Title:
CARD-HOLDING CASE WITH A DISPENSING HOLE
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A card-holding case has a case body provided with a card dispenser. The case body has a cavity to receive cards, and a dispensing hole. The cavity is closed by a cover having an aperture and a slide rail unit. The card dispenser includes a slide disposed over the aperture and mounted slidably to the slide rail unit, and a pusher arm connected to the slide and extending into the cavity through the aperture. The pusher arm has a push end to contact the cards. The slide is slidable relative to the cover to move the push end toward the dispensing hole so that the push end pushes one of the cards outward from the dispensing hole. The card-holding case may be hung on the user's body when a hanging string is attached to the case body.



Inventors:
Chang, Shen-wei (Taichung Hsien, TW)
Application Number:
11/612017
Publication Date:
06/19/2008
Filing Date:
12/18/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/457, 206/215
International Classes:
B65H3/02; B65D85/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
RANDALL, JR., KELVIN L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Brooks Kushman (Southfield, MI, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A card-holding case comprising: a case body including a base, a cavity formed in said base and adapted to receive a stack of cards, a cover closing said cavity, and a dispensing hole communicated with said cavity, said cover having an aperture and a slide rail unit; and a card dispenser including a slide disposed over said aperture and mounted slidably to said slide rail unit, and a pusher arm connected to said slide and extending into said cavity through said aperture, said pusher arm having a push end adapted to contact one of the cards, said slide being slidable relative to said cover to move said push end toward said dispensing hole, whereby said push end pushes one of the cards outward from the dispensing hole.

2. The card-holding case of claim 1, wherein said pusher arm is connected pivotally to said slide and is biased to move said push end downward.

3. The card-holding case of claim 2, wherein said pusher arm further has a pivot end pivoted to said slide opposite to said push end, and a torsion spring connected to said pivot end and biasing said pusher arm.

4. The card-holding case of claim 2, wherein said base has a bottom wall, and a plurality of sidewalls extending upward from said bottom wall to confine said cavity with said bottom wall, said slide rail unit having two spaced apart parallel rails extending in one direction, said push end being movable in said one direction, said cover further having a top wall disposed on top of said sidewalls, said dispensing hole being formed between said top wall and a top end of one of said sidewalls transverse to said one direction.

5. The card-holding case of claim 4, wherein said cover is hinged to said base.

6. The card-holding case of claim 4, wherein said card dispenser further has a returning spring, said returning spring having two ends which are opposite to each other in said one direction and which are connected respectively to said slide and said cover.

7. The card-holding case of claim 6, wherein said case body further includes a guide disposed on said one of said sidewalls and proximate to said dispensing hole.

8. The card-holding case of claim 7, wherein said guide has a plurality of spaced apart guide ribs each projecting from an inner surface of said one of said sidewalls and an inner surface of said bottom wall and each having an inclined guide surface that extends inclinedly and upwardly from said bottom wall to said top end of said one of said sidewalls.

9. The card-holding case of claim 1, wherein said case body further includes a hanging part provided with a hanging hole.

10. The card-holding case of claim 9, further comprising a hanging string connected to said hanging hole.

11. The card-holding case of claim 1, further comprising a magnifying lens mounted on said cover.

12. The card-holding case of claim 1, further comprising a compass mounted on said cover.

13. The card-holding case of claim 1, further comprising a mirror mounted on said cover.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a card-holding case, more particularly to a card-holding case having a dispensing hole and a hanging string.

2. Description of the Related Art

Conventional card-holding cases are generally formed as hard cases, which have a size slightly larger than that of name cards. Such cases are usually placed on desks or tables because of the large thickness thereof. People also use thinner card-holding cases, which are convenient to carry and which can be placed in a pocket or a bag.

FIG. 1 shows a card-holding case which is easy to carry and which includes a base housing 11 and a cover 12 connected pivotally to the base housing 11. The base housing 11 includes a base wall 111, an engaging wall 112 extending upward from a longitudinal side of the base wall 111, two sidewalls 113 extending upward from two transverse sides of the base wall 111, and a cavity 114 for receiving a stack of name cards 13, which is defined by the base wall 111, the engaging wall 112 and the sidewalls 113. The cover 12 is provided with a hook 121. When the cover 12 is closed, the hook 12 interlocks with the engaging wall 112.

