Title:
Bowl with a base layer and a lid as a base
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A bowl which includes an upper part, a lower part positioned below the upper part, wherein the upper part and the lower part are made of a first material, a base layer over the lower part of the bowl and made of a second material, a clamp ring positioned around the bowl in a region between the upper part and the lower part and operable to clamp the top region of the base layer to the lower part of the bowl. A lid of the bowl includes a top with a depression formed therein shaped to accommodate the bowl upright or at a tilt.



Inventors:
Dua, Gregory C. (Clark, NJ, US)
Bloom, Edward J. (Fair Haven, NJ, US)
Application Number:
11/365166
Publication Date:
02/08/2007
Filing Date:
03/01/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D90/12
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060151511Suction cup lidJuly, 2006Kaposi
20040144779Mounting clip for plastic containersJuly, 2004Schulte et al.
20090071959BINMarch, 2009Cheung
20060243727System for protecting a containerNovember, 2006Fantroy
20080017651DRINK CUP AND LIDJanuary, 2008Walker et al.
20040182862Disposable drink cup lid with a condiment resevoirSeptember, 2004Scott
20090139042Paint brush cleaner and methodJune, 2009Ruzumna
20080099485Sortables storage containerMay, 2008Holbrook et al.
20070289971Valve for Electronic EnclosureDecember, 2007Olszewski
20020134781Sleeve for engaging a food container with condiment holder formed thereonSeptember, 2002Peter Jr.
20080272136TRANSPORT CASE FOR TRANSPORT OF HIGH-VALUE HEAVY TRANSPORT GOODSNovember, 2008Schmidl et al.



Primary Examiner:
ALLEN, JEFFREY R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
OSTROLENK FABER LLP (NEW YORK, NY, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A bowl comprising: an upper part; a lower part positioned below the upper part and including a bottom of the bowl; the bowl having an outside; a base layer disposed over the outside of the lower part of the bowl, the base layer extending up the lower part of the bowl to a top edge of the base layer; a top region of the base layer below the top edge thereof; and a clamp ring positioned around the bowl in a region of the bowl between the upper part and the lower part and over the top edge of the base part and the clamp ring operable to clamp the top edge of the base layer to the lower part of the bowl.

2. The bowl of claim 1, wherein the bowl further comprises a receptacle formed in the outside of the bowl and positioned in a region between the upper part and the lower part of the bowl and shaped and positioned to receive the clamp ring on the bowl.

3. The bowl of claim 2, wherein the receptacle comprises a recess in the outside of the bowl in the region between the upper part and lower part of the bowl.

4. The bowl of claim 3, wherein the clamp ring further comprises: an upper section including a profiled region shaped to fit in the recess in the outside of the bowl; and a flange extending from the upper section and shaped to press the top region of the base layer against the outer surface of the bowl.

5. The bowl of claim 4, wherein the base layer is shaped, sized and positioned so that the top region thereof is positioned below the recess in the outside of the bowl; and the top region being tapered from a greater thickness of the base layer below the top edge to a smaller thickness at the top edge of the base layer.

6. The bowl of claim 5, wherein the flange of the clamp ring contacts the tapered top region of the base layer to clamp the base layer.

7. The bowl of claim 1, wherein the base layer has a non-skid outer surface.

8. The bowl of claim 7, wherein the upper and lower parts are comprised of another material than the outer surface of the base layer.

9. The bowl of claim 1, wherein the clamp ring is made of a material that is more flexible than a material of the upper and lower parts of the bowl.

10. The bowl of claim 1, further comprising a lid for covering the bowl.

11. The bowl of claim 10, wherein the lid includes a top with a depression formed therein, and wherein the depression is shaped to accommodate the bottom part of the bowl such that the bowl stands in the depression of the lid.

12. The bowl of claim 11, wherein the lid is shaped to close the bowl.

13. The bowl of claim 12, further comprising a depression in the lid shaped to accommodate the lower part of the bowl, such that the bowl may stand upright when the bowl is positioned in the depression of the lid.

