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Publication numberUS3512227 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 19, 1970
Filing dateMar 4, 1968
Priority dateMar 4, 1968
Also published asDE1909405A1, DE1909405B2, DE1966378A1
Publication numberUS 3512227 A, US 3512227A, US-A-3512227, US3512227 A, US3512227A
InventorsKrawagna Alois A
Original AssigneeWesthem Corp Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Articulable article clamp
US 3512227 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

' M5yj 19, 1970 A. A K A A'gNA- 3,512,227

' I ARTICULABLE ARTICLE CLAMP Filed March 4, 1968 s E FIG. 5

1 N V ENTOR.

Agent United States Patent 3,512,227 ARTICULABLE ARTICLE CLAMP Alois A. Krawagna, Will-owdale, Ontario, Canada, as-

signor to Westhem Corporation Limited, Toronto, Ontario, Canada Filed Mar. 4, 1968, Ser. No. 710,321 Int. Cl. A411) 51/08; A441) 21/00 US. Cl. 24-243 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An integrally constructed, articulable article includes two spaced upstanding members at least one of which is resiliently bendable. First and second members are hingedly joined to the two upstanding members respectively by flexible webs constituting first and second hinge lines respectively. The latter'two members are hingedly connected via a third flexible web at a location remote from the first and second hinge lines, one of these members being ungeniculate between its two hinge lines.

This invention relates to articulable articles which can be extruded or molded from resilient plastic material, such as polypropylene, and which exhibit a two-position, over-toggling eflect. This over-toggling effect makes the articulable articles well adapted for use as clipping or gripping devices. The articulable articles according to this invention can also be employed in applications which make use of the fact that, due to the over-toggling eifect, a portion of the articulable article can take up two positions: an out or projecting" position, and an in or recessed position. Such an application might be as a recessible handle for briefcases, suitcases, etc.

It is an object of this invention to provide an integral articulable article, which can be either molded or extruded, of which a portion exhibits a two-position, overtoggling etfect.

Accordingly, this invention provides an integral articulable article, comprising: two spaced upstanding members of which at least one is resiliently bendable, a first swingable member hingedly joined to one of said upstanding members through a first flexible web constituting a first hinge line, a second swingable member hingedly joined to the other of said upstanding members through a second flexible web constituting a second hinge line, said first and second swingable members being hingedly joined together at points remote from said first and second hinge lines through a third flexible web constituting a third hinge line, at least one swingable member being ungeniculate between its two hinge lines, all said hinge lines being substantially parallel.

Two embodiments of this invention are shown in the accompanying drawings, in which like numerals denote like parts throughout the several view, and in which:

FIG. 1 is a sectional view of a first embodiment of this invention in the closed position;

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the first embodiment of this invention in an intermediate position;

FIG. 3 is a sectional View of the first embodiment of this invention in the open position;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a pants hanger utilizing the first embodiment of this invention;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view of a second embodiment of this invention in the open position;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view of the second embodiment of this invention in the closed position; and

FIG. 7 is a sectional view of a pants hanger incorporating the third embodiment of this invention.

Referring first FIG. 1, there is shown an integral articulable article 10, adapted to be secured to, and to cooperate with, a base 12 having a substantially flat surface 13. The

3,512,227 Patented May 19, 1970 articulable article 10 consists of two upstanding members 15 and 16, a first swingable member 18 hingedly joined at one end to the upstanding member 15 through a flexible web 20, a second swingable member 22 hingedly joined at one end to the upstanding member 16 through a flexible web 23, and a third swingable member 25 hingedly joined at its one end 27 to the other end of the swingable member 18 through a flexible web 28, and hingedly joined at its other end 30 to the other end of the swingable member 22 through a flexible web 32. The flexible webs 20, 23, 28 and 32 constitute hinge lines in the article 10, and all of the hinge lines are substantially parallel.

The upstanding members 15 and 16 have lateral extensions 34 and 35, respectively, by which the upstanding members 15 and 16 can be secured to the base 12. The attachment can be by any appropriate known method, for example glue, mechanical attachment members, or welding.

