US 3677415 A
Supporting means of cantilever type designed to display articles for sale in a retail store. The invention contemplates a panel designed to be an improvement over the usual pegboard in that the holes are virtually invisible by reason of surface treatment of the panel and reduced size of the holes. The invention also contemplates special cantilever supporting bars having special attaching means locking them positively on an apertured panel, which may be that of the invention or a standard or other type of pegboard.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Radek  CANTILEVER MERCHANDISE SUPPORT  Inventor: John R. Radelt, Hinsdale. I11.
 Assignee: Ready Metal Manufacturing 011., Chicago.
221 Filed: Sept. 17, 1970 2| Appl.No.: 73,026
 Int. Cl. ..A47I 7/00  Field otSearch ..211/S9. 60. 87; 248/D1G. 3. 248/225  Relerences Clted UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,842,264 7/1958 Larson ..206/65 3,315,816 4/1967 Mallory ....211/60 2,614,701 10/1952 Mapson ....211/87 3,002,629 10/1961 Gersin ..211/35 51 July 18, 1972 Nelson ..211/60 8/1965 Murray Bilodeau. OConnor...
Rendich Modrey ..287/189.36
Primary mminerNile C. Byers. Jr. Attorney-Frank H. Marks ABSTRACT Supporting means of cantilever type designed to display articles for sale in a retail store. The invention contemplates a panel designed to be an improvement over the usual pegboard in that the holes are virtually invisible by reason of surface treatment of the panel and reduced size of the holes. The invention also contemplates special cantilever supporting bars having special attaching means locking them positively on an apertured panel, which may be that of the invention or a standard or other type of pegboard.
SChlnmlODrawingflgures Patented July 18, 1972 3,677,415
2 Sheets-Shea t l N VF N TOE dzhrz P @002 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 pI/l I llll/lA/I/fl CANTILEVER MERCHANDISE SUPPORT My invention relates to display equipment especially suitable for showing articles in retail stores and the like, and has to do more particularly with equipment of this character designed for hanging small items such as hardware, etc., on a generally vertical wall for quick attachment and removal.
My invention may be considered an improvement in the well known "pegboard" type of display which has long been employed for hanging and displaying articles of all sorts.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Pegboards for a long time have had a generally standard fonn, consisting of rigid sheeting formed of suitable material such as plywood, Masonite or other synthetic or composition" substance and provided with rows of regularly spaced holes for reception of hooks on which articles may be hung. Such boards are supported in a generally vertical plane by suitable props, and the holes are usually standardized to 3/l6- inch diameter.
Despite its wide use, such equipment is subject to a number of serious objections. For one thing, the hooks, while inexpensive and convenient, readily fall out of the holes when not bearing a weight, because of the lack of retaining or locking means.
For another thing, such equipment is lacking in esthetic attractiveness. Inasmuch as, under practically all circumstances, many of the holes remain unused while others are employed, they are starkly visible, marring the appearance of what might otherwise be a visually attractive display.
BRIEF OUTLINE OF THE INVENTION An object of my invention is to provide an improved display means in a vertical plane for a plurality of relatively small articles offered for sale in a "self-service or other shop. While especially suitable for small hardware items such as hand tools, my invention is applicable to the support of a wide variety of goods of substantial weight and small sire.
Another object is to provide, in equipment of the type referred to, an improved panel or sheet having a number of novel and advantageous features in combination.
Thus, my improved panel, while it may be formed of a variety of materials, is preferably of relatively thin sheet metal such as steel or aluminum, reducing weight and cost, and provided with a decorative surface so as to render the hookreceiving holes inconspicuous.
To enhance further the inconspicuousness of the holes, the latter are substantially reduced in diameter as compared to the 3/ 16-inch holes commonly employed in standard pegboard. Thus, the unoccupied holes are, for all practical purposes, normally invisible to casual inspection.
A further object of my invention is to provide a new and improved article supporting hanger bar or bracket adapted for quick and easy attachment to and detachment from a perforated board or panel, which bar has special locking means cooperating with said panel, obviating its accidentally falling off the panel. My improved hangers may be used on my improved panel and also in conjunction with standard or other pegboards.
