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Número de publicaciónUS3871516 A
Tipo de publicaciónConcesión
Fecha de publicación18 Mar 1975
Fecha de presentación11 Jun 1973
Fecha de prioridad11 Jun 1973
Número de publicaciónUS 3871516 A, US 3871516A, US-A-3871516, US3871516 A, US3871516A
InventoresHoward P Holkestad, Raymond G Ordner
Cesionario originalJ L Marsh Inc
Exportar citaBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
Enlaces externos: USPTO, Cesión de USPTO, Espacenet
Antitheft packaging device
US 3871516 A
Resumen
An antitheft packaging device is disclosed including an elongated body having two end portions each arranged to display and hold an article to be packaged, in the preferred embodiment either a cassette tape in one end or an eight-track tape in the other end, and a cover interfitting with the body in a reversible, removable fashion to allow the display and removal of a packaged article. In the preferred embodiment, the article is placed within the elongated body, and the cover is interfit with the body to encapsulate the article and prevent the removal of the article from the antitheft packaging device of the present invention until sale of the article. Thus, through use of the present invention, theft of the article packaged is retarded by increasing its dimension and making it more obvious to view and more difficult to surreptitiously remove from a place of business.
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mggg i Hollrestad et a1.

[451 Mar. 18, 1975 1 ANTITI-IEFT PACKAGING DEVICE [75] Inventors: Howard P. Holkestad, Minnetonka;

Raymond G. Ordner, Minneapolis, both of Minn.

[73] Assignee: J. L. Marsh Incorporated,

Minneapolis, Minn.

[22] Filed: June 11, 1973 [21] App]. No.: 368,650

Primary Examiner-Donald F. Norton Attorney, Agent, or FirmWicks & Nemer [57] ABSTRACT An antitheft packaging device is disclosed including an elongated body having two end portions each arranged to display and hold an article to be packaged, in the preferred embodiment either a cassette tape in one end or an eight-track tape in the other end, and a cover interfitting with the body in a reversible, removable fashion to allow the display and removal of a packaged article. In the preferred embodiment, the article is placed within the elongated body, and the cover is interfit with the body to encapsulate the article and prevent the removal of the article from the antitheft packaging device of the present invention until sale of the article. Thus, through use of the present in vention, theft of the article packaged is retarded by increasing its dimension and making it more obvious to view and more difficult to surreptitiously remove from a place of business.

27 Claims, Drawing Figures 1 ANTITHEFT PACKAGING DEVICE BACKGROUND The present invention relates generally to packaging devices, and more specifically to antitheft packaging devices for small, easily stolen articles.

With the increasing merchandising of small, easily stolen articles, an increasing need has arisen for methods and apparatus to prevent theft of such articles.

For example, cassette tapes and eight-track tapes have become a quite popular medium for the recording of music and the spoken word in general. Both of these items are of small dimension, one popular tape cassette case being about 4 inches in length, 2 inches in width, and approximately five-eighths of an inch in height. Eight-track tapes are slightly larger in all dimensions. As can be easily recognized, articles of this size may be easily slipped into the pocket or purse ofa thief or further concealed in packages or outer garments.

Previous antitheft packaging techniques have included a general approach of attempting to make the small item larger by excessively dimensioning the packaging in which the small article is inserted. This makes theft more difficult but generally requires a nonreusable package and an additional packaging step to firmly seal the small article to be merchandized within the large packaging, which additional step is generally performed at the manufacturing level.

The best known solution to the above problems allowing a reusable package is disclosed in a copending application for Letters Patent entitled Anti-Theft Packaging Device" filed by the present inventor on July 31, 1972, and accorded Ser. No. 276,657, and now US. Pat. No. 3,828,922. But, this device is generally tailored to the size of an article to be packaged and, for two sizes of articles such as cassettes and eight-track tapes, would generally require twosizes of packaging devices.

SUMMARY The present invention provides a simple, low cost, easily usable, reusable, antitheft packaging device which may package either of two sizes of articles with a simple modification of the device which may be made without tools, without any significant skill, and at the retail establishment and away from the manufacturing level. Thus, the quantity and type of packaging devices are reduced.

A preferred embodiment of the present invention includues a hollow, vertically elongated body having a generally solid planar front with viewing apertures formed in the end portions of the front, for convenience termed the top and bottom portions. Top and bottom apertures allow viewing of the packaged article by the customer and through the front without the necessity of the removal of the article from the body.

A cover for retaining the article to be packaged is then removably interlocked or interfit with the body, in the preferred embodiment by latches and removable hinges, and the articleto be packaged is inserted between the cover and the body behind the viewing apertures.