14. The bowl system of claim 12, wherein the depression is shaped to accommodate the lower part of the bowl such that the bowl can remain tilted when the bowl is positioned in the depression of the lid and tilted relative thereto.

15. The bowl system of claim 14, wherein the base layer of the bowl is made of a non-skid material such that the bowl does not slide within the depression of the lid.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

The present application claims the benefit and priority of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/706,350 filed Aug. 8, 2005 and entitled BOWL WITH BASE LAYER, the entire disclosure of which is incorporated by reference herein.

BACKGROUND OF THE DISCLOSURE

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a bowl having a base layer and a lid. The lid may cooperate with the base layer to provide a support for the bowl. The base layer is installed on the lower part of the bowl. It may for example, be a non-skid layer. The bowl may slide on a surface during use, e.g., during mixing of the contents in the bowl. A non-skid bottom on a bowl helps prevent that. A lid positioned to support the bowl provides a convenient stabilizer for the bowl and the lid may be non-sliding as well.

2. Related Art

An example of a bowl with an extra non-skid base layer at its bottom is shown in U.S. Pat. No. 5,419,454. Between the bottom and the top rim of the bowl, the exterior of the bowl is shaped to define a downwardly facing, annular shoulder. The base layer covers the exterior of the bottom part of the bowl and extends up from the bottom of the bowl to a top edge of the base layer that abuts the underside of the shoulder. In practice, that design can present several problems which the present invention is intended to overcome.

The shoulder extends perpendicularly our from the side of the bowl. Because the non-skid bottom layer is formed separately from the bowl and is later installed on the bowl, precise dimensioning of the extra non-skid base layer is required so that its top edge will abut the underside of the shoulder without any gap between the shoulder and the top edge of the base layer or without the base layer being too tall and its top edge not abutting smoothly, but instead bending or deforming outwardly or inwardly. Further, due to the presence of a gap or of a slight deformation of the base layer, a gap or some opening or space is either initially present or may develop at the intended fully annular abutment between the top edge of the base layer and the shoulder on the bowl. Furthermore, because the non-skid base layer material is typically comprised of a somewhat flexible and resilient plastic, or rubber, or the like material, the top edge of the base layer may be pulled, pried or otherwise deformed outwardly, perhaps only momentarily. This may temporarily provide a space for infiltration of dirt, a food product then in the mixing bowl, etc., causing an unsanitary condition that cannot be cured because material is thereafter trapped under the base layer.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention overcomes the above drawbacks by providing a stiff material ring around the bowl, which engages the bowl shortly above the top edge of the base layer, and extends down over the top edge of the base layer and clamps the top edge region of the base layer against the exterior of the bowl. Covering the top edge of the base layer prevents user access to it and blocks possible infiltration inside the base layer of dirt, food in the bowl, etc. Further, the ring extends down sufficiently to accommodate variations and tolerances in the location or height of the top edge of the base layer. This is accomplished in part by avoiding abutment between the top edge of the base layer and a shoulder of the bowl. Instead, a separate ring secures the top region of the base layer to the bowl exterior.

A bowl according to an embodiment of the present invention includes an upper part, a lower part below the upper part, wherein the upper part and the lower part are made of a first material, a base layer disposed over the lower part of the bowl and preferably made of a second material and a clamp ring positioned around the bowl in a region between the upper part and the lower part and operable to clamp the top region of the base layer to the lower part of the bowl.

