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July 30, 1968 B. HERSHAFT PROTECTIVE ARTICLE DISPLAY CONTAINER Filed May 23, 1967 INVENTOR Ell/9R) HERSHfl/T BY WKZ/M ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,394,802 PROTECTIVE ARTICLE DISPLAY CONTAINER Barry Hershaft, Yonkers, N.Y., assignor to Tl1e Jackmeyer Corporation, New York, N.Y., a corporation of New York Filed May 23, 1967, Ser. No. 640,734 1 Claim. (Cl. 206-78) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An improved article packaging device and method for making the same, said device being particularly suitable for retail display, including an article carrier tray and a window cover, said cover including transparent film portions sealing the tray compartments while providing visual access to articles disposed within the pockets.
THE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Field of the invention This invention is in the field of merchandise packaging and particularly packaging articles to be distributed at the retail level.
This invention is in the field of a point of purchase display providing visual access to the articles packaged.
This invention further is in the field of devices of the class described which are of higher strength than comparable packages heretofore known and which are readily opened by the consumer but which are particularly resistant to surreptitious opening of the package and extraction of the contents at the point of purchase.
Description of the prior art Transparent packages permitting visual access to the contents of the packaged article have become increasingly important as a merchandising tool. Heretofore such articles have utilized blisters of vacuum formed, heat sealable material, such as cellulose acetate, cellulose acetate butyrate, etc., to which a card is adhered, the card covering the drawn or vacuum formed protuberances or pockets within which the articles to be sold are encompassed.
In a variation of the noted sort of package, instead of a single sheet of cardboard being secured over the transparent blister to define a closure for the pockets, a foldedin-half cardboard member is provided, one flapof which is unbroken and the other flap of which is provided with a series of apertures corresponding to the widest dimension of the pockets defined in the article carrying tray.
In the last mentioned type of device, the pocket portions of the tray are inserted through the windows of the cardboard, the broken flap thereafter being folded over the open ends of the pockets, whereupon, when the cardboard flaps are secured together, the tray is locked in sandwiched position between the flaps.
In both of the described types of merchandise packages, great care was required in packing and shipping a plurality of such articles in a container since the blister forming materials heretofore used are readily crushed, compromising the appearance of the package and the protection afforded the enclosed article.
Summary of the invention The present invention relates to an improved merchandising or point of purchase package which permits the use of strong and less expensive tray forming plastic materials.
The package comprises a preferably opaque tray having one or more pockets heat sealingly connected to the rear face of a cardboard or like insulating material covering, said rear face having previously been treated with a coating composition which renders the same receptive to a heat sealed connection with the tray. The cardboard is provided with one or more windows registering with the pockets of the tray, the front face of the cardboard being covered, for substantially its entire surface, with a thin, transparent film, such as cellophane, sealing the windows or apertures in the cardboard and providing visual access to the contents of the package.
Access to the articles in the pockets is achieved by puncturing the film in the area in registry with the pockets and removing the contents.
Accordingly, it is an object of the invention to provide an improved merchandising package.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a merchandising package permitting visual access to the contents, of lesser cost and higher strength than comparable packaging devices heretofore known.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a package of the type described wherein a packaged article may be readily removed from its associated pocket and wherein penetration of the film which covers the article is normally accompanied by an audible pop, thereby giving notice of the fact that the article safeguarding film has been compromised.
It is a further object of the invention to provide a novel method of making an article package of the type described.
To attain these objects and such further objects as may appear herein or be hereinafter pointed out, reference is made to the accompanying drawing, forming a part hereof, in which:
FIGURE 1 is an exploded pre-assembly view of the components of an article packaging device of the type described;
FIGURE 2 is a front perspective view of the completed article package;
FIG. 3 is a view similar to face;
FIGURE 4 is a magnified section taken on the line 4-4 of FIGURE 2.
In accordance with the invention, 10 is a plastic article carrier tray which is preferably formed of high strength vinyl, high-impact styrene or some comparable thermoplastic material. The tray 10, in known manner, normally by vacuum forming, has been provided with one or more pockets 11, 12, integrally formed from the substance of the tray 10, the pockets being displaced from the plane P-P defined by the major portion of the front face 13 of the tray 10.
A cover card 14, which is preferably formed of cardboard or some similar substance, is provided with cutout windows or apertures 15, 16, of a size substantially equal to the size of the pockets 11, 12, at the points of intersection of such pockets and the major plane P-P.
In addition, the tray 10 includes a circumferential flange 17 which is disposed about the periphery of the tray.
The rear face 18 of the cardboard cover member 14 is coated with a compatible, heat scalable plastic material, as shown at 19 (see FIGURE 1), which plastic material is chosen to correlate with the plastic material selected for the formation of the tray. The coating is compatible with the selected plastic material so that a heat seal connection between the coating and the material of the tray may be readily effected.
