US 3698036 A
Herein described is apparatus useful as roller assemblies for sliding structure such as a door or a window which engage tracks in the door or window frames. The structure comprises a frame insertable within the outer frame of the sliding structure which is generally U-shaped and comprises a roller rotatably mounted within the U-shaped frame. A U-shaped support supports the roller within the frame and includes a pair of extensions which are insertable through slots within the U-shaped frame on either leg thereof. Means disposable through the top of the frame engages the support structure for adjusting the limit of travel of the structure of the support within the U-shaped guide frame slots. A spring is included between this support and the frame to bias the wheel support and the wheel away from the frame.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[451 Oct. 17, 1972 3,416,183 12/1968 Martin.........................16/105 1541 SLIDING STRUCTURE ROLLER ASSEMBLY Primary Examiner-Donald A. Griffin Attorney-Victor Sepulveda [72} Inventor: Martin M. Goodman, Tarzana,
 Assignee: Columbia Belford lnc., Los Angeles, S C
(:ahf' Herein described is apparatus useful as roller assemblies for sliding structure such as a door or a window which engage tracks in the door or window frames. The structure comprises a frame insertable within the outer frame of the sliding structure which is generally U-shaped and comprises a roller rotatably mounted within the U-shaped frame. A U-shaped support supports the roller within the frame and includes a pair of extensions which are insertable through slots within the U-shaped frame on either leg thereof. Means disposable through the top of the frame engages the support structure for adjusting the limit of travel of the structure of the support within the U-shaped guide frame slots. A spring is included between this support and the frame to bias the wheel support and the wheel away from the frame.
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17 l! 3 I lo n! 3 2 .2 FEE z 29 76 INVENTOR. MARTIN M. GOODMAN ATTORNEY SLIDING STRUCTURE ROLLER ASSEMBLY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to sliding structure roller assemblies and more particularly to novel and improved roller assemblies disposable within the frame of the sliding structure which is adjustably mounted to limit the adjust-ment position of the roller within the frame.
2. Discussion of the Prior Art I-Ieretofore, many attempts have been made to construct a reliable yet inexpensive roller assembly for sliding door structure and in particular light-weight sliding screen doors. Sometimes the roller assemblies include grooves in the rollers which engage tracks disposed at the bottom and sometimes the tops of the door frames. The desired roller assembly is one which is capable of being positioned within the frame of the sliding structure for effectively holding the structure onto rails. This practice of mounting sliding screen doors, for example, and the like upon tracks located across the top and bottom of doorways is conventional, such mountings being effected through a number of guide rollers or wheels set into the top and bottom of the door frame to engage the tracks in the door frames. A common problem which occurs in these methods is that it is necessary to leave enough room for the insertion of the sliding structure within the door frame tracks. This becomes difficult when it is desirous for the wheels to be firmly positioned within the tracks to prevent the door from being easily removed from the tracks. Further a sufficient amount of room is necessary in order to initially install the screen door. On the other hand, if these structures are too loosely mounted within the tracks, it is not uncommon for these wheels to leave or jump the tracks as the doors are being moved to either an open or closed position. This is especially true in the case of screen doors and other light doors which do not include glassed panels for weight.
The structures so far designed in the prior art have attempted to overcome the above problems by spring biasing the rollers towards the tracks. This method firmly positions the doors in the door frame. Some prior art devices include a somewhat complicated structure which includes in some instances leaf springs or other type of structure which are used to force the rollers downwardly. It has been found that all of these prior art devices are cumbersome, expensive, and thus unacceptable for market use.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION All of the above problems incurred in the prior art have been overcome by the present invention as set forth in a described embodiment hereinafter. The present invention comprises a frame including a pair of parallel legs. Each leg of the pair includes a guide slot therein. A wheel support is included and interdisposed in the frame between the pair of legs. The wheel support includes a pair of extensions, each being associated into an associated guide slot in an associated one of the legs of the frame. A coil spring is disposed between the frame and the support for urging the support and wheel away from the frame. Thus when disposed within the sliding structure frame, the wheel tends to protrude below the frame and engage a track associated therewith. The guide wheel is mounted to the frame support and includes a V-slot therein which engages a track in the door frame.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS like and corresponding parts throughout the several views and wherein:
FIG. I is a view illustrating a sliding screen structure which encompasses a roller assembly in accordance with the principles of this invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged section of the structure and the roller assembly taken along the lines 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a side view of the sliding screen structure and the roller assembly in accordance with the principles of this invention taken along the lines 3-3 of FIG. 2; and
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the roller assembly in accordance with the principles of this invention removed from the sliding screen structure.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Turning now to the drawings, a plurality of roller assemblies indicated generally at 10 are shown with a sliding closure 11 in FIG. I. The sliding closure 11 which as shown may be, for example, a patio screen door having screen material 12, with a surrounding frame 15. The frame 15 may have an upper frame section 16 and a lower frame section 17, each mounting a pair of roller assemblies 10 to support and guide the closure 11 formovement along an upper track 20 and a lower track 21, both of which are mounted on suitable supporting framework. As will be seen in FIG. I, the frame 15 surrounds the entire door structure with bevelled abutted corners so that the interior of the frame is not exposed anywhere along the entire perimeter of the closure.
The lower frame section 17 is shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, in a partial broken away view at the location of the lower roller assembly. The closure frame section 17 is typical and in a preferred form can be formed as an extrusion of light metal such as aluminum. The extrusion has a rear panel 25 and a front panel 26. The front panel 26 is recessed in a typical manner to receive a peripheral edge of the screen material 12 as head therein in a suitable manner. An internal bracing wall 29 extends between the frame panels 25 and 26 and is cut through at the location of the roller assembly, as shown in FIG. 3, to cooperate with parts of the roller assembly 10 to hold the latter in assembled relation with the frame. Additionally, the frame section has an inner face 30 which is provided with an opening 31 through the wall thereof at a location of each of the roller assemblies.
