FLEXIBLE PACKAGE INCLUDING A
DOCKING STATION FORMED FROM A
PLURALITY OF CLOSELY SPACED SLITS
Inventor: Ronald G. Thieman, Noblesville, IN
Assignee: Illinois Tool Works Inc., Glenview, IL
Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this patent is extended or adjusted under 35 U.S.C. 154(b) by 634 days.
Filed: Apr. 1, 2003
Prior Publication Data
US 2004/0074058 Al Apr. 22, 2004
Related U.S. Application Data
Continuation of application No. 10/325,483, filed on Dec. 19, 2002, now Pat. No. 6,918,230, which is a continuation of application No. 10/232,844, filed on Aug. 30, 2002, now Pat. No. 6,962,034, which is a continuation of application No. 09/794,592, filed on Feb. 27, 2001, now Pat. No. 6,499,272, which is a continuation of application No. 09/493,718, filed on Jan. 28, 2000, now Pat. No. 6,216,423, which is a continuation-in-part of application No. 09/370,053, filed on Aug. 6,1999, now Pat. No. 6,209,287, which is a continuation of application No. 08/965,722, filed on Nov. 7, 1997, now Pat. No. 5,956,924.
Provisional application No. 60/148,495, filed on Aug.
B65D 33/16 (2006.01)
B65B 61/18 (2006.01)
U.S. CI 383/64; 53/412; 53/133.4;
53/139.2; 493/213; 493/927
Field of Classification Search 53/412,
53/416, 450, 451, 133.4, 550, 551, 552, 213, 53/214,215,139.2; 493/927,213,214; 383/63-65;
See application file for complete search history.
Apparatus and methods for forming, filling, and sealing a flexible recloseable container. Both vertical and horizontal methods for placing product within the container are disclosed. The invention includes guiding a web of film which has interlocking fastener strips sealed to the web. A slider for locking and unlocking the fastener strips is placed in the correct orientation, spread apart at a pair of inner feet, and inserted over the fastener strips. The slider is positioned to close a substantial portion of the strips, and then an end stop, docking station, and corner seal are formed against a sealing plate. The slider is then repositioned, and a tamper evident seal may be placed over the fastener strip. Apparatus and methods for placing a product in a flexible recloseable container, and also for manufacturing an empty, flexible recloseable container. One method includes providing a pair of interlockable fastener strips, a web of flexible film, and a plurality of sliders, placing the sliders on the pair of interlockable fastener strips, subsequently attaching the interlockable fastener strips with attached sliders to the web of flexible film, and either placing a product within the web or providing the empty container to the consumer.
4 Claims, 28 Drawing Sheets