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Publication numberUS3288489 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 29, 1966
Filing dateJul 5, 1963
Priority dateJul 5, 1963
Publication numberUS 3288489 A, US 3288489A, US-A-3288489, US3288489 A, US3288489A
InventorsJahn Martin D
Original AssigneeChicago Metallic Sash Company
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Main runner coupling
US 3288489 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 29, 1966 M. D. .JAHN 3,288,489

MAIN RUNNER COUPLING Filed July 5. 1963 i IWI United States Patent O 3,288,489 MAIN RUNNER COUPLING Martin D. Jahn, Riverside, Ill., assignor to Chicago Metallic Sash Company, Chicago, lll., a corporation of Illinois Filed July S, 1963, Ser. No. 292,988 7 Claims. (Cl. 287-189.36)

The invention relates generally to suspended ceiling structures, and more particularly to a novel joint construction for connecting the abutting ends of two longitudinally aligned runners.

The invention has among its objects the production of a runner joint which is very simple in construction, easily produced, and enabling the use of very simple installation or assembly techniques, the resulting joint being exceptionally rigid and durable, -and employing joining ends of identical construction.

A further object of the invention is the production of such a runner joint in which the connecting members are so designed that the reinforcing between the two runners is greater than the distance between the interconnecting portions of the runners.

Many other objects and advantages of the construction herein shown and described will be obvious to those skilled in the art from the disclosure herein given.

In the drawings, wherein like reference characters indicate like or corresponding parts:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the end of a runner constructed in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational View of two runners such as that illustrated in FIG. l disposed in abutting relation;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken approximately on the line 3 3 of FIG. 2; and

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of a modification of the invention.

The present invention contemplates the production of a joint construction for connecting the abutting aligned ends of a pair of runner members to lock the same in rigid relation, in which the locking means is constructed from the material forming the runner and is so designed that a reinforcing is achieved, whereby an extremely rigid joint results that will resist relatively large bending stresses on the runner assembly. This is accomplished by forming the runner with an extension member Which is adapted to overlie -a portion of the abutting runner, such extension and cooperable portion of the abutting runner being provided with interlocking means, as for example, a cooperable tongue and slot structure, the tongue in the embodiment illustrated being formed on the extension member and adapted to be inserted in a slot on the cooperable portion of the adjacent runner. The construction is such that the extension extends outwardly beyond the tongue and thus provides an additional reinforcement with the reinforcing portions of the runners when assembled, being greater than the distance between the assembled tongues, thereby imparting maximum rigidity to the structure.

Referring to the drawings, and more particularly to FIG. 1, the reference numeral 1 indicates generally the end portion of .a runner constructed in accordance with the present invention, the runner being of generally inverted T-shape and illustrated as of the single web type, constructed from a single sheet of material, and comprising an elongated normally vertical body member 2 which is provided at its upper longitudinal edge with a reinforcing bead 3, constructed'by forming the portion of the material into a tubular configuration. Disposed at the bottom longitudinal edge of the body member 2 is a normally horizontal flange or bottom portion, indicated generally by the numeral 4, formed by bending the sheet material transversely with respect to the body 2 to form ICC an outwardly extending flange S, the material then being bent back upon itself Ias indicated at 6, with the opposite free edge of the latter being reversely bent to form -a reinforced edge portion 7. The speciiic details of the runner construction may vary and as thus far described form no part of the present invention.

Extending longitudinally outwardly from the free end edge 8 of the body 2 is a generally planer extension member indicated generally by the numeral 9, having a transversely extending tongue 11 extending substantially at right angles to the plane of the body 2, the tongue 11 being disposed intermediate the free end of the extension member 9 and the adjacent end of the body 2. The tongue 11 preferably is formed from the material forming the exension 9, the tongue in the embodiment illustrated being formed from the outer end portion of the extension whereby the latter is provided with two outwardly extending portions 12 which project beyond the tongue 11. The body 2 is also provided with a vertically extending slot 13 formed therein of a size to receive a tongue 11 on a cooperable runner. As will be apparent from the drawings, particularly FIG. 2, the top and bottom edges 14 and 15 may converge toward the free end edge of the tongue, whereby the latter is generally of a trapezoidal shape, having its long base integrally connected with the extension member 9. As will be apparent from a reference to FIGS. 1 and 3, the extension member 9 may be provided with a lateral offset 16 at its juncture with the body member 2, such offset being substantially equal to the thickness of the metal forming the body portion.

In assembling a pair of runners constructed in accordance with the invention, the runners, which obviously are identically formed at opposite ends, are disposed with the end edges of the flange portions 4 abutting and the body members 2 laterally offset to dispose the tongues 11 of each runner in alignment with the cooperable slot 13 of the other runner, following which the tongues may be inserted in such slots by lateral relative movement between the two runners to bring the same into exact longitudinal alignment, as illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3. It will be apparent that the converging edges 14 and 15 facilitate the easy insertion of the tongues into the associated slots 13, following which the tongues may be bent back as illustrated in connection with the right hand tongue in FIGS. 2 and 3, the left hand tongue being illustrated in its position immediately following insertion into the associated slot. The offsetting of the extension members 9, in connection With a body 2 of single thickness of material, enables the proper alignment of the two runner ends with the respective extension members in close engagement with the adjacent body portion of the other runner.

