US 2689778 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
p 21, 1954 w. CHAMBERS ETAL 2,689,778
REFRIGERATOR SHELF MOUNTING STRUCTURE Filed April 16 l95l 3 Sheets-Sheet l AMZYW Sept. 21, 1954 Filed April 16, 1951 W. L. CHAMBERS ETAL REFRIGERATOR SHELF MOUNTING STRUCTURE IIE-a. 5
5 Sheets-Sheet 2 liar :2; a.
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REFRIGERATOR SHELF MOUNTING STRUCTURE I5 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed April 16, 1951 Patented Sept. 21, 1954 REFRIGERATOR SHELF MOUNTING STRUCTURE Worthy L. Chambers,
Chicago, and Joseph H.
111., assignors to Motor Products Corporation, Detroit, Mich., a corporation of New York Application April 16, 1951, Serial No. 221,238
9 Claims. (Cl. 312-351) This invention relates generally to refrigerator structures, and refers more particularly to improvements in mountings for shelves, crisper pans or other containers.
It is one of the objects of this invention to provide a mounting structure composed of a relatively few simple parts capable of being inexpensively manufactured and installed within the storage compartment of a refrigerator cabinet to support shelves and/ or containers in a manner such as to enable the latter to be readily removed from and inserted into the storage compartment through the usual access opening.
It is another object of this invention to provide a retaining rail substantially channel shaped in cross section for receiving a part, such for example as a shelf, to be supported within the storage compartment of a refrigerator, and having means coacting with means on said part to hold the latter against lateral shifting movement relative to the rail.
It is still another object of this invention to provide a pair of rails arranged in superposed seating relationship for independently supporting an open top container and a shelf or closure panel above the open top of the container.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a construction of the above general type wherein the bottom container supporting rail is secured in place by fastener elements and wherein the top shelf retaining rail is positioned in seating engagement with the bottom rail by cooperating engaging means on the rails. Thus the shelf retaining rail is held in place on the container supporting rail without the use of separate fastening means, and may be readily removed by merely lifting the shelf off the container supporting rail.
The foregoing as well as other objects will be made more apparent as this description proceeds, especially when considered in connection with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
Figure 1 is a fragmentary front elevational view of a refrigerator cabinet with the door removed and showing containers or crisper pans supported at the bottom of the storage compartment;
Figure 2 is a sectional View taken on the line 2-2 of Figure 1;
Figure 3 is a sectional view taken on the line 3-3 of Figure 1;
Figure 4 is a sectional view taken on the line 4-4 of Figure 3; V
Figure 5 is an enlarged cross sectional view showing the mounting structure embodying the features of this invention;
Figure 6 is a sectional view taken on the line 66 of Figure 2;
Figure 7 is a sectional view taken on the line 1--1 of Figure 2;
Figure 8 is a perspective view of one of the containers or crisper pans;
Figure 9 is a sectional view taken on the line 9-9 of Figure 4;
Figure 10 is a sectional view taken on the line Iii-l0 of Figure 4;
Figure 11 is a fragmentary sectional view of a modified form of construction; and
Figure 12 is a side elevational view of the construction shown in Figure 11.
Referring to the embodiment of the invention shown in Figures 1 to 10 inclusive, it will be noted that the numeral l0 designates a refrigerator having a cabinet I I comprising an outer shell I2,
an inner shell l3 and suitable insulating material M housed in the space provided between the shells. The inner shell I 3 defines a storage compartment and has an opening through the front Wall which registers with an opening in the front wall of the outer shell [2 to provide an access opening [5 to the storage compartment. In accordance with conventional practice the access opening I5 is closed by a door (not shown) suitably hinged along one side edge to the adjacent side of the cabinet H. The storage compartment is refrigerated by the usual apparatus shown in part in Figure 2 of the drawings and designated by the numeral [6. The part l6 of the refrigerating apparatus comprises a motor-compressor unit I! suitably supported in the rear of the cabinet I 1 below the outer shell i2. The bottom wall l8 of the outer shell I2 is bowed upwardly adjacent the rear edge thereof to provide ample clearance for the motor-compressor unit i1 and the bottom wall l9 of the inner shell is inclined in an upward direction to afford ample clearance above the bowed portion for insulation.
