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Publication numberUS3159423 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 1, 1964
Filing dateMay 28, 1963
Publication numberUS 3159423 A, US 3159423A, US-A-3159423, US3159423 A, US3159423A
InventorsAlfred R. Gilbert
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
gilbert
US 3159423 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 1, 1964 A. R. GILBERT 3,159,423

CONVERTIBLE FURNITURE UNIT Filed May 28, 1963 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 1 /4? 2 INVENTOR fill-RED A. G/L BERT Dec- 1, 19 A. R. GILBERT CONVERTIBLE FURNITURE UNIT 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed May 28, 1963 INVENTOR. R. GILBERT United States Patent 3,159,423 CONVERTIBLE FURNITURE UNIT Alfred R. Gilbert, Paoli, Pa., assignor to Philco Corporation, Philadelphia, Pa., a corporation of Delaware Filed May 28, 1963, Ser. No. 283,885 7 Claims. (Ci. 297-119) This invention relates to furniture units. More particularly, the invention is directed to a furniture unit adapted for household use and which unit is selectively convertible from a desk to a bench or, conversely, from a bench to a desk. While of broader applicability, the invention has particular utility in combination with cabinet structure having an upwardly facing planar surface portion and adapted for housing sound reproducing apparatus such as phonographs and radios.

The decorative shape and appearance features of the furniture unit are disclosed and claimed in my copending application, Serial No. 74,694, filed May 1, 1963, and assigned to the assignee of the present invention.

It is an objective of the invention to provide a furniture unit easily convertible from one article, such as a bench, to another article, such as a writing desk.

It is a further feature of the invention that it provides a convertible furniture unit having phonograph or like I components disposed in at least one compartments/d end thereof that also serves as upper surface portions of either a desk or a bench, and is openable to provide access to radio and phonograph apparatus disposed within the compartment.

In achievement of the foregoing and other objectives, the invention comprises the combination of a furniture unit having an upwardly facing platform provided with compartment means, preferably a pair of compartments disposed beneath opposite end portions of said platform, a set of legs of one length attachable to lower portions of said compartments to provide for support of the unit, a second set of legs of another length attachable for storage in inverted position to an edge portion of the upwardly facing platform, and a cross-member disposed in interconnecting relation to free end portions of the stored legs, all said legs being detachably affixed to said platform and cross member, and said compartments, respectively, and said sets of legs being adapted for selective interchangeability with one another whereby to modify the height of said platform and compartments with respect to the floor and to modify the height of said cross-member above said platform.

It will be appreciated that it is a still further feature of the invention that the non-supporting legs are disposed in a position wherein they extend upwardly from a rear edge portion of the platform so as to provide, in com bination with the cross-member, either a back rest or a guard rail, depending upon whether the unit is used as a bench or a desk.

It is a feature of the invention that the overall spatial requirements of the furniture unit in either of its converted forms remain substantially the same.

A more complete understanding of the invention may be had by referring to the following description, taken in light of the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective showing of a convertible furniture unit embodying the invention, and illustrating one of the forms to which it is convertible;

FIGURE 2 is a somewhat diagrammatic showing similar to FIGURE 1, and illustrating elements of the furniture unit in exploded perspective;

FIGURE 3 is similar to FIGURE 2, but illustrates the furniture unit from a different angle converted to another of its forms;

FIGURE 4 is a fragmentary sectional view looking in the direction of arrows 4-4 as applied to- FIGURE 1,

3,159,423 Patented Dec. 1, 1964 and illustrating a preferred mode of attachment of the supporting leg members;

FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary view partly in section, looking in the direction of arrows 5-5 applied to FIG- URE 1, illustrating the mode of attaching the upper inner leg members to the platform;

FIGURE 6 is a view similar to FIGURE 5, looking in the direction of arrows 6-6 as applied to FIGURE 1, and illustrating the preferred mode of attaching the outer upper leg members to the platform;

FIGURE 7 is a fragmentary view, partly in section, looking generally in the direction of arrows 77 applied to FIGURE 1, and illustrating the preferred mode of attachment of the horizontal cross member to upper ends of the inner and outer leg members shown in FIG- URES 5 and 6; and

FIGURE 8 is an exploded fragmentary showing, partly in section, of an additional structural feature of the invention.

