US 2827117 A
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W. T. BATEMAN VERTICAL-LY SWINGING FLEXIBLE DOORS March 18, 1958 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed May 25, 1954 R on mm 5 n m M u W m K" M. w/ x w n /-H ATTORNEY March 18, 1958 w. T. BATEMAN 2,327,117
VERTICALLY SWINGING FLEXIBLE DOORS Filed May 25, 1954v 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 vINVl-ENTOR AORNEY March 18, 1958 w. T. BATEMAN VERTICALLY SWINGING FLEXIBLE DOORS s Sheets-Shet 3 Filed May 25, 1954 i ill/l2 fl/l/l/l/ INVENTOR M40444 7/0/1445 547644410 A ORNEY United States Patent VERTECALLY SWFLNGING FLEXIBLE DOORS Wiiiiam Thomas Bateman, Alexandria, Va.
Application May 25, 1954, Serial No. 432,217
15 Claims. (Cl. 169-354) This invention relates to swinging doors of heavy flexible sheet material and more particularly to swinging doors for cooler or storage rooms which are designed to be opened by the striking of freight carriers thereagainst.
lt is the object of the present invention to provide flexible swinging doors for cooler or storage rooms which are of rugged construction, of few mechanical parts and which are characterized by low installation and maintenance costs.
Another object of the invention is to provide gravity hinge mountings for swinging doors in which the gravity hinges are disposed at the upper ends of the door only, for cooperation with rigid supporting arms for the flexible closures so that the opening movements of the doors can be initiated from oblique angles as well as directly from the front of the door opening, thereby eliminating the need for long approach aisles leading to the doorway. The high location of the hinge mounting excludes possibility of injury to the hinge mechanism, cargo loads or personnel in the operation of the doors.
The invention proceeds upon the principle of providing a closure of heavy flexible sheet material for a door opening which normally is adapted to be disposed in closed position by the provision of gravity hinges mounted on the upper parts of the door jambs of the door frame, which cooperate with pintle rods afiixed to rigid arm assemblies from which are suspended the flexible panels or closures. The doors are opened with minimum abrupt shocks by the movement of merchandise carriers or pallets which strike against the flexible closures, which in turn transmit the force to the supporting arms for the flexible closures to open the doors on the axes of the gravity hinges and which operate automatically to return the supporting arms and flexible closures to their closed position following the clearance of the moving force through the doorway.
The simplicity of the gravity hinge embodied in the instant invention, composed of a pair of aligned bearing bushes for the vertical pintle and the arcuate track for the lateral terminal of the pintle rod, results in an easy movement of the parts with little friction, which is minimized to the extreme by hte provision of a roller on ball bearings for the pintle rod extremity on the arcuate trackway.
Other objects and purposes will appear from the detailed description of the invention following hereinafter, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein- Fig. l is a front elevation of a door opening provided with a pair of swinging doors of flexible sheet material in accordance with the invention;
Fig. 2 is an enlarged front elevation of the door assembly'at the upper left portion of Fig. 1;
Fig. 3 is a sectional view along line 3--3 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 4 is a vertical sectional view along line 4-4 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 5 is a front elevation of the gravity hinge mounting with the parts shown in the open position of the door;
Fig. 6 is a horizontal sectional view along line 66 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 7 is a vertical sectional view along line 7-7 of Fig. 1;
Fig. 8 is a horizontal sectional view along line 8-8 of Fig. l; V
Fig. 9 is a vertical sectional view of a different embodiment of the invention showing an alternative arrangement for suspending the flexible door closure from its supporting arm as a variation from that shown in Fig. 4; and
Fig. 10 is a front elevation of the double-faced frame employed in the mounting shown in Fig. 9.
In the drawing is shown a door closure for a framed door opening 2 leading to'a cooler room or a stock room of more general utility. The door opening 2 is framed by vertical jambs 3 and 3' onthe opposite sides thereof and horizontal lintel 4 at the top thereof. In the illustrated embodiment of the invention, a pair of'swinging doors 1 and 1 are shown mounted for pivotal movement about vertical axes adjacent each of the door jambs3 and 3', but the invention may be realized as well for single swinging doors. Furthermore, since the construction of the doors 1 and 1' and the mountings therefor'are identical, only one will be described in detail, the other being a counterpart, and in fact the doors, because of their symmetrical construction, are interchangeable.
