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Publication numberUS3429283 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 25, 1969
Filing dateDec 14, 1966
Priority dateDec 14, 1966
Publication numberUS 3429283 A, US 3429283A, US-A-3429283, US3429283 A, US3429283A
InventorsUhor Emil
Original AssigneeUhor Emil
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Convertible bench or chair and picnic table
US 3429283 A
Abstract  available in
Images(6)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

E. UHOR 3,429,283

CONVERTIBLE BENCH OR CHAIR AND PICNIC TABLE Feb. 25, HQGQ Sheet Filed Dec. 14, 1966 Emil lmr INVENTOR.

CONVERTIBLE BENCH OR CHAIR AND PICNIC TABLE E. UHOR Feb. 25, 1969 Sheet Filed Dec.

Emil Uhor INVENTOR.

Feb. 25, 196g UHOR 3,429,283

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Feb. 25, 1969 E. UHOR 3,429,283

CONVERTIBLE BENCH OR CHAIR AND PICNIC TABLE Filed Dec. 14, 1966 Sheet 5 of6 F l9. /4 228 l 332. .326 296 3 0 /5 I 15 Emil Uhor IN VEN TOR.

E. UHOR 3,429,283

CONVERTIBLE BENCH OR CHAIR AND PICNIC TABLE Feb. 25, 1969 Sheet 6 Emil Uhor Filed Dec. 14, 1966 INVENTOR.

United States Patent M 3,429,283 CONVERTIBLE BENCH 0R CHAIR AND PICNIC TABLE Emil Uhor, P.O. Box 414, Bowie, Md. 20715 Filed Dec. 14, 1966, Ser. No. 601,622 US. Cl. 108-11 13 Claims Int. Cl. A47b 3/08, 35/00 ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The invention disclosed herein involves convertible furniture including a structure which may be alternatively used as a bench or chair and which may be converted to a picnic table or a table of general utility having features which enable it to be used as a dressing table. Additionally, the disclosure includes a canopy assembly for a picnic table which may be removed and converted into use as a backyard wading or swimming pool.

The present invention generally relates to articles of furniture and particularly convertible furniture to enable a chair or bench to be converted from its normal use as a chair or bench to other utilitarian purposes.

An object of the present invention is to provide convertible furniture in the form of a bench in which the back of the bench is pivotal from a normally upwardly inclined position to a substantially horizontal position projecting rearwardly from the seat portion of the bench at an elevated relation thereto for association with a similar convertible bench for forming a picnic table with a seat along the remote edges thereof.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a convertible bench and picnic table assembly in accordance with the preceding object in which each end of the seat portion of the bench is provided with an extensible support structure for supporting an elongated seat between the ends of the oppositely disposed converted benches to provide a seat assembly completely around the periphery of the picnic table.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a convertible bench and picnic table assembly in accordance with the preceding objects in which novel locking means is provided for retaining the components of the bench and picnic table in their various positions with the assembly also including the provision of insertable auxiliary panels, to extend the length of the picnic table when formed.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a convertible bench and picnic table assembly having a seat portion and a back portion supported from upwardly inclined structural components in which one of the structural components may be disconnected so that the bench back can be swung about a horizontal axis and at least one vertically inclined axis so that the bench back can be retained in substantially horizontal attitude at all points of adjustment.

Another important object of the present invention is to provide a convertible chair having a chair back which can be pivoted to a horizontal position for use as a table, orientated in a vertical position alongside of one rear corner of the chair in a reversed position to reveal a mirror surface on the chair back and also capable of being oriented securely in a normal position for use as a chair back.

A still further important object of the present invention is to provide a convertible chair in accordance with the preceding object in which the chair is provided with oppositely opening storage trays or drawers disposed under the seat portion thereof together with means interconnect- 3,429,283 Patented Feb. 25, 1969 ing the trays for assuring that they will move simultaneously in opposite directions.

Still another important feature of this embodiment of the invention is to provide a convertible chair in accordance with the preceding objects in which the chair is provided with casters and a detachably supported backrest is provided thereon which also includes a storage area which may be attached to the chair when the chair back is swung to a position with the mirror facing the area alongside of the chair.

Yet another import-ant feature of the present invention resides in the provision of a convertible bench and picnic table assembly having a canopy supported thereover to protect the picnic table when assembled therewith and being detachable therefrom for orientation in an inverted manner for forming a shallow swimming pool or wading pool for use in the backyard or the like.

A further important and significant object of the present invention is to provide an article of convertible furniture which is highly utilitarian by virtue of it being converted from use to another and yet which is relatively simple in construction :and inexpensive to manufacture.

These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a picnic table assembly employing two convertible benches, an auxiliary insert table top panel and seat assemblies;

FIGURE 2 is a vertical sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 2-2 of FIG- URE 1 illustrating further structural details of the convertible bench illustrating various positions of the bench back;

FIGURE 3 is a fragmental plan view of one end of the bench seat and the associated auxiliary seat structure;

FIGURE 4 is a detailed sectional view taken along sec- .tion line 44 of FIGURE 1 illustrating the juncture being the supporting structure for the bench back and the associated structure for locking the bench back in adjusted position;

FIGURE 8 is a plan view of the construction of FIG- URE 7;

FIGURE 9 is a transverse, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 9-9 of FIGURE 8 illustrating further structural details of the adjustable and locking mechanism;

FIGURE 10 is a longitudinal, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 10-10 of FIGURE 9 illustrating further structural details of the adjusting and locking mechanism;

FIGURE 11 is a perspective view of a convertible chair;

FIGURE 12 is a fragmental perspective view of the convertible chair of FIGURE 11 illustrating the chair converted to a utilitarian table;

FIGURE 13 is a perspective view of the convertible chair assembly orientated in position with the chair used as a dressing chair;

FIGURE 13A is an exploded group perspective view illustrating the structural details of the demountable auxiliary backrest;

FIGURE 14 is a detailed sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 1414 of FIGURE 11 illustrating further structural details of the chair assembly;

FIGURE 15 is a plan sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 1515 of FIG- URE 14 illustrating further structural details of the drawer assembly and illustrating the structure for assuring opposite movement of the drawers;

FIGURE 16 is a detailed sectional view of a type of detachable connection which may be employed in the chair assembly of FIGURE 11 or the bench assembly of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 17 is an exploded group perspective view illustrating the pivotable support connection for the backrest employed in the chair assembly of FIGURE 11;

FIGURE 18 is a perspective view illustrating a picnic assembly including a canopy and auxiliary leg support for the auxiliary seat;

FIGURE 19 is a perspective view of the canopy assembly converted into a wading pool for children;

FIGURE 20 is a perspective view of a corner portion of the frame structure for the canopy assembly;

FIGURE 21 is a perspective View of the inner corner of the canopy assembly when used as a wading pool;

FIGURE 22 is a detailed sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 22-22 of FIGURE 19 illustrating the relationship of the waterproof panel to the framework; and

FIGURE 23 is a sectional view of a detachable connection.

