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Publication numberUS3337262 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 22, 1967
Filing dateMar 1, 1965
Priority dateMar 1, 1965
Publication numberUS 3337262 A, US 3337262A, US-A-3337262, US3337262 A, US3337262A
InventorsJr Franklin R Amthor, Roy E Kanitz, James M Katzfey
Original AssigneeHamilton Mfg Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Folding table assembly with seating structure
US 3337262 A
Abstract  available in
Images(12)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Aug. 22, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL 3,337,252

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 12. Sheets-Sheet l k wv WW), S. MI %%N 5 W %WJ Q Q m3 m3 v ww i Q J M IlIH\ \ww .mwk c QR EN m w ww fi @Y I E k% N Nvmv N N mm X WM r 4 PVUJ N Y W mw P l. -N v QNRI E %N\\ l MNN @w WWW m L7 LRNN N u fl AWN /K ww wk a m wk ,Qw mm Qw lurk fir 8" 22, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL 3,337,262

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE l2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed March 1, 1965 g- 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL 3,337,262

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 12 Sheets-$heet 3 g- 1967 .1. M. KATZFEY' ETAL 3,33 2

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE l2 Sheets-$heet '4 Filed March 1, 1965 12 Sheets-Sheet 5 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Aug. 22, 1967 Filed March ,1,

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FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 12 Sheets-Sheet e 2, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ET'AL 3,337,262

I FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 lZSheets-Sheet 7 12 Sheets-Sheet i mm ,QQN QC U k w E v EN E Aug. 22, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLYWITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 ww I \1 Q E w mm, Qw mm .3 v m m v N NQW N Nfi \HQm Wm mm WW4 8w AL ug- 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE v 12 Sheets-Sheet 9 Filed March 1 Aug. 22, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY. ETAL 3,337,262

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE Filed March 1, 1965 12 sheets-sheet 10 w w MN Q W Aug. 22, 1967 J. M. KATZFEY ETAL 3,

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE 12 Sheets-Sheet 11 Filed March 1,

g- 22, 1967 J. M, KATZFEY ETAL- 3,337,262

FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE 12 Sheets-Sheet l2 FiledMarch l, 1965 United States Patent 3,337,262 FOLDING TABLE ASSEMBLY WITH SEATING STRUCTURE James M. Katzfey, Two Rivers, Wis., Franklin R. Amthor, Jr., Bethel Park, Pa., and Roy E. Kanitz, Amherst, N.Y., assignors to Hamilton Manufacturing Company, Two Rivers, Wis., a corporation of Wisconsin Filed Mar. 1, 1965, Ser. No. 436,082 31 Claims. (Cl. 297159) This invention relates generally to folding tables, and more particularly to a transversely folding table assembly.

A folding table assembly of the type disclosed in Kanzelberger et al. Patent No. 3,101,064 comprises two table top sections positioned in end-to-end relation, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of the top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to the outer end of each top section. The assembly may be moved between open and closed positions, and when the assembly is in the open position, the top sections are in horizontal end-to-end alignment and are supported by the three leg supports, and when the assembly is in closed position the top sections are vertically disposed in substantially parallel planes and are supported by the end leg supports only, the center leg support being lifted out of engagement with the floor.

A folding table of this character is very useful in a facility such as a school cafeteria or lunch room because it may be folded to its closed position and rolled to an out-of-the-way location when not in use, thus permitting the major portion of the room to be employed for other purposes. When the table is being used, it is ordinarily necessary to provide seats of some sort for the students or other individuals to sit on while using the table. Such seats should extend along at least one longitudinal side of the table, and it is preferable that the seats be secured to and be foldable with the table so that they too will be in an out-of-the-way location when the table is not being used.

A seat may of course take numerous forms, such as a bench, stool or chair, and to meet the demands of its customers, a manufacturer should be able to offer a number of seat forms. It would of course greatly increase production costs if a different table construction were required for each form of seat.

Accordingly, it is an object of this invention to provide a foldable assembly including a basic or standard table and any one of a variety of seating structures which may be readily attached to or detached from the table.

It is another object to provide an assembly of the foregoing character, wherein the table may be used without a seating structure.

Another object is to provide an assembly of the foregoing character, wherein the table may be folded while seating structure is attached thereto.

Still another object is to provide an assembly of the foregoing character, including stabilizers which are operative when the assembly is in its open position to retard unwanted rolling movement of the assembly.

Still another object is to provide an assembly of the foregoing character, including counterbalancing means for assisting in movement of the assembly between its open and closed positions, the counterbalancing means being adjustable so that the table may be used with or without seating structures, or seating structures having differing weights may be used.

Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying figures of the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a folding table assembly embodying the invention;

3,337,262 Patented Aug. 22, 1967 FIG. 2 is an elevational view taken on the line 22 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken on the line 33 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view showing the table in a partially folded position;

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view showing the table in its fully folded position;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 66 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 77 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 8 is an enlarged fragmentary view of a portion of the assembly;

FIG. 9 is another enlarged fragmentary view of a portion of the assembly;

FIG. 10 is a sectional view taken on the line Ill-10 of FIG. 9;

FIG. 11 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 1111 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 12 is a further enlarged sectional view of a portion of the structure shown in FIG. 11;

FIG. 13 is a sectional view taken on the line 13-13 of FIG. 12;

FIG. 14 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 14-14 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 15 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 1515 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 16 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 16-16 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 17 is a fragmentary side elevational view showing another form of the invention;

FIG. 18 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 1818 of FIG. 17;

FIG. 19 is a further enlarged fragmentary sectional View taken on the line 1919 of FIG. 18;

FIG. 20 is a side elevational View showing the structure of FIG. 17 in a partially folded position;

FIG. 21 is a side elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 17 in the fully folded position;

FIG. 22 is a fragmentray side elevational view showing still another form of the invention;

FIG. 23 is a sectional view taken on the line 2323 of FIG. 22;

FIG. 24 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 2424 of FIG. 22;

FIG. 25 is a fragmentary elevational view taken on the line 2525 of FIG. 22;

FIG. 26 is a fragmentary elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 22 in a partially folded position;

FIG. 27 is a side elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 22 in a fully folded position;

FIG. 28 is a fragmentary side elevational view showing still another form of the invention;

' FIG. 29 is a fragmentary sectional view taken on the line 29-29 of FIG. 28;

FIG. 30 is a fragmentary side elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 28 in a partially folded position; and

FIG. 31 is a fragmentary side elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 28 in a fully folded position.

