US 3750597 A
A tipless tray which is inertially stabilized and which is isolated from vertical shocks. The tray is mounted atop a rod. A pendulum type weight is secured to a tube which is connected to a ball bearingly mounted to a pair of sheets secured together. The ball fits into a pair of spherical sockets positioned in opposing fashion in the pair of sheets. The rod extends freely through the ball and into the tube. A spring is positioned within the tube abutting a plate fixedly fastened to the bottom end of the rod. The spring cushionly supports the rod and tray above the ball.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [1 1 Muns [ Aug. 7, 1973 1 GRAVITY ACTION TIPLESS TRAY WITH VERTICAL CUSHION MEANS 21 Appl. No.: 190,131
 U.S. Cl 108/45, 224/42.46, 248/182,
 Int. CL... A47b 23/00, A47b 37/00, B60r 7/06,
 Field of Search 224/42.46 R, 42.46 A,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 633,021 9/1899 Mason 248/403 1,135,914 4/1915 Olesberg 248/182 1,623,427 4/1927 Manrock 248/182 Stoll 248/402 Sheron 248/403 Primary Examiner-James T. McCall Assistant Examiner-Kenneth J. Dorner Attorney-Harold R. Woodard et a1.
 ABSTRACT A tipless tray which is inertially stabilized and which is isolated from vertical shocks. The tray is mounted atop a rod. A pendulum type weight is secured to a tube which is connected to a ball bearingly mounted to a pair of sheets secured together. The ball fits into a pair of spherical sockets positioned in opposing fashion in the pair of sheets. The rod extends freely through the ball and into the tube. A spring is positioned within the tube abutting a plate fixedly fastened to the bottom end of the rod. The spring cushionly supports the rod and tray above the ball.
7 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures FIG.
INVENTOR. JOSEPH C. MUNS JMM wuimi fi jg ATTOR EYS GRAVITY ACTION TIPLESS TRAY WITH VERTICAL CUSHION MEANS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention is in the field of inertia stabilized platforms.
2. Description of the Prior Art Many vehicle operators, such as truck drivers, drink coffee or other similar liquids while driving vehicles. It is therfore desirable to provide an inertia stabilized platform within the vehicle so that a beverage container may be positioned thereon without spilling the contents during violent or sudden maneuvers of the vehicle. Such a platform could also hold items such as pencils and cigarettes. It is known to mount a tray to a dashboard of a vehicle, and one such device is shown in the U. S. Pat. No. 2,93l,489 issued to Farnholtz. The Farnholtz device is not vertically and horizontally stabilized and therefore will not absorb shocks and will not move so as to compensate as the vehicle suddenly stops, accelerates or turns. Another type of carrier is disclosed in the U.S. Pat. No. 3,228,577 issued to Croft wherein a platform is suspendedly mounted by a plurality of chains secured to a pivot point. Related devices are shown in the U. S. Pat. Nos. 2,683,640 issued to Mangine and 1,438,030 issued to Bulinski. The Mangine device is a tray adapted to be secured to the end of a table, whereas the Bulinski device is a large table designed to be positioned within a ship. The Bulinski table has a pendulum attached thereto for allowing the table surface to remain horizontal while the supporting structure secured to the ship pivots about a specified point. The Bulinski table top is not vertically stabilized and thus will move vertically as the supporting structure moves vertically. Disclosed herein is a holder which is inertially stabilized and which is also vertically stabilized to absorb shocks.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention is a tipless holder comprising a mount, a weighted device suspendedly and swingingly mounted from the mount, a holder mounted atop the device, and spring means on the weighted device cushioningly spacing the holder thereabove.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a new and improved tipless holder.
It is a further object of the present invention to provide a tipless holder which is inertially and vertically stabilized. I
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a new and improved stabilized holder for mounting within a vehicle.
Related objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following description.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a fragmentary cross sectional view of an automobile dashboard having the holder incorporating the present invention mounted thereon.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary side view of the holder shown in FIG. 1 looking in the direction of arrows 22.
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary cross sectional view taken along the line 3-3 of FIG. 2 and viewed in the direction of the arrows.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT For the purposes and understanding of the principles of the invention, reference will now be made to the embodiment illustrated in the drawings and specific language will be used to describe the same. It will nevertheless be understood that no limitation of the scope of the invention is thereby intended, such alterations and further modifications in the illustrated device, and such further applications of the principle of the invention as illustrated therein being contemplated as would normally occur to one skilled in the art to which the invention relates.
Referring now more particularly to FIG. 1, there is shown a fragmentary cross-sectional view of an automobile dashboard 111 having the holder 10 incorporating the present invention mounted thereon. Holder 10 has an arm 12 connected thereto which extends downwardly being secured to the dashboard by a conventional clamp 13. Clamp l3 and arm 12 may be used to secure holder 10 to a variety of different walls such as an automobile dash board, a boat dashboard or other similar members. Holder 10 may be mounted to a variety of vehicles such as trucks and other similar moving objects. It is understood that a variety of other means may be utilized to mount holder 10 in lieu of clamp 13 and arm 12.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary side view of the holder shown in FIG. 1 looking in the direction of ar rows 22. Holder 10 has a tray 14 fixedly secured by fasteners 16 to block 15. Tray 14 may also be secured to block 15 by means other than fasteners 16. Block 15 is shown fragmented in FIG. 2 to illustrate the positioning of fasteners 16 and to show rod 17 which projects freely into block 15 abutting the lower surface 18 of tray 14. Rod 17 is not fixedly connected to block 15 thereby allowing for the quick and easy removal of the tray from the holder for cleaning purposes. Tray 14 may be a simple flat member or may have upward turned circumferential edge. It is not necessary, however, for the edges of the tray to be turned upwardly in order for the holder to retain objects on the tray. A ball bearing 19 is retained by bearing socket assembly 20 which has a top plate 21 and a bottom plate 22 fixedly connected together by screws 25 and wing nuts 26. Arm 12 (FIG. 1) is bifurcated thereby forming arm portions 27 and 28 which extend beneath plate 22 being secured thereto by the screws 25 and nuts 26. Plates 21 and 22 have respectively opposed ball sockets 23 and 24. Sockets 23 and 24are spherical in configuration and bearingly receive ball bearing 19. The center of ball bearing 19 is positioned centrally of sockets 23 and 24 with the upper portion of the ball projecting through the top opening of socket 23 and with the bottom portion of the ball projecting through the bottom opening of socket 24.
