US 3641720 A
A building structure employing prefabricated panels having outer skins and an adhesive insulating filling. The edges of the panels are in the form of metal sockets adapted to receive box-type, metal stud splines to which they are interlocked horizontally by means of complemental protrusions and recesses to prevent relative movement longitudinally between the panels and the stud splines. The stud splines form conduits for electrical wiring and have an at least partially open side for the insertion of electrical outlets. The stud splines are provided with bottom plates integrally attached thereto by which they are secured to a base slab. Assembly of panels and stud splines is effected sequentially and with final transverse movement to effect interlocking between the panels and the stud splines.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [151 3,641,720
Berrie 1 1 Feb. 15, 1972  PREFABRICATED BUILDING 3,367,076 2/1968 OBrien.... ....52/309 X CONSTRUCTION WITH INTERFITTING 3,479,784 11/1969 Massagli ..52/309 X  Inventor: Robert W. Bertie, Yorba Linda, Calif.
 Assignee: Omnico Systems International Inc.,
 Filed: Nov. 6, 1969  Appl. No.: 874,514
 U.S. Cl ..52/122, 52/220, 52/285, 52/309, 52/586  Int. Cl. ..E04c 1/10  Field of Search ..52/309, 90, 122, 234, 586, 52/615, 285, 220
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,062,994 5/1913 Pruden ..52/90 2,137,767 11/1938 Betcone... .....52/274 2,730,772 1/1956 Jones ....52/309 X 2,845,150 7/1958 McBerty ..52/586 X 3,203,145 8/1965 Raynes ..52/90 X 3,334,455 8/1967 Russell ..52/586 X STUD SPLINES FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 224,223 10/1959 Australia ..52/238 6,805,282 10/1968 Netherlands ..52/309 Primary Examiner-Alfred C. Perham Attorney-Christie, Parker & Hale 1 ABSTRACT A building structure employing prefabricated panels having outer skins and an adhesive insulating filling. The edges of the panels are in the form of metal sockets adapted to receive boxtype, metal stud splines to which they are interlocked horizontally by means of complemental protrusions and recesses to prevent relative movement longitudinally between the panels and the stud splines. The stud splines form conduits for electrical wiring and have an at least partially open side for the insertion of electrical outlets. The stud splines are provided with bottom plates integrally attached thereto by which they are secured to a base slab. Assembly of panels and stud splines is effected sequentially and with final transverse movement to effect interlocking between the panels and the stud splines.
13 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures PAIENTEDFEB 15 I972 3.641 .720
SHEET 2 [IF 3 PREFABRICATED BUILDING CONSTRUCTION WITH INTERFI'ITING STUD SPLINES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. This invention lies in the field of prefabricated building structures using preformed panels which are mounted to provide walls, ceilings, floors and roofs of the building structures.
2. Prefabricated building structures using standard panels are known in the art, together with various means for mounting the panel edges to each other. Examples of such constructions are seen in the patents to Betcone, US. Pat. No. 2,137,767; Stolz, U.S. Pat. No. 2,143,288; McBerty, U.S. Pat. No. 2,845,150; and Wagner US Pat. No. 2,850,771. However, all of these structures are needlessly complex and expensive, and it is the purpose of the present invention to provide a prefabricated building construction which is simple and economical, which more readily lends itself to mass prefabrication, which provides conduit for electric wiring inherent in the building structure and the ready mounting of electrical outlets thereto, and which interlocks the structure into a strong, rigid, nontilting arrangement.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The basic building unit of the building construction of this invention is a prefabricated panel formed with outer skins between which is an adhesive insulating material, such as polyurethane, which serves to hold the skins together and to prevent them from buckling, forces being readily transferred from one skin to the other through the polyurethane lining. The skins of the panels may be of thin sheet steel bonded together by the polyurethane liner, and with their edges return bent and flanged to form a socket or groove at each longitudinal edge of the panel. These sockets or grooves receive onehalf of box-type steel stud splines which are horizontally interlocked at a multiplicity of points along the length of the panels and stud splines to prevent relative vertical movement therebetween, thereby strengthening the building surface against planar forces which might otherwise cause parallelogramming of the panels by angular tilting relative to their base line.