In general, an assembly in accordance with this invention includes a folding table of the general character disclosed in the previously mentioned Kanzelberger et a1. Patent No. 3,101,064 and the Amthor et a1. application Ser. No. 357,577, filed Apr. 6, 1964. The table includes two table top sections positioned in end-to-end relation, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of the table top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to each table top section adjacent its outer end. The assembly is movable between open and closed positions, and when the assembly is in open position, the table top sections are in horizontal end-to-end alignment and are supported by the center and end leg supports, and when the assembly is in closed position, the top sections are vertically disposed in substantially parallel planes and are supported by the end leg supports only, the center leg support being lifted out of engag ment with the floor.

Each end leg support preferably comprises caster carrying legs and stabilizer legs. When the assembly is in close position, it is supported by the caster carrying legs and the casters permit the assembly to be easily moved about. When the assembly is in open position, it is supported at its outer ends by the stabilizer legs which retard unwanted movement of the outer ends ofthe assembly. Transfer of support between the caster carrying legs and the stabilizer legs is accomplished automatically upon movement of the assembly between its open and closed positions.

The assembly further includes equalizing means pivotally connected to the center leg support and to the table top sections for maintaining the center leg support in vertical position throughout movement of the assembly between its open and closed positions, stretcher bars for maintaining the center and end leg supports in substantially parallel planes throughout the opening and folding movements, a latch for holding the assembly in its open position, and counterbalancing means for assisting movement of the assembly between its open and closed positions.

The assembly further includes seating structure for at least table top section, the seating structure extending adjacent a longitudinal edge but below the level of the top section. The seating structure comprises seating means and support means, the support means being secured to the seating means and detachably connected to an end leg support and to the center leg support of the table. The seating structure is constructed and secured to the table such that it pivots and folds with the table. Since the total weight of the assembly depends upon whether a seating means is provided, the previously mentioned counterbalancing means is made adjustable so that the assembly may be used with or without a seating means. Moreover, adjustment of the counterbalancing means permits use of seating structure of different forms and hence different weights.

In greater detail, the assembly includes a folding table which may be of the type having a unitary supporting structure 30 and a pair of table top sections 31 and 32. The supporting structure comprises two outer end leg supports 33 and 34, each end leg support including a pair of generally L-shaped caster carrying legs 36 and upper and lower cross braces 37 and 38, respectively (FIGS. 1 and 2. The legs 36 are secured together in laterally spaced relation by the cross braces 37 and 38 and may be secured to the cross braces as by welding. The lower cross brace 38 is generally U'shaped and its two arms extend angularly outwardly in the general direction of the adjacent corners of the assembly and in side-by-side relation to the horizontal lower portions of the L-shaped legs 36. The lower ends of the legs 36 and the lower cross brace 38 receive casters 39 which support and facilitate movement of the assembly on the floor when the assembly is closed. The outturned portions of the legs 36 and the outturned arms of the lower cross brace 38 place adjacent casters 39 of the end leg supports 33 and 34 a substantial distance apart to provide greater stability when the assembly is in its folded position. The upper cross brace 37 extends laterally of the assembly and is preferably secured to the two legs 36 as by welding, and at the upper end of each leg 36 is preferably provided a cap member 41 in the form of a channel, the legs 36 being pivotally connected to the cap member 41 by pins 42.

Each outer end leg support further comprises a pair of tubular stabilizing legs 43 for supporting the outer ends of the table top sections when the assembly is in its open position, each leg 43 being pivotally connected by a pin 44 to the cap member 41 adjacent the pivotal connection of a leg 36 to the cap member. Thus, the legs 36 and 43 of the end leg supports are respectively pivotally connected by the pins 42 and 44 to the table top sections through the cap members 41 and aprons to be described hereinafter. The pivotal axes of the stabilizing legs 43 and the legs 36 are offset and the length of the stabilizing legs 43 is related to the length of the legs 36 such that, when the assembly is in its open position, the stabilizing legs 43 rest on the floor and support the outer ends of the assembly and the casters 39 of the legs 36 are lifted to a non-supporting position. To this end, the pivotal connections of the stabilizing legs 43 may be offset toward the longitudinal center of the assembly and spaced downwardly from the pivotal connections of the legs 36, and, as previously stated, the stabilizing legs 43 extend downwardly from their pivotal connections and engage the floor when the assembly is open.

The stabilizing legs 43 of each pair are connected adjacent their lower ends by a laterally extending cross brace 46, which is at substantially the same height as the cross brace 38 when the assembly is in open position. The stabilizing legs 43 are also slid'ably connected to the legs 36 as by tubes 47 (FIGS. 1 and 4) which loosely receive the stabilizing legs 43 therein and are connected as by welding to the legs 36. Friction cups 48 are preferably provided at the lower ends of the stabilizing legs 43 for frictionally engaging the floor when the assembly is open and thereby retarding unwanted rolling or sliding movements of the outer ends of the assembly.

The supporting structure of the table further comprises a center leg support 51 (FIGS. 1 and 3) which includes an upper portion 52 and a lower portion 53 which is movably connected to the upper portion 52. The lower portion 53 comprises a pair of uprights 54 secured together by a lower cross brace 56, and the upper portion 52 comprises a pair of tubular slide members 57 secured together by an upper cross brace 58. Each of the uprights 54 of the lower portion 53 is disposed in telescoping relation within a slide member 57 of the upper portion 52. The upper end of each of the slide members 57 is rigidly secured to a channel shaped cap member 59 as by welding, and the lower end of each upright 54 is provided with a cup 61 preferably made of a relatively high friction material. The cups 61 rest on the floor when the assembly is in its open position and restrain unwanted movement of the center of the assembly, similar to the action of the cups 48 on the stabilizing legs 43.

The supporting structure further comprises two pairs of table top section supporting means, the two pairs extending in horizontal end-to-end relation when the assembly is in open position and substantially vertically when the assembly is in closed position. Each pair of table top section supporting means comprises two laterally spaced aprons 62 each having an angle cross section. The two aprons of each pair are rigidly connected at their outer ends to the channel shaped cap members 41 as by welding, the pins 42 also extending through holes formed in the aprons 6 2. The adjacent ends of the four aprons 62 are also pivotally connected to the cap members 59 of the center leg support by pins 63.

