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Publication numberUS3751129 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 7, 1973
Filing dateOct 20, 1971
Priority dateOct 20, 1971
Also published asCA976053A, CA976053A1, DE2251653A1
Publication numberUS 3751129 A, US 3751129A, US-A-3751129, US3751129 A, US3751129A
InventorsDean C, Wright D
Original AssigneeWright Barry Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Card tray
US 3751129 A
Abstract
A plastic storage drawer or tray for data cards of documents provided with a positionable compressor or follower made of molded plastic elements. The drawer or tray supports a longitudinal guide track or channel, the compressor having integral track-engaging flanges and a releasable locking shoe for holding the compressor in adjusted position against the cards. The plastic compressor assembly encloses a pivoted locking lever carrying the locking shoe, and a spring normally urging the shoe against the longitudinal guide track. The locking shoe is shaped to permit the compressor or follower to be positioned without restraint toward the stack of cards in the tray. The guide track may comprise a metallic strip attached to one side wall of the drawer or tray. The bottom of the drawer is provided with reentrant shaped feet which cooperate with raised ledges on the top of the drawer to permit a series of drawers to be securely stacked one on the other vertically.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 Wright et a1.

[ CARD TRAY [75] Inventors: David M. Wright, Shewsbury;-Carl J.

Dean, Southbridge, both of Mass.

[73] Assignee: Wright, Barry, Corporation,

Watertown, Mass.

[22] Filed: Oct. 20, 1971 [21] Appl. No.: 190,927

[52] US. Cl 312/185, 211/51, 220/223 [51] Int. Cl. 1141b 63/00, B42f 9/00 [58] Field of Search 312/183, 185; 402/70, 73; 220/22.1-22.6

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 4 889,340 6/1908 Sherwood 220/222 1,009,176 11/1911 Reimer 220/224 1,061,463 5/1913 Fraser 220/224 1,163,373 12/1965 Schmidt... 220/223 1,279,621 9/1918 Weber 220/223 1,931,891 10/1933 Cooper 220/222 1,948,935 2/1934 Rand 220/223 2,757,674 8/1956 Chamberlin 220/221 2,860,642 11/1958 Marks et al. 220/223 [451 Aug. 7, 1973 3,612,337 10/1971 Harger ..220/22.3

Primary ExaminerPaul R. Gilliam Attorne'y-Milton E. Gilbert ments provided with a positionable compressor or fol- 1 lower made of molded plastic elements. The drawer or tray supports a longitudinal guide track or channel, the compressor having integral track-engaging flanges and a releasable locking shoe for holding the compressor in adjusted position against the cards. The plastic compressor assembly encloses a pivoted locking lever carrying the locking shoe, and a spring normally urging the shoe against the longitudinal guide track. The locking shoe is shaped to permit the compressor or follower to be positioned without restraint toward the stack of cards in the tray. The guide track may comprise a metallic strip attached to one side wall of the drawer or tray. The bottom of the drawer is provided with reentrant shaped feet which cooperate with raised ledges on the top of the drawer to permit a series of drawers to be securely stacked one on the other vertically.

11 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures minnow Hm 3.151.129

' sum 1 or 4 INVENTORS DAVID M. WRIGHT CARL J. DEAN ATTORNEY PATENIEB Q 3.751.129.

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swan u 0r 4 INVENTORS 5 6 DAVIDM. WRIGHT CARL .1. DEAN ATTORNEY CARD TRAY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The invention relates to a molded plastic drawer or tray for a data card or document file provided with a compressor or follower adjustably positionable longitudinally of the drawer.

Prior file drawers for office use have generally been made of sheet metal. The metal drawer and compressor requires forming, fitting, and attaching together numerous small structural elements involving a relatively expensive operation. Furthermore the final product has sharp edges and is subject to dents, scratches and rust in use, while being heavier than is desirable.

In general terms, an object of this invention is to overcome these drawbacks of sheet metal drawers by the use of molded plastic components.

