US 3451362 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 24, 1969 E. J. osTLlNG ETAL 3,451,362
. FURNITURE CONSTRUCTION HAVING YIELDABLE RECESSED FASTENING MEANS Filed sept. 2o, 1957 United States Patent O U.S. Cl. S-60 16 4Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This disclosure relates to a furniture construction containing a back wall, two side walls, and at least one shelf. The walls and shelf or shelves are attached through slotted clips which are recessed in the ends of the back nwall and the shelves, and through double head screw members which are attached to the side walls and t into the slotted clips.
The clips are so shaped and positioned in the recessed portion of the members that as the screw heads slide in the slots, the joints are wedged into tight contact. The clips preferably have flexible arms which f-orm the slot. The structure is so assembled with or Without the use of an expanding tool for the walls to produce a structure which has no visible indication of fastening means.
This invention relates to furniture construction. In one of its aspects it relates to a novel furniture construction in which a back wall, two side walls, and at least one lshelf between the side walls, are assembled with recessed yieldable fastening means for the members comprising slotted clips in one of each of the joining members and screw members attached to a juxtaposed member and positioned in said slotted clips, whereby the structure has no external means of attaching the members t0- gether.
In the construction of modular or unit wall hanging members, such as booths, for example, it is desirable to assemble the structure as simply as possible with a minimum of operations. It is also desirable -to conceal the means of construction to make the unit more aesthetically pleasing and also to protect the unit from unauthorized disassembly. These features are especially important with telephone booths, which are, in many instances, in unprotected areas where vandalism and pilfering are cornmon. Generally, telephone booths must be easily constructable and have strong construction, whereby the means for the construction is hidden from ordinary view.
I have now discovered a furniture construction for a modular telephone booth, and the like, containing the back wall, two side walls, and at least one shelf, the walls and shelf being so constructed that the fastening means employed are yieldable and are not visible. The construction is strong, yet the connections are flexible to facilitate rapid construction.
By various aspects of this invention, one or more of the following -or other objects can be obtained.
It is an object -of this invention to provide a modular wall unit for 4telephone booths and the like.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a booth construction which is simple, rapid, and yet strong.
It is a further object of this invention to privide an improved booth structure, wherein the means for joining the members are hidden from view when the construction is complete.
It is yet another object of this invention to provide a tightly secured joint structure which is strong and exible to facilitate construction of furniture units.
It is still another object of this invention to provide a modular booth unit which is easily and quickly constructed by one person with simple tools.
Other aspects, objects, and the several advantages of this invention are apparent to one skilled in the art from a s-tudy of this disclosure, the drawings, and the appended claims.
According to the invention, there is provided a furniture construction comprising a back wall, side walls, and at least one `shelf between the side walls, and fastening means between the side walls, and the: back wall and shelf, the fastening means being recessed in lthe joints and comprising slotted clips in one member and screw members attached to an adjoining member and positioned in the `slotted clips, whereby the structure has no visible means of attaching the members together.
Preferably, the back wall and lthe shelves are positioned between the two side walls. The clips are of eX- ble construction and preferably recessed in the ends of the shelf and back wall to facilitate assembly and disassembly of the unit.
The invention will now be described. with reference to the accompanying drawings in which: t i FIG. 1 is an exploded view of the embodiment of an inverrtlon;
FIG. 2 is a perspective close-up view of a screw member employed in the construction fastening means;
FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the slotted clip members employed in the construction of the embodiment shown in FIG. l;
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of a joint structure employing the clip of FIG. 3 and the screw member of FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a front elevational view of the unit as it is being constructed showing the expanding tool and the method of attaching the back wall to the: side walls;
FIG. 6 is a `sectional view taken along lines VI-VI of FIG. 3;
FIG. 7 is a partial end View of the back wall of FIG. l, showing a recessed portion with a clip in the recess; and
FIG. 8 is an end view of the means employed for attaching the unit shown in FIG. 1 to the wall.
