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Publication numberUS2766856 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 16, 1956
Filing dateAug 2, 1952
Priority dateAug 2, 1952
Publication numberUS 2766856 A, US 2766856A, US-A-2766856, US2766856 A, US2766856A
InventorsNels Nelsson
Original AssigneeUnited States Gypsum Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Access panel construction
US 2766856 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Oct. 16, 1956 N. Nl-:LssoN 2,766,856

ACCESS PANEL CONSTRUCTION Filed Aug. 2, 1952, 2 Sheets-Sheet l Y ZZWM j@ M.; :M h y @76.

Oct. 16, 1956 N. NELSSON 2,766,856

ACCESS PANEL. CONSTRUCTION Filed Aug. 21952 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 .Illl

I,IMI

IN VEN TOR.

ACCESS PANEL 'CONSTRUCTION Nels Nelsson, Chicago, Ill., assignor to United States Gypsum Company, Chicago, Ill., a corporation of Illinois Application August 2, 1952, Serial No. 302,354

8 Claims. (Cl. 189-46) The present invention relates to an access panel construction and has special reference to such a construction having a frame defining an opening for permanent connection to a wall or ceiling and a removable panel member fitting thereover to close the opening.

More particularly, this invention relates to an access panel construction in which the panel member is mounted on a frame with the rear surface of said panel contacting the outer wall surface about said opening. The panel automatically adjusts itself to irregularities and variations in the thickness of the plaster wallboard or other surfacing material.

Access panels are commonly employed in buildings to provide entry to various inner spaces, such as concealed storage spaces, plumbing connections and valves, areas containing electric light switches, panel boxes, etc., crawl spaces, ventilators and others.

The access panel construction of the present invention may be readily installed during construction of a building or in buildings already constructed. When installed with the panel member in place it is substantially ilush with the exposed wall or ceiling on which employed so as to blend therewith and be substantially unnoticed.

The panel is so mounted on its frame that it will adjust itself to a wide range of wall surface thicknesses and to irregularities in the exposed wall surfaces. This may be accomplished by forming opposed ribs or flanges on the rear face of said panel adjacent the sides thereof, with diagonal slots therein for engaging pins extending inwardly from opposite sides of the frame. The slots slope inwardly from the rear edges of the flanges and upwardly so that when the panel is inserted on its frame in a wall the weight thereof aids in holding it tightly against the wall surfaces surrounding the opening to be closed.

A lock or latch is preferably provided at the upper end of the panel member and the adjacent frame portion to hold the panel on its frame with the rear face of the panel against the wall surface. A safety catch may also be employed which permits the panel member to be swung outwardly while maintaining it connected to its frame. The catch also permits the panel to be entirely removed from the frame when desired.

The frame and panel members are preferably rectangular as the openings in walls and ceilings are commonly of this shape. The panel member must be at least slightly wider than the Width of the opening and substantially longer than the length of the opening to insure that the panel member will completely cover the opening irrespective of the position of the pins in their slots which in turn depends largely upon the thickness of the Wall or ceiling surfacing material.

An object of the present invention is to provide an access panel construction in which the panel supported by a frame adjusts itself to irregularities and variations in thickness of the surfacing material thereabout.

Another object is to provide such a construction in States Patent-C which the weight of the panel urges it against the surrounding wall surface.

A further object is to provide a panel construction of the above type having locking means for holding the panel in proper position on its frame with the panel member engaging the surrounding wall surface.

A still further object is to provide an access panel having a safety catch to prevent accidental detachment of the panel member from its frame when it is opened.

An additional object is to provide such a construction in which the panel may be readily and entirely removed from its frame. 6

Still another object is to provide an inexpensive access panel construction which may be readily installed in either new or old constructions.

Further objects and advantages Will'be apparent from the following description and claims when considered with the accompanying drawings, in which:

Fig. l is a front elevational View of an access panel construction embodying the present invention positioned in a wall or ceiling with part of the surfacing material broken away;

Fig. 2 is a side elevational view of the panel construction shown in Fig. l taken along the lines 2-2 of Fig. 1;

Fig. 3 is a rear elevational View of the access panel construction shown in Fig. 1;

Fig. 4 is a cross-sectional view taken on the line 4--4 of Fig. 3;

Fig. 5 is a view similar to Fig. 4 with the panel member in open position but secured to the frame member by a safety catch;

Fig. 6 is a side elevational view of the access panel construction secured to the joists in a ceiling during construction of the building; and

Fig. 7 is a View similar to Fig. 6 of the access panel construction secured to metal lath in a ceiling during construction of the ceiling.

