US 3268195 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
g- 23, 1966 LE ROY cs. HOFFMAN 3,268,195
SUPPORT PANEL AND CLIP Filed Dec. '7, 1965 INVENTOR.
LEROY G. HOFFMAN Ka 272m AGENT 3,268,195 Ice Patented August 23, 1966 3,268,195 SUPPORT PANEL AND CLIP Le Roy G. Hoffman, Upper Montclair, NJ. (RR. 2, P.(). Box 109, Eureka, S. Dak.) Filed Dec. 7, 1965, S81. No. 512,063 11 Claims. (Cl. 248225) This invention relates to a panel and clip means for mounting thereon. More particularly this invention relates to decorative panels having longitudinally disposed slots in one face and clips for the removable mounting therein.
Even more particularl this invention relates to a panel having slots disposed in precise relationship to each other and at a preselected angle and size to the face of the panel, and to clips having a slot engaging portion formed at a more acute angle than the angle of the slot.
In the construction of business oflices, schools, store interiors and the like, it has become popular to use natural wood panelling for decorative purposes and to provide special functional effects. It is often desirable to place shelves, pictures and the like on these panels. In the case of schools and stores particularly, it is desirable to be able to make changes in the arrangement of these attached shelves, pictures and the like all without damaging the panelling.
It is an object of this invention to provide a panel lhaving longitudinally disposed slots, precisely spaced and sized so as to be readily mounted as a matched member of a large wall pattern. In this manner it is an intent of this invention to provide a panel wall having a continuous slot pattern for the entire wall. To enable pictures, displays, shelves and the like to be readily hung and to be removed and remounted as desired without difficulty or damage to the panelling, I provide a metal clip having a slot engaging portion. This slot engaging portion is formed with a first portion of an angle more acute than the slot lip angle and with a second portion at an angle to the first portion. The clip so formed is adapted to engage the slot at one point for easy sliding into position and when the load is applied the clip first portion is caused to be moved into engagement with the bottom slope surface of the slot and the second portion is moved into locking engagement with the top slope surface of the slot. When the load is released the bias in the clip returns the clip to the original as-formed condition and in this condition is easily removed f-rom the slot.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a highly decorative wall panel adapted to removably retain clips adapted to support pictures, shelves and the like. The same being economical of manufacture, installation and replacement.
The combination by means of which the above and other advantages of the invention are attained will be described in the following specification, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing showing a preferred embodiment of the invention in which:
FIGURE 1 represents a sectional view showing a portion with two adjacent slots representative of the plurality of slots formed in one of the faces;
FIG. 2 represents in enlarged scale, a fragmentary front view of the panel with a typical support clip mounted therein, the clip being in the unloaded position;
FIG. 3 represents the fragmentary front view of FIG. 2 with the support clip shown in the load supporting position;
FIG. 4 represents a sectional view taken on the line 44 of the panel and clip of FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 represents a sectional view taken on the line 55 of the panel and clip of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 6 represents a side view of a support clip having its object engaging end curved into a hook.
Referring now to the drawing in detail and in particular to FIG. 1 there is shown a panel 10 in which there are a plurality of slots 12 formed in one face. As exemplified and as reduced to practice, the panel 10 may be of plywood about one-half inch or more in thickness and if of plywood usually of five-ply construction. Plastic, metal or similar material into the face of which a groove or slot 12 can be cut, pressed or molded may also be used. It is only necessary that the slot 12, when it is formed, be of uniform cross-section in those portions of the panel where a support clip 14 is to be mounted. As reduced to practice and used in many tests and installations, a slot 12 which is three thirtyseconds inch in width and about nine to ten sixty-fourths inch in depth provides an adequate depth for the insertion and safe and satisfactory use of clips 14 as shown. These clips have and do carry loads up to one-hundred fifty pounds and are removable from the slot without damage to the wood forming the slot and also without damage to the clip. This slot to be effective and to stand the concentrated loads provided by the clip 14 and as determined by use tests preferably has an angle A which is about fifty-two to seventy degrees. This angle provides that the support lip 18 have a like included angle and that such a lip portion of this angle provides an outer edge that is not so sharp as to be easily crushed and at the same time provides a slope surface 20 which as the panel is mounted in an upright manner is sloped inwardly and downwardly. A balance between narrow and wide spacing of the slots is a matter of selection and preference. The slot 12, when made in a plywood panel having a face ply of decorative wood such as walnut, birch, maple or other such woods, appears as an inconspicuous groove and blends partly into the grain pattern of the paneling. When the parallel-spaced slots are spaced two inches apart and less and are disposed over a panel four feet wide the slots see-m to dominate the panel appearance and detract from the general effect of the panel graining. It has therefore been determined by careful experiments that a spacing B of about three inches provides a very satisfactory slot arrangement and at the same time the slots are sufliciently close to permit the mounting of clips 14 in nearly any desired pattern or spacing. On a spacing of three inches a panel of four feet in width has sixteen slots with both edges having portions of one slot so that when the slots are mounted to form larger patterns the horizontally disposed edges will appear as a slot which in effect it is. It is to be noted that the angle A, as shown, is preferably made at sixty degrees included angle.
