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Publication numberUS3318269 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 9, 1967
Filing dateOct 22, 1965
Priority dateOct 22, 1965
Publication numberUS 3318269 A, US 3318269A, US-A-3318269, US3318269 A, US3318269A
InventorsJames D Kinn
Original AssigneeNat Canvas Products Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible table
US 3318269 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

967 J. D; KINN COLLAPSIBLE TABLE Filed Oct. 22, 1965 2 4. m j m. T

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United States Patent Ohio Filed Oct. 22, 1965, Ser. No. 500,957 6 Claims. (Cl. 108-112) This invention relates to a collapsible or folding table which, when not in use, may be folded or collapsed into a compact unit requiring a minimum of floor space for storage. More particularly, this invention relates to a collapsible or folding table particularly adapted for use as a game table for table tennis which, may be entirely collapsed for storage and which also may be partially folded or collapsed to provide a table surface of reduced size with a vertical backboard or wall for individual practice or play.

Folding or collapsible tables including those designed specifically for table tennis are well known in the prior art. US. Patents 2,645,539, 2,772,935, and 2,913,294 each disclose folding tables designed for table tennis play in which a pair of equal sized table sections are attached to one another by hinges and may be folded to an upright, vertical position to reduce the storage space for the table when it is not in use. Structures such as these have found commercial success and are satisfactory to the user who either wishes to use the table in its entirety or store it away during periods of nonuse.

In addition to providing a folding table which may be stored in a minimum of space as previously described, this invention provides a folding or collapsible table suitable for use as a game or table tennis table which may be partially folded so that one section or court remains in its normal horizontal position while the other section is folded to a vertical position. Such a table not only provides a general utility table of reduced size for uses other than table tennis, but may also be used by an individual for practicing table tennis and the like. As will be seen from the detailed description below, the folding table of this invention, unlike tables known in the prior art, may be partially collapsed so that a single section or court is held in vertical position adjacent the inner edge of the second section or court, so that an individual player may practice by striking the ball against the vertical section which acts as a backboard to return the ball to the position of the player.

Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a collapsible or folding table which may be completely folded with its two sections or leaves in vertical position for storage or may be partially folded with only one section or leaf in vertical position to provide a half-sized table with a vertical backstop for use in practicing table tennis and the like.

Other objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof, reference being made to the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a view in perspective of a preferred embodiment showing the table in partially collapsed position with one of the sections held in vertical position against the abutting inner edge of the other section and also showing, in phantom, the position of the collapsed section when it is opened to provide a complete table;

FIGURE 2 is a view in elevation of the table shown in FIGURE 1, showing both sections in open position and showing the details of the support frame and associated supporting members;

FIGURE 3 is a view in elevation of the preferred em-' bodiment shown in FIGURES 1 and 2, showing the table in completely closed position with both sections in a vertical top to top relationship and showing, in phantom, these sections in open position; and

FIGURE 4 is a partial cross-sectional view, on an enlarged scale, taken along line 44 of FIGURE 2, showing the details of the manner in which the inner abutting edges of the table are supported by a vertical support pole.

Referring first to FIGURE 1, the table includes a pair of top sections 10 and 11 which are preferably equal in size and, when positioned horizontally with their edges abutting one another, comprise a complete court for table tennis. Each of the top sections 10 and 11 is rectangular and has an inner end 12, an outer end 1 3 and sides 14 and 15. As best seen in FIGURE 4, the inner ends 12 (and preferably the outer ends 13 and sides 14 and 15) include a downwardly depending flange 16 which extends normal to the major surface of the top sections 10 and 11. The flanges 16 strengthen the top sections 10 and 11 and, as will be later shown, help to keep the top sections 10 and 11 in open or horizontal position by cooperating with a vertical support member.

A table support frame includes a pair of parallel, spaced apart support bars 17 and 18 which are secured to a pair of transverse, U-shaped frame members 19 and 20, as best seen in FIGURE 1. Casters or wheels may be provided on each end of the frame members 19 and 20 for convenience. A pair of spaced apart frame braces 21 and 22 extend between the ends of the frame members 19 and 20 to complete the lower frame structure. Cylindrical sleeves 23 and 24 are secured in the center of the support bars 17 and 18 respectively, and extend upwardly toward the top sections 10 and 11 when in open or horizontal position. The axes of the sleeves 2'3 and 24 lie in the vertical plane which passes between the abutting inner ends 12 of the top sections 10 and 11, when open, as best seen in FIGURE 2. Telescoping support pole-s 25 and 26 extend from within the sleeves 23 and 24 respectively, and may be locked in position by means of a set screw 27 which is threaded through the sleeve 23 or 24. As illustrated in FIGURES l-3 the set screw has an external wing nut for convenience in positioning the support poles 25 and 26 at the desired height.