The doors 1 and 1', which may be designated as curtain doors or flapper doors, are formed from heavy flexible sheet material of plastic or composite sheeting and are suspended from rigid supporting arms 20 and 20, respectively. I have found sheet material composed of S-ply rubber and fabric sheeting highly practical. This sheeting is approximately Ms" in thickness and is composed of three layers of rubber alternatingwith two layers of fabric, with the rubber layers outermost. This material may range in weight from to 1 pound per square foot, so that the weight of the flexible sheet material for a door opening of 7' x 7' may amount to forty to fifty pounds. The material resembles laminated fabrics used for belting, and heavyweight material is required, for not only must the material be capable of taking the repeated blows and impacts of modern mechanical battery and gasoline powered freight cargo carriers as the same strike against it, but these striking forces must also be transmitted through this material to effect an opening of the doors when these movable vehicles impinge thereagainst.
Small window panes 5 and 5', of plastic material, may be provided in each of the flexible panels 1 and 1' as a safety measure.
Whilegravity hinges have been known for a long period of time, the hinge assembly in accordance with the invention is particularly rugged and reliable. This arises from the fact that the bearing unit for the pintle rod which is afiixed to the door supporting arm, may be formed integrally and may consist of a base strap 10' which may be aifixed to the upper end of vertical jamb 3 or 3' of the doorway by means of screw bolts 14. If the jambs 3 and 3 are of metal, thebase strap 10 may be welded thereto at the upper portion of the jamb. A lateral projection 11 extends from the lower end of the base strap 1i) and a lateral projection ,12 extends from the base strap 10 adjacent to the upper end thereof. The free end of projection 12 supports the lowermost portion of the semicircular track 13, the diametral ends of which curve upwardly from this point and merge with the enlarged upper end 10 of the base strap 10 (Fig. 5). A notch of V-shape or circular configuration is disposed at the lowermost point of track 13 to provide a secure jse at tor the pintle roller, described hereinafter, the
closed position of the door. Projection 11 is provided a with a circular opening 15 and projection 12 is provided with an aligned circular opening-16 whichwconstitute bearing bushes for the-pintl e rod fl ofrth'e hinge as- .sembly as .the samejexecutes its rotaryand reciprocating movements. a
j The spacing between the projections 11 and 12,1.which may amount 'toZ feet, provides an etfective. guide for the up and down movements of the.pintle rod 2f which may move 1% as thesam'e is rotated from .its loweri most dwell to itshighest positions at the extreme ope ning or closing limits of the. door" Furthermore the support of the .free'portionof the semicircularftrackway by the projection12 results he stablemounting for the trackway at" its mid-point to supplement 'the support thereof atthe oppositeends thereof on enlarged base portion (Figs; '2 and 5); .Therefore, the gravity hinge unit, which may beformed integrally as one piece, lends .itselfto economical. fabrication and easy mounting upon the door jamb. a r 7 "The pin'tlero'dfzl, which is designed toffor'm a compone'nt part 'of the gravity hinge, is preferably formed of%" rod material of alengt'h approximating 2 /2 feet which, as described above, it rotatably'and reciprocably movable .in bearing'bushfopenings and 16 of 2. 2" diameter... Theupper endiof the pintle rod is provided with lateral.extensiomorofiset 22 which over.-
liesthecentral part of the innerportion'of the arm 20. j extension is .fitted at its free end with a roller 23 fastened'thereon by bolt 24. The roller.23, which plates 33 and 34 at spaced points along the length of the supporting arm.
.In the preferred embodiment of the invention, as shown inFig. 4, the door flap 1 of sheet material is looped at its upper end in the form of a cylindrical loop 9 formed by rows of stitchings 8. The looped end isslid into the cylindrical tube 32, which may have an internal diameter of 4". Following the disposition :of the looped I 7 end 9 of the curtain door within the cylindrical tube 32,
with the free end of the door projecting through the slotted passage 31, the rod 36 is slid into the interior of' the loop 9 to provide .a secure support for the upper end of the curtain door. This support is secured firmly by the application of the end closure to the free end of the arm; The steel rod 36' may approximate a diameter oi /2" in order to fill in completely the space within the slotted cylindrical tube 32.
