Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS2992742 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 18, 1961
Filing dateJul 18, 1960
Priority dateJul 18, 1960
Publication numberUS 2992742 A, US 2992742A, US-A-2992742, US2992742 A, US2992742A
InventorsPendergrast Jr John Brittain
Original AssigneePendergrast Jr John Brittain
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Commodity rack
US 2992742 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Lara-...Ju

July 18, 1961 J. B. PENDERGRAST, JR 2,992,742

COMMODITY RACK Filed July 18, 1960 JOHXII B. PENDERGRAST; JR.

2,992,742 COMMODITY RACK John Bnttain Pendergrast, Jr., 1700 W. Paces Ferry Road NW., Atlanta, Ga. Filed July 18, 1960, Ser. No. 43,630 11 Claims. (Cl. 211-49) This invention relates to a commodity rack, and` has as its primary object the provision of an improved rack provided with spring-biased shelves which, when empty, will fold upwardly to a substantially vertical out-of-theway pos1tion.

An additional object of the invention is the provision of such a rack wherein the shelves are vertically movable so as to accommodate a wide variety of bottled or packaged or other goods.

A further object of the invention is the provision of a rack of this character wherein the shelves are downwardly moved by weight of the contents thereon in order that the upper shelf will rest on the contents of a lower shelf thus providing a substantial and firmly packaged unit which may 4be moved from place to place with a minimum of el'Iord and dilliculty and which will substantially obviate the risk of the contents falling during movement or by accidental tilting of the rack.

An additional important object of the invention is the provision, in a rack of this character, of a self-adjusting shelf so arranged that the shelf exerts pressure on the merchandise below it, not -by arcuate movement about a hinged pivot, but by downward pressure of the entire shelf, which is impelled downwardly as a result of the weight of goods loaded on the shelf, which overcomes the friction of springs located at the hinge point, the shelf being so arranged `as to prevent arcuate movement below the point at which the shelf is horizontal.

A further object of the invention is to provide a hinged shelf so supported as to also have vertical sliding movement relative to a frame or support and to provide in conjunction with said shelf, a hinge having spring tension so adjusted that the shelf remains normally in a horizontal position when merchandise is placed on it for display, b-ut which permits the shelf to swing upwardly to a vertical position when the merchandise is removed.

A more specific object of the invention is the provision of suitably channeled vertical support means, and expansible spring clips secured to the shelf and engaging in the channel whereby upon relieving the tension eX- erted by the spring clip against the sides of the channels, the shelf can easily be moved, or by tilting of the shelf, removed, or placed in the exact position desired without the use of tools, nuts, bolts, or other mechanical devices.

A further specific object of the invention is the provision in a rack of a supported shelf suitable for building displays of merchandise in tiers, so larranged that when a first layer of merchandise is placed on the base of the rack, or on the floor, in a position adjacent properly positioned vertical back supports, and a shelf is then fixed to the back supports, an additional layer of mechandise can be placed on the shelf, and on further shelves and mechandise placed on the other shelves until the display is built to the desired point. Each shelf is thus adapted to -rest on the top of the merchandise below, so that the shelves themselves do not entirely carry the weight of the merchandise but provide leaves between the layers of merchandise to supply firmness and stability and to keep the display from falling, and thus protect the merchandise while on display. The arrangement is such that spring tension moves the shelf pivotally to a vertical position when the merchandise has been removed from that ,individual shelf, and as each layer of merchannited States Patent sans ice

dise is removed, each shelf swings upwardly to uncover the next layer of merchandise below, but `as the shelves are loaded they will self-level until they rest on the layer of merchandise below.

A11 additional important object of the invention is the provision of a vertically movable shelf which is so hinged that it can swing upwardly to a vertical position, but wherein means are provided to preclude downward swinging below a horizontal position of a angle to the vertical support. Thus when the merchandise is put on display, if the shelf is improperly positioned, the entire shelf automaticaly moves downwardly by the weight of the merchandise thereon until it is properly resting on the merchandise below rather than swinging downwardly below the horizontal.

Still another object of the invention is the provision of a rack of this character wherein the shelves may be made in any desired size, and of substantially any type of suiiiciently rigid material, such as wire, sheet metal, plastic, paper board, wood or the like.

