US 2640747 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
G. B. BODENHOE'F I 2,640,747
LAP TABLE Filed July 26, 1951 June '2, 1953 IN V EN TOR. ENYDFF Geoae. 5.80s
Patented June 2, 1953 George B. EBodenhofi, Cleveland, Ohio, assignor toAnthonywM. Golubich, Gleveland,.0hio- Application J u'ly26, 1951, Serial-No. 238,74
2-'Glaims. Cl. -.3'1125') "This invention relates, as indicated; to Tap tables or trays; but has referencemore'particu- 'larlyto-a deviceof this-characterwhichhas been especia'zllydesigned for use in the home or by salesmenandothers while traveling.
A primary object of the invention isto pro videa deviceof-the character-described, which is-contouredtofit the body and thighs or lap of 'the user.
"Another object of-the invention is to providea device of the a character described" having a: novel supporting leg or member which isfoldable to an operative and" inoperative position.
furtherobiectof the'invention'is to provide a device of the character described, having a noveL-formofhinge connection and stop element, whereby the supporting leg or member may be easily removed. or assembled with the tablehand effectively" supported in upright" or open position.
Other objects and advantagesofmy invention will beapparent during thecourse of thefollowing; description. In the accompany drawings forming a part of this specification and in which like numerals are-employed to designate like partszthtoughout the same,
"Fig. 1.15:2. top planviewofa tray, embodying a preferred form of the invention;
Fig. 2 is a bottom plan View of the tray, with the tray supported member in collapsed or closed condition;
Fig. 3 is a side or end elevational view of the tray;
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary portion of Fig. 2, on an enlarged scale;
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view, taken on the line 5-5 of Fig. 4;
Fig. 6 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view, taken on the line 66 of Fig. 4;
Fig. '7 is a view similar to Fig. 4, but showing a modification;
Fig. 8 is a fragmentary cross-sectional View, taken on the line 88 of Fig. '7, and
Fig. 9 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view, taken on the line 99 of Fig. 7.
Referring more particularly to Figs. 1 to 6 inclusive of the drawings, the lap table or tray will be seen to comprise a table or tray, generally designated by reference numeral I, and a supporting leg or member, generally designated by reference numeral 2.
The table I is preferably molded in one piece, from a plastic, such for example, as Styron, and has a generally flat upper and lower surface, the upper surface having a peripheral upstanding flange 3, which extends entirely around the table,
and serves to confine objects on: the tablezrand prevent them from falling or' being: pushed off the table. The table also has a recess ltherein,
adjacent the upper edge thereof, which. recess is adapted to'rec'eive and hold a, penciLqpennior theflike, and alsohas: adepending, closed-bottom,
hollow protuberance. '5; for the reception of a glass tumbler, abottle of ink; paper fasteners or clips, or other objects.
The. tableais further'formed; to? provide .a. lorrgitudinal recess 5 in its lower edge, whiclrisrcont'oured to receive a. portion of "the abdomen: of the userof the tray, soias to enable :thezatray-to more closely conform toqthe body -ofithe user,.;as well as to provide: ends I: and; 8:; whichfunction to -prevent lateral displacement. of: the tray while in use on a persons lap.
'Moldedrintegrally with: and: extending from therear or' l'ower surface-f the tablet is a-pair of spaced-bearings- 9aand l0 havingopenings .H of substantially circular cross-section extending therethrough'. 1
Also molded integrallywith and extending from: the rearior. lower-surfaceof thetable l,.:is a pair; of; spaced :stop. elements or abutments 1-2 and: lithe element 1.2. extendingw laterally from the bearing 9 and in a radially inboard direction, being provided with an inclined surface [4, and the element [3 extending laterally from the bearing I0 and in a radially inboard direction, being provided with an inclined surface [5, coplanar with the surface 14 of the element l2.
The supporting member or leg 2 is preferably formed from a single piece or length of wire, of fairly heavy gauge, and is bent to provide spaced arcuate portions l6 and H, which are designed to fit and conform to the thighs of the user, when the tray is in operative position, that is to say, when the member 2 is in open or unfolded position.
The member 2 is also formed to provide spaced parallel arms l8 and I9, at the ends thereof, which terminate in radially-outwardly extending trunnion elements 20, which are disposed in the openings H of the bearings 9 and 10, so as to permit pivotal movement of the member 2 in said bearings.
The member 2 may be folded fiat against the rear surface of the tray l, as shown in broken lines in Fig. 3, in which position the tray and supporting member form a compact, fiat, unit, which facilitates storage and shipment thereof.
When it is desired to use the tray, the member 2 is unfolded or opened to the solid line position shown in Fig. 3, in which position, the arms l8 and I9 come into abutment with the surfaces l4 and [5 respectively, which thereby prevent movement of the member 2 beyond this position.
With the member 2 thus positioned, the tray is placed on the lap of the user, with the recess 6 adjacent the abdomen of the user and the portions 16 and I1 disposed on the thighs or legs of the user. In this manner, the table is comfortably supported, and can be used for eating, writing, etc., without fear of displacement from the lap of the user.
It is thus seen that I have provided a lap table which is admirably adapted for use in the home and on the road, which is contoured to fit the body and thighs of the user, and which is characterized by a novel supporting leg or member, foldable to operative and inoperative positions, and a novel hinge connection and stop element, whereby the supporting leg or member may be easily removed or assembled with the table, and efiectively supported in upright or open position. The supporting leg may be easily removed by springing the arms l8 and I9 inwardly to remove the trunnio-ns 20 from the openings ii. This springing of the arms 18 and I9 is facilitated by reason of the contour of the supporting member.
In that form of the invention shown in Figs. '7, 8 and 9, the table I is preferably formed of heavy cardboard or the like, having any desired surface finish or covering, such as a wood-simw lating paper.
Secured to the table I, as by means of hollow rivets 2|, is a pair of laterally-spaced hinge elements 9, which are located in approximately the same position at the back or bottom of the table I, as the elements 9 and ID with respect to the table I.
The elements 9' are preferably stamped from sheet metal and are bent intermediate their ends to provide bearing portions H of substantially circular cross-section which receive the trunnion elements 20 of the supporting member 2.
Each of the elements 9' is provided with a portion l2 which extends in an inboard direction from the element 9, is formed integrally with the latter, and is provided with an upwardly curved portion 14', which serves the same function as the surfaces l4 and [5 of the previously described form of the invention, that is to say, the arms l8 and [9 of the member 2 come into abutment with these portions M which thereby prevent movement of the member 2 beyond this Position.
It is tobe understood that the forms of my invention, herewith shown and described, are to be taken as preferred examples of the same, and that various changes in the shape, size and arrangement of parts may be resorted to, without departing from the spirit of my invention, or the scope of the subjoined claims.
Having thus described my invention, I claim:
1. In a lap table of the character described, a substantially flat table having laterally-spaced bearing elements extending from the bottom of said table, a table supporting member formed from a single length of wire comprising parallelspaced arms and having trunnions on their ends disposed in said bearing elements, said bearing elements having portions extending laterally therefrom and formed integrally therewith and lying in the path of movement of said parallel arms to arrest movement of said supporting member, whereby said supporting member is pivotally movable from a position substantially parallel with said table to an operative position more than 90 degrees from said first-named position.
2. A lap table as defined in claim 1, in which said bearing elements are formed from sheet metal, and are riveted to said table, said laterally extending portions of said bearing elements'being formed integrally with the bearing elements.
GEORGE B. BODENHOFF.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PA'IENTS Number Name Date 2,039,922 Neats et a1 May 5, 1936 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 282,338 Great Britain Jan. 5, 1928