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Publication numberUS3911834 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 14, 1975
Filing dateSep 13, 1973
Priority dateSep 13, 1973
Also published asCA1014489A, CA1014489A1
Publication numberUS 3911834 A, US 3911834A, US-A-3911834, US3911834 A, US3911834A
InventorsBenjamin W Quaintance
Original AssigneeInt Paper Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Pallet
US 3911834 A
Abstract
An improved four way entry pallet made of foldable material such as corrugated paperboard and which provides a flat deck having an area substantially equal to the size of the pallet.
Images(5)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

[451 Oct. 14, 1975 United States Patent 1 Quaintance .1 mm m m mnm me u m Tam n m U "m w e mhh.m e m Pu] v w m .1 hWMRQSnwAm 2579 2 6666. 7 9999999 II/HHHH 3 29765 1 563 894 797573 ,3 ,3 662 79 z ommoos ,3 ,5 3333333 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS [22] Filed: Sept. 13, 1973 313,777 8/1969 108/55 963,409 7/1964 United Kingdom................... 108/51 [21] Appl. No.: 396,786

Primary Examiner-Roy D. Frazier Assistant Examiner-William E. Lyddane or Firm-Alfred L. Michaelson m e g A m m A 84 6 53%8 3 89 O fi% ;wW2 7 0 8 n 0 1m mmh we 1 r m m m2" l -f C IM Umm 111.1. 218 555 [.l.[

ABSTRACT [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS An improved four way entry pallet made of foldable material such as corrugated paperboard and which M U G- e .W m m a S t e S r b m u S a F e g m m. m n.

.w v 4 t 1 e hum a c -m $6 I C 80 4 flO 36 5:1. 5 M6 mm r. Pm 67 ss fl 1/ 88 8 00 .0 .l lsl "M 6 O 2 2,444,183 6/1948 Cahners................................ 2,446,914 8/1948 Fallert et a1.

2,807,404 9/1957 Cote 2 996 276 8/1961 Sorensen et a1.

U.S. Patent Oct. 14,1975 Sheet1of5 3,911,834

US. Patent Oct. 14,1975 Sheet2of5 3,911,834

US. Patent Oct. 14, 1975 Sheet30f5 3,911,834

U.S. Patent Oct. 14,1975 Sheet40f5 3,911,834

FIG. /0

US. Patent Oct. 14, 1975 Sheet 5 of5 3,911,834

PALLET BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field to which the Invention Pertains When boxes or containers are to be either stored or moved, it is convenient to stack them upon a pallet so as to facilitate moving the articles with a forklift truck. The use of pallets in the storage or warehousing of cartons or containers is quite old. Until recently, almost all pallets were made of wood. Although the use of wood insures that the pallet will be able to resist the compressive stresses to which it is subjected, the cost of using wood and the labor involved in fabricating wooden pallets resulted in a sufficiently high cost per pallet as to necessitate the reuse thereof. Thus, if quantities of material were shipped upon pallets made of wood, the recipient of the shipment would generally have to return the pallets to the shipper or supplier. As a result, an extra shipping charge was incurred when the pallets were returned.

Recognizing the disadvantages which attended the use of wooden pallets, prior art workers endeavored to construct pallets of other material, for example foldable material such as corrugated paperboard. The invention disclosed herein relates to an improved pallet construction made of foldable sheet material such as corrugated paperboard.

2. Prior Art As previously indicated, prior art workers endeavored to avoid the disadvantages associated with wooden pallets by attempting to provide pallets of acceptable strength and which were manufactured from foldable sheet material such as corrugated paperboard. The general objective of such prior art constructions was to supply a pallet which was constructed from a rel atively inexpensive material thus avoiding the requirement that the pallet be returned.

A number of early prior art pallet constructions which employ foldable sheet material suffered from the disadvantage that the tines of a forklift truck could not enter the pallet channels on all of the four sides. Thus, care had to be exercised when pallet loads were stacked in order to insure that an entry to the pallet remained accessible. In time, prior art workers developed pallets made of foldable sheet material such as corrugated paperboard and which provided entry from any ofthe four sides of the pallet. In the art, such pallets are referred to as four way entry pallets.