FIG. 1 shows the articulable article 10 in its closed or recessed position, in which the third swingable member 25 is in surface contact with the surface 13 of the base 12. The first, second and third swingable members 18, 22 and 25 are, due to their thickness, relatively rigid by comparison with the thin flexible webs by which they are joined together. In order to permit the first, second and third swingable members 18, 22 and 25 to be moved to the open position, shown in FIG. 3, it is necessary that the upstanding members 15 and 16 be resiliently bendable,

so that their upper extremities can move outwardly to ac commodate the over-toggling stress. This necessity that the upstanding members 15 and 16 be resiliently bendable will be more clearly understood from an examination of FIG. 2, to which attention is now directed. FIG. 2 shows the first step in opening out the articulable article 10 from its closed position (FIG. 1) to its open position (FIG. 3). The first step is to pivot one of the outside swingable members 18 or 22 (in this case member 18) upwardly as shown. It will be appreciated that, in order to move from the FIG. 1 position to the FIG. 2 position, the members 18 and 25 must go through a dead-centre position in which they are parallel with one another. This deadcentre position represents a state of unstable equilibrium for the articulable article 10, and in order to reach this position, the upper extremity of the upstanding member 15 must be moved slightly to the left. This leftward movement is resisted by the upstanding member 15, which wants to remain in the position shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. This accounts for the over-toggling eflect exhibited by the article 10. During the pivotal motion of the swingable member 18, the right hand upstanding member 16 'will undergo little or no bending, because of the frictional engagement of the base 12 with the right hand end of the swingable member 25. However, since the articulable article 10 could also be opened out by first pivoting the swingable member 22, the upstanding member 16 should have the same kind of resilient bending characteristic as the upstanding member 15. If, however, it could be guaranteed that the swingable member 18 would always be the first to be pivoted outwardly, the upstanding member 16 would not have to be bendable.

FIG. 3 shows the second stage of the opening-out of the articulable article 10. During the opening-out of the article 10 from the FIG. 2 position to the FIG. 3 position (from the dotted lines to the solid lines in FIG. 3), the upstanding members 15 and 16 are not required to undergo any bending stress, due to the double articulation inherent in the swingable members 18, 22 and 25.

FIG. 4 shows a pants-hanger 37 incorporating the first embodiment of this invention. The pants-hanger 37 comprises a base member 38, two upstanding members 40 and 41 integral with the base member 38 at the ends thereof, a swingable member 42 hingedly joined to the upper extremity of the upstanding member 40 through a flexible web 44, a swingable member 46 hingedly joined to the upper extremity of the upstanding member 41 through a flexible web 47, and a swingable member 50 hingedly joined to the swingable member 46 through a flexible web 52 and hingedly joined to the swingable member 42 through a flexible web 53. It will thus be seen that, in all important respects, the members 40, 42, 50, 46 and 41 correspond, respectively, to the members 15, 18, 25, 22 and 16 in FIG. 1. The two-stage opening-out procedure described with reference to FIGS. 13 is identical with the opening-out procedure for the pants-hanger 37 shown in FIG. 4.

It will be appreciated that, in order to return the members 18, 25 and 22 from the FIG. 3 position to the FIG. 1 position, the opening-out procedure is simply reversed, with the swingable member 22 being first pivoted down into the FIG. 2 position, following which the swingable member 18 is pivoted down to the FIG. 1 position, the latter pivotal movement causing the resiliently bendable upstanding member 15 to bend slightly leftwardly. The same opening and closing procedures apply to the pantshanger 37 shown in FIG. 4, and the positions of the swingable members in FIG. 4 correspond to those in FIG. 2, i.e. the intermediate position.

The cuffs 55 and a portion of the legs 56 of a pair of pants are shown properly positioned against the base member 38 of the pants-hanger 37 in FIG. 4. If pressure is now applied where shown by the arrow 58 against the leftward end of the swingable member 50, the swingable member 50 can be brought down tightly against the base member 38, to hold the cuffs 55 of the pants in place.