In order to improve the operating action of the curtain door, the slotted opening 31 along the lower boundary of the supporting and 20 is lined with rounded surfaces .35 and which may .be in the form of /2" diameter rods welded to the extremities .of the horizontal frame projections 29 and 27, respectively. These rods permit a limited flexing of the curtain door 1 as the latter is- V subjected to impacts of vehicles. preparatory to the trans- .mission of these impacts to the supporting arm20; This may be ofisetfi! fromthe rotary. axis of thepin'tle rod,
is mounted onball-bearingsso that-it may. roll easily on the track 'l3, as the .door is swung from its closed and openpositions. In.fact,.the door is supported 'by roller 23' resting on its arcuate; track'13' and its smooth operation 'is facilitated by the. guiding ei fects' afforded by the movement ofthepintle rod 21 in the bearing bushes 1'5.and16. "'If. the .roller 23'i s.'fitted with ball-bearings which require'no: oiling, it is .then only necessary to oil 'free. and easy. rotary. movement of the doors.
periodically the bearingbushes '15 and 16 .to assure a 1 'Ihepintlej rod v21-is drilled 'at displaced points therealong for. the affixiation thereof to the arm 20 supporting the fiexible panel-1.. As shown in Fig. 6, screw bolts 26 are passed throughfthediametraiopenings. in the pintle rod '21 an'dar'e-fasten'ed to theinnerend .25 of'the arm ,20 'by means of threaded .boltsj27. ITheopenings in the pintle rod and the bolts.26 passing therethrough areQdis-- posedin the plane of;.'o.fise.t.arm 22 and in the plane of improves the operating cycle of the'openingand' closing movementsof the door. and also prevents anyundue wear. of the flexible panel at its' point of connection with the V supporting armtherefor. V
a In the embodiment of the invention illustrated in Figs.
9 and 10, the supporting arm 20 is similar in construction to that described above.
. However, the mounting sup port for the flexible closure is modified by the provision of a double-faced sheet metal support forv the flexible fabric which extends beyond the slotted passage 31 bounded by the tubular rods .35 .and 35'. .The sheet metal support is formed of opposed plates. 40 and 42'c0rres- .ponding generally to-the contour of the supporting .arrn
'20, but extendingtherebeyond for approximately a '2" margin. The upper edge. of junction of the plates 40 and 42 is rounded into a generally cylindricaltormation 41 and is disposed horizontally in'ord er tofit within the slotted tube 32-mounted across the length of the supporting arm 20." The projecting boundaries of the plates "40 and 42 are drilled with staggered rivet holeswhich are aligned inthe .plates 40 and .42. The heavy 'flexible the supporting 'arm20' so that when the arm 22 and the rollejr '23 supported thereby are/in line with the lowern 1ost.Part of "the:tr'ack'13',-.the'door.is in its.closed posijtion' and is disposedwithin the plane of thedoor-fr'ame opening.
The supporting arrn20, as; well as its companion supplastic or rubber sheeting .is inserted between the plates 4t) and 42 byspr'inging them apart and thereafter the 7 same may be united by .riveting the threeplys.together with rivets 45.
