US 3876247 A
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United States Patent [1 1 Chilewich 1 1 COMBINED BRIEFCASE AND BACKREST  Inventor: Aron Chilewich, 180 E1 End Ave.
New York NY. 10028 221 Filed: Dec. 14,1973
 U.S. Cl. .1 297/231; 190/8; 190/42; 297/118; 297/188; 297/191; 297/217  Int. Cl. A47c 7/02  Field of Search 297/1 18. 188. 191. 217, 297/230, 231; 224/47; 190/8 41 R. 42
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS $092,224 6/1963 ONeil 297/118 X 3.094.355 6/1963 Pedro 297/217 X 3.532378 Ill/1970 Dalia 297/118 1 Apr. 8, 1975 Primary Examiner-James C. Mitchell Attorney. Agem, 0r FirmDarby & Darby  ABSTRACT A briefcase which can be used. when closed, as a backrest for the upper or lower portions of a person's back, comprises two tray-like rigid compartments. The length of the briefcase is greater than its width and. when closed, the briefcase tapers along its length with the taper being selected so that the closed briefcase will comfortably support the back of an individual when the case is rested against the back of a seat The compartments are hinged together along the length of the briefcase and the locking means and handle for the briefcase are positioned on the opposite long side of the briefcase.
1 Claim, 4 Drawing Figures COMBINED BRIEFCASE AND BACKREST This invention pertains to a briefcase or attache case which, when closed, can be used to provide a back support for a seated person.
People with back ailments often find that normal seating arrangements provide inadequate support for the back and, as a result, create discomfort. As a common example, the soft seats of automobiles can result in substantial discomfort to people with back problems, particularly after an extended trip.
The present invention pertains to an attache case or briefcase which can be placed behind the back of a seated person to provide support for his upper or lower back. The briefcase is designed in such a way that it is not readily distinguishable from an ordinary briefcase. Furthermore, the arrangement of the hardware, such as the hinges, handle, and locking means, is such as to minimize the possibility of damage to the surface upon which the briefcase rests when it is used as a backrest.
Briefly, in accordance with the invention, a briefcase comprises two tray-like compartments formed of a relatively rigid material. When closed, the two portions together form a tapered construction from one short end to the other. The briefcase is hinged along its length with the handle and locking means located on the long wall opposite the hinges.
The invention is described in detail below with reference to the drawings, wherein:
FIG. I is a perspective view showing the briefcase supported on a car seat, or the like;
FIG. 2 is a side sectional view along line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a perspective view showing the briefcase in its open position; and
FIG. 4 is a rear view of the briefcase.
Referring to the drawings, the briefcase includes two complementary tray-like compartments A and 10B. Compartment 10A includes two short sidewalls l2 and 14 and two long sidewalls l6 and 18 extending transversely from a bottom panel 21. The height of the walls l2, l4, l6 and 18 is the same, and, thus, compartment 10A is essentially identical to standard briefcase covers.
The compartment IOB also includes two short sidewalls 20 and 22 and two long sidewalls 24 and 26. The height of short sidewall 22 is greater than that of the short sidewall 20 and the interconnecting long sidewalls 24 and 26 are shaped as trapezoids so that the compartment 108 is therefore of a tapered construction. As a result of this construction, and as shown most clearly in FIGS. 2 and 4, the angle between the bottom panel 28 and short sidewall 20 is greater than ninety degrees whereas the angle between the bottom panel 28 and the short panel 22 is less than 90, both angles being chosen so that the short sidewalls 20 and 22 are coplanar with the short sidewalls l2 and 14 and substantially transverse to bottom panel 21 when the briefcase is closed.
In accordance with a principal feature of the invention, the compartments 10A and 10B are hinged together along the long sidewalls l8 and 26 by means of hinges 30 and 32 which permit the compartments to be rotated relative to one another without lateral movement between them. A handle 34 is secured to the opposite long sidewall 24 and the two compartments may be locked together by means of cooperating lock sets 36A, 36B and 38A, 38B. An interior stay 40 may be used to enable the briefcase compartments to be held open as shown in FIG. 3.
In FIG. 1, the briefcase is shown resting on the short sidewalls l2 and 20 on a car seat 42 or the like. In this position, because of the tapered construction the briefcase will provide substantial support for the upper middle portion of the back. The width of the narrow end of the briefcase should be sufficiently small so that the briefcase will comfortably fit between the back of the seat and the users back. The extent of the taper is selected so that the user will be sitting in a comfortably upright position.
If the position of the briefcase is reversed so that it rests on its wider end, the tapered construction will result in increased support for the lower portion of the back.
The specific construction illustrated in FIGS. 1-4 is advantageous since, because of the location of the hinges, locks and handle, the closed briefcase closely resembles a standard briefcase despite its tapered construction. This would not be the case if, as would be expected, the short endwalls of the two compartments were hinged together and the handle and locks located in the wider portion of the case. Also, the arrangement of the hardware along the long sides of the briefcase results in less damage to the surfaces of the seat.
Furthermore, by providing the entire taper in only a single compartment (108), the cost of manufacture is reduced since only one of the two compartments must be specially formed. Also, because of the increased height of the short endwall 22, as opposed to a symmetrical construction, it is easier to fill the case with papers.
What is claimed is:
1. A combined briefcase and back support comprising first and second tray-like compartments, each of the compartments including two short sidewalls and two long sidewalls extending from a bottom panel, the four sidewalls of one of the compartments being perpendicular to the bottom of said one compartment and of equal height, the short sidewalls of the other compartment being unequal in height, the angle between the lower sidewall and the bottom panel of said other compartment being greater than and the angle between the taller sidewall and the bottom panel of said other compartment being less than 90, both angles being chosen so that the short sidewalls of said other compartment are coplanar with the short sidewalls of said one compartment and substantially transverse to the bottom panel of said one compartment when the briefcase is closed, the dimensions of the long sidewalls of said other compartment being selected so that the height of the briefcase, when closed, tapers along the length of the briefcase, with the extent of the taper being chosen to provide comfortable support for the back of an individual by permitting the individual to sit upright when the briefcase is rested on one of its short sides against the back ofa seat or the like, hinge means for securing together the compartments permitting rotation of one compartment relative to the other without relative lateral movement, said hinge means being mounted on contiguous long sidewalls of the two compartments, and means for locking the compartments together, said locking means being located on the other long sidewalls of the compartments.
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