US 3315801 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 25, 1967 R. D. LOWRY DISPENSER PACKAGE Filed May 18, 1964 United States Fatent O 3,315,801 DISPENSER PACKAGE Robert D. Lowry, Winchester, Mass., assignor to Lowry Development Corporation, Winchester, Mass., 2 corporation of Massachusetts Filed May 18, 1964, Ser. No. 367,969
7 Claims. (Cl. 206-56) This invention relates to commodity packaging and more particularly to a dispenser package for containing an individual portion or serving of a liquid or semi-liquid food, such as ketchup, mustard, salad dressing, jam, jelly, cream, tartar and other sauces, or of other such commodities, edible or otherwise. Packages of this invention may be used with any flowable material, but they are particularly adapted for use with commodities which flow more readily under applied pressure, since packages of the invention may be collapsed under pressure applied as between the thumb and fingers.
It is a particular object of the invention to provide a package which can be collapsed as by applying pressure between the thumb and fingers, to dispense the contents and which, at the same time, will, after dispensing only part of the contents through a suitable top opening, stand upright by itself so that the remainder of the contents will not spill and thus be available for further helpings.
It is a further object of the invention to provide such a package which is adapted for fabrication with its contained food serving or other commodity in a continuous automatic machine operation and which is of uncomplicated structure and few parts, so as to render the packages amenable to rapid production at low cost.
To this end, the dispensing collapsibility is provided by enclosing the commodity between the folds of an outer fairly stiff package wall which is folded medially along a straight line constituting a hingle line for a billows type squeeze-together of the outer stiff folds. The commodity is retained between the walls in a hollow pillowlike sack formed by reason of attachment of a more flexible sheet material around its marginal edge portions to at least one and preferably to both folded panels of the outer wall, forming a hermetically sealed hollow enclosure sandwiched between the folded walls of the outer stiff material.
These and other objects of the invention will be more fully understood when taken in connection with typical embodiments thereof, as shown in the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 is a diagrammatic view illustrating mechanism used in the initial formative steps of making the package;
FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional'view illustrating a succeeding step;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the completed pack- FIG. 4 shows the completed package after it has been opened for dispensing its contents and demonstrating its dispensing use;
FIG. 5 is cross-sectional view of a modified form of the invention at an intermediate stage of formation, and showing additionally in dotted lines a further alternative modification;
FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of the alternative dotted line form of package illustrated in FIG. 5 after folding;
FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6 of the full line FIG. 5 modification after folding; and
FIGS. 8-11, incluisve, illustrate two additional alternative forms of opening means for the packages.
Since the structure of the packages may more readily be understood by following the steps in their fabricaice tion, reference is made to FIG. 1, which shows diagrammatically a typical mechanism for making and filling packages from sheet material, being conventional in every respect save possibly for the use of a D-shaped horn 10.
Roll 12 comprises a rolled length of relatively stiff sheet material which, when unwound, supports itself in generally the same plane, for example, 3 mil cellulose acetate. Opposed roll 14 comprises a rolled length of limper material, i.e. of greater flexibility and which does not necessarily support itself, and of slightly greater width than that of the material 12, being, for example, 1 mil polythylene, polypropylene, polyester, cellulose acetate or a vinyl plastic, or laminations of any of these to each other or to a metal foil. Vacuum coated metallic deposits may be made on either or both of the materials to form linings which will render the package gas, as well as liquid, impervious when packaging volatile or oxygensensitive commodities to retain aroma or prevent spoilage. The materials are thus chosen for their particular moisture, grease or gas transmission-resistant qualities, depending upon the particular commodity being packaged. Preferably, the materials are of such nature that they can be heat-sealed together, though adhesives may be used if necessary.
Pairs of heated rollers 16 and 18, respectively, are positioned to heat-seal the longitudinal edges of the two strips 12 and '14 together as they advance downwardly through the machine to form longitudinal seals 17 and 19, respectively. Spaced below the level of the rollers 16 and 18 are opposed reciprocating heating elements 22 which are brought into contact with the descending strips to seal them transversely as at 24 at equidistant intervals.
A knife 26 severs the sheets across the middle of the transverse seals 24. The elements 22 and knife 26 operate during a dwell in an intermittent feed. Alternatively, of course, mechanisms having a continuous feed may be used or multiple side-by-side mechanisms to which multiple width single sheets 12 and 14 as simultaneously fed. Slitting knives subsequently separate the multiple side-by-side packages.
The horn 19 gives a fullness to the limper sheet material 14 so that, after the longitudinal transverse sealing at 24, the package has a pillow shaped contour as indicated at the bottom of FIG. 1. If desired, the horn 10 may be heated, particularly when the material 14 is a thermoplastic material that can be stretched under heat without rupture, in which case the material 14 need not be wider than the material 12.
The horn 10 is hollow to accommodate a feed tube leading down from a hopper 30 which is metered in a known manner to stop its feed periodically during at least a portion of the strip travel. 28 represents a fixed rod which squeezes the loose part of sheet 14 centrally against the sheet 12 after the filling operation to eliminate excess internal air, particularly when the metered portion is only a partial fill. This renders it easier to perform the next folding step.
Other mechanisms may be utilized to form the filled unfolded packages, for example, by advancing the sheet material 14 in multiple width horizontally over cavities, vacuum or pressure forming the pockets in the cavities, loading from above and then covering with multiple width sheet material 12 as it continuously advances down over the advancing loaded pockets. Such a method gives better opportunity for varying the internal shape of the pockets and for providing stiffening embossings along the seal lines.
