US 3842890 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[ Oct. 22, 1974 United States Patent [1 Kramer l l COILABLE CLOSURE DEVICE Primary Examiner-Peter M. Caun n .S L S r O uh p U 7 0 7 HO J N a mm mm yO HC O t n e V m M 7 Attorney, Agent, or FirmHarold Weinstein 22' Filed:
 ABSTRACT A coilable closure device to open or close a door Feb. 9, 1973 opening. The device includes a frame, a guide means, a vertical storage chamber and a single sheet of plastic vertically coilable upon itself within the storage chamber without the use of a post for storage when not in use. Whenever the door opening is to be closed thesheet is slid in the guide means across the frame to close the door opening. Vertical rods are embedded in the plastic sheet if extra stiffness or rigidity is desired. The guide means are either fixed or pivotal and the top of the plastic sheet can be horizontal or slanted.
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COILABLE CLOSURE DEVICE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Heretofore in the prior art closures. were .made of slatted members or flexible sheets which were wound about a post much like awindow shade. If the material were metal, wood or heavy plastic fixed guides tracks or power drives were required to roll the slideable closure member closed, but even then a large storage space was required because of the post or track.
SUMMARYOF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention toprovide an improved coilable closure device which is simple, economical and reliable; which overcomes the prior art disadvantages; which in the open position has a plastic sheet which upon itself coils ina tight roll without a post; which is vertically coiled within a storage chamber of the frame; which uses a single or pair of fixed guide means; which uses a plastic sheet having an enlarged top or a lengthened height to retain the. sheet within the guide; which uses a pivotal guide in combination with a slanted top plastic sheet; which has a latch member serving as a stop to prevent the plastic sheet from being completely disposed within the storage chamber; and which uses vertical rods in the plastic sheet to provide stiffness and to prevent collapse thereof.
Other objects and advantages will be apparent from the following description of several embodiments of the invention and the novelfeatures will be particularly pointed out hereinafter in the claims.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS This invention is illustrated in the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of the improved closure device of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a partially enlarged front elevational view of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a partial perspective view broken away showing the top and bottom guide-flanges of the plastic sheet.
FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken along line 6-6 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 7 is a front elevational view of 'the top guide track.
FIG. 8 is a view taken along line 8-8 of FIG. 7.
FIG. 9 is a side sectional view of the bottom guide track looking in the opposite direction asFIG. 8.
FIG. 10 is an assembly view of theupper portion of the closure device showing the guide mounted to the sash.
FIG. 11 is a front elevational view of a modified suredevice.
FIG. 12 is a longitudinal sectional view taken along line'l2-12 of FIG. 11.
FIG. 13 is a partial perspective view of the upper portion of the right side of FIG. 11.
FIG. 13a is a sectional plan view of FIG. 13.
FIG. 14 is a top edge view of 'the plastic sheet showing the vertical rods.
FIG. 15 is a partial front elevational view of the plastic sheet of FIG. 14.
FIG. 16 is a top edge view of a modified plastic sheet.
of FIG. 19 showing the holding spring reIaX edT FIG. 22 is a sectional view taken along lines 22-22 of FIG. 20 showing the holding spring compressed by the closure member.
FIG. 23 ia a fragmentary top plan view of the guide flanges. of the closure member.
FIG. 24 is a fragmentary elevational view partly broken away showing the slanted top of the coil closure member.
DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION In the embodiment of the invention shown in FIGS.
55 improved closure device designated generally 30 is illustrated as having a frame 32. The frame 32 is connected into the wall or other opening 33 and may be pre-assembled or assembled at site using new or existing components. The frame 32 shown in FIG. 1 includes a side jamb 34, a storage jamb 36, a top member 38 connected between the jambs 34 and 36, and a bottom floor member 40. A top guide track 42 shown best in FIGS. 1 and 7 is connected to the top member 38 by suitable means such as screws 43 (See FIG. 10). A bottom guide track 44. shown in FIGS. 1 and 9 is connected in the floor 40 below the floor line.
