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Publication numberUS3843222 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 22, 1974
Filing dateNov 7, 1972
Priority dateNov 7, 1972
Publication numberUS 3843222 A, US 3843222A, US-A-3843222, US3843222 A, US3843222A
InventorsBerkun E
Original AssigneeCosco Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Clothes hamper
US 3843222 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Berkun 1 Oct. 22, 1974 1 1 CLOTHES HAMPER [75] Inventor: Earl E. Berkun, Indianapolis, Ind. [73] Assignee: Cosco, Inc., Columbus, 1nd.

221 Filed: Nov. 7, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 304,396

[52] U.S. Cl 312/257 A [51] Int. Cl A471) 47/00 [58] Field of Search 312/257 A, 257, 108, 111, 312/140, 204, 257 SK; 52/656, 475;

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,481,560 1/1924 Ringer 312/257 SK 2,730,421 1/1956 Burst et a1. 312/257 A 3,146,029 8/1964 Gariepy 297/445 3,455,605 7/1969 Anderson... 297/445 3,567,300 3/1971 Mari 312/257 3,588,212 6/1971 Gersch 312/204 3,606,510 9/1971 Anderson 312/257 SK 3,664,274 5/1972 Bustos 312/108 3,672,739 6/1972 Taut 312/111 3,717,396 2/1973 Du Pree 312/257 R 3,736,035 5/1973 Brown 312/111 Primary ExaminerPaul H. Gilliam Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Trask, Jenkins & Hanley 5 7 ABSTRACT A clothes hamper formed from top and bottom frames having peripherally extending, opposed grooves disposed in vertical alignment with each other. Pairs of vertically extending posts are received in said grooves and interconnect the top and bottom frames. The front, back, and sides of the hamper are enclosed by a pair of panels which are received in the frame grooves. The top of the hamper is closed by a lid swingably connected to the top frame, and a floor ex: tends across the bottom frame.

4 Claims, 14 Drawing Figures SHEEI 20$ 5 PATENTED [161 22 I924 PATENTEDBBI 22 m 38431222 sum was s CLOTHES HAMPER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It has heretofore been the conventional practice in the manufacture of clothes hampers to form the body portion thereof as an integral one piece shell with the open upper end of the shell closed by a lid swingably connected thereto. This has prevented the hampers from being shipped in a compact knocked-down condition. It has also required the use of different tools to produce hampers having different design effects.

It is therefore an object of this invention to provide a clothes hamper construction which can be shipped in compact knocked-down condition, but which can be easily and quickly assembled. It is further object of the invention to provide a hamper construction which can be erected from the same components to provide a hamper having two different design effects.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with one form of the invention, there are provided generally rectangular top and bottom frames having opposed peripherally extending grooves formed therein. A first set of webs projects downwardly from the top frame groove and a second set of webs projects upwardly from the bottom frame groove. Said webs are disposed along the front and side stretches of the frames to thus divide each of the grooves into inner and outer channels along the front and side stretches of the frames.

Pairs of front and rear posts are received in the frame grooves and interconnect the top and bottom frames. Said posts at their upper and lower ends abut the adjacent ends of the webs in said first and second sets of webs. A U-shaped panel has its upper and lower ends selectively received in the inner or outer channels to enclose the front and sides of the hamper. With said panel received in the inner channels, it will abut the inner faces of the webs and the front posts. However with said panel received in the outer channels, it will abut the outer faces of the webs and front posts, thus hiding them from view and creating a different design effect. The back of the hamper is closed by a second panel connected to the rear posts and received in the back stretches of the peripheral top and bottom frame grooves.

