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Publication numberUS3469587 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 30, 1969
Filing dateDec 22, 1967
Priority dateDec 22, 1967
Publication numberUS 3469587 A, US 3469587A, US-A-3469587, US3469587 A, US3469587A
InventorsDavid Folkes
Original AssigneeFoldway Covers Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible weatherproof cover for swimming pools
US 3469587 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

D. FOLKES Sept. 30, 1969 COLLAPSIBLE WEATHERPROOF COVER FOR SWIMMING POOLS Filed Dec. 22, 1967 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG .3.

' lN/EHTOR 041 40 [Oz/ ATTORNEY Sept. 30, 1969 o. FOLKES 3,469,587

COLLAPSIBLE WEATHERPROOF COVER FOR SWIMMING POOLS Filed Dec. 22, 1967 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 AI IOHNLY Sepfi. 30, 1969 D. FOLKES 3,469,587

COLLAPSIBLE WEATHERPROOF COVER FOR SWIMMING POOLS Filed Dec. 22, 1967 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTOR DAVID FOLKES 68015874 Forfafm ATTORNEY 3,469,587 CGLLAPSELE WEATHERPROOF COVER FOR SWEMMING POOLS David Foihes, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, assignor to Foldway Covers Limited Continuation-impart of application Ser. No. 503,690,

Get. 23, 1965. This application Dec. 22, 1967, Ser.

Int. Q1. A455 1/00; E041) 1/347 U.S. (Ii. 135-1 10 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The invention relates to a collapsible temporary structure for use as a cover for swimming pools and the like and is a continuation-in-part of my co-pending application Ser. No. 503,690 filed Oct. 23, 1965, to be issued on Jan. 2, 1968 as US. Letters Patent No. 3,361,144, entitled Collapsible Weatherproof Cover for Swimming Pools.

The sales of private swimming pool installations, particularly in temperate climates are often restricted by the variations in the weather which tend to limit the use of an outdoor pool to two to three months of the year. The use period can sometimes be extended by erecting wind barriers around the pool but notwithstanding this, the fact that the pool is open to the air results in a substantial heat loss every night and as a result the water is often at an uncomfortably low temperature. However, the cost of erecting a permanent covering or canopy over a. pool is very great, and in addition, it substantially decreases the appeal of the pool in the warmer summer months since families will usually wish to swim in the pool and to sun bathe around the edge and this will be impossible where there is a permanent covering. In some cases, removable canopies or coverings have been provided for swimming pools usually being of such a size and complex structure that their cost was even greater than that of a permanent structure.

Accordingly, it is an objective of the present invention to rovide a collapsible cover for swimming pools and the like which is simple and economical to build and which is so constructed as to be readily assembled on the site and to be collapsible and erectable by a home owner.

More particularly, it is an objective of the present invention to provide an apparatus having the foregoing advantages which is substantially transparent so as to permit heating of the pool by the suns rays during the day.

More particularly, it is an objective of the present invention to provide an apparatus having the foregoing advantages in which individual panels of the transparent material may be readily replaced.

tates Patent More particularly, it is an objective of the present in- V as a greenhouse or removable utility cover for automobiles and the like.

The foregoing and other advantages will become apparent from the following description of a preferred embodiment of the invention which is here given by way of example only with reference to the following drawings, in which like reference devices refer to like parts thereof throughout the various views and diaphragms, and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective illustration of a swimming pool cover according to the invention erected in position and showing one portion thereof collapsed;

FIGURE 2 is an end elevational view, partially in section, along the line 22 of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 3 is a sectional detail along the line 33 of FIGURE 2;

FIGURE 4 is a greatly enlarged perspective illustration of the detail shown in the circle 4 of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 5 is a greatly enlarged side elevational view of the detail shown in circle 5 of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 6 shows the detail of FIGURE 5 in another position.

FIGURE 7 is a perspective of an alternative embodiment corresponding to the detail of FIGURE 6;

FIGURE 8 is a perspective of an alternative embodiment corresponding to FIGURE 4, partially cut away;

FIGURE 9 is a section of an alternative embodiment corresponding to FIGURE 3;

FIGURE 10 is a perspective of a further alternative embodiment corresponding to FIGURES 8 and 4, partially cut away;

FIGURE 11 is a side elevational View of an alternative embodiment showing the junction of the supporting ribs at the ridge, and,

FIGURE 12, is a section along the line 1212 of FIGURE 11.

It will be noted from the drawings that this preferred embodiment of the invention comprises as basic members a plurality 'of generally arch-shaped hoops or frame members indicated as 10 which are arranged and braced to provide support for a series of strip like plastic panels 11 so as to provide a generally arch-shaped canopy structure for maximum strength and resistance to loads such as may be caused by heavy rain or snow. One end of the structure may be supported by means of the three bracing struts 12 anchored to one of frames 10 and at their lower ends being united together and fastened in the ground so as to support the same in its collapsed condition, but these are rendered unnecessary in an alternative embodiment. It will be noted from FIGURE 1 that the collapsing action consists essentially of a concertina-type movement with frames 10 remaining in their arch position but being pushed against one another in sequence. In this way, in their collapsed position, the frames 10 and supporting structure and the plastic panels 11 occupy somewhat less than ten percent of their extended length thereby providing a pool area substantially clear of obstruction during the summer months, which the exception of the collapsed or stored structure which will remain erected at one end of the pool being supported by members 12, or being self-supporting, as described below.