With more particular reference to the drawings and first to FIGURE 1, a convertible furniture unit 10 comprises an upwardly facing platform or surface 11 beneath end portions of which are disposed compartments 12 and 13. The platform 11 includes hingedly mounted doors 14 and 15 which overlie the compartments 12 and 13, respectively, and provide access thereto as illustrated by the opened left-hand door 14. The compartments are adapted to house radio-phonograph apparatus, and conventional grill coverings 16 and 17 extend over loudspeaker openings (not shown) in front wall sections of the compartments.

The unit 10 is supported, as shown in FIGURES l and 2, by a plurality of shorter tapered legs 18 afiixed to lower portions of compartments 12 and 13 by means hereinafter to be described. A plurality of longer tapered legs 19 are affixed to a rear edge portion of platform 11, each at one end thereof and extend upwardly in inverted position as compared with the taper and position of the shorter legs 13. A cross member or stretcher 20 receives the free ends of legs 19 and ties them together by means hereinafter to be described.

In FIGURES 1 and 2, the unit is illustrated as having a form primarily useful as a bench, and in FIGURE 3 the unit is illustrated as converted to a form having utility as a desk, in which form the longer legs 19 and the shorter legs 18 have been interchanged with respect to their positions shown in FIGURES l and 2. It will be appreciated that the size in plan and the overall height of the furniture unit in either form remains substantially the same and, by virtue of this uniformity, spatial requirements for both forms of the unit remain substantially the same.

With additional reference to FIGURES 2 and 3, portions of the furniture unit, in its two forms, have been shown in exploded manner, in order to illustrate the manner in which the inverted legs and stretcher are afiixed to the upper surface of the platform. In the interest of brevity in description of the invention, reference will be had only to the converted form illustrated in FIGURES 1 and 2, it being understood that legs 18 and 19, with the exception of their lengths, are identical in every respect in their relationship to other elements of the furniture unit.

As illustrated in exploded form in FIGURE 2, the outer inverted legs 19 are affixed to stretcher 2b as a unitby means illustrated in FIGURE 7and inner adjacent legs 19 are affixed to platform 11-by means illustrated in FIGURE 5. With the elements sub-assembled as shown in FIGURE 2, the upper ends of center legs 19 are inserted into apertures 21 in stretcher 20, according to the showing of FIGURE 7, and screws 22 extending from free ends of the outer legs are inserted, with clear- 3 ance, through countersunk openings 23 that extend through platform 11, as illustrated in FIGURE 6. Wing nuts 24 are then threaded onto screws 22 to complete the assembly.

The lower ends of center legs 19, as seen in FIGURE 5, are aflixed to platform 11 by threaded engagement of screws 22 with T nuts 25 having threaded portions within apertures 26 that extend through platform 11. These two center legs are substantially equally spaced with relation to the adjacent edge of the platform.

The support legs 18 include screws 27 threaded into nuts 28 that extend through lower wall portions 31 of compartments 12 and 13, as seen in FIGURE 4.

In further accordance with the invention, and as best seen in FIGURES 7 and 8, each of legs 19 is provided at its smaller end with a metal foot or ferrule 29 having an internally threaded bore providing for threaded attachment of the ferrule to screws 30 extending from the mentioned end. With the ferrules 29 removed, screws 30 also are threadedly engageable with threads 31 in stretcher 30 to provide for attachment of the outermost legs 19 to the stretcher; whereas, when the ferrules 29 are in place, they may serve as supporting pads or feet. The shorter legs 18 are of similar construction.

By virtue of the hereinabove described construction, the furniture unit may be readily converted from the form shown in FIGURES 1 and 2 to that illustrated in FIG- URE 3. This is accomplished by disassembling all legs and reassembling the legs to the form shown in FIGURE 3 in accordance with the various sub-assembly illustrations of FIGURES 4 to 8. Also, the unit may be stored or shipped with the legs disassembled from the main body unit comprising platform 11 and cabinets 12 and 13, and later assembled to the form desired by the user of the apparatus.

From the foregoing description, it will be appreciated that the invention provides a convertible furniture unit having phonograph or like components disposed in at least one compartmented end thereof that also serves as upper surface portions of either a desk or a bench, and is openable to provide access to radio and phonograph apparatus disposed within the compartment. Also, the unit is highly versatile in that the non-supporting legs arrayed across surface portions of the unit serve, in combination with the stretcher, either as a back rest or a rear guard rail.

