US 3336881 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
g- 1967 w. M. AIKEN, SR
TABLE DROP LEAF SUPPORT Filed 7 June 5, 1966 H (Ill/Illll/l/fl/ll/III/I w/u 14M M. AIKEN, JR. BY
ATTORNE Y5 United States Patent 3,336,881 TABLE DROP LEAF SUPPORT William M. Aiken, Sr., Statesville, N.C., assignor to Acme Metal Slide, Inc., Statesville, N.C., a corporation of North Carolina Filed June 3, 1966, Ser. No. 555,185 3 Claims. (Cl. 108--77) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE Heretofore, drop leaf supports have included slide members arranged to travel more or less horizontally along the underside of the main table surface in moving to an extended position for supporting the table drop leaf at its raised position level with the main table surface; a drop leaf support of this type being disclosed, for example, in U.S. Patent No. 2,731,317, issued Jan. 17, 1956'. This horizontal movement is entirely feasible where the hinge arrangement consists of a plurality of hinges each having a restricted extent along the attachment edge and sufficiently spaced to allow free movement of the slide member therebetween. However, where it is desired to use a hinge having substantial extent along the attachment edge of the drop leaf, no such spacing is available so that the use of supports having horizontally moving slide members is precluded.
By the present invention, a unique drop leaf support is provided which does not require any hinge spacing and which can be utilized eifectively to support a variety of sizes of drop leaves. Briefly described, this invention provides a drop leaf support which includes a channel bracket adapted to be attached to the underside of a main table surface and formed to carry a slide member in spaced relation below the main table surface and to impose an inclined sliding path on the slide member during extension and retraction thereof that is clear of the attachment hinge; provision also being made to vary the inclination imposed on the slide member at its extended position for selectively determining the extended length of the slide member.
These and other features of the present invention are described in detail below in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary side elevation illustrating the arrangement of a drop leaf table having a drop leaf support according to the present invention, the slide member thereof being in its retracted position;
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the drop leaf support illustrated in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional detail taken substantially on the line 3--3 in FIG. 2 with the drop leaf attachment hinge indicated in phantom lines;
FIG. 4 is a further fragmentary side elevation illustrating the table drop leaf shown in FIG. 1 in its raised position supported by the drop leaf support slide member at its extended position; and
FIG. 5 is a related fragmentary side elevation illustrating the drop leaf support slide member at an adjusted extended position.
Referring now in detail to the drawings, FIG. 1 illustrates a drop leaf 10 attached at one edge thereof to a main table surface 12 by a single hinge member 14 which has a substantial lengthwise extent along the attachment edge of drop leaf 10 and which projects below the underside of the main table surface 12 as may be best seen in FIGS. 4 and 5.
The illustrated embodiment of the drop leaf support of the present invention, generally indicated by reference numeral 16', is fixed to the underside of main table surface 12 adjacent the hinge member 14 by a plurality of attaching screws 18 extending through openings 20 (FIG. 2) formed in the outwardly extending flange portions 22 of a channel bracket 24 which also includes vertically extending side walls 26 and a bottom wall 28 that is inclined with respect to the underside of the main table surface 12.
Located adjacent the forward end of bottom wall 28 is a transverse ridge or slide boss 30 on which the bottom edge of a slide member 32 rides during extension and retraction thereof, slide member 32 being fitted at one end thereof with a loop element 34 and having abutment lugs 36, 38 arranged to abut a side wall 26 and thereby determine the maximum slide of slide member 32 within channel bracket 24. Also extending transversely between side walls 26 at the back end of channel bracket 24 is a positioning member 40 mounted endwise in a pair of aligned slots 42 in side walls 26, a cylindrical spacer element 44 being disposed around positioning member 40 between side walls 26. A wing nut 46 threaded on one end of positioning member 40 can be loosened to release the positioning member 40' and permit adjustment thereof in the slots 42, and then tightened to hold it securely at its adjusted position; the spacer element 44 maintaining sufiicient spacing of side walls 26 when wing nut 46' is tightened to permit free sliding movement of slide member 32 therebetween.
