US 3297382 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 10, 1967 N. D. SNOWDEN 3,297,382
CABINET WITH FOLDABLE TABLE Filed June 30, 1965' 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 L 4/ 26 M k 26' L INVENTOR Q;- Norman D. Snowden ATTORNEYS Jan. 10, 1967 N. D. SNOWDEN 3,297,382
CABINET WITH FOLDABLE TABLE Filed June 30, 1965 I5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Norman D. Snowden Mm, 5y [2% i ATTORNEYS Jan. 10, 1967 D, SNOWDEN I 3,297,382
CABINET WITH FOLDABLE TABLE Filed June 30, 1965 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 [N VEN TOR Norman D. Snow/den gyymw 1 United States Patent O 3,297,382 CABINET WITH FOLDABLE TABLE Norman D. Snowden, 3691 Asbury Lane, Atlanta, Ga. 30331 Filed June 30, 1965, Ser. No. 468,222 2 Claims. (Cl. 312238) This invention relates to an article of furniture that is constructed and intended to be used under a variety of conditions; and is more particularly related to an attractive convertible cabinet of the type wherein, in one position articles such as books, or the like, can be stored in an open upper portion and other household articles can be stored in a closed lower portion, and, in another position, when the front vertical surface of the lower portion of the cabinet is positioned in a horizontal plane at table level height, the cabinet can be used as a table or desk, without disturbing the articles stored in the cabinet.
In the past, it has been the practice of furniture manufacturers to construct furniture that has multiple uses. Consumer demand for such furniture was generally due to the economy effected by not having to purchase multiple pieces of furniture wherein a single piece of furniture could serve multiple purposes. A demand of this type is most prevalent in smaller dwellings, for instance, efliciency apartments and the like, wherein considerably more emphasis is placed on articles of furniture that occupy relatively little space and yet are capable of being converted or adapted to a plurality of uses.
Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a chest, cabinet, or similar piece of furniture having operable parts that enable its use as a desk or table without interferring with or hindering its storage space.
It is another object of this invention to provide a combination cabinet and table in which the supporting legs of the table, when not in use, will be confined within the cabinet limits and will be hidden from view so as not to interfere with the esthetic appearance of the cabinet.
Another object of this invention is to provide a convertible cabinet that has a series of horizontal shelves and a front lower vertical surface that is pivotal so that it can pivot to a horizontal plane whereupon it is coextensive with one of the horizontal shelves of the cabinet.
Another object of this invention is to provide an attractive convertible cabinet having a series of horizontal shelves in its upper portion and a vertically extending lower front panel portion that is pivotal so that it can be pivoted to a horizontal plane that is coextensive with one of the horizontal shelves of the cabinet and so that the cabinet shelf and the front panel form a continuous horizontal surface, without obstruction or interruption.
Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent upon inspection of the following specification, taken in conjunction with the enclosed drawing, in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the convertible cabinet arranged in the corner of a room;
FIG. 2 is a perspective View of a lower portion of the cabinet shown in FIG. 1, the vertical lower panel of one of the cabinets being shown in its extended position;
FIG. 3 shows a partial cross-sectional view of the convertible cabinet at its lower panel pivot point, showing the cabinet in its storage position as shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the convertible cabinet, similar to FIG. 3, but showing the lower panel pulled outwardly of its storage space immediately before being pivoted to its table position;
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of the cabinet, similar to FIGS. 3 and 4, but showing the lower panel pivoted to its table position;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the lower panel of the 3,297,382 Patented Jan. 10, 1967 convertible cabinet showing its interior or underside and the manner in which its legs are attached;
FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the under portion of the shelf of the convertible cabinet to which the lower panel is pivotally attached; and,
FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view of the intersection of the lower portions of the cabinet.
