US 3563599 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Jules M. Heumann San Francisco, Calif.
Mar. 17, 1969 Feb. 16, 1971 Metropolitan Furniture Manufacturing Company San Francisco, Calif.
fractional part interest to each partnership inventor Appl. No. Filed Patented Assignee FURNITURE CONSTRUCTION WITH REMOVABLE PANELS AND CUSHIONS 13 Claims, 7 Drawing Figs.
U.S. Cl. 297/218; 297/440 Int. Cl. A47c 4/30, A47c 4/02 Field of Search 297/218,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,059,875 11/1936 Katz 297/283 3,220,767 1 1/1965 Hendrickson 297/219 3,248,147 4/1966 Testa 297/218 3,266,113 8/1966 Flanagan, Jr... 24/204 3,484,907 12/1969 Elsenheimer 24/204X Primary Examiner-Casmir A. Nunberg AttorneyFryer, Tjensvold, Feix, Phillips & Lempio ABSTRACT: A furniture construction comprises a rigid frame having a plurality of upholstered panels removably mounted thereon by pairs of identical interlocking fastening means. Each fastening means of each pair comprises a plurality of resilient elements adapted to be snapped into locked position with respect to the elements of a mating fastening means. A plurality of cushions are detachably secured to the frame by means of belts having reversible snap fasteners attached to the ends thereof.
PATENTED FEB 1 6 I9" sum .1 0F 2 INVENTIO'R JULES M. HEUMANN FIG.
ATTORNEYS PATENTEUFEmsmn sum 2 HF 2 FIG.5
|NVENTOR 7 BY JULES M. HEUMANN ATTORNEYS I FURNITURE CONSTRUCTION WITH-I REMOVABLE PANELS AND CUSHIONS Furniture upholstery oftentimes becomes damaged, soiled or otherwise impaired. Such conditions are particularly prevalent with respect to furniture employed in hotels, for example, wherein furniture is subjected to continuous use. When the furnitures upholstery becomes impaired considerable expense is normally involved for repairing same, including rather high shipping and handling charges. In addition, a replacement for the furniture must be obtained for the interim during which such repairs are being made.
An object of this invention is to overcome the above, briefly described problems by providing a furniture construction having upholstered components removably mounted thereon to facilitate expeditious and economic repair or replacement. One novel aspect of this invention comprises the utilization of at least one pair of substantially identical and interlocking fastening means for removably attaching an upholstered panel on the furniture construction. Each fastening means of each pair may comprise a plurality of resilient elements adapted to interlock with resilient elements of the other fastening means to positively attach the panel on the furniture. Another aspect of this invention involves the utilization of straps secured to cushions with each strap having reversible fastening means thereon for permitting the cushion to be turned over when one side thereof becomes unduly soiled or otherwise impaired.
Other objects of this invention will become apparent from the following description and accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is an isometric view of the back side of a couch employing novel features of this inventiontherein;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged view of an, end of the couch with an upholstered panel shown in a removed position adjacent thereto;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary view showing a pair of fastening means employed in the couch in partial, interlocking relationship;
FIGS. 4 and 5 are enlarged, sectional views taken in the direction of arrows M and 5-5 respectively, in FIG. 1;
FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken in the direction of arrows 6--6 of FIG. 4; and
FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken in the direction of arrows 7-7 in FIG. 2.
FIG. 1 illustrates a couch employing novel features of this invention therein. However, it should be understood that such features may be utilized in other furniture constructions, such as chairs, ottomans and the like. It should be further noted that the illustrated couch embodiment is symmetrically formed, i.e., the ends thereof are identically constructed. Therefore, only one end of the couch will be described in detail.
The couch has a stationary frame comprising vertically disposed and parallel legs 10 and Ill suitably secured to horizontally disposed and parallel cross braces I2 and I3. The legs and braces provide means defining a rectangular opening 14 (FIG. 2) adapted to receive and retain an upholstered panel 15 therein. The frame further comprises horizontally disposed and parallel cross braces I6 and 17 positioned at the back side of the couch and perpendicular relative to braces 12 and I3, respectively.
Vertically disposed and parallel braces 18 and 19 are secured between cross braces 16 and 17 to define three rectangular openings, one of which is shown at 20 in FIG. 4. Each opening is adapted to receive an upholstered panel 21 substantially identical to panel 115. The legs and various braces are suitably secured together to form a structurally integrated frame construction. The couch may further comprise three identical upholstered seat cushions 22 and upholstered back cushions 23 removably mounted on the frame in a manner hereinafter described.