It is to be noted that when the panels 10 are mounted so as to provide a wall and with the slots 12 disposed as shown, the clips 14 may be mounted in the slots so as to provide support for loads to be placed thereon. It is desirable that the clips be so formed as to be easily inserted into the slots. After insertion and perhaps sliding the clip horizontally into longitudinal position the clip when the load is applied must be so formed as to be positively engaged in the slot and after the load is removed the clip must from its residual bias be able to return to its original form so as to be easily removed from the slot without damage to the clip and slot. I accordingly provide a clip 14 having a straight portion 22 and to this portion there is attached a bend portion 24 which has an inside radius of perhaps one sixty-fourth inch. A downwardly extending portion 26 is disposed at an included angle of about forty-five degrees and as reduced to practice is about seven sixty-fourths long. A short member portion 28 of about three thirty-seconds inch is bent or formed out of the plane of portion 26 and is at an included angle of about one hundred thirty-five degrees to the portion 26.
Attached to as a part of and extending from the clip shank portion 22 may be any one of several article engaging forms. As for example, as seen in FIG. 6, there is formed a circular hook portion 30 which may be small in diameter and be used in the hanging of pictures or may be larger in diameter and be used to support utensils. A right angle portion 32 as seen in FIGS. 4 and 5 extends from shank 22 and may be used to support shelves and the like. A clip 14 such as seen in FIGS. 4 and 5 but terminating at the bottom end of shank 22 and having no angle portion 32 may be used to attach to cabinet portions, brackets and the like. Special end forms may also be made to suit particular applications. The clip 14, as exemplified and reduced to practice, is made of an aluminum extrusion cut to suitable lengths. The Wall thickness is about thirty-five to fifty-thousandths of an inch, and when the clip is about one-quarter inch long the clip will support about one hundred fifty pounds and will return to its original form when the load is lifted. It is only important to note that the slot engaging portion of the clip 14 when inserted into the slot 12 and prior to the application of a load rests on the bottom slope 20 of the slot at only a single point. This point 34 is at the bend or angle between portions 26 and 28 and provides a means of minimum engagement with the slot so that the clip may be readily slid or placed in a desired location in the slot. As the load is placed on the clip the clip bends at point 24 causing point 34 to slide down the slope 20 until the entire portion 26 engages and lies on slope surface 20. As port-ion 26 approaches the slope 20 it is to be noted that the extreme or outer end of the short member 28 moves upwardly to engage the upper surface 36 of the slot 12 and to, in effect, wedge or lock the clip into the slot. It is desirable to so size and proportion the portions 26 and 28 as to insure that the end is as near the full depth of the slot as practical and that as the load is applied to the clip the end of portion 28 is able to move toward and into engagement with the surface 36.
USE AND OPERATION The panel -10, for economical reasons, is usually made of a standard four foot width and the slots 14, as exemplified, are precisely and evenly spaced so that panels can be mounted in an end-to-end relationship and in a random manner and when so formed, the slots will coincide permitting the panels to be assembled into a large pattern. The panel or panels may be one-half inch laminated ply- WOOd type construction, or may be of thicker construction. A slot module made from extruded or formed metal can also be shaped so as to provide a slot of predetermined size and angle. The essential feature of the panel and clip is that the angle of the clip be more acute than the angle of the slope surface 20 so that the loaded clip is sprung into a full engagement with the slope and so that the end of portion 28 tends to engage the opposite slope 36. When such a formed clip is used in the slot, the clip when so loaded places the bend 24 into a strictly shear strain and insures that the clip portion 22 lies against the face of panel 10.
The terms in, out, up, down and the like are merely for the purpose of description of the invention as illustrated and do not necessarily apply to a position in which the panel may be constructed or sometimes used.
While I have herein shown and described my invention in what I have conceived to be the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is recognized that departures may be made therefrom within the scope of my invention, which is not to be limited to the details disclosed herein but is to be accorded the full scope of the claims so as to embrace any and all equivalent products.
