US 3333890 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 1, 1967 R. L. WHITWAM RETAINER ASSEMBLY 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed July 18, 1966 INVENTOR Rancid L. Whitwam BY (741%70, hlqmj,
Aug6 1, 1967 R L. WHITWAM 3,333,80
RETAINER AS SEMBLY Filed July 18, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet :1
INVENTOR ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,333,890 RETAINER ASSEMBLY Ronald L. Whitwam, Spring Lake, Mich., assignor to American Seating Company, Grand Rapids, Mich., a corporation of Delaware Filed July 18, 1966, Ser. No. 566,007 9 Claims. (Cl. 297-191) This invention relates to a retainer assembly, and more particularly to a retainer for a seat back useful for holding magazines, pamphlets, and'various articles.
Under the usual practice, the seat backs of buses, planes, and other vehicles are usually provided with pockets or receptacles in which magazines, maps, and various pamphlets are stored. Such pockets are often bulged outwardly in areas, thus limiting the already narrow space between seats, while at the same time various articles including food materials are placed within the receptacles. It is extremely diflicult to remove all of such material from the pockets in the limited periods where the vehicles are stopped for cleaning, the operation being time-consuming and tedious.
I have discovered that the above difliculties can be avoided by employing a retainer assembly in which a pair of tubes connected in spaced relation may be each elastically anchored to the seat back, permitting rocking of either tube for independently opening the top or the bottom of the retainer. By making the ends of the tube rack also independently movable, the retainer is adapted for receiving articles of varying sizes and types and in varying arrangements, while at the same time permitting ready removal of articles from the bottom of the rack or retainer.
A primary object, therefore, is to provide a retainer assembly adapted for use on seat backs and overcoming the difficulties above described- A further object is to provide a seat back article retainer having end portions and upper and lower portions elastically drawn tightly against the seat back while being independently movable. A still further object is to provide a retainer assembly in which upper and lower tubes are connected to form a rack frame, and elastic tension means are provided within the tubes and anchored by cables to the back of the seats. A still further object is to provide cable means flexibly anchored to seat backs and extended through plastic closures for tubes in which elastic members are supported. Other specific objects and advantages will appear as the specification proceeds.
The invention is shown in an illustrative embodiment by the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a vehicle seat having backs equipped with retainer assemblies embodying my invention; FIG. 2, a view similar to FIG. 1 but showing one seat having the upper tubular portion of the retainer moved rearwardly to receive a magazine; FIG. 3, a view similar to FIG. 2 but showing the retainer released for holding the magazine compactly against the back of the seat; FIG. 4, a view similar to FIG. 3 but showing the lower tube of the retainer swung outwardly to open the retainer and thus permit the removal of articles and materials within the rack, the upper tube providing a rocking pivot for this action; FIG. 5, a perspective and exploded view, partly in section, showing the components of the assembly in separated relation; FIG. 6, a sectional view showing the lower tube held compactly against the seat back; and FIG. 7, a view similar to FIG. 6 but showing the lower tube swung outwardly to open the retainer or rack.
In the illustration given, the vehicle seat back is indicated by the numeral 10. Secured to the seat back, as shown best in FIGS. 5, 6 and 7, is an elongated flange 11 through which are passed rivets 12. The flange 11 is rolled upon itself at one end to provide a tubular anchor 13 having a pair of slots 14 formed therein through which the cables 15 extend. The cable ends are retained within the slots 14 by ball-fitting ends 16. I prefer to employ ball fittings provided with tubes which receive the ends of the cables 15 and to swage the tubes about the cables to form a secure joint. The cables are preferably formed of strands of stainless steel or of any other suitable material.
The body of the retainer is preferably formed by an upper tube 17 and a lower tube 18, the tubes being formed of metal or other suitable material and being connected by rods 19 which may be welded to the tubes or otherwise secured thereto and with the rods extending inwardly so as to lie adjacent the seat back 10, as shown best in FIGS.
' 5 and 6.
Within the tubes 17 and 18 I provide a tensioning member 20 which may be an elastic cord, tension spring, or
any other elastic means. In the specific illustration given, an elastic cord is connected to the cable 15 by a coupler member 21, as, for example, an aluminum tubular device receiving on one end the cable 15 and at the other end the cord 20. The tubular ends of the member 21 are swaged to join the cord 20 and cable 15, the connection being made when the cord 20 is elastically extended so that when the connection is made and the cord 20 released, the cord draws the tube 17 or 18 tightly inwardly toward the seat back 10.