Referring to FIG. 2, one novel aspect of this invention comprises the utilization of at least one pair of substantially identical and interlocking fastening means 25 for removably attaching panel IS in the furniture construction. Although the illustrated embodiment shows four pairs of such fastening means it should be understood that a lesser or greater number thereof may be employed. Referring briefly to FIG. 3, each of the fastening means preferably comprises a horizontally disposed base 26 having multiple rows of vertically disposed and resilient elements secured thereto.
Each element comprises a flexible stem 27 having an enlarged head 28 secured to a free end thereof. The stems are suitably spaced from each other to provide spaces therebetween to permit a pair of fastening means to be snapped together, as shown, by interlocking the respective elements thereof. In particular, the heads 28 of a first fastening means are adapted to snap into a fixed position in the spaces provided between the elements of a second fastening means (FIG. 5). An aperture 29 may be formed through base 26 at each end of the fastening means for securance purposes.
The fastening means may be of the type marketed by the Industrial Tape Division of the 3M Company and known as HEDLOK fasteners. For example, their so-called MNZ 1.56" X 0.75 X 0.08" oval base nylon fastener has proven quite suitable for the furniture applications under consideration. The nylon material exhibits sufficient resiliency to promote the above-mentioned interlocking function occurring between each pair of fastening means. U.S. Pat. No. 3,266,1l3, for example, illustrates other types of similar fastening means which could be employed herein.
Panel 15 may comprise a rectangular base 30 of plywood or other rigid material which is suitably padded and covered by fabric 31. Horizontally disposed spacers or struts 32 and 33 are suitably secured to the back side of the panel to be substantially coextensive therewith. The struts mount the first ones of the pairs of fastening means 25 at the ends thereof. The struts further aid in rigidifying the panels to prevent warpage thereof.
Horizontally disposed and parallel secondary crossbraces 34 and 35 are secured to the couchs frame to increase the structural integrity thereof and to cooperate with juxtaposed struts 32 and 33 (FIG. 5) to aid in properly locating the panel on the couch. In particular, the lower portion of strut 33 engages the top portion of brace 35 whereas the top portion of strut 32 engages the lower portion'of strut 33 engages the top portion of brace 35 whereas the top portion of strut 32 engages the lower portion of brace 34. The braces thus properly locate the panel and prevent lateral movements thereof relative to the frame.
In the embodiment under consideration the first and second fastening means of each pair are secured to identical panels 15 to attach the inboard and outboard panels together. The panels are mounted on the couchs frame to expose the upholstered sides thereof on opposite sides of brace or arm 13. The panels further assume positions (FIG. 5) wherein such upholstered sides are substantially flush with the outer surface portions of braces 10, II, 12 and I3. Recesses 36 and 37 may be formed on respective sides of brace 12 to receive the lower end of a respective panel therein. Foamed plastic strips 38 and 39 may be secured to the exposed sides of braces 34 and 35, respectively, to afford the panels a snug fit on the frame.
FIGS. 2 and 7 illustrate a tool 40 which may be employed to expeditiously remove panels I5 and 21 from the furniture. The tool may be formed out of a thin and flexible piece of stainless steel or the like, constructed and arranged to provide a flat body portion having a handle 41 secured to one end thereof. An angled resilient tongue 42 may be stamped out of the body portion and arranged to collapse when it is inserted between leg 11 and panel 21 (FIG. 7), for example.
Once the tongue passes the panel it automatically springsback to its dotted line position. The tool is then pulled away from the couch to permit tongue 42 to engage the back side of the panel to release the fastening means for panel removal. Referring to FIG. 4, it should be noted that panels 21 are substantially identical to panels 15 but are directly attached to braces 45 and 46, formed integrally with the couchs frame.
The means for detachably mounting seat cushions 22 and back cushions 23 will not be described. Each seat cushion, as shown in FIG. 4, is suitably upholstered to define a seam 47 having one end of a strap 48 secured therein. The free end of the strap has a reversible, female member 49 of a reversible snap fastening means secured thereto whereas an interengaging male member 50 is secured to the top side of brace 46. A slanted cross brace 51 is secured to the couchs frame to receive the strap thereunder to hold the seat cushion in position and to hide the straps visibility.