From FIGURE 2 it will be noted that each of frames 10 consist essentially of a continuous rib member 13 bent into substantially arch-like shape and provided with interior-support comprising bracing rods '14. At the lower ends of rib members 13 there are provided means for rolling or sliding thereof for collapsing and extending as aforesaid consisting in one form of wheels or casters 15 rotatably mounted in tandem between mounting plates 16 which are welded or bolted to rib members 13. Frames 10 are linked together with one another by a series of generally horizontally extending bracing struts 17 (see FIGURE 5) consisting of strut portions 17a and 17b hingedly mounted to adjacent frames at spaced intervals around the arched shape thereof and having their free ends hingedlyconnected together by means of bolt 18. Strut portion 17a is further provided with extension or sleeve 19 adapted to fit around and engage the end portion of strut portion 17b to receive bolt 18 and permit hinging thereon over a wide arc, locking bar 19a being fastened across the ends of flanges 19 to abut against strut portion 17b when in the extended position at a point just past alignment with strut portion 17a, and maintain the same in their extended position. Alternatively, the elbow joints may be constructed as shown in FIGURE 7, by means of an intermediate channel portion 19b to which both of strut portions 17 and 17a are separately hinged as shown.

The individual panels 11 of plastic material are preferably comprised of transparent sheet vinyl or other plastic, which may be sewn or welded or may be separate panels as described below and clamped within rib members 13 around the contour thereof. For this purpose, ribs 3 may be constructed as shown in FIGURE 3 and comprise essentially a rectangular channel shape in section having an inner wall 20, side Walls 21 and outer walls 22 defining a continuous opening therebetween. A continuous clamping bar 23 may be slidably located within the rib member 13 and may be drawn into engagement with outer wall portions 22 for clamping of plastic sheets 11 therebetween by means of a series of clamping bolts 24 adapted to pass Within the opening between Walls 22 as aforesaid and threadably engage bar 23. Alternatively, the plastic panels 11 may be separate from one another and provided with a welted edge 11a, by means of plastic welding for example around a core of rope ll b or by simply using a thicker portion of plastic along the edge of the sheet 11, and sliding each of sheets 11 into their respective channel-shaped ribs 13 from one end as shown in FIGURE 9.

The end walls of the structure are also collapsible and are preferably constructed of a series of vertical frame members 25 of similar cross-section to rib members 13 as illustrated in FIGURE 3, and interconnected by collapsible struts 26 of similar construction to struts 17 permitting the same to be folded double for collapsing thereof (as shown partially in FIGURE 2). In order to permit collapsing of the frame portions 25 towards one another, the plastic material 11 mounted thereon is preferably attached around the arch-shaped periphery of the endmost frame member 10 by means of series of crown fasteners or the like (not shown).

In order to permit collapsing and extending as aforesaid, mounting means are permanently fastened around the pool or other area to be covered consisting in one form of parallel steel rail members 27 fastened to the surroundings of the pool or to the ground by any suitable means such as a series of wooden anchor boards 28 and spaced apart from one another a distance corresponding to the spacing between the ends of rib members 13. A series of crown fasteners may be provided along the lower periphery of plastic panels 11 for engagement with similar crown fasteners fastened for example to wooden anchor boards 28. Similarly, where the end walls of the structure are to be collapsible as described in connection with FIGURE 2, similar rails indicated as 29 are provided anchored to anchor boards 30 and the plastic panels 11 are fastened thereto as by crown fasteners (not shown).

In operation, plastic panels 11 will be attached to rib members 13 by first of all withdrawing slide members 23 therefrom and then inserting folds of panels 11 within the opening between wall portions 22 thereof and subsequently sliding clamping members 23 therealong and fastening the same in clamped engagement by means of bolts 24. The adjacent frame members 10 may then be moved into their fully extended apart position by simply drawing the same along rails 27 and strut portions 17a and 17b are forced into their extended position with locking bar 19a lying along and around strut portion 17b holding the same in such position. Collapsing of the structure may be effected by applying pressure to strut portions 17a and 17b in the region of flanges 19 at bolt 18 in a direction causing disengagement of locking sleeve 19a from strut portion 17b and thereafter rolling the released frame member 10 towards the next adjacent member. These movements may be repeated in sequence until all such frame members are lying closely adjacent to one another at one end of the pool. The same operation essentially will be carried out with respect to extension and collapsing of the end portions of the structure comprising vertical frames 25 and extendable struts 26.

For purposes of entry and exit a door flap of plastic (not shown) may be provided in one or both of the ends of thestructure and fastened by crown fasteners to the adjacent plastic thereof. According to a further embodiment, the roller means illustrated in FIGURE 4 may advantageously be replaced by an interlocking skid and rail device, two forms of which are illustrated in FIGURES 8 and 10.