The outer end leg supports 33 and 34 and the center leg support 51 are further interconnected by a pair of stretcher bars 66 (FIGS. 1 and 6) which extend longitudinally of the assembly and are intermediate the sides of the assembly. The outer ends of the stretcher bars 66 may be pivotally connected to either the end legs 36 or to the stabilizing legs 43. In the present instance, the outer end of each stretcher bar 66 is shown as pivotally connected by a pin 67 to a bracket 68 which is rigidly secured to the upper cross brace 37 of an outer end leg support. The brackets 68 extend substantially horizontally, when the assembly is open, in the direction of the center leg support 51. The inner end of each stretcher bar 66 may be pivotally connected to either the center leg support 51 or to the underside of the table top section at the opposite end of the assembly. In the present instance, the inner end of each stretcher bar 66 is pivotally connected to the cross brace 58 of the upper portion 52 of the center leg support 51. For this purpose, two brackets 71 (FIGS. 1, 3 and 6) are rigidly secured to the cross brace 58 and are pivotally connected to the stretcher bars 66 as by pins 72. The bracket 71 at one side of the table is laterally offset from the other bracket 71 and extends downwardly at an angle, so that the inner ends of the stretcher bars 66 cross each other. The brackets 71 are so positioned that the axes of the pins 67 and 72 for each stretcher bar 66 substantially define a parallelogram with the axes of the pins 42 and 63 which pivotally connect the aprons 62 to the end and center leg supports.

Equalizing means is also provided to maintain the center and end leg supports in substantially vertical positions throughout opening and folding movements of the assembly. The equalizing means comprises two links 76 (FIGS. 1, 3 and 6), each link 76 being connected between the lower portion 53 of the center leg support 51 and a pair of the aprons 62. The lower ends of both links 76 are pivotally connected by means of a pin 77 to a cylindrical rod retainer 78 which is part of an open position locking mechanism to be described hereafter. The rod retainer 78 is secured as by welding to the upper surface of the cross brace 56 of the center leg support. From the rod retainer 78, the links 76 extend upwardly and slant longitudinally toward the respective ends of the assembly. The upper end of each link 76 is secured as by welding to a cross member 79 (FIGS. 3 and 6) having the shape of an angle. The two cross members 79 extend laterally of the assembly between the pairs of aprons 62 and are pivotally connected to the aprons 62 by means of pins 81, a pin 81 being secured to each end of the cross members 79 and extending through a hole formed in the adjacent apron 62;

As the assembly is moved from its open position shown in FIG. 1, through an intermediate position shown in FIG. 4, to its closed position shown in FIG. 5, the upper ends of the links 76 swing downwardly and inwardly relative to the upper end of center leg support 51, and the lower ends of the links 76 move downwardly, which causes the lower portion 53 of the center leg support to move downwardly relative to the upper portion 52. Further, the links 76 maintain the center leg support 51 in vertical position during the opening and closing movements, and the end leg supports 33 and 34 are similarly held in vertical position due to the connections of the stretcher bars 66 to the end and center leg supports. Interference between the stretcher bars 66 and the links 76 is prevented during opening and closing movements by positioning one stretcher bar 66 and one link 7'6 on each side of the longitudinal center line of the assembly, and, on each side of the assembly, the stretcher bar 66 and the link 76 extend in opposite directions.

The open position locking mechanism is of the type described in the pending application of Anderson et al., Serial No. 273,683, filed April 17, 1963. Briefly, this locking mechanism comprises a rod or plunger 82 (FIGS. 3 and 7) secured to and extending upwardly from the rod retainer 78 on the cross brace 56 of the center leg support 51, and a releasable catch mechanism 83 secured to the other cross brace 58 of the center leg support. A hole (not shown) is formed through the cross brace 58 and the plunger 82 is positioned to extend through the hole when the assembly is in its open position, and the catch mechanism 83 is positioned on top of the cross brace 58 over the hole and is adapted to engage and hold the upper end portion of the plunger 82 when the assembly is open. The catch mechanism 83 may include a washer (not shown) having a hole or aperture formed therein through which the plunger 82 extends, the edges of the hole in the washer being adapted to bite into and grip the plunger 82 when the axis of the plunger 82 is substantially out of alignment with the axis of the hole in the washer. To release the lock when the assembly is to be moved to the open position, a release handle 84 (see FIGS. 3 and 6) is provided which extends upwardly from the catch mechanism 83 to a position intermediate the adjacent ends of the table top sections 31 and 32 and to a height preferably just below the upper surface level of the table top sections. When the assembly is in its closed position, the two cross braces of the center leg support are a substantial distance apart as shown in FIG. 5 and the plunger 82 is withdrawn from the catch mechanism 83. As the assembly is moved to its open position, the plunger 82 moves upwardly relative to the cross brace 56, enters the hole in the cross brace 56, and is engaged and held by the washer of the catch mechanism 83. The assembly Will then remain locked in the open position until the handle 84 is manipulated to bring the axis of the washer hole into substantial alignment with the axis of the plunger 82 so that the washer will release the plunger 82 and permit the assembly to be moved to its closed position.

Another lock mechanism is preferably provided for locking the assembly in its closed position. This mechanism may be of the character disclosed in the previously mentioned Kanzelberger et al. patent, and comprises a latch 86 connected to the pin 42 which connects one of the aprons 62 to a leg 36 of an end leg support, and an arm 87 secured to the latch 86 and engaging the adjacent leg 36. The arm 87 holds the latch 86 in substantially horizontal position during opening and closing movements of the assembly, and in position for a hook 88 formed on the end of the latch 86 to engage a pin 42 at the opposite end and on the same side of the table, when the table is in its closed position. To this end, the pin 42 which is engaged by the latch 86 extends laterally outward a short distance from the side of the assembly, as shown in FIG. 6.

Novel counterbalancing means is provided for assisting movement of the assembly to its closed position and for counterbalancing the weight of the assembly during movement to its open position. The counterbalancing means comprises a compression spring 91 (FIGS. 11 to 13) positioned within each of the uprights 54 of the center leg support 51, the lower end of each spring 91 resting on a dowel 92 and its upper end engaging an adjusting mechanism. The dowels 92 are supported by the inturned lower end portions 93 of the uprights 54. The adjusting mechanism for each compression spring 91 comprises a threaded bolt 94 which extends through a hole 96 formed in the top side of the cap member 59 substantially coaxial with the slide member 57, the head of the bolt being above the cap member and a washer 97 secured to the bolt being below the top side of the cap member 59. The diameter of the washer 97 is greater than the diameter of the hole 96 and thus prevents the bolt from being pushed by the spring 91 out of the slide member 57 but permits rotative movement of the bolt 94. A low friction washer 98 also having a diameter greater than that of the hole 96 may be positioned between the washer 97 and the cap member 59 to reduce the force required to turn the bolt 94.

