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Publication numberUS3653375 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 4, 1972
Filing dateOct 30, 1970
Priority dateOct 30, 1970
Publication numberUS 3653375 A, US 3653375A, US-A-3653375, US3653375 A, US3653375A
InventorsMarvin J Raffel
Original AssigneeMarvin J Raffel
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Massaging chair
US 3653375 A
Abstract
Two vibrators are mounted on opposite sides of a chair frame below the seat so that the path lengths of the waves traveling through the chair from the vibrators are equal in both directions in a closed path. There are two controls for the vibrator motors, one control regulating the amount of massaging action by controlling the speed of both the vibrators, while the other control regulates the speed and direction of massaging action by controlling the differential speed between the two vibrator motors.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [151 3,653,375 Raffel 1 Apr. 4, 1972 [54] MASSAGING CHAIR 3,547,109 12/1970 Martin ..128/33 [72] Inventor: Marvin J. Raffel, 135 W. lndian Creek Primary Examiner L pp Court Mflwaukee 53217 Attorney-Arthur L. Morsell, Jr. and Curtis B. Morsell, Jr. [22] Filed: Oct. 30, 1970 B T 21 Appl. No.: 85,598 [57] A s RACT Two vibrators are mounted on opposite sides of a chair frame below the seat so that the path lengths of the waves traveling [52] IU.S.((:Ill through the chair from the vibrators a equal in both 2; d 4 2 324,6 directions in a closed path. There are two controls for the I 1 o are Y vibrator motors, one control regulating the amount of massaging action by controlling the speed of both the vibrators, while I 56] References Cited the other control regulates the speed and direction of massag- UNITED STATES PATENTS ing action by controlling the differential speed between the two vibrator motors. 3,019,785 2/1962 Eiden ..l28/33 3,050,051 8/1962 Moxley ..l28/33 ll Claims,6 Drawing Figures f l W (a) l (c) l/ 7 Patented April 4, 1972 3,653,375

M I N /2 g (Q l 7 g I j ATTORNEYS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention is useful in furniture, and is particularly suitable for use in reclining chairs to provide massaging waves for the occupant of the chair.

2. Description of the Prior Art l-leretofore there have been vibrating chairs such as those disclosed in the Blake U.S. Pat. No. 2,715,901, the Oetinger U.S. pat. No. 2,937,641, and in the Leach U.S. Pat. No. Re. 24,487 relating to a couch. In these constructions the vibrating motors have been located in particular places on the chair or couch to afiect a particular portion of the body. Two vibrating motors have not been positioned on opposite sides of a chair frame portion in such a manner that the path lengths of the waves from the plural vibrators are equal in both directions in a closed path of travel formed by solid members. Nor has there been a dual control system for plural vibrating motors wherein one control regulatesthe amount of massaging action by controlling the speed of two vibrator motors while the other control regulates the differential speed between the two vibrator motors to thereby control the speed and direction of the interference massaging waves in a surrounding path around a center.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention provides controlled rotary massaging action on the body of the user. This is accomplished through the use of controlled interference waves that are caused by two out-of-phase vibrator motors mounted on opposite sides of a surrounding frame path formed of solid members to which all parts of the chair are connected.

A further object of the invention is to provide a two control system for the above whereby one control regulates the amount of massaging action generated by both vibrator motors, and the other control regulates the speed and direction of the rotary interference wave massaging action by controlling the differential speed between the two vibrator motors.

A further object of the invention is to provide, in a chair or the like, novel positioning of two vibrators on a single surrounding frame portion of solid material or on two interconnecting frame portions properly arranged and balanced to obtain maximum effective interference waves traveling in a closed path around the center of the chair, the massaging waves being transmitted to the person sitting in the chair by the sag-resistant springs which are stretched across the frame, and by other frame members that come in direct contact with the body through padding on the chair, so that the entire body of the occupant receives the stimulating and relaxing effect of the massaging waves.

