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Патент USA US3080093

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March 5, 1963
w. B. SUTHERLAN
3,080,083
COLLAPSIBLE CONTAINER
Filed Oct. 17. 1960
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BY
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ATTORNEY
United States Patent 0
1
d?dd?dd
Patented Mar. 5, 1%53
2
angles to produce corresponding adjacent vertical sec
3,080,083
tions 14 and 15 and horizontal strips 16, 17 or ?anges.
The upper frame 10 is completely separable from the
other parts, while the lower frame 12 has permanently
lodged therein (as by a press ?t, glue, or even nails) a
horizontal ?oor panel 18, conveniently (but not neces
sarily) made or" a single sheet of plywood (e.g. 1%" ply
wood) and carrying along its lower face, a downwardly
CQLLAPSHBLE CGNTAINER
William B. §utherlan, 47th and S. Adams St.,
Tacoma, Wash.
Filed 0st. 17, 1969, Ser. No. 63,062
1 (Zlaim. (Cl. 217-12)
This invention relates to a collapsible container or box
and more particularly to such a structure which, after
projecting pair of longitudinal skid rails 25}, 22 disposed
being used as a container and emptied, can have its side 10 generally parallel to each other and more-'or-less adjacent
walls removed from their upright position, laid flat on
opposing edges of the box or frame.
the bottom and the whole unit locked together in such
Two opposing vertical strips 14 of each frame are
compact position for shipping or storage.
each formed with a horizontal slot 24, 25 located ap
Accordingly it is an object of the invention to provide
proximately midway along the length thereof, the corre
an improved container of the character described. In 15 sponding slots of the upper and lower frames being verti
particular such a box has already found commercial ac
cally alignable so as to conjointly receive a metal tie bar
ceptance for packing and shipping apples, and other uses
2s when the two frames are spaced vertically apart (FIGS.
will be apparent to various readers varying with their
3 and 5). Each tie bar is formed as a longitudinal, gen
?elds of interest. In addition to the saving of space in
erally fiat strip 28 having each end bent outward more-or
transporting or stacking the empty boxes, the present con 20 less at right angles to form terminal engaging jaws 3t},
struction is particularly advantageous in permitting a
32 receivable through the corresponding frame slots.
more thorough and easy cleaning and disinfecting of the
Four side walls 3!}, 36, 33, all (which may be of iden
empty box when disassembled since each side wall, for
tical size and hence interchangeable if the frames lit, 12
example, is entirely separable.
are square) are each formed in interlocking dove-tailed,
Still another purpose or’ the invention is to provide a 25 vertical edges 42, 44 (FIG. 4) so that they may be stood
knock-down box construction wherein, upon assembly,
upright, thus coupled together along their edges and can
separable upright locking members serve simultaneously
not subsequently shift inwardly because supported by each
to strengthen the lateral walls and impart further rigidity
other. By ?rst placing their lower edges within the bot
to the assembly, thus permitting construction of the con
tom frame 12 and then pressing down the top frame It)
tainer wal s vof relatively light weight material, or al 30 around their upper edges, the top rail 16 abutting against
ternatively allow greater loads to be carried with con
or overlying the upper edge of each side wall, the four
ventional strength walls.
walls are securely held in position, forming (together
Yet another object resides in the provision of such a
with the floor 13) a box or container. Then each tie
knockdown packing crate or box which can be easily and
bar 26, which may have had its lower engaging lip 32
quickly assembled and disassembled by unskilled labor 35 already inserted through the corresponding lower frame
without tools, or at most by using only a simple lever
slot 25 before the side walls are in place, has its medial
strip 23 pressed back tightly against the adjacent outer
Other objects and advantages of the invention will be
face of the side wall and its upper lip 36‘? inserted out
apparent from the following description and claims, the
ward through the upper frame slot 24 (with the aid of
novelty consisting in the features of construction, com 40 a tool such as a screwdriver when the structures ?t very
bination of parts, the unique relations of the members
tightly together). The opposing pair of tie bars, thus
and the relative proportioning, disposition, and operation
mounted, serve to lock together the top and bottom frames
thereof, all as more completely outlined herein and par
19, ‘12 (together with their embraced side and bottom
ticularly pointed ‘out in the appended claims.
walls) while at the same time lending lateral reinforce
in the drawings, which form part of the present speci?
ment to the unit.
such as a screw driver.
cation:
v
FIG. 1 is a vertical sectional View, partly in elevation,
of my collapsible packing box shown somewhat sche
matically, in compact form with the four side walls lying
on the bottom and the upper and lower frames held to
gether by removable cleats;
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the assembled box
with a portion broken away to show the inner construc
tion;
As shown best in PEG. 3, the engagement of the rear
faces of tie bars 26, 28 against wall members 34, 38 se
curely retains the jaws 3t}, 32 in their interlocked en
gagement with frames 11? and i2, effectively restraining
50 the jaws 3d, 32 from becoming dislodged from slots 24,
25. At the same time the tie bars securely tie the frames
ill, 12 together, resisting any tendency for them to spread
apart and thus retaining the edges of side walls 34, 36,
38, Kill well secured within the embrace of ?anges id, 15;
FIG. 3 is a vertical sectional View taken through a side 55 and the side walls function to maintain the separation of
of the assembled box at right angles to FIG. 2 along the
line 3--3;
FIG. 4 is a detail perspective showing the interlocking
construction of the side walls;
the frames in spaced parallel planes. in addition they do
not add appreciably to the weight of the assembly and
thus furnish the support which might otherwise be ob
tained only by a thicker wall or other reinforcement.
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the assembled box as 60 The top and bottom frames, in turn, impart unusual rigid
seen from above, with portions broken away to show inner
ity to the unit.
