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Publication numberUS3249387 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 3, 1966
Filing dateFeb 16, 1965
Priority dateFeb 16, 1965
Publication numberUS 3249387 A, US 3249387A, US-A-3249387, US3249387 A, US3249387A
InventorsWilliam J Pivacek
Original AssigneeMobilaid Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Swinging arm rest
US 3249387 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

y 3, 1966 w. J. PIVACEK 3,249,387

SWINGING ARM REST Filed Feb. 16, 1965 2 Sheets-Sheet l y 3, 1966 w. J. PIVACEK 3,249,387

SWINGING ARM REST Filed Feb. 16, 1965 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR. W/Zl/A'M Z F/VACfK CFMX T )1.

United States Patent 3,249,387 SWINGING ARM REST William J. Pivacek, Elyria, Ohio, assignor to Mobilaid Incorporated, Elyria, Ohio, a corporation of Ohio Filed Feb. 16, 1965, Ser. No. 433,041 4 Claims. (Cl. 297417) This invention relates to movable arm rests for wheel chairs and to the provision of safe, comfortable and convenient sidewise ingress to and egress from wheel chairs as well as safe and comfortable occupancy thereof. My invention may also be viewed as an improvement in the arm rest and side support portions of wheel chairs for the special benefit of occupants whose legs should not or cannot be used for, or much in aid of, the patients limited mobility.

The prior art has exhibited and employs movable, removable and/ or detachable arm rests to let or aid a wheel chair patient slide his posterior sidewise to or from his wheel chair from or to an adjacent bed, chair or other place where he may want to have, or preserve an upright sitting position.

Removable arm rests however pose such problems as: what does the patient or attendant do with the removed arm rest? What of the patient lacking strength to effect removal, especially in the case of a'neat telescopic fit between lower part of the arm rest and certain upwardly opening ports or tubes of the chair? There is also the problem of the lost or mislaid arm rest and the risk of using the chair, even if only for a short time, without it. In institutions having many chairs, detached arm rests tend to be lost, or deformed so as to fit but one chair and no other, or none at all.

There have been also movable arm rests which are not ordinarily detached, or detachable from the chair; being merely movable or swingable to an inoperative position remote from the seat and/ or from the back of the chair. These ordinarily stick out below or behind, when moved, so the patient cant retrieve them, nor can the patient employ them for guidance, steady-rest or support. And attendants are much pestered by them until returned to working position as operative ar-m rests. When such prior arm rests are disposed to protrude rearwardly, the patient and his garments and/or posterior a,re exposed to the wheeland tire of the chair, and the chair is awkwardly lengthened and made relatively non-maneuverable. When such an arm rest is swung downwardly and rearwardly as in Sill No. 2,269,918, it tends to conflict with the spokes and tires of the major wheels or impairs the free swiveling of castor wheels where a pair thereof are commonly employed; Sills single trailing castor wheel being quite uncommon and undesirably unstable per se.

It is therefore among the objects of my invention to provide arm rests for a chair, especially a wheel chair, which in its usual normal condition or position performs all desirable offices and functions known and desired of arm rests, as well as providing side walls and guards adjacent and above the sides of the seat and interposed between the wheels and the patients hips and thighs; and which in another and retracted condition permit free sliding sidewise ingress to and egress from the seat of the chair with assistance, if needed, from the retracted arm rest.

3,249,387 Patented May 3, 1966 ice Another object is to provide movable or retractable arm rests for wheel chairs which are stout, strong, handy, and reliably load-bearing in both their normal forward and retracted rearward positions. A similar object is to provide a movable arm rest for a wheel chair which in its retracted position will serve as a safe rest and support of limited forward extent and always as a useful side guard.

Another object is to provide a movable arm rest of simple, foolproof and sturdydesign for permanent attachment to a wheel chair, and which will repeatedly assume, and persistently hold, the same normal forward, or rearward retracted, positions, and be easily changed from one to the other.

These and other objects and advantages will more fully and at large appear from the following description of a preferred form and embodiment of my invention, refertreme position to the other.

