US 3747133 A
A side rail assembly comprising a pair of end members hingedly mounted at their bottom ends in brackets attached to the bed frame so as to swing from raised vertical position downwardly towards each other to collapsed position; composite telescoping horizontal rails extending between the end members; and locking means on one of the horizontal rails for holding it in extended position to maintain the end members in vertical position and the entire assembly in raised position.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 Hutt [451 July 24,1973
[ COLLAPSIBLE SIDE RAIL ASSEMBLY FOR HOSPITAL BED  lnventor: Clyde B. I-Iutt, 601 E. 22nd,
 Filed: Apr. 22, 1971 ] App]. No.: 136,349
 US. Cl. 5/331, 5/100  Int. Cl. A47c 21/00  Field of Search 5/331, 100
[561 References Cited UNITEDSTATES PATENTS 3,248,744 5/1966 Hutt 5/331 5/1963 Murcott 5/331 Primary Examiner- James T. McCall Assistant Examiner-Andrew M. Calvert Attorney-L. R. Geisler  ABSTRACT A side rail assembly comprising a pair of end members hingedly mounted at their bottom ends in brackets attached to the bed frame so as to swing from raised vertical position downwardly towards each other to collapsed position; composite telescoping horizontal rails extending between the end members; and locking means on one of the horizontal rails for holding it in extended position to maintain the end members in vertical position and the entire assembly in raised position.
3 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures COLLAPSIBLE SIDE RAIL ASSEMBLY FOR HOSPITAL BED BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Various types of demountable side guards have been developed for cribs and beds, particularly hospital beds. More recently these have been foldable or collapsible as well as demountable so that they can be raised into operating position or lowered to more or less out-of-the-way position without actually having to be entirely dismounted from the bed frame. US Pat. No. 3,234,570, issued Feb. 16, 1966, and US. Pat. No. 3,248,744, issued May 3, 1966, show recently improved side rail assemblies of this type. One objection to the side rail assemblies described in these, as well as previous patents, is that the rail assembly, when in fully raised position, does not extend for the full length of the bed and thus does not enclose the foot portion as well as the head portion. Other objectionsto these and other foldable rail assemblies are that they are too complicated in construction and thus rather expensive to produce, are heavy and cumbersome to install on a bed frame or to remove therefrom and are often troublesome for the hospital attendant to operate.
An object of the present invention is to provide an improved collapsible and demountable side rail assembly suitable particularly for hospital beds which will be easy and relatively inexpensive to manufacture, using only a minimum of material in its production, suitable for full length or three-quarter length bed, extending the full length of the bed when raised, and which will be quick and easy to manipulate when mounted on the bed.
A further object of thisinvention is to provide an improved side rail assembly for a bed, which, while capable of providing a maximum of safety for the patient in the bed, will present no upkeep problem, will practically never require any repair, and at the same time, whether in raised or lowered position, will be good looking and attractive in appearance.
Another specific object is to provide such a collapsible side rail assembly which, when in collapsed position, will be below the level of the mattress and thus will not offer any interference with the treatment of the patient in bed or with the arranging or changing of the bed; and also will not at any time extend below the bed springs or interfere in any way with ordinary housekeeping. I
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A pair of brackets, extending out from the sides of the front and rear bed frame posts on the side of the bedstead where the rail assembly is mounted, pivotally support the bottom ends of a pair of end rail members which are mounted to swing in opposite directions downwardly towards each other in a vertical plane from raised vertical to lowered position. These end rail members hingedly support the respective ends of hori- BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a side elevation of the bed frame with the side rail assembly being shown in full lines in fully raised position and in broken lines in lowered r collapsed position;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary section on line 22 of FIG. 1 drawn to a larger scale;
FIG. 3 is a section on line 3-3 of FIG. 1 drawn to the same scale as FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary foreshortened longitudinal sectional elevation of the top telescoping rail in expanded position showing the top portion of the end member of the rail assembly on the right as viewed in FIG. 1; and
FIG. 5 is a section on line 5-5 of FIG. 1 showing the locking means for the rail assembly on the middle telescoping rail.
Referring first to FIG. 1, a supporting post at the head of the bed frame is indicated at and the corresponding supporting post at the foot of the bed frame is indicated at 11. As is shown, these posts are formed in the customary manner of tubular metal which is square in cross-section and are joined by a pair of angle-iron side bed rails, one of which is indicated at 12. The top of the mattress is indicated at M.
A vertical, channel-shaped bracket 13 is mounted on the head post 10, and a similar bracket 14 is mounted on the foot post 11. Since these brackets are identical, except oppositely positioned, it will suffice to describe the bracket 13 which is shown more fully in FIGS. 2 and 3. The bracket 13 consists of a short channelshaped member formed with a pair of integral side arms 15 and 16 at the top and bottom respectively by which the bracket is secured in place on the bedpost 10, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, positioned out a slight distance from the side of the bed frame.
