US 2227764 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan 7, 1941- w. s. SAUNDERS El'AL 2,227,764
ADJUSTABLE SEAT SUPPORT Filed Feb. 21, was
2? INVENTORS 6019475 5. Saw/055s.
Patented Jan. 7, 1941 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE ADJUSTABLE SEAT SUPPORT tion of Michigan Application February 21, 1938, Serial No. 191,659
This invention relates to improved adjustable supporting means, particularly for seats, such as vehicle seats and the like. An important object of the invention is to provide adjustable supporting means whereby a seat may be conveniently moved to the front or rear, and whereby the elevation of the seat may be changed during such movement, without changing its angular position, and to incorporate in conjunction with such mechanism improved means whereby the angular position of the seat may be independently changed at will. A related object is to improve such adjustable supporting means by simplification of both the construction and installation thereof thereby reducing the total cost.
Another object is to provide such a device in which the main supporting elements comprise swingable parallel links, each of said links being formed in two sections centrally pivoted and swingable with relation to each other to change the effective length thereof, whereby the inclination and the vertical height of the seat may be changed independently at the front and rear.
In the drawing:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of a seat, partly broken away, carried by supporting mechanism constructed in accordance with the present invention.
Figure 2 is an enlarged side elevational view of the same.
Figure 3 is a plan view of such assembly with the cross-connecting shafts centrally broken away, and
Figure 4 is a detailed section taken substantially on the line 4-4 of Figure 3, and looking in the direction of the arrows.
Referring now to the drawing, reference character H3 designates a seat, which is adjustably attached to the floor l2 by supporting mechanism constructed in accordance with the invention. The mechanism consists of two substantially similar assemblies, one located beneath each end of the seat. Although they may be constructed as symmetrical opposites rather than exactly alike, and although certain differences between them will hereafter be pointed out, the two assemblies are otherwise the same, so that detailed description of one only thereof will suffice.
Each such assembly comprises front and rear articulated link assemblies pivotally mounted upon and near the ends of longitudinally extending floor rail l5. The floor rail is of channel form and is bolted or otherwise suitably attached to the floor. The forward link assembly is designated l'll8, and the rear link assembly 2l28.
These carry longitudinally extending seat supporting rail [6, of inverted channel form, to which the seat frame is attached.
The link sections are also of channel form, and each link assembly normally acts as a single rigid link, although formed in two parts articulated and relatively swingable to change the effective length thereof, and so the height of the front or rear portion of the seat above the floor. The lower link portion ll of the front link assembly is pivoted to the floor rail upon a shouldered pin 2|, an upper link portion I8 is pivoted to the seat rail upon a shaft 23 which extends across between the assemblies which support the opposite ends of the seat. The link portions are centrally articulated by a pin l9. Likewise the upper link 28 of the rear link assembly is pivoted to the seat supporting rail by a shaft 24 which extends across to and performs a similar function in the opposite assembly. The lower link 21 is pivoted to the floor rail by a simple pin 22, and the link portions are centrally articulated by a pin 29. The link portions may also be of channel section, and neither assembly is extensible to a straightline position. Since the two portions of which each link assembly is formed always lie at an angle to each other, vertical loading tends to cause them to break about their central pivot and swing to decreased angularity, thus shortening the effective length of the assembly. Such angular movement of the two link portions of each assembly is normally prevented, however, by the locking means presently to be described.
Angular movement of the link sections with relation to each other about their central pivots, as well as bodily swinging of the link assemblies about their end pivots is prevented by means of sector gears as 3|, 32, which may be stamped from sheet metal and are rigidly secured, as by welding, to the lower link sections ll, 21 respectively. Journaled upon each of the shafts 23, 24, is a gear as 33, 34, these gears meshing with and being rollable over the sector gears 3 I, 32 respectively, when not locked against rotation by their respective locking dogs 36, 31. Such dogs will be seen to be pivoted upon the seat supporting rail l6. They are normally engaged with the teeth of their respective gears 33, 34, although releasable therefrom by operating mechanism presently to be described; such operating mechanism allowing selective release of either dog independently, or both simultaneously, as the operator may desire.
When both dogs are released, the link assemblies may pivot freely about all four of the pivot points 2|, 22, 23, 24, allowing the seat to move as if mounted upon four simple links, and the link sections are also free to swing with relation to each other about their central pivots I9, 29. Springs connected to the central pivots draw such central pivots toward each other, constantly urging the two links of each assembly toward their position of maximum angularity as shown in Figure 2, and imposing resistance to angular movement of the sections, thus facilitating bodily swinging of the sections about the end pivots 2|-23, 22-24 only, when it is desired to move the seat to front or rear without tilting it. Because of the cross-connecting means (presently to be described) the springs may be incorporated in only one of the assemblies, while the locking means may conveniently be carried entirely by the other assembly, as shown.
