Title:
CD Disk Case
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A CD case for storing a CD includes a housing to protect the CD including an opening for the CD, a flexible spring member to engage said CD after the CD has entered the housing and a plunger having a first arm and a second arm to engage the CD.



Inventors:
Unda, Juan Carlos (Whittier, CA, US)
Angel, Miguel (Whittier, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/671149
Publication Date:
08/07/2008
Filing Date:
02/05/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
G9B/23.039
International Classes:
B65D85/57
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
REYNOLDS, STEVEN ALAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WILSON DANIEL SWAYZE, JR. (PLANO, TX, US)
Claims:
1. A CD case for storing a CD, comprising: a housing to protect the CD including an opening for the CD; a flexible spring member to engage said CD after said CD has entered the housing; and a plunger having a first arm and a second arm to engage the CD.

2. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said housing includes a pair of apertures to play the CD case in a binder.

3. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said housing includes a passage to accept the plunger.

4. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 3, wherein said passage includes opposing slots to accept the plunger.

5. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 4, wherein said plunger includes an outward plunger projection to cooperate with said opposing slots.

6. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said flexible spring member includes a first inward projecting section to resist the outward motion of said CD.

7. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 6, wherein said flexible spring member includes a second inward projection section to resist the inward motion of said CD.

8. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 7, wherein said flexible spring member includes a third section to hold said CD.

9. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said flexible spring member includes a U-shaped end section.

10. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said housing includes a flattop.

11. A CD case for storing a CD as in claim 1, wherein said housing includes a flat bottom.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a unitary holder or CD disk case for holding a compact disk CD.

BACKGROUND

Compact discs (hereinafter called CDs) are recording media from which recorded information can be read out by means of a laser beam. By virtue of the extremely high density and fidelity of the recorded information therein, compact discs are becoming increasingly popular.

Typical compact discs have a flat disc-shaped body provided with a central aperture which facilitates the exact mounting on a read-out instrument such as a compact disc player.

While the CDs are relatively rugged and forgiving of minor scratches, dust and debris, they still must be stored and given protection. Indeed, scratches that sufficiently scatter the laser beam can block reading of the encoded information. A disc protective container also serves for the display of a label that attracts the buyer and informs the user of the disc.

The sales of compact discs has been increasing by very large amounts. Compact discs have completely displaced long play records and have sales which are equivalent or greater than pre-recorded audio cassette tapes. Almost universally, the compact discs are sold in a plastic CD box. These boxes are almost identical, having a flat top, with short side walls extending downwardly from opposite sides of the flat top. These boxes further have a flat bottom, with a short side wall extending upwardly from opposite ends of the flat bottom. The flat top is pivotally attached at one of its ends to the corresponding end of the flat bottom. When the flat top is pivoted so as to be parallel with the flat bottom, a relatively thin box is formed which comprises the flat top and flat bottom spaced apart by a distance equal to the distance that the short side walls extend from the respective flat top and bottom. The short side walls form a continuous enclosed perimeter around the CD box. A hub is associated with the flat bottom and is capable of having compact disc retained on the hub and within the CD box when the flat top is moved to its closed position in which it is essentially parallel to the flat bottom.

The compact discs are usually kept in compact disc carrying cases. These laser discs carrying cases commonly comprise a cover shell hinged to a base shell and locked by lock means. A tray is typically provided within the base shell for receiving and holding the disc. The tray may have a central engagement means for holding the center aperture of the CD. Commonly, those engagement means are rosettes typically made up of a series of tines raised in a circle and radially extending inward towards a center pushing area.

One of the major drawbacks associated with such conventional CD carrier is the difficulty with which the cover shell is pivoted from the base shell in an open position. Indeed, because the cover and base shell are typically formed of clear polystyrene, it is difficult to distinguish them. Consequently, it is not uncommon for the user, in attempting to grasp the base shell with one hand, to mistakenly place the thumb and fingers of that hand on the cover side walls, thinking them to be part of the platform, while correctly placing the fingers of the other hand on the platform back wall and lifting, with the thumb of that hand, the cover front border. Since both hands are inadvertently holding the cover, the container cannot be opened.

The proper technique for opening most of the cases presently on the market is to place the fingers of both hands on the base shell back wall, the thumb of both hands on the base shell front wall, one of which lifts the cover front border. While this works relatively well, once one is experienced, the operation can prove to be difficult since it requires manual dexterity.

Consumers sometimes have additional problems with the CD cases that pivot open. For example, the CD disk can easily fall out of the open case and fall to the floor. The CD disk may be scratched as a result of falling out of the open case. Consumers are always looking for a simpler way of managing the storage of the CD disk.

Prior attempts to provide CD carrying cases which are more easy and simple to open proved to be unsatisfactory as those prior art cases are of complex construction and expensive to manufacture. Examples of such prior art cases are described by way of examples, in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,000,316; 5,213,209; 5,265,721; 5,346,074; 5,515,979; 5,526,926; 5,549,199.

Also known in prior art, there are the laid-open applications GB-9,517,521 and GB-9,611,747, both in the name of Courchesne, which disclose CD carrying cases having a built-in pop-up cover comprising essentially a push-button for releasably locking the cover of the case on the base shell and cooperating with a V-shaped leaf-spring mounted at the rear end of the case on a hinge component. In each of those documents, the leaf-spring has an arm abutting on the top wall of the cover and another arm abutting on the bottom wall of the base shell. One of the drawbacks with CD cases is that it is still too expensive to be economically feasable.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,056,117 discloses a CD carrying case having a built-in pop up cover. The case comprises a box-like base shell adopted to receive the compact disc and a cover shell sized to fit over the base shell and having a rear end hingely connected to a rear end of the base shell. The cover shell is pivotable between an open position away from the base shell for opening the case and a close position against the base shell for closing the case. The case further comprises a locking the cover shell in the close position and a biasing element adapted to cooperate with the locking mechanism for biasingly popping up the cover shell in the open position as the locking mechanism is released.

