Title:
Card jacket protecting card and apparatus for manufacturing the same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A card jacket capable of closely holding a card therein has a front wall formed from a front film, and a back wall formed from a back film, and has three sealed sides and one open side. The front film is a composite film including a reinforcing film, a background-color layer formed on one surface of the reinforcing film to color the reinforcing film in a background color, and a transparent surface film laminated to the background-color layer. The transparent surface film is embossed with an embossed pattern.



Inventors:
Kamimoto, Yoshimasa (Tokyo-To, JP)
Kato, Toshiaki (Yokohama-Shi, JP)
Application Number:
10/704319
Publication Date:
04/07/2005
Filing Date:
11/07/2003
Assignee:
KAMIMOTO & COMPANY, LTD.
YUGEN KAISHA KATO KM CORPORATION
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
383/105, 383/119, 229/71
International Classes:
B31F1/07; B32B3/30; B32B27/08; B42F7/02; (IPC1-7): B65D33/04
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PASCUA, JES F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LADAS & PARRY (26 West 61st Street, New York, NY, 10023, US)
Claims:
1. A card jacket capable of closely holding a card therein, and having three sealed sides and one open side, and having one side wall formed from a composite film; wherein the composite film includes: a reinforcing film, a background-color layer formed on one surface of the reinforcing film to color the reinforcing film in a background color, and a transparent surface film laminated to the background-color layer; and an embossed pattern is formed on the transparent surface film.

2. The card jacket according to claim 1, wherein the transparent surface film is a laminated film having a plurality of layers.

3. The card jacket according to claim 1, wherein the background-color layer is a color film.

4. The card jacket according to claim 1, wherein the background-color layer is a printed layer printed on the reinforcing film.

5. The card jacket according to claim 1, wherein the background-color layer is a deposited metal film formed by deposition.

6. The card jacket according to claim 1, wherein the transparent surface film is formed of a biaxially oriented polypropylene resin, and the reinforcing film is formed of a nonoriented polypropylene resin.

7. A card jacket manufacturing apparatus for manufacturing a card jacket of a predetermined size capable of closely holding a card therein, and having three sealed sides and one open side, said card jacket manufacturing apparatus comprising: a front film feed unit for feeding a long front film for forming a front wall of the card jacket along a front film feed passage; a back film feed unit for feeding a long back film for forming a back wall of the card jacket so that the front and the back film are put together; an embossing drum provided in its circumference with an embossing pattern and disposed near the front film feed passage; and a jacket-forming unit disposed below the embossing drum with respect to a direction in which the front and the back film are fed, and capable of bonding together joining parts of the front and the back film, and of melt-cutting the front and the back film to provide the card jacket.

8. The card jacket manufacturing apparatus according to claim 7, wherein the front film is a composite film including: a reinforcing film, a background-color layer formed on one surface of the reinforcing film to color the reinforcing film in a background color, and a transparent surface film laminated to the background-color layer; and the embossing drum embosses a pattern on the transparent surface film.

9. The card jacket according to claim 2, wherein the background-color layer is a color film.

10. The card jacket according to claim 2, wherein the background-color layer is a printed layer printed on the reinforcing film.

11. The card jacket according to claim 2, wherein the background-color layer is a deposited metal film formed by deposition.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a card jacket for containing a single card, such as a game card.

2. Description of the Related Art

Card games using cards have worldwide spread in recent years. Cards for such card games include rare cards having scarcity value. Such rare cards are used for a trading game in which players trade cards. The rare card is a treasure to the owner, and the owner handles the rare card with utmost caution and makes every effect not to dirty and not to damage the rare card. Some cards, other than those used in the trading game, are used only for playing games. Valued cards among those for playing games are handled also with caution so that the valued cards may not be dirtied. Each of the rare cards and valued cards is contained in a card jacket formed by processing a transparent plastic film, and the card contained in the card jacket is used in the game.

Although the conventional card jacket formed by processing a simple, transparent film is satisfactory in a protective function to protect the card from contaminants, such a card jacket does not have a fancy appearance and does not give the owner any pleasure of carrying the card in the card-card jacket.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a card jacket having an attractive appearance, providing carrying pleasure, having an appearance having a striking difference from those of other persons' card jackets, and capable of coming into prominence.

According to a first aspect of the present invention, a card jacket having one wall formed from a composite film comprising: a reinforcing film, a background-color layer formed on one surface of the reinforcing film to color the reinforcing film in a background color, and a transparent surface film serving as an outer layer and laminated to the background-color layer; wherein a pattern is embossed on the transparent surface film.

