Flexible, Collapsible Or Folding Patents (Class 141/337)
  • Patent number: 11166487
    Abstract: Kit for producing a cigarette includes a cigarette tube holding a smoking material, a funnel having a length, a top face, a bottom face, and funnel includes a fold line along which bottom face of funnel is folded relative to the top face to form a slot and a closed bottom face. The funnel receives the smoking material through the slot and fills the funnel with smoking material for filling the cigarette tube. The cigarette tube is filled with the smokable material. The funnel is rollable into a filter, and the filter is inserted into an end of the cigarette tube, and the filter filters smoke from the smoking material and the cigarette tube when the cigarette tube and the smoking material are ignited. There is likewise a method of making a cigarette using the kit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 2019
    Date of Patent: November 9, 2021
    Inventor: Ryan Okamura
  • Patent number: 11123049
    Abstract: A system for hands-free collection of biomaterials, such as urine, in a vessel disposed below a closable port, the vessel being sealable by an at least partially automated sealing mechanism, the sealed vessel being transferable to a storage area. In general terms this application is directed to a hands-free, biomaterial collection system that is it least partially automated. In one aspect, a biomaterial collection system comprises a biomaterial capture area including a port, a collection area disposed below the capture area, a vessel disposed in the collection area and aligned with the port, and a sealing mechanism disposed in the collection area for sealing the vessel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 21, 2021
    Assignee: WK HOLDINGS, INC.
    Inventors: Heidi Kramer, Herman Wagschal, Joseph Wagschal
  • Patent number: 10744026
    Abstract: A urine directional system to guide the direction of urine flow, the system having a urine directional device having a generally elongated tubular object that is flexible, extendable, and compressible, and a cap that makes contact with the user, the cap being comfortable to the touch. The urine directional device can also have segments of rigid tubing that is integrally formed with or attached at opposite ends of the tubular object to provide sturdiness to the device. The device can also have a screen at one end of the device to catch solid objects in the urine. The system can also have a holder to hold and store the urine directional device. The holder can have a removable container located at the bottom of the holder to catch drips from the device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 17, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 18, 2020
    Inventor: Kirk Trachsel
  • Patent number: 10518322
    Abstract: An example molten material funnel includes a first outlet lip and a second outlet lip. The first and second outlet lips are configured to both contact molten material communicated through the molten material funnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2019
    Assignee: United Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Wai Tuck Chow, Yan Seng Loh
  • Patent number: 10458770
    Abstract: An explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) tool has an inflated state and a deflated, collapsed state. In the inflated state, the EOD tool includes a central longitudinal axis and a radially outer portion. The radially outer portion contains an inflation composition. The radially outer portion includes an opening for admitting the inflation composition into the radially outer portion, an exterior wall and an interior wall that defines a through opening centered on the central longitudinal axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 25, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2019
    Inventors: Christopher Wilhelm, Samuel Emery, Paul Giannuzzi, Daniel McCarthy, Lesley Wilhelm
  • Patent number: 10398878
    Abstract: One embodiment is an improved method for providing a tube for attachment to a medical device such as a catheter that provides for intermittent changes in tube path length as a result of body movement thereby reducing the stress and pain caused by pulling on the device, as well as the optional provision to provide a very low, controlled tension that provides improved stability of the medical device without damage to the surrounding body tissues. This controlled tension can be applied or removed intermittently by a medical practitioner or the patient. The tubal devices shown in Fig and Fig both provide for extension in tubal path length while simultaneously providing for intermittent or continuous low tension pull on the catheter. Provision is also made for a continuous smooth fluid path with no moving internal parts.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2019
    Inventor: Bernard Engelhardt
  • Patent number: 10117772
    Abstract: A female urination aid to enable a female to urinate from a standing position. The invention, in one embodiment, has a disposable funnel, typically made of paper or similar material, which fits into a reusable holder, which enables the funnel to be held against the body. The funnel may include an attached pad of wiping paper. In a second, reusable or multi-use embodiment, the funnel portion of the apparatus is of a reusable material such as plastic. A fluid container for holding a cleaning solution conveniently snaps onto the funnel, forming an easy to carry kit. Wiping paper may be attached to the funnel, so as to form a readily usable kit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2018
