US 2619395 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
T. A. KENT Nov. 25, 1952 ADJUSTABLE FOLDING TABLE FOR AUTOMOBILE SEATS 2 SHEETS-SHEET 1 Filed May 9, 1949 INVENTOR.
0444s A. EENZ BY T. A. KENT Nov. 25, 1952 ADJUSTABLE FOLDING TABLE FOR AUTOMOBILE SEATS 2 SHEETSSHEET 2 Filed May 9, 1949 4 T, u. 7 R 0.0% m I a r m Cfl Mm I m .L- A m M .,V O
/V I .6 is -Y Patented Nov. 25, 1952 ADJUSTABLE FOLDING TABLE FOR AUTOMOBILE SEATS Thomas A. Kent, Los Angeles, Calif.
Application May 9, 1949, Serial No. 92,144
This invention relates generally to an adjustable convenience table adapted, when not in use, to be recessed into a vertical member as a Wall, and relates more particularly to such a device arranged for use in the rear seat of an automobile mounted on or recessed into the back of the front seat.
Tables for this purpose have been made in the past but they have been subject to certain disadvantages which have prevented their wide acceptance by the motoring public. Supporting legs are sometimes so positioned that it is difficult or impossible for persons to enter or leave the automobile while the table is in its open position. Little attention has been paid to eliminating the rattles in the mechanism of the table assembly, especially when the table is in its closed position. Tables are not easily adjustable as to height and slope to suit the con venience of different persons.
An object of my invention is therefore to dis-; close a folding table for automobiles which is easily and quickly adjustable as to height andslope and which uses only a single centrally disposed supporting leg.
Other objects and purposes will be clear from a reading of the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing in which:
Fig. 1 is a perspective view of two table assemblies recessed into the back of a front seat of an automobile, the table on the left side being in opened or operative position and the table on the right being in closed position.
Fig. 2 is a side elevational view, in section,
taken on line IIII of Fig. 1, the support leg in collapsed position and the mirror in opened position being shown in dotted outline.
Fig. 3 is an exploded view, partially in section, of the support leg and support bracket.
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary plan view, partially in section, taken on line IV-IV of Fig. 2.
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary plan view of a corner of my table showing an alternative form of support lock bolt, the bolt in locked position being shown in dotted outline.
Fig. 6 is a fragmentary view taken on line VI-VI of Fig. 2.
Fig. '7 is a fragmentary side elevational view of an alternative form of support slots.
Fig. 8 is a fragmentary side elevational view of another alternative form of support slots.
Generally speaking, my invention comprises a rectangular metal frame, a table slidably engaging slots in the side walls of the frame, a
single, centrally located supporting leg, and means for adjustability as to height and slope to be described in detail hereinafter. The rectangular frame may be attached to the rear surface of the front seat of an automobile or, preferably, recessed therein.
Fig. 1 shows an automobile front seat II and tables I2, each of the latter being preferably of such width, as shown, that two tables may be accommodated in the width of seat II. A rectangular metal frame, indicated in its entirety by I3, is secured to the rear surface of seat II and includes horizontal opposing walls I4 and I4, vertical opposing side walls I5 and I5 and vertically extending U-shaped channel members I6 and I6 (see Fig. 4) parallel to said side walls.
Centrally located in upper horizontal wall I4v is hole I! through said wall. Channel members I6 and I6 have narrow elongated slots I9 and I9 formed therein, and a plurality of horizontally disposed pairs of support slots 2| and 2|, 22 and 22', and 23 and 23' are also formed in said channel members communicating with slots I9 and I9.
Frame I3 is strengthened at each corner by a triangular metal gusset 28 extending across said corner, each gusset having therein a hole 27 through which passes a screw or bolt 28 for securing frame |3 to seat II. Gussets 26 are preferably welded to the Walls to afford rigidity to the structure.
