US 3713717 A
The disclosure hereof is related to body construction and particularly to such bodies as are used in trucks and provide for storage space and areas at opposite sides of a platform for accessibility from the ground at opposite sides of the truck or the like upon which the body is mounted. Further, the concept is to form the body hereof in body units which themselves are arranged to be positioned at opposite sides of a platform assembly, such side units in turn being comprised of modular elements or modules, which may be assembled to form different combinations of storage areas, the assembly being effected in such a manner as to conceal the manner of assembly primarily to prevent deterioration of the same by the elements, the formation of the modules themselves being facilitated by reason of the substantially identical transverse cross-sectional configuration of the material from which the modules are formed, it being disclosed how modules of different forms can be assembled, the cross-sectional configuration of the material from which the modules are formed being arranged to provide for recessing of access doors and like members further adding to the resistance of the arrangement to the effect of elements thereon.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 91 Hafner  BODY CONSTRUCTION  Inventor: Oliver B. Hafner, Birmingham, Ala.
 Assignee: Altec Manufacturing Company, Inc., Birmingham, Ala.
 Filed: June 25, 1971  Appl.No.: 156,850
Primary Examiner-Casmir A. Nunberg Attorney-Robb & Robb 4 1 Jan.30,1973
 ABSTRACT The disclosure hereof is related to body construction and particularly to such bodies as are used in trucks and provide for storage space and areas at opposite sides of a platform for accessibility from the ground at opposite sides of the truck or the like upon which the body is mounted. Further, the concept is to form the body hereof in body units which themselves are arranged to be positioned at opposite sides of a platform assembly, such side units in turn being comprised of modular elements 'or modules, which may be assembled to form different combinations of storage areas, the assembly being effected in such a manner as to conceal the manner of assembly primarily to prevent deterioration of the same by the elements, the formation of the modules themselves being facilitated by reason of the substantially identical transverse crosssectional configuration of the material from which the modules are formed, it being disclosed how modules of different forms can be assembled, the cross-sectional configuration of the material from which the modules are formed being arranged to provide for recessing of access doors and like members further adding to the resistance of the arrangement to the effect of elements thereon.
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INVENTORI 0. B. HAFN ER I BY 0 azzzvw BODY CONSTRUCTION OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION It is a particular object of this invention to provide body construction comprised of spaced side units which in turn consist of modules having different side elevational shapes, these shapes in turn being bent up from material having identical transverse cross-sectional configuration, the shape of the modules themselves being such as to facilitate their juxtaposition and assembly when so arranged.
Another object of the invention is to provide for the construction of side units for bodies as hereinbefore suggested, which may consist of shapes best described as 6s, Us and Us, arranged in a pattern which brings the various components or modules together in a rigid unit, in turn being provided with a top member which further rigidifies the assembly and is in turn connected to vertical members provided in each module.
Another object of the invention is to provide side units involving the modular construction hereof, in which the various shapes described as 6s, Us and Us may be relatively interchangeably used, and by bending in appropriate manners from other shapes for assembly, one side unit of a body for example consisting of one combination of such modules and other side unit of a body consisting of another combination or the same combination of such modules, having the different side elevational shapes suggested.
A more particular object of the invention is to provide the transverse cross-sectional form of the material from which the modules are bent up, so that it may be provided in strips if desirable and cut off to predetermined lengths, subsequently notched and thereafter assembled in the manner suggested for the purposes hereof.
Another object of the invention is to provide for the manufacture of the material from which the various different side elevational shapes are formed, so that by predetermined layout such shapes may be preliminarily operated upon to notch the same and subsequently formed into the desired transverse cross-sectional configuration, and thereafter bent into the side elevational shapes desired.
Another object of the invention is to provide for the mounting of certain shelves and trays within the modules in such a manner as to further rigidify the structure and make possible preliminary assembling of the supporting components for such shelves and trays whereby when the respective side units are finally assembled from the modules comprising the same, such shelves and trays will not require further difficult mounting operations.
Other and further objects of the invention will be understood from a consideration of the specification ap-' pended hereto and disclosed in the drawings, wherein:
FIG. 5 is an end view, illustrating the transverse cross-sectional configuration which prevails in the various modules and specifically of course in FIG. 4.
FIG. 6 is a module of what is termed the L-shape, bent up, ready for assembly.
FIG. 7 is a transverse cross-sectional view, showing the configuration of the different module, which itself is shown in flat form in FIG. 8, and after formation in the other figures.
FIG. 9 is the module denoted 6 as the same is being bent into ultimate position as shown in FIG. 10, the latter being the fully bent up position of the FIG. 9 disclosure.
