Canadian Patents Database / Patent 2636515 Summary

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(12) Patent Application: (11) CA 2636515
(54) English Title: TUBULAR ORGANIZER
(54) French Title: DISPOSITIF DE RANGEMENT TUBULAIRE
(51) International Patent Classification (IPC):
  • A45C 11/00 (2006.01)
  • A45D 44/00 (2006.01)
  • A47G 29/00 (2006.01)
(72) Inventors :
  • CARR, MATTHEW J. (Canada)
(73) Owners :
  • UMBRA LLC (United States of America)
(71) Applicants :
  • UMBRA LLC (United States of America)
(74) Agent: BLAKE, CASSELS & GRAYDON LLP
(74) Associate agent:
(45) Issued:
(22) Filed Date: 2008-06-30
(41) Open to Public Inspection: 2009-12-30
Examination requested: 2010-03-04
(30) Availability of licence: N/A
(30) Language of filing: English

English Abstract



An organizer for storing items including at least three receptacles, each of
the three
receptacles having an upper section and a lower base section, each of the base
sections having
a non-planar bottom surface such that each of the receptacles is incapable of
standing on its
own when resting on a flat surface, wherein each of the at least three
receptacles is fixedly
secured to at least one other of the at least three receptacles, such that the
at least three
receptacles function to support one another in a standing orientation when
placed on the flat
surface.


Note: Claims are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.


WE CLAIM:
1. An organizer for storing items, comprising:
at least three receptacles, each of said three receptacles comprising an upper
section
and a lower base section, each said base section having a non-planar bottom
surface such that
each of said receptacles is incapable of standing on its own when resting on a
flat surface,
wherein each of said at least three receptacles is fixedly secured to at least
one other of said at
least three receptacles, such that said at least three receptacles function to
support one another
in a standing orientation when placed on said flat surface.
2. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles is
generally tubular in shape and each said upper section is cylindrical in
shape.
3. The organizer recited in Claim 2 wherein each of said non-planar bottom
surfaces of
each of said lower base sections comprises an arcuate surface.
4. The organizer recited in Claim 2 wherein each of said non-planar bottom
surfaces of
each of said lower base sections comprises a substantially semi-spherical
surface.
6. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein said upper section has a generally
polygonal
cross-section.
7. The organizer recited in Claim 6 wherein said upper section is generally
rectangular in
cross-section.
8. The organizer recited in Claim 6 wherein said upper section is generally
hexagonal in
cross-section.
9. The organizer recited in Claim 6 wherein said upper section is generally
octagonal in
cross-section.
10. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles
comprises an interior floor.
11. The organizer recited in Claim 10 wherein each said floor is arcuate in
shape.
12. The organizer recited in Claim 10 wherein each said floor is semi-
spherical in shape.
13. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein at least two of said at least
three receptacles
are of different heights.
14. The organizer recited in Claim 2 wherein at least two of said at least
three receptacles
are of different diameters.
15. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles is
transparent.

6


16. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles is
translucent.
17. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles is
opaque.
18. The organizer recited in Claim 1 wherein each of said at least three
receptacles is made
of plastic.
19. An organizer for storing items, comprising:
at least three receptacles, each of said three receptacles comprising an upper
section
and a lower base section, each said base section having a non-planar bottom
surface such that
each of said receptacles is incapable of standing on its own when resting on a
flat surface,
wherein each of said at least three receptacles is fixedly secured to at least
one other of said at
least three receptacles and to no other structure, such that said at least
three receptacles
function to support one another in a standing orientation when placed on said
flat surface.

7

Note: Descriptions are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.