Referring now to the drawings, there is provided a modular wall construction comprising a back wall 2, side walls 10 and 12, and shelf members 16 and 18. The back wall has recessed portions 4 and 6 in the end thereof, and a longitudinal slot 8 extending horizontally across the back surface thereof. When constructed, the recessed portions 4 and 6 are aligned with double headed screw members 14 (shown more fully inFIG. 2) and contain clips such as those shown in 22 which engage the screw members shown in FIG. 2.. Each wall member has at least six screw members 14: two for the back wall, and two for each shelf member. Each of the shelves has at least two recessed portions like 4 containing clips like 22 for engaging the screw members 14.
The unit is attached to the `wall through a sliding rail member 20 which is bolted to the wall and through a bar 22a which is slidably engaged by rail 20u and is fastened in slot 8 through bolts 24 which extend from the front surface of back wall 2 through holes 26. As seen in FIG. 8, the bolts 24 extend through bar 22a and draw the bar against the flanges of the rail 20a to prevent movement of bar 22a within rail member 20a after the desired location has been established.
The sore-w members used in the embodiment shown in FIG. l are preferably of like construction to those which are shown in FIG. 2. The screw member 14 has head 40 and head 42 with a connecting shaft 44. Head 40 is provided with a suitable screwdriver engaging aperture 46 in order to fasten the screw member -14 in 3 place through threads 48 into the faces of side walls and 12.
'The clip disposed in the recessed portions of the end walls and the recessed portions of the shelves, is shown in FIG. 3. The clip 22 contains a fastening surface 32 having holes 34 and 36 for engaging the clips into the bottom of recessed slots through screw members. The clip has a pair of cantilevered raised arms 24 and 26 which preferably extend upwardly at an angle to the plane of engaging portion 32. As can be seen in FIG. 6, the inner portion of the slot between arms 24 and 26 contain tapered surfaces 28 and 30 for wedging between the heads of screw member 14 and for drawing the screw further into the recess.
As can be seen in FIG. 4, as the screw member 14 is forced to the right and into the slot between arms 24 and 26, the tapered surfaces of 28 and 30 and the pitch of the arms 24 and 26 (with respect to the plane of the end surface) pull screw member 14 downwardly with respect to the clip, and thereby force the screw containing member, such as 10, against the recess and clip containing members, such as 16. As can be seen in FIG. 4, screws 51 and 52 fasten the clip retaining surface to the bottom of recess 4. As is also obvious from FIG. 4, arms 24 and 26 extend upwardly at an angle to the plane containing the outer surface of member 10 and member 16. Thus, the sliding of the screw member 14 into the slot in clip 22 draws member 10 tightly against member 16. Clip 22 holds the members together with a strong spring tension, permitting expansion and contraction of the joint. In a preferred embodiment, the ends of arms 24 and 26 are forced against the oute-r surface of member 10. The degree of tension between members 10 and 16 is determined by the depth of recess 4. In this manner, the structure can be made as permanent as desired. For example, if the depth of recess 4 is increased to about .025 inch the two walls will be virtually inseparable without extreme force or permanent damage.
One of the slots 6 in each end of back wall 2 contains a notch 20 which extends onto the planar surface of wall 2. The slot is large enough to permit a protruding screw member 14 on either side wall 10 or 12 to pass through the notch 20 while the ends of the back wall are ilat against the side walls 10 and 12.
The booth is simple in construction. The end wall, side walls and shelves can be supplied from the manufacturer with -recessed portions cut, clips in the recessed portion and screws placed on the side walls as shown in FIG. 2. The back wall can also be provided with the horizontal `groove 8.
