US 3822422 A
Portable multiple purpose camping apparatus adapted to serve as a pack frame that can be carried on the back of the camper when folded up and which can be unfolded on the camp site to form a camp chair, a chaise lounge or can be completely unfolded to form a cot for sleeping.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
llnited States- Patent 1191 Buntyn [111 3,822,422 1 July 9,1974
[ COMBINATION MULTIPLE PURPOSE CAMPERS FOLDING COT AND PORTABLE PACK FRAME  Inventor: Tom C. Buntyn, 6704 Langston,
 Filed: July 26, .1973  Appl. No.: 383,296
 US. Cl 5/114, 5/110, 297/118  Int. Cl A451 1/00, A45f 3/00  Field of Search 224/9, 5 BC, 25 R, 25 A;
 References Cited v UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,045,257 7/1962 Knapp 5 112 x 3,464,607 9/1969 Grace et a1. 5/82 3,620,428 11/1971 Silverthorne ..5/114 3,716,271 2/1973 'Kurz ..5/114 3,768,105 10/1973 Gregory 1 5/110 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 606,385 7/1960 Italy; 5/114 Primary Examiner-Casmir A. Nunberg Attorney, Agent, or FirmMarion E. Shafer 57 ABSTRACT Portable multiple purpose camping apparatus adapted to serve as a pack frame that can be carried on the back of the camper when folded up and which can be unfolded on the camp site to form a camp chair, a chaise lounge or can be completely unfolded to form a cot for sleeping.
1' Claim, 11 Drawing Figures mmrmm" 9 w SHEEK 1 OF 3 FIG. 3
PATENTEDJUL 91924 sum 3 w a FIG. I!
COMBINATION MULTIPLE PURPOSE'CAMPERS FOLDING COT AND PORTABLE PACK FRAME SUBJECT MATTER OF INVENTION This invention relates to portable camping equipment and more specifically this invention relates to a novel convertible multi-purpose cot that can also be folded to formother articles of campers furniture including being folded into a camping pack frame.
PRIOR ART comfort by devising combination pack frames that could also double as other items of useful camp equipment after the camper arrived at the chosen camp site. The prior art discloses a variety of pack racks or pack frames that can be converted into camp stools or camp chairs, and there have been at least two previous efforts to develope camping apparatus with interchangeable parts that could be used to convert a pack frame into a camp cot or vice versa, but in each instance and in each conversion there were loose parts to be assembled and reassembled which required some amount of skill on the part of the camper and were potential sources of immense frustration when the camper found himself in the remote wilderness minus some part of the apparatus necessary to assemble the cot or to reassemble the pack to hike back. It is therefore a major purpose of this invention'to create a light, efficient, portable, multi-purpose piece of camping equipment of unitary construction that can be converted from pack to a campers cot or other articles of camping furniture by simply refolding the device into different configurations without the necessity of reassembling loose or extra parts.
OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION It is an object of this invention to create a convertible campers pack rack, folding cot and multi-purpose item of camping equipment of such unitary construction that all of the essential parts of the apparatus will remain fixed attached parts of the device in all of the configuration thereby minimizing the danger of losing essential parts.
Another object of the invention is to. create an item of muIti-purpose camping apparatus which can be readily converted from one use to another simply by refolding the device into a different configuration.
In the past folding camp cots have either been too heavy and too sturdy to be readily portable on the back of the camper or the devices have been so flimsy that the cot sagged in the middle-allowing the campers back to touch the ground with resulting cold and discomfort. It is accordingly an object of this invention to provide a folding camp cot of sufficiently rigid construction'and height as to prevent the cot from sagging during use.
' Another object of the invention is to provide a combination convertible pack rack and campers cot that can be converted into a useful camp chair by folding the device into the proper configuration.
Still a further object is to provide an item of multipurpose convertible camping equipment that can be converted into a chaise longue when the camper desires to rest in a semi-reclining position.
A still further object of this invention is to create a multi-purpose folding pack rack in which the folded spaced apart layers of canvas which form the cot cover will serve as spaced springs holding the pack at a slight distance from the campers back and thereby minimizing the discomforts of rubbing and chafing of the campers-back. The spaced apart'layers of cot canvas are also designed to permit air to circulate between the back of the camper and the pack thereby minimizing perspiration, discomfort to the camper and needless wetting of the articles in the pack.