CA 02636515 2008-06-30

1 TUBULAR ORGANIZER
2 FIELD OF THE INVENTION
3 [0001] The present invention relates generally to organizers, and more
particularly to
4 organizers comprising a plurality of individual receptacles secured to one
another in such a way
as to form a stable, free-standing structure, whereas no one individual
receptacle would stand
6 freely on its own.
7
8 BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
9 [0002] Organizers used to hold various items in a plurality of separate
receptacles are
well known in the art. For example, organizers are often used on desks for
holding pens,
11 pencils, scissors, and the like. Organizers are also found in bathrooms for
the purpose of
12 holding toothbrushes, hairbrushes, toothpaste, and other items. Such
organizers generally
13 include a planar bottom surface, from which the plurality of receptacles
extend upwardly.
14 [0003] One problem with these prior organizers is that they tend to be
unhygienic when
used in proximity of liquid, for example, on the counter top next to a sink in
a bathroom or
16 kitchen. Since a planar bottom surface provides little to no space between
the organizer and the
17 underlying surface, moisture is prevented from evaporating, which leads to
its accumulation
18 beneath the organizer. The combination of trapped moisture and an anaerobic
environment
19 provides many pathogenic microbes ideal conditions for growth.
Consequently, organizers with
planar bottom surfaces are generally unsuitable for use near sinks and the
like.
21 [0004] Another problem with prior organizers is that the growth of microbes
and
22 accumulation of residue can go undetected by the user, especially when the
receptacles are tall,
23 deep, and narrow, as is generally the case for receptacles arranged to hold
toothbrushes. The
24 problem is exacerbated when the inner surface of a receptacle comprises
corners or crevices,
which facilitate such growth and accumulation.
26 [0005] Still another problem with prior organizers is that their
receptacles generally have
27 the same dimensions, i.e., height, width, diameter, etc. This poses a
predicament when the user
28 of the organizer wishes to store items of varying dimensions. For example,
the optimal
29 dimensions for a receptacle arranged to hold a short, wide item, such as, a
makeup brush,
would not be optimal for a receptacle arranged to hold a long, slender item,
such as a
31 toothbrush.
32 [0006] Thus, there is a longfelt need for an organizer which minimizes the
potential for
33 trapping moisture underneath its bottom surface, provides a means for
detecting and minimizing
21784941.1


CA 02636515 2008-06-30

1 unhygienic growth and/or accumulations within its receptacles, and includes
receptacles of
2 various dimensions.
3
4 BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
[0007] The present invention generally comprises an organizer for storing
items, having
6 at least three receptacles, each of the three receptacles comprising an
upper section
7 and a lower base section, each base section having a non-planar bottom
surface such that each
8 of the receptacles is incapable of standing on its own when resting on a
flat surface, wherein
9 each of the at least three receptacles is fixedly secured to at least one
other of the at least three
receptacles, such that the at least three receptacles function to support one
another in a
11 standing orientation when placed on the flat surface.
12 [0008] The general object of the invention is to provide an organizer which
minimizes
13 the potential for trapping moisture underneath its bottom surface.
14 [0009] Another object of the invention is to provide an organizer with a
means for
detecting and minimizing unhygienic growth and/or accumulations within its
receptacles.
16 [0010] A further object of the invention is to provide an organizer which
includes
17 receptacles of various dimensions.
18 [0011] Still another object of the invention is to provide a useful yet
aesthetically
19 pleasing organizer.
[0012] These and other objects, features and advantages of the present
invention will
21 become readily apparent to those having ordinary skill in the art upon
reading the following
22 detailed description and claims in view of the several views of the
drawings.
23
24 BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
[0013] The nature and mode of the operation of the present invention will now
be more
26 fully described in the following detailed description of the invention
taken with the accompanying
27 drawing figures, in which:
28 Figure 1 is a front perspective view of a first embodiment of the present
invention
29 organizer shown holding a plurality of items;
Figure 2 is a front perspective view of the organizer alone;
31 Figure 3 is a front elevational view of the organizer;
32 Figure 4 is a back elevational view of the organizer;
33 Figure 5 is a right side elevational view of the organizer;
34 Figure 6 is a left side elevational view of the organizer;
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CA 02636515 2008-06-30

