US 2982339 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 1961 J. H. CLARIN 2,982,339
FOLDING CHAIR Filed Jan. 12, 1959 supported parallel relation ,to
Unite States 2,982,339 FOLDING CHAIR H. Clarin, Oak Park, 111., assignor to Clarin Mfg.
Co., Chicago, Ill., acorporation of Illinois Filed Jan. 12, 1959, Ser. No. 786,077
3 Claims. (Cl. 155-143) ing the folded chair from the collapsed to the extended seat-forming position.
The main object of this invention is the provisionrof .a novel folding chair construction which incorporates a pivotally mounted seat and which offers the advantages of increasing the seating capacity of a given floor area and of improved ease of operation when extending the folding chair from the folded to the unfolded arrangement. A further object of this invention is to provide a ,foldable chair which offers the above-mentioned features and which is of simple, sturdy and economical con- .struction. Other objects and advantages of this invention will be understood by reference to the following description andto the accompanying drawings wherein one embodiment of a folding chair constructed in accordance with this invention is illustrated.
In the drawings:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of the chair shown in seat-formingdisposition, and with the seat also shown inthe generally upright position in dotted outline; Figure 2 is a fragmentary enlarged view of the seat and operating linkage when the chair is folded, with an intermediate position indicated by broken lines;
. Figure 3 is a fragmentary side view showing the seat and operating linkage in extended seat-forming position; and
Figure 4 is a view similar to Figure 3, showing the operating linkage in extended seat-forming position and showing the seat in the tilted, generally upright position.
response to folding andunfolding of the chair between a folded or collapsed position in general alignment with the legs 13 and 17 (Figure 2), and an unfolded or exthe. surface on which the chair is placed (Figure 1). Hingedly attached to the supporting link 19 is a seat 21 which, when the chair is unfolded, is shiftable upwardly from a seating position in th lin 9 19 en ra ly upright position transverse to the link 19 (Figure 4),
tended position disposed transversely of the legs in generally parallel relation to the tail t .9
Fat nted May 2', .3 :1:
2 As is readily apparent, shifting of the seat to the generally upright position acts to effectively reduce the area occupied by theextending forward portion of the seat. This space reduction may be effectively used to increase the available back to front clearance between parallel chair rows to'thereby afford increased ease of movement between the rows. On the other hand, the additional room made available byshifting the seat to the upright position also permits closer over-all spacing ,of parallel chair rows to increase the seating capacity of a given fioor area without diminishing the effective clearance between the rows.
Considering the construction of the disclosed chair in greater detail, the front legs 13 constitute the free extremities of a U-shaped frame member 23 having a back panel 25 secured within the frame member arch. As illustrated, the frame member is formed from a fiat metal strip, the edges of which'have been rolled inwardly to provide a pair of beads 27 for stiffening the frame of the chair. Additional structural rigidity is imparted to the frame member 23 through the use of a pair of cross braces 29 and 31 which are welded or otherwise suitably secured to the front legs 13, and which are also formed of beaded cross section. The cross brace 29 ex.- tends between the front legs above the pivotal interconnection 15 of the front and rear legs and, as will be further shown, cooperates with other portions of the chair to assist in determining the unfolded seat-forming .chairposition; The other cross brace 31 extends between the front legs below the pivotal connection 15 and also has fixedly connected thereto a pair of diagonal braces 33 which extend to a connection with the extreme lower portion of the front legs. Each of the rear legs 17 is formed with a main segment 35 of beaded cross section which extends downwardly from the pivot 15 and a strap or extension 37 which is suitably welded or otherwise fixedly secured to the main segment 35 and which extends upwardly beyond the pivotal connection 15. The rear legs 17 are braced to provide increased rigidity and stability by a pair of cross braces 39 and 41 which are also of beaded cross section and which are welded or otherwise fixed between the main leg segments 35. The lower extremities of the front and rear legs are preferably provided with rubber shoes or the like, such as indicated at 43, to obtain non-skidding and non-marring features when in enother end by a pin 45 with a second .or connecting link 47. In turn, the connecting links 47 are pivotally connected to the front legs 13 at a point spaced vertically above the pivotal interconnection 15 and above the inter.- connection of the link 19 with the leg extension 37 The rigidity of the seat suporting links 19 is strengthened by forming them of L-shaped cross section and by interconnecting them by means of across bar 49 which is spot welded or otherwise suitably attached to the hor izontally disposed flanges of the seat supporting links The cross bar 49 is also formed with a beaded cross section similar tothe other braces and legs except that an additional stiffening rib 51is formed in the flat between the longitudinal beads.