Although the prior art reflects a degree of success in providing a four way entry pallet made of foldable sheet material such as corrugated paperboard, such success has been achieved at the cost of compromising other design criteria. For example, a number of prior art, four way entry, corrugated paperboard pallets are constructed from exceedingly complex blanks which are difficult to manufacture and assemble. Additionally, in many prior art constructions the four way entry feature has been achieved at the cost of using material which would normally form part of the top deck or upper surface of the pallet. Thus, such pallets do not provide a top surface or deck which has an area substantially equal to the overall area of the pallet. As a result, pallets of this type may be difficult to use if the articles stacked thereupon are small. For example, ifone attempts to stack articles upon a corrugated pallet having apertures or depressions in the top deck, the articles may fall into the depressions thus disturbing the symmetry of the stacked configuration. To avoid such an undesirable result, prior art pallet constructions wherein the deck was not flat required the use ofa separate sheet of foldable material such as corrugated paperboard in order to overlay the non-flat deck of the pallet.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The instant invention comprises a two or four way entry pallet constructed of foldable material such as corrugated paperboard and includes a base having a top deck and a number of side legs which define channels therebetween. Each of the legs is comprised of foldably connected side, bottom and end walls. Additionally, one of the side walls of each of the side legs is foldably connected to the top deck. The inner side walls of each of the legs is foldably connected to a respective extension flap which extends inwardly and is secured to the lower surface of the top deck.

At least one sheet of foldable material such as corrugated paperboard is longitudinally wrapped about the base and is secured to the top surface of the deck and the bottom surface of the legs. The sheet of foldable material includes at least one vertical end panel which may be provided with at least one aperture that is spaced between the side legs.

The preferred embodiment of the invention includes a base having a plurality of longitudinally aligned legs intermediate the side legs.

Description of the Drawings FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a blank from which may be formed one embodiment of the instant invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view showing the blank of FIG. 1 in a folded condition.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing the blank of FIG. 1 in a folded and erected position.

FIG. 4 is another perspective view of the pallet base of FIG. 3.

FIGS. 5 and 10 are each a perspective view ofa sheet of corrugated paperboard which forms a component of the instant invention.

FIGS. 6 and 11 are each a perspective view of a corrugated pallet embodying my invention.

FIG. 7 is a plan view of a blank which may be used to form a component of one embodiment of my invention.

FIG. 8 is a perspective view suggesting the assembly of a base for use in another embodiment of my invention.

FIG. 9 is a perspective view showing the base portion which results from the assembly suggested in FIG. 8.

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of another form of a base portion for another embodiment of my invention.

FIG. 13 is a perspective view of two sheets of corrugated paperboard or other foldable material which form a component of another embodiment of my invention.

FIG. 14 is a perspective view of a pallet resulting from combining the components shown in FIGS. 12 and 13.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to FIG. 1, there is shown in perspective view a blank 25 of foldable sheet material which, for purposes of description, will be assumed to be a blank of corrugated paperboard. Preferably, the flutes of the corrugated medium are disposed parallel to the arrow 60, i.e., the flutes of the corrugated medium are transversely disposed such that the flutes are exposed at the side edges 61, 62 of the blank 25.

As may be noted, the blank 25 of FIG. 1 has been symmetrically cut and scored so that it will be necessary to describe only the components of one half of the blank. Thus, considering the right hand half of the blank 25 shown in FIG. 1, there is provided an extension flap 11 which is foldably connected to inner side wall forming panels 12. A bottom wall forming panel 13 is foldably connected to the side wall forming panels 12 and is alsofoldably connected to outer side wall forming panels 14 which are in turn foldably connected to the deck panel 15. Foldably connected to the inner side wall forming panels 12 are end wallforming panels l7.Similarly, end wall forming panels 18 are foldably connected to the outer side wall forming panels 14. Foldably connected to each of the end wall forming panels 17 and 18 is a retaining flap 19.

