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Publication numberUS3876250 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 8, 1975
Filing dateDec 6, 1973
Priority dateDec 6, 1973
Publication numberUS 3876250 A, US 3876250A, US-A-3876250, US3876250 A, US3876250A
InventorsGunter F Eberle
Original AssigneeVecta Group
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Upholstery frame for a chair
US 3876250 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Eberle 1 Apr. 8, 1975 [54] UPHOLSTERY FRAME FOR A CHAIR 3.677.601 7/1972 Morrison et al. 297/445 3,815955 6 i974 G'b'lt 297 445 [75] Inventor: Gunter F. Eberle, Dallas, Tex. l l erra [73] Assignee: The Vecta Group, Inc., Dallas, Tex. Primary Examiner-Marion P O r- Filed: Dec. 1973 Assistant ExammerDarrell Marquette [21] Appl. No.: 422,600 [57] ABSTRACT Upholstery frame for a chair having independent back 521 U.S. Cl. 297/446; 297/294; 297/452 and Seat Support means, Preferably including 11 P of 51 rm. Cl. A47c 7/02 Substantially identical Side frame members of tubular [58] Field of Search 297/452, 444, 445, 295, metal or the like- The upholstery frame insludes a P 297 4 29 of opposed end rails interconnected to define a substantially quadrilateral frame. Preferably, each 0p- 5 References Cited posed side rail comprises a pair of vertically spaced UNITED STATES PATENTS rail members. The upholstery frame is adapted for removable connection to the side frame members of said 3,038,758 6/1962 Molla 297/445 chair 3.084.897 4/1963 Kam Wah 297/445 3.565487 2/1971 Reiter 297/452 6 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENTEUAPR ms 3. 876.250

figure 4 figure 5 UPI-IOLSTERY FRAME FOR A CHAIR BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a chair construction. More particularly, this invention relates to an upholstery frame for a chair which provides firm but comfortable support for the user. Chair components, including the upholstery frame, may be shipped disassembled in a compact package and can be readily assembled for use.

Numerous chairs have been proposed in the prior art using metal frame members, usually tubular, bent to form back and seat supports and providing resiliency for flexure in use. Such chairs have been relatively inexpensive but have had a number of disadvantages. For example, such chairs have not provided the proper support for the user, being generally uncomfortable especially when used for an extended period of time. Prior art chairs have also been bulky to ship, even when shipped disassembled. Additionally, when prior art chairs have been shipped disassembled, they have been difficult to assemble for use. This invention has been evolved with the general object of overcoming the disadvantages of prior art chairs and of providing a lightweight chair which provides firm, comfortable and interchangeable support for the user.

An object of the present invention is to provide an upholstery frame which can be shipped disassembled in a compact package and which can be readily assembled for use.

A further object of the invention is to provide an upholstered back and seat support which is readily removable for cleaning or replacement.

Still other objects, features and advantages of this invention will become more fully apparent from the follwing detailed description, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention contemplates a chair provided with a removable seat and/or a removable back which are independently supported from a pair of spaced side frames.

Preferably, the side frames are adapted to flex in a manner such as to allow resiliently restrained backward movement of the back and resiliently restrained downward movement of the seat. Each side frame includes a first upwardly-extending shank, a bight and second upwardly-extending shank. The bight of each side frame member defines a base means. First upwardlyextending shank of each side frame member is secured to the back, and the second upwardly-extending shank of each side frame member is secured to the seat. Preferably the terminal portion of first upwardly-extending shank is angled rearwardly and the rest of the first upwardly-extending shank is angled forwardly relative to the bight, and the second upwardly-extending shank terminates in a rearwardly-extending and downwardlydepending loop which defines arm rests and provides connecting sites for the seat at the terminal portion of the loop. In such manner flexure of the seat-supporting portions allows resiliently restrained movement of the seat, primarily in a downwardly direction, and to a limited extent, in a rearward direction. The result of this support of the seat, combined with the independent back support, is a chair which is firm but very comfortable.

To secure the back and the seat to the side frame members, a plurality of transverse openings is provided in the first upwardly-extending shank and in the loop portion of the side frame members through which fastening elements such as screws or bolts are extended. With this feature, and with each side frame member being in a common generally vertical plane, the side frame members can be substantially identical, thereby facilitating manufacture and also permitting shipping of the chair knocked down or disassembled in a compact package, the chair being readily assembled for use.

