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Publication numberUS2869614 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 20, 1959
Filing dateMay 25, 1955
Priority dateMay 25, 1955
Publication numberUS 2869614 A, US 2869614A, US-A-2869614, US2869614 A, US2869614A
InventorsFloyd B Wamsley
Original AssigneeFloyd B Wamsley
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Combination wheel chair and stretcher
US 2869614 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. Z0, 1959 F. B. wAMsLEY l 2,369,514

COMBINATION WHEEL CHAIR AND STRETCHER Filed May 25, 1955 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 JM .103 1% 19A/M ,10067 1 u /703/ ef@ Jan. 2o, 1959 F. B. WAMSLEY 2,869,614

COMBINATION WHEEL CHAIR AND STRETCHER Filed May 25, 1955 3 Sheets-EhemI 2 I 1w WU/ @@S Jan. zo, 1959 F. B. WAMSLEY 2,869,614

COMBINATION WHEEL 'CHAIR AND STRETCHER Filed May 25, 1955 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 United States Patent` O 2,869,614 COMBINATION WHEEL vCHAIR AND STRETCHER` Floyd B. Wamsley, Glendora, Calif. Application May 25, 1955, Serial No. 511,046 1o claims. (cl. 15s-3o) This invention relates to a combination wheel chair and stretcher, and more particularly to an adjustable and locomotive combination wheel chair and stretcher adapted for movement over a bed or over a toilet bowl.

The necessity and desirability for a chair with an adjustable back and leg portions is obvious. By converting the back and leg portions into a single horizontal plane with the seatportion, the device is converted into a stretcher whereby a person resting on the stretcher may be conveniently moved from the stretcher to a bed. A device of this type is particularly useful in situations when there is not a nurse or other person in attendance 4on the invalid to aid in moving the invalid from a wheel chair to a bed.

For a stretcher to b e effective for moving the invalid onto an adjoining bed, it is necessary that the stretcher be slidable over the bed with the body supporting structurc overlapping the bed and o f substantially the same height as the top of the bed. If the bed and stretcher do not overlap it is likely, if not probable, that the patient being moved would fall between the stretcher and the bed. This likelihood is increased by reason of the fact that the stretcher is supported on casters, and a slight` force on the stretcher in a direction away from the bed would cause the stretcher to move away from the bed. Needless to say, serious injury could result from the patient falling t-o the floor.

The invention herein contemplates a device providing the advantages indicated above. l

It is an object of the invention herein to provide a cornbination wheel chair and stretcher with means for adjusting` the leg and back portions thereof `to convert the chair into a stretcher.

`It is another `object ofthe invention herein to provide a stretcher on wheels capable of being moved over either an ordinary `bedor a hospital bed to facilitate movement of alpatient froln the stretcher to the bed.

It -is a further object of the invention herein to provide adjustment means for converting a wheel chair into a stretcher that are capable of use by a patient resting thereon., and are within easy reach of the patient for such use., l` l Whereas it is desirable, as heretofore noted, to provide a` chair that may beconverted .into a stretcher, it is also desirable to provide such a chair with locomotive features. By having selfpropelling features it becomes possible for the patient to move himself from one room `to another. It is, therefore, an object of the invention herein to provide locomotive means for use in connection with a combination wheel chair and stretcher.

It is also desirable that such a chair 4be adapted for movement over a toilet bowl and that means be providedin the chair for usingtoilet facilities without removimg the patient from the chair. It is, therefore, an object of the-invention herein to provide a wheel chair adaptable for movement over a toilet bowl.

It is a further object of the invention herein to provide a removable portionin the seat ofthe wheel chair there? by adapting the chair for use as a .toilet seat.

These and other objects of the invention herein will be apparent from the following detailed description and drawings, wherein like numerals are used to designate similar parts throughout.

