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Publication numberUS20080172978 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 12/015,734
Publication dateJul 24, 2008
Filing dateJan 17, 2008
Priority dateJan 20, 2007
Publication number015734, 12015734, US 2008/0172978 A1, US 2008/172978 A1, US 20080172978 A1, US 20080172978A1, US 2008172978 A1, US 2008172978A1, US-A1-20080172978, US-A1-2008172978, US2008/0172978A1, US2008/172978A1, US20080172978 A1, US20080172978A1, US2008172978 A1, US2008172978A1
InventorsMichael Caruso
Original AssigneeMichael Caruso
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Screen wall system
US 20080172978 A1
Abstract
A screen wall system that provides the ability to form a screen wall using just a few, particular channel members and corresponding adapter members. One of the few, particular channel members is a U channel member that can be used to form other types of channel members. Each adapter member can be removably attached to one or two channel members to form F channel members, H channel members and corner members that are collectively used to assembly a screen wall.
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Claims(1)
1. A U channel member comprising:
a pair of opposing sidewalls;
a base joined to said opposing sidewalls to provide a generally U shaped structure defining a channel between said sidewalls;
said base having an interior side that forms part of said channel and an opposite exterior side; and
said exterior side having at least one longitudinally extending groove therein.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/881,618, filed Jan. 20, 2007. Application No. 60/881,618 is hereby incorporated by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

(1) Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a system for supporting screen walls.

(2) Description of the Prior Art

U channel members, F channel members, H channel members and corner channel members are known in the art and have been and are currently used to support screen panels or screen walls. These prior art channel and corner members are shown in FIGS. 1-14. Specifically, in FIGS. 1 and 2, there is a prior art F channel member 10 that can be used as a top and/or base and/or a side expander for screen walls or panels. Channel member 10 has side walls 11 and 12 and a base 13. Side walls 11 and 12 and base 13 define channel 14 which is sized to receive a portion of a screen frame or porch panel. Channel member 10 also has a flange portion 15 that is generally coplanar with base 13. Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, there is shown prior art H channel 20 that can be used as a top and/or base for screen walls or panels, as well as top and/or base expanders for screen walls or panels. Channel member 20 has side walls 21 and 22 and a base 23. Side walls 21 and 22 and base 23 define channel 24 which is sized to receive a portion of a screen frame or porch panel. Channel member 20 also has a flange portion 25 that is generally coplanar with side wall 22. Referring to FIGS. 5 and 6, there is shown a prior art U channel member 30 that can also be used as a top and/or base for screen walls or panels as well as a side expander for screen walls or panels. Channel member 30 has side walls 31 and 32 and a base 33. Side walls 31 and 32 and base 33 define channel 34 which is sized to receive a portion of a screen frame or porch panel. Referring to FIGS. 7 and 8, there is shown a prior art corner channel member 40 that is used to form a 90 corner between two adjoining screen walls. Channels 41 and 42 receive portions of screen frames or porch panels. Referring to FIGS. 9 and 10, there is shown another prior art corner member 50 that can also be used to form a 90 corner between two adjoining screen walls or panels. Channels 51 and 52 are sized to receive portions of screen frames or porch panels. Referring to FIGS. 11 and 12, there is shown another prior art H channel member 60 that can be used with screen walls or screen panels. H channel member 60 has channels 61 and 62 that are sized to receive sections 70 of screen frames. Referring to FIG. 13A, there is shown a structure 80 that utilizes prior art F channel members 10, the H channel member 60 and corner member 50. Structure 80 also uses square tubing 75. Referring to FIG. 13B, there is shown prior art T cover member 90 which is comprised of two sections 90A and 90B. FIG. 13C illustrates how T cover member 90 is joined to a pair of screen frame members 96A and 96B with fastening devices 97. Referring to FIG. 14, there is shown a structure 100 that utilizes prior art F channel members 10 and prior art corner channel member 40. Structure 100 also uses a prior art T channel member 90.

