US 20050223611 A1
A picture frame assembly enables the user to hang picture frames with any desired orientation. When many frames are to be hung, a mounting track having a raised rail is affixed to a wall. A support disc member has fixed and spring biased teeth to grip the rail at a desired location. Mounting means on picture frames cooperate with an arcuate mounting surface on the support disc for mounting the frames with a desired orientation. A support disk may also be mounted directly on the wall. Side bars may be employed as frame side extenders to adjust the outer configuration of a frame.
1. a picture frame assembly, comprising:
a support member having an arcuate surface;
means mounting said support member on a wall surface; and
a picture frame structure including means for mounting a picture element to be displayed; and
picture frame structure mounting means for adjustably mounting said picture frame structure on said support member with a selected angular orientation.
2. A picture frame assembly of
3. A picture frame assembly of
4. A picture frame assembly of
5. A picture frame assembly of
6. A picture frame assembly of
7. The picture frame assembly of
8. The picture frame assembly of
9. A picture frame assembly of
10. A picture frame assembly of
11. A picture frame assembly of
12. A picture frame assembly as recited in
13. A picture frame assembly of
14. A picture frame assembly of
15. A picture frame assembly, comprising a picture frame structure having four frame sides establishing a display opening;
at least one frame extender member having the same length as one of said four frame sides;
a mounting structure attached to a rear side of said frame member and comprising a pair of mounting fingers; and
a pair of mounting slots formed on a rear side of said picture frame structure, said mounting slots each being positioned to receive one of said mounting fingers to position said frame extender member in abutting relationship with a frame side effectively to widen said frame side.
16. A picture frame assembly, comprising:
a support means for supporting a picture frame structure;
track means for mounting said support member on a wall, said track means having a plurality of track sections, each section having a raised rail;
coupler means for coupling adjacent track sections, end-to-end, said coupling means comprising a coupling bar having spring fingers for gripping said raised rail of one track section and additional spring fingers for gripping said raised rail of an adjacent track section; and
means for mounting said support means on said track means.
17. The picture frame assembly of
18. A picture frame assembly of
1. Field of the Invention
This invention relates to picture frame assemblies for displaying one or more pictoral images and, more particularly, to such an assembly in which picture frames can be mounted with selected orientations.
2. Description of Related Art
U.S. Pat. No. 3,952,435,
U.S. Pat. No. 3,878,633 mounts and displays a plurality of framed paintings and the like on a display panel having a plurality of parallel, spaced mounting channels.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,659,991 provides a picture frame assembly for displaying several pictures. A background panel for affixation to a room wall has one or more apertures, each releasably receiving a picture frame.
U.S. Pat. No. 4,912,863 shows a modular picture frame system in which frames are mounted on bases which have slots receiving connecting bars enabling frames to be connected one to the other to form a unitary assemblage of any size, configuration or organization.
U.S. Pat. No. 4,712,322 disclose a multiple modular frame apparatus, including a plurality of frames, each connected by means of dove tail grooves to other frames.
A variety of three dimensional displays are shown in U.S. Pat. No. 4,123,862.
U.S. Pat. No. 6,553,704 provides a picture frame with slide out picture holders. The frame has entrance slots for inserting the holders and slots for receiving the edges of picture holders.
U.S. Pat. No. 6,374,523 shows a holder for displaying a sheet of material which is slid into the holder through an open side and is held by channels along inside edges of the holder.
As indicated above, it is known in the prior art to employ a wall-mounted track, or rail, for mounting a plurality of pictures. Although such a track may extend in different directions, this often results in pictures which are not easily oriented correctly.
It is, accordingly, an object of the invention to provide an improved wall-mounted picture frame assembly in which picture frames are easily adjusted to a desired orientation.
To this end, a preferred embodiment of a picture frame assembly of the present invention includes a disk-shaped support member mounted on a mounting track which is, itself, mounted on the wall in a selected direction, such as horizontal, vertical, or at an angle as in the case of pictures to be hung on a wall adjacent a stairway. The support member has an arcuate mounting surface.
In order to adjustably mount a picture frame structure on the disk-shaped support member, a semi-circular flange, or wall, which has a surface complementary to the arcuate mounting surface on the support member, is mounted on the rear side of the picture frame structure. When mounting the picture frame structure, the semi-circular flange is engaged with the complementary arcuate mounting surface on the disk-shaped support member. This supports the picture frame structure on the support member. The orientation of the picture frame member may be adjusted by moving the picture frame structure angularly around the support member until the desired orientation of the picture frame is attained. In this way, a picture frame member may be positioned in either landscape or portrait orientation even when the mounting track is in an orientation other than horizontal or vertical, as when it is mounted at an angle up a stairway. Means are provided to retain the picture frame structure in the desired orientation; this means comprises friction tabs provided as an extension of the semi-circular mounting flange so that the flange grips the mounting surface to retain the picture frame member in the selected orientation.
