US 3902932 A
A holder for a flexible sided container such as a box of facial tissues comprises a pair of coactable base members each of which is provided with container gripping means. The members are also provided with adjusting means for controlling the separation of the gripping means, the separation being directly related to the size of the container. In most embodiments the gripping means will be a pair of flanges which, when adjustment is proper, will deform the flexible sides of the container to effectively hold the container against displacement. The adjusting means permit sliding of one base member relative to the other so that the separation of the gripping means can be properly set.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Gdanski et al. Sept. 2, 1975 1 HOLDER FOR FLEXIBLE SIDED 2,545,844 3/1951 Cougias 211/43 CONTAINER 2,588,862 3/1952 Mayo 248/310 x 2,625,162 l/l953 Edeborg 211/51 1 Inventors! Ronald Gdanski, l0 Sunnylea 2,704,443 3/1955 Eaton 211 51 x Crescent, Grimsby, Ontario; Aime 2,733,044 5/1973 Rabner 248/313 Fournier, 13 Masterson D12, St. 2,911,700 11/1959 Wieland 248/310 X Catherines O t i both f Canada 3,389,805 6/1968 Yeomans 21 1/43 3,514,014 5/1970 Skowronski 221/46  Filed: Nov. 21, 1973  Appl, No.: 418,133 Primary Emn'1inerR0y D. Frazier Assistant E.\'amine1-Rodncy H. Bonck  Foreign Application Priority Data Oct. 16, 1973 Canada 183508  ABSTRACT A holder for a flexible sided container such as a box of  US. Cl 248/313; 248/D1G. 5 facial tissues comprises a pair of coactable base mem- [51 1 int. Cl. A47F 7/28 bers each of which is provided with container gripping [581 Field of Search 248/313, 31 l, DIG. 5; means. The members are also provided with adjusting 21 H43, 51; 221/45, 46, 282285 means for controlling the separation of the gripping means, the separation being directly related to the size  References Cited of the container. In most embodiments the gripping UNlTED STATES PATENTS means will be a pair of flanges which, when adjust- 1,377,160 5 1921 Tiikkainen 248/310 Proper 1 deform the l sides, h 1,460,642 7/1923 Cadenhead 211/4 contamer to effecttveh hold the conta ner agamst d1sl 739 545 12/1929 C bb l y 211/51 X placement. The ad ustmg means perm1t s11d1ng of one 1,923,996 8/1933 Oldenbusch 211/43 base member relative to the other so that the separa- 2,235,839 3/1941 McEner 248/311 X tion of the gripping means can be properly set. 2,466,899 4/1949 Kincaid..... 248/313 X 2,511,843 Graether 211/43 4 Claims, 22 Drawing Figures PATEN [EU SEP 21975 PATENTED SEP' 2 m5 HOLDER FOR FLEXIBLE SIDED CONTAINER The present invention relates in general to holders for flexible sided containers and in particular to holders forboxes of facial tissues.
Boxes for facial tissues are commonly formed of light card stock paper and are rectangular or square in shape. These boxes vary considerably in the quantity of tissues contained within and in their dimensions of length. width and height. One side of the box is usually perforated so that a portion can be removed to permit access to the tissues contained therein. Such boxes are normally printed in attractive designs and colours so that they are pleasing in appearance.
Existing tissue box holders come in many shapes and sizes but none can be considered to be an optimum design. Some holders completely envelope the tissue box like a second skin and thus hide the aesthetic appearance of current boxes. Such holders do not accommodate larger sized boxes at all and they can only sloppily accommodate smaller sized boxes. Some holders are designed to sit only on a flat surface while others will only sit on the transmission hump of an automobile. Also many tissue box holders will not permit the box to. be held in a horizontal orientation while the holder itself is oriented vertically. If the tissues lie vertically they will tend to sag and fold within the box as their quantities dwindle. Holders which are more versatile than most are bulky and not easily positionable in convenient locations in automobiles. boats. homes and ofticcs.
The tissue box holders of the present invention overcome these drawbacks since they are small. adjustable. inconspicuous. easily mounted and they can be ori ented either vertically or horizontally while always holding the box horizontally. In its basic form the present invention comprises a pair of coactable base members each having container gripping means thereon. Means are provided on the base members to adjust the separation of the gripping means and maintain the members in the adjusted position. The separation of the gripping means. which may be a pair of flanges directed towards each other. is directly related to the size of the container to be held. In operation the gripping means deform portions of opposite sides of the container, trapping the connecting container panel between the gripping means and the adjacent supporting surfaces of the base members.