Secured to .each of the seat supporting links adjacent was b n? i a 1 enga n as or button 53 which is fabricated of a rubberized material to cushion contacting engagement between the seat 21 and the supporting links 19 and to diminish the noisewhich would otherwise result from impact between the seat 21 and the supporting links 19. t While various seat structures are readilyeinployable, in the illustrated embodiment, the seat 21 comprises a metallic frame 55 which has securedtherein a wooden seat member 57. Welded on each side of the seat is a plate 59 having an opening or aperture through which the pin 45 extends, and by which the seat is hingedly connected to the links 19 and 47. I
The plates 59 are each also formed with an abutment or stop 61 which is positioned for engagement with an ear 63 formed on the adjacent link 47 in extending relationship rearwardly of the pin 45 interconnecting the seat 21 and the links 19 and 47. The location and forma tion of the car 63 and the stop 61 are such as to provide contacting engagement between the adjacent edges of the ear and the stop when the connecting link 47 and the seat 21 are in generally parallel relation.
As can be seen especially in Figures 3 and 4 of the drawings, the ear 63 also serves to limit unfolding extension of the chair and thereby determine the seatforming chair disposition by engagement against the back surface of the upper cross brace 29 connecting the front legs 13. V
When the chair is extended in the seating arrangement as shown in Figure 3, the seat is supported by the seat supporting links 19 in generally parallel relation thereto, i.e., in generally parallel relation to the floor. However, as seen particularly in Figure 4, the seat may be swung about the pin 45 from the generally horizontal position until the stop 61 engages the car 63 to limit tilting of the seat to a position generally transverse to the seat supporting link 19 and generally parallel to the connecting link 47. As is readily apparent, the upright position of the seat serves to materially increase the space available in front of the chair to enable ease of passage between parallel rows and/or to obtain closer row spacing without diminishing the space available for passage between the rows.
The chair can be readily folded to the collapsed position illustrated in Figure 2 by tilting the extended chair forwardly and by applying closing pressure with the foot against the lower rear leg cross brace 39 to swing the scissored legs into generally parallel relation. Incident to this movement, the links 19 and 47 rotate so that they are also in parallel relation with the legs 13 and 17 and so that the pin 45 is disposed upwardly of the respective interconnections of the links 19 and 47 to the legs 17 and 13. In this folded condition, the seat is disposed between and in generally parallel relation to the front and rear legs 13 and 17, as well as being generally parallel to the links 19 and 47, and is disposed with its rearward edge disposed upwardly in adjacent position to the back panel 25. v
' As mentioned earlier, another very important feature of the present invention is the ease with which the seat 21 may be unfolded from the collapsed position. With reference particularly to Figure 2 of the drawings, it will be noted that the chair is readily unfolded from its collapsed position, shown in full lines, by grasping the upper end of the seat 21 while standing to the rear of the 'folded chair. The seat 21 is moved rearwardly and downwardly, with the seat and the seat supporting frame pivoting about the connections of the links 19 with the forward ends of the leg extensions 37 and about the pivot axis provided by the pins 45. The downward arcuate movement of the rear edge portion ofthe seat 21 creates a thrust, through the links 19, on the upper extensions 37 of the rear legs 17, to thereby effect an unfolding of the front and rear legs. This unfolding movement of the seat and legs continues until the depending cars 63 on connecting links 47 strike the cross brace 29, to thereby limit the unfolding motion of the chair and posi- V 4 tion the chair as seen in Figures 1 and 3. Unfolding of the chair may also be accomplished by grasping the top of the frame member 23 by one hand, and by grasping and then pulling outwardly and upwardly on the front edge of the seat 21 with the other hand. As the seat 21 and the connecting link 47 are in generally parallel relation when in the folded condition, the stop 61 and the ear 63 are engaged. Hence, an outwardly directed force against the front edge of the seat is transmitted through the stop 61 and car 63 to initially cause downward and rearward swinging of the connecting links 47 about their pivotal connections with the front legs 13. As the front edge of the seat moves outwardly, the direction of the applied force is gradually shifted upwardly along a comfortable and