As conducive to a clearer understanding of this invention it may be pointed out that previous devices have required specially designated bases and back frames of varying complexity, while in the instant invention there is provided a shelf which, while illustratively shown with a foldable base, can be used to create displays by merely attaching suitably spaced vertical supports to any suitable vertical surface, aflixing the shelves thereto and loading the merchandise thereon. Previously designed display devices have lbeen primarily designed for one product and have no flexibility of use, while displays built using the shelf and rack of this invention may be readily adapted for use for a wide variety of commodities including canned goods, bottles, boxed goods, or other articles, simply Iby placing the shelf in the required position, and adding or removing shelves as may be needed to bring the new display to the desired height.

Hitherto known display devices having movable shelves have also been limited, in the main, to certain fixed positions to which they can be moved, or, alternatively, require tools, nuts bolts, or other mechanical devices to iiX them in the requisite position. The shelves in the instant invention can be placed in any exact desired position within the confines of the vertical supports and may be so placed or inserted or removed by simply manually relieving the spring tension exerted by the clips. Additionally, display devices of this general character have required the construction of special back frames for retaining the shelves, and specially constructed shelves designed to permanently lit the back frames. The present device enables the manufacturer to build display fixtures of any type or of any desired material in any design desired which include the vertical supports needed for the shelves of the instant invention, and further where different types of display racks are dimensioned for shelves of the same size, the shelves may be made interchangeable from one rack to another even if one rack is made of wood, while another is made of wire, or sheet metal, or other materials.

A further important object of the invention is, therefore, the provision of an improved rack, and shelf construction therefor, `which overcomes all of the foregoing difficulties, which fills a need in the present eld of selfservice merchandising for a display device which can be used for mass displays of a desired product, which will give protection to the product while on display, which may be easily and quickly loaded with merchandise, which facilitates the selection of merchandise by the customer, which can be readily and easily changed for the display of a different product when desired, and can be built in situ or readily stored in a small space.

An additional object of the invention is the provision of a rack of this character which is sturdy and durable in construction, reliable and efficient in operation, and relatively simple and inexpensive to manufacture, assemble and utilize.

Other objects reside in the combinations of elements, arrangements of parts, and features of construction, all as will be more fully pointed out hereinafter and disclosed in the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIGURE 1 is a front View, in perspective, of one form of device embodying features of the instant inventive concept, showing one shelf in folded and the other shelf in unfolded horizontal position.

FIGURE 2 is an enlarged sectional view taken substantially along the line 2 2 of FIG. l as viewed in the direction indicated by the arrows.

FIGURE 3 is an enlarged sectional view taken substantially along the line 3 3 of FIG. l as viewed in the direction indicated by the arrows.

Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawings.

In the illustrative embodiment hereinafter shown and described, the support has been shown as comprising a pair of spaced rectangular metal uprights having channels therein and shelves are shown as made of wire, but it will be readily understood that other materials may be ernployed so long as the inherent principles of the instant invention are retained. It will be further understood that the shelves can be loaded with any desired goods, not necessarily only bottled goods.

Having reference now to the drawings in detail, there is generally indicated at a rack, which includes a base 10A, which may be of any desired conventional type, and which is shown, illustratively as having axed thereto a pair of vertical upright members 11. Obviously if desired, the base may be made foldable relative to the uprights, although this feature constitutes no part of the instant invention. Equally obviously, the base may be omitted entirely and the uprights secured directly to a vertical support or surface. Each of the members 11 is, illustratively, of hollow rectangular cross-sectional configuration, as best shown in FIG. 2, and includes a longitudinally extending vertical slot 12 which extends the entire length of the inner or confronting sides of the two opposed members 12.

Other types of frame members having spaced parallel channels therein may equally well be employed.

One or more shelf assemblies generally indicated at 13 is adapted to be mounted between the uprights 11. Each shelf assembly comprises a rectangular frame including side members 14, a front member 15 and a rear member 16. The frame is interconnected by strands of wire 17, extending longitudinally and transversely of the frame to form a wire shelf of substantially conventional design. Connected to the rear member 16 is the bight 20 of a U-shaped rod 20a, which includes upwardly extending portions 21, and normally horizontally extending portions 22, integral with the portions.