While the aforesaid card-holding case can be carried easily in a pocket or a bag, because the thickness thereof has to be limited considerably so as to avoid occupation of too much space, the card-holding case is so thin that the use must grasp it carefully when picking out one of the name cards 13 therefrom. Besides, when one of the name cards 13 is to be taken out from the card-holding case, it is necessary to first take out the card-holding case from the pocket or bag, and then open the card-holding case and separate the name cards to get one. This task is time-consuming. Therefore, further improvements relating to a card-holding case are desirable.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, an object of the present invention is to provide a card-holding case, which can be operated easily to dispense cards one by one through a dispensing hole.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a card-holding case, which can be hung on a user's body.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide a multi-functional card-holding case, which incorporates other functional components such as a lens, a compass, a mirror etc.

According to the present invention, a card-holding case comprises a case body and a card dispenser. The case body includes a base, a cavity formed in the base and adapted to receive a stack of cards, a cover closing the cavity, and a dispensing hole communicated with the cavity. The cover has an aperture and a slide rail unit. The card dispenser includes a slide disposed over the aperture and mounted slidably to the slide rail unit, and a pusher arm connected to the slide and extending into the cavity through the aperture. The pusher arm has a push end adapted to contact one of the cards. The slide is slidable relative to the cover to move the push end toward the dispensing hole so that the push endpushes one of the cards outward from the dispensing hole.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. 1 shows a conventional name card case;

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of a card-holding case according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the card-holding case of FIG. 2 in an open state;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the card-holding case of FIG. 2 in a closed state;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is the same view as FIG. 5, but showing a slide which has been pushed rightwards;

FIG. 7 is the same view as FIG. 5, but showing a card that is pushed outwards from a dispensing hole; and

FIG. 8 is a bottom plan view of the card-holding case of FIG. 2.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, there is shown a preferred embodiment of a card-holding case (A) according to the present invention, which is usable to hold a stack of name cards 91 and which has a hanging string 92 attached thereto (see FIG. 8). The card-holding case (A) includes a case body 2, a dispensing hole 4, a compass 5, a magnifying lens 6, a mirror 7, and a card dispenser 8.

The case body 2 includes a base 21, a cavity 22 to receive the name cards 91, a cover 23, and a dispensing hole 4. The base 21 has a bottom wall 210, and a plurality of sidewalls, i.e. two parallel front and rear sidewalls 211, 212, and two parallel left and right sidewalls 213, 214. The bottom wall 210 cooperates with the front, rear, left and right sidewalls to define the cavity 22.

The cover 23 has a top wall 230 disposed on top of the front, rear, left and right side walls 211, 212, 213, 214, a front panel 231 extending downward from a front end of the top wall 230, an aperture 232 formed in the top wall 230 in communication with the cavity 22, two slide rails 233 (i.e. a slide rail unit) provided on two edges of the aperture 232 and extending in a direction substantially parallel to the front panel 231.

The dispensing hole 4 is an elongated slot formed between the top wall 230 and a top end of the left sidewall 213 (i.e. one of the sidewalls transverse to the direction of the slide rails 233), and is communicated with the cavity 22. The dispensing hole 4 may also be an elongated slot formed integrally in the base 21 or the cover 23 during molding of the base 21 or the cover 23.

The base 21 further has a guide which includes a plurality of guide ribs 215 disposed proximate to the dispensing hole 4, two spaced-apart lower hinge portions 216 provided on the rear sidewall 212, a hanging part 217 provided at the middle of the rear sidewall 212, two spaced-apart engaging blocks 218 provided in the front sidewall 211, and a handle part 219 disposed in the front sidewall 211 between the two engaging blocks 218. A hanging hole 3 is provided in the hanging part 217 to permit attachment of the hanging string 92 (see FIG. 8) to the hanging part 217. Each guide rib 215 projects from inner surfaces of the left sidewall 213 and the bottom wall 210 and has an inclined guide surface 2151 that extends inclinedly and upwardly from the bottom wall 210 to the dispensing hole 4.

