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Publication numberUS20050061214 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/837,450
Publication dateMar 24, 2005
Filing dateApr 29, 2004
Priority dateSep 24, 2003
Publication number10837450, 837450, US 2005/0061214 A1, US 2005/061214 A1, US 20050061214 A1, US 20050061214A1, US 2005061214 A1, US 2005061214A1, US-A1-20050061214, US-A1-2005061214, US2005/0061214A1, US2005/061214A1, US20050061214 A1, US20050061214A1, US2005061214 A1, US2005061214A1
InventorsFrank Tsai
Original AssigneeFrank Tsai
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Foldable table with longitudinal mid-support arrangement
US 20050061214 A1
Abstract
A foldable table includes a tabletop having two longitudinal side edge portions; two side runners respectively supported at two sides edge portions of the tabletop; a longitudinal mid-folding arrangement comprising a mid-runner longitudinally extended between the two sides runners; and a pair of leg assemblies foldably and spacedly affixing to the tabletop, wherein the mid-runner is adapted to facilitate the folding operation of the leg assemblies.
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Claims(20)
1. A foldable table, comprising:
a tabletop having two longitudinal side edge portions;
two side runners respectively supported at two sides edge portions of said tabletop;
a longitudinal mid-folding arrangement comprising a mid-runner longitudinally extended between said two sides runners, wherein said mid-runner is suspendedly and spacedly supported underneath said tabletop; and
a pair of leg assemblies foldably and spacedly affixing to said tabletop, wherein each of said leg assemblies comprises a leg frame transversely and pivotally mounted between said two side runners, and a folding frame pivotally coupling between said leg frame and said mid-runner to retain said leg frame in an unfolded position, in such a manner that in a folded position, said leg frames are pivotally and inwardly folded to rest under said tabletop, and in said unfolded position, said leg frames are pivotally and outwardly folded to perpendicularly stand under said tabletop.
2. The foldable table, as recited in claim 1, wherein said mid-runner has two ends extended to couple with said two leg frames of said leg assemblies to enable said leg frames to rotate with respect to said mid-runner.
3. The foldable table, as recited in claim 2, wherein each of said leg frames comprises a transverse member rotatably extended between said two side runners and a supporting legs downwardly extended from said transverse member, wherein said two ends of said mid-runner are respectively coupling with said transverse members to retain said mid-runner in position between said two side runners.
4. The foldable table, as recited in claim 3, further comprising two attachment units rotatably connecting said transverse members of said leg frames with said two ends of said mid-runner respectively, wherein each of said attachment units comprises a C-shaped frame holder having a guiding slot for said respective transverse member rotatably passing through and a frame connector extended from said frame holder to securely attach to said respective end of said mid-runner.
5. The foldable table, as recited in claim 1, wherein each of said folding frames has a leg coupling end pivotally coupling with said respective leg frame and a table coupling end pivotally and selectively coupling along said mid-runner such that when said leg frames are outwardly and pivotally folded, each of said folding frames limits a pivot movement of said respective leg frame with respect to said mid-runner so as too retain said respective leg frame at said unfolded position.
6. The foldable table, as recited in claim 2, wherein each of said folding frames has a leg coupling end pivotally coupling with said respective leg frame and a table coupling end pivotally and selectively coupling along said mid-runner such that when said leg frames are outwardly and pivotally folded, each of said folding frames limits a pivot movement of said respective leg frame with respect to said mid-runner so as too retain said respective leg frame at said unfolded position.
7. The foldable table, as recited in claim 4, wherein each of said folding frames has a leg coupling end pivotally coupling with said respective leg frame and a table coupling end pivotally and selectively coupling along said mid-runner such that when said leg frames are outwardly and pivotally folded, each of said folding frames limits a pivot movement of said respective leg frame with respect to said mid-runner so as too retain said respective leg frame at said unfolded position
8. The foldable table, as recited in claim 1, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
9. The foldable table, as recited in claim 4, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
10. The foldable table, as recited in claim 5, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
11. The foldable table, as recited in claim 7, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
12. The foldable table, as recited in claim 3, wherein said tabletop, which is constructed to have two side panel, comprises a pivot hinge formed at a mid-portion of each of said side runners between said two side panels, wherein said mid-runner has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end and aligned with said two pivot hinges in such a manner that said side panel are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via said pivot hinges for reducing a size of said tabletop.
13. The foldable table, as recited in claim 7, wherein said tabletop, which is constructed to have two side panel, comprises a pivot hinge formed at a mid-portion of each of said side runners between said two side panels, wherein said mid-runner has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end and aligned with said two pivot hinges in such a manner that said side panel are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via said pivot hinges for reducing a size of said tabletop.
14. The foldable table, as recited in claim 11, wherein said tabletop, which is constructed to have two side panel, comprises a pivot hinge formed at a mid-portion of each of said side runners between said two side panels, wherein said mid-runner has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end and aligned with said two pivot hinges in such a manner that said side panel are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via said pivot hinges for reducing a size of said tabletop.
15. The foldable table, as recited in claim 1, wherein each of said leg frames comprises a transverse member rotatably extended between said two side runners and a supporting legs downwardly extended from said transverse member, wherein said two ends of said mid-runner are respectively coupling with said transverse members to retain said mid-runner in position between said two side runners, in such a manner that said mid-runner is suspendedly and spacedly supported underneath said tabletop by said two transverse members.
16. The foldable table, as recited in claim 15, wherein each of said folding frames has a leg coupling end pivotally coupling with said respective leg frame and a table coupling end pivotally and selectively coupling among said mid-runner such that when said leg frames are outwardly and pivotally folded, each of said folding frames limits a pivot movement of said respective leg frame with respect to said mid-runner do as to retain said respective leg frame at said unfolded position.
17. The foldable table, as recited in claim 15, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
18. The foldable table, as recited in claim 16, wherein said mid-runner is extended between said two side runners in a parallel manner so as to ensure a symmetric folding operation of said leg assemblies.
19. The foldable table, as recited in claim 15, wherein wherein said tabletop, which is constructed to have two side panel, comprises a pivot hinge formed at a mid-portion of each of said side runners between said two side panels, wherein said mid-runner has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end and aligned with said two pivot hinges in such a manner that said side panel are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via said pivot hinges for reducing a size of said tabletop.
20. The foldable table, as recited in claim 18, wherein wherein said tabletop, which is constructed to have two side panel, comprises a pivot hinge formed at a mid-portion of each of said side runners between said two side panels, wherein said mid-runner has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end and aligned with said two pivot hinges in such a manner that said side panel are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via said pivot hinges for reducing a size of said tabletop.
Description
CROSS REFERENCE OF RELATED APPLICATION

