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Publication numberUS3570200 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 16, 1971
Filing dateApr 14, 1969
Priority dateApr 14, 1969
Publication numberUS 3570200 A, US 3570200A, US-A-3570200, US3570200 A, US3570200A
InventorsBaer Arthur, Ritner Carl E
Original AssigneeSpecialties Const
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Partition panel structures
US 3570200 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 16, 1971 c. E. RITNER PARTITION PANEL STRUCTURES 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed April 14, 1969 5 8 7 I. m m ml mE ,Z N A E m v m m U L H R T AR vl4lllllll FIG. 2

t e ATTORNEYS March 16, c, E RlTNER PARTITION PANEL STRUCTURES 2 Sheets-Sheet 8 Filed April 14, 1969 KIA . a 6 1 )RR m mn VR .R W U m mR CA BY W,MM;W

their ATTORNEYS United States Patent O U.S. 'Cl. 52-422 12 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An interior partition panel structure which includes an extruded vertical post support having a cross-sectional configuration of a cross formed by orthogonally intersecting flat members, and an adjustable base member. Panels join the posts with the panel edges received in corners defined between the orthogonal fiat members of the posts, and with adjacent panels at each post having their edges located in diagonally opposite corners. A transom bar mounted along the top edges of the panels is fitted with a removable cover, and a projecting rib of the transom bar serves to align the panels along their top edges. A baseboard slidably received in a slot in the bottom of the panels can be used to fill the space between the bottom of the panels and the floor.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an improved interior partition panel which is both esthetically appealing and easy to erect and disassemble, and which employs a novel supporting post that may be used at corners and in straightruns of the partitions to accept panels of any standard design without the use of special fittings and hardware.

Interior partitions for office buildings, schools and factories are in widespread use for dividing large rooms into smaller areas of various sizes, and there are many types of partition assemblies for as many specific purposes. Of the several known types of assemblies, however, many are intended for permanent erection only or require specially designed fittings, hardware and panels so that little versatility is available from any single assembly. Moreover, many interior partitions are both complex to erect and expensive to purchase, restricting their appeal for temporary partition installations. In general, the trend in such partitions has been away from simple, universal designs.

In several known types of structural frame members for partitions, the vertical and horizontal framing members are of complex extruded cross-sectional configuration, having various webs and flanges defining grooves and channels for receiving attaching hardware consistings of lugs, brackets and other interlocking attachments for securing the panels to the framing members. Yet other supporting posts, although structurally simple, require unsightly fastening lugs and brackets for attaching the partition panels.

It therefore is an object of this invention to provide a simply constructed interior partition panel structure which can be easily and quickly assembled and disassembled.

It is another object of this invention to provide a partition structure with a minimum number of elements, all of which may be inexpensively and quickly mass produced. A

It is a further object of this invention to provide a partition structure of neat and unique esthetic appearance, and which avoids the primary objections to structures of the prior art.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In brief, these and other objects of the invention are attained by an interior partition panel structure which includes a vertical, preferably extruded, post support having a cross-sectional configuration of a cross formed between intersecting flat flanges or webs. Preferably, the posts are supported by adjustable base members. Edges of closure panels are received in corners defined between the intersecting webs of respective posts, and panels are attached to the webs by screws or other suitable fastening elements. In the preferred embodiment, the edges of adjacent panels are received in diagonally opposite corners of the same post, and a transom with a removable snapon cover is mounted along the top of the panels and includes a downwardly projecting rib serving to align the panels at the top. The bottom edges of the panels may be provided with a slot to slidably receive a baseboard, which may be added to fill the space between the bottom of the panels and the floor.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS For a better understanding of the invention, reference may be made to the following detailed description of exemplary embodiments, and to the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is an elevational view of an interior partition panel structure in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary cross-sectional view taken on line 22 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary cross-sectional view taken on line 3-3 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of a vertical support element taken on line 4-4 of FIG. 2;