A pair of pivot arms 28 and 29 extend from each of the table section sides 14 and 15 from an intermediate point thereof downwardly and are pivotally attached to the lower portions of the frame members 19 and 20. As best seen in FIGURE 2, each of the pivot arms 28 and 29 has an upper section 30 and 31, respectively, and a lower section 32 and 33, respectively. The upper sections 30 or 31 and lower sections 32 or 33 extend at an angle to one another to form the L-shaped or dogleg pivot arm 28 or 29. The lower ends of each of the pivot arms 28 :and 2 are pivoted on a pin extending through the lower portions of each end of the frame members 19 and 20, as indicated at 34 and 35. The upper ends of the pivot arms 28 and 29, as best seen in FIGURE 2, are pivoted on a pin extending through a bracket 36 or 37 secured to the lower surface of the table section 10 or 11 at a point on the sides 14 or 15, intermediate the inner and outer ends 12 and 13.

At the outer corners of each of the top sections 10 and 11, folding legs 3841 are pivoted to the top sections 10 and 11 With releasable braces so that the legs may be secured in a vertical position to support the outer ends of the top sections 11) and 11 when in horizontal position, or may be swung to a closed position lying parallel and adjacent to the sides 14 and 15 of the top sections 10 and 11 when these sections are in closed or vertical position, as shown in FIGURE 3. The manner of securing and the hardware required for the legs 3841 is conventional and will not be described in detail.

Finally, as seen in FIGURE 4, the upper end of the support poles 25 and 26 has a slot 42 which extends radially across the support poles 25 or 26 parallel to the flanges 16 on the inner ends 12 of the top sections and 11. The width of the slot 42 is suflicient to receive both the flanges 16 on each edge 12 of the top sections 10 and 11 when both of the top sections are in horizontal or open position.

When the preferred embodiment above described is in open position, with both top sections 10 and 11 held in horizontal abutment along their inner ends 12, a continuous horizontal upper surface is provided for table tennis or other general use In this position, all four pivot arms 28 and 29 are pivoted or swung outwardly away :from the center of the table about their lower pivot points 34 and 35 respectively until the outer surfaces of the lower sections 32 and 33 contact the inner surfaces of the frame members 19 and 20 respectively, at pressure points designated by reference numerals 43 and 44 in FIGURE 2. At this position, the weight of the top sections 10 and 11 is substantially supported by the pivot arms 28 and 29 and pushes downwardly through the brackets 36 and 37 which are substantially outside of the pivot points 34 and 35 in the frame member, thus holding the pivot arms 28 and 29 in open or outer position. As previously explained, the top sections 10 and 11- are held in abutment at their inner end 12 by the slot 42 which grips the flanges 16 on the inner ends 12 and prevents these flanges from pulling apart; The lower edges of the flanges 16 rest upon the bottom of the slot 42, as indicated by reference numeral 45 in FIGURE 4, and the support poles and 26 are locked in their upper positions shown in FIGURES 1 and 2 by the set screws 27. With the support poles 25 and 26 so positioned, the inner ends 12 of the top sections 10 and 11 cannot be depressed or swung downwardly. Finally, the legs 38-41 support the outer ends of the top sections 10 and 11 so that, in the preferred embodiment described, each top section is supported at six places, by the support poles 25 and 26 at the inner ends 12, by both of the pivot arms 28 and 29 at inter-mediate points through the brackets 36 and 37 and at the outer ends by the legs 38 and 39 or 40 and 41.

While the described preferred embodiment includes the outer legs 38-41, a folding table in accordance with this invention may be provided having no outer legs 3841 so that each top section 10 and 11 v is supported at four places. Such a table would not be as suitable for use as a table tennis or other game table, but, on a smaller scale, could be used as a general purpose utility table. Without outer legs 3841, the top sections 10 and 11 will remain in open, horizontal position as long as the center of gravity of each top section, 10 and 11, is inward of the brackets 36 and 37 or, between support points provided by the brackets 36 and 37 and the support poles 25 and 26, 1 Such an arrangement could be provided by increasing the angle between the upper portions 30 land 31 and lower portions 32 and 33 of the support arms 28 and 29, respectively, thus moving the position of the brackets 36 and 37 outwardly away from the inner ends 12 of the top sections 10 and 11-. 'Also, a locking means similar to the set screw 27 can be provided in the upper end of the support pole 25 or 26 adjacent the slot 42 to secure the flange-s 16 on the inner ends 12 of the top sections 10 and 11 within the slot 42. In place of a locking screw in the support poles 25 or 26, a pin 46 extending through the upper portions of the support pole 25 or 26 and the flanges 16 could be used to hold the flanges in place. Such a pin 46 is shown in FIGURE 4.