A floor having a plurality of openings formed therein extends across the bottom frame for supporting the clothes in the hamper. And a lid is swingably connected to the top frame for closing the open upper end of the hamper.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The accompanying drawings illustrate the invention. In such drawings:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a clothes hamper embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the hamper shown in FIG. I, but showing the front panel thereof in a different orientation;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged horizontal section taken on the line 3-3 of FIG. I, but with portions of the panels being broken away, and the front and rear posts removed;

FIG. 4 is a vertical section taken on the line 4-4 of FIG. 3, but with the front and rear posts connected to the frame;

FIG. 5 is a vertical section taken on the line 5-5 of FIG. 3, but with the front post connected to the frame;

FIG. 6 is a vertical section taken on the line 6-6 of FIG. 3, but with the rear post connected to the frame;

FIG. 7 is an enlarged horizontal section taken on the line 7-7 of FIG. 2, but with portions of the panels being broken away, and the front and rear posts removed;

FIG. 8 is a vertical section taken on the line 8-8 of FIG. 7, but showing the front and rear posts connected to the frame;

FIG. 9 is a vertical section taken on the line 9-9 of FIG. 7, but showing the rear post connected to the frame;

FIG. 10 is a vertical section taken on the line 10-10 of FIG. 7, but showing the front post connected to the frame;

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of one of the front posts;

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of one of the rear posts;

FIG. 13 is an enlarged transverse section taken on the line 13-13 of FIG. 12; and

FIG. 14 is a vertical section taken on the line 14-14 of FIG. 7, but showing the rear post connected to the frame. 3

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT As shown in the drawings, the skeletal frame for the hamper comprises top and bottom frames 10 and 12 interconnected by a pair of front posts 14 and a pair of rear posts 16.

As shown in FIG. 8, the bottom frame 12 has a de-. pending peripheral skirt 20. The lower edge of skirt 20 along the front and sides of the frame is thickened and an upwardly extending groove 21 is formed therein to define pair of laterally spaced fingers 22 and 23. As shown, L-shaped feet 25 project downwardly from the finger 23 at the front corners of the hamper and from the finger 23 and the bottom of the skirt 20 at the rear corners of the hamper.

The upper edge of skirt 20 along the front and sides of frame 12 projects inwardly and then downwardly to define a vertically disposed shoulder 27. The rear ends of the shoulder 27 at each side of the frame are continuous with the upper portion of the skirt which forms a thin shoulder 28 extending across the rear of the frame. The inner lower edges of the shoulders 27 and 28 are integral with a horizontally disposed floor 30 extending across the frame 12. Conveniently, the central portion of the floor 30 is provided with a plurality of openings 32 to permit air circulation within the hamper. A plurality of ground-engaging legs 34 project downwardly from spaced points on the floor 30 to provide support for the central portion of said floor. Desirably, a plurality of braces 35 extend between the floor 30 and skirt 20.

A rib 37 disposed inwardly from the shoulder 27 projects upwardly from the floor 30 along the front and sides of the frame. In a like manner, a rib 38 joined at its ends to the ends of rib 37 is disposed inwardly from the shoulder 28 and projects upwardly from the floor 30 along the rear of the frame. With the rib 37 being spaced from the shoulder 27, and disposed in parallelism therewith, said rib and shoulder form an upwardly open groove 39 extending along the front and sides of the framev And in a like manner, the rib 38 and shoulder 28 form an upwardly open groove 40 extending along the rear of the frame. The grooves 39 and 40 thus cooperate to define a groove extending peripherally around the frame 12.

As shown in FIGS. 7 and 8, an elongated web 41 projects upwardly from the floor 30 intermediate the shoulder 27 and rib 37 along the front of the frame, and elongated webs 42 project upwardly from said floor intermediate said shoulder and rib along the sides of the frame. Thus, the wheels 41 and 42 cooperate with the shoulder 27 and rib 37 within the longitudinal extents of said webs to divide the groove 39 into an outer channel 39a and inner channel 39b.

As shown, each of the webs 42 terminates well inwardly from the front and rear of the frame. In a like manner, the web 41 terminates laterally inwardly from the sides of said frame, thereby disposing the adjacent ends of the webs 41 and 42 in spaced relation to each other. An L-shaped opening 47 is formed in the groove 39 at the junctures of the front and side stretches of the frame. The openings 47 are disposed between the adjacent ends of the webs 41 and 42 and in alignment therewith. As shown in FIG. 10, sockets 48 having L-shaped configurations corresponding to the configuration of openings 47 extend downwardly from the edges of said openings. A rectangular shaped opening 50 is also formed in the groove 39 immediately rearwardly of and in alignment with each of the webs 42. The rear edges of the openings 50 are disposed slightly forwardly of adapted to receive one of the front posts 14, and each of the openings and its associated socket 52 is adapted to receive one of the rear posts 16.

