US 3600036 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Inventor Farid A. lskander Brooklyn, N.Y. Appl. No. 840,166 Filed July 9, 1969 Patented Aug. 17, 1971 Assignee Herman Miller, Inc.
COMPONENT SEATING 12 Claims, 7 Drawing Figs.
US. Cl 297/239, 297/248, 297/41 1, 297/445, 297/457 Int. Cl A47c 3/04, A47c l/08, A470 7/54 Field of Search 297/113,
115,117, 227, 239, 248,249, 411, 414, 422, 457, k 458, DIG. 2; Des. 15/8,]1
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,703,135 3/1955 Leatherman 297/239 2,936,826 5/1960 Reineman 297/M D UX 3,084,977 4/1963 Chapman 297/239 Primary Examiner- Paul R. Gilliam Attorney- Price, Heneveld, l-luizenga & Cooper ABSTRACT: This disclosure relates to a seating construction in which base units can be interlocked in tandem arrangement for benches and the like. Cushion receiving pockets are formed between base units and cushions are positioned in the pockets as well as on seat portions of the base units. The base units are formed with U-shaped leg members on either side to facilitate the interlocking relationship and to permit vertical stacking of the units in nested position with the cushions between the nested base members.
Pmemenmmmn 3,600,036 I SHEET 2 OF 3 INVENTOR. j tow/0 A 1.969005? 1 i WM flaw r Fl Go 60 v V frail 5V5 PATENTEU AUBI Tum SHEET 3 OF 3 COMPONENT SEATING This invention relates to seating construction. In one of its aspects it relates to a seating construction in which a base member is formed from U-shaped leg members.
In another of its aspects the invention relates to a bench seating construction formed from a plurality of interconnected self-supporting base components wherein cushion receiving pockets are formed between the bases, and cushions are positioned in the pockets as well as on seat portions of the base. i
' Nestable seating units such as chairs are well known. One such chair construction permits a plurality of chairs to be vertically stacked in a nesting relationship, and also permits the chairs to be interlocked in tandem along a line. The chairs, however, retain their individual characteristics in the interlocked position.
I have now discovered a new seating construction in which a plurality of individual units can be interlocked in a tandem arrangement wherein the individual units are blended into a single and unitary structure in design as well as function with the use of cushions between the interlocking members, and further in which the individual units are nestable in a vertical stack.
' By various aspects of this invention, one or more of the following, or other, objects can be'obtained.
It is an object of this invention to provide a seating unit with cushions which can be used by itself or interlocked with others for tandem arrangement in the construction of benches and the like. 7
It is a further object of this invention to provide individual seating units which can be vertically stacked in nested relationship.
It is a further object of this invention to-provide a cushion containing bench unit of unitary design which can be extended or diminished in unit length as desired without tolls or modifications to the structural portions of the bench.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a cushion containing bench unit wherein the bench can be disassembled into a vertical stack of nesting components with the cushions included within the vertical stack of such nested units.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a seating unit comprised of three basic components and the length of said seating unit can be altered by adding or subtracting two of said components.
It is yet another object of this invention to provide a rigid nestable base member which can be used for multiple seating components of varying length by a simple interlocking arrangement.
Other aspect, objects, and the several advantages of this invention are apparent to one skilled in the art from a study of this disclosure, the drawings, and the appended claims.
According to the invention there is provided a bench formed from a plurality of self-supporting base units arranged in interlocking tandem relationship and forming cushion receiving pockets therebetween. Seat supporting means are formed on the 'base units. Cushions are positioned in the pockets as well as on the seat supporting means.
Still further according to the invention, there is provided a seating construction having a base member comprising first and second U-shaped members forming legs for said seating with the bight portion of each U-shaped member adapted to contact a supporting surface. A seat wall joins an upper portion of one leg of each of the U-shaped members, whereby a plurality of units of said U-shaped members can be vertically stacked in nesting relationship. I
The invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a bench according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view in section of the bench illustrated in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken along lines Ill-III of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a single base unit used in constructing various seating components according to the invention;
FIG. 5 is a partial plan view of the base unit illustrated in FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a side elevational view partly in section of the base unit as seen along line VI-VI of FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is a schematic illustration of the method of assembling three such base units; and
FIG. 8 is a front elevational view of a bench unit such as shown in FIG. 1 wherein the bench is broken into components and assembled in a vertical stack in which the base units are in nested relationship.