In assembling the booth structure, rail member 20 is -rst attached to the wall. Bar member 22a is then attached to rail member 20a. The back wall 2 is then attached to the supporting wall by positioning the rail in the slot 8 and attaching bolts 24 as shown in FIG. 8. The slot 8 is longer than rail member 20a to permit lateral adjustment after the unit is completed. The side walls 10 and 12 are then attached to shelves 16 and 18 by attaching the shelves first to one side wall member, for example 12, and then sliding the other wall member 10 in place. The side walls are then rigidly attached to the shelf members through the interlocking screws and clips. The shelves and side `walls are then lifted and the unit is positioned so that the bottom screw members I14 on side walls 10 and 12 pass through notches 20 on either side of back wall member 2 into recesses 6. At this point, the back wall member 2 will be between the side walls 10 and 12 with screw members from side walls 10` and 12 positioned within the slots 6 in the ends of the back wall 2. This position will be similar to that shown in FIG. 5. It can be seen that the top screw members 14 in the side walls 10 and 12 will be positioned above the top of back wall 2. In order to position these top screw members 14 into slots 4 in the top portion 0f back wall 2, it is necessary to spread apart the side walls 10 and 12. This spreading is conveniently done by an expanding tool comprising bar members 54 and 56 attached through a hinge at 58. The operation of this tool is indicated by phantom lines. Once the walls are spread apart as shown in FIG. 5, the side walls can be moved downwardly with respect to back wall 2, thereby positioning the upper screw members 14 adjacent slots 4 in the back wall. The expanding member is then removed and the side walls 10 and 12 come closed against the end of back wall `2. Further movement downwardly of the side walls with respect to the back wall 2, will cause upper and lower screw members 14 to engage the clips in recesses 4 and 6 to produce a locking joint such as that shown in FIG. 4. A telephone can then be attached to the back wall in such a way as to cover bolts 24. The telephone is preferably positioned just above the top shelf to prevent the sides 'from being lifted upwardly.
As is obvious from the foregoing description, the end of slot 8 will be hidden from view by the side walls 10 and 12. Thus, the unit cannot be slid off the wall, due to the fact that the end walls 10 and 12 will abut against the edges of the rails 20. Further, when a bank of booths are attached to the wall, the clearance between the ends of the rail 20a and the slot 8 permits the booth to be positioned directly against an adjacent booth after assembly despite the `fact that a small clearance is required to assemble each booth.
The notch 20 in the back wall is so placed that when the screw members 14 engage the fastening clips 22, the notch will be behind shelf 16.
The shape of the clips is important in constructing the unit. The clips must be somewhat flexible or yieldable in order to allow the side walls 10 and 12 to expand outwardly to allow the back wall to be connected to the side walls. The above described spreading of the side walls is due at least in part to the flexible or yieldable nature of the clip structures.
As can be seen from the foregoing disclosure, none of the means for constructing the joints are visible to the eye after the unit has been constructed. Furthermore, the disassembly of the unit will not be possible when a telephone is mounted slightly above the top shelf. For example, in order to disassemble the unit, the side walls 10 and 12 must be raised relative to the back. This raising will not be possible since the top shelf will abut against the telephone.
Whereas the invention has been described with reference to two shelves positioned at the bottom portion of the booth, it is obvious that other constructions, such as one or more shelves at the top of the booth, or one or more shelves at the bottom of the booth can be provided within the scope of the invention. Also, it is within the scope of the invention to provide a booth with only one shelf.
Whereas the invention has been described with relation to a booth which can be attached to a permanent wall, it is within the scope of the invention to provide a booth which can be attached to a supporting stand which in turn is attached to the floor. In such a construction, the side walls of the booth can be attached to supporting members which in turn are attached to supporting legs. In this construction, the wall attaching means need not be provided.
Reasonable variation and modification are possible within the scope of the foregoing disclosure, drawings without departing from the spirit of the invention.
1. In a furniture construction comprising two side wall members, a back wall member between said side wall members, and at least one shelf member between side walls, the improvement which comprises yieldable recessed fastening means between said shelf member and said side walls and recessed fastening means between said back wall and said side walls, said yieldable fastening means between said shelf member and said side wall being yieldable so as to permit spreading of said side walls away from said shelf member to permit insertion of said back wall and engagement of said recessed fastening means between said back walls and said side walls whereby a booth can be constructed without a visible means of securing together said back wall member, said side wall members, and said shelf member.
