US 3471112 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 7, 1969 p, MaCDQNALD ET AL 3,471,112
COMBINATION SHELF SUPPORT AND ANCHOR Filed Nov. 21. 1967 /fij g FIG. 3
, INVENTORS FRANCIS X. MACDONALD PAUL M MACDONALD ATTORNEYS United States Patent vs. C]. 248-239 3 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A shelf support adapted to be mounted inan opening in the wall of a cabinet structure having a plug member adapted to fit in said opening, a ledge member integral with the plug and a shelf holddown means positioned above the shelf supporting ledge.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION "Field of the invention This invention relates generally to shelf-supporting devices and more particularly is directed towards a novel combination shelf support and anchor for restraining a shelf against displacement.
Description of the prior art Shelves, particularly those provided in. kitchen cabinets and the like, normally are supported by small brackets which may be mounted to the cabinet Walls at a selected height position. Conventional shelf supportsnormally provide only a shoulder on which the lower edge of the shelf rests and do not restrain the shelf against upward or lateral displacement. As a result cabinet manufacturers normally package shelves separately and the shelves are not mounted until the cabinet is installed. This avoids damage which might occur to the cabinets during shipment by reason of the shelves banging about within the cabinet. The practice of separately packaging the shelves is unsatisfactory since it adds to production costs and often times the shelves will become lost or separated from the cabinet during shipment. Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a simple lowcost combination shelf support and anchor to hold the shelf against displacement during shipment and permitting installation of the shelves at the factory.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention features a combination shelf support and anchor comprising a relatively thin, flat body portion or plate having integral therewith a rearwardly extending post for insertion in a mating socket formed in a cabinet wall or the like, a forwardly extending shoulder for supporting the lower edge of a shelf, and a downwardly and forwardly extending finger located in spaced relation above the shoulder and adapted to engage the upper edge of the shelf carried by the shoulder. The finger is resilient and is adapted to deflect inwardly to permit passage of a shelf dropped into position onto the shoulder and then spring out into operating position to prevent displacement of the shelf.
In a modification of the invention an abutment is formed along one edge of the shoulder to engage the forward or rearward edge of the shelf to prevent lateral displacement thereof.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a view in perspective of a combination shelf support and anchor made according to the invention,
FIG. 2 is a view of side elevation partly broken away showing the device in operative position,
3,47 1,1 12 Patented Oct. 7, 1969 FIG. 3 is a top plan view thereof, and, FIG. 4 is a view in perspective showing a modification of the invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now more particularly to FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 of the drawings there is shown an integrated combination shelf support and anchor 10', preferably molded from a suitable plastic material such as polyvinyl chloride, for example, which is generally strong and rigid with a certain amount of resiliency. The device is formed with a substantially flat and generally rectangular body portion 12 which, when in operating position, lies flat against a vertical wall 14 of a cabinet or the like. Typically, in kitchen cabinets the wall 14 is pre-drilled with a number of sockets 16 of selected heights.
The device 10 is provided with mounting means which in the illustrated embodiment is in the form of a rearwardly extending ribbed post 18 adapted to fit snugly in the socket 16. Other mounting means may also be employed to advantage. Generally opposite the post 18 there is a forwardly extending planar shoulder 20 at right angles to the body portion 12 and reinforced by means of an integral web portion 22. The shoulder 20 serves to engage and support the lower marginal edge of a shelf 24 resting on the upper surface of the shoulder.
Formed integral with the body portion 12 and extending downwardly and outwardly from the upper portion thereof is a resilient finger 26. The finger joins with the body portion 12 at the upper end of an opening 28 formed in the body portion 12 and generally conforming in shape to the freely extending finger 26 but of slightly larger size. The function of the opening 28 is to accommodate the finger 26 when it is temporarily depressed inwardly under the action of a shelf 24 being lowered onto the shoulder 20. It will be understood that the shelf 24 will normally be precut to length so that the opposite ends of the shelf will butt substantially against the forward faces of supports 10 located on opposing vertical walls. The resilient finger and the cooperating opening 28 thus permits a shelf 24 to be cut closely to size so that there will be no longitudinal play in the shelf when installed. With the shelf in position as shown in FIG. 2, the finger 26 will snap out once the upper edge of the shelf has cleared the free end of the finger 26. The free end of the finger terminates a short distance above the shelf surface to provide clearance for the finger to move in and out of position. In this position, the shelf 24 is restrained against both upward and downward movement by means of the cooperating finger 26 and shoulder 20. Trapped in this fashion, the shelf will not bang about during shipment and handling of the cabinet. The shelf may be readily removed from the support by merely depressing the finger 26 into the opening 28 and raising the shelf clear of the finger.
As best shown in FIG. 2, the body portion 12 is longitudinally tapered somewhat in its upper portion through the hinge section indicated by reference character 30 this being somewhat thicker than the remainder of the body portion 12. This configuration not only strengthens the finger 26 at its root but also facilitates mounting the self by presenting a smoothly curving upper portion as the shelf drops down into position.
Referring now more particularly to FIG. 4 there is illustrated a modification of the device and in this embodiment an abutment in the form of a diagonal web section 32 is formed integrally with the device between the upper surface of the shoulder 20' and the forward face of the body portion 12' at one or the other side edge thereof. In FIG. 4 the abutment is shown in solid line on the lefthand side of the device although it may also be formed on the right-hand side thereof as indicated in broken line. The function of the abutment 32 is to engage the forward or rearward edge of the shelf 24 to prevent lateral movement thereof. In practice, the devices are mounted adjacent the corners of the shelf and a device such as illustrated in FIG. 3 may be employed at the left-hand forward edge of the shelf while another similar device is mounted diagonally opposite at the rearward right-hand corner of the shelf. Devices such as in FIG. 1 embodiment may be employed at the other diagonally opposite I corners. In this fashion, the shelf is fully restrained against upward, downward or lateral movement and yet may be easily removed should it be desirable to change the shelf height, for example.
Having thus described the invention, what we claim and desire to obtain by Letters Patent of the United States is:
1. A unitary combination shelf support and anchor device formed of a single piece of plastic for mounting a shelf between opposing cabinet walls having spaced sockets formed therein comprising:
(a) a substantially fiat body portion,
(b) an integral shoulder formed on one side of said body portion to engage the lower edge of a shelf placed thereon,
(c)reinforcing web means integral with and interconnecting the bottom of said shoulder and said body portion,
(d) a planar resilient finger formed integrally with said body portion spaced from said shoulder and extending outwardly from said one side of said body portion and towards said shoulder,
(e) said finger extending from said body portion for a distance approximately the depth of said shoulder and terminating at a distance from said shoulder generally corresponding to the thickness of said shelf,
(f) said body portion being formed with an opening in register with said finger to receive said finger upon depression thereof, and
(g) an integral post extending from the other side of said body portion for insertion in a selected one of said wall sockets.
2. A unitary combination shelf support and anchor device according to claim 1 including an abutment formed on said one side of said body portion and at one edge thereof to engage a corner edge of said shelf.
3. A unitary combination shelf support and anchor device according to claim 1 wherein said body portion is tapered at the junction of said body portion and said finger.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 598,742 2/1898 Ostertag 248-243 1,354,270 9/1920 Wood 248-250 1,398,071 11/1921 Forester 248-239 X 2,790,616 4/1957 Cardinal 248-217 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,283,148 3/1961 France.
ROY D. FRAZIER, Primary Examiner J. F. FOSS, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R.