After the individual packages are severed by the knife 26, the walls 12 and 14 are folded medially as over a mandrel 32 shown in FIG. 2, while a spot or line of adhesive 34 is interposed between the two panels or folds 36 and 38 of the inner limp sheet to hold the package in the shape shown in FIG. 3. In FIG. 3, 40 represents one fold or panel of sheet 12, 42 the other panel, and 43 the intervening fold line with the folds 36 and 38 of limper sheet 14 sandwiched therebetween.
Because of the lateral stiffness of the package, imparted by self-supporting relatively stiff sheet 12, it may be picked up between the thumb and finger on its end edges, and then a top corner of the package along the fold line may be severed as with a pair of scissors and the package inverted to discharge the contents through the resulting opening 46, as shown in FIG. 4. If only a portion of the serving is desired, the package may then be reinverted and will stand on the bottom edges of panels 40 and 42 which act as spaced-apart feet to support the package in inverted V-shaped upright position with the single fold 43 at the top, as shown in FIG. 3.
Also, as indicated in FIG. 4, the two angularly inclined diverging panels 40 and 42 may be squeezed together about the single fold 43 to apply pressure to the contents to extrude them from the opening.
As will be understood, if in the operation of FIG. 1 the packages are wider than they are high, it may be desirable that the fold be made in a direction parallel to the line of advance through the mechanism of FIG. 1, rather than transversely thereof.
In the modifications shown in FIGS. 5, 6 and 7, the stiffer sheet material 12a is a little more than doubled in width with respect to the width of limper material 14a so that the packaging and filling process in effect takes place on only a portion of the stiff sheet 12a with longitudinalseal 19a being at the edge of only the limper sheet 14a. When, then, the package of FIG. is folded it may be folded along the medial line A of sheet 12a to create a structure as shown in FIG. 7, wherein the pod or pillow container is attached solely to one panel 40a of the folded stiffer sheet. The adhesive 34a then is interposed between panel 42a and sheet 14a.
The dotted lines in FIG. 5 show an alternative structure wherein the limp sheet material 14b is slightly more than half the width of the stiff sheet material 12a. When the fold line is therefore made along A, the package resembles that shown in cross-section in FIG. 6, one longitudinal seal 19b being located as shown in FIG. 6.
In both cases cutting or tearing the outer fold will expose the contents, since the fold line is closely adjacent one of the marginally sealed edge portions of the limper sheet.
Instead of relying upon cutting or severing with an external instrument, the roll 12 of sheet material may have dispensing holes, slits or lines of perforations preformed in sheet :12 along or near the subsequent fold lines A and covered with strips of pressure-sensitive adhesive tape which act as closures for the dispensing openings until removed by the user. Or, opening tabs of any desired size or shape may be incorporated into the package, examples of which are shown in FIGS. 8 and 9. FIG 8 shows a tab 50 of a material which is adhered to the stiff sheet either with an adhesive which is stronger than the material itself, or by heat sealing, so when the tab 50 is pulled downwardly, it will rupture the underlying sheet material. Such rupture is aided by shaping the dies used to attach tab 50 in such manner as to pinch the sheet material 12 at or near the edges of the tab to weaken the structure in this area and allow it to rupture when the tab is lifted. Thus in FIG. the die 60 has two sharp edges 61 and 62 for this urpose.
In the example shown in FIGS. 9 and 11, a fabric tab '70 is securely embedded and amalgamated into the sheet material 12 between hot dies 72, so then when the tab is stripped upwardly from the material, it will tear the material and cause a hole to be made therein.
These removable closure attaching operations can readily be performed on sheet material 12 before or as it is being fed to the package forming mechanism, as may other desirable operations, such as printing, embossing or other form-changing appearance or strengthening operations.
What is claimed is:
1. A collapsible dispenser package containing a flowable commodity comprising two opposed sheets of material, one of said sheets being relatively stiff and the other of said shets being limper, said sheets being hermetically sealed together around the marginal edge portions of the limper sheet with a fullness in said limper sheet to form a hollow enclosure between said sheets said stiffer sheet being folded medially along a single fold line to sandwich said limper sheet between augularly inclined panels of said folded stiffer sheet diverging away from said fold and terminating in spaced-apart edges forming feet for supporting said package in inverted V-shaped configuration with said single fold at the top of said package, and a flowable commodity contained within said hollow enclosure, said :panels being movable together about the fold line as a hinge to collapse said package and extrude said commodity through an opening made near said fold line.
2. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, having means adjacent said fold line for rupturing said stiffer wall adjacent said fold line to create an aperture in said package for flowing discharge of said contents through said aperture upon squeezing said panels together.
3. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, wherein all the marginal edge portions of the limper wall are sealed to one only of said folded stiffer wall panels.
4. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, wherein the stiffer Wall is folded along a line closely adjacent a marginal edge portion of the limper sheet.
5. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, having tab means attached to said stiffer wall adjacent the fold line of said panels for rupturing said wall ot form an opening through which said commodity may be dispensed.
6. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, having an adhesive adhering the folded panels of the limper sheet together to retain the stiffer sheet panels from unfolding from their angularly inclined folded configuration diverging away from said fold.
7. A dispenser package as claimed in claim 1, wherein said opposed sheets are substantially co-extensive and are both folded substantially medially.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,125,318 8/1938 Salfisberg. 2,554,841, 5/1951 Rumsey. 2,664,239 12/1953 Vogt 229-69 3,026,016 3/1962 Scher 206-45.34 X 3,053,385 9/1962 Spees 206-45.34 X 3,098,601 7/1963 Anderson et al. 3,159,096 12/1964 Tocker. 3,223,233 12/ 1964 Becker et al. 22940 3,223,310 12/1964 Becker et al. 20665 3,224,640 12/1965 Schneider et al. 229--94X 3,235,168 2/1966 Nichols 22955 THERON E. CONDON, Primary Examiner.
MARTHA L. RICE, Examiner-