Referring more particularly to Figs. 1 5 there is shown an access panel construction embodying the present invention installed in a wall. The panel construction comprises a frame 11 and a closure panel 1,2. The frame, which is preferably rectangular in shape, may be made of angular sheet metal of suflicient length to form the four sides. The angular sheet metal preferably has a relatively wide web and a relatively narrow ange at right angles thereto. ln forming the frame a suitable angle member has its relatively wide web severed at the proper points to form the four sides. It is then bent inwardly` into a rectangle of suitable size consisting of opposite side webs 13 and 14 and opposed end webs 15 and 16 lying in substantially a common plane. The open corners formed by the bending may have metal straps 10 welded thereacross. The resulting frame has the wide webs lying in substantially a common plane with the narrow flanges 2i) extending in one direction from the inner edges thereof.

The size of the frame is such that the anges will fit within the opening to be closed adjacent the sides of the opening, and the webs of the frame will overlie the rear sides of the plaster, wallboard or other surfacing material about the openings. The wide webs of the frame are preferably provided with openings 17 to facilitate attaching the frame to the rear side of a Wall about an opening.

The panel member 12 is formed from a sheet of suitable material such as metal, and is slightly wider than the distance between the side flanges and substantially longer than the distance between the end anges of the, frame. This permits the frame to cover the opening delined by the flanges although it may be moved a substantial distance upwardly or downwardly with respectI thereto. In describing the frame, the sides are those i ofthe panel'llradjacent the lower end thereof.

portionsivi/hieltV are'verticai when a frame is installed in a wall and the ends designate the top and bottom portions when so installed. Thesarne designations vare used even Ythough the construction may be employed in a ceiling or'Y other partition.

The peripheral edges of the panel, are preferably beveled toward `the-*rear as shown particularly inFigs, 4 and 'This beveling may 'be Slight and need not be ntuhmore `than 1/ 16 inchYK in depth. I--lowevenV it strengthens the edges,improves the appearanceand also results in better contact between `the edges Vand the wall surface. i f

' Pins 18 and 1 9 extend inwardly from the flanges atY opposite sides of the frame.Y .'Ifherpanel 1 2 'is provided V with Vrearwardly@melding angesV 2,1 and 22 having Slots Z3 extending forwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping upwardly'as'illustrated yin' Figs, 2 and 4. The

slots areof a S'izeto fit the pins 18 and 19 on the frame 1i.

VA lock or latch is preferably-provided on the upper ends of the panel and frame; The latch is adjustable S0 that it Ywillsel'v to hold theY panel @nits Vframe and Yagainst the wall or ceiling surface whether the pins 18 Y,

V Vwardly Vfrom the top with Vone side 28 sloping rearwardly for cooperation with the sloping portion of the dog 26. Due to the cooperating sloping edges of the locking members, the panel may be locked tightly Yagainst the ange oftheV frame or spaced a distance therefrom.

'Ink order tolrprevent dropping of the'panel from its Y 4 Y Y moved to disconnect the shackle 31 from the spring member 29. Y Y 1 To insert the panel construction inra building being erected, the framemay be nailed to the joists orerstuds,

as shown in'Fig. 6, or it may be tied by wire to Vtlrterear Y face of metal lath.

When the panel construction is employed in Va ceilingY as illustrated in Figs. V6 and 7, it operates in exactly the same waywas when employed in a Wdh-except thatthe panel must beurged tightly against the surface surround- Ving'the opening instead of relying tofsome extent upon.

gravity to Yelect such result. Y f Y Y Y The present panel construction may be readily andinexpenswelyY constructed andginstalled. 'Thefpanel will adjust itself to wall materials of various thicknesses or having somewhat irregular surfaces.VY` When properly positioned the panel may be securely locked in place and whenremoved the safety vcatchV prevents it from acci-` dentally droppingv down from the frame. The'panel may be `decorated similarlyto the wall surrounding the open? ing, and when positioned appears as Va part Vof theY wallV itself. v n Y Y Y While a particular embodiment of this invention has been illustrated and described, it will be understood, gof

- spect to said frame, said frame'having a rear portion forV engaging the rear siderof said surfacing material about frame, particularlywhen itis employedin aceiling, a Y

n, safety catch is provided. This may consist of ,a leaf spring 29 securedY suchas by weldingV tothe rearrface The spring 29, shown in 1Eigs. 3, 4 and 5,*is shapedso that it is spacedfrom'the panel throughout its length, except Vadjacent' its rearwardly curvedffree end which is resil- K iently maintained against .therpaneL A Wire shackle 31 may be pivotally mounted on the lowerflange of the of this invention.