Referring now specifically to the drawings and especially the embodiment of the invention illustrated in FIGURES 1-10, the picnic table assembly is generally designated by the numeral 30 and includes a pair of oppositely disposed convertible bench assemblies 32 which are identical in construction and auxiliary seat assemblies 34 which extend perpendicular to the benches and the picnic table 30 may have auxiliary table top insert panels 36 depending upon the desired length of the picnic table.

Each bench 32 has an identical supporting assembly at each end thereof including an inverted 'U-shaped support member 38 of tubular material such as tubular pipes or the like. The depending legs of the support 38 are interconnected by a tubular brace member 40 fixedly secured thereto as by welding or the like.

Extending between the supports 38 is a plurality of boards or planks 42 which form the seat portion of the bench and suitable fasteners are employed for rigidly fixing the boards or planks to the supports 38. While wood boards or planks 42 have been illustrated inasmuch as this represents conventional picnic bench construction, it is pointed out that any suitable material may be employed to form the bench 32. Also, the lower end of each leg of each support 38 is provided with a supporting foot 44 having a threaded shank 46 engaged with a nut 48 abuttingly engaging the lower end of the supporting leg 38 thus providing an adjustable foot for levelling and securely supporting the bench assembly 32 so that the convertible bench is level.

Extending upwardly and rearwardly from the upper corner of each support member 38 is a tubular support member 50 which is telescopically received in a movable tubular member '52 which has a supporting and adjusting assembly 54 at the upper end thereof which is connected to the edges of a panel or board 56 which forms the bench back 56 when in vertically inclined position and a portion of the picnic table assembly when in horizontal position.

Thesupporting assembly 54 at the upper end of the tubular member 52 includes a horizontally disposed cylindrical sleeve 58 fixed to the upper end of the tubular member 52 as by welding 60 or the like. Disposed within the cylindrical member 58 and rotatable in relation thereto is an inner cylindrical member or sleeve 62. The cylindrical member 58 has an outer end wall 64 with an opening 66 and the inner cylindrical member 62 has a similar end wall 68. The outer cylinder 58 is provided with a plurality of circumferentially spaced and aligned apertures 70 while the inner cylindrical member 62 has correspondingly arranged apertures 72 for alignment therewith and for the reception of a spring bias lock pin 74 which may move radially in relation to the apertures 70 and 72 for positioning therein to lock the sleeves 58 and 62 in desired angular adjusted position.

The lock pin 74 is slidably received in a laterally extending lug 76 on a bracket 78 and also through a laterally extending lug or plate 80 in spaced parallel relation to the lug 76. -A coil compression spring 82 encircles the pin 74 with one end engaging the plate 80 and the other end engaging a washer or abutment 84 rigid with the pin 74. Thus, the spring 82 will spring bias the lock pin 74 toward the cylinders 5-8 and 62.

The end of the lock pin 74 is provided with a knurled knob 86 for manipulation thereof and a transeverse pin 88 extends diametrically from the lock pin adjacent the knob 86 for engagement with a pair of carn members 90 and 92 that are integral with the plate 80. The cam plates 90 are relatively low position cam plates and permit the pin 88 to move toward the plate 80 to an extent that the inner end of the lock pin 74 will project through alined apertures 70 and 72. When the knob 86 is grasped and the pin 74 pulled outwardly thus compressing the spring 82, the rod 84 may then be rotated to bring the diametric pin 88 into engagement with the notches 94 on the high cam plates 92 thus locking the lock pin 74 in retracted position to enable relative rotation between the cylindrical member 58 and the cylindrical member 62 inasmuch as the pin 74 will be retracted from engagement with the apertures 70 and 72.

Supported by the adjustable and supporting assembly 54 is a U-shaped bracket 96 having spaced parallel legs 98. Extending laterally centrally of the bracket 96 is a threaded stud 100 having a flat surface 102 thereon for non-rotative engagement in a correspondingly shaped aperture in the inner end wall of the cylindrical member 62. The inner end wall of the cylindrical member 58 is provided with a circular aperture for rotatably receiving the threaded stud 100. A friction washer 104 is disposed between the bracket 96 and the inner end wall of the cylindrical member 58 and a corresponding friction washer is disposed between the inner surface of the inner end wall of the cylindrical member 62 and the inner end of a threaded tubular member 106 which extends longitudinally inwardly through the end walls 64 and 68 and is provided with an operating handle or knob 108 on the outer end thereof for tightening the screw-threaded member 106 onto the threaded stud 100 thus compressing the friction washers 104, the inner end walls of the cylindrical members into engagement with each other and into engagement with the bracket 96 and the inner end of the threaded member 108 thus retaining these components in frictionally adjusted position by tightening the knob 108 and thy loosening the knob 108, these components may be adjusted into adjusted position and subsequently relocked.

The knob 108 enables adjustment of the bracket 96 about an axis defined by the threaded stud 100 to any desired position. In certain positions such as those in which the board or panel 56 will be orientated, the apertures 70 and 72 may be employed along with the pin 74 for positively locking the panel or board 56 in position.

The panel or board 56 is also adjustable about an axis perpendicular to the axis of the threaded stud 100 and this is accomplished by the provision of an elongated substantially U-shaped bracket 110 which has the legs thereof secured to and recessed into the surface of the panel 56 suitable fasteners 112 or the like.