,As shown in Fig. 9, the impactson the flexible door 43am transmitted therefrom to thesheet metalassembly porting arm 20', is preferably. framed ofshee'tmetal and is composed of a front. .wall .28 and a .rear .wall 26 capped'with a channelm'ember 33. .The front wall 28is bent inwardly .at its'lower endat-29 and-the -rear.'wal1 26 1s bent'mwardlyat 27 'to 'definea .slottedopening 31 along the lower boundary of the supporting arm which, 1n the illustrated embodiment of the invention, is formed ofa configuration resemblinggenerally a pair of juxtaposed trapezoids. T heinner end of the' arm adjacent to the hinge mounting is enlarged to provide a'secure mountingfor'the'pintle rod 21, while the free end 30 ofthe ..a'rm 20fneed be of only small-depth'and' a fraction of thedepth of the other end, since itiservesimerelyas a closure for. the .framework' of the'rnounting arm and poss blyas an end support for the slotted cylindrical tube P32 acting" as a guideipassage-which extends horizontally fromthe small end'3 0 acrossthe full length of the mount' mg arm '20; Theslotted cylindrical" tube'32-is :also .supported by openings in transversely disposed reenforcing I 40 and 42 and therefrom to the supporting arm20, with i wear or fatigue on'the parts being minimized by the 'rounded surfacesatforded by cylindrical rods 35 and35.. "When the closures describedabove are used as swinging doors for. cooler rooms, it isdesired. to sealthe doors as muchas possible against the loss of cooling air from the enclosure, EOIjthiS purpose a flexible sealing flap Tis' supported from thehorizontal lintel 4 and extends .anismsmay be applied-' easily' r6, existing; door openings by first1moun'ting the'base strap '10 onto th'ejamb .with
the pintle' rod in the-assembly. Thereafter, theroller v 23 may be aflixed to the lateral extension arm 22 of the pintle rod and the large end of the supporting arm 20 may be bolted to the pintle rod by means of bolts 26 and nuts 27. The removable cap 30 on the small end of the supporting arms 20 is then removed to permit the sliding of the upper end of the flexible door panel into the supporting arm whether it be of the construction shown in Fig. 4 or that shown in Fig. 9, whereupon cap 30 is replaced. The flexible sealing straps 7 and metallic sealing straps 48 may be applied to the lintel and jambs to prevent undue leakage of air from the chamber or storage room to which the doors are applied.
Upon wearing of any of the parts, replacements may be made by the simple dis-assembly and assembly of the parts as described hereinabovel The supporting arm for each door flap may be fabricated from any desired sheet metal, for example, 14 gauge sheet steel. The parts may be integrated by welding, bolting, or similar fastening expedients. The small end of the arm 20 remote from the pintle rod 21 may be cut to adapt the door to varying-sizes and the end closure 30 therefor may be varied accordingly or may even be omitted. The supporting arm may weigh as much or more than the flexible panel supported thereby. The combined weight is correlated to the degree of incline of the trackway 13 to permit the opening of the door to be executed without need for the imposition of undue force thereagainst. For example, the lesser the degree of incline of the trackway, the smaller is the force required to raise the door as it turns.
1 claim: 7
1. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material within a door frame, comprising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid supporting arm engaging only the upper portion of said panel, a vertical hinge of limited length affixed to one end of said arm, and means for mounting said hinge in only the upper part of said door frame for rotary movement about a vertical axis, leaving free the edge of said panel below said hinge, constituting the major height of said panel, and the opposite edge of said panel substantially in its entirety.
2. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material mounted for rotary movement on a door jamb, com prising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid arm for freely supporting said panel from only the upper portion thereof, a vertical hinge element of limited length affixed to one end of said arm and provided with a lateral extension at the upper end thereof, and a cam track mounted on the upper portion of the door jamb cooperating with said hinge element and lateral extension to automatically return said door to closed position following the flapping of the door to open position.
3. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material adapted for rotary movement on a door jamb about a vertical axis, comprising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid supporting arm for detachably connecting only the upper part of said panel to said arm, said arm having a vertical hinge element of limited length affixed to the end thereof, a slotted guide passage extending through said arm from the opposite end thereof and communicating with a slot extending across the bottom of said arm, and interengaging means between said guide passage and the upper part of said panel for suspending said panel through said slot, leaving free the vertical edge of said panel below said vertical hinge element.
4. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material adapted for rotary movement on a door jamb about a vertical axis, comprising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid hollow supporting arm for detachably connecting only the upper part of said panel to said arm, said arm having a vertical hinge element of limited length aflixed to the end thereof, a slotted cylindrical guide passage extending horizontally through said arm from the opposite end thereof and communicating with a slot extending across the bottom of said arm, a closure for the lastmentioned end of said hollow supporting arm, and interengaging means between said guide passage and the upper part of said panel for suspending said panel through said slot, leaving free the vertical edge of said panel below said vertical hinge element.
5. A swinging door as set forth in claim 4 wherein the height of the arm at the end of the closure is a fraction of the height of the arm at the end afi'ixed to the vertical hinge element.
