US 3392689 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
July 16, 1968 J. FERDINAND ET AL 3,392,689
KNOCKDOWN STEEL SHELVING UNIT FOR CORNER FASTENING MEANS THEREFOR Filed Nov. 28, 1966 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. F G l IRWIN J. FERDINAND DALE R. LOPATKA July 16, 1968 l. J. FERDlNAND ET AL 3,392,689
KNOCKDOWN STEEL SHELVING UNIT FOR CORNER FASTENING MEANS THEREFOR Filed Nov. 28, 1966 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 EMMW E (MW;
IN'VENTORS. IRWIN J. FERDINAND I T I I I BY DALE R. LOP TKA F1630 ,4/M*
ATT'YS- July 16, 1968 l. J. FERDINAND ET AL 3,392,689
KNOCKDOWN STEEL SHELVING UNIT FOR CORNER FASTENING MEANS THEREFOR 4 Sheets-$heet 3 Filed NOV. 28, 1966 INVENTORS. IRWIN J. FERDINAND DALE R. LOPATK BY 0/ ;i f AT T'Y y 6. 1968 J. FERDINAND ET AL 3,392,689
KNOCKDOWN STEEL SHELVING UNIT FOR CORNER V FASTENING MEANS THEREFOR Filed Nov. 28, 1966 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 um E Fl G. 7
I I 8 INVENTORS.
75 IRWIN J. FERDINAND DALE R. LOlPATKA.
United States Patent KNOCKDOWN STEEL SHELVING UNIT FOR CORNER FASTENING MEANS THEREFOR Irwin J. Ferdinand, Glencoe, and Dale R. Lopatka, Glenview, Ill., assignors to S. A. Hirsh Manufacturing Company, Skokie, Ill., a corporation of Illinois Continuation-impart of application Ser. No. 544,961,
Apr. 25, 1966. This application Nov. 28, 1966, Ser.
Claims. (Cl. 108110) This application is a continuation-in-part of our copending application, Ser. No. 544,961, filed Apr. 25, 1966.
This invention relates to knockdown steel shelving of a frame type in which post members and cross members rigidly support a plurality of horizontally disposed shelves with novel means for assembling, securing and adjusting the shelves and the cross members on the posts.
Specifically, the instant invention contemplates an easily assembled and adjusted steel shelving unit wherein the shelves are fastened at their corners to the posts by a lever fastening means and the cross members are secured in cooperation therewith to front and back posts by the simple rotation of a bolt that expands hooked end flanges received within an aperture in the side wall of the post, thus maintaining between both shelves and posts, and between braces and posts a rugged, rigidly squared relationship.
A rigid and easily assembled unit of knockdown shelving is further enhanced by a novel post connector for tiering low units that requires no tools for assembly, yet enables otherwise bulky units of shelving to be shipped and stored in smaller conveniently handled packages.
The shelves of this invention are of the type described in the following applications: Ser. No. 362,150, filed Apr. 23, 1964 (now Patent No. 3,276,403); Ser. No. 499,203, filed Oct. 21, 1965; Ser. No. 544,961, filed Apr. 25, 1966; reference to which is hereby made for the disclosure of the rectangular shelves preferably ribbed for reinforcement and having side and end flanges made of prestruck sheet metal blanks rolled in one piece wherein transverse and longitudinal compound flanges of plural thickness are provided and include marginally rolled full box-shaped flanges on at least the front and back edges that rigidity the shelves. The corners of the shelves are notched out to expose the ends of the flanges for square abutting engagement against corner post walls as clamped in place by finger assemblies to prevent sway of the shelving unit.
A primary object of this invention is to provide a shelving unit characterized by a readily understood and quickly operated fastening means that produces a strong joint between shelves and post members and cross members without any need for tools.
Another object of this invention is to provide a simple to operate fastening device for knockdown shelving in which manual actuation of a lever pivotally mounted on one shelving member and engaging another shelving member involves an elongated element with a head portion engaging a slot in a corner post and forming thereby an assembly in which shelves are weight supported for initial assembly positioning yet when tightened forms a rigid, squared self-locking joint between the shelf flange and each corner post merely with a quick manual single movement of the lever.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a simple to operate fastening device that is, in open position, readily accessible for preliminary adjustment, yet is concealed within the shelving member when in closed position.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a fastening means that locks against one of the members after clamping a post and a shelf together.