1 Figure 7 is a bottom plan view of the organizer;
2 Figure 8 is a top plan view of the organizer;
3 Figure 9 is a cross-sectional view taken generally along line 9-9 in Figure
5;
4 Figure 10 is an enlarged view of Area 10 shown in Figure 9;
Figure 11 is an enlarged view of Area 11 shown in Figure 7;
6 Figure 12 is a front perspective view of a second embodiment of the
organizer;
7 Figure 13 is a front perspective view of a third embodiment of the
organizer;
8 Figure 14 is a perspective view of a second embodiment of a receptacle of
the
9 organizer;
Figure 15 is a perspective view of a third embodiment of the receptacle;
11 Figure 16 is a perspective view of a fourth embodiment of the receptacle;
and,
12 Figure 17 is a perspective view of a fifth embodiment of the receptacle.
13
14 DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
[0014] At the outset, it should be appreciated that like drawing numbers on
different
16 drawing views identify identical structural elements of the invention.
While the present invention
17 is described with respect to what is presently considered to be the
preferred embodiments, it is
18 understood that the invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiments.
The present
19 invention is intended to cover various modifications and equivalent
arrangements included
within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
21 [0015] Unless defined otherwise, all technical and scientific terms used
herein have the
22 same meaning as commonly understood to one of ordinary skill in the art to
which this invention
23 belongs. Although any methods, devices and materials similar to those
described herein can be
24 used in the practice or testing of the invention, the preferred methods,
devices and materials are
now described.
26 [0016] The following description is best understood in view of Figures 1-9.
Figure 1 is a
27 front perspective view of a first embodiment of the present invention
organizer, hereinafter
28 referred to as organizer 10, shown holding a plurality of items. Figure 2
is a front perspective
29 view of organizer 10 alone. Figure 3 is a front elevational view of
organizer 10. Figure 5 is a
right side elevational view of organizer 10. Figure 4 is a back elevational
view of organizer 10.
31 Figure 6 is a left side elevational view of organizer 10.
32 [0017] In the embodiment shown in these figures, organizer 10 comprises
seven tubular
33 receptacles, namely, receptacles 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 18. In Figure
1, receptacle 11 is
34 shown holding toothpaste tube, 19, receptacle 14 is shown holding make-up
brush 21,
21784941.1 3


CA 02636515 2008-06-30

1 receptacle 12 is shown holding razor 20, and receptacle 15 is shown holding
toothbrush 23.
2 Each of the receptacles comprises a non-planar bottom surface, as
illustrated with the rounded
3 bottom outer surfaces of the receptacles. Preferably, the non-planar bottom
surface of each
4 receptacle is adapted to provide minimal contact with an underlying surface
upon which
organizer 10 is intended to rest, such as a bathroom sink, in order to
minimize the potential for
6 trapping liquid between organizer 10. Such a non-planar bottom surface
renders its respective
7 receptacle incapable of standing on its own when resting on a flat surface.
Accordingly,
8 organizer 10 comprises at least three receptacles fixedly secured to at
least one other, and
9 arranged to support one another in a standing orientation when placed on
said flat surface.
[0018] Each of receptacles 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 18 may include an upper
section
11 and a lower base section, namely, upper sections 11 a, 12a, 13a, 14a, 15a,
16a, and 18a,
12 respectively, and lower base sections 11 b, 12b, 13b, 14b, 15b, 16b, and
18b, respectively.
13 However, it should be appreciated that one or more of the receptacles may
be of integral
14 construction.
[0019] Organizer 10 may comprise any suitable material, for example, plastic,
glass,
16 metal, etc. In a preferred embodiment, as shown in the figures, each of the
receptacles
17 comprises a substantially transparent material, such as, glass or
polyethylene terephthalate. For
18 the sake of clarity, the figures show only the general outer contours of
the portions of the
19 receptacles that are obscured by those in the foreground, as illustrated
with hatched lines. A
substantially transparent material is preferred, because it enables a user to
detect the presence
21 of unhygienic growth or accumulation within the receptacle.
22 [0020] Figure 7 is a bottom plan view of the organizer 10, and Figure 8 is
a top plan
23 view of organizer 10. Figure 11 is an enlarged view of Area 11 shown in
Figure 7. As illustrated
24 in these figures, each of receptacles 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 18 is
fixedly secured to at least
one other receptacle by means of at least one connector 30. Connecter 30 may
be any means
26 suitable for fixedly securing one receptacle to another, but preferably
comprises a bridge of rigid
27 material extending between and fixedly secured to the outer surfaces of the
two receptacles.
28 Alternatively, each receptacle may be fixedly secured to at least one other
receptacle by directly
29 bonding the outer surfaces of the two receptacles.
[0021] Figure 9 is a cross-sectional view taken generally along line 9-9 in
Figure 5.
31 Figure 10 is an enlarged view of Area 10 shown in Figure 9. The means for
attaching each of
32 upper sections 11a, 12a, 13a, 14a, 15a, 16a, and 18a, to its respective
lower base section, 11b,
33 12b, 13b, 14b, 15b, 16b, or 18b, may be any means suitable in the art.
Preferably, as shown in
34 the figures, such means generally comprises interlocking flanges. In
particular, each upper