The bottom end 30 of ball 19 is truncated and has a shank 31 integrally attached thereto. Shank 31 extends into a hollow tube 29 which is fixedly connected thereto by conventional fasteners 32. Tube 29 is fragmented illustrating shank 31. Hole 39 (FIG. 3) extends through ball 19 and shank 31 and freely receives rod 17. Rod 17 may rotate or vertically move in hole 39 without any resistance from either ball 19 or shank 31. A washer 34 (FIG. 2) is fixedly connected to the lower end of rod 17 and has an outside diameter smaller than the hollow interior 33 of tube 29. Washer 34 may be connected to rod 17 by a plurality of means such as by staking or welding. A helical spring 35 is positioned in tube 29 having a top end 40 which contacts the lower surface of washer 34. The bottom end 41 of spring 35 rests atop shank 37 of weight 36. Shank 37 extends freely into tube 29 being fixedly connected thereto by conventional fasteners 38 as illustrated in the lower fragmented portion of tube 29. Spring 35 extends upwardly from shank 37 to contact washer 34.
Vertical shocks imparted to the holder through arm 12 are absorbed by helical spring 35 whereas horizontal movement imparted to the arm is absorbed by the pivotal mounting of ball 19 to holder 20. Weight 36 is suspendedly and swingingly mounted from socket assembly 20. Helical spring 35 cushioningly spaces the tray from the mount and weight. Thus, the tray may move vertically with respect to ball 19 and socket assembly 20.
in one embodiment of the holder, weight 36 had an approximate weight of between 3 id to 4 pounds while the tray was circular with its circumferential edge located at the vertex of an angle of not greater than 30 formed by a line parallel with the tray and a line from the tray edge to the center of gravity of weight 36. It has been determined that the distance from the center of gravity of weight 36 to the center of ball 19 should equal the diameter of tray 14 whereas the distance from the center of ball 19 to tray 14 should be not less than one-third the radius of tray 14. in this same embodiment, objects having a total approximate weight of 8 pounds could be placed atop the tray without impairing the operation of the holder.
An actual test of a holder complying with the dimensions of the above paragraph was conducted with the holder mounted to an automobile dashboard. A tall cup completely filled with liquid was then placed atop the tray and the vehicle was then maneuvered through a series of steps of great acceleration, panic stops and quick turns without a drop of liquid being spilled from the cup. The same result occurred if the cup was positioned at the center or near the edge of the tray. When the cup was placed near the tray edge, then the tray was observed to rotate with respect to holder 20 during maneuvers. Weight 36 compensates for the momentum of the object(s) placed on the tray. That is, the weight will during vehicle maneuvers position the tray in a nonhorizontal position to compensate for the cup'momentum. For example, when the vehicle was suddenly stopped, then the weight 36 swing forward toward the dashboard thereby tilting the tray so that the top of the cup was directed away from the front of the vehicle.
While the invention has been illustrated and described in detail in the drawings and foregoing description, the same is to be considered as illustrative and not restrictive in character, it being understood that only the preferred embodiment has been shown and described and that all changes and modifications that come within the spirit of the invention are desired to be protected.
The invention claimed is:
l. A tipless holder comprising:
a weighted device suspendedly and swingingly mounted to said mount;
spring means on said weighted device;
a holder supported only by said spring means so as to be isolated from vertical shocks;
a bearing connected atop said weighted device and bearingly received by said mount; and, a rod supporting said holder and projecting into said bearing and resting atop said spring means, said rod is freely rotatable and vertically movable with respect to said bearing.
2. The holder of claim 1 wherein:
said weighted device has a shaft with said spring means positioned therein; and,
said bearing has an appendage connected to said shaft.
3. The holder of claim 3 wherein:
said rod extends freely through said bearing, said appendage and into said shaft;
said weighted device includes a weight and said shaft has a bottom end with said weight fixedly connected thereto; and,
said spring means is a spring resting atop said weight and extending vertically upward.
4. The holder of claim 4 and further comprising:
a plate affixed to said rod and resting atop said spring.
5. The holder of claim 4 wherein:
said holder includes a tray and a block affixed therebeneath, said block has a hole receiving said rod.
6. The holder of claim 5 wherein:
said mount has a pair of sheets secured together with said sheets having opposed spherical sockets receiving said bearing.
7. An inertially stabilized holder comprising:
mounting means receiving said bearing;
a weight suspendedly'connected to said bearing and being swingable withrespect to said means;
a rod extending upwardly out of said bearing; and,
a holder mounted atop said rod;
a shaft mounted to and beneath said bearing and with said weight connected to and beneath said shaft;
spring means positioned in said shaft and vertically supporting said rod; 7
said bearing is a ball having a truncated bottom end and an appendage connected thereto and to said shaft with said rod being rotatable in said ball and said shaft and freely vertical movable with respect thereto.