A further object of the invention is to devise such an item of multi-purpose camping equipment providing it with cross braces curved in such a direction that when the structure is folded into a pack rack and mounted on the campers back that said cross braces and the cross portion of the folding leg will curve in such a direction as to curl around the campers back and spinal column thereby reducing one of the serious discomforts of pack carried burdens.
Other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent through consideration of the following description and appended claims in conjunction with the attached drawings'in which:
DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the multi-purpose combination pack frame and camp cot folded to'constitute a pack frame and the drawing illustrates the manner in which said combination cot and pack frame would be mounted on the back of ahiker or camper.
FIG. 2 is a front view of the device contemplated by this invention in folded position showing the under'surface of the head panel illustrating the positioning of the shoulder strapsused to secure said combination cot and pack rack on the back of a hiker or camper.
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the U shaped leg employed to support the head panel and a similar U shaped leg is employed to support the foot panel of said combination pack rack and cot.
FIG. 4 is an end view of the same leg showed in FIG. 3 showing how a slight curve is fabricated into the length of said U shaped leg so that when the combination camping device is folded to form a pack rack that said leg will fold into such a position that the leg will curve around the back and spine of the camper carrying the pack.
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the device contemplated by this invention completely unfolded to form a campers folding cot.
FIG. 6 is a side plan view of the unfolded cot showing I the positioning of the folding legs when the device is unfolded to form a cot.
FIG. 7 is a side plan view illustrating the method of fabricating the stress hinge employed to join the head and foot panels to the center panel of the folding cot together with an illustration of the hinges employed to join the center legs to the folding cot and illustrating the stop shoulder which limits the rotation of said folding legs.
FIG. 8 is a side plan view of the hinge shown in FIG. 7 showing the hinge in closed position as it would be if the cot were folded up and also showing the leg hinge in folded position.
FIG. 9 is a perspective view of the device described herein partially unfolded to form a chaise longue.
FIG. 10 illustrates the combination camping device described herein folded into such a configuration as to form a camping chair in which the center legs of the cot form the leg of the chair, the inverted head panel of the cot forms the seat of the chair and the head panel legs unfold to serve as the back brace for the chair.
FIG. 11 is a side plan view of the device described herein folded to form a chair.
In describing one selected form of preferred embodiment in this invention as shown in the drawings and described in this specification, specific terms and components are used for clarity. However, it is not intended to limit the claimed invention to the specific form, components or construction shown and it is to be understood that the specific terms used in this illustration of the invention are intended to include all technical equivalents which operate in a similar manner to accomplish a similar purpose.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT OF INVENTION Referring to the specific embodiment of the invention selected for illustration in the accompanying drawings, and starting with the device in a completely unfolded position to form a cot as shown in FIG. 5 and 6 the number 21 is used to designate the overall folding cot structure which is generally of a rectangular shape in common with most camp cots and is divided into three folding panels designated as head panel 22, center panel 23, and foot panel 24. The frame for folding cot 21 could be fabricated from wood, strong plastic, but is preferably fabricated from a tubular metal material that is both light and comparatively rigid and strong. Head panel frame member 25 is generally of a U shaped construction with an intermediate portion of the parallel legs of head panel frame member 25 tapered inward from each side by an amount approximately equal to the diameter of the tubing used for the frame such that the width of the head end of the cot is slightly shorter than the width of most of the cot. The center section of the cot is supported by two spaced apart parallel frame members 26 and 27 which are connected by means of folding hinges 29 and 30 to the side legs of head frame member 25. Foot panel 24 is supported by a generally U shaped frame member 28. As in the case of head panel frame member 25 that portion of the side legs of foot panel frame member 28 that are adjacent to the joined end portion of said'foot panel are tapered inward from each side by an amount approximately equal to the diameter of the tubing used for said frame and the opened end of the side legs of frame member 28 are connected by means of hinges 31 and 32 to center panel frame members 26 and 27 so that the five frame members join together to create a generally rectangular folding frame except that the side portions of the upper and lower corners are tapered inward to permit the cot to fold more efficiently and more compactly.