The present invention may also include a lid for the bowl. The lid includes a top side with a depression in it shaped to accommodate the bottom region of bowl such that the bowl will stand securely in the depression of the lid. Furthermore, the bottom of the bowl and the lid are shaped to complement each other for secure support of the bowl. Preferably, there is a respective rounded region at the bottom of the bowl and in the lid depression, both shaped to enable the bowl to be positioned at various tilt angles, yet the bowl is firmly supported at a tilt in the lid depression.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION FO THE DRAWINGS

Other objects and features of invention are described in the following description with reference to the drawings, in which

FIG. 1 illustrates a side view of a bowl of an embodiment of the present application;

FIG. 2 is a cross-section of the bowl in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlargement of the area of detail illustrated in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 illustrates of the bowl supported at a tilt in its lid;

FIG. 5 is a side view of the bowl in its lid; and

FIG. 6 is a cross section of the bowl in FIG. 5.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

FIG. 1 illustrates a bowl 12 of the present invention with a separate base layer 18 placed over the bottom part of the bowl and a lid 14 covering the open top of the bowl. The bowl 12 includes an upper part 13 and a lower part 16 below the upper part. The lower part 16 is preferably covered by the base layer 18 which covers the bottom surface 15 of the bowl 12 and continues a predetermined distance up the sidewall 17 of the bowl 12. The sidewall may include a spout 9 formed in one side in the bowl 12 to allow for pouring of material from the bowl 12. A handle or grip 19 may be formed on the opposite side of the bowl 12 for holding the bowl 12.

The base layer 18 is preferably made of a material that is different than the material of the upper part 13 and the lower part 16 of the bowl 12. In a preferred embodiment, the base layer 18 is made of a material that provides frictional resistance to movement of the bowl 12 over a surface, such as a non-slip rubber, or plastic material. That material tends to be flexible and resilient, and more flexible than the material of the rest of the bowl 12.

As illustrated in FIGS. 2-3, the base layer 18 extends up the sidewall 17 in the lower part 16 of the bowl 12 to a top edge 20 of the base layer. Over its top edge region, toward its top edge 20, the base layer 18 tapers on its exterior to a reduced thickness over the top edge region 24 near the top edge 20. The region 24 of the base layer and possibly some of the area just below the region 24 is clamped by clamp ring 30 described below.

Slightly above the anticipated location of the top edge 20 of the base layer 18, the exterior of the bowl 12 has an annular recess, or other receptacle or connection 26 for receiving the clamp ring 30. The top edge 20 of the base layer 18 does not abut anything in the recess or any part of the recess or any shoulder or part of the bowl above the top edge 20, but rather extends up to or slightly below the recess or receptacle 26.

The clamp ring 30 clamps the top edge region 24 of the base layer 18 against the exterior surface 32 of the lower portion 16 of the bowl 12 below the recess 26. The clamp ring 30 preferably includes an upper portion 33 which is complementarily profiled at 34 to be received in the recess 26, or the upper portion of the ring 30 may be held by any other suitable holding or clamping device on the exterior of the bowl 12. Below its profiled region 34, the clamp ring 30 has a depending clamping flange 36 which extends down sufficiently to extend over the top edge 20 and the top edge region 24 of the base layer 18 and to press against the edge region 24 to hold it to the lower portion 16 of the bowl 12. The flange 36 is preferably in firm contact with region 24 of the base layer 18 in contact area 38 around the ring 30 in the region 24.

The flange 36 is shaped to provide a clearance gap 39 between the flange 36 and the bowl 12 to provide sufficient room to accommodate different heights and manufacturing tolerances of the top edge 20 and the top edge region 24 of the base layer 18.

The clamp ring 30 is typically comprised of a different material than both the more rigid bowl 12 and the more flexible base layer 18. Preferably, the clamp ring 30 is sufficiently elastic to be expanded as needed to be installed in the recess 26 and also to receive the base layer 18 and sufficiently strong and resilient to remain within the recess 26 and to maintain a pressure on the top edge region 24 of the base layer 18.

The benefits of this arrangement over that shown in U.S. Pat. No. 5,419,454 have been described above. In particular, the clamp ring 30 prevents the top edge 20 of the base layer 18 from lifting away from the surface 32 of the lower portion 16 of the bowl 12, so that dirt and food, etc., will not infiltrate between the base layer 20 and the bowl 12. In addition, the clamp ring 30 forms a physical barrier that covers the top edge 20 of the base layer 18 and provides further protection against infiltration.