As an initial step in the formation ofa pallet from the blank of FIG. 1, the wall forming panels 11, 12 and 13 are bent about the score line 43 so as to position the extension flaps 11 in face abutting relation with the deck panel 15. Thereupon, the extension flaps 11 are adhesively secured to the deck panel 15. To facilitate this erection step, the extension flaps l1 and portions of the deck panel 15 may be provided with a contact type cement as suggested by the shading lines in FIG. 1. Alternatively, other types of adhesive may be used, e.g., hot melt adhesive. After complettion of this step, a configuration of the type shown in FIG. 2 is obtained. To erect the configuration of FIG. 2 into a pallet base, the inner side wall forming panels 12 are bent upwardly to a vertical position so as to secure the configuration shown in FIG. 3. Thereupon, as suggested by the arrows shown in FIG. 3 and end wall forming panels 17 and 18 are bent upwardly about their respective score lines and the retaining flaps associated with each of the end wall panels is bent so as to be disposed within the leg associated therewith. Generally, it is preferred to position each of the retaining flaps in face-abutting relation to the adjacent side wall. However, as shown at 42, the side wall forming flaps may be bent inwardly beyond a right angle position with respect to the side wall to which they are attached and, in that event, the associated retaining flap may be folded into interfering engagement with the other side wall.

Thereafter, the configuration of FIG. 3 is rotated 180 so as to appear as shown in FIG. 4. Thus, it will be seenthat there is provided a base 40 which has a flat deck 15 and a plurality of legs disposed along theside edges thereof and wherein each of the legs is comprised of side walls 12, 14, bottom wall 13 and at least one end wall, 17 or 18. Moreover, it will be seen that each of the legs defines a channel therebetween, for example the channels 38 or the channel 39 whereby a four way entry to the pallet is available. Preferably, as shown in FIG. 4, the lower part of each of the channels 38 is bridged by an extension of the bottom walls of the adjacent side legs, i.e., the bottom walls of all the legs on a respective side of the base are integral.

Shown in FIGS is a partially folded blank 43 of foldable material which preferably is corrugated paperboard and preferably has longitudinally disposed corrugations as suggested by the arrows and legend corr."

The blank 43 is transversely scored to define a bottom panel 44, end panels 45, 46 and top flaps 47, 48. The end panels 45, 46 may include apertures 49, 50, respectively which, as will be seen, permit four way entry.

Referring to FIG. 6, there is shown one embodiment of my invention. More specifically, the embodiment-of FIG. 6 results from combining the base 40 of FIG. 4 with the wrapper or blank 43 of FIG. 5. Thus, in the pallet construction of FIG. 6, the blank 43 is wrapped longitudinally around the base 40 and is secured, for example by glueing, to the deck and the bottom surface of the base. To facilitate the attachment of the wrapper blank'43to the base 40, glue may be applied to the wrapper sheet 43 as suggested by the shaded areas shown in FIG. 5. As previously suggested, the end panels of the wrapper sheet may be provided with centrally disposed apertures 49, 50 which provide access to the channel 39 thereby providing, together with the channels 38, a four way entry pallet. The apertures may be omitted if only a two way entry pallet is desired.

Experiments conducted upon the occasion of the invention have established the importance of providing a wrapper sheet secured to the base portion, ve.g., the wrapper sheet 43. More specifically, it has been found that although the base 40 provides sufficient strength to resist compressive stresses, the base is relatively weak with respect to resistant transverse shear forces,

i.e., shear forces parallel to the channels 38. It has been found that such shear forces commonly arise when a pallet is used to ship goods stacked thereon. In such event, it appears that the movement of the shipping vehicle, e.g., a truck, gives rise to transverse shear stresses which, in the absence ofa wrapper sheet, will casue the base to collapse. By providing a longitudinally wrapped sheet around the base and which is secured to the top and bottom surface of the base, such transverse shear forces are resisted by the wrapper sheet which may, for

example, be a sheet of linerboard or a sheet of corrugated paperboard.

As suggested in FIG. 4, the pallet base shown therein is a rather narrow pallet base. Although such a pallet may be useful when shipping or storing certain prepackaged commodities, in many instances it is desired to employ a pallet which is significantly wider than the pallet of FIG. 6. When a significantly wider pallet is desired, it is preferable to add thereto a plurality of longitudinally aligned legs which are disposed intermediate the legs on the sides of the pallet shown in FIG. 6. A convenient way to provide such legs is to employ a blank of the type shown in FIG. 7.