For an explanation of the operation of the drop leaf support 16 of the present invention, attention is first directed to FIG. 1 where the slide member 32 is illustrated at its retracted position, the bottom edge thereof resting on slide boss 30 and the back edge 28' of bottom wall 28. The slide member 32 is thus carried by channel bracket 24 in spaced relation below the main table surface 12. After drop leaf 10 has been lifted to its raised position level with the main table surface 12, slide mem ber 32 is extended along a sliding path. imposed thereon by channel bracket 24 that is inclined with respect to the main table surface 12. It will be noted that the spacing between positioning member 40 and bottom wall 28 may be suflicient to permit limited pivotal movement of slide member 32 about slide boss 30 during extension thereof so that the inclination of the sliding path may vary; however, this inclination will, in any case, be such that the sliding path imposed on slide member 32 lies beneath the hinge member 14. Extension of slide member 32 continues until the loop element 34 comes into contact with the underside of drop leaf 10 and slide member 32 becomes wedged between positioning member 40 slide boss 30 and the underside of drop leaf 10 so that no further extension is permitted and drop leaf 10 is supported at its raised position.
The extended length of the slide member 32 at its extended or supporting position can be selectively determined by adjustment of positioning member 40 to vary the inclination of extended slide member 32 as best illustrated in FIGS. 4 and 5. In FIG. 4, positioning member 40 is illustrated near the lowest end of slots 42 whereby the extended length of slide member 32 is relatively short, while in FIG. 5 where a large drop leaf 10" is being supported, the positioning member 40 is adjusted to a position near the top of slots 42 whereby slide member 32 can pivot about the fulcrum provided by slide boss 30 and become wedged at a lesser inclination with respect to the underside of drop leaf thereby resulting in a longer extended length of slide member 32 which offers more effective support for the larger drop leaf 10'. Other extended lengths of slide member 32 can be selected in a similar manner by proper adjustment of positioning member 40 in slots 42.
The slots 42 in the illustrated embodiment are arranged so that the long axes thereof intersect the sliding path of slide member 32 whereby adjustment of positioning member 40 therein will vary the inclination of slide member 32 at its extended position in the aforementioned manner. Additionally, the long axes of slots 42 slope substantially from vertical in relation to the main table surface 12 so that the reaction force against positioning member 40 resulting from the wedging action of slide member 32 is directed substantially against the top edges of slots 42 so as to reduce the holding load imposed on wing nut 46. It is understood, of course, that slots having other slopes than that illustrated are within the scope of the present invention; however, the illustrated slots 42 provide a nice balance between providing proper adjustment of positioning member 40 with respect to the sliding path of slide member 32 while also reducing the force required to retain positioning member 40 at its adjusted position when slide member 32 becomes wedged at its extended position.
The present invention has been described above for purposes of illustration only and is not to be limited by this description or otherwise except as defined in the appended claims.
1. Means for supporting a table drop leaf attached at one edge thereof to a main table surface by hinge means having substantial extent along said attachment edge, said supporting means comprising a channel bracket adapted to be fixed to the underside of said main table surface adjacent said hinge means, and a slide member slida-bly disposed in said channel bracket for movement between a retracted position permitting said table drop leaf to hang from said hinge means and an extended position at which the extending end portion of said slide member supports said table drop leaf at its raised position level with said main table surface, said channel bracket being formed to carry said slide member in spaced relation below said main table surface and to impose an inclined sliding path on said slide member during extension and retraction thereof that lies beneath said hinge means, and said channel bracket including adjusting means for varying the inclination imposed on said slide member at the extended position thereof and thereby selectively determining the extended length of the slide member at said extended position.
2. Means for supporting a table drop leaf as defined in claim 1 and further characterized in that said channel bracket includes a slide boss on which the bottom edge of said slide member rides during extension and retraction thereof, said slide boss being located adjacent the end of said channel bracket at which said slide member is extended and retracted and providing a fulcrum about which said slide member is pivoted when the sliding path imposed thereon is varied.
3. Means for supporting a table drop leaf as defined in claim 2 and further characterized in that said channel bracket is formed with a pair of side walls each of which have an elongated slot therein, said elongated slots being respectively aligned in said side walls adjacent the other end of said channel bracket with the long axis thereof disposed to slope substantially from vertical in relation to said main table surface and intersect the sliding path of said slide member, and in that a positioning member is held between said side walls by releasable securing means engaging said elongated slots for determining the inclina tion of said slide member at said extended position.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,651,825 12/1927 Luppert 10 878 2,210,220 8/1940 Soisson 108-78 2,295,094 9/ 1942 Teague 108-80 2,458,627 1/1949 North 108-78 2,731,317 1/1956 Duncan 10878 FOREIGN PATENTS 351,125 6/1931 Great Britain.
FRANCIS K. ZUGEL, Primary Examiner.
DAVID J. WILLIAMOWSKY, Examiner.