A need still exists for improved channel components for use with screens and screen walls that allow a user to quickly assemble sturdy screen walls.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is therefore a primary object and general purpose of the present invention to provide a screen wall system that provides the ability to form a variety of channel members using only a few, particular channel members and corresponding adapter members.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a cost savings in the manufacture of the components of the screen wall system of the present invention as well as a time savings in the assembly of screen walls using the screen wall system of the present invention.

Specifically, the present invention is directed to a screen wall system that provides the ability to form a screen wall using just a few, particular channel members and corresponding adapter members. One of the few, particular channel members is a U channel member that can be used to form other types of channel members. Each adapter member can be removably attached to one or two channel members to form F channel members, H channel members and corner members that are collectively used to assembly a screen wall.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the ensuing description and accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention itself, both as to organization and method of operation, may best be understood by reference to the detailed description which follows taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a side view, in elevation, of a prior art F channel member;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the prior art F channel member of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a side view, in elevation, of a prior art H channel member;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the H channel member of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a side view, in elevation, of a prior art U channel member;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the U channel member of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a side view, in elevation, of a prior art corner channel member;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the prior art corner channel member of FIG. 7;

FIG. 9 is a side view, in elevation, of another prior art corner channel member;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of the prior art corner channel member of FIG. 9;

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of a prior art H channel corner member;

FIG. 12 is a side view, in elevation, of the prior art H channel corner member of FIG. 11 having screen frames positioned within the channels of the prior art H channel corner member;

FIG. 13A is a diagram of a structure that is assembled utilizing the prior art channel members of FIGS. 1, 9 and 12;

FIG. 13B is a perspective view of a prior art T cover member;

FIG. 13C is a side view, in elevation, of the prior art T cover of FIG. 13B connected to screen frames;

FIG. 14 is a diagram of another structure utilizing the prior art channel members of FIGS. 1, 7 and 13B.

FIG. 15A is a side view, in elevation, of a large U channel member in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 15B is a perspective view of the U channel member in of FIG. 15A;

FIG. 15C is a side view, in elevation, of a small U channel member in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 16 is a perspective view of an adapter that is configured to be used with either of the U channel members shown in FIG. 15B and FIG. 15C in order to form other types of channel members;

FIG. 17A is a side view, in elevation, of an H channel member formed by connecting the adapter member of FIG. 16 to the U channel member shown in FIG. 15A;

FIG. 17B is a perspective view of the H channel member of FIG. 17A;

FIG. 17C is a perspective view of an H channel member in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention, this H channel member being formed by connecting the adapter member of FIG. 16 to the small U channel member shown in FIG. 15C;

FIG. 18A is a side view, in elevation, of an adapter in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 18B is an exploded view illustrating the interconnection of the adapter of FIG. 18A with the large U channel member of FIG. 15A so as to form a large F channel member;

FIG. 18C is a perspective view of the F channel member formed by connecting the adapter of FIG. 18A to the large U channel member of FIG. 15A;

FIG. 18D is a perspective view of a small F channel member formed by connecting the adapter of FIG. 18A to the small U channel member of FIG. 15C;

FIG. 18E is a perspective view of the adapter of FIG. 18A;

FIG. 19A is a side view, in elevation, of an adapter in accordance with a further embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 19B is an exploded view illustrating the interconnection of the adapter member of FIG. 19A to the large U channel member of FIG. 15A and the small U channel member of FIG. 15C so as to form a corner channel member;

FIG. 19C is a perspective view of a corner channel member formed by connecting the adapter member of FIG. 19A to the large U channel member of FIG. 15A and the small U channel member of FIG. 15C;

FIG. 19D is a perspective view of the adapter of FIG. 19A;

FIG. 20 is an exploded view showing a channel member and adapter in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 21 is an exploded view showing a channel member and adapter in accordance with a further embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 22 is a perspective view of an R channel member in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 23 is a end view, in elevation, of a pair of R channel members, one of which being shown in FIG. 22, that are connected to screen frames; and

FIGS. 24, 25 and 26 illustrate various ways the R channel member of FIG. 22 can be used as a mounting flange.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