In the single embodiment described each of the roller assemblies 10 is of the same construction regardless of whether it is associated with the lower frame section 17 or the upper frame section 16. Construction of the roller assembly 10 is shown generally in FIGS. 2, 3 and 4 and includes a generally U-shaped frame structure 32 which has a U-shaped roller support 34 mounted therein. The U-shaped frame assembly 32 includes a pair of spaced side members 36 and 38 which are parallel to each other and include an extension 39 on side member 36, and an extension 40 on side member 38. Extension 36 has a slot 42 therein and a matching slot 44 is provided in extension 38. A guide 46 extends from the top of the U-shaped roller support 34 and is slidably engaged within the slot 42 of side extension 36. Likewise, guide 48 extends on the other side of the support mount 34 and engages the slot 44 in side extension 38. This allows the U-shaped support 34 to be slidable within the U-shaped frame 32.
The U-shaped support 34 is shown in the embodiment described and includes a pair of flat downwardly depending flanges 50 and 52 and a top portion 56 which joins the flat flanges 50 and 52 together. A roller 56 is mounted to rotate between the flanges 50 and 52 in a suitable manner as will hereinafter be described. Roller 56 has a groove 58 therein which is adapted to engage the top portion of the track 60 or the track provided in the upper doorway, whichever the case may be.
The roller 56 is mounted between the flanges 50 and 52 on a pair of cylindrical protrusions 62 and 64 centrally located on the inner walls of the flanges 50 and 52 of U-shaped support 34. A hearing 66 is slidably mounted in the opening 68 of the roller 56 to act as a bearing between the roller surface and the axles provided by the protrusions 62 and 64.
The U-shaped support 34 is preferably comprised of a nylon or other type of plastic material and is easily flexible so that it can be spread apart to insert the wheel 56 and its associated bearing onto the protrusions 62 and 64 in a suitable manner.
A threaded member 70 is threaded into the hole 72 in the top portion 32 of the U-shaped frame and is adapted to thread in and out of the U-shaped frame 32. A spring, in this embodiment shown as a coil spring 74, is positioned around a portion of the threaded member 70 which extends into the U-shaped frame 32 and is affixed to the top portion 56 of the U-shaped support 34 in a suitable manner. The top portion of the threaded member 70 is adapted to extend through the holes 30 of the top plate 31 of frame 17 in a suitable manner. The U-shaped frame which encompasses the entire roller assembly is mounted to the inner bracing wall 29 by the screws 76 clamping the extension 39 and 40 onto the inner bracing wall 29.
In operation of the present invention it can be seen that the roller support, and consequently the roller 56, is slidable within the slots 42 and 44 so that it can be easily moved away from the track 60. After the roller assembly has been placed within the frame 17, it can be adjusted so that the limit of travel of the support 34 can be impeded by the abutment of the top portion 76 thereof engaging the bottom portion of screw 70. It can be seen that adjustments can be easily made in the described embodiment to limit this travel from the outside of the frame 17 by screwing the screw 70 in and out, whichever the case may be, and thus complete disassembly of the roller assembly is unnecessary to perform this task.
Having thus described one preferred embodiment of this invention, what is claimed is:
l. A sliding structure roller assembly comprising:
a frame including a pair of spaced parallel legs, each of said legs including an elongated guide slot therein;
a wheel support being located within the space between said legs, said support including a pair of guide extensions each of which extend into an associated guide slot within each of said legs, said wheel support being U-shaped including a pair of parallel spaced apart extensions, each of said extensions having a pair of facing cylindrical protrusions, said wheel having a center hole therethrough adapted to engage said pair of protrusions on either side thereof;
means disposed between said support and said frame for urging said wheel and support away from said frame;
a wheel being mounted to said wheel support and adapted to extend below said frame; and
said wheel support further including a hollow cylindrical bearing being disposed within the said center hole in said wheel and the protrusions on the parallel extension on said wheel support.
2. The apparatus as defined in claim 1 and further including adjusting means disposed between said frame and said wheel support for restricting the travel between said frame and said support.
3. The apparatus as defined in claim 1 wherein said urging means being a coil spring.
4. The apparatus as defined in claim 1 and further including an adjustable threaded member threaded into said frame and being adapted to abut said support at different distances therebetween when the threaded member is adjusted in said frame.
5. The apparatus as defined in claim 4 and wherein said bias means being a coil spring being disposed about said threaded member.
. 6. A sliding structure roller assembly including: a frame having a pair of spaced parallel legs, each of said legs including an elongated guide slot therein;
a wheel support being disposed between said spaced parallel legs, said wheel support including a pair of guide extensions, each said guide extension being disposed into a corresponding said guide slot in said frame, said wheel support being substantially U-shaped and including a pair of parallel spaced extensions, each said parallel spaced extension having a cylindrical protrusion, said cylindrical protrusions extending toward each other and being in substantial axial alignment;
a wheel mounted to said wheel support and adapted to extend below said frame, said wheel having a center hole therethrough to receive said cylindrical protrusion of said wheel support extensions, said wheel being supported by said cylindrical protrusions of said wheel support extensions;
means disposed between said support and said frame for urging said wheel and said wheel support away from said frame, said means including adjusting means disposed between said frame and said wheel support, said adjustment means includes an ad justable threaded member connected to said frame and being adapted to abut said wheel support at different distances when said threaded member is adjustably moved with respect to said frame, said means further including bias means disposed about said threaded member for urging said frame and said wheel support away from each other.
7. Assembly as defined in claim 6 and where said bias means being a coil spring, the ends of said coil spring being in direct contact with said frame and said wheel 5 support.
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