Supported in the storage compartment at the bottom of the latter is a pair of containers in the form of crisper pans 20 open at the top. The pans 20 are supported in lateral spaced side by side relationship, and the open top portions thereof are respectively closed by panels 2| independently supported directly above the respective pans 20. The panels 2| also serve as shelves in the storage compartment, and are preferably formed of glass or some equivalent transparent material. The pans 20 are identical in construction and may be formed of any suitable material. In the present instance the pans 20 are shown as formed of a plastic or plastic composition; and each pan has integral front,
rear, side and bottom walls 22, 23, 24 and 25 respectively. The front walls 22 of the pans are ribbed transversely, and are suitably fashioned at the upper edges to accommodate trim moldings 2B. The trim moldings 26 are fashioned with forwardly and downwardly curved flanges 2'! which serve as handles for the pans.
The opposite side walls 24 of each pan are offset laterally inwardly as at 28 to reduce the width of the pans and the offset portions are turned laterally outwardly at the top of the walls 24 to form flanges 29 having a Width approximating the extent to which the side walls are offset. The bottom wall 25 of each pan 23 is inclined upwardly from a point intermediate the ends of the pan to afford clearance for the upwardly inclined part of the bottom wall IQ of the inner shell 13. Positioned between adjacent side walls 2% of the crisper pans 23 is a guide 33 which may be formed in any suitable manner from various materials. Particularly satisfactory results have been obtained by forming the guide 3!] of molded plastic. In any case the guide as comprises a horizontal section 3! and a vertical section or post 32 at one end of the section 3i. In assembly the post 32 is positioned between the crisper pans 23 at the front ends of the latter, and is fashioned with a front wall 33 which forms in appearance a continuation of the front Walls 22 of the pans 20 when the latter are in their rearwardmost positions in the storage compartment. In this connection it is to be noted that the wall 33 on the post is transversely ribbed to correspond with the ribbing on the front walls 22 of the pans 20. The bottom of the post has attaching lugs 34 which are secured to the bottom wall IQ of the inner shell l3 by suitable fastener elements 35. The upper end of the post 32 is fashioned to accommodate a mold" ing trim strip 36 identical in shape to the molding trim strips 26 provided on the pans 23.
The horizontal section 31 of the guide is provided with vertically spaced supports 31 integrally connected by transverse and longitudinal ribs 33. As shown in Figure '7 of the drawings, the trans verse ribs 38 terminate short of the opposite sides ofthe supports 31, and provide laterally opening channels 39 for respectively slidably receiving the flanges 29 on adjacent side walls 26 of the pans 20. The rear end of the horizontal section 31 has attaching ears 10, and the latter are secured to the rear wall of the inner shell [3 by fastener elements d1. As shown in Figure 4 of the drawings the elevation of the horizontal section 3| is such that the channels 39 cooperate with the flanges 29 on the pans to support the latter with the bottom walls 25 spaced vertically above the bottom wall E9 of the inner shell l3. It will also be noted that the opposite side edges of the top support 3'! on the horizontal section 3! provide seats for supporting the adjacent edges of the glass panels or shelves 2!.
The outer edges of the glass panels 2! and the corresponding side edges of the pans 20 are respectively supported by rails d2 and 23. As shown in Figure of the drawings, the rails 22 and 23 are channel shaped in cross section, and the top rails 42 are seated on the top surfaces of the guide rails 43. Both rails extend rearwardly from the access opening l5 in the cabinet along the inner surfaces of opposite side walls of the inner shell l3, and are arranged with the channels opening laterally inwardly. The bottom guide rails 43 respectively slidably receive the adjacent flanges 29 on the pans 20, and the base portions 44 of the guide rails 43 are secured to the adjacent side walls of the inner shell [3 by fastener elements 35. The top rails 62 respectively receive the adjacent marginal edges of the glass panels and serve as retainer strips for the glass panels. It will be noted from Figure 5 of the drawings that suitable lips 53 and 2-1 extend laterally outwardly from opposite sides of the base portions 48 of the retainer rails 22. The lips 46 respectively intimately engage adjacent side walls of the inner shell [3 to provide a fluidtight seal, and the lips d1 project into recesses '69. The recesses 49 are fashioned by undercutting the base portions 44 of the bottom rails 33 along the top edges of the base portions, so that when the rails 43 are secured in place by the fastener elements 45, the undercut portions coact with the adjacent walls of the inner shell to provide the recesses 49.
