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Publication numberUS3603274 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 7, 1971
Filing dateJul 28, 1969
Priority dateJul 28, 1969
Publication numberUS 3603274 A, US 3603274A, US-A-3603274, US3603274 A, US3603274A
InventorsFerdinand Irwin J, Kulbersh Irwin R
Original AssigneeHirsh Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Modular adjustable wall shelving
US 3603274 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] Inventors lrwinJ. Ferdinand Glencoe; Irwin R. Kulbersh, Morton Grove, both of, 111. 2| A' mo. 845,173 [22] Filed July 28, 1969 [45] Patented Sept. 7,1971 [73} Assignee Hirsh Company Skokie, 111.

[54] MODULAR ADJUSTABLE WALL SHELVING 9 Claims, 12 Drawing Figs.

[52] US. Cl 108/108, 108/152, 248/243, 248/250 [51] Int. Cl. A47b 57/06 [50] Fieldotsearch 108/108, 109, 107, 152; 21 1/135, 153; 248/243, 239,250, 223, 225

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,295,182 2/1919 Markwood 108/152 2,993,603 7/1961 Fohn 108/152 Primary ExaminerBobby R. Gay Assistant Examiner-Peter A. Aschenbrenner Attorney-11arbau'gh and Thomas ABSTRACT: Modular knockdown shelving is disclosed having vertical spaced supports with a plurality of recessed slots for the engagement of adjustable hidden brackets that support the ends of shelf members whereby the brackets lock to the shelves and the supports by the load thereon. A plurality of shelves can be variously positioned in vertically spaced relationship between and upon a pair of upright supports and can be readily adjusted, one to the other, to provide the desired spacing between the shelves. The shelves have a plane top surface with a rolled flange edge and are provided with a bottom panel, also having a flanged edge which interlocks with the rolled flange and also looks to the brackets. In one embodiment, the brackets fit within the rolled flanges of the shelf ends and serve both to interlock the top and bottom panels and rigidly support the shelf in load-supporting relationship.

PATENTEUSEP Hen 3503274 INVENTORS /RW//V J. FEfPD/NA/VD IRWIN R. KULBERSH A rrorneys MODULAR ADJUSTABLE WALL SHELVING CROSS-REFERENCES Ferdinand et al. US. Pat. No. 2,837,219 211-147 Handler et al. US. Pat. No. 3,139,258 211-136 Ferdinand et al. US. Pat. No. 3,265,455 312-295 Ferdinand et a1. appln. Ser. No. 745,287

Filed: July 16, 1968 BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Modular knockdown shelving for home and office is known in the art. These units are conventionally assembled with various forms of securing devices, screws and bolts that do not always provide predetermined levelling control or rigidity because the tightness of the parts depends upon the skill of the installer in affixing hard to reach securements. These tool assembled shelving units not only require skill in their installation but are more difficult, costly and time consuming to install. 1

There has been a trend in wood shelving to use exposed accessory equipment and brackets which, although exhibit strength, do detract from the appearance of the shelves and show that they are of the knockdown variety. In depicting conventional book shelves for attachment to a wall or as wall cabinets with their ends disposed in vertical alignment, these devices leave gaps between the shelf ends into which small articles disappear. The supporting parts generally extend to the floor areas where they interfere with cleaning below them and otherwise obstruct usable areas of the shelving. These prior art shelves, excepting those recited in the cross-references supra, not only display their structural bracing but do not overlap decoratively to break the sameness of parallel vertical and parallel horizontal lines.

