Title:
Mountable container system
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention provides a mountable container system which comprises a container and a base adapted to be removably coupled to each other. The container comprises a first mating portion and the base comprises a second mating portion slidably fitting with the first mating portion of the container. The base is adapted to attach to mount on a fence post or the like without the use of tools.



Inventors:
Serio, Ron (Buffalo, NY, US)
Application Number:
10/876110
Publication Date:
02/17/2005
Filing Date:
06/24/2004
Assignee:
SERIO RON
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A01G9/02; B65D6/04; B65D6/28; B65D21/02; (IPC1-7): B65D6/28
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Primary Examiner:
ELOSHWAY, NIKI MARINA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HODGSON RUSS LLP (BUFFALO, NY, US)
Claims:
1. A container system for mounting on a post, the container system comprising: a container including a first mating portion; and a base adapted to be manually mounted on the post without the use of tools, the base including a second mating portion sized for slidable fit with the first mating portion of the container to removably couple the container to the base; whereby the container system can be assembled and mounted on the post without the use of tools.

2. The container system of claim 1, wherein the base is formed of four walls and a top and may be attached to the post by capping the post with the base.

3. The container system of claim 1, wherein the container is a flowerpot.

4. The container system of claim 1, wherein the first mating portion comprises a slot.

5. The container system of claim 1, wherein the first mating portion comprises a ridge.

6. The container system of claim 1, wherein the second mating portion comprises a slot.

7. The container system of claim 1, wherein the second mating portion comprises a ridge.

Description:

This application claims the priority of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/482,361, filed on Jun. 25, 2003, the disclosures of which is incorporated herein by reference.

FILED OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to containers and in particular to containers that can be mounted.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

There are a multitude types holders and brackets for containers such as flowerpots, depending on where the container is to be placed. However, all of the prior art examples have multiple disadvantages in that they generally must be assembled with screws or nuts and bolts before use. Further, they generally have to be fixed in place by using a second set of screws or nuts and bolts. For a less experienced installer this can be laborious and time consuming and are difficult to move from place to place. Additionally, these existing units cannot be used to easily mount a container on the top of a fence or a fence post. Thus, there is a need for a container suitable for mounting on a fence or fencepost that allows ease of installation and use.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a mountable container system which comprises a container and a base adapted to be removably coupled to each other. The container comprises a first mating portion and the base comprises a second mating portion wherein the respective mating portion are sized for slideable cooperating fit. The base may be adapted to attach to a post such that when the container and base are assembled the container is mounted on the post.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the present invention illustrating an embodiment of the container system mounted on a post.

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of the present invention illustrating another embodiment of the container system mounted on a post.

FIG. 4. is a perspective view of the present invention illustrating an embodiment of the container.

FIG. 5. is a perspective view of the assembled container system of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a mountable container system which can be mounted on a post. The container system includes a container and a base. The container comprises a first mating portion and the base comprises a second mating portion sized for slidable fit with the first mating portion. Accordingly, the container and the base are adapted to be removably coupled to each other by slidably engaging the first and second mating portions. When the first and second mating portions are slidably engaged, the container system is said to be “assembled”. In one embodiment, the assembled container system is held together by frictional force between the first and second mating portions.

The base is adapted to be mounted on the post without the use of tools. The size and shape of the base are determined by the size and shape of the post onto which the base is intended to be mounted and can be modified to accommodate posts of circular, rectangular or other cross-sectional shapes. In one embodiment, the base is provided as a rectangular box having four walls, an open end and a closed top end, wherein the cross-sectional dimensions of the base are slightly larger than that of a standard fence post. Such a base may be mounted to a standard fence post by sliding the base over the post through the open end of the base, thereby “capping” the post.

Both the container and base may be made of plastic materials, such as polyethylene, polystyrene, polyvinyl chloride, or any other suitable material as will be recognized by those skilled in the art. The container and base can be made, for example, by injection molding, formed by using blowing agents, or by any suitable means. Because assembly of the container system preferably requires neither special skills nor tools, the assembling process can be carried out either by the manufacturer, or preferably by the user. The size, shape and artistic design of the container is also modifiable according aesthetic tastes and can comprise a wide array of decorative elements. When the container system is made of colored plastics it may not require finishing paints or coatings. Optionally, the container system can be painted by the user at any time with appropriate commercially available paints or coatings.