A number ofconfigurations of the basic invention are possible. the mechanism for adjustment being a main variable. For example. mutually engageable ratchet teeth on the base members permit easy reduction of the separation between gripping means for entrapment of a box while inhibiting increased separation therebetween to prevent removal of a box. Alternatively a plurality of interlocking splines or ribs on the base members can be used to position the gripping means in their predetermined positions. Any of the adjusting means disclosed can be readily incorporated into the basic design which lends itself to injection or compression moulding. Each of the base members. with appropriate forethought. can be moulded in a single step.
One additional advantage of the present invention is that the base members may be readily provided with surface areas which accept advertising copy. Thus the container holder of the present invention could find use 2 in disseminating information about. for example. the product lield thereby.
The invention will now be'described in greater detail with reference to the drawings wherein:
FIG. I is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the first base member of the preferred embodiment.
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the second base member of the preferred embodiment.
FIG. 4 is a sectional view looking along line 44 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 5 is a sectional view looking along line 5-5 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 6 is an enlargement of the circled portion of FIG. 5.
FIGS. 7 and II are plan views of the second and third embodiments respectively of the present invention.
FIGS. 8 and 9 are sectional views looking along lines and 9-9 respectively of FIG. 7.
FIGJIO is a partial perspective of the male ratcheting portion of the second embodiment.
FIGS. 12 and 13 are sectional views looking along lines l2-l2 and l3l3 respectively of FIG. II.
FIG. 14 is a perspective view of a'four th embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. I5 is a sectional view looking along line I5I5 of FIG. 14.
FIGS. 16 and 17 are plan views of the first and second base members respectively of the fourth embodiment.
FIGS. I8 and 19 are partial sectional views of the locking tabs of the fourth and fifth embodiments respectively.
FIG. 20 is a perspective view of the fifth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 21 is a plan view thereof; and
.FIG. 22 is a sectional view looking along line 2222 of FIG. 20.
A preferred embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. I to 6. Flexible container holder 30 comprises tow coactable main parts. namely a first base member 32 and a'sccond base member 34. These members will be described individually from the structural viewpoint and then their cooperative operation will be defined.
First base member 32 comprises a generally rectangular base plate portion 36 which has therein a congruent generally central and rectangular opening 38. Wall means 40 are provided along the opposite ends of the plate 36. the wall means extending away from the plate surface a short distance. Wall means 42, similar and parallel to wall means 40, are provided along opposite ends of opening 38. extending away from the plate surface -the same distance as wall means 40. Extending along the outermost edge of each wall means 40 and directed towards the adjacent wall means 42 is a flange means 44. best seen in FIGS. 1, 2 and 4. Extending.
along the outermost edge of each wall means 42 and directed towards the adjacent wall means 40 is a flange means 46. Each pair of wall means 40, 42 and flange means 44, 46 defines a guideway 48 which is adapted to receive a portion of the second base member 34, as will be described later.
Extending outwardly from plate 36 is abutment wall means 49, the top surface of which is coplanar with the outermost edges of wall means 40 and 42. In the pre- 3 ferred embodiment illustrated the abutment wall 49 bridges the distance from one wall means to the other wall means 40 along one side of plate 36. The abutment wall also is coextensive with the side of open ing 38 adjacent the one side of the plate and as such it merges with both wall means 42.
Extending outwardly from the top surface of the abutment wall 49 is a side wall 50. As shown the side wall 50 runs the full length of the abutment wall, but this need not be so as its main function is to support the box gripping means 52. The box gripping means 52 is illustrated as a flange directed inwardly of the plate and spaced a short distance outwardly of the abutment wall top surface. The flange 52 is substantially central of the abutment wall and is provided with angled ends 54, the purpose of which will become apparent during the discussion of the operation of the invention.
On the side of the opening opposite abutment wall 49. the plate 36 is provided with a sloping portion 56. best viewed in FIGS. 2 and 5. Thus the thickness of plate 36 progressively decreases towards opening 38 over approximately half the distance from the adjacent outside edge of plate 36 to the adjacent inside edge of opening 38. The purpose of this sloping portion will also become evident in view of later discussions.
First base member 32 is provided with adjustment means in the form of a pair of cantilevered ratchet plates 58 which are utilized in adjusting the box holder of the present invention.
