Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3515429 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 2, 1970
Filing dateOct 9, 1968
Priority dateOct 9, 1968
Publication numberUS 3515429 A, US 3515429A, US-A-3515429, US3515429 A, US3515429A
InventorsBollinger Howard N
Original AssigneeAmerican Hospital Supply Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Wheelchair tray attachment
US 3515429 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 2, 1970 H. N. BOLLINGER 3,515,

WHEELCHAI R TRAY ATTACHMENT Filed Oct. 9, 1968 26 l6 W 23 if j un -1m fi 20b LL? Is 20 VI'II'IIIIII" I 5 I INVENTOR. HOWARD N. BOLLINGER United States Patent 3,515,429 WHEELCHAIR TRAY ATTACHMENT Howard N. Bollinger, Cincinnati, Ohio, assignor to American Hospital Supply Corporation, Evanston,

Ill., a corporation of Illinois Filed Oct. 9, 1968, Ser. No. 766,165

Int. Cl. A47b 39/00 U.S. Cl. 297-153 ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A tray attachment for invalid chairs. The tray may be easily and quickly attached to and detached from any of a wide variety of conventional invalid chairs or wheelchairs despite dimensional and configurational differences in such chairs.

BACKGROUND While tray attachments for invalid chairs have been known in the past, such trays have been suitable for use only with specific chairs or brands of chairs and have not been mountable on other chairs of the same manufacturer or of different manufacturers. Furthermore, conventional trays have often been difficult to attach and detach, especially for an occupant of a chair, and generally have not been adjustable to suit the requirements or preferences of different occupants.

SUMMARY Unlike prior tray attachments, the tray of the present invention is equipped with flexible straps which may be easily wrapped about the trays rearwardly-projecting arm extensions and about the armrests of a conventional wheeled invalid chair to secure the tray in place. Each strap is provided along opposite end surfaces with an adhering product marketed commercially under the trademark Velcro, such product being fully disclosed in Pat. No. 3,009,235, issued Nov. 21, 1961, and Pat. No. 2,717,437, issued Sept. 13, 1955. While substantial forces may be exerted on such straps, as where a number of relatively heavy articles are placed upon the portion of the tray in front of the chairs armrests, the tendency of the tray to pivot downwardly and forwardly about the ends of the armrests is firmly resisted by the straps which, because of their orientation and the relationship between the tray and armrests, are subjected primarily to shearing forces which the Velcro connections easily withstand. Nevertheless, when detachment of the tray is desired, an occupant of the chair, or some attendant, may readily peel apart the Velcro connections of the straps to release the tray from the chairs armrests.

While the armrests of different makes and models of wheelchairs differ dimensionally, the attachment straps are proportioned to extend about virtually any of such armrests so that, for practical purposes, the structure of the present invention constitutes a universal tray attachment for wheelchairs. Furthermore, on any given wheelchair, the tray may be mounted in any of a variety of positionsthat is, in any of a range of selected distances from the back rest of the chair-to meet the needs and preferences of the occupant.

DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a fragmentary perspective view illustrating a tray attachment of the present invention mounted upon a. wheelchair;

FIG. 2 is a further perspective view illustrating in greater detail the attachment means for the tray;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged sectional view taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 2;

5 Claims 3,515,429 Patented June 2, 1970 ice DESCRIPTION Referring to the drawings, the numeral 10 generally designates a wheelchair having wheels 11, an upstanding back rest 12, a seat 13', and generally horizontal armrests 14. The armrests may be padded or unpadded and, in the illustration given, consist of a pair of spaced parallel members secured to the horizontal tubular frame portions 15 of the chair. It is to be understood, however, that the horizontal tubular members 15 may themselves constitute the armrests in less elaborate versions of the chair. Since the chair as shown is generally conventional in the respects noted above, further description of such components is believed unnecessary herein.

Upon the armrests is mounted a horizontal tray 16 which has a main panel portion 16a and a pair of spaced parallel rearwardly-extending arm extensions 16b. The rearwardly-projecting arm extensions are separated by an arcuate recess 17. As shown in the drawings, the arm extensions overlie the armrests of the wheelchair with the main panel portion of the tray projecting forwardly well beyond the front upper edges 18 of those armrests.

The tray has flat top and bottom surfaces and may be formed from any rigid and durable material. In the illustration given, the front and side edges of the main panel portion are covered by a protective strip 19 which may extend slightly above the top surface of the tray to assist in retaining articles placed upon the tray surface.