Fig. 1 is a perspective view of the invention herein;

Fig. 2 is a top plan view;

Fig. 3 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view taken along the line 3-3 of Fig, 2;

Fig. 4 is a vertical cross-sectional view taken along the line 4-4 of Fig. 1;

Fig. 5 is a fragmentary horizontal View taken along the line 5 5 of Fig. 1;

Fig. 6 is a horizontal sectional view taken along the line' 6 6 of Fig. 4;

Fig. 7 is a horizontal sectional View taken along the line-77 of Fig. 4;

Fig. 8 is a partial exploded perspective view showing the supporting framework for the invention herein;

Fig. 9 is a perspective view of the locomotive mechamsm;

Fig. 10 is a horizontal sectional view taken along the line 10--10 of Fig. 1; and

Fig. 11 is an elevational view of the back elevating mechanism.

Referring now more particularly to the drawings, there is shown in Fig. 1 a combination wheel chair and stretch* er 12, including a supporting framework 14, an elevating mechanism 16, body support means 18, and locomotive means 20.

It will be seen from Fig. 8 that the supporting framework 14 includes a horizontally disposed U-shaped member consisting of arms 22 and 24 joined by a web 2o. The framework is made of tube steel. The ends of the arms 22 and 24 extend beyond the web 26, terminating in attened end portions 28 and 30. These end portions are apertured as at 32 and 34. The framework includes another U-shaped member pivo-tally connected to the foregoing member including arms 36 and 33 joined by web 40. The web 40 extends beyond the arms 36 and 38 terminating in pins 42 and 44. The pins are inserted through the apertures 32 and 34 in the rst mentioned U-shaped structure, and are rotatably carried thereby. The ends of arms 36 and 38 are provided with sockets adapted to receive swivelling casters 46 of conventional design. The ends of arms 22 and 24 are also provided with sockets adapted t-o receive casters 4S. it will be seen that because the framework is U-shaped, the device may be moved over a toilet bowl without any interference from structural members on the framework 14. The framework is shallow in height, extending slight 1y above the casters 46 and 48. The provision of the casters, as well as the shallowness Iof the framework makes it possible to slide this framework under a bed. In fact, the framework is adapted to fit either under a hospital bed or an ordinary bed used in homes.

The elevation means includes two oppositely facing, vertically disposed U-shaped tubular members 50 and 512 connected by a vertical joining structure 54. The U-shaped member 52 has the ends thereof flxedly attached to the arm 22 of the framework 14. The web 56 of the tubular U-shaped member 52 has attached thereto one end of the joining structure 54. The U-shaped tubular member 50 has its arms pointed upwardly and '3 is lixedly attached to the body support means 13, as will be described hereinafter. Ariixed to the web portion of the U-shaped member 56 isa T member 58. The arms of the T are attached to the web of U-,shaped member 56, with the shank extending downwardly therefrom.V

The shank of the T slidably fits into a tubular lmember 60 forming part of the joining structure 54 and atlixeld to the web 56 of the U-shaped member 52. The mem.- ber 6i? and the shank of T member 58 are keyed ktogether as at 62. They tubular member dil also includes ears 64 integral therewith provided with apertures 66.

Referring now to Fig. l it will be seen that between the ears 64 there is mounted a worm gear 67 suitably attached to a shaft 68 with a crank 7l) on the end thereof'. The shank of the T has provided thereon a rack 72 for engagement with the teeth of the worm. From the foregoing it will be apparent that by turning the crank 7i?, the worm gear operating on the rack 72 will cause the body supporting member 13 to be raised or lo-wered relative to the frame 14. lt will be seen that the crank 70 is conveniently placed so as to be readily available to a person sitting on the chair. v