Having described my invention herein, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A panel having selectively spaced slots so formed that when the panel is mounted in a vertical manner the slots are disposed to extend in a generally horizontal manner and at least one clip adapted to be removably mountable in the slot, the combination of panel and clip comprising (l) a panel having a plurality of slots disposed in precise relationship to each other, the slots formed in one Wall and each having a predetermined cross-section at least at those locations where a clip is to be mounted and when the panel is mounted for use, said slots at the predetermined cross-section having a bottom slope surface extending inwardly and downwardly to provide a lip included angle of greater than fifty degrees, the slot at its inner end having a top surface disposed at a selected distance from the bottom slope surface, and (2) a clip member formed of a material having a residual bias and having a straight portion adapted to lie adjacent a face of the panel, the straight portion having means for engaging and supporting a load, a second straight portion of the clip attached to the straight portion and extending at an angle to the first straight portion, the angle being more acute than the included lip angle of the bottom surface of the slot and panel face, and a third portion of the clip attached to the slot receiving end of the second portion and having an engaging surface at a predetermined distance above the plane of the lower surface of the second straight portion so that when a load is applied to the clip the bias of the clip at the angle between the first and second portions will be overcome and the second straight portion will be urged into contact with the bottom slope of the slot and the third portion will be lifted by the moved second portion so that the engaging surface of the third portion will be urged against the top surface of the groove.
2. A panel and clip as in claim 1 in Which the slots formed in the wall have substantially parallel top and bottom surfaces and the included lip angle is not less than about fifty-two degrees and is not greater than about seventy degrees.
3. A panel and clip as in claim 1 in which the second and third clip portions are formed of one piece with the third portion bent from the plane of the second portion so as to provide at the bend a sliding cam surface for the clip to slide down the lower slope surface and with the upper distal end of the third portion providing the engaging surface for the third portion to engage the upper surface of the slot.
4. A panel and clip as in claim 3 in which the slot width may be from one-sixteenth to three-sixteenths inch wide and from one-quarter to seven-sixteenths deep and in which the top and bottom surfaces are substantially parallel and with the include-d lip angle not less than fifty-two degrees and greater than seventy degrees.
5. A panel and clip as in claim 3 in which the slots are spaced not less than two and one-quarter inches apart and not more than four inches apart.
6. A panel and clip as in claim 3 in which the means for engaging and supporting a load as provided by the first straight portion of the clip is an outer portion extending from the straight portion and bent into a form of a hook.
, 7. A panel and clip as in claim 3 in which the means for engaging and supporting a load as provided by the first straight portion of the clip is an outer portion extending at substantially right angles to the first straight portion and providing a bracket support.
8. A panel and clip as in claim 3 in which the slots are disposed at sixty degrees included angle between the face and the lower slope surface and the angle between the first and second portions of the clip is forty-five degrees.
9. A panel and clip as in claim 8 in which the slots are spaced about three inches apart and the slots are about three thirty-seconds inch in width.
10. A clip for use on a panel having slots with spaced opposing side walls, the slots forming a lip angle with the face of the panel the included angle being greater than fifty degrees, the clip being formed of a material having a residual bias and comprising (1) a first portion adapted to lie against the face of a panel and to bear against the face when a load is applied to the clip, (2) particularly formed portions of said first portion providing means for engaging and supporting a load, (3) a second straight portion of the clip extending from the first portion and at an angle to the first portion, said angle being more acute than the included lip angle, and (4) a third portion of the clip attached to and extending from the slot receiving end of the second portion and with the second portion forming an engaging surface of limited extent with which to engage the lower surface of a slot when the clip is in an unloaded position and with the distal end of the third portion providing engaging means with which to engage the top surface of a slot when the load is applied to the clip whereupon the bias of the clip at the angle between the first and second portions is overcome and the second straight portion is urged into contact with the bottom slope of a slot and the third portion is moved upwardly with the distal end formed and sized to engage the upper slot surface.
I11. A clip as in claim 10 in which the included angle between the first and second portions is about forty-(five degrees and in which the included angle between the second and third portions is about one hundred thirty-'five degrees.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 661,557 11/1900 Schwab 248301 X 1,220,021 3/'191-7 Smyrk 20-74 3, 112,912 12/ 196 3 Alvarez 2-482'23 3,172,540 3/1965 Berge 21187 3,199,683 8/1965 Graswick -2'1171 3,235,218 2/ 1966 Graham 248225 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,253,295 2/1961 France.
603,903 4/ 1960 Italy.
CLAUDE A. LE ROY, Primary Examiner.