Received within the U-shap'ed bracket 110 and rigid therewith is a cylindrical member or sleeve 114 having end walls 116 received between the legs 98 of the bracket 96. Extending through the legs 98 of the bracket 96 and through the end walls 116 is an elongated bolt or rod 118 having a threaded end 120 provided with a screwthreaded knob or handle 122 thereon so that by tightening the knob 122, the legs 98 of the bracket 96 may be brought into engagement with the end walls 116. The elongated bolt or rod 118 is polygonal in cross-section such as being square and is received in a correspondingly square tube 124. The square bolt 118 also extends through a correspondingly square hole 126 in one of the bracket legs 98 so that the bolt 118 will not rotate nor will the square tube 124 rotate when the plank or board 56 is pivoted about the axis defined by the bolt 118.

Thus by tightening the nut or knob 122, the components 98, 118, 116 and 114 become rigidly connected together. To provide increments of adjustment about the axis of the bolt 118, the square tube 124 is provided with disklike washers or plates 128 and 130 thereon with a coil compression spring 132 extending therebetween. At least one of the disks 130 is movable longitudinally so that the spring 132 will bias the disk 128 and 130 towards the end plates 116 respectively on the cylindrical member 114. Disposed between each end plate 116 and a corresponding disk 128 or 130 is a plurality of ball detents 134 which are received in correspondingly shaped sockets in the facing surfaces of the end plates 116 and the disks 128 and 130. Thus, as the cylindrical member 114 is rotated, the resiliency of the spring 132 will enable the end plates 116 to rotate in relation to the disk 138 and 130 which are rotatably fixed in relation to the square tube 124 and also rotatably fixed in relation to the bolt 118 and the bracket 96. Thus, this structure will provide a snap action adjustment which provides for orientation of the panel or board 56 in desired adjusted angular position about the axis of the bolt 118 as well as about the axis of the threaded stud or bolt 100.

As illustrated in FIGURE 1, a plurality of auxiliary panels 140 may be employed and the structure includes the use of correspondingly aligned sockets 136 receiving connector pins or rods 138 which are frictionally received in sockets 136 in the back bench forming panels 56 and auxiliary panels 140 of the same construction. As illustrated in FIG. 1, the panels 56 and 140 have pairs of sockets 142 similar to the sockets 136 in each edge thereof to enable the panels to be engaged or connected when benches are aligned in end-to-end relation, in sideto-side relation, in back-to-back relation, etc., thereby rendering the device more versatile in use. Also, the adjusting assembly 54 enables the panel 56 to be disposed in vertical or inclined position for use as a backboard, sunshade or the like.

Also, the adjustable suport assembly is only provided on one end of the bench back panel 56 in that the telescopic tube 52 on the other end thereof may be detached from the supporting tube 50 by employing a detachable connection generally designated by numeral 143. Also, sockets 144 are provided for receiving a canopy structure to be described hereinafter.

For locking the seat panel 56 in its inclined position for use as a seat back there is provided an elongated lock rod 146 which extends along the top surface of one of the suporting tubes 40 and which is guided at its inner end by an upstanding lug 148 carried by a channel shaped bracket 150 adjacent the inner end thereof. The inner end of the lock rod 146 is provided with a laterally offset locking portion 152 adapted to extend behind the bench back panel when it is pivoted downwardly and forwardly into engagement with a stop 154 on the tubular member 41 The lock rod 146 extends out through the support 38 and the outer end of the lock rod 146 is provided with a loop type handle or eye 156 for rotating and moving the lock rod 146 longitudinally. The lock rod 146 has a coil compression spring 158 thereon with one end abutting the tube 38 and the other end abutting an abutment washer 160 on the rod 146 thus biasing the rod 146 inwardly. A cam 162 in the form. of a tubular member having oppositely disposed notches 164 for receiving a diametrically projecting pin 166 on the handle portion of the rod 146 so that the rod 146 may be orientated in an inner position with the laterally projecting end 152 thereof extending upwardly as illustrated in the dotted line illustration in FIGURE 6 or orientated in a position with the laterally projecting end 152 disposed horizontally and engaging the surface of the bench back panel 56 opposite to the stop 154 in which either of the pin 166 is in the outermost pair of notches 164 as illustrated in FIGURE 6 for locking the bench back detachably in adjusted position.

The auxiliary seat 34 includes a plurality of slats or panels 168 retained in assembled relation by end members 170 fixed across the ends in any suitable manner and additional transverse connectors 172 may be provided between the spaced slats or panels 168 for retaining these panels in assembled relation.

Each end of the seat portion of the benches 32 is provided with a supporting structure including a pair of rails 174 which are slidably disposed between adjacent slats or panels 42 with their inner ends being interconnected by a transversely extending retaining member 176 of right angular configuration with the vertical flange being disposed adjacent the U-shaped support 38 for the bench 32 so that it engages the inner surface of the bight of the inverted U-shaped support 38, outward sliding movement of the supporting rails 174 will be limited and due to engagement of the horizontal flange of the transverse member 176 in underlying relation to the slats or panels 42, downwardly pivotal movement of the rails 174 will be precluded thus forming a support for the auxiliary seat 34- by virtue of the slats 168 resting in perpendicular crossed relation to the supporting rails 174. The horizontal flange of the transverse member 176 is provided with a headed fastener element 178 which extends down through the slot formed by the center two slabs 42 with the adjacent edges of the center slats 42 being recessed as at 180 for slidably receiving the enlarged head of the headed fastener 178. This enlarged head may be in the form of a stationary polygonal member or in the form of a bolt with a square or round head or in the form of a bolt having a roller at the top thereof for movably guiding the fastener bolt 178 and movably guiding the transverse member 176 so that it will be retained in perpendicular relation to the slats 42 by virtue of the rails 174 being received in the slots between the outermost pairs of slats and the guide bolts received in the slot between adjacent slats 42. Thus, the rails 174 may be telescoped in relation to the slats 42 and the outer ends of the rails 174 are interconected and retained in parallel relation by a transverse member 182 which is in parallel relation to the transverse member 176 and which will engage the ends of the slats 42 when in stored position with the upper surface of the transverse member 182 being substantially flush with the upper surface of the slats 42 thus eliminating any possibility of the transverse member 182 being pulled outwardly during normal movement of persons occupying the seat portion of the bench 32.