The provision of suitable coating compositions or adhesives is known and need not be here elaborated upon, it being understood that, in accordance with usual practice, where a styrene thermoplastic tray is selected, the coating will normally have a high syrene content; where a high strength vinyl is selected for the tray, the coating FIGURE 2 of the reverse will incorporate a large measure of vinyl components, etc.
To the front face 20 of the cardboard member 14 there is adhesively or otherwise applied a thin film 21 of transparent material, such as cellophane for example. Preferably the cellophane sheet is of a size which is coextensive with the cardboard member 14. Thus, the windows 15, 16 defined by the board will be sealed by the film 21, which may preferably be in the 1 to 2 mil thickness range.
Prior to attachment of the cellophane, the front face of the cardboard may be imprinted with any desired advertising matter, decorative scheme, etc. In like manner, prior to the application of the coating 19, the rear or reverse face 18 of the cardboard 14, particularly in the areas which extend beyond the outer peripheral flange 17 of the tray, are marked with such instructions, advertising matter or the like as may be appropriate.
The package is provided for use to the manufacturer or distributor of articles as a two component system, namely, the cardboard 14 with the film 21 attached thereto as a first component, and the tray as a second component. Articles to be sold are disposed within the pockets 11, 12 of the tray. The cardboard sheet 14 is mounted over the face of the tray, preferably with portions of the cardboard extending outwardly laterally beyond the marginal edges of the flange 17 of the tray. The windows 15, 16 of the cardboard are disposed in registry with the pockets 11, 12 of the tray. Preferably, the aligning operations of the cardboard with respect to the tray are effected in a jig, or automatically, to expedite this operation.
Thereafter, heat sealing apparatus is brought to bear against selected areas 22 of the tray, causing a heat seal connection to be effected between the tray and the coating 19 on the rear face of the card.
The heat seal is effected by the application of pressure only against the face of the cellophane, heat and pressure being exerted against the areas 22. The insulation effects provided by the cardboard prevent disruption or compromise of the film in the areas of the film in registry with the areas 22.
From the foregoing it will be seen that the cellophane film 21 which was previously adhesively secured to the front face of the card substantially at all portions of the card where the film and card were in engagement, will be taut and will perform the function of a window, permitting visual access to an article of merchandise disposed within the pocket, the cellophane preventing the article from being removed while the cellophane is intact.
In order to obtain access to the article after sale of the package, it is merely necessary to press against the tautly stretched cellophane surface, as with a pointed instrument, whereupon the same, due to its taut condition, will rupture with an audible pop, readily permitting access to the contained article. The facility with which the article may be removed is to be contrasted with comparable see-through packages of the above described prior art types. In such other types of packages, the article may be removed only by tearing away the cardboard or, more often, by cutting through the transparent blister tray. As is well known to anyone who has attempted to open prior art packages, either of the two alternate means for opening the same has drawbacks which render their use, to say the least, inconvenient. Moreover, after the prior art package has been opened by access through the tray, it is no longer possible to utilize the tray as a temporary receptacle for the article.
In the present device, puncturing of the stretched cellophane or other film provides a very convenient means for access to the contents, without destroying the other components of the package. Moreover, the sound which accompanies rupture of the cellophane is a means for alerting a storekeeper as to pilferage.
The ability to use styrene or vinyl as the tray material provides a drastically improved structure in the sense that such materials, while opaque, are of a great deal higher strength than the transparent type of material hereofore required in the packaging devices heretofore known. Moreover, in addition to the higher strength, the materials are substantially less expensive than the acetates, etc., required by the prior art.
Having thus described the invention and illustrated its use, what is claimed as new and is desired to be secured by Letters Patent is:
1. A see-through package comprising, in combination, a tray member of substantially opaque, colored thermoplastic material including a generally planar portion and at least one integral pocket part displaced a substantial distance from the plane defined by said planar portion, a planar cover member of insulating material such as cardboard secured to said tray member, said cover member having an aperture formed therethrough in registry with said pocket part of said tray member, a transparent planar film substantially coextensive with said cover member secured to the front face of said cover member, a thermoplastic coating formed on the rear face of said cover member, and heat seal connection portions formed between said planar portion of said tray and portions of said coating of said rear face in surrounding relation of said pocket part, thereby to define a three dimensional compartment essentially sealed by the portion of said film in registry with said aperture, with said pocket part being visible through said film and aperture, said front face of said cover member being of a color which contrasts with the color of said tray whereby an article disposed between said film and pocket is displayed against an opaque colored background framed by a differently colored surrounding area.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,861,405 11/1958 I-Ianford 53--22 2,892,538 6/ 1959 Middleton et al 20643 3,305,086 2/1967 Hartman 229--2.5 3,307,693 3/1967 Bittner 20678 OTHER REFERENCES Modern Packaging Encyclopedia, 1962, pp. 300, 301, 306, 307.
WILLIAM T. DIXSON, 1a., Primary Examiner.
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