FIG. 10A is a fragmentary view in side elevation showing the mounting of a tray in one of the modules.
FIG. 11 is a view in plan, showing the preliminary form of a further module of U shape, prior to bending operations performed thereon.
FIG. 12 is a transverse cross-sectional view of the module material of FIG. 11 in fully formed condition, illustrating the identity with the cross-sectional configurations of FIGS. 5 and 7.
FIG. 13 is the ultimate bent up module, designated as the U module formed from the member of FIG. 11.
FIG. 13A is a fragmentary sectional view showing the interlocking of shelves with the module of FIG. 13, for example.
FIG. 14 is a view from one end of a body, showing the respective side units assembled with a platform.
FIG. 15 is a side elevational view of the top, one of which is used for each side unit and being identical in substantially all respects.
FIG. 16 is a plan view, showing the top of FIG. 15 prior to its bending and formation.
FIG. 17 is a vertical sectional view, taken about on the line 17-17 of FIG. 2, looking in the direction of the arrows.
FIG. 18 is a plan view of the material from which the trays are formed, prior to bending into ultimate shape.
FIG. 19 is a vertical sectional view, showing the tray after being bent.
FIG. 20 is a plan view of one of the spacer or separator members used in the tray.
FIG. 21 is a fragmentary view in section, illustrating the platform extending between the side units.
FIG. 22 is a plan view of the platform shown in FIG. 21.
Referring now to 7 FIG. 3 wherein a side unit of completed assembly is disclosed, it will be noted that one of the modules will be designated A, another B, and the third module C, these modules being further illustrated as to their respective component formation in FIG. 1 as comprising the U-shaped module A in which the main portion thereof is formed as shown in FIG. 11 from an elongated flat strip of material, including the vertical member 1, the horizontal portion 2 and a further vertical member 3, formed so as to assume the cross-sectional configuration illustrated in FIG. 12 which predominates throughout the various modules hereinafter to be described, involving a rearlip 4, a main section 5, and a front recessed lip formation 6.
It will be understood that the side members 1 and 3 are substantially identical in length and notched areas 7 and 8 likewise identical with the bending lines 9 and 10 being those upon which the side members are bent to form the ultimate shape described hereinafter as a side elevational shape known as a U, being the module A previously referred to.
In view of the ability to form the module in original flat condition of FIG. 1 1, it is contemplated that certain racks or shelf-supporting elements 1 1 and 12 will be affixed to the respective members 1 and 3, as by welding or the like, prior to bending upon the lines 9 and 10 previously mentioned.
The module B is similarly formed along the lines suggested in FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 from an initial strip illustrated in FIG. 4 having the part 13 which will ultimately become a vertical member and the part 14 which will ultimately become a horizontal member after the formation along the dotted lines is resorted to so as to provide a rear lip at 15 and a recessed lip formation at 16 substantially identical to that at 4 and 6 respectively of FIG. 12.
A suitable tray support member 17 is fixed to the vertical member 13 by welding in an appropriate manner, the same involving a hook formed at 18 in upper and lower positions.
FIG. 6 is illustrative of the so-called L shaped module, in this case the L being laid down in horizontal condition so to speak to provide the verticalmember 13 and horizontal portion 14 as illustrated, this being designated of course as the module B.
The module C will be designated hereinafter as the 6 shape in side elevational view, and is formed of a strip shown in FIG. 8 involving what will ultimately be a vertical member 19, a horizontal member 20, a further vertical member 21, and an additional horizontal portion 22.
A suitable tray bracket 17 identical to the bracket 17 of FIG. 4 is shown with appropriate hooks 18 suitably welded to the vertical member 19 as illustrated.
Notches such as 23, 24, 25 and 26 are cut in the side edge of the strip prior to ultimate formation into the transverse cross-sectional configuration illustrated in FIG. 7, involving a rear lip 27 and a recessed lip formation 28 at the front thereof.
It will be noted that this transverse cross-sectional configuration is identical to that shown in FIGS. 5 and 12.
FIG. 9 illustrates a step in the ultimate bending up of the finished 6 module, with the vertical member 19 extending upwardly from the horizontal portion 20, at an angle, and the vertical member 21 extending at an angle with respect to the horizontal portion 20, and the horizontal portion 22 prior to the finished bending into the position shown in FIG. 2.
There has now been described the various modules A, B and C which go to make up the basis elements of a side unit, illustrated in FIG. 3, there remaining only to be connected thereto initially the top which is illustrated in FIGS. 15 and 16, as comprising an elongated portion 29 formed from a strip such as illustrated in FIG. 16 at 30 wherein ends 31 and 32 are arranged to be bent at right angles to the strip 30 after bends have been effected at the dotted lines and notches at 33 and 34 and formed; suitable notches at 35 and 36 near the ends being likewise necessary to complete the formation.