This application is a continuation-in-part of a utility application, Ser. No. 10/671,393, filed Sep. 24, 2003 by the inventor of this application

BACKGROUND OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

1. Field of Invention

The present invention relates to a banquet table, and more particularly to a foldable table which comprises a longitudinal mid-support arrangement extended between two side runners for substantially enhancing the strength of the tabletop and the leg assembly in a foldably movable manner.

2. Description of Related Arts

Banquet tables have become very popular since the tables are economical, cheap and foldable that can be quickly and easily folded for carriage and storage and unfolded for use. Especially when some participant-intensive activities take place in multi-function rooms or designated areas, the banquet tables can be temporary set up in minutes. After the functions, the banquet tables can be quickly and neatly folded up for storage.

A conventional banquet table comprises a tabletop and a pair of table legs foldably mounted underneath the tabletop. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 5,957,061 generally suggests a banquet table that two table legs are pivotally mounted at two opposed side end portions of the tabletop. Since the two table legs support the tabletop at two side end portions thereof, when a downward loading force F is applied on the tabletop, a mid-portion of the tabletop may be cracked easily. In order to enhance the rigid structure of the banquet tabletop, the tabletop must be made of stiffness materials such as wood or metal. However, the wooden or metal tabletop will increase the overall weight of the banquet table that reduces the portability of the banquet table.

In order to enhance the portability of the banquet table, the tabletop is made of lightweight materials such as plastic. One of the common technologies to manufacture the tabletop is known as the plastic “air-blow” molding technique. Therefore, the overall weight of the banquet table will be substantially reduced by the plastic tabletop. However, such banquet table having the plastic tabletop has several drawbacks.

