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Publication numberUS3682112 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 8, 1972
Filing dateMay 22, 1970
Priority dateMay 22, 1970
Publication numberUS 3682112 A, US 3682112A, US-A-3682112, US3682112 A, US3682112A
InventorsHomer R Emrick
Original AssigneeEmrick Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Collapsible overbed table
US 3682112 A
Abstract
A collapsible bedside table having a horizontal base, a vertical guide post and an elevatable table top. The table top has a support portion adapted to cooperate with the vertical guide portion to maintain the table top horizontal as its vertical position is varied over a range. A first hinge member is secured between the base and the vertical guide post to permit a relative pivoting movement therebetween. A second hinge member is secured between the vertical guide post and the table top to permit a relative pivoting movement therebetween. The first and second hinges permit a movement of the base, the vertical guide post and the table top to a condition of parallelism therebetween.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [15] 3,682,112

Emrick [4 1 Aug. 8, 1972 54] COLLAPSIBLE OVERBED TABLE 407,452 8/1966 Switzerland ..108/115 1,336,486 7/1963 France ..108/134 [72] Invent Emrick Kalamm 702 1895 Great Britain l()8/l 15 73 Assignee: Emrick, lnc., Kalamazoo, Mich. Z' Exxavminehfiaglcis tt oodh 221 Filed: May 22,1970 am [21] Appl. No.: 39,938 [57] ABSTRACT Y A collapsible bedside table having a horizontal base, a 12%: w and an [58] Field o1 s e are1i..... i08/116, 115, 134, 144, 150, i i 9 108/47 99 111; 211/178 R; 5/57 B; 248/158 with the vertical guide portion to malntaln the table top horizontal as its vertical position is varied over a [56] Reierences Cited range. A first hinge member is secured between the base and the vertical guide post to permit a relative UNITED STATES PATENTS 1 pivoting movement therebetween. A second hinge 599 962 3/1898 Hampshire ..108/111 member is Secured between the vertical guide p 2 199895 5/1940 Sharp ..108/99 x and the table top to Permit a relative p g move- 212991909 10/1942 Linderme ..248/15 8 mm merebetweeh- The first and Second hinges p 3,481,286 12/1969 LaMar ..108/144 wit a movement of the base, the vertical guide p 1,120,702 12/1914 Erdrnan ..108/115 and the table top to a condition of parallelism 2,879,118 3/1959 KOlb ..108/115 therebetween. 3,188,986 6/1965 LaVigne ..108 144x FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 7/1935 Great Britain ..-.l08/l l5 5 Claim, 8 Drawing Figures 1 COLLAPSIBLE OVERBED TABLE FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a bedside table and, more particularly, relates to a collapsible bedside table wherein the base, the vertical guide post and the table top are movable relative to each other to a condition of parallelism therebetween.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Overbed tables have been used for many years in hospitals and nursing homes, as well as private homes, for permitting bedridden individuals to have a flat surface available to .them for eating, writing letters or many other and varied purposes while in bed. However, as-the cost of hospital care and nursing home care increases, many families find that it is financially impomible to place elderly persons, such as close relatives, in hospitals and nursing homes for proper care and treatment. As a result, many families are bringing the close relatives into their own home and caring for them themselves.

When a person is at home, it is usually the case that the person is not completely bedridden. However, the person may have periodic spells of illness which may confine the person to the bed for a short interval of time. During the time that the person is mobile and capable of moving freely from the bedroom area, it

would be desirable to store an overbed table in a collapsed condition in a closet or under the bed. As far as I am aware, there are no overbed tables on the market which are capable of being easily collapsed for storage purposes.

A disadvantage of known overbed tables is that the manufacturer of such overbed tables must place the unassembled component parts thereof into a shipping carton for purposes of shipping same to the customer, usually a hospital, nursing home and in some cases to private individuals. It is also often necessary to include in the shipping carton a rather detailed list of instructions to inform the purchaser of the steps which must be followed in order to assemble the overbed table. These instructions are usually complicated and, in some cases, necessitate the use of special tools in order to assist in the assembly thereof. When inexperienced personnel are involved in the assembly of the overbed tables, it is sometimes necessary where a large quantity of tables are involved, for a representative of the manufacturer to visit the purchaser to assist the assembly personnel in assembling the component parts of the tables. Accordingly, an overbed table which may be assembled by the manufacturer and placed in an assembled condition into a shipping carton for purposes of shipping same to a customer to thereby eliminate the assembly operation by the customer would be highly desirable.