The wall track comprises a base having a pair of base sections, one on each side of a raised rail positioned between the base sections. The raised rail is supported by ribs extending from the base sections, which ribs are spaced longitudinally of the track to provide tracking gaps therebetween. Fixed and movable teeth are provided on the support member to extend through selected gaps to engage opposed edges of the rail. The movable teeth are spring-biased towards engagement with the rail. When positioning a support member on the track, the user moves the movable teeth in a direction away from engagement with the rail. This enables the support member to be adjusted longitudinally of the track to a selected mounting position. The user then releases the movable teeth, and the fixed and movable teeth are engaged with the opposite edges of the rail through selected gaps. This retains the support member at a selected longitudinal position along the track. In order to insure that the support member is suitably supported when the track is not horizontal, the fixed and movable teeth are constructed to bridge at least one of said ribs.
The picture frame structure has a back wall, and a frame member having four sides establishing a display opening is affixed to one side of the back wall. An entry slot is formed through one side of the frame member so that a picture member may be inserted into the display opening. The other sides of the frame member have edge-receiving slots facing the display opening and extending only partially through the side. These edge-receiving slots receive and retain respective edges of the picture member so that the picture member stays in place in the display opening.
In a second embodiment of the invention, the mounting means for adjustably mounting the picture frame structure on the support member comprises a similar arcuate wall complementary to the arcuate mounting surface of the support disc member and a spring tab formed in the back wall of the picture frame structure, the spring tab having an abutment shoulder positioned at a distance from the arcuate wall permitting the mounting means to be snapped onto the support member with the arcuate wall engaging a selected portion of the arcuate surface of the support member and the shoulder abutment engaging the support member at a point opposed to the selected portion of the arcuate surface of the support member to retain the selected orientation of the picture frame structure on the support member.
A third embodiment of the invention employs mounting means comprising a set of spaced spring fingers arranged along a circle complementary to the arcuate surface of the support member. The picture frame structure is mounted on the support member by snapping the spring fingers onto the arcuate surface of the support member with the picture frame structure at a desired orientation.
In cases where it is desired to hang a picture frame alone, a support member may be attached directly to a wall. In this embodiment, a support disk member having an arcuate surface is attached to a wall by means of Velcro, an adhesive, or nails. A picture frame structure uses mounting means of the type employed in the first three embodiments for support on the support member with a selected orientation.
An optional feature relates to the use of side bars as frame extenders for changing the shape of a rectangular frame to a square or to otherwise enlarge a frame as desired. A frame extender, or side bar, is mounted on a mounting member having a pair of parallel mounting fingers. The back wall of the picture frame is provided with corresponding mounting slots. When a user wishes to extend the width of a frame, the fingers of the mounting member are inserted into the corresponding mounting slots, and the side bar is abutted with a side of the frame to widen the frame.
The mounting track may include several aligned sections which are connected by means of a coupler bar having spring fingers to grip the adjacent ends of the raised rail track sections.
These and other objects, features and advantages of the invention will be more fully appreciated with references to the accompanying Figures, in which:
A picture frame assembly of the invention is shown in
As seen in
Track 30 is mounted on a wall by means of double-sided foam tape on the bottom sides of base portions 32 and 34. Alternatively, mounting holes 42 through base portions 32 and 34 may accommodate nails for attaching track 30 to a wall.
A support disc member 44 has an arcuate mounting surface 45 used for mounting a picture frame structure on support disc member 44, as will be explained below. Structural details of support disc member 44 will be described more filly below with respect to
As seen in
Support disc member 44 is shown in more detail in the elevation view of
The mounting teeth are seen in
As seen in
A second embodiment of mounting means is shown in
A third embodiment of mounting means is shown in
An additional feature is shown in
As seen in
Additional receiving slots 111 are formed on mounting members 100 so that additional frame side extenders may be added as desired.
There are times when only a single picture frame is to be mounted on a wall. For such situations, a support disc member 124, as shown in
It will be understood that important elements of the picture frame assemblies of the invention, including wall track 30, support disc members 44 and 124, the back walls of the picture frame structures, and mounting fingers and receiving slots for mounting the frame side extenders are preferably formed of molded plastic materials.
While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that many variations are possible within the teachings and scope of the invention as claimed.