Each adjusting mechanism further comprises a nut 101 threaded onto the bolt 94, the nut 101 having an enlarged washer-like portion 102 secured thereto which fits over the upper end of the compression spring 91 and is preferably secured to the compression spring 91 as by welding. It will be apparent that, when the bolt 94 is rotated as by engaging its head with a wrench, the nut 101, which is prevented from rotating freely because it is secured to the compression spring 91, will move axially along the bolt 94 in a direction which depends upon the direction of rotation of the bolt 94, such axial movement of the nut 101 adjusting the compressive force exerted by the associated compression spring 91 and thus the amount of counterbalancing force. When the nut 101 is at the upper end of the bolt 94 as shown in FIG. 12, the minimum possible counterbalancing force is exerted by the spring 91 and the amount of force exerted by the spring gradually 7 increases as the nut 101 is screwed downwardly. In the position of the nut 101 shown in FIG. 11, the spring 91 exerts approximately two-thirds maximum force.

The lower end of the bolt 94 is enlarged as at 103 to prevent the nut 101 from being screwed off this end of the bolt 94. To prevent the nut 101 and the washer 97 from becoming jammed or frozen together when the nut 101 reaches the upper limit of its movement and the operator continues to turn the bolt 94, a portion 104 of the washer 97 is offset downwardly, as by radially shearing the washer 97, and a plurality of protrusions 106 are formed on the portion 102 of the nut 101, the protrusions 106 extending above the upper surface level of the portion 102. As the nut 101 and the washer 97 move together, due to turning movement of the bolt 94 the portion 104 of the washer 97 scrapes across the top surface of the protrusions 106 and eventually engages one protusion 106* which prevents further turning movement of the nut 101 relative to the bolt 94. Thus, the major surface areas of the lower and upper sides of the washer 97 and the nut 101, respectively, are prevented from coming into contact and jamming on freezing. If jamming or freezing were to occur, disassembly of at least a portion of the center leg support would probably be necessary to disengage the nut 101 from the washer 97.

Assuming that the table is initially in its open position, the cups 48 of the stabilizing legs 43 engage the floor and the casters 39 of the end legs 36 are lifted somewhat out of supporting engagement with the floor. When the table is to be moved to its closed position, the handle '84 at the center of the table is moved to disengage the catch mechanism 83, and the center leg support 51 is then lifted off the floor. Each table top section then rotates about the pivotal axis of the stabilizing legs 43, and the outer end legs 36, including the casters 39, move downwardly relative to the stabilizing legs 43. When the casters 39 are in firm engagement with the floor, continued upward movement of the center leg support 51 causes the weight of the assembly to shift to the end legs 36 and when the assembly reaches its closed position the equalizing legs 43'are raised out of engagement with the floor and are folded between the top sections 31 and 32 (FIG. A relatively loose-fit is preferably provided between each stabilizing leg 43 and the tubular member 47 which connects it to the adjacent end leg 36 because the pivotal axis of the upper end of each stabilizing leg 43 must move in an arc during opening and folding movements, which causes the stabilizing legs 43 to slant or tilt somewhat relative to the tubular members 47.

Movement of the assembly toward its open position causes the pivotal axis between the table top sections and each pair of stabilizing legs 43 to swing toward the center leg support 51 and downwardly relative to the pivotal axis between the table top sections and the adjacent end legs 36, and the lower ends of the stabilizing legs 43 eventually engage the floor. Thereafter, continued movement of the assembly toward the open position shifts the weight of the assembly to the stabilizing legs 43, and the end legs 36 are thereafter moved upwardly slightly relative to the stabilizing legs 43 and the center leg support engages the floor. The length of the stabilizing legs 43 relative to that of the end legs 3-6 is such that the casters 39 are either lifted entirely off the floor when the assembly is open or at least such that the weight is taken off the casters, so that the ends of the table are prevented from shifting in the event the table is accidentally bumped.

The assembly further comprises seating structure which may be attached to the table and which is foldable with the table when it is so attached. The seating structure may extend along at least one side of one of the table top sections. However, the seating structure shown in FIGS. 1 to 16 comprises seating means in the form of four bench top sections 111, 112, 113 and 114 extending along the respective sides of the respective table top sections 31 and 32. Thes bench top sections are supported by and are connected to the table by support means. When the assembly is in open position, the pair of bench top sections 111 and 112 are in end-to-end horizontal alignment and extend along one longitudinal side of the table, and the pair of bench top sections 113 and 114 are in endto-end horizontal alignment and extend along the other longitudinal side of the table. Further, the plane of the bench top sections is parallel to but displaced downwardly from the plane of the table top sections when the assembly is open. Thus, each bench top section is associated with one longitudinal side of one of the table top sections,

and is at a proper height for sitting when using the table.

The support means for each pair of longitudinally spaced bench top sections comprises two pairs of bench aprons 116 each pair of the bench aprons 116 being rigidly secured to the underside of one of the bench top sections and extending longitudinally of the assembly when in open position. Extending laterally of the assembly between the aprons 116 of each pair are two cylindrical swivel tubes 117 and 118, the tubes 117 being generally adjacent the outer end leg supports of the table and the tubes 118 being generally adjacent the center leg support of the table. The tubes 117 and 118 are mounted for pivotal movement relative to the aprons 116 by means of pivot brackets 119, one bracket 119 being secured to an apron 116 at each end of each tube 117 and 118 and having a circular cup shaped portion which rotatably receives the associated end of a tube. Rivets 121 positioned coaxially of the tubes 117 and 118 and through holes formed in the brackets 119 and the aprons 116 may also be provided to hold the tubes 117 and 118 firmly assembled with the aprons 116.

The bench top sections of each pair are connected together by a cross link 122 of the support means, each link 122 being secured at its ends as by Welding to the swivel tubes 118. The links 122 are connected to the tubes 118 adjacent the ends of the tubes that are adjacent the table, and downwardly extending legs 123 are secured as by welding to the other ends of the tubes 118. Further, legs 124 similar to the legs 123, are secured to the tubes 117, the legs 123 and 124 engaging the floor when the assembly is in open position (FIG. 1) and preferably being provided with caps 126 at their lower ends. Two resilient bumpers 127 (FIGS. 1, 7 and 16) are preferably secured to the upper surface of each cross link 122 at positions where they are engaged by the undersurfaces of the bench top sections adjacent the inner ends of the bench top sections when the assembly is in the open position.