    Inventor: John Baham
  • Patent number: 10040598
    Abstract: A reusable and washable storage device comprising a plurality of sides and a plurality of hinges. Each the plurality of hinges are placed between at least two of the plurality of sides and comprise an axis of rotation. The plurality of sides rotate about the axis of rotation from a first position to a second position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2018
    Assignee: Bellfig Creative, LLC
    Inventor: Eric Brice Woodlock
  • Patent number: 9346657
    Abstract: A funnel apparatus for storage inside of a container lid. The funnel apparatus includes a circular planar sheet having a centered circular shaped pop-out member with perforated lines therearound to facilitate the removal thereof. The funnel apparatus provides an inner edge and an outer edge, wherein the inner edge is formed after removal of the pop-out member. The device can be removed from a container lid by use of a pull tab that extends from the outer edge thereof. A slit that extends from the inner edge to the outer edge of the planar sheet, wherein the user can separate the device via separating the slit in order to form ends. The device can be formed into a conical shape having a flared open upper and a tapered open bottom, wherein the open bottom is placed into the open upper of a bottle to enable the pouring of liquids and powders therein.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 18, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Inventor: Roderick Hanson
  • Patent number: 9233823
    Abstract: A fuel surge arrestor can include a funnel shaped to fit within a fuel fill receptacle of a craft. The funnel can have a nozzle opening for accepting a fuel fill nozzle. A vent can be located at a top opening of the funnel. The vent can include a plurality of baffles that enable airflow within the vent while deterring heavy vapors and liquids from exiting the vent during a fuel surge. Various stems having different outer diameters designed to fit within various-sized fuel fill receptacles can be removably coupled to the funnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 12, 2016
    Assignee: FOX ENVIRONMENTAL PRODUCTS, LLC
    Inventor: Garry Fox
  • Publication number: 20150129085
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a funnel comprising: a funnel body, where said funnel body includes an inner layer and an outer layer, and where said funnel body is made of a flexible material; a wide first opening and a wide second opening, where the first opening is larger than the second opening, and where the first opening has a curved portion and a planar portion; and an outwardly extending curved lip disposed on the rim of the first opening.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 13, 2013
    Publication date: May 14, 2015
    Inventor: Jeanette Everett
  • Publication number: 20150096644
    Abstract: An oil pourer includes a spout shell that is configured to be connected with a bottle of culinary oil and a collapsible funnel section connected with the spout shell and moveable with respect to the spout shell between an open position and a closed position. When the funnel section is in the open position, the funnel section and the spout shell define an oil-filling opening. When the funnel section is in the closed position, the funnel section seals against the spout shell to close the oil-filling opening. A method of using an oil pourer is also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 8, 2013
    Publication date: April 9, 2015
    Applicant: Helen of Troy Limited
    Inventors: Alex Lee, Mackenzie Mor, Thomas Jason Dooley, Paul Lacotta, Dio Climaco Cavero
  • Publication number: 20150053677
    Abstract: In the container and nozzle disclosed, the nozzle is formed from a die cut sheet and mounted to the container in flat condition for storage and transport. The nozzle has a tab at an upper end and a pour channel at a lower end. The tab has an aperture with radially oriented slits to be pressed over threads on the container neck and thereby held in position. The pour channel has four panels and a glue panel joined by score lines to be expandable from the flat condition to an open condition for allowing a material to flow through. A number of slits are cut through the sheet along a juncture between the tab and the pour channel, the slits allowing the pour channel to be fully expanded with minimum distortion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 20, 2014
    Publication date: February 26, 2015
    Inventor: Mark Gordon
  • Patent number: 8871092
    Abstract: A collapsible container consists of three parts: a rigid top rim, a flexible center band, and a rigid base. This combination of sections allows the container to easily collapse to about one-third of its original height. The container is also quite stable when expanded and is self-supporting. In various embodiments of the invention, for example, the upper rim may be expandable, the base may include holes or mesh to serve as a colander or strainer, or the base may be configured as a tube to function as a funnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: Progressive International Corporation
    Inventor: Heather Curtin
  • Patent number: 8844743