For providing additional support for the outer end of the rails 174, the central portion of the transverse member 182 is provided with a U-shaped bracket 184 which pivotally supports a tubular member 186 between the legs thereof by a suitable pivot bolt, rivet or the like. Telescopically received in the tubular member 186 is a supporting rod 188 which is slidably received in the tubular member 186 and which has the outer end thereof free for orientation in an aperture 190 in the transverse tubular member 40 extending between the legs of the inverted U-shaped support 38, as illustrated in FIGURE 5. The inner end of the rod 188 which is received in the tubular member 186 is engaged with a coil compression spring 192 which biases the rod 188 outwardly and adjacent the inner end of the rod 188, there is provided a projecting pin 194 which is slidable in a slot 196 in the tubular member 186 with the slot 196- having a laterally extending bayonet type slot 198 communicating therewith so that the rod 188 can be locked in extended position and in engagement with the aperture 190 so that the outer end of the rails 174 and the transverse member 182 will be supported in the horizontal position as illustrated in FIGURE 5. When the auxiliary seat '34 is removed, the rod 188 may be grasped and rotated until the pin 194 moves out of the bayonet slot 198 into the longitudinal slot 196 and then the spring 192 can be compressed by moving the rod 188 inwardly until it disengaged from the aperture 198 in the transverse tubular member 40. Then the tube 186 and the rod 188 may be swung vertically so that the free end of the rod 188 may pass upwardly past the outer surface of the bight portion of the inverted U-shaped support 38. When the tube 186 and rod 188 are orientated in substantially horizontal position, the rod 188 may be released so that the spring 192 will bias the rod 188 into engagement with an apertured lug or bracket 209 formed centrally on the transverse member 176 thus providing a. storage position for the tube 186 and rod 188 with it being pointed out that the pin 194 will limit the outward movement of rod 188- but permit it to extend sufficiently to engage the apertured bracket 200. The dimensional characteristics of the rod 188 and the tube 186 are such that they will be received between the central adjacent slat 42 which also receives the fastening guide bolt 188. The adjacent ends of the adjacent slats 42 may be notched as at 202 for receiving the bracket 184 so that the transverse member 182 may be engaged flush with the end surface of the slats 42. The lug 200 may be welded on or it may be an upwardly struck lug struck from a right angular metal structural element to facilitate the retention of the manufacturing cost of the item at a low figure.

The tubular member 52 which is telescoped over the upwardly extending tubular support member 50 is provided with a suitable lock clamp 204 to lock the panels 56 in vertically adjusted position. Thus, the vertical adjustment combined with the detachable connection 143 for one of the support members enables not only orientation of the panels 56 parallel with the slats 4'2 but also enables the panels 56 to be swung in a horizontal plane to any angular relation to the slats 42 thus enabling adjacent benches to be orientated with the panels 56 in endto-end relation to provide a relatively long and narrow table if desired. If desired, the panel 56 may also be used independently either in a horizontal position parallel with the slats 42 or in a horizontally swung position in perpendicular relation to the slats 42. The supporting structure for the benches including the support 38 may be reinforced and interconnected wherever deemed necessary for proper rigidity and the threaded stem 46 on the levelling feet 44 may be locked in position conveniently by the use of a lock nut 48 thereby enabling the table surface to be orientated in substantially a. horizontal plane regardless of irregularities in the ground surface on which the assembly rests. The latch rods 146 enable easy conversion of the back bench panels 56 from the inclined bench forming position to the horizontal table forming position with the lock pin 7-4 securely locking the panel 56 in adjusted position about an axis defined by the threaded stud 100. To orientate the panel 56 about the axis defined by the bolt 118 when one end thereof is detached, the knob 122 may be loosened and tightened in an obvious manner. Thus, the bench 32 may be used in a conventional manner as a bench or easily converted to a table structure without any other bench or converted into a wider table structure by orientation of an identical bench in relation thereto as illustrated in FIGURE 1 with additional auxiliary panels being employed as necessary. The table will then have a seat at each end and if seats are desired along each side thereof, the auxiliary seats 34 are placed in position after first extending the 8 supporting rails 174 into their operative position as illustrated in FIGURE 5.

With this construction, the bench structure will be highly utilitarian and easily converted from a bench to a table arrangement thereby eliminating the necessity of providing both picnic benches and tables in picnic areas, parks, backyards and the like.

Referring now specifically to the embodiment of the invention illustrated in FIGURES 11-17, the convertible chair and table assembly is generally designated by reference numeral 210 and includes a chair seat .212 supported by four depending legs 214 which may diverge slightly and which may be of conventional construction and secured to the seat 212 in a conventional manner. The lower end of each leg 214 is provided with a caster wheel assembly 216 which may be of conventional construction and either a free wheeling caster wheel structure or a caster wheel having a conventional brake assembly incorporated therein to render the caster wheel assembly stationary when desired.

Extending upwardly from one rear corner of the seat 212 is a support rod 218 telescopically received in a tubular support member 220 which has a clamp structure 219 at the lower end thereof for adjustably supporting the tubular support member 220 on the support rod 218. The support rod 218 is rigidly fixed to the seat 212 in any conventional manner.

The other rear corner of the seat 212 is provided with an undercut notch 222 Communicating with the upper surface thereof and communicating with the rear edge thereof for slidably receiving the headed end 224 of a support tube or rod 226. An insertable lock pin 228 is slidably disposed in the side edge of the seat 212 for insertion behind the reduced portion of the fitted end 224 of the support 226 for detachably retaining the headed end 224 securely in the notch 222 thus forming substantially parallel upwardly extending support members 220 and 226 for a chair back panel 230.

The chair back panel 230 is of elongated rectangular configuration and may be planar in configuration or may be provided with cushioning material or the like which may also be provided on the chair seat 212. When the chair back 230 is in the conventional position as illustrated in FIGURE 11, it extends generally vertically upwardly from the seat 212 with the chair back being spaced above the seat 212 and being generally rearwardly inclined in a conventional manner. The opposite surface of the chair back 230 is provided with a mirror 232 mounted thereon and secured in place thereon in any suitable manner such as by a peripheral frame or the like.