Still another object is to provide equipment of the type described specially designed for mass production and thus available in large quantities at low cost for chain stores, etc.
Various other objects and advantages will become apparent to those skilled in the art as the description proceeds.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Referring now to the drawings forming a part of this specification and illustrating certain preferred embodiments of my invention.
FIG. I is a fragmentary perspective view of a portion of wallboard carrying several fonns of article-supporting bars or hooks (hereinafter for brevity referred to as bars) constituting preferred embodiments of my invention;
FIGS. 2, 3 and 4 are fragmentary perspective views showing in detail several preferred forms of attaching means for the artide-supporting bars;
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view, partly in elevation, taken substantially along line 5-5 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary sectional view, partly in elevation, taken substantially along line 6-6 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 7 is a fragmentary sectional view, partly in elevation, taken substantially along line 77 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 8 is a fragmentary sectional view, partly in elevation, taken substantially along line 8-8 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 9 is a fragmentary perspective view, with parts broken out for added cleamess, showing an arrangement for supporting my improved panel, prior to attachment, and
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary perspective view showing the parts seen in FIG. 9 after attachment is completed.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION Referring to FIG. I, my invention contemplates a special board or panel 10 to be used as a generally vertical supporting wall for articles to be displayed for sale, as aforesaid. Panel 10 may be supported in any suitable manner by props, braces or stands, as in the case of wall boards previously in use.
However, I have found that a most convenient arrangement for my purposes comprises a skeleton frame including posts P (FIGS. 9 and 10) of metal tubing of rectangular section having spaced slots S, commonly used for knockdown display equipment. Panel [0 is attached, as by welding, to suitable hollow support bars B which likewise have vertically spaced slots S. Suitable hooks interengage slots S and s, whereby panel 10 is hung in cantilever fashion from horizontally spaced posts P.
Panel 10 may be formed of a wide variety of materials. A major feature, from the standpoint of my invention, is that holes 12, arranged in any desired or convenient spacing and number, preferably in a regular pattern, are of a diameter substantially less than three-sixteenths inch, the standard size of apertures formed in currently used pegboard to receive hooks of standard character formed of 3/ l 6-inch wire.
I have found that holes of the order of about three thirtyseconds inch or less, when viewed from a distance of a few yards, do not obtrude upon the view of a person of normal vision and, hence for all practical purposes, may be said to be substantially invisible.
The invisibility" of holes 12 is thought to be due to a combination of their small size and arrangement on the board in a regular pattern. The effect of non-obtrusiveness is obtainable if the holes are arranged in a rectangular or non-rectangular pattern, such as circular, spiral, etc., it being a psychological axiom that attention normally is not distracted by a regular or monotonous pattern, where the elements (individual holes in this case) of the pattern are inconspicuous. The number and spacing of the holes is a matter of choice.
My preferred material for panel [0 is a relatively stiff sheet material, preferably sheet metal such as steel or aluminum. While [do not consider the gauge or thickness critical, I find that sheet steel of a guage within the approximate range of 0.030 to 0.060 inch, depending upon load requirements, is suitable. Plywood, masonite, etc., may also be used.
To enhance the inconspicuousness of holes [2 and to add to the attractiveness of the display, I preferably impart to panel 10 a decorative surface 15 in any suitable pattern or design, inasmuch as a visible pattern serves to distract a viewer's attention from holes 12. The surface design may be applied to the sheet in any known or other suitable manner.
For example, a coating or lamination of vinyl or other suitable plastic coating may be applied in any suitable manner, as by spray or roller application in fluid form or by adhesive application of sheet material. The pattern or design may be formed as by printing on the coated panel I0 or on an applied sheet prior to application.
Otherwise, a surface design may be produced directly on the sheet metal by anodizing or other chemical or mechanical modification of said sheet material, without application of any surface coating. For example, plate may be of a type known as rigidized," which has had its surface deformed, as by a hard platen or roller, to impart a surface pattern or design. Other modes of deformation or other processes may suggest themselves to those skilled in the art to impart a surface design or pattern.