Each ratchet plate 58 is generally rectangular in plan and has one longitudinal side thereof fixed to the inside surface of one of the wall means 42 such that it overlies opening 38. The top surface of each ratchet plate is coplanar with the top surfaces of the wall means 40 and 42 and abutment wall 49. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 each plate 58 merges at one end thereof with the abutment wall but this is not essential to operability of the invention. In fact the invention would be operable if each ratchet plate 58 were only cantclcvcred to an appropriate wall means 42 or to the abutment wall 49.
The surface of each ratchet plate adjacent opening 38 is provided with a plurality of transverse. parallel. tandemly oriented female ratchet teeth 60. Each tooth has a generally saw tooth profile with a ramp portion 61 and a locking portion 62 shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, the teeth pointing towards abutment wall 49. Tooth 64 is at the outermost end of the ratchet plate and has a height greater than that of the remaining teeth by a distance 63. Its function will also be described later.
Centrally located in each guideway 48 and adjacent the abutment wall 49 is a mounting boss 65. The height of the boss 65 is the same as that of the abutment wall and it is provided with a countersunk portion 66 and a through hole 68. Mounting screws or bolts can be located in the countersunk boss to fasten the first base member to any supporting medium. Since the underside of plate 36 is also planar. double-sided adhesive tape can be bonded thereto to facilitate ready mounting of the first base member to a supporting surface. with or without the use of screws or bolts in boss 65.
The second base member 34 will now be described in greater detail. It essentially comprises a U-shaped base plate portion 70 which has two legs 72 sized for reception in guideways 48. Each leg 72 has a step 74 along the outermost edge thereof and a step 76 along the innermost edge thereof. the height of the steps being equal to or slightly less than the spacing from the top of plate 36 to the underside of flanges 44 and 46 of the first base member. In order to conserve material. each leg may be provided with a depression 78 in the bottom thereof. best seen in FIGS. 3 and 4.
Along the back ofplate 70 runs abutment wall means 80 which. like abutment wall means 49. need not extend the full width of the member. The abutment wall 80 carries an inwardly directed box gripping means 82, analagous to flange 52 and at the same height above plate 70 as flange 52 is above plate 36. At this point it should be pointed out that when the second base member is received within the first base member the top sur faces of plates 36 and 70 are coplanar, as are flanges S2 and 82. As with flange 52, flange 82 is provided with angled ends 84.
Between the legs 72, spaced therefrom a distance 94 slightly greater than the thickness of wall means 42 and projecting outwardly from the cross-piece joining the legs is an adjusting plate means in the form of a can televered ratchet plate 86, the thickness of-which is much less than the thickness of plate 70. The outermost edge of ratchet plate 86 is coplanar with the outermost ends of legs 70 and is provided with a pair of spaced apart male ratchet teeth 88 sized for reception in female ratchet teeth 60. These male teeth are best viewed in FIGS. 3, 5 and 6 and it is seen that each tooth has a ramp surface 90 and a locking surface 92.
In the outermost end of each leg 72 is provided a cutout 96 which is sized to mate with the outer exposed surface of boss 65. Also. centrally located on the ratchet plate 86 is a thumb release 98 which is in the form of a circular boss having a diameter less than the spacing between ratchet plates 58 and a height no greater thanthe top surface of plate 70. This boss has an inwardly sloping annular surface 100 and exposes a circular portion of the ratchet plate 86 at 102.
Both base members may have sloping side portions 104 and 106 extending the full length thereof. adapted to receive preprinted advertising material or any such message.
Both base members lend themselves admirably to production by injection or compression moulding techniques. In order to form the various flanges integrally with the appropriate upstanding wall means the mould dies may be designed with appropriate inserts which would. when the part is withdrawn, leave a slot or cut out immediately below the associated flange. Thus cutouts 108, 110, 112 and 114 appear immediately below flanges 52, 44, 46 and 82 respectively.
When assembling the two base members together, legs 72 with steps 74. 76 thereon are aligned with guideways 48 and the members are forced together as shown in FIGS. 1. 4 and 5. Steps 74 first engage in guideway 48 under flanges 44 and as the members slide together steps 76 will engage under flanges 46 and ramp surfaces 90 of ratchet teeth 88 will engage ramp surfaces 61 of ratchet teeth 64. Continued sliding or drawing together of the base members will force ratchet teeth 88 over ratchet teeth 64 and subsequently over ratchet teeth 60 until movement is ceased. Withdrawal of the second base member 34 from the first base member is prevented by the locking action of surfaces 92 and 62 on teeth 88 and 60. However. should it be desired to separate the base members, thumb guide 98 can be depressed and due to the flexible nature of cantileveredplate 86 the teeth 88 will be forced out of engagement with the teeth 60. thereby permitting sliding movement of the first base member in the second base member between limits imposed by teeth 64 and abutment wall 49. If it is desired to remove the first base member completely from the second base member. the thumb guide is depressed and the first base member moved to where ratchet teeth 88 engage teeth 64. With the thumb guide depressed the first base member may then be tilted upwardly at-the back side thereof so that ratchet plate 86 is tilted towards sloping surface 56. Withthc first-base member in this attitude engagement between ratchet teeth 88 and 64 is overcome and the first base member may be fully withdrawn.
