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United States Patent Application 20170355485
Kind Code A1
Finke; Markus December 14, 2017

TRANSPORTATION CONTAINER

Abstract

A transportation container with a stacked arrangement of containers formed from plastic, in which the containers are formed with a container bottom and a peripheral container wall, wherein the container bottom is configured so as to cover a total area of a transportation pallet or a section thereof, the peripheral container walls are formed with an upright wall and reinforcements disposed thereon, the containers are releasably assembled from container components which have two lateral container components, wherein container components disposed adjacent to each other are connected together in an interlocking and/or force-fitting manner.


Inventors: Finke; Markus; (Altenbeken-Schwaney, DE)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Finke Formenbau GmbH

Altenbeken-Buke

DE
Family ID: 1000002664402
Appl. No.: 15/601188
Filed: May 22, 2017


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: B65D 7/24 20130101; B65D 85/00 20130101; B65D 2585/00 20130101; B65D 88/54 20130101; B65D 90/00 20130101; B65D 88/12 20130101
International Class: B65D 6/16 20060101 B65D006/16; B65D 85/00 20060101 B65D085/00; B65D 88/12 20060101 B65D088/12

Foreign Application Data

DateCodeApplication Number
Jun 9, 2016DE20 2016 103 062.5

Claims



1. A transportation container comprising: a stacked arrangement of containers formed from plastic, wherein the containers are formed with a container bottom and peripheral container walls, wherein the container bottom is configured to cover a total area of a transportation pallet or a section thereof; the peripheral container walls are formed with an upright wall and reinforcements disposed thereon; the containers are releasably assembled from container components which have two lateral container components, wherein the container components disposed adjacent to each other are connected together in an interlocking or force-fitting manner in a region of the container walls and the container bottom; the containers are disposed directly above one another in the stacked arrangement of containers, wherein the containers are articulated together along a long side of the containers in a manner such that an upper container is moved between an initial position and a swung up position; the initial position comprising the upper container being disposed in a manner such as to close an upper container opening of a lower container disposed directly beneath the upper container; and the swung up position comprises the upper container being pivoted about a swivel axis of an articulated connection connecting the upper container and lower container, such that the upper container opening of the lower container, disposed directly beneath the upper container, is opened.

2. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the upper container is locked in the swung up position by a locking means.

3. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the upper container is secured against swinging up by means of a closing device when the upper container is disposed on the lower container disposed directly below the upper container in the initial position.

4. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the container bottom includes openings in at least a section of a bottom surface of the container bottom.

5. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein at least one central container component is disposed between the two lateral container components.

6. The transportation container as claimed in claim 5, wherein the two lateral container components are configured as crate components which are open on one side and the at least one central container component is configured as a crate component which is open on two sides.

7. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein connections between the container components are tongue and groove connections.

8. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein connections between the container components are interlocked connections in which projections engage in an interlocked manner in associated recesses.

9. The transportation container as claimed in claim 5, wherein flutes are disposed on sections of one or both surfaces which come into releasable contact upon releasable assembly of the container components and the at least one central container component.

10. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the reinforcements comprise reinforcing ribs projecting outwardly or inwardly from the upright wall of the container wall.

11. The transportation container as claimed in claim 10, wherein the inwardly projecting reinforcing ribs form push-in seats for storage components which are releasably disposed in the container.

12. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the upper container of the stacked arrangement of containers, a top container opening of the upper container is at least partially closed off with a lid.

13. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the lower container arranged in the stacked arrangement of containers is disposed on one or more transportation pallets, wherein the container bottom of the lower container completely overlies a loading area of the transportation pallets.

14. The transportation container as claimed in claim 1, wherein a sealing element is disposed on opposite surfaces of the container components.

15. The transport container as claimed in claim 1, wherein a total area of the container bottom covers a plurality of transportation pallets, wherein the transportation pallets are connected together by pallet connectors.
Description



CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims priority to DE Application No. 20 2016 103 062.5 having a filing date of Jun. 9, 2016, the entire contents of which are hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF TECHNOLOGY

[0002] The following relates to a transportation container having a stacked arrangement of containers formed from plastic.