CODSillCtlOl'l; and
For a quick knock-down or disassembly of the unit,
FIG. 6 is a detail horizontal sectional view of a corner
the only step requiring even a short pause is the dislodging
of a modi?ed form of corner joint.
of the upper engaging lip 3d of one tie bar from its frame
Fundamentally my construction is based on a pair of 65 slot 24. This can best be effected by inserting the blade
rectangular frames 19, 12 corresponding to the perimeter
of a large screwdriver between the respective vertical
of the box and adapted to be disposed horizontally and
?ange 14 and the surface of the adjacent side wall 34» or
spaced apart vertically so as to form the upper and lower
33, and, by a prying action springing the ?ange 14 out
edges thereof, each frame being made of rigid material
wardly suf?ciently to clear the edge of lip 36, then moving
substantially L-shaped in cross section, such as angle 70 the frame bar away from the bottom 18 suihciently for
iron and each side bent lengthwise approximately at right
the end of the tie bar 13 to clear the frame. Then this
3,080,088
3
side of the top frame 10 can be raised and pushed trans~
versely to disengage the opposite tie bar lip, the side walls
then knocked outward so as to separate them. They can
then be laid ?at on top of the ?oor 18 as seen in FIG. 1
and the upper frame 10 placed on top. A pair of U
shaped clips 46, 48 can then be inserted into the vacant
tie bar slots 24, 25 of each frame to secure the two frames
together in this compacted position for shipping or stor
age. Accordingly it should be apparent that I have pro-'
4
within the vertical ?anges of the lower frame and resting
on the horizontal ?anges thereof; four rectangular side
panels received between the upper frame and said ?oor
panel with their outer faces closely adjacent and parallel
to the inner faces of the respective vertical ?anges and
con?ned therewithin their lower margins resting on said
?oor panel adjacent the side margins thereof their upper
margins con?ned beneath the upper horizontal ?anges,
and their ends provided with-respective tenons vertically
vided a. collapsible container having not only the ad 10 spaced to define between themselves, notches which re- .
ceive the tenons of the adjoining end of an adjacent side
vantage of compact knock-down storage in small space
when empty, but also possessing unusual reinforced walls
when assembled. In addition, both assembly and dis
assembly can be effected quickly and easily by unskilled
labor without appreciable training'ror instruction.
In the assembled box, the wall members 34, 36, 38, 49
panel, whereby said side panels brace one another against
inward movement While providing support for said- upper
frame; and a pair of strap-metal tie~links each having a
length corresponding to the height from a lower slot to
the upper slot of a pair when said upper frame is sup
ported-onsaid side panels, and eachhaving a back face
bearing ?atly against the outer faceof a respective side
engagement of their respective ends against one another
panel, having its respective end portions inserted be
at the corners of the box. This may be provided for by
beveled ends which mutually support one another as 20 tween, the said respective outer face and the respective
overlapping vertical ?anges, and having respective tongues
shown in FIG. 6, although in the preferred form» of the
at its upper and lower ends disposed transversely of its
invention shown in FIG. 4, the ends of the wall mem
longitudinal axis and projecting outwardly through re:
bers are notched to provide interlocking tenons 42, 44
spective slots in the respective upper and lower vertical
which not only provide the abutting support to resist in
ward collapsing but also interlock the adjoining side 25 ?anges at the respective opposite sides of the box, each a
tie link extending vertically between the upper and lower
members vertically so as to resist any vertical displace
frames at said opposite sides of the box, tying said frames
ment of one relative to the other, assisting the top and
together, and locked to the respective frames by outward
bottom frames 10 and 12. in resisting vertical displace
pressure of a respective side panel maintaining said
rnent. At the same time, the embracing reception of
the upper and lower margins of the sidemembers 34, 36, 30 tongues hooked into their respective slots; said tongues
having a length only slightly greater than the thickiress of
38, 40 by frames 10 and 12 securely hold the side mem
the respective vertical ?anges in which they are hooked;
bers against outward separation'from assembly.
‘and said side panels and the adjacent vertical ?angesbe
While I have herein shown and described my invention
are supported against collapsing inwardly, by the abutting
ing relatively yieldable sufficiently to be pried apart __so
in what I have presently conceived to be the most prac
tical and preferred embodiment, it is recognized that 35 as to permit insertion of the tongues through .gaps thus
provided between them, in order to hook-the tongues into
departures may be made therefrom within the scope of
said slots during assembly of the box ‘and to release the
my invention, which is not to be limited to the details dis
tongues
from the slots during disassembly of the box.
closed herein, but is to be accorded the full scope of
the claim so as to embrace any and all equivalent devices.
The invention having been herein described, what .I 40
References Cited in the ?le of this patent ‘
claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
A collapsible box comprising: a separable pair of upper
and lower metal frames of conforming rectangular plat
form each comprising four bars ‘of angle section having
respective horizontal ?anges disposed in a common hori 45
zontal plane ‘and vertical ?anges projecting toward one
another in pairs in respective vertical planes at the four
sides of the box, the vertical ?anges at opposite sides _of
the box having respective horizontal slots disposed in 60
vertically opposed pairs at the centers of said opposite
sides; a rectangular ?oor panel shaped to ?t loosely
UNITED STATES PATENTS
759,961
1,277,515
Beems ______________ __ May 17, 1904
Wild ________________ __ Sept. 3, 1918
1,857,350
Brock _______________ _.. May 10, 1932 -
1,895,428
2,961,113
Edgin _______________ _.. Jan. 24, 1933
Kienlen _____________ __ Nov. 22, 1960
FOREIGN PATENTS
519,309
164,899
Great Britain _________ _... Mar. 21, 1940
Austria ______________ _.- Dec. 27, 1949
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