US 3674311 A
A seat, such as an upholstered chair, sofa or love seat, is so constructed that it can be shipped in a flat package, knocked down, and assembled by the purchaser in a very few minutes. The seat has a back, two arms and seat which are assembled by connecting the back to the seat and then by ingenious means connecting the two arms to the back and seat. The upper ends of the arms have hook engagement with cooperating means on the edges of the back, whereupon the seat is bolted to the arms to complete the assembly. The seat construction employs conventional sinuous springs extending from front to back and the seat deck construction is such that longer springs may be used, connected in close proximity to the front and back of the seat deck and at relatively low points to improve the comfort of the seat by spring action. Tension means connected to the springs prevents the "bucketing" of the springs, the tensioning means being variable to control such action.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Miller July 4, 1972  CHAIR CONSTRUCTION Primary Examiner-Paul R, Gilliam  Inventor: Richard II. Miller, 4723 Crestwood Way,
Sacramento, 95822 AttarneyAlexander B. Blair  Filed: Feb. 26, 1970  ABSTRACT Appl. No.: 18,019
Related US. Application Data The seat has a back, two arms and seat which are assembled by connecting the back to the seat and then by ingenious means connecting the two arms to the back and seat. The upper ends of the arms have hook engagement with cooperating means on the edges of the back, whereupon the seat is bolted to the arms to complete the assembly. The seat construction employs conventional sinuous springs extending from front to back and the seat deck construction is such that longer springs may be used, connected in close proximity to the front and back of the seat deck and at relatively low points to improve the comfort of the seat by spring action. Tension means connected to the springs prevents the bucketing" of the springs, the tensioning means being variable to control such action.
2 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures PATEMTEDJUL' 4 m2 SHEET 2 BF 2 CHAIR CONSTRUCTION This application is a division of Ser. No. 71 1,259, filed Mar. 7, 1968, now US. Pat. No. 3,526,433.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION As is well known, it is the common practice in furniture factories to manufacture completed, assembled, upholstered chairs, love seats and sofas and the articles are usually shipped in large paperboard cartons. These cartons are bulky and freight rates for shipping them are quite high. The present improvement permits chair components to be manufactured and shipped in knocked-down condition as distinguished from the present method of manufacture and shipment.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The bottom, back and sides of a chair are manufactured in their entirety, including upholstery and coverings, and then are shipped stacked one on top of the other in knocked-down condition to be assembled by the use of a few bolts. The back is provided with a bottom rail which, in assembling, is bolted to the back rail of the deck and the back is provided in opposite edges nearthe top thereof with a slot within which is arranged a hanger. The completed sides of the chair are provided with flat upwardly opening hooks insertable through the openings in the edges of the back and then moved upwardly to engage the hooks with the hangers. The side rails of the deck are then bolted to the sides of the chair. With the upwardly opening hooks carried by the sides of the chair, the weight of the back and its connection to the seat is placed directly on the sides of the chair, the weight thus being directly supported by the sides of the chair.
The deck includes a novel construction including low front and rear rails to which are connected the ends of sinuous springs, and these springs are connected to each other and to the side rails of the deck by auxiliary springs. The arrangement of the parts relative to the front and rear rails is such that longer than usual sinuous springs may be employed and they are anchored to the front and rear rails in close proximity to the forward and rear extremities of the chair.
The deck further includes an auxiliary rear rail above the main rail and beneath which the rear ends of the sinuous springs extend. Tensioning means is connected between the auxiliary rear rail and each sinuous spring to control the firmness and bucketing action of the latter. An auxiliary front rail is spaced above the main'front rail and is provided with a support above the auxiliary rail and below the upper extremity of the deck so that the seat cushion may have a deep forward edge to improve the seating comfort of the chair.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the finished chair;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the component parts of the chair showing the sides of the chair separated from the bottom and back;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the seat deck per se;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged section on line 4-4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5' is a detailed section on line 5-5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a plan view of the deck structure of the chair with the springs, etc., eliminated;
FIG. 7 is an enlarged detailed sectional view showing the connection ofthe back and one of the chair sides;
FIG. 8' is a fragmentary perspective view of the frame of one of the chair sides and a portion of the frame of the back; and
FIG. 9 is a fragmentary bottom plan of one comer of the chair frame.