Referring now to FIGS. 15A and 15B, there is a shown large U channel member 150 in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention. U channel member 150 comprises walls 152 and 154 and base 155 which between walls 152 and 154. Base 155 is attached to walls 152 and 154. In a preferred embodiment, walls 152 and 154 are substantially parallel to each other. Walls 152 and 154 and base 155 define channel 156. Channel 156 is sized to receive a frame of a screen wall or panel. Base 155 has a top side 157 and a bottom side 158. Bottom side 158 is configured to have a plurality of longitudinally extending dovetail grooves 160. In a preferred embodiment, dovetail grooves 160 are equidistantly spaced. The purpose of dovetail grooves 160 is explained in the ensuing description. FIG. 15C shows a U channel member 162 that is relatively smaller in size than the large U channel member 150. U channel member 162 comprises walls 163 and 164 and base 165 which between walls 163 and 164. Base 165 is attached to walls 163 and 164. In a preferred embodiment, walls 163 and 164 are substantially parallel to each other. In accordance with this embodiment, walls 163 and 164 are relatively smaller than walls 152 and 154, respectively, of large U channel member 150. Walls 163 and 164 and base 165 define channel 166. Channel 166 is sized to receive a frame of a screen wall or panel. Base 165 has a top side 167 and a bottom side 168. Bottom side 168 is configured to have a plurality of longitudinally extending dovetail grooves 169. In a preferred embodiment, dovetail grooves 169 are equidistantly spaced. The purpose of dovetail grooves 169 is explained in the ensuing description. The U channel members 150 and 162 replace prior art U channel member 30 shown in FIG. 5.

Referring to FIG. 16, there is shown adapter 170 in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention. Adapter 170 is used in combination with either large U channel member 150 shown in FIG. 15A or small U channel member 162 shown in FIG. 15C. Adapter 170 comprises sections 172 and 174 that are, in a preferred embodiment, arranged orthogonally. Section 172 has an inner side 176 and outer side 178. Adapter 170 further includes a plurality of longitudinally dovetail-shaped ribs 180 that are complementary to dovetail-shaped grooves 160 and 169 of channel members 150 and 162, respectively. In a preferred embodiment, ribs 180 are equidistantly spaced. Each rib 180 is sized to slide into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 160, of large U channel member 150, or a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 169, of small U channel member 162, in order to form an H channel member. FIGS. 17A and 17B show large H channel member 190 formed by attaching adapter 170 to large U channel member 150. FIG. 17C shows small H channel member 192 formed by attaching adapter 170 to small U channel member 162. The size of adapter 170 can also varied depending upon the desired size of the H channel member. The H channel member shown in FIGS. 17A, 17B and 17C replace prior art H channel member 20 shown in FIG. 2.

Referring to FIGS. 18A and 18E, there is shown adapter 200 in accordance with a further embodiment of the present invention. Adapter 200 comprises base 202 which has top side 204 and bottom side 206. Adapter 200 includes a plurality of longitudinally dovetail-shaped ribs 208 that are complementary to dovetail-shaped grooves 160 and 169 of channel members 150 and 162, respectively. In a preferred embodiment, ribs 208 are equidistantly spaced. Referring to FIG. 18B, each rib 208 is sized to slide into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 160 of large U channel member 150, or a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 169 of small U channel member 162 in order to form an F channel member. FIG. 18C shows large F channel member 220 formed by attaching adapter 200 to large U channel member 150. FIG. 18D shows small F channel member 230 formed by attaching adapter 200 to small U channel member 162. The size of adapter 200 can also be varied depending upon the desired size of the F channel member. The F channel members 220 and 230 replace prior art F channel member 10 shown in FIG. 1.