The cover 23 further has a stop plate 234 disposed at an inner side of the top wall 230 proximate to the aperture 232, a circular insert hole 235 disposed between the slide rails 233 for insertion of the compass 6, a circular through hole 236 disposed in the top wall 230 to receive the magnifying lens 7, two spaced apart upper hinge portions 237 projecting from the top wall 230 and connected pivotally to the lower hinge portions 216, and two spaced apart engaging hooks 238 disposed in the front panel 231. The stop plate 234 has a stop face 241 adjacent to the aperture 232, and a first spring-retaining hook 242 projecting downward therefrom. When the cover 23 is closed, the engaging hooks 238 of the cover 23 engage the respective engaging blocks 218 of the base 21. When the cover 23 is opened by applying forces to the cover 23 and the handle part 219, the engaging hooks 238 of the cover 23 disengage from the respective engaging blocks 218 of the base. When the cover 23 is turned relative to the base 21, the cavity 22 is opened.

The compass 5 is inserted into the insert hole 235 in the cover 23 so that the compass 5 can be viewed without opening the cover 23.

The magnifying lens 6 is fixed in the through hole 236 of the cover 23 and can be used when the cover 23 is opened.

The mirror 7 is disposed at an inner side of the cover and may be used when the cover 23 is opened.

The card dispenser 8 includes a slide 81 disposed over the aperture 232 and mounted slideably on the slide rails 233, a returning spring 82 that has two opposite ends respectively connected to the stop plate 234 and the slide 81 and that biases the slide 81 to move toward the dispensing hole 4, and a pusher arm 83 connected pivotally to the slide 81 and extending downward from the slide 81. The slide 81 has a slide plate 811, a knurled anti-slip portion 812 provided on a top side thereof, a pair of pivot lugs 813 projecting downward from the slide plate 811, and a second spring-retaining hook 814 projecting downward from the slide plate 811.

In particular, the two ends of the returning spring 82 are respectively connected to the first spring-retaining hook 242 of the stop plate 24 and the second spring-retaining hook 814 of the slide plate 811. The pusher arm 83 has pivot ends 831 pivoted respectively to the pivot lugs 813, a push end 832 opposite to the pivot ends 831 and a torsion spring 833 connected to the pivot ends 831 and the pivot lugs 813 to bias the pusher arm 83 to move downward so that the push end 832 is pushed against the name cards 91. Therefore, the push end 832 is able to press a topmost one of the name cards 91 either when the name cards 91 completely fill the cavity 22, or when only a few name cards 91 are left in the cavity 22.

While the pusher arm 83 in this embodiment is fabricated as a separate piece from the slide plate 811, it may be formed integrally with the slide plate 811 during molding the slide plate 811. On the other hand, the push end 832 of the pusher arm 83 may be provided with a friction plate 834 to provide frictional contact with the name cards 91.

FIGS. 5, 6 and 7 illustrate the operation of the card dispenser 8. When the slide 81 is moved rightwards and away from the dispensing hole 4 by hand, the pusher arm 83 and the push end 832 are moved rightwards. At this state, the name cards 91 do not move rightwards as they are stopped by the right sidewall 214. The returning spring 82 is extended because it is pulled rightwards.

When the slide 81 is released, the returning spring 82 returns to its original position so that the slide 81 and the push end 832 of the pusher arm 83 move leftwards and toward the dispensing hole 4. In this state, the push end 832 pushes the topmost one of the name cards 91, which is in contact therewith, toward the dispensing hole 4 until the slide 81 abuts against the stop face 241 of the stop plate 234. When the name card 91 reaches the guide ribs 215, the guide surfaces 2151 of the guide ribs 215 guide the name card 91 to move outward through the dispensing hole 4. Note that the width of the dispensing hole 4 is so designed that only one of the name cards 91 can pass through the dispensing hole 4.

Referring back to FIG. 8, the hanging string 92 extends through the hanging hole 3 in the hanging part 217 so that the case body 2 may be hung on the neck of the user. On the other hand, as the case body 2 is made of a transparent material, any card placed within the case body 2 can be viewed directly from the outside. Therefore, the case body 2 may be used as a hanging card enclosure.

Note that the card-holding case (A) according to the present invention has two longitudinal sides in a first direction (I) (see FIG. 2) and two transverse sides in a second direction (II), and is suitable to receive a plurality of cards that have horizontally printed lines in the second direction (II). As the hanging hole 3 is provided at one of the longitudinal sides of the case body 2, it is convenient for the user who wears the hanging string 92 to read the horizontally printed lines of the card. Alternatively, the hanging hole 3 may also be provided at one of the transverse sides of the card-holding case (A). In this case, the card-holding case (A) is suitable to receive cards having vertically printed lines.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.