FIGURE 8 shows a ground rail 35, which replaces the rail means 27 of FIGURE 4, comprising a rectangular channel-shaped member having retaining flanges 36 and 37 defining a restricted open slot therealong, and provided with attachment lugs 38 for fastening to a plank (not shown) or otherwise as desired. Each channel-shaped rib 13 is provided at its lower end, in this example, with a leg 39 and a skid member 40, leg 39 being dimensioned to fit slidably between flanges 36 and 37, and skid 40 being adapted to slide along the inside of rail 35 while being too wide to shape between flanges 36 and 37. FIG- ure 10 shows a somewhat cheaper form of skid device in which leg 39 is merely turned over at its free end to provide a skid 40A.

By this means, it is possible to dispense with supporting struts 12, and the cover is self-supporting even in its collapsed condition, the engagement of the skid and rail means holding the cover firmly down against even very strong winds.

An additional feature is shown in FIGURES 11 and 12 for use in reducing the tendency for the plastic sheets 11 to be punctured at the ridge of the cover, by avoiding sharp edges. In this embodiment, ribs 13 are joined at their upper ends by means of an open, U-shaped channel member 41 formed in two parts and welded at 42 into the inverted shallow V-shape shown, to accept ribs 13. Bolts 43 pass through member 41 and ribs 13 from side to side to retain the same in position. Strut members 17 are attached between members 41, being hingedly fastened to flanges 44 for the purpose, so as to hold the same in the stressed, extended position, or to be collapsible as desired.

In many cases it will be found that the life of the plastic sheets 11 can be greatly prolonged by the addition of a reinforcing strip (not shown) attached along the lower edge of each such sheet 11 about six to twelve inches wide and of canvas vinyl, or other material, or one or more additional thickness of plastic material heat sealed thereto, which will reduce tearing of the sheets 11 at this point.

Where further strength is required a further welded edge (not shown) can be added along the bottom edge of each panel 11 and inserted into the channel or rail 35.

The construction of the opposite ends of the cover may be formed in single sheets or may also be formed of separate panels 11 with welded edges (not shown) and the individual vertical members 25 may also be of channelshaped section as shown in FIGURE 9, thereby permitting replacement of individual panels 11 as required. In some cases the provision of doors (not shown) at each end may be inadequate, and in such cases the entire central section of one or both ends may alternatively be attached to the adjacent portions by means of zippers (not shown) so as to permit a greater opening to be provided for ventilation, and such central panel can be then rolled up out of the way.

The foregoing is a description of a preferred embodiment of the invention which is here made by way of example only. The invention is not to be taken as limited to the specific steps described but comprehends all such variations that come within the spirit and scope of the 'appended claims.

What I claim is:

1. A temporary collapsible structure for use as cover for swimming pools and the like and comprising:

a plurality of generally arch-shaped frames;

track means adapted to be anchored permanently for supporting said frame movably at their ends; carriage means on said frame ends engaging said track means;

means retaining said carriage means against displacement of said carriage means from said track means; collapsible strut means connected between adjacent said frames and extensible to support the same;

end frame members at each end of said structure adapted to extend in a plane of a said arch-shaped frame, said end frame member on at least one end of said structure being releasably movable to permit said arch-shaped frames to be moved towards the other end of said structure; and

plastic canopy means releasably attachable over said structure.

2. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, including locking means on said strut means to hold same in their extended position.

3. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said track means comprise support channel means to carry said carriage means, and retaining flange means on said channel means engaging said carriage means.

4. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said plastic canopy means are releasably attachable between adjacent arch-shaped frames thereby forming a roof and side walls of said structure.

S. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said plastic canopy means form end cover means releasably attachable around said arch-shaped frame at each end of said structlure.

6. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, including track means adapted to be anchored permanently for supporting said end frame members movably at their ends.

7. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said end frame members comprise a plurality of vertical frame members extending between the upper portion of said arch-shaped frame and the ground therebeneath.

8. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said end frame members comprise a plurality of vertical frame members and collapsible strut means connected between the adjacent vertical frame members and extensible to support the same.

9. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said arch-shaped frames are formed of channel-shaped members having side walls spaced apart sufiicient to receive two said enlarged panel edge means therebetween, and retaining flanges on said side walls defining a single continuous slot of a width sufficient to accept thickness of at least two said plastic canopy means while retaining said edge means therein.

10. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said carriage means comprise skid means on said arch-shaped frames at their ends having a greater length than width with ends angled upward.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,344,717 6/1920 Puff. 1,427,749 8/ 1922 Leech. 2,627,864 2/1953 Barker -1 2,986,150 5/1961 Torian 135-1 3,165,110 1/1965 Brooks 1353 XR KENNETH DOWN EY, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 4-172; 135-3, 4

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Referenced by
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US3729890 *Apr 22, 1971May 1, 1973Taiyo Kogyo Co LtdShiftable pillar wheel supporting device
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U.S. Classification135/129, 135/119, 135/130, 135/906, 4/498
International ClassificationE04H15/02, E04H15/52, E04H3/16
Cooperative ClassificationE04H15/52, Y10S135/906, E04H15/02, E04H3/165
European ClassificationE04H3/16B, E04H15/02, E04H15/52