FIG. 5 illustrates the manner in which a flexible sided box may be securely held by the present invention. A box. such as a tissue box 116. has flexible sides I18 and a bottom 120 which may be up to three layers of card stock thick at the seam. A flange height of 3/16 of an inch should thus be allowed to clear the side wall material in case a seam is present. With the first base member extended so as to present the greatest opening between flanges 52 and 82 a box may be placed with its bottom 120 against the coplanar top surfaces of plates 36 and 70 and one side against one of the flanges 52 or 82. The two base members are then forced together so that the other flange 82 or 52 engages the opposite side of the box. The base members may then be drawn closer together by a distance of at least one ratchet tooth whereby the flanges 52 and 82 compress the box therebetween by crimping and gripping the sides 118 at 122. Since the box bottom is strong relative to the sides. the bottom will not tend to buckle and there is considerable resistance to removal of the box in a direction perpendicular to the plane of the holder. The box can. however. be removed easily in one of two ways. It can be slid along the holder towards one end thereof until the flanges 52. 82 disengage the sides 118. The box can. of course. be orginally introduced. or reintroduced. into the holder in the reverse manner due to the angled ends 54. 84 of the flanges 52, 82 which feed the box into position. Alternatively the box may be removed by depression of the thumb guide. which may be reached through the normal opening in the box and pressed from within the box. followed by sliding separation of the two base members.
It is readily apparent that a more permanent locking of the box in place could be achieved by having one or both flanges 52, 82 in the form of serrations. The serrations might actually penetrate the box sides to lock the box. withdrawal being achieved then only by the latter method described above. It is also apparent that boxes can be held with a side thereof against plates 36 and 70 so as to be gripped at top and bottom by flanges 52., 82. With these alternative gripping modes. it can be seen that the holder may be positioned either horizontally or vertically on an appropriate supporting surface so as to always present the box in the preferredorientation.
It is also readily apparent that other forms of gripping means could be provided so that the basic adjustment principle could be adapted for other uses. For example the flange could be replaced by a straight upright wall so that objects which do not readily compress could be gripped by friction thcrebctween. Books. for example, could be held in a handy vertical manner with the bound edge up for display and promotion purposes.
A second embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. 7. 8. 9 and 10 whereinthe' flexible box holder comprises two coactable main parts. namely a first base member 202 and a second base member 204. The first base member comprises a rectangular base plate portion 206 provided along each of a pair of opposite sides with wall means 208 which extend a short distance outward of the plate surface. Each wall means'208 is. in turn. provided with flange means 210 spaced a short distance from the plate surface and directed towards the flange means 210 on the opposite wall means. An abutment wall means 212 spans one end of the plate 206, extending between wall means 208. 208, the top surface of the abutment wall means being coplanar with the top surface of each flange means 210.
Extending outwardly from abutment wall 212 is a side wall 214 which carries a flange means 216 directed inwardly of plate 206 a short distance above abutment wall 212. As with the flanges 52 and 82 of the preferred embodiment. flange means 216 is provided with angled ends 218 to permit sliding sideways insertion of a flexible sided box. As with the preferred embodiment. openings such as 220 in plate 206 can result below the various flanges if the base member is moulded in a single operation.
A pair of guide rails 222 are provided projecting outwardly of plate 206 and running parallel to side walls 208. The height of projection of each rail is less than the distance between the top surface of plate 206 and the underside of flanges 210 and is preferably no more than half that distance. Extending parallel to abutment wall 212 between rails 222 are adjustment means in the form of a plurality of parallel. tandemly oriented female ratchet teeth-224. each having a ramp portion 226 and a locking portion 228. the teeth being directed towards abutment wall 212 (FIG. 8). The teeth can be moulded in a depression 230 formed in plate 206 between rails 222 and the apex of each tooth should be substantially coplanar with the top surface of guide rails 222.
As with the preferred embodiment. a pair ofcountersunk mounting holes 232 can be provided in plate 206 to augment of replace any other standard mounting means which might be contemplated.