There is thus provided a rear lip 37 further illustrated in FIG. 17 as depending downwardly from the top portion 29 with a recessed lip formation being denoted at 38.
The FIG. 17 disclosure is further described to point out in detail the certain various features provided by the recessed lip formation of the modules, in this case the module B being availed of for description, and the recessed lip formation 16 thereof in conjunction with the recessed lip formation 38 at the top portion 29, providing for the flush mounting of a door generally designated 40.
It will be seen that the door 40 is formed up in such a manner as to have a face 41 from which is bent a parallel portion 42, in turn providing for a peripheral spacer 43, and a rearward out-turned and up-turned lip 44 at the upper side of the edge of the door 40 and the lip 44 as illustrated at the lower part of the door being downwardly extending from the spacer 43. The door 40 is hinged at 45 so as to move Into the position shown in FIG. 14 or similar positions therebetween.
The recessed lip formations 16 and 38 are in turn equipped with a gasket 46 which extends around such formations and includes a flexible lip 47 integral therewith, against which theinner face 48 of the door 40 will press and thus seal the interior of the compartmentor storage area formed by the module B.
It will be noted that the rear face 48 of the door 40 is intended to be connected to the lip 44 by welding or the like, and this welding area is concealed within the door when it is in closed condition so as to be relatively shielded from elements to which it may be exposed periodically.
A further important aspect of the invention herein being described is that the modules A, B' and C are assembled together by welding, in the case of the. modules A and B by means of welding applied to the vertical members 1 and 13, the module B in turn being connected by the horizontal portion 14 thereof by welding to the horizontal portion 22 of the module C, so as to complete the respective modules in the condition shown in FIG. 2.
The top portion 29 is thereafter affixed to all of the vertical members engaged by the same, including the vertical members 3 and 1 of the module A, the vertical member 13 of module B and the vertical member 19 of the module .C.
To further stiffen and provide for the enclosure desired in the module configuration, a suitable backing member or sheet 48 is provided welded to the lips such as 37 and 15 of the module as illustrated in FIG. 17 for example.
All of the doors in the respective modules are similarly formed as the door 40 of FIG. 17, such doors not being further designated other than by individual numerals 49 for the module A and 50a for the module C.
As suggested in FIG. 14, the side units, one of which has been disclosed heretofore and particularly reference is made to FIGS. 1 to 3 inclusive at this point, this being the side unit designated for the purposes hereof as 50.
Another side unit, such as 51, is tended to be sup ported at the opposite portion of the platform designated 52, this being further illustrated in FIGS. 21 and 22, and to be described subsequently.
The side unit 51 may be identical with the side unit 50 previously described in detail, or as suggested in FIG. 3 be comprised of three U modules, one of which may be the module A and a further module similar thereto in side elevational aspect, but somewhat elongated as by turning up the end of the portion 14 of the module B along the lines of the dotted line 53 disclosed in FIG. 3.
By the sane analysis, the horizontal portion 22 of the C module would be left unbent or an identical module to that of A be used so that the vertical member suggested by the dotted line at 53a be provided, and thus in effect two A modules be availed of with a similar but spread-out module as previously described spanning the space therebetween.
In all cases, it will be noted that the vertical members of the modules are connected to the top portion 29 where they extend adjacent thereto, and all in turn fastened to a back plate or sheet 48 in any case.
The body is further integrated by means of the platform 52, which consists of a main floor plate 55, having the upwardly extending sides 56 thereon, suitably fastened to the inner sides of the respective side units 50 and 51.
The platform 55 is equipped with certain outrigger portions 57 which in turn support the side units thereon engaging with the bottom portions of modules such as It is noted that the various parallel and coextensive vertical members such as l and 13 are welded together to the respective modules A and B and this welding takes place so as to be within the storage area itself, and thus not exposed to the elements which would possibly result in deterioration.
The bottom portion 14 of the module B is in turn welded suitably to the co-extending portion 22 of the module C, thus connecting all the modules together, and since the top portion 29 is in turn welded to all the vertical members extending thereto, it will be observed that a rigid integrated side unit is thereby provided.
As suggested in FIG. 2, certain shelves such as 60 may be supplied in the module A and connected as indicated in FIG. 13A where the verticalmember 19 is equipped with shelf-supporting members 11 and 12 which in turn provide for the interengagement of the down-turned lip 61 formed at the end 62 of the shelf 60 with a suitable stop 63 pressed out of such shelf support, and a further upwardly extending section 64 engaging with the end 62, and specifically the lip 61 thereof. It will be seen that since such an' arrangement is provided on both the vertical members 1 and 3 that shelves spanning the space therebetween will further rigidify and connect these parts together.