BACKGROUND

[0003] Transportation containers for goods of various types and small parts are known per se in a variety of different embodiments. As an example, the document DE 19 42 864 discloses a transportation container for goods of any type with a means for a forklift truck, in which the transportation container is formed from individual parts which can be assembled in different ways depending as required, for example to form pallets with stacked columns onto which further pallets and containers can be placed, or to form single-stacked or multi-stacked containers with side walls which can be removed so that they can be loaded and unloaded from the side, wherein the containers can be closed by inserting a side wall.

[0004] A transportation container which can be assembled is also known from the document DE 10 2014 105 871 A1. The size of the transportation container can be adjusted to change its transportation volume.

[0005] Document DE 40 37 696 A1 discloses a modular container system formed from modular elements which are matched to each other, wherein specific dimensions are identical so that they can be combined to produce different containers.

SUMMARY

[0006] An aspect relates to a transportation container with a stacked arrangement of containers which are formed from plastic, which is versatile and for which loading and unloading is as simple as possible.

[0007] In one aspect, a transportation container is provided with a stacked arrangement of containers formed from plastic, in which the containers are formed with a container bottom and a peripheral container wall, wherein the container bottom is configured so as to cover a total area of a transportation pallet or a section thereof. The peripheral container walls are formed with an upright wall and reinforcements disposed thereon. The containers are releasably assembled from container components which have two lateral container components, wherein container components disposed adjacent to each other are connected together in an interlocking and/or force-fitting manner in the region of the container walls and the container bottom. Containers disposed directly one above the other are articulated together along a long side of the container in a manner such that an upper container can be moved between an initial position in which the upper container is disposed in a manner such as to close the upper container opening of a container which is disposed directly beneath it, and a swung up position in which the upper container has been swung up about a swivel axis of the articulated connection so that the upper container opening of the container which is disposed directly therebeneath is opened.

[0008] In the stacked arrangement of the containers, the containers disposed directly on top of each other, which in general may also be termed crates, are placed on top in a manner which is at least partially interlocked. In this manner, in one embodiment, in the bottom region of the upper container, projections which may run continuously or discontinuously around the outer periphery engage in an interlocking manner in associated sections in the lower container, for example in the region of an upper peripheral rim of the lower container. Positioning or storage elements for the upper container may be formed with the projections in the bottom region when the latter is disposed on a storage area, for example, for example on a floor.

[0009] The containers or the container parts may be produced as injection moulded components, wherein recycled plastic may be used in this regard.

[0010] The upper container may be locked in the swung up position by means of a locking device. Locking at least in the swung up position may be carried out by ensuring that the upper container clicks into the swung up position. In this regard, the locking device may include a guide component which, when swinging up or down, is guided along a projection which penetrates into the guide component which, for example, is disposed at the upper rim of the lower container. In an end position, the guide component locks so that the upper container is secured in the swung up position. To swing it down subsequently, the guide component can be released from the locked position to allow the upper container to be swung down into position on the lower container.

[0011] The upper container may be capable of being secured against being swung up when the upper container is disposed in the initial position on the container disposed directly beneath it by means of a closing device. One or more closures may be provided which, by closing the respective closure, secure the upper container in the initial position on the container which is disposed directly therebelow. One or more of the closures may be disposed on the front of the transportation container. One or more closures may be provided exclusively in the region of the front, i.e. on the opposite side to the articulated connection disposed at the back.

[0012] The container bottoms may include openings at least in a section of the bottom surface. At least in a section of the container bottom, a grid floor may be provided, whereupon the openings are disposed within a grid structure. The grid structure may completely cover the respective bottom surface of the container or crate. It may be formed by webs and openings disposed therebetween. The grid structure may be formed in a consistent manner over the entire grid floor, for example with a honeycomb or kite structure. Alternatively, the container bottom may be partially or completely configured as a closed bottom.