A closure member 46 in the form of a single sheet 48 is used to close the wall opening 33 as shown best in FIG. 1. The sheet 48 may be made of any suitable plastic. A plurality of top guide flanges 50 are formed along one side of the top edge 52 in spaced relation to each other. Each of the top guide flanges 50 extend horizontally a short distance with sides 54 sloped toward and terminating at the blunt end 56 as shown in FIG. 4.
A plurality of bottom guide flanges 58 are formed along the bottom edge 60 on the same side as that of top guide flanges 50 and immediately below the same. The bottom guide flange 58 is shaped similartothat of top guide flange 50, and extends horizontally a short distance with sides 62 sloped toward and terminating at the blunt end 64 as best illustrated in FIG. 4. A plurality of vertical relief recess 66 is formed on the side of the plastic sheet 48 opposite the flanges 50 and 58 and extends the full length thereof from topedge 52.to bottom edge 60. There is a recess 66 formed between adjacent flanges 50.
The thickness of plastic sheet 48 is predetermined to permit the plastic sheet to readily coil about, itself as shown in FIG. 6. The recesses 66 allow the sheet 48. to wind tighter without fatiguing or cracking the plastic. However, the flanges 50 and 58 serve as spacers to delimit the self-coiling of the sheet 48 by contracting the opposite surface on which the recesses 66 are formed as the sheet is coiled within the storage jamb 36 as more fully explained hereinafter.
The top guide track 42 is U-shaped with the opening 68 facing the viewer as shown in FIG. 7. The track 42 has a vertical base 70 which turns into a horizontal long leg 72 on the top and a horizontal short leg 74 on the bottom as is illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 10. The screws 43 pass through holes in the leg 72 to mount the track to the trade 32. The guide flanges 50 of the closure member 46 rest upon the leg 74 to hold the plastic sheet 48 in vertical position. A plurality of spaced vertical ribs 76 extend from the end of the log leg 72 downwardly parallel to the base 70 and outwardly of the end of the short leg 74 to terminate in the plane of the short leg 74. The ribs 76 are somewhat flexible in that they can be bent to permit the sheet 48 to be positioned with the flanges 50 inserted into the opening 68 past the ribs 76. However. once the flanges 50 of the sheet 48 has been positioned upon the legs 74 the ribs 76 act to prevent the sheet 48 from outward movement to maintain the flanges 50 upon the leg 74 and prevent their slipping off during opening or closing of the member 46.
The bottom guide track 44 is the mirror image of track 42 and has short leg 78 on top for engagement with bottom flange 58, a base 80 terminating in a long leg 82 which mounts the track into the floor 40 by suitable means (not shown). Ribs 84 (only one of which is shown) extend upwardly from the end of the long leg 82 to terminate in the plane of the short leg 78 after crossing the opening 86 in the track 44. The ribs 84 serve the same purpose as the upper ribs 76 in that they act to prevent the sheet 48 from accidentally being removed from the track 44 by maintaining the engagement between the leg 78 and the flange 58.
A coiling guide 88 is formed within the storage jamb 36 along the entire vertical inner periphery thereof. The coiling guide 88 has a curved surface as shown in FIG. 6. The outermost coil of the sheet 48 within the jamb 36 will slide along and be guided by the coiling guide 88 to permit smooth coiling or uncoiling of the sheet 48 within the storage jamb 36.
The tracks 42 and 44 each extend within the storage jamb 36 with the bottom track 44 being shown in FIG. 6 as representative thereof. The tracks 42 and 44 abut the coil guide 88, with the base 70 and 80 respectively leaving the openings 68 and 86 free to continuously receive from or deliver to the flanges 50 and 58 respectively of the sheet 48 within the storage jamb 36.
The two extremes of the positions of the closure member 46 are the open position shown in FIG. 6 wherein the sheet 48 is substantially coiled within the storage jamb 36 so that the opening 33 is free to pass, and the closed position shown in FIG. 1 wherein the sheet 48 has been slid out of the storage jamb 36 to close the opening 33. In the open position a latch 90 connected at the leading edge of the sheet 48 acts as a stop to butt against the outer side of jamb 36 to prevent the sheet 48 from being completely coiled within the jamb 36. In the closed position the latch 90 will engage a latch bolt 92 connected within jamb 34to se cur e the closure member 46 in the closed position.