When used in vertical walls, the stud splines are desirably provided with end plates welded or otherwise secured thereto by which the stud splines are secured at the bottom to bolts embedded in a base slab, their tops being secured to a continuous metal cap. The metal parts are preferably formed of steel, but it is obvious that other materials could be used, including aluminum alloy, and the panels, while they may have steel or other metal skins on both sides, may be formed of a steel skin on the outside and a gypsum board skin on the inside, with a plywood skin on the outside and a gypsum board skin on the inside, or, for interior walls, with gypsum board skins on both sides. In all cases, the longitudinal edges of the panel will be provided with metallic sockets into which the stud splines fit.
The corners of the sockets and stud splines are preferably formed with complementary protrusions and recesses which interlock as the stud spline and panel are moved finally relative to each other in a transverse direction. These interlocking corners prevent relative longitudinal movement between the panels and stud splines, and strengthen the building surface against transverse planar forces in the manner recited.
The stud splines are of open, boxlike form and serve as conduit for electric wiring and the like. Preferably, the stud spline has an at least partially open side for reception of electrical outlets and other devices to be embedded in the wall. The vertical wall construction preferably rests upon a bottom sill or flashing which is adjustable vertically into level position by means of nuts placed upon the slab-embedded bolts which are attached to the bottom plates of the stud splines. The flashing is adjusted vertically before the stud splines are attached, and may then be filled in with grouting between the flashing and the base slab in which the attaching bolts are embedded. Each panel is interlocked to an in place stud spline by final transverse movement relative thereto and each stud spline is interlocked to an in place panel by final transverse movement permitted by a slot engagement with its bottom bolt mounting. While the outer skins of the panel may be otherwise secured together, it is ordinarily sufficient to hold them by the adhe sion of the polyurethane lining therebetween which strongly adheres to the skin surfaces.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. I is a perspective view, with a portion cut away, of a prefabricated building construction according to the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a vertical sectional view on the line 2-2 of FIG. I with parts broken away;
FIG. 3 is a partial horizontal sectional view on the line 3-3 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the upper portion of a stud spline;
FIG. Sis a perspective view of the upper corner of a panel;
FIG. 6 is a horizontal sectional view showing the manner in which a stud spline is attached to an upright panel;
FIG. 7 is a view explaining the manner in which horizontal interlocking between the panels and stud splines prevents tilting of the panels from a planar force;
FIG. 8 is a sectional view through an edge of a modified form of panel;
FIG. 9 is a view similar to FIG. 8 ofa further modified form of the panel; and
FIG. 10 is a view similar to FIGS. 8 and 9 of a still further modified form of panel.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS FIG. 1 shows a building construction according to the present invention having vertical panels 11 providing the vertical walls of the structure and roof panels 12 forming the structure roof. A bottom flashing or sill is shown at 13 on which the panels 11 are mounted. A corner trim is shown at I4 and roof trim at 15.
The panels of FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 6 have sheet metal outer skins l6 and 17 held together by a liner or filling of polyurethane foam l8 adhesively bonded to the inner surfaces thereof. The edges of the skins 16 and 17 are return bent at 19 and flanged at 21, with the flanges 21 meeting to form an edge groove socket 22. The panels 11 may be made in a continuous process by forming and aligning the skins l6 and 17 with polyurethane placed therein and foaming to fill the space therebetween to be bonded to the interior surfaces and hold the skins against separation. This method of construction forms no part of the present invention, but is one manner of forming the panels continuously, whereupon they may be cut to any desired length, depending on the building structure in which they are to be incorporated. The panels may be of any desired dimensions, and by way of example only, can be 3 inches thick and 36 inches wide, with the length determined by the nature of the building structure and of the order of 8, 17 or 27 feet in height. The sheet metal skin may be of any desired gauge, for example, 28 gauge. The panel skins are prevented from buckling by the polyurethane foam therebetween and cemented securely to their inner surfaces. Forces generated in either skin are transmitted directly to the polyurethane foam and therethrough to the opposite skin of the panel.
The corners of the groove sockets 22 are provided with spaced interlocking bosses or protrusions 23 adapted to interlock with complementary recesses 24 in the corners of stud splines 25. The stud splines 25 are of box-type construction, as shown in the drawings, and are provided with an at least partially open side 26 which desirably faces inwardly of the building structure, as shown in FIG. 3. The hollow interior of the stud spline 25 forms conduit for electric wiring and the like 27 (FIG. 2) and the open side 26 serves for the entrance of an electric outlet 28 (FIGS. 1 and 2) which is connected to the wiring 27. To permit entry of the electric outlet, the adjacent edges of the panels may be cut out, as at 30.