2. A furniture construction according to claim 1 wherein said yieldable recessed fastening means comprises slotted yieldable clips in one member and screw members attached to adjoining members positioned in said slotted clips.
3. A furniture construction according to claim 2, wherein said slotted clips are open-ended slotted clips.
4. A furniture construction according to claim 2, wherein at least a portion of said slotted clips are attached in recessed portions of one member and spaced beneath the surface of said member.
5. A furniture construction according to claim 1 wherein said recessed fastening meansbetween said back wall and said side walls comprise recessed areas formed in the side edges of said back wall, slotted clips fixed in said recessed areas of said back wall side edges, and screw members fixed to face portions of said side walls, said screw members having heads projecting `out of said face portions and engageable with said slotted clips fixed in said recessed areas of said back wall side edges.
6. A furniture construction according to claim 1 wherein there are two parallel, spaced shelf members between said side wall members, each of Said shelf members being fixed to said side wall members by yieldable, recessed fastening means.
7. A furniture construction according to claim 5, wherein each side edge portion of said back wall adjacent said side walls contains at least two recessed portions containing said clips, one of said recessed portions being in the vicinity of a shelf attached to said side walls and containing a notch in the front face of said back wall, whereby said one of said screw members protruding from said side wall can enter said one recessed portion of said side wall through said notch, and wherein said notch is aligned be* hind said shelf when said screw member is positioned within said clip in said one recessed portion.
8. A furniture construction according to claim 7, wherein another of said recessed portions in said end of said back wall is spaced from said shelf.
9. A furniture construction according to claim 8, wherein there are two shelf members, each shelf member containing at least two recessed portions containing openended clips within each end thereof, and said side walls contain said screw members positioned so as to be insertable into said clips to firmly hold said shelves in place.
10. A furniture construction according to claim 1, wherein there is further provided a groove extending across the back portion of said back wall, a rail member is positioned in said groove, a bar member slidably engaged by said rail member and attached to said back wall,
said rail member is attached to a supporting structure so that said groove is not visible when said furniture is assembled and attached to said supporting structure.
11. A furniture construction according to claim 10 wherein said bar member is attached to said back wall through at least one screw which draws said rail member tightly against said back wall to hold said rail member in fixed relation to said bar member.
12. A furniture construction according to clai-m 9 wherein said rail member is laterally slidalble within said groove, said groove is longer in length than said rail member so that said furniture is laterally adjustable after the same has been constructed.
13. A joint structure for furniture and the like comprising a rst wall member; a second wall member abutting said first wall member and having a recessed portion opening into the joint between said first and second wall mem-bers, an open-ended, slotted flexible clip positioned within said recessed portion and attached to one of said first and second wall members, a screw member having a head engageable with said clip and positioned within said clip, said screw member being attached to the other of said first and second Wall members so as to pull said first and second wall members together.
14. A joint structure according to claim 13 wherein said clip is bifurcated and positioned at an angle to the plane Vbetween said first and Second joint structure such that as said screw member is slid into said clip, said first wall member is positioned tightly against said second wall member.
15. A joint structure according to claim 13 wherein said clip is attached to the bottom of said recessed portion, said screw member is attached to first wall member, said clip is bifurcated and `spaced from the surface of said second member.
16. A joint structure according to claim 15 wherein said clip is so-shaped and positioned that when said screw member is positioned in the innermost portion of said clip, the free ends of said clip will abut against the outer surface of said first Wall member.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,427,012 9/1947 Lum 211-90 X 2,438,051 3/1948 Hennessey 24S-239 X 3,190,243 `6/1955 Pira 10S-152 3,265,344 `8/1966 Ornstein 108-152 X 3,295,474 1/1967 Ornstein 108--152 3,362,610 1/1968 Van Dyke 211-135 X 3,333,555 8/1967 Kapnek 10S-152 3,381,636 5/1968 Saiberlich 10S- 152 JAMES T. MCCALL, Primary Examiner.
U.S. Cl. X.R.