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Publication numberUS3254462 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 7, 1966
Filing dateJul 31, 1961
Priority dateJul 31, 1961
Publication numberUS 3254462 A, US 3254462A, US-A-3254462, US3254462 A, US3254462A
InventorsToler George P
Original AssigneeToler George P
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Flexed panel wall construction
US 3254462 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 7, 1966 G. P. TOLER FLEXED PANEL WALL CONSTRUCTION 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed July 31, 1961 FIG. I

FIG. 2

INVENTOR. GEORGE F! TOLER f:TORNEY June 7, 1966 c. P. TOLER FLEXED PANEL WALL CONSTRUCTION Filed July 31, 1961 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG. 5

FIG. 4

INVENTOR. GEORGE P. TOLER ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,254,462 FLEXED PANEL WALL CONSTRUCTION George P. Toler, 1301 Brooklawn, Boise, Idaho Filed July 31, 1961, Ser. No. 128,104 3 Claims. (Cl. 52-222) This invention relates to building members and more particularly to building members constructed to provide when assembled a load bearing wall, ceiling, column, or the like.

Various types of building means are known to the art. These include structural members for forming walls, ceilings, etc., which are dimensioned to support a given load, and the use of relatively thin bendable members in load bearing columns, walls, and the like, have not been used since same are normally structurally relatively weak.

Such bendable'members are normally used only for decorative purposes and not as load bearing members.

In accordance with the present invention, bendable structural members and connecting means are provided. These members are constructed and assembled so that the load bearing capacity of the individual bendable members are substantially increased and preferably relatively thin members, normally unsuitable for building purposes are utilized.

The connecting means of the present invention includes a normally elongated member which is desirably flexible intermediate the ends thereof to thus substantially increase the lateral strength of the members. Preferably the bendable members and the connecting means of the invention are used together with the lateral edges of the bendable members being received in the channel-shaped portions of the connecting means so that the connection is sealed and the edges of the bendable members restricted. Suitable means are preferably provided as headers and footings to align or position the bendable members and connecting means when assembled so that the desired shape of walls, columns, and the like can be obtained. The headers and footings can be channel-shaped members or they can be scalloped footings, etc.

Accordingly it is an object of the invention to provide new building means.

Another object of the invention is to provide new connecting means.

Another object of the invention is to provide new structural building means composed of bendable members constructed and assembled in such a manner to provide load bearing units.

Another object of the invention is to provide a new means of constructing load bearing walls, columns and the like wherein relatively thin and previously structurally unsuitable materials can be utilized.

Another object of the invention is to provide a new use for relatively thin members in construction projects.


A'further object of the invention is to provide new means for constructing and assembling a plurality of normally bendable members whereby the individual strength of the members is increased and same are joined to provide a load bearing wall, column, etc.

Another object of the invention is to provide relatively inexpensive and easily assembled building means.

Various other objects, advantages and features of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is an isometric view showing the application of a preferred specific embodiment of the building means of the invention in a wall and a ceiling.

FIG. 2 is an enlarged partial cross section view taken along the line 22 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged partial isometric view illustrating the connecting means and manner of assembling the members in a preferred embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 4 is an isometric view on a reduced scale of the building means of the invention when used as a column.

FIG. 5 is an enlarged cross section view taken along the line 5--5 of FIG. 4.

FIGS. 6 and 7 are partial isometric views of preferred constructions of footings and headers.

'The following is a discussion and description of a preferred specific embodiment of the new building means of the invention, such being made with reference to the drawings whereon the same reference numerals are used to indicate the same or similar parts and/or structure. his to be understood that such discussion and description is not to undulylimit the scope of the invention.

The use of relatively thin and normally flexible or bendable materials in buildings as load bearing members has not been possible with prior art constructions in view ofthe fact that therelatively thin or bendable members will flex or bendwhen subjected to a load,

making them unsuitable for such use. Such thin and flexible members are often inexpensive due to their size or dimensions and materials of construction. When an elongated piece or member formed of flexible material is subjected to a lateral force themember will immediately blend intermediate the ends and, if the force or load is continued, such will break or split. It has been found that by restricting the lateral edges of a bendable member the lateral force applied will be supported and a substantial load can thus be contained by a normally shown in the drawings.

- FIGS. 2 and 3 of the drawings illustrate a member constructed of bendable material shown generally at 10, the member 10 being formed of any suitable bendable material, preferably panels of fiber glass, fiber glass reinforced plastic materials, fiber board, ply-wood, fiber reinforced concrete, suitable metals including aluminum, steel, alloys of same, or other semi-rigid or flexible materials. Each of the members 10 are normally relatively flat and bent or shaped to be arcuate in transverse cross section as illustrated and, in some instances, angled members can also be constructed with the same or similar advantages being obtained.