FIG. 4 illustrates the application of the invention to runners employing a body member 2' of double thickness, having walls 2a and 2b, connected at their upper edges by a tubular bead portion 3', the lower edges of the walls 2a land 2b terminating in oppositely disposed outwardly extending flange portions 5a and 5b generally corresponding to the flange 5 of the construction illustrated in FIGS. l-3. The runner proper is completed by a cap strip 17, the longitudinal edges of which are folded around the adjacent longitudinal edge of each flange.

Ihis construction also illustrates the reversal of the tongue and slot, the slot 13 being disposed in the extension member 9' and `the tongue 11 being disposed on the fbody `member 2', but if desired, the same general construction of FIGS. l-3 could be employed as to the location of the tongue and slot. Obviously, the tongue 11 may be provided with outwardly converging top and bottom edges 14' and 15.

In either case, `the entire tbody and extension mem-bers, as Well as the tongue, could |be made of double thickness as illustrated in FIG. 4, in which case lthe extension 9 would be offset at 11 similar to the offset 11 of the construction of FIGS. 1-3, such extension members likewise being offset the thickness of `the body member opposite the extension member when two runner ends are abutted, which in this case would be twice the thickness of the metal from which the runner is formed.

Where a double thickness runner construction is employed, it may be desirab-le to make each extension member of single thickness, in which case the extension member may be formed from the double thickness of the body member of a leading |or trailing runner during the fabrication processes, the associated extension member extending from one thickness of the body. The other body mem-ber would then be only of single thickness where overlapping by such extension mem-ber, in which case no offset would be required.

It will be noted from the above description that I have provided a runner joint for connecting t-he abutting ends of two longitudinally aligned runners, which joint is extremely simple, capable of ready fabrication and constructed -to provide maximum reinforcement to insure a very rigid connection between the runners. Likewise, the construction is such that in any of the forms of the invention all of the runner ends are identically formed so that any runner end will properly mate with any other runner end.

Having Athus described my invention, it `will be obvious that various immaterial modifications may be made in the same without dep-arting from the spirit of my invention; hence I -do not wish to be understood as limiting myself to the exact form, construction, arrangement and combination of parts herein shown and described, or uses mentioned.

What I claim as new and ydesire to secure by Letters Patent is:

1. A runner joint for connecting like abutting ends of a pair of aligned runners of a suspended ceilin-g structure, each runner being of generally inverted Tshape having a central normally vertical body member and a normally horizontal flange portion, comprising an extension member formed on and extending longitudinally outwardly from the body member of each abutting runner end, each such extension member lying in a plane extending parallel to -t-he plane of the associated body member with which it is to .be engaged, and in-te-rlocking means comprising a tongue formed on one of said members, and a slot formed in the other of said members, each tongue initially extending at substantially right angles to said plane, and spaced from the free end of the associated member, each slot being of a size lto receive the tongue on the other runner, when the runners are in aligned abutting relation, each extension member being laterally offset -the thickness of the metal forming the overlapping portion of the body member of the other runner, whereby the latter portion of each runner and the extension member of the other runner may be disposed in side-by-side relation when the runner ends are in aligned abutting relation, with the portions of said extension members disposed between each free end thereof and the interlocking means tformed thereon, providing longitudinal reinforcement opposing bending action between said runners, the tongues on the respective assembled runners being bent back to overlie the adjacent portions of the runner engaged therewith to lock the runners in such lassembled relation.

2. A runner joint for connecting like abutting ends of a pair of aligned runners of a suspended ceiling structure, each runner Ibeing of generally inverted T-shape having a central normally vertical body member and a normally horizontal flange portion, comprising an extension member formed on and extending longitudinally outwardly from the body member of each abutting runner end, each such extension member lying in a plane extending parallel to the plane of the associated |body member with which it is to be engaged, and interlocking means cornprising a tongue formed on one of said members, and a slot formed in the other of said members, each tongue initially extending at substantially right angles to said plane, and spaced tfrom the free end of ythe associated member, each of said tongues being generally trapezoidalshaped having outwardly convenging top and bottom edges and connected at its long base to its member, each slot being of a size to receive the tongue on the other runner, when the runners are in aligned abutting relation, each extension member being laterally offset the thickness of the metal forming the overlapping portion of the body member of the yother runner, whereby the latter portion of each runner and the extension member of the other runner may be disposed in side-by-side relation when the runner ends are in aligned abutting relation, with the portions of said extension members disposed between each free end thereof and the interlocking means formed thereon, providing longitudinal reinforcement opposing bending action between said runners, -the tongues on the respective assembled runners being bent back to overlie the adjacent portions of the runner engaged therewith to lock the runners in such assembled relation.

