US 3516469 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 23, 1970 B. L. MCDONALD POWER OPERATED FLEXIBLE WALL SECTION Filed Jan. 2, 1969 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 5y www fm. @We
TTO/Q/Vfy June 23, 1970 B. l.. MCDONALD POWER OPERATED FLEXIBLE WALL SECTION 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Jan. 2, 1969 TTO/Q/VEV United States Patent Oihce 3,516,469 POWER OPERATED FLEXIBLE WALL SECTION Bruce L. McDonald, 302 1st St., Jackson, Mich. 49203 Filed Jan. 2, 1969, Ser. No. 788,516 Int. Cl. E06b 9/08, 9/14 U.S. Cl. 160-26 2 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention relates to doors, windows, partitions, blinds and the like, wherein it is desired to provide a closure member for any type of wall opening.
An object of the inveniton is to generally improve devices of the character indicated and to provide such a closure which is simple in construction, economical to manufacture and efficient in operation.
Another object of the invention is to provide a closure for a wall opening which has almost universal application, whereby the overall costs of the closure may be reduced, particularly the many expensive on-site costs which can be eliminated through mass production methods.
Another object of the invention is to provide a device of the character indicated which may be used as a movable partition, which may be erected and taken down with a minimum of effort and expense.
Another object of this invention is to provide a device of the character indicated which, because of its construction, greatly conserves space which must ordinarily be provided for hinged doors, and the like. This device also requires much less space for storage when it is not in use.
Another object of the invention is to provide a closure for a wall opening which is constructed in a manner to provide maximum sound and thermal insulation by having an air space trapped between spaced layers of material.
Another object of the invention is to provide a closure for a wall opening which makes it economically feasible to provide power operated doors, and the like, within the budget of the average home owner.
Anoter object of the invention is to reduce the weight and thickness of doors, partitions and the like, by employing tension in the layers of material, which provides rigidity and indestructibility to the structure, without the necessity of using stiff substances as plywood, and the like.
Another object of the invention is to provide builders and architects with an additional medium of expression, through the use of a great variety of colors, textures and materials for the exposed surfaces of the wall closure, such as a door or a partition.
The foregoing and other objects and advantages of the invention will become more apparent as the description proceeds, reference being made from time to time to the accompanying drawing, forming part of the w1th1n disclosure, in which drawing:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the device embodying the invention.
FIG. 2 is a vertical section, taken substantially on the line 2 2 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a vertical section, taken substantially on the 3,516,469 Patented June 23, 1970 line 3-3 of FIG. 1, with a power source shown in broken lines. This figure also shows an elevational view of one end of the closure member.
FIG. 4 is an enlarged, horizontal section taken substantially on the line 4 4 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 5 is a modification showing an exploded view of the device when used as a partition.
FIG. 6 is a compacted View of the device shown in FIG. 5, with a driving mechanism in place.
FIG. 7 is an enlarged, perspective view of a plurality of spacer elements strung together like beads on a pair of heavy cords. This figure also illustrates the driven elements which receive the driving sprockets.
FIG. 8 is an enlarged, end, elevational view of one of the spacers shown in FIG. 7, illustrating the manner in which it is received in the track, which is shown in cross section.
FIG. 9 is a perspective view illustrating the drive mechanism and the manner in which the tracks coil within the frame structure, which is partly shown in broken lines.
FIG. 10 is a diagrammatic view illustrating the manner in which the strung together spacers are received in the coiled track.
Referring now more particularly to the drawing, it will be understood that in the embodiment herein disclosed, the reference character 11 indicates, in general, the frame in which is housed the device embodying the invention. The frame 11 includes a base member 12, a top member 13, a side member 14, and a side member 15. The base member 12, and the top member 13, house and support laterally positioned track members 16, one of which is shown in section, in FIG. 8, which track members terminate, at one side of the frame, in spirals 17 and 18, (FIGS. 4 and 9). The spiral ends 17 and 18 of tracks 16 are housed in a frame member 19, as shown in FIG. 4. The frame member 19 also encases the drive shaft 20, which moves the closure member, as hereinafter described. The drive shaft 20 is driven by a suitable motor 21, which may be located within the frame member 19, as conditions dictate. The drive shaft 20 is provided, at either end, with suitable bearings 22. The drive shaft 20 has mounted for rotation therewith, upper and lower sprockets 23 and 24, which are housed in the upper and lower frame members 13 and 12, and are arranged to move the closure member, which is generally indicated by the reference character 25.
The closure member 25 is constructed of a plurality of spacers 26 (FIGS. 7 and 8) Awhich are strung together, like beads, on the heavy cords 27, which may be made of nylon or other suitable material. The spacers 26 are preferably made of a plastic material also, so that they will withstand moisture, heat, etc. The spacers 26 are preferably made of hexagonal (in cross section) stock (FIGS. 4 and 10) so that there are three faces on each side, to which faces is cemented the material layers 28, 29 (FIGS. 2 and 4) to form the enclosure 25. The spacers 26 extend inwardly from the upper and lower edges of the material layers 28-29, a predetermined distance, except at the extreme ends of the closure 25 where the spacers 26A and 26B extend from the upper edge to the lower edge of the closure 25. The material is cemented onto the faces of the spacers 26 so that there is an insulating dead air space Ibetween the layers 28-29 throughout a substantial portion of their area. Although I have shown only one thickness to each layer 28-29, it will be understood that a multiple thickness may be employed, if desired, to give more strength to the closure 25.
As shown in FIG. 8, each spacer 26 is formed with a recess 30 to receive the flange 31 of the track 16, and with a set back 32 to receive the ange 33 of the track. Each spacer is also formed with a recess 34 (FIG. 7) for receiving the teeth of the drive sprockets 23-24, so that upon rotation of the shaft 20, in either direction, by the reversible motor 21, the closure 25 will move longitudinally. When the closure 25 moves to the left in FIG. 1 and 4, to open the door, it will coil on the coiled track sections 17 and 18. When it is moved to the right, the end spacer 26B Will be received snugly in the offset 35 of the member 14 to close the opening. The tracks 16, 17, 18 at top and bottom maintain tension at all times on the layers of material, yet the closure is flexible enough to negotiate the coils.
It is believed that the operation of the device is obvious from the foregoing description.
Having described my invention, what I claim and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A closure for a Wall opening comprising a frame, channel like tracks supported by said frame, each of said tracks terminating at one end in a coil, and a exible closure -member supported by said tracks and frame and slideable therein, said exible closure member consisting of a plurality of rigid spacers having their ends received in said tracks and having elements thereon arranged to engage the teeth of power driven sprockets, said spacers having bores through which is strung at least one heavy cord, there being at least one layer of eXible material secured to front and back of said spacers to form a dead air space between said layers, each of said tracks having means thereon for exerting lateral and longitudinal tension on said flexible closure member.
2. The structure of claim 1 in which said tracks and said spacers cooperatae to develop longitudinal and lateral tension in said flexible closure member.
References Cited 641,3101 `6/1962 Italy.
J. KARL BELL, Primary Examiner U.S. Cl. X.R. -36, 133