Referring again to Fig. 8, the body supporting means 18 comprises a rectangular framework 74 of metal 'tubing for the seat, a second framework 76 pivoted thereto as a leg support, and a third framework '78 also pivoted to the framework 74 as a back support. The seat framework 74 is iixedly attached to the upstanding arms of the U shaped member t) at Si) and 82 by welding or any other suitable means. Extending from the arms 84 and S6 of the framework 74 are flattened end portions 8d. The leg supporting framework 76 includes arms 90 and 92 with flattened ears 94 on the ends thereof. The ears 94 at one end of the framework 76, and the ears 33 of the framework '74 are apertured and suitably joined together by a Vshaft gextending therethrough. On one end of the shaft is a locking member 9S which is of conventional type, such as complementary cams or wedges respectively fixed on the shaft and on the adja cent flattened end portion 3S, and is used to holdrthe two frameworks in any desired relative position. The frame work 78 is formed similarly to the framework 76 and is joined to the framework 74 in a manner similar to that indicated for framework 76. In Fig. l'it will be seen that if it is so desired a footrest lill? and a headrest 162 may be affixed to the ends of frameworks 76 and 7S. These rests are affixed to the frameworks 76 and 73 in a manner similar to the way in which framework 76 is attached to framework '74- and may ibe locked in any suitable position.

Referring to Fig. 3, there is placed on each of the framework 74, 76, 73, and the headrest 162 and the footrest 1th) stiffening support plates These may take the form of pieces of plywood, or, if so desired, of metal plates. llaced over 'the stiffening members are foam rubber cushions 106. These may be glued or otherwise aflixed to the underlying stiffening plates 104. Placed over the foam rubber cushions 196 are leather or plastic covering sheets ft. These covering sheets may be tacked, or otherwise affixed to the underside of the stiffening plates MP4.

Now to be considered is the manner in which the back and leg supports are made adjustable relative to the seat. As will be seen in Fig. ll, a sector 110 is aixed to one arm o-f the framework 73. Extending down from the arm S4 of the framework 74 is a bracket 112, suitably vapertured rotatably to support a shaft 114 o-n the end of which is affixed a worm gear 116. At the endof the shaft, opposite the worm gear 116, is a crank 11%. The arcuate edge of the sector 110 has teeth 120 thereon, which are shaped complementary to the teeth of the worm gear Filo. By turning the crank 116 the framework 78 may be pivoted relative to the horizontal framework 74. As will be seen in Fig. l, the crank 118 is conveniently placed and within easy .reach of a person sitting on the chair.

At the forward edge oli-the framework 74 there is another sector, worm gear and crank 122, which is similar to the structure heretofore described, and is used to pvot the leg-support framework 76 into any desired position relative to the framework 74. lt will beY unnecessary to describe this structure in detail as it is identical with the structure used for adjusting theframework 78.

Reference will now be had to Fig. 9 wherein the loco motive structure of the invention herein is shown. This structure includes pulleys 124, belts 126, and the interconnecting gearing and shafts necessary to effect selective movement of the wheels 128 effecting the locomotion. The device is so designed that by pulling on the outer reaches of the belts 126, in the manner indicated by the arrows in Fig. 9, a clockwise motion will be imparted to the wheels 128 to move the chair in a forward direction. The gearing is so designed that pulling on either one of the belts individually will move the wheel on that side of the chair, the belts operating'individually to move each wheel selectively.