Referring to FIGS. 19A and 19D, there is shown adapter member 300 in accordance with a further embodiment of the present invention. Adapter 300 comprises section 302 and section 304 which, in a preferred embodiment, are arranged orthogonally. Section 304 has an exterior side 306 and an interior side 308. Similarly, section 304 has an exterior side 310 and interior side 311. Adapter 300 includes longitudinally extending dovetail-shaped ribs 312 attached to exterior side 306 of section 302. Ribs 312 are complementary to dovetail-shaped grooves 160 and 169 of channel members 150 and 162, respectively. Ribs 312 are equidistantly spaced. Each rib 312 is sized to slide into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 160 of large U channel member 150, or into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 169 of small U channel member 162. Adapter 300 further comprises a plurality of longitudinally extending dovetail-shaped ribs 314 attached to interior side 311 of section 304. Ribs 314 are complementary to dovetail-shaped grooves 160 and 169 of channel members 150 and 162, respectively. Thus, each rib 314 is sized to slide into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 160 of large U channel member 150, or into a corresponding longitudinally extending dovetail groove 169 of small U channel member 162. Referring to FIGS. 19B and 19C, in one embodiment, adapter 300 is connected to large U channel member 150 and small U channel member 162 to form corner channel member 400. The size of corner channel member 400 can be varied by connecting adapter 300 to two large U channel members 150, or to two small U channel members 162, or to one large U channel member 150 and a small U channel member 162 (as shown in FIG. 19C). Thus, corner channel member 400 replaces prior art corner channel member 50 (FIG. 7) and prior art corner channel member 60 (FIG. 9).

Although channel members 150, 162 and adapters 170, 200 and 300 have been described in the foregoing description as having either dovetail-shaped grooves or complementary dovetail-shaped ribs, it is to be understood other configurations can be used to attach adapters 170, 200 and 300 to the channel members 150 and 162. One example of a different configuration is shown in FIG. 20. Channel member 400 is a U channel member that comprises sidewalls 402 and 404 and base section 406 which is connected to sidewalls 402 and 404. Sidewalls 402 and 404 and base section 406 define channel 407 that receives a portion of a screen frame (not shown). Base section 406 has a bottom side 408 which is configured to have a plurality of generally circular shaped, longitudinally extending grooves 410. Channel member 400 is configured to be used with adapter 420. Adapter 420 has plate section 422 and a plurality of longitudinally extending ribs 424 that are shaped so as to conform to the shape of grooves 410. Thus, each rib 424 is shaped to be slid into a corresponding one of grooves 410. The ribs 424 and grooves 410 are sized so that there is slight degree of friction between each rib 424 and the inner walls of each corresponding groove 410 so as to prevent adapter 420 from becoming disengaged from channel member 400. FIG. 21 shows another example of a different configuration used to attach an adapter to a channel member. Channel member 450 is another U channel member that comprises sidewalls 452 and 454 which are joined to base section 456. Sidewalls 452 and 454 and base section 456 define channel 457 which receives a portion of a screen frame (not shown). Base section 456 has a bottom side 458 that is configured to have a plurality of longitudinally extending, generally T shaped grooves 460. Channel member 450 is configured to be used with adapter 470. Adapter 470 has a plate section 472 and a plurality of longitudinally extending, generally T shaped ribs 474 that are shaped so as to conform to the shapes of grooves 460. Each rib 474 is shaped so as to be slid into a corresponding one of grooves 460. The ribs 474 and grooves 460 are sized so that there is slight degree of friction between each rib 474 and the inner walls of each corresponding groove 460 so as to prevent adapter 470 from becoming disengaged from channel member 450.

The shapes of the grooves and ribs of the channel members and adapters, respectively, shown in FIGS. 20 and 21, are just examples and it is to be understood that grooves and ribs having other shapes can be used. Furthermore, instead of using a plurality of grooves and ribs, channel member 400 can be configured to have a single, large sized groove in bottom side 408 and adapter 420 can be configured to have a single, large size corresponding rib, or similar structure, that has a shape that conforms to the single, large size groove in bottom side 408. Other configurations for attaching the adapters to the channel members are possible.