A further object of the invention is to provide an improved vibrating chair which is relatively simple to manufacture, which does not affect the normal appearance of the chair, which produces beneficial and pleasing massaging action, and which is otherwise well adapted for the purposes described.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the accompanying drawings, in which the same reference numerals designate the same parts in all of the views:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a chair, part being broken away to show one of the vibrating motors;

FIG. 2 is a view looking up from underneath one type of chair to show the position of the vibrator motors on a surrounding frame portion for one type of chair;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view looking principally at the bottom of a reclining chair to show the position of the vibrator motors on interconnecting frame portions;

FIG. 4 is a diagrammatic view showing a preferred electrical circuit utilizing plural speed vibrator motors;

FIG. 5 is a similar view showing a modified circuit wherein there are motors with untapped field coils, and wherein both of the controls are rheostats; and

FIG. 6 is a similar diagrammatic view showing still another modification wherein the vibrator motors are standard three speed motors, and wherein the speed control for the motors is a switch, and wherein the differential speed control is a rheostat.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS ever, in certain instances such frame may be metal'or part wood and part metal, but the frame elements, forming the surrounding path shown by the arrows in FIGS. 2 or 3, are formed of rigid material as distinguished from flexible material. While the invention is particularly suitable for use in chairs, it is nevertheless useful in other articles of furniture such as couches, beds, mattresses, or the like, it being only important that there be a surrounding frame portion of rigid material such as the frame portion 12 of FIG. 2, or l2'-52 of FIG. 3, which may be either square, rectangular, or anyother shape, as long as it forms a surrounding path for vibrations. The effect may also be produced by the use of interconnected frame portions as will be hereinafter discussed in connection with FIG. 3.

In accordance with the present invention, vibrating motors 13 and 14 are mounted on the closed frame path 12 so as to be directly opposite one another, whereby the vibration path (a) is equal in length to the vibration path (b). These motors are conventional vibrator motors having their shafts connected to eccentric weights 8 and 9, respectively. They are preferably AC-DC induction motors, and the motors are firmly clamped or otherwise attached to the frame portions 12 to impart vibration thereto. The purpose of this arrangement is to obtain maximum effective interference waves from the vibrating motors which travel in a surrounding path around a center, such as the center (c) of the chair frame 12. With this arrangement the two vibrators work together to affect all parts of the chair, as distinguished from prior art constructions wherein each vibrator is located to have its principal affect on a certain section of the chair and hence on a certain portion of the body of the occupant.

FIG. 3 illustrates the application of the invention to a certain type of reclining chair 50 which has arm portions 51, a base frame 12 which corresponds to the frame 12 of FIG. 2, and a seat frame 52 which is positioned upwardly from the base frame 12. The seat frame is pivoted as at 53 to the forward ends of metal arms 54. The inner or rear ends of said arms are pivoted as at 55 to the base frame 12 or to rigid connections therewith. Suitably connected to the seat frame is a back frame 56. Sag-resistant springs, such as the sinusoidal springs 57 illustrated, extend longitudinally of the back frame, and similar springs 58 are stretched from the front to the back of the seat frame. In this type of frame there is also usually a foot rest (not shown) which is suitably connected to the lower frame. In this type of reclining chair it is preferred to maintain the surrounding path by the use of two interconnecting frames 12' and 52. Therefore, the vibrator motor 14 which corresponds to the motor 14 of FIG. 2 is connected to the frame 12 similar to the motor 14 of FIG. 2. The other motor 13 which corresponds to the motor 13 of FIG. 2 is, however, connected to the rear portion of the seat frame 52, preferably to the underside thereof. This creates the same effect as is illustrated in FIG. 2 inasmuch as the massaging waves will travel as shown by arrows in FIG. 3 from the solid frame 52 through the solid metal hinge connections 54 into the lower frame 12'. Thus a closed or surrounding path through solid members is still provided, the massaging waves being transmitted to the occupant of the chair both by the springs 57 and S8 and by other frame members which come in direct contact with the body of the occupant through the surface padding on the chair so that the entire body receives the stimulating and relaxing affects of the massaging waves.

