Title:
Twist-collapsible storage container
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A twist-collapsible storage container, which includes a soft rectangular container body formed of a series of compartments, a bottom board mounted inside the container body and closely attached to the horizontal bottom wall of the container body, four horizontal rod members respectively fastened to the four vertical sidewalls of each compartment of the container body in horizontal at the top, and four vertical rod members respectively fastened to the four angles between each two adjacent vertical sidewalls of each compartment of the container body in vertical and kept spaced from the ends of the horizontal rod members of the respective compartment at a gap.



Inventors:
Wang, Wen-tsan (Taipei, TW)
Application Number:
11/221689
Publication Date:
03/15/2007
Filing Date:
09/09/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D25/00
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Primary Examiner:
BRADEN, SHAWN M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
LEONG C. LEI (WALNUT CREEK, CA, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A twist-collapsible storage container comprising a soft rectangular container body, said container body being formed of a plurality of compartments connected in series, said container body having a horizontal bottom wall that forms a close bottom side of one of said compartments, said compartments each having a top opening, four vertical sidewalls, four horizontal rod members respectively fastened to said four vertical sidewalls thereof in horizontal at a top side, and four vertical rod members respectively fastened to the respective compartment in between each two adjacent vertical sidewalls of said the respective compartment in vertical and kept spaced from the ends of the horizontal rod members of the respective compartment at a gap, and a hard bottom board mounted inside said container body and supported on the horizontal bottom wall of said container body.

2. The twist-collapsible storage container as claimed in claim 1, wherein said container body is made out of a fabric.

3. The twist-collapsible storage container as claimed in claim 1, wherein said horizontal rod members and said vertical rod members are flexible rod members.

4. The twist-collapsible storage container as claimed in claim 1, wherein said container body has a horizontal insertion slot in one vertical sidewall of one of said compartments adjacent to said horizontal bottom wall through which said bottom board is inserted into the inside of said container body and attached to said horizontal bottom wall.

5. The twist-collapsible storage container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the number of said compartments is 3.

6. The twist-collapsible storage container as claimed in claim 1, wherein the number of said compartments is 2.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

(a) Technical Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a storage container and more particularly, to a twist-collapsible storage container that is folding collapsible through a twisting action.

(b) Description of the Prior Art

A storage box may be made folding collapsible so as to save storage space when not in use. A known folding collapsible storage box comprises a rectangular box body made out of soft fabric, four horizontal top rods respectively fastened to the four sides of the rectangular box body in horizontal at the top side, two horizontal bottom rods respectively fastened to two opposite bottom sides of the rectangular box body in horizontal, and four vertical rods respectively fastened to the four angles of the rectangular box body in vertical and kept spaced from the ends of the horizontal top rods and the horizontal bottom rods at a gap. The rod members support the rectangular box body in a three-dimensional shape for holding things. When twisting the upper part of the storage container, the storage box is collapsed.

This structure of storage box is complicated. Further, the horizontal top and bottom rods and the vertical rods are rigid rod members that cause an inconvenience to the folding operation.

Further, a conventional storage box has only one compartment for holding a limited amount of storage items. For storing a big amount of storage items, multiple storage boxes may be used and arranged together. When not in use, these storage boxes must be separately collapsed.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The primary purpose of the present invention is to provide a twist-collapsible storage container, which has a simple structure and can easily be twisted into a collapsed flat condition to reduce space occupation.

To achieve this and other objects of the present invention, the twist-collapsible storage container comprises a soft rectangular container body formed of a series of compartments, a bottom board mounted inside the container body and closely attached to the horizontal bottom wall of the container body, four horizontal rod members respectively fastened to the four vertical sidewalls of each compartment of the container body in horizontal at the top, and four vertical rod members respectively fastened to the four angles between each two adjacent vertical sidewalls of each compartment of the container body in vertical and kept spaced from the ends of the horizontal rod members of the respective compartment at a gap.

Further, the box body has a horizontal insertion slot in one vertical sidewall thereof adjacent to the horizontal bottom wall through which the bottom board is inserted into the inside of the box body and attached to the horizontal bottom wall.

When collapsing the twist-collapsible storage container, it is not necessary to take the bottom board out of the box body, and the user can directly twist the top side of the twist-collapsible storage container to collapse the twist-collapsible storage container smoothly.

The foregoing object and summary provide only a brief introduction to the present invention. To fully appreciate these and other objects of the present invention as well as the invention itself, all of which will become apparent to those skilled in the art, the following detailed description of the invention and the claims should be read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. Throughout the specification and drawings identical reference numerals refer to identical or similar parts.

Many other advantages and features of the present invention will become manifest to those versed in the art upon making reference to the detailed description and the accompanying sheets of drawings in which a preferred structural embodiment incorporating the principles of the present invention is shown by way of illustrative example.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is an exploded view of a twist-collapsible storage container according to a first embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of an alternate form of the twist-collapsible storage container according to a second embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (I).

FIG. 4 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (II).

FIG. 5 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (III).

FIG. 6 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (IV).

FIG. 7 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (V).

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of a twist-collapsible storage container according to a third embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 9 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the third embodiment of the present invention (I).

FIG. 10 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the third embodiment of the present invention (II).

FIG. 11 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the third embodiment of the present invention (III).