The seating structure further includes means for detachably connecting the bench top sections to the table, the connecting means comprising, for each pair of bench top sections, two outer connecting links 131 and a center connecting link 132. Each outer connecting link 131 is secured at one end to a swivel tube 117, and, as shown in FIG. 2, extends downwardly from the associated swivel tube and is thenbent to extend laterally of the assembly toward the adjacent end leg support of the table. At the lower end of each outer connecting link 131 is provided a pivot nut 133 ('FIGS. 14 and 15) which is secured to the end of the associated link 131 and is internally threaded. When the links 131 and the legs are made of tubular material as shown, the nuts 133 may be positioned within the open ends of the tubes and be secured thereto as by welding. The nuts 133 have tubular extensions 134 which extend coaxially beyond the ends of the links 131, and the extensions 134 are positioned through holes 136 formed through the stabilizing legs 43 0f the outer end leg supports. Bolts 137 are positioned through the extensions 134 and threaded into the nuts 133 to hold the links 131 assembled with the legs 43 but also to permit relative pivotal movement between the legs 43 and the links 131. The portion of each leg 43 around the hole 136 is flattened as at 138, and the nut 1'33 abuts the flattened portion 138. By this construction, the links 131 are able to pivot about the axis of their lower outturned portions relative to the stabilizing legs 43, such pivotal movement, through an angle of approximately 4, being desirable because of the previously described slant of the stabilizing legs during opening and closing movements of the assembly.

Each center connecting link 132 (FIGS. 3, 7, 11 and 16 is secured as by welding to substantially the longitudinal center of a cross link 122 and extends toward the table and is then turned upwardly adjacent the associated slide member 57 of the center leg support 51. A connecting block 141 is secured as by welding to each slide member 57, and its inner and outer sides are recessed to fit the contour of the cylindrical slide member 57 and the link 132. Internally threaded holes 142 (FIG. 11) are formed in the blocks 141, and bolts 143 are positioned through holes formed in the links 132 and threaded into the holes 142 for rigidly securing the links 132 to the center leg support 51 of the table.

The construction of the support means is such that the bench top sections 111 to 114 are horizontal when the assembly is in open position. The legs 123 and 124 engage the floor and provide support for the bench top sections adjacent their laterally outer edges, while the links 131 and 132 provide support at their other or inner edges. Further, the lower laterally extending portions of the outer connecting links 131 are relatively close to the floor so that persons using the assembly will have little trouble stepping over the links 131 in order to sit near the longitudinal center of the table.

As the assembly is inoved to the closed position, the inner connecting links 132 and the cross links 122 rise with slide members 57 of the center leg support. The cross link 122 remains horizontal while the aprons 116 and the bench top sections 111 to 114 pivot about the axes of the swivel tubes 117 and 118. At the outer ends of the assembly, the outer connecting links 131 rise with the stabilizing legs 43. During opening and closing movements the pins 44 connecting the stabilizing legs 43, to the table aprons 62 swing through an arc about the pins 42 connecting the caster carrying legs 36 to the aprons, and consequently the stabilizing legs 43 swivel slightly within the tubes 47. The type of connection provided between the outer connecting links 131 and the stabilizing legs 43 is advantageous because it accommodates such swiveling movement of the stabilizing legs. When the assembly is completely folded (FIG. the bench top sections 111 to 114 are substantially vertical and parallel to the table top sections 31 and 32, and the support means is folded between the pairs of bench top sections. Of course, the counterbalancing means assists in movement of the assembly between the open and closed positions- FIGS. 17 to 21 illustrate another embodiment of the invention, wherein the seating means of the assembly comprises a plurality of swivel chairs 151 rather than benches. In this embodiment, three chairs 151 are provided at each longitudinal side of each table top section 31 and 32. The table is exactly the same as the table shown in FIGS. 1 to 16, and therefore the same reference numerals are used to indicate the parts of the table.

The supporting means of the seating structure comprises, on each side of the table, a pair of elongated U- shaped frame members 152 which are longitudinally spaced when the assembly is in the open position, each of the members 152 being adjacent a longitudinal side of one of the table top sections 31 and 32 and having upwardly extending arms 153. Adjacent each of the arms 153 of the members 152 is positioned a brace 154, the braces 154 being secured to the members 152 and being generally parallel to the arms 153, and the arms 153 and the braces 154 supporting two of the three chairs. Further, a pair of parallel braces 156 are secured to each member 152 at approximately its longitudinal center for supporting the center of the three chairs.

Under each chair 151, two V-shaped rails 157 and 158 are secured as by welding to the arms 153 and the braces 154, and to the braces 156, the rails 157 being at the upper ends of the arms and braces and the rails 158 being spaced downwardly from the rails 157. A leg 159 (FIGS. 17 and 18) is secured to each of the upper rails 157, the legs 159 extending horizontally away from the table and then downwardly to the floor when the assembly is in the open position, the horizontal portion of the legs 159 forming a Y configuration with the rails 157 (see FIG. 18).

A swivel tube 161 (FIG. 19) is secured as by welding to each pair of rails 157 and 158, each :of the tubes 161 extending generally vertically when the assembly is in the open position and being positioned between the arms of the V-shaped rails at the apex thereof. The seating means of the seating structure comprises, in addition to the chairs 151, a mounting plate 162 and a swivel pin 163 for each of the chairs 151 (FIG. 19). The mounting plates 162 are secured to the underside :of the chairs 151 and the pins 163 are secured to the plates 162 and extend downwardly therefrom and are positioned within the swivel tubes 161. Roll pins 164 secured to the swivel pins 163 below the tubes 161 are preferably provided to hold the seating means in assembled relation with the support means, but of course the seating means may be easily removed by removing the roll pins 164.

The support means further comprises means for connecting the seating structure to the table, comprising, at each side of the table, two outer connecting links 166 and 167 and an inner connecting link assembly 172. The outer connecting links 166 and 167 are connected to the stabilizing legs 43 of the table in exactly the same manner as the links 131 as shown in FIG. 14. From the stabilizing legs 43, the links 166 and 167 extend laterally away from the table and then are turned to extend angularly upwardly and toward the end of the table (see FIGS. 17 and 18). The links 166 and 167 are pivotally connected to the supports for the chairs 151 at the outer ends of the assembly by pivot plates 168 and tubular pivot sockets 169 (FIGS. 19 and 20). The plates 168 are secured to the underside of the upper rails 157, and a socket 169 in turn is secured to the underside of each plate 168. The upper ends of the links 166 and 167 are turned laterally outward and are positioned within the sockets 169, and two roll pins 171 are mounted in and extend from each of the links 166 at the ends of the sockets 169 to hold the links 166 and the sockets 169 in assembled relation but also to permit relative pivotal movement.

