US 3537748 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Nov. 3, 1970 o. L. KNAPP 3,537,748
I COMBINED AMBULATORY ASSISTANCE DEVICE AND FOLDING CHAIR Filed March 5, 1969 I 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. )RVILLE L. KN PP BY,
ATTORNEY 3,537,748 COMBINED AMBULATORY ASSISTANCE DEVICE AND' FOLDING CHAIR Filed March s, 1969 o. L. KNAPP 2 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTO ORVILLE L. K NAPP ATTORNEY United States Patent Us. Cl. 297-418 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An ambulatory assistance device, which may be a crutch, a cane or the like, combined with a folding chair having novel construction features including a brace and locking means to retain the chain in extended position. The bracei's pivoted at one end to the forward end of the seat, and at its other end is pivoted to a slide adapted to move upwardly and downwardly on a part of the ambulatory assistance device. The slide carries a lug or similar detent which, when the chair is extended, engages a latch to retain the chair in extended position. The latch is remotely actuated to unlocked position by means adjacent the upper end of the ambulatory assistance device.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION I Field of the invention The invention relates to ambulatory assistance devices,
and more particularly to an ambulatory assistance device,
which may be a crutch, cane, or the like, in combination with a folding chair. I
' Description of the prior art reasons, such as excess weight, diflicult extending and/ or collapsing.
' ISUMMARY' OF THE INVENTION 3 My invention overcomes all of these disadvantages.
It is an. object of this invention to provide an improved ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination which is light in weight, rigid in construction, and
which provides a stable chair when extended.
\ Itis a further object to provide an improved ambulatory assistance deviceand folding chair combination that is positively and automatically latched in extendedposition,
.and in which the latch may be remotely actuated by means adjacent the upper part of the cane or crutch to unlatch the locking means to permit easy collapsing of the chair. It is a still further object to provide an improved ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination having novel construction features resulting in a 3,537,748 Patented Nov. 3, 1970 rigid and stable construction which is easy to operate and is trouble-free.
With the above objects, and with other objects and advantages in view, the invention comprises a combined ambulatory assistance device, such as a cane or crutch, for example, and a folding chair. The chair includes a pair of forward legs pivoted at their upper ends to the forward end of a seat, the rearward end of the seat being pivoted on the cane or crutch intermediate its ends. The chair is a tripod construction, the lower end of the cane or crutch forming the third leg of the chair. A pair of reinforcing rods, extending in a plane generally parallel with the seat, are pivotally connected at their forward ends to the lower ends of the two chair legs, while the rear ends thereof are brought into adjacent relationship with each other and pivoted to a support on the lower end of the cane or crutch. A pair of load transmitting rods, extending in a plane generally parallel with the forward legs, pivotally interconnect the rear end of the seat with the above-mentioned support on the lower end of the cane or crutch, which have the effect of transmitting part of the weight of the person sitting on the chair to the cane or crutch at a point close to the ground, relieving the cane or crutch of any load that might tend to twist or bend it. The chair also includes a brace which is pivotally connected at its forward upper end to the forward end of the seat between the forward legs, the
brace extending downwardly and rearwardly to a pivot connection on a slide movable upwardly and downwardly on the lower part of the cane or crutch. The slide includes a downwardly extending tubular extension surrounding the cane or crutch which, when the chair is fully extended, engages the support on the lower end of the cane or crutch to limit the opening or extending movement of the chair. The tubular extension carries a boss which cooperates with a latch pivoted on the support on the lower end of the cane or crutch to lock the parts in the extended position. An operating rod extends upwardly from the latch to a position adjacent the upper or body supporting end of the cane or crutch, where it can be readily operated to release the latch to enable the chair to be collapsed when desired. A cross rail interconnects the lower ends of the legs to reinforce them. A clip on the brace, intermediate the ends thereof, engages the cross rail when the chair is collapsed to retain the parts in collapsed or closed position.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS A better understanding of the invention and its operation will become evident from a consideration of the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment and the accompanying drawings, in which FIG. 1 is a side view of the combination in its extended position;
FIG. 2 is an elevation of the combination in its extended position as viewed from the front;
FIG. 3 is an elevation of the combination in its extended position as viewed from the rear; 7
FIG. 4 is a top plan view of the combination in its extended position looking downwardly on the seat thereof;
FIG. 5 is a side elevation view, similar to that shown in FIG. 1, but showing the chair in its collapsed position;
FIG. 6 is a detail of FIG. 5, drawn to a larger scale, showing the lower rear end of the brace, the clip thereon, and the slide to which the brace is pivoted; and
FIG. 7 is a detail of the structure in FIG. 1, drawn to a larger scale, illustrating the lower support on the cane or crutch with the latch thereon, the operating rod for the latch, and pivotal connection of the reinforcing rods and the load transmitting rods.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT With reference to the accompanying drawings, in which corresponding parts are referred to by the same reference numerals, the combined ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination is designated in its entirety by the numeral 10, and comprises an ambulatory assistance device 12 and a folding chair 14.