FIGURE 4 is a vertical section through the front swinging supporting link of the left arm rest as viewed from the front of the chair and taken along the line 4-4 of FIG. 3, and

FIGURE 5 is a fragmentary side'elevation of the forward portion of the left frame of the chair as viewed in FIG. 3 and more forwardly of the chair with the arm rest removed and taken along the broken line 5-5 of FIG. 4.

In FIGS. 1 and 2 -a preferred form of my invention is shown in the environment of a conventional folding wheel chair 1 having its large driving wheels 2 rearwardly disposed and pivotally supported onthe rear posts of the side frame members 3 of the chair. Castor wheels 4 support the front of the chair where foot rests 5 are carried and extend forwardly in a conventional way. The chair also comprises a flexible back rest 6 with its sides secured to the rear posts of the side frames, and also comprises the flexible folding seat 7 having its side edges secured to seat rails 8 which are connected to and included in a familiar X-brace construction 9.

Not so conventionally, the forward ends of the right and left seat rails are guided for vertical motion parallel to the side frames by telescopic guides 10, see FIGS. 4 and 5, of which the male members 11 are T-shaped and rotatably receive and support the seat rails in the head portions thereof whilst the leg portions of the members 11 are slidably received-in vertical female tubular frame members 12 through their open upperends. To illustrate the telescopic guides in FIGS. 4 and 5, the heads of the T-shaped members 11 are shown as spaced a bit above the upper ends of the tubular member 12. When the seat 7 is opened and lowered to its ultimate working load-bearing position, the heads of the members 11 will have load bearing engagement with the upper ends of V 3 members 12,. on both the right and left sides of the chair, and give the forward and outward portions of the seat firm support, both vertically and horizontally, with no obstruction to the occupants free sliding movement over, to and from the forward portion seat of the chair as shown in FIG. 2.

In this preferred form of my invention the chair and arm rests are symmetrical right and left. For convenience of illustration and description the rests and parts of the chair on the left side will be principally seen and referred to. The corresponding parts on the right side of the chair may be taken to be the right-handed equal of their left-handed counterparts.

The arm rests of my invention are shown in their usual, so-called normal, working position in FIG. 1 for supporting the forearms of the patient comfortably when he is supported in upright position on the seat 7 and by the backrest 6. In this position in FIG. 1 both arm rests are in their foremost forward position. Each arm rest 15 comprises an upper, horizontally disposed, preferably padded, patients arm-engaging rail 16 with a downwardly disposed, longitudinally extending vertical flange ll7 which is pivotally engaged at pivot points 13 and 14, and supported by equal, upstanding, swingable links 18 and 19 near the forward and rearward ends respectively of the rail 16, FIGS. 1, 2 and 3. The links 18 and 19 are pivotally supported at their lower ends for fore and aft swinging motion about laterally extending, horizontally disposed axes 20 and 21 respectively journalled and secured 1 in tubular bearings 22 and 23 respectively carried by the side frames, and spaced apart fore and aft of the chair the same distance as the spacing between the upper pivotal connections 13 and 14 between the links and the flange 17 in parallelogram relation, permiting the free swinging of the links as from the forward-right and rearward-left positions shown in FIG. 2 through the right-angled,

middle position of FIG. 3.

To limit the swinging motion of the arm rests, give them firm, secure support and positionsv in their extreme forward and rearward positions, FIGS. 1 and 2, and, additionally, to provide side walls and seat guards between the sides ofthe seat 7 and the wheels 2,I provide in each arm rest a plurality of parallel, horizontal closely spaced links or slats 25,'each pivotally connected at its forward and rearward ends respectively, as by pivot pins or bolts 26, FIG. 4, to the swinging links 18 and 19. As shown in FIG. 4 the slats 25 have appreciable thickness and flat upper and lower surfaces which are all horizontal and parallel whereby to engage one another on wide,.firm bearing areas in either ofthe extreme forward or rearward positions of the arm' rests, FIGS. 1 and 2. The vertical spacing of the slats 25, i.e., the spacing of their proximate horizontal surfaces, from each other determines the arcuate extent to which the swinglinks 18 and 19 may swing, cf. FIGS. 2 and 3. In FIGS. 1 and 2 the slats 25, or two or more of them, are shown in load-bearing engagement with each other, positioning and supporting the arm rests in their extreme, load-bearing positions. Ordinarily all the mechanical, load-bearing elements of the arm rest structures will be made of metal, the slats 25 will all be equal to each other, and the pivot pins 26 will be located with substantially equal spacing from each other so that all or many of the slats will have substantially simultaneous contact with each other in the swung positions. Good contact between the first slats to contact will suffice to locate and support the arm rests, andv volved. When the occupant puts his weight on the arm rests to enter or leave the chair sidewise, the armrest assemblies take positions such as shown in FIGURE 2. When riding in the chair the arm rests repose as in FIGURE 1. In both events the slats are closed, and the assemblies have full load bearing strength as well as great predisposition to hold the slats closed. In operation the only opening between the slats will occur during the unstable, transitory condition of FIG. 3 which affords only a negligible chance of pinching anything.