21784941.1 4


CA 02636515 2008-06-30

1 section comprises a first flange, each lower base section comprises second
flange
2 complimentary to the first flange, and the first flange is operatively
arranged to interlock with the
3 second flange, such that the upper section is securely attached to, and
supported by, its
4 respective lower base section. For example, Figure 10 shows first flange 11c
of upper section
11a in interlockingly engaged with second flange 11d of lower base section
11b.
6 [0022] Figure 12 is a front perspective view of a second embodiment of the
present
7 invention organizer, hereinafter referred to as organizer 100. Organizer 100
comprises five
8 receptacles, namely, receptacles 101, 102, 103, 104, and 105. Receptacles
101, 102, 103, 104,
9 and 105 comprise upper sections 101a, 102a, 103a, 104a and 105a,
respectively, and lower
base sections 101b, 102b, 103b, 104b (not fully shown), and 105b,
respectively. Preferably,
11 receptacles 101, 102, and 103 are substantially tubular and of various
heights and diameters,
12 as shown in this figure.
13 [0023] Figure 13 is a front perspective view of a third embodiment of the
present
14 invention organizer, hereinafter referred to as organizer 150. Organizer
150 comprises three
receptacles, namely, receptacles 151, 152, and 153. Receptacles 151, 152, and
153 comprise
16 upper sections 151a, 152a, and 153a, respectively, and lower base sections
151b, 152b, and
17 153b (not fully shown), respectively. Preferably, receptacles 151, 152, and
153 are substantially
18 tubular and of various heights and diameters, as shown in this figure.
19 [0024] While Figures 1-13 show the organizer comprising substantially
cylindrical
tubular receptacles, it should be appreciated that the particular shape of the
upper and lower
21 base sections may be modified without departing from the scope of the
invention. For example,
22 Figure 14 is a perspective view of second embodiment receptacle 200
comprising upper section
23 200a, having a generally rectangular cross-section, and rounded lower base
section 200b.
24 Figure 15 a perspective view of third embodiment receptacle 250 comprising
upper section
250a, having a generally triangular cross-section, and three-sided pyramidal
lower base section
26 250b. Figure 16 is a perspective view of fourth embodiment receptacle 300
comprising upper
27 section 300a, having a generally hexagonal cross-section, and six-sided
pyramidal lower base
28 section 300b. Lastly, Figure 17 is a perspective view of fifth embodiment
receptacle 350
29 comprising upper section 350a, having a generally octagonal cross-section,
and eight-sided
pyramidal lower base section 350b.
31 [0025] Thus it is seen that the objects of the invention are efficiently
obtained, although
32 changes and modifications to the invention should be readily apparent to
those having ordinary
33 skill in the art, which changes would not depart from the spirit and scope
of the invention as
34 claimed.

21784941.1 5

A single figure which represents the drawing illustrating the invention.

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Admin Status

Title Date
Forecasted Issue Date Unavailable
(22) Filed 2008-06-30
(41) Open to Public Inspection 2009-12-30
Examination Requested 2010-03-04
Dead Application 2012-07-03

Abandonment History

Abandonment Date Reason Reinstatement Date
2011-06-30 FAILURE TO PAY APPLICATION MAINTENANCE FEE

Payment History

Fee Type Anniversary Year Due Date Amount Paid Paid Date
Filing $400.00 2008-06-30
Request for Examination $800.00 2010-03-04
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 2 2010-06-30 $100.00 2010-06-04
Current owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Current Owners on Record
UMBRA LLC
Past owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Past Owners on Record
CARR, MATTHEW J.
Past Owners that do not appear in the "Owners on Record" listing will appear in other documentation within the application.

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Representative Drawing 2009-12-03 1 9
Cover Page 2009-12-17 2 39
Abstract 2008-06-30 1 14
Description 2008-06-30 5 288
Claims 2008-06-30 2 65
Drawings 2008-06-30 14 232
Prosecution-Amendment 2010-03-04 2 54
Prosecution-Amendment 2010-03-04 2 50
Assignment 2008-06-30 2 79
Fees 2010-06-04 1 200