US 3429611 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 25, 1969 A. L. VAN RYN 3,429,611
FOLDING CHAIR Filed April 2, 1968 Sheet of 2 INVENTOR Arthur L. VcmRyn BY 13m, Jdtbm lalfow,
\ ATTORNEYS Feb. 25. 1969 L, VAN RYN I 3,429,611
FOLDING CHAIR Filed April 2, 1968 Sheet 2 of 2 I N VENTOR 30 2| BY Z xlltmv, Fallow,
Arthur L. VonRyn 23 FIG. 14 W9 y ATTORNEYS United States Patent 9 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A folding chair is provided with linkage which automatically lowers the seat as the chair is folded so that the seat rests below the back panel in a compact folded unit. A bumper piece is provided which may be used as a right or lefthand piece interlocked with the seat pan.
Background and summary A standard type of folding chair folds with the padded seat in front of the back panel forming a bulky folded unit usually of about seven inches or more in thickness. Such a chair, even when folded, is cumbersome to carry or store. Further, in the folding of chairs of this type employing cross rods that bear against the seat bottom or pan, it is found that such contact produces noise, scraping of the paint, etc.
I have discovered that without sacrificing the back panel in depth and while maintaining the seat for occupancy at the desired level, it is possible to produce an extremely compact folded unit with a thickness less than half that heretofore obtained by providing link means or mechanism by which the seat during the folding operation is automatically lowered into the open space below the back panel. Further, the bottom of the pan may be protected against contact with the cross rod by the use of a grooved bumper plate which may be interlocked with a perforated seat pan and reversed for use on either side of the seat pan.
Drawings In the accompanying drawings, FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a folding chair in open position for occupancy; FIG. 2, a view similar to FIG. 1 but showing the seat raised independently of the other structure; FIG. 3, a perspective view of the chair in folded position, showing the seat lowered into the space below the back panel; FIG. 4, a perspective view of a grooved bumper plate in position for fitting on the right side of a seat pan; FIG. 5, a view similar to FIG. 4 but showing the plate reversed for use in the lefthand side of the seat pan; FIG. 6, a vertical sectional view of the bumper in position between the seat pan and the inner seat frame, which is upholstered, the section being taken as indicated at line 66 of FIG. 7; :a broken front view of the seat pan with the seat raised as shown in FIG. 3 and with the bumper in the righthand position; FIG. 8, a view similar to FIG. 7 but showing the bumper plate in the lefthand position; FIG. 9, a broken side view in elevation on an enlarged scale showing the folding mechanism at one side of the chair; FIG. 10, a view similar to FIG. 9 but showing the seat independently raised, as illustrated in FIG. 2, while the folding mechanism remains stationary; FIG. 11, a view similar to FIG. 9 but showing the parts in folded position; FIG. 12, a broken front view in elevation of the structure shown in FIG. 11; FIG. 13, an exploded view of the parts of the folding mechanism including a broken view of the seat pan and seat frame with the upholstered material removed, the parts being shown in spaced-apart relation; and FIG. 14, a broken sectional plan view, the section being taken as indicated at line 14--14 of FIG. 9.
Detailed description For the comfort of the occupant of a folded chair, it is necessary to provide a back rest panel of substantial depth while at the same time the cushion of the seat is supported at a raised level. I have discovered that linkage may be provided which lowers the cushion seat during the operation of folding so that it fits well within the space below the back rest, and a very compact folded structure is formed, as illustrated best in FIG. 11.
Taking up the details of the structure shown in the drawings, the chair 20 has a pair of front legs 21 which extend upwardly beyond the seat to form :a back frame carrying a back panel 22. A pair of back legs 23 are pivotally connected to the front legs 21, and the legs support a seat 24 through a folding mechanism 25 which includes side arms 26 with a connecting cross rod 27, lever 28, and link 29.
The front leg 21 on each side has a flattened recessed portion 30 to allow space for the folding mechanism and to permit a better attachment of the side arm. The side arm has a bumper 31 at the rear for rest against the bottom of the rear stretcher rod 32. Each side arm has a boss 33 for the attachment of the lever 28 by means of a rivet 34, and it carries a second boss 35 for the attachment of the arm to the front leg by means of a rivet 36. Each side arm 26 has a longitudinal slot 37 through which the shoulder bolt 38 extends for tying the side arm to the link 29 and the seat '24, bolt 38 being threaded into the clinch nut or weld nut 39 attached to the seat frame 40. The bolt 38 holds the seat pan 41 to the seat frame by extending through the hole 42, as shown best in FIG. 13.
If desired, a hole 43 at the cross rod 27 may be provided. to allow the side arm mechanism to be attached to the side arm mechanism of an adjacent chair by the insertion of short rods into the holes. As shown best in FIG. 13, washers 37a are placed on the sides of the slot 37 in each side arm 26.