In the present invention two controls are employed, one control regulating the amount of massaging action by controlling the speed of both vibrator motors 13 and 14, while the other control regulates the speed and direction of the massaging action by controlling the differential speed between the motors 13 and 14 in such 'a way that interference frequency waves are produced.

Referring now to FIG. 4, the switch 15, designated a common switch, is a four-position switch for the purpose of controlling the amount of massaging action by regulating the speed of both motors 13 and 14. One wire 16 leading from a source of current connects with the central pole 17 of the switch 15. The switch has an off position 18 and speed positions 1, 2 and 3. These are connected by wires 19, 20 and 21 with taps 22, 23and 24 of the field coil 25 of the motor. The other end of the field coil is connected with the wire 26- connecting with the other side of the source of electricity. The electric wire 19 is connected by a wire 27, through a four-wire jack and plug set 28, with a tap 29 on the field coil 30 of the other motor 14. The electric wire 20 is connected by conduit 31 with a tap 32 of the field coil 30, and electric wire 21 is connected by a wire 33 with the tap 34 of the field coil 30 for the motor 14.

The field coil of the motor 13 is a standard coil for a threespeed motor. The field coil 30 for the motor 14 has three more taps at the other end in addition to the taps 29, 32 and 34. A differential speed switch 35 is similar to the switch 15. Its central pole 36 is connected by an electric conduit 37 with the source wire. The terminal 38 is in off position and there are other positions 1a, 1b and 10. These are connected by electric conduits 39, 40 and 41 with the three extra taps 42a, 42b and 42c.

With the above arrangement, assuming that common switch 15 is set as illustrated in FIG. 4, to complete the circuit to terminal l for minimum speed this will, of course, cause the motor 13 to operate at its minimum speed. At the same time, due to the connection provided by the electric wire 27 with the top of the coil 30 for the motor 14, the latter will be operated at its minimum speed as far as switch 15 is concerned. By switching the switch lever for the switch 15 to contact 2, both motors will be operated at an increased speed, and by switching to terminal 3 the speed of both motors will be still further increased. Thus the amount of massaging action is regulated by controlling the speed of both vibrators simultaneously.

Through use of the differential switch 35 and a properly wired and tapped coil 30, if the switch lever is set to contact terminal la of switch 35 the speed of the motor 14 will be increased, for example, by 100 rpm. over the speed of the motor 13. If the switch 35 is set to engage terminal lb as illustrated, the speed of the motor 14 will be decreased a small amount, such as 30 r.p.m. under the speed of motor 13, and by regulating the switch 35 to contact terminal (c) of the switch the speed of the motor 14 will be decreased, such as 100 r.p.m., under the speed of motor 13. Thus the switch 35 regulates the speed and direction of the massaging action by controlling the differential speed between the motors 13 and 14 in such a way that interference frequency waves are controlled.

The switches 15 and 35 may, of course, have more or less than the four positions illustrated and described, depending upon the number of motor speeds desired.

In the form of the invention of FIG. 5 the motors 113 and 114 both have untapped field coils. However, motor 114 is modified so that it runs at least 100 rpm. faster than motor 113 when the rheostats 115 and 135 are in a position for zero resistance. In this form of the invention the rheostat 115 serves the same function as the switch 15, i.e. to control the amount of massaging action by regulating the speed of both vibrator motors 113 and 114. Here the rheostat finger is connected by electric wire 116 with one side of the source and the resistance coil of the rheostat is connected by the wire 119 with the field coil 125 for the motor 113. The electric wire 119 is also connected by wire 127 with the field coil 130 for the motor 1 14. The other end of the coil is connected by wire 139 with the movable contact finger of the rheostat, the coil of the rheostat being connected by electric wire 126 with the other side of the source of current, and there being a wire 150 connecting the other end of the field coil 125 with the source wire 126.

With the arrangement of FIG. 5 the rheostat 115 controls the speed of both motors 113 and 114 and the rheostat 135 controls the speed of motor 114 only so that it, in effect, controls the differential speed between the two motors 113 and l 14.