The inner connecting link assembly 172 is similar to that which will be described in connection with FIGS. 23 and 24, and comprises a connecting link 173 having an upturned inner end portion which is secured to the block 141 of the table. From the block 141, the link 173 extend downwardly and then laterally outward from the table, and is secured at its outer end to a horizontal, l-ongitudinally extending cross link 174. The latter link 174 is U-shaped and its arms extend under the two seats adjacent the center leg of the table, and plates 176 and sockets 177, similar to the plates 168 and the sockets 169, are provided to pivotally connect each cross link 174 to the remainder of the support means. Again, roll pins are pref- I erably provided to hold the sockets 177 assembled with the links 174.

If desired, a handle 178 may be provided on at least one side of the assembly, the handle being secured to one of the links 173 on the upper side thereof and extending upwardly and then laterally outward away from the table. A resilient hand grip 179 may also be provided at the outer end of the handle 178.

It will be noted in FIG. 18 that, on each side of the table, the member 152 and the legs 159 adjacent one of the table top sections are oifset laterally of the assembly relative to the member 152 and the legs 159 adjacent the other of the table top sections. Thus, when the assembly is moved to the closed position (FIGS. 20 and 21), the lateral offset permits the members 152 and the legs 159 to be interleaved and the assembly to be compactly folded.

Opening and closing movement of the assembly with chairs is generally the same as the movements of the assembly with benches, and the movement is assisted by the counterbalancing means. One difference is that, in the case of the assembly with benches, the supporting legs of the seating structure are always substantially vertical, whereas the arms 153 of the members 152 and the legs 159 of the assembly with chairs are vertical when the assembly is open and are generally horizontal when the assembly is closed. The handle 178, when one is provided, may be gripped in order to maintain a firm hold on the assembly during movement between the open and closed positions.

FIGS. 22 to 27 illustrate still another form of the invention wherein the seating means of the seating structure comprises stools 186 rather than benches or chairs. In this instance, a set of three stools 186 is provided adjacent each longitudinal side of each table top section. Once again, the table shown in FIGS. 22 to 27 has exactly the same construction as the table illustrated in FIGS. 1 to 21 and therefore the same reference numerals are again used to indicate corresponding parts of the table.

The support means on the seating structure comprises, on each side of the table, two U-shaped frame members 187 which may be similar to the frame members 152, each frame member 137 having arms 188 which extend vertically from the floor up to the underside of the stools when the assembly is in its open position (FIG. 22). A plurality of vertical braces 189 are secured to the portion of each frame member 187 between the arms 188, the braces being generally parallel to and extending to the same height as the arms 188.

With reference to FIG. 23, a generally V-shaped rail 191 is secured as by welding to the upper ends of the arms 188 and the braces 189 under each stool 186, the free ends of the nails 191 being secured to the arms 188 and the braces 189. Further, at the apex of each rail 191 is secured, as by welding, a leg 192 which extends from the associated support 191 laterally away from the table and then downwardly, and engages the floor when the assembly is open, in the manner of the legs 159 shown in FIGS. 17 and 18. The stools 186 are secured as by screws to the upper side of the rails 191 and are supported thereby.

The support means of the seating structure again includes means for connecting the seating structure to the table, the connecting means being substantially identical to the connecting means of the assembly with chairs. On each longitudinal side of each table top section, an outer connecting link 196 (FIGS. 23 and 25) is pivotally connected to the adjacent stabilizing leg 43 of the table by a pivot nut construction indicated at 197, which may be identical to the construction previously described. From the stabilizing leg 43, the outer connecting link 196 extends laterally outward from the table, angles upwardly and toward the adjacent end of the table, and then is turned laterally outward and extends underneath the stool 186 which is at the outer end of the assembly. A swivel tube 198 is provided beneath each of the outermost stools, or those adjacent the end leg supports, and also to each of the stools adjacent the center leg support of the table.

A plate 199 secured as by welding to the underside of the V-shaped rails 191 for these end and center stools and the tubes 198 are secured to the underside of the plates. The upper ends of the outer links 196 are positioned in the swivel tubes 198 and are retained therein by roll pins 201 (FIG. 25), the roll pins 201 preventing unwanted removal of the links 196 from the tubes 198 but permitting relative pivotal movement between these members.

On each side of the assembly, the swivel tubes 198 associated with the stools adjacent the center leg support of the table pivotally receive the ends of a longitudinal and horizontal U-shaped member 202 which forms part of the inner connecting link assembly 203 of the support means 12 of the seating structure. The latter assembly 203 may be identical to the assembly 172 shown in FIGS. 17 and 18, and comprises .a center connecting link 2114 which is secured to the center leg support of the table in the manner previously described, the member 202, a handle 206, and a hand grip 207.

The assembly illustrated in FIGS. 22 to 27 is similar to those previously described. When the assembly is in the open position (FIG. 22) and is to move to the closed position (FIG. 27) the center leg support is moved upwardly as by gripping the handle 206 and lifting a center portion of the assembly. Of course, the counter-balancing springs previously described assist this operation. The member 202 of the center connecting link assembly 203 remains substantially horizontal as shown in FIGS. 26 and 27, and the U-shaped members 187 swing inwardly as shown in FIGS. 26 and 27. Once again, the arms 188 of the member 187, the braces 189 and the legs 192, at one longitudinal side of the center leg support are lateral- 1y offset from the corresponding members on the other longitudinal side of the assembly so that these members will be interleaved o-r nested when the assembly is moved to the closed position. The outer connecting links 196 pivot slightly relative to the stabilizing legs 43 of the outer end leg supports of the table due to the swinging movement of the upper ends of the stabilizing legs as previously explained. As shown in FIG. 27, the lengths of the members 202 and the outer connecting links 196 may be adjusted such that the planes of the stools 186 are not exactly vertical when the assembly is in closed position but rather slant upwardly and outwardly, such construction providing smooth folding operation of the assembly.

The form of the assembly illustrated in FIGS. 28 to 31 is similar to the form illustrated in FIGS. 22 to 27, the principal difference being that in the form of FIGS. 22 to 27 there are three stools in each set whereas in the form of FIGS. 28 to 31 there are four stools in each set. By providing additional stools, more persons may use the assembly at one time, of course. Once again, the table of the assembly is identical to the tables previously described and the same reference numerals are again used to indicate corresponding parts.

The seating structure of the assembly of FIGS. 28 to 31 comprises a plurality of stools 2.11 mounted on supporting means which includes a plurality of U-shaped frame members 212 having arms 213 formed thereon and braces 214 secured thereto. At the upper ends of the arms 213 and braces 214 is secured as by welding a plurality of support rails 216. Again, a leg 217 is secured to each lrail 216 and forms a T configuration with the rails 216, when viewed from the top (see FIG. 29). The stools 211 are connected to the rails 2.16 and the upper portions of the legs 217 as by screws and are supported thereby.