Referring to FIG. 22, there is shown an R channel member 500 in accordance with another embodiment of the present invention. R channel member 500 can be used to replace prior art H channel member 60 (FIG. 11) and T cover member 90 (FIG. 13B). R channel member 500 is configured for use in mounting a screen frame, or joining assembled screen frames. The R channel member 500 comprises a generally flat plate section 502 and section 504 which is configured to have a channel section 506. Channel 506 has a generally trapezoidal shape. In a preferred embodiment, section 504 is rigidly attached to flat plate section 502.

FIG. 23 illustrates how R channel members 500 are connected to screen frame members 730. In this particular example, screen frame sections 730 are each configured as screen frame members that are disclosed in commonly owned U.S. provisional application Nos. 60/827,312 and 60/827,304, both filed Sep. 28, 2006. Each channel section 506 is positioned within a corresponding channel 732 of a screen frame member 730. Each R channel member 500 is secured to each screen frame member 730 with fastening devices 734 such as nails or screws.

FIGS. 24, 25 and 26 illustrate various ways in which R channel member 500 can be used as a mounting flange. In FIG. 24, R channel member 500 is mounted to support member 1000. Support member 1000 can be any type of column, post or support that is part of a screen wall, or part of a structure to which a screen wall is to be attached. Specifically, R channel member 500 is mounted to face 1002 of support member 1000. Screw 1004 is used to attach R channel member 500 to support member 1000. A screen frame 730 (shown in FIG. 23) is mounted to section 504 of R channel member 500 with screw 1006. It is to be understood that R channel member 500 can be used with types of screen frames as well.

In FIG. 25, illustrates R channel member 500 mounted from the exterior to a support member 2000. Support member 2000 can be any type of column, post or support that is part of a screen wall, or part of a structure to which a screen wall is to be attached. Specifically, support member 2000 has an interior face 2002, an exterior face 2004 and side 2005. Section 504 of R channel member 500 is mounted to screen frame 730 with screw or fastener 2006. Section 502 of R channel member is attached to exterior face 2004 such that the head of screw or fastener 2006 faces side 2005 of support 2000. Screw or fastener 2008 is used to attach section 502 to exterior face 2004. Interior molding 2010 may be used for additional support for screen frame 730. In this configuration, the screen frame 730 abuts the interior molding 2010.

In FIG. 26, illustrates R channel member 500 mounted from the interior to a support member 3000. Support member 3000 can be any type of column, post or support that is part of a screen wall, or part of a structure to which a screen wall is to be attached. Specifically, support member 3000 has an interior face 3002, an exterior face 3004 and side 3005. Section 504 of R channel member 500 is mounted to screen frame 730 with screw or fastener 3006. Section 502 of R channel member is attached to interior face 3002 such that the head of screw or fastener 3006 faces side 3005 of support 3000. Screw or fastener 3008 is used to attach section 502 to interior face 3002.

The channel members of the present invention may be fabricated from any one of a variety of materials, e.g. plastics, resins, composites, and metals such as aluminum, steel, brass, etc. In the case of plastics, injection molding techniques may be used in forming the channel members.

It is to be understood that the sizes and dimensions of any of the channel members and adapters of the present invention may be varied depending upon the particular application.

The foregoing description of the preferred embodiments of the invention has been presented for purposes of illustration and description only. It is neither intended to be exhaustive nor to limit the invention to the precise form disclosed; and obviously many modifications and variations are possible in light of the above teaching. Such modifications and variations that may be apparent to a person skilled in the art are intended to be included within the scope of this invention as defined by the accompanying claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7861473 *Jan 14, 2009Jan 4, 2011Marhaydue, LLCLow-profile screen framing system
US20120096788 *Oct 22, 2010Apr 26, 2012Cashman Daniel JBuilding trim having slidable moulding
US20130305639 *Oct 21, 2011Nov 21, 2013Beat GuhlFastening arrangement for glass balustrades
Classifications
U.S. Classification52/716.8
International ClassificationE04C3/40
Cooperative ClassificationE04C3/02, E04B2001/2448, E04B1/5806, E04C2003/0473, E04B2/60, E04B2001/2466, E04C2003/023, E04C2003/046
European ClassificationE04C3/02, E04B2/60