US 2919817 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
| MAsLow xuocxnowu 'SHELVING UNIT Jan. 5, 1960 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Oct. 5, 1955 scs ST'L-FII FIG.IO
LQUIS MASLOW INVENTOR.
Jan. 5, 1960 MASLOW v KNOCKDOWN SHELVING UNIT INVENTOR LOUIS MASLOW M 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Flled Oct 5, 1955 United States Patent KNOCKDOWN SHELVING UNIT Louis Maslow, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Application October 5, 1955, Serial No. 538,592
Claims. (Cl. 211-148) This invention relates to further improvements in the construction of furniture such as cabinets, shelves, bookcases or the like which can be rapidly assembled from component parts, dismantled, or modified to provide a varied assortment of furniture by the homemaker himself. Conventional household or office furniture in addition to being expensive are not portable, nor adapted for home erection or modification hence limiting the functional and aesthetic development thereof.
The instant invention is directed to frames of substantially similar construction which can be joined at home by an unskilled person to form a variety of furniture designs, dismantled, or modified, without additional coupling means nor tools of any form whatsoever. The coupling means are integrally incorporated in the frames requiring but a simple manual operation to effect an assembly or the dismantling of an existing assembly.
Consequently the primary object of the invention is the provision of an inexpensive furniture construction adapted for mass production methods of fabrication, which can readily be assembled or modified into a varied assortment of furniture shapes or dismantled into substantially similar units adapted for transportation and storage without tools, wherein the means for coupling the components are integrally incorporated in the components requiring a relatively simple manual operation to either dismantle or secure the components together.
Another inventive object is the provision of economical frames designed particularly for production techniques wherein the said frames can readily be joined to provide a large variety of sturdy stylish furniture and wherein coupling means are integrally incorporated in the frames closed.
In Figures 4, 5 and 6, there is shown a plurality of shelves or frames secured transversely to spaced parallel to permit an unskilled person to manually dismantle or assemble the frames without the aid of tools.
A still further inventive object is the provision of an inexpensive latticed furniture construction, comprising an assemblage of substantially similar latticed units, said units being secured together with integral coupling means not requiring the use of tools to either assemble or dismantle the frames.
A still further inventive object is the provision of latticed frames provided with interlocking portions whereby transversely disposed frames can be dismantled or assembled by hand without tools.
Further objects and novelly advantageous features will become more apparent from the following detailed description, appended claims and drawings in which:
Figure 1 is a top plan view of a frame incorporating the instant invention;
Figure 2 is a sectional view taken along plane 2-2 of Figure 1;
Figure 3 is a front elevational view of the frame shown in Figure 1;
Figure 4 is an end elevation of an assembly of transversely disposed frames illustrating the manner of effecting an assembly;
Figure 5 is a partial front elevation of the assembly of Figure 4;
Figure 6 is a partial top plan view of the assembly of Figure 4;
Figure 7 is a partial top plan view of a modified form of shelf or frame;
Figure 8 is a partial front elevation of the assembly Figure 15 is a cross-sectional view of the shelf frame shown in Figure 13 taken along line 1515 thereof;
Figures 14 and 17 are partial top plan and front elevational views, respectively, of another form of shelving frame assembly; and
Figures 16 and 18 are partial top plan views, respectively, of still another form of shelving frame assembly. One of the novel shelf or frame components which is usually horizontally disposed in an assembly is seen in Figures 1, 2 and 5 to comprise a longitudinal series of uniformly spaced ribs 26 secured by welding or the like to transverse rods 21, 22 and 23. The front and rear edges of the frame comprise pairs of spaced ribs 24 and 25, both pairs being parallel to the ribs 20. The spacing of the rib pairs 24 and 25 is perpendicular to the plane of the frame as better seen in Figure 2. The ribs 20 are secured along the upper surfaces of the rods 21, 22 and 23 whereas the rods 21, 22 and 23 are disposed between the pairs of ribs 24 and 25. Although the ribs 20 are shown rectangular in section and the ribs 24, 25 and 21, 22 and 23 as circular in cross-section; other shapes can easily be substituted without departing from the inventive scope. The exterior edges of the ribs are provided at their respective ends with curvate pairs of notches 26, A
27, 28 and 29 which provide means for securing the frame to transverse supporting frames as will be dissupporting frames 30 providing tiers of shelves. The supporting frames 30 each comprise pairs of vertical supports 32 and 33 interconnected with spaced horizontal stifleners 34 and form transverse supports for the shelves.
