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Publication numberUS3789955 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 5, 1974
Filing dateAug 18, 1972
Priority dateAug 18, 1972
Publication numberUS 3789955 A, US 3789955A, US-A-3789955, US3789955 A, US3789955A
InventorsKnapp W
Original AssigneeRaymond Lee Organization Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Retractable stairway device
US 3789955 A
Abstract
A motor is mounted in an upper floor adjacent an opening between the upper floor and an adjacent lower floor of a structure. A coupling device is provided in a stair unit and the motor so that in one manner of operation the motor retracts the stair unit upward onto the upper floor through the opening and closes the stair unit substantially flush with the upper floor. In another manner of operation, the motor opens the stair unit downward from the upper floor and extends the stair unit downward onto the lower floor through the opening.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 Knapp Feb. 5, 1974 RETRACTABLE STAIRWAY DEVICE [75] Inventor: William H. Knapp, Selma, Ala.

[73] Assignee: The Raymond Lee Organization,

- Inc., New York, NY.

[22] Filed: Aug. 18, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 281,735

52 us. Cl. 182/78 51 Int. Cl. E06c 9/00 [58] Field of Search 182/68, 77, 78, 79, 80

[56] 2 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS L81 1,707 6/1931 Bessler 182/80 2,931,456 4/ l 960 Harmon 1,035,570 8/1912 Gary et al.

Primary Examiner-Reinaldo P. Machado Attorney, Agent, or FirmDaniel Jay Tick 5 7] ABSTRACT A motor is mounted in an upper floor adjacent an opening between the upper floor and an adjacent lower floor of a structure. A coupling device is provided in a stair unit and the motor so that in one manner of operation the motor retracts the stair unit upward onto the upper floor through the opening and closes the stair unit substantially flush with the upper floor. In another manner of operation, the motor opens the stair unit downward from the upper floor and extends the stair unit downward onto the lower floor through the opening.

3 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures .1 RETRACTABLE STAIRWAY DEVICE DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to a retractable stairway device.

The principal object of the invention is to provide a retractable stairway device of simple structure, which is inexpensive in manufacture and functions with efficiency, effectiveness, reliability and rapidity to retract and extend a stairway between adjacent floors of a structure.

In order that the invention may be readily carried into effect, it will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawing, wherein:

FIG. I is a side view of the retractable stairway device of the invention in open position; and

FIG. 2 is an end view of the retractable stairway device of the invention in closed position.

In the FIGS., the same components are identified by the same reference numerals.

The retractable stairway device of the invention is provided in an opening 1 between an upper floor 2 and an adjacent lower floor 3 of a structure (FIG. 1). The

stairway device of the invention selectively provides access between the floors 2 and 3.

The retractable stairway unit of the invention comprises a stair unit 4 (FIGS. 1 and 2). A reversible motor 5 (FIGS. I and 2) is mounted on the upper floor 2 adjacent the opening 1 between the floors and may comprise any suitable motor such as, for example, an electric motor, a hydraulic motor, an electrohydraulic motor, or the like.

A trap door panel 6 (FIGS. 1 and 2) is mounted in the opening 1 between the floors and is coupled to the motor 5 by a coupling device 7 of any suitable type for pivotal movement by the motor from a position flush with the upper floor and closing the opening, as shown in FIG. 2, to a position extending at an angle between the floors, as shown in FIG. 1.

The trap door panel 6 has a pair of spaced substantially parallel tracks 8 and 9 mounted therein (FIG. 2). The stair unit 4 is slidably mounted on the tracks 8 and 9.

A coupling device such as, for example, a rack and pinion arrangement 10 (FIG. 2) is provided on the stair unit 4 and the motor 5. Thus, when the motor 5 is operated in one direction of rotation, said motor moves the stair unit 4 via the rack and pinion 10 in an upward direction, indicated by an arrow 11 (FIG. 1), along the tracks 8 and 9 of the trap door panel 6 until the bottom 12 of said stair unit clears the free edge 13 (FIG. 1) of the trap door panel.

The trap door panel 6 is then pivotally moved by the motor 5 via the coupling 7 to a position flush with the upper floor 2 in which it closes the opening 1 (FIG. 2).

When the motor 5 is operated in the opposite direction of rotation, said motor opens the trap door panel 6 via the coupling 7 to a position extending at an angle between the floors. The motor then moves the stair unit 4 via the rack and pinion 10 in a downward direction along the tracks 8 and 9 of the trap door panel 6 until the bottom 12 of said stair unit is substantially adjacent the lower floor 3, as shown in FIG. 1.

The motor 5 is preferably coupled to the trap door panel via a gear coupling 7, whereby said motor pivotally moves said trap door panel in a desired direction. The motor 5 moves the stair unit 4 in a desired direction via the rack and pinion 10.

I claim:

1. A retractable stairway device in an opening between an upper floor and an adjacent lower floor of a structure for selectively providing access between the floors, said retractable stairway device comprising a stair unit;

motor means on the upper floor adjacent the opening between the floors;

a trap door panel mounted in the opening and coupled to the motor for pivotal movement by the motor from a position flush with the upper floor and closing the opening to a position extending at an angle between the floors, the stair unit being slidably mounted on the trap door panel; and

rack and pinion means coupling the stair unit to the motor means in a manner whereby in one manner of operation the motor means moves the stair unit in an upward direction along the trap door panel until the bottom of the stair unit clears the free edge of the trap door panel and in another manner of operation the motor means moves the stair unit in a downward direction along the trap door panel until the bottom of the stair unit is substantially adjacent the lower floor.

2. A retractable stairway device as claimed in claim I, wherein the motor means is a reversible motor.

3. A retractable stairway device as claimed in claim 1, wherein the trap door panel has a pair of spaced substantially parallel tracks mounted thereon and the stair unit is slidably mounted on the tracks.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1035570 *Jul 17, 1911Aug 13, 1912Charles GaryTruck extension-ladder.
US1811707 *Jul 20, 1928Jun 23, 1931Bessler Disappearing StairwayDisappearing stairway
US2931456 *Aug 12, 1957Apr 5, 1960Prec Parts CorpDisappearing stairway
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5111906 *Feb 7, 1991May 12, 1992Auguste AbadiaRetractable ladder apparatus
US6802392 *Mar 25, 2003Oct 12, 2004Gene S. DavisStowing stairway
US6866118Jun 21, 2004Mar 15, 2005William D. BattenbergMotorized access apparatus for elevated areas
US6886661Sep 26, 2003May 3, 2005William D. BattenbergMotorized access ladder for elevated areas
US7360814Dec 2, 2005Apr 22, 2008Castagno Leo LInterior space expansion system
US7753171Dec 2, 2005Jul 13, 2010Castagno Leo LStructure having a compactable walkway
US7841448Feb 6, 2007Nov 30, 2010Jean-Pierre LairAutomatic ladder for attic access
US8020667Apr 19, 2007Sep 20, 2011Dennis JohnsonLift apparatus
US8028804Nov 13, 2007Oct 4, 2011Jean-Pierre LairAutomatic ladder for attic access
US8376084Jun 2, 2010Feb 19, 2013Leo L. CastagnoStructure having a compactable walkway
Classifications
U.S. Classification182/78
International ClassificationE04F11/02, E04F11/04
Cooperative ClassificationE04F11/04
European ClassificationE04F11/04