US 2707664 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
May 3, 1955 M. MARSILIUS 2,707,664
FOLDING macs FOR COLLAPSIBLE TABLE} Filed Sept. 21, 1953 IN V EN T OR.
B a W Q Q/M ATTORNEYS.
United States Patent FOLDTNG LEGS FGR COLLAPSIBLE TABLE Mac Marsilius, Woodstock, Il assignor to Woodstock Metal Products, Inc, Woodstock, 11L, a corporation (if-Illinois Application September 21, 1953, Serial No. 381,155
1 Claim. (Cl. 311-77) This invention relates generally to collapsible tables and the like, and more particularly to a mounting construction for folding legs.
It is an important object of the present invention to provide a collapsible table having foldable supporting legs which are of high strength and rigidity in their extended position.
It is another object of the present invention to provide foldable supporting legs which may be simply and securely locked. in an extended position, and readily unlocked to permit manual folding.
it is a further object of the present invention to provide foldable supporting legs which are simply and securely mounted for pivotal movement between an extended support position and a folded storage position.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a .novel mounting structure for folding legs for collapsible tables and the like wherein a combined pivot and locking structure of simple and efilcient design cooperates with resilient portions of a leg structure to permit secure and rigid locking of the leg in an extended support position, and simple release and pivotal movement of the leg to a folded storage position.
It is a still further object of the present invention to provide a collapsible table of simple and sturdy construction which may be readily folded into a compact unit for convenient-storage and easy portability.
It is still another object of the present invention to provide a collapsible table having a deck or table surface of relatively extended length when in an open position, which may be folded into a closed position so as to provide a compact unit of substantially smaller area than the .area of the table surface when in open position.
The above and other objects and features of the present invention will be more readily apparent from the following description when read in connection with the accompanying drawing, wherein:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of a table constructed in accordance with the present invention, shown in an erected position for use.
Figure 2 is another perspective view, showing the table of Figure 1 in a completely folded position for storage.
Figure 3 is another perspective view, looking upwardly from below, showing the table of Figure l in a semifolded position wherein one pair of supporting legs has been collapsed for storage.
Figure 4'is a'b'ottom plan view of a portion of the table, showing the novel construction by which a supporting leg is mounted at the corner of the table deck, the leg being shown in a retracted position.
Figure 5 is a vertical sectional view taken along the 45 diagonal center line of a corner of the table, showing the supporting leg in a downwardly extended position.
Figure 6 is a vertical sectional view along the line 66 of Figure 5, showing the terminal portions of the leg in contracted position.
Figure 7 is similar to Figure 6, showing the terminal portions of the leg in locked position.
Referring more particularly to Figures 1 to 3 of the drawing, I have shown a table embodying the novel features of my present invention. A deckor table surface 10 is supported at its four corners by a plurality of U- shaped vertical legs 20. The deck 10 is preferably of elongated rectangular form, made up of two half-pore .tions 12 and 14 hingedly connected in side-by-side relation along adjacent sides, as shown. Each table halfportion is provided with an edge flange 16 and a peripheral flange 17 Although any conventional type of hinge may be employed, 1 have shown a pair of jack-knife hinges 18 which each comprise two overlapping apertured ears mounted one each at the corners of the table halfportion edges, each opposed pair being interconnected by means of a pivot bolt. In this manner, the half-portions may be pivoted from the side-by-side position of Figure 1, wherein the adjacent edge flanges 16 of the half-portions 12 and 14 are in contacting abutment so as to limit further pivotal movement in an opening direction and provide a unitary plane table surface, to the face-to-face position of Figure 2, wherein the half-portions i2 and 14 are pivoted in a closing direction so that the under surfaces thereof are in adjacent contacting relation to provide a small and compact unit.
The legs 20 are mounted in a novel manner at the terminal portions of their U-shaped construction, as will hereinafter be described in detail, for pivotal movement from a downwardly extending support position to a fiat folded position for storage. The folding of the legs is best seen in Figure 3 wherein legs Zita and 2% are shown folded against the bottom surface of the table half-portion 12, and legs 20c and 29:! are shown vertically extended downwardly from the corners of the table halfportion 14. The legs are mounted so as to permit folding along the diagonal of the table half-portion in overlapping relation. Although leg 221 a is shown as being overlapped on top of leg 2011, it will be apparent that the converse relation is equally suitable. The legs need not be folded in any particular sequence to achieve a compactly folded unit in that the novel mounting structure of the present invention permits the legs to nest closely against the bottom surfaces of the table half-portions, whereby the table halves may be readily pivoted into face-to-face relation without obstruction by the folded legs.
Referring .now with particularity to Figures 4 to 7, for a detailed description of the novel features of my leg mounting means, I have shown one of the U-shaped legs v20 operatively mounted at the under portion of the table corner. A channel bracket 39 is suitably attached, as by bolting or welding, to the table deck, closely adjacent the corner thereof. The channel 30 preferably includes attaching flanges 32 supporting a pair of spaced vertical side walls 34, and a horizontal connecting wall 36. The wall 36 is cut out so as to provide a central tongue portion 37, and a pair of key portions or slots 38 which are defined by a pair of inwardly extending ears 39 positioned between the tongue 3"] and the spaced side walls 34.
A mounting strap 40, of substantially the same width as the tongue 37, is attached to the deck at its one end, as .at 42, and to the tongue at its other end, as at 44.