The seating structure of the assembly further comprises connecting links 218 which pivotally connect the outermost of the stools to the outer end leg supports of the table, the inner ends of the links 218 being pivotally connected to the stabilizing legs of the table in the manner previously described. Swivel tubes 219 and mounting plates 221 are secured to the underside of the outermost of the stools for making a pivotal connection with the link 218. At the center and on each side of the assembly is again provided an inner connecting link assembly comprising a connecting link 222, a U-shaped cross member 223, a handle 224 and a hand grip 226. The connecting link 222 is secured to the center leg support of the assembly in the manner previously described, and the outer ends of each member 223 is pivotally connected to remainder of the seating structure at the center of the assembly by swivel tubes 227 and mounting plates 228. The members forming the inner connecting link assembly may be identical to those of the corresponding assemblies previously described, andmay be connected to the remainder of seating structure in a similar manner.

The movement of the assembly illustrated in FIGS. 28 to 31 is similar to the movement of the assemblies previously described. Again, the members 212 and the legs 217 on one longitudinal side of the center leg support of the table are laterally ofiset from the corresponding members on the other longitudinal side of the center leg support so that these members will nest or interleave pr-operly when the assembly is moved to the folded position.

Since the seating structures in each of the assemblies described may differ in weight, the counterbalancing means previously described may be adjusted to exert a difierent counterbalancing force for each of the assemblies. Thus, if the table is used without a seating structure of any kind, the bolts 94 may be turned to move the nuts 101- upwardly to the point where the springs 91 will exert relatively little force. On the other hand, if a relatively heavy seating structure is connected to the table the bolts 94 may be turned to cause the springs 91 to exert greater force and thus help to compensate for the additional weight.

It will be apparent that a novel and useful folding table assembly has been provided including a table which may be used alone without seating structure of any kind or which may be used with any one of a variety of seating structures. Thus a manufacturer may ofier for sale a standard or basic table and a variety of seating structures for use with the table, and a customer may make his choice of the type of seating structure he wishes, and it is not necessary for the manufacturer to provide a different table for each type of seating structure. Such standardization of course reduces the cost of manufacture. Further, after a customer has purchased a table and, possibly, a seating structure, he may at any time purchase an additional seating structure for use with the table. Still further, a customer may purchase a table and more than one seating structure and attach one or the other of the seating structures to the table to meet various occasions. Still further, the customer may attach one type of seating structure to one side of the table and a different type to the other side of the table if he desires. The novel counterbalancing means enables the assembly to be easily moved between opening and folded positions regardless of which of the foregoing types of assembly is adopted.

We claim:

1. A folding table assembly movable between open and closed positions, comprising a table and at least one seating structure, said table comprising two table top sections positioned in horizontal end-to-end relation when in open position, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of said top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to each of said top sections adjacent its outer end, said seating structure comprising support means, seating means and connecting means, said support means being secured to said seating means, and said connecting means being secured to said support means and detachably secured to said center leg support and to at least one of said end leg supports of said table, said connecting means being pivotal relative to said seating means about axes which are generally parallel to the pivotal axes of said top sections relative to said end and center leg supports, said seating structure extending adjacent 'a longitudinal edge of the top section associated with said one end leg support with said support means engaging the floor and said seating means being in a substantially parallel plane with but below the level of said associated top section when said assembly is in said open position, and said top sections and said seating means being vertically disposed in generally parallel planes and said assembly being supported by said end leg supports when said assembly is in said closed position.

2. A folding table assembly movable between open and closed positions, comprising a table and at least one seating structure, said table comprising two table top sections positioned in horizontal end-to-end relation when in open position, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of said table top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to each of said table top sections adjacent its outer end, said seating structure comprising seating means and support means attached to said seating means, said support means being detachably connected to said center leg support and to at least one of said end leg supports of said table, at least a portion of said support means being pivotal relative to said seating means, said seating structure extending adjacent a longitudinal edge of the table top section associated with said one end leg support, said support means engaging the floor and said seating means being in a substantially parallel plane but below the level of said associated table top section when said assembly is in said open position, and said table top sections and said seating means being generally vertically disposed and said assembly being supported by said end leg supports when said assembly is in said closed position.

3. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said portion of said support means which is pivotal relative to said seating means is also detachably connected to said center leg support and to said one end leg support.

4. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said portion of said support means which is pivotal relative to said seating means also engages the floor when said assembly is in said open position.

5. Apparatus as in claim 3, wherein said portion of said support means also engages the floor when said assembly is in said open position.

6. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said support means further comprises a portion which is stationary relative to said seating means, said pivotal portion being detachably connected to said center leg support and to said one end leg support, and said stationary portion engaging the floor when said assembly is in said open position.

7. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said center leg support comprises an upper portion which is pivotally connected to said table top sections and a lower portion which is movably connected to said upper portion, said support means of said seating structure being detachably connected to said upper portion of said center leg support.

8. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said one end leg support of said table comprises a caster carrying leg and a stabilizing leg, said caster carrying leg supporting said assembly when in said closed position and said stabilizing leg supporting said assembly 'when in said open position and said support means of said seating structure being detachablly connected to said stabilizing leg.

9. Apparatus as in claim 2, wherein said support means includes a link for detachably connecting said seating structure to said one end leg support, said link extending laterally outward from said end leg support to the remainder of said seating structure at a height which is relatively close to the floor when said assembly is in said open position, whereby a person may easily step over said link when walking between said table and said seating structure.

10. A folding table assembly movable between open and closed positions, comprising a table and at least one seating structure, said table comprising tWo table top sections positioned in horizontal end-to-end relation When in open position, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of said table top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to each of said table top sections adjacent its outer end, said seating structure comprising seating means and support means attached to sai seating means, said support means being detachably connected to said center leg support and to both of said end leg supports of said table, at least a portion of said support means being pivotal relative to said seating means, said seating structure extending adjacent at least one longitudinal edge of said table from substantially one end of said table to substantially the other end of said table, said seating means comprising two portions each extending from substantially said center leg support to one of said end leg supports, said support means engaging the floor and said seating means being in a substantially parallel plane with but below the level of said table top sections when said assembly is in said open position, and said table top sections and said seating means being generally vertically disposed and said assembly being supported by said end leg supports when said assembly is in said closed position.