The upper end of the support members 220 and 226 are pivotally connected to the chair back 230 by a structure illustrated specifically in FIGURE 17 and which includes a cylindrical sleeve 234 fixed to the edge of the chair back 230 in any conventional manner such as by a bolt 236 attached to the chair back 230 in any conventional manner such as by extending outwardly from the interior of a peripheral frame. The bolt 236 is provided with a pair of flat sides 238 for non-rotative reception in a correspondingly flat sided aperture 249 in the inner end of the cylindrical member 234. The bolt 236 extends through an aperture 242 of cylindrical configuration in the upper end of the support member such as a support member 226 and receives a conventional washer 244 and a wing nut 246 thereon. The fiat sided bolt 236 also extends through a circular plate 248 having a flat sided opening 250 therein so that the plate 248 will also be locked with the bolt 236 insofar as rotation is concerned but the plate 248 may reciprocate longitudinally of the bolt 236 against a coil compression spring 252 which is disposed between the plate 248 and the inner end of the cylindrical member 234.

The circular plate 248 has a plurality of ball detents 254 mounted thereon in facing relation to the cylinder member 255 which has an inner end wall 258 fixed to the support 226 with the inner surface of the plate 258 which 9 faces the ball detents 254 having sockets or the like therein for receiving the ball detents 254 and forming means for adjustably retaining the support 226 and the chair back 230 in adjusted position in relation to each other.

Thus, with both of the supports 220 and 226 in upright position as illustrated in FIGURE 11, the angular position of the chair back 230 may be varied about the transverse axis defined by the bolts 236 by loosening and tightening the wing nuts 246 in an obvious manner. By securely tightening the wing nut 246, the chair back 230 may b rigidly fixed in position whereas with the wing nut 246 partially loosened, the chair back 230 may be pivoted with the ball detents and spring 252 serving to releasably lock the chair back 230 in various positions.

When it is desired to use the convertible chair 210 as a table, the device will be orientated in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 12. When this occurs, the pin 228 is retracted and the clamp 219 loosened so that the support member 220 may be pivoted about the vertical axis of the support member 218 to enable the chair back 230 to swing about generally the vertical axis of the member 218. The chair back 230 may be orientated substantially in a horizontal position before the support member 226 is detached or it may be orientated in a horizontal osition after it has been detached. After the support member 226 has been detached from the seat 212, it is swung to a position alongside of the edge of the chair back 230 as illustrated in FIGURE 12 so that it is retained in an outof-theway position. Then, a person using the chair may sit on the seat 212 with the chair back 230 generally disposed in a rearwardly extending relation or the chair back 230 may be swung in any position around the vertical axis defined by the support member 218 so that the person may have the table forming surface of the chair back 230 in any horizontal position desired while he is occupying the seat 212 or while another chair is drawn to the table top surface in any suitable manner. As will be appreciated, the locking clamp 219 may be employed for adjusting the vertical position of the chair back 230 to any desired adjustable height with the range of the telescopic engagement of the support member 218 with the support member 220.

When the mirror 232 on the reverse surface of the chair back 230 is to be employed, the chair back 230 is turned approximately 180 as compared with FIGURE 11 about the vertical axis of the support 218 and also about the horizontal axis defined by the bolt 236 thus orientating the mirror 232 in substantially a vertical position extending laterally outwardly from the rear edge of the seat 212 as illustrated in FIGURE 13. The vertical position of the mirror 232 may be varied by using the clamp 219 and of course the support member 226 is orientated in a position alongside of the chair back 230 so that the person occupying the seat 212 may employ the mirror to observe themselves in any manner desired. An anchoring device such as that illustrated in FIGURE 6 may be employed to lock the backrest 230 in position.

If a backrest is desired when the mirror 232 is being employed, this is provided by an arcuate backrest member 260 which has end walls 262 defining a tray structure as illustrated in FIGURES l3 and 13A. The backrest 260 is supported on an L-shaped supporting rod 264 having a headed lower end 266 on the vertical leg thereof and a headed end 268 on the end of the horizontal portion thereof. The headed lower end 266 is received in the notch 222 in the same manner as the lower end of the support 226 with the pin 228 being a serewthreaded rod as best seen in FIGURE 12. The end of the horizontal leg 268 is received in an upwardly opening bifurcated bracket 270 which is secured to the surface of the tubular support 220 so that when the mirror 232 is parallel to the back edge of the seat 212, the bifurcated bracket 270- which is attached to the tubular member 220 with an offset provides a sliding interlocking engagement with the headed end 268 of the mounting rod 264.

The horizontal portion of the mounting rod 264 extends through aligned openings in the end walls 262 with the free end of the mounting rod 264 receiving a coil compression spring 271, a retaining washer 272 and a split spring ring 274 received in a groove 276 in a mounting rod 264 with the inner end of the spring 270 frictionally engaging the end wall 262. The opposite end wall 262 is provided with a plate 276 fixed thereto as by welding and having a plurality of holes or sockets 278 for receiving a dowel pin 280 on a plate 282 secured to the mounting rod 264 in any suitable manner so that the backrest 260 may be orientated generally in the vertical position illustrated in FIGURE 13 for use as a backrest or orientated in substantially the horizontal position as illustrated in FIGURE 13A so that the back of the backrest 260 may be opened inasmuch as the back is formed by a closure lid 284 hingedly attached to one edge thereof and having a suitable latch mechanism 286 provided at the front edge thereof in the form of a spring finger and detent arrangement. The interior of the backrest when in the tray position is provided with a compartment forming divider 288 which divides the compartment into a plurality of areas for receiving various items employed for personal appearance purposes and the like. The backrest may be cushioned or constructed of metal, plastic or the like, an the spring 271 enables it to be pivoted to the desired positions and the removable pin or screw 228 enables it to be easily attached and detached in relation to the assembly illustrated in FIGURE 13.

For additional storage of articles, the chair seat 212 is provided with a pair of oppositely movable drawers 288 and 290 disposed in underlying relation to the seat 212 and movable laterally in opposite directions from the sides thereof. Each of the drawers is provided with a knob 292 and a divider 293 dividing the drawer into a plurality of compartments. In underlying supporting relation to the drawers 288 and 290 is a bottom panel 294 connected to the seat 212 by front and rear edge panels 296. The panel 294 is provided with parallel slots 298 receiving a depending projection 300 on the bottom of each drawer to guide and limit the longitudinal movement of the drawers. The underside edge of each drawer is provided with a longitudinal laterally opening channel 302 having inturned edges 304 receiving guide rollers or wheels 306 that are journalled on projecting axles 308 carried by the front and rear edge walls 296 respectively thus further guiding the movement of the drawers and enabling the drawers to be moved with little effort.