In the preferred embodiment, the cover is reversible to allow a single cover to be used with either top or bottom portions by simply reversing the cover position and interfitting it into the hinge and latch desired, either adjacent the top or adjacent the bottom of the body.

Also, the preferred embodiment of the packaging device of the present invention is designed to package eight-track tape cartridges in the bottom end portion and cassette tape packages in the top end portion. Thus, with the reversible cover, either the eight-track tape or the cassette tape cartridges may be displayed by reversing the cover and bringing the desired portion to the top position. That is, if an eight-track cartridge is to be displayed, the cover is placed adjacent the eighttrack viewing aperture, and the portion termed a bottom is revolved to the top to display the eight-track cartridge. The converse arrangement can be made if the packaging device of the present invention is to be again used for cassette cartridges.

It is thus an object of the present invention to provide a novel antitheft packaging device.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a novel antitheft packaging device which releasably maintains articles within a body.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a novel antitheft packaging device which can display two differing sizes of articles without significant modification of the device.

These and further objects and advantages of the present invention will become clearer in light of the following detailed description of an illustrative embodiment of this invention described in connection with the drawings.

DESCRIPTION-OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows a front perspective view of an antitheft packaging device according to the present invention and also illustrates an identification tag which can be used.

FIG. 2 shows a back perspective view of the device of FIG. 1 better illustrating the retaining cover.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged cross sectional view taken along section lines 3-3 in FIG. 2 also illustrating a removal tool.

DESCRIPTION The FIGURES show an antitheft packaging device according to the present invention and generally designated 10. Device 10 includes a hollow, vertically elongated plastic body 12 specifically including a generally planar, rectangular, solid and thus closed front 14, including a viewing face 16 and a back face 18, and an open back. Front 14 further includes sides 20 and 22 extending the length of front 14 and arranged perpendicularly to front 14.

Two viewing apertures 24 and 26 are defined adjacent the top and bottom ends of face 16 of front 14. In particular, aperture 24 is formed of a perpendicular inset extension portion 28 extending from face 16 of front 14 and towards and past back face 18. Portion 28 is in the form of a hollow, open ended parallelepiped. A rim or border portion 30 extends from the walls of portion 28 inwardly and parallel to face 16 and at a position in portion 28 behind back face 18 to define a front facing inset portion 32, best seen in FIG. 1, and a rear facing inset portion 34, best seen in FIG. 3. As will become clear hereinafter, a cassette tape" case, shown in dotted line in FIG. 3 as 36, occupies inset portion 34.

Mutually perpendicular to surface 16 of front 14 and sides 20 and 22 and substantially centrally of sides 20 and 22 are two ribs 38 and 40 extending from back surface 18 to a point within the rearward extent of side walls 20 and 22. Rib 38 is adjacent aperture 26 and rib 40 is adjacent aperture 24. The backmost portion of rib 38 includes a latch portion 42 in the form of an extension 44 arranged parallel to face 18 and extending towards the cassette end of body 12 including aperture 24. Similarly, a latch portion 46 is defined on rib 40 to include extension 48 extending oppositely of extension 44. That is, extension 48 extends towards the eighttrack portion of body 12 including aperture 26.

Extension 48 of latch 46 formed on rib 40 is shown in FIG. 3 as engaging, interfitting, interlacing, or interlocking with a similarly formed latch portion 50 on a lip 52 of a retaining cover 54. In particular, cover 54 is formed of a first portion 56 of a generally rectangularly shaped and planar plastic material and arranged parallel to face 18, in the closed position shown in FIG. 3. Cover 54 further includes two lip portions 52 and 58 arranged perpendicularly to and projecting towards face 18, in the closed position shown in FIG. 3, which lip portions are defined on either end of portion 56. Lip 52 is formed on one end of portion 56, intended generally to lie centrally of body 14, and lip 58 is formed on the opposite vertically arranged end of portion 56 arranged generally towards the ends of body 12.

Latch 50 formed on front lip 52 then includes latching extensions 59 and 60. Extensions 59 project towards rear lip 58, in the closed position seen in FIG. 3,

and are arranged to engage, interfit with, interlace with, or interlock with the body latches 46, as will be explained further hereinafter. Extensions 60 will oppo sitely of extensions 59, in the closed position seen in FIG. 3, and are arranged to engage, interfit with, interlace with, or interlock with the body latches 42, as ill be explained further hereinafter. Also, in the reversed position of cover 54 discussed hereinafter, the latch engagement is reversed.