The rails d3 may be formed of any suitable material, such as plastic or plastic compositions and possess the requisite strength to effectively support the pans 20 and shelves 2i. The shelf retainer rails 42 are formed of a flexible resilient material, such for example, as extruded plastic and the flanges of the retainer rails yieldably grip the adjacent marginal edges of the shelves 2!. The retainer rails 42 are assembled on the outer marginal edges of the shelves 2i before the shelves are installed in the storage compartment, and the bottom flanges of the channelshaped retainer rails 32 respectively rest on the top flanges of the pan supporting rails d3. As stated above the depending lips ll on the retainer rails 42 extend into the recesses 23, and the upstanding lips 43 respectively yieldably engage the inner sides of the storage compartment to provide a fluid-tight seal. It will be noted from the above that lateral shifting of the shelves and retainer rails 32 relative to the supporting rails 43 is prevented by engagement of the lips 41 in the recesses 19. However, the shelves 2i, together with the retainer rails 32 may be readily removed by merely lifting the shelves off the supporting rails 23. Thus the shelves 2i and crisper pans 23 may be inserted into and removed from the storage chamber independently of one another.
The top surfaces of the shelves or glass panels 2| are formed with laterally spaced longitudinally extending ribs 59. The top flanges of the retainer rails 42 are in turn formed with longitudinally extending grooves 5i in the inner surfaces thereof for respectively receiving the adjacent ribs 50 on the glass panels 2!. It follows from the above that the glass panels 2i are held against shifting movement laterally with respect to the retainer rails 42 by the interlocking engagement between the ribs 56 and grooves 5i;
Upon reference to Figure 10 of the drawings, it will be noted that the glass panels 21 are positioned fore and aft of the retainer rails 52 by projections 53 respectively extending upwardly from the top flanges of the guide rails 33 at opposite ends of the latter. The projections 53 at the front ends of the guide rails 43 are especially important in that they prevent accidental displacement of the glass shelves and retainer rails 42 in an outward direction relative to the supporting rails 43. However, the glass shelves 2| together with the retainer rails 42 may be removed when desired by merely moving the same vertically relative to the supporting rails 43.
In order to prevent accidental disengagement Y of the crisper pans 20 from their respective guides,
it will be noted that each crisper pan is fashioned with astop or projection 54 at opposite sides thereof. The stops 54 project downwardly from the flanges 29 adjacent the rear ends of the crisper pans, and respectively engage stops 55 formed on the bottom flanges of the guide rails 43. Similar stops 56 may be provided on the bottom support 39 of the guide 30, if desired. In this connection attention is again called to Figure 5 of the drawings, wherein it will be noted that the width of the channels formed by the guides 43 is sufficiently greater than the elevation of the stops 55 to enable lifting the pans 20 the required distance to clear the stops 55 when it is desired to completely remove the pans from the storage compartment. A similar distance is provided between the supports 31 of the central guide 30 so that clearance is provided between the stops 54 and the stops '55, 56 when the pans are raised to remove the same from the storage compartment.
In some instances it is desirable to eliminate one of the crisper pans 20 and associated shelf or panel 2| so that a storage space of substantial height may be provided in the storage compartment of the refrigerator cabinet. With this in view reference is made to Figures 11 and 12, wherein it will be noted that provision is made for mounting a single crisper pan in the storage compartment adjacent one side wall of the latter. The outer flange 29 on the crisper pan and the adjacent marginal edge of the associated glass panel or shelf 2| are independently supported in the same manner previously described in connection with Figure 5 of the drawings, and the same reference numerals are used to indicate corresponding parts. The central support for the crisper pan 20 and associated glass panel 2| is somewhat different, however, since it is not necessary to make provision for supporting a second crisper pan thereon.
As shown in Figures 11 and 12 the central support comprises a vertical post 66 and a horizontal section 6| projecting rearwardly from the top of the post. The post 66 is positioned to the rear of the oifset portion 28 on the adjacent side of the pan 20 and is secured at the lower end to the bottom wall IQ of the inner shell [3 by a bracket 62. The horizontal section 6| projects rearwardly from the post 60 and is secured to the rear wall of the inner shell by a suitable bracket 63. As shown particularly in Figure 11 of the drawings, the horizontal section has an upwardly extending rib 64 intermediate the opposite side edges thereof, and this rib is turned laterally to form a flange 65. The flange 65 cooperates with the top wallof the horizontal section 6| to form a guide channel 66 into which the adjacent flange 29 on the pan extends. The top of the flange 65 has laterally spaced longitudinally extending ribs 61, which serve as bearing surfaces for supporting the adjacent marginal edge of the glass panel 2|. If desired suitable stops 68 may be provided on the horizontal section 6| adjacent the front end of the latter for engagement with the stops 54 on the pan to limit outward movement of the pan.
