US 3043354 A
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y 1962 E J. FITZGERALD 3,043,354
MOLDED PLASTIC CONTAINER Filed July 15, 1960 7113;) FIG? i; 42 l ENTOR I EDMUND J.Fl ERALD ATTORNEY 4.. ire States mew atent ice 3,043,354 MOLDED PLASTIC CONTAINER Edmund J. Fitzgerald, 228 West St., Leominster, Mass. Filed July 15, 1960, Ser. No. 43,119 1 Claim. (Cl. 150-.5)
This invention relates to a new and improved molded plastic container and to certain improvements in the formation of the container, including means therein for the holding of special articles which may include for instance a set of coasters, jewelry, soap, athletic equipment including balls, or any other type of device which may be suitably carried, transported or displayed in said container.
One of the principal objects of the new container residesin the provision of a one-piece molded bottom and top connected by an integrally molded strip-like plastic hinge, the hinge having a resilient characteristic tending to maintain the lid and the bottom of the box of the container in open condition; the provision of a container and hinge therefore as above described including a latch holding the lid closed with respect to the bottom of the container but when the latch is released, releasing the lid from the bottom of the container, the lid naturally springs open to its originally molded condition, i.e., at 180 with respect to the bottom of the container, so that in effect there are two display portions of the device exposed, both of them resting on a single supported and in parallel alignment.
Another object of the invention includes the provision of special new and improved bracket frames for detachable insertion within said portions of the container for holdingspecial or irregular objects therein; and the provision of a modified hinge which is adapted to hold the lid of the container at 90 with respect to the box when not under compulsion of the latching device.
The invention further relatess to arrangements and combinations of parts which will be hereinafter described and more particularly set forth in the appended claim.
Reference is to be had to the accompanying drawings, in which FIG. 1 is a section showing the container in the natural, open condition in which it is molded;
FIG. 2 is a section showing the container closed;
FIG. 3 is a view in elevation looking in the direction of arrow 3 in FIG. 2;
FIGS. 4 and 4a are sections showing modified hinges;
FIG. 5 is a transverse section through a part of a container according to the invention and showing the interior bracket or framework;
FIG. 6 is a section on line 66 of FIG. 5; and
FIG. 7 is a section on line 7-7 of FIG. 5.
In carrying out the invention, the same is essentially provided by means of a pair of members which are indicated in FIG. 1 at 10' and 12. As shown in FIG. 1, these members are substantially equivalent and they are connected by a special now and improved hinge construction generally indicated at 14. It will be seen that both of these members 10 and 12 rest on a table top in completely open condition, revealing the contents thereof, and this is the natural position of these members. When member 12, for instance, is pivoted over 180 to close member 10, the same must be held by a latch and this latch may assume any simple form of latch such as a hook member 16 at the inside area of the rim of the member 10, the same latching under some kind of projection or the like as at 18 in the member 12. Any other kind of latch may be provided but these particular latches can be integrally molded in the same die. The rims of the respective members 10 and 12 may be provided with interfitting tongues and grooves, etc., or they may have a rabbeted conformation in order to help in maintaining the same in closed condition, and such a construction is indicated generally at 20.
It is to be understood that the device so far described and shown in closed condition in FIG. 2, is made in one piece in a mold, preferably of polyethylene or the like. The two container members 10 and 12, either one of which may be a top or a bottom, are connected by a relatively thick heavy resilient hinge construction which in effect flows in an M-shape or wave from one member to the other, this hinge having a central depression 22. The depression 22 is a kind of a trough and it finds the opposite configuration at the areas 24 and 26. The result of this construction is that a relatively strong hinge is provided which in and of itself will swing members 10 and 12 apart to their originally molded condition as shown in FIG. 1, but the hinge will yield to allow the container to close as is indicated by the reference numeral 28 in FIG. 3. Of course the hinge is considerably deformed when it is swung from one position to the other, i.e., from the FIG. 1 position to the FIG. 2 position, and tension is imparted on the hinge structure, so that when an inward pressure is directed in the region of the hook 16 in FIG. 2 and the hook is released from the inwardly directed projection '18, the above described hinge construction will immediately swing the member 10 180 into alignment with the member 12.
The hinge construction may extend completely along the length of the two containers, or it may be interrupted as is'indicated in FIG. 3.
It is desired to be emphasized that either portion 10 or 12 may be made smaller and need not come about through an are sufficient to rest on the same support. That is, one portion 12 may be the bottom of the container and the lid 10 could be a good deal flatter and shallower than that shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, but in that case the two parts would not have the equivalent carrying capacity as shown and the lid of course would not necessarily rest on the table top.
As shown in FIG. 4, a different kind of hinge may be molded. The two surfaces of the V facing each other as at 30, 32 may be adhesively bonded together, and in this case when the lid is released, it will move to approximately a position and not fall back into the original molded condition of FIG. 1 since the adhesive bonding of the two surfaces identified at 30 and 32 will restrict the resilient action to be had thereby, that is in FIG. 1. Depending on the relative angle of the original V before cementing, depends the degree to which the lid will return, as for instance, 45, 90, or other angle as desired.
In FIG. 4a the V shape of FIG. 4 is inverted and if the surf-aces 30a and 32a should be cemented together, the cover or lid of the box would open past up to for instance, 270, in which case the device can be used as a pedestal and display means.
Depending upon the weight and thickness of the parts in FIG. 1, will depend the weight and thickness of the hinge. The hinge must be stronger when the parts 10 and 12 are relatively heavy or carry relatively heavy parts so that the degree of resiliency of the hinge may be varied in order to accomplish the purposes at hand.
As shown in FIGS. 5, 6 and 7, I may provide a frame or bracket detachably secured to the inner walls of the container for the reception and display of different articles. For instance, as shown in FIG. 5, and also in FIG. 6, there are provided a series parrallel spaced ribs indicated at 34 and 36. These are connected. by a rib or the like 38 and in some cases they can even be connected by a bottom member 40 to make the set of ribs 34 and the set of ribs 36 all in one piece.
These ribs are shaped and placed to fit the article and aoeaase will support between them a series of thin objects like plates, saucers, coasters, records, and the like, but the point at issue here is that by providing the upright members 42 undercut or dove-tailed at 44, the same may be slid in the grooves 46 and thus temporarily snapped or held in position and they may be removed if it is desired to do so.
It will be seen that a cake of soap for instance can be supported on these ribs Without contacting the bottom of the box as in a more or less conventional soapdish, and other objects can be held and displayed therein if this should be desired.
Having thus described my invention and the advantages thereof, I do not Wish to be limited to the details herein disclosed, otherwise than as set forth in the claim, but What I claim is:
A container comprising a bottom and a top, an integral hinge construction connecting the same, said container being molded in one piece of resilient plastic material, said hinge having a central depressed conformation with References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,928,445 Boyd Sept. 26, 1933 2,483,304 Vogel Sept. 27, 1949 2,687,157 Cowan ..1 Aug. 24, 1954 2,718,326 Le Blanc Sept. 20, 1955 2,842,178 Solomon July 8, 1958 2,845,104 Frankel July 29, 1958 2,852,054 Motley Sept. 16, 1958 2,915,214 Frankel Dec. 1, 1959 2,985,333 Kirkman May 23. 1961
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