The upper ends of the posts 14 and 16 are received in the top frame 10. As shown in FIG. 4, said frame has a vertically extending peripheral skirt 60. A flange 62 projects inwardly from the skirt 60 along the front and side stretches of the frame 10 intermediate the height of said skirt. The inner edge of flange 92 terminates in a downwardly extending rib 64 disposed in parallelism with the lower end of skirt 60 and forms therewith a downwardly open groove 65 extending along the front and side stretches of the frame. An elongated web 67 extends downwardly from the flange 62 intermediate the skirt 60 and rib 64 along the front stretch of the frame. Similarly, a pair of elongated webs 69 project downwardly from the flange 62 intermediate said skirt and rib along the side stretches of the frame. Thus, the webs 67 and 69 cooperate with the skirt 60 and a rib 64 within the longitudinal extents of said webs to divide the groove 65 into an outer channel 65a and an inner channel 65b.

Each of the webs 69 terminates well inwardly from the front and rear of the frame. In a like manner, web 67 terminates laterally inwardly from the sides of said frame thereby disposing the adjacent ends of the webs 67 and 69 in spaced relation to each other. L-shaped openings 70 are formed in the groove 65 at the junctures of its front and side stretches. Said openings are disposed between the adjacent ends of webs 67 and 69 and in alignment therewith. Sockets 72 having L- shaped configurations corresponding to the openings 70 extend upwardly from the edges of said openings. A

rectangularly shaped opening 73 is also formed in the groove 65 immediately rearwardly of and in alignment with each of the webs 69. Rectangularly shaped sockets 74 corresponding in configuration'to the openings 74 project upwardly from the edges of said openings. As shown in FIG. 4, each of the sockets 72 and 74 terminates below the plane of the upper edge of the frame skirt 60.

As shown in FIG. 4, the skirt 60 has an inwardly projecting horizontally disposed top wall 76. Said top wall along the rear of the frame projects substantially inwardly and terminates at its inner edge in a downwardly projecting flange 78 generally parallel with, and inwardly from, the adjacent lower portion of skirt 60. The lateral ends of flange 78 are integrally joined to the rib 64. The skirt 60 and flange 78 are interconnected at longitudinally spaced points along their length by a plurality of longitudinally spaced braces 82 connected to said flange and skirt. For reasons that will become more apparent hereinafter, each of the braces 82 has a downwardly open slot 84 formed in its lower edge. The slots 84 are disposed in longitudinal alignment with each other and cooperate with groove 65 to define a downwardly open groove extending peripherally around the top frame 10.

The frames 10 and 12 have corresponding sizes and configurations. In this manner, the grooves 39 and 40 in the bottom frame 14 are disposed in vertical alignment with the groove 65 and slots 84, respectively, in the top frame. In this same manner, the bottom frame webs 41 and 42 are disposed in vertical alignment with the webs 67 and 69, respectively, on the top frame. And the bottom frame openings 47 and their associated sockets 48 are in vertical alignment with the top frame openings 70 and their associated sockets 72, and the bottom frame openings 50 and their associated sockets 52 are in vertical alignment with the top frame openings 73 and their associated sockets 74.