Referring now more particularly to the drawing, in which like numerals indicate like parts throughout the various figures, the cabinet 10 is L-shaped and comprises two cabinet portions 11 and 12 of similar configuration constructed to be positioned in the corner of a room. Since the cabinet portions 11 and 12 are of similar constructions, only cabinet portion 11 will be described while similar parts on portion 12 will carry similar numerals with the addition of a prime following each numeral. The cabinet 11 comprises vertical side supports 14 and 15 extending upwardly from the floor of the room. Horizontal shelves 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, and 21 extend between the vertical side portions 14 and 15, in a parallel relationship, and a top shelf 22 extends between the upper end of each of the vertical side supports 14 and 15. Vertical panels 25 are positioned between each of the shelves 17-22, and these panels are aligned with one another as if they were one continuous panel extending vertically upward from the shelf 17 to the top shelf 22. Of course, it is the builders option as to the number of horizontal shelves and vertically extending panels 25 that are positioned between the shelves. The lower shelf 16 can be left free of vertical panels 25, at the builders options, in order that more bulky items might be stored thereon. Of course, the convertible cabinet is constructed so that the upper shelves 17-21 are exposed and adapted to shelve eye-appealing articles such as books, flowers or various other decorations, while the lower shelf 16 is normally out of sight and can be utilized for the storage of unsightly articles.
A lower front panel 26 is pivotally attached to the shelf 17 by the hinge mechanism 28, shown in detail in FIGS. 3-5. The hinge mechanism 28 comprises a panel support 29 which is securely fastened to the lower front panel 26, a hinge element 30 of conventional construction, a slide 31 attached to the hinge element 30, and a slide support 32 which is attached to the lower portion of the shelf 17. The slide 31 is slideably received in the slide support 32 so that the lower front .panel 26 can be selectively positioned in its storage position, as shown in FIG. 3, or pulled outwardly of its storage position and pivoted on the hinge mechanism 28 to its table position, as shown in FIG. 5. The slide 31 and panel support 29 are of the same thickness so that when the panel support is pivoted to the position shown in FIG. 5 its surface adjacent the panel is coextensive with the surface of the slide that is adjacent the shelf 17. Accordingly since the panel 26 and the shelf 17 are of the same thickness, their upper surfaces, in the .position shown in FIG. 5, are also coextensive.
As is best shown in FIG. 6, legs 35 are pivotal-1y attached to the *bottom or interior portion of the lower front panel 26 of the convertible cabinet so that when the panel 26 is in its extended or table position the legs 35 can be pivoted to a vertical or substantially vertical position and support the lower front panel 26 from the floor. When 'it is desired to pivot the lower front panel 26 to its vertical or storage position, the legs 35 are merely pivoted to a position substantially parallel to the surface of the lower front panel 26, whereupon the panel is free to pivot to its vertical position. After the panel 26 has been pivoted to its vertical position it can be moved inwardly of the convertible cabinet by pressing thereon and causing the slide 31 to slide through the slide support 32,
' 3 whereupon the lower front panel 26 will be moved inwardly of the edge portion of the shelf as shown in FIG. 3.
The lower front panel 26 has decorative knobs 36 attached thereto. The knobs 36 can be grasped so that the lower front panel .26 can be slid inwardly or outwardly of the cabinet when the cabinet is being converted between its table position and its storage position.
The cabinet portion 12 is constructed in a manner similar to the cabinet portion 11, with the only difference being that the cabinet 12 is shown as being shorter in width and having fewer vertical panels 25. Since the cabinet portions 11 and 12 are arranged in the corner of a room, and since the horizontal shelves 17 and 17 of each cabinet are wider and extend outwardly of the shelves 1822 and 18'22' and their vertical panels 25 and 25', the portion of the shelves 17 and 17' that abut the adjacent cabinet portion must be cut on an angle at 38 so as not to interfere with their corner placement. Also, since the lower front panels 26 and 26' swing up into the same plane of the horizontal shelves 17 and 17', the panels must be foreshortened at the ends that are adjacent to the other cabinet portion on the adjacent wall so as not to interfere with its shelf when positioned in the same plane. This construction, of course, would create a gap between the lower panels of the cabinet portions which might be considered unsightly. Accordingly, an L-shaped brace 40 is positioned between the lower front panels of the cabinet portions 11 and 12 so that the gap between the panels is hidden from view, and also so that the lower panels tend to rest in a vertical plane when in their storage or vertical position. While the L-shaped brace is shown on the exterior portion of the lower front panels, it is to be understood that this brace can be positioned behind the panels or between the panels to perform substantially the same function.
The knobs 36 and 36' are of a size so that when the lower front panels 26 or 26 are pulled outwardly of their cabinet portion and pivoted up to their table positions, the knobs on the opposite lower front panel will not interfere with the movement.