Referring to FIG. 7, the blank 30 shown therein is preferably manufactured of corrugated paperboard wherein the flutes of the corrugated medium are disposed as suggested by the arrows. The blank of FIG. 7 is cut and scored so as to provide a bottom wall forming panel 33 foldably connected to two side wall forming panels 36 which are foldably connected to top flaps 34. Referring to FIG. 8, the configuration 30' suggests the manner in which the blank 30 of FIG. 7 may be folded to provide a plurality of longitudinally aligned legs. Disposed beneath the configuration 30' shown in FIG. 8 is a wider version of a base of the type shown in FIG. 4. As suggested by FIG. 8, the configuration 30 is intermediately located between the legs on both sides of the pallet base such'that the outwardly extending top flaps 34 are in face abutting relation with the bottom of the deck panel 15. The outwardly extending top flaps 34 are secured to the bottom of the deck panel 15. The securement between the outwardly extending top flaps 34 and the bottom of the deck may advantageously be obtained by again using an adhesive or hot melt glue as suggested by the shading lines in FIG. 8. Alternatively, the top flaps 34 may be stapled to the bottom of the deck 15.

After the configuration of longitudinally disposed legs has been secured to the deck 15 of FIG. 8 and the resulting pallet is rotated 180 the pallet base of FIG. 9 results wherein it will be seen that a four way entry pallet base is provided. More particularly, the pallet base of FIG. 9 includes a flat deck 15 with a plurality of legs along both sides thereof which define channels therebetween whereby a forklift truck may enter from the side of the pallet. Additionally, channels 60 are defined between the side legs and the intermediate legs. The legs disposed along the sides of the pallet base of FIG. 9 are constructed as hereinbefore recited with respect to FIG. 4. The longitudinally aligned legs which are disposed intermediate the side legs are eachcomprised of a bottom wall, two side walls foldably connected to the bottom wall, at least one end wall foldably connected to one of the side walls and a pair of outwardly extending top flaps, each of the top flaps being foldably connected to the side walls on a respective side of the longitudinally aligned legs and secured to the bottom surface of the pallet deck 15 by the use of an adhesive or staples.

In order to resist shear forces, the pallet base of FIG. 9 is combined with a wrapper of the type shown in FIG. 10 which will be recognized as being substantially similar to the wrapper of FIG. 5 except that two slots or apertures 70, 71 may be provided in each of the end wall portions 45, 46. The wrapper 43a of FIG. 10 is combined with the pallet base a of FIG. 9 to produce the pallet of FIG. 11 wherein it will be seen that the wrapper 43a is longitudinally wrapped about the pallet base 40a and is secured to the upper and lower surface of the pallet base. Additionally, it will be noted that the apertures 70, 71 are spaced between the side legs of the pallet base so as to align with the channels 60 of the pallet base 40a so as to provide four way entry.

Referring to FIG. 12, there is shown an alternate construction whereby a pallet base 40b may be provided which includes longitudinally aligned legs located intermediate the side legs. In accordance with this embodiment, a pallet base 40b is provided by providing two adjacently disposed pallet bases ofthe type shown in FIG. 4. Thus, in FIG. 12, two pallet bases are shown with their component parts designated by the letters a and b. The line 72 designates the interface between the two pallet bases, i.e., the side walls of the two pallet bases are in face abutting relation. If desired, the face abutting side walls may be secured together, e.g., by glueing.

Referring to FIG. 13, there is shown an alternate form of a wrapper sheet wherein two wrapper sheets 73, 74 are employed instead of the single wrapper sheet of the type shown in FIG. 10. The advantage of using two wrapper sheets as suggested by FIG. 13 in place of a single wrapper sheet resides in the fact that it is preferable to have the corrugations of the wrapper sheet longitudinally disposed as suggested in FIG. 13. If the corrugations of the wrapper sheet are thus disposed, difficulties might be encountered in producing a wrapper sheet of significant length, i.e., a corrugating machine might 'not be available which has a width sufficient to provide a wrapper sheet of the required longitudinal dimension. In this event, the construction of FIG. 13 can be resorted to and two, discreet wrapper sheets maybe employed.

The two wrapper sheet 73, 74 of FIG. 13 may be combined with the pallet base 40b of FIG. 12 to provide the palletconstruction of FIG. 14. Thus, referring to FIG. 14, it will be seen that the wrapper sheets 73, 74 have been longitudinally wrapped around the pallet base 40b and the wrapper sheets 73, 74 have been secured to the top and bottom surfaces of the pallet base 40b, for example by glueing. Additionally, it will be noted that the apertures 76, 77 are so located on the end panels 75 as to be alignedwith the longitudinal channels which are defined by the legs on the side of the pallet base 40b and the intermediately located longitudinally aligned legs which result from the combination of the two pallet base sections which comprise the overall pallet base 40b.