Head panel frame member 25 and foot panel frame member 28 are joined to center panel frame members 26 and 27 by means of stress hinges 29, 30, 31 and 32 which are illustrated in somewhat greater detail in FIGS. 7 and 8 of the drawings herein. Stress hinge 29 may be fabricated from tubular sleeves adapted to slide over the ends of frame members 25, 26, 27 and 28 but in the prototype described herein said stress hinges were fabricated from sheet metal formed into the U shaped configuration to fit around 3 sides of the frame members to which they were to be attached and are secured to said frame members by means of rivets 33 33 as shown in FIG. 8. As a sub-portion of stress hinge 29 a flange 34 extends at an angle from one end of each of the body portions of hinge 29 where said flanges are joined by means of a pivot 35. It should be noted that this stress hinge can be folded to allow the two legs of the hinge to lie parallel to each other in folded position or the hinge may be opened by as much as 180 so that the legs of the hinge extend in a straight line extension from each other and are prevented from rotating beyond 180 by stop surface 36 and 36. This structure will hereafter be referred to generally as stress hinge 29 and the expression stress hinge is deemed as including all of the sub-component parts of said hinge.
Center panel parallel frame members 26 and 27 are supported and held in spaced apart relationship by generally U shaped folding legs 37 and 38. Said folding legs 37 and 38 are connected to center panel frame members 26 and 26 by means of dog leg hinges 39 39 which permit said U shaped legs to be folded inward toward the center of center panel 23 until the common or joined portion of legs 37 and 38 lay parallel and adjacent to each other against cot cover 42, or in the alternative said legs may be unfolded and rotated back slightly more than until the rotation of said legs are limtied by stop surfaces 40. Under normal circumstances spaced apart frame members 26 and 27 would tend to be pulled toward each other when a heavy body was placed upon the upper surface of cot 21 which resultance of sagging of the cover of cot 21. By providing cross braces 41 41 extending from side to side of center legs 37 and 38 as shown in FIG. 5 and FIG. 1, said cross braces provide transverse rigidity to the center section of the cot as well as adding support for the legs and helps hold the cover of cot 21 more tautly in stretched condition.
The top surface of cot 21 is provided with a cover 42 of appropriately flexible material or heavy canvas spanning the frame created by frame members 25, 26, 27, and 28 and appropriately sewn around or connected to said cot frame members in any convenient manner. The canvas or material used for cot cover 42 should be flexible but should have very little elasticity since the tautness of cover 42 is a factor in creating air spaces between panels 22, 23 and 24 when they are folded and held to prevent the pack which may be mounted on the outside of the device when used as a pack rack from rubbing directly against the back of the camper or hiker carrying the pack rack. A somewhat better frontal view of center leg 37 together with cross bracev 42 is provided in FIG. 10.
A generally U shaped folding leg 43 is pivotally attached to the inside surface of the tapered portion of head panel frame member 25 and is so proportioned and positioned that that it is adapted to lie inside the parallel side portions of head panel frame member 25 when leg 43 is rotated into folded position. When com pletely folded leg 43 comes to rest against cot cover 42 and lies between the inside of U shaped head frame member so that it supplies transverse rigidity and strength to the center portion of head panel 22 when in folded position. The outward rotation of leg 43 is limited by means of split folding brace 44 which pivotally connects between an intermediate point on leg 43 and pivot point at an intermediate point on the side legs of head frame panel 25. FIG. 3 provides a profile view illustration of the side of leg 43 when viewed straight on from the head end of the cot but an end view of leg 43 is shown in FIG. 4in which the leg has been rotated by 90 shows that there is a slight curve in the transverse portion of U shaped leg 43. It will be seen later that this curve provides a bracing and spring action when the device is folded into and used as a pack frame but as somewhat more concern to the camper said folded leg 43 will be immediately adjacent to the campers back when the device is used in folded position as a pack rack as shown in FIG. 2. By curving the cross portion of leg 43 as shown in FIG. 4 slightly toward the center of the .cot (toward canvas cover 42 when the cot is in folded position) said leg is caused to curve' around the back and spinal column so that it causes minimum contact with and bruising of the campers back where'thecross portion of said leg 43 would otherwise rub in the absence of this curve.
