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Publication numberUS3901432 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 26, 1975
Filing dateOct 30, 1972
Priority dateOct 30, 1972
Publication numberUS 3901432 A, US 3901432A, US-A-3901432, US3901432 A, US3901432A
InventorsLancaster Cecilia H
Original AssigneeBaker Raymond N
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible box structure
US 3901432 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 [11] 3,901,432 Lancaster Aug. 26, 197

[54] COLLAPSIBLE BOX STRUCTURE 1,473,942 11/1923 Strauss 229/46 2,597,848 5/1952 Reeser [751 lnvenm" Cecilia Lancaster, Bethesda, 3,276,662 /1966 Farquhar 229/23 BT [73] Assignee: Raymond N. Baker, Washington,

D.C. a part inter t Primary Examiner-William 1. Price Assistant Examiner-Stephen P. Garbe [22] led: 1972 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Raymond N. Baker Appl. No.: 301,741

US. Cl. 229/23 R; 229/23 BT; 229/41 R; 229/45; 229/46 Int. Cl..... 865d 13/04; Bd 5/36; 365d 45/32 Field of Search 229/23 HT, 23 R, 23 A, 229/41 R, 46, 43, 45

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 831,415 9/1906 Carnahan 229/41 R 1,168,561 1/1916 Rosenwald 229/23 R 1,384,065 7/1921 l-lirschwitz 229/41 R [5 7] ABSTRACT Three-piece collapsible box structure made from sheet material such as cardboard. Sidewalls are defined by sheets foldable into flat configuration when not in use and operable to outline side peripheries of the box. The sidewalls can be held in open position by coaction with top and/or bottom closures or by a pivotable stay means carried along a fold line. Top and bottom closures can be interchangeable with various depth sidewall structure. Ribbon, stretchable cord, or other securing means can be integral with the box structure.

4 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures PATENTEU 13251975 SHEET 1 BF 2 FIG] l rr COLLAPSIBLE BOX STRUCTURE This invention is concerned with collapsible container structure, in particular, with three-piece collaps ible container structure providing high strength, attractive box structures while conserving storage space of containers when not in use through easily operable collapsible and assembly features.

In retail marketing, industry and homes there is a growing need for a high strength container which does not occupy space equivalent to its capacity when not in use. Neither the one-piece heavy corrugated cardboard box nor the lighter two-piece foldable department store type box has filled the need for a quality container which was sturdy and sufficiently attractive that a purchaser would want to use the box in the home. Also none of these prior art foldable containers made variable capacity possible for providing optional selection of certain parts. Further none of these containers provide built-in rapid tying and easy assembly features desirable in commercial operations.

These and other disadvantages of the prior art are overcome by the present invention. Basic concepts of the invention and basic contributions to this art made by the invention are brought out in the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. I is a perspective view of a container embodying the invention shown in the process of assembly for use,

FIG. 2 is a side view of the elements of FIG. 1 in collapsed form,

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a container similar to that of FIG. 1 with differing tying means for easy assembly,

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a container embodying the invention in the process of assembly,

FIG. 5 is a side view of the container of FIG. 4 in compact assembled form,

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of side wall means for a container embodying the invention,

FIGS. 7 and 8 are side views of endwall means for use with the embodiment of FIG. 6, shown in expanded and partially collapsed form respectively, and

FIG. 9 is an alternate form of endwall means for use with the above embodiment.

The three-piece box structure of FIG. 1 includes top 12, bottom 14, and sidewall 16. The structure of top closure means 12 includes end panel 18 and side flaps 20, 21, 22, and 23 such side flaps are foldable into a flat position along the line of their respective junctures with the periphery of panel 18. The longitudinally extending sidewall flaps 20 and 22 include button means 24, centrally located along their length.

Sidewall means 16 are foldable into flat condition, as shown in FIG. 2, along corner lines 28, 29, 30, and 31.

Bottom endwall means 14 is substantially identical to the top endwall means 12 except that it includes stretchable cord means 35, 36 attached centrally along its longitudinal side flaps in position to be stretched into a tying or locking relationship with buttons 24 and 25 respectively.

To maintain the sidewall means 16 in the extended condition, the lateral side flaps 21 and 23 of the top closure means 12, as well as the lateral side flaps of the bottom closure means 14, are inserted inwardly of the sidewall means. The longitudinally extending side flaps of top 12 with buttons 24 and 25 and the longitudinally extending side flaps with stretchable cord means 35 and 36 remaining external of the sidewall means 16.