In addition, as the clamp ring 30 is a separate element, it affords the opportunity to provide a decorative ring around the bowl of a different color, with a selected profile, etc., if desired.

The lid 14 for the bowl is described with reference to FIGS. 2 and 4-6. In FIG. 2, the lid 14 is used to cover or seal the open top end of the bowl 12. The lid 14 has the geometric shape of the open top of the bowl, e.g., substantially circular. The lid includes a substantially vertical sidewall 40 extending to a substantially horizontal lid closure part. When the lid is installed on the bowl as in FIG. 2, the wall 40 extends downward and the lid then includes a dome 44. When the same lid 14 is disposed under the bowl, as in FIGS. 4-6, the top 42 includes a depression 44 formed substantially in the center of the top. A flange 46 may extend horizontally outward from a bottom of the sidewall 40 and may extend into tab 48 on one side of the lid 14.

As illustrated in FIG. 2, when the lid 14 is disposed such that the top 42 is downward, the lid 14 fits into the top of the bowl 12 to cover the open end of the bowl 12. In a preferred embodiment, the lid 14 is sized such that the flange 46 abuts the top surface of the sidewalls 17 of the bowl 12 to provide a stop for supporting the lid and possibly also a seal between the lid 14 and the bowl 12.

Alternatively, the lid 14 may be used as a base in which the bowl 12 may be stably positioned at various tilt angles. In this embodiment, the lid 14 is on a surface with the top 42 facing up and including the depression. The bowl 12 may then be placed on the lid 14, with the bottom part 16 of the bowl sitting in, and preferably nesting in, the depression 44. The bottom part of the bowl 16 and the depression 44 in the lid 14 are preferably shaped and particularly are complementary in shape, such that the bowl 12 securely sits in the depression 44. The bowl 12 may sit substantially upright in the depression 44, as illustrated in FIGS. 5-6, for example, or may be tilted, as illustrated in FIG. 4 at the convenience of the user of the bowl. Thus, the lid 14 provides a stable base for the bowl 12. The bowl 12 can be held tilted during mixing, for example, without the need for the user to hold the bowl tilted.

Preferably, the lower part 16 of the bowl 12 and the depression 44 are shaped such that the bowl sits in the depression securely in both an upright and a tilted position. In particular, the sidewall 17 of the bowl 12 at the bottom of the lower part 16 is preferably rounded, while the bottom surface 15 is substantially flat as illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 6, for example. The surface of the depression 44 of the lid 14 is also substantially rounded in a complementary shape, such that when the bowl is seated in the depression in the upright position there is a slight gap 45 between the surface of the depression 44 and the flat bottom surface 15 of the bowl 12, as in FIG. 5A. When the bowl is tilted, as illustrated in FIG. 4, for example, the rounded surface of the depression 44 easily accommodates the rounded parts of the sidewall 17 of the lower part 16 of the bowl 12 and the bowl remains tilted.

The rounded parts of the bowl side wall and the depression are preferably frusto-spherical, around a center such that the bowl may be tilted over a range of tilt angles and will still be held securely in the lid depression.

In addition, since the base layer 18 is attached to the lower part 16 of the bowl 12 and is preferably made of a non-slip substance, when the bowl 12 is tilted and seated in the depression 44, the bowl will not slip out of the tilted position. This feature is particularly useful when the bowl 12 is used for mixing, since it is often convenient for a user to tilt the bowl while mixing its contents. Furthermore, the lid is also preferably of a material which frictionally resists movement over a surface on which the lid is disposed, so that the bowl supported in the depression will not move over the surface when the user places something, like a mixing tool, in the tilted bowl.

The flat horizontal nature of the bottom surface 15 of the bowl 12 also allows the bowl to stand securely upright when placed on virtually any flat surface.

Although the present invention has been described in relation to particular embodiments thereof, many other variations and modifications and other uses will become apparent to those skilled in the art. It is preferred, therefore, that the present invention be limited not by the specific disclosure herein, but only by the appended claims.