One of the advantages of the collapsing table of this invention is that, due to its unique construction, requiring no hinges to connect'the top sections 10 and 11, one or both of the top sections 10 and 11 may be folded or closed to vertical position. As previously explained,

. when both top sections Hand 11 are closed to vertical position, the table occupies a minimum of floor space for storage. When only one of the top sections 11 is folded to vertical position, the table provides a half-court playing surface for table tennis practice or may be used as a general purpose table of reduced size. Referring to FIG- URE 3, the top sections 10 and 11, when in closed, vertical position, are supported by the support bars 17 and 18 which extend normal to and support the inner edges 12, as indicated by reference numerals 47 and 48. In this position, the upper or playing surfaces of the top sections 10 and 11 are closely adjacent and parallel to the support poles 25 and 2.6 and the sleeves 23 and 24. The upper sections 30 and 31 of the pivot arms 28 and 29 lie closely adjacent and parallel to the lower surfaces of the top sections 1%) and 11, as seen in FIGURE 3, and prevent further inward pivoting of the pivot arms 28 and 29 about their lower pivot points 34 and 35, respectively. The outer legs 3841 are, of course, collapsed to a position closely adjacent and parallel to the sides 14 and 15 of each of the top sec-tions 10 and 11. Thus the closed top sections 11) and 11 are held against downward movement by the support bars 17 and 18, and against lateral movement by the support poles 25 and 26,- sleeves 23 and 24 and the upper sections 30 and 31 of the pivot arms 28 and 29.

When only one of the top sections is closed, such as top section 11 as shown in FIGURE 1, it is supported in vertical position in a similar manner with its inner edge 12 resting upon support bars 17 and 18, and its top surface adjacent the sleeves 23 and 24 and extended support poles 25 and 26. In order to close one section, as shown in FIGURE 1, it is necessary to lower the support poles 25 and 26 by releasing the set screw 27, swing the inner end 12 of this section 11 downwardly towards the support bars 17 and 18, and then pivot the pivot arms 28 and 29 inwardly until the top section 11 is in vertical position. Then the support poles 25 and 26 are moved again. to their upper position and locked there to support the inner end 12 of the still open top section 10.

It will be apparent that, because of the unique pivoting and locking arrangement of the table of this invention, one or both of the top sections may be held in vertical position as previously described. Furthermore, this advantage is present in embodiments of the table which do not include outer legs 38-41. Thus the table of this invention may be used in fully open position, may be fully closed for storage in a minimum space or may be partially closed for use as a practice table or table for general use of reduced size.

Various modifications of the above described preferred embodiment of the invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art and it is to be understood that such modifications can be made without departing from the scope and tenor of the accompanying claims.

I claim:

1. A collapsible table comprising, in combination, a pair of top sections, each having an inner end, an outer end, an upper surface and a lower surface, which sections, when said table is open, are held in generally horizontal position with their inner ends in abutment to form a contmuous surface, a support frame including a pair of spaced apart horizontal support bars extending below and generally normal to the abutting inner ends of said open top sections and a pair of horizontal frame members ex tending below and generally parallel to said abutting inner ends, a support pole extending upwardly from each of said horizontal support bars toward said abutting inner ends when said sections are in open position, means for individually pivoting each of said top sections from said open position to a closed position wherein such closed top section is generally vertical with its inner end resting upon said horizontal support bars and with its upper surface closely adjacent and parallel to said vertical support poles, said pivot means including a pair of spaced apart parallel pivot arms extending from upper pivot points on the lower surface of each of said top sections intermediate its inner and outer ends to lower pivot points on said frame below said horizontal frame members, each of said pivot arms comprising an elongate angle member having a lower portion extending between said horizontal frame members upwardly from said lower pivot points, and an upper portion extending from said upper pivot points at an angle to said lower portion such that, when said table section is in open, horizontal position, the lower portions of each pair of pivot arms rest against and are prevented from further outward movement by one of said horizontal frame members and such that, when said table section is in closed, vertical position, the upper portions of each pair of pivot arms are closely adjacent and parallel to said lower surface of said vertical table section, and means to hold said top sections inhorizontal position.

2. The collapsible table of claim 1 wherein said horizontal support bars are secured to said horizontal frame members to form a horizontal, rectangular frame supported by vertical legs extending downwardly from each corner thereof, with a lower portion of each of said pivot arms pivotally secured to one of said legs at said lower pivot points below said rectangular frame.