Table I2 is shown in closed position at the right in Fig. 1 and in open or operative position at the left in that figure. Releasable means are provided for holding table I2 in its closed position (see Fig. 2), such means including latch rod 3|, latch rod spring 32, latch rod collar 34 and latch release finger 33. Rod 3| is arranged to engage hole I! in upper horizontalwall I4 of frame I3 when table I2 is in closed position, being urged into said engagement by the force of spring 32 exerted against latch rod collar 34 fixed to the latch rod 3|. The outer end of rod 3| is preferably beveled as shown at 36 to facilitate latching when closing the table. Latch release finger 33 is fixed to the lower end of latch rod. 3| and projects outwardly from table l2, spring 32 being of such strength that with table I2 in its closed position a small force exerted on finger 33 withdraws latch rod 3| from its engagement in hole I I, thus permitting table l2 to be opened.
Fixed to table I2 is support bracket 42. Its opposing end walls 43 and 43' are preferably partially sloped outwardly as seen in Fig. 3 for rea-' sons to be described hereinafter, and circular holes 44 and 44 are formed centrally in said end walls 43 and 43. Bracket 42 is attached to table |2 by rivets or other suitable fastening means 45.
Projecting laterally from the sides of table l2 and near lower edge 46 thereof are retainingstuds 41 and 4'! having enlarged heads 48 and 48'. Studs 41 and 41 slidably engage slots I9 and i9 and are prevented from disengaging therefrom by enlarged heads 48 and 48'.
Support lock bolts and Bi are provided on table l2 adjacent lower edge 46 thereof. Fig. 4
illustrates spring-loaded support lock bolt.5|, in-- cluding bolt housing 53, finger grip 54, spring 55 and collar 56. Collar 55 is fixed to bolt 5| spring- 55, bearing against housing 53 and collar 56, normally urges bolt 5| outwardly as shown, and bolt 5| may be withdrawn into housing 53 by manually mOVll'lg finger grip 54 away from-housing 53.
An. alternative form. of support lock bolt is shown in Fig. 5, wherein theprojecting andwithdrawn positions ofbolt 51 are maintained by springdetent means. Two notchesfil and162- are formed in bolt 5|. Leaf spring 63 is fixed to housing 64 as by rivets 65' and. is formed into, a V'- shape at 66, said V-shaped portion being urged against bolt 5| by the force of spring 63'. Thus bolt5i willbe held in withdrawnposition. (as in solid lines in Fig. 5) when: V-shaped portion 66 is in engagement with notch 6| of. bolt 51, and will be held in projecting position (as in dotted outline in Fig. 5) when. V-shaped portion 65. is inengagement with notch 62 of bolt 5 I.
Movement of table :2 from closed. position to open or operative position is accomplished. in the following manner: Latch release finger 33ris depressed, thus withdrawing latch rod 3lfrom its engagement inhole ii; The upper part of table I2 may now be moved upwardly and. rearwardly using support bracket 42' as a handle. When lower edge 4tv of table l2 hasbeen raised to desired height (retaining studs 41 and 47-" having slid upwardly in slots l9 and IS) a slight rearwardi movement of table i2 causes studs 41'! and 41 to enter a selected pair of slots, as 22 and 22. Support lock boltsSi and 5i may then be moved outwardly so that they engage slots I9v and 69! respectively.
In order to support table i2 in open position, I provide a centrally disposed adjustable support leg, indicated in its entirety by H. Leg 'H' includes support sleeve '52 and support rod 73', the latter slidably engaged within the former in telescoping relation. Support sleeve 2'2 is pivotally attached at 14 to lower wall I4 of frame IS, the axis of the pivotal movement being so disposed parallel to lower wall id as to allow support leg H" to swing in a plane parallel to vertical side walls l5 and A longitudinally extending slot 15 is formed in support sleeve I2 in communication with circumferential slot 15' near pivot 14' and with a plurality of circumferential slots 77', I8 and 19distant from pivot '54. Each of the circumferential slots communicating with longitudinalslot 15. extends only partially around sup-- port sleeve (2.
Support rod "i3 is provided at its lower end with radially extending support rod stud 3i slidablyengaging longitudinal slot 75 or, selectively, one of circumferential slots l6, 1?, l8 and 79. When table I2 is in closedposition, support rod stud 8| engages circumferential slot 76, support leg, 7| thus being inits collapsed position as shown in dotted outline in Fig. .4.
