US 2159233 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 3, 1939- J. STANNARD 2,159,233
PORTABLE DISPLAY RACK Filed July 8, 1956 '[Z //v1//v T01? JAY STANNARD -/7 a I 47' TOR/v5? Patented May 23, 1939 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 4 Claims.
My invention relates to display racks comprising a plurality and preferably two, slightly spaced superposed trays, connected together in a manner whereby said trays may be transported in the above relationship but may be quickly and easily moved relatively and laterally to each other to positions wherein the wares in said trays are all displayed at the same time. My invention has particular application to bakeries and the like where samples of' the various cakes and pastries may be placed in the trays and carried from the wagons to the prospective purchasers and displayed without unnecessary handling.
One disadvantage of using a single tray resides in the fact that either a limited number of samples can be carried or else the tray must necessarily be fairly large and unwieldy. My invention therefore has for a first object the provision of a portable rack comprising a plurality of trays so disposed and arranged that a comparatively large number of samples may be carried, the rack being substantially no more cumbersome than an ordinary single display tray having dimensions equivalent to one of the trays of which may rack is formed. A further object resides in providing a connecting means between the trays and a handle connected to one tray so arranged and correlated that the trays may be carried together in relatively compact, superposed positions but relatively movable while being supported by the handle, simply by manipulating the handle of the rack relatively to move the upper and lower trays, to positions exposing all of the goods to view at the same time. A further object resides in so disposing and arranging the connecting means relative to the two trays as to permit said trays to be supported in either superposed or relatively and laterally spaced positions of equilibrium,
With these and other objects in View, my invention includes the novel elements and the combinations and arrangements thereof described below and illustrated in the accompanying drawing in which- Fig. l is a perspective view of my device;
Fig. 2 is a transverse, sectional View taken through the two trays and in the plane of the direction of relative movement thereof;
Fig. 3 is a view similar to Fig. 2, illustrating 50 the trays in laterally spaced positions; and
Fig. 4 is a more or less diagrammatic view of the trays in spaced position and illustrating the mechanics involved in the design.
Referring to the drawing, I indicates generally the lower tray which is defined by the base 2,
side walls 3 and end walls 4, the sides and base of the tray being preferably secured together in metal frames 5. For simplicity, the trays have been illustrated as unitary structures in Figs. 2 to 4. The ends 4 are each provided with a slot 6 extending transversely thereof and preferably in a somewhat diagonal or oblique direction. The upper tray I is defined by the base 8, side walls 9 and end walls I0. Secured to the side walls 9 and extending thereabove is a handle II by which the rack is adapted to be carried. Link members I2, one of which is shown in Fig. 1 and it being understood that there are two of said link members connecting the two trays together adjacent opposite ends thereof, are pivotally connected as at I3 to the upper tray I and pivotally secured to the lower tray I as at I4. Pins which may be formed by bolts l5 are secured to the tray 1 and slidably disposed in the slots 6 of tray I.
Inasmuch as there are two connecting means between the trays comprising in each instance a link I2, pin I5 and slot 6, I have illustrated in Figs. 2 to 4 of the drawing and will hereinafter refer for descriptive purposes to one only of the said connecting means, it being understood that simultaneous and identical operations of both of said means are effected in the manipulation of my rack.
It will be noted that the pin I5, link I2 and slot 6 are so arranged, as illustrated in Fig. 2, that in the normal carrying position of the rack the trays occupy slightly spaced, superposed positions of stable equilibrium. In other words, the pin, I5 engages the slot 6 at one end thereof and to one side of a vertical plane through the center of gravity of the supported tray I and the pivotal connection I4 of the link I2 lies to the other side of said vertical plane. The lower or supported tray I, therefore is supported from the upper tray in a position of stable equilibrium and may be carried by the handle I I under ordinary circumstances beneath the upper tray as indicated in Fig. 2. By tilting the handle II or, preferably, as in practice, by imparting a suddenly arrested swinging force thereto, the equilibrium of the lower tray is destroyed and the force being transmitted to said lower tray will impel the same in the direction of the applied force. That is to say, if the operator were to grasp handle II and move the trays toward the left as viewed in Fig. 2, suddenly reversing such movement of the handle and perhaps tilting the rack slightly downward in the direction of the first movement tray I will move toward the left relative to tray 1 until the trays occupy the relatively spaced positions shown in Fig. 3 In this position, it will be noted that pin I5 has moved relative to tray I and slot 6 and occupies a position upon the same side of the vertical plane through the center of gravity of tray I as that occupied by the pivotal connection I4 of the link I2. The trays in the latter positions are out of alignment but in equilibrium and unless affected by further applied forces the two trays will remain in the relatively and laterally spaced positions to which they have been moved.