I claim:

1. A convertible furniture unit, comprising: generally horizontally extending platform means; a first set of legs of uniform length detachably fixed to said platform means and extending downwardly therefrom to support the same horizontally at a first height; a second set of legs of uniform length different from the length of the legs of said first set, the legs of said second set being detachably fixed to said platform means and extending upwardly therefrom; and a cross-member extending generally horizontally between and detachably fixed to free end portions of the legs of said second set, said first and second sets of legs being interchangeable to provide either a higher or a lower horizontal position of the platform means and a lower or a higher position of said cross member with respect to said platform means.

2. A convertible furniture unit according to claim 1. and further characterized in that substantially fixed absolute elevation of said cross member is maintained in either of the recited combinations of leg positions.

3. The combination of a furniture unit having an upwardly facing platform provided with a pair of compartments disposed beneath end portions of said platform, a first set of legs of one uniform length attachable to the lower portions of said compartments to provide for support of the unit, a second set of legs of another uniform length attached in inverted position to an edge portion of the upwardly facing platform, and a cross-member disposed in interconnecting relation to free end portions of the stored legs, the legs of each set being detachably affixed to said platform and cross-member, and said compartments, respectively, and said set of legs of one uniform length being adapted for selective interchangeability with the set of legs of other uniform length whereby to modify the height of said platform and compartments with respect to the floor and to modify the height of said cross-member above said platform.

4. A furniture unit according to claim 3 and further characterized in that certain legs of the second set are threadedly engageable with said cross-member and are handleable therewith as a unit and other of the legs of the second set are threadedly engageable with said platform, said cross-member including apertures within which are releasably received free ends of said other legs of the second set, and said platform, including apertures within which are releasably received free ends of said certain legs of the second set.

5. A furniture unit according to claim 4 and further characterized in that each of said sets of legs includes threaded projections at each end thereof, said legs of said first set each being threadedly attached at one end thereof to said compartments and having a ferrule threadedly attached to the other end thereof adapted to serve as supporting feet, said other of the legs of said second set having ferrules threadedly attached to their recited free ends and received within the cross-member apertures, said threaded projection of the recited certain of said legs of said second set affording the threaded engagement with said cross-member, and nut means threaded onto the projections at the other ends of the recited certain legs and adapted to retain the same within said platform means apertures.

6. A convertible furniture unit comprising: upwardly facing platform means; a first set of legs of equal length detachably fixed to said platform means and adapted to support the same; a second set of legs of equal length but differing in length from the said first set of legs which support the platform means, said second set of legs being detachably fixed, in inverted vertically extending position, to an edge portion of said platform means; and a crossmember extending between free end portions of said second set of legs, interconnecting the latter, and extending substantially parallel to said upwardly presented platform means, said first and second sets of legs being interchangeable to provide either an elevated or a lowered position of the platform means while maintaining substantially fixed absolute elevation of said cross-member.

7. A furniture unit according to claim 6 and characterized in that said first set of legs and said second set of legs are of like number, said second set of legs including one pair affixed to and handleable with said cross-member as a unit when detached from said platform means, and another pair fixable to said platform means independently of said cross-member.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 164,370 Ham June 15, 1875 1,539,112 Gloekler May 26, 1925 1,976,031 Lowenberg Oct. 9, 1934 2,566,201 Himes Aug. 28, 1951 2,578,114 Webber Dec. 11, 1951 2,703,136 Masse Mar. 1, 1955 2,871,489 Emmert Feb. 3, 1959 2,915,350 Sinclair Dec. 1, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 857,639 Great Britain Jan. 4, 1961

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3338190 *Mar 3, 1966Aug 29, 1967Jerry J HammondStool
US3619002 *May 1, 1970Nov 9, 1971Mckinney JayCombination toy and chair
US4002369 *Mar 17, 1972Jan 11, 1977Royal Seating CorporationChair and method of making same
US5409307 *Feb 17, 1994Apr 25, 1995Forsythe; Lester W.Combined computer and vehicle simulator cockpit desk and method thereof
US7293834 *Apr 21, 2005Nov 13, 2007Oakworks, Inc.Articulating table
US20050155525 *Dec 23, 2004Jul 21, 2005Riach Jeffrey M.Sloped table top and a table having a sloped table top
US20060001296 *Apr 21, 2005Jan 5, 2006Riach Jeffrey MArticulating table
Classifications
U.S. Classification297/119, 312/235.5, 297/344.12, 312/351.3, 312/235.2, 108/156
International ClassificationA47C7/72
Cooperative ClassificationA47C7/72
European ClassificationA47C7/72