US 3599921 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Inventor William J. Cumber Char-don, Ohio 2,725
Jan. 14, 1970 Aug. 17, 1971 Erico Products Inc. Cleveland, Ohio Appl. No Filed Patented Assignee INDEPENDENT SUPPORT CLIPS 3 Claims, 6 Drawing Figs.
US. Cl 248/317, 52/484, 248/300 Int. Cl E04b 5/52 Field of Search 248/3 I 7, 323, 327, 343, 342, 62, 58, 300; 52/484, 489, 485,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,132,999 3/1915 Beers ..287/l89.35 UX 3,463,432 8/1969 Ptak 52/489 X FOREIGN PATENTS 1,177,311 9/1964 Germany 52/484 Primary Examiner-J. Franklin Foss Attorney-Adrian Medert Pmmmwemsn 3,599,921
INVENTOR. WILLIAM J. CUMBER 4m Medwf ATTORNEY This invention relates to a ceiling hanger or support clip and more particularly to a multipartclip adapted to encompass the supporting beam of a false or subceiling and. be supported independently thereof for suspending fixtures and similar devices belowthe false ceiling.
In providing a false or acoustical subceiling, beams which may take several different forms in cross section are first assembled in spaced relation to form a lightweight gridlike framework suspended in any suitable mannerfrom the-struc tural members comprising the ceiling. Panel membershaving peripheral lips-are simply placed into the framework andlare held thereon with the lips of the panelmembers resting'upon the beamsof the gridlike framework. H'eretofore,.it has been the practice-to supportfixturesandithe-like below such a false. or subceiling directly from the beams by means of asuitable clip attachedtothe beam. Where the beamswereof substantial rigidity and strength and capable of supportingisuchfix tures, prior art devices have proved satisfactory, however, there has been a tendency to use beams which arenotisubstantial enough to support both the ceiling panels and fixtures,
with the result that building; codes in some. areas forbidithe. supporting of fixtures on'the framework supporting he'ceiling panel members.
In such cases it has been necessary to support lightingfixtures and other devices directly from the structural members.
of the ceiling. Such practice necessitated the providing of holes or openings through the subceilingpanel-members and the dropping of supporting, members such. as wires,cables, rods and the like therethrough to which lighting fixtures and other devices were secured. below the subceiling. This priorpractice was undesirable for the reason that once' openings were provided through the panels, they couldnot be usedxinterchangeably with other panels. Furthermore, to remove a panel it was necessary to first remove the lighting-fixture-and withdraw the supporting member,.all of which added to the cost of installing and maintaining the false. or. suspended cellmg.
It was therefore highly desirable that means of supporting electrical fixtures and. other devices from the structural members of the ceiling be providedwhich would be independentof the supporting framework of the false ceiling'and preferably could be used at the joint between adjacent panel members at the point where the panel members are resting on the beams and thus avoid mutilation of the panel members by passing supporting members therethrough.
Accordingly, it is among the objects of the present invention to provide a simple and efficient means for supporting fixtures and similar devices below a falseceiling; independently of said false ceiling, which overcomes the drawbacks of prior practices and is exceedingly simple and inexpensive to manufacture and may be readily assembled or mounted.
Another object of the present invention .is to provide a sup porting clip for suspending devices below the lower surfaces of the panel members of an acoustical ceiling which does not interfere with the assembly or removal of ceiling panel members from the supporting grid work upon which they are disposed.
Another object of the invention is to provide a ceiling hanger comprising a plurality of cooperating members arranged to encircle the supporting beam of a false. ceiling and be supported independently thereof for suspending devices. below the false ceiling.
Another object of the invention is to provide a supporting clip which is particularly adapted for suspending light fixtures and the like below a false or subceiling comprising a gridlike framework of inverted T'shaped supporting beams having panel members resting on the flanges of such beams which eliminates the work and time involved in providing openings in the panel members to receive supporting members for such fixtures.
These and other objects and advantageous features of the present invention will become more apparent from the follow- 2. ing detailedudescription of a preferred embodiment thereof, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing wherein corresponding. reference characters throughout denote corresponding parts and wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a ceiling hanger or support clip constructed in accordance with this invention and illustrated in association with a beam of inverted T-shaped cross section for effecting suspension of ceiling panels,
' FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the support clip prior to its assembly with the beam-member,
FIG. 3 is a side elevational view illustrating the first step in the assembly of the support clip of FIG. 1 with a beam member,
FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIG. 3 illustrating-the second step in-assembling the support clip with a beam member,
FIGVS is a side elevational'view showing the support clip in assembled relation-about a supporting beam; and
FIG; 6-is a plan view of a blank from which the support clip of FIG. 2 is formed.
The support clip of the present invention is equally well adapted for use in new construction as well as remodeling where the'installation of suspended or false ceilings is most commonplace. One of the methods used widely in installing suspended or' false ceilings comprises first suspending a series of inverted T-shaped supporting beams from an overhead supportingstructure in parallelspaced arrangement by means of suitable rods or cables. Ceiling panels are then supported between-the transverse or horizontal portions of the T-shaped supporting beams. The ceiling panels commonly used are formed several different materials such as plastic, steel, fiberboard-and the like. Accordingly, it is desirable to suspend devices such as electrical fixtures, partition members, transverse rods, display members and the like below such suspendedceilings without interfering with the panel members comprising the ceiling.
