Title:
Earplug dispenser
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention relates to an earplug dispenser. The dispenser comprises a container for keeping earplugs, said container being provided with means for dispensing earplugs from the container. The dispenser has substantially the general shape of an earplug.



Inventors:
Hakansson, Jorgen (Tyringe, SE)
Application Number:
09/822405
Publication Date:
10/03/2002
Filing Date:
04/02/2001
Assignee:
HAKANSSON JORGEN
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/540, 206/533
International Classes:
A47F1/08; A61F11/08; B65D47/08; B65D47/26; G07F9/10; (IPC1-7): B65D83/04
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20080011620Box for a hearing deviceJanuary, 2008Kramer
20030116244Clear vinyl stringed musical instrument dust-cover incorporating a fitted head stock pocketJune, 2003Naffziger
20040016653Quick draw card "QDC"January, 2004Hage
20060266672Recyclable packageNovember, 2006Young
20050133400Food preservation deviceJune, 2005Stigler
20070144938WATERPROOF REMOTE FUNCTION ACTUATOR WITH ELECTRONIC DISPLAYJune, 2007Buccinna et al.
20040188294Carrying case of a tool box assemblySeptember, 2004Chen
20030006153Article-embedded folding sleeveJanuary, 2003Gerard Jr. et al.
20060157368Crate comprising multiple cavitiesJuly, 2006Kraft
20050207680Foil bag for packaging moist tissuesSeptember, 2005Schumacher et al.
20080221703LOADING A DEVICE FOR A PULMONARY IMPLANTSeptember, 2008Que et al.



Primary Examiner:
FIDEI, DAVID
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Benton S. Duffett, Jr. (Alexandria, VA, US)
Claims:
1. An earplug dispenser, comprising a container for keeping earplugs, said container being provided with means for dispensing earplugs from the container, wherein the dispenser substantially has the general shape of an earplug.

2. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein it is a portable and stand-alone dispenser so as to be adapted to be freely relocated by hand.

3. The dispenser as claimed in claim 2, wherein it has a base portion adapted to stand on an underlying surface and an elongate main portion extending away from said base portion, wherein the dispenser is adapted to stand upright.

4. The dispenser as claimed in claim 3, wherein said base portion includes a bottom of the container, said bottom having an inside for facing earplugs kept in the container and an outside adapted to stand on an underlying surface.

5. The dispenser as claimed in claim 3, wherein said main portion has a dome-shaped top portion.

6. The dispenser as claimed in claim 3, wherein said base portion is provided with said means for dispensing.

7. The dispenser as claimed in claim 6, wherein said means for dispensing is accessible when said base portion is lifted from an underlying surface.

8. The dispenser as claimed in claim 7, wherein said means for dispensing is one of the group consisting of: a rotary lid provided with a hole, wherein the rotary lid is fitted to the container, the container having a bottom plate provided with a hole similar to the one of the rotary lid, whereby the rotary lid may be rotated so that the two holes become aligned with each other and allows earplugs in the container to be taken out; a plate being able to slide sideways for exposing an access hole to the interior of the container; and a tab or a hatch which may be opened so that a hole underneath is revealed for taking out earplugs from the container.

9. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein it is adapted to contain earplugs packaged in bulk.

10. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein at least a major part of it is made of a transparent material.

11. The dispenser as claimed in claim 2, wherein it is dimensioned to contain about 100-300 earplugs, preferably about 160-240 earplugs, typically about 200 earplugs.

12. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein it has substantially the general shape of an earplug from the group consisting of: an earplug having the general shape of a truncated cone with a rounded top portion; an earplug having the general shape of a truncated cone with a rounded top portion and a bottom portion with enlarged diameter; an earplug having the general shape of a straight circular cylinder; an earplug having the general shape of a straight circular cylinder with a rounded top portion; an earplug having a base portion with a cross-section from one of oval, diamond, rhombus-shaped; an earplug having the general shape of an elliptic paraboloid; an earplug havind an elongate main portion which has a generally ellipsoid shape or the shape of an egg, which main portion extends away from a generally cirular base portion, the boundry between the main portion and the base portion forming a waist portion.

13. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein it is a disposable dispenser.