The rear ends of the trays arm extensions 16b terminate along a transverse line which is normally spaced in front of back rest 12. Connecting means in the form of connecting straps 20 detachably secure the arm extensions to the wheelchairs armrests at points spaced well behind the leading edges 18 of those armrests. Each strap 20 is formed of highly flexible and generally non-stretchable material and extends in a transverse direction completely about an armrest 14 and the arm extension 16b of the tray disposed directly above that armrest. Referring to FIG. 3, it will be observed that each strap has a first end portion 20a which is permanently secured by screws 21 or by any other suitable means to the top surface of the trays arm extension 16b, an intermediate portion 20b extending downwardly and then upwardly about armrest 14 and the supporting frame member 15 therefor, and a second or free end portion 20c which overlies the first end portion 201:. Velcro strips 22 and 23 are permanently bonded or otherwise secured to the opposing surfaces of end portions 20a and 200 for releasably anchoring the free end portion 200 in place upon portion 20a. Specifically, one of the end portions, such as free end portion 20c, is provided with a Velcro strip having a multiplicity of outwardly projecting plastic hooks 24, while the opposite end portion, such as end portion 20a, is provided with a Velcro strip having a pile composed of a multiplicity of outwardly projecting plastic loops 25. The hooks and loops of the Velcro strips are disposed to engage and interlock to resist shearing of the overlapping portions of each strap. However, the hooks are flexible and may be pulled out of engagement with the loops of the pile when the free end portion 200 of the strap is peeled away from the permanently mounted end portion 20a. Since the structure of the Velcro product is believed well known, and is fully disclosed in the aforementioned patents, further discussion is believed unnecessary herein.

When the tray attachment is mounted as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the main panel portion 16a projects well in front of the front edges 18 of the armrests. Downward force in the direction of arrow 26 (FIG. 4), as would occur when objects are placed upon the main portions of the tray, tends to raise the free ends of the arm extensions 16!; to cause the tray to pivot forwardly about the front edges 118 of the armrests. However, the attachment straps 20 encircle the arm extensions and armrests adjacent the rear ends of those arm extensions and at points spaced well behind the leading edges 18 of the armrests. The tensioning force applied to the attachment straps tends to shear the free end portions 20a and 20c of the straps apart; however, the interlocking hooks and loops of such end portions are easily capable of withstanding the shearing forces created by a loading of the tray with the result that the tray 'will remain securely in position upon the armrests of a wheelchair until such time as the occupant or attendant intentionally releases the attachment straps.

Since the end portions of the straps are of substantial length with a substantial area of overlap even when the tray is mounted upon the wheelchair having relatively large or thick armrests, it is believed apparent that the tray attachment may be easily mounted upon virtually any wheelchair equipped with the usual horizontal armrests. The tray attachment may therefore be considered as a universal attachment suitable for mounting upon all, or substantially all, conventional wheelchairs. Furthermore, in mounting the tray attachment upon any given wheelchair the extent of overlap between the arm extensions 16b and the armrests 14 may be varied to suit the comfort and convenience of the patient.

While in the foregoing I have disclosed on embodiment of the invention in considerable detail for purposes of illustration, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that many of these details may be varied without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. In combination with a invalid chair having a pair of generally horizontal armrests, a generally horizontal tray having a main panel portion disposed in front of said armrests and a pair of spaced parallel rearwardly-projecting arm extensions overlying said armrests, and attachment means extending transversely about each arm extension and the armrests therebelow and spaced a substantial distance behind the front end of each armrest for detachably securing the tray in place, each of said attachment means comprising a flexible and generally non-stretchable strap having a first end portion fixed to a top surface of one of said arm extensions, an intermediate portion beneath the armrest adjacent said one of said arm extensions, and a second end portion overlying said first end portion, said first and second end portions having one of their overlapping surfaces provided with a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic hooks and the other of said surfaces provided with a pile composed of a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic loops, the hooks being disposed to engage and interlock with the loops of said pile to resist shearing of the overlapping end portions of each strap, said hooks being flexible to disengage themselves from the loops of said pile when said second end portion is peeled away from said first end portion.

2. In combination with an invalid chair having a pair of generally horizontal armrests, a generally horizontal tray detachably mounted upon said arm-rests, said tray having a main panel portion disposed in front of said arm rests and a pair of spaced parallel rearwardly-projecting arm extensions overlying said armrests, and attachment means extending transversely about each arm extension and the armrests therebelow and spaced a substantial distance behind the front end of each armrest for detachably securing the tray in place, each of said attachment means comprising a flexible and generally non-stretchable strap having a first end portion fixed to one of said arm extensions adjacent the rear end of said one extension, an intermediate portion beneath the armrest underlying said one extension, and a second end portion overlying said first end portion, said first and second end portions having one of their overlapping surfaces provided with a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic hooks and the other of said surfaces provided with a pile composed of a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic loops, the hooks being disposed to engage and interlock with the loops of said pile to resist shearing of the overlapping end portions of each strap said hooks being flexible to disengage themselves from the loops of said pile when said second end portion is peeled away from said first end portion.