In the modification of FIG. 6 the motor 213 corresponds to the motor 13 of FIG. 2 or 13 of FIG. 3, and all of the wiring for the motor 213 is the same as heretofore described in connection with FIG. 4. The various parts will, therefore, be designated by the same numerals preceded by the digit 2. Motor 214, instead of being a three-speed motor with three extra taps as in FIG. 4, is a standard three-speed motor, the same as motor 213. The wire 233 connects with the first tap of the motor 214. The line 231 connects with the second tap, and the line 227 with the third tap. Thus the switch 215 controls the speed of both motors. The rheostat 235, however, has its coil connected by wire 226 with the source of current and has its movable finger connected by wire 239 with the lower end of the field coil 230 for the motor 214. Thus the rheostat controls the speed of only the motor 214 and, hence, the differential speed between the motors 213 and 214. The circuits of FIGS. 4, 5 and 6, therefore, merely show three different ways of accomplishing the same net result.

When a person is sitting in the chair 10 or 50, the interference waves from motor 14 or 14 and 13 or 13, operating out of phase, travel around the frame as shown by the arrows (a) and (b) in frame 12 or l2'52 in combination, which frames are all comprised of structural elements formed of rigid material as distinguished from flexible material. Thus the two vibrators either 13 and 14 or 13' and 14 work together to create a predetermined effect on all portions of the chair, producing a sensation of traveling waves of vibration. By use of the controls 15, or 215 the speed of both motors may be increased or decreased as desired to regulate the amount of massaging action. By manipulating the controls 35, or 235 the differential speed between the two motors may be controlled so that the vibrators produce vibrations of different frequencies, which frequencies combine to produce interference waves which result in an apparent motion of the lines of massage. When two motors are operating at identical speed there is little effect of moving lines of massage. When, how ever, the controls 35, 135 or 235 are operated to produce different speeds between the two motors, then the effect of motion is produced by the lines of vibration traveling in the closed path (b) of the frame portion 12 in FIG. 2 for example. With predetermined settings for the controls 35, 135 or 235 the direction of the waves may be reversed by reversing the relative speeds of the two motors.

For example, if the pointer switch 35 of FIG. 4 is at position 10, which would be the fastest position for motor 14, then motor 14 is operating faster than motor 13 because of differences in the number of turns in the field coils of the two motors or because of variations in the gauge of the wire which is used in the field coils, or due to any other conventional change which affects the normal speed. When the switch 35 is in position 1b, this produces a speed for motor 14 which is slower than the speed of motor 13, and when this occurs this reverses the direction of the massaging waves from the direction shown by the arrows in FIG. 2. When the switch is at position 1c, the motor 14 is operated at a still slower speed with respect to motor 13 which increases the differential and, therefore, increases the frequency of the interference waves, the latter being proportional to the differential speed.

In FIG. 5, when the rheostat 135 is at 0 resistance the motor 114 will be running faster than the motor 113 because the motor 114 has fewer turns in its field coil or is otherwise varied to produce this result. As the rheostat 135 is moved, it will gradually reduce the speed of the motor 114 until it matches the speed of the motor 113. Further movement in the same direction of the switch will then cause the motor 114 to operate at a slower speed than the motor 113, at which point the interference massaging waves will be reversed from the direction shown by the arrows in FIG. 2.

Likewise, in FIG. 6, when rheostat 235 is at 0 resistance the motor 214 runs faster than motor 213 because it has fewer turns in its field coil or has been otherwise modified to produce this result.

As a result of the above construction, wherein moving waves of vibration are created by controlling the differential speed between the two vibrators, an effect more like a body massage is created which is more soothing and relaxing to the body of the occupant.

In the claims the word rigid as used in connection with the frame portion 12, or 12'-52 in combination, denotes that the frame portions comprise elements formed of rigidmaterial as distinguished from flexible material, and the term frame portion contemplates either a frame as shown in FIG. 2 or a frame portion comprising part of each of a plurality of interconnected frames as in FIG. 3.