The space separating the pairs of supports 32 and 33 is smaller than the overall width of the frame, i.e. the out to out dimension from the ribs 24 to the ribs 25 is greater than the space separating the inner surfaces of the supports 32 and 33. Consequently the notches 26, 27, 28 and 29 are made large enough to permit the insertion of the frame between the supports 32 and 33 as shown in the plan view of Figure 6.
In making an assemblythe horizontal frames are tilted relative to the horizontal position and the notches 26, 27, 23 and 29 are aligned with the supports 32 and 33.
The horizontal frames are then forced downward to wards the horizontal position causing the notches to securely engage and partially encompass the supports 32 and 33. sufficient compressive pressure between the walls of the notches and the supports to prevent dislodgement during normal usage. It should further be noted that the ribs 24 and 25 also bear upon the stilfeners 34 of the vertical 9 Patented Jan. 5, 1960 In the horizontal position illustrated there is a) resist vertical downward pressure from objects placed on the ribs it is not necessary to positively restrict upward movement of the frame relative to the supports.
To dismantle the assembly it is only necessary to force manually one pair of ribs upward re ative to the engaging supports. Such upward pressure causes the frame to tilt relative to the horizontal reducing thereby the frictional engagement between the supports and the ribs. Thedimensions of the horizontal frame relative to the support spacing is such that the induced frictional forces can be readily overcome by manual force applied by a person of less than average strength.
A modified form of the invention illustrated in Figures 7 through 11. The modified form of the shelf or frame shown in said figures is in all respects similar to the shelf illustrated in the preceding figures except for the provision of additional reinforcement in order to adapt it for use in supporting heavy materials or for longer spans. Thus the modified frame comprises spaced ribs 36 secured to transverse rods 37. The front and rear edges of the frame comprise pairs of spaced ribs 38. and 39 which are closely spaced adjacent the ends of the frame and more widely spaced in parallel relation along the central portion thereof. The pairs of spaced ribs 33 and 35! are further provided with a trusslike reinforcement in the form of a sinuously bent wire which is secured to the upper and lower members of ribs 38 and 39 abutting points, as by welding. The longitudinal edges of the frames are thus substantially reinforced against bending stresses and a more rigid assembly is achieved wherein considerably greater weights may be supported over substantially increased spans.
Although the invention has herein been illustrated and described with respect to a supporting frame 30 located at the left hand side of the horizontally disposed shelf or frame, it will of course be understood that a similar supporting frame would usually be located on the right hand side of the shelf for engagement with pairs of notches 2'6 and 29.
Figures l4, l6, l7 and 18 illustrate some of the ways in which the basic components herein disclosed may be employed to extend a shelving assembly horizontally and vertically. Figures 14 and 17 illustrate one form of horizontal extension of a shelving assembly. In this form the pair of vertical support members 33 support the shelf components 4%, ii and and serve to interlock said shelves which thus extend therefrom horizontally in both directions. It will of course be understood that the other extremities of said shelves (not shown) are engaged in a similar fash on with similar vertical supports thereby permitting the extension of the shelving assembly horizontally in either direction to any extent desired. Although there is illustrated a shelf in which only one pair of the vertically algned notches 25, 27 are engaged with only one of the wires constituting the vertical support it will of course be understood that with respect to each shelf both pairs of notches may be engaged with the vertical support thus locking each shelf frame end with both vertical wires of the support 33 to thereby provide addit onal rigidity. The figures illustrate an arrangement in which the shelves are positioned in staggered relation; it will however be understood that the shelves may be in alignment with each other as is illustrated by shelf components 43 and 44 of Figures 16 and 18. Said Figure 18 also illustrates one of the ways in which vertical supports may be superposed to form vertical extensions of the shelving assembly. Thus one vertically aligned pair of each set of notches 26 and 27 of shelf units 45 and 4-6 engage with the upper and lower vertical support 33 thereby serving to lock the vertical supports to each other and further locking the horizontally disposed shelf units so as to provide an interlocked assembly.