course, that the invention'is not'to be limited thereto, since many modifications maybe-made, and it is contemplated therefore by the appended Vclaims to cover anyV such modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope Iclaim: s

1. VAn-access panel constructionVV for closing an iopen- Y ing in a structural surfacingmaterial comprising a'f'rame and a panel member movable generally endwise'with resaid opening and inwardly projecting pinsnat Vopposite y sides thereof, said panel member being larger than saidV openings and having rearwardly extending fixed V-por.- 'Y i tions at the opposite sides with slots extending inwardlyy from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward one end Y of said panel for flttting over said pins. Y i

2. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame frame. For this purpose portions of the flange maybe struck up providing slots for theV ends of the shackle. The Y slots.V are somewhat oval and the terminating ends of the Vshackle arepreferablyV bent slightly toward the Vlooped Y portion so as to provide a snap action tending to hold the Yshackle forwardly toward the panel or rearwardly therefrom, out of the way. As shown in Fig'. 5 when Vthe panel is'disconnected'from theV frame by unlocking the latch 24 and removing the slotted flanges Z1 and 22 from the pins Y 18 Vand 19, the panel will still be supported by the safety Y catch. c Y

The present access panel'may be employed in either new or old constructions. Where a building is already erected,a suitable `opening is made inV the walls and the frameV 11 is inserted therethrough and then Ypositioned Y with the forward sides of the frame Vweb engaging the rear sides of the wallsurface, Vas shown particularly in Figs. 1, 2, 4.and 5, andthe flanges extending forwardly adjacent the sides ofthe opening. The web is then preferably'secured :to the Wall by any suitablemeans such as tape, adhesive or cement. n

VAfter theV frame has been securedrin place, the panel is'position'ed over the opening by inserting the slots V273 over the pins 18 and 19, The weight ofthe panel causes it to fi-t tightlyagainst the exposed wall surfaces about t the openings. In this position the pivotV 25 is'rotated to i Vlock Vthe panel in place against the Wall surface.

lf itis desired toY entirely remove Ythe panel from Ithe frame such as forVV decorating or'any other purpose, the panel may be and a pganel member movable generally endwise with 1re? sperct to saidrame, cooperating latching members on said frame and lpanel members adjacent corresponding ends thereof, said frame having a rear portion for engagingfthe rear side of said surfacing Vmaterial about said opening and a flange extending'forwardly from said rear j portion for fitting in said openingadjacent the sides thereof,fsaid flange having inwardly projecting pins on op-V posite sides, said panel member being larger than said opening and having rearwardly extending xed portions on opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward the lath end ofk e Said'panel for receiving said pins therein, said latching members cooperatingV to latch said panel member to said frame when said pins are positioned at Various locations in said slots within a predetermined distanerof the inner ends thereof. Y i Y' v 3. An access panelconstruction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame and a panel member movable generally endwise. with respectVV to said frame, cooperating latching Ymembers on said frame and'panel membersv adjacent corresponding v ends thereof, `said frame having airear portion y.for .engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening Vand a flange extending forwardly from s'aidsrear portion for vfitting in saidY opening adjacent the sides thereof, said flange having inwardly projecting pinsonopposite sides,

said panel member being larger than said opening and; having rearwardly Vextending VVfixed' portionsV on opposite sides with slotsextendinginwardlyfrom the rearedge's,Y

thereof and sloping towardthe latch end of said panel Vfor receiving said pins therein, atleast one of saidrlatch- 'Y ing members having a rearwardly sloping contact portion to permit said latching members to be actuated to latch said panel member to said frame when the pins are positioned at various locations in said slots within a predetermined distance from the inner ends thereof.

4. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame and a panel member movable generally endwise with respect to said frame, cooperating latching members on said frame and panel members adjacent corresponding ends thereof, said frame having a substantially at rear portion for engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening and a flange extending forwardly from said rear portion and fitting in said opening adjacent the sides thereof, said ange having inwardly projecting pins on opposite sides, said panel member being larger than said opening and having rearwardly extending portions on opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward the latch end of said panel for receiving said pins therein, said latching members cooperating to latch said panel member to said frame when said pins are positioned at various locations in said slots within a predetermined distance of the inner ends thereof, and a safety catch comprising an elongated member secured at one end to the rear side of the opposite end of said panel member and extending inwardly therefrom in generally spaced relation to said panel member, and a shackle attached to said frame for being positioned between said catch member and the panel member therebeneath.

5. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame for being positioned in said opening and a panel member larger than said opening, said frame having a rear portion for engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening and inwardly projecting pins at opposite sides thereof, said panel member being movable toward and away from said frame while being maintained substantially parallel to the rear portion of said frame and having rearwardly extending portions at opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward one end of said panel for sliding over said pins to guide said panel during movement thereof with respect to said frame.

6. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame for being positioned in said opening and a panel member larger than said opening, said frame having a rear portion for engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening and inwardly projecting pins at opposite sides thereof, said panel member being movable toward and away from said frame while being maintained substantially parallel to the rear portion of said frame and having xed rearwardly extending portions at opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward one end of said panel for sliding over said pins to guide said panel during movement thereof with respect to said frame.

7. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame for being positioned in said opening and a panel member larger than said opening, said frame having a rear portion for engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening and inwardly projecting pins at opposite sides thereof, said panel member being movable toward and away from said frame while being maintained substantially parallel to the rear portion of said frame and having rearwardly extending portions at opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward one end of said panel for sliding over said pins to guide said panel during movement thereof with respect to said frame, and a safety catch for permitting limited movement of said panel while parallel to the rear portion of said frame and also pivotal movement of said panel with respect to said frame, said catch comprising an elongated member secured to one end of said panel member on the rear side thereof and extending inwardly therefrom in general spaced relation, and a shackle attached to said frame and releasably connected to said catch member.

8. An access panel construction for closing an opening in a structural surfacing material comprising a frame for being positioned in said opening and a panel member larger than said opening, said frame having a rear portion for engaging the rear side of said surfacing material about said opening and inwardly projecting pins at opposite sides thereof, said panel member being movable toward and away from said frame while being maintained substantially parallel to the rear portion of said frame and having rearwardly extending portions at opposite sides with slots extending inwardly from the rear edges thereof and sloping toward one end of said panel for sliding over said pins to guide said panels during movement thereof with respect to said frame, and cooperating latching members on said frame and panel members adjacent corresponding ends thereof for latching said panel member to said frame when said pins are positioned at various locations in said slots within a predetermined distance of the inner ends thereof.

References Cited in the le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 867,165 Shultz Sept. 24, 1907 1,716,038 Ferris June 4, 1929 1,818,269 Olley Aug. 11, 1931 1,889,221 Schleicher et al. Nov. 29, 1932 1,905,082 Wuebling Apr. 25, 1933 1,921,051 Traut Aug. 8, 1933

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US867165 *Mar 15, 1907Sep 24, 1907Charles H ShultzChute.
US1716038 *Nov 4, 1927Jun 4, 1929Reed FerrisAccess door
US1818269 *Sep 6, 1929Aug 11, 1931Crouse Hinds CoWall cover plate and mounting therefor
US1889221 *Jan 10, 1931Nov 29, 1932Schleicher IncAccess structure
US1905082 *Dec 19, 1930Apr 25, 1933Wuebling Harry BFlush panel construction
US1921051 *Sep 18, 1930Aug 8, 1933Higgin Mfg CoAccess panel latch
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3181661 *May 27, 1963May 4, 1965American Air Filter CoPanel wall louvers
US3286405 *May 14, 1964Nov 22, 1966Schembri William TAccess door
US3930338 *Feb 4, 1974Jan 6, 1976Arelco, IncorporatedAccess door
US5327682 *Mar 12, 1993Jul 12, 1994Karp Associates, Inc.Access panel having removable door and recessed hinge
US8220204 *Jul 20, 2006Jul 17, 2012Lg Electronics Inc.Refrigerator door and method of manufacture thereof
US8375639Nov 29, 2011Feb 19, 2013Lg Electronics Inc.Refrigerator door and method of manufacture thereof
US8523304 *Dec 17, 2008Sep 3, 2013Lg Electronics Inc.Refrigerator and manufacturing method of the same
US8769879Nov 29, 2011Jul 8, 2014Lg Electronics Inc.Refrigerator door and method of manufacture thereof
US8770684Aug 19, 2013Jul 8, 2014Lg Electronics Inc.Refrigerator and manufacturing method of the same
US20110048047 *Dec 17, 2008Mar 3, 2011Kim PansooRefrigerator and manufacturing method of the same
US20140208658 *Sep 4, 2012Jul 31, 2014Richard JelacicAccess fixture
Classifications
U.S. Classification49/246, 16/257, 49/254, 49/465, 292/240
International ClassificationE04F19/08
Cooperative ClassificationE04F19/08
European ClassificationE04F19/08