, Withreference tothe accompanying drawing and particularly FIGS; 1 and 2', there is illustrated a ceiling hanger or support clip which provides means for independently suspending or supporting devices below the mounting beams of a ceiling panel construction, made in accordance with the teachings of this invention and generally indicated by the numeral 10. The ceiling hanger is formed of a suitable resilient sheet material such as spring steel strip. As shown in FIGS. 1, 3, 4, and 5 the hanger 10 is adapted to be assembled with an elongated acoustical beam 11 of inverted T-shaped cross section consisting of a vertical or central web 12 and cross flange 13 extending laterally along the length of the bottom margin of the central web. The cross flange extends laterally equal distances so as to provide on each side of the web a ledge adapted to support'subceiling panel members 14 as shown in FIG. 1, it being head area of the subceiling. The upper free edge of the web 12 of the T-bar llis reversely bent to form a tubular head 15 to whichsuitable'hanger rods (not shown) may be attached for supporting the subceiling comprising the T-bars and panel units.
The ceiling hanger, or clip 10 formed of spring steel includes'a pairof cooperating members 18 and 19 which, in the manufacture thereof as shown in FIG. 2 are attached together by a fracture joint 17 and when. separated and assembled, define an opening therebetween for receiving the inverted T- bar or beam 11. The complimentary configuration of the memberslB and 19 is such that the opening therebetween receives the particular cross section of the beam 1 1 used in the formation of the subceiling. In the illustrated embodiment employing T-bars the member 18 includes an elongated body portion 20 having a deep rectangular offset portion 21 extending crosswise thereof. The lower end'of the body portion is bent at right angles to form the leg 22-which extends a distance slightly greater than one-half the width of the cross base member 23 extending parallel to the cross flange 13 and terminates beyond the edge thereof. The leg 22 and the base member 23 form a pocket 24 of sufficient width that one side of the cross flange 13 may be freely inserted therein to the extent that in assembly. the walls of the pocket are independent of the flange 13. Adjacent to the free end of the base 23 there is provided a slot 25 forming a strap 26 which is offset upwardly out ofthe plane of the base 23. At the upper end ofthe body portion 20 there is provided a punched-out tab 27 and an opening 29.
The member 19 of the ceiling hanger includes an elongated body portion 28 having a deep rectangular offset portion 29a extending crosswise thereof complementary to the offset portion 21 of the member 18. The lower end of the body portion 28 is formed with an outwardly extending leg 30 terminating in a tongue 31 of reduced width and offset downwardly out of the plane of the leg member 30. Above the offset portion 29a the body portion 28 is provided with a locking slot 32 and an opening 290 which latter is adapted to be aligned with the opening 29 of the member 18 when the two parts of the hanger are assembled about the T-bar 11.
The base 23 of member 18 is provided with an opening 33 therethrough for receiving the shank portion 34 of a suitable stud 35. The area 33a surrounding the opening 33 is depressed to receive the head portion 36 of the stud so that the upper surface thereof is in the plane of the surface of the base 23. Any suitable fixture may be supported on the stud 35 and secured thereto by a nut 37 as shown in FIG. 1. In assembling the fixture on the stud 35 a suitable cover plate (not shown) may be used to conceal the portions of the hanger exposed below the lower surface of the cross flange of the T-bar 11.
In assembling the ceiling hanger 10 with the T-bar 11 the portions 18 and 19 are first separated at the fracture joint 17 and the pocket 24 formed by the leg 22 and base 23 of the member 18 is slipped over one leg of the cross flange l3 and the lower part of the body portion 29 is disposed adjacent one surface of the web 12. At this point the base 23 may be in engagement with the lower surface of the cross flange 13 as illustrated in FIG. 4 of the drawing. The offset tongue 30 of the member 19 is inserted below the strip 26 of the base 23. The lower part of the body portion 28 is then moved adjacent to the opposite side surface of the web 14 and the leg 30 is positioned adjacent the upper surface of the cross flange 33. The locking slot 32 engages over the tab 27 which is then depressed and locked into place. When the members 18 and 19 are thus assembled, the respective openings 28a and 29 are in alignment to receive one end of a suitable supporting wire 38, the other end being secured to the structural members of the ceiling. ln supporting the clip 10 bearing a suspended device with respect to the beam 11 the supporting member 38 is therefor adjusted to provide free movement between the adjacent portions of the clip 10 and beam 11. Although the foregoing description has been specially directed to the use of applicant's support clip with an inverted T-shaped beam member it is to be understood that beams of various cross-sectional shapes may be used in conjunction with a clip embodying applicant's invention.
It will be understood that the above description is by way of illustration and in accordance with the provisions of the Patent Law, variations and further modifications of the specific structure disclosed therein may be made without departing from the spirit of the invention.
l. A ceiling hanger for supporting fixtures below and independently of the structural members of a false or suspended ceiling construction comprising opposed cooperating members so formed and arranged as to define an opening .therebetween for the passage of a structural member therethrough, one of said members having an elongated body portion with a reversely bent transverse base flange formed on one end thereof defining an open pocket, said second member having a body portion complemental to the body portion of said first member and terminating in a transverse flange extending substantially parallel with said base flange and means engaging said flange members for securing them together.
2. A ceiling hanger according to claim 1 wherein means are provided, in said flange defining a pocket, for receiving a stud member to which fixtures may be attached.
3. A ceiling hanger for supporting fixtures independently of the structural members of a false or suspended ceiling construction comprising opposed cooperating members so constructed and arranged as to define an opening therebetween for the passage of a structural member therethrough, one of said members including a base portion, a body portion at one end of the base portion having an offset remote from the base portion, said base portion being reversely bent to form a transverse pocket, said other member having a base portion extending parallel to the said reversely bent and a body portion with an offset complemental to the offset on the body portion of the first member, and means for securing the base members together.