[0013] The lateral components may be formed as crate components which are open on one side, and the at least one central container component may be formed as a crate component which is open on both sides. The lateral container components and/or the at least one central container component may be formed as one piece or from a plurality of assembled wall components. As an example, wall section-forming components may be clipped onto the bottom or fastened in a different manner, for example releasably. In one embodiment, between the lateral container components are a plurality of central container components which may be formed with the same or different widths.

[0014] The connections between the container components may be provided with tongue and groove connections. The tongue and groove connections may be formed in the region of the upright side walls and/or in the region of the container bottom. In complementary manner or as an alternative, the container components may be screwed together. In this regard, openings and associated screw bosses may be provided on the container components.

[0015] The connections between the container components may be provided with interlocking connections, wherein projections engage in an interlocked manner in associated recesses. The interlocking connections may be formed in the region of the upright side walls and/or in the region of the container bottom. The projections may be disposed on a vertically orientated wall section and project in the direction of the container component to be fastened thereto so that, when the container components are assembled, they can be accommodated in an associated recess in the opposite container component.

[0016] Flutes may be disposed on one or both surfaces of surface sections which face each other when the container components are releasably assembled. The surface flutes may be disposed adjacent to one of the connections into which the container components engage. The flutes may have a flat toothed structure at least in parts, for example with pyramids or truncated pyramids.

[0017] The reinforcements may comprise reinforcing ribs which project outwardly and/or inwardly from the upright wall of the container wall. The reinforcing ribs may be formed on the container wall as upright flat sections. The depth of the reinforcing ribs looking along the container wall may change over the height of the container wall. As an example, the reinforcing ribs may be deeper in a foot region which is adjacent to the bottom of the container, and thus wider than in the upper end region.

[0018] In the case in which reinforcing ribs are provided which project inwardly, they may form push-in seats for releasable storage components which can be disposed in the container. Inserts may be inserted into one or more of the push-in seats, for example in the form of upright wall inserts, whereupon the load volume of the container can be divided up. Furthermore, foam blocks may be secured in the container by means of the push-in seats, which blocks serve to accommodate objects to be transported in the transportation container.

[0019] In a container which is disposed at the top of a stack, the top container opening may be at least partially closed by a lid. The lid may be formed in one or more parts. The lid may be completely removable from the container. In one embodiment, the lid is provided with at least two lid parts which are hinge mounted on opposite sides of the container. The lid parts may respectively cover a region of the container opening which is associated with one of the container components. In this manner, when the container is made wider, for example by inserting a further central container component, an associated lid part can be incorporated into the lid.

[0020] A container which is disposed at the bottom of a stack may be disposed on one or more transportation pallets, wherein the bottom of the bottom container completely overlies a loading surface of the one or more transportation pallets. The loading surface may correspond to half or all of the area of a Euro Pool pallet. The one or more transportation pallets may be releasably secured to the stack of transport containers by means of a securing means.

[0021] A sealing element may be disposed on opposite surfaces of the container components. The sealing element may be formed as a sealing strip formed from an elastic material, for example rubber. The sealing element may be positioned on the associated surface, optionally secured with a bonding agent, or alternatively it may be positioned in a groove provided on the associated surface. By means of the sealing element, it is possible to make the transportation container watertight, dustproof or gas-tight. In one embodiment, the sealing element may be provided in different separated regions between adjacent walls in order to seal the respective regions when assembled.

[0022] When the container bottom is formed so as to cover the whole surface of a plurality of transportation pallets, the transportation pallets are connected together by means of pallet connectors. The area of the container bottom overlies the area of the transportation pallets. The pallet connectors may, for example, be produced as profiles formed from metal, in particular aluminium. The pallet connectors may in this regard be inserted into associated recesses on the pallets when the pallets are moved towards each other. Spacers may be disposed between the pallets.

[0023] Transport securing means may be disposed in the container formed, for example, as foam strips or sheets. In one embodiment, the transport securing means may be evenly spaced apart. The transport securing means may be inserted at the wall into associated push-in seats.

[0024] One or more holding rings may be provided on the container, for example clipped onto the bottom. Goods for transport accommodated in the transportation container can be lashed down with the aid of the holding rings. Anchoring points may be provided for optional additional holding rings. The anchoring points may be produced by predetermined breaking points which allow the anchoring points to be removed in order to create an aperture for the insertion of a holding ring.