14. The dispenser as claimed in claim 1, wherein the container is provided with an in-mould label.

15. An earplug dispenser apparatus, comprising a dispenser and therein contained earplugs, said dispenser comprising a container in which said earplugs are provided, said container being provided with means for dispensing earplugs from the dispenser, wherein the dispenser substantially has the general shape of an earplug provided in said container.

16. The dispenser apparatus as claimed in claim 15, wherein said dispenser contains earplugs packaged in bulk.

17. The dispenser apparatus as claimed in claim 15, wherein at least a major part of the dispenser is made of a transparent material so that at least some of said earplugs are visible.

18. A method of making people aware of the presence of earplugs for protecting hearing, comprising the steps of: providing a dispenser that has substantially the general shape of an earplug; arranging earplugs inside said dispenser; locating said dispenser containing earplugs at a place of working.

19. The method as claimed in claim 18, which further comprises providing at least a major part of the dispenser of a transparent material so as to make visible or expose at least some of said earplugs.

20. The method as claimed in claim 18, which further comprises making the shape of the dispenser to substantially correspond to the general shape of one of said earplugs contained therein.

21. The method as claimed in claim 18, wherein said place of working is near a noise source.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to the technical field of earplug dispensers.

BACKGROUND ART

[0002] In loud or noisy environments, such as in factories, it is of great importance for people who are present to protect their hearing from being impaired or even lost. For this reason some sort of hearing protection, such as earplugs or earmuffs is provided for them to apply inside or outside their ears so as to block out the noise. Earplugs are to be at least partially inserted into the auditory meatus of a user's ear, whereas earmuffs are to be applied to the outside of the user's ear.

[0003] It is currently a great problem that people, such as factory workers, who are about to enter a noisy place remarkably often do not apply available hearing protection because of negligence or lack of attention. Such carelessness may lead to irreversible loss of hearing.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0004] An object of the present invention is to increase the use of hearing protection among workers in noisy environments.

[0005] Another object of the invention is to enhance the availability of hearing protection for people being present in noisy environments.

[0006] Yet another object of the invention is to provide effective distribution of earplugs.

[0007] Still another object of the invention is to alert persons near a noisy environment to the presence of earplugs for protecting hearing.

[0008] These and other objects which will become apparent in the following are accomplished by an earplug dispenser, an earplug dispenser apparatus and a method as defined by the accompanied claims.

[0009] According to one aspect of the invention an earplug dispenser is provided. The earplug dispenser comprises a container for keeping earplugs, said container being provided with means for dispensing, i.e. taking out, removing, etc., earplugs from the container. The dispenser substantially has the general shape of an earplug.

[0010] According to another aspect of the invention a method of making people aware of the presence of earplugs for protecting hearing is provided. According to the method the presence of earplugs is alerted by carrying out the steps of:

[0011] providing a dispenser that has substantially the general shape of an earplug;

[0012] arranging earplugs inside said dispenser;

[0013] locating said dispenser containing earplugs at a place of working, preferably near a noise source.

[0014] Thus, the invention is based on the understanding that the human being strongly responds to visual stimuli and that his behaviour is adaptable to such stimuli. It is known that different people are susceptible to visual impressions to different degrees. It has been found that an icon such as an object representing the image of another object affects the human mind considerably and rapidly creates associations to said another object.

[0015] A dispenser which has the general shape of an earplug and which is strategically located in a working place will attract a worker's attention and remind him or her of using earplugs contained therein. An advantage of this large-scale representation of an earplug in the form of a dispenser is that it, apart from functioning as a triggering mechanism for the human brain and being a memory-aid, provides readily available earplugs.

[0016] In an advantageous embodiment of the invention, the dispenser is portable and stand-alone. Thus, it is easily relocated and is independent of additional support means. This is a benefit over prior art dispensers which are designed to be stationary, and often mounted to a wall.

[0017] Preferably, the dispenser has a size which is adapted to the size of a person's hand, in particular to the “grip capacity” of a person's hand. Thus, the size of the dispenser is suitably such that an average person is able to hold the dispenser with one hand. For example, the dispenser may have a height of about 18 cm and a bottom diameter of about 9 cm.