    Abstract: A compressible container (200) has a cap (100) configured to engage therewith. The cap (100) includes a first valve (150), preferably in the form of first and second disks (112,120), one above another, each disk having at least one hole (113,122) therethrough. The disks are rotatable with respect to one another The holes (113,122) of the first and second disks (112,120) align in a first position to create channel therethrough and misalign in the second position to close the channel. The cap (100) may also include a second valve (130) connected to the channel. The second valve (130) may comprise a ball (134) inside a conic section tube (132). The ball (134) is designed to float on the liquid (300) so that any liquid (300) attempting to exit the container cap (100) will be prevented from doing so as the second valve (130) will be closed when the liquid forces the ball (134) into engagement with the conic section tube (132).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Inventor: Giuseppe Costa
  • Patent number: 8689987
    Abstract: A container adapter for use in feeding human infants and animal infants is shown. The container adapter has an internal threaded portion that can comprise a set of thread segments sized and configured to match the external threads of a commercially available soda or bottled liquid container, and can have an external threaded portion sized to match the internal threads of a standard nipple ring for an infant feeding bottle. The container adapter includes a funnel that provides a user with assistance in inserting infant feeding ingredients into the liquid container by placing the container adapter on the liquid container to use the funnel of the container adapter to place infant feeding ingredients into the liquid container. The container adapter is then inverted and installed onto the liquid container. A nipple within a collar is attached to the container adapter thus converting the liquid container to an infant feeding bottle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 8, 2014
    Inventor: Linda A. Lewis
  • Patent number: 8671999
    Abstract: A method for removing foam with a foam retainer constructed with a hollow tubular body including a receiving end and a discharge end. A passage is formed within the hollow tubular body through which a liquid is adapted to flow. The discharge end of the hollow tubular body is adapted to snugly fit onto an open end of a container into which the liquid flows. As the container is filled with the liquid, the foam generated during the dispensing of the fluid rises back into the discharge end of the hollow tubular body. In the hollow tubular body, the foam is received and captivated therein such that when the hollow tubular body is removed, the foam may also be removed from the container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Inventor: M Pasha Pashazadeh
  • Patent number: 8656966
    Abstract: A yard waste bag device is provided having a rectangularly tubular structure with rounded lower edges, adapted to maintain a bag opening while loading contents therein. The device comprises two open ends, a hollow interior and rotating corners adapted to allow a condensed, folded configuration for storage. A user may slide this assisting device into a yard waste bag in order to maintain the bag opening, whether in a vertical or horizontal position. Once the yard waste bag is full, the assisting device may be removed and stored. There is a designated marker within the device to identify the fill mark for the bag to prevent overfilling. A handle may be provided in the top edges of the device to facilitate removal of the device once the bag has been filled. The lower edges of the device are rounded to facilitate smooth entry into a yard waste bag.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Inventors: John Copland, Lesley Copland
  • Publication number: 20140041757
    Abstract: A funnel assembly includes a plurality of legs and a funnel element having a larger opening and a smaller opening. The funnel element is attached at the legs and is collapsible and expandable between a use state, where the larger opening is substantially opened and the legs are arranged to support the funnel assembly in a free-standing manner, and a collapsed state, where the funnel and the legs are collapsed for storage. When in the use state, the funnel assembly may be disposed at a floor or support surface and the larger opening is at an upper region of the funnel assembly and the smaller opening is at a lower region of the funnel and spaced from the floor or support surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 6, 2013
    Publication date: February 13, 2014
    Inventor: Van M. Kassouni
  • Publication number: 20140020339
    Abstract: A flexible funnel positioned at a filling station of a fill machine. The flexible funnel directs a product dispensed at the filling station of the filling machine into a pouch. The flexible funnel having a rigid upper portion and a plurality of fingers. The rigid upper portion includes an open top end and an open bottom end. Each of the plurality of elongated fingers hingedly connected to the upper portion. The rigid upper portion has a regular polygon shape having a plurality of sides, and each of the plurality of fingers is individually articulatable with respect to one of the plurality of sides of the upper rigid portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 20, 2013
    Publication date: January 23, 2014
    Applicant: POUCH PAC INNOVATIONS, LLC
    Inventor: R. Charles Murray
  • Patent number: 8602071