Figures 12, 13 and 15 illustrate a modified forrnof shelf unit which is adapted to be placed into positron on a vertical support without being forced into position, the frictional gripping force being applied thereafter as will be more particularly described. The arrangement permits an increase in the amount of pressure applied by the walls of the notches against the vertical support members and also prevents said members from being scored or marred as the shelf frame is placed in position. The shelf frame illustrated in Figures 12, 13 and 15 is in all respects similar to that illustrated in Figure 1 except that the end transverse rods are formed of two units 48 and 49. The outer ends of transverse rods 3-8 and 4-9 are secured to the pairs of spaced ribs 50 and 51 while the free inner ends are spaced from each other as shown at 52 in Figure 12. As shown in Figures l3 and 15 said free ends are surrounded by a rotatable sleeve 53. In Figure 12 the sleeve is shown removed for purposes of clarity. Said sleeve 53 surrounds the free ends of ribs 4'9 and 5t) and the intermediate space 52. Sleeve 53 is formed with converging or tapered side edges 54 which form cam surface bear ing against ribs 55. The sleeve may advantageously be formed of a trapezoidally shaped blank of sheet metal which is coiled around the ends of the ribs and to form a cylinder with the tapered side Walls indicated at 54. in its initial or normal position the sleeve 53 is positioned so that the convergent or narrowest portions of the cam surface of the cylindrical sleeve bear against he ribs 54 and 55. The sleeve may then be rotated causing the wider divergent portions of the sleeve cam surface to bear against said ribs 54 and 55 and since said ribs are secured to rods 49 and 59, the rods arfl thus forced apart thus causing the entire end portions of the shelf frame to be widened. In this case the overall width of the srelf frame can thus be smaller than the space separating pairs of supports 32 and 33 i.e. the normal out to out dimension from the ribs 50 to the ribs 51 can be smaller than the space separating the inner surfaces of the supports 32 and 33. Consequently the shelf frame can be positioned in a horizontal plane between said vertical supports without contacting them or being forced into position. In order to secure the frame in position it is only necessary to rotate the sleeve thereby expanding the frame end so as to provide a gripping contact between the notched ends of the shelf frame and the vertical supports. Rotation of the sleeve is readily accompl'shed by inserting a rod or nail in perforation es in the sleeve whereby the sleeve is easily rotated and the frame end is thus spread to securely lock the shelf frame in position.
It is now apparent that the above described structure provides an extremely simple method for either joining or disconnecting a plurality of frames. No tools or special couplings are required which may be misplaced or not available.
Although the embodiment depicted is a preferred form, the many forms obtainable by changes in size, shape, material, arrangement are all obviously within the scope of the invention.
Having duly described in detail the nature of the invention, a grant of Letters Patent is desired for the novelty as defined in the following claims.
l. A furniture assembly comprised of a horizontal frame and at least two spaced vertical frames, said horizontal frame comprising two parallel pairs of front and rear ribs secured together with transverse rods, the ends of the ribs being provided with notches along the outer edges, the axis of the notches being vertical, each of the vertical frames comprising pairs of spaced supports joined with the stifieners at right. angles to the supports, said notches being in alignment with the supports, the
spacing between the support pairs being slightly less than the width of the first said frame along a section through the notches the ends of said frame being resiliently compressible toward each other, thereby permitting the horizontal frame to be forced into a truly horizontal position by pressing the horizontal frame downward relative to the supports, creating thereby compressive pressure between the supports and the walls of the notches, the reception of the supports in the notches causing a secure coupling action between the frames, said ribs being disposed in contact with a stiffener preventing downward movement of the horizontal frame beyond the stiffener, whereby upward tilting pressure applied to the first said frame will cause disengagement between the notches and the supports for dismantling purposes.
