US 3875873 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
I Umted States Patent 11 1 11 1 Howitt 1 Apr. 8, 1975  TABLE 1,414.575 5/1922 211mm 248/165 1378.650 10/1934 ann0n.... 108/156  Inventor: Robert T. Howm, Leommster. 3244,]25 4H9, Macks), I v H 108/25 Mass- 3.604.371 9/1971 CHVQIPCC1 108/156 Assigneez Frem Corporation. wnrccslcl Manning X Mass. FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 22 Filed; Oct. 9 1973 614.517 12/1960 Italy 1. 248/188 475,275 10/1952 Italy 1 1 1 108/156  Appl. No.: 404,772 504.382 7/1954 Canada 1 1. 248/188 1.131.884 10/1956 France 403/363  U.S. Cl. 108/25; 120488//1l5665;'224488//11581 Primary Emmmer Roy D Frazier H In 3/06 Assistant E.\'aminerWi11iam E. Lyddane Fieid 248M Attorney, Agent, or FirmNorman S. Blodgett; Gerry  References Cited  ABSTRACT UNITED STATES PATENTS A table having removable legs whlch are readily stored with the top. 117.277 7/1871 Hallowell el al 108/156 1.262.339 4/1918 Hathorne 248/188 7 Claims. 11 Drawlng Flgur s PATENIEDAPR ems SHEET 1 BF 4 TABLE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It is common practice at social events to use small tables on which the guests can place their glasses, plates, and other eating materials. In the past, these small tables have been provided with fixed legs that could be stored only with difficulty. Some have been provided with hinged foldable legs that permit the legs to be folded into the interior of a recess in the bottom of the table in the manner similar to the well-known card table." Because of the intricate nature of the hinging mechanism, it is difficult to provide an inexpensive table of this kind whose hinge has any degree of durability. In other words, such a table is either expensive or it becomes readily inoperative. Furthermore. because such snack tables are often used outdoors and sometimes left there, the prior art portable and storable tables have been subject to rapid deterioration due to the attack of the elements. These and other difficulties experienced with the prior art devices have been obviated in a novel manner by the present invention.
It is, therefore, an outstanding object of the invention to provide a table all parts of which are adaptable to be formed inexpensively of plastic by the injection molding process.
Another object of this invention is the provision of a table for occasional use whose legs are removable. The connection of the legs to the table being simple and rugged in construction.
A further object of the present invention is the provision of an occasional table having removable legs which are readily secured and stored with the top.
It is another object ofthe instant invention to provide a table which is rugged in construction which can be readily formed of inexpensive plastic material and which is capable of a long life of useful service.
It is another object of the invention to provide a table that is neatly stackable to a considerable height and c cupy very little space when stacked.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In general, the invention consists of a table having a top with a flat horizontal surface and having at least three sockets extending into the under side thereof. A plurality of legs is provided, each one being formed to fit tightly into one of the sockets. A flange extends around the periphery of the top, the flange having two apertures arranged on opposite sides to receive the legs for storage.
More specifically, the top and legs are fabricated by injection molding from plastic. The legs are of generally U-shaped cross-sectional configuration and, when stored, lie side-by-side in the apertures in the flange. Each aperture is rectangular in shape and elongated in the horizontal direction.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The character of the invention, however, may be best understood by reference to one of its structural forms, as illustrated by the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. I is a perspective view of a table embodying the principles of the present invention, showing it in operative condition,
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the table showing it in inoperative or storage condition,
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the top of the table,
FIG. 4 is a vertical sectional view of the top taken on the line lV--IV of FIG. 3,
FIG. 5 is a vertical sectional view of a leg, taken on the line V-V of FIG. 6,
FIG. 6 is an elevational view of the leg,
FIG. 7 is a horizontal sectional view of the leg taken on the line VII-VII of FIG. 6,
FIG. 8 is a bottom view of a portion of the top,
FIG. 9 is a vertical sectional view of the top taken on the line IXIX of FIG. 3,
FIG. [0 is a vertical sectional view of the top taken on the line X)( of FIG. 3, and
FIG. 11 is a side elevational view of a portion of the top as viewed along the line XI-XI of FIG. 3.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring first to FIG. 1, wherein are best shown the general features of the invention, the table, indicated generally by the reference numeral 10, is shown as consisting of a top II to which are attached three legs I2, 13 and 14. FIG. I shows the table in operative condition. The top 11 and the legs l2, l3, and 14 are formed of plastic by the injection molding process. The top is formed from low melt polypropylene and is provided with a deep cylindrical recess 15 which is particularly adapted to receive a drinking glass and with a large shallow recess [6 adapted to hold food snacks.
In FIG. 2, the table is shown in inoperative condition, ready for storage. The legs are shown in side-by-side relationship and held in apertures in a flange which extends around the periphery of the top, as will be described more fully hereinafter.
