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Publication numberUS3865448 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 11, 1975
Filing dateOct 9, 1973
Priority dateOct 9, 1973
Also published asCA1013018A, CA1013018A1
Publication numberUS 3865448 A, US 3865448A, US-A-3865448, US3865448 A, US3865448A
InventorsWinterheimer Sylvester A
Original AssigneeWhirlpool Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Shelf retainer
US 3865448 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Umted States Patent 11 1 1111 3,865,448

Winterheimer 1 Feb. 11, 1975 SHELF RETAINER 2,597,267 5/1952 Shoemaker et al. 62/329 2,746,828 5/1956 Amore 312/138 A 1751 Inventor f' wmterhe'me" 2,872,270 2/1959. DOlive..... 211/153 x Evansvlllel 2,876,910 3/1959 Morton, Jr... 211/153 3,266,858 8/1966 Klotz 312/270 [73] Ass'gnee' w' g Benton Harbor 3,666,228 5/1972 Arnold.. 24/255 R 3,690,744 9/1972 Squire 312/214 x 22 Filed; Oct 9, 1973 3,709,576 1/1973 Lemoine 312/214 [21] App! 404l91 Primary Examiner-James T. McCall Attorney, Agent, or FirmHofgren, Wegner, Allen, [52] US. Cl 312/311, 24/255 R, 211/134, Stellman & McCord 248/250, 312/214, 312/351 [51] Int. Cl F25! 11/00, A4711 1/14 57 ABSTRACT [58] Field ofSearch ..3l2/3l1,351,214, 348, l

312M158 A 140 270; 211/134 126 153; Retamer means for retamlng a shelf w1th1n a refr1gera- 248/250 74 361 220/9 F 85 K DIG tor cabinet. The retainer means includes a deformable 73 P 62/329 member embracing the front edge of the shelf and having opposite ends cooperating with a portion of the [56] References Cited cabinet liner to prevent forward withdrawal of the UNITED STATES PATENTS shelf from the cabinet. 2,453,387 11/1948 Rundell 312/138 A 12 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures F .fi zt |tz 1.1" A I u ,8 /8- /3' 8 ,6 7 x. F; 1: 3 '4 3, h wlu- .1 1 .1. 1-1 1..|.i.1 1.1 11 .1 1 .1 4-1 1 |+1 -1 1;i-1 ".|l

1/ I I I I PATENTED F551 1 I975 V 3 865 ,448

SHELF RETAINER BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates to refrigeration appliances and in particular to means for retaining shelves within a refrigerator cabinet.

2. Description of the Prior Art In one form of refrigerator comprising a freezer having fast-freeze shelves, the shelves comprise wire grid structures carrying a serpentine evaporator tube. The shelves are carried in the cabinet of the appliance on suitable supports formed in the inner liner of the cabinet.

One example of' a refrigerator having an evaporator provided with a movable section is that shown in US. Letters Pat. No. 2,597,267 of M. G. Shoemaker et al. In the refrigerator structure disclosed therein, rods are utilized at the opposite ends of a tubular trim member attached to the front edge portion of the evaporator. Coil springs are provided for urging the hook ends of the rods into engagement with the trim member. A windlass device is provided adjusting the movable half section of the evaporator with the hook ends serving as pivots during the raising or lowering movement of the section.

In US Letters Pat. No. 3,266,858 of D. R. Klotz, a refrigerator cabinet storage compartment construction is shown having a front edge bar provided with an up wardly extending ridge against which the front edge of the shelves may abut.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention comprehends an improved shelf structure means wherein a shelf is retained against forward withdrawal from a cabinet such as a refrigeration appliance cabinet. The retainer means includes means on an inner liner portion of the cabinet and means on a deformable member embracing the front edge of the shelf cooperating to prevent such shelf movement.

More specifically, the present invention comprehends the provision in a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within the cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within the liner, and retainer means for retaining the shelf on the support means, the retainer means comprising means on the liner defining first retaining means at the front portion of the support means and a deformable member embracing the front edge of the shelf, the member having opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with the first retaining means to prevent movement of the shelf forwardly and upwardly from the support means.

The deformable member effectively defines a trim means at the front of the shelf.

The retaining means may comprise cooperating male and female interlocking means at the opposite ends of the deformable member.

The shelf support means may include means at the rear of the liner for preventing upward movement of a rear portion of the shelf thereat.

The retainer means requires no special brackets or holes to be made in the cabinet liner as the liner may be formed with an integral recess defining the female means of the retainer. The recess may be formed in the liner at the time of formation thereof together with the shelf support means and means for preventing upward movement of the rear portion of the shelf.