Referring to FIG. .1, attention is invited to the fact that while an upholstered chair is shown, the invention is applicable to similar articles such as sofas, love seats, etc. The chair comprises four main components, namely, a seat 10, back 12, and sides 14. Each of these components at. the factory may be upholstered and covered and completed as individual separate units.
The seat or bottom portion 10 comprises a frame shown in section in FIG. 4. This frame comprises a front rail 16 and rear rail 18, and it will be noted that both of these railshave their tops spaced substantially from the top of the frame as a whole. These rails are connected at their ends by side rails 20, and the connection between the front and side rails is strengthened by the usual knee blocks 22.
The side rails 20 have their upper edges at a higher elevation than the tops of the front and rear rails, and front and rear blocks 24 and 26, respectively, are secured to the upper edges of the side rails. These blocks may be of the same width as the side rails 20 as shown by the blocks 26 in FIG. 6. The tops of the blocks 24 are flush with the auxiliary front rails 28 (FIG. 4) and a flat strip 30, preferably formed of thin plywood, extends over the auxiliary rail 28 and over the tops of the front portions of the blocks 24. The blocks 26 are higher than the blocks 24 and each of the latter is provided with an auxiliary block 32, the top surface of which is in the same horizontal plane as the tops of the blocks 26. A heavy flexible rubber strip 34 is cemented or otherwise secured forwardly and rearwardly to the upper faces of the blocks 26 and 32 and projects inwardly therefrom asshown in FIG. 5.
It will be noted that the auxiliary front rail 28 is spaced above the main rail 16. An auxiliary rear rail 36 spans the side rails 20 (FIG. 4) and is spaced over the main rear rail 18. These spaces between the main and auxiliary front and back rails are utilized to receive a plurality of hooks 38 and 40 fixed, respectively, to the main front and back rails 16 and 18. Sinuous springs 42 are connected between corresponding front and rear hooks, the arrangement of such springs being shown in FIG. 3. The springs 42 are connected to each other and to the side frames by auxiliary springs 43. By providing the spaces referred to, the spring mountings may be arranged very close to the front and rear limits of the chair deck, thus providing for the use of substantially longer springs of the sinuous type. The length and resiliency also areimproved by the fact that the hooks 38 and 40 are arranged relatively close to the bottom of the chair deck. The spring arches as shown in FIG. 4, the uppermost limit of the spring between its ends being arranged above the rubber strip or webbing 34. These relatively strong rubber webbings 34, as will become apparent, allow the deck pad to cavitate on the sides of the chair without producing a "hammock effect.
Certain cross members of each of the sinuous springs are connected by a strong rubber band 44 to hooks 46 fixed to the top of the auxiliary back rail 36. Springs may be employed in place of rubber bands as will be obvious. Where bands are used, they are looped around certain portions of the springs and then arranged in V-shape as shownin FIG. 3 and are connected at their ends to the hooks 46. The bands 44 (or springs) control the firmness of the seating comfort and bands of different tension may be employed. The seat 10 is of largely conventional construction and will be supported by the elements described. Since the strip 30 is arranged below the level of the webs 34, a deep cushioned front edge may be employed to improve the seating comfort.
Each chair side 14 is of course provided with an interior frame, and the same is true of back '12, as shown in FIG. 8. The frame for each chair side comprises front and rear posts 48 and 50, upper curved wood units 52 and cross members 54, 56 and 58. Each member 56 and 58 is provided with a bolt opening 60 for a purpose to be described.
Each rear post 50 is provided with metal bracket 62 having an upwardly openinghook 64, the body of each bracket lying in a substantially vertical plane. The hooks 62 are employed for connecting the sides of the chair to the back.
Among other elements, the back 12 comprises vertical side posts 66 and a bottom rail 68. The bottom rail 68 is provided with at least one bolt opening 72 for a purpose to be described.
Each post 66 is provided near its upper end with a vertical slot 74 through which the bracket 62 is adapted to be inserted. On each inner face of thepost 66 is secured a chafing plate 76,
the bottom of which is downwardly notched as at 78. The bracket 62 is inserted through the slot 74 and then is raised so that the notch 64 in the bracket 62 slides upwardly into the notch 78 of the plate 76, as shown in FIG. 7. The upward opening of the notch 64 is important for a purpose to be described.