The second base member 204 comprises a U-shaped base plate portion 234 provided with a central opening 236 and a step 238 along eachoutside edge. The thickness of plate 234 is essentially the same as the distance from the top surface of plate 206 to theunderside of flanges 210. I
Each leg of plate 234 may be provided with a depression 240 in the bottom thereof to conserve material. In addition the central portion of plate 234 is provided with a depression 242 in the bottom thereof which extends the full width of the central section and actually extends into the inside edges of each leg so as to form a bottom step 244. The depth of depression 242. and of steps 244, is slightly greater than the height of guide rails 222, which rails are designed to mate with steps 244.
End abutment wall means 246 extends across the back edge of plate 234 and is provided with a flange 248 directed inwardly of plate 234 and having angled ends 250. The flange is parallel to plate 234 and is spaced above the plate a distance substantially equal to the spacing of flange 216 above abutment wall 212. As with the first base member. one-step moulding of the second base member results in the formation of an opening 252 in plate 234 directly below flange 248.
Adjusting plate means in the form of a pair of ratchet plates 254 are cantilevered from the inside edge ofcentral opening 236, the ratchet plates being substantially identical and being spaced laterally from each other as well as from the legs of plate 234. The free end of each ratchet plate is essentially coplanar with the free end of each leg and the bottom surface of each ratchet plate is substantially coplanar with the exposed surface of depression 242. As best shown in FIG. 10 one of the ratchet plates 254 is provided on its bottom surface at its free end with a male ratchet tooth 256 having a ramp portion 260 and a locking portion 262 which may be obtusely angled with respect to the bottom surface. Tooth 256 is designed to mate with teeth 224 as shown in FIG. 8. The other ratchet plate 254 is provided with a male ratchet tooth 258, having a ramp portion 264 and a locking portion 266 similar to locking portion 262. As shown in FIGS. 8 and 10. the teeth 256 and 258 have the same height. but their apicies are displaced longitudinally of the ratchet plates 254 by a distance 268 substantially equal to half the pitch between teeth 224. This mechanism for interaction between teeth 224 and 256. 258 provides for increased adjustability between the first and second base members.
The present embodiment of the invention holds a flexible sided box in the same manner as the preferred embodiment. namely locked between opposing flanges 216 and 248. The adjustability is enhanced. however. since two positions of the second base member can be achieved with only one tooth on the first base member. As shown in FIG. 8, tooth 256 is engaging one tooth 224, their locking portions 260 and 228 being in a locking configuration. Due to the relative displacement between teeth 256 and 258, the sloping portion 264 of tooth 258 will rest on the sloping portion 2260f the tooth 224 engaged by tooth 256, near the apex thereof. Should the second base member be pushed inwardly of the first base member. the apex of tooth 258 will rise along sloping portion 226 and drop over the apex of tooth 224 so that the locking portion 226 comes into locking configuration with the locking portion 228,just vacated by tooth 256. At this time the sloping portion 260 of tooth 256 will rest on the sloping portion 226 of the next innermost tooth 224 on the first base member. Thus for any one tooth 224, two positions of the second base member. as determined by the relative displacement of teeth 256, 258 are possiblev Due to the relative flexibility of cantilevered ratchet plates 254 the second base member can be withdrawn from engagement with the first base member by applying an outward separa tion force on the second base member relative to the first base member whereby teeth 256, 258 ride up and over teeth 224.
Since the disengaged tooth 256 or 258 is in a position to engage itself with the female tooth as it approaches its engaged position. it is seen that the two male tooth system prevents the teeth from jumping or skipping engagement positions and opening the base members more than desired. It is also apparent that the separation force desired can be set in manufacture by having the locking portions 262, 266 make appropriate angles with the bottom surface of ratchet plates 254.
A third embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. 11, 12 and 13 wherein the flexible box holder comprises two coactablc main parts, namely a first base member 302 and a second base member 304. The first base member 302 is very similar to first base member 202 of the second embodiment and has a rectangular base plate portion 306 provided with side walls 308. inwardly directed side flanges 310, transverse abutment wall means 312 with end wall 314 and end flange 316 thereon. The flange 316, as before. has angled ends 318 to aid sliding sideways insertion of a flexible sided box. A pair of longitudinally directed parallel guide rails 320 project outwardly from the top surface of plate 306, the height of projection approximating the outward spacing of flanges 310.