Accordingly, the objects of this invention include:

1. To provide a collapsible overbed bedside table.

2. To provide a collapsible overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, which may be completely assembled by the manufacturer and placed in a collapsed condition into a conveniently sized shipping carton for purposes of shipping same to a customer to thereby eliminate a complicated assembly procedure by the customer.

3. To provide an overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, in which the customer may place the collapsed overbed table into a locked, upright position of use without the requirement of special tools.-

4. To provide an overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, which may be collapsed to a size to permit storage in a closet or under the patients bed.

5. To provide an overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, which may be collapsed to a size to permit individuals to place same into the trunk of an automobile for purposes of transporting the overbed table from one location to another such as might occur when a patient leaves the hospital or nursing home to visit his family and the overbed table is loaned to the patient for a certain interval of time for use in the family s home.

6. To provide an overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, which is comprised of easily manufacturable components to substantially reduce the cost of manufacturing same.

. 7. To provide an overbed bedside table, as aforesaid, which is virtually maintenance free. Other objects and purposes of this invention will be apparent to persons acquainted with overbed tables of this general type upon reading the following specification and inspecting the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. I is a perspective view of an overbed table embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of an assembled overbed table in a collapsed position inside a conventional shipping carton;

FIG. 3 is a partially sectioned side elevational view of a partially collapsed overbed table;

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the overbed table except that the overbed table is in an inverted position;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the hinge connection between the vertical guide post and the table top shown in the encircled portion A of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken along the line VI-VI of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken along the line VII- VII of FIG. 5; and

FIG. 8- is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of the hinge connection between the base and the vertical guide portion shown in the encircled portion B of FIG. 4.

Certain terminology will be used in the following description for convenience in reference only and will not be limiting. The words up, down, right and left will designate directions in the drawings to which reference is made. The words in and out will refer to directions toward and away from, respectively, the

geometric center of the device and designated parts thereof. Such terminology will include derivatives and words of similar import.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The objects and purposes of the invention are met by providing a collapsible bedside table comprising a horizontal base having a vertical guide post and an elevatable table top having a support portion adapted to cooperate with the vertical guide post of the base to maintain the table top horizontal as its vertical position is varied over a range. Means are provided which are adaptable to permit a relative movement between the base, the vertical guide post and the table top to a condition of parallelism therebetween.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION The overbed or bedside table 111 (FIG. 1) embodying the invention is generally C-shaped, as seen from the side as in FIGS. 1 and 4 and comprises a base member 11, a generally vertical guide post assembly 12 and a generally horizontal table top 13. In this particular embodiment, the base member 1 1 is generally I-shaped having a pair of horizontally spaced, parallel leg members 14 and 16 connected to opposite ends of an elongated bar 17 U-shaped in cross section. Wheels 18 are secured to opposite ends of each of the parallel legs 14 and 16 to permit the base 1 1 to be moved on the wheels 18 from one location to another. The top of the base 11 is preferably, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, substantially planar.

Referring now to FIGS. 4 and 8 which show the table of FIG. 1 in an inverted position, a hinge 19 comprises a pair of flanges 21 and 22 pivotally interconnected by a pin 23 through the knuckle portion 24 thereof. In this particular embodiment, the flange 21 (FIG. 8) is fixedly secured to the leg 16. The flange 22 is generally L-shaped with the horizontal leg portion 26 thereof being fixedly secured to the end of the vertical post assembly 12. A portion 27 of the flange 22, particularly the leg portion 26, extends leftwardly from the lower end of the post assembly 12. A sleeve 28 is slidably mounted over the U-shaped bar 17 of the base member 11 and is adapted to slide over the portion 27 of the flange 22 to lock the base member 11 to the vertical post assembly 12.