The instant invention is directed to modular adjustable shelving for walls and the like which overcomes and mitigates these and related drawbacks of the prior art shelving.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is concerned with modular knockdown shelving characterized by double-walled and enclosed end individual shelf units adapted to receive integral brackets engageable with spaced fixed uprights and each being positionable in a vertical place, wherein one hook portion of the bracket locks within a slot in the upright and the other longer portion or supporting arm of the bracket locks within the space between the double walls. In one embodiment, the shelves have rolled end box flanges defining an internal elongated space adapted to receive the longer portion of the bracket whereby the shelves are mountable in either random positions from the brackets or in a symmetrical horizontal end-to-end configuration. In either embodiment the inner terminal wall of the rolled box flange, is adapted to yieldably receive an upturned side flange and the down-turned end flanges of the bottom panel or wall in assembly and then be locked into that position by the inserting of the longer supporting arm of the bracket. The slots in the vertical fixed supports are recessed in a vertical reinforcing channel, the one hook portion of the brackets locks the shelf to the upright at each slot so that once assembled, only plain, uncluttered and finished metal surfaces are seen in the normal attitude of the shelving.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Referring to the drawings illustrative embodiments of this invention are shown wherein:

FIG. 1 is a fragmentary perspective view of a shelving assembly of this invention;

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the lines 2-2 of FIG. 1;

FIG. 2A is a fragmentary cross-sectional view along the I lines 2A-2A of FIG. 7A of a modified form of the shelf bracket;

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the lines 3-3 of FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary plan view of a bottom panel wall of one of the shelf members;

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary perspective view of a comer of an assembled double-walled shelf member showing a comer insert means and the interlocking flanges of the top and bottom panels in broken lines;

FIG. 6 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the lines 6-6 of FIG. 5 to show one fonn of the side flange construction;

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the lines 7-7 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7A is a fragmentary cross-sectional view to show another form of side flange construction with two shelves in abutting relationship at an upright having a widened channel;

FIG. 8 is a fragmentary plan view of the comer shown in FIG. 5 with the corner insert in place; i

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along the lines 9-9 of FIG. 8; and

FIG. 10 is a fragmentary partially sectioned view of the underside of shelf showing juncture of the bracket and the upright support member.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to FIG. I, there is shown an assembly of three identical shelves l0 and a pair of identical uprights 12, the latter being affixed to a wall or other vertical surface (not shown), lying in the rear plane of the perspective, with the objects 14 supported thereon. Each of the shelves 10 has a top panel 16, a bottom panel 18 and the corners of the shelves have corner inserts 20. Each shelf is supported at a point opposite an upright 12 by means of a bracket 22, only a small portion of each being visible in FIG. I.

Referring to FIGS. 2 and 3, the structure of the uprights I2 is shown more clearly to comprise a single-piece, elongated, extruded and shaped metal post comprising a pair of spaced walls 24 and 26, the back edges 28 of which are essentially coplanar and open therebetween, to engage against the supporting wall 30.

The pair of sidewalls are bent toward each other at the other edges to form the rounded corners 32 and the flat front sections 34 and 36 along the entire length of the support member. The walls 34 and 36 can be the same or different widths and are spaced from each other a distance sufficient to receive therebetwcen a single bracket 22 or as shown in FIG. 7A a pair of brackets set side-by-side. The walls 34 and 36 are each again reverse bent as at 38 to form the continuous elongated channel defined between the inner walls 40 and 42 and terminating in the intermediate wall 44 spaced outwardly from the edges 28. This latter wall is a primary supporting surface, both fore and aft for the brackets 22, as will be described. The intermediate wall 44 of the channels has a series of slots 45 therein for attachment of the shelves at selected heights.

First, reference is made to FIGS. 2 and 5, to illustrate that the top panel 16 of each shelf 10 has a supporting top surface 50 having the integral front-side box flange 52, the rear-side box flange 54, and end reverse flanges 56 and 58. Since the box flanges 52 and 54 are essentially the same except for the modification disclosed in FIG. 6, the description of the flange 52 in FIG. 2, will suffice for their general configuration and as one embodiment thereof. Thus, the top 50 is turned upwardly to form the object-retaining edge 59 and then rolled outwardly and downwardly to form the rounded top edge 60, then the flange 52 is turned inwardly to form the inner wall 64 and finally is bent outwardly again to form the inner edge flange 66 which can be press-fitted into the rolled edge 60 (FIGS. 5 and 10). FIG. 6 represents a modified front-side flange 52 and also a modified rear-side flange 54 wherein the inner edge flange 66 is of lesser width than the internal width of the rolled edge 60 to thereby be spaced from the inner wall 68 as indicated at 70. This structure allows a slight spring action in the wall 64 to the extent of the space 70 therealong.