'FIG. 5 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of a transom element taken on line 55 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged elevational view showing the intersection of a vertical support element, partition panels and transom; and

FIG. 7 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-sectional view of the lower portion of a partition panel with an adjustable baseboard suitable for use with the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION FIG 1. illustrates an erected partition assembly according to the invention which includes vertical post supports 10 and 11 to which are affixed wood or metal partition panels 12. The panels may be, for example, standard commercial doors of hollow plywood box construction, or any other commercially available panel. Since the assembly is designed for maximum versatility and requires no special attaching hardware, the selection of the panel Size and material is not critical. The posts 10, 11 may extend to the ceiling to be joined to a ceiling channel 13, although the posts need not be longer than the height of the partition.

Each of posts 10, ll has a supporting base member 14 at its foot that can be adjusted to raise and lower the height of the post and attached panels relative to the floor level. A transom 15, more fully described below, is mounted at the top of the panels '12.

Each vertical post 10, 11, as illustrated best in FIGS. 2, 3 and 4, has a cross-section in the shape of a square cross formed by a pair of flat webs, or flanges, 16 intersecting at right angles. Preferably, the posts are extruded in unitary form from a suitable material, such as aluminum, which can be out in any desired length and given an attractive finish by etching, anodization or spray coating, as desired. The vertical edges 17 of adjacent panels are received in diagonally opposite post corners defined between the intersecting webs 16, and the panels are affixed to the posts by screws 18 or other suitable fasteners extending through holes 19 bored in the webs and engaging the panel ends 20, or, in an alternative arrangement, engaging the panel sides 21 near the panel ends. In the resulting configuration of the preferred arrangement, the panel sections 12 alternate on opposite sides of those webs which extend parallel to the plane of the finished partition structure.

As shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, the vertical posts may be used as either end posts or corner posts. Because of the configuration of the support posts, panel ends need not abut the same projections of the common web, thereby making all panel ends accessible to fasteners extending through the web and allowing the mounting of panels along the partition wall in any desired order. Moreover, the alternating, staggered displacement of the panels forwardly and rearwardly of the webs parallel to the finished partition makes the partition esthetically more pleasing and interesting to a viewer. In this connection, it will be noted that the panels can be disposed consecutively in a common direction, rather than in alteration forwardly and rearwardly.

The base member 14 associated with each post, as depicted in FIGS. 1, 2 and 4, consists in part of a foot or rug grip 22 attached to an externally threaded screw leg 23. The screw leg 23 is received in a hollow internally threaded cylindrical bushing 24 to which is attached a knurled adjusting nut 25 for adjustment of the bushing with respect to the legs 23. Each nut includes protrusions 27 from its upper surface for engaging the ends of the web members at the lower end of the post support Whenthe nut is turned, thus preventing undesired turning of the nut once set. The base supporting bushing 24 fits into a recess 26 formed between notched portions of the intersecting webs at the lower end of each vertical'post and, thus, the bushing may be easily inserted or removed from the post, eliminating the need for special attaching devices between the base member and the posts.

When the adjusting nut 25 is turned, the bushing 24, the top of which contacts the upper end of the recess 26 is lowered or raised relative to the leg 23, thereby raising or lowering the post height from the floor. Each post can thus be individually adjusted in height to compensate for variations in floor elevations from point to point.

The transom I15, illustrated in FIGS. 1, 2 5 and 6, consists in part of a transom channel member 28 with a rib 29 projecting downwardly from the undersurface 30 of the member 28. Screws 31, extending through holes bored in the under surface of the channel member and into the upper ends 32- of the panel section, may be used to secure the transom atop the partition. The faces 33 of the panel sections are fitted against and aligned by the rib which, in addition, gives a finished appearance to the otherwise exposed top edges of the panels, as is best observed from FIGS. 5 and 6. A recess 34, formed where the rib 29 is cut away, receives a vertical post '11 at each intersection of the transom, panel sections, and vertical posts, as depicted in FIG. 6.