FIG. 12 is a schematic drawing showing the twist-collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container according to the first embodiment of the present invention (IV).

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The following descriptions are of exemplary embodiments only, and are not intended to limit the scope, applicability or configuration of the invention in any way. Rather, the following description provides a convenient illustration for implementing exemplary embodiments of the invention. Various changes to the described embodiments may be made in the function and arrangement of the elements described without departing from the scope of the invention as set forth in the appended claims.

Referring to FIG. 1, a twist-collapsible storage container in accordance with the present invention is shown comprising a container body 1 and a bottom board 2.

The container body 1 is made out of a tough and elastic fabric (for example, canvass) of certain thinness by stitching, having a top opening, a bottom wall and four vertical sidewalls. Further, the container body 1 is divided into three vertically spaced compartments. Four horizontal rod members 12 are respectively fastened to the four vertical sidewalls of the container body 1 in horizontal corresponding to the top side of each of the three vertically spaced compartments of the container body 1. Four vertical rod members 13 are respectively fixedly fastened to the four comers in between each two adjacent vertical sidewalls of each of the three vertically spaced compartments of the container body 1 in vertical and kept spaced from the ends of the respective horizontal rod members 12 at a gap. According to this embodiment, the horizontal rod members 12 and the vertical rod members 13 are flexible rod members. When the user twists the twist-collapsible storage container, the rod members 12 and 13 can be curved, facilitate the twisting action. The rod members 12 and 13 can be glass fiber rods, carbon fiber rods, spring rods, or other suitable tough and resilient rods.

The rod members 12 and 13 can be fastened to the container body 1 with stitches, i.e., horizontal and vertical pockets are respectively provided at the top side of each of the four vertical sidewalls of each of the three vertically spaced compartments of the container body 1 and the angle between each two adjacent vertical sidewalls for holding the rod members 12 and 13.

The bottom board 2 fits the horizontal bottom wall of (the bottom compartment of) the container body 1, and is inserted into the box body 1 and closely attached to the top surface of the horizontal bottom wall of the container body 1 to keep the vertical rod members 13 in vertical, thereby supporting the container body 1 in shape.

FIG. 2 shows an alternate form of the present invention. According to this embodiment, a horizontal insertion slot 14 is formed in one vertical sidewall of the container body 1 near the bottom side corresponding to the height (thickness) and width of the bottom board 2 so that the bottom board 2 can be inserted through the horizontal insertion slot 14 into the inside of the container body 1 and closely attached to the top surface of the horizontal bottom wall of the container body 1.

Referring to FIGS. 3˜7, when the twist-collapsible storage container is not used, twist the top side of the top compartment of the twist-collapsible storage container in clockwise direction or counter-clockwise direction (for example, counter-clockwise direction as shown in FIG. 3) while keeping the bottom board 2 inside the container body 1 and holding the bottom side of the twist-collapsible storage container immovable. At this time, the vertical sidewalls of the top compartment of the container body 1 are twisted, and the rod members 12 and 13 corresponding to the top compartment of the container body 1 are properly curved without damage, allowing smoothly performance of the twist action. When continuing the twisting action, the height of the top compartment of the twisted container body 1 is gradually lowered, and the four vertical sidewalls of the top compartment of the container body 1 are respectively folded into a triangular shape (see FIG. 4). Thereafter, continuously twisting the top side of the container body 1 to collapse the intermediate compartment of the container body 1 (see FIG. 5) and then the bottom compartment of the container body 1 (see. FIG 6). At final, the top side of the top compartment of the container body 1 and the bottom side of the bottom compartment of the container body 1 are closely attached together (see FIG. 7), and the four triangles that are formed of the four vertical sidewalls of the top compartment of the container body 1 are abutted against one another, forming a rectangular profile. The collapsed status of the twist-collapsible storage container has a flat shape convenient for storage or delivery with less space occupation. When keeping the twist-collapsible storage container in the collapsed status for a certain length of time, folding lines 11 will be formed out of the triangular contour of the collapsed vertical sidewalls of the container body 1 due to the pressure of the weight of the twist-collapsible storage container itself or other loads rested on the collapsed twist-collapsible storage container (see FIG. 7). These folding lines 11 will facilitate further collapsing action of the twist-collapsible storage container.

FIG. 8 shows an alternate form of the twist-collapsible storage container. This embodiment is substantially similar to the embodiment shown in FIG. 1 with the exception that the container body 1 has only two vertically spaced compartments. When twisting the top side of the container body 1 relative to the bottom side of the container body 1 in clockwise or counter-clockwise direction, the top compartment and bottom compartment of the container body 1 are collapsed one after the other (seed FIGS. 9˜11). When collapsed, as shown in FIG. 12, the four triangles that are formed of the four vertical sidewalls of the top compartment of the container body 1 are abutted against one another, and the collapsed status of the twist-collapsible storage container has a flat shape convenient for storage or delivery with less space occupation.

It will be understood that each of the elements described above, or two or more together may also find a useful application in other types of methods differing from the type described above.

While certain novel features of this invention have been shown and described and are pointed out in the annexed claim, it is not intended to be limited to the details above, since it will be understood that various omissions, modifications, substitutions and changes in the forms and details of the device illustrated and in its operation can be made by those skilled in the art without departing in any way from the spirit of the present invention.