The article supporting bars which l employ in combination with my improved panel 10 are likewise believed to embody features of novelty representing marked advantages over the hooks previously used on pegboard to support articles, which hooks have a propensity to drop out. In contradistinction, my improved cantilever bars are designed to lock themselves in place on the panel and cannot accidentally fall out of the holes but must be removed by deliberate manual action.
In general, my improved cantilever bars or brackets comprise a generally horizontally extending cantilever member, the outer end of which is free and the inner end, adjacent panel 10, being secured to a device designed to be quickly attachable to and detachable from an apertured panel. Said attachment device in general comprises spaced wires insertable in holes of the panel, said wires including a pair which are resiliently distortable to enter a pair of said holes, so that, after insertion, said resilient wires will automatically tend to spring back toward normal position and thus wedge or lock themselves in place.
Turning to the drawings, FIG. 1 shows several forms of cantilever bars embodying my invention and designed to support articles of different shape, size and weight.
Thus, numeral represents a bar of simple fonn formed of wire or rod stock of suitable gauge, the free end 22 being slightly upturned to prevent a supported article from accidentally sliding off. The other end of bar 20 is bent at about a right angle to provide a depending foot 25 which is secured in an expedient manner to a plate 30, preferably of metal. While numerous modes of attachment will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art, I have found it most convenient to form on plate as by stamping a forwardly extending annular boss or ring 27 to which foot 25 is attached, as by brazing or welding at vertically spaced points.
The top and bottom marginal portions of plate 30 are bent rearwardly (FIGS. 4 and 5) to provide overlying flanges 32 and 32, said flanges being deformed to provide generally vertical tunnels 35. Upper flange 32 secures a generally U-shaped wire 37 the web portion 38 of which underlies flange 32 while the legs 39 pass through tunnels 35, above which the legs 39 are offset backwardly. Thus, legs 39 of wire 37 are insertable by a simple manual operation in a pair of horizontally spaced holes of panel 10.
Secured by lower flange 32 is a locking wire 37'. This element, while generally U-shaped and retained by flange 32' similarly to upper wire 32, differs from the latter in the following respects. Wire 37', while of about the same gauge as wire 37, to be receivable in the holes of panel 10, is of resilient stock (upper wire 37 need not be). Leg portions 39 may be spread at a slight angle to converge or diverge and may also be crimped instead of being straight like upper wire 37, as seen clearly in FIGS. 4 and 7.
It will be apparent that, to attach plate 30 and the cantilever bar carried thereby to panel I0, legs 39 must be manually squeezed toward approximate parallelism to insert them into a pair of horizontally spaced holes and then pushed in, whereupen the legs tend to spring back to their normally angled relation, becoming wedged and locked in the holes. Thus, the bracket is secure against accidental loosening or dropping out and off the panel, whether carrying a load or not. Positive force must be applied in order to remove or reposition a bar, with my invention.
Obviously, it makes no difference whether legs 39 normally converge or diverge, as long as they are slightly non-alined and resilient, thus producing a firm, resiliently wedging action when inserted in the holes.
Bar 20a (FIGS. 1 and 2) is generally similar to the construction just described, with certain modifications designed to accommodate heavier loads. Thus, the rod stock employed is of heavier gauge, while its support is more rugged. A larger plate 5 30a is employed, the foot portion 250 being secured to a pair of vertically spaced annular bosses 27a, 27a in an otherwise similar manner to bar 20.
Also, as seen in FIG. 2, for greater support on the panel, plate 300 is provided at the top with more than two (in this case three) spaced books 39 as in the embodiment of FIG. 4. The number may be increased to provide the desired strength, while the lower attaching wire 39,39 may be similar to that of FIG. 4, being crimped, as seen clearly in FIGS. 4 and 7, and resilient.
