US 3580466 A
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United States Patent Inventors Edmund J. Thelen Deerfield; Robert H. King, Evanston, Ill. Appl. No. 795,647 Filed Jan. 31, 1969 Patented May 25, 1971 Assignee Packaging Corporation of America Evanston, Ill.
SANITARY PACKAGE 5 Claims, 6 Drawing Figs.
U.S. Cl 229/14, 229/51, 229/17 Int. Cl 865d 5/56, B65d 17/00 Field of Search 229/5 1 (TS), (TC), 17, 14 (BE), 14(BA); 206/57 Primary Examiner-Davis T. Moorhead Attorney-Pendleton, Neuman, Williams & Anderson ABSTRACT: A sanitary package is provided with a reclosable cover to facilitate dispensing of a product therefrom. The package includes a foldable outer carton having a reclosable cover defined on the top panel thereof and a sealed productaccommodating bag disposed within the carton and affixed thereto.
SANITARY PACKAGE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Various sanitary packages have heretofore been provided which because of certain design characteristics are beset with one or more shortcomings. For example, once the prior sanitary package was opened, the package could not be readily and effectively reclosed and as a result the product became easily soiled. Generally, the initial opening of a prior package of this character was an awkward and frustrating operation requiring the use of scissors, a knife or the like and resulted in numerous instances in substantial mutilation or defacement of the package. Oftentimes the prior package, particularly where cotton was the product being packaged, took the form of a compressed roll which was clumsy to handle and difficult to remove a selected amount of cotton therefrom. In other instances the forming and loading of the package was a complicated, time consuming and expensive operation. Lastly, the prior structures were frequently ineffective in maintaining the sterile character of the accommodated product prior to the original opening of the package.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Thus, it is an object of this invention to provide a sanitary package which overcomes the aforementioned shortcomings associated with the prior structures.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a sanitary package which is capable of being readily setup and loaded by automatic or semiautomatic equipment.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a sanitary package which may be manually opened without difficulty and without the need for special tools and yet, is capable of preserving the sanitary condition of the product when subjected to normal handling before its initial opening.
It is a still further object of this invention to provide a sanitary package which is attractive in appearance and of sturdy construction.
Further and additional objects will appear from the description, accompanying drawings and appended claims.
In accordance with one embodiment of the invention, a sanitary package is provided which includes an outer foldable carton and a sealed product-accommodating bag disposed within the carton and affixed thereto. The carton has a top panel which has formed thereon a reclosable cover defined by a pair of spaced elongated first cuts on the exposed surface of the panel and by a pair of spaced elongated second cuts on the concealed surface of the panel. The depth of cut of the first and second cuts is less than the thickness of the carton materi al. The spacing between the first cuts is greater than the spacing between the second cuts and the second cuts are registered between the first cuts. Disposed within the outer carton is a sealed product-accommodating bag. Formed on one surface portion of the bag is a weakening score such as a cut which defines a tonguelike member. The tonguelike member is smaller in size than the reclosable cover and is affixed to the concealed surface of the latter and thus, movable therewith. A segment of the bag surface which encircles, but is spaced from, the periphery of the tonguelike member is afi'ixed to the carton interior surface by a continuous band of adhesive.
For a more complete understanding of the invention, reference is made to the drawings wherein:
FIG. I is a perspective top view of one form of the improved sanitary package prior to the latter being initially opened;
FIG. 2 is similar to FIG. I but showing the reclosable cover in an open position;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary perspective top view showing the reclosable cover in a partially reclosed position;
FIG. 4 is a plan view of one form of the carton blank showing the interior or concealed surface thereof;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary view showing the product-accommodating bag in inverted position on a forming mandrel and showing the location of a weakening score and adhesive stripe on a portion of the bag surface and with the carton in partially embracing relation therewith; and
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the improved package subsequent to being loaded and with the loading end of the carton shown in a partially closed condition.
DESCRIPTION Referring now to the drawings, an improved package 10 is shown which is particularly suitable for the sanitary packaging of sterile products such as cotton or cotton balls, gauze pads, etc. The package 10 in the illustrated embodiment includes a bag 11 formed of suitable plastic or treated paper. The bag 11 is closed at opposite ends, preferably by heat sealing subsequent to loading thereof. The bag 11 is disposed within a foldable carton 12, preferably of the seal end typc.