The end flanges 56 and 58 of the shelf are differently formed by the omission of the top rolled edge 60 therefrom so that the shelves may abut at these ends one to the other in an essentially flat coplanar configuration using double uprights 12 or a single modified upright 12' (FIG.. 7A) and in the fact that the lower rolled edge 72 terminates in a shallow inner upright reverse flange 74 (FIG. The flanges 56 and 58 are rolled from an elongated tab at each end'of the blank sheet metal in forming the top panel 16 in a manner known in the art. The four corners of the top panels 16 are cut out or notched as shown in FIG. 5 which forms the edge 76 intersecting with the edge 78 forming a cutout comer and exposing the open end of the flanges 56 and 58 and the open end 80 of each box flange 52 and 54 along the edges of the shelf.

In FIG. 4 a top plan view of a bottom panel 18 of a shelf is shown, having the inner surface 82, identified for subsequent orientation of the assembled parts, with each of the four corners cut off as shown at 84. The bottom panels 18 are each flat and essentially rectangular or conforming in shape to their matching top panel 16. Each of the bottom panels 18 has a pair of rear or wall-side notches 86 cut therein, defined by the parallel edges 88 and 90 and the inner edges 92. This rear edge of the panels 16 has the upright flange 94, as viewed in FIG. 4, extending therealong, intercepted by or made discontinuous by the notches 86 and terminating at the cutoff corners 84.

The front edge of each of the bottom panels 18 has a similar upstanding flange 96 running continuously or discontinuously therealong. In one embodiment these flanges 94 and 96 are somewhat shorter than the width of the support arms 100 (show'n in FIGS. 2 and of the bracket members 22 and another embodiment are higher as shown at 94 and 96 in FIGS. 2A and 6. The remaining edge or sides of the panels 18 have the downtumed flanges 102 and 104 which are about a depth corresponding to the height of the upright flanges 74 over which they engage as shown at one end in FIGS. 5 and 7. The comer members 20, all of which are identical (FIGS. 5, 8 and 9) are constructed of hard rubber or plastic in a square or round design to fit within the cutout corners 76-78 with the car 106 extending from one wall and the protuberance 108 extending from a contiguous wall. The car 106 is adapted to be press-fitted into the channel opening 80 of the front box flange 52 in the manner shown in FIG. 9 while at the same time the protuberance I08 engages and locks within or behind the reverse flange 56 on a side of the shelf. The protuberance 108 can have a sloping inner surface 110 and a more perpendicular outer surface 112 so that it has a camming and locking action. Once in place, it is not easily removed. The outer surfaces 114 can be flush or not with the outer surfaces of these respective flanges and as before stated can be rounded. The ear 106 is offset from the inner surface 116 so that it matches with the channel and the members fit snugly in each comer opening. Since the panel 18 has cutaway corners 84, the insertion of the corner members 20 does not interfere with theassembly of the shelf. Those comer members 20 that are placed in the rear box flange 54 are reversed so that their protube- The supports 12 are positioned to the wall in a spacing such that there is a support opposite each of the openings 86 of the shelves. These openings are wider than the supports the openings and no particular care is necessary in this placement as long as the supports for each shelf series are vertical and parallel. Where uniformity in appearance is important, even placement of the supports 12 centrally opposite each of the openings 86 is readily accomplished.