Another object of the invention is to enable economical quantity production of the drawer unit by the use of a minimum number of molded plastic components.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the present invention, a drawer for a data card file is provided with a compressor or follower assembly for holding the stacked cards in asubstantially vertical position, and both drawer andcompressor or follower assembly are made almost completely of integrally joined or molded plastic elements. The drawer, is preferably molded as a one piece plastic unit and is provided on its inside wall with a longitudinal guide or track member adapted to support the-compressor or follower for adjustable positioning along the length of the drawer, and for locking the same against the stack of cards in the drawer.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the compressor or follower unit carries a pivoted locking lever having a shoe or latch portion adapted for frictional or locking engagement with an inside surface of the drawer, or the surface of the guide or track member mounted thereon. The latch portion of the locking lever is shaped to permit unrestricted movement of the compressor unit forward against the stack of cards in the drawer. The compressor unit consists of front and back plates forming an enclosure for the locking lever, a spring, and the operating linkage for actuating the shoe. The compressor unit further includes a slide plate attached to or integral with the unit for supporting the same on the guide or track member.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a preferred drawer construction showing the compressor or follower of the invention.

FIG. 1A is an enlarged perspective view illustrating a portion of the trackway in the drawer.

FIG. 2 is a longitudinal sectional view taken on line 32 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a transverse sectional view along line 3-3 of FIG. I, and illustrating the compressor member in place.

FIG. 4 is a rear perspective view of the plastic compressor assembly.

FIG. 5 is a sectional view along line 5--5 of FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 6-6 of FIG. 7, and

FIG. 7 is a side view of the guide-track.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawing, and particularly to FIGS., 1, 2, and 3, the card drawer as shown consists of a relatively thin-walled molded plastic tray or drawer I5 having a bottom wall 16, side walls 17 and I8, and front and back walls 19 and 20 all formed as an integral, onepiece unit; and an adjustably positionable compressor or follower 22 in said tray for maintaining the cards in a partially compressed upright position whether the tray is completely or only partly filled with cards. The compressor unit or assembly 22 also preferably consists of molded plastic elements, as shown. Normally, only one such compressor unit would be used with a tray full or substantially full of cards. However, two or more such units could be used if so desired, and especially where only a small number of cards are stored in a tray.

The. plastic components of the tray and compressor are molded from a dense thermosetting plastic material of a type which insures a dimensionally stable end product, such as that marketed under the trade name DELRIN. There are a number of equivalent plastic materials available that may be used to provide a suitable product. According to customary molding procedure, draft is provided in-the vertical surfaces of the mold, where necessary, providing slight inclination of the inside surfaces 23 and 24 of the front and back walls of the tray (see FIG. 2).

One side wall 17 is provided with a longitudinal rib 26 facing inwardly of the tray, the rib being provided with a vertically disposed projection 27 forming a flat smooth guiding surface for the edges of the business cards resting in the tray. The surface of the rib may also be provided with a molded-in scale 26a and indicia 26b for rapidly estimating the number of cards in the tray.

To facilitate handling of the tray, handles are provided at both ends. In the preferred construction, recessed compartments 10 and 11 are formed at both the front and rear ends of the tray by extending the molding of the outside of the side wall portions, such as 18A and 18B, beyond the end walls 19 and 20, and also integrally molding a ledge 12 across the base joining these extended wall portions, as shown. Finger gripping handles are provided by suitably fastening U-shaped molded pieces 29 and 30 between the extended portions 18A and 188, respectively, at the top of the end walls, thereby enabling the fingers to be inserted into 0 the compartments l0 and 11 and engage the downardly extending panels of parts 29 and 30 to provide handles (as is apparent in FIG. 2). These compartments 10 and 11 are of a size to accomodate one of the same type of business data cards as are contained within the tray. This card may be marked in such manner as to identify the stacked card contents of the tray. The trays themselves may readily be stacked one upon the other in a convenient manner. To accomplish this the bottom wall 16 has preferably four feet such as 122 formed at the outer edges. These feet are so located with respect to the ledges 12 and end walls 17 and 18 as to be enabled to nest within the recess 124 and 126 provided in the upper surface of the molded pieces 29 and 30; respectively.

To support and guide the compressor or follower 22 for lengthwise adjustment in the drawer 15, a guide or track member 33 (FIGS. 1A, 6 and 7) is attached at the inside of the side wall 17. As best shown in FIG. 1A, the track member 33 comprises an elongated thin strip of metal formed in generally U-shaped cross section. The central portion of the track member 33 is provided with suitable openings for receiving lug members 34, 35, as shown, for rigidly attaching the track 33 to the drawer. The upper and lower longitudinally disposed edges 36 and 37 of the track are formed parallel to each other and raised away from the inside wall 17 of the drawer to provide two projecting trackways for guiding a C- shaped portion of the follower 22 as best shown in FIG. 3 and FIG. 4. The C-shaped portion has guide elements 38, 39 preferably formed as integral parts of a slide plate 40 that is, in turn, provided as an integral part, or attached to, the follower 22 as shown in FIG. 4.