As previously indicated, the front posts 14 interconnect the top and bottom frames 10 and 12. The front posts 14 are identical in construction, and as shown in FIG. 11, each of said posts has a L-shaped configuration formed from a pair of legs 90 and 91. A pair of bayonets 92 and 93 project outwardly from the upper and lower ends of said posts. Each of the bayonets 92 and 93 has an L-shaped configuration formed from a pair of arms 94 and 95 disposed in vertical alignment with the legs 90 and 91, respectively. As shown, the arms 94 and 95 have lengths shorter than the lengths of the legs 90 and 91. The bayonets 92 on the posts 14 are received in the upper frame openings and their associated sockets 72. And in a like manner, the bayonets 93 are received in the bottom frame openings 47 and their associated sockets 48. With the bayonets 92 received in the upper frame openings 70, the upper ends of the post legs and 91 will be seated in groove 65 against the flange 62 and the lateral edges of said legs will be in abutting engagement with the adjacent ends of the webs 67 and 69. Similarly, with the bayonets 93 received in the bottom frame openings 47, the

lower ends of post legs 90 and 91 will be seated in the groove 39 with the lateral edges of said legs abutting the adjacent ends of webs 41 and 42. As shown, the bayonets 92 and 93 have outwardly extending barbs 96 at outer ends which are received against undercut shoulders 97 on the sockets 72 and 48 for releasably locking the bayonets in said sockets.

The rear posts 16 are identical in construction, and as shown in FIG. 12, each comprises a central leg 98 having bayonets 99 and 100 projecting outwardly from the upper and lower ends thereof. Each of the bayonets 99 and 100 has a length shorter than the length of the leg 98 and is of a size adapted to be received in the upper and lower frame openings 73 and 50. Thus, with the bayonets 99 received in the upper frame openings 73 and their associated sockets 74 and thebayonets 100 received in the bottom frame openings 50 and their associated sockets 52, the upper ends of the legs 98 will seat in the groove 65 against the flange 62 and the lower ends of the legs 98 will seat in the groove 39. The bayonets 99 and 100 are angularly offset with respect to the legs 98. Thus, the legs extend obliquely across the grooves 65 and 39 with the front edges of the legs 98 abutting the rear edges of the webs 42 and 69, and the rear edges of said legs, which are angled laterally outwardly with respect to the front edges, abutting the bottom frame shoulder 27 and the inner face of the upper frame skirt 60. As shown, the bayonets 99 and 100 have outwardly projecting barbs 102 at their outer ends which are received against undercut shoulders 103 on the sockets 74 and 52 for releasably locking the bayonets in said sockets.

As shown, the front and rear posts 14 and 16 interconnect the top and bottom frames and 12 with the ends of the post legs 90, 91 and 98 supporting the top frame 10 in a fixed vertically spaced relationship to the bottom frame 12. Further, with the front and rear post legs engaging the adjacent edges of the webs on the top and bottom frames, said legs act in combination with the webs to form a continuous band around the front and sides of the top and bottom frames within the vertical extents of said webs.

The skeletal frame of the hamper is enclosed along the front and sides of said hamper by a generally U- shaped panel 110 having a front wall 111 integrally connected to a pair of side walls 112. One of the advantages of the invention is the ability to mount the panel either outside the extent of the front posts and the frame webs so that said posts and webs are hidden as in FIG. 2 or on the inside of said posts and webs so that said posts and webs are exposed as in FIG. 1. This permits the hamper to have two different appearances while using the same frame components.

When the panel 110 is mounted outside the webs 41, 42, 67 and 69, as is shown in FIG. 2, its lower edge received in the channel 390 and its upper edge received in the channel 65a. With the panel so positioned, its inner face will be supported against the outwardly disposed faces of the webs 41, 42, 67 and 69 and the outwardly disposed faces of the front post legs 90 and 91. With the panel received in the channels 39a and 65a, the rear edges of the panel and side walls are received between the rear posts 16 and the outer walls of said channels.

When the panel 110 is mounted inside the webs 41, 42, 67, 69, as shown in FIG. 1, its lower edge is received in the channel 39b and its upper edge is received in the channel 65b. With the panel so position, its outer face will be supported against the inwardly disposed faces of the webs 41, 42, 67, 69 and the inwardly disposed faces of the front post legs and 91. The rear edges of the panel side walls 112 are received in slots 115 formed by L-shaped arms 117 mounted on the inner rearward edge of the rear post legs 98. Desirably, the arms 117 have a length shorter than the post legs 98 to dispose their opposed ends in abutting engagement with the bottom frame rib 28 and top frame rib 78.