On the end of support rod 13 distant from support rod stud 8! is secured a support latch assembly, as best seen in Fig. 3. The support latch assembly includes hollow cylindrical housing 83, support latch bolts 84 and 84', support latch release fingers 85 and 85 and spring 86. Fingers 85 and 85' are fixed to the inner ends of bolts 84 and 84 respectively and project outwardly through ports 8-! and 81 formed in the wall of housing 83'. Housing 83 is arranged to be received within support bracket 42, whereupon spring 86 forces support latch bolts 84 and 84' intoengagement with holes 44 and 44' in end walls-43 and 43 of support bracket 42.
It can now be seen that when table I2 has been moved into operative position, as described previously, support leg 1| may be swung rearwardly and downwardly around pivot mounting 14. Support rod 13 may then be rotated clockwise approximately a quarter turn in order to move support rod, stud 8|. out of circumferential. slot 16 and into longitudinal slot T5,,whereupon. support rod 73 may be slid: upwardly and rearwardly untilsupport rod stud is opposite a desired one of.circumferentialslots-i7, I8'and 79. A quarterturn countercloclnvise rotation of support rod 13 moves stud 3i into a desired circuinferentialislot, as "i8, as shown inFig. 2. Support latchhousing 83 may then be moved upwardly into support bracket 42, sloping end walls 43 and 43."serving tomove support latch bolts 8 1 and 84," inwardly against the force of spring 85 until. said bolts 84 and 84 are opposite holes: and 44, whereupon said bolts are forced outwardly into locking engagement with saidholes by spring. 85.
Disassembly of support leg H from support bracket 42 is accomplished by manuall moving support latch release fingers 85 and, 85' toward each other and withdrawing housing 83 from bracket 42. Collapsing of support leg 1-1 and restoring of leg 1|, and of table |2 to their closed positions are accomplished by sequencesofoperations the, reverse of those described above for assembling the device.
It will be observed that pivotal mounting l4 is disposed in frame l3 interiorly of the closed position of table I2. Thus. support leg H is hidden from view by table l2 when leg H and table l2 are in their closed positions so that a neat externalsurface is provided.
It should be noted, as can be seen in Figs. 2' and 4, that when table I2 is in horizontal position and support lock bolts 5| and 5| are in engagement with vertical slots l9 and I9, re tainin studs 41 and 41' do not contact therear surface of horizontal support slots 22 and 22'. Said support slots are purposely madev deeper than necessary for the horizontal position of table |2 in order to permit said table to bepositioned sloping upwardly to the rear if desired by the user.
In order to minimize rattles in my folding table assembly, I may provide a small helical spring 9| in the base of support sleeve 12, as best seen in Fig. 3. When support leg 'H is in collapsed position, the lower end of support rod 13 slightlycompresses spring 9| and is restrained from small movements within support sleeve 12 by said contact. I may also provide spring clip 92 secured as by screw 98 to the frame of seat II and arranged to receive support sleeve 12 when support leg H, is in its collapsed position. Clip 92 will hold leg H to prevent undesirable movement and consequent-noise.
For greaterv convenience in using my invention.
I may provide folding mirror 93 recessed into the upper surface of table I 2, said mirror being hingedly attached to table [2 by hinge 9 1. I may also provide light 95 mounted on the rear of seat H within frame l3 and above the opened position of mirror 93, light 95 being connected through switch 96 and wire 97 to a source of electric power such as the automobile battery (not shown).
It should be noted that table l2 is made up of two flanged sections, lower section [i and upper section I02, and said sections are joined with their flanges in interlocking relationship. I preferably crimp portions of the flange of upper section [02 around the outer edges of lower section H]! as at I03 to hold said sections together. I also provide for attaching fabric I04 to table 12, marginal portions I05 of fabric I04 being held by the interlocking relationship of the flanges of sections NH and 102. Thus the fabric used to cover lower section l0! of table l2 (which is the surface exposed to view when table [2 is in closed position) may be made to harmonize with the upholstery or seat cover material used in the automobile, and said fabric I04 may be. changed from time totime with relative ease. Upper surface 196 is attached to upper section 102 as by glue or other means, and may be plastic or similar wearand liquid-resistant material.