As is evident in FIG. 3, the top is generally defined by three gently-curved sides 17, I8, and 19 arranged in a generally triangular conformation with their ends joined by circular segments 2], 22, and 23. The top is provided with a downwardly-extending flange 24 that extends entirely around the periphery and is provided with windows or apertures 25 and 26 located in the sides 16 and 18, respectively. Located within the flange in the center of the circular segment 23 (at the intersection of the sides I7 and 18) is located a socket 27. A similar socket 28 is associated with the circular seg ment 22 at the intersection ofthe sides 18 and 19, while a socket 29 is similarly associated with the circular segment 21 at the intersection of the sides 17 and 18. As has been stated, the upper flat surface is interrupted by a plurality of recesses, including a first cylindrical recess I5 which is fairly deep and of a size to receive a drinking glass. The other recess 16 is relatively large, is of kidney shape, and is adapted to receive snacks or the like.
Referring now to FIGS. 5, 6, and 7, which show the details of the leg 12 (which is exactly similar to the legs 13 and 14), the leg is formed from high impact polystyrene and is provided with an upper portion 33 which has a reduced cross-sectional shape and extends at a substantial angle to the remainder of the leg. This arrangement assures that, when the upper portion of each leg is in its socket, the legs extend in a non-parallel manner to each other, spreading in the downward direction. In general, of course, the legs are of U-shaped cross-section, as shown in FIG. 7, where the legs of the U are shown as residing at a slight angle.
FIGS. 8. 9, l0, and 1] show some details of the table top 11. FIG. 8 is a plan view that shows clearly the relationship of the bottom of the recess 15 to its adjacent socket 29. FIG. 9 shows another view of the socket 27 and the recess 16. It particularly shows the manner in which the socket 29 is tapered in the upper direction to clamp tightly on the upper end 33 of a leg. In FIG. is can be seen that the bottom of the drinking glass recess is on the same horizontal level as the bottom of the edge 24. in FIG. 11 it can be seen that the aperture is rectangular in shape and is elongated in the horizontal direction. The wall above the aperture 25 is defined by an inner surface 34 (see FIG. 4) and an outer surface 35, the surface being spaced and parallel. The wall below the aperture is also defined by an inner surface 36 (see FIG. 4) and an outer surface 37. The outer surface 35 of the upper wall is co-planar with the inner surface 36 of the lower wall. This allows the table top to be withdrawn from an injection molding mold (while still forming a window or aperture 25) without the use of expensive and complicated side-action mechanisms or the like in the mold.
It can be seen. then. that the present invention involves a small. inexpensive snack table that is resistant to erosion and destruction. that is easily assembled and disassembled. and that provides an excellent storage arrangement for the legs. so that they do not become lost or mislaid. Use of injection-molded plastic means that the table and. particularly the recesses 31 and 32. can be readily washed and cleaned and that the colorful colors available will be aesthetically pleasing.
It is obvious that minor changes may be made in the form and construction of the invention without departing from the material spirit thereof. It is not. however. desired to confine the invention to the exact form herein shown and described. but it is desired to include all such as properly come within the scope claimed.
The invention having been thus described. what is claimed as new and desired to secure by Letters Patent l. A table. comprising:
a. a top injection molded of plastic and having a flat upper surface. the top having at least three sockets extending downwardly therefrom.
b. a plurality of legs. each one being adapted to fit tightly into one of the sockets. and
c. a flange extending around the periphery ofthe top.
the flange having two apertures arranged on opposite sides and adapted to receive the legs for storage. each aperture through the flange being rectangular in shape and elongated in the horizontal direction. the wall above the aperture being defined by inner and an outer parallel surfaces. the wall below the aperture being also defined by inner and outer parallel surfaces. the outer surface of the wall above being coplanar with the inner surface of the wall below. thereby facillitating molding of the top.
2. A table as recited in claim 1, wherein the legs are of generally U-shaped cross-sectional configuration and the legs can lie side-byside for storage in the apertures.
3. A table as recited in claim 2, wherein the crosssectional shape of each leg is made up ofa straight web from each end of which extends a straight leg lying at an obtuse angle to the web.
4. A table as recited in claim 1, wherein the upper surface of the top is defined by three generally gentlycurved sides arranged in a generally triangular configuration with circular segments joining their ends. and wherein the said apertures are located in the portion of the flange extending from two of the sides.
5. A table as recited in claim 1, wherein the upper flat surface is interrupted by a plurality of recesses. one of which is circular and ofa size to receive a drinking glass and another of which is kidney-shaped to receive snacks.
6. A table as recited in claim 1, wherein each leg is provided with an upper portion of reduced cross sectional shape extending at a substantial angle to the remainder. so that. when the upper portion of each leg is in its socket. the legs extend in a non-parallel manner to each other. spreading in the downward direction.
7. A table. comprising:
a. a top having a flat surface. the top being injection molded and having at least three sockets extending downwardly therefrom.
b. a plurality of legs. each one being adapted to fit tightly into one of the sockets. and
c. a flange extending around the periphery of the top.
the flange having two apertures arranged on opposite sides and adapted to receive the legs for storage. the flat upper surface defining a horizontal plane. each aperture having an upper edge and a lower edge. the upper edge being entirely on one side of a vertical plane passing through the aperture and the lower edge being entirely on the other side of the vertical plane. thereby facillitating molding of the top.