US 3450308 A
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June 1969 w. c. SCHOENEFELD ARTICLE DISPENSER HAVING AN INCLINE 1D BOTTOM RAMP AND A FRONT WALL ARTICLE OUTLET OPENING Sheet Filed Oct. 6, 1967 INVENTOR WILLIAM C. SCHOENEFELD I W ATTORNEYS BY w; 62.0.4,
June 1969 w. c. SCHOENEFELD 3,
ARTICLE! DISPENSLR HAVlNG AN lNCLlNEI) BOTTOM RAMP AND A FRONT WALL ARTICLE OUTLET OPENING Filed 00:. 1967 Sheet 2 of 4 Inner Rear LL 1.
INVENTOR WILLIAM C. SCHOENEFELD ORNEYS June 7, 1969 w. c. SCHOENEFELD 3,450,308
ARTICLE DISPENSER HAVING AN INCLINED BOTTOM RAMP AND A FRONT WALL ARTICLE OUTLET OPENING Filed OC(.. 6, 1967 Sheet FIG. 8
D L E F E m mo .NH C S mo M m L W BY 274....4 y%TFORNEYS June 17, 1969 w. c. SCHOENEFELD ARTICLE DISPENSER HAV[NG AN INCLINED BOTTOM RA AND A FRONT WALL ARTICLE OUTLET OPENING Filed 001. 6, 1967 Sheet FIG INVENTOR WILLIAM C. SCHOENEFELD BY A A. ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,450,308 ARTICLE DISPENSER HAVING AN INCLINED BOTTOM RAMP AND A FRONT WALL ARTICLE OUTLET OPENING William C. Schoenefeld, P.O. Box 256, Greenwood Lake, N.Y. 10925 Filed Oct. 6, 1967, Ser. No. 673,329 Int. Cl. A47f 1/08; B65d 5/06 U.S. Cl. 221305 8 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A dispenser for containing and dispensing individually a plurality of stacked articles, the dispenser being constructed from a unitary sheet folder to form a container and an internal ramp member for directing the lowermost of the stacked articles to an opening having dimensions to permit articles to pass individually therethrough and to permit each article to be grasped while it is within the container.
Field of the invention Description of the prior art A large variety of prior art dispensers have been constructed by folding a sheet-material blank to form a container. Where the material is cardboard, such dispensers are quite inexpensive due to the low cost of the cardboard and the ease of cutting and bending a blank of this material. When assembled these dispensers generally define an enclosure for containing a plurality of articles, an opening in the enclosure through which articles are extracted, and internal guide means for directing the articles to the opening. Whether the articles arrive at the opening by a gravity feed or by other inducement, the type of dispensers considered here must also include metering means to prevent the article adjacent the dispensing opening from falling out, and to permit the removal of only one article at a time.
In attempting to achieve the various functions described above, a variety of folded-sheet dispensers have been developed with objectives of simplicity and economy. Where the dispenser-containers included internal ramp structure for guiding the articles, it was often found expedient to form the ramp from separate sheet material and to secure the ramp within the container by adhesive, staples or other comparable means. While this type of design is relatively simple, it still requires at least two independent parts, plus means for joining the parts. A more simple alternative structure utilizes a single sheet flexible enough to be bent into the desired shape, but requiring adhesive or other supplemental means to establish and maintain the overall dispenser construction. Another alternative structure relied upon material inherently stiff enough to provide the desired stability without any securing mean; however, a unitary blank of such stiff material could not feasibly be bent into the complicated shape required to form both internal and external structure. Thus regardless to the approach, none of the prior art dispensers has included all the desirable features discussed above, without also including an unde- 3,450,308 Patented June 17, 1969 sirable aspect, particularly the aspect of separate parts or separate securing means.
Summary of the invention This invention relates to a dispenser for containing a plurality of stacked articles which may be individually removed through a dispensing opening in the lower, front portion thereof. The dispenser is constructed from a unitary sheet which when folded forms the Walls of a container, an internal ramp extending from the opening upward and rearward to a portion of the container spaced from the front portion, and includes means integral to the sheet both for supporting and securing the ramp in its inclined position and for securing together portions of the walls to establish and maintain the containers shape.
In one embodiment of this present invention, the support means for the internal ramp structure is a section of the blank wrapped partially around the ramp, but the section is itself secured to .a dispenser wall. Contrary to the prior art dispensers where the ramp was directly connected to another portions of the dispenser, this embodiment avoids the problem of joining parts and merely supports the ramp by contact with another section of the blank. This is significant, because it provides stability for the ramp while permitting the use of a unitary dispenser blank with no additional parts or security means. Thus all of the structural elements of the dispenser, including the housing, the internal ramp structure, the metering and joining means are integral portions of the blank.