The embossed pattern formed on the transparent surface film, i.e., the outer layer, scatters light and the pattern stands out in bold relief against the colored background. Thus, the attractive pattern, together with the background-color layer, gives the card jacket a striking difference from the conventional colorless, transparent card jacket, and a discriminative appearance.

The transparent surface film may be a laminated film consisting of a plurality of layers. The plurality of layers of the laminated film function as reflecting surfaces which give a holographic effect to the pattern, and enhance the depth of the pattern.

The background-color layer may be a deposited metal film formed by deposition. Such a metal film makes the pattern glitter, and the pattern appears in various appearances according to viewing directions. The use of a laminated film consisting of a plurality of layers as the transparent film further enhances holographic effect. The card jacket containing a card stands out conspicuously and will give satisfaction to the owner of the card.

According to a second aspect of the present invention, a card jacket manufacturing apparatus for efficiently mass-producing card jackets of a predetermined size having three bonded sides and one open side comprises: a front film feed unit for feeding a long front film for forming a front wall of a card jacket along a front film feed passage, a back film feed unit for feeding a long back film for forming a back wall of the card jacket so that the front and the back film are put together; an embossing drum provided in its circumference with an embossing pattern, and disposed near the front film feed passage; and a jacket-forming unit disposed below the embossing drum with respect to a direction in which the front and the back film are fed, and capable of bonding together joining parts of the front and the back film, and melt-cutting the front and the back film to provide the card jacket.

The outer surface of the front film can continuously be embossed, the embossed front film and the back film can continuously be bonded together to form a continuous, flat tube, and the flat tube can be cut by melting at predetermined intervals into card jackets each having three sealed sides and one open side. Thus, the card jacket can be mass-produced at a low cost.

The card jacket according to the present invention has the front wall formed from the composite film consisting of the reinforcing film, the background-color layer formed on one surface of the reinforcing film to color the reinforcing film in a background color, and the transparent surface film serving as an outer layer and laminated to the background-color layer, and provided on its surface with an embossed pattern. The embossed surface of the transparent surface film scatters light, and scattered light, together with the background-color layer, makes the pattern stand out in unique cubic relief against the colored background. Thus, the card jacket of the present invention containing a card has a striking difference in appearance from other card jackets, and gives the owner of the card great satisfaction.

When the transparent surface film is a laminated film consisting of a plurality of layers, the plurality of layers serve as reflecting surfaces that film give a holographic effect to the embossed pattern, and enhance the depth of the pattern.

When the background-color layer is a metal film formed by deposition, the background of the pattern can be colored in a sharp color. When the background color layer is formed by printing, the background color layer can be colored in multiple colors that will exercise a remarkable effect on the pattern. When the background color layer is a metal film formed by deposition, the background color layer will make the pattern glitter and stand out conspicuously, and provide an utmost holographic effect.

When the transparent surface film serving as an outer film is an oriented polypropylene film (OPP film), the transparent film is highly transparent, enhances the holographic effect by irregular reflection, and has high strength. When the reinforcing film is a nonoriented polypropylene film (CPP film), the front and the back wall of the card jacket can firmly bonded together.

Since the card jacket manufacturing apparatus embosses the transparent surface film continuously with the embossing roller, card jacket can highly efficiently be mass-produced, and the card jacket decorated by the embossed pattern can be manufactured at a low cost.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above and other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which;

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a card jacket in a preferred embodiment according to the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view of a front film included in the card jacket shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view, similar to FIG. 2, of another possible front film;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view, similar to FIG. 2, of a third possible front film;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view, similar to FIG. 2, of a fourth possible front film;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view, similar to FIG. 2, of a fifth possible front film;

FIG. 7 is an enlarged, fragmentary, typical sectional view, similar to FIG. 2, of a sixth possible front film;

FIG. 8 is a front elevation of an embossing unit included in a card jacket manufacturing apparatus according to the present invention; and

FIG. 9 is a side elevation of a heat-sealing unit included in the card jacket manufacturing apparatus according to the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Referring to FIG. 1, a card jacket in a preferred embodiment according to the present invention is, for example, 92 mm in length and 66 mm in width, and has the shape of a bag having three sealed sides. The card jacket is formed by superposing a front wall of a front film 1, and a back wall of a back film 2, and bonding together corresponding side edges and corresponding end edges of the front and the back wall. The card jacket has opposite sealed longitudinal sides 4, one sealed transverse side 3, and one open transverse side 5. A card 6 is inserted through the open end into the card jacket. the size of the card jacket is determined such that the card fits the card jacket closely.