As with the second embodiment, adjustment means in the form of a plurality of parallel. tandemly oriented ratchet teeth 322 extend transversely between rails 320,-but these teeth differ from those previously described in that they have two sloping portions 324, 326 instead ofjust one such portion. Thus, as shown in FIG. 12, each tooth has a cross-section approximating an isosceles triangle rather than a cross-section approximating a right angle triangle. as do the teeth of the previous embodiments.
A pair of countersunk mounting holes 328 may be provided in plate 306 to aid in mounting the holder of the present embodiment to an appropriate supporting surface.
The second base member 304 is similar to second base member 204 in that it comprises a generally U- shaped base plate portion member 330 having a pair of legs 332 flanking a central opening 334. The outer edges of legs 332 are provided with steps 336 for sliding within the space between plate 306 and flanges 310 and abutment wall means 338 bridges the outermost edge of the cross-piece joining legs 332. A flange 340 projects towards opening 334 from abutment wall means 338, flanges 340 and 316 being spaced above plate 330 and abutment wall 312, respectively, by substantially the same amount. As with flange 316, flange 340 has angled ends 342.
As shown in FIGS. 11 and 12, adjusting plate means in the form of a ratchet plate 344 is cantilevered from the cross-piece joining legs 332 and is centrally oriented with respect to opening 334. In the form of this embodiment illustrated, plate 332 is sized so that its bottom surface will engage the top surface of rails 320 and hence, as shown in FIG. 12, the top surface of ratchet plate 344 is actually coplanar with the bottom surface of plate 330. If plate 330 were, formed in a manner analagous to plate 234 of the second embodiment, i.e. with guide steps analogous to steps 244, then the ratchet plate 344 could be cantelevered to the inside cross edge of the plate 330, just as ratchet plates 254 are cantelevered to plate 234.
On the bottom surface of ratchet plate 344, at the free end thereof. is a transverse ratchet tooth 346, with sloping portions 248 and 250 (FIG. 12). In operation the tooth 346 mates with teeth 322 to lock the second base member relative to the first base member to secure a flexible sided box between flanges 316 and 340. Because of the sloping surfaces 324, 326 and 348, 350 adjustment of the base members relative to each other is quite easy. although more spring action of the cantilevered ratchet plate 344 is required to ensure effective engagement of the ratchet teeth.
In all of these embodiments it is seen that the first base member forms a track in which the position of the second base member may be adjusted. By having appropriately sized base members any size of flexible container can be held.
Two further embodiments exhibiting the inventive features of the preferred embodiment are illustrated in FIGS. 14 to 22. Each of these embodiments comprises first and second coactablc base members. box gripping means on each base member and adjusting means on the base members for spacing the gripping means apart by a predetermined distance.
The embodiment of FIGS. 14 to 18 is shown in perspective in FIG. 14 as comprising a pair of coactable, mutually adjustable base members 402 and 438. Base member 402 has a generally planar base plate portion 404 provided with a central rectangular opening 406. A stepped portion 408 extends along one longitudinal edge of the base plate adjacent opening 406, portion 408 being spaced outwardly a short distance from plate 404 and being parallel thereto. Abutment wall means 410 extends across the outermost longitudinal edge of portion 408 and projects outwardly therefrom. A pair of box gripping means on flanges 412 are directed parallel to portion 408 towards opening 406 and. as in the previous embodiments, they have angled ends 414. It is understood that any number offlanges, or even a plurality of gripping teeth. could be utilized in place of the pair of flanges 412.
Surface 416 slopes from the outermost edge of abutment wall 410 outwardly so that its opposite edge is generally in line with the bottom surface of plate 404. This surface is of sufficient size to accept advertising information. instructions for use of the holder. or other printed matter. As shown in FIGS. 15 and 16 stepped portion 408 and surface 416 are supported by a plurality of intersecting ribs 418 and 420. These ribs are utilized to strengthen the structure. providing rigidity as well as a framework for receiving the covering thereover to complete stepped portion 408 and'sloping surface 416. It is understood that this construction permits integral moulding of the first base member and extreme rigidity. Should the base member be integrally moulded. openings akin to openings 108, 114 or 220 would appear in portion 408 below flanges 412.
Mounting holes 422. which may be countersunk are provided in stepped portion 408. i
Cantilevered from stepped portion 408 over'opening 406 is an adjusting plate means 424 whose top surface is essentially coplanar with the top surface of portion 408. On the under surface of plate 424 and facing opening 406 are a plurality of tandemly oriented alternating parallel ribs 426 and grooves 428, the ribs and grooves extending longitudinally of plate 424. The use of the ribs and grooves will become apparent in the dis cussion of the operation of the flexible box holder of this embodiment.