A further object of the present invention is to provide 3,392,689 Patented July 16, 1968 an improved fastening means for cross members actuated by rotation of a threaded element to expand fingers projecting from either the brace or the corner post and engaged in the other member.
A further object resides in the construction and arrangement by which additional intermediate shelves can be later installed if desired or, once installed, can be moved to other levels on the corner posts with the shelving against a wall and without disturbing brace members or other shelves.
Other objects and advantages of the present invention will become apparent by reference to the following description accompanied by the drawings showing the embodiments of the present invention wherein like reference numerals refer to like parts.
In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a. knockdown steel shelving unit embodying the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary perspective view of a shelf corner including a depending end flange and a box-type flange prepared to accommodate the fastening device of the present invention;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary perspective side view in partial cutaway illustrating one mode of attaching a shelf to a support between corner supports at opposite ends of the shelves;
FIGS. 3-A, 3-B and 3-C are diagrammatical sequential representations showing the operation of said fasteners for receiving the shelf to the corner support shown in FIG. 3;
FIG. 4 is an elevational end view of one form of boxtype horizontal flange member with a lever action fastening device therein;
FIG. 5 is an enlarged detailed perspective view of the elongated element assembly including one displacement m FIG. 6 is a fragmentary perspective side view in partial cutaway illustrating one mode of attaching a brace to a support between front and back corner supports;
FIG. 7 is a detailed fragmentary elevation in partial cutaway showing the fastening relationship of the construction shown in FIG. 5;
FIG. 8 is a plan view of an improved connector for vertically aligned corner supports;
FIG. 8A is a cross-section elevational view of the support column connector shown in FIG. 8; and
FIGS. 9-A, 9-B and 9-C are sequential fragmentary perspective views showing the insertion. into one support column of the present invention.
In FIG. 1 a unit of shelving is shown comprising vertical corner supports 80, cross members or braces 70, and flanged shelves 10, which can be easily located and relocated vertically along the corner supports 80 without use of tools. A screwdriver, if any tool is used, is all that might be useful to secure braces to corner supports 80, although the fastening device securing these members comprise a knurled kerf-headed thumb screw 77 usable in two ways, namely finger manipulation or a screw driver if desired, thus obviating or minimizing the need for tools to assemble the shelving unit.
Because all corner constructions under consideration are similar in the shelving, the following description of one corner construction relates to all including both braces and shelves.
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary perspective view, taken partly from below, looking towards a notched shelf corner 23. The structure is defined by planar portion 11 bordered by depending side and end supporting fllanges 12 and 24, respectively, as constructed according to the present invention. Shelf end flange 24 may or may not be roll-formed but preferably is shown as having a reverse bend 25 to avoid manual contact with any sharp sheet metal edges.
The side flange 12 is preferably box-shaped in construction and comprises an outer wall 13 and an inner wall 17 connected by a bottom ribbed wall 22 and a dual thickness top wall 22a. Outer wall 13 has a shallow terminal recess 14 bordered by contact ears 15 which ensure a square abutment between flange 12 and the corner support 80 (FIG. 3). The inner wall 17 has longitudinally extending ribs 20 and 21 that laterally strengthen the flange 12 and is notched and sheared to provide two vertically spaced guide ears 19 that are bent inwardly to end edges 16a engaging the support 80 and a guide notch 19a between the ears 19 for the bolt as later described.
Spaced from the notched end of the flange 12 and disposed in the outer wall 13 and the inner wall 17 are opposed displacement pin guide slots and 31 of matching shapes, each comprising an oblique intersection of two slots forming four slots; namely, a rear guide slot 32, an upper guide slot 33, a forward guide slot 34, and a retaining slot in wall 13. 'Counterpart slots in wall 17 are identified as rear guide slot 36, upper guide slot 37, forward guide slot 38, and retaining slot 39. The rear guide slots 32 and 36 and forward guide slots 34 and 38 extend in opposite directions longitudinally, while the upper guide slots 33 and 37 and retaining slots 35 and 39 are constructed on a radius of less length than the combined length of the forward and rearward slots 34 and 32, as the arc thereof is swung upwardly from the most forward point on forward slots 34 and 38. Moreover, it is important that the uppermost point on upper guide slots 33 and 37, be farther forward, i.e., spaced closer to the end nearest slots 34 and 38 of flange 12, than the lowest point of retaining slots 35 and 39. The difference between the distance from the near end of flange 12 to the top of upper guide slots 33 and 37 and the distance from the near end of flange 12 to the bottom of retaining slots 35 and 39 defines the longitudinal travel of an elongated bolt or element 50.