Such insertion of the lateral side flaps is shown in dotted lines in the embodiment of FIG. 3. The result is that the top and bottom closure are firmly locked in position, the the sidewall means of the structure is locked in its open position and a rigid, high strength box structure is provided.

FIG. 2 shows the three pieces of the collapsible container of FIG. I in one available collapsed form for shipment or storage.

One of the important advantages of the invention over the prior art is the selectability of container capacity. The depth of the sidewall means 16, and thus the capacity of the container, is selectable within the teaching of the invention. Either deep or shallow boxes are readily obtainable while the endwall closure means remain of the same dimensions. This feature makes numerous sizes of boxes readily available by merely stocking various depth sidewall means. Also, differing color schemes and decorator patterns can be obtained by selecting among the various sidewall means and endwall closure means to be combined.

The embodiment of FIG. 3 is substantially identical to that of FIG. 1 except for a single securing means, button 40 which is centrally located of the top closure means. Stretchable cord means 42 originates and terminates at such button means and surrounds the box laterally. Other fastening means such as snap means could be used instead of button means and decorative stretchable tapes and ribbons can be used for tying of the box.

In the embodiment of FIG. 4 top and bottom closure means 44 and 45 have fixed side portions so as to form a shallow-depth, compact, box when not separated by sidewall means 46. The sidewall means 46 is foldable at corner portions and collapsible centrally of the lateral sides along lines 48 and 50 respectively so that the sidewall means 46 can be folded compactly and carried or stored within the top and bottom closure means 44 and 45 (as shown in dotted lines in FIG. 5).

Ribbon means 52 are used to tie the container together in either the full capacity or compact form. This type of embodiment is ideally suited to school lunch box usage. After consumption of the contents, it can be placed in the compact form of FIG. 5 and have substantially the same contour and size as a book. This type of sidewall structure can also be used with the embodiment of FIGS. 1 and 3.

The invention provides several means for keeping the lateral portions of the box sidewall structure in extended condition when in use. In the partial view of bottom closure means 45 and sidewall means 46 of FIG. 6, brace means is secured to a panel of bottom closure means 45. Brace means 60 holds the lateral sidewall in extended form when inserted as indicated. Such brace means are located at each longitudinal end of a closure means when the center fold line is provided at each end. Location on one closure means, preferably the bottom closure means is sufficient but, such brace means can be included on both top and bottom means if desired.

Another approach for holding such lateral sidewall means in extended form is shown in FIGS. 7 and 8. An elongated stay 62 is rotatably held at pivot point 64 by stretchable material. With the stay in this position it prevents the lateral sidewall from folding upon itself. FIG. 8 shows stay 62 positioned in parallel relation to the lateral sidewall fold line to permit inwardly folding of the lateral sidewall.

The various embodiments can also be made with the side flaps of the top and bottom end means foldable along crease lines in a manner known in the art. A representative example of this type is shown in FIG. 9. This provides a three-piece box which is completely foldable into flat relationship without requiring vacant storage space as in the embodiment of FIG. 5. Various depth sidewall means can be used to vary the capacity of any of the embodiments.

The collapsible container structures of the present invention when used for retail stores can be made of the conventional pressed cardboard and similar types of materials known in the trade. For heavier industrial uses corrugated cardboard or equivalent materials can be used. More durable, long-life boxes for use in home storage and for other seasonal storage needs can be made from pressed wood, metals, plastics and cardboard, alone or in combination, using foldable tape seams, or their equivalent, for the less flexible materials.

Other modifications of the fastening means, or other adaptation of the means for holding the sidewall structure in open position, or combinations of the features shown in the various embodiments can be resorted to in the light of the above disclosure without departing from the basic principles of the invention taughtf Therefore in determining the scope of the present invention reference shall be had to the accompanying claims.

What is claimed is: 1. Three-piece collapsible box structure comprising sidewall means made of sheet-like material, such as cardboard, the sidewall means being foldable into a flat configuration and expansible into an extended configuration which defines the sidewall peripheral outline of an enclosure which is open on its two remaining oppositely disposed surfaces, closure means adapted to be assembled in combination with the sidewall means when in extended configuration including a pair of closures for separately covering respectively each of the remaining open surfaces defined by sidewall means, the sidewall means including planar sidewall panels meeting along juncture lines and being foldable along at least such juncture lines, the closure means including side flaps adapted to extend in planes about the peripheral outline of the box structure, each in substantially parallel relationship to its respective adjacent sidewall panel, a portion of such side flaps fitting internally of the peripheral configuration defined by the sidewall means and a portion of such flaps fitting externally of such configuration so that the internally fitted flaps maintain the sidewall means in extended configuration, and fastening means for releasably securing the closure means in covering relationship to the remaining oppositely disposed surfaces of the sidewall means. 2. The structure of claim 1 in which at least one of the sidewall panels is foldable upon itself so that the overall length dimension of the sidewall means, when in collapsed configuration, is no greater than the overall length dimension of the closure means.