The vertical walls 11 are mounted on a base slab 31 in which are embedded bolts 32 at spacings corresponding to the width of the panels 11. The bottom flashing or sill 13 is vertically adjustable relative to the slab 31 by bottom nuts 38 on the bolts 32 by which the flashing may be leveled. The flashing is provided with spaced holes to receive the bolts 32, the holes being disposed in a multiple arrangement similar to a multiple arrangement selected for the width of the panels 11. The bottoms of the stud splines 25 are provided with mounting plates 39 rigidly welded to their bottoms and provided with slots 4] allowing limited horizontal or transverse movement of the stud spline 25 to effect interlocking engagement of the projections 23 and the recesses 24 in the panel socket and the stud spline. Such final interlocking movement is indicated by the arrow 42 in FIG. 6 where the panel 11 is in place and the stud spline 25 is being assembled therein. When the stud spline is finally positioned in interlocking relation with the installed panel, it is held in position by an upper nut 43 clamped to the bottom plate 39. After the flashing 37 is leveled, the space between the slab 31 and the flashing is preferably filled with grouting at 44 (FIG. 2). An interior baseboard trim strip is shown at 40.
Over the upper end of the stud spline 25 in FIG, 2, there is placed an elongated, continuous, generally U-shaped cap 45 to which the ends of the stud splines are attached, as by selftapping screws or bolts 46, the stud splines being thereby held at their bottoms by the bolts 32 and at their tops by the selftapping screws or bolts 46.
In the structure of FIG. 2, panels 47, similar to the panels 11 and 12, are used for the ceiling of the building structure and are supported with their stud splines on the ledges 48 provided on the caps 45 at the top of panels 11. A shear transfer strip 49 is placed upon the cap 45 and is attached to the cap and to the panels 47 by means of self-tapping screws or bolts 51 and 52, respectively. The roof panels 12 are provided with offset strips 53 which interlock with flanges 54 on the strips 49 before the roof panels are moved transversely into interlocking engagement with their stud splines, similar to the stud spline 25. The panels 47 are also interlocked with stud splineslike 25, whereby in both the ceiling and the roof longitudinal relative movement between the panels and the stud splines is prevented, and thereby the panels are prevented from parallelogramming into angular relation to their baselines.
A corner arrangement for the building structure is illustrated in FIG. 3 where a stud spline 25 has been split into two half-portions 25A and 253 which are mounted at 90 relationship to each other at the corners of a right-angular baseplate 55. The panels 11 have their edge grooves or sockets 22 interlocked with the stud spline halves, as shown in FIG. 3, and the corner trim strip 14 completes the corner appearance.
FIG. 7 indicates the manner in which the building walls, whether vertical walls, ceilings, floors or roofs, are rigidified against the planar force indicated by the arrow 56. The panels 11 are interlocked with their stud splines 25 so as to prevent relative vertical movement therebetween so that the panels 11 cannot assume the interrupted line position 11A. Therefore, the interlocking of the protrusions 23 with the recesses 24, which prevents such relative longitudinal movement, opposes the planar force 56 by preventing tilting of the panels and their parallelogramming into the broken line position 11A in angular relationship to their base line. Hence, forces, as indicated at 56, imposed on the panel 1 l are immediately transmitted by the interlocking protrusions and recesses from each panel to the adjacent stud spline, and from it to the next adjacent panel, the resistance to relative longitudinal movement between the panels and stud splines preventing the panels from tilting or parallelogramming and thereby effectively opposing the force 56.
Instead of the double sheet metal skins 16 and 17 heretofore described, the structural panels can be otherwise formed within the spirit of the present invention. FIG. 8 shows a panel 57 having an outer sheet metal skin 58 and an inner gypsum board skin 59 held together by the adhesive and insulating polyurethane foam 61 therebetween. The edge the metal skin 58 extends toward the inner skin and is formed into an edge groove socket 62 which has the projections 23 in its corners, as previously described. The socket groove 62 faces outwardly like the socket 22 and cooperates with the stud spline 25 in the same manner. The final flange of the socket 62 may be secured to the gypsum board skin 59, if desired, but adequate holding of the parts is obtained through the use of the polyurethane adhesive along. The gypsum board may be preferred to metal for an interior wall.