Once the closure member 46 is assembled within the frame 32 the guide flanges 40 and 58 will be in continuous contact with the legs 74 and 78 respectively of the guide tracks 42 and 44. Whenever it is desired to move the closure member 46 the leading edge of the sheet 48 or the latch 90 will be grasped and pushed inwardly or pulled outwardly to slide the sheet 48 to the desired position with the flanges 50 and 58 slidingly contacting the one piece legs 74 and 78 to continuously maintain the sheet 48 in vertical position.
The sheet 48 is self-coiling within the storage jamb 36 with the aid of the coiling guide 88 and there is no need for the use of a vertical post or coiling grooves to wind about.
The closure member 46 can be used instead of or to replace existing doors or in home improvements where a wall opening is added may be installed new. The closure device offers the positive advantage of a mechanical sliding contact between the flanges and the tracks across the opening, rather than the pivoting action of hinge hung doors which always have to be cut when carpeting is added. Also there is less likelihood of drafts or binding or warpage and it is easier to replace if the need ever arises for redecorating or wear.
In the embodiment of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 11-17 a modified closure device designated generally as 100 has a frame 102 in which a reinforced closure member 104 is disposed to slide within a top guide track 106 and a bottom guide track 108 shown in FIGS. 11 and 12 to open and close a wall opening 110 bounded by the frame 102 and floor 112.
The frame 102 shown in FIG. 11 has a side jamb 114 g which is fitted with a latch bolt 116 upon which the latch 118 mounted on the closure member 104 locks when the member 104 is drawn fully across the opening 110. A storage jamb 120 is formed on the frame 102 on the side opposite jamb 114 and connected between a top member 122 and the floor 108 to complete the frame 102.
As in the earlier embodiment the storage jamb 120 shown in FIGS. 13 and 13a has a coiling guide 124 and is used to store the coiled closure member 104 which will be slid into and out of storage for opening or closing thereby.
The top guide track 106 is suitably affixed to the top track 122 and the bottom guide track 108 is suitably affixed to the floor 112. Each track 106 and 108 is generally U-shaped with the track 108 upright, while the track 106 is inverted so that the grooves 126 therein face each other and add to the height of the opening 110.
The height of the closure member 104 is substantially equal to the combined heights of the opening and the two grooves 126. To operate the closure member 104 one need merely slide the same to the left or the right as viewed in FIG. 11. The closure member 104 has an oversized height for the opening 110 which is taken into the two grooves 126 and slideably held therein.
The closure member 104 is made of any suitable plastic material, some of which would be flexible enough to coil in stored position and rigid enough to vertically stand within the tracks 106 and 108 to close the opening 110 without buckling. However, such plastic material is relatively expensive and in order to use a less costly plastic material rods, stiffeners or wire 128 made of metal or plastic are vertically disposed as illustrated in FIGS. 14 and 15 within the uniform thickness of the plastic sheet or closure member 104. This permits the thickness of the member 104 to be kept at a minimum, while providing sufficient vertical strength to prevent buckling even during severe sliding use of the closure member 104.
In certain service a heavier design such as a closure member 104a as illustrated in FIGS. 16 and 17 is needed. Member 104a has sections 130 of uniform thickness formed between adjacent vertical rods or wire stiffeners 132. Immediately surrounding each of the vertical rods 132 in an enlarged cross-section 134 shaped as semi-circular bulges which extend vertically the full length of the closure member 104a.
The closure members 104 and 104a do not require either top or bottom guide flanges since their stiffness and height provide the necessary stability to keep the members 104 and 104a within the guide tracks 106 and 108. Of course closure member 104a would be used in the closure device 100 as a substitute for closure member 104, without requiring any other component changes except possibly some minor dimensional adjustments to permit slidable motion of a member 104a within tracks 106 and 108 and proper storage thereof within the jamb 120.