    Abstract: A bag filling assembly is provided for facilitating clean and efficient filling of a flexible resealable storage bag. The assembly includes a frame and a pole coupled to and extending from the frame. The pole has a top and a bottom with the bottom being coupled to the frame. A funnel is coupled to the top of the pole and includes an open bottom, an open top, and a perimeter wall extending between the open bottom and the open top. A bag support is coupled to the frame and positioned under the funnel for supporting a bag under the funnel to receive matter passing through the funnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Inventor: Mark S. Eno
  • Patent number: 8567457
    Abstract: An apparatus for a vehicle having a fluid reservoir fillable with fluid from a container includes a fill tube that empties into the reservoir. A funnel is fixed to the fill tube. The funnel collapses to a stowed position and extends to a use position. The funnel collapses and extends only outside of the fill tube. A cap is connected to the funnel and seals the fill tube opening when the funnel is in the stowed position. The cap is removable from the fill tube opening and has an extension that opens a seal of the container when the funnel is in the use position to permit filling of the reservoir through the funnel and the fill tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 29, 2013
    Assignee: GM Global Technology Operations LLC
    Inventors: Joseph M. Polewarczyk, Kevin G. Kolpasky
  • Patent number: 8479780
    Abstract: An apparatus for filling top opening refuse bags including an upright bag supporting structure and a separate hopper supportable on the upright structure for directing refuse into a refuse bag. The upright support structure and hopper both have a collapsible design which permits folding from an open operative condition to a substantially flat condition for storage. The hopper is formed by a unique arrangement of trapezoidal panels which permit collapsing of the hopper to the substantially flat condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2013
    Inventors: Jesus Daniel Fernandez, David J. Fernandez, Jr., Nicolas G. Walters
  • Publication number: 20130139474
    Abstract: A collapsible bag or pouch for collecting samples of soil, mud, liquid and gases, having an internal mechanical seal and a heat sealable area near the opening that is protected during sample loading, preferably by a funnel detachable from the pouch. After loading and prior to heat sealing the pouch is secured from the outside by mechanical interlocking seal. The bag also has an air-tight port for sampling the gaseous headspace after the bag is sealed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 2, 2011
    Publication date: June 6, 2013
    Inventor: Todd Coleman
  • Patent number: 8448678
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for passively collecting water in an environment where dew forms are disclosed. The apparatus has a radial body which includes a hydrophobic surface that is supported at a slope of about 10 to 80 degrees from the direction of gravity. The apparatus may also include ridges which increase the surface area of the body thus increasing dew collection and provide shade which reduces the temperature increase of the body when the apparatus is exposed to sunlight. The method includes supporting a hydrophobic radial surface at a slope of about 10 to 80 degrees from the direction of gravity and waiting for dew or condensation to form on the hydrophobic surface and run down the hydrophobic surface to either a reservoir or a beneficiary of the passively collected water, such as the roots of a plant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 28, 2013
    Inventor: Robert Kenneth Edwin Mitchell
  • Patent number: 8360111
    Abstract: A method for squeezing at least one fruit wedge, including providing at least one fruit wedge, providing a disposable funnel having substantially circular cross-section formed from a substantially stretchable material, the disposable funnel having an inlet and an outlet, inserting the fruit wedge through the inlet of the disposable funnel until the fruit wedge is substantially enclosed by the disposable funnel, providing a bottle having a neck, inserting the outlet of the disposable funnel into or stretching the disposable funnel over the neck of the bottle, squeezing the disposable funnel until juice separated from the fruit wedge is squirted through the outlet into the bottle and, squeezing the disposable funnel with sufficient force so that the fruit wedge is expelled from the funnel to substantially reside in the bottle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Inventor: Dawn Lynn Morgan
  • Patent number: 8347927
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for passively collecting water in an environment where dew forms are disclosed. The apparatus has a radial body which includes a hydrophobic surface that is supported at a slope of about 10 to 80 degrees from the direction of gravity. The apparatus may also include ridges which increase the surface area of the body thus increasing dew collection and provide shade which reduces the temperature increase of the body when the apparatus is exposed to sunlight. The method includes supporting a hydrophobic radial surface at a slope of about 10 to 80 degrees from the direction of gravity and waiting for dew or condensation to form on the hydrophobic surface and run down the hydrophobic surface to either a reservoir or a beneficiary of the passively collected water, such as the roots of a plant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Inventor: Robert Kenneth Edwin Mitchell
