US 3497922 A
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United States Patent O 3,497,922 CHART HOLDER Richard L. Wade, St. Louis County, Mo., assignor to Professional Specialties Co., St. Louis, Mo., a corporation of Tennessee Filed May 24, 1963, Ser. No. 731,941 Int. Cl. B42f 1/00, 9/00 U.S. Cl. 2li-67.7 S Claims ABSTRACT F DISCLOSURE A chart holder as for use in hospitals and the like having mutually hinged front `and back covers, said front cover having upper and lower sections joined along a hinge axis parallel to that of the front and back covers. A latch bar mounted on said back cover and adapted for engagement with the upper section of said front cover during usage of said chart holder, said latch bar being urged into open position so that upon full opening of said chart holder the same will be maintained in opened position without requiring forcible retention of said covers in parted condition.
BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates in general to chart holders and, more particularly, to a chart holder having novel latch means so as to allow for ease of insertion of charts within, and equal facile removal of charts from, said holder.
It is, therefore, a primary object of the present invention to provide a chart holder, as for patients usage, which contains a latch member for interengaging the chart holder back cover and front cover during normal periods of usage and which is further adapted to maintain said covers in spaced apart relationship when in unlatched condition so as to thereby permit of insertion and removal of charts with respect to said holder without requiring the user to forcibly maintain said covers in such open condition as is requisite with current chart holders wherein there is not provided any means countering the customary spring force urging said covers into closed condition.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a chart holder of the type stated having an angulated front cover so that during normal periods of use, as for reference of the retained charts, the front cover may be swung into chart exposing position without causing damaging Contact with the latch means.
It is another object of the present invention to provide a chart holder of the character stated incorporating latch means which may be easily mounted upon existing chart holders.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide a chart holder of the type stated having means for automatically maintaining the chart holder in full open condition after swinging of the front cover through a predetermined path so that the same operates in a most etlicient and yet simple fashion.
It is a still further object of the present invention to provide a chart holder of the type stated which may be most economically manufactured of durable, yet relatively lightweight components; which is easily manipulatable; and which is reliable in operation.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIGURE 1 is a front view of a chart holder constructed in accordance with and embodying the present invention. FIGURE 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary front view of 3,497,922 Patented Mar. 3, 1970 ICC the upper portion of said chart holder, with portions broken away, illustrating the latch in locked position.
FIGURE 3 is a vertical sectional View taken on the line 3--3 of FIGURE 1.
FIGURE 4 is a side view of the chart holder in closed position.
FIGURE 5 is a side view of the chart holder in open position for usage.
FIGURE 6 is a plan view of the latch in unlocked condition.
FIGURE 7 is a side view of the chart holder in full open position for chart loading or unloading.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now by reference characters to the drawing which illustrates the preferred embodiment of the present invention, A generally designates a chart holder of the type commonly utilized in hospitals for maintaining patients records. Chart holder A comprises front and back covers 1, 2, respectively, which may be fabricated of any suitable rigid material, such as preferably metal or plastic. Front cover 1 is transversely divided into a relatively short upper section 3 and a relatively larger lower section 4, while said back cover 2 is of unitary, planar character. Said covers 1, 2 are mutually hingedly connected about an axis extending transversely of their normally upper ends Iwith said axis being defined by a hinge rod 5 received within, and extending through, aligned hinge knuckles 6, 6 integrally formed upon cover 2 and upper section 3 of front cover 1, resepectively. Said knuckles 6, 6 are so spacedly provided upon their respective covers 1, 2 as to be arranged in abutting, paired relationship, with an intervening spacing, as at 7, between each such knuckle pairs to present portions of said hinge rod 5 for encircling disposition thereabout of coil springs 8 having extensions 8 at one of their ends for bearing disposition against the outer face of upper section 3 of front cover 1 thereby biasing said section 3 into closed relationship upon back cover 2. The ends of hinge rod 4 project beyond covers 1, 2, and carry resilient collars 9, 9 which facilitate suspension of chart holder A in a customary position of rest. There may be provided centrally of front cover upper section 3 a holder 10 for a patients name plate, said holder ybeing secured, as by rivets 11.