The end of the strap is further positioned around brace 46 and snapped into position once panel 21 has been removed to expose same. It should be noted thata socket is formed at each side of female member 49 of the snap fastener to permit cushion 22 to be turned over, sideways, should the exposed side thereof become soiled or otherwise impaired. Although only one strap is illustrated, it should be understood that any desired number thereof may be employed.
Back cushion 23 defines a seam 52 having one end of a strap 53 secured therein (FIGS. 4 and 6). Bottom brace 51 is secured to upstanding braces 54 and a parallel top brace 55 to provide a backup subframe for the rear cushions. The same type of snap fasteners 49-50 are employed therefor, as more clearly illustrated in FIG. 6, to attach the free ends of the straps to braces 54. It should be understood that other types of fastening means, such as a suitable version of fastening means 25, could be utilized in lieu of fastening means 4950.
1. ln a furniture construction comprising a frame defining at least one closed opening therein, a rigid panel removably mounted on said furniture construction to completely cover said opening, upholstery covering an outer side of said panel, at least one pair of substantially identical and interlocking fastening means for removably attaching an inner side of said panel on said furniture construction, each of said fastening means comprising a horizontally disposed base having multiple rows of vertically disposed and resilient elements secured thereto, each of said elements comprising a stem having an enlarged head secured to an end thereof, said stems spaced one from another on said vase to permit said pair of fastening means to be snapped and attached together by interlocking the respective elements thereof.
2. The invention of claim 1 wherein said furniture construction comprises two of said panels and wherein a first one of said pair of fastening means is secured to the inner side of one panel and a second one is secured to the inner side of the other panel, said panels being attached to each other by said fastening means.
3. The invention of claim 1 wherein said panel is attached directly to said frame by said pair of fastening means with on of said fastening means being secured to said frame and the other one of said fastening means being secured to said panel.
4. The invention of claim I wherein said panel comprises spaced parallel struts secured to an unupholstered side thereof and wherein a fastening means is positioned at each end of each strut.
5. The invention of claim 4 wherein said frame comprises spaced parallel crossbraces each juxtaposed to a respective one of said struts and cooperating therewith to prevent said panel from moving laterally relative to said crossbraces.
'6. The invention of claim 1 wherein said frame comprises means defining a substantially rectangular opening for receiving said panel therein to maintain the upholstered side thereof substantially flush with outer surface portions of said frame.
7. The invention of claim 1 wherein said furniture construction is a couch having at least one removable panel mounted at each end thereof and a plurality of removable panels mounted at a back side thereof.
8. The invention of claim 1 wherein said furniture construction at least one cushion removably attached to said frame, said cushion comprising at least one strap secured thereto and cooperating fastening means for attaching a free end of said strap to said frame for removably attaching said cushion to said frame. I
9. In a furniture construction comprising a frame and a plurality of cushions, each upholstered on opposite sides thereof, removably mounted on said frame, a strap secured to each of said cushions and reversible fastening means for attaching a free end of said strap to said frame whereby said cushion may be reversed on said frame, means forming an opening in said frame for exposing said fastening means and a panel, upholstered on an outer side thereof, removably mounted on said frame to normally close said opening.
10. The invention of claim 9 wherein said frame comprises a brace and said reversible fastening means comprises interengaging male and female elements, one of said element secured to said brace and the other of said elements secured to a free end of said strap.
11. In a furniture construction comprising a stationary frame defining an opening therein, a substantially fiat and rigid panel removably mounted on said furniture construction to completely cover the opening defined by said frame, upholstery covering an outer side of said panel, and cooperating releasable fastening means on an inner side of said panel and on said furniture construction for releasably attaching said panel on said furniture construction.
12. The invention of claim 11 whereiri the opening defined by said frame and said panel are rectangular and wherein said fastening means attaches said panel on said furniture construction to maintain the outer, upholstered side of said panel substantially flush with respect to outer surfaces portions of said frame.
13. The invention of claim 11 wherein said fastening means releasably attaches said panel directly to said frame.
3 3 33 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3,5 3,599 Dated February 97 Inventor(s) Jules n It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
Claim 1, Col. 3, line &1, "vase" should be --base-- Claim 8, Col. 4, line 18, after "construction" the word --comprises should be inserted Claim 10, Col. '4, line 34, "element" should be --elements-- Claim 12, C01. 4, line 49, "surfaces" should be --surface--.
Signed and sealed this 29th day of June 1 971 (SEAL) Attest:
EDWARD M.FIE'ICHER,JR. WILLIAM E. SGHUYLER Attesting Officer Commissioner of Pat