Referring now to the drawings, and to FIGS. 1 through 6 in particular, there is shown bench unit 12 having a self-supporting base unit 14. The bench contains end cushions 16, horizontal or seat cushions l8 and vertical cushions 20.
The base unit 14 is formed from a pair of U-shaped members forming legs for the unit. A seat wall 28 joins the top portion of one leg of each of the U-sahped members. More specifically, one of the U-shaped members is formed by end wall 22 and depending wall portion 26 joined by bottom or bight portion 24. The bottom or bight portion 24 is adapted to rest on a supporting surface. The other U-shaped member is formed from depending wall portion 30 and end wall 34 which are joined by bottom 32. The top portion of depending wall 30 and the top portion of depending wall 26 are joined by horizontal top or seat member 28.
Continuous edge rims 36 and 38 are formed at the front and back edges of the base unit. The rims extend along the sides and bottom of each U-shaped member and along the horizontal top or seat wall 28. The ridges serve to strengthen the overall construction as well as retain the cushions in their desired positions.
End wall 22 and depending wall portion 26 are pitched at a slight angle away from each other. Similarly, depending wall portion 30 and end wall 34 are pitched at a slight angle away from each other. These wall portions and end walls have an angle of approximately 1 with the vertical to permit a nesting arrangement in a vertical stack of such base units with the cushions positioned therebetween as seenin FIG. 8.
The U-shaped member formed by depending wall portion 30, bottom 32 and end wall 34 is dimensionally slightly smaller than the U-sahped member formed by end wall 22, bottom 24 and depending wall portion 26. That is, the distance between depending wall portion 30 and end wall 34 is slightly less than the distance between end wall 22 and depending wall portion 26. Further, the distance between theedge rims 36 and 38 at wall portions 30, bottom 32 and end wall 34 is less than the distance between the edge rims 36 and 38 at the end wall 22, bottom 24 and depending wall portion 26. This dimensional difference between the U-sahped members permits easy interengagement of the base members in an interlocked tandem arrangement. Such a construction is illustrated in FIG. 7.
As seen in FIG. 7, three base units are assembled together by inserting a second U-shaped member (depending wall 30, bottom 32 and end wall 34) of a second base member into a first U-shaped member (end wall 26, bottom 24 and wall portion 26) of a first base member. Then a second U-shaped member of a third base unit is inserted into the first U-shaped member of a second base unit.
Each of the cushions l6 and 20 fit conformily within the U- shaped members. Preferably, the cushions 20 and 18 are of identical size so that they can be interchanged. As seen in FIG. 1, the end cushions 16 rise above the seat cushions 18 a greater distance than cushions 20. Cushions 20 rise slightly above the seat cushions l8 and serve as dividers between seat portions of the bench.
Referring now to FIG. 8, there is shown a bench which has been disassembled and arranged in nested and stacked form. The U-shaped members of each base are nested within the U- shaped members of corresponding lower base units. The end cushions 16 fit beneath the central portion of the lowermost base unit. The seat cushions l8 fit between the nested bases.
The central cushions 20 rest in the U-shaped members of the top base in the stack. Thus, the bench illustrated in FIG. 1 can be disassembled and arranged in neat stack in which the bases nest and the cushions are arranged within the stack.
The base is preferably molded in one piece from rigid plastic material. For example, fiberglass impregnated with a thermosetting resin can be employed. Other thermosetting resins alone or reinforced with fibrous material, and thermoplastic materials can also be employed. Such plastic materials are conventional and are well known in the art. A]- ternately the base can be formed from sheet metal such as aluminum.