A snap-on cover 35, consisting of a cover piece 36 having a latch 37 along each longitudinal edge covers the open channel of the member 28, providing a closed conduit for electrical or communications wiring. Each latch 37 consists in part of a hook 38 which locks into a recess 39 formed between an inwardly and downwardly tapering projection 40 and an inwardly projecting flange 41. When the cover is placed over the opening of the channel member and pushed downwardly, the walls 42 of the member 28 spring apart slightly as the hooks 38 pass over the tapering surfaces of the projections 40. The cover 35 also includes a narrow channel 43 formed between the portions 44, 45 to accept a prying instrument for removal of the cover. A screw driver, for example, inserted into the channel 43 and forced downwardly deflects the channel walls 42 outwardly to release the hooks 38 from their positions in the recesses 39.

FIG. 7 illustrates a panel having a slot at its lower 4 edge to accommodate a wood or metal baseboard 51 free to slide within the slot. The baseboard may be lowered to a desired level to completely close the space between the bottom of the panel and the floor and fastened by a screw 52.

The embodiments of the invention described herein are illustrative only. Many variations and modifications may be made by one skilled in the art without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention. For example, the webs of the support post need not intersect at precisely right angles, so that the corners formed by the webs might define acute and obtuse angles. Further, adjacent panels need not be staggered forwardly and rearwardly of the partition line, even though adjacent panel edges are located in diagonally opposite corners of the post. In addition, panel edges need not be located in diagonally opposite corners, but, instead, panel ends may abut the same projections of a common web. All such variations and modifications, therefore, are intended to be included within the scope of the appended claims.

We claim:

1. A partition panel structure comprising a multiplicity of post supports, each of the post supports including four flange portions and each adjacent pair of flange portions intersecting perpendicular to each other thereby defining between the four flange portions two pairs of diagonally opposite right-angle corners, a multiplicity of panel elements, each of the panel elements including opposite longitudinal panel edges disposed substantially perpendicular to opposed major faces of the panel elements, at least one corner of each of the support posts receiving one of such opposite longitudinal panel edges and each opposite longitudinal panel edge being received by one of said post supports the received longitudinal panel edge abutting against a portion of one of the flange members which defines the receiving corner in face to face relation and a portion of one major face of the panel element abutting an adjacent flange portion of the receiving corner in face to face relation, and spaced fastening elements extending through the portion of each flange member against which a longitudinal panel edge abuts, like fastening elements engaging the panel end and securing the panel element to the post support.

2. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 1 wherein the post supports include a recess at the lower end of the post supports formed at the intersection of the web members, and a supporting base member for the post supports received in the recess.

3. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 1 wherein panel elements whose longitudinal axes are substantially parallel are juxtaposed with their respective adjacent longitudinal edges being received in opposite corners of a common post support.

4. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 1 wherein panel elements Whose longitudinal axes are perpendicular to each other are positioned with their respective longitudinal edges being received in adjacent corners of a common post support.

5. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 1 wherein panel elements whose longitudinal axes are perpendicular to each other are positioned with their respective longitudinal edges being received in opposite corners of a common post support.

6. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 1 further comprising a transom member including a channel member having upstanding walls connected by an undersurface which abuts in face to face relation the upper longitudinal edge of corresponding panel elements, a rib connected to the undersurface and projecting downwardly along the longitudinal axis of the undersurface, the rib abutting in face to face relation one of the major faces of the panel elements, and spaced fastening elements extending through the portion of the undersurface against which the longitudinal edge of the corresponding panel elements abut, the fastening elements engaging the upper 5 panel end and securing the transom member to the corresponding panel elements.

7. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 6 wherein a cover member is connected to the upstanding walls, the upstanding walls including means for fastening the cover member to the walls.

8. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 7 wherein the fastening means includes an inwardly projecting flange connected to each of the upstanding walls and further includes an inwardly and downwardly tapering projection connected to the upstanding walls above the flanges thereby forming a recess, and latch means connected to the cover member which joins in locking relation with the recess.