Assuming that cross pins and 41 represent that load and fulcrum, respectively, of a class I lever (FIGS. 3A and 3B), it is not enough that the above relationship alone be maintained to accomplish the optimum results of the present invention and it is to be noted that the centers of retaining slots 35 and 39 are spaced sufliciently below the centers of forward slots 34 and 38 to receive and provide an over-center toggle locking recess for pin 40 in retaining slots 35 and 39 against an inadvertent unlocking upward movement thereof after the application of force to the lever 60 which drives the fulcrum pin 41 to the end of the slots 34 and 35 and the load pin 40 to the slots 35 and 39. The off-center relation of displacement pins 40 and 41 defined by the disposition of slots 30 and 31 that permits the locking of the pin 40 in retaining slots 35 and 39 is a pertinent feature of the present invention, in addition to the manner in which upper guide slots 33 and 37 vertically displace pin 40. Slots 32 and 36 permit idle retraction of the pins 40 and 41 from their operative locations.
FIG. 3 shows a fragmentary perspective side view with portions of the corner support 80 partly cut away and showing two shelves in different stages of assembly therein at the notched-out end of the shelf box-flange 12.
In the lower portion of FIG. 3 the pins are retracted ready for locating the shelf and in the upper portion the shelf is shown locked in place.
Double key hole apertures 90, each having opposed vertically aligned lobes 91 and 92 to receive the bolts are located on corner support 80 at any level where it is desired to fasten a shelf 10.
FIG. 3 also shows the relationship of the side flange 12 to the corner support 80 as the fastening means pivotally mounted on horizontal flange member 12 is introduced into aperture 90 of corner support 80.
Still referring to FIG. 3 as well as to FIG. 3A, the box flange member 12 has transversely extending through displacement pin guide slots 30 and 31 the two pins 40 and 41 that engage apertures 64, 65, 66 and 67 respectively in a U-shaped lever 71 which at its manually actuated power end or handle 61 envelopes and rests against the flange member 12 in its closed position. The load pin 40 further pivotally engages a winged nut 53 which in turn threadedly engages the bolt element 50 having a shank 51 extending through the guide notch 19a and a kerfed head 52. Displacement of the pin 40 by lever movement correspondingly displaces the bolt 50 to which pin 40 is fastened by the winged nut 53. The bolt 50 is supported for endwise movement longitudinally within the box flange 12 upon actuation of the lever and the ultimate relative position of the head 52 with respect to the support is first manually adjusted by turning the bolt.
With the pins 40 and 41 in the preintroductory position as shown in FIG. 3C, the head 52 is within the confines of the box flange 12 so that the shelf can be raised or lowered along the support 80. Then when the pins 40 and 41 are advanced to the position shown in FIG. 3A with the lever 60 open the head 52 enters the aperture and the shank 51 can be moved into the lower lobe 92 in weight supported relationship by downward movement of the flange 12 and guide elements 19 (FIG. 3). Thereafter, the lever 60 is closed and while pin 41 fulcrums in slots 34 and 35, the pin 40 moves to the overcenter toggle position shown in FIG. 3B tightening the head 52 against one side of the support wall and the contact ears 15 and end edges 16a against the other side of the support wall. The preintroduction position shown in FIG. 3C of the bolt where the shoulder 54 of head 52 rests against guide 19 is a full retraction of the head 52 into flange 12 as at the terminal recess 16 and this also facilitates shipment and storage of unassembled units of shelving.
In FIG. 4, flange 12 is viewed from an end disengaged from corner support 80. Certain of the components of the U-shaped construction of the lever are best seen in this end view, particularly shank 51, guide 19, ribbed web 22 are integral with flange 12, and the lever 60 is an independent part constructed with two cars 61 and 63 that are integrally connected by web portion 62, which has a slot of length sufficient to fully receive flange 12 between ears 61 and 63 with ear 63 frictionally engaging the inner wall 17 of the flange when lever 60 is in its fastening or closed position, as shown in FIG. 3. Apertures 64, 65, 66 and 67 in lever 60 that receive displacement pins 40 and 41 are in the unwebbed portions of ears 61 and 63, and in its closed position the apertures in the flange are covered by the ears 61 and 63 of the U-shaped lever so that there is no temptation to release the shelf except by operating the lever.