The term ambulatory assistance device as used in this specification refers to a device to enable or to assist a person to walk, and may take the form of a cane or crutch, or any other similar structure. In the modification selected to describe the invention, the ambulatory assistance device is in the form of a cane adapted to be engaged by a portion of the body using it, that is, by a hand. The cane includes an elongated standard 16, the upper end having thereon a body engaging portion 18 of generally triangular form, the apex of the triangle having a pair of extensions engaging the upper end of the standard 16 and secured thereon by a plurality of rivets 19. The lower end of the standard 16 has a ground engaging portion 20 to which is attached a rubber tip 22 to reduce the noise when the cane strikes the ground and to minimize the possibility of slipping.
If a crutch were employed, it is evident that the standard 16 and body engaging portion 18 would have the necessary length to reach the armpit of the person using it, and that the usual padding would be added.
The ambulatory assistance device 12 includes a first support 24, a second support 26, and a third support 28. These supports are integrally connected with the device 12 as by rivets and the like. The first support 24 comprises a short tubular member, generally rectangular in section, having aligned bores through opposite sides to receive the standard 16 which, in the example shown, is tubular and round in section. The support 24 is disposed intermediate the ends of the device 12, sufficiently above the tip 22 to comfortably support the seat of the chair, which may be about 18 inches or so.
The second support 26 is similar in construction with the first support 24, and is illustrated in clearer detail in FIG. 7. This support 26 is disposed about the ground engaging portion 20 of the device just above the rubber tip 2.
The third support 28 is disposed adjacent the upper end of the body supporting portion 20 and comprises an angle secured by rivets to the two downwardly extending sides of the triangle 18 as more clearly shown in FIG. 3.
A seat 30 is pivotally connected to the first support 24. The seat comprises a generally rectangular tubular frame 32 supporting criss-crossed cross members 34 and 36. The members 34 and 36 may be made of any desired material or webbing, but in the example shown are made of thin aluminum strips the ends of which are looped around the frame 32 and secured by rivets 38 as shown in FIG. 4. It is not essential that the seat be made of criss-crossed aluminum members, but may be made of any of the numerous materials used for chair seats, such as cane, upholstered, etc. The rear end of the frame 32, intermediate its ends, passes through aligned openings in the opposite sides of the support 24, as shown in FIG. 4, to pivotally support the rear end of the seat in an obvious manner.
While the folding chair 14 and the ambulatory assistance device 12 may be made of any of the well known materials used in the construction of folding chairs and canes or crutches, it is preferred to use tubular aluminum where possible, because of its strength and light weight.
The front leg arrangement of the chair 14 comprises a generally U-shaped structure 40 having a pair of legs 42 and 44 receiving rubber tips 46 at their ends. A bight 48 interconnects the upper ends of the legs, and passes through a pair of spaced pivoting means 50 riveted to the front end of the frame 32 as shown in FIG. 2. A cross rail 52, comprising a tubular rod, extends between and retains the lower ends of the legs 42 and 44 in spaced parallel relationship, and functions as a reinforcing means and also as a means to retain the chair in collapsed condition as will be seen hereinafter. An elongated rod 54 passes through the cross rail 52 and through bores in the lower ends of the legs 42 and 44, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, the ends of the rod 54 being peened outwardly to prevent lateral movement thereof.
A pair of hollow tubular reinforcing rods 56 and 58 pivotally interconnect the lower ends of the legs 42 and 44 with the ground engaging portion 20 of the cane 12. The rear ends of the rods 56 and 58 are flattened and brought together in abutting relationship, where they are pivotally supported on the second support 26 by a pivoting pin 60 passing through bores in the rods 56 and 58 as seen in FIG. 7. The forward ends of the rods 56 and 58 are also flattened at 62 and provided with bores to receive the rod 54. As shown in FIG. 2, the forward ends of the rods 56 and 58 are disposed between the ends of the cross rail 52 and the lower ends of the legs 42 and 44, forming a pivot joint.