  • Patent number: 8336584
    Abstract: A kitchen storage bag filling device including a resilient sheet of water-resistant material having an interior portion and an exterior portion, separated by a pre-scored arc. A user grips and squeezes the interior portion of the sheet to bend the sheet along the pre-scored arc, thereby creating a free-standing funnel-like structure. The interior portion is inserted into a plastic bag and the plastic bag is held open to increase the ease of filling the bag with liquid or solid material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2012
    Assignee: Edison Nation, LLC
    Inventor: David Belmonte
  • Patent number: 8336586
    Abstract: A loading sleeve and method for loading pellets into chemical reactor tubes where the length of the loading sleeve is greater than the clearance above the upper tube sheet. The loading sleeve includes a rigid upper sleeve portion and a rigid lower sleeve portion extending downwardly from the upper sleeve portion and means for holding the upper and lower sleeve portions together in both an aligned position, in which their longitudinal axes are aligned, and in an unaligned position, in which the longitudinal axes are at a substantial angle relative to each other. The method includes bending the loading sleeve at a hinge means, inserting the lower portion of the loading sleeve into the chemical reactor tube, then straightening the loading sleeve and inserting the upper sleeve portion into the chemical reactor tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2012
    Assignee: Extundo Incorporated
    Inventor: Clifford L. Johns
  • Patent number: 8225950
    Abstract: A fruit holder for removable attachment to the top of an open bottle such as, for example, an open beer bottle. The fruit holder is characterized by its construction including a bottle top engaging portion in fluid communicating relation to a beverage contained by the bottle, a funnel portion integrally formed above the bottle top engaging portion, and a wedge holder integrally formed on a segment of the funnel and extending outwardly from the funnel so that a fruit wedge may be placed and held on the wedge holder and juice from the fruit wedge, when squeezed, will flow along the wedge holder into the funnel, and through the bottle top engaging portion to the beverage contained by the bottle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 24, 2012
    Assignee: LeTube Custom Cigar Tubes, LLC
    Inventor: Brian Fukai
  • Publication number: 20120090732
    Abstract: According to the invention, a system for collecting debris is disclosed. The system may include a flexible sheet, two lengthwise members, a handle, and two hooks. The flexible sheet may have a trapezoidal shape having a short edge, a long edge, and side edges. The flexible sheet may also have apertures substantially near the middle of each side edge. Each aperture may be sized to permit the insertion of a hand. The lengthwise members may be encased by the flexible sheet between the apertures and the side edges. The handle may be coupled with one side of the flexible sheet and located between the long edge and a point substantially centered between the two apertures. The first hook may be coupled between the handle and the short edge on that same side. The second hook may be between the first aperture and the short edge on that same side.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 15, 2010
    Publication date: April 19, 2012
    Applicant: Leaf Taco, Inc.
    Inventor: Benjamin W. Suh
  • Publication number: 20120090724
    Abstract: A disposable funnel used to transfer fluidic, granular or similar material from a first container to a second container. The disposable funnel comprises a resilient, planar paper stock material having a weak adhesive applied to both planar surfaces. Once the funnel is constructed, it is inserted into one container and fluidic or granular material provided in a second container, would be transferred through the use of the funnel. Once the transfer has been completed, the funnel can be removed from the first container and then discarded. The disposable funnel could be constructed utilizing a static vinyl material instead of the resilient, planar paper stock material, thereby forming the funnel without the utilization of the weak adhesive material.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 19, 2010
    Publication date: April 19, 2012
    Inventor: Brian Heller
  • Publication number: 20110309209
    Abstract: Disclosed is a bag stand including a hollow stand having an inner surface, an outer surface, a top end, and a bottom end, the hollow stand including at least one side panel, each side panel having two ends, each end of each side panel connected to an adjacent end of a side panel to form a substantially continuous outer surface and a substantially continuous inner surface thereby defining an opening along the top end of the hollow stand; and a funnel interfacing with the top end of the hollow stand and having an inner surface, an outer surface, a top end, a bottom end, and at least two side ends, the funnel defining an opening at each of the top end and the bottom end of the funnel, the top end of the funnel having a larger opening and the bottom end of the funnel having a smaller opening.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 20, 2011
    Publication date: December 22, 2011
    Applicant: PRATT INDUSTRIES (U.S.A.), INC.