Therefore, there is still a need for an improved CD carrying case that is economically feasable, long lasting and easy to built and use.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An object of the present invention is to provide a case for storing a compact disc that satisfies these above-mentioned needs.

The case for storing a CD in accordance with the present invention is reliable and long lasting since it minimizes the amount of components. Also very importantly for this type of product which is part of a ferocious market is that the case according to the present invention combines simplicity and inexpensiveness to manufacture with durability and trouble-free in operation.

The case disclosed combines simplicity and inexpensiveness to manufacture with durability and trouble-free in operation.

The present invention includes a CD case for storing a CD including a housing to protect the CD including an opening for the CD, a flexible spring member to engage the CD after the CD has entered a housing and a plunger having a first arm and a second arm to engage the CD.

The housing includes a pair of apertures to place the CD case in a binder, and the housing includes a passage to accept a plunger. The passage includes opposing slots to accept a plunger, and the plunger includes an outward plunger projection to cooperate with the opposing slots.

A flexible spring member includes a first inward projecting section to resist the outward motion of the CD, a second inward projecting section to resist the inward motion of the CD and a third section to hold the CD.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention may be understood by reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which, like reference numerals identify like elements, and in which:

FIG. 1 illustrates a perspective view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a top view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 3 illustrates an end view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 4 illustrates an end view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 5 illustrates an end view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 6 illustrates a perspective view of the CD case of the present invention;

FIG. 7 illustrates a perspective view of the CD case of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 illustrates a CD case 100 in accordance with the teachings of the present invention. The CD case 100 includes a rigid housing 102 which is hollow to receive a CD 130 and having a substantially flat top 104, a substantially flat bottom 106 and a continuous sidewall 108 which extends between the top 104 and the bottom 106 to form a continuous enclosed perimeter around the housing 102. The sidewall 108 includes a passage 110 or aperture to accept a plunger 112. The opposing edges 114 of the passage 110 includes a slot 116 to accept outward plunger projections 118 formed along the sides of the plunger 112 and to travel within the slots 116.

Additionally, the opposing sidewall 108 includes a CD slot 120 sized approximately larger than the diameter of the CD 130 to allow the CD 130 to enter and exit the housing 102. The plunger 112 includes a first arm 122 and a second arm 124 which extends outwards from the plunger 122. Each of the first arm 122 and the second arm 124 includes a concave curved edge 123, 125 which is curved to approximate the curved edge of the CD 130 so that the first arm 122 and the second arm 124 can provide uniform pressure along the edge of the CD 130. The top 104 and the bottom 106 include cooperating first apertures 140 and cooperating second apertures 142 to allow the user to place the CD case 100 in a binder. The spacing between the first aperture 140 and the second aperture 142 may be such to correspond to the spacing between two rings of a binder. The housing 102 additionally includes projecting elements 144, 146 positioned between the top 104 and the bottom 106 and positioned to stop the inward movement of the CD 130 at a point where the CD 130 is completely within the housing 102.

FIG. 2 illustrates a flexible spring member 200 positioned on opposing sides of the housing 102 and which is memory less in that that after the flexible spring member 200 has been distorted, the flexible spring member 200 will return to its original shape. The flexible spring member 200 includes a first inward projecting section 202 which allows the CD 130 to enter the housing 102 and moves outward to allow the widest part of the CD 130 to pass and then first inward projecting section 202 moves inwards to hold the CD 130 in position against the plunger arms 122, 124. The flexible spring member 200 additionally includes a second inward projecting section 206 to prevent the CD 130 from traveling to far into the housing 102. Between the first inward projecting section 202 and the second inward projecting section 206 is a third section 204 of the flexible spring member 200 to hold the CD 130. The flexible spring member 200 includes a first U shaped end section 208 at one end of the flexible spring member 200 and a second U shaped end section 210 at another end of the flexible spring member 200 to hold the flexible spring member 200 in position. The CD 130 enters the CD slot 120 and moves inward into the housing 102, and the CD 130 moves outwards the first inward projecting section 202 and moves inwards the second inward projecting section 206 and the third section 204. The CD 130 continues to move inward and moves outwards the third section 204 which moves inwards the first inward projecting section 202 and the second inward projecting section 206. The CD engages and moves outwards the second inward projecting section 206 and moves inward the first inward projecting section 202 and the arms 122, 124 and stops at the projection elements 144, 146. The user pushes the plunger 112 inward into the housing 102 in order to push the CD 130 out of the CD slot 120.

FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 illustrate a first protective sheet 140 and a second protective sheet 142 positioned on both the flat top 104 and flat bottom 106 to protect the CD 130 from being scratched as the CD 130 travels within the housing 102. The first protective sheet 140 and the second protective sheet 142 extends from the CD slot 120 to approximately the first arm 122 and the second arm 124 and may be formed from soft thin cloth or other suitable material.

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view of the present invention.

FIG. 4 illustrates a side view of the present invention.

FIG. 5 illustrates a side view of the present invention.

FIG. 6 illustrates a perspective view of the housing 102 of the present invention. Additionally illustrated is the plunger 112, the first arm 122, the second arm 124, the projecting elements 144, 146 and the first and second aperture 140, 142.

FIG. 7 illustrates a perspective view of the CD case 100.

While the invention is susceptible to various modifications and alternative forms, specific embodiments thereof have been shown by way of example in the drawings and are herein described in detail. It should be understood, however, that the description herein of specific embodiments is not intended to limit the invention to the particular forms disclosed.