The bases are easily constructed by conventional molding processes.
The benches of the invention are easily constructed without tools by a simple interlocking procedure described hereinbefore. This easy construction allows the consumer to make his own bench size and arrangement and to change the size at the point of use. Further, the construction permits a neat stacking of these benches when they are not in use.
Further, the seating construction of the invention provides a functional design with a striking appearance. The cushions 20 provide continuity from one bench section to the next as well as physically divide the seat portions of each bench. Thus, a plurality of interconnected units appears as a single unitary furniture member. In other words, the unitary appearance of each of the individual components is lost and blended into the overall structure when they are assembled into a multiple unit, such as is illustrated in FIG. 1.
The invention has been described with reference to cushions fitted within a rigid base member. It is possible within the scope of the invention to use the base member by itself and without cushions. For example, by removing the continuous edge rims 36 and 38 at the horizontal top 28, the base can be easily used as a seat.
It is to be understood that the invention is not limited to a bench constructed of three units. More than three individual base units or less than three individual base units can be used in forming a seating component according to the invention. In
fact, a single base unit with end cushions 16 and a horizontal cushion 18 can be constructed according to the invention.
As is obvious from the foregoing description, the complete system is formed from three simple components, namely end cushions l6, horizontal and vertical cushions 18 and 20, and base units 38. The length of the bench constructed can be adjusted by adding or subtracting two of these components, the base unit 14 and a cushion 18 or 20.
Reasonable variation and modification are possible within the scope of the foregoing disclosure, the drawings, and the appended claims without departing from the spirit of the invention.
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows.
1. A seating construction having a base member comprising:
first and second U-sahped members each having a pair of upstanding sides; said members forming legs for said seating at each end thereof with the bight portion of each adapted to contact a supporting surface;
a seat wall joined to an upper portion of one of the sides of each of said U-shaped members, said U-shaped members opening upwardly to form cushion receiving pockets whereby plural units of said U-shaped members can be nested in a vertically stacked arrangement of said base prising a continuous rim at either side of said seatin construction, extending along a side of each of said U'shape members and along said seat wall to retain said cushions within said seating unit.
5 A seating construction according to claim 1 further comprising a continuous rim at either side of said seating construction extending along a side of each of said U-shaped members 1 and along said seat wall for retaining cushions within said seating construction and rigidifying said base member.
6. A seating construction according to claim 1 wherein said second U-shaped member is dimensionally smaller than said first U-shaped member so as to permit interlocking tandem arrangement of plural base members with said second U-shaped member of one base member nested within the first U-shaped member of another base member.
7. A seating construction comprising a plurality of base members as defined in claim 1, each of said base members being arranged in interlocking tandem arrangement with the second U-shaped members of the base members being positioned within first U-shaped members in adjacent base members; and cushions on said seat walls and in each of said U- shaped members.
8. A seating construction according to claim 7 wherein said cushions in said U-shaped members extend upwardly at least to the top of said cushions in said seat walls.
9. A seating construction according to claim 7 wherein the cushion in the last of said U-shaped members at each end of said seating construction extends upwardly above the remainder of said cushions within said U-shaped members.
10. A seating construction according to claim 7 wherein at least some of said cushions in said U-shaped members are of equal size and shaped as said cushions on said seat wall.
1 1. A bench comprising:
a plurality of self-supporting base units each having a pair of legs, said base units arranged in side-by-side relationship with a leg of one base unit telescopically engaged within the leg of an adjacent base unit to interlock said base units together and to form upwardly opening cushion receiving pockets within said telescopically engaged base units;
seat supporting means formed on each base unit; and
cushions received in said pockets and on said seat supporting means.
12. A seating construction having a base member comprisfirst and second upwardly opening U-shaped members having sides and forming legs for said seating with the bight portion of each adapted to contact a supporting surface;
said sides of said U-shaped members diverging in an upward direction to form downwardly tapered cushion receiving pockets;
a seat platform joined to and supported by the upper portion of one of the sides of each of said U-ahped members.