The base member 38 has, midway of its ends, a slightly thicker portion 60 in which the hook 62 of the pantshanger 37 is embedded.

It will be appreciated that, for the first embodiment shown in FIGS. 1-4, the amount of pressure, if any, exerted by the swingable member 25 (50) against the base 12 (base member 38) is governed by the lengths of the swingable members and the upstanding members, and by the spacing between the upstanding members. For example, in FIG. 1, if the upstanding members 15 and 16 were positioned closer together than the spacing shown, while the rest of the dimensions were maintained, the swingable member 25 would be urged more strongly against the base 12 in the closed position. Conversely, if the upstanding members 15 and 16 were spread further apart, a point would be reached where, in the closed posi tion, the swingable member 25 would be spaced out of contact. with the-base 12. The same relationships apply to FIG. 4, and it is intended that the dimensions of .all members be chosen so as to give the desired pressure between the swingable member 50 and the base member 38 in the closed position.

Attention is now directed to FIGS. and 6, showing, in cross-section, the second embodiment of this invention in its open and in its closed position. In FIG. 5, the invention has been incorporated into a wall clip 64 for holding in an upright position a broom of which the handle 65 appears in cross-section. The wall clip 64 includes a base 66, two upstanding members 68 and 70 integral with the base 66, a swingable member 71 hingedly joined to the upper extremity of the upstanding member 68 through a flexible web 72, and a swingable member 74 hingedly joined to the upper extremity of the upstanding member 70 through a flexible web 76. The two swingable members 71 and 74 are hingedly joined together through a flexible web 78. Preferably, the wall clip 64 is molded or extruded in the configuration shown in FIG. 5, which represents the. open position. As can be seen, the swingable member 71 has an integral jaw 80 projecting upwardly from it, and the swingable member 74'has a jaw 81. Preferably, the wall clip 64 is bilaterally symmetrical about a line passing through the flexible web 78 perpendicular to the base 66. Each of the jaws 80 and 81 has a concavely curved portion 83 of which the radius of curvature is substantially the same as the radius or" the broom handle 65. Fastening means, such as screws 85, can be provided in the base member 66 for securing the wail clip to a wall.

In order to lock the broom handle between the jaws 80 and 81, the broom handle pressed against the flexible web 78, thereby forcing the two swingable members 71 and 74 to pivot about their respective flexible webs 72 and 76 through a dead-centre or over-toggling position in which the three flexible webs 72, 76 and 78 are in alignment, to the closed position shown in FIG. 6. In the closed position, the jaWs 80 and 81 tightly grip the broom handle 65 and hold it in position. The force exerted by the jaws 80 and 81 on the broom handle 65 is a function of the amount of residual bending stress in the upstanding members 68 and when the jaws and 81 are locked around the broom handle 65 in the closed position. Naturally, the resistance of the upstanding members 68 and 70 to bending is a function of the elasticity of the material employed, and the dimensions of the upstanding members themselves. To remove the broom handle 65 from the grip of the jaws 80 and 81, the broom handle is merely grasped and pulled out wardly.

Attention is now directed to FIG. 7, which shows, in cross-Section, a pants-hanger 88 incorporating the third embodiment of this invention. The pants-hanger 88 has a base member 90 of which the inside surface 91 is slightly curved concavely. At the extremities of the base member 90 are located integral upstanding members 93 and 94. A swingable member 95 is hinged to the upper extremity of the upstanding member 93 through a flexible web 96, and a similar swingable member 97 is hinged to the upper extremity of the upstanding member '94 through a flexible web 98. Two intermediate swingable members 100 and 101 arehinged, respectively, to the swingabie members 95 and 97 through flexible webs 103 and 104, and are hinged to each other through a flexible web 106. The swingable member 100 has an upward projection 108, integral with itself, near its rightward end. The base member 90 has a slightly thickened portion midway of its ends, in which the book of the pants-hanger 88 ,is embedded at 111. The pants-hanger 88 is shown, in FIG. 7, in the closed position, and because of the slight curve 'on the inside wall 91 of the base member 90, the intermediate swingable members 100 and 101 bear against the surface 91 at four spaced-apart points 112, 113, 114 and 115, thereby providing a more evenly distributed grip on the cuffs of a pair of pants than that afforded by the single swingable member 50 shown in FIG. 4. In order to open the pants-hanger 88 into the open position, one merely pulls upwardly on the projection 108 thereby lifting the flexible web 106 above the hypothetical line joining the flexible webs 103 and 104. By pulling further on the projection 108, all four swingable members 95, 97, 100 and 101 can be swung outwardly away from the base member 90, thereby permitting pants cuffs to be inserted or removed from the pants-hanger 88.