This slide plate 40 extends at right angles to the main body of the compressor assembly 22, whereby the front and rear faces of the compressor are disposed transversely of the drawer, providing support for the data cards.

To releasably lock the compressor 22 at any desired longitudinal position along the drawer, the compressor includes a spring loaded locking lever 42 pivotally mounted inside of the compressor, as shown in FIG. 5, and having at one end a latch 43 projecting from an opening in the slide 40 to engage the central portion of trackway 33. The guide member 33 is suitably deformed by upsetting the metal of the trackway along its length to provide a series of spaced raised ridges 45 to insure adequate interlocking engagement of the latch 43 with the trackway 33.

The opposite end of lever 42 projects from an opening in the upper surface of compressor assembly 22 and is provided with a thumb piece 50. As best shown in the detailed sectional view of FIG. 5, lever 42 is pivotally mounted at 51 inside the compressor assembly 22, and normally urged to the locking positions with the latch 43 projecting against the guideway 33 by a spring, such as U-shaped leaf spring 52. The spring is anchored at one end within a bracket 53 and its free end urges the lever 42 in the clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 5.

For assembling the compressor 22 onto the track 33, or removing this member from the track 33, the upper and lower edges 36, 37 of the trackway are provided with notched regions 55 near one of the ends of the guide 33, and the slide plate 40 on the follower 22 is also provided with notches 56 in the depending edges of the C-shaped portions 38, 39 that engage the trackways on the guide 33. That end of the guide 33 is also longitudinally slitted at 57, 58 and a central tongue portion 56 is deformed outwardly to provide an end stop limiting further travel of the card compressor 33,

For assembly and disassembly of the compressor 22 onto the guide 33, the compressor 22 is positioned at the end of the guideway 33 with the notched openings 56 in the C-shaped guide members 38, 39 disposed over the end sections 90 of the trackway with the end portions 91 of the C-shaped guide members on the slide plate 40 disposed in the notches 55 of the trackway 33. By depressing the thumb button 50 to withdraw the latch 43 into position where its outer edge is substantially flush with the slide plate 40, said plate may then be slidably entered onto the upper and lower trackways with the C-shaped guide members 38, 39 encircling the trackways 36, 37 as shown in FIG. 2.

As discussed above, the compressor or follower assembly 22 is preferably made of molded plastic elements, providing a construction that is durable and economical to manufacture and assemble. In a preferred embodiment shown in FIGS. 3, 4 and 5 the follower 22 comprises front and back plate 57 and 58 having peripheral flanges that are fastened together, as by solvent or ultrasonic welding, to form a thin hollow outer enclosure for the assembly. Inside this enclosure is provided a fixed hub 51 for pivotally supporting the locking lever 42, a socket 53 for receiving the U- shaped leaf spring 52 and a fixed stop 62 for engagement by an extension 42A of the locking lever 42 to limit the extent of clockwise pivoting movement of the lever when the thumb button 50 is depressed. All of the slide plate 40, the fixed hub 51, and the socket 53 are preferably molded as integral parts of either the front or back plates 57, 58 so that this assembly is comprised of only four separate parts.

The tray or drawer is also completely molded as a single integral unit having base, sides, and ends, with only the guide member 33 and the end handle portions 29 and 30 being added to complete the assembly. This overall construction involves a minimum of lightweight, durable, and inexpensive parts having minimized assembly cost yet results in a durable well made product amenable to quantity production.

Although specific embodiments of the invention are set forth and embodied in the foregoing description it is apparent that the invention admits of various modifications and rearrangement of parts.