Although a number of embodiments of theinstant invention have hereinbefore been described by way of example, it will be appreciated that other embodiments may be perceived by those skilled in the art to which this invention pertains. For example, the number of legs provided may be varied depending upon the load to be carried. Similarly, if corrugated paperboard is used as a foldable material, the type of board may be selected to accommodate the expected load. Thus, it will be understood that the scope of the instant invention is to be defined by the claims appended hereto.

I claim:

1. A pallet which comprises:

a. a base constructed of corrugated sheet material which comprises,

i. a flat deck, the flutes of said corrugated sheet material being disposed transversely across said deck,

ii. a plurality of legs defining aligned, open, transverse channels therebetween and disposed adjacent to opposed longitudinal sides of said deck, each of said legs comprising an outer side wall foldably connected to 'said deck, a bottom wall foldably connected to said outer side wall, an inner side wall foldably connected to said bottom wall and at least one end wall foldably connected to one of said side walls, the corrugations in said side walls being vertically disposed, and a retaining flap foldably connected to said end wall and disposed within the leg associated therewith. each of said end walls extending from one side wall to the opposite side wall and each of said end walls and each of said retaining flaps having a vertical height substantially equal to the vertical height of said side walls and each of said retaining flaps being in face abutting relation witl'. respect to the adjacent side wall of the leg associated therewith, and

b. at least one sheet of foldable material wrapped longitudinally around said base and secured to the deck and bottom surface of said base.

2. A pallet which comprises:

a. a pallet base constructed of corrugated sheet mate rial comprising,

i. a flat deck, the flutes of said corrugated sheet ma terial being disposed transversely across sait deck,

ii. a plurality of side legs defining aligned, open, dinally aligned legs being secured to said deck;

transverse channels therebetween and disposed and v adjacent to opposed longitudinal sides of said b. at least one sheet offoldable material wrapped londeck, each of Said legs Comprising an Outer Side gitudinally, substantially around said base and se- Wall foldably Connected to Said deck, a bottom cured to the deck and bottom surface of said base. Wall foldably cmmected to Said Outer Side Wall 3. The pallet of claim 2 wherein each of said longituan inner side wall foldably connected to said bot- (finally aligned legs comprises; tom wall and at least one end wall foldably con- 3. a bottom wall; nected to one of Said Side walls the corrugations b. two side walls foldably connected to said bottom in said side walls being vertically disposed, and a 10 retaining flap foldably connected to said end wall and disposed within the leg associated therewith, each of said end walls extending from one side wall to opposite side wall and each of said end walls and each of said retaining flaps having a vertical height substantially equal to the vertical height of said side walls and each of said retaining flaps being in face abutting relation with respect to the adjacent side wall of the leg associwall;

c. at least one end wall foldably connected to one of said side walls; and

d. a pair of top flaps, each of said top flaps being foldably connected to the side walls on a respective side of said longitudinally aligned legs and disposed in face abutting relation with respect to the bottom surface of said deck.

4. The pallet of claim 3 which further includes two m d h i h extension flaps, each of said extension flaps foldably iii. a plurality of l it di ll li d l di connected to the inner side walls of each of said side posed intermediate aid ide leg id l it di legs on a respective side of said pallet and each of said nally aligned legs having channels therebetween extension flaps being secured to and in face abutting which are substantially transversely aligned with relation with the bottom surface of said deck.

the channels between said side legs, said longitu-

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Classifications
U.S. Classification108/51.3, 108/57.1
International ClassificationB65D19/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D2519/00343, B65D2519/00323, B65D19/0081, B65D2519/00054, B65D19/0016, B65D2519/00278, B65D19/0026, B65D2519/00293, B65D2519/00373, B65D2519/00318, B65D2519/00557, B65D2519/00268, B65D2519/00288, B65D2519/00562, B65D2519/00019, B65D2519/00333, B65D2519/00273, B65D19/0095
European ClassificationB65D19/00C3D4C1, B65D19/00C3D2A, B65D19/00C1B4C1, B65D19/00C1B2C1