The convertible cabinet can be built-in by cutting out portions 41 at the bottom of the vertical side supports 14 and 15, attaching the side supports 14 and in the conventional manner to the wall of the room, and putting molding 42 around the upper portion of the cabinet, between the cabinet and the ceiling of the room. Obviously, the cabinet can be positioned in the room without permanent attachment thereto by merely placing the cutout portion 41 over the baseboard of the room and by not attaching the molding 42 to the ceiling.
While the knobs 36 and 36' are used to slide the panels 26 and 26' inwardly and outwardly of the cabinet, at the builders option the knobs can be constructed so that they are easily detachable from their lower front panels and can be removed so that when the front panel is in its table position there will be no obstruction on the surface of the table and the lower front panel will be a continuous extension of the shelf 17 so that there will be no interruption in the surface formed by the shelf 17 and the panel 26.
At this point, it should be understood that this invention provides a convertible cabinet construction that can be utilized as a storage cabinet or as a table surface at the option of the owner, whereby the table-height shelf forms a continuous unbroken surface with the pivotal lower front panel to form a table surface of increased area over that of the panel alone and the shelf area can be utilized as if it were a portion of the panel surface. Also, when the table surface is pivoted to its vertical position so as to form a decorative front lower piece for the cabinet, the table portion can be moved inwardly of the cabinet so that the hinge mechanism, which is generally thought to be unsightly is completely hidden from sight and the convertible cabinet becomes a decorative storage area for the room. Furthermore, since the lower front panels are of different widths, table surfaces of d'ifierent sizes are available.
It will be obvious to those skilled in the art that many variations may be made in the embodiment chosen for the purpose of illustrating the present invention without departing from the scope thereof as defined by the appended claims.
- 1. In a cabinet of the type having in its upper portion a series of exposed horizontal shelves for housing small articles and in its lower portion a generally closed storage area, the combination therewith of a slide support attached to the underside of one of said horizontal shelves, a slide slideably received in said slide support, a hinge having one of its leafs connected to said slide, a panel support of dimensions effectively equal to said slide connected to the other leaf of said hinge on the side thereof adjacent said slide, a rectangular panel of a size substantially equal in its length and depth to the length and dept-h of said one of said horizontal shelves and in width to the 'height of said lower portion of said cabinet, said slide support being displaced from the edge of said one of said shelves and the pin of said hinge being positioned parallel to and downwardly of said slide and said panel support, at least one leg pivotally attached to said panel whereby said panel is selectively positioned in a. vertical plane, inwardly of the edge of said one of said shelves, with said leg folded to a position substantially parallel with said panel, or in a horizontal plane in contiguous parallel relationship with said one of said shelves with said leg folded to a position substantially perpendicular with said panel.
2. In an L-s-haped cabinet of the type arranged to fit into the corner of a room and having in its upper portion a series of exposed horizontal shelves for storing small articles and in its lower portion a generally closed storage area, the combination therewith of one of said horizontal shelves on each side of said L being of a greater width than the remaining shelves, slide supports mounted on the under side of each of said one shelf, slides slideably received in said slide supports, panel supports, hinges connected between said slides and said panel supports where- 'by one surface of each of said panel supports is pivotal to effectively form a continuation of one surface of its slide, rectangular front lower panels on each side of said L-shaped cabinet being attached to said panel supports, each of said panels being of a size substantially equal in length and depth to the length and depth of its respective said one shelf and in width to the height of said lower portion of said carbinet, said slide supports being displaced from the edge of each of said one shelf and said panel supports being displaced from the edge of said panels whereby each of said panels is selectively positioned in a vertical plane, inwardly of the edge of its said one shelf, or alternately, in a horizontal plane in contiguous parallel relationship with its said one shelf, a pair of legs pivotally attached to each said panel and being of a length substantially equal to the height of the lower portion of said cabinet.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 541,504 6/1895 Roberts 312-255 2,162,031 2 6/ 1939 Rodman 10879 2,714,743 8/1955 Loohner 16179 FOREIGN PATENTS 712,292 7/1931 France.
600,648 4/ 1948 Great Britain.
CLAUDE A. LE ROY, Primary Examiner. CHANCELLOR E. HARRIS, Examiner.