The vertical post assembly 12 (FIG. 3) comprises a pair of tubular members 31 and 32. In this particular embodiment, the tubular member 32 is telescoped over the tubular member 31. The tubular member 31 is fixedly secured, as by welding, to the leg portion 26 of the flange 22 on the hinge 19. A conventional counterbalance mechanism 33, such as a coiled spring, is mounted internally of the tubular members 31 and 32 and is adapted to apply a force tending to urge the tubular member 31 outwardly from the end of the tubular member 32. Thus, and when the table is placed in the upright position illustrated in FIG. 1, the counterbalance mechanism 33 applies a force tending to raise the table top 13 over a desired range sufficient to render the table top utilizable with conventional chairs or utilizable over and above a patient who is bedridden. Thus, the counterbalance mechanism 33 balances the weight of the table top 13 so that a minimum of force is required in order to lift the table top 13 toward the maximum height. A conventional locking mechanism 34, such as a ratchet and pawl mechanism, is also mounted internally of the tubular members 31 and 32 and is adapted to lock the table top at any desired vertical position within the aforedescribed range. A lockreleasing lever 36 extends outwardly from the locking mechanism 34 through an opening 37in the wall of the tubular member 32 to make same conveniently operable by a user of the table. The lever 36 is adapted for releasing the locking mechanism 34 to unlock the table top 13 to permit same to be readily adjusted to a desired height within the aforedescribed range.

A U-shaped bracket 38 (FIGS. 5 and 6) is snugly received over the outer surface of the tubular member 32 adjacent the table top end thereof and fixedly secured thereto, as by welding. The U-shaped bracket 38 comprises a pair of parallel legs 39 and 41 and an interconnecting crosspiece 42. The free ends of the legs 39 and 41 opposite the crosspiece 42 extend outwardly beyond the tubular member 32 and have axially aligned openings 43 and 44, respectively, therein. A flange 46 projects downwardly (FIG. 5) away from the crosspiece 42 and at an angle relative to the vertical. An opening 47 is provided in the flange 46 and is generally centrally located in the flange 46.

The table top 13 (FIG. 1) comprises a planar member 51 having a flat upwardly facing surface 52 thereon which, when the table is upright in the position illustrated in FIG. 1, serves as a serving surface. A housing member 53 is secured to the bottom surface of member 51 (upper surface in FIGS. 2-4). The housing member 53 comprises, in this particular embodiment, four generally upright side surfaces 56, 5'7, 58 and 59 and a top plate 61. Aligned openings 62 and 63 (FIG. 5) are provided in the walls 56 and 56 of the housing member 53. The openings 62 and 63 are further aligned with the opening 47 in the flange 46 of the bracket 38 when the flange 46 is in the position illustrated in solid lines in FIG. 5. In this particular embodiment, the opening 62 is T-shaped as shown in FIG. 6.

A pair of L-shaped flanges 64 (FIGS. 5 and 6) is secured by a pair of horizontally spaced, generally horizontal legs 65 (FIG. 6) to the top wall 61 of the housing 53. The vertical leg 66 extends through the T- shaped opening 62 in the wall 56 of the housing 53 and extends upwardly along one surface of the tubular member 32 and terminates in a knuckle 67. The opening through the center of the knuckle 67 is axially aligned with the openings 43 and 44 in the free ends of the legs 39 and 41 of the bracket 38 and receives a pin 68 to pivotally interconnect the tubular member 32 with the housing 53.

A guide member 69 (FIG. 5 and 7) IJ-shaped in cross section is secured to the top wall 61 between the horizontal legs of the L-shaped bracket 64 as shown in dotted lines in FIG. 6. A slide member 76 is received in the opening defined by the top wall 61 and the U- shaped guide member 69 and is slidable longitudinally therethrough. In this particular embodiment, the slide member 76 is aligned with the opening 47, the stem portion of the opening 62 and the opening 63. The right end 71 of the slide member (FIG. 5) is tapered and is received by the aligned openings 47 and 63. A flange 72 is provided on the opposite end of the slide member 70 and extends perpendicularly away therefrom and in a direction away from the housing 63. A pin 73 is fixedly secured to the slide member 76 and a pin 74 is fixedly secured to the U-shaped guide member 69. A spring 76 interconnects the pin members 73 and 74 to urge the slide members 76 rightwardly through the aligned openings 47 and 63. A manual leftward force (FIG. 5) applied to the flange 72 will permit a movement of the slide member 76 leftwardly to the broken line position to retract the tapered end 71 from the openings 47 and 63.