Panel 63 of FIG. 9 has an outer plywood skin 64 and an inner gypsum board skin 65 held together by the adhesive and insulating polyurethane foam 66. A U-shaped channel member 67 of sheet metal is disposed between the skins 64 and 65 and forms an edge groove socket 68 which has multiple spaced protrusions 23 at its corners cooperating with the recesses 24 in the stud spline 25. The member 67 has it channel facing outwardly and may be held in place solely by adhesion to the polyurethane foam 66, or may be connected to the interior skin surfaces, as desired.
The panel 71 of FIG. 10 is particularly designed for use in interior walls. It comprises gypsum board skins at 72 and 73, spaced and held together by adhesive and insulating polyurethane foam 74. A U-shaped channel member 67, the same as in FIG. 9, provides an edge socket groove 68 and is held in position solely by adhesion to the polyurethane foam 74, or by attachment to the skins, as desired.
While certain preferred embodiments of the invention have been specifically illustrated and described, it will be understood that the invention is not limited thereto as many variations will be apparent to those skilled in the art.
1. A prefabricated building structure comprising:
a plurality of prefabricated panels having outwardly facing groove sockets in the longitudinal edges of said panels;
a plurality of protrusions located in spaced relation longitudinally of said groove sockets;
stud splines extending longitudinally of said panels in said edge groove sockets; and
a plurality of protrusion-receiving recesses located in spaced relation longitudinally of the stud splines transversely telescoped about said protrusions whereby when assembled the panels and splines are interlocked and constrained against relative movement in a longitudinal direction to prevent tilting and parallelogramming of the panels upon application of planar forces thereto.
2. A structure according to claim 1 including a mounting plate secured to each of said stud splines at at least one end thereof whereby said splines are attached to a supporting surface in a load-transmitting relationship with said surface.
3. A structure according to claim 2 including an elongated aperture in said baseplate whereby said stud splines are attached to said supporting surface to permit engagement of the stud splines and panel sockets by a final transverse movement in the direction of elongation between the splines and the panels in the final assembly thereof.
4. A building structure according to claim 1 wherein said stud splines are of a boxlike cross section and the groove sockets in said panels are of a complementary rectangular configuration. 5. A building structure according to claim 2 wherein said panels and stud splines are mounted vertically on top of a bottom flashing and said flashing is adjustably mounted upon rigidly mounted bolts which also serve to hold the mounting plates at the bottom of the stud splines.
6. The structure defined in claim 1, in which:
said stud splines are supported, except for their interlocking with the panels, only adjacent their top and bottom portions; and
in which said panels are connected against movement through their interlocking connection with the stud splines.
7. The structure defined in claim 1, in which:
said stud splines are open substantially throughout their length for the reception of circuit wiring and electric outlets therein.
8. The structure of claim 7 in which:
said stud splines have an at least partially open side through which the electric outlets may be inserted.
9. The structure defined in claim 1 in which:
said panels constitute the vertical wall of a building structure;
additional similar panels constituting the interior ceiling of the building structure; and
additional similar panels forming the roof of the building structure.
10. The building structure of claim 1, in which:
the edges of said panels are return bent and flanged, with the edges of the flanges meeting to form the groove socket between the return-bent portions and flanges of the panel edges.
11. The structure of claim 1, in which:
said panels have an exterior sheet metal skin and an interior skin of an interior wall material; and
in which the edges of said exterior skin bend toward the interior skin into the form of a U-shaped channel facing outwardly and forming the groove socket in the longitudinal edge of the panel.
12. The building structure ofclaim l. in which:
said panels have an exterior plywood skin and an interior wall material as an interior skin; and
U-shaped metallic channels between said skins providing the groove sockets in the longitudinal edges of the panels;
said exterior-interior skins and U-shaped channels being held together by an adhesive polyurethane foam between the skins.
13. The building structure of claim 1, in which:
said panels have two interior wall material skins;
U-shaped channels between the skins at the edges thereof providing the outwardly facing, longitudinally extending groove sockets; and
said wall skins and U-shaped metal channels being adhesively bound together by a polyurethane foam liner.