To assemble a shelf 10, it is only necessary to place a 18 within a panel 16 and push slightly against the edges of the flanges 102 and 104, so that they bend upwardly sufficientlyto slip over the flanges 74 at each end as shown in FIG. 7. At the same time, the flanges 94 and 96 take a position such as shown in FIGS. 2 and 7 at each of the front and rear box flanges 52 and 54 of the shelf. The comer inserts 20 can be inserted at this time or later in the assembly.

Referring to FIGS. 2 and 10 a bracket 22 is shown with its support arm placed within the space between the panels 16 and 18 and with the top and bottom edges contiguous to the interior surfaces 126 and 82 of these panels. The end 128 of the bracket arm 100 is spaced from the flange 94, but may abut thereagainst. The brackets 22 have hook ends 130 with the offset buttress I32 and the notch 134 at the opposite or top edge 136. The buttress 132 has an inner upstanding end tab 138 with a flat surface on its inner edge and the offset oppositely facing lower edge 141. The bottom edge of the tab 138 is rounded, as at 142, and joins'the edge 141 at the corner 144. The effective distance between the respective planes of the edge 140 and the edge 141 is substantially the same as the thickness of the intermediate wall 44.

The bracket 22 is positioned and attached to the shelf by inserting the support arm 100 into the opening 86 with the bracket turned sideways. As it is inserted it is turned to the edgewise position shown when the notch I34 registers with the reverse flange 54 and then it is turned about 90 to the upright or edgewise position shown with the notch 134 engaging the reverse flange 54 at the ear end of the shelf. This locks the bracket 22 within the shelf and it cannot be moved except by reversing this procedure. The openings 86 allow lateral adjustment of the brackets in a shelf.

Having affixed two brackets 22 to a shelf, one through each of the openings 86, the shelf is tipped upwardly and the hook ends 130 are inserted into the channels 40-42 at an angle so that the tabs 138 pass into the slots 45 of each upright support. The shelf is then allowed to hinge downwardly due to the clearance provided by the curved edge 142 to the locked position shown in FIG. 2. In this position, the edge 140 engages the backside of the intermediate wall 44, the corner 144 engages the bottom edge of the slot 45 and the buttress edge 141 fits against the front side of the intermediate wall 44. The corner 144 forms a fulcrum point and the buttress 132 takes the thrust of the weight of the shelf at the bottom wall 44 ofthe channel. A firm and secure fastening results. The juncture of the buttress 132 with the support arm 100 can be beveled, as at 146, sufficiently forward of the notch 134 to retain the rigidity of the bracket. As the brackets 22 lock into the uprights, thc rear-side box flange 54 is also brought into abutting relationship with the wall 34-36 of each upright 12 on each side of the bracket 22, imparting lateralstability to the assembly. To remove a shelf, it is only necessary to grasp the forward edge andhinge it upwardly, whereby the rounder corner 142 clears the bottom edge of the slot and allows the tab 138 to come out.

The front flange 96 and the rear flange 94 of the bottom panel 18, in the embodiment just described are shorter than the space between the surfaces 82 and 126 of the opposing panels. The primary interlocking of the panels is that of the respective flanges 102 and 104 with the end flanges 72 and upturned edge 74 although the flat outer faces of the flanges 94 and 96 do frictionally engage inside the box channels 52 and 54. Thus, there is provided some vertical resilience between the panels so that the arm 100 wedges tightly therein when turned to its upright position. This action may how the bottom panel 18 slightly at the contact area of the arm 100. However, the main thrust on the shelf is between the top edge of the arm 100 and the surface 126 of the panel 16. The panel 18, nesting as it does within the top panel 16, with the flanges 94 and 96 sprung slightly inside the box flanges 52 and 54, adds rigidity panel 9 to the box structure formed and complements the rigidity imparted by the arm 100.