When the overbed table It) is in the collapsed posi tion illustrated in FIG. 2, it may be placed in a conven tional shipping carton 77 to permit shipping to a customer. The base member 11, the vertical post assembly 12 and the table top 13 are collapsed to a position of parallelism therebetween. However, when the vertical post assembly 12 is parallel to the table top 13,

the left end of the vertical post assembly 12 is spaced upwardly from the table top 13. Accordingly, conventional packing material 78 may be utilized to maintain the \llgrtical post assembly in parallelism with the table top The overbed table may, if desired, be provided with a drawer, vanity or other article containing or mirror 'supporting device, generally indicated at 79 (broken lines in FIG. 2) built therein. Thus, the packing 78 may be eliminated and the vertical post assembly 12 will be supported by the vanity 79 to maintain the vertical post assembly 12 generally parallel with the table top 13.

OPERATION Although the assembly of the overbed table described above will be understood from the foregoing description by skilled persons, a summary of such assembly is now given for convenience.

The overbed table 10 is normally fully assembled by the manufacturer so that the base member 11 is hingedly connected to the vertical post assembly 12, particularly the tubular member 31, by the hinge member 19. The vertical post assembly 12 is also hingedly connected to the housing 53 secured to the table top 13. Since the base member 11, the vertical post assembly 12 and the table top 13 are generally parallel to each other, the entire assembly may be placed in a relatively flat shipping carton 77 for purposes of shipping the assembly to a customer.

The collapsible overbed table 10 may be erected from the collapsed position (FIG. 2) to the upright position of use illustrated in FIG. 1 by first pivoting the base member 11 (FIG. 3) and the vertical post assembly 12 about the axis of the pin 68 so that the post assembly 12 is generally vertically aligned and perpendicular to the table top 13. As the flange 46 (broken lines in FIG. 5) approaches the tapered end 71 of the slide member 70, the tapered end 71 will be received by the opening 47 in the flange 46 to lock the tubular member 32 in a position perpendicular to the table top 13. The locking engagement between the tubular member 32 and the housing 53 may be increased by forcably (manually) moving the flange 72 rightly to move the tapered end 71 further through the opening 47 in the flange 46.

After the post assembly 12has been assembled into the vertical position illustrated in FIG. 3, the base member 11 may be pivoted about the axis of the pin 23 of the hinge member 19 to the position illustrated in FIG. 4 wherein the base member 11 is generally parallel with the table top 13. After the base member has reached the position illustrated in FIG. 4 wherein the U-shaped bar 17 extends perpendicularly away from the tubular member 31 and parallel to the L-shaped flange 22 (FIG. 8), the sleeve 28 may be slid rightwardly from the broken line position of FIG. 8 to the solid line position to overlap the portion 27 of the leg portion 26 of the flange 22 to lock the base member 1 1 to the tubular member 31.

It is to be noted that all during the erection of the table described 'hereinabove, no special tools, such as wrenches or screw drivers, are required in order to assemble the overbed table It). Further, it is to be noted that all during the foregoing described erection of the table, the table top 13 can remain in the bottom half of the shipping carton 77 so that the serving surface 52 thereof will always remain protected until the table is completely erected after which time the entire unit can then be tipped on its side and removed from the bottom half of the shipping carton 77 without scratching the serving surface 52.

It is also to be recognized that when the bedside table 10 is no longer required for serving a patients needs, it may be collapsed to the position illustrated in FIG. 2 and stored in a closet or underneath the patients bed.