Formed within upper section 3 of front cover 1 is a pair of spaced apart openings 12, 12 for projection therethrough of locking tabs 13, 13' respectively, integrally formed upon a latch bar 14 disposed upon the inner face of back cover 2 for reciprocal slideable movement transversely of said back cover 2. Said latch bar 14 is fabricated preferably of suitable sheet stock, being of narrow, elongate character, and having a length which may be less than the width of back cover 2. Tabs 13, 13 are bent in a plane normal to that of bar 14 and back cover 2 for projecting through said openings 12, 12 for purposes presently appearing. Formed in latch bar 14 is a pair of spaced apart guide slots 1S, 15 through which extend the stems (not shown) of rivets 16, 16 respectively, secured within back cover 2 and having enlarged heads of greater cross section than the width of slots 15, 15'. It will thus be seen that the length of slots 15, 15 determines the travel of latch bar 14 in either direction along its longitudinal axis.
At one of its ends latch bar 14 extends beyond the adjacent side margins of front and back covers 1, 2 and is provided thereat with a nger 17, bent forwardly from the plane .of said latch bar 14, at an angle of about degrees thereto, to allow for manipulation. Substantially intermediate its length, latch bar 14 is cut away along its upper edge, as at 18, to permit of engagement to one end of an extension spring 19, the other end of which is secured to back cover 2 as to urge said latch bar 14 in a direction toward the end thereof carrying finger 17, as may be seen in FIGURE 6r.
With latch bar 14 pushed toward the left hand side of chart holder A as viewed from the front (FIGURES 1 and 2) or into a condition wherein spring 19 will be under tension, locking tabs 13, 13 will be aligned with openings 12, 12.' in upper section 3 for locking projection therethrough whereby said upper section 3 of front cover 1 will be retained in chart-closed relationship with back cover 2 under force of coil springs 8. Upon raising of upper section 3, in a manner to be described more fully hereinbelow, to remove said locking tags 13, 13 from relative disposition within said openings 12, 12', latch bar 14 under bias of extension spring 19 will shift to the right hand side of chart holder A, as viewed from the front (FIGURES l and 2) into the position shown in FIGURE 6 and thereby remove said locking tabs 13, 13 from a state of alignment with openings 12, 12. Thus, if upper section 3 were then swung returningly toward back cover 2, tabs 13, 13 would abut the inner face of upper section 3 (see FIGURE 7) proximate openings 12, 12 so as to prevent full closure of chart holder A.
Front cover upper section 3 along its lower margin is integrally provided with a plurality of spaced apart hinge knuckles 20 which are aligned with corresponding hinge knuckles 21 formed on the upper edge of front cover bottom section 4 for accommodating a hinge rod 22 whereby said lower section 4 may be freely swingable thereabout with relationship to said upper section 3. As may best be seen in FIGURE 4, the zone of hinge connection between upper and lower front cover sections 3, 4 respectively, bears snugly against back cover 2 through bias of springs 8 whereby the various charts and like documents are securely clamped between such hinge zone, indicated broadly at 23, and the confronting portion of back cover 2. Upon upward swinging of front cover lower section 4 about hinge 22 the retained charts are thus eX- posed for reference.
Referring more particularly to FIGURES 4, and 7, it will be seen that front cover lower section 4 is transversely angulated, at 24, for presenting narrow top and relatively enlarged bottom planar portions 25, 26; the angle therebetween being greater than 90 degrees. The extent of top portion 25 and the particular angle defined thereby with bottom portions 26 are so determined as to prevent abutment between the outer face of front cover 1 and the projecting ends of locking tabs 13, 13 when the latter are in locked condition and the user swings front cover 1 into chart lopen condition for study of the enclosed charts (FIGURE 5 In normal position of usage, latch bar 14 will be in position to present locking tabs 13, 13 within openings 12, 12', with front cover upper section 3 being urged downwardly to assure positive gripping of any retained charts, documents, and the like. In this condition the user may freely swing lower section 4 of front cover 1 about hinge 22 for study of any retained charts without concern as to accidental dislodgement thereof. FIGURES 4 and 5 illustrate the two fundamental positions of use, namely, closed and open, respectively.