The tightening assembly as shown in FIG. 5 preferably comprises three separate parts: retainer 53, the displacement pin 40 that pivotally supports the retainer 53, and the bolt element 50 which is threadedly supported by the retainer 53. It will be appreciated that this assembly could be constructed as a single component such as a rod thatis bent to take the place of the bolt and pin 40 to engage slots 30 and 31. Such a construction, however, may be acceptable for some applications but would lack the desirable feature of the element 50 assembly as shown,-
namely, the capability of element 50 to be adjustably tightened by merely having its head rotated before the toggle strain is applied. Material stresses involved in using tht present invention may over a period of time fatigue crucial points along slots 30 and 31, and the fastening devices ability to be easily retightened is considered to be important to its optimum usefulness. This is especially true in shelving units constructed of light gauge metal that is being supported against side sway forces.
In those instances where shelf-to-corner fastening devices are not intended to withstand fore and aft sway forces to maintain the rigidity of the entire unit, as Where shelving is directly supported against a wall, anti-sway braces, such as brace 70 illustrated in FIG. 6 are desirable to prevent shelving sway. FIG. 6 illustrates a mode of attaching brace 70 to corner support 80 to prevent toppling. In addition to having apertures 90 on support side walls 82 and 83 to receive fastening means mounted on shelf flange 12, the corner support 80 has on its rear wall 84 vertically spaced pairs of slots 101 and 102 to receive fastening means extending from brace 70.
Slots 101 and 102 are located on corner support 80 at any level where it is desired to fasten a brace 70. The invention is not limited to the particular relation of slots 101 and 102 to apertures 90 embodied in FIG. 2, since braces and shelves may well be fastened to the same corner support 80, side wall 82 or 83 or to rear wall 84, it being appreciated that the front wall 85 is left unslotted and intact to maintain a smooth appearance. The cooperation of fastening means with aperture 90 and with paired slots 101 and 102 will be described.
The braces 70 cooperate when desired wit-h pairs of the vertically spaced slots 101 and 102 along the abutting edges of the rear wall 84. The shape of slots 101 and 102 depends upon the shape of the fastening brackets 71 that are to be received in the slots 101 and 102. As illustrated in FIG. 6, slots 101 and 102 are substantially rectangular, and are separated by median stock 103.
FIGS. 6 and 7 show the fastening device of the present invention in secured position with an open end of brace 70 abutting the bipartite rear wall 84 of the corner support 80 in registration with slots 101 and 102. Securely attached inside the top wall 86 of brace 70 is an L-bracket 71 comprising a leg portion 72 welded to the wall 86 and a flange portion 73 spaced from the end of the brace 70 a distance equal to the thickness of the wall 84 to the thickness of corner support wall 86 to engage the upper edge of slot 101. The flange portion 73 integrally forms a lock flange that engages the inside surface of the bipartite rear wall 84. Flange 73 extends upward a distance a little less than the vertical dimension of slot 101 so that it can be easily received therethrough.
An opposing L-shape bracket 69 comprises a floating leg portion 74 of like overall dimensions as bracket 72 or including a flange 75, which is a counterpart to flange 73. The bracket 74 however for its floating adjustable operation as a jaw of an expanding clamp is pierced and threaded as at 76 coincident with a guide hole 68 in the bottom wall 87 of the cross brace 70 to receive the bolt 77 by which it is held in assembled relation in the cross brace for insertion of its lock flange 75 in slot 102.
The bolt serves for expanding bracket 74 with flange 75 against the bottom wall 87 as shown in FIG. 7. It is significant that screw 77 spans the full inside dimension of brace 70 to contact the leg portion 72 in a guide recess 72a therein, a machine screw having a round head in place of the knurled head 78 shown, which would, as mentioned above need only a screwdriver for fastening brace 70 to the corner support 80. The median portion 103 prevents the end edges of the side walls of the cross brace from off-setting with the openings 101 and 102.
With the bolt 77 as the tightening means, the brace 70 is easily fastened to the corner support 80 by the following steps: (1) when assembling the brace 70 the bracket 72 is brought to the position shown in dotted lines in which the outer edge of flange 75 is flush with bottom wall 87, then (2) the entire brace 70 is tilted slightly to permit upward insertion of the flange 73 along the upper edge of slot 101, then (3) with flange 73 thus positioned the flange 75 of the lower brace 70 is on -a level to slip into the slot 102 with all end edges of brace 70 resting against wall 84 whereupon (4) the bolt is tightened to expand abutting the bracket 74 until it engages the lower edge of slot 102 with its flange against the rear wall 84.