Although a particular preferred embodiment of the invention has been disclosed in detail for illustrative purposes, it will be recognized that variations or modifications of the disclosed apparatus, including the rearrangement of parts, lie within the scope of the present invention.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

l. A collapsible substantially C-shaped overbed table comprising a horizontal base;

a vertical guide post assembly mounted to one end of said base, said post assembly including first and second parallel post members adapted for relative longitudinal movement over a range;

table top means overlying said base, one end of said table top means being aligned above said one base end and being connected to one of said first and second post members, said base and table top means both having top substantially planar faces, said table top means including support means adapted to maintain said table top means horizon-- tal as its vertical position is varied over said range, and means connected between said first and second post members for locking said table top means at any vertical position within said range and including means vertically movable with said table top means for releasing said locking means to unlock said table top means for vertical movement within said range;

first hinge means secured between said base and said other of said post members for swinging movement of said base relative to said other of said post members for about 271) degrees about the axis of said first hinge means to a position parallel with, coextensive with and on one side of said guide post assembly wherein said top face of said base faces away from said guide post assembly;

second hinge means secured between said table support means and said one of said first and second post members for swinging movement of said support means and said table top means relative to said one of said post members for about degrees about the axis of said second hinge means to a position parallel with, coextensive with and on the opposite side of said guide post assembly from said base wherein the top face of said table top means also faces away from said guide post assembly;

first releasable locking means for locking said base to said other of said first and second post members; and

second releasable locking means for locking said support means to said one of said first and second post members.

2. The collapsible bedside table defined in claim 1, wherein said first releasable locking means includes a first locking member on said base and a first cooperating member on said other of said first and second post members, said first locking member being cooperable with said first cooperating member to lock said base to said other of said first and second post members to maintain said vertical guide post assembly in an upright position of use relative to said base; and

wherein said second releasable locking means includes a second locking member onsaid one of said first and second post members and a second cooperating member on said support means on said table top, said second locking member being cooperable with said second cooperating member to lock said vertical guide post assembly to said support means on said table top to maintain said table top in a horizontal position of use relative to said base and said vertical guide portion.

3. A collapsible bedside table according to claim 2, wherein said first cooperating member comprises a flange extending outwardly of said other of said post members parallel and adjacent said base when said vertical guide post assembly extends at a right angle to said base; and

wherein said first locking member comprises a sleeve slidably secured to said base and adapted to slide into coupling engagement with said flange to thereby lock said vertical guide post assembly in said right angle position relative to said base.

4. A collapsible bedside table according to claim 2, wherein said second locking member comprises means defining a recess in the upper end portion of said one of said first and second post members, when said table is assembled; and

wherein said second cooperating member comprises an elongated latch member mounted for longitudinal sliding movement on said support means, an end portion of said latch member being received in said recess when said table top means extends at a right angle to said vertical guide post assembly to thereby lock said table top means to said one of said first and second post members.

5. A collapsible bedside table according to claim 4, including spring means secured between said support means and said latch member for normally urging said latch member toward said recess.

Patent Citations
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US2299909 *Feb 14, 1940Oct 27, 1942Linderme Theodore GFoldable table
US2879118 *Jul 22, 1957Mar 24, 1959Kolb Armstrong HTwo-legged folding table construction
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4815392 *Nov 17, 1986Mar 28, 1989Soeoet OlafWork station with fixed and rotatable work surfaces
US8082857May 28, 2009Dec 27, 2011Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Overbed table for use with patient support
US8100061Jun 12, 2009Jan 24, 2012Hill-Rom Services, Inc.Item support apparatuses and systems for bedside
US8960104Jan 31, 2013Feb 24, 2015Steelcase Inc.Table
US9271569Mar 11, 2014Mar 1, 2016Herman Miller, Inc.Reconfigurable table
US20090241807 *May 28, 2009Oct 1, 2009George Christopher MOverbed table for use with patient support
USD754995Jan 6, 2015May 3, 2016Steelcase Inc.Furniture base
USD774322 *Oct 1, 2015Dec 20, 2016GCX CorporationOver bed table
USD774810Sep 3, 2014Dec 27, 2016Steelcase Inc.Table
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/116, 108/150
International ClassificationA47B9/20, A47B23/04
Cooperative ClassificationA47B23/046, A47B9/20, A47B2023/047, A47B3/0815
European ClassificationA47B3/08D4, A47B9/20, A47B23/04E