It will be apparent that a single spring connecting the two central pivots might be substituted for the two springs, which are shown as connecting these pivots with a central part of the floor rail, although the use of two springs provides a centering action tending to maintain the link assemblies in vertical position.
These springs are strong enough to return the links to their positions of widest angularity, and preferably counterbalance a substantial portion of the expected normal seat load. They thus tend to lift the front and rear of the seat to their great est possible height. It will be seen, however, that if we assume the front dog 36 to be released, an increased load upon the front of the seat will then allow the gear 33 to roll over the gear 3| until the link I8 assumes any desired angular position with respect to the gear 3|, where it may be held by again allowing the dog 36 to engage. Likewise as to the rear link assembly 21, 28; if dog 31 is released, downward force (which may be imposed by pushing rearwardly upon the seat back, as well as by pushing down upon the back of the seat cushion) tends to roll the gear 34 forwardly and downwardly over the gear 32 to any desired position, where it may be held by re-engagement of dog 31.
The rolling gears 33 of the two supporting assemblies at opposite ends of the seat are rigidly secured to and connected for unitary movement by a tubular cross-connecting shaft 25, journaled upon shaft 23. The rear rolling gears 34 of the two oppositely disposed assemblies are similarly connected by a like tubular shaft 26 mounted upon the rear pivot shaft 24 and functioning similarly with respect to the rear portions of the mechanism. Thus the locking dogs and their operating mechanism need be incorporated in but one of the assemblies, and uniform movement of the two ends of the seat is assured.
The front dog is operable by a link 4| and the rear dog by a link 42, the inner ends of such links being pivoted and slidable in upper and lower arcuate slots 38, 39, respectively in a plate 44 rockable by the handle 40, upon the shaft portion of which, pivoted in seat rail l6, such plate is secured. When the handle is in vertical position, both pawls are engaged. At such time the inner end of link 4| lies at the end of slot 39, so that any forward movement of the handle immediately releases the front dog. The inner end of the link 42, however, normally occupies a position spaced from the rear end of slot 38, so that such forward movement does not release the rear dog until after complete release of the front dog. This will be seen to enable releasing the front pawl only, by moving the handle a short distance forwardly, as
to the position indicated in dotted lines at A. Movement of the handle farther forwardly however, as to the position designated 0, releases both pawls, as the end of the upper slot 38 then picks up the link 42, pulling dog 31 out of engagement with the gear 34. A stepped bend is provided in link 42, at a point designated 43, furnishing an abutment with which a supplemental link is engageable, the rear end of such link encircling and freely sliding upon link 42. The inner end of link 45 is pivoted and slidable in slot 39, and normally occupies the opposite end thereof from that occupied by the inner end of link 4|. At such time, with the handle 40 in the central position, link 45 is also in engagement with abutment 43, so that rearward movement of handle 40, as to the position designated B, immediately draws the link 42 to the left, as viewed in Figure 2, releasing the rear dog 3'! only. Springs 46, 41 are provided, acting upon the links 4 I, 42 respectively and tending to draw them outwardly and urging the dogs 36, 31 into engagement with the gears 33, 34. It is to be noted that these springs do not act directly upon the plate 44, or handle 4|]. An additional spring 48 tends to draw the link 45 to the right, and it will be observed that this spring, in cooperation with the spring 46 tends to center the plate 44 and maintain the handle 40 in the vertical position, since the links 4|, 45 normally engage the ends of the lower slot.
While it will be apparent that the illustrated embodiments of my invention herein disclosed are well calculated to adequately fulfill the objects and advantages primarily stated, it is to be understood that the invention is susceptible to variation, modification and change within the spirit and scope of the subjoined claims.
What we claim is:
1. Means for movably supporting a seatuor the like, comprising a plurality oflink" assemblies adapted to swing about substantially parallel axes and to be articulated to a support and a supported ob ect, at least one of said link assemblieseom Bfi'sihg two pivotally connected sections, and selectively releasable means for holding said link assemblies against bodily swinging movement, and for holding said sections against pivotal movement with relation to each other, whereby upon release of said holding means the supported object may be moved without unwanted tilting by bodily swinging of said link assemblies, or may be tilted to different angles by pivoting said sections with relation to each other.