Further, structural rigidity can be provided in accordance with the invention by providing the form of front-side box flanges and rear-side box flanges shown in FIG. 6. In this structure, illustrated by a front-side flange 52, the front flange 96' of the bottom panel 18 is longer than the space between the assembled panels. In this embodiment the end flanges 56 and 58 of the top panel 16 and the end flange 104 of the bottom panel 18 are the same as shown in FIGS. 5, 7, and 10. How ever, as the bottom panel 18 is nested within the top panel 18, the front flange 96 and the rear flange 94' (FIG. 2A) are forced up between the inside of the curved edge 60 against the resilience of the wall 64 as allowed by the space 70. The space 70 can be adjusted by variations in the length of the turned edge 66 so that it is greater than, about equal to or slightly less than the thickness of the flanged wall 96 (or the flange 94 for the rear box flange 54). In this manner the gripping action between the part along these edges can be made dependent on the resilience of the flange wall 64, or on the combined resilience and wedging action of the edge 66 into the inner rounded corner of the curved edge 60 as at the space 70.

The flanged interlock arrangements shown in FIGS. 2, 5 and and that of FIG. 6 for the front-side and rear-side box flanges 52 and 54 can be used with the modified end flange construction shown in FIGS. 2A and 7A. In this embodiment, referring to FIG. 7A, a pair of contiguous shelves 10 is shown, affixed to a modified upright support 12' having the walls 34-36 set apart a greater distance, and having an enlarged slot 45 therebetween to accommodate a pair of modified brackets 22' in side-by-side relationship.

Referring to FIG. 2A it is seen that the modified bracket 22' has the same support arm 100, the hook end 130, the buttress 132, the tab 140 etc. but the notch 134 has been omitted. The cutout corner 76-78 here shown for the rear-side box flange 54, but including for purposes of illustration, the embodiment shown in FIG. 6, now accommodates the support arm 100 which extends into the end flange 56 (of each shelf) and is contiguous to the bottom rolled edge 72 and retained by the reverse edge flange 74.

Each of the top panels 16, shown in FIG. 7A are the same as illustrated in FIG. 4 and the parts thereof need not be further described except as they relate to and cooperate with the lower panels 18'. Each lower panel 18' has the end flange 150 extending upwardly with the reverse flange 152 formed therealong and is provided with the retaining edge 154 formed to engage over the top of the support arm 100 of the modified bracket 22'. The rear or wall side notches 86 are omitted in the panel 18' of this embodiment. The end flanges 56 of the top panels 16 and the flanges 150, in the assembled shelves 10 shown in FIG. 7A formed a channel opening 156, at each end of the shelves, to receive the support arms 100. These flanges are dimensioned such that the height of the channel opening 156 is the same as, or slightly less than the vertical width of the support arm 100. If desired, the end 128 (FIG. 2A) of the bracket can be beveled or rounded as at 158, at one or both corners to facilitate insertion of the shelf on the support arm. The support arm 100 can also taper slightly to a smaller vertical width at the end 128 along the length so that a squeeze fit in the channel 156 is assured.

The shelves 10 in FIG. 7A can be afi'ixed to the supports 12 in two different ways, e.g., by inserting a bracket 22' in each end of channel 156 of a shelf and then hooking the tab 138 into the slot 45 in the manner previously described, or by first affixing the brackets and then attaching the shelf thereto by pushing the channel openings 1S6 upon the support arms 100.

From this description it is seen that the knockdown shelving of this invention comprises three essential components, the assembled shelf member, the bracket member and the upright support member, to include a pair of the latter members to complete an assembly. The shelf member requires only spaced top and bottom walls 82 and 126 to function and these spaced walls need extend only over a portion of the width and length of the shelf. The bracket members require a hook means at one end and a rigid support arm extending therefrom.

Likewise, the upright support members require a longitudinal recessed wall on intermediate wall with a slot such as the slot 45 therein.