    Inventor: John Richard Muse
  • Publication number: 20110277883
    Abstract: Exemplary embodiments are disclosed of devices and methods, which may aid in leaf and debris (or other particles) cleanup or transport sometimes used in conjunction with tarps and/or filling of garbage cans and garbage/leaf bags, etc. In an exemplary embodiment, a funneling apparatus generally includes a sheet having edges defining a perimeter. A stay may be disposed along at least one of the edges and at least partially along the perimeter of the sheet. The funneling apparatus may be reconfigurable between a first configuration in which the sheet is substantially flat and a second configuration in which the sheet is rolled into at least one funnel-like configuration. The stay may be operable for helping the sheet remain substantially flat for the first configuration of the funneling apparatus and/or for helping retain the funnel-like configuration for the second configuration of the funneling apparatus.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 21, 2011
    Publication date: November 17, 2011
    Applicant: SNOW SOLUTIONS LLC
    Inventor: Mark Noonan
  • Publication number: 20110214782
    Abstract: A funnel (1) comprising a funnel body (2) defining an upper inlet opening and a lower discharge opening, the inlet being of greater diameter or width than the discharge opening, at least a portion of the funnel body being define by or having mounted thereon an attachment means (16) permitting the funnel to be attached to a substantially vertically arranged body panel of a vehicle. In a preferred embodiment said attachment means comprises one or more regions or portions of a magnetic material (16) for attachment to steel body panels of the vehicule or other ferromagnetic objects. In an alternative embodiment said attachment means may comprise one more suction cups. Preferably at least a portion of the funnel body is formed from a flexible or callapsible material whereby the funnel can be manipulated between an in use configuration and a collapsed or folded configuration to enable the funnel to stored in a compact form.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 13, 2009
    Publication date: September 8, 2011
    Inventor: John McGeary
  • Patent number: 7984733
    Abstract: Exemplary embodiments are disclosed of devices and methods, which may aid in leaf and debris (or other particles) cleanup or transport sometimes used in conjunction with tarps and/or filling of garbage cans and garbage/leaf bags, etc. In an exemplary embodiment, a funneling apparatus generally includes a sheet having edges defining a perimeter. A stay may be disposed along at least one of the edges and at least partially along the perimeter of the sheet. The funneling apparatus may be reconfigurable between a first configuration in which the sheet is substantially flat and a second configuration in which the sheet is rolled into at least one funnel-like configuration. The stay may be operable for helping the sheet remain substantially flat for the first configuration of the funneling apparatus and/or for helping retain the funnel-like configuration for the second configuration of the funneling apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 26, 2011
    Inventor: Mark Noonan
  • Patent number: 7886782
    Abstract: A telescoping funnel and container assembly comprises a container member including an opening with a neck portion, which has a circular base member extending perpendicularly therefrom. The base member includes an outer, circumferential, upstanding wall portion extending opposite the container member. The neck portion has an inner shoulder section encircling the container member opening. A plurality of concentric, annular ring members, each of a selected diameter, surrounds the container member opening, with an innermost, annular ring member secured to the neck portion of the container member. The selected diameter of each annular ring member increases with distance from the neck portion. The plurality of concentric, annular ring members is contained within the upstanding wall portion of the base member and is extendable upwardly to form a funnel. A cover member is removably fastened to the upstanding wall portion of the base portion for covering the annular ring members in a collapsed state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 15, 2011
    Inventor: Tony Curtis
  • Publication number: 20100281822
    Abstract: A load smart system for continuously loading preformed pouches into a fill-seal machine is provided. A plurality of pouches are disposed within a pouch delivery device, each of the pouches having an upper edge and an indicia. The fill-seal machine includes a rotating turret having a plurality of radially extending grippers. The rotating turret rotates the plurality of gripper pairs between a loading station, an opening station, a filling station, a sealing station, and an unloading station. A robotic transfer device is positioned between the pouch delivery device and the loading station of the fill-seal machine. The robotic transfer device includes an optical sensor positioned on a gripper member. During operation, the optical sensor scans the indicia to determine the pouch characteristics and a controlling station controls the gripper member to deposits the pouch within the gripper pairs at the loading station a predetermined distance from the upper edge of the pouch.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 21, 2010