2. Means for adjustably supporting a seat or the like, comprising a plurality of link assemblies adapted to swing about substantially parallel axes and to be articulated to a suitable support at one end and to a supported object at the other, at least two of said link assemblies being spaced from each other at their supported ends but arranged upon the same extended axis, each of said two link assemblies comprising two sections pivoted together intermediate the ends of the assembly, means for releasably holding said sections against relative pivotal movement and for releasably holding the link assemblies against bodily swinging movement, whereby by pivotal movement of said sections with respect to each other, the effective length of said two link assemblies may be changed to tilt the supported object in a desired direction, and by bodily swinging movement of all of said link assemblies the supported object may be moved without unwanted tilting.
3. Means as set forth in claim 1 including spring means resisting relative pivotal movement of said sections, said holding means comprising a gear portion carried by that one of said link assemblies which is formed in two sections and concentric with the axis of pivotal connection of said sections and fastened to one section but loose with respect to the other, a gear rotatable upon an axis fixed with respect to said other section, meshing with said first mentioned gear portion and rollable thereover when said sections are pivoted with respect to each other, and dogging means for preventing rotation of said gear to simultaneously lock the sections against relative pivotal movement and prevent bodily swinging of the link assembly as a whole.
4. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which all of said link assemblies are formed in two pivotally connected sections, said holding means including independently operable holding portions for each of said link assemblies, each of said holding portions including a gear concentric with the axis of pivotal connection of the link sections of its assembly and fastened to one section but loose with respect to the other, a rolling gear rotatable on an axis fixed with respect to said other section, meshing with said first-mentioned gear portion and rotatable thereover when said sections are pivoted with respect to each other, dogging means for preventing rotation of each of said rolling gears to simultaneously lock the sections against relative pivotal movement and prevent bodily swinging of the link assemblies as a whole, and means for releasing said dogging means individually or together, whereby when one of said dogging means is released and another remains engaged, the supported object is held against unwanted bodily movement while tilting thereof may be effected by pivotal movement of the sections released by disengagement of their dogging means, and bodily movement of the supported object without unwanted tilting may be efiected by a swinging movement of all of said link assemblies when all of said dogging means are released.
5. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which a plurality of such link assemblies are arranged in spaced, front and rear positions, each of said assemblies incorporating a pair of centrally pivoted link sections, independently operable locking means for each of said assemblies arranged to hold said sections against relative pivotal movement about their central pivot and also to hold said assemblies against bodily swinging movement, spring means opposing pivoting of said sections about their central pivots, and operating means for selectively releasing either one or both of said locking means for the front and rear assemblies.
6. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which a plurality of such link assemblies are arranged in spaced, front and rear positions, each of said assemblies incorporating a pair of centrally pivoted link sections, independently releasable holding means for said front and rear assemblies, and. spring means opposing swinging movement of said link sections with respect to their central pivot.
7. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which a plurality of such link assemblies are arranged in spaced, front and rear positions, each of said assemblies incorporating a pair of centrally pivoted link sections, independently releasable holding means for said front and rear assemblies, and spring means opposing swinging movement of said link sections with respect to their central pivot, said spring means acting independently upon said assemblies in opposite directions and tending to maintain both the individual link sections and the supported object in predetermined relative positions.
8. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which a plurality of such link assemblies are arranged in spaced front and rear positions, each of said assemblies incorporating a pair of centrally pivoted link sections, swingable with relation to each other in opposite directions, means for releasing the front and rear link assemblies for simultaneous swinging movement, and spring means acting on both of said assemblies to simultaneously oppose breaking movement of the sections of both assemblies about their central pivots.
9. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which a plurality of such link assemblies are arranged in spaced front and rear positions, each of said assemblies incorporating a pair of centrally pivoted link sections swingable with relation to each other in opposite directions, means for releasing the front and rear link assemblies for simultaneous swinging movement, and spring means acting on both of said assemblies and simultaneously opposing breaking movement of the sections of both assemblies about their central pivots, said spring means also tending to swing said assemblies bodily in opposite directions, thereby tending to maintain the same yieldably in a centered position.
10. Means as set forth in claim 1 in which said assemblies are arranged in spaced, front and rear positions, independent holding means for said assemblies, operating means for said holding means including a pivoted handle swingable in opposite directions from a central position, oneway connecting means extending between said handle and each of said holding means and working in opposite directions, whereby one of said holding means may be released independently of the other when the handle is swung in each direction from said central position, and supplemental one-way drive connecting means extending between said handle and one of said holding means and operable by rotation of the handle in the opposite direction from that required to operate the other operating means extending from said handle to said same holding means and having lost motion connection with said handle, whereby when the handle is swung far enough in said opposite direction both holding means may be simultaneously released.
WALTER S. SAUNDERS. THOMAS A. MCGREGOR.