The hamper frame is enclosed along the rear of the hamper by a back panel wall 120. The lower edge of said panel is seated in the bottom frame groove 40, and the upper edge of said panel is seated in the slots 84 formed in the top frame braces 82. The panel 120 has a lateral extent such as it extends over the rear faces of the back posts 16. Conveniently, the panel 120 is connected to said back posts as by screws 122 received in openings 124 formed in the post legs 98 and arms 117.

The hamper can be provided with any desired type of lid 128. In the embodiment illustrated, a pair of laterally spaced hinges are mounted on the bottom face of the lid, as by screws 132. Said hinges are connected to the top frame 10 by screws 134 received in sockets 136 extending downwardly from the skirt top wall 76 between said skirt and the rib 78. With the lid in its closed position, it will be supported about its periphery on the skirt top wall 76.

As will be understood, the frame skirts 20 and 60, as well as their webs 41, 42, 67, 69, may have any desired surface treatment or ornamentation applied thereto. The same is true with the outwardly disposed faces of the front and rear posts 14 and 16.

I claim:

1. A clothes hamper, comprising a top frame, a bottom frame, a floor extending across said bottom frame, means forming a downwardly open groove extending along the front, back and-side stretches of said top frame, a plurality of first webs projecting downwardly from said downwardly open groove intermediate its width, means forming an upwardly open groove extending along the front, back and side stretches of said bottom frame, a plurality of second webs projecting upwardly from said upwardly open groove intermediate its width, said first and second webs dividing said grooves into inner and outer channels, front posts connected at their opposed ends to said grooves in said top and bottom frames, rear posts connected at their opposed ends to said top and bottom frames, said front and rear posts being received in the grooves in said top and bottom frames with said front posts in alignment with said first and second webs, a first panel selectively received in the inner and outer channels in said top and bottom frames for selectively enclosing the front and sides of said hamper inside or outside the extent of said front and rear posts and said first and second webs, and a second panel received in said top and bottom frame grooves and connected to said rear posts for enclosing the back of said hamper.

2. A clothes hamper as set forth in claim 1 in which said front posts have generally L-shaped cross-sections and are received in said top and bottom frame grooves at the junctures of the front and side stretches thereof, said rear posts are received in said top and bottom frame grooves at the rear of the side stretches thereof,

said rear posts have vertically extending slots formed along the inner faces thereof, and said first panel is disposed in abutting engagement with said front posts with its rear edges received in said slots in said rear posts.

4. A clothes hamper as set forth in claim 1 in which said first and second webs are disposed along the front and side stretches of said frames, and said front posts each have a pair of angularly oriented arms the edges of which abut a pair of adjacent first and second webs.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4671580 *Oct 21, 1985Jun 9, 1987Saga International, Inc.Knock down file cabinet
US5964533 *Sep 16, 1996Oct 12, 1999Lamont LimitedHamper apparatus and methods
US6089394 *Jul 22, 1996Jul 18, 2000Lamont LimitedCollapsible hamper for the storage of laundry and other items
US8016126Jan 2, 2009Sep 13, 2011Google Inc.Cabinet structures resistant to racking deformation for rack mounted computing systems
USRE37924Aug 23, 2000Dec 10, 2002Bajer Design & Marketing, Inc.Collapsible container and method of making and using same
EP0762586A1 *Aug 27, 1996Mar 12, 1997LegrandCasing for electrical apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification312/265.2
International ClassificationA47B47/05, A47B47/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47B47/05
European ClassificationA47B47/05
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jun 24, 1983ASAssignment
Owner name: COSCO, INC.
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:W.G.G. & COMPANY, INC.;REEL/FRAME:004149/0091
Effective date: 19830311
May 23, 1983ASAssignment
Owner name: W.G.G. & COMPANY, INC., 2525 STATE ST., COLUMBUS,
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:COSCO, INC.,;REEL/FRAME:004134/0949
Effective date: 19830310