One form of carton blank 13 is shown in FIG. 4, which is preferably formed of paperboard and includes a bottom panel 14, a top panel 15, a first narrow side panel 16 separating the bottom and top panels and foldably connected thereto, and a second narrow side panel 17 foldably connected to the side edge of the bottom panel 14 opposite the first side panel 16. An elongated extension flap 18 is foldably connected to the side edge of the top panel 15 opposite the first side panel 16. Flap I8 cooperates with the second side panel 17 to form a manufacturer's joint 19, see FIG. 6, when the blank 13 is set up to form a carton. To the opposite end edges of the top, bottom and side panels are foldably connected closure flaps 20, 21, 22 and 23 which are adapted to be secured in overlapping relation so as to close off the ends of the carton subsequent to the bag being loaded, see FIG. 6.
The top panel 15 is provided with a cover 24 which is defined on the exposed surface of panel 15 by a first set of partial cuts 25 which extend angularly across the top panel from the first side panel 16 to the extension flap 18. The cover 24 is defined on the concealed surface of the top panel 16 by a second set of partial cuts 26. The cuts 25 and 26, in both instances, have a depth of cut which is less than the thickness of the sheet material from which the blank 13 is made. In the illustrated embodiment, the cuts comprising each set extend convergently from the first side panel 16. Formed in extension flap 18 is a pair of tear lines or cuts 27 which are aligned with the ends of the first set of cuts 25 and extend angularly across the extension flap 18 so as to define a finger tab 28.
The spacing between the cuts 25 comprising the first set is greater than the spacing between the cuts 26 of the second set. Thus, the spacing differential between the respective cuts of the sets provides a border 30 which serves as a barrier against infestation and foreign matter finding its way into the carton interior prior to the initial opening of the cover. When the cover 24 is initially opened, the fibers forming the center stratum of the blank paperboard material are pulled apart so that a first portion 13a thereof will adhere to the cover and a second portion 13b thereof will remain with the portion of the top panel 16 circumjacent the access opening 31 formed therein when the cover is initially opened, see FIG. 2.
The finger tab 28 serves a dual function: (a) it facilitates initial opening of the cover; and (b) it facilitates retention of the cover in its reclosable position, see FIG. 3. When the manufacturers joint is formed, the adhesive in the vicinity of the finger tab 28 may be omitted entirely or only spots 17a of adhesive may be utilized; thus, enabling the tab 28 to be readily separated from the second side panel when a finger nail is placed behind the tab and then outward pressure applied. The reclosing steps will be described more fully hereinafter.
In one method of setting up the package 10, the bag, either seamless or formed with a side seam, is initially formed in a conventional manner with one end lla thereof closed by heat sealing or adhesive. The open end bag is then inverted and placed over an upright mandrel 32, see FIG. 5. While the bag is so positioned, a cut 33 of substantially U-shape is formed in one face of the bag and defines the ultimate access opening therein through which the accommodated product can be removed when the cover is moved to its open position. The configuration of the access opening defined by the cut 33 closely approximates the access opening 31 formed in the top panel by partial cuts 26.
Subsequent to the cut 33 being applied to the bag 11, a continuous stripe of adhesive 34 is applied to either the exposed surface of the bag, see FIG. 5, or to the concealed surface of the carton so as to completely encircle the access opening which is defined by cut 33. It is important that a continuous encircling bond be attained between the bag and the interior surface of the carton so that said bond will serve as a barrier against infestation and the like occurring between the ends of the carton and the cut 33 formed in the bag. It should be noted that the continuous stripe of adhesive 34 is spaced from the perimeter of the access opening in the bag so that there will be no interference with the bag when the cover 24 is initially opened. it is also important that the portion of the bag adjacent the narrow end of the access opening be free from the second side panel ll7 at ll7a so that the bag and side panel portion 170 will cooperate with one another so as to form a pocket into which the finger tab 28 is frictionally placed when the cover is moved to its reclosed position, see FIG. 3; and thus, the cover is retained in its closed position.
Adhesive 35 is placed on the tonguelike portion 11b of the bag H which is delimited by the U-shaped cut 33. Subsequent to the cut 33, adhesive stripe 34 and adhesive 35 being applied to the inverted, mandrel-accommodated bag 11, the blank 13 is folded and partially set up about the bag while it is still in position on the mandrel 32. Care is to be exercised so as to align the tonguelike portion 11b of the bag between the cuts 26 of the second set formed in the top panel of the carton. Pressure is then applied to the exposed surface of the carton so as to effect the necessary bond between the bag and the interior surface of the carton. Additional portions of the bag, aside from that in the vicinity of the cut 33, may be adhesively secured to the carton, if desired (e.g., to the interior of back panel 14), so that the bag will remain in its proper relative position with the carton during and subsequent to loading.