Back lip 58 includes a hinge portion 62 including tabs 64 and 66 arranged parallel to portion 54 and extending towards the ends of body 12 and in the same direction as extensions 59. Tabs 64 and 66 of hinge portion 62 are arranged to engage, interfit, interlace, or interlock with projections 68 and 69 forming a part of body hinge portion 70 in the cassette end of body 12 including aperture 24.

In particular, body 12 also includes hinge slots 74 and 76 in the cassette end. Body hinge projections 69 and 68 overlie slots 74 and 76 and project towards aperture 24 to engage, interfit, interlace, or interlock with tabs 64 and 66 of cover 54, as will be explained further hereinafter.

Similarly, a body hinge 80 is formed on the eighttrack end of body 12 including aperture 26. Body hinge 80 includes slots 84 and 86 and overlyingprojections 89 and 88 which are directed towards aperture 26.

Push prevention ridge or ledge 90 is seen as extending from face 18 and the inner surfaces of sides 20 and 22 adjacent hinge slots 84 and 86 for purposes which will be made clear hereinafter. Similarly, a push prevention ridge or ledge 92 is formed adjacent hinge slots 74 and 76 of body hinge '70 on the cassette end of body 12 adjacent aperture 24.

As shown in FIG. 1, an identification tag 94 is positioned over the aperture 95 in the viewing face 16 of body 12 defined between ribs 38 and 40 to cover this aperture and to further identify the article to be sold, as will be made clearer hereinafter.

OPERATION Basically, the antitheft device of the present invention operates by: encapsulating and securing an article to be packaged between the body 12 and the retaining cover 54 yet allowing the viewing of the article through viewing apertures 24 and 26, which are of a dimension less than that of the article to be packaged to prevent passage of the article within the body 12 through the viewing apertures; and allowing the removal of the cover 54 to allow removal of the article from the body upon the sale of the article while retarding theft of the article before sale by increasing its physical dimension and reducing its ability to be surreptitiously removed from a retail store.

The particular embodiment shown provides packaging for either a cassette tape or eight-track tape, at opposite ends of the body 12, and is shown as specifically constructed for these articles. In particular, if a cassette tape 36 is to be encapsulated as shown in FIG. 3, the cover, assumed separated from body 12, is attached to body 12 as follows: Tabs 64 and 66 of cover 54, as shown, include a sharp bend and thus tabs 64 and 66 of hinge portion 62 on back lip 58 may be inserted into slots 74 and 76 within body 12, while generally holding cover 54 with portion 56 perpendicular to face 18, to cause tabs 64 and 66 to underlie the overhang of body hinge 70, and in particular projections 69 and 68, when cover 54 is pivoted forward and downward so as generally align portion 56 parallel to face 18, as shown in FIG. 3.

Latch 50 of front lip 52 of cover 54 is then engaged with latch 46 of rib 40, adjacent aperture 24, by causing the projection 48 of latch 46 and projections 59 of latch 50 to engage, interfit, interlace, or interlock to thereby retain cover 54 to body 12 at both ends of cover 54.

Also, projections 60 of latch 50 simultaneously en gage, interfit, interlace, or interlock with projections 44 of latch 42 of rib 38 to double latch cover 54 and further retard theft by further preventing an unauthorized removal of cover 54 from body 12.

Upon sale of an article so packaged, cover 54 may be removed, by, for example, removing the identification tag 94 covering aperture 95, as seen in FIG. 1, and inserting a tool into aperture 95, as seen in FIG. 3 with respect to tool 100, to separate ribs 38 and 40 and to push against lip 52 and urge it backwards to disengage latches 42 and 46 from latch 50. The cover may then be pivoted back on the body hinge and cooperating cover hinge 62 and the article withdrawn for sale.

If the next article to be packaged is, for example, an eight-track tape which is desired to be positioned behind viewing aperture 26 and encapsulated within device 10 of the present invention, cover 54 is completely removed by reversal of the procedure for installation given above, the cover is reversed in position, and hinge 62 of cover 54 is engaged, interfit, interlaced, or interlocked with hinge on the opposite end of body 12 in a similar manner tothat explained above with respect to the engagement of hinge 62 and binge 70. Further, latch 50 on lid 52 of cover 54 is engaged, interfit, interlaced, or interlocked with latch 42 on rib 38 and latch 46 on rib 40 in a manner similar to that explained above. I

Thus, the body 12 of the present invention includes hinge and latch means 70 and 46 and also 80 and 42,

each separated at least by a distance arranged to secure the article to be packaged betwen them. It is deemed preferred that the article to be packaged not rattle or move significantly within the packaging device, and thus the device of the present invention be specifically designed for the two differing articles to be packaged, such as eight-track tape or cassette tape. It is further preferred that the body be generally symmetrical in nature with the top portion equal in size to the bottom portion with each comprising substantially onehalf of the body to allow the cover to be of a uniform size which is also substantially equal to one'half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body 12. This allows a symmetrical reversal of the cover and a savings of material. It will of course be recognized that with a vertical separation of the latch means 42 and 46, the cover need not occupy onehalf of the vertical dimension of body 12.