In the appended claims, the terms geniculate and ungeniculate are used. Looking at -FIG. 1, the term geniculate could properly describe that portion of the article 10 extending between the flexible web 28 and the flexible web 23, i.e. the portion consisting ofboth swingable members 22 and 25. Together, the members 22 and 25 constitute a geniculate member, since the term geniculate means having one or more knee-like joints or bends. Thus, in FIG. 7, the portion of the pants-hanger 88 extending between the flexible web 103 and the flexible web 98 is also a geniculate member, with two'kneebends. The term ungeniculate would describe the swingable member 22 in FIG. 1, since member 22 by itself has no knee-bends in it.

The preferredmaterial for use in fabricating the articulablearticle of this invention is polypropylene, primarily because of its performance at the flexible webs in the structure, where it has proved capable of withstanding repeated flexings without rupture or deterioration. Since, however, it is conceivable that other materials could be used with equivalent or superior performance characteristics, this invention is not to be considered limited to use with polypropylene.

It is also emphasized that the flexible webs through which a given swingable member is joined to two other members need not necessarily be located at the ends of that given swingable member. It is quite conceivable that a flexible Web could be located at an intermediate point along the swingable member. For example, in FIG. 1, the swingable member 22 could extend rightwardly beyond the flexible web 23, such that the latter is located at an intermediate position along the member 22.

While preferred embodiments of this invention have been disclosed herein, those skilled in the art will appreciate that changes and modifications may be made therein.

What I claim as my invention is:

1. An integral, articulable article, comprising:

two spaced upstanding members of which at least one is resiliently bendable,

a first swingable member hingedly joined to one of said upstanding members through a first flexible web constituting a first hinge line,

a second swingable member hingedly joined to the other of said upstanding members through a second flexible web constituting a second hinge line,

said first and second swingable members being hingedly joined together at points remote from said first and second hinge lines through a third flexible web constituting a third hinge line, at least one swingable member being ungeniculate between its two hinge lines, all said hinge lines being substantially parallel, the other swingable member being geniculate at a location between its two hinge lines about a fourth flexible web, said fourth flexible web constituting a fourth hinge line substantially parallel with the other hinge lines.

2,. An integral articulable article, comprising:

two spaced upstanding members of which at least one is resiliently bendable,

a first swingable member hingedly joined to one of said upstanding members through a first flexible web constituting a first hinge line,

a second swingable member hingedly joined to the other of said upstanding members through a second flexible web constituting a second hinge line,

a third swingable member hingedly joined to said first swingable member through a third flexible web constituting a third hinge line, and hingedly joined to said second swingable member through a fourth flexible web constituting a fourth hinge line, at least two of said swingable members being ungeniculate, all said hinge lines being substantially parallel.

3. An article as claimed in claim 2, in which each of said swingable members is ungeniculate between its two hinge lines, whereby each swingable member is adapted to maintain its two hinge lines a given distance apart.

4. An article as claimed in claim 3, further comprising a base member resiliently and integrally supporting said upstanding members at locations on the latter spaced from said first and second webs, the base member spacing the upstanding members apart a given distance, whereby the upstanding members tend to seek a position of minimum stress in which said first and second hinge lines are separated by a rectilinear distance which is less than the sum of the rectilinear distances between sequentially adjacent pairs of hinge lines.