In order to guide the stainless steel cable 15 while permitting flexing thereof during movement of the retainer, I provide a plastic closure member 22 having a bell-shaped mouth 23, the closure having a reduced portion fitting tightly within the end of each tube. The parts are shown in assembled relation in FIGS. 6 and 7.
Assembly and operation In the assembly of the rack structure, the anchor flanges 11 are secured by rivets 12 in the manner shown best in FIGS. 6 and 7, with the ball fittings 16 received Within the tubular portion 13 and with the cable 15 extending through the slots 14 for freemovement of the cables. The inner ends of the cables 15 are extended through the closure members 20 and, with the elastic cords 20 fully extended, the inner ends of the cables are secured to the cords by the coupling members 21, the tube extensions of these members being swaged about the cable ends and cord ends. The closures 22 are pressed within the ends of the tubes 17 and 18 and the elastic members 20 then draw the parts tautly into the position shown in FIG. 6. In the operation of the retainer member as above assembled, it is only necessary to draw the upper tube 17 outwardly to permit the insertion of a magazine, etc., as illustrated best in FIGS. 2 and 3, the lower tube 18 providing a pivot for this action and serving also as a means for confining the lower end of the magazine or article tightly against the seat back. When it is desired to remove the contents of the retainer or rack, it is necessary only to swing the lower rod 18 outwardly, as shown best in FIG. 4, with the upper rod serving as a pivot. Articles and materials within the rack are immediately released, as illustrated in FIG. 4. If necessary, either end of the rack may be independently drawn outwardly to' While the rack body may be formed of metal, as above described, it will be understood that plastic or other suitable materials may be used. The closure 22 is preferably formed of nylon, but it will be understood that other suitable materials may be used.
The retainer rack assembly has the advantage of permitting articles within the rack to be readily seen from the outside while also permitting independent swinging movement of either end of the rack and of the upper and lower tube portions of the rack, while at the same time the rods 19 urge articles within the rack compactly against the seat back so as to conserve space between the seats. The independent rocking movement of the rack, in which the tubular components provide pivots, enables cleaning personnel to service a bus, plane, or other vehicle in a minimum of time.
While in the foregoing specification, I have set forth a specific embodiment in considerable detail for the purpose of illustrating the invention, it will be understood that such details may be varied widely by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of my invention.
1. A retainer assembly for a seat back, comprising spaced tubes extending across said back, rods connecting said tubes, elastic means within said tubes, and cable means having end portions anchored to said back and inner end portions connected to said elastic means for drawing said tubes tightly against said back whereby said tubes at the bottom and top of said retainer may be independently flexed away from said tube.
2. The structure of claim 1 in which said cables'are anchored by ball fittings to said seat backs.
3. The structure of claim 1 in which said tubes are connected by vertical rods secured to said tubes.
4. The structure of claim 1 in which said tubes are provided with plastic closures having bell-shaped ends receiving said cables.
5. In combination with the back of a vehicle seat, a pair of vertical anchor strips secured to the edge portions of the seat back and provided with cable openings, cables having their outer ends secured to ball fittings received within said anchor strip openings, transverse tubes receiving the inner ends of said cables, and elastic means within each of said tubes secured under tension to the inner ends of said cables whereby each of said tubes is independently drawn against the seat back and is independently movable away from said back.
6. The structure of claim 5 in which said tubes are circular in cross section.
7. In combination with a seat back, cables anchored at their outer ends to said back, tubes receiving said cables, elastic means within each tube secured to said inner cable ends, and rod means connecting said tubes.
8. A retainer for attachment to a generally vertical surface, comprising at least a pair of spaced-apart cross tubes, elastic members in said tubes, and means securing said elastic members under tension to said vertical surface for drawing each of said tubes independently toward said surface whereby each of said tubes may serve as a pivot for rocking said retainer on said surface to open selectively the top and bottom of said retainer.
9. The structure of claim 8 in which connecting rods extend between and are secured to said tubes to form a rack.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 327,668 10/1885 Ehrlich 297-191 X 1,229,871 7/1917 Boock 297191 1,267,239 5/1918 Love 297189 2,483,043 9/ 1949 Golden 297-163 2,807,908 10/ 1959 Lykes 248-451 FOREIGN PATENTS 8,785 1901 Great Britain. 12,587 1914 Great Britain.
DAVID J. WILLIAMOWSKY, Primary Examiner.