What we claim as our invention is:
1. In a refrigerator, a cabinet having a storage compartment and having an access opening registering with the storage compartment, a panel member extending transversely of the storage compartment, a retainer rail member carried by the panel member and extending along one marginal edge of the panel member, said retainer rail member having vertically spaced resilient flanges respectively engaging opposite sides of the panel member adjacent said marginal edge and frictionally gripping the panel member to secure the retainer rail member in assembled relationship with the panel member, a rib on one of the members extending in the direction of :length of the retainer rail member and engageable in a groove in the other of said members to hold the latter against relative lateral shifting movement, a container guide rail forming a seat for the retainer rail and secured to the ad- :J'acent wall of the cabinet beneath the retainer rail, and cooperating interengaging means on the rails releasable upon lifting the panel together with the retainer rail relative to the guide rail.
2. In a refrigerator, a cabinet having a storage compartment and having an access opening registering with the storage compartment, a panel extending transversely of the storage compartment, a retainer rail carried by the panel and respectively extending along one side edge of the panel, said retainer rail having vertically spaced resilient flanges respectively engaging opposite sides of the panel and frictionally gripping the panel therebetween to secure the retainer rail in assembled relationship with the panel, a rib projecting from one side of the panel in a position to engage in a groove in the adjacent flange of the retainer rail to hold the latter and panel against lateral shifting movement, and a sup porting rail secured to the inner side of the cabinet in a position below the retainer rail for engagement by the retainer rail to support the latter and adjacent edge of the panel within the cabinet.
3. The structure defined in claim 2. wherein the supporting rail has a vertical shoulder cooperating with the adjacent side of the cabinet to provide an upwardly opening groove and wherein the retainer rail has a depending lip engageable in said groove to hold the retainer rail in assembled relationship with the supporting rail.
4. The structure defined in claim 3 wherein the retainer rail has a resilient lip engageable with adjacent side of the cabinet for urging the depending lip on said retainer rail laterally inwardly into frictional contact with said shoulder.
5. In a refrigerator, a cabinet having a refrigerated storage compartment and having an access opening in the front wall registering with the storage compartment, 2. guide rail in the storage compartment extending rearwardly from the access opening and secured to the adjacent side wall of the compartment, said guide rail having vertically spaced flanges projecting inwardly from said adjacent wall and extending lengthwise of the guide rail, a shelf in the storage compartment above the guide rail, a retainer rail extending along the marginal edge of the shelf adjacent the guide rail and having vertically spaced resilient flanges cooperating with one another to grip the shelf therebetween, the bottom flange on the retainer rail having a seating engagement with the top flange on the guide rail, and cooperating interengaging means on said rails preventing relative lateral shifting movement of the rails and disengageable upon raising the shelf together with the retainer rail upwardly relative to the guide rail.
6. The structure defined in claim 5 wherein the cooperating interengaging means comprises alip depending from the retainer rail and a vertical shoulder on the guide rail engaged by the inner side of said lip.
7. The structure defined in claim 6 wherein the retainer rail has an upwardly projecting resilient lip yieldably engageable with the adjacent side of the storage compartment and cooperating with said side to urge the depending lip on the retainer rail inwardly into frictional contact with said shoulder on the guide rail.
8. The structure defined in claim"? wherein the upwardly projecting lip on the retainer rail extends for substantially the full length of the retainer rail and forms a seal between the shelf and adjacent side of the storage compartment, and wherein the lip on the retainer rail is disengageable from the shoulder on the guide rail upon lifting the shelf together with the retainer rail relative to the guide rail.
9. In a refrigerator, a cabinet having a refrigerated storage compartment and having an access opening in the front wall registering with the storage compartment, a, guide rail in the storage compartment extending rearwardly from the access opening and secured to the adjacent side wall of the compartment, said guide rail having vertically spaced flanges projecting inwardly from said adjacent wall and extending lengthwise of the guide rail, a shelf in the storage compartment above the guide rail, aretainer rail extending along the marginal edge of the shelf adjacent the guide rail and having vertically spaced resilient flanges cooperating with one another to grip the shelf therebetween, the bottom flange on the retainer rail having a seating engagement with the top flange on the guide rail, means at the top of the guide rail cooperating with the adjacent side of the storage compartment to form an upwardly opening groove extending lengthwise of the guide rail, and a lip depending from the retainer rail into the groove and releasable from said groove upon lifting the shelf together with the retainer rail relative to the guide rail.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 362,457 Moore May 3, 1887 1,504,522 Sherer Aug. 12, 1924 2,114,170 Ball Apr. 12, 1938 2,192,562 Scott Mar. 5, 1940 2,194,177 Rundell Mar. 19, 1940 2,261,078 Shockey Oct. 28, 1941 2,311,411 Nave Feb. 15, 1943 2,323,957 Zalkind. July 13, 1943 2,338,889 Yoxsimer Jan. 11, 1944 2,408,194 Bourdius Sept. 24, 1946