5. An article as claimed in claim 2, in which one of said swingable members is geniculate at a location between its two hinge lines about a fifth flexible web, said fifth web constituting a fifth hinge line substantially parallel with the other hinge lines.

6. An article as claimed in claim 5, further comprising a base member resiliently and integrally supporting said upstanding members at locations on the latter spaced from said first and second webs, the base member having an upper surface extending between the upstanding members and facing in the direction in which the upstanding members project, said upper surface being concave in a plane parallel to said direction and containing both upstanding members, the base member spacing the upstanding members apart a given distance, whereby the upstanding members tend to seek a position of minimum stress in which said first and second hinge lines are separated by a rectilinear distance which is less than the sum of the rectilinear distances between sequentially adjacent pairs of hinge lines.

7. A method of producing an integral articulable article, said method including the steps:

extruding from resilient material an extrudate having a cross-section comprising: an elongated base portion having at its extremities two integral upstand ing portions, and a plurality of intermediate portions extending between the upper extremities of said upstanding portions, the intermediate portions being linked together and to said upstanding portions by short relatively thin portions which constitute flexible webs in the extrudate, the flexible .webs defining a plurality of parallel hinge lines, the rectilinear distance between the flexible webs attached to the upstanding portions being less than the sum of the rectilinear distances between sequentially adjacent pairs of flexible webs, and

cutting said extrudate transversely to obtain a section thereof.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,052,004 9/ 1962 Wallshein 24257 XR 3,292,223 12/ 1966 Esposito 24-437 3,313,009 4/ 1967 Beckerer 24-257 3,384,938 5/ 1968 OConnor 24--243 .9

DONALD A. GRIFFIN, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 223-96

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3052004 *Apr 1, 1959Sep 4, 1962Melvin WallsheinClamping devices for attachment to a wire or cable
US3292223 *Mar 11, 1965Dec 20, 1966Esposito Jr Vincent JIntegral snap-action clips
US3313009 *Mar 12, 1965Apr 11, 1967Beckson Mfg IncSpring clip
US3384938 *Oct 23, 1965May 28, 1968Thomas E. O'connorPliable material clamp
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4486923 *Aug 31, 1979Dec 11, 1984Matburn (Holdings) LimitedClosure device for bags or pouches
US4557098 *Mar 1, 1984Dec 10, 1985Butler Manufacturing CompanyDeformable centering sleeve for tab of roof panel attachment clip unit
US4873808 *Mar 27, 1989Oct 17, 1989Butler Manufacturing CompanySpacer block for standing seam roof
US5285556 *Dec 14, 1992Feb 15, 1994Shorin Joseph EIntegral polymeric clamp
US5572776 *Dec 12, 1994Nov 12, 1996Delco Electronics CorporationFastener employing a Bi-stable mechanism
US6215081Mar 29, 1999Apr 10, 2001Brigham Young UniversityBistable compliant mechanism
US6508587 *Oct 26, 2000Jan 21, 2003James H. Byers, Jr.Easily manipulated closures for bag-like containers, containers incorporating the same, and methods for making such containers
US6757975Jan 24, 2002Jul 6, 2004Brigham Young UniversityMulti-layered compliant mechanisms and method of manufacture
US6904647 *Jan 20, 2003Jun 14, 2005James H. Byers, Jr.Clamping devices
US6932312 *Feb 18, 2004Aug 23, 2005Wen-Chun ChenSuspension device for a tool handle
US8573576 *Jun 26, 2009Nov 5, 2013Intuitive Research And Technology CorporationClamp for single-handed operation
US20100327507 *Jun 26, 2009Dec 30, 2010Intuitive Research And Technology CorporationClamp for single-handed operation
Classifications
U.S. Classification248/113, 223/96
International ClassificationA45C13/26, A45C13/00, A47G25/48, A47G25/00
Cooperative ClassificationA45C13/26, A47G25/487
European ClassificationA45C13/26, A47G25/48G