[0018] Advantageously, the dispenser is dimensioned to contain about 100-300 earplugs (i.e. 50-150 earplug pairs), preferably about 160-240 earplugs, typically about 200 earplugs. This means that the dispenser is considerably smaller than other known dispensers, and contains fewer earplugs. This handy and convenient format of the dispenser makes it easy to bring it along in, for instance, a tool box. The dispenser may be placed on the working table or practically anywhere in a workroom, thereby better ensuring that the earplugs are really used. It hardly requires any space and still is visible and draws attention of persons nearby. It is therefore not necessary to walk several hundreds of meters to fetch earplugs from a larger centrally located dispenser. Owing to the small format, each small working group may collect a hand-held, portable dispenser. Thus, instead of a few larger, bulky centrally located dispensers, many small portable dispensers may be placed very near the source of noise. The earplugs will be more easily available.

[0019] The dispenser, which substantially has the general shape of an earplug comprises an elongate main portion and a base portion. The base portion is adapted to stand on an underlying surface, such as a table or shelf. The elongate main portion will extend from the base portion upwards. In a working place such an upright standing dispenser will further contribute to the workers noticing it and being more willing to apply earplugs in their ears.

[0020] As is known to the person skilled in the art, there are some different earplug shapes. The shape of the dispenser contributes to facilitate the grabbing hold of the dispenser. One example of the shape of a dispenser is the general shape of a truncated cone. Another example is a straight cylinder. The top portion of the dispenser may be flat or rounded, such as dome-shaped. The base portion may have an enlarged diameter in relation to what would be the “standard” base of the cone or cylinder, i.e. the base portion projects outwardly like a lip from the extension of the standard cone or cylinder. The dispenser may advantageously be rotational symmetric. The cross-section of the base portion may be other than circular, such as oval, diamond or rhombus-shaped. The dispenser may have the general shape of an elliptic paraboloid. The dispenser may also have an elongate main portion which has a generally ellipsoid shape or the shape of an egg, which main portion extends away from a generally cirular base portion, the boundry between the main portion and the base portion forming a waist portion.

[0021] It should be noted that the terms “main portion” and “base portion” are used to describe the shape of the dispenser, and are not to be confused with the previoulsy mentioned container and means for dispensing earplugs from the container. The container and said means for dispensing do not have to agree with the main portion and the base portion, respectively. The actual container, adapted to hold earplugs, may e.g. be defined by the main portion and a part of the base portion. Likewise, the container may be defined only by a part of the main portion. The base portion may include a bottom of the container, wherein the bottom has an inside for facing earplugs kept in the container and an outside adapted to stand on an underlying surface.

[0022] The ratio between the diameter of the bottom or the base portion and the height of the dispenser is suitably about 2:5-1:2, which is also the ratio of a corresponding earplug.

[0023] The dispenser of the invention suitably has the shape of what is known as a foam plug. However, it is also possible to design the dispenser in the shape of what is known as a glass down plug. Some examples of typical earplugs to be used as models for the shaping of the dispenser according to the invention are: “303” and “202” (BILSOM); “6300 Earplugs” (3M); “Taper Fit EAR”, “Classic EAR”, “Amigo EAR”, “Grande EAR” and “E-Z-Fit EAR” (Aearo Company); “PURAFIT” and “Spark Plugs” (Moldex); “MAX” and “MAX Lite” (Howard Leight).

[0024] Suitably, the base portion of the dispenser is provided with said means for dispensing. When the dispenser is placed on an underlying surface so that the base portion is in contact with and standing on the surface, said means for dispensing may be adapted to be concealed and become accessible when the dispenser, or rather the base portion, is lifted from the underlying surface. The person skilled in the art understands that it is also possible to provide said means for dispensing visible on the base portion as well as on the main portion.

[0025] An example of a means for dispensing is a rotary disc or lid. The rotary lid is circular and is provided with a hole. The rotary lid is fitted to the container of the dispenser. The container has a fixed bottom plate which is also provided with a hole similar to the one of the rotary lid. Thus, the rotary lid may be rotated so that the two holes become aligned with each other and allows earplugs in the container to be taken out. Naturally, said bottom plate may be a part of the actual means for dispensing which is applied to a container without an own bottom plate.

[0026] Instead of a rotary disc or lid, the means for dispensing may include a plate which slides sideways and thereby exposes an access hole to the interior of the container.