3; A tray attachment for invalid chairs comprising a generally horizontal tray adapted to be detachably mounted upon the armrests of a conventional invalid chair, said tray having a main panel portion adapted to be disposed in front of the armrests of an invalid chair and a pair of spaced parallel rearwardly-projecting arm extensions adapted to overlie said armrests, and attachment means for securing the free end portions of said arm extensions to the armrests of a chair, said attachment means comprising a pair of flexible and generally non-stretchable straps each having a first end portion fixed to a top surface of one of said arm extensions adjacent the free end thereof, an intermediate portion adapted to extend downwardly about a chair armrest, and a second end portion adapted to overlie said first end portion for attachment thereto, said first and second end portions having one of their overlapping surfaces provided with a multiplicity of outwardly-projectin g plastic hooks and the other of said surfaces provided with a pile composed of a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic loops, the hooks being disposed to engage and interlock with the loops of said pile to resist shearing of the overlapping end portions of each strap when the tray is mounted upon a chair with each strap extending transversely about an armrest "and an arm extension disposed thereabove, said hooks being flexible to disengage themselves from the loops of said pile when said second end portion is peeledaway from said first end portion.

4. The structure of claim 3 in which said first and second end portions of each strap overlap above each of said arm extensions. 7

5. A tray attachment for invalid chairs comprising a generally horizontal tray adapted to be detachably mounted upon the armrest of a conventional invalid chair, said tray having a main panel portion adaptedto be disposed in front of the armrests of an invalid chair and a pair of spaced parallel rearwardly-projecting arm extensions adapted to overlie said armrests, and attachment means for securing the free end portions of said arm extensions to the armrests of a chair, said attachment means comprising a pair of flexible and generally non-stretchable straps each having a first end portion fixed to one of said arm extensions adjacent the free end thereof, an intermedlate portion adapted to extend downwardly about a chair armrest, and a second end portion adapted to overlie the top surface of said one of said arm extensions, means secured to the top surface of said one of said arm extensions directly beneath said second end portion, said last-mentioned means and said second end portion having opposing surfaces engaging each other, one of said opposing surfaces being provided with a multiplicity of outwardlyprojecting plastic hooks and the other of said opposing surfaces being provided with a pile composed of a multiplicity of outwardly-projecting plastic loops, the hooks being disposed to engage and interlock with the loops of said pile to resist shearing apart of said opposing surfaces when said tray is mounted upon a chair with each strap extending transversely about an armrest and an arm extension disposed thereabove, said hooks being flexible to disengage themselves from the loops of said pile when said second end portion is peeled away from said lastmentioned means.

(References on following page) 6 References Cited 3,279,008 10/1966 Wallach 24-204 3,307,872 3/1967 Murcott 297- 3s5 UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,352,602 11/1967 Svendsen 297-453 x 2,420,673 5/1967 Monrad 108-43 X 3,383,738 5/1968 Fox et a1. 297 24s x 2,994,557 8/1961 King 297-153 X 3,220,767 11/ 1965 Hendrickson 297-219 5 JAMES T. MCCALL, Primary Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2420673 *Mar 20, 1945May 20, 1947Eric S MagnusNavigation device
US2994557 *May 1, 1959Aug 1, 1961Steve S KingChild's convertible chair
US3220767 *Jan 29, 1964Nov 30, 1965Krueger Metal Products CompanyChair
US3279008 *Nov 23, 1964Oct 18, 1966Wolverine Shoe & Tanning CorpSki band
US3307872 *Apr 25, 1966Mar 7, 1967Murcott Charles ESupport belt
US3352602 *Jan 15, 1965Nov 14, 1967Svendsen Svend Eri BjerregaardConvertible chair and table
US3383738 *Aug 11, 1966May 21, 1968Charles P Riva JrChair tie
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4022136 *Jun 14, 1976May 10, 1977Schott James GDesk for physically handicapped persons
US4266825 *Jun 25, 1979May 12, 1981Robert Le DonneMounts for attachment of devices to wheelchairs
US4662676 *Sep 11, 1985May 5, 1987Ken HavelockArm tray for chair
US5038451 *Nov 21, 1989Aug 13, 1991Smith Clyde DFolding lawn chair tray
US5106156 *Jul 30, 1990Apr 21, 1992Marquis James RDetachable foldable tray for child vehicle safety seats
US5176259 *May 18, 1992Jan 5, 1993Karsten AndersenUtility tray with flexible strap fasteners
US5310244 *Feb 5, 1992May 10, 1994Borgardt Alvin GLapboard/patient restraint device
US5333929 *Jun 2, 1992Aug 2, 1994Slagerman Engineering Ltd.Wheelchair tray
US5382074 *Jan 4, 1994Jan 17, 1995Pietra; Barbara M.Detachable stroller tray
US5458394 *Oct 14, 1993Oct 17, 1995Hasbro, Inc.Tray assembly for child's seat
US5720520 *Feb 14, 1997Feb 24, 1998Bengtson; Michaele L.Detachable child seat
US6827405 *Sep 12, 2003Dec 7, 2004Pierre RobertsPortable armrest for a chair
US7210735Jun 7, 2005May 1, 2007Mary Frances LangSystems and methods for a wheelchair tray
US7216929Jun 5, 2006May 15, 2007Mary Frances LangSystems and methods for a wheelchair tray
US7850177 *Jun 1, 2008Dec 14, 2010Terence GilhulyStroller platforms
Classifications
U.S. Classification297/153
International ClassificationA61G5/00, A61G5/10
Cooperative ClassificationA61G2005/1094, A61G5/10
European ClassificationA61G5/10