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US20100259139A1 - Portable locker device - Google Patents

Portable locker device Download PDF

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Publication number
US20100259139A1
US20100259139A1 US12381738 US38173809A US20100259139A1 US 20100259139 A1 US20100259139 A1 US 20100259139A1 US 12381738 US12381738 US 12381738 US 38173809 A US38173809 A US 38173809A US 20100259139 A1 US20100259139 A1 US 20100259139A1
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US
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Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
structure
side
structures
door
portion
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US12381738
Inventor
Kevin Alan Tussy
Original Assignee
Kevin Alan Tussy
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

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Classifications

    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT COVERED BY ANY OTHER SUBCLASS
    • F25D25/00Charging, supporting, and discharging the articles to be cooled
    • F25D25/005Charging, supporting, and discharging the articles to be cooled using containers
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C13/00Details; Accessories
    • A45C13/18Devices to prevent theft or loss of purses, luggage or hand carried bags
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C5/00Rigid or semi-rigid luggage
    • A45C5/02Materials therefor
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A45HAND OR TRAVELLING ARTICLES
    • A45CPURSES; LUGGAGE; HAND CARRIED BAGS
    • A45C5/00Rigid or semi-rigid luggage
    • A45C5/04Trunks; Travelling baskets
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y10TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC
    • Y10TTECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER US CLASSIFICATION
    • Y10T70/00Locks
    • Y10T70/50Special application
    • Y10T70/5009For portable articles
    • Y10T70/5031Receptacle

Abstract

A portable locker appartus is disclosed comprising four rigid side wall structures, a rigid back wall structure and a rigid door structure with a locking mechanism that allows the apparatus to be secured by its user while allowing substantial airflow into and through the locker apparatus.

Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0001]
    1. Field of the Invention
  • [0002]
    The invention relates generally to the field of locking storage devices. In particular, the invention relates to portable locking storage devices designed to secure an individual's belongings in a common area.
  • [0003]
    2. Description of Related Art
  • [0004]
    The problem of providing a practical, secure storage area in a small space that is open to many people such as a common refrigerator in an office or work area has defied a practical solution. The prior art consists largely of devices that are complicated, heavy, difficult to use, or require significant customization.
  • [0005]
    The present invention overcomes these problems, providing a simple, lightweight, portable, locking storage device that can be used in a wide variety of settings.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0006]
    The present invention is a portable locker appartus comprising four rigid side wall structures and a rigid back wall structure, a rigid door structure, a first locking mechanism on said door structure and a second locking mechanism one of said side structures, wherein said first and second locking mechanism fit together in locking engagement, wherein said apparatus is constructed to allow substantial airflow into and through the locker apparatus. In one embodiment of the invention, the first and second locking mechanisms comprise a combination lock. In another embodiment of the invention, the first and second locking mechanisms comprise a lock operated by a key. In one embodiment of the invention, the side wall structures are interchangeable, and in one embodiment the side wall structures, said back wall structure, and said door structure are substantially flat.
  • [0007]
    In one embodiment, the side wall structures include projections that fit into complementary recesses in the adjacent side wall structure. In one embodiment, the door structure opens by pivoting through an arc up to 90 degrees about a point near one edge of the door structure and may be fixed in an open position to form a shelf.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0008]
    FIG. 1 is a diagram showing a perspective view of an exemplary portable locker device.
  • [0009]
    FIG. 2 is a diagram showing a side view of an exemplary snap fit mechanism.
  • [0010]
    FIG. 3 is a diagram showing a side view of an exemplary snap fit mechanism.
  • [0011]
    FIG. 4 is a diagram showing a side view of an exemplary snap fit mechanism.
  • [0012]
    FIG. 5 is a diagram showing an end view of the sidewalls of an exemplary portable locker device.
  • [0013]
    FIG. 6 is a diagram showing a perspective view of the portable locker device in a collapsed position for marketing or storage.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
  • [0014]
    The following description is presented to enable any person skilled in the art to make and use the invention. For purposes of explanation, specific nomenclature is set forth to provide a thorough understanding of the present invention. Descriptions of specific embodiments or applications are provided only as examples. Various modifications to the embodiments will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art, and general principles defined herein may be applied to other embodiments and applications without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Thus, the present invention is not intended to be limited to the embodiments shown, but is to be accorded the widest possible scope consistent with the principles and features disclosed herein.
  • [0015]
    Referring to FIG. 1, an exemplary embodiment of the invention consists of an locker device 100 comprising four side structures 102, a back structure 104, and a locking door structure 106. These structures may be constructed of a rigid polymer, or any other suitable material including without limitation metal, wood, or wide variety of plastics. Preferably, these structures are constructed to allow for substantial airflow into and through the locker device. The locker device may include a rigid or collapsable, removable handle 107 to provide for easy carrying. In an exemplary emboidment of the invention, some or all of these structures are constructed to allow the user to easily see the contents of the locker device. In an exemplary embodiment of the invention, the internally facing sides of the door real panel and side panels are flat to provide an even surface to place items.
  • [0016]
    Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, in an exemplary embodiment of the invention the four side structures 102 and the back structure 104 of the portable locker device are all attached to each other by a series of snap fit mechanisms 108. In one embodiment, a male portion 110 of the snap fit mechanism comprises a rigid projection with sides having a tapered region 112 and a flat or parallel region 114, and head 116 that extends out 118 from the sides of the projection, but has tapered leading edges 120. A female portion 122 of the mechanism comprises two somewhat flexible projections 124 that are spaced apart from each other. The female portions each have a head 126 that is similar in shape to the head of the male portion, with complementary angled leading edges 128.
  • [0017]
    To attach the side structures 102 and/or the back structure 104 of the portable locker device together, the edges of adjacent structures are first aligned. The male portion 110 of one or more of the snap fit mechanisms 108 is aligned between the two female portions 122 and pressed in. The tapered leading edges 120 of the male portion engage the complimentary angled leading edges 128 of the female portion, spreading the two female portions apart until the head 116 of the male portion passes beyond the heads 126 of the two female portions. The two female portions then snap back into their original position, locking the male portion of the snap fit mechanism in place.
  • [0018]
    Referring to FIG. 3, in an exemplarly embodiment a male portion 130 of the snap fit mechanism comprises two somewhat flexible projections 132 with tapered heads 134 that extend outward from the outer side of the projection. A complimentary female portion 136 of the mechanism comprises a recess with an entry channel 138 that is sufficiently wide to accommodate the two flexible projections but narrower than the two tapered heads of the male portion. To attach the side structures 102 and/or the back structure 104 of the portable locker device together, the edges of adjacent structures are first aligned. The flexible projections on the male portion are aligned with the entry channel of the female portion and pressed in. The tapered heads of the male portion engage the sides of the entry channel and are pressed inward toward each other. When the completely clears the entry channel, the flexible projections spring outward and lock the male portion into the female portion.
  • [0019]
    Referring to FIG. 4, in another exemplarly embodiment a similar male portion 170 of the snap fit mechanism comprises two somewhat flexible projections 172 with tapered heads 174 that extend outward from the outer side of the projection. This male portion extends from the edge of the side structure 102 and/or back structure 104 of the portable locker device. A complimentary female portion 176 of the mechanism is located at or near the edge of the adjacent side structure and/or back structure, and comprises a recess oriented perpendicular to the edge of the structure, with an entry channel 178 that is sufficiently wide to accommodate the two flexible projections but narrower than the two tapered heads of the male portion. To attach the side structures 102 and/or the back structure 104 of the portable locker device together, the edges of adjacent structures are first aligned. The flexible projections on the male portion are aligned with the entry channel of the female portion and pressed in. The tapered heads of the male portion engage the sides of the entry channel and are pressed inward toward each other. When the completely clears the entry channel, the flexible projections spring outward and lock the male portion into the female portion.
  • [0020]
    In an exemplary embodiment, the number of snap fit mechanisms 108 on any particular structure may vary, but the spacing of the snap fit mechanisms remains constant to allow interchangeability.
  • [0021]
    Referring to FIG. 5, in an exemplary embodiment of the invention, each of the rigid side walls 104 includes a projection 140 on one side that can be fastened to the edge of the adjacent side wall by bolts or any other type of fastener.
  • [0022]
    The locking door structure 106 is attached to the side structures 102 such that it can swing open. In an exemplary embodiment the door structure swings forward and down 180 degrees so that the opening of the portable locker device is maximized. Referring to FIG. 1, in another exemplary embodiment, the door structure swings forward and down 90 degrees, and is then fixed in position to create a shelf.
  • [0023]
    In an exemplary embodiment of the invention, the door structure 106 is attached to the right and left side structures 102 using small pins or other mechanisms that create a pivot point near the base of the door structure. The upper portion of the door structure is designed so that two small projections 142 from the sides of the door structure project outward. These two small projections engage two complimentary grooves or notches in the side structures to hold the door in a closed position. With the door held in position the user can latch the clasp into the lock with only one hand leaving the other free to hold the contents previously removed from the invention.
  • [0024]
    The door structure 106 also has a locking mechanism 144 positioned on either the top, right or left side. A complimentary mechanism 146 is positioned on the outside surface of one of the side structures 102 such that the two locking mechanisms can connect in locking engagement, locking the door structure 106 closed. The locking mechanism may be operated by any means, including a standard combination or keyed lock.
  • [0025]
    In an exemplary embodiment, one or all of the four side structures 102 are identical and interchangeable. One or more of the side structures 102 and/or back structure 104 may include a structure to facilitate attachment of the portable locker device to an enclosure such as a refrigerator, or to another portable locker device. Such structure may include a hook, loop, D-ring, or other type of connecting structure.
  • [0026]
    Referring to FIG. 6, in an exemplary embodiment, all of the side structures 102, the back structure 104, and the door structure 106 are sufficiently flat that they can be stacked when the portable locker device is unassembled. This allows for convenient, space-saving marketing display and transportation of the device.
  • [0027]
    It will be understood by those skilled in the art that the present invention can be constructed in a wide variety of sizes for use in different applications. For example, the locker device 100 can be sized to fit in a standard refrigerator to secure an individual's food or drink, to fit inside a cabinet such as a kitchen cabinet to secure poisonous or hazardous materials, to fit in a bathroom or other cabinet to secure medications or other similar materials. The locker device could also be placed on it's side or back panel to provide the user with the most convenient way to open the device based upon where it is being used at the time and the desired contents.