The removable seat or back comprise an upholstery frame having two opposed side rails contoured to conform adjacent portions of said side frames and receiving the adjacent side frame portions in a nesting relationship, and two opposed end rails which connect the side rails at the terminal portions thereof. The end rails together with the side rails define a rigid, substantially quadrilateral frame. Each opposed side rail preferably comprises spaced, substantially parallel rail members which can receive terminal portions of the end rails therebetween and which are integrally connected to the end rails. Attachment means are provided in the opposed side rails for securing the resulting interchangeable upholstery frame to the chair side frames, and means extending across the quadrilaterial frame is secured to the rails.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the drawing,

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a chair embodying the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a seat upholstery frame of this invention;

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a back. upholstery frame of this invention provided with a plurality of supporting strips;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of an upholstered back embodying the present invention; and

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an upholstered seat embodying the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring to FIG. 1, chair 10 comprises upholstered seat 1 l, upholstered back 12 and a pair of spaced, substantially identical side frame members 13 and 14, preferably of tubular metal, and most preferably of stainless steel tubing. Side frame member 13 is similar to side frame member 14 and comprises first upwardlyextending shank 15 extending generally vertically, including terminal portion 15a secured against one side of back 12 and preferably angled rearwardly and the rest or main portion 15b which is preferably angled forwardly, both relative to base means such as bight 16.

Second upwardly-extending shank 17 extends upwardly from the forward end of bight 16 and terminates in rearwardly-extending and downwardly-depending loop 18 which provides arm rest 19. Terminal portion 20 of loop 18 extends forwardly toward shank l7 and provides connecting sites for seat 11 which is secured to terminal portion 20 and to the corresponding portion of member 14 at opposite sides. A pair of screws 21 and 22 is provided for securing terminal portion 20 to one side of seat 11 and another pair of screws 23 and 24 is provided for securing terminal portion 15a to one side of back 12. A similar connection is used on the opposite side of the chair to secure side frame member 14 to the opposite side of seat 11 and to the opposite side of back 12. By way of example, side frame members 13 and 14 are of tubular stainless steel having an outer diameter of one inch and a wall thickness of approximately 3/32 inches. Suitable plugs and 26 having reduced-diameter body portions are provided for closing the ends of member 13. Plugs 25 and 26 are inserted into the ends of side frame member 13 with a press fit. A similar pair of plugs is provided for side frame member 14.

A seat upholstery frame of this invention is shown in FIG. 2. Opposed side rails 27 and 28 are integrally connected with opposed end rails 29 and 30 to form a frame having a quadrilateral configuration. Side rail 27 is made up of two spaced, substantially parallel rail members 31 and 32. Similarly, side rail 28 is made up of two spaced, substantially parallel rail members 33 and 34. Terminal portions of end rail 29 are received between rail members 31 and 32 at one end and between rail members 33 and 34 at the other end. In like manner, terminal portions of end rail 30 are received between rail members 31 and 32 at one end and between rail members 33 and 34 at the other. Rigid connections at the intersections of the rail members and the terminal portions of the end rails can be made in any convenient manner, e.g., by welding, glueing and similar methods.

Attachment means such as plates 35, 36, 37 and 38 are secured by welding or similar means to the corresponding rail members of side rails 27 and 28, preferably on the inboard side thereof, and are provided with threaded openings for receiving screws such as screws 5 21 and 22 (FIG. 1) for attachment means 36 and 35, respectively. If desired, in order to facilitate attachment of upholstery to the frame, fastening panel 39 made of wood or similar relatively soft material can be taped or otherwise secured to end rail 29. In this manner the upholstery can be stapled thereto or otherwise secured in order to prevent shifting when in use. The end rails and the rail members can be contoured as desired.

A back upholstery frame having substantially the same construction is shown in FIG. 3. Opposed side rails 40 and 41 are connected to opposed end rails 42 and 43. Attachment means 46 and 47 in side rail 41 are provided with a threaded opening and screws 23 and 24, respectively, are threadedly received therein. Similarly, attachment means 44 and are provided in side rail 40. Fastening panel 48 is attached to end rail 43 using tape ribbons 49 and 50 and serves the same purpose as fastening panel 39 in FIG. 2. A plurality of supporting strips such as 51 and 52 extend across the frame defined by rails 40, 41, 42 and 43 and are attached thereto in any convenient manner, e.g., by looping each end of such strip around the respective rail and stapling or sewing. Similar supporting strips also extend across the seat upholstery frame shown in FIG. 2.