    Publication date: November 11, 2010
    Applicant: Pouch Pac Innovations, LLC
    Inventor: R. Charles Murray
  • Publication number: 20100206428
    Abstract: A collapsible funnel and a method for making a collapsible funnel is disclosed. In accordance with one embodiment of the invention, the collapsible funnel may be provided with a screen for filtering fluids placed into the funnel. In accordance with another aspect of the invention, a funnel is provided which includes multiple adjacent panels and a glue strip adjacent to one end, which enables the funnel to be manufactured with conventional process machines.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 1, 2010
    Publication date: August 19, 2010
    Applicant: S & S Concepts, Inc.
    Inventors: Theodore R. Salani, Lawrence A. Salani
  • Patent number: 7736057
    Abstract: An article to aid loading a leaf bag is disclosed. The article has a tubular body member configured and arranged to fold substantially flat and insert into a leaf bag and a funnel structure extending from the tubular body member, which is also configured and arranged to fold substantially flat. The funnel structure comprises at least one panel connected to at least one flexible insert to form a substantially cone-shaped funnel that empties into the tubular body member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 19, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 15, 2010
    Assignee: Leaf Bag Funnel, LLC
    Inventor: David VanBost
  • Patent number: 7717144
    Abstract: A device for applying salt and melted butter into popcorn which comprises a perforated straw-like component having a sealed lower end. A funnel component is integral with an upper end of the perforated straw-like component. When the perforated straw-like component is inserted into the popcorn, salt and melted butter will be poured into the funnel component and flow out through the perforated straw-like component into the popcorn.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 18, 2010
    Inventor: Philip M. Bottega
  • Patent number: 7678271
    Abstract: A collapsible container consists of three parts: a rigid top rim, a flexible center band, and a rigid base. This combination of sections allows the container to easily collapse to about one-third of its original height. The container is also quite stable when expanded and is self-supporting. In various embodiments of the invention, for example, the upper rim may be expandable, the base may include holes or mesh to serve as a colander or strainer, or the base may be configured as a tube to function as a funnel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2010
    Assignee: Progressive International Corporation
    Inventor: Heather Curtin
  • Patent number: 7677276
    Abstract: A funnel includes a funnel body, and a narrow stem portion connected to a lower portion of the funnel body, with a half-closed damper having an elastic engaging opening being formed on a top of the funnel body. Alternatively, the funnel includes a funnel body and a narrow stem portion connected to a lower portion of the funnel body, with an elastic engaging opening and a half-opened baffle being formed at an upper portion of the funnel body at two opposite positions. In the latter case, the elastic engaging opening includes two inward curved clamping arms, and a vertical slit is formed between the two clamping arms to downward extend to the funnel body. With the elastic engaging opening, the funnel can be used with liquid containers having differently sized spouts. And, with the half-closed damper or the half-opened baffle, liquid being poured into the funnel is prevented from spilling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 16, 2010
    Assignee: Shanghai Easy-Use Tools Enterprise Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Shi Yu Sun
  • Publication number: 20100032057
    Abstract: In one embodiment, the present invention comprises a pipe threading machine comprising a cutter, a reamer and a threader. The pipe threading machine further comprises a releasably attached funnel. One embodiment of the funnel comprises angled sidewalls joined to form a leak proof funnel shaped receptacle, a continuous upper rim disposed about the upper opening of the leak proof funnel shaped receptacle, and a drain hole located at the bottom of one or more angled sidewalls. The funnel further comprises a connection arm extending from the funnel and adapted for mating with the pipe threading machine such that the leak proof funnel shaped receptacle suspends upright. A drain pipe extends from the drain hole for redirecting fluid draining from the pipe threading machine into a fluid repository. The funnel optionally comprises a horizontal stabilizing latch extending from the upper rim.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 7, 2008