Referring to FIG. 2, the front film 1 is a composite film formed by laminating a transparent reinforcing film 7 of a thickness in the range of 30 to 50 μm, i.e., a base film, a background-color layer 8 of a thickness in the range of 25 to 50 μm formed on the reinforcing film 7, and a transparent surface film 9 of a thickness in the range of 18 to 20 μm, i.e., a surface layer. An embossed pattern 10 is formed by embossing the transparent surface film 9. The thickness of the front film 1 including those of bonding layers bonding the reinforcing film 7, the background-color layer and the surface film 9 is on the order of 0.1 mm.

Irregularities 10a forming the embossed pattern 10 reflect light fallen on the surface film 9 irregularly, consequently, the embossed pattern 10 looks in various appearances. Thus, the embossed pattern 10, together with the color of the background-color layer 8, provides the card jacket with a unique visual effect, and the card jacket stands out conspicuously.

When the front film 1 is provided with a transparent, laminated surface film 9A formed by laminating a plurality of films as shown in FIG. 3, the front film 1 has an increased number of reflecting surfaces. The reflecting surfaces make the embossed pattern look in further various appearances.

The background-color layer 8 may be a color film 8A as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, a printed layer 8B as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, or a metal film 8C, such as an aluminum film formed by deposition, as shown in FIGS. 6 and 7.

The color film 8A tints the embossed pattern 10. The printed layer 8B can tint the embossed pattern 10 in multiple colors. The deposited metal film 8C makes the embossed pattern 10 glitter. The deposited metal film 8C provides the highest holographic effect of making the embossed pattern 10 stand out conspicuously.

The front film 1 may be nay one of the following laminated structures.

Laminated structure 1: Transparent film+Color film+Reinforcing film (FIG. 2)

Laminated structure 2: Laminated transparent film+Color film+reinforcing film (FIG. 3)

Laminated structure 3: Transparent film+Printed layer+Reinforcing film (FIG. 4)

Laminated structure 4: Laminated transparent film+Printed layer+Reinforcing film (FIG. 5)

Laminated structure 5: Transparent film+Deposited metal film+Reinforcing film (FIG. 6)

Laminated structure 6: Laminated transparent film+Deposited metal film+Reinforcing film (FIG. 7)

Preferably, the transparent surface film is a biaxially oriented polypropylene film (OPP film) scarcely having elasticity, and the reinforcing film 7 is a nonoriented polypropylene film (CPP film). An OPP film as the surface transparent film 9 has a high transparency, makes the embossed pattern 10 look clearly, and is effective in forming a durable card jacket. A CPP film, although inferior in transparency, as the reinforcing film 7 is excellent in stretchability, can satisfactorily and firmly be bonded to the back film 2 (CPP film). Thus, a card jacket formed by bonding together the front wall of the front film 1 including a CPP film as the reinforcing film 7, and the back wall of the back film 2 similar to the front film 1 is durable, and the front and the back wall will not separate.

The back film 2 has a thickness of about 0.1 mm approximately equal to that of the front film 1. The back film 2 may be a transparent film, a semitransparent film, or a film provided with a hologram, provided that a card 6 contained in the card jacket can be seen through the back film 2.

FIGS. 8 and 9 are views of assistance in explaining a card jacket manufacturing apparatus according to the present invention. Referring to FIG. 8 showing an embossing unit, an embossing drum 13 provided in its circumference with a pattern is disposed on the upper side of a front film guide structure 12 for guiding the front film 1 unwound from a front film roll 11, a platen roller 14, such as a silicone rubber roller, is disposed opposite to the embossing drum 13 on the lower side of the front film guide structure 12. The embossed front film 1 is taken up on a take-up shaft 16 driven for rotation by a motor 15. The embossed front film 1 provided with embossed patterns, and the back film 2 are fed so as to be put together as shown in FIG. 9. A heat-sealing head 17 is moved down intermittently to form opposite sealed longitudinal sides 4, a sealed transverse side 3 by heat-sealing joints of the front film 1 and the back film 2.

Thus, the front film 1 is fed continuously, the embossing drum 13 embosses the pattern on the surface of each of parts, of a length equal to that of a card jacket, of the front film 1, the embossed front film 1 and the back film 2 are fed so as to be put together, and the heat-sealing head 17 is moved down intermittently to heat seal parts of the front film 1 and the back film 2 corresponding to the opposite longitudinal sides and the transverse side of each card jacket to produce card jackets each having three sealed sides and one open transverse side.

The card jacket of the present invention can be used for containing a card other than a game card, such as a picture postcard or the like. A card jacket provided with an embossed pattern of famous sights, flowers or memorial things of a tourist resort, and containing picture postcards of the tourist resort will be a valuable, innovative souvenir.

Although the invention has been described in its preferred embodiments with a certain degree of particularity, obviously many changes and variations are possible therein. It is therefore to be understood that the present invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described herein without departing from the scope and spirit thereof.