[0025] A closing lug may be hinge mounted. In the closed state, a securing lug may penetrate through an aperture in the closing lug so that a securing rod or padlock can be introduced into an opening of the securing lug, in order to secure the closing lug in the closed position.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION

[0026] Some of the embodiments will be described in detail, with reference to the following figures, wherein like designations denote like members, wherein:

[0027] FIG. 1 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a transportation container with a stacked arrangement of two containers formed from plastic;

[0028] FIG. 2 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of the transportation container of FIG. 1;

[0029] FIG. 3 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a lateral container component;

[0030] FIG. 4 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a central container component;

[0031] FIG. 5 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a transportation container from the side, wherein a lid is closed;

[0032] FIG. 6 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of the transportation container of FIG. 5;

[0033] FIG. 7 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a pallet of the transportation container of FIG. 1;

[0034] FIG. 8 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a lid;

[0035] FIG. 9 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a further transportation container prior to assembly;

[0036] FIG. 10 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of the further transportation container of FIG. 9 after assembly;

[0037] FIG. 11 represents diagrammatic views of a container with transportation securing means disposed therein;

[0038] FIG. 12 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a section with a seal;

[0039] FIG. 13 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a section of a container with a holding ring, as well as a holding ring, and

[0040] FIG. 14 represents diagrammatic perspective views of a section with a closing lug.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0041] FIGS. 1 and 2 show diagrammatic perspective views of a transport container 1, in which an upper container 2 and a lower container 3 are disposed directly above and below each other. The lower container 3 is disposed on two pallets 4a, 4b and releasably secured to it by means of a securing means 5. A loading surface 6 which is formed by the two pallets 4a, 4b together, completely overlies a bottom surface 7 of the lower container 3. In addition, a bottom surface 8 of the upper container 2 is of the same size.

[0042] A container bottom 9 is formed as a grid floor 10 which has a grid structure which extends over the entire bottom surface 8. The grid floor 10 is formed by webs 10a and openings 10b surrounded by the webs 10a. Projections 11 and associated recesses 12 (see also FIG. 3) are integrated into the grid floor 10. The projections 11 are disposed in the associated recesses 12 when the upper and lower containers 2, 3 are releasably assembled from container components. In this regard, FIGS. 3 and 4 show perspective views of a lateral container component 30 as well as a central container component 40.

[0043] The upper container 2 and the lower container 3 are articulated along a long side of the container 13 by means of a hinged articulation 14, as can be seen more clearly in FIGS. 5 and 6. A locking means 15 is provided with a guide component 15a as well as an associated guided guide pin 15b which is guided between the swung up position shown in FIGS. 5 and 6 and the initial position shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 when swung upwards and downwards in an elongate recess 15c of the guide component 15a. In the swung up position shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, the upper container 2 is locked by means of the locking means 15. To swing it down, the locking means 15 is released.

[0044] In the embodiments shown, two containers are stacked one above the other and disposed on the pallets 4a, 4b. Alternatively, more than two containers of this type may be stacked one on top of the other.

[0045] The upper and lower containers 2, 3 are each assembled from two lateral container components 30 which are shown in FIG. 3, as well as a central container component 40 which can be seen in FIG. 4. Alternatively, a plurality of central container components 40 may be disposed between the two lateral container components 30, for example three at most. In addition, the central container component 40 may be dispensed with entirely.

[0046] In addition to the connections by means of the projections 11 and the associated recesses 12 in the region of the container bottom, tongue and groove connections 16 are additionally provided in the region of the upright lateral walls 17 of the containers 2, 3. Alternatively, both the projections 11 and the tongue and groove connections 16 may be dispensed with, whereupon the container components 30, 40 may be screwed together.