3. Three-piece collapsible box structure comprising sidewall means made of sheet-like material, such as cardboard, the sidewall means being foldable into a flat configuration and expansible into an extended configuration which defines the sidewall peripheral outline of an enclosure which is open on its two remaining surfaces, closure means adapted to be assembled in combination with the sidewall means when in extended configuration including a pair of closures for separately covering respectively each of the remaining open surfaces defined by sidewall means, the sidewall means including longitudinal sidewalls and lateral sidewalls with the sidewall means being foldable along juncture lines between the longitudinal and lateral sidewalls and along similarly oriented fold lines located centrally of each lateral sidewall, and stay means pivotally mounted along the lateral sidewall fold lines and pivotally rotatable in position to permit folding of the lateral sidewalls or to maintain the lateral sidewalls in extended configuration. 4. Three-piece collapsible box structure comprising sidewall means made of sheet-like material, such as cardboard, the sidewall means being foldable into a flat configuration and expansible into an extended configuration which defines the sidewall peripheral outline of an enclosure which is open on its two remaining oppositely disposed surfaces, closure means adapted to be assembled in combination with the sidewall means when in extended configuration including a pair of closures for separately covering respectively each of the remaining open surfaces defined by sidewall means, the sidewall means including planar sidewall panels meeting along juncture lines and being foldable along at least such juncture lines, the closure means including side flaps adapted to extend in planes about the peripheral outline of the box structure, each in substantially parallel relationship to its respective adjacent sidewall panel, a portion of such side flaps fitting internally of the peripheral configuration defined by the sidewall means and a portion of such flaps fitting externally of such configuration so that the internally fitted flaps maintain the sidewall means in extended configuration, and fastening means for releasably securing the closure means in covering relationship to the remaining oppositely disposed surfaces of the sidewall means, the fastening means including button means mounted on the closure means and cord means interconnecting the pair of closure means and releasably holding them in fixed position on the oppositely disposed surfaces of the sidewall means.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US831415 *Jan 26, 1905Sep 18, 1906Globe Wernicke CoCollapsible vertical transfer-file.
US1168561 *Jun 22, 1914Jan 18, 1916Lucian RosenwaldCollapsible box.
US1384065 *Mar 4, 1920Jul 12, 1921Sydney S GoldbergCollapsible portable hatbox
US1473942 *Nov 4, 1922Nov 13, 1923Ferdinand StraussFastening device
US2597848 *Jul 19, 1949May 27, 1952Patent & Licensing CorpEgg container
US3276662 *Feb 4, 1965Oct 4, 1966Reynolds Metals CoContainer construction and parts therefor or the like
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4098383 *Mar 24, 1977Jul 4, 1978Leif CarpmanMethod for the feed of cylindrical objects to a working machine
US4133430 *Nov 7, 1977Jan 9, 1979Cravens Harold ECartonized tray
US4657176 *Nov 25, 1985Apr 14, 1987Eiwa Sangyo Kabushiki KaishaCollapsible box including bag and attached lid
US4659322 *Aug 23, 1985Apr 21, 1987Boudin Leon LApparatus and method for producing a resealable container
US5205412 *Apr 8, 1992Apr 27, 1993Aurex, S.A. De C.V.Recyclable package for a stack of rolls of magnetic tape
US5305949 *Dec 24, 1992Apr 26, 1994Linden Gerald EFoldable, easily-disposable pizza box, and methods of making and using same
US5765748 *Mar 27, 1996Jun 16, 1998Chen; In-ChangBox cover
DE9208093U1 *Jun 13, 1992Sep 3, 1992Europa Carton Ag, 2000 Hamburg, DeTitle not available
Classifications
U.S. Classification229/117.2, 229/122.3, 229/125.22
International ClassificationB65D5/02, B65D5/42, B65D5/12
Cooperative ClassificationB65D5/4283, B65D5/12
European ClassificationB65D5/42J1, B65D5/12