Cantilever bar 20b (FIG. I) represents another form of support or hanger for displaying other types of articles. This bar is generally U-shaped, formed of a single rod of suitable gauge with its outer free end preferably bent upwardly to provide a stop or hook. The inner ends of the rod are bent downwardly to provide feet 42 which are secured to plate 30!) similarly to the embodiment of FIG. 4, this plate being otherwise adapted to be detachably mounted on panel III in a manner similar to plate 30 described hereabove.
Bar 20c (FIGS. 1 and 3) is still another form of cantilever support designed to carry non-slidably one or a plurality of articles of substantial bulk and weight. This hanger may be formed of one or two (in the embodiment shown) plates 45, 45 arranged in parallel vertical planes, the upper edges being serrated to prevent sliding of articles supported thereon. The ends of these plates are bent normally to form overlying flanges 47 which are secured together in any suitable manner, as by screws, rivets, brazing, etc.
The bar or bracket 20c is attached to a plate 30c in any suitable manner, as by screws 50, 50' (FIG. 3) spaced vertically on plate 30c, lower screw 50' being ridable in an arcuate slot 55 formed in the plate, whereby hanger 20c may be angled if desired.
It will be seen that l have provided a new and improved cantilever hanger adapted to support a wide variety of articles on an apertured panel of any type, including the standard pegboard presently employed or my improved panel described hereabove. The article supporting bars, which may take a variety of forms to suit the character of goods to be displayed, may be quickly and easily mounted on the board, as described above, whereupon they automatically lock themselves securely in place and remain so whether free or loaded. Thereafter, they are readily removed by application of moderate manual force, as described.
Various changes coming within the spirit of my invention may suggest themselves to those skilled in the art. Hence, I do not wish to be limited to the specific forms shown or uses mentioned except to the extent indicated in the appended claims.
I. A construction for displaying articles on a substantially vertical support, comprising in combination a. a panel having a plurality of small apertures of the order of about three thirty-seconds inches in diameter,
b. means for supporting said panel in a substantially vertical plane,
c. the exposed surface of said panel bearing a pattern tending to distract attention from said apertures, and which in consequence of their small size render them virtually invisible, and
d. an article supporting cantilever bar detachably mounted on said panel, said bar having e. resilient tenuous means insertable in said apertures and frictionally engageable with the walls thereof, so as to lock itself automatically therein.
2. A device as set forth in claim I, wherein the panel is formed of sheet metal with the pattern impressed in the exposed surface thereof.
3. An article supporting cantilever-type hanger adapted for detachable engagement with an apertured supporting panel comprising a. a bar,
b. a plate fixed to said bar in a plane generally normal thereto,
c. separate U-shaped tenuous elements connected to the upper and lower portions of said plate for detachable engagement with the apertures in the supporting panel,
d. the tenuous element connected to the upper portion of said plate terminating in prongs extending inwardly and upwardly beyond the upper edge of said plate, and
e. the tenuous element connected to the lower portion of said plate terminating in prongs of limited flexibility and extending transversely therefrom in directions slightly out of parallelism with each other to enhance their frictional engagement with the walls of the apertures in which they are inserted, to inhibit accidental displacement of the hanger from said panel.
4. A device as set forth in claim 3, wherein said last-mentioned prongs are deformed from straight lines to enhance their frictional engagement with the apertures in the panel.
5. An article supporting hanger of cantilever type comprising a. a bar,
b. a plate fixed to said bar in a plane generally normal thereto with the upper and lower marginal portions of said plate bent over to form overlying flanges,
c. means for detachably connecting said bar and plate to a generally upright apertured panel, comprising vertically spaced tenuous elements insertable into apertures of said panel in a manner to inhibit accidental displacement of the hanger,
d. said tenuous elements comprising a pair of prongs projecting freely beyond the limits of said plate from the upper and lower portions thereof, respectively, with each pair being generally U-shaped and retained on the plate by embracement of said flanges,
e. the upper prongs extending inwardly and upwardly while f. the lower prongs are resilient, deformed from straight lines, and vary slightly from the parallel so as to enhance their frictional engagement with the walls of the apertures in which they are inserted to serve as yieldable locks therein.
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