The particular structure necessary to effect the desired result is shown also in Fig. 4. Starting with the structure necessary to move the left-hand wheel of the chair, there is shown a short, vertical shaft 130 fixedly mounted in a bracket 132 aliixed to arm 86 of framework 74. VRotatably mounted on the shaft is a bevel gear 134 which meshes with a bevel gear 136 connected to a shaft 138. On the end of the shaft 138 opposite the bevel gear 136 is another bevel gear 146. This end of the shaft is journaled in a bushing provided in a Vbracket 142 affixed to arm `84 of the framework 74. The bevel gear 149 meshes with another bevel gear 144 xedly attached' to a stub shaft 146. The stub shaft is enclosed withinv an outer sleeve 148 and an inner sleeve 150. The inner sleeve 150 is axially movable relative to the outer sleeve 148, but rotates with the shaft 146; The shaft 146 is joined to the inner sleeve by pin 152. The inner sleeve also has cut therein' a vertical slot or spline 153. Extending downwardly below the shaft 146, and co-axially therewith, is a second shaft 154 with a key 156 thereon. Key 156 slides in spline 153, thereby allowing vertical adjustability for the locomotive means for the left-hand wheel. Encircling the'shaft 154 is a second inner sleeve 158 which is` also enclosed within the outer sleeve 148. The second sleeve 15S has a key 160 ailixed thereto, which is received in a vertical spline or slot 161 cut into the inner surface of the outer sleeve 148. This key and spline allows for vertical adjustability ofthe locomotive means for the right-hand wheel. At the downward ex tremity of shaft 154 is aixed a bevel gear 162 meshing with another bevel gear 164 attached to a horizontal shaft 166. Shaft 166 is supported by bracket 168 attached to the arm 22 of framework 14, and isrotat'ably journaled' therein. At the end of shaft- 166', opposite'to the end to which bevel gear 164 is aixed, there is a spur gear' 170. This gear meshes withra second'spur garj172 (',sec Fig. 5') aflixed'to the axle 174 of the wheel 128. Afol'- lowing of the gear train will reveal that' by`v` pulling fror'n front to rearl on the outer reach of the belt member 126 on the left-hand side of the chair, a clockwise movement is imparted to wheel 128. Movement on the left-hand belt imparts movement to the left-hand wheel only.

The movement of theright-hand wheel isv effected by pulling on the outer reachy of the belt 126 from front to rear on the right side of the chair. This imparts a move ment to the pulley 124 which is keyed to the outer sleeve 148 at 176. The outer sleeve, as previously mentioned, is keyed at to the inner sleeve 158. The inner sleeve. at the bottom thereof', has an attached bevel gear.178 which meshes with bevel gear 180. Bevel gear is axed to shaft 182 which has a'spur 'gear' 184 affixedthereto. This -spur'gear meshes with anotherspurf'ge'ar 186 (see Fig. 5) connected to the axle 188 of right-hand wheel 128. Following the gear train will reveal that 4fthe backward pull on the outer reach of belt 1261will to the supporting frame- 14. `The cross-sectional` relationship of the sleeves and shafts is shown in Figs. 6 and 7. It is further to be noted that the locomotive means is compact in form, andoextendsdown but a limited distance on the left-hand side `(as `viewed by an occupant) from the underside of 4the seat framework 74.` Thisis desirable in order that the" stretcher lit asclosely to the top of a bed as is possible.

Now to be described is the removable portion in the seat member which makes it possible for a person operatingthe chair to use it as a toilet seat. Referring to Figs. 1, 2 and 3, there is shown acircular cut out section or trap door 190. This trap door extends through the outer covering 108, the foam rubber cushion V106, and the stiifenng plate 104, making this member entirely removable therefrom. As will be seen in Fig. 3, this section is independently provided with its own stilening plate 104, a foam rubber cushion 106and a plastic or leather"cover 108. Aixed to the underside of the trap door 190 are bars 192 supported by brackets 196 depending from and attached to the underside of the trap door. Depending from the underside of the stiffening plate of frame 74, and suitably attached thereto, are two identical plates 198. These two plates have guideways 202 and 204 provided therein. The guideways include horizontal portions 206 and 208, with diagonal arms 210 and 212 extending upwardly therefrom. The ends of the bars 192 are received at the upper end of the diagonal branches 210 and 212. To move the trap door 190 out of its normal `position in the body portion of the seat, there is provided a chain and sprocket drive 214.` The sprockets 216 are affixed to a shaft 218 which is journaled in the plates 198. The sprockets 216 are affixed to shaft 218 adjacent the plates198 and a crank 222 is aixed to one terminal end of the shaft. At the other end of plates 198 are idler sprockets` 224 aflxed to a shaft 226 which is journaled in plates 198. Chains 230 are axed at spaced apart positions to the forwardly disposed bar 192. The chains then extend around sprockets 224, around sprockets 216 and thence to the rearwardly disposed bar 192 to which the other ends are attached. By turning crank 222 in a counterclockwise direction, it will be seen that trap door 190 is drawn down the diagonal guideways 210 and 212 and then horizontally along the guideways 202 and 204. In retracted position the trap door 190 is shown in dotted lines in Fig. 3. To bringthe trap door back into position in the seat member, all that need be done is to turn the crank in a clockwise direction which pulls the trap door along the guideways and back up into position.