A pair of load transmitting rods 64 and 66 interconnect the rear end of the seat 30 and the second support 26, in order to transmit the greater part of the weight of the person occupying the seat directly to the ground enggaging portion 20 of the cane. This construction relieves the middle portion of the cane 12 of forces tending to bend or twist it. The upper ends of the rods 64 and 66 are pivoted to the rear end of the frame 32 at spaced points on opposite sides of the first support 24 by the pivoting means 68 and 70, as shown in FIG. 3, the lower ends being flattened and bored to receive the pivoting pin 60 and supported in the second support 26 as shown in FIG. 7.
A brace 72, in the form of a tubular rod, pivotally interconnects the front end of the frame 32 of the seat 30 with a slide 84 movable on the standard 16 between the first and second supports 24 and 26. The brace 72 is bowed at 74 intermediate its ends as shown in FIG. 1, permitting the parts to be collapsed (FIG. 5) without the brace binding against the rear end of the frame 32 of the seat. The upper forward end of the brace 72 carries a pivot 76 surrounding the bight 48 of the U-shaped member 40 intermediate the pivoting means 50, as shown in FIG. 2, and the lower rearward end of the brace carries, as an extension thereof, a tubular pivoting member 77 having aligned bores therein to receive a pivot pin 78 passing through aligned bores in the slide 86, as shown in FIG. 6. A retaining means, such as a clip 80, is riveted to the lower side of the pivoting member 77 for a purpose to be set forth hereinafter.
The slide 84 comprises a tubular upper cross part 86, rectangular in cross section, having upper and lower aligned bores 87 receiving a depending tubular extension 88, the upper end of the extension being integral with the cross part 86 to move therewith. When the chair is fully extended, the lower end of the extension 88 engages the upper side of the second support 26, as shown in 'FIG. 7, thereby limiting the extension of the chair, the brace 72 serving to give rigidity and stability to the structure.
Adjacent the lower end of the extension 88 there is provided a boss 90 serving as a keeper for a locking mechanism including a latch 92 pivoted at one end by a pivot pin 94 passing through aligned bores in the second support 26. The latch 92 is generally U-shaped in section, the pivot pin passing through the legs. One end of the bight of the U of the latch includes an elongated slot 96 receiving the lower end 20 of the standard 16 and the extension 88 of the slide 84. With the parts in the position shown in FIG. 7, the left hand end of the slot 96 engages the upper part of the boss 90, and any movement in an upward direction of the slide 84.and the extension 88 thereon will result in a pivoting movement of the latch 92 in a clockwise direction about its pivot pin 94, bringing the left' hand end of the slot more tightly against the boss 90 in a locking action. Downward movement of the extension 88 is prevented by the engagement of the extension with the second support 26. When the left hand end of the latch 92 is forced downwardly, resulting in a counterclockwise movement about the pivot pin 94, the left hand end of the slot 96 moves downwardly about the boss 90 clearing the latching engagement therewith, permitting the extension 88 on the slide 84 to move upwardly when the chair is moved to its collapsed position.
A remotely actuated control rod 98 permits operation of the latch 92 from a position adjacent the body engaging portion 18 of the ambulatory assistance device 12. The rod 98 passes through aligned apertures 100, 102 and 104 in the third, first and second supports28, 24 and 26, respectively, and through apertures 105 in the slide 84, the upper end of the rod carrying an operating knob 106, and the lower end of the rod carrying a stop 108 engaging the upper side of the left hand end of the bight of the latch, passing through an aperture in the end of the latch as shown in FIG. 7. A spring 110 interposed between the upper part of the second support 26 and the lower part of the left hand end of the bight of the latch urges the left hand end of the latch upwardly into a boss engaging, or locked position.