Spaced outwardly from the ends of plate 424 are a pair of crescent-shaped cut-outs 430 in. plate 404 the legs of which are directed away from plate 424. Contained within each cut-out is a tab portion 432 of plate 404, which portion has a limited degree of flexibility. Stops 434 extend outwardly from tabs 432 and extend around a portion of the periphery thereof. although the shape of stops 434 is not'critical to the invention. As shown in FIG. 18, the flexibility of tabs 432 may be enhanced by having the thickness thereof less than that of plate 404.
Extra mounting holes 436 can be provided in base plate 404 to aid in mounting the first base member 402 to a supporting surface.
Second base member 438 is provided with adjustment means such as plate 440 specifically adapted for coaction with adjusting plate 424. A plurality of spaced. parallel ribs 442 extend longitudinally of plate 440 adjacent one edge thereof, the spacing between ribs 442 being no less than the thickness of ribs 426 and i the thickness of ribs 442 being no greater than the width of grooves 426. As is apparent from FIGS. 14 and 15, ribs 442 are mutually engageable with ribs 426 and grooves 428. In order to ensure a solid fit between adjusting plates 424 and 440 the distance from the underside of plate 440 to the top of ribs 442 should be very close to the distance from the top of plate 404 to the base of grooves 428.
As is best shown in FIG. 14. plate 440 has sloping ends 444 and has a length slightly less than the minimum distance between tabs 432.
A stepped or raised portion 446 abuts the edge of plate 440 opposite ribs 442 and has a length approximating that of plate 404. It is seen that portion 446 has a height such that it is coplanar with portion 408 in the assembled state illustrated in FIGS. 14 and 15. Extending upwardly from the opposite longitudinal edge of portion 446 is abutment wall means 448 which carries inwardly directed box gripping means 450 which may be in the form of the-flanges shown. the flanges having angled ends 452.
A sloping surface 454. akin to surface 416 is provided. running outwardly from abutment wall 448. As with first base member 402, the second base member may be constructed with a plurality of intersecting ribs 456, 458 underlying portion 446 and sloping surface 454.
The use of the flexible box holder of the present embodiment will now be described. A box to be held is first measured by placing one side to be held in line with edge 462 of the second base member such that the opposite side falls in the vicinity of indicia 460 placed on the top of raised portion 446. The lowest number that can be seen adjacent the box side is the adjustment number and it has a corresponding number amongst the indicia 464 which appear on adjusting plate 424. Each number of indicia 464 corresponds to one of the grooves 428.
If the two base members 402 and 438 are not assembled together, assembly is effected by inserting ribs 442 into grooves 428 such that the outermost rib is received in the groove bearing the number corresponding to the number selected in the first step. Insertion of the adjusting plate 440 into engagement with plate 424 is enhanced by sloping ends 444 which guide the plate 440 into position. Due to the reasonably tight fit of the adjusting plates therewill be negligible tilt between the base members during assembly and hence the tab 432 at the assembly end will be depressed by the plate 440 sufficiently to permit assembly. Plate 440, and second base member 438, are locked after assembly between stops 434 on tabs 432. In order to disassemble the box holder it is necessary to depress one of the tabs 432 to lower the associated stop below the bottom surface of plate 440 so that the plate 440 can be slid thereacross to utlimately disengage ribs 442 from grooves 428.
The present embodiment provides a very secure adjusting mechanism which can be used to space gripping means 412, 450 a predetermined distance apart, that distance being directly related to the size of box to be held. The box 466 is inserted by sliding it. on coplanar portions 408, 446 so that the flexible sides thereof are engaged by gripping means 412, 450 in the same manner as with the preferred embodiment.
The fifth embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. 19 to 22 inclusive and comprises two adjustable eoactable base members 502 and 526. First base member 502 comprises a base plate portion 504 provided along one edge thereof with an upstanding end wall 506 having an inwardly directed box gripping means in the form of a flange 508 having angled ends 510, flange 508 being spaced a fixed distance from and generally parallel to base plate 504.
Along the opposite edge extends upstanding abut ment wall means 512 provided with cantelevered adjusting means such as plate 514 extending toward flange 508 parallel to base plate 504. Adjusting plate 514 has a plurality of alternating ribs 516 and grooves 518 in the undersurfaee thereof. the ribs and grooves being parallel to abutment wall 512.