A subtle feature of the present invention may now be explained. It will now be recognized that ledges 90 and 92, as specifically seen in FIG. 3, prevent the pushing upon lip 58 of cover 54 to thus disengage the cover hinge and the body hinge. That is, while difficult to perform, it has been found that a disengagement of cover 54 from body 12 can be accomplished by applying pressure against lip 58 to disengage the cover hinge and the body hinge. Push prevention ledges 90 and 92 thwart this manipulation, as seen in FIG. 3, by retarding the movement of lip 58 towards either aperture with the cover in the latched position.

Therefore, a novel antitheft packaging device has been presented which may be quickly loaded with articles to be packaged, is reusable, will merchandise two distinct sizes of articles without significant modification of the device, releasably maintains the articles within the body 12 until sale, and includes additional antitheft features retarding undesired removal of cover 54.

Now that the basic teachings of the present invention have been explained, many extensions and variations will be obvious to one having ordinary skill in the art. For example, articles other than eight-track and cassette tapes may be packaged, although the packaging device of the present invention was specifically designed for these articles.

Also, while it is deemed preferred that the cover latch centrally of the body and hinge upward of the body, no limitation to the precise placement of these retaining mechanisms is intended. It will now be recognized that the cover may in fact be transverse of the vertical dimension of body 12, or many other orienta tions.

Additionally, while it is deemed preferred to fabricate the device 10 of the present invention from plastic materials, no limitations to this material is intended.

Further, many further configurations ofthe device 10 of the present invention will be envisioned by those skilled in the art.

Thus, since the invention disclosed herein may be embodied in other specific forms without departing from the spirit or general characteristics thereof, some of which forms have been indicated, the embodiments described herein are to be considered in all respects i]- lustrative and not restrictive. The scope of the invention is to be indicated by the appended claims, rather than by the foregoing description, and all changes which come within the meaning and range of equivalency of the claims are intended to be embraced therein.

What is claimed is:

1. Antitheft device for packaging small articles, comprising in combination: an article to be packaged, the article being of fixed dimensions; a hollow, vertically elongated body, including a generally closed front face, the body being divided into a top portion and a bottom portion, with viewing apertures defined in the top and bottom portions of the front face to allow the article to be packaged within the hollow body to be visible and viewed through the front face of the top and bottom portions of the body, the viewing apertures being of a dimension less than the fixed dimensions of the article to be packaged to prevent passage of the article within the hollow of the body through the viewing apertures, the body further including a hinge member and including a latch member separated from the hinge member by at least a dimension of the article to be packaged; and a retainer member of a dimension to cover at least a part of the top portion or at least a part of the bottom portion of the body including a hinge member and including a latch member separated from the hinge mem ber by a distance arranged to removably cooperate with the body hinge member and body latch member to secure the article to be packaged between the body and the retainer member and yet allow viewing of the article through the viewing aperture and allow removal of the retainer member to remove the article from the body upon sale of the article while retarding theft of the article before sale.

2. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein the body includes at least two latch members and at least two hinge members arranged to allow the retainer member to be placed in either of two positions, with one position allowing the retainer member to cover at least a part of the top portion of the body and another position allowing the retainer member to cover at least a part of the bottom portion of the body.

3. The antitheft device of claim 2, wherein one of the body hinge members and body latch members are defined in the body adjacent the top of the body and are also defined in the body adjacent the bottomof the body and the remainder of the body hinge members and body latch members are positioned centrally of the body to allow a general reversal of the retainer member from a position adjacent the top portion of the body to a position adjacent the bottom portion of the body.

4. The antitheft device of claim 3, wherein the body is arranged to receive two different sizes of articles to be packaged.

5. The antitheft device of claim 4, wherein the body is arranged to receive a standard cassette tape package in the top portion of the body and to receive a standard eight-track tape package in the bottom portion of the body.

6. The antitheft device of claim 5, wherein the top portion of the body further includes extensions perpendicular to the front face of the body and extending generally between the front face of the body and the retainer member to encapsulate and render immovable a standard cassette tape package. U

7. The antitheft device of claim 6, wherein the body is of a generally symmetrical nature with the top portion approximately equal in size to the bottom portion and each of the top portion and bottom portion comprising substantially one-half of the body and wherein the retainer member is ofa dimension equal to substantially one-half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body.