2. An assembly comprising a frame and spaced vertical supports, said frame including parallel sides and opposite transverse ends, said sides comprising pairs of spaced ribs, the spacing of the ribs being perpendicular to the plane of the frame, said sides including resiliently defiectable axial projections, said supports being spaced less than the width of the frame from side to side, including notches permitting the sides to engage the supports in a retaining manner when the frame is perpendicular to the supports providing compressive pressure between the sides and the supports, movement of the frame to a position not at right angles with the supports causing disengagement.
3. A furniture assembly comprised of a horizontal frame and at least two spaced vertical frames in frictional engagement therewith, said horizontal frames comprising two parallel pairs of front and rear ribs secured together with transverse rods intermediate the ends of said ribs, the endmost of said rods being formed of two units, the outer end of each of said units being secured to a pair of ribs and the free ends of said units being disposed in spaced relation, a rotatable sleeve surrounding said free ends and the space therebetween, said sleeve being formed with converging side edges which form cam surfaces bearing against portions of said frame secured to said units whereby upon rotation of said sleeve, said units are forced apart thereby moving said front and rear ribs apart and widening said frame to thereby provide increased frictional engagement between said ribs and said vertical frames.
4. A furniture assembly comprising a horizontal frame and at least two spaced vertical frames, said horizontal frame comprising two pairs of front and rear ribs secured together with transverse rods, the ribs of each pair being closely spaced adjacent the ends of the frame and more widely spaced in parallel relation along the central portion thereof, a sinuously bent wire secured between each pair of ribs along the more widely spaced portions thereof to provide a reinforcement therefor, the ends of the said ribs being provided with notches along the outer edges, the axis of the notches being vertical, each of the vertical frames comprising pairs of spaced supports joined with stifieners at right angles to the supports, said notches being in alignment with the supports, the spacing between the support pairs being slightly less than the width of the first said frame along a section through the notches, the ends of said frame being resiliently compressible toward each other, thereby permitting the horizontal frame to be forced into a truly horizontal position by pressing the horizontal frame downward relative to the supports, creating thereby compressive pressure between the supports and the walls of the notches, the reception of the supports in the notches causing a secure coupling action between the frames, said ribs being disposed in contact with a stiffener preventing downward movement of the horizontal frame beyond the stiffener, whereby upward tilting pressure applied to the first said frame will cause disengagement between the notches and the supports for dismantling purposes.
5. A planar relatively thin frame having opposite ends, each of said ends being comprised of a pair of spacedapart transversely extending rods having notched portions adapted to engage transversely disposed supports when the frame is at right angles to said supports, means carried by said rods for expanding the transverse dimension of said frame to effect secure engagement between said notched portions and said supports, said expanding means comprising a rotatable sleeve having converging side edges forming cam surfaces which bear against a portion of said frame in order to effect said expansion upon the rotation of said sleeve.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS I D. 174,647 Maslow May 3, 1955 28,573 Hall June 5, 1860 241,645 Gilfillan et al. May 17, 1881 894,711 Worchester July 28, 1908 963,218 Gilmore July 5, 1910 1,612,937 Mitchell Jan. 4, 1927 1,833,935 Dickey Dec. 1, 1931 1,879,372 McComb Sept. 27, 1932 2,086,118 Chadwick July 6, 1937 2,101,487 Anderson Dec. 7, 1937 2,316,560 Causey Apr. 13, .1943
FOREIGN PATENTS 13,224- Great Britain May 1, 1897 74,107 Denmark May 5, 1952