The inner walls of the doors each have a right angle member 310 secured thereto with the flange thereof disposed in overlying relation to the opposed peripheral portions of a rotatable gear 312 rotatably mounted on a retaining bolt 314 with the gear 312 being oriented intermediate the length of the drawers. The gear 312 is in meshing engagement with oppositely disposed rack gears 316 which extend throughout the length of the right angular member 310 below the horizontal flange thereof so that as one of the drawers 288 is moved in one direction, the other drawer 290 will be moved in a corresponding amount in the opposite direction so that the drawers will always be retained in the same position relative to the chair seat 212.

As illustrated in FIGURE 15, the divided 293 in the drawer 288 is vertically oriented with longitudinal and transverse partitions dividing the drawer into a plurality of small pockets or compartments. In the drawer 290, a different type of divider is employed in the form of a horizontal plate 318 having a plurality of openings 320 extending therethrough. The plate 318 is oriented between the bottom and lower end of the drawer as illustrated in FIGURE 14 and the openings 320 may be of various sizes to form sockets for containers such as liquid containers for fingernail polish and the like to enable such container to be supported in an upright stationary position.

The drawer 290 also is provided with a transparent slide type closure 322 received in corresponding grooves in the walls of the drawer as designated by numeral 324. A suitable knob 326 is provided for the closure lid 322. The closure lid or panel 322 may be only partially as long as the drawer and may be moved from end to end thereof by the knob for selectively revealing and concealing certain areas of the drawer when the drawer is in open position.

FIGURE 16 illustrates another embodiment of detcntionable connection between the support 226 and the seat 212. In this embodiment of the connection, the support element which corresponds to support element 226 is designated by numeral 328 and includes a short section 330 which may be permanently secured to the seat 212. The permanent section 330 is in the form of a short socket having a compression spring 332 therein. Slidable in the support 328 is a locking line 334 having a knob or handle 336 extending laterally through a slot 338 which is longitudinally extending and provided with a lateral extension 340 at the upper end thereof for retaining the pin or rod 334 in elevated retracted position. A similar offset lateral slot may be provided at the lower end of the groove 338 to retain the knob or handle 336 in the lowered lock position in which condition the spring 332 is compressed and the lock pin 334 bridges the juncture between the socket 330 and the tubular support 328. An alignment plate or lug 342 is secured to the tubular member 328 so that as the tubular member 328 is pivoted into alignment with the stationary section 332, the alignment plate 342 will retain these components in alignment until such time as the retracted lock pin 334 is released by rotating the knob 336 a portion of a revolution and then move the rod longitudinally to compress the spring and lock the tubular member 328 to the socket 330 after which the knob 336 is again rotated a portion of a revolution to retain these components in locked and aligned position.

The guiding and aligning plate 342 is arcuate where it engages the stationary section 330 and is provided with notches 344 in the side edges thereof for engagement with projecting pins 346 on the section 330 for further securing the sections 328 and 330 in alignment.

If desired, the back panel 230 may be provided with detachable supporting legs on the free end thereof which may be either detachable or pivotal for folding alongside the back panel for orientation in depending relation when the back panel is used as a supporting table. Also, identical convertible chair structures may be employed for aligning the back panels 230 when orientated in horizontal position to form an elongated table in the same manner as the device in FIGURES 1-10 and interconnecting means such as illustrated in FIGURE 4 may be employed if desired for this purpose. The detachable connection for the support 328 may be employed in the construction of FIGURE 2 as the detachable connection 143.

FIGURES l8-22 disclose a picnic table assembly simi lar to that illustrated in FIGURE 1 but with a canopy assembly 352 associated therewith which may be removed and converted to use as a swimming or wading pool as illustrated in FIGURE 19.

The picnic table assembly 350 includes the table structure 354 formed from convertible benches 356 corresponding with the structure illustrated in FIGURES 1l0. The auxiliary seat 358 also illustrated in FIGURES 1-10 except that the auxiliary seat 358 is provided with a supporting member at the center thereof which includes a depending tube 360 having a telescopic rod 362 disposed therein and adjusted in relation thereto by a suitable wingtype setscrew 363. The rod 362 is provided with a transverse ground engaging foot 364 at the lower end thereof for supporting the central portion of the auxiliary seat 358. The upper end of the tube 360 is provided with a transverse member 366 which is journalled to the undersurface of the auxiliary seat 358 and retained in operative depending position or inoperative position along the undersurface of the auxiliary seat 358 by a suitable lock mechanism 368 in the form of a wing nut or the like having any suitable type of structure for retaining the auxiliary support in underlying relation to the auxiliary seat 358.

The canopy 352 includes a flexible panel 370 of any suitable color and preferably of heavy duty plastic, waterproof canvas or other Waterproof material and normally overlies the table 354 to protect the articles of food on the table from rain, insects falling from trees and the like. The canopy 352 is supported by depending support rods 372 received in the sockets in the picnic table 354 with the upper ends thereof being detachably connected to a supporting framework generally designated by numeral 374.-

The framework 374 includes end members 376 and side members 37 8. These members are preferably tubular with the ends of the end member 376 being provided with a cap 380. The end of the side member 378 is provided with a clamping connection with the end member 376 which includes a partially cylindrical clamp member 382 underlying the end portion of the end member 376 and provided with a top partially cylindrical clamp member 384 overlying the member 376 and joined to the lower part of the clamp by a hinge 386. The lower portion of the clamp member 382 may be integrally formed with the side member 378 with the upper clamp member having an arcuate extension 388 which overlies a similar extension interconnecting the lower member 382 and the tubular members 378. A sliding lock sleeve 390 of cylindrical configuration is mounted on the side member 378 for sliding over the extension 388 for retaining the assembly in locked condition. The sleeve 390 may be a resilient split sleeve or provided with any suitable spring detent mechanism or the like to retain it in its locked position for retaining the end member 376 and side member 378 in assembled condition.