In FIG. 7 the back and side of the chair are shown as being merely covered with upholstery material 80. It will be apparent, however, that the frames of these units may be provided with both upholstery or padding covered by upholstery material.
When each side 14 is assembled, as shown in FIG. 7, the bolt holes 60 will align with similar openings 82 in the side rails 20 to receive bolts 84 for connecting the deck to the side members. These bolts may be of the type shown in FIG. 4 for connecting the bottom rail 68 of the back to the back rail 18 of the deck. Such bolts preferably include heads 86 having points 88 projecting therefrom to be driven into the wood of the elements by which they are carried so that when the units are brought together, the bolts may be inserted from the inside of the deck frame. Beneath the corners of the deck frame are secured gusset or corner plates 90 (FIG. 9) and the chair is provided with feet 92 adapted to be secured to plates 90 of bolts 94.
OPERATION As previously stated, each of the main units of the construction, l0, l2 and 14, are manufactured and completely assembled at the factory, whereupon these units may be stacked in a much smaller carton than is ordinarily used in the shipping of furniture. Thus a great saving in shipping space and freight rates is effected. The kit thus packed will include feet 92 as separate elements together with the necessary assembly bolts.
The purchaser, for example a furniture store, will unpack the furniture units and placing the back rail 68 in position against the back rail 18 of the seat deck will secure these two units together by the bolt 86 (FIG. 4), only one such bolt being necessary. Having thus assembled the deck and back, the sides are then assembled by inserting the brackets 62 through the openings 74 and then lifting the side relative to the back to seat the brackets 62 relative to their plates 76. The bolts 84 are then inserted through the openings 60 (FIG. 8) and 82 (FIG. whereupon the main units of the chair will have been completely assembled. The plates 90 (FIG. 9) are then secured in position, and one of the feet 92 is bolted to each plate 90 to complete the assembly.
Attention is invited to the fact that upwardly opening of the notch 64 is important. By this arrangement the entire weight of the back of the chair is transmitted through the brackets 62 to the sides 14 which seat squarely on the floor. Thus, no force is transmitted downwardly from the back 12 to the rear portion of the seat deck. All of the foregoing operations of assembly are quickly and easily carried out, and a resultant chair provides a strong rigid construction. The rubber webbing 34 minimizes the hammock effect due to the flexing downwardly of the seat 10 near its edges. Longer sinuous springs 42 may be employed for the reasons stated, and the resultant chair provides a higher degree of comfort in use. A chair of excellent quality may be sold at a lower price because of the elimination of the assembly operations in the factory, the simplicity of the assembly operations by the purchaser, and the great saving of space in the shipment of the article.
From the foregoing it will now be seen that there is herein provided an improved chair construction which accomplishes all of the objects of this invention and others, including many advantages of great practical utility and commercial importance.
As various embodiments may be made of this inventive concept, and as many modifications may be made in the embodiments hereinbefore shown and described, it is to be understood that all matter herein is to be interpreted merely as illustrative, and not in a limiting sense. I
1. A chair comprising a frame formed of side rails and front and back cross rails connected at their upper ends to said side rails and having upper faces arranged below the top edges of said side rails, hooks carried by the upper faces of said front and back rails, sinuous springs connected between the hooks of said front and back side rails and arching therebetween to support a cushion, an auxiliary front rail spaced above and parallel to said first-named front rail, a hOrizontal strip arranged on said auxiliary front rail, a block supported by said side rail and having its top surface arranged above said strip, a block supported on each side rail forwardly of said auxiliary rear rail and having its top surface substantially in the plane of the top surfaces of said first-named blockS, a rubber webbing connected to and extending between the tops of said blocks and projecting inwardly thereof, the arrangement of said strip below the top of said blocks and said rubber webbing being such as to provide for deeply cushioned side edges of a cushion arranged on said webbing.
2. A seat unit according to claim 1 provided with an auxiliary rear rail spaced above and parallel to said first-named rear rail, and tensioning means connected between the top of said auxiliary rear rail and each of said sinuous springs at a point spaced from the rear end thereof to tension such spring.