With `only the chains 230 to support the trap door 190 in position, it is likely that the trap door would not be held firmly enough to support the weight of a person sitting on the chair. For this reason, a means is provided to lock the cut out portion in position on the seat. The means for accomplishing this includes two slide bars 232 of identical structure. Each of the slide bars 232 includes an elongated portion 234 and a downturned end portion 236. The bars are supported on the underside of the trap door 190 by U-shaped brackets 238 and on the seat member by plates 239. To remove the trap door 190 the downturned ends 236 are pulled outwardly from the edges of the chair, thereby releasing the trap door for movement down the guideways. To secure the trap door again, the bars 232 are pushed inwardly and slide under brackets 238 and plates 239 provided on the underside 'of the trap door 190 and the seat member.

Ibero yet remains to be described the manner in which the device is converted from a wheel chair into a 'stretcher slidable over the edge of a bed. Moreparticularly, there remains to be described the means for disengaging the driving wheels and the bringing into engagement of the casters on the front end of the wheel chair. This feature is necessary in order that the stretcher be movable towards an adjacent bed. It is obvious that if the drive wheels V128 are in engagement with the oor, it would be impossible to impart sidewise motion to the stretcher. For this reason the drive wheels are lifted out of engage ment with the floor surface, and the casters onthe front end of the chair are brought into engagement with the oor, after which sidewise movement may be imparted to the device.

Referring to Fig. 1 it will be seen that a sector 240 is xedly attached to frame member 36. The arcuate edge of this sector has teeth 242thereon. Engageable with teeth 242 is a worm gear 244 xedly attached to a shaft 246 rotatably mounted and held against axial movement in a bracket 248 affixed to U-shaped member 52. On

the end `of shaft 246 opposite the worm gear 244 is a` crank 250. The shaft 246 is of suicient length so that the crank 250 is within easy reach and readily accessible to a person sitting on the chair.

The casters 46 are brought into engagement with the oor surface, and drive wheels 128 are lifted out of engagement with the floor surface, by turning crank 250. Turning the crank 250causes the worm gear 244 to mesh with the teeth 242`on the sector 240. This in turn causes the framework 36, 38 and 40 to pivot on pins 42 jonrnaled` in apertures 32 and 34 of end pieces 28 and 30. The framework 36, 38 and 40 is pivoted downwardly towards the floor surface until the casters 46 support the weight of thewheel chair, and the drive wheels 128 are slightly above the door surface.

It is apparent from the foregoing detailed description that the invention herein `combines into a single device many features not heretofore known,` or found only individually in the prior art. The device is` readily convertible from a chair toa stretcher; from achair to a toilet seat; and from a chair without locomotion to one with locomotion. The drive wheels operate selectively,

:and all means for effecting adjustability are readily accessible to a person sitting on the chair.

Although a specific embodiment of the invention has been shown for purposes of illustration, it is to be understood that various changes and modifications can be made without departing from the spirit and. scope of the invention. Accordingly, the invention is to be limited only as set forth in the following claims.

The invention is hereby claimed as follows: v

1. A combination wheel chair and stretcher including vertically disposed elevating means, a base connected at one side to and extending laterally from said elevating 'means and having an opposite free edge, a support attached at the corresponding side to said elevating means and extending laterally therefrom over said base and having an opposite free edge, and locomotive means carried by said base and said support whereby the: combination may be moved by an operator resting thereon.