[0047] Reinforcing ribs 18 protrude inwardly and outwardly from the container walls 17. As can be seen in FIG. 3, with the reinforcing ribs 18, push-in seats 20 may be formed on an inside 19 into which, for example, foam components can be pushed in order to locate them within the respective container 2, 3. In one embodiment, foam components of this type (not shown) may accommodate items or components to be transported, for example in an interlocking manner. The items to be transported may in this manner be localized and secured within the respective container.

[0048] As can be seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, a lid 21 is hinged on the upper container 2 so that the upper container 2 can be opened for loading or unloading. FIG. 8 shows a diagrammatic view of a central lid portion 21b (see also FIG. 9 below) of the lid 21 from above, which is formed by adjacent lid portion elements 22, 23.

[0049] FIG. 7 shows a perspective view of one of the pallets 4a, 4b. A pallet loading surface 26 is formed on pallet feet 24, 25, which in the embodiment shown has a closed bottom 27 with a reinforcement 27a disposed thereon with webs 27b. The webs 27b form compartments 28 into which objects can fall which drop through the grid floor 10 of the container 2, 3. The bottom 27 of the pallets 4a, 4b may cover the entire bottom area of the containers 2, 3.

[0050] The upper container 2 is secured on the lower container 3 by means of a closing means 29, several of which are shown, and which in the embodiment shown is provided with a closing lug 29a (cf. FIG. 1). The closing means 29 prevents the upper container 2 from swinging upwards when closed.

[0051] FIGS. 9 and 10 show diagrammatic perspective views of a further transport container 1 before and after assembly; in contrast to FIG. 9, FIG. 10 shows a transport container with upper and lower containers 2, 3. The same reference numerals as those used in the preceding figures are employed for the same features here.

[0052] Lid parts 21a, 21b, 21c are provided which are associated with the central container component 40 and the lateral container components 30.

[0053] To form the container bottom 9, pallets 4a, 4b are fixed together with the aid of pallet connectors 50a, 50b which, for example, are formed as metal profiles, in particular aluminium. In this regard, the pallet connectors 50a, 50b are pushed into associated recesses in the pallets 4a, 4b when the pallets 4a, 4b are moved towards each other. Spacers 51 are disposed between the pallets 4a, 4b.

[0054] FIG. 11 shows views of a container in which transportation securing means 60 are disposed which, in the embodiment shown, are configured as foam strips or sheets. In the embodiment shown, the transportation securing means 60 are evenly spaced. The transportation securing means 60 are inserted at the wall into associated push-in seats 19.

[0055] FIG. 12 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a section with a sealing element 70 which in the embodiment shown is configured as a sealing strip formed from an elastic material, for example rubber. The sealing element 70 may be placed on the associated surface 71, optionally secured by a bonding agent or alternatively positioned in a groove provided on the associated surface 71. With the aid of the sealing element 70 it is possible to make the transport container 1 watertight, dust-proof and/or gas-tight. In the embodiment of FIG. 9, the sealing element may be disposed in regions 72a, 72b, 72c in order to seal the respective regions upon assembly.

[0056] FIG. 13 shows a diagrammatic perspective view of a section of a container with a holding ring 80 which is clipped onto the bottom, as well as an individual holding ring. Transportation items received in the transportation container can be lashed down with the aid of the holding ring 80. The anchoring points 81 in the embodiment shown are formed by predetermined breaking points which allow the anchoring points 81 to be removed in order to create an aperture for insertion of a holding ring.

[0057] FIG. 14 shows diagrammatic perspective views of a section with a closing lug 29a which is hinge mounted. In the closed condition (see the right hand view in FIG. 14), a securing lug 90 penetrates through an aperture 91 in the closing lug 29a so that a securing rod or a padlock can be introduced into an opening 92 of the securing lug 90 in order to secure the closing lug 29a in the closed position.

[0058] Although the present invention has been disclosed in the form of preferred embodiments and variations thereon, it will be understood that numerous additional modifications and variations could be made thereto without departing from the scope of the invention.

[0059] For the sake of clarity, it is to be understood that the use of "a" or "an" throughout this application does not exclude a plurality, and "comprising" does not exclude other steps or elements. The mention of a "unit" or a "module" does not preclude the use of more than one unit or module.

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