8. The antitheft device of claim 7, wherein the body hinge members are arranged at opposite ends of the body and the body latch members are arranged centrally of the body.

9. The antitheft device of claim 8, wherein the body hinge members include at least one slot in the body with an overhang of material adjacent the slot and wherein the retainer member hinge member comprises tabs extending from the retainer member and of a dimension to fit into the body hinge slot, with the tabs including a sharp bend to allow the retainer member hinge to be inserted into the body hinge slot and cause the retainer member tab to underlie the overhang of the body hinge member.

10. The antitheft device of claim 9, wherein the body hinge member includes a push prevention ledge arranged oppositely of the overhanging ledge to thereby engage the retainer member while the retainer member is in a hinged position to thereby prevent unauthorized removal of the retainer member by a pushing of the retainer member tab out of the body hinge slot.

11. The antitheft device of claim 10, wherein the body latch member comprises a projection generally parallel to the front face of the elongated body and extending towards one end of the elongated body and wherein the retainer member latch member comprises a projection substantially parallel to the vertical dimension of the retainer member and extending toward the other end of the elongated body.

12. The antitheft device of claim 11, wherein the body includes a position allowing the attachment of an identification tag centrally of the body.

13. The antitheft device of claim 3, wherein the body hinge members are arranged at opposite ends of the body and the body latch members are arranged centrally of the body.

14. The antitheft device of claim 3, wherein the body hinge members include at least one slot in the body with an overhang of material adjacent the slot and wherein the retainer member hinge member comprises tabs extending from the retainer member and of a dimension to fit into the body hinge slot, with the tabs including a sharp bend to allow the retainer member hinge member to be inserted into the body hinge slot and cause the retainer member tab to underlie the overhang of the body hinge member.

15. The antitheft device of claim 14, wherein the body hinge members include a push prevention ledge arranged oppositely of the overhanging ledge to thereby engage the retainer member while the retainer member is in a hinged position to thereby prevent unauthorized removal of the retainer member by a pushing of the retainer member tab out of the body hinge slot.

16. The antitheft device of claim 2, wherein the body hinge member includes a push prevention ledge to engage the retainer member while the retainer member is in a hinged position to thereby prevent unauthorized removal of the retainer member.

17. The antitheft device of claim 2, wherein the body is arranged to receive two different sizes of articles to be packaged.

18. The antitheft device of claim 17, wherein the body is arranged to receive a standard cassette tape package in the top portion of the body and to receive a standard 8-track tape package in the bottom portion of the body.

19. The antitheft device of claim 18, wherein the body is of a generally symmetrical nature with the top portion approximately equal in size to the bottom portion and each of the top portion and bottom portion comprising substantially one-half of the body and wherein the retainer member is of a dimension equal to substantially one-half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body.

20. The antitheft device of claim 2, wherein the body is of a generally symmetrical nature with the top portion approximately equal in size to the bottom portion and each of the top portion and bottom portion comprising substantially one-half of the body and wherein the retainer member is of a dimension equal to substantially one-half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body.

21. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein the body hinge member includes a push prevention ledge to engage the retainer member while the retainer member is in a hinged position to thereby prevent unauthorized removal of the retainer member.

22. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein one of the body hinge members and body latch members are defined in the body adjacent the top of the body and also defined in the body adjacent the bottom of the body and the remainder of the body hinge members and latch members are positioned centrally of the body to allow a general reversal of the retainer member from a position adjacent the top portion of the body to a position adjacent the bottom portion of the body.

23. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein the body is arranged to receive two different sizes of articles to be packaged.

24. The antitheft device of claim 23, wherein the body is arranged to receive a standard cassette tape package in the top portion of the body and to receive a standard eight-track tape package in the bottom portion of the body.

25. The antitheft device of claim 24, wherein the body is of a generally symmetrical nature with the top portion approximately equal in size to the bottom portion and each of the top portion and bottom portion comprising substantially one-half of the body and wherein the retainer member is of a dimension equal to substantially one-half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body.

26. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein the body is of a generally symmetrical nature with the top portion approximately equal in size to the bottom portion and each of the top portion and bottom portion comprising substantially one-half of the body and wherein the retainer member is of a dimension equal to substantially one-half of the vertical dimension of the elongated body.

27. The antitheft device of claim 1, wherein the body includes a position allowing the attachment of an identification tag centrally of the body. l

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Clasificaciones
Clasificación de EE.UU.206/387.11, 206/807, 220/23.8, G9B/23.15
Clasificación internacionalE05B73/00, G11B23/023
Clasificación cooperativaY10S206/807, E05B73/0023, G11B23/023
Clasificación europeaG11B23/023, E05B73/00B2