2. A wheel chair including a base of U-Shaped conguration with the open end of the U facing towards the rear of the chair, elevating means ahxed to one arm of said U-shaped base, a support connected to and extend ing laterally outward from said elevating means over said U-shaped Abase and having an outer free edge, and locomotive means carried by said base and support members and operable by a person sitting on said support. said support being provided with a removable portion in the center thereof, the open end of said U-shaped base adapting the chair for movement over a toilet bowl and the removable portion in said support :adapting said o support for use as a toilet seat.

' base' and support' and providing for vertical movement of said support relative to said base, said base vand support extending laterally "outward 'in a single direction from said elevating means and having free outer edges, and locomotiv-e means carried by said base and support adapted for operation by a` person resting on said sup port, said support including a fixed central seat, leg support pivotally connected to saidsea't, a back support pivotally connected to said central seat, and means for selectively adjusting said leg" and back supports to any desired position relative to said central seat,

4. `A combination wheel chair and stretcher as set forth in claim 3 wherein said back support further includes a headrest pivotally connected thereto and adjustable there with, and said leg support further includes a footrest pivotally connected thereto and adjustable therewith.

5. A wheel chair comprising a seat, a leg rest, and a back rest, means 'pivotally mounting said legl rest and said back rest relative to the seat whereby said leg rest v and said back rest may be adjusted to lie substantially V'coplanar with the seat to form a stretcher, or angularly with respect thereto to form a chair, a toilet opening in the seat, a supporting frame, said frame extending substantially commensurate with said seat for supporting the chair, said frame being disposed below the' seat in spaced relation therewith, wheels for supporting the frame, and means interconnecting the frame and the seat disposed entirely on one side ofthe seat to facilitate movement of the structure over a bed when the seat, leg rest and backrest are in coplanar position, the rear side of said frame being open` whereby said frame may be disposed around a toilet bowl to facilitate use ofthe structure therewith;

6; A wheel chair as definedv claim 5",'wherein means 8. A wheel chair as defined in claim 5, wherein lo- ,comotion means is'provided adjacent the seat for drivingy at least certain" of saidwheels, and means is' provided for vertically adjusting the height of the seat` and locomotion means relative' to the frame.-`

9. A wheel chair' as defined in claim 5. wherein locomotion means'is provided for driving at least certain of said wheels, and means is provided. for disabling the action4 of the driveto permit thechair structure tol b`e shifted laterally.'l y

10. A wheel' chair as defined in claim 5, wherein a movable closure member is provided for said toilet opening, and means ispro'vided for propelling said closure member towardl and away from said opening.

References Cited in the le-ofthis patent` UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,094,117 Butler Apr. 21, 1914 1,224,478 McNeil Mayv 1, 19.17 1,219,295 Hadley Mar. 13, 1917 1,527,754 Simon -f c Feb. 24, 1925 1,691,620 Wilson a Nov; 13, 1928 1,723,288 MacFee Aug. 6, 1929 1,857,031 Schaffer May 3, 1932 1,899,040 Koken Feb. 28, 1933 2,086,550 Hartig v- -..v Julyf13, 1937 2,101,290 Pierson Dec. 7, 1937l 2,322,683 Costa a June-22, 1943 2,377,649 Quinney June 5, 1945 2,498,853 Hassold et. al. Feb. 28, 1950 2,592,025 Gray Apr. 8, 1952 2,609,862 Pratt T Sept. 9, 1952 2,635,899' Osbon4 ..c Apr. 21, 1953 2,673,987- Upshaw:v 3.--.... Apr; 6, 1.954 FOREIGN PATENTSv 836,236 Germany Apr. 10, 1.952

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U.S. Classification280/230, 5/86.1, 5/81.10R, 5/604, 280/211, D24/183, 280/250, 5/618, 297/DIG.400, 4/480
International ClassificationA61G5/00
Cooperative ClassificationY10S297/04, A61G5/006
European ClassificationA61G5/00C