Illustrated in FIGS. 17 to inclusive is a tray arrangement which spans the space between the vertical member 13 of the module B and the vertical member 19 of the module C, being supported upon the hook brackets 17 by the hooks 18 extending therefrom for guides to receive suitable downwardly extending mating members 65. The trays to be supported on the tray brackets 17 are shown in detail as previously suggested, including the longitudinally extending bottom 66 from which extend upwardly the sides 67 and 68 bent aboutas illustrated in FIG. 19; these sides 67 and 68 including the slots 69 and 70 therein.
The slots 69 and are arranged to receive dividers illustrated in FIG. 20, formed to include a main section 71 with ears 72 extending outwardly therefrom so as to slip into the slots 69 and 70 and assume the position shown in FIG. l7 with respect thereto.
It will be apparent that by bending the sides 67 and 68 sufficiently to remove the divider 71 that the ears 72 will be susceptible of passing through the slots 69.
From the foregoing, it is pointed out that the modules A, B and C of the so-called U, L and 6 shapes in elevational view respectively, are susceptible of integrating into a side unit so as to form compartments which are in turn suitably welded together or otherwise affixed so that the fastenings thereof are concealed therewithin, and in conjunction with a top portion provide for the definition of such storage areas with suitable doors arranged for recessed connection and positioning whereby to exclude the entrance of moisture, water or otherwise thereinto, with the minimum of welding connections being made which are normally exposed to the elements even those made in the top and vertical members of the respective modules being so arranged as to be least exposed in any event.
The concept of modules of different forms which are nevertheless in turn formed of material which has the identical transverse cross-sectional configuration will be seen to facilitate manufacture and reduce cost thereof.
1. In body construction of the class described, in combination, a side unit comprising a series of modules, each having at least horizontal bottom portions and vertical side members positioned to provide a plurality of storage compartments, said portions and members having substantially identical transverse cross-sectional configurations, said modules being connected together interiorly thereof whereby to prevent exposure of the fastenings to exterior elements, and a top member covering said modules.
2. The combination as claimed in claim 1, wherein the top member is fastened to at least one vertical member of each module.
3. The combination as claimed in claim 1, wherein a pair of side units are spaced from one another, and connected to a platform assembly spanning the space therebetween, the modules of one unit comprising one combination of certain side elevational shapes and those of the other unit comprising certain other side elevational shapes, all modules being formed of portions and members having substantially identical transverse cross-sectional configurations.
4. The combination as claimed in claim 3, wherein the modules of at least one of the side units consist of side elevational shapes resembling Ls, 6s and Us, the vertical side members of said modules being connected to the top member.
5. The combination as claimed in claim 3, wherein the vertical side member of one module is connected to the bottom portion of an intermediate module, the vertical side member of the latter being in turn connected to a vertical side member of an adjacent module, and the top is connected t0 all the vertical members mentioned to provide rigidity to the side unit of which those members are a part.
6. The combination as claimed in claim 2, wherein the top is fastened to the vertical members of the side unit with which it is associated.
7. The combination as claimed in claim 1, wherein the modules of said unit consist of side elevational shapes resembling Ls, 6s and Us, the L module being positioned at right angles to the position which usually identifies the same as an L, the vertical portion of L shape being connected to the vertical portion of the adjacent U shape and the horizontal portion being connected to the vertical member and the upper transverse portion of the 6 shape.
8. The combination as claimed in claim 7, wherein the vertical member of the 6 shape and the vertical member of the L shape are provided with oppositely disposed drawer brackets, and a drawer spans the space therebetween.
9. The combination as claimed in claim 7, wherein the vertical members of the U shape are provided with oppositely disposed shelf brackets, and shelves span the space therebetween and interlock with said brackets.
10. The combination as claimed in claim 1, wherein consequence of the transverse cross-sectional configuration of the portions and members and of the top, the modules and top provide recesses in which doors are positioned so as to be at least flush with the outer edges of the portions, members, and corresponding portion of the top, whereby to prevent the entrance of water or the like into the interior of the modules.
1 l. The combination as claimed in claim 10, wherein a seal is provided for the portions, members and top which which engages the adjacent areas of the doors to increase the resistance to entrance of water or the like into the said interior.
12. The combination as claimed in claim 10, wherein the doors are formed with an outer face and inwardly extending spacer sections, the edges of said sections in turn providing surfaces for fastening an inner face for the door and being secured thereto in a manner to conceal the means for securing the same from the exterior of the unit in which the door is incorporated, and be confined in the recesses aforesaid.