11. A folding table assembly as in claim 10, wherein said portions of said seating means comprises two sets of seats, each of said sets being adjacent one of said table top sections and extending from substantially an end of said table to substantially the longitudinal center of said table, and said support means including a center connecting link assembly which is rigidly seccured to said center leg support of said table and is pivotal relative to said seating means.

12. Apparatus as in claim 10, wherein said support means of said seating structure includes a pair of outer links detachably connected to the respective end leg supports of said table and an inner link assembly detachably connected to said center leg support of said table, said outer links being pivotable through a relatively small angle relative to said end leg supports and said inner link assembly being non-pivotable relative to said center leg support.

13. Apparatus as in claim 10, wherein said support means of said seating structure includes a pair of outer links detachably connected to the respective end leg supports of said table and an inner link assembly detachably connected to said center leg support of said table, said portions of said seating means comprising two sets of seats, one of said sets being on each side of said center leg support and both of said sets being connected to said inner link assembly.

14. Apparatus as in claim 10, wherein said support means of said seating structure includes a pair of outer links detachably connected to the respective end leg supports of said table and an inner link assembly detachably connected to said center leg support of said table, said support means of said seating structure comprising a plurality of legs which engage the floor when said assembly is in said open position, said legs being secured to said outer links and to said inner link assembly and being pivotally connected to said seating means.

15. Apparatus as in claim 10, wherein said support means of said seating structure includes a pair of outer links detachably connected to the respective end leg supports of said table and an inner link assembly detachably connected to said center leg support of said table, said support means of said seating structure comprising a plurality of legs which engage the floor when said assembly is in said open position, said legs being secured to said seating means and being pivotally connected to said inner link assembly.

16. Apparatus as in claim 15, wherein said legs of said seating structure on one side of said center leg support are laterally oifset from said legs of said seating structure on the other side of said center leg support, whereby said leg on said one side may be interleaved with said legs on said other side when said assembly is in said closed position.

17. Apparatus as in claim 10, wherein said seating structure extends along both longitudinal sides of said table.

18. A folding table assembly movable between open and closed positions, comprising a table and a plurality of seating structures, said table comprising two table top sections positioned in horizontal end-to-end relation when in open position, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of said table top sections, and an end leg support pivotally connected to each of said table top sections adjacent its outer end, each of said seating structures comprising seating means and support means 16 attached to said seating means, said support means of each of said seating structures being constructed to be detachably connected to said center leg support and to at least one of said end leg supports of said table whereby said plurality of seating structures may be selectively connected to said table, a selected one of said seating structures when attached to said table extending adjacent a longitudinal edge of at least one of said table top sections, the support means of said selected seating structure engaging the floor and its seating means being in a substantially parallel plane but below the level of said table top sections when said assembly is in said open position, and said table top sections and said seating means of said selected seating structure being generally vertically disposed and said assembly being supported by said end leg supports when said assembly is in said closed position. 1

19. A folding table assembly movable between open and closed positions, comprising a table and a plurality of seating structures, said table being connectable to any selected one of said seating structures and comprising two table top sections positioned in horizontal and endto-end relation when said assembly is in said open position and being generally vertically disposed when said assembly is in said closed position, a center leg support pivotally connected to the adjacent ends of said table top sections and an end leg support pivotally connected to each of said table top sections adjacent its outer end, each of said plurality of seating structures comprising seating means and support means attached to said seating means, a selected one of said seating structures when connected to said table having its support means detachably connected to said center leg support and at least one of said end leg supports, said selected seating structure being foldable with said table and the support structure of said selected seating structure engaging the floor when said assembly is in said open position.

20. Apparatus as in claim 19, wherein said seating structures are of different forms and of different weights, and said table further comprises counterbalancing means for assisting movement of said table between said open and closed positions, said counterbalancing means being adjustable whereby compensation may be made for different weights of said assembly.

21. Apparatus as in claim 19, wherein any selected one of said seating structures when connected to said ta'ble extends along one longitudinal edge of said table from substantially one end of said table to substantially the other end of said table, said support means including a pair of outer links connecting said seating structure to said end legs of said table and an inner link'assembly connecting said seating structure to said center leg support of said table.

22. Apparatus as in claim 21, wherein said seating means of each of said seating structures comprises two sets of seats, each of said sets extending from said inner link assembly to one of said outer links.

23. A folding table movable between open and closed positions, comprising at elast one table top section, support means pivotally connected to at least one end of said table top section for supporting said section when in said open position, and adjustable counterbalancing means connected to said support means for exerting a force tending to move said table to said closed position, whereby the amount of force exerted may be adjusted to a desired value.

24. Apparatus as in claim 23, wherein said counterbalancing means comprises at least one preloaded spring, and the amount of force exerted may be adjusted by adjusting the preload on said spring.

25. A folding table movable between open and closed positions, comprising two table top sections positioned in horizontal end-to-end relation when in said open position and being generally vertically disposed when in said closed position. a center leg support pivotally connected

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US9016213 *Jul 22, 2008Apr 28, 2015Fariborz TajbakhshWorkstation with variable spatial configuration capabilities
US9237801Dec 9, 2014Jan 19, 2016Lifetime Products, Inc.Table top with a plurality of closely spaced depressions
US20050116513 *Oct 2, 2004Jun 2, 2005Kent AshbyTable with folding seats
US20050161984 *Jan 27, 2004Jul 28, 2005Sico IncorporatedFolding table
US20080116724 *Nov 17, 2006May 22, 2008Sico IncorporatedFolding table and seating system
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Classifications
U.S. Classification297/158.4, 108/177, 108/174, 297/170, 108/173
International ClassificationA47B3/14
Cooperative ClassificationA47B3/14, A47B2003/145
European ClassificationA47B3/14
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 29, 1984ASAssignment
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC. 555 SKOKIE BLVD., SUITE
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN NATIONAL BANK AND TRUST COMPANY OF CHICAGO, A NATIONAL BANKING ASSOCIATION;REEL/FRAME:004238/0072
Effective date: 19820628
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC.,ILLINOIS
Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN NATIONAL BANK AND TRUST COMPANY OF CHICAGO, A NATIONAL BANKING ASSOCIATION;REEL/FRAME:4238/72
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC., ILLINOIS
Jul 6, 1982ASAssignment
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC., 1316 18TH ST., TWO RIVE
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN HOSPITAL SUPPLY CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004013/0243
Effective date: 19820628
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN HOSPITAL SUPPLY CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:4013/243
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC.,WISCONSIN
Owner name: HAMILTON INDUSTRIES, INC., WISCONSIN
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:AMERICAN HOSPITAL SUPPLY CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004013/0243