It is to be understood that I do not desire to be limited to the exact details of construction shown and described, for obvious modifications will occur to a person skilled in the art.

What I claim is:

1. In an article of furniture having a frame portion whose there are sag-resistant springs interconnecting opposite parts of said frame portion.

3. An article of furniture as claimed in claim I in which there is also means for regulating the amount of massaging action by simultaneously controlling the speed of both motors.

4. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which the electric circuit is a common circuit for the two motors, and in which the controlling means is in said common circuit.

5. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 3 in which the electric circuit is a common circuit for the two motors, and in which both controlling means are in said common circuit.

6. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which the article of furniture is a chair, and in which the frame portion is a rectangular frame portion at least part of which is a part of the base of the chair.

7. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 6 in which there are sag-resistant springs interconnecting opposite parts of said frame portion.

8. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which each vibrator motor is a multi-speed motor having a field coil with optional taps, in which the field coil of one of the motors has elements are formed of rigid material and are arranged to provide a closed path surrounding a portion of the article, two electric motor-operated vibrators mounted opposite one another on said frame portion, electric circuit means for the motors of said vibrators, a source of current, and means for controlling the differential speed between the two motors to thereby control the speed and direction of the interference waves in said closed path formed by the frame portion whereby a massaging action is produced.

2. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which extra taps for producing speeds which are optionally greater than or less than the speed of the first motor, and in which the means for controlling the differential speed between the two motors comprises a switch for controlling the tap selection of said last-mentioned motor.

9. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 3 in which both motors are multi-speed motors with optional taps, and in which the means for regulating the massaging action is a common switch for selecting corresponding taps of the two motors to simultaneously control the speed of both motors.

10. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which the means for controlling the speed and direction of massaging action by controlling the differential speed between the two motors includes a rheostat for at least one of said motors.

11. An article of furniture as claimed in claim 1 in which the V two motors are multi-speed motors, in which there is a common switch for simultaneously controlling the speed of both motors, and in which there is a rheostat for controlling the speed of one of the motors only.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3019785 *May 18, 1959Feb 6, 1962Niagara Therapy Mfg CorpVibratory massage cushion
US3050051 *Jan 26, 1959Aug 21, 1962William N MoxleyMassage apparatus
US3547109 *Mar 4, 1968Dec 15, 1970Clifford Miles MartinVibratory massage apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3831591 *Mar 14, 1973Aug 27, 1974R NewkirkVibratory cushion
US3902687 *Jun 25, 1973Sep 2, 1975Robert E HightowerAircraft indicator system
US3934283 *Jun 17, 1974Jan 27, 1976Raffel Marvin JBed frame with readily connectable vibrator motors
US4099773 *May 31, 1977Jul 11, 1978Chang James FCouples chair
US4105024 *May 16, 1977Aug 8, 1978Raffel Marvin JMassaging furniture
US4559929 *May 21, 1984Dec 24, 1985Hyman Products Co., Inc.Massage device
US5140977 *Apr 15, 1991Aug 25, 1992Raffel Product DevelopmentMounting for vibrating motor
US5593206 *Mar 27, 1996Jan 14, 1997Fukuoka Kagaku Ltd.Apparatus for vibrating seats
US5668535 *Dec 7, 1995Sep 16, 1997Emerson Electric Co.Filter condition sensor and indicator
US5713832 *Apr 23, 1996Feb 3, 1998Product Development Consulting Inc.Massaging furniture with electric vibration device and eccentric rotor
US6056357 *Sep 23, 1996May 2, 2000Yukihiko SaitohApparatus for vibrating seats
US6507282Jan 12, 2001Jan 14, 2003The Holmes Group, Inc.Filter monitoring system using a thermistor
Classifications
U.S. Classification601/60
International ClassificationA61H23/02, A61H1/00
Cooperative ClassificationA61H2023/0272, A61H2201/0149, A61H23/0263, A61H2023/0281, A61H2201/0138
European ClassificationA61H23/02R2