[0027] Another alternative is a tab which may be opened so that a hole underneath is revealed.

[0028] Yet another alternative would be a feeding device, wherein by means of, for instance, a feed wheel earplugs may be taken out of the container.

[0029] The container could also be at least partially separated into two parts, by lifting, unscrewing etc one part from the other. In that case such a mechanism would be the means for dispensing.

[0030] The present invention also involves a new packaging concept for earplugs. Earplugs may be packaged in bulk into the container, i.e. they are put directly into the container without any additional wrapping (neither around single earplugs nor around earplugs in pairs). This means that the packing process can be made fast and effective. A great advantage of the present invention is that it provides a combined dispenser and package for earplugs. This is satisfactory from a hygienic point of view. Thus, the earplugs do not have to be packaged separately in pairs in small plastic wrappings and then be introduced into the dispenser. Furthermore, the dispenser is preferably made of a disposable material, suitably a polymer, such as an environment friendly plastic material, typically polyethylene or polypropylene. Such a disposable dispenser can be manufactured to a lower cost than prior art packing, in which earplugs are normally packaged in bulk in pairs. Thus, after having emptied the earplugs from the dispenser it may be thrown away and replaced by a new dispenser filled with new earplugs. Even though this type of dispenser is particularily advantageous for containing and dispensing disposable earplugs, the person skilled in the art will realize that this dispenser is also applicable to reusable earplugs.

[0031] According to an advantageous embodiment of the invention at least part of the dispenser is made of a transparent material so that at least some of said earplugs are visible. Thus, a person seeing the dispenser will perceive, not only the general shape of the dispenser, but also its contents. This combination will help to attract his attention to the dispenser and/or the earplugs even more. If the earplugs are of a bright or vivid colour this may further enhance the effect, rather like a revolving light on an emergency vehicle such as an ambulance.

[0032] Alternatively, additional drawing of attention may be made by means of a suitable label provided on the dispenser. The label may have an eye-catching design and may be provided with a specific print. One advantageous way of applying a label is by means of in-mould labelling. In-mould labelling is a production technology in which a pre-printed plastic label is inserted into a mould at the same time as the plastic material to be formed is injected. This allows, for instance, photographic images to be permanently bonded to an injection moulded dispenser according to the invention.

[0033] The dispenser, or at least the container of the dispenser, may be manufactured by injection moulding or vacuum forming. The dispenser is made thin-walled, suitably 0.5-1 mm, typically 0.7 mm, impact resistant polymer, which can resist incautious handling of the dispenser and strains such as transportation. One advantage of making the dispenser thin-walled is that this will easily achieve transparency. Another advantage is that of waste reduction. Since the dispenser is preferably disposable the waste can be kept to a minimum. A further advantage of the thin wall is that the dispenser will have a low weight and be indeed portable. Yet another advantage is that the cost of manufacturing a dispenser will be relatively low since little material is required for making a thin wall. One way of manufacturing the dispenser is by moulding a container, filling it with earplugs and sealing it with a bottom plate which suitably includes a means for dispensing the earplugs from the container.

[0034] According to another aspect of the invention an earplug dispenser apparatus is provided. It comprises a dispenser and therein contained earplugs. The dispenser comprises a container in which the earplugs are provided. The container is provided with means for dispensing the earplugs from the dispenser. The dispenser has substantially the general shape of an earplug provided in the container. This has the additional advantage that a person can visually perceive, even from a considerable distance, the general type (or the shape) of the earplugs in the dispenser. Thus, if different types of earplugs are available at a location, a person will quickly see which dispenser contains his favourite type.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0035] FIG. 1 illustrates an embodiment of an earplug dispenser apparatus according to the present invention.

[0036] FIG. 2 is a perspective view from below of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0037] FIG. 3 schematically illustrates one embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0038] FIG. 4 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0039] FIG. 5 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0040] FIG. 6 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0041] FIG. 7 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0042] FIG. 8A illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0043] FIG. 8B is a view from the bottom of the earplug dispenser shown in FIG. 8A.

[0044] FIG. 9 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0045] FIG. 10 illustrates an example of a means for dispensing earplugs from an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0046] FIG. 11 illustrates another example of a means for dispensing earplugs from an earplug dispenser according to the present invention.