In this embodiment another feature of the ramp is a secondary opening in the ramps surface adjacent the dispensing opening. Since the bottom-most article rests upon the ramp, the articles lower surface would generally be unexposed; however as a result of the ramp opening, articles, when grasped, may be contacted on both upper and lower surfaces. This secondary opening at the lower end of the ramp coincides with the principal dispensing opening in the front wall of the container; thus a person can extend two fingers through both open ings and grasp the article by its exposed edge. Where articles might fall through the dispensing opening, one dimension thereof may be smaller than the corresponding article dimension, to restrain such articles from being dislodged without first being slightly deformed. For example, paper packets of soap powder might be slightly bent when dispensed.
Description of the drawings FIG. 1 is a front perspective view of the dispenser of this invention,
FIG. 2 is an upper, front perspective view thereof,
FIG. 3 is a side sectional view through 33 of FIG. 2,
FIG. 4 is a plan view through 44 of FIG. 2,
FIG. 5 is a sectional view through 5-5 of FIG. 3,
FIG. 6 is a plan view of the blank for forming the dispenser,
FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the blank after the first fold to form the ramp,
FIG. 8 is a similar view of the blank after the second fold with the ramp completed,
FIG. 9 is a similar view beginning the third fold, with the front and side walls defined,
FIG. 10 is a similar view, finishing the third fold, defining the bottom wall and ramp support and beginning the fourth fold,
FIG. 11 is a similar view showing a continuation of the fourth fold, and
FIG. 12 is a similar view showing the completion of the fourth fold.
Description of the preferred embodiment In FIG. 1 the preferred embodiment of the new dispenser 1 is shown in its assembled condition, having been constructed from a unitary sheet of cardboard folded into a rectangular box shape. As seen in the perspective views at FIGS. 1 and 2, the box comprises front wall 2, rear wall 3,'side walls 4 and 5, bottom wall 6 and top wall 7. In the lower front portion of the box is dispenser opening 8 formed by cutout 9 in the lower part of the front wall 2, and adjacent cutout 10 in the front part of bottom wall 6. Within the container is an inclined ramp 11 having a body part 11A, a lower base part 118 and a lower end part 110 disposed at the intersection of the body and base parts. The ramp extends from opening 8 at the intersection of the front and bottom walls, upward and rearward to 3A of rear wall 3 at about one third the height thereof.
When ready for use the dispenser as seen in FIG. 3 would contain a plurality of articles a in a vertical column extending from the ramp 11 upward to the top wall 7. This preferred dispenser is suitable for many different articles, including for example, soap powder packets, which are slightly deformable when extracted. The packet width dimension corresponds generally to the width of cutout 9 or the distance between the side walls 4 and 5. For each packet, the thickness measured vertically, corresponds to the height dimension of cutout 9, and is such that the packet can be removed through the dispenser opening 8 when grasped and pulled by a persons finger or by other grasping means. With these dimensional relationships, edges either of the article or of the dispensing opening should be deformable in order to permit easy extraction of these articles.
In FIGS. 2 and 3 the ramps horizontal base part 11B is shown to be integral with inclined body part 11A. Adjacent cutouts 12 and 13 in the inclined and horizontal ramp parts respectively, define a finger opening which coincides with the dispensing opening 8 in front and bottom walls of the container. Top wall 7 is a readily openable flap convenient for loading the plurality of packets.
This preferred container is constructed from a blank 20 shown in FIG. 6. For ease of description the blank will be described as having an approximate L shape hav ing legs 21 and 22. Leg 21 comprises five generally rectangular primary or wall sections, designated 2, 3, 4, and 27, separated by fold lines 14A-14D between each two sections. Leg 22 is formed by two additional longitudinal secondary sections 11 and 6 separated from each other by a cut line 15, and separated from leg 21 by fold lines 16 and 23.
In another embodiment of the blank, leg 21 may comprise only four primary sections, since the assembled dispenser has only four sides, with the fifth section 3 of the blank being eliminated. In this latter case, sections 4A and 5A would also be omitted; and tab 3B and sections 7 and 7A would extend from wall 5.
Fabrication requires that this blank be folded numerous times along appropriate fold lines as explained below. While the sequence of folds is not fixed, a preferred order for forming the interior structure and the outer shell is now described.
The first fold is shown in FIG. 7 in which section 11 is folded on fold lines 16, 17, and 18 to form ramp base 11B, inclined ramp body 11A and ramp tab 11C. In FIG. 8 the ramp is fully formed with tab 11C inserted into a slot 11D in section 27, which is folded along fold line 14A to become the dispensers inner rear wall disposed at a right angle to side wall 4.