It can be seen that I have disclosed a compact convenience table for automobiles with features of adjustability as to height and slope not heretofore provided. It is understood that although I have shown only three pairs of horizontal support slots 21 and 2|, 22 and 22', and 23 and 23, and only four circumferential slots 16, 17, I8 and 19, a greater number of these slots may be provided to attain greater adjustability.
Fig. 7 illustrates an alternative disposition of support slots l2l, I22 and I23 with relation to narrow elongated slot H9 formed in channel member H6. Reference characters used in this figure are 100 greater than their respective counterparts described previously. Table I2 is moved into open or operative position by the same sequence of operations as described previously except that the final movement of table I2 is a slight movement forward, instead of rearward, to cause retaining studs 41 and 41 to enter a selected pair of support slots.
An alternate shape of support slots is shown in Fig. 8, wherein reference characters are 200 greater than their respective counterparts described previously. Support slots 22I, 222 and 223 formed in channel member 216 are curvilinear so that their ends distant from elongated slot 2l9 are slightly displaced vertically from the points where said support slots respectively communicate with elongated slot 2l9.
The drawings and description herewith are only exemplary and my invention is to be construed in the light of the appended claims only.
1. An adjustable table assembly for attachment to the back of a front seat of an automobile, comprising: a rectangular metal frame comprising two parallel vertical channel members and top and bottom connecting members, each of the vertical channel members being provided with a narrow longitudinally extending slot and with a plurality of horizontally disposed parallel support slots communicating with said elongated slot; a rectangular fiat table having attached thereto a laterally projecting retaining stud adjacent the lower end of said table at each side, said studs slidably engaging said elongated slots and engageable with a selected pair of said horizontal support slots, said table having two support lock bolts selectively engageable with said elongated slots; a spring-loaded latch centrally disposed in the upper edge of said table, arranged toengage an opening in the top connecting member of said frame for retaining the table in closed position; a support bracket fixed to the outer surface of said table; and a centrally disposed, longitudinally extendible support leg pivotally attached at its lower end to the bottom connecting member of said frame adjacent the inner edge of said bottom connecting member and inwardly of the plane of said longitudinally extending slots, said support leg having at its upper end spring-loaded support latch means for engaging said support bracket.
2. A table assembly of the character stated in claim 1 wherein said support leg includes a tubular support sleeve provided with an axially extending slot and a plurality of circumferential support slots and a support rod slidable within said support sleeve in telescoping relation, said support rod having adjacent its bottom end a radially extending support rod stud adapted to slide in said axially extending slot and to engage a selected circumferential support slot.
3. An adjustable table assembly for attachment to the back of a front seat of an automobile, comprising: a rectangular metal frame comprising two parallel vertical channel members and top and bottom connecting members, each of the vertical channel members being provided with a narrow longitudinally extending slot and with a plurality of support slots communicating with said longitudinally extending slot; a rectangular flat table having attached thereto a laterally projecting retaining stud adjacent the lower end of said table at each side, said studs slidably engaging said longitudinally extending slots and engageable With a selected pair of said support slots, said table having two support lock bolts selectively engageable with said longitudinally extending slots; a support bracket fixed to the outer surface of said table; and a centrally disposed, longitudinally extendible support leg pivotally attached at its lower end to the bottom member of said frame adjacent the inner edge of said bottom connecting member and inwardly of the plane of said longitudinally extending slots, said support leg having at its upper end springloaded support latch means for engaging said support bracket.
THOMAS A. KENT.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,403,317 Gross Jan. 10, 1922 1,553,821 Johnson Sept. 15, 1925 1,576,034 Butt Mar. 9, 1926 1,655,516 Simpson June 10, 1928 1,780,706 Goldbecher Nov. 4, 1930 1,790,468 Frank Jan. 27, 1931 1,809,866 Riesche June 16, 1931 1,893,458 Tatum June 3, 1933 2,249,287 Gearhart et al. July 15, 1941