Attached to the end members 378 is a pair of laterally extending end rails 392 journalled on the end members 376 by a sleeve 394 and locked in position by a suitable wing-type setscrew 396. The ends of the laterally extending members 392 are interconnected by a longitudinal member 398 and a plurality of transversely extending and longitudinally extending intersecting braces are provided between the end member 376 and the longitudinal member 398.

When the framework 374 is used to support the flexible member 370 as a canopy, it is oriented with the end members 376 and the side members 378 above the longitudinal members 398. Rather than in the position illustrated in FIGURE 22 which is the position the structure is orientated when used as a wading pool or the like. For receiving the supporting legs 372, the side members 378 have tubular socket members 402 attached thereto and provided with a wing-type setscrew 404 for detachably receiving the legs 372. The legs 372 may be telescopic in order to vary the elevational position of the canopy and to provide the canopy at the optimum position.

The side member 378 is provided with a corresponding longitudinal frame member 406 and end frame members 408 which are connected to the side member 378 by sleeves 410 and a setscrew 412. Intermediate bracing 414 corresponding to the bracing 400 is also employed.

For retaining the framework components in their desired position, the end members 392 are provided with tubular sleeves 416 secured thereto and each end member 408 is provided with a similar sleeve 418. A U-shaped connecting rod 420 is inserted through the sleeves 416 and 418 when they are in adjacent position for retaining the framework components in either a vertical depending position or a vertical upstanding position in relation to the side members 376 and 378. The U-shaped members 420 may have a long leg which has a laterally offset lower end 422 to prevent complete disengagement of the U- shaped member from one of the sleeves such as sleeve 416 to prevent loss thereof.

When hte canopy 352 is removed from the supporting leg 372, it may be placed flat down on a supporting surface with the framework laid out flat and the flexible canopy 370 laid out flat on top thereof. Then the longitudinal members 398 and 406 are lifted upwardly into upstanding position and the fastener rods 420 are brought into play. The fastener rod 420 engaged with the sleeve 418 thus locking the frame in the position of FIGURE 19. The excess material at the corners of the canopy may be secured as an overlapping gusset by a suitable nap fastener assembly 424, and suitable tie straps may be provided as an integral part of the canopy to retain it in position on the end members 376 and 378 and also alongside of the longitudinal members 398 and 406 with such tie straps being secured in position by suitable stitching or other bonding means.

The inversion of the framework may be accomplished by disconnecting the ends of the side members from the end members with the fasteners 420 disconnected and orientating the frame components by turning each component 180 or the longitudinal members may be pivoted in relation to the side and end members by loosening the setscrews 396 and 412 with of course the inner ends of the transverse bracing having sleeves also rotatably journalled on the respective end members and side members 376 and 378.

In the condition illustrated in FIGURE 18, the panel of waterproof material is oriented exteriorly of the framework 378 and tied thereto in any suitable manner such as by tie straps, span-type straps or the like. When the canopy and framework is removed, the components of the framework which normally are in depending relation are pivoted approximately 180 into upstanding relation and the side walls of the flexible material which normally depended from the main panel thereof are then orientated in upstanding position with the dimensions of the central panel and edge portions being variable depending upon the dimensions of the framework to enable water to be placed in the flexible material with the framework forming an enclosure therefore for retaining the flexible waterproof material in a position to form a wading pool or shallow swimming pool for children especially useful in the backyard or the like.

With the framework on the outside when in condition for use as wading pool, the telescopic legs may be either removed or may be used to facilitate anchoring of the framework so that the wading pool cannot be shifted. Normally, the wading pool when it is used will be positioned on a relatively smooth fiat surface to prevent damage to the flexible member. In addition, when the flexible member is used as a canopy, transversely or longitudinally extending bows may be provided between the framework components to provide a convex curvature to the upper surface of the flexible waterproof inasmuch as this will prevent sagging of the central portion of the flexible waterproof member thereby preventing any possibility of collection of water, insects, leaves or other material in the center of thet canopy when disposed in overlying relation to the picnic table. Theflexible waterproof material may be constructed of heavy-duty flexible plastic having suitable decorative materials incorporated therein to enhance the over-all appearance of the picnic table when used as a canopy and also to provide a relatively attractive wading or swimming pool when used as a pool. The structure of the device is such that it may be easily converted from one use to another and is sufiiciently lightweight in construction to enable a person of average physical ability to handle the device effectively for converting it from use as a canopy for a picnic table to a swimming or wading pool.

FIGURE 23 illustrates the details of another type of connection which may be used at 143 in FIGURE 2 and includes a short tube 51 attached to support 38 with a half sleeve 53 attached rigid therewith and an opposed projecting pin 55 and hole 57. The long tube 50" has a lock rod 59 slidable therein and a half sleeve 61 fixed thereto and an opposed pin 63 and hole 65 is provided for interengagement with hole 57 and pin 55. The tube 50 has a slot 67 therein which has offset areas 69 therein for receiving a lock handle 71 to enable locking of the connection or disconnection thereof in an obvious manner. Other types of detachable connections may be employed such as a telescopic sleeve slidable on the upper tubular member and telescopic over a lower tubular member and releasably locked thereto by a bayonet slot and pin arrangement.

The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readliy occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described.

What is claimed as new is as follows:

1. An article of convertible furniture comprising a seat assembly, a backrest extending upwardly from the seat assembly, and means supporting the backrest from the seat assembly for pivotal movement of the backrest about substantially a horizontal axis elevated above the seat assembly, and swinging movement of the backrest about substantially a vertical axis adjacent one side edge of the backrest to enable the backrest to be orientated in a horizontal position to form a table movable in a substantially horizontal plane into different positions relative to the seat assembly, a canopy mounted in overlying relation to the backrest when in horizontal table forming position, said canopy being detachably supported from the backrest and including a flexible waterproof panel to protect articles on the table from rain, leaves, insects and the like.

2. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said canopy also includes a framework including a peripheral rail and a depending framework attached thereto, said depending framework being pivotal from a depending position to an upstanding position, said waterproof flexible panel being disposed above the framework when orientated above the table surface and being pivotal to an upright position when resting on a supporting ground surface whereby the waterproof panel may be employed as a wading pool.