FIGS. and 7 illustrate the parts in the closed or collapsed position. The clip 80 engages the cross rail 52 to retain the chair collapsed, the seat 30 is pivoted upwardly about its connection with the first support 24, the lower ends of the legs 42 and 44 are swung inwardly, and the upper part of the brace 72 is substantially parallel with the legs forming a compact structure. The slide 84 has moved upwardly away from the second support 26 to a position just below the first support 24. In order to extend the chair, the device may be held in the position shown in FIG. 5 with the tip 22 engaging the ground, the upper end of the ambulatory assistance device held by one hand or retained in an armpit, and the upper end of the seat 30 may be grasped by one hand and swung outwardly from the cane or crutch in a clockwise direction. This action releases the engagement of the clip 80 with the cross rail 52, the upper or forward end of the seat swinging outwardly about the pivot connection with the first support 24 and the legs 42 and 44 swinging outwardly about their pivotal connections with the forward end of the seat and the forward ends of the reinforcing rods 56 and 58. As the forward end of the seat 30 swings outwardly and downwardly, the rear end of the brace 72 and the slide 84 attached thereto move downwardly about the standard 16 of the ambulatory assistance device, the extension 88 on the slide striking the latch 92 causing it to move counterclockwise about its pivot pin 94 sufficiently to allow the extension 88 and the boss 90 thereon to pass through the slot 96 in the latch to a position in which the lower end of the extension 88 engages the upper part of the second support 26 to limit the downward movement of the slide and the extension of the chair, the boss 90 coming to a stop just below the latch 92 as shown in FIG. 7. In this limiting position, the chair is fully extended, and the parts are in their relative positions shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3. There is provided a rigid and stable structure, the brace 72 looking the forward end of the seat 30 with the lower end of the ambulatory assistance device 12 and the second support 26 thereon, while at the same time serving as a reinforcing means. The reinforcing rods 56 and 58 on the one hand, and the cross rail 52 on the other hand, maintain the lower ends of the legs in their proper the upper end of the ambulatory assistance device is grasped by one hand or by an armpit while the lower end engages the ground, in the position shown in FIG. 1, and one hand grasps the outer or forward end of the seat 30 and pulls upwardly in a counterclockwise direction. Depressing the knob releases the latch 92 from engage ment with the boss 90 on the extension 88, permitting the slide 84 to move upwardly. The counterclockwise movement of the forward end of the seat 30 continues until the parts move into the position shown in FIG. 5, in which the cross rail 52 enters the jaws of theclip 80 to retain the chair in its collapsed position.
1. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination, comprising: an ambulatory assistance device having an upper body engaging portion and a lower ground engaging portion, and a first support and a second support intermediate said upper and lower portions; and a folding chair, said chair having a seat pivotally attached at its rearward end to said first support, a pair of legs pivotally attached at their upper ends in spaced relation at the forward end of said seat, reinforcing means pivotally interconnecting the lower ends of said legs with said second support, a slide movable on said ambulatory assistance device intermediate said supports, a brace means pivotally interconnecting the forward end of said seat and said slide, said slide engaging said support to limit the extension of said chair, and means locking said chair in its extended position.
2. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, in which said reinforcing means comprises a pair of rods, one end of one of said rods being pivotally attached to the lower end of one leg and one end of the other of said rods being pivotally attached to the lower end of the other leg, and the other ends of said rods brought together in contiguous relationship at the pivotal attachment to said second support.
3. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, in which said brace is bowed upwardly intermediate its ends.
4. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, including a reinforcing cross rail interconnecting the lower ends of said legs, and retaining means attached to said brace and engaging said cross rail when said chair is collapsed to retain the chair in collapsed position.
5. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, including load transmitting means pivotally interconnecting the rearward end of said seat with said second support.
6. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 5, in which said load transmitting means comprises a pair of rods, one end of each of said rods being pivotally connected to the rearward end of said seat at opposite sides of said first sup port.
7. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, in which said pair of legs comprises a U-shaped member, the bight of the U being pivotally connected with the forward end of said seat.
8. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 1, in which said slide includes a tubular member extending downwardly therefrom and surrounding the lower end of said ambulatory assistance device, said tubular member engaging said second support when the chair is in extended position.
9. An ambulatory assistance device and folding chair combination as defined in claim 8, in which said looking means comprises a latch pivoted on said second support, said latch having a recess receiving said tubular extension on said slide, means on said extension engaged relative positions. When it is desired to collapse the chair, by said latch to retain said slide in chair extended position, and a spring urging said latch into engagement References Cited with said means on said extension.
10. An ambulatory assistance deviceand folding chair UNITED STATES PATENTS combination as defined in claim 9, including a remote- 979,959 12/1910 Johnson 297 118 ly positioned means to actuate said latch, and a third sup- 5 2,629,429 2/1953 Baumfeld et a1 297 118 port adjacent the upper end of said ambulatory assistance 2,766,813 10/1956 Kay 297*155 2,991,035 7/1961 Puckett 248-155 device, said remotely positioned means comprising a rod slidable in apertures in said first second nad third sup- DONALD A. RIFFIN P ports and through said slide, said rod being attached at G nmary Exammer its lower end to said latch, the upper end of said rod 10 having a knob thereon. 248155; 29716 US. Cl. X.R.