The force produced by rotation of bolt 77, for example, engaged in bracket 74 separates brackets 72 and 74 to securely engage them with opposite edges of slots 101 and 102 respectively.
Theoretically, median 103 is unnecessary. Slots 101 and 102 could merge into a single slot. However, considering a factor of possible lightness of sheet material used for the shelving under consideration, the median 103 is desired to foot the end edges of the cross brace and strengthen the slot engagements.
To facilitate shipment and storage of corner supports of tall knockdown units of shelving of the kind described herein both for a common inventing and for short and high shelving units, and corner supports are manufactured in two or more separate pieces to be connected end to end upon assembly of the unit of shelving by the consumer. As shown in FIG. 8 the present invention embraces a novel concept in support column connectors, one that provides for concealed, easy and secure attachment and for alignment by an element which can be inserted initially into either corner post section without fastenings and contributes to the rigidity of the entire unit of shelving.
FIG. 8 is a plan view of the support column connector of the present invention which is shown at 113, formed of parallel side walls 114 and 115 interconnected by web 116 along one edge to provide a channel. Extending from the other edges of walls 114 and 115 are identical, oppositely disposed flanges 111 and 112, each having oppositely offset portions 117 and 118, respectively, along partial shear lines 119 made partially across the flanges 111 and 112 normal to their longitudinal edges.
FIG. 8 best shows how offset portions 117 and 118 are oppositely off-center, one on one side of one shear line being outwardly disposed as at 118 and the other diagonally opposite on the other shear line being outwardly exposed as at 117, same being depressed from the viewing plane in FIG. 8.
In FIG. 8-A, an end view of the connection, best shows the extent of this offset relationship. It should be noted also that in the use of the connectors the shear lines need not be cross-aligned with spacing between outwardly ofi'set facing offsets because while one abuts the end of a support member in positioning relationship, the other offset enters the support member and like a tooth bits into the inner wall to oppose removal or shifting.
FIG. 9 shows how the offset portions 117 and 118 cooperate to prevent total insertion of the connector device into either end of the end-abutting corner support members 80. For example, 113 can be inserted at one end into an open end of either column support 80, and one of the offset portions will engage the inside surface of wall 85 of one column support 80, and permit insertion until the shoulder of the diagonally opposite offset abuts the end of the column. For instance, if the right hand end of the connector, shown in FIG. 8 is inserted, the offset 118 will slide inwardly until the offset 117 abuts the end of the corner support as viewed in FIG. 9. Further insertion is prevented by the abutting engagement of the other offset. When the other corner support is slid over the protruding end of the connector then it collapses inwardly, the exposed offset and abuts directly against the exposed end of the first column closing thereagainst to a hair line space between them. Thus, until end abutment between the column sections the connector cannot slip out of its place of spanning the joint and after the abutting engagement the counter resilient twisting relationship induced upon the connector tightens it in its confinement and maintains the vertical integrity of the connection between the abutting portions of support column 80 while preserving perfect alignment.
Thus two low shelving units can be placed one upon the other after assembly to provide a single tall shelving assembly.
Having thus described the invention and the mechanical purposes of various elements and parts thereof, it will be apparent how the objects set forth are attained and how various and further modifications may be made therein without departing from the spirit thereof, the scope of which is commensurate with the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. In a knockdown shelving construction comprising an upright post member having an aperture through a wall portion thereof, a shelf having a horizontal portion and a depending flange member terminally abutting said wall portion and having a side with an aperture therein, a clamp device interconnecting said members including a lever pivotally mounted in one of said apertures on one member and closely following the shape of said one memher in its closed position for movement between a closed and :1 released position, and an elongated element pivotally engaging said lever at one end and having catch means at its other end releasably engaging in the other of said apertures to draw said flange endwise tightly against said post in the closed position of said lever, said elongated element being normally retracted to dispose said catch means within said one member permitting relative movement of the flange member vertically along said post member.
2. The combination called for in claim 1 in which said other of said apertures is a keyhole slot and in which said elongated element includes a threaded member adjustable engaging said lever and said catch means is an enlargement received in said keyhole slot in weight bearing relationship supporting said shelf.
3. The combination called for in claim 1 in which said flange member has integral laterally-turned spaced guide ears supporting said elongated element adjacent to said catch means and defining an opening within which said catch means is retracted.