A tab insert 520 has a width approximately the same as adjusting plate 514 and extends therebeneath along the full length of abutment wall 512. pair of U- shaped cut-outs 522 in insert 520 define flexible tabs 524 which are resiliently biased outwardly of plate 504. The tabs 524 seen in FIG. [9 lie outwardly of plate 514 and serve the same purpose as tabs 432 in the fourth embodiment.
Second base member 526 is also of a simple construction. having an adjustment means or plate 528 adapted to eoact with plate 514, it length being slightly less than the spacing between tabs 524. A plurality of spaced ribs 530 are provided on the upper surface of plate 528, one of the ribs preferably being along the outermost edge thereof, the spacing of ribs 530 being no less than the width of ribs 516.
Extending along the opposite edge of plate 526 is a support or abutment wall 532. the length of which is substantially the same as wall 506. Support wall 532 has a foot portion 534 of the same thickness of insert 520 and box gripping means 536 cantelevered therefrom along the top edge thereof. Gripping means 536, shown in the form of a flange. is analagous to flange S08 and with the second base member assembled to the first base member the flanges 508 and 536 are coplanar as shown in FIG. 22. Flange 536 has angled ends 538 as do the other flanges described herein.
Assembly. use and disassembly of the present embodiment is the same as for the previous embodiment the only difference being that the adjusting means are not contained between the box gripping means. This means that at least the first base member must be larger but this is offset by the increased surface area for advertising slogans. etc. It is noted that the indicia for determining the proper location of the second base member relative to the first base member are not shown in this embodiment although such indicia are usable.
It should be understood while the present invention has been described with respect to tissue boxes it is equally useful in holding any container having at least a portion of the sides thercofdcformable or penetrable by the gripping means and that with proper gripping means it will even hold objects. such as books. by frietional engagement therewith.
l. A holder for a container having at least two opposed flexible sides, comprising a first member having a first base plate portion and first abutment wall means. and a second member eoactable with said first member and having a second base plate portion and second abutment wall means. each of said members having a side wall upstanding from the respective abutment wall means and having at least one container gripping flange thereon. the flange being spaced outwardly from the respective abutment wall means and directed inwardly of its associated member; said first member further including a pair of spaced apart guideways each adjacent a respective end of said first base plate portion and de fined by a pair of parallel upstanding spaced apart walls. one wall of each pair supporting, along with a portion of said first abutment wall means. a first ratchet plate overlying said first base plate portion. towards which are directed a plurality of transversely directed female ratchet teeth; said second member further including a pair of spaced apart legs. each adapted for guiding reception in a corresponding one of said guideways; a resilient second ratchet plate cantilevered to said second base plate portion. positioned between said legs and generally parallel thereto; a pair of upstanding transversely oriented, spaced apart male ratchet teeth. each positioned adjacent an edge of said second ratchet plate remote from said second abutment wall means; whereby with each said leg slidably engaging the corresponding one of said guideways each of said male ratchet teeth can be selectively mated with a corresponding one of said female ratchet teeth. thereby setting said flanges on said side walls at a desired separation for engaging a corresponding side of said container.
2. A holder according to claim 1 and including an opening in said first base plate portion underlying said first ratchet plate. said second ratchet plate being deflectablc into said opening to disengage said male and female ratchet teeth and permit enlargement of said separation.
3. A holder according to claim 2 wherein said opening is defined on three sides by said first abutment wall means and said one wall of each pair of guideway defining walls.
4. A holder for a container having at least two opposed flexible sides comprising eoactable first and second members. each of said members having a base plate portion. abutment wall means upstanding from said base plate portion, a side wall upstanding from said abutment wall means and at least one container gripping flange on said side wall. spaced outwardly from said abutment wallmeans and directed inwardly of its associated members; said first member including a pair of spaced apart guideways each adjacent a corresponding end of said base plate portion. each defined by a pair of parallel upstanding spaced apart wall means; each of said \vall means of each pair having a flange thereon spaced outwardly from said base plate portion and directed towards the flange on the other wall means of the pair. one wall means of each pair defining an edge of said base plate portion; the other wall means of each pair supporting along with said abutment wall means a first ratchet plate overlying an opening in said base plate portion. towards which opening are directed a plurality of transversely directed female ratchet teeth on each first ratchet plate; said second member including a pair of spaced apart legs. each adapted for sliding means and adjacent a corresponding one of said legs; whereby with each of said legs slidably engaging a corresponding one' of said guideways. each of said male ratchet teeth can be selectively mated with a corresponding one of said female ratchet teeth thereby setting said flanges on said sidewalls at a desired separzb tion for engaging the corresponding flexible side of said container.