A generally U shaped folding'leg 46 similar in construction to folding leg 42 except for the positioning of the curve in said leg is pivotally attached to the inside surface of the tapered portion of foot panel frame member 28 and is so proportioned and positioned that is adapted to lie inside the parallel side portions of foot panel frame member 28 .when leg 46 is rotated into folded position. When completely folded leg 46 comes to rest against the underside of cot cover 42 and lies between the inside of U shaped foot panel frame member 28 so that it supplies transverse rigidity and strength to the center portion of said foot panel 24 when said folding leg 46 is in folded position in the same manner as was described for leg 43 in connection with the strengthening of head panel 22. Similarly the outward rotation of leg 46 is limited by means of split folding brace 44 which pivotally connects between the intermediate point'on said leg 46 and pivot point 45 at an intermediate point on the side legs of head panel frame member 28. U shaped folding leg 46 is provided with a transverse curve similar to that fabricated into U shaped leg 43 except that leg 46 must be mounted in foot panel frame member 28 in such position as to cause the curve surface of U shaped leg 46 to curve in the opposite direction from the curve in U shaped leg 43. Said curve in U shaped leg 46 will curve toward the canvas cot cover when said leg is folded against said cot cover 42 and when leg 46 is in extended or unfolded position said curve will point toward the center of cot 21. When foot panel 24 is folded over center panel 23 and head panel 22 is folded over foot panel 24 to produce a pack frame it will be seen that the curve in folding leg 43 and the curve in folding leg 46 both curve around and away from the back of the person carrying said pack rack. It should also be noted that the swinging or banging of a pack or load on the outside surface of the pack rack will strike the outer curved surfaces of folding leg 46 andv folding leg 43 causing the outside parallel proportions of said U shaped legs to spring out- 6 ward thereby offsetting any tendancy of the canvas cover 42 to sag so that the pack load is prevented from banging against the back of the hiker.
By tapering the ends of head frame member 25 and foot frame member 28 inward as previously described the three cot frame panels are caused to fold more efficiently and more compactly into each other as can be seen by examining the side profile views shown in FIG. 10 and FIG. 11 and the side of cot 21 as shown in FIG. 1. But also note that when the frame is folded into a pack rack that folded legs 37, 43 and 46 will serve both as transverse bracers and as spacers or separators between the adjacent but spaced apart panels of folded cot cover 42 so that circulating air space is preserved between each of thespaced apart stretched layers of cot covering 42 and that the direct weight of such pack loads as may be attached to the pack rack are not permitted to come into direct contact with the back of the hiker carrying the pack. v
The shoulder harness system 48 is mounted on the underside of head panel 22 and is best illustrated in FIG. 2 of the drawings herein. Said shoulder harness system is made up of shoulder harness straps 49 and 50 attached to an intermediate point in the upper portion of the underside of cot cover 42 by any appropriate or convenient means. In the inventors prototype the straps were sewn to canvascover 42 and the attachment was strengthened by an appropriate sized reinforcement patch 51 as illustrated. The outer end of shoulder harness straps'49 and 50 terminate in snap clips 52 52 which connect to eyelets 53 53. Eyelets 53 53 and 53 53 are sewn into the right and left side of the lower portion of the underside of the head panel portion of cot cover 42 as shown in FIG. 2. The manner in which these straps extend over the shoulders and body of a camper or hiker and are returned to eyelets 53 53 for the purpose of supporting said combination folding cot and pack rack on the back of a camper or hiker will be readily appreciated from an examination of FIG. 1 and FIG. 2. Said shoulder harness strap system 48 and securing means should be so positioned on the underside of folding cot head panel 22 as to cause the upper portion of said cot and pack rack to extend above the shoulders of the camper and to position said pack rack on the campers back in such position as to avoid having the cross members of the pack frame ride on the campers buttocks. Since campers will vary in height and in robustness, some means of adjusting the effective length of shoulder strap system 48 is necessary. In the instance of the inventors prototype of this invention the effective length of shoulder straps 49 and 50 were adjusted by the choice of connecting snap clips 52 into upper eyelets 53 53 or into lower eyelets 53' 53'. It will be readily apparent, however, that there are a variety of satisfactory commercial devices available for adjusting the actual length of straps 49 and 50 and a variety of satisfactory techniques and hardware for connecting the lower ends of straps 49 and 50 to appropriate return points on the lower portions of head panel 22. The choice of specific hardware or positioning of the shoulder harness system is not claimed as a unique part of this invention and any equivalent technique of shoulder harness support should be regarded as within the scope of this invention.
