US 3779504 A
An inexpensive but reliable stand to support a readily bendable article such as a menu, photograph, display card or the like which is flexible in at least one direction, e.g., one of paperboard. The stand has three posts, two of which are on a common axis and the third is displaced laterally from said axis. Thus, the item to be supported may be bent into concave form and rigidly supported by engaging the same between the posts.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Schwartz et a1.
[ STAND FOR MENUS AND THE LIKE Inventors: Sidney M. Schwartz, 10185 N.
Collins Ave., Bal Harbour, Fla. 33154; Avrum N. Andalman, 185 Euclid Ave., Glencoe, 111. 60022 Filed: Apr. 17, 1972 Appl. No.: 244,726
u.s. Cl. 248/441, 248/469 Int. Cl A47b 97/04 Field of Search 248/441, 443, 451, 248/453, 460, 463, 464, 465, 466, 469, 473; 40/125 H, 125 B, 152.1, 155
References Cited UNITED sTATEsPATENTs Kessler 248/309 Dec. 18, 1973 2,206,775 7/1940 Hoofer ..248/214 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 5/1944 Great Britain 211/148 Primary Examiner-Wi11iam H. Schultz Att0rneyLeonard S. Knox [5 7] ABSTRACT An inexpensive but reliable stand to support a readily bendable article such as a menu, photograph, display card or the like which is flexible in at least one direction, e.g., one of paperboard. The stand has three posts, two of which are on a common axis and the third is displaced laterally from said axis. Thus, the item to be supported may be bent into concave form and rigidly supported by engaging the same between the posts. i
1 Claim, 4 Drawing Figures STAND FOR MENUS AND THE LIKE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Referring the invention to a restaurant menu, for example, many establishments prefer to keep the menu on the table or counter where itis readily available to the customer.
Thus, the customer may, upon taking his seat, have the menu close at hand for consideration prior to being approached by the server instead of deferring making his preference known until the server becomes available, and then ordering while the server fidgets at his side.
It is common practice to have the menu on the table, but supported in a spring clip which is either freestanding or secured to one side of the table. In the former case, removing the menu necessitates the use of two hands since the base of the clip is too light to maintain its position unaided. In both cases, it becomes inconvenient to direct an edge 'of the menu into the mouth of the clip. Consequently, annoyance ensues.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention comprehends a stand for menus, photos, display cards or similar articles in the nature of heavy paper or light cardboard capable of being readily deformed into a curve about one axis, but incapable of taking a permanent set when so bent. Rigidly carried in a base is a plurality of upstanding posts, say three in number. Two of the posts are located on a common axis and the third is displaced laterally from said axis and essentially mid-way of the first mentioned posts. Thus, the article is slightly curved .by one or both hands and inserted between the pegs, whereby it is held by the forces exerted when the article attempts to re sume its normal shape. The forces exerted by the arti-,
cle against thepegs are of a moderate nature, viz. just sufficient to maintain the article in a vertical position, but permitting virtually frictionless withdrawal. Since replacement of the article in the, stand entails vertical movement and the article can be made to readily clear the posts during this step, one is not obliged to hold the base while so doing. The baseneed not be provided with ballast, so that in nearly every case, woodor plastic composition will meet the requirements.
Other objects are to provide a stand for the purpose stated which may be (I) readily molded in one piece from plastic composition, (2) which requires tooling of very low cost, (3) which is readily adaptable to mounting of a clip whereby the stand may be semipermanently anchored to a table or counter, (4) which may readily take decorative forms when intended for use as an esthetic support for a photograph, and (5) wherein the mechanical features lending utility are scarcely noticeable.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a stand in accordance with the invention;
FIG. 2 is a combined end elevation and cross section taken on the line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an end elevation showing a permanent mode of attaching the stand to a supporting surface; and
FIG. 4 is an end elevation showing a semi-permanent mode of securing the stand to a supporting surface.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Adverting to the drawing, there is shown, by way of example, a stand or holder 10 for a menu 12, or similar paperboard article which is readily flexed manually into a curved configuration, as shown,'but will assume little or no permanent set. The device includes a base 14 of suitable size and thickness, depending upon the dimensions and weight of the article to be supported, and 'of any desired peripheral configuration, e.g., rectangular, elliptical, free form, but which is shown, exemplificatively, as rectangular.
Upstanding from the base 14 is a set of three posts or pegs 16a, 16b, 160. The first two lie on a common axis II, and the third has its center laterally displaced from said axis by an amount II. The post 160 is located essentially mid-way between the post 16a and 16b. These pegs may be cylindrical, as shown, or of any other cross section. The height of the posts measured from the base will be so chosen as to afford acceptable support, depending upon forces tending to displace the article; a taller article will. require a relatively greater height of post, and a shorter article, a lesser height. In the case where the base 10 is easily machined, the same may be bored to receive the posts with a press fit. In the case of a molded assembly, the posts may be an integral that the article 12 may be bent as shown, located around and between the posts and released, whereupon the inherent resiliency of the article will maintain the same vertically pending withdrawal. If a sloped position of the article is desired, the posts may be positioned with their axes correspondingly inclined. This alternative is ideally suited to articles such as photographs, display cards and the like which are intended to be viewed from above at a comfortable angle. If it is desirable to secure the device to the top of a counter or table 22, a plate 24 (FIG. 3) may be secured to the base 14 and the top 22 by means of screws 26 and 28.
If semi-permanent location is desired, a spring clip 30 screwed at 32 to the base 14, may be employed.
In order to preclude-slippage, the bottom face of the base 14 may be covered with a frictional material, such as felt or rubber, as shown.
As an alternative, the posts 16a, 16b, 16c may be encased in sleeves of gum rubber to increase the friction.
It will have become apparent that mounting of the article will present a concave surface when viewed from one side, and a convex surface when viewed from the other. Thus, the user has immediate choice. For example, one may prefer a convex presentation of a photograph and another person a concave presentation. In either case, the photograph or other article may be assembled with a sheet of transparent material, e.g., of methyl methacrylate for protection of the surface, and this sheet need not be permanently secured to the article. Under these circumstances, imparting curvature to the article and protective sheet will tend to maintain good surface-to-surface contact and therefore, preclude entry of foreign matter.
1. In combination, a sheet of flexible yet generally shape retaining material having spaced opposite margins, and a stand for supporting the same, said stand turn toward its normal condition and into interengaged relation with said posts, the margins of the article exerting force against respective ones of the first mentioned posts and that part of the article intermediate said margins exerting force against the third post, the direction of the force exerted on the article by the first mentioned posts being opposed to the direction of the force exerted on the article by the second mentioned post.