When it is desired to either remove charts from, or to insert charts within, chart holder A, the user after swinging lower section 4 of front cover 1 into chart open condition (FIGURE 4) will persist in applying force upon lower section 5 to cause same to continue through its direction of movement. Such force acting against the bias of coil springs 6 will effect a parting .of hinge zone 23 from back cover 2, whereby further swinging of front cover 1 will be about hinge rod 5 as upper and lower sections 3, 4 will then move jointly. By such action, upper section 4 will have been swung with relationship to hinge rod 5 so as to remove openings 12, 12 from tabs 13, 13' respectively, whereupon latch bar 14 is freed for movement to the right hand of chart holder A (as shown in FIGURES 1 and 2) through influence of spring 19. Tabs 13, 13 are, as described above, thus presented for detaining engagement with the inward face of front cover upper section 4 inhibiting same from moving toward back cover 2. By such engagement chart holder A is maintained in a full open condition (FIGURE 7) so that charts may be easily withdrawn or replaced without requiring the use-r to exert force for maintaining covers 1, 2 in parted condition for such purposes, as has been required with all chart holders heretofore known.
After the withdrawal or replacement action has been completed, the user then through manipulation of finger 17 forces latch bar 14 to the left (as shown in FIGURE 5) so that alignment is re-established between tabs 13, 13 and openings 12, 12', respectively, whereupon front cover upper section 4 may then be rocked downwardly under force of coil springs 6 so as to effect firm gripping of the charts between hinge zone 23 and back cover 2.
It is, of course, apparent that latch bar 14 of the present invention could be easily mounted upon existing chart holders without requiring any undue, costly, modification of the same.
From the foregoing it is manifest that latch bar 14 functions in a manner to provide a result which has long been sought in the chart holder field but not heretofore attained, namely, to allow of manipulation of the charts for removal, insertion, or replacement purposes without causing the user to exert, with one hand, the necessary force to overcome the bias of the springs so as to maintain the covers in open condition long enough to effect the desired operation.
It should be understood that changes and modifications in the formation, construction, arrangement and combination of the several parts of the chart holder may be made and substituted for those herein shown and described without departing from the nature and principle of my invention.
Having thus described my invention what I claim and desire to obtain =by Letters Patent is:
1. A chart holder comprising a rear cover, a front cover, said front cover having an upper section and a lower section, means hingedly engaging said rear cover and the upper edge of said upper section of said front cover, means urging said upper `section of said front cover toward said rear cover, a latch member mounted on said rear cover, detent members provided on said latch member, cooperative means provided on said front cover upper section for engaging said detent members when said upper section is in chart closed relationship with respect to said rear cover, and resilient means urging said latch member away from detent engaged condition.
2. A chart holder comprising a rear cover, a front cover having an upper section and a relatively larger lower section, first hinge means engaging said rear cover and one marginal portion of said upper section of said front cover for allowing relative swingability, means urging said upper section of said front cover toward said rear cover in closed relationship, a latch bar mounted on said rear section in confrontation to the adjacent face of said front cover upper section, means for engaging said latch bar to said front cover upper section when the latter is in closed relation with respect to said rear cover, and means for urging said latch -bar away from engaged relationship with said front cover upper section when the latter is moved into chart opened condition.
3. A chart holder as defined in claim 2 and further characterized by said means engaging said latch bar and said front cover upper section comprising at least one locking taib provided on said latch bar, said upper section having at least one opening for alignment with said locking tab and for reception of said latter when in engaged relationship.
4. A chart holder as defined in claim 3 and further characterized by second hinge means engaging said front cover lower section and said front cover upper section in the latters marginal portion opposite to that engaging said first hinge means.
5. A chart holder as defined in claim 3 and further characterized by said latch bar comprising a narrow elongate member disposed transversely of said rear cover adjacent said first hinge means and being slideable reciprocally of its longitudinal axis.
I6. A chart holder as deiined in claim 3 and further characterized by said latch bar comprising a narrow elongate flat -member disposed transversely of said rear cover in axial parallel relationship to said rst hinge means, means mounting said latch bar upon said rear cover for slideable movement of said latch Ibar reciprocally of its longitudinal axis, and resilient means urging said latch bar into disengaged condition.
7. A chart holder as defined in claim 2 and further characterized by said latch bar being elongate and narrow and being presented transversely of said rear cover proximate, and axially parallel, to said first hinge means, said means engaging said latch bar and said front cover upper section comprising a plurality of tabs extending from said latch bar in normal relationship thereto and being spaced apart longitudinally of said latch bar, said upper section of said front cover having openings for alignment with said latch bar locking taibs for extension of the latter therethrough, means for rendering said latch bar reciprocally slideably upon said rear cover axially of its length, and resilient means urging said latch bar -in a direction for presenting said locking tabs out of UNITED STATES PATENTS 7/1955 Boone 24-66 XR 9/1966 Ricke 24-66 XR DONALD A. GRIFFIN, Primary Examiner