The members 10 are joined where assembled by the use of suitable connecting means, the preferred embodiment of such being shown generally at 12 and consisting of an elongated connecting member which is preferably formed of a thin metallic member having a bendable center portion which is preferably generally looped shaped in transverse cross section as shown at 14. The member 12 is provided with longitudinal side portions 16 which are preferably generally parallel to the sides of the looped portion 14 to form spaced channels extending longitudinally along the members 12.

One of the connecting members 14 is positioned between two adjacent members 10 with the lateral edges of the bendable members being received in the channels formed by the side portions 16 of the member 12. The size of the channels and construction of the connecting member 12 is chosen in relation to the bendable member 10 so that the longitudinal edges of the bendable members Will be snugly received within the channel shaped portion thereof and such will restrict the edges of the bendable members so that when a lateral load is placed upon the bendable members the restricted edges will be held and the load will be received and carried by the entire bendable members. Elimination of flexing intermediate the ends materially adds to the lateral strength of the bendable members and makes the system possible. In addition, the lateral edges of the bendable members 10 are snugly received so that same are sealed to prevent passage of air, light, water, etc., between the bendable members 10 and the connecting members 12. The members 12 thus serve a three-fold purpose or function, that is they join the individual panels or bendable members, they seal the connection between the members, and they restrict the edges to provide the desired strength.

In connection with the function of the connecting members 12, FIG. 3 illustrates the connect-ion of the members 10 and 12 and shows the member 10 being bent from its normal position as shown in dotted lines to its assembled position shown in the solid lines and, as will be apparent from this view, the outermost edge 17 of the portion 16 of member 12 will engage and be in tight line contact with the surface of the bendable member 10 and the restriction of the channel shaped portion of member 12 will cause the extreme lateral edges 11 of the members 10 to be also in tight engagement with the inner surface of the channel shaped portion of the members 12.

Due to the natural resilience of many of the materials used in constructing the member 10 as well as the pressure exerted by the connecting member 12 it is desirable in many instances to provide suitable headers and footings in which the members 10 and 12 are positioned to maintain the members in the desired assembled relation. Such header or footing means are illustrated in FIGS. 6 and 7 of the drawings.

In FIG. 6 a channel shaped foot is shown at 20 and is mounted on a floor or the like 22. The same shape of member can be used as a header on the other end of the member 10 to rest against a ceiling or the like. The channel shaped member 20 has side members 24 and 26 which project from the base portion in spaced relation and which engage the channel portion of the connecting members 12 and the center portion of the bendable members 10, thus holding the assembled unit in position and preventing the possibility of undesirable movement of the assembled wall, floor, etc. The spacing of the sides 24 and 26 of the header or footing 26 can be selected or varied in accordance with the size of the bendable member and the connecting members being used and such selection of sizes can increase or decrease the amount of sealing obtained by the edge of and the connecting member 12 or, if desired, the recess 32 can be arcuate or angled so as to receive only the members 10 with the connecting members 12 being somewhat shorter in length and terminating near the outer surface of the header or footing 30. Also, in some instances, it is desirable to provide a projecting guide or flange which can be shaped to receive the various members instead of a recess or groove, as shown. As will be apparent to those skilled in the art, many modifications of the headers and footings can be used to suit a particular application without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention.

FIG. 1 of the drawings illustrates a wall 40 and a ceiling 42 which are constructed from the building members as described hereinbefore. Both the wall 40 and the ceiling 42 are shown as constructed entirely of the members of the invention and when so assembled provide a load bearing wall and ceiling having considerable strength, and same can be constructed with a minimum cost due to the lightness and inexpensive materials usable.

FIGS. 4 and 5 of the drawings further illustrate an application of the invention whereby a column shown generally at 44 is constructed of four of the members 10 joined by four connecting members 12. As will be apparent from FIG. 5, the members 10, particularly where they are very flexible, can be bent in various arcuate shapes or forms, depending upon the structure being constructed and materials used.

Other applications can be made of the invention, including use as a roof, partition, screen, etc., as will be apparent to those skilled in the art. Applicants building members also have desirable acoustical properties which make their use in the interior of buildings and the like very desirable; The round surfaces presented by the structural units will tend to deflect or reflect the sound waves in a number of directions preventing echo or the like. In addition, when the members 10 are made of fibrous material or the like a large portion of the sound normally reflected will be absorbed.