Extending laterally from the extremity of each of portions 2'2 is a transverse end piece 24, of a length to extend through the slot 12 into the interior of the adjacent upright member 11. One of the members 24, designated at 24A is of greater length than the other one, `and is surrounded by a coil spring 25, one end 26 of which is secured Varound rear shelf frame member 16, and the other end of which 27 engages in the adjacent slot 12, the arrangement being such as normally to bias the shelf to the position shown in dotted lines in FIGURE 3, or the position of the upper shelf in FIGURE 1. Since the two shelves are identical in construction, being shown only in different positions of adjustment, the same reference characters are used herein to designate both shelves. Each end 24 and 24A is provided with a spring clamp or clip member, generally indicated at 3i?, each clamp comprising a generally U-shape member including a bight 31 and a leg 32 forming a lever portion, which is apertured to receive the end 24 or 24A, and a second leg 33, which is in turn provided with a U-shaped portion 34 dimensioned to extend into the adjacent slot-12. The portion 34 is apertured at its bight to receive the end of the adjacent member 24 or 24A. From the inner leg 35 of each U-shape portion 34 and operating handle portion 36 extends inwardly o/ver the shelf 13. The U-shaped portion 34 is resilient, and is so dimensioned that the sides thereof normally engage the sides of each slot 12, to secure the associated shelf 13 normally in iixed vertical position relative to the uprights 11. The arrangement is such, however, that compression of the opposed handles 36 of la given shelf will release the engagement of the sides of the U-shape portions 34 with their associated slots 12, and permit the shelf to be moved vertically to a desired height. The frictional engagement of the springclips Sil with the sides of slots 12 is sufficiently tight normally to hold an empty shelf in an adjusted position. However, the spring tension affected by the U-shape portions 34 is such that upon the loading of any material weight on the associated shelf 13, the same will be forced downwardly vertically into a position to rest on the contents `of the next adjacent shelf below, or on whatever may be positioned on the base 10A. Obviously the springs 25 serve when the shelves are empty to bias to the shelves to the vertical position shown by the upper shelf in FIGURE l, and when any article is placed thereon the shelves assume a horizontal position as disclosed in the lower position of FIG. l. It will be seen also that the portions 21 serve as limit stops, by their engagement with the rear portion 16 of frame 14 to limit the downward swinging movement of the shelves 13 to a horizontal position, as best shown in FIG. 3.

It is to be understood that other types of supports and shelves constructed of other materials may be employed so long as the basic inventive concept of two channeled support members having a shelf mounted therebetween, with the shelf vertically movable under the weight of commodities placed thereon, the shelf being spring biased from a horizontal to a vertical position, with compressible spring clips retaining the empty shelf against vertical movement, is retained.

From the foregoing it will now be seen that there is herein provided an improved commodity rack, which accomplishes all of the objects of this invention, and others, including many advantages of great practical utility and commercial importance.

As many embodiments m-ay be made of this inventive concept, and as many modifications may be made in the embodiment hereinbefore shown and described, and it is to be understood that all matter herein is to be interpreted merely as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

I claim:

1. In a rack, the combination of a base, a pair of vertical uprights connected to said base, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the inner confronting sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a wire frame, and a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said wire frame, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, and spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of Vertical adjustment.

2. In a rack, the combination of a base, a pair of vertical uprights connected to said base, said Vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a wire frame, and a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said wire frame, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, and spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially verticalposition.

3. In a rack, the combination of a base, a pair of vertical uprights connected to said base, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a wire frame, and a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said wire frame, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position, and stop means limiting the downward swinging movement of said shelf assembly to horizontal position.

4. In a rack, the combination of a base, a pair of vertical uprights connected to said base, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a wire frame, and a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said wire frame, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position, stop means limiting the downward swinging movement of said shelf assembly to horizontal position, said spring clamp assemblies including U-shaped portions extending into said slots, and lever portions connected to one leg of each U-shaped portion, arranged so that compression of said U-shaped portions releases the engagement thereof with the sides of said slots.

5. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of Vertical uprights, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said shelf, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, and spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment.

6. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of vertical uprights, said Vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said shelf, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, and spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position.

7. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of vertical uprights, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said shelf, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, and spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position, and stop means limiting the downward swinging movement of said shelf assembly to horizontal position.

8. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of vertical uprights, said vertical uprights hav- 6 ing longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said shelf, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position, and stop means limiting the downward swinging movement of said shelf assembly to horizontal position, said spring clamp assemblies including U-shaped portions extending into said slots, and lever portions connected to one leg of each U-shaped portion arranged so that compression of said U-shaped portions releases the engagement thereof with the sides of said slot.

9. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of vertical uprights, said vertical uprights having longitudinally extending vertical slots in the sides thereof, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod secured to one end of said shelf, said rod having its ends extending into said slots, spring clamps engaging said ends and said slot to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, spring means normally biasing said shelf assembly from horizontal to substantially vertical position, and stop means limiting the downward swinging movement of said shelf assembly to horizontal position, said spring clamp assemblies including \U-shaped portions extending into said slots, said U-shaped portions each having an opening therein through which v an end of said rod extends, and lever portions connected to one leg of each U-shaped portion arranged so that compression of said U-shaped portions releases the engagement thereof from the sides of said slot, the other of said legs of each U-shaped portion having a right angularly disposed extension having an opening therein through which said rod extends.

10. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair `of vertical uprights, each upright having two spaced apart confronting portions defining a longitudinally extending vertical channel, the channels of the uprights being positioned in confronting relation, at least one shelf assembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod the ends of which extend into said channels, and spring clamps secured to said ends and engaging the sides of said channel to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment.

1l. In a display rack for commodities, the combination of a pair of vertical uprights, each upright having two spaced apart confronting portions defining a longitudinally extending vertical channel, the channels of the uprights being positioned in confronting relation, at least one shelf yassembly mounted for vertical sliding movement between said uprights, said shelf assembly including a transversely extending rod the ends of which extend into said channels, spring clamps secured to said ends and engaging the sides of said channel `to hold said shelf assembly in a selected position of vertical adjustment, and means for releasing the engagement of said spring clamps with the sides of said channel.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,039,647 Carter Sept. 24, 1912 2,867,332 Adams Jan. 6, 1959 2,908,395 Patterson Oct. 13, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,009,104 France of 1952

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1039647 *Jun 8, 1912Sep 24, 1912Waterloo Register CompanyNursery-chair.
US2867332 *Apr 28, 1954Jan 6, 1959James Adams JohnShelving assembly
US2908395 *Jan 11, 1957Oct 13, 1959Spring A Way Displays Of CalifDisplay racks with folding and vertically adjustable trays
FR1009104A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3137251 *Feb 13, 1961Jun 16, 1964Southern Spring Bed CompanyMerchandise racks
US3151576 *Oct 27, 1961Oct 6, 1964Vita Pakt Citrus Products CoDisplay stands
US3151744 *Jan 30, 1961Oct 6, 1964Vita Pakt Citrus Products CoDisplay stand
US3217667 *May 15, 1964Nov 16, 1965Vita Pakt Citrus Products CoIlluminated display stand
US3534935 *Apr 4, 1968Oct 20, 1970Gunn Ronald LeonardSliding display or storage units and catch mechanisms therefor
US3612288 *Aug 27, 1969Oct 12, 1971Lesley James RichardHinged display rack
US4292902 *Nov 1, 1976Oct 6, 1981Barrineau Wade HShelf system
US4322005 *Mar 27, 1981Mar 30, 1982DisplaycoDisplay stacker with biased pivoted trays
US4750623 *Mar 12, 1987Jun 14, 1988Paul Flum Ideas, Inc.Stackable shelving system
US4919282 *May 13, 1987Apr 24, 1990Duff Terry LMovable gondola shelving with hidden shelf adjustment mechanism
US6196647 *Apr 7, 1999Mar 6, 2001Grandview Designs, Inc.Vertical media storage system
US7806236 *Nov 12, 2008Oct 5, 2010Target Brands, Inc.Method of displaying a product on a product display system
US8640482 *Aug 2, 2007Feb 4, 2014Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.Refrigerator having folding shelf
US9134063Jun 1, 2009Sep 15, 2015Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.Refrigerator
US20050119859 *Jun 2, 2004Jun 2, 2005Pqi ConsultingOptimal Surface Mitigated Multiple Targeting System (OSMMTS)
US20080034778 *Aug 2, 2007Feb 14, 2008Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.Refrigerator having folding shelf
US20090065454 *Nov 12, 2008Mar 12, 2009Target Brands, Inc.Product display system
US20090293533 *Dec 3, 2009Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.Refrigerator
EP2801504A1 *May 8, 2013Nov 12, 2014K. Hartwall Oy ABShelf for a roll container
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/146, 211/134, 211/150, 108/2, 211/59.4
International ClassificationA47F5/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47F5/0037
European ClassificationA47F5/00C1B