9. A partition panel element in accordance with claim 8 wherein the latch means includes a hook element for insertion into the recess.

10. A partition panel element in accordance with claim 9 wherein the cover member includes a step portion, and further includes a flange member extending laterally outward and over the step portion thereby forming a recess in the cover member.

11. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 2, in which the supporting base member comprises:

a foot; an externally threaded screw leg attached to the foot;

and a hollow internally threaded cylindrical bushing engaged with the screw leg and received in the post support recess.

6 12. A partition panel structure in accordance with claim 11, further comprising:

an adjusting nut attached to the bushing and including at least one upward protrusion on its upper surface positioned to engage the ends of the web members at the bottom of the post support when the nut is turned.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,835,524 12/1931 Rinehart 52234 2,963,131 12/1960 Brockway 52l22 2,968,118 l/1961 Paulson 46-12 2,969,565 1/1961 Levy 52241 3,049,195 8/1962 Leat 52l22 3,189,140 6/1965 Luss 52l22 3,194,361 7/1965 Thurman 52495 3,195,698 7/1965 Codrea 52495 3,282,006 11/1966 Halsey 52l22 3,316,041 4/1967 Nelson 52281 FOREIGN PATENTS Ad. 70,624 1958 France 52238 1,188,880 1959 France 52238 487,286 1938 Great Britain 52281 JOHN E. MURTACH, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 52282, 241

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3646714 *Jun 22, 1970Mar 7, 1972Kingsberry Home CorpClosure mold for building panels
US3713257 *Oct 19, 1970Jan 30, 1973Design Prod IncFree-standing panel system
US3720026 *Jun 23, 1970Mar 13, 1973Gasteiger OPartition
US3841042 *Mar 13, 1973Oct 15, 1974Tiffany IndustriesPanel locking devices
US3875721 *Nov 29, 1972Apr 8, 1975Mero AgMultipartite profiled rod for the production of skeleton building constructions
US3885362 *Apr 19, 1973May 27, 1975Pollock Gordon JModular noise abatement enclosure and joint seal
US3990205 *Jun 20, 1975Nov 9, 1976Interflex Systems Inc.Movable partition wall
US4237799 *Feb 7, 1978Dec 9, 1980Citibank, N.A.Banking protection system for 24 hour banking
US4597231 *Oct 22, 1984Jul 1, 1986Quest Thomas AAngular cap for dressing and stabilizing office partitioning
US4603530 *Apr 1, 1982Aug 5, 1986Karl GlockensteinWall element
US4662131 *Feb 6, 1984May 5, 1987Karl GlockensteinWall element
US4881353 *Apr 21, 1987Nov 21, 1989Braendel & Associates, Inc.Cubicle
US5086597 *Feb 20, 1990Feb 11, 1992Herman Miller, Inc.Work space management system hallway wall arrangement
US5511348Oct 8, 1991Apr 30, 1996Steelcase Inc.Furniture system
US5724778May 25, 1995Mar 10, 1998Steelcase Inc.Furniture system
US6003275 *Oct 19, 1998Dec 21, 1999Steelcase Development Inc.Furniture system
US6134844Jun 24, 1997Oct 24, 2000Steelcase Inc.Method and apparatus for displaying information
US6170200Aug 27, 1999Jan 9, 2001Steelcase Development Inc.Furniture system
US6629386Sep 13, 2000Oct 7, 2003Steelcase Development CorporationFurniture system
US9206600Dec 5, 2013Dec 8, 2015Allsteel Inc.Modular wall system
US9284729 *May 5, 2011Mar 15, 2016Allsteel Inc.Modular wall system
US20120317899 *May 5, 2011Dec 20, 2012Allsteel Inc.Modular wall system
Classifications
U.S. Classification52/126.4, 52/282.4, 52/241
International ClassificationE04B2/78, E04B2/76, E04B2/74
Cooperative ClassificationE04B2/7854, E04B2002/749
European ClassificationE04B2/78C