By a third folding operation shown in FIGS. 9 and 10, section 6 is folded along fold lines 23, 24 and 25 forming the bottom wall 6 and sections 6A and 6B. As shown in FIG. the bottom wall 6 is wrapped under ramp base 113 to thereby support it, and section 6A forms an inner side wall underlying side 5, with tab 6B engaged to slot 4 60 in section 27. By this tab connection, section 6 is maintained in its position relative to section 27, assuring that ramp base 11B will also be securely supported.
FIGS. 11 and 12 show the final folds of sections 3, 3B, Sand 7 on fold lines 14C, 14D, 3D and 3E. This forms section 5 into a side wall, section 3 into an outer rear wall which lies flat against inner rear wall 27, and section 7-as the top wall. During final assembly after the basic rectangular container is formed, tab 3B is inserted in slot 3C of section 4, fiaps 4A and 5A of the respective side walls are bent over, and top wall 7 is folded down with its flap 7A tucked into the slot formed adjacent front wall 2.
1. A dispenser for housing and individually dispensing a plurality of articles stacked therein, the dispenser comprising a unitary sheet folded to form a container which, when in upright position, has a dispensing opening in the lower front wall portion thereof, the container comprising (a) upstanding walls,
(b) a ramp within the container, the ramp including a lower end part adjacent the opening and defining the lower boundary thereof and a body part extending from the end part upward and rearwar from said front wall to a portion of the container spaced from said opening,
(0) means integral with the sheet for supporting and securing the ramp in said inclined position, and
((1) means integral with the sheet for securing together portions of the walls to establish and maintain the containers shape.
2. A dispenser as defined in claim 1 wherein the ramp when in assembled position further includes a base part extending generally laterally below said body part from said end, and the means for supporting the ramp comprises a bottom wall of the container.
3. A dispenser as defined in claim 1 wherein said means for securing together portions of the walls comprise tabs integral to the sheet and insertable into slots in the sheet aligned with the tabs when the dispenser is in assembled condition.
4. A dispenser as defined in claim 1 and including top and bottom walls, wherein said unitary sheet is a blank comprising:
(a) a first portion divided by four, spaced generally parallel fold lines into five wall sections having side and end edges, the fold lines defining side edges, and the end edges traversing the side edges,
(b) first and second, adjacent, secondary sections extending from the end edges of two, adjacent, wall sections, these secondary sections:
(i) being separated from their respective wall sections by secondary fold lines extending along the end edges of said wall sections,
(ii) being separated from each other by a cut line, and
(iii) each having a free end remote from the secondary fold line,
(c) one of the secondary sections being foldable to form the ramp, its free end connectible to its associated wall section, and
(d) the remaining secondary section being foldable to form the bottom wall of the container.
5. A dispenser as defined in claim 1 wherein said container is a rectangular box including a front wall, and the sheet has a first cutout defining the dispensing opening in the lower portion of the front wall and a second cutout in the ramps lower end defining an open permitting the grasped articles to be contacted on both upper and lower surfaces.
6. A dispenser as defined in claim 5 wherein the container includes a bottom wall adjacent to and intersecting the front wall, the lower end part of the ramp is generally adjacent said intersection, and the sheet includes a third cutout in said bottom wall adjacent to and having dimensions corresponding to the second cutout.
7. A dispenser as defined in claim 4 wherein the blank further comprises tabs and cooperating slots into which the tabs are inserted for forming joints when the dispenser is assembled, a first joint being between the free end of the secondary section forming the ramp and the wall section from which it extends, and a second joint being between two wall sections forming adjacent sides of the dispenser.
8. A unitary blank suitable to be folded and assembled into a container having walls and an internal supported ramp for dispensing articles, the blank comprising:
(a) a first portion divided by at least three, spaced,
generally parallel fold lines into at least four, pri- 15 mary sections having side and end edges, the fold lines defining the side edges, and the end edges traversing the side edges,
(b) first and second, adjacent, secondary sections extending from the corresponding end edges of two, adjacent, primary sections, these scondary sections:
(i) being separated from their respective primary sections by secondary fold lines extending along the end edges of said wall sections,
(ii) being separated from each other by a out line, and
(iii) each having a near end adjacent its respective secondary fold line, and a free end remote from the secondary fold line,
(c) one of the secondary sections being foldable to form the ramp, its free end connectible to the primary section from which it extends, and
(d) the remaining secondary section being foldable along a transverse fold line intermediate its ends to form a ramp support means.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,119,213 12/1914 Abt 221--305 2,216,323 10/ 1940 Ringler 221-305 X WALTER SOBIN, Primary Examiner.
U.S. Cl. X.R.