The closure device 100 is able to use a much smaller storage jamb 120 than would have been possible with the closure device 30 because of the use of the modified closure members 104 and 104a and the elimination of the guide flanges therein. Accordingly each of the closure members 104 and 104a are able to form a tight coil about itself within the storage jamb 120 responsive to the small horizontal force exerted upon sliding or pushing the closure member 104 or 104a open to the retracted position within jamb 120 as illustrated in FIG. 13 and 13a. The coiling action of closure members 104 and 104a is aided by the coiling guide 124 in continuing to turn about itself within the jamb 120 without the need of a center post. The enlarged cross sections 134 of closure member 104a all have curved surfaces to permit the edges and contacting surfaces to move relative each other and ride over such curves without binding or sticking in any manner so as to form a tight coil when member 104a is fully retracted.
The wire rods 128 and 132 may be embedded within the closure members 104 and 104a, respectively, during the molding of said members, or in any other suitable manner as for example if the closure members are to be laminated then such rods would be positioned upon the lamination prior to final assembly.
In the embodiment of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 18-24 another modified closure device designated generally as 140 has a frame 142 in which a pivotal top guide track 144 is mounted in the top member 146 thereof. A closure member 148 shown in FIGS. l8, l9 and 20 is slideably received in the top guide track, and has a sloped or slanted top 150 which will cause the track 144 to pivot as described more fully hereinafter. The closure member 148 has a front side 152 and a rear side 154. A plurality of guide flanges 156 are formed at the top 150 to extend outwardly from the front side 152 as shown in FIGS. 21, 22 and 23. A plurality of guide flanges 158 are formed at the top 150 to extend outwardly from the rear side 154 also as shown in FIGS. 21, 22 and 23.
r The present embodiment of FIGS. l824 combines the advantages of the two previous embodiments but does not have their disadvantages. Accordingly the embodiment of the present invention of FIGS. 18-24 uses a closure member 148 with (1) guide flanges 156 and 158 to provide positive mechanical support therefor and (2) a slanted or sloped top set at an angle which permits the closure member 148 to be tightly coiled by continually collecting the flanges 156 and 158 above the top 150 of the coil to prevent the thickness of the flange from adding to the cross-sectional area of the coil as is illustrated in FIGS. 20 and 24.
The frame 142 depicted in FIG. 18 has a side jamb 160 which is fitted with a latch bolt 162 upon which a latch 164 affixed in the closure member 148 is locked onto in the usual manner to close the opening 166. A storage jamb 168 is formed on the frame 142 on the side opposite jamb 160 and connected between the top member 146 and the floor 170. The bottom of the storage jamb 168 is fitted with a pedestal 172 upon which the coiled closure member 148 sits slightly raised abovethe floor so as to provide a small clearance or the barest touching 174 at or just above the floor 170 as the closure member 148 is extended across the opening The top guide track 144 is hidden from view by a clover plate 176 connected to the top member 146 and extending across the frame 142 from jamb 160 to jamb 168 as illustrated in FIG. 18. g
The top guide track 144 is pivotally connected to the top member 146 as at 178 by a pin 180 extending therethrough. The pivot 178 is formed in superposition to the side jamb 160. The opposite end of the guide track 144 abuts the storage jamb 168. The guide track 144 shown in FIGS. 21 and 22 is an inverted U-shaped with a horizontal base 182 connected into parallel vertically extending legs 184, 186 which each have its end turned inwardly to form horizontal lips 188, 190, respectively. A spring 192 is pinned at either end to connect between the top member 146 and the guide track 144.
The top 150 of the closure member 148 is slanted at a predetermined angle so that the leading edge 194 has the greatest height and the top 150 slants downwardly toward the jamb 168 and the top 150 slopes downwardly into the coil so that the smallest height is inside the coil at the center or trailing edge of the member 148. The thickness of the top 150 is divided into substantially equal thirds between flange 156, central portion 196 and flange 158. The sloped to 150 will prevent the adjacent flanges 156 and 158 from contacting each other within the coil but rather one will be raised above the other as shown in FIGS. 20 and 24. Since the flange 156 and 158 thickness is equal to the thickness of the central portion of the closure member 148 the flanges will continually next above the coil as the closure member 148 is retracted and coiled within the storage jamb 168.