The strength of such plastic tabletop is weak that the mid-portion of the plastic tabletop may be cracked easily due to the downward loading force F. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, U.S. Pat. No. 6,431,092 generally suggest a banquet table generally comprises a under the top panel 1, a metal made reinforcing arms 3 transversely mounted below a mid-portion of the top panel 1 between the two supporting arms 2 to substantially increase the strength of the top panel 1.

In addition, in order to foldably attach the table leg 4 to the tabletop, the table leg 4 comprises a standing leg rotatably mounted between the supporting arms 2 and a folding leg pivotally mounted between the standing leg and the reinforcing arm 3 such that the standing leg is capable of pivotally folding under the top panel 1 of the tabletop. As a result, the reinforcing arm 3 not only enhances the strength of the top panel 1 but also rigidly supports the table leg 4 in a foldable manner. In other words, the plastic tabletop must include the reinforcing arm 3 in order to dorm the banquet table.

However, the reinforcing arm 3 restricts the pivotally attaching position of the folding leg. Since the reinforcing arm 3 is transversely mounted at the middle of the tabletop, the folding leg must be long enough to pivotally extend form the standing leg to the reinforcing arm, which may weaken the strength of the folding leg.

Furthermore, due to the position of the reinforcing arm 3, the tabletop cannot be modified to employ with a folding hinge at the mid-portion thereof for further overlappedly folding the tabletop in half to substantially reduce the size of the tabletop.

SUMMARY OF THE PRESENT INVENTION

A man object of the present invention is to provide a foldable table, which comprises a mid-runner longitudinally extended between two side runners, wherein a folding frame of the leg assembly is adapted to adjustably couple along the mid-runner to retain the leg assembly in a folded position. In other words, a length of the folding frame can be substantially shortened to couple between the standing leg and the mid-runner so as to enhance the strength of the leg assembly.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a foldable table, wherein the mid-runner can be simply modified to incorporate with a folding hinge to overlappedly fold the tabletop so as to substantially reduce the size thereof.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a foldable table, which has a rigid, simple, and strong structure.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a foldable table, wherein no expensive mechanical structure is required to be employed in the present invention in order to achieve the above mentioned objects. Therefore, the present invention successfully provides an economic and efficient solution nit not only for providing a reinforced supporting configuration to the tabletop but also for enhancing the folding movement of the leg assembly with respect to the tabletop.

Accordingly, in order to accomplish the above objects, the present invention provides a foldable table, comprising:

a tabletop having two longitudinal side edge portions;

two side runners respectively supported at two sides edge portions of the tabletop;

a longitudinal mid-folding arrangement comprising a mid-runner longitudinally extended between the two sides runners, wherein the mid-runner is suspendedly and spacedly supported underneath the tabletop; and

a pair of leg assemblies foldably and spacedly affixing to the tabletop, wherein each of the leg assemblies comprises a leg frame transversely and pivotally mounted between the two side runners, and a folding frame pivotally coupling between the leg frame and the mid-runner to retain the leg frame in an unfolded position, in such a manner that in a folded position, the leg frames are pivotally and inwardly folded to rest under the tabletop, and in the unfolded position, the leg frames are pivotally and outwardly folded to perpendicularly stand under the tabletop.

These and other objectives, features, and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description, the accompanying drawings, and the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional foldable table.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a foldable table according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3 is a sectional side view of the foldable table according to the above preferred embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view of the foldable according to the above preferred embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 illustrates the foldable table incorporating with a folding hinge according to the above preferred embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIG. 2 of the drawings, a foldable table according to a preferred embodiment of the present invention is illustrated, wherein the foldable table comprises a plastic tabletop 10 having two longitudinal side edge portions, two side runners 20 respectively supported at two sides edge portions 11 of the tabletop 10, and a longitudinal mid-folding arrangement comprising a mid-runner 30 extended between the two side runners 20 underneath the tabletop 10.