[0047] FIG. 12 illustrates an example of manufacturing a container for an earplug dispenser of the present invention, the container being provided with an in-mould label.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0048] FIG. 1 illustrates an embodiment of an earplug dispenser apparatus 10 according to the present invention. The earplug dispenser apparatus 10 comprises a dispenser 12 and therein contained earplugs 14. The dispenser 12 comprises a container 16 in which said earplugs 14 are provided. The elongate container 16 is at its circular bottom 18 provided with means (not shown) for dispensing earplugs 14 from the dispenser. As is seen from the figure, the dispenser 12 has the general shape of an earplug 14 in the container 16. The dispenser 12 (and the earplugs 14) has the generally shape of a truncated cone, the top 20 of the truncated cone being ended by a dome-shape.

[0049] FIG. 2 is a perspective view from below of an earplug dispenser 30 according to the present invention. This earplug dispenser 30 has the same shape as the dispenser of the earplug dispenser apparatus shown in FIG. 1. In this perspective a means 32 for dispensing earplugs is shown. The means 32 for dispensing earplugs comprises a pivotal tab 34 which may be opened by pulling the tab 34 with a finger, thereby revealing an opening 36 through which earplugs may be picked out manually. The opening 36 is sealed by pushing the tab 34 back.

[0050] FIG. 3 schematically illustrates one embodiment of an earplug dispenser 40 according to the present invention. The earplug dispenser 40 comprises a base portion 42 and a main portion 44. The base portion 42 has substantially the shape of a thin circular disc. The main portion 44 is connected to the base portion 42. Furthermore, the main portion 44 is elongate and extends away perpendicularly from the base portion 42 (in particular the plane of the base portion). The shape of the main portion 44 is somewhat similar to a bullet, i.e. it goes from being generally straight near the base portion 42 to being rounded at the top 46, said top 46 being an elliptic paraboloid. The dispenser 40 as a whole has the general shape of an earplug. A typical earplug with this appearance is marketed under the name “202”, by BILSOM. In use, the bottom of the dispenser 40, i.e. the base portion 42, is in contact with an underlying surface such as a table or a shelf. The dispenser 40 thus stands upright and draws the attention of potential users. When a user wishes to take out earplugs from the dispenser 40, he simply picks up the dispenser so that he can access the means for dispensing which is provided at the bottom of the dispenser 40, open said means and take out earplugs from the container. This type of means for dispensing are shown in FIGS. 10 and 11.

[0051] FIG. 4 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 50 according to the present invention. The dispenser 50 is shaped as a cone being truncated by a rounded top 52 in the form of a partly spherical cap. The slant of the cone is small (less than 20° of deviation from the longitudinal centre axis of the cone). A typical earplug with this appearance is marketed under the name “303”, by BILSOM.

[0052] FIG. 5 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 55 according to the present invention. The dispenser 55 has the general shape of a straight cylinder typically having a ratio of 1:2-2:3 between the diameter D and the height H. For instance, Aearo Company manufactures earplugs named “Grande”, “Classic” and “Amigo” having a straight cylindrical shape.

[0053] FIG. 6 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 60 according to the present invention. The dispenser 60 comprises a base portion 62 and a main portion 64. The base portion 62 is circular and disc-shaped and relatively thick (cf. the embodiment shown in FIG. 3). The main portion 64 begins by extending from the bottom portion 62 upwards and inwardly towards a centre axis (perpendicular to the plane of the base portion) at an angle of approximately 30°-60°, such as 45°. This angle is kept for about a lower third of the main portion 64. Thereafter the inclination of the main portion 64 will be almost parallel to the centre axis (a deviation of less than 20°) and the main portion 64 is finally completed with a rounded top 66. This dispenser 60 has the general shape of for instance an earplug named “E-Z-Fit” (Aearo Company).

[0054] FIG. 7 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 70 according to the present invention. It has a circular base portion 72 from which a main portion 74 extends from the base portion upwards, beginning with a short inward slant, i.e. a decreasing diameter, and ending with a somewhat pointed dome-shape. In between, the major part of the main portion is generally straight and parallel to the longitudinal centre axis of the dispenser 70. The dispenser 70 has substantially the shape of an earplug which is named “MAX” (Howard Leight).