The shelf retainer may be utilized with all types of shelves including solid sheet shelves, wire grid shelves, and combination wire and tube shelves. The retainer may be provided with a preselected pattern or other aesthetic configurations in forming a trim for the front edge of the shelf.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING Other features and advantages ofthe invention will be apparent from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a refrigeration appliance having shelf retainer means embodying the invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged horizontal section taken substantially along the line 2-2 of FIG. 1; and

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary further enlarged vertical section taken substantially along the line 33 of FIG. 2.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In the exemplary embodiment of the invention as disclosed in the drawings, a refrigeration apparatus generally designated 10 illustratively comprises an upright refrigerator, and more specifically, an upright freezer having a plurality of shelves 11 disposed in a forwardly opening refrigeration chamber 12 defined by a cabinet 13 and selectively closed by a door 14.

As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, cabinet 13 may comprise a conventional insulated cabinet defined by an outer metal wall 15, an inner liner l6 conventionally formed of plastic, and a body of insulation 17 between the outer wall and liner. In one conventional form, insulation 17 comprises foamed-in-place foam insulation.

Liner 16 is conventionally formed into a box like configuration and installed as a one-piece element within the outer cabinet 15. The liner may be provided with a plurality of shelf supports 18 at the opposite sides of the liner at preselected heights for supporting the shelves in vertically spaced relationship as shown in FIG. 1. When the shelves are installed on the supports 18, as shown in FIG. 2, they are prevented from tipping upwardly at the rear portion thereof by means of lugs 19 formed integrally in the corner 9 of the liner and spaced above the rear portion of the righthand supports 18.

To prevent forward and upward movement of the shelf along the support 18, a retainer generally designated 20 is associated with each shelf. The retainer herein comprises an elongated deformable member which may be formed of a resilient material, such as plastic, and which is adapted to embrace the front edge portion 21 of the shelf as best shown in FIG. 3. In the illustrated embodiment, the retainer comprises a U- shaped member having a forward bight portion 22, a lower leg portion 23, and an upper leg portion 24. Lower leg portion 23 may include an upturned flange portion 25 adapted to engage the rear of the forward turn 26 of the evaporator tube 27 where the shelf comprises a tube and wire grid shelf. Upper leg 24 engages the upper surface of the wire grid portion 28 to complete the embracing relationship of the retainer to the front edge portion of the shelf.

The opposite ends 29 and 30 of retainer strip 20 are received in recesses 31 in the opposite side walls of liner 16 when the retainer strip is installed on the front edge portion 21 of the shelf, as shown in FIG. 2. Thus, in installing the retainer strip, it is bowed outwardly at its center, as shown in phantom lines to permit the ends 29 and 30 to spring into the recesses 31 as the strip is moved into embracing relationship to the shelf front portion 21.

The retainer 20 thereby effectively prevents forward and upward movement of the shelf 11 relative to the cabinet space 12. Further, the bight portion 22 defines a front surface 32 which may be suitably colored or provided with a suitable pattern to provide a desirable aesthetic effect as a trim element in the refrigeration apparatus construction. The mounting of the retainer requires no brackets or holes to be made in the liner, thereby maintaining the integrity of the liner and minimizing the cost of installation. The retainer may be arranged to be used with any type of refrigerator shelf including solid sheet, wire grid, and combined wire grid and tube shelves. The fit between the ends 29 and 30 of the retainer and the liner wall in recesses 31 may be relatively snug so as to retain the shelves effectively in the cabinet. As the retainer may be formed as a simple plastic extrusion, and the recesses 31 may be formed integrally in the liner, the cost of the retainer is effectively minimized. Further, no special tool is necessary to snap the retainer into places, as shown in FIG. 2, thereby further effectively minimizing the cost of assembly.

As will be obvious to those skilled in the art, the retainer may be formed of other materials, such as metal, composite metal, and plastic materials, etc., as desired.

The foregoing disclosure of specific embodiments is illustrative of the broad inventive concepts comprehend by the invention.

Having described the invention, the embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed and defined as follows:

1. In a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within said cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within said liner, and retainer means for retaining said shelf onsaid support means, said retainer means comprising: means on said liner defining first retaining means adjacent said front edge of said shelf; and a deformable member embracing the front edge of said shelf, said deformable member having an upper portion overlying said front edge of the shelf, and opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with said first retaining means to prevent movement of said shelf front edge upwardly and forwardly from said support means.

2. The refrigerator shelf retaining means of claim 1 wherein said first and second retaining means comprise cooperating female and male means.

3. The refrigerator shelf retaining means of claim 1 wherein said first retaining means comprises a female retaining means in said side walls.

4. The refrigerator shelf retaining means of claim 1 wherein said first retaining means comprises recesses formed in said side walls.

5. The refrigerator shelf retaining means of claim 4 wherein said second retaining means comprises projecting end portions of said deformable member.