A pair of identical channel-shaped end members 17 and 18 are hingedly mounted at their bottom ends on hinge bolts 19 and 20, respectively, near the bottom ends of the brackets 13 and 14 respectively. The channel-shaped end members 17 and 19 are similar in crosssection to the brackets 13 and 14 but are sufficiently smaller in cross-sectional size to fit within the brackets 13 and 14, and the bottom edges of the end members 17 and 18 are curved about the hinge bolts 19 and 20 to enable the end members to swing freely in arcs of nearly from the vertical raised position (shown in full lines in FIG. 1) to the lowered positions (shown in broken lines). When the end members are in fully raised vertical position, they are held against any side movement by their respective brackets and hinge bolts, the only movement being permitted them being their downward swing towards each other. As apparent from FIGS. 1 and 2, the bottom ends of the end members 17 and 18 and the bottom ends of their supporting brackets are located below the side rails of the bed frame, and thus below the springs and mattress of the bed. Preferably a thin bumper of resilient material, indicated in broken lines at 21 in FIG. 2, is placed in the top of each of the brackets 13 and 14 to cushion the shock when the end members are swung up suddenly into vertical position by the moving of the rail assembly into raised position, as later described.
A composite top rail 22 has its ends pivotally connected to the top of the end members 17 and 18 respectively. This composite rail 22 is composed of three telescoping portions 23, 24 and 25, as shown in FIG. 1. This enables the top rail 22 to be contracted sufficiently to enable the entire rail assembly to be collapsed to the lowered out-of-the-way position shown in broken lines in FIG. 1 when the rail assembly is not needed. To prevent the possibility of any of the three telescoping portions 23, 24 and 25 from inadvertently being pulled entirely out of an adjacent connected portion, the outer ends of the portions 23 and 24 are formed with a narrow inwardly-extending annular flange 23 or 24 (FIG. 4), while the inner ends of the portions 24 and 25 are provided with collars 26 and 27 respectively, to engage the flanges 23 and 24' respectively, when these portions are pulled outwardly from each other to the fullest extent.
A second or intermediate composite hoirzontal rail 28 has its ends also pivotally connected to the end members 17 and 18 respectively, as shown in FIG. 1. This composite rail 28 is composed of the two telescoping parts 29 and 30. Since the overall length of this intermediate rail does not have to be reduced to the same extent as the top rail 22, when the assembly is lowered to the fully collapsed position, as evident from FIG. 1, it is not necessary to have this intermediate rail comprising more than the two telescoping parts 29 and 30.
Similarly, a lower composite horizontal rail 31, having its ends pivotally connected to the end members 17 and 18 respectively, is composed of two telescoping parts 32 and 33, this lower rail requiring to be reduced in length still less when the assembly is in collapsed position, as apparent from FIG. 1.
In order to lock the assembly in fully raised position and to prevent any inadvertent collapsing of the same, simple locking means is provided on the intermediate horizontal rail 28 which prevents the telescoping of its component parts 29 and 30 when this rail is in fully extended position. This locking means, which is shown in FIG. 5, comprises a spring-pressed button 34 mounted in the part 30 of the rail which engages a properly located aperture 35 in the outer part 29 when the two parts 29 and 30 are brought into fully extended relationship by the setting up of the rail assembly into full raised position.
To facilitate the raising and lowering of the rail assembly a pair of hand holds 36 and 37 (FIGS. 1 and are provided near the top of the end member 18 and near the aperture 35 for the locking button on the part 29 on the intermediate horizontal rail 28 respectively. This particular arrangement of the pair of operating handles or hand holds has been found to be very convenient since the attendant can easily grasp the hand holds 36 and 3'] simultaneously with the right and left hands respectively, and, when lowering the assembly, can at the same time press the locking button 34 with the thumb of the left hand.
Due to the fact that the horizontal rails of the assembly are all composed of telescoping parts the rail assembly can be made suitable for beds of varying overall lengths, the only change required being in the location of the locking button 34 in the part 30 of the intermediate rail 28. The telescoping tubular rails can be made of lightweight material so that the entire assembly is neither heavy nor cumbersome, but nevertheless will provide a stable, safe and satisfactory side bed rail assembly when mounted in place.
As apparent from FIG. 1, the side rail assembly, when set in fully lowered position, will be entirely below the top of the matress and thus completely out of the way of the patient. This assembly occupies very little space in collapsed position and offers no hindrance to the attendant in the changing or rearranging of the bed. Even in collapsed condition it presents a good appearance. In addition to the advantage of being so easily manipulated and maintained, the low cost at which it can be produced has proved an important factor.
1. A collapsible side rail assembly for a bed including a pair of end members, a pair of elements secured to the head post and the foot post respectively on the side of the bed frame, the bottom ends of said end members hingedly supported in said elements respectively so as to enable said end members to swing in a vertical plane from vertical raised position in opposite directions downwardly toward each other, a plurality of composite horizontal rails hingedly connected at their ends to said end members respectively, each of said horizontal rails comprising a plurality of telescoping parts enabling them to contract longitudinally when said end members are swund downwardly towards each other from vertical raised position to lowered position, and means for locking said assembly in raised position.
2. The side rail assembly as set forth in claim 1 with three composite longitudinal rails extending between said end members, the top horizontal rail joining the top ends of said end members and consisting of three telescoping parts, the intermediate and bottom composite rails each consisting of two telescoping parts, and with said locking means mounted on the intermediate rail and so arranged as to prevent any telescoping movement of the two parts of said intermediate rail relatively with respect to each other while said assembly is in fully raised position.
3. The side rail assembly as set forth in claim 2 with said elements for mounting said end members of said assembly on the head and foot posts of the bed frame comprising a pair of upright channel-shaped brackets extending out from the side of the head post and foot post of the bed frame, respectively, said end members being similar in cross section to said brackets, with the bottom portions of said end members fitting within said brackets, and with the bottom ends of said end members hingedly supported in the bottom ends of said brackets respectively.