What is claimed is:

1. In a molded plastic file drawer having bottom and I side walls for filing data carrying media, the combination comprising:

an elongate guide track member secured to the inner side of one of said walls between the top and bottom thereof and extending lengthwise of said drawer, and a compressor member slidably mounted on said guide track member;

said guide track member being so shaped in crosssection as to form a pair of spaced longitudinally extending tracks and a channel between said tracks;

said compressor member comprising:

a flat wall portion extending substantially across the width ofsaid file drawer to compress the media therein when the compressor member is adjusted toward one end of the drawer,

a locking assembly for releasably retaining said compressor member in a fixed position along said guide track member to enable re-positioning the compressor member in the drawer, said locking assembly comprising first means extending into said channel adapted to yieldingly and frictionally engage said guide track member and second means for releasably retaining said first means in engagement with said guide track member, and

a slide plate extending normal to the flat wall portion of the compressor member and having means slidably mounted to said spaced tracks for maintaining said wall portion in position as the compressor member is adjusted in the drawer by movement along said guide track member.

2. A file drawer and compressor member according to claim 1, in which said first means adapted to yieldingly engage said guide track member comprises a pivoted lever having an outwardly extending shoe which frictionally engages said guide track member.

3. The file drawer and compressor member according to claim 2, in which said second means comprises a spring normally biasing said pivoted lever so as to press said shoe outwardly against said guide track member.

4. A file drawer and compressor member according to claim 1, in which said compressor member including said flat wall portion and slide plate comprises molded plastic elements enclosing said locking assembly.

5. A file drawer and compressor member according to claim 1, in which the plastic side plate of the compressor member embodies integral projecting flanges slidably engaging the said tracks of the guide track member.

6. A file drawer and compressor member according to claim 1, in which said compressor member comprises a plastic front plate forming said flat wall portion and a plastic plate spaced from the flat wall portion of said front plate so as to form a hollow shell enclosing said locking assembly, said slide plate being integral with and extending from said plastic front plate.

7. A compressor member for a file drawer comprismolded plastic front and back plates, said plates having up-standing peripheral flanges secured together so that said plates form a hollow shell, and being formed so as to provide first and second openings to said shell at the top and at one side respectively of said compressor member,

a slide plate integral with said compressor member at said one side of said front and back plates, said slide plate having means for slidably mounting said compressor member to a guide track on one longitudinally extending wall of said drawer,

a pivoted locking lever mounted within said shell, said lever having a locking element at one end thereof aligned with said second opening and a handle at another end thereof projecting out of said shell through said first opening, and

resilient means biasing said locking lever so as to urge said locking element outwardly of said shell through said second opening for engagement with said drawer wall.

8. In a molded plastic file drawer for filing datacarrying media, said drawer having a bottom wall and opposite side walls, the combination comprising:

a compressor member in said drawer, means mounting said compressor member so that it is slidably connected to a single one of said opposite side walls, and locking means for releasably impeding movement of said compressor member lengthwise of said drawer;

said compressor member having a flat wall portion extending'transversely of the length of said drawer to compress media therein when said compressor member is adjusted toward one end of said drawer;

said mounting means comprising an elongate guide track member secured to said single side wall and extending lengthwise of said drawer at a level intermediate the top and bottom of said single side wall, and a slide member on said'compressor member slidably interconnected with said guide track member, said slide' member extending normal to said flat wall portion; and

said locking means comprising a series of spaced re-- taining elements on said guide track member, a spring-biased locking element pivotally mounted to said compressor member and disposed so as to yieldingly engage said series of spaced retaining elements, and means for pivoting said locking element away from said guide track member so as to enable repositioning of said compressor member in said drawer. 9. Apparatus according to claim 8 wherein said guide track member comprises elongate means forming two parallel spaced grooves extending lengthwise of said drawer, and said slide plate comprises guide elements that fit in said grooves and are slidably interconnected with said elongate means.

10. Apparatus according to claim 8 wherein said elongate means comprise offset edge portions of said guide track member.

11. Apparatus according to claim 8 wherein said compressor member is hollow and comprises mutually confronting and spaced back and front end plates with said flat wall portion forming part of one of said plates, and further wherein said locking element includes a first portion that extends between said plates and is pivotally mounted to said compressor member, a second portion that extends out from between said plates and is engagable with said guide track member, and a third portion accessible outside of the compressor member for pivoting said locking element so as to move said second portion away from said guide track member.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification312/185, 220/544, 211/51
International ClassificationB42F17/00, B42F17/02
Cooperative ClassificationB42F17/02
European ClassificationB42F17/02