3. The collapsible table of claim 1 wherein said vertical support pole is adjustable in length from an upper position in contact with the abutting inner ends of said sections when in open position to a lower position below said upper position.

4. The collapsible table of claim 3 which further includes means for locking said support pole to said abutting inner ends of said table sections when said sections are in open position,

5. The collapsible table of claim 1 in which said means for holding said top sections in horizontal position includes at least one table leg extending from each of said outer ends downwardly to support said top sect-ions when in open horizontal position, said table legs pivotally at tached to said outer end, whereby when said top sections are in vertical closed position said legs may be swung to a closed vertical position closely adjacent and parallel to said top sections.

'6. The collapsible table of claim 1 wherein said upper pivot points on the lower surface of said top sections are in a line parallel to the inner and outer ends of said top sections and spaced closer to said outer end than said inner end.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 504,778 9/1893 Flory 5-139 741,132 10/1903 Harman 5-138 858,969 7/1907 French 108-112 1,054,894 3/1913 Ball 5-140 2,299,910 10/ 1942 Linderme 108-115 2,343,832 3/1944 Pinson et a1. 108-64 2,569,007 10/1951 Klyce 108-112 2,645,539 7/1953 Thompson 108-113 2,772,935 12/1956 Read 108-113 2,886,387 5/1959 'Honeycutt 108-112 2,913,294 11/1959 Linde.

DAVID J. WILLIAMOWSKY, Primary Examiner. F. ZUGEL, Assistant Examiner,

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US504778 *Mar 23, 1893Sep 12, 1893 Combined folding bed and dressing-case
US741132 *Jan 13, 1903Oct 13, 1903Warren HarmanFolding bed.
US858969 *Sep 8, 1906Jul 2, 1907Albert Edward FrenchIroning-table.
US1054894 *Aug 10, 1912Mar 4, 1913Napoleon B DouglassWall-bed.
US2299910 *Sep 26, 1940Oct 27, 1942Linderme Theodore GFolding table
US2343832 *May 21, 1941Mar 7, 1944Abraham PinsonPortable bleacher
US2569007 *Sep 25, 1946Sep 25, 1951David J KlyceFolding table
US2645539 *May 6, 1950Jul 14, 1953Daniel T ThompsonFolding table, tennis table, or the like
US2772935 *May 11, 1955Dec 4, 1956Clyde M ReadFolding game table
US2886387 *Jul 15, 1957May 12, 1959Illene Honeycutt BTable storage rack
US2913294 *Nov 8, 1956Nov 17, 1959Leonard J LindeCollapsible table employing legs for supporting the table in extended and collapsed positions
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3434436 *Jan 20, 1967Mar 25, 1969Creative Environments IncCollapsible workbench
US3437058 *Jun 2, 1967Apr 8, 1969Sico IncFolding room service table
US4489661 *Apr 12, 1982Dec 25, 1984Fitzgerald Patrick WFoldable tables and the like
US4570751 *Mar 7, 1985Feb 18, 1986Gerhard KleuAdjustable platform scaffolding
US5048857 *Oct 26, 1989Sep 17, 1991Colgate-Palmolive CompanyVertically collapsible food service cart system
US5203266 *Sep 29, 1989Apr 20, 1993Colgate-Palmolive Co.Foldable table having centerline folding leaves
US6234919 *Sep 23, 1999May 22, 2001Marion Tom MizerackiTable tennis handle-less racquet and multipurpose combination table
US6645096Oct 24, 2002Nov 11, 2003Sportcraft, LtdFoldable table tennis table
US6786162Feb 20, 2003Sep 7, 2004Randy E. VolkmerSpace-saver workbench
US6986722Apr 29, 2002Jan 17, 2006Sop Services, Inc.Compact collapsible tennis table
US7704170May 11, 2007Apr 27, 2010Sop Services, Inc.Four piece table tennis table having a stabilized joint
US20020119844 *Apr 29, 2002Aug 29, 2002Dadbeh Benanali H.Compact collapsible tennis table
US20070265117 *May 11, 2007Nov 15, 2007David JulianFour piece table tennis table having a stabilized joint
US20110177893 *Jul 21, 2011Sportcraft, Ltd.Table tennis table top
US20140011614 *Jul 9, 2012Jan 9, 2014Samuel ChenTable tennis lift
EP1059053A1 *Jun 7, 2000Dec 13, 2000Etablissements CornilleauDisplay device for table tennis tables
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/170, 108/115
International ClassificationA63B67/04, A47B3/087
Cooperative ClassificationA47B25/003, A63B69/0097, A63B67/045, A63B67/04, A47B3/087, A63B2210/50
European ClassificationA63B67/04, A47B25/00B, A47B3/087