In one embodiment, to mount the container system, the base may be placed over the top of a post. As will be recognized by those skilled in the art, the base may be modified in size and/or shape to accommodate a variety of post types, such as fence posts. The container portion may then be positioned such that the first mating portion is caused to slidably engage the second mating portion by application of force. In one embodiment, the first mating portion comprises slots and the second mating portion comprises ridges such that the ridges are received by and slidably engage the slots.

In an embodiment of the mounted container system, the base may be placed over the post such that the base is considered to-cap the post. The user may then engage the first and second mating portions to assemble the container system. Alternatively, the user may engage the first and second mating portions to assemble the base to the container system, and then mount the assembled container system. However, as will be apparent to those skilled in the art, assembling and mounting the container do not require tools.

These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will be more readily apparent from the following description of the drawings.

Referring to the drawings, and particularly to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a perspective view of disassembled container system 10. Container system 10 generally comprises a container 1 and a base 2 mountable on a post 5.

While the container 1 is depicted as a generally conical shape, it may be provided in any container shape. For example, the container 1 may be cylindrical, square, rectangular, etc.

The container 1 has a bottom surface 6 and a first mating portion generally designated 3. While the first mating portion 3 is shown as including a plurality of slots 3a and 3b, the first mating portion 3 need not be limited to slots, and may comprise any suitable means for slidably engaging the second mating portion 4. Further, while the first mating portion 3 is depicted as having female mating elements (slots), the container 1 may comprise male and/or female mating elements.

Also shown in FIG. 1 is the base 2. While the base 2 is depicted as generally rectangular in cross-sectional shape, it may be provided in any shape suitable for receiving a post 5. Moreover, the base need not be bilaterally symmetrical through its cross-sectional or longitudinal axis. The base 2 comprises a second mating portion generally designated 4, including two ridges 4a and 4b sized for slidable fit with slots 3a and 3b of container 1, thereby allowing the base 2 and container 1 to be removably coupled with tools to assemble container system 10. Further, while second mating portion 4 is depicted as male mating elements (ridges), base 2 may comprise male and/or female mating elements complementary to the mating elements on the container. In this particular embodiment, a top 8 of the second mating portion 4 is shown as raised above a top 7 of the base 2. However, the second mating portion 4 need not be limited to such a configuration, as the ridges of second mating portion 4 may be positioned further down the base 2 such that the top 8 of the second mating portion 4 is parallel with or below the top 7 of the base 2.

One embodiment of the mounted container system 10 is depicted in FIG. 2. Here, the container 1 is shown assembled to the base 2 via the first mating portion 3 having engaged the second mating portion 4. In this particular embodiment, a bottom 6 of container 1 is shown as essentially parallel with the top 7 of the base 2. Further, the top 8 of the second mating portion 4 is above the top 7 of the base 2. Also shown is the base 2 affixed to the post 5 by capping post 5 such that the container system 10 is mounted on the post 5.

Another embodiment of the mounted container system 10 is depicted in FIG. 3. Here, the container 1 is shown as assembled with the base 2 via the first mating portion 3 having engaged the second mating portion 4. However, in this particular embodiment, the bottom 6 of container 1 is below the top 7 of base 2. Further, the top 8 of the second mating portion is essentially parallel with the top 7 of the base 2. This configuration can be further understood by reference to FIG. 4 wherein the container 1 has a notched area 9. The notched area 9 is provided so that a portion of the container 1 can be lower than the top 7 of the base 2 when the container system 10 is assembled and mounted on the post 5. The size of notch 9 can be varied so that more or less of container 1 can be set over base 2 and/or lower on the post 5.

Turning now to FIG. 5, a perspective view of the mounted container system 10 is provided. From this figure it can be seen that the container 1 is set forward on base 2 over the second mating portion 4. The top 8 of the second mating portion 4 is shown as having engaged the first mating portion 3, which includes recesses 3a and 3b into container 1. Further, the container 1 is depicted with the notched area 9 as described in FIG. 4, such that the container 1 is offset below the top 7 of the base 1 and over the base 2.

While this invention has been described through specific examples, minor modifications to the specific embodiments described here will be apparent to those skilled in the art and are intended to be within the scope of this invention.