natural path to continue the downward swinging movement of the connecting link 47. Incident to the continued downward swinging movement, the connecting links 47 begin to swing forwardly toward the front legs and the upper ends of the rear legs 17 are extended in the forward direction. Upon completion of the extending operation, the ear 63 engages the back of the upper cross brace 29, as seen in Figures 3 and 4, to limit swinging of the connecting link 47. In this condition, the seat supporting link 19 is positioned in generally transverse relation to the legs with a slight forwardly and upwardly directed pitch. At this time, the seat 21 is disposed in the upstanding condition, but can be readily swung forwardly about the pin 45 into seating position in parallel supported relation to the link 19. By the pivotal mounting of the seat in the manner disclosed, there is provided a folding chair including a seat member which is upwardly tiltable to increase the back to from area available for transit between parallel rows and which affords increased ease of operation during setting up of the chair from the collapsed to the extended seat-forming condition. In addition, the dis closed chair can be readily collapsed when desired, and,
when collapsed, forms an exceptionally thin unit in which the seat as well as the link assemblies and rear legs are all generally located within the frame member 23. Hence, the disclosed chair construction affords increased seating capacity for a given floor area, while requiring a minimum amount of storage area when the chair is collapsed.
Various changes and modifications can be made to the present disclosure to achieve certain of the features mentioned herein without departing from the principles of this invention. Various features of the invention are set forth in the appended claims.
1. A folding chair comprising front and rear legs pivotally connected intermediate their ends with the front pair of said legs extending upwardly to support a back for the chair, a seat supporting frame comprising a pair of links disposed along opposite sides of the chair with the forward end of each link pivotally connected to the upper end of one of said rear legs, a connecting link pivotally interconnected between the rear portionrof each of said pair of links and the back supporting portion of the associated one of said front legs, a seat connected to the rear end portions of said pair of links for pivotal movement relative thereto about a transverse axis, with the forward portion of said seat being positionable in supported engagement with the forward portion of said seat supporting frame and said seat being swingable about said transverse axis to an upwardly extending position free of said seat supporting frame, at least one of said connecting links including an extension thereof which is positionable for engagement with a first stop means carried by said front legs'to limit the unfolding movement of said front and rear legs, and a second stop means carried by said seat adjacent the rear thereof and in position for engagement with said projecting portion of said connecting link to thereby limit the relative 'pivotal movement between said seat and said seat supporting frame as said is in its unfolded, erected said front pair of legs extending upwardly to support a back for the chair, a seat supporting frame comprising a pair of links disposed along opposite sides of the chair inwardly of said legs, the forward end of each of said pair of links being pivotally connected with the upper, end of one of said rear legs, a connecting link pivotally interconnected between the rear portion of each of said pair of links and the upper, back supporting portion of the associated one of said front legs, a seat connected to the rear end portion of said pair of links for pivotal movement relative thereto about a transverse axis, with the forward portion of said seat being adapted for supporting engagement with said seat supporting frame, said connecting links each including an end portion thereof which is positionable for engagement with stop means fixed on said front legs, and additional stop means disposed adjacent the rear end portion of said seat in position for engagement with said projecting portion of said connecting link to thereby limit the relative movement between said seat and said seat supporting frame as the seat is raised, said additional stop means also being effective to limit movement between said connecting links and said pair of links of said seat supporting frame in the folding of said chair to its collapsed position.
3. A folding chair as set forth in claim 2, wherein said additional stop means is disposed on said seat at a position rearwardly of the pivotal connection between said connecting link and said seat supporting frame.
- References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Morgan et al. Jan. 3, 1956