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Publication numberUS3836218 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 17, 1974
Filing dateNov 24, 1972
Priority dateNov 24, 1972
Publication numberUS 3836218 A, US 3836218A, US-A-3836218, US3836218 A, US3836218A
InventorsA Hallal
Original AssigneeA Hallal
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Connecting device for modular constructions
US 3836218 A
Abstract
In a system for modular constructions, it is necessary to have a minimum variety of basic components, to provide ease of erection without the aid of particular tools, to allow maximum flexibility to suit any spatial environment and to offer resistance to weight, pressure or impact. In this invention, there are two basic components comprising a basic cubical unit adapted to receive a basic connector item designed for longitudinal insertion along any of its edges, into mating grooves on the cubical unit, thus providing a system which can be manually assembled in a multitude of relatively strong arrangements in all directions and which is greatly resistant to the effects of weight, pressure or impact.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Hallal [76] Inventor: Alfred Jean Hallal, 4000 De Maisonneuve Blvd. W., Apt. 913, Westmont, Quebec, Canada [22] Filed: Nov. 24, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 309,164

[52] US. Cl 312/111, 312/108, 312/257 R [51] Int. Cl. F16b 12/02 [58] Field of Search 312/108, 111, 257; 46/26, 46/29; 211/182 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,281,856 10/1918 Shaw 46/29 3,076,286 2/1963 Czecholinski 3,093,568 6/1963 Cox 3,150,903 9/1964 Chapman et al 3,661,434 5/1972 Alster 312/108 CONNECTING DEVICE FOR MODULAR CONSTRUCTIONS Primary Examiner-Paul R. Gilliam Attorney, Agent, or Firmlan Fincham [5 7] ABSTRACT In a system for modular constructions, it is necessary to have a minimum variety of basic components, to provide ease of erection without the aid of particular tools, to allow maximum flexibility to suit any spatial environment and to offer resistance to weight, pressure or impact. In this invention, there are two basic components comprising a basic cubical unit adapted to receive a basic connector item designed for longitudinal insertion along any of its edges, into mating grooves on the cubical unit, thus providing a system which can be manually assembled in a multitude of relatively strong arrangements in all directions and which is greatly resistant to the effects of weight, pressure or impact.

1 Claim, 4 Drawing Figures sum 1 or 3 mma sun 1 1914 Fig. 1

PAIENTEDsEPI m SHEEI 3 (IF 3 Fig.5

CONNECTING DEVICE FOR MODULAR CONSTRUCTIONS The present invention relates to a connecting device for the erection of modular constructions consisting of a plurality of interchangeable cubical units which can be easily assembled manually.

It is common in modular systems of this nature to either consist of a complexity of components and fasteners, thus requiring tools for assembling, or, in the simpler versions, to lack proper stability and resistance to collapse under weight, pressure or impact.

I have found that these disadvantages can be overcome by my system which consists of a minimum number of basic components, is easy to erect, requires no tools for assembling and cannot be easily disjoined by weight, pressure or impact.

The principle of the invention will be described in connection with the accompanying drawings which show, by way of example, a typical embodiment of the invention.

In these drawings:

FIG. 1 is an elevation of an embodiment comprising three cubical units.

FIG. 2 is a top view of the same embodiment.

FIG. 3 is a view in perspective projection of the basic connector item, and

FIG. 4 is a detail in perspective projection of the connection joining the three cubical units, shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, by means of the basic connector item.

FIG. 5 is a view in perspective showing the connector assembled with one module.

The cubical units 1, 2 or 3 illustrated in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 are joined together at their edges by means of the basic connector item 4 (two shown) illustrated in FIG. 3.

The connections 4 each is in the form of a section so designed as to permit the assembly of up to four cubical units perconnector along the length of their respective edges when the connector is inserted into corresponding longitudinal grooves such as those illustrated at 5 located at a specific distance from the edges of each of the cubical units, within the perimeter of each face, and running along the entire lengths of the units sides as shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2. The connector item 4 is shorter than the length of the cubical units sides as shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2. The connector item 4 is shorter than the length of the cubical units sides in order to permit sufficient clearance for the insertion .of other connector items 4 along the perpendicular grooves 5 for the addition of further cubical units 4 in other directions at right angles. The length of the connector item 4 in relation to the sides of the cubical units is illustrated in FIG. 2 and in the detail of the embodiment shown in FIG. 4.