The process of converting folding cot 21 into a pack rack, into a chaise longue or a camp chair is a matter of refolding the structure into its various possible configurations as shown in the drawings herein rather than in a change in structure and these matters will be discussed in the following section on Operation.
When the combination folding cot and campers pack rack as described herein is folded into a pack rack and mounted on the back of a camper some means will need to be provided of preventing the center panel and the foot panel from unfolding and falling away from head panel 22 which is strapped to the campers back. In the case of the experimental prototype of this invention the three panels were held together when used as a pack rack by means of straps 54 54 which tied frame members 25, 27, and 28 together as illustrated in the upper left hand corner of FIG. 1. A similar strap would be needed in the upper right hand end of said panel frame members but the strap is not shown in this position in order to avoid obscuration of this portion of the drawing. The inventor used a simple strap buckle that was pulled tight for said strap securing means. For purposes of security one end of said strap should probably be securely sewn to an appropriate point on the head panel portion of cot cover 42 and it will be readily apparent that there is commercially available a variety of techniques and hardward for securing said head, center and foot panels together in folded position when the device is being used as a pack rack.
OPERATION As already explained when said combination camping device is to be employed as a camp cot it should be unfolded and the folding legs positioned as shown in FIGS. and 6 of the drawings herein. When the device is to be used as a chaise longue head panel 22 may be lifted to an appropriate and comfortable angle of inclination by placing a box or other convenient object under folding leg 43 and a number of other ways of securing head panel 22 in an inclined position for use as a chaise longue are already known to the manufacturers of lawn and hospital furniture and this invention makes no claim as to a specific or unique means of securing head panel 22 at an inclined angle as the ultimate manufacturer of the device will undoubtedly want to choose his own method of supporting head panel 22 at an inclined angle.
In order to fold said combination camping device into a configuration for use as a camp chair folding center legs 37 and 38 are extended and placed on the ground forming a support for center panel 23. Foot panel 24 is folded over center panel 23 and head panel 22 is then folded back over foot panel 24 and folding leg 43 is extended to serve as a back for said camp stool shown in FIG. 10 and FIG. 11 of the drawings herein.
When the device is used as a pack rack, folding legs 37, 38, 43 and 46 are all folded to lie flush against cot covering 42. Foot panel 24 is then folded over center panel 23 and head panel 22 is then folded over foot panel 24 leaving shoulder strap harness system 48 exposed on what is now the upper or outer surface of head panel 22. The upper end of panels 22, 23 and 24 are secured together by securing straps 54 or any other appropriate securing means and center folding leg 38 is rotated out by approximately 90 to serve as a shelf for such pack or load as the camper may see fit to strap to the rack formed by folding leg-shelf 38 and center panel 23 as shown in FIG. 1. The rack and associated pack are then lifted and positioned on the back of the camper with shoulder straps 49 and 50 extending over the shoulders of the camper and being returned to appropriate securing points or eyelets 53 53 as illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2 of the drawings herein.
ADVANTAGES In the foregoing description of the structure and operation of the invention set forth herein a number of advantages have been claimed for the apparatus and others will be readily apparent to persons skilled in the art. In summary, one of the principal advantages of the invention would include the great convenience of having a light, efficient, portable, multi-purpose piece of camping equipment of unitary construction that can be readily converted from pack rack to a campers cot or other articles of camping furniture such as a chaise longue or a folding camp chair by simply refolding the device into different configurations without the necessity of reassembling loose or extra parts. This elimination of the danger of losing essential parts by unitary construction of a multi-purpose device that is converted from one configuration or use to another simply by the process of refolding said structure so that there is no danger of arriving at the camp site without essential parts is a material advantage that will be readily appreciated by any experienced camper.