For still better security of retaining the arm rests in their forward position as shown in FIG. 1, and on the right side of FIG. 2, I provide swingable latches 27 pivotally mounted at one end on lower slats 25 as at 28, and having notched ends 29 at their other, upper, ends releasably engaging pins 30 carried on upper slats 25. When employing the latches 27 to lock the arm rests in their forward position,the latches may be disengaged from the pins 30, releasing the arm rests to be swung rearwardly as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3.

While I have illustrated and described a preferred form of my invention herein, I do not want to be limited precisely thereto in the scope and effect of :my patent, nor-limited in any other way inconsistent with the progress by which my invention has promoted the art.

I claim:

1. In a wheel chair having wheels, side frames and a seat with forward and rearward ends, a movable arm rest and support therefor comprising pivotally connected elements in parallelogram relation, one of said elements comprising a horizontal part of a side frame having forwardly and rearwardly disposed pivotal supports, a second of said elements comprising the arm rest proper disposed above and parallel to said frame part, a third element lying parallel to said first and second elements and disposed adjacent to one of. them, and horizontally spaced. upstanding, parallel forward and rearward links pivotally connected to said supports respectively and to the ends of-said elements, two of said elements positively engaging each other when said links are substantially inclined forwardly and rearwardly from vertical uprightness and giving said arm rest load-bearing strength and stability in its foremost and rearmost positions, respectively, the said forwardly disposed pivotal support being spaced rearwardly of the forward end of said seat and said links being restrained in their foremost inclined positions to dispose said arm rest proper in comfortable supporting relation to the forearms and hands of an occupant seated in the chair.

2..The arm rest and support of claim -1 wherein the said forward link is connected to said forward support remotely from the forward end of said seat, and said arm rest proper has its forward end approximately as far forward as the forward end of said seat when said link is inclined to its most forward position, and said arm rest has its forward end disposedproximate the mid-portion of said seat in, the rearmost inclined position of said link whereby substantially the forward half of the seat is cleared for sliding ingress and egress by the occupant of v the chair when said arm rest is given'its rearmost position, and said arm rest has load-bearing strength and support both horizontally and vertically in said rearmost position.

3. The arm rest and support of claim 1 with additional elements similar to said third element and parallel therewith and adjacent thereto and connected to said links at their forward and rearward ends respectively, said third and other elements being connected to said links in the lower portions thereof and having parallel horizontal edges spaced apart when said links are standing vertically, all said third-and other elements having substantially edge engagement with one another limiting swinging motion of said links when said links are in their foremost and rearmost inclined positions respectively, said third and other links being disposed between the occupant of the chair and the wheel adjacent said seat.

4. The arm rest and support of claim 1 in which said third horizontal element is interposed between said Wheel and an occupant of said seat.

UNITED References Cited by the Examiner 5 STATES PATENTS Hannahs 5331 Haskes 5331 Brophy 297417 6 Ducavich 29745 Linquist 297416 Enghauser 5-331 Mize 297-440 Ofiner 297-417 CASMIR A. NUNBERG, Primary Examiner.

FRANK B. SHERRY, Examiner.

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U.S. Classification297/411.33, 297/DIG.400, 5/430
International ClassificationA61G5/12
Cooperative ClassificationA61G5/12, Y10S297/04, A61G2005/125, A61G2005/128, A61G2005/1054
European ClassificationA61G5/12