6. In a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within said cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within said liner, and retainer means for retaining said shelf on said support means, said retainer means comprising: means on said liner defining first retaining means adjacent said front edge of said shelf; and a deformable member embracing the front edge of said shelf, said member having opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with said first retaining means to prevent movement of said shelf forwardly from said support means, said deformable member comprising a U- channel.

7. ln a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within said cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within said liner, and retainer means for retaining said shelf on said support means, said retainer means comprising: means on said liner defining first retaining means adjacent said front edge of said shelf; and a deformable member embracing the front edge of said shelf, said member having opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with said first retaining means to prevent movement of said shelf forwardly from said support means, said shelf including a laterally extending refrigerator tube adjacent said front edge of the shelf, said deformable member including means for engaging said tube.

8. In a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within said cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within said liner, and retainer means for retaining said shelf on said support means, said retainer means comprising: means on said liner defining first retaining means adjacent said front edge of said shelf; and a deformable member embracing the front edge of said shelf, said member having opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with said first retaining means to prevent movement of said shelf forwardly from said support means, said deformable member defining a front portion having a preselected patterned forwardly facing surface.

9. In a refrigerator having an outer cabinet, a shelf having side edges and a front edge, a liner within said cabinet including side walls having support means for supporting the side edges of the shelf within said liner, and retainer means for retaining said shelf on said support means, said retainer means comprising: means on said liner defining first retaining means at the front portion of said support means; a deformable member embracing the front edge of said shelf, and having a top portion overlying said front edge of the shelf, a front portion extending in front of said front edge of the shelf, and opposite ends defining second retaining means cooperating with said first retaining means to prevent movement of said deformable member and said shelf front edge forwardly and upwardly from said support means; and means on said liner for preventing upward movement of a rear portion of the shelf away i from said support means.

wherein said first retaining means and said means for preventing upward movement of a rear portion of the shelf are formed integrally in said liner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2453387 *Jan 4, 1947Nov 9, 1948Philco CorpArticle supporting closure for cabinets
US2597267 *Nov 29, 1949May 20, 1952Philco CorpRefrigerator having an evaporator provided with a movable section
US2746828 *Jul 28, 1952May 22, 1956Philco CorpCabinet construction
US2872270 *Aug 6, 1956Feb 3, 1959Chamberlain CorpSliding refrigerator shelf
US2876910 *Dec 14, 1955Mar 10, 1959Hoosier Cardinal CorpRefrigerator shelf
US3266858 *Mar 12, 1964Aug 16, 1966American Motors CorpRefrigerator cabinet storage compartment construction
US3666228 *Nov 9, 1970May 30, 1972Owens Illinois IncRefrigerator clip
US3690744 *Feb 5, 1970Sep 12, 1972Admiral CorpAdjustable refrigerator shelf
US3709576 *Feb 10, 1971Jan 9, 1973Gen Motors CorpRefrigerator door liners
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4043624 *Aug 7, 1975Aug 23, 1977Whirlpool CorporationRefrigeration apparatus wall structure
US4191434 *Jul 28, 1978Mar 4, 1980General Electric CompanyRefrigerator compartment partitioning means
US5228581 *Sep 12, 1991Jul 20, 1993Hill Refrigeration Division, Falcon Manufacturing Inc.Solid state shelf means for transforming an open wire shelf into a solid support within a refrigerated display case
US5441338 *Jul 27, 1992Aug 15, 1995Donnelly CorporationSnap-on shelf
US5454638 *Feb 21, 1995Oct 3, 1995Donnelly Technology, Inc.Adjustable refrigerator shelving
US5642924 *Feb 29, 1996Jul 1, 1997White Consolidated Industries, Inc.Shelf system for a refrigerator cabinet
US5893620 *Jul 26, 1993Apr 13, 1999Whirlpool CorporationMultiple shelf support system in common refrigerator liner
US9345342 *Dec 14, 2015May 24, 2016Giselle F NAGYEarthquake-activated shelf security system
US20030025424 *Jul 31, 2002Feb 6, 2003Patricia GravesAppliance having shelving
US20060054063 *Sep 16, 2004Mar 16, 2006Ryan D R JrShelving accessory including overlay member with channel and recess
EP1655564A1Nov 3, 2005May 10, 2006Indesit Company S.p.A.Refrigerating appliance with fixed evaporator plane
EP2620730A1 *Jan 28, 2013Jul 31, 2013Indesit Company S.p.A.Food refrigerating device
WO2005059456A1 *Dec 14, 2004Jun 30, 2005Arcelik Anonim SirketiA cooling device
Classifications
U.S. Classification312/311, 24/561, 211/134, 312/351, 312/408, 248/250
International ClassificationF25D25/02
Cooperative ClassificationF25D25/02
European ClassificationF25D25/02