While the invention has been described in connection with a preferred specific embodiment thereof, it will be understood that this discussion and description is intended to illustrate, and not to limit the scope of the invention, which is defined by the claims.

What is claimed is:

1. A structural building unit comprising, in combination, a plurality of elongated relatively wide panel members of relatively thin bendable material, each of said panel members being arcuate in transverse cross section, a plurality of continuous elongated integral relatively narrow connecting members each having a resilient center portion having a generally C-shaped transverse cross section, longitudinal side portions generally parallel to and spaced from the sides adjacent the edge of said center loop C-shaped portion and connected to the edges thereof to form channels therealong, said side portions positioned in intersecting planes, one of said connecting members being positioned betwen adjacent ones of said panel members with the lateral edges thereof being snugly received in said channels, said connecting member engaging the lateral edges of the panel members in co-acting and sealing relation, and holding said panel members under stress in a cambered shape, a header and footing having side portions, said footing being positioned at the bottom and said header being positioned at the top of said, panel and connecting members with said side portions of said footing and header engaging and confining the ends of the channels of said connecting members and said panel members to prevent movement therebetween, said unit being constructed and adapted to provide a load bearing wall, ceiling, column or the like with said channels of said connecting members sealingly receiving and joining said panel members and restricting the lateral edges of same to increase theload bearing capacity thereof.

5 Q 6 2. The structural building unit of claim 1 wherein said 7 2,620,750 12/ 1952 Watter 52222 XR header and footing are channel members. 2,787,812 4/1957 Long 52494 3. The structural building unit of claim 1 wherein 2,806,278 9/1957 Crump 52293 XR said header and footing are channel members, said 2,923,383 2/ 1960 Webb 52588 panel members are of fibrous material, and said connect- 5 3,027,983 4/ 1962 Pink 52664 ing members are metal. FOREIGN PATENTS References Cited by the Examiner 1 462,089 9/ 1951 taly.

1,110,457 10/ 1955 rance. UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,198,987 6/1959 France. 613,599 11/1898 Pease 52 493 10 2,073,185 3/ 1937 Shafer 52293 FRANK L. ABBOTT, Primary Examiner. 231L170 2/1943 Ham 52223 WILLIAM 1. MUSHAKE, EARL J. WITMER, JACOB 2,397,388 3/1946 Troedsson 52262 L NACKENOFF E 2,438,428 3/1948 Birdsall 52481 mmmers 2,615,211 10/1952 Gardner 52495 15

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3390495 *Mar 2, 1966Jul 2, 1968Eric DalbyFlexed ceiling structure with trimmed edges
US3452500 *Nov 16, 1966Jul 1, 1969Heirich William CWall paneling system
US3453792 *Jul 11, 1968Jul 8, 1969Intern Aluminum LtdSpindle mounting for storm doors
US3465486 *Jun 2, 1967Sep 9, 1969Etienne D RolinStructural unit for beam structures and flotation hulls and method of manufacture
US3503172 *Jan 29, 1968Mar 31, 1970Beguin Gilbert HEdge-joined sheet material
US3513608 *Nov 20, 1968May 26, 1970Nagrod WalterCurvilinear prefabricated building with conical roof
US4083153 *Apr 28, 1977Apr 11, 1978Sumpter Gary TCeiling and wall structures having curved panels
US4193239 *Jun 27, 1978Mar 18, 1980Barto LeroyPrefabricated wall or ceiling assembly
US4377314 *Oct 14, 1980Mar 22, 1983Christophe GeversPiece of furniture particularly for stowing goods away, and stow-away unit formed by such pieces of furniture
US4763453 *Jun 29, 1987Aug 16, 1988Blumcraft Of PittsburghDoor shoe assembly
US5265662 *Jul 16, 1991Nov 30, 1993Sanwa Shutter CorporationShutter curtain for a building opening
US6192642Apr 10, 2000Feb 27, 2001Hunter Douglas Inc.Cladding system and panel for use in such system
US6199337 *Nov 20, 1996Mar 13, 2001Hunter Douglas Inc.Cladding system and panel for use in such system
US6427409Feb 14, 2001Aug 6, 2002Hunter Douglas Inc.Cladding system and panel for use in such system
USRE46043Apr 8, 2014Jun 28, 2016Awi Licensing LlcCanopy-like decorative structure
EP0081643A1 *Oct 7, 1982Jun 22, 1983artur fischer forschungSealing of the ends and joints of a facing composed of slabs
U.S. Classification52/222, 52/455, 160/231.2, 52/393, 52/781
International ClassificationE04C2/32, E04B2/72
Cooperative ClassificationE04C2/32, E04B2/72
European ClassificationE04B2/72, E04C2/32