6. A swinging door as set forth in claim 4 wherein said hollow supporting arm is provided with at least one transverse reenforcing plate between the opposite ends thereof to reenforce the arm and to provide intermediate support for said cylindrical guide passage.
7. A swinging door as set forth in claim 4 wherein said vertical hinge element is provided with a lateral extension at the upper end thereof in the plane of said arm, and a freely rotating rolling member adjacent the end of said extension.
8. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material adapted for rotary movement on a door jamb about a vertical axis, comprising a panel of said sheet material having a cylindrical loop at the upper edge thereof, a rigid supporting arm for detachably connecting the cylindrical loop of said panel to said arm, said arm having a vertical hinge element of limited length aifixed to the end thereof, a slotted cylindrical tube extending hori- Zontally tirongh said arm from the opposite end thereof and communicating with a slot extending across the bottom of said arm, said slotted tube receiving the cylindrical loop of the panel with the rest of the panel passing through said slot, a cylindrical bar extending into the interior of the loop, and a closure for the last-mentioned end of said supporting arm and the ends adjacent thereto of the slotted tube, loop and bar, leaving free the vertical edges of said panel below said closure and said vertical hinge element.
9. A swinging door as set forth in claim 8 wherein the slot extending across the bottom of the arm is bordared by rounded surfaces to minimize wear on the flexible panel adjacent to the junction lines between the panel and the arm.
10. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material adapted for rotary movement on a door jamb, comprising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid supporting arm for detachably connecting the upper part of said panel to said arm, said arm having a vertical hinge element of limited length affixed to the end thereof, a slotted cylindrical tube extending horizontally through said arm from the opposite end thereof and communicating with a slot extending across the bottom of said arm, a double-faced sheet-metal frame extending from a rounded junction therebetween having the junction fitting within the slotted tube and the frame extending through said slot beyond the bottom boundaries of said arm, and means for affixing the upper edge of said panel of sheet material between the opposite faces of said frame leaving free the opposite vertical edges of said panel.
11, A swinging door as set forth in claim 10 including a closure for the last-mentioned end of the supporting arm and the ends adjacent thereto of the slotted tube and double-faced frame, and rounded surfaces adjacent to the slot extending across the bottom of the supporting arm to minimize wear on the double-faced frame adjacent to the junction lines between said frame and arm.
12. A swinging door of heavy flexible sheet material within a door frame, comprising a panel of said sheet material, a rigid supporting arm engaging only the upper portion of said panel, a vertical pintle rod of limited length affixed to one end of said arm and extending above the upper edge of said arm, a lateral extension projecting from the upper end of said pintle rod superposing and in the plane of said arm, a roller member on the free end of said extension, a gravity hinge affixed to the door frame adjacent to said pintle rod comprising a sheet supporting said' roller member, lateral projections at the top and 'bottorn of; said base provided With aligned aper- "tures for guiding the pintle rod in iverticaly reciprocating movements, said track being inclined upwardly from its radial median inhoth directions to permit the paneland supporting arm therefor to swing in either direction from a the plane of the door frame and to be returned automatically thereto as the roller drops to its lowest median point by gravitational force. 7
g 13; A swinging door as set forth in claim 12 wherein the sheet metal base of the gravity hinge affixed to the door frame is enlarged at its upper end to integrate the a opposite .terminalsiof the semi-circular track, and in addition the lateral projections extending from said base are also integral therewith. 7
14. A swinging door as i set forth in claim 13 wherein the lowestn-iediah ofthe cir eular traclg is recessed 7 .to provide a secure seatifor theroller menjher therein.
i r References in the file of this patent v V V i UNITED-STATES PATENTS 1,112,159 Rossiter Sept; 29,
' 1,386,621 Hughes 'Aug. 9,1921 2,135,057 Slay'ter-et a1. a Nov. 1, 1938 2,279,572 Karin Aprf14, 1942 2,309,928, 2 Bennett Fe'b. 2,1943 2,619,167 Eckelfi Nov. 25, 1 952 15 2,621,725 Shacikoski Deci 16, 1952 2 ,630,170 Ewing Mar. 3, 1953 7 2 ,688,164 Nelson Sept '7', '1954 FOREIGN PATENTS 259,778 Great Britain Oct. 21, 1926 1,079,154 1954 France' .i;. e May 19,