Further rigidity to the assembly is provided by the interengaging backside flange 54 and the notch 134 in the support member. A feature of the invention is to provide a shelf comprising the two interlocking panels 16 and 18 or 16' and 18 as have been illustrated. This structure further in combination with the front and back box flanges 52 and 54 forms a rigid and safe shelf for high density items such as books and the like. Still another feature can be seen in the manner in which the four flanges of the two panels lock into each other, both from the standpoint of ease of assembly and the rigidity and appearance of the assembled shelf. Furthermore, end to end abutment of the shelves on a common upright support whereby both vertical and lateral rigidity are imparted to the shelving. These features are provided without sacrifice of the external appearance of the shelving no matter which combination of uniform or intermittent wall spacing is used.

What is claimed is:

l. Knockdown shelving including:

a. a shelf member, a bracket member and an upright sup port member;

b. said shelf member having spaced top and bottom walls extending over a portion of the width and length of the shelf;

c. an aperture in said shelf opening to the space between said spaced walls;

d. said bracket member having a hook end with an upwardly turned tab extending above said top wall and a support arm extending downwardly below the bottom wall;

. said support member having a vertical recessed intermediate wall with a slot therethrough at the shelf level; whereby in the assembled condition said hook end of said support arm is adapted to engage the slot in said intermediate wall of said support member with said tab against the backside of said wall above said slot and said support arm extending through said aperture into the space between the top and bottom walls of said shelf.

2. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim I in which:

a. said shelf member has a depending flange member at one side and an aperture in the bottom wall contiguous to said flange;

b. said bracket member has a notch in the top edge of said support arm whereby said flange member is engaged within the notch of said support arm in the assembled condition of said shelf.

3. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 1 in which:

a. the top and bottom walls of said shelf member have a box channel open at one end; and

b. said support arm is adapted to press fit into said box channel.

4. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 1 in which:

a. the top wall of said shelf member has a depending box flange along opposite edges and :1 depending upwardly turned reverse flange along a remaining edge to form a stiffened top panel;

b. said bottom wall of said shelf member has an upstanding flange along opposite edges and a downwardly turned reverse flange along a remaining edge to form a reinforcing bottom panel;

c. the effective perimeter of said flanges of said bottom panel being less than the perimeter of said flanges of said top panel whereby the former is nestable within the latter in which nested condition the inner wall of said box flanges engage against the upstanding flanges of said bottom panel and the reverse flange of said top panel engages under the downwardly turned flange of said bottom panel.

5. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 4 in which:

a. said top and bottom panels are rectangular in planar configuration the sides of which are defined by the respective flanges of said opposite edges of each and the ends are defined by said respective reverse flanges and downwardly turned reverse flanges.

6. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 4 in which:

a said bottom panel has an opening in one of said opposite edges to receive said support member; and

b. said support arm is press-fitted between said top and bottom walls of said shelf member.

7. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 2 in which:

a. the hook end of said bracket member has a lower buttress edge facing away from from the support arm;

b. an upwardly depending tab is provided at the top edge of said hook;

c. said tab having a buttress edge facing toward said support arm;

d. said respective buttress edges are vertically offset from each other an amount substantially equal to the thickness of said intermediate wall of said support member; and

e. a notch is provided in the top edge of said support arm to which:

receive said depending flange member. 8. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 7 in a. said support member has a second wall outward from said recessed wall;

b. said notch in said support arm has an edge spaced from said lower buttress edge of said hook member an amount substantially equal to the space between said recessed wall and said second outer wall;

0. said tab having a buttress edge facing toward said support arm;

d. said respective buttress edges are vertically offset from each other an amount substantially equal to the thickness of said intermediate wall of said support member; and

e. a notch is provided in the top edge of said support arm t receive said depending flange member.

9. Knockdown shelving in accordance with claim 7 in which:

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U.S. Classification108/108, 248/243, 248/250, 108/152
International ClassificationA47B57/00, A47B96/02, A47B57/42
Cooperative ClassificationA47B57/425, A47B96/027
European ClassificationA47B96/02J, A47B57/42B