The connection resulting from the longitudinal insertion of the connector item 4 into the corresponding grooves 5 of the cubical units hence becomes extremely resistant to collapse under the effects of weight, pressure or impact.

Basically, the connector item 4 comprises a pair of mutually perpendicular webs 6 and 7 that cross at their centres to form a cross. The free ends of the webs 6 and 7 are each provided with a flange each extending perpendicular to its respective web and projecting as locking elements 8a and 8b to equal distances on each side of its web.

The cubical units 1, 2, 3, etc... as above indicated are provided with grooves 5 which receive the locking elements 8a and 8b of flanges 8 to secure cubical units together. A pair of grooves 5 uniformly spaced one on each side of a corner of a unit (1, 2 and 3) are adapted to receive a pair of cooperating locking elements 8a and 8b formed by a pair of adjacent flanges 8 of a connector 4 (see grooves designated 5a and 5b in FIG. 1 and their cooperation with flanges 8a and 8b One typical joint is shown in perspective in FIG. 4. It will be noted that the connector item 4 is received in grooves 5, as above described, and that the connector item 4 does not traverse grooves 5 which extend perpendicularly to the ones within which it is received. The space between the cubical units 1 and 3 is indicated at 9 while the space between the units 2 and 3 is indicated at 10.

The term cubical unit is intended to include units in various shapes including ones with rectangular cross sections and may be of tubular form or may be in the form of open-ended containers and, as below indicated, may also include storage grids or even self-contained chambers or dwelling units for modular building construction.

It will also be apparent that for many purposes there need not be grooves 5 at each of the comers of the units 1, 2 and 3 only, and this is all that is required to connect these two units, 2 and 3 together so that for the specific application the other grooves 5 may be omitted.

It will, of course, be appreciated that there is practically no limit to the number of units 4 which can be so connected in all directions, thus providing extreme versatility to suit any spatial environment and that, while the system is primarily designed for the erection of modular and interchangeable furniture components, the method can be readily adapted for construction toys, storage grids and prefabricated modular selfcontained dwelling units.

What I claim is:

1. In a system for modular constructions, the combination consisting of l) a plurality of housing units and (2) a plurality of connectors designed for longitudinal insertion along any of its edges, into mating grooves on said housing units wherein:

each said connector comprises an elongated, solid,

' one piece, integral unit consisting of a pair of mutually perpendicular webs, intersecting substantially at their midpoints, there being four mutually perpendicular substantially identical T shaped arms extending from siad point of intersection, each of of said flanges being parallel to a plane containing one pair of said intersecting webs and all of said flange being of substantially equal lengths, sufficiently less than the length of the side of said housing unit to permit the insertion of similar connectors into mating grooves on adjacent faces of said housing unit and at right angles to said first connector, adjacent flanges forming first co-operating locking means therebetween, said first cooperating locking means having a substantially rectangular configuration and having an aperture at a projected corner where a projection of adjacent flanges would intersect, said apertures being diagonally opposed to a pair of intersecting webs, each of said housing units being an integral unit and having at least a pair of adjacent sides, said adjacent sides intersecting to form a right angle, each of said adjacent sides having an inwardly and outwardly facing surface, each outwardly facing surface having a channel therein, each channel being substantially equidistantly spaced from said point of intersection of said sides at a distance substantially equal to the length of said mutually perpendicular webs, each of said channels having a depth substantially equal to the width of said flanges, each of said channels having a width substantially equal to the thickness of said flanges, each pair of channels on said adjacent sides forming a second co-operating locking means, said second cooperating locking means having a substantially rectangular configuration equal to the rectangular said flanges being parallel held in a spaced-apart relationship with respect to a neighboring housing unit by a distance equal to the thickness of the webs of said connecting means, whereby any of said housing units may be removed from the assembly without disturbing adjacent housing units.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1281856 *Jan 24, 1916Oct 15, 1918Slade & Miller CompanyToy blocks.
US3076286 *Jul 15, 1955Feb 5, 1963Stephen J CzecholinskiBuilding blocks
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US3150903 *Oct 22, 1962Sep 29, 1964Vega Ind IncFrame structure for cabinets and the like
US3661434 *May 28, 1970May 9, 1972Alster RalphUnitary modular shelving structure
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4067161 *Sep 22, 1975Jan 10, 1978Rensch EberhardModular furniture
US4123129 *Nov 18, 1976Oct 31, 1978Tektronix, Inc.Modular electronic instrument cabinets
US4192562 *Aug 22, 1978Mar 11, 1980Bishoff Mark LInterfitting and removable modular, frame, storage units
US4526427 *Apr 19, 1983Jul 2, 1985Rudi BollApparatus for fastening instruments in a front panel or switchboard
US5100216 *Sep 14, 1990Mar 31, 1992Lyle EnnsModular furniture
US5421645 *Feb 16, 1993Jun 6, 1995Young; Richard E.Modular compartments for utility vehicle
US5466057 *Mar 16, 1994Nov 14, 1995Blankenburg; KarlModular storage apparatus
US5477594 *Dec 29, 1993Dec 26, 1995Christian Memorial Cultural CenterNiche panel
US5531517 *Sep 9, 1993Jul 2, 1996Alpen; RichardInterlocking front-load bulk storage containers
US5915803 *May 12, 1997Jun 29, 1999Metro Industries, Inc.Modular storage and support assembly
US6079803 *Feb 2, 1998Jun 27, 2000Westerlund Products CorporationCloset organization system and method for installing same
US6142321 *Feb 2, 1998Nov 7, 2000Westerlund Products CorporationAdjustable shelving apparatus
US6250843 *Oct 1, 1998Jun 26, 2001Metro Industries, Inc.Trim assembly for use with a flanged support post
US6550216Apr 21, 2000Apr 22, 2003Harout OhanesianStorage shed
US6843025 *Oct 25, 2001Jan 18, 2005Keter Plastic Ltd.Construction kit
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US7410289Mar 21, 2006Aug 12, 2008Wolf Designs, Inc.Interlockable watchwinder
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US7866769Sep 6, 2007Jan 11, 2011Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system and components thereof
US7918515 *Oct 6, 2008Apr 5, 2011Chi Yu Steel Co., Ltd.Modular shelving system
US8113600 *Sep 4, 2009Feb 14, 2012Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system with stackable shells
US8186776Sep 4, 2009May 29, 2012Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system and connectivity of the components therein
US8414092Feb 13, 2012Apr 9, 2013Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system with stackable shells
US8418874Dec 3, 2010Apr 16, 2013Target Brands, Inc.Storage bin and associated system
US8573716May 25, 2012Nov 5, 2013Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system and connectivity of the components therein
US8683759 *Jan 14, 2011Apr 1, 2014Lane LythgoePre-cast polygonal shelter
US8708433Apr 15, 2013Apr 29, 2014Target Brands, Inc.Storage and organization system and components thereof
US20110173899 *Jan 14, 2011Jul 21, 2011Lane LythgoePre-cast polygonal shelter
US20110241505 *Mar 31, 2010Oct 6, 2011Varoujan TashjianModifiable modular furniture system with channel connector.
US20120055924 *Sep 8, 2011Mar 8, 2012Abb AgElectrical switchgear cabinet
US20130106268 *Oct 26, 2011May 2, 2013Ming-Hwa HsuStructure of knockdown cabinet
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EP0960585A2 *May 27, 1999Dec 1, 1999Jugendstätte BellevueSet for the construction of tridimensional structures
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Classifications
U.S. Classification312/111, 312/108, 312/257.1
International ClassificationA47B47/00, F16B12/02
Cooperative ClassificationF16B12/02, A47B47/0041
European ClassificationA47B47/00H4, F16B12/02