3. In a runner constructed for connection to the abutting end of an aligned like runner of a suspended ceiling structure, said runner being of generally inverted T-shape having a central normally vertical body member and a normally horizontal ange portion, the combination of an extension member formed on the runner end, and extending longitudinally outwardly from the body member, such extension member lying in a plane extending parallel to the longitudinal axis of the body member portion with which it is to be engaged, means for interlocking with like means on another runner comprising a tongue formed on one of said members and a slot formed on the other of said members, said tongue initially extending at substantially right angles to said plane, said slot of a size to receive a like tongue on such other runner when such runners are in aligned abutting relation, said extension member being laterally offset the thickness of the metal forming the interlocking portion of the body member whereby the latter member of each runner may be disposed in side-by-side relation with the extension member of the other runner when the runner ends are in aligned abutting relation, the interlocking means carried by said extension being spaced from the free end thereof with the portion of the extension member therebetween forming reinforcing means opposing bending action between a pair of assembled runners.

4. In a runner constructed for connection to the abutting end of an aligned like runner of a suspended ceiling structure, said runner being of generally inverted T-shape having a central normally vertical body member and a normally horizontal ange portion, the combination of an extension member formed on the runner end, and extending longitudinally outwardly from the body member, such extension member lying in a plane extending par allel to the longitudinal axis of the body member portion with which it is to be engaged, means for interlocking with like means on another runner comprising a tongue formed on one of said members and a slot for-med on the other of said members, said tongue initially extending at substantially right angles to said plane and being generally trapezoidal-shaped having outwardly converging top and bottom edges and connected at its long base to the respective member, said slot of a size to receive a like tongue on a like runner when such runners are in aligned abutting relation, said extension member being laterally offset the thickness of the metal forming the interlocking portion of the body member whereby the latter member of each runner may be disposed in side-by-side relation with the extension member of the other runner when the runner ends are in aligned abutting relation, the interlocking means carried by said extension being spaced from the free end thereof with the portion of the extension mem-l ber therebetween forming reinforcing means opposing bending action between a .pair of assembled runners.

S. A runner as defined in claim 4, wherein said runner body and extension member are of a single thickness of metal and the extension member is laterally offset with respect to said body member by the thickness of the latter.

6. A runner as defined in claim 4, wherein said runner body member is of a double thickness of metal, `said extension member and tongue likewise being of double thickness With the extension member being oiset with respect to the body member by the thickness lof the latter.

7. A Irunner as defined in claim `4, wherein said runner body member is of double thickness of metal, but of only References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,924,311 2/1960 Brown 189-36 HARRISON R. MOSELEY, Primary Examiner.

I. K. BELL, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2924311 *Apr 2, 1957Feb 9, 1960Donn Prod IncT-splice
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3418779 *May 9, 1966Dec 31, 1968Shatterproof Glass CorpWindow units
US3492766 *May 9, 1968Feb 3, 1970Mccloskey Grant CorpAdjustable stud
US3701555 *Nov 24, 1969Oct 31, 1972Harris Kenneth DClamp
US3777432 *Sep 18, 1972Dec 11, 1973Lightolier IncCollapsibly joined louver grid
US3846031 *Apr 4, 1972Nov 5, 1974Rollform IncCeiling grid system expansion joint
US4335973 *Mar 20, 1981Jun 22, 1982Armstrong World Industries, Inc.Runner splicer bar
US4498802 *Sep 29, 1983Feb 12, 1985Burroughs CorporationCoupling arrangement
US4544301 *Nov 1, 1982Oct 1, 1985Burroughs CorporationCoupling apparatus
US5678946 *Jan 23, 1996Oct 21, 1997Enami Seiki Mfg. Co., Ltd.Joint structure for metal plates
US6131362 *Feb 2, 1999Oct 17, 2000Buecker Machine & Iron Works, Inc.Sheet metal beam
US6729100Apr 30, 2002May 4, 2004Usg Interiors, Inc.Main tee splice
US6843033 *May 9, 2003Jan 18, 2005Kabushiki Kaisha Okumura SeisakushoConnecting mechanism for ceiling panel supporting stringers
US7188740Jul 7, 2004Mar 13, 2007Rubbermaid, Inc.Adjustable length wire shelves for adjustable organizer system
US7240803 *Jul 7, 2004Jul 10, 2007Rubbermaid, Inc.Shelf mounting bracket for adjustable organizer system
US7255237 *Jul 7, 2004Aug 14, 2007Rubbermaid IncorporatedMounting upright and clip for adjustable organizer system
US7296697Dec 18, 2003Nov 20, 2007Rubbermaid IncorporatedAdjustable closet organizer system
US7314144Jul 7, 2004Jan 1, 2008Rubbermaid, Inc.Shoe shelf for adjustable organizer system
US7387212Jul 7, 2004Jun 17, 2008Rubbermaid IncorporatedTop rail assembly for adjustable organizer system
US7392911Feb 20, 2007Jul 1, 2008Rubbermaid, Inc.Shelf mounting bracket for adjustable organizer system
Classifications
U.S. Classification403/285, 52/506.7
International ClassificationE04B9/10, E04B9/06
Cooperative ClassificationE04B9/10
European ClassificationE04B9/10