The foldable table comprises a pair of leg assemblies 40 foldably and spacedly affixing to the tabletop 10, wherein each of the leg assemblies 40 comprises a leg frame 41 trasnversely and pivotally mounted between the two side runners 20 and a folding frame 42 pivotally coupling between the leg frame 41 and the mid-runner 30 to retain the leg frame 41 in an unfolded position. In which, in a folded position, the leg frames 41 are pivotally and inwardly folded to rest under the tabletop 10, and in the unfolded position, the leg frame 41 are pivotally and outwardly folded to perpendicularly stand under the tabletop 10 wherein the mid-folding arrangement is adapted to facilitate the folding and unfolding operation of the leg frames 41.

According to the preferred embodiment, the tabletop 10 is a single layer tabletop preferably made of lightweight but rigid materials, such as plastic, by plastic molding or FRP. It is worth mentioning that the tabletop 10 can be a double-layer tabletop that a top layer is overlappedly formed on a bottom layer to define an air chamber between the two layers.

The tabletop 10, having a rectangular shaped, defines a surrpunding rim 12 downwardly extended from each of the side edge portions 11 of the tabletop 10 to define a receiving cavity 101 within the surrounding rim 12 at a bottom side of the tabletop 10 such that each of the foldable pivot leg assemblies 40 is adapted to foldably receive within the receiving cavity 101 of the tabletop 10 at the folded position.

Referring to FIG. 2 of the drawings, the surrounding rim 12 has an outer sidewall 121 and an inner sidewall 122 to define a receiving track 123 longitudinally formed under the tabletop 10 along the respective side edge portion 11 thereof wherein the two side runners 20 are securely mounted within the receiving tracks 123 respectively.

Each of the side runners 20, which is made of rigid material such as metal, is an elongated member extended from one side end portion of the tabletop 10 to another opposed side end portion thereof at a longitudinal mid-potion of the tabletop 10, so as to substantially enhances the rigid structure of the tabletop 10.

As shown in FIG. 2 of the drawings, the mid-runner 30 is extended between the two side tunners 20 in a parallel manner at a position underneath the tabletop 10 for facilitating a folding and unfolding operation of the two leg assemblies 40. In other words, the leg assemblies are capable of symmetrically folded and unfolded with respect to the tabletop 10. Moreover, referring to FIG. 3 of the drawings, the mid-runner 30 is suspendedly and spacedly supported underneath the tabletop 10 wherein the leg assemblies 40 are operatively coupled with two end portions the mid-runner 30 so as to move between the folded position and the unfolded position. It is worth mentioning that the mid-runner 30 merely provides a guide to the folding and unfolding operation of the leg assemblies 40, and as a result, it does not act as a direct reinforcing support to the tabletop 10.

According to the preferred embodiment, each of the leg frames 41 comprises a transverse member 411 rotatably extended between two side runners 20 and a supporting leg 412 downwardly extended from the transverse member 411 in such a manner that each of the two supporting legs 412 is adapted to pivotally fold between folded position and the unfolded position. Accordingly, each of the transverse members 411 has two ends rotatably engaged with the two side runners 20 respectively wherein the two transverse members 411 are transversely extended along two transverse side edge portions of the tabletop 10 respectively so as to enhance the strength of the tabletop 10.

Each of the folding frame 42 has a leg coupling end 421 pivotally coupling with the respective leg frame 41 and a table coupling end 422 pivotally and selectively coupling along the mid-runner 30 such that when the leg frames 41 are outwardly and pivotally folded, each of the folding frames 42 limits a pivotal movement of the respective leg frame 41 with respect to the mid-runner 30 so as to retain the respective leg frame 41 at the unfolded position.

Each of the folding frames 42 comprises a folding braces 423 defining the leg coupling end 421 to pivotally connect to the supporting leg 421 of the leg frame 41 and a folding arm 424 which is pivotally connected to the folding brace 423 and defines the table coupling end 422 to pivotally connect to the mid-runner 30 such that when the leg frames 41 are inwardly and pivotally folded to the folded position, the folding braces 423 are pivotally folded to overlap with the folding arms 424 respectively. In other words, the folding braces 423 is pivotally folded with respect to the folding arm 424 to extend a distance between the leg coupling end 421 of the folding frame 42 and the table coupling end 422 thereof so as to retain the respective leg frame 41 at the unfolded position.