4. A knockdown sheet metal shelving construction comprising a hollow upright post member having keyhole aperture in a Wall portion thereof with the lobe thereof extending downwardly, a shelf having a depending flange member terminally engaging said wall portion adjacent to said aperture means, said flange having aperture means through it spaced from the end thereof, a lever pivotally mounted at its fulcrum point in said aperture means, an elongated element at one end pivotally engaging said lever at its load point and having at its other end a catch means releasably engaging in said keyhole aperture for drawing said flange member against said wall portion upon manual movement of the force point of said lever from open to closed positions, said load point on said lever being offset ahead of a straight line through said force and fulcrum points in the lever closing direction, and said aperture means on said flange member being elongated longitudinally of said flange for movement of said fulcrum point to retract said elongated element from said post member permitting level adjusting movement of the flange member along said post member.
5. The combination called for in claim 4 in which said aperture means is in the shape of a Y in which a pin at said load point moves in the leg and an arm portion thereof which are at an obtuse angle with respect to each other and a pin at said fulcrum point is slidably mounted in the remaining arm of said aperture means.
6. The combination called for in claim 5 in which the aligned leg and arm are slightly offset with respect to each other and separated by a recess in the aperture wall opposite the other arm, said recess receiving said load point pin in an over-center toggle locking relationship when the lever means is in closed position.
7. A knockdown sheet metal shelving construction comprising hollow spaced upright post members having vertically spaced openings on their facing walls and apertures in adjacent walls, brace means engaging in said openings securing said post members in rigid parallel spaced relationship, a shelf member notched at its corners to be terminally received between said post members and having a horizontal portion with a depending flange member terminally abutting said apertured wall portions, each of said flanges having a side with an aperture therein,
a clamp device interconnecting said post and flange members, including a lever means pivotally mounted in one of said apertures on said flange member for movement between a released and a closed position, and an elongated element pivotally engaging said lever means at one end and having catch means at its other end releasably engaging in one of said apertures to draw said flange end tightly against said post in the closed position of said lever, said lever means being movable in said one aperture to retract said catch means within said flange member permitting while in its closed retracted pOsition, relative movement along said post member by the flange member.
8. The combination called for in claim 7 in which said brace means terminally engages said wall and includes brackets mounted thereon having oppositely directed flanges thereon extending through said openings and behind said rear wall, and means for expanding said bracket meas into rigidifying engagement with said opposed edges.
9. The combination called for in claim 7 in which said lever means is pivotally mounted at its fulcrum point in said aperture means, and said elongated element at one end pivotally engages said lever at its load point for drawing said flange member against said wall portion upon manual movement of the force point of said lever from open to closed positions, said load point on said lever being offset ahead of a straight line through said force and fulcrum points in the lever closing direction, and said aperture means on said flange member being elongated longitudinally of said flange for movement of said fulcrum point to retract said elongated element from said post member permitting level adjusting movement of the flange member along said post member.
10. In a knockdown shelving construction comprising end abutting cross-sectionally rectangular upright post members having a front wall and side apertures through a side wall portion thereof near their abutting ends, a shelf having a horizontal portion and a depending flange member terminally abutting said wall portion and having a side with an aperture therein, a clamp device interconnecting said port and flange members extending through one of said side apertures into the interior of said port member and including a clamp means mounted in one of said apertures on the flange for movement between a closed and a released position, and an elongated element engaging said clamp at one end and having catch means at its other end releasably engaging in and extending through one of said side apertures into the interior of said port member to draw said flange endwise tightly against said post in the closed position of said lever, connector means received in said upright port members bridging their abutting ends comprising a T-shaped member having parallel web leg members spaced from said side walls to clear movement of said catch means and engaging the rear wall of port members and oppositely disposed arm portions engaging the inside faces of the front walls of said port members, said arm portions having oppositely offset portions along shear lines made crosswise of the flanges and appreciably spaced for the offset edges of the shear lines on the front face of the arm portions to define shoulders facing each other with one oflset edge engaging one port member while the other offset edge initially abuts said one of said port members and in final assembly engages the other one of said port members.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 597,186 1/1898 Hunter 108110 1,024,922 4/1912 Beecher 108107 1,905,908 4/1933 Karnes 108108 2,896,794 7/1959 Jarvis 108109 3,132,910 5/1964 Vigna 108106 3,276,403 10/1966 Ferdinand et al. 108-106 3,332,374 7/1967 Ferdinand et al. 108-107 FRANCIS K. ZUGEL, Primary Examiner.