Fig. 4 illustrates diagrammatically the mechanics of the rack assembly and the forces tending to retain the trays in separated positions. Assuming for descriptive purposes that the trays pivot relatively to each other about the pin I5 as an axis, it will be evident that the link I21 serves to control the pivotal movement of tray I relative to tray I and limit the same in a separating direction. sents a vertical plane through the pin I5 and arrows I! and I8 represent, respectively, vertical. planes through the centers of gravity of the trays I and I. Furthermore, the arrows I1 and I8 together with the lines I9 and 20 extending perpendicularly from the pin I 5 to the arrows II and I8 represent, respectively, the moments of each tray about their common pivotal axis I5. It will i be seen that trays I and I tend to pivot in opposite directions about the pin and that the link I2 serves to limit the relative movement of the trays.
In the positions illustrated in Fig. 2, the centers of gravity of the trays lie between the points of 1 connection of the connecting means'thereto and the trays are, therefore, in positions of stable equilibrium. And in this connection, it should be noted that the slot and pin construction is so arranged relative to the trays and to the link connection therebetween as to maintain said trays in superposed positions both when being carried by the handle or when deposited to rest upon the floor or ground surface.
In conjunction with the foregoing, it should be noted that the handle II is illustrated as connected to the side walls 9 of tray I. Obviously, the handle may be disposed in any suitable manner, however, it is desirable that it be so disposed as to afford free and easy manipulation of the trays. In this regard, it is evident that if handle II extends above the left side of the tray I, as illustrated in the drawing, it may be gripped and the trays supported in relatively and laterally spaced positions of equilibrium or balance necessitating at the most the application of a tilting force of small magnitude. Furthermore, a handle so disposed permits the same to be gripped in a zone intermediate the centers of gravity of the trays so that the trays lie on opposite sides of the point of applied force and tend to balance each other.
In considering the moments of trays I and I about pin I5, for example, and the function of link I2 to maintain the trays separated as shown in Fig. 4, frictional resistance, for practical purposes, should be noted. Furthermore, linkIZ acts as an over-centering device so that pivotal movement of the trays relative to each other may occur in opposite directions and to positions of equilibrium wherein the trays occupy superposed positions or are laterally spaced and out of alignment.
Obviously, the handle II may be attached to the lower tray I and extend between the ends 4 thereof. However, with this construction, the
The dot-dash line I6 repre- 1 ease of manipulation of the two trays encountered in the preferred construction illustrated is found wanting. It is preferable and my invention is so designed that the upper tray is provided with the handle and the lower tray suspended therefrom whereby, in superposed relationship, they may be carried as a relatively compact assembly and readily separated by a manipulation of the handle without the necessity of changing ones grip thereon from the normal carrying position or first depositing the rack upon the ground.
While I have described my invention in its preferred embodiment, it is to be understood that the words which I have used are words of description rather than of limitation. Hence, changes within the purview of the appended claims may be made without departing from the true scope and spirit of my invention in its broader aspects.
What I claim is:
1. In a device of the character described, two relatively movable trays having upstanding end portions, a link pivotally connected to and lying between each adjacent pair of said end portions of said trays and near adjacent sides thereof when said trays lie in.superposed positions, the end portion of one tray being provided with a slot having one end disposed near the side opposite to the side thereof first mentioned and said slot extending from its said end downwardly and transversely of said end portion, and a pin secured to the other tray and slidably disposed in said slot whereby said trays may be moved to superposed and torelatively laterally spaced positions of equilibrium.
2. Ina device of the character described, two relatively movable trays having upstanding end portions, a link pivotally connected to and lying between each adjacent pair of said end portions of said trays and near adjacent sides thereof when said trays lie in superposed positions, the end portion of one tray being provided with a slot having one end disposed near the side opposite to the side thereof first mentioned and extending in its entirety downwardly and obliquely of the end, and a pin secured to the other tray and slidably disposedin said slot whereby said trays may be moved to superposed and to relatively laterally spaced positions of equilibrium; the lower tray extending lengthwise beyond the upper tray, and the end portions thereof extending above the bottom of said upper tray.
3. A portable display rack comprising two relatively movable trays disposed in spaced, superposed position and provided with upstanding end portions, the upper of said trays being provided with a handle extending between the sides thereof and the lower tray being supported on said upper tray, a link pivotally connected to and lying between each adjacent pair of said end portions of said trays and near adjacent sides thereof when said trays lie in superposed positions, the end portion of one tray being provided with a slot having one end disposed near the side opposite to the side thereof first mentioned and said slot extending downwardly and transversely of said end portion and relatively beneath said handle, and a pin secured to the other tray and slidably disposed in said slot whereby while being carried by said handle said trays may be relatively and laterally swung to positions of equilibriumin and out of alignment.
4;. A portable display rack comprising tworelatively movable trays disposed in spaced, superposed position and provided with upstanding end portions, a link pivotally connected to and lying between each adjacent pair of said end portions of said trays and near adjacent sides thereof when said trays lie in superposed positions but said link being connected to the upper tray at a point relatively nearer a central lengthwise zone of the lower tray than the point of connection of said link to said lower tray, the end portion of said lower tray being provided with a slot having one end disposed near the side opposite to the side thereof first mentioned and said slot extending from its said end downwardly and transversely of said end portion, and a pin secured to said upper tray and slidably disposed in said slot; said trays being movable to relatively laterally spaced and to superposed positions of equilibrium.