Another-advantage of the multi-purpose-camping device described herein is that the separated and spaced apart layers of the cot frame and cover that make up the pack rack when folded are so spaced and positioned as to preserve space for circulating air between the pack and the campers back and the interleaved cross portions of folding legs 43, 37 and 46 prevent the pack from actually resting upon or rubbing directly on the campers back thereby minimizing perspiration and discomfort to the camper.'
Where an ordinary folding frame cot would ordinarily sag when a heavy weight was placed in the center of it the folding cot described herein has been provided with rigidity and cross bracing by the employment of dual folding legs under the center panel including additional cross braces at an intermediate point on said center legs together with the positioning of the folding legs under the head and foot panels. In the ordinary course of events a pack rack made up of a folding frame and covering material would ordinarily be pulled sufficiently by the weight of a pack placed thereon to permit the weight of the pack to rub against the back of the hiker and certainly to bend against his back as the pack fluctuated up and down with the gate of the hiker. It is a further material advantage of this invention that the weight of a pack resting or banging on the transverse portion of folding legs 43, 37 and 46 will cause the curves in folding legs 43 and 46 to flex in such a manner as to extend the effective transverse length of said legs 43 and 46 which having been mounted inside the perimeters of head frame member 24 and foot panel frame member 28 will tend to stretch and make such frame members wider thereby offsetting any tendancy of cot cover 42 to sag. This in turn prevents the weight of the pack from rubbing or bouncing on the back of the hiker.
Although this specification describes but a single embodiment of the invention with certain applications thereof, it should be understood that structural or material rearrangements of adequate or equivalent parts,
substitutions of equivalent functional elements and further modifications in structure can be made and other applications devised without departing from the spirit and scope of my invention. I therefore desire that the description and the drawings herein be regarded as only an illustration'of my invention and that the invention be regarded as limited only as set forth in the following claims, or as required by the prior art.
Having thus described my invention, I claim:
1. A combination folding cot and campers pack frame comprising:
A. a three panel folding frame fabricated from metal tubing with l. a generally U shaped head panel frame member with the joined end portion of said head frame tapered inward from each side by an amount approximately equal to the diameter of the tubing used for the frame,
2. a center panel having two spaced apart parallel frame members, I
3. a generally U shaped foot panel frame member with the joined end portion of said foot panel frame tapered inward from each side by an amount approximately equal to the diameter of the tubing used for the frame, and
4. stress hinged connections connecting the head and foot panel frame members to the center panel frame members to form a generally rectangular cot frame with the foot panel frame folding directly over the center panel and the head panel frame folding directly over the foot panel frame;
B. a generally U shaped leg hingedly attached to each end of the center panel said legs being 1. hinged to fold under toward the middle of said center panel when'the cot is folded,
2. the hinges for said center section legs being provided with stop surfaces adapted to limit the outward rotation of said center legs, and
3. each of said center section legs being provided with braces C. a U shaped folding leg pivotally attached to the inside surface of the tapered portion of the head panel frame member adapted to lie inside the parallel side portions of the head panel frame member when folded and having I. a slight curve in the cross member of said U v shaped leg such that said cross portion curves toward the center of the cot and around the back of the camper as a pack, and
2. a folding brace connecting between an intermediate point on said folding leg and an intermediate point on the side members of the head panel frame member;
D. a U shaped folding leg pivotally attached to the inside surface of the tapered portion of the foot panel frame member adapted to'lie inside the parallel side portions of the foot panel frame member when folded and having l. a slight curve in the cross member of said U shaped leg such that said cross portion curves toward the center of the cot and around the back of the camper when the device is carried as a pack, and
2. a folding brace connected between an intermediate point on said folding leg and an intermediate point on the side members of the foot panel frame member;
E. a cover of flexible material spanning said folding cot frame F. shoulder harness straps attached to the under side of that part of the cot cover covering the head panel and adapted to support said pack on the shoulders and back of a hiker or camper.