While the inverted bag and the encompassing carton are still in position on the mandrel 32, one end of the carton is sealed closed, whereupon the carton and bag are removed therefrom, inverted to an upright position and then the product loaded through the respective open ends of the carton and bag. After the loading has taken place, the remaining open end of the bag is sealed closed by the application of heat or adhesive and the respective open end of the carton sealed closed by the closure flaps 2023, see FIG. 6.
ln a second method of setting up the package, the bag is formed about the mandrel 32 by folding a sheet of suitable material thereabout, securing the overlapping side edges so as to form a tube. The cut 33 is formed in the sleeve in a manner as previously described. While the ends of the tubelike bag remain open, the carton blank is folded into encompassing relation about the bag in manner as previously described. Prior to the carton blank being folded about the bag tube, stripes of adhesive may be applied to either the carton surface or the bag surface in manner as aforedescribed. The tubular bag and carton are then removed from the mandrel for either storage in a collapsed condition or are transferred to a setup station, not shown.
The configuration of the carton 112, bag 111 and the cover 24 and its location on panel may be varied from that illustrated so as to more effectively accommodate a particular product and facilitate the dispensing thereof. The sanitary package heretofore described is suitable for accommodating products such as medical supplies, or various types of food and the like.
Thus, an improved sanitary package has been provided which is of simple construction, may be readily opened without the need for a knife, scissors, or other similar tools, is attractive in appearance, effective in operation and capable of being effectively reclosed.
While various embodiments of the invention have heretofore been described, it is to be understood, of course, that the invention is not limited thereto, but further modifications are contemplated and it is intended by the appended claims to cover such modifications.
We claim: h l. A sanitary package comprising an outer carton formed of foldable sheet material and a product-accommodating bag disposed within said carton and sealed independently thereof; said carton including top and bottom panels arranged in spaced registered relation, side and end panels foldably interconnecting corresponding peripheral portions of said top and bottom panels, the exposed surface of said top panel being provided with a pair of elongated spaced first cuts extending thereacross and defining a hinged reclosable cover, said first cuts being spaced inwardly from the foldable connections between said top panel and said end panels, said cover being defined on the concealed surface of said top panel by a pair of elongated spaced second cuts, the spacing between said second cuts being less than that of said first cuts whereby said second cuts are disposed between said first cuts, the depth of each cut being less than the thickness of said sheet material; said bag having a side thereof adjacent said carton top panel provided with a cut which defines a hinged tonguelike member having the hinge axis thereof substantially aligned with the hinge axis of said reclosable cover, said tonguelike member being affixed to the concealed surface of said cover and being movable therewith, said tonguelike member being smaller area than said reclosable cover, said bag having an exterior portion of said side circumjacent said tonguelike member and the hinge-axis therefor affixed by a continuous unbroken bond to the carton interior surface.
2. The package of claim 1 wherein said carton top panel has foldably connected to the periphery thereof an extension flap which is affixed to the edge of said reclosable cover opposite the hinge axis for said cover, said extension flap overlying the exterior of one side panel; said extension flap being provided with a pair of third cuts defining a finger tab which is releasably affixed to said one side panel exterior and is foldably connected to and carried by said top panel reclosable cover.
3. The package of claim 2 wherein said finger tab is positionable behind and in frictional engagement with said one side panel when said cover is in its reclosed position.
4. The package of claim 11 wherein the end panels of said carton are formed by overlapping closure flaps foldably connected to the periphery of at least said top and bottom panels to form a seal end type carton.
5. The package of claim 1 wherein said first and second cuts formed on said top panel extend from one side panel to the other side panel.
F FORM PC4050 (10-69) UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No- 3,580,466 Dated May 25, 1971 Inventor(s) Edmund J. Thelen and Robert H. King It 'is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
Column 3, lines 50 and 53 insert abefore "manner" Column 4 line 37 insert of before "smaller" Column 4 line 56 insert outer-- before "carton" Signed and sealed this 28th day of September 1971.
EDWARD M.FLETCHER,JR. ROBERT GOTTSCHALK Attestlng Officer Acting Commissioner of Patents USCOMM-DC \iO37B-P59 U45. GOVIIN'IINT PRINTING OFFICE: I969 0-866-384
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