The lever 28 is attached to the rear leg 23 by a rivet 44 and to the side arm 26 by a rivet 34 and to the link 29 by a rivet 45. The link 29 connects the lever 28 with the shoulder bolt 38 and thereby to the seat 24.
As the chair is folded, the rear leg 23 forces the long shank portion 28a of lever 28 upward so that the lever pivots on the rivet 34 and with the result that the short shank portion 28b is forced downward pulling the link 29 down with it. This moves the seat 24 downwardly as the shoulder bolt 38 slides :along the slot 37 of the side arm 26, the side arm being raised into the vertical position, as shown in FIG. 11, by the folding of the chair. Conversely, as the chair is opened, the rear leg forces the long shank of the lever 28 downwardly and the short shank portion 28b upwardly, thus raising the link :and forcing the seat forward by moving the shoulder bolt 38 along the slot.
When in the folded position, the lever and link are folded together, as seen in FIG. 11, but when in the opened position the lever and link are stretched out in a straight generally horizontal line. The shoulder bolt constitutes a slidable pivot pin on which the seat moves and the slot provides a slideway for the pivot pin. It will be understood that any means for supporting the pivot pin so that it may slide during the folding operation to permit lowering of the seat may be employed.
The bumper plate 46 may be formed of plastic, rubber, composition material, or of any suitable material which will reduce noise, protect the structure against scratching or wear, etc. I prefer to employ a plastic bumper plate having two faces 46a and 46b so that it can be used as a righthand bumper, as shown in FIG. 7, or a lefthand bumper, as shown in FIG. 8. The bumper is preferably grooved, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, so that it will fit into a series of perforations 47 in the seat pan 41 and rest between the seat pan and the upholstered seat frame 40 without the need for further attachment by means of screws, rivets, adhesive, etc.
The adjacent edges of the perforations 48 and 49 are set at an angle so that the cross rod 27 will always contact the surface of the bumper as the rod slides from its location 460 in the open position of the chair, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 9, to its new location 46d in the closed position of the chair, as shown in FIGS. 3 and 11. As shown in FIG. 3, the bumper plates extend generally longitudinally of the seat pan.
While in the foregoing specification I have set forth a description of the structure in considerable detail for the purpose of illustrating an embodiment of the invention, it will 'be understood that such details may be varied widely by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of my invention.
1. 'In a folding chair, a pair of front legs having an extension providing a chair back frame, a back panel carried by the upper portion of said back frame, a pair of rear legs pivotally connected to said front legs, a side arm pivotally mounted on each of said front legs, a seat mounted on a pivot pin slidably carried by said side arms, and link means connected to said rear legs and said pivotally-mounted pivot pin for moving said pivot pin and the seat carried thereby downwardly as said rear legs are folded toward said front legs to lower said seat below said back panel.
2. The structure of claim 1 in which the side arm is provided with a longitudinal slot in which said pivot pin is mounted.
3. The structure of claim 1 in which an actuating lever is pivotally connected at one end to a rear leg and at an intermediate point to said arm and has an angularlyextending portion connected by a link to said slidablymounted pivot pin.
4. The structure of claim 1 in which said side arms are connected by a cross rod extending along the bottom of said seat.
5. The structure of claim 4 in which the bottom of said seat is provided with a bumper plate engaging said cross rod as it moves over said seat bottom.
6. The structure of claim 5 in which said seat bottom is provided with a pan slotted to receive said bumper plate on the right and lefthand side of the bottom and said plate is grooved and is reversible so as to interlock with said pan on either side thereof.
7. In a folding seat provided with a seat pan having slots therein and with a cross rod movable across the bottom of the pan in the folding and unfolding of a chair, a bumper plate having inclined grooves therein and adapted to interlock with an apertured pan having portions received within said grooves, said bumper having portions extending beyond said pan and longitudinally of the pan for engagement with said cross rod.
8. The structure of claim 7 on which each side of said pan is slotted and each bumper plate has inclined and aligned grooves on opposite sides thereof whereby said bumper plate may be reversed to fit either side of said pan.
9. In a folding chair, a pair of front legs having an upper extension providing a chair back frame, a back panel carried by the upper portion of said back frame, a pair of rear legs pivotally connected to said front legs, side arms pivotally mounted on said front legs and connected at one end thereof by a cross rod, said side arms each having a longitudinal slot therein, a seat mounted on pivot pins slidably mounted in the slots of said side arms, and lever and link means connected to said rear legs and said pivotally-mounted pivot pins for moving said pivot pins downwardly as said rear legs are folded toward said front legs to lower said seat below said back panel.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,211,289 8/1940 Orton 29758 2,654,419 10/ 1953 Nordmark 29758 2,729,275 1/ 1956 Morgan et al. 297-58 2,843,187 7/1958 Manne et al 297-58 DONALD A. GRIFFIN, Primary Examiner.