[0055] FIG. 8 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 80 according to the present invention. The dispenser 80 has as in the previous examples a base portion 82 and a main portion 84 The cross-section of the base portion 82 is in this case substantially diamond-shaped, instead of circular. See FIG. 8B. Thus, the base-portion 82 has two diagonals D1 and D2, one (D1) being longer than the other (D2), As can be seen in the figures the “diamond” has no sharp corners. The main portion 84 is substantially erect and cylindrical, and has a dome-shaped top 86. An earplug which has the corresponding shape of this shown dispenser is named “MAX Lite” (Howard Leight).

[0056] FIG. 9 illustrates another embodiment of an earplug dispenser 90 according to the present invention. It has a design that is similar to that of the dispenser shown in FIG. 4. However, the dispenser 90 shown in FIG. 9 is more curved than a (truncated) cone. The main portion 94 begins by extending from the base portion 92 at a certain angle to the plane thereof. Further up the main portion 94 diverts to extend in a direction being close to perpendicular to the plane of the base portion. The main portion is ended by a rounded top 96. An earplug which has the corresponding shape of this shown dispenser is named “Spark Plugs” (Moldex).

[0057] FIG. 10 illustrates an example of a means 100 for dispensing earplugs from an earplug dispenser according to the present invention. This means 100 for dispensing is in the form of a rotary lid. The rotary lid 100 is circular and comprises a circular flat disc 102 which is surrounded by a higher ring 104 projecting away from the disc 102. The rotary lid 100 further comprises a beam 106 extending over the diameter of the disc 102 and being of the same height as the ring 104. The beam 106 serves for gripping and rotating the rotary lid 100 by means of e.g. two fingers. The disc 102 is provided with a hole 108 which is large enough for earplugs to pass though it.

[0058] The rotary lid 100 is fitted to the bottom of a container of a dispenser in which earplugs are kept. Thus, the bottom of the container (or a part thereof) substantially conforms with the rotary lid 100 and is provided with a fixed hole which in size corresponds to the hole of the rotary lid 100. The rotary lid 100 may be rotated to such a position that its hole 108 and the hole of the container bottom will constitute a common through hole. Earplugs can now be removed from the container though this common through hole. After a user has removed the number of earplugs he desires, he simple rotates the rotary lid 100 thereby eliminating the through-hole and closing the access to the interior of the container.

[0059] The rotary lid 100 is adapted to be arranged at the bottom of a container, i.e. at the base portion of any one of the dispensers shown in the previous figures.

[0060] FIG. 11 illustrates another example of a means 120 for dispensing earplugs from an earplug dispenser according to the present invention. The means 120 for dispensing earplugs is circular and is suitably provided to a container of a dispenser which has a corresponding circular bottom portion. The means for dispensing comprises a hatch 122 which can be opened and closed. The means 120 for dispensing is provided with an indentation 124 so as to facilitate the opening (by a user's finger or thumb) of the hatch 122. When the hatch 122 is opened and the dispenser is turned upside down, earplugs may be taken out one by one. Alternatively, a user may shake out earplugs from the dispenser, holding it in any position.

[0061] FIG. 12 illustrates an example of manufacturing a container for an earplug dispenser of the present invention, the container being provided with an in-mould label. In FIG. 12 a mould 140 is shown in a sectional view, the mould comprising an upper mould halt 142, and a lower mould half 144 including a core member 146. The core member 146 projects into a cavity 148 of the upper mould half 142. The upper mould half 142 is provided with an inlet passage 150 leading to said cavity 148. Before starting the moulding process a plastic label 152 has been applied to the core member 146 and is kept in place, e.g. by means of static electricity. Hot plastic material is injected into the cavity 146 through the passage 150. The plastic material will cover the label 152 which will become in-moulded. Subsequently, the mould halves 142, 144 are separated and the finished container having an in-mould label is removed. Thereafter, the container will preferably be filled with earplugs and provided with a bottom having means for dispensing the earplugs. It should be noted that FIG. 12 is not a true scale representation of the mould halves. The figure is merely shown as an elucidative example.





 
Previous Patent: Packing box

Next Patent: Accessable medicinal dosage carrier