Each :of the U-shaped legs .255 includes an arcuate supportend 22, and a pair of spaced parallel sides or body portions 24 having terminal ends 26. The terminal ends 26 are provided with oppositely out-turned, right angle foot portions 28. The leg 2% is preferably formed by suitably bending to shape a single continuous length of metal rod. It is an essential feature of the present invention that the terminal portions 26 be spring biased in spaced relation to each other, whereby a forced contracting movement of the terminal ends 26 toward each other will be resiliently opposed, and upon release of the force,
the terminals ends 26 will return to their normal spaced relation. Although this desired functional characteristic may be achieved by forming the legs from tubes, channels, or a variety of other forms, the particular rod form illustrated provides an extremely simple, etficient, and low cost construction.
The spaced side walls 34 are suitably apertured at 35 to receive the foot portions 28 of the leg terminal ends 26. The length of each of the foot portions 28 is preferably equal to or slightly greater than the distance between an outer side edge of the tongue 37 and a corresponding adjacent side wall 34. It will be apparent that contracting movement of the terminal ends 26 toward each other will be opposed by abutment with the tongue 37, as best seen in Figures 4 and 6, whereby the removal of the foot portion 23 from the aperture 35 is prevented. The mounting strap 40 also serves to similarly limit contracting movement of the terminal ends 26.
Each leg is pivotally mounted to the table by insertion of the foot portions 23 into corresponding apertures 35 of the side walls 34. Preferably, the terminal ends 26 of the leg are moved toward each other so as to permit the foot portions 23 to be inserted from a position between the tongue and the table deck prior to the attachment of the strap 4%, thereby avoiding abutment between the terminal ends 26 and the tongue 37. The subsequent attachment of the strap serves to complete the assembly and preclude removal of the leg from its mounting by limiting contracting movement of the terminal ends 26 when the leg 29 is swung to a position clear of the tongue 37 between the tongue and the deck, as when the leg is in its folded position.
The mounting structure of the present invention provides a simple and reliable locking means in the form of the slots 38 and ears 39, as seen in Figure 4. When the leg 20 is in a vertically extended position, the terminal ends 26 will be urged by spring bias into the slots 38. It will be apparent that abutment of the ears 39 with the leg terminal ends 26 will serve to preclude any pivotal movement of the foot portions 28 in the apertures 35, thereby locking the leg member 20 in its vertical position. When it is desired to fold the leg for the purpose of collapsing the table for storage, it is merely necessary to contract the leg terminal ends 26 toward each other against their normal separating spring tension so as to bring the terminal ends 26 to a position of clearance with respect to the ears 39. The tongue 37 serves to retain the foot portions 28 within apertures 35, as previously described, and the leg member 20 may then be swung toward the under surface of the table deck to a folded position.
Contracting movement of the leg terminal ends 26 is best shown in Figure 4, wherein the left-hand terminal end 26 is shown in its normal position of separation away from the right-hand terminal end 26. Both terminal ends 26 are in contacting engagement with the inner side walls 34 of bracket 30, when the leg 20 is in its folded position. I have also shown the left-hand terminal end 26 in dotted lines in the position it would assume if moved toward the right-hand terminal portion. In Figure 6, I have clearly indicated contracting movement of the leg member terminal ends 26 toward each other for pivotal movement of the leg 20, and in Figure 7 I have shown the leg in its normally expanded state when vertically extended.
It will be apparent that as the leg is moved from a folded position to an erected position it is merely neces sary to pivot the leg upwardly, permitting the leg terminal ends 26 to ride along inclined edges 39a of the flanges 39, in the manner of a moving member along a cam surface. In this manner, the leg terminal ends 26 are moved toward each other until they pass over the flanges 39 and snap into the slots 38, whereupon the leg is in a vertical position and is locked in place. To retract the leg to a folded position, the leg terminal ends 26 are again moved toward each other to clear the ears 39, and the leg 20 is pivotally swung to its folded position.
While I have herein shown and described a preferred embodiment of my invention, manifestly the structure disclosed is capable of modification and rearrangement without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. I do not, therefore, wish to be understood as limiting this invention to the precise embodiment herein disclosed, except as I may be so limited by the appended claim.
What is claimed is:
In a folding table construction, a table top and a plurality of supporting legs, each of said legs being of resilient U-shaped form providing oppositely out-turned terminal ends, a plurality of mounting means for securing said legs to said table top, each comprising a channel-shaped bracket forming a spaced pair of parallel side walls, said side Walls having a transverse connecting wall therebetween at their lower edges and a pair of outwardly extending attaching flanges at their upper edges, said attaching flanges being rigidly secured to the bottom surface of said table top so as to position said side walls in downwardly extending relation therefrom, said side walls each being apertured at a point between the upper and lower edges thereof to provide an opposed pair of apertures each continuously surrounded by the corresponding side wall, whereby the terminal ends of a leg may be inserted through said apertures and pivotally supported therein by said side walls only, so that all supporting and pivoting forces will be exerted between the leg and the bracket, the distance between said side Walls being less than the normal resilient separating distance between the sides of the leg, whereby the said terminal ends may be extended through said side wall apertures and retained therein by the normal resilience of the leg, said bracket connecting wall being formed with a pair of lateral slots closely adjacent said side walls and directly below said apertures to receive the sides of a leg therein and cooperate with said apertures to effect locking of the leg in a fixed position of pivotal adjustment in downwardly extending relation to the plane of said table top, and means limiting contracting movement of said leg sides toward each other so as to permit entry and removal of said leg sides with respect to said bracket connecting wall slots while preventing removal of said leg terminal ends from said bracket side wall apertures, whereby said legs may be securely held by said brackets while permitting pivotal movement between folded and locked extended positions relative to said table top.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,287,444 Rudy Dec. 10, 1918 1,300,861 Otte Apr. 15, 1919 1,309,774 Otte July 15, 1919 1,350,834 Nierodka Aug. 24, 1920 2,291,967 Keahey Aug. 4, 1942 2,497,552 Ledel Feb. 14, 1950 2,574,592 Schatfer Nov. 13, 1951