Referring to FIG. 4 of the drawings, the mid-runner 30 has two end portions 31 extended to respectively couple with the two leg frames 41 and enables the leg frames 41 to rotate with respect to the mind-runner 30. Accordingly, the foldable table further comprises two attachment units 50 rotatably connecting the leg frames 41 with the two end portions 31 of the mid-runner 30 respectively wherein each of the attachment units 50 comprises a C-shaped framer holder 51 having a guiding slot 511 for respective transverse member 411 rotatably passing through and a frame connector 52 extended from the frame holder 51 to securely attach to the respective end 31 of the mid-runner 30 via a rivet or a screw in such a manner that the transverse members 411 of the leg frames 41 are rotatably connected to the end portions 31 of the mid-runner 30.

It is thus apparent that the attachment unit 50 may be replaced by other connecting arrangements which connect the respective end portion 31 of the mid-runner 30 with the transverse member 411 of the respective leg frame 41 such that the transverse member 411 is allowed to support under the tabletop 10 in a rotatably movable manner with respect to the mid-runner 30.

It is worth mentioning that two or more mid-runners 30 can be employed to parallelly extended between the two side runners 20 wherein the table coupling end 422 of the folding frame 42 is adapted for pivotally coupling with the two mid-runners 30 to guide the leg frame 41 to fold between the folded position and the unfolded position.

It is worth mentioning that the mid-runner 30 is adapted to directly and securely mount underneath the tabletop 10 to retain the position of the mid-runner 30 wherein the end portions 31 of the mid-runner 30 is extended towards the two leg frames 31 between the two side runners 20 such that no attachment unit 50 is required to connect the mid-runner 30 with the leg frames 41.

Referring to FIG. 5 of the drawings, the foldable table according to the preferred embodiment can be further modified to further reduce the overall size thereof by overlappedly folding the tabletop 10 in half. Accordingly, the tabletop 10, which is constructed to have two side panels 101, comprises a pivot hinge 60 formed at a mid-portion of each of the side runners 20 between the two side panels 101, wherein the mid-runner 30 has two longitudinal portion pivotally connected end to end in such a manner that the side panels 101 are adapted to fold in an overlapped manner via the pivot hinge 60 to reduce the size of the tabletop 10. It is worth mentioning that an additional pivot hinge can be employed to pivotally connect the longitudinal portions of the mid-runners so as to enhance the folding movement of the tabletop 10.

Therefore, the foldable table of the present invention can be simply modified to incorporate with the pivot hinges 60 without altering or complicating the original structure of the foldable table in comparison with the conventional foldable table that the reinforcing arm is transversely extended at a mid-portion of the tabletop.

One skilled in the art will understand that the embodiment of the present invention as shown in the drawings and described above is exemplary only and not intended to be limiting.

It will thus be seen that the objects of the present invention have been fully and effectively accomplished. It embodiments have been shown and described for the purposes of illustrating the functional and structural principles of the present invention and is subject to change without departure from such principles. Therefore, this invention includes all modifications encompassed within the spirit and scope of the following claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7536961 *Oct 31, 2007May 26, 2009Lifetime Products, Inc.Table including a plastic table top and attached frame
US8561552 *Jan 7, 2010Oct 22, 2013Mei-Fang ChangFoldable table with anti-torsion arrangement
US8677912 *Nov 1, 2012Mar 25, 2014Ping-Cheng TsaiFoldable table
US8881661 *Dec 26, 2013Nov 11, 2014Ping-Cheng TsaiFoldable table
US8931421 *Dec 4, 2013Jan 13, 2015Ping-Cheng TsaiFoldable table
US20150020716 *Oct 6, 2014Jan 22, 2015Ping-Cheng TsaiFoldable Table
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/132
International ClassificationA47B3/087
Cooperative ClassificationA47B3/087
European ClassificationA47B3/087
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Apr 29, 2004ASAssignment
Owner name: WOK & PAN IND., INC., CHINA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:TSAI, FRANK;REEL/FRAME:015297/0683
Effective date: 20040428