Claims (9)

  1. 1. A portable locker appartus comprising:
    four rigid side wall structures and a rigid back wall structure;
    a rigid door structure;
    a first locking mechanism on said door structure and a second locking mechanism one of said side structures, wherein said first and second locking mechanism fit together in locking engagement;
    wherein said apparatus is constructed to allow substantial airflow into and through the locker apparatus.
  2. 2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said first and second locking mechanisms comprise a combination lock.
  3. 3. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said first and second locking mechanisms comprise a lock operated by a key.
  4. 4. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said side wall structures are interchangeable.
  5. 5. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said side wall structures, said back wall structure, and said door structure are substantially flat.
  6. 6. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said side wall structures include projections that fit into complementary recesses in the adjacent side wall structure.
  7. 7. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said door structure opens by pivoting through an arc up to 90 degrees about a point near one edge of the door structure.
  8. 8. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said door structure can be fixed in an open position to form a shelf.
  9. 9. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said door structure is substantially flat to provide a suitable surface on which items can be placed.
US12381738 2009-03-16 2009-03-16 Portable locker device Abandoned US20100259139A1 (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US12381738 US20100259139A1 (en) 2009-03-16 2009-03-16 Portable locker device

Applications Claiming Priority (1)

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US12381738 US20100259139A1 (en) 2009-03-16 2009-03-16 Portable locker device

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US20100259139A1 true true US20100259139A1 (en) 2010-10-14

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20140076831A1 (en) * 2012-02-21 2014-03-20 Richard Mathewson Adaptable Telecommunications Equipment Mounting Frame
US8677790B2 (en) * 2011-12-16 2014-03-25 Rex A. RAMSEY Security enclosure and associated method
US20160113366A1 (en) * 2014-10-28 2016-04-28 Samsonite Ip Holdings S.A.R.L Luggage case having surface features providing enhanced corner strength

Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4470647A (en) * 1982-06-01 1984-09-11 Mark L. Bishoff Interfitting and removable modular storage units including connectors forming part of a unit as well as sliding support for adjacent units
US4881744A (en) * 1988-03-10 1989-11-21 Merit Industries, Inc. Electronically scored dart game having front opening service door
US5061023A (en) * 1990-07-06 1991-10-29 Northern Telecom Limited Telephone terminal bases
US5797612A (en) * 1995-03-24 1998-08-25 Buccioni; Aldo Sports equipment carrier
US6820950B1 (en) * 2002-08-26 2004-11-23 Ching-Ching Trading Co. Modular case for holding articles
US7048346B2 (en) * 2001-01-13 2006-05-23 Cube Concepts Llc Snap together modular storage
US20080180007A1 (en) * 2007-01-29 2008-07-31 Franklin Sports, Inc. Collapsible storage locker

Patent Citations (7)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4470647A (en) * 1982-06-01 1984-09-11 Mark L. Bishoff Interfitting and removable modular storage units including connectors forming part of a unit as well as sliding support for adjacent units
US4881744A (en) * 1988-03-10 1989-11-21 Merit Industries, Inc. Electronically scored dart game having front opening service door
US5061023A (en) * 1990-07-06 1991-10-29 Northern Telecom Limited Telephone terminal bases
US5797612A (en) * 1995-03-24 1998-08-25 Buccioni; Aldo Sports equipment carrier
US7048346B2 (en) * 2001-01-13 2006-05-23 Cube Concepts Llc Snap together modular storage
US6820950B1 (en) * 2002-08-26 2004-11-23 Ching-Ching Trading Co. Modular case for holding articles
US20080180007A1 (en) * 2007-01-29 2008-07-31 Franklin Sports, Inc. Collapsible storage locker

Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US8677790B2 (en) * 2011-12-16 2014-03-25 Rex A. RAMSEY Security enclosure and associated method
US20140076831A1 (en) * 2012-02-21 2014-03-20 Richard Mathewson Adaptable Telecommunications Equipment Mounting Frame
US20160113366A1 (en) * 2014-10-28 2016-04-28 Samsonite Ip Holdings S.A.R.L Luggage case having surface features providing enhanced corner strength

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