The closure member 148 is continually within the guide track 1144 once the closure device 140 is assembled as shown in FIG. 20. The height of the leading edge 194 determines the position of the guide track 144 which in FIG. 20 is shown raised with the spring 192 compressed. The flanges 156 and 158 act to trap the top 150 of the member 148 within the U-shaped guide track 144 and prevent the member 148 from accidentally being withdrawn from the track 144. The closure member 148 is fully retractedin FIGS. 20 and 22 so that the guide track 144 is fully raised in its most horizontal position, the coiled portion of the closure member 148 is of largest cross section and the most coils therein, and the opening 166 is fully open.
Contrasted with this is the illustration in FIG. 19 wherein the closure member 148 is fully extended so that the guide track 144 will be urged by the spring 192 to follow the slope of the top 150 and be pivoted clockwise to form an angle to the horizontal with spring 192 substantially relaxed as illustrated in FIGS. 19 and 21, the coiled portion of the closure member 148 is of smallest cross section and the fewest coils therein, and the opening 166 is fully closed with the leading edge 194 of the closure member 148 contacting the side jamb 160 and the latch 164 bolted on bolt 162 as shown in FIGS. 18 and 19.
Between the fully open and fully closed positions the guide track 144 will assume an intermediate position corresponding to that of the slope of the top 150 and the location of the leading edge 194 which will set the angle of said track 144. The channel shaped aperture 198 formed within the track 144 is sufficiently large in size and cross-section to permit free universal movement of the top 150 and flanges 156 and 158 therein. Upon the closure member 148 being fully extended (FIGS. 18 and 19) the guide track 144 will support the flanges 156 and 158 upon the lips 190 and 188 respectively to maintain the clearance 174. In all the positions the light weight closure member 148 will be self supporting and the height of the pedestal sufficient to maintain the clearance 174. Of course, as was shown in earlier embodiments of the invention a bottom track can be added and used as desired with a minimum of modification.
The closure member 148 in this preferred form includes wire rods 200 embedded in vertical spaced relation within the central portion 196 of the closure member 148.
To provide maximum flexibility and stability, the flanges are formed 156 and 158 illustrated in FIG. 21, 22 and 23 in alternately spaced relation to each other on opposite sides 150 and 150 of the member 148, and shaped generally triangular to provide for tight coiling of the closure member 148 within the storage jamb 168, jet large flat surfaces for contact within the track 144.
It will be understood that various changes in the details, materials, arrangements of parts and operating conditions which have been herein described and illustrated in order to explain the nature of the invention may be made by those skilled in the art within the principles and scope of the invention.
Having thus set forth the nature of the invention, what is claimed is:
1. A storagable closure device for a door opening comprising:
a. a frame connected across the door opening,
b. a storage chamber formed on one side of the frame,
c. a top guide member pivotally connected to the frame,
d. a plastic closure member coilably stored in the storage chamber,
e. the closure member having a slanted top with a folded portion formed on at least one side of the top whereby on coiling of the closure member the folded portion is on the slant and out of the way of the coil to permit a tight roll, and
f. the folded portion is received into the guide member and on closure of the closure member will cause the guide member to pivot to conform to the angle of the slanted top of the closure member.
2. The combination claimed in claim 1 wherein:
a. the guide member is channel shaped with the pivot connection remote from the storage chamber, and
b. the slant of the top of the closure member is highest at the leading edge of the closure member and decreases into the coil.
3. The combination claimed in claim 2 wherein:
a. the folded top has spaces horizontal extensions which are engaged in the channel member.
4. The combination claimed in claim 3 wherein:
a. spring means bias the channel member to pivot downwardly to conform to the slant of the top of the closure member.