3. An article of convertible furniture comprising a seat assembly, a backrest extending upwardly from the seat assembly, and means supporting the backrest from the seat assembly for pivotal movement of the backrest about substantially a horizontal axis elevated above the seat assembly, and swinging movement of the backrest about substantially a vertical axis adjacent one side edge of the backrest to enable the backrest to be orientated in a horizontal position to form a table movable in a substantially horizontal plane into different positions relative to the seat assembly, said seat assembly and backrest being elongated to form a bench structure, means accessible from the front of the bench structure for retaining the backrest in upwardly inclined position at the rear of the seat assembly, said backrest including means on at least a portion of the peripheral edge thereof for engagement with similar means on an identical bench structure for enabling a relatively long table to be provided by the backrest when positioned in a horizontal position, said seat assembly including an extensible supporting structure at each end thereof forming a horizontal supporting surface for receiving one end of an auxiliary seat extending between and supported on the extended supports on a pair of bench structures forming a picnic table.

4. The structure as defined in claim 3 wherein said seat assembly includes a plurality of slats, said extensible support including a pair of rails movably disposed in the grooves formed between the slats, a transverse connecting member connecting the inner ends of the rails and underlying the slats, a connector member interconnecting the outer ends of the slats with the rails extending thereover 15 thereby precluding downward movement of the rails in relation to the slats and limiting the outward movement thereof, said rails being interconnected by an outer end member which retains the auxiliary seat thereon in extended position and lies flush against the ends of the slats of the seat assembly when in retracted position.

5. The structure as defined in claim 4 wherein the member interconnecting the outer ends of the rails includes a pivotal prop attached centrally thereto, said prop being telescopic and pivotal from a downwardly inclined proping position to a horizontally disposed position for orientation between a pair of adjacent slats.

6. The structure as defined in claim 5 wherein said slats are supported by an inverted U-shaped support assembly at each end thereof including depending parallel supporting legs, a transverse member interconnecting said legs, said transverse member having an aperture therein for receiving the lower end of the prop when in proping position for forming a rigid support for the outer end of the rails.

7. The structure as defined in claim 6 wherein the lower ends of the tubular legs are provided with threaded members with each of the threaded members having a foot on the lower end thereof for enabling the seat assembly to be levelled, and a lock nut on the threaded end for locking the adjustable foot in adjusted position.

8. An article of convertible furniture comprising a seat assembly, a backrest extending upwardly from the seat assembly, and means supporting the backrest from the seat assembly for pivotal movement of the backrest about substantially a horizontal axis elevated above the seat assembly, and swinging movement of the backrest about substantially a vertical axis adjacent one side edge of the backrest to enable the backrest to be orientated in a horizontal position to form a table movable in a substantially horizontal plane into different positions relative to the seat assembly, said seat assembly and backrest being elongated to form a bench structure, means accessible from the front of the bench structure for retaining the backrest in upwardly inclined position at the rear of the seat assembly, said backrest including means on at least a portion of the peripheral edge thereof for engagement with similar means on an identical bench structure for enabling a relatively long table to be provided by the backrest when positioned in a horizontal position, said means supporting the backrest including a pair of upwardly extending support members, one of said support members being detachable from the seat assembly, the other of the support members being telescopically adjustable for varying the height of the backrest and including telescopic members with one of the telescopic members being rotatable in relation to the other to enable the backrest to swivel about substantially a vertical axis.

9. The structure as defined in claim 8 wherein the upper end of each of said support members includes a generally transverse cylindrical sleeve, a pivot bolt attached to each edge of the backrest received in the respective cylindrical sleeve and manually operated means locking the bolt to the cylindrical sleeve.

10. The structure as defined in claim.9 wherein said means locking the bolt to the cylindrical sleeve includes an inner sleeve rigid with the bolt, said inner sleeve and cylindrical sleeve having selectively aligned apertures therein, a lock pin movable into the aligned apertures, and means retaining the lock pin in retracted position for enabling pivotal movement of the backrest about an axis defined by the pivot bolts.

11. The structure as defined in claim 10 wherein the pivot bolt at the upper end of said other support member includes a U-shaped bracket fixedly attached thereto and including laterally extending end lugs, a tubular member attached to the backrest and received between the lugs, an elongated bolt extending through the lugs and the tubular member for securing the tubular member in relation to the lugs.

12. The structure as defined in claim 11 wherein said elongated bolt is polygonal and rigid with the lugs, a pair of circular disks within the tubular member, spring means between the disks urging the disks outwardly, said disk being non-rotatively mounted on the bolt, and spring detent members on each of the disks, said tubular member having end walls with inwardly facing recesses therein for receiving the detents for releasably retaining the tubular member and backrest attached thereto in adjusted position about an axis defined by the elongated bolt.

13. An article of convertible furniture comprising a seat assembly, a backrest extending upwardly from the seat assembly, and means supporting the backrest from the seat assembly for pivotal movement of the backrest about substantially a horizontal axis elevated above the seat assembly, and swinging movement of the backrest about substantially a vertical axis adjacent one side edge of the backrest to enable the backrest to be orientated in a horizontal position to form a table movable in a substantially horizontal plane into different positions relative to the seat assembly, said seat assembly and backrest being elongated to form a bench structure, means accessible from the front of the bench structure for retaining the backrest in upwardly inclined position at the rear of the seat assembly, said backrest including means on at least a portion of the peripheral edge thereof for engagement with similar means on an identical bench structure for enabling a relatively long table to be provided by the backrest when positioned in a horizontal position, an auxiliary seat as sembly extending between the bench structures, and a supporting leg for the auxiliary seat assembly pivotally supported from the center thereof for supporting the center of the auxiliary seat assembly to prevent tipping over of the picnic table.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,792,737 2/ 1931 Greenstreet 297-124 2,481,935 9/1949 Larson 297--124 XR 2,561,703 7/1951 Koenig 297-124 XR 2,882,957 4/1959 Anderson 297124 2,897,876 8/ 1959 Austin 297124 XR 2,936,204 5/ 1960 Sofi 108-34 2,959,209 11/1960 Larkin 297-124 3,006,705 11/1961 Williams et al 108-14 BOBBY R. GAY, Primary Examiner.

G. O. FINCH, Assistant Examiner.

US. Cl. X.R. 297124

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Classifications
U.S. Classification108/11, 297/124
International ClassificationA47B3/14, A47B85/00, A47B3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47B3/14, A47B85/00
European ClassificationA47B3/14, A47B85/00