    Publication date: February 11, 2010
    Inventor: Harvey Multer
  • Patent number: 7635013
    Abstract: A cap assembly and method therefore is disclosed. The cap assembly preferably has a funnel coupled thereto. Preferably, the funnel is stored within the cap assembly so that it will always be available for use. Further preferably, the user could avoid getting any of the liquid on his/her hands because the funnel would be capable of being placed into position and stored without the user ever having to touch it.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2006
    Date of Patent: December 22, 2009
    Inventor: Darren L. Ballinger
  • Publication number: 20090283178
    Abstract: A funnel includes a funnel body, and a narrow stem portion connected to a lower portion of the funnel body, with a half-closed damper having an elastic engaging opening being formed on a top of the funnel body. Alternatively, the funnel includes a funnel body and a narrow stem portion connected to a lower portion of the funnel body, with an elastic engaging opening and a half-opened baffle being formed at an upper portion of the funnel body at two opposite positions. In the latter case, the elastic engaging opening includes two inward curved clamping arms, and a vertical slit is formed between the two clamping arms to downward extend to the funnel body. With the elastic engaging opening, the funnel can be used with liquid containers having differently sized spouts. And, with the half-closed damper or the half-opened baffle, liquid being poured into the funnel is prevented from spilling.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 3, 2008
    Publication date: November 19, 2009
    Inventor: Shi Yu Sun
  • Patent number: 7604143
    Abstract: A holder for a bag. The holder comprises a stand or trash can and chute elements rotatably engaged to the stand or trash can. The chute elements are for opening the bag when frictionally engaging interior surfaces of the bag. The chute elements comprise a first pair and a second pair of chute elements. Each of the first pair of chute elements have stop elements for limiting rotation on the stand or trash can of each of the second pair of chute elements, when each of the first pair of chute elements has engaged sides of the bag in the holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 2005
    Date of Patent: October 20, 2009
    Inventor: John L. Kerekes, Jr.
  • Publication number: 20090151815
    Abstract: A funnel that is both functional and storage-efficient is disclosed. A funnel when properly stored takes up no more space than the funnel body itself; when its fully extended can be as long as 30 inches long—longer than any funnel seen in the general consumer market. At its most flexible posture the funnel can be made snake-like to reach the most hard-to reach areas, such as the underside of an automobile or the backside under the kitchen sink.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2008
    Publication date: June 18, 2009
    Applicant: Garage and Things Inc.
    Inventors: Jack Zikeh Peng, Chi-Chung Edward Lee, Nien-Shiang Liu
  • Patent number: 7472727
    Abstract: A stand to which a sandbag can be easily and quickly, yet securely, attached and which includes a funnel portion that directs sand into the attached sandbag. The stand includes legs that are foldable for storage and a clip system for quickly and securely attaching and detaching sandbags to the funnel portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2006
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2009
    Inventor: Ryan N. Sherrard
  • Patent number: 7469725
    Abstract: A system for accurately measuring and delivering a predetermined amount of fuel to a vehicle for a specified mission. This system rapidly refuels vehicles to a specific wet vehicle weight. The fuel loading value is determined based upon an algorithm, which accounts for interactions of mission duration, and/or mission payload weight, and/or mission environmental effects. The fuel loading is accomplished by using one or more measuring tubes with a floating valve, which precludes the continued flow of fuel into the tank when the predetermined amount of fuel is delivered. The measuring tubes can be of specific lengths each corresponding to an output of the algorithm or a single telescoping tube that enables varying the length of the tube. Each unique tube length corresponding to a unique output of the algorithm. An alternative system comprises different sized fuel bladders. These systems enable a rapid foolproof method of refueling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2008
    Assignee: Honeywell International Inc.
    Inventor: Richard E. Annati