Upholstery envelope 53 (FIG. 4) is fitted over the back frame shown in FIG. 3. Openings 54 and 55 permit ready access for screws 23 and 24, respectively, to respective attachment means 46 and 47. A cushion made from foam rubber, flexible polyurethane foam, or the like, is provided on one or both sides of supporting strips such as 51 and 52 and are held in place within the back frame when upholstery envelope 53 is fitted thereover. In the same manner upholstery envelope 56, provided with holes 58 and 57 for screws 22 and 21 (FIG. 1) and a similar set of holes on the opposite side thereof is fitted over the seat frame shown in FIG. 2 after the seat frame is provided with a desired number of supporting strips and cushions. When the seat upholstery frame or back upholstery frame are attached to tubular chair side frame members 13 and 14 in the manner hereinabove set forth, the portions of chair side frame members contiguous with the respective side rail members of the upholstery frames are pulled in and nest against the outboard side of the spaced parallel rails which make up the side rail members of the upholstery frame, thereby providing a firm connection without placing undue stress on the screws or similar fasteners which engage the attachment means provided in the side rails of. theupholstery frames.

Convenient materials of construction for the rail members and the end rails are steelrods, steel tubes, or the like.

While in the foregoing specification this invention has been described in relation to certain preferred embodiments thereof, and many details have been set forth for purpose of illustration, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that the invention is susceptible to additional embodiments and that certain of the details described herein can be varied considerably without departing from the basic principles of the invention.

I claim:

1. A rigid upholstery frame for a chair having two spaced side frame members, comprising:

two opposed side bars contoured to conform to said chair frame members, each of said side bars consisting of two vertically spaced, substantially parallel rails, said rails are maintained in said spaced relation by attachment means rigidly connected to each rail and located on the inboard side of said rails, by locating said attachment means on the inboard side of said rails and by maintaining said spaced vertical relation each side bar forms a cavity that is contoured to the shape of the side frame member of said chair;

two opposed end rods, each being rigidly connected at the terminal sections of said side bars, thereby forming a substantially quadrilateral frame;

support means connected to said side bars and end rods and extending across said quadrilateral frame;

said attachment means having connecting means for.

cooperatively joining said side frame members of said chair when they are received in said contoured cavities formed by said side bars, whereby said chair frame members nest in cooperative relation.

upholstery frame and is attached to said fastening panel.

3. The upholstery frame in accordance with claim 1 wherein said attachment means consists of two horizontally separated plates.

4. In a chair comprising a pair of spaced side frames,

an upholstered back means attached between said= frames and an upholstered seat means attached be- 6 tween said side frames, the improvement which is a rods and extending across said quadrilateral frame; rigid upholstery frame for each of said back means and said attachment means having connecting means for Seat means comprising: cooperatively joining said side frame members of two pp side bars contoured to conform to said said chair when they are received in said contoured chair frame members, each of said side bars con- 5 cavities formed by said side bars, whereby Said sisthg of two vertically Spaced Substantially Paral' chair frame members nest in cooperative relation lel rails, said rails are maintained in said spaced relation by attachment means rigidly connected to each rail and located on the inboard side of said rails, by locating said attachment means on the in- 10 h f l n h dt f d board side of said rails and by maintaining said W eema astenmg Pane e spaced vertical relation each side bar forms a cavrails and wherein uphflstery envelope slfrrounds S ity that is contoured to the Shape of the Side frame upholstery frame and is attached to said fastening member of said chair; P two opposed d rods, h b i i id connected [5 6. The upholstery frame in accordance with claim 4 at the termi al se ti ns f said id b h b wherein said attachment means consists of two horiforming a substantially quadrilateral frame; zontally separated plates. support means connected to said side bars and end between said parallel rails of said side bars, thereby forming a rigid upholstery frame. 5. The upholstery frame in accordance with claim 4

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3038758 *Apr 28, 1959Jun 12, 1962Charles P MollaKnockdown chairs having reversible cushions employing supporting frames
US3084897 *Mar 3, 1960Apr 9, 1963Wong Chek WahFrame for rattan furniture
US3565487 *Dec 23, 1968Feb 23, 1971Reiter VictorPlastic tubing holder
US3677601 *Jun 8, 1970Jul 18, 1972Knoll Intern IncSlung furniture
US3815955 *Dec 29, 1972Jun 11, 1974Vecta GroupChair construction
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4061396 *Feb 24, 1976Dec 6, 1977Ami Industries, Inc.Tie down for rotating seat cushions
US4529246 *Mar 30, 1981Jul 16, 1985Leib Roger KPatient chair
US4555139 *Mar 30, 1983Nov 26, 1985Leib Roger KPatient's defined-motion chair
US4595235 *Apr 15, 1982Jun 17, 1986Leib Roger KPatient's defined-motion chair
US4784435 *Dec 3, 1986Nov 15, 1988Leib Roger KPatient chair
US4946224 *Mar 21, 1988Aug 7, 1990Leib Roger KCombination wood-metal chair
US5071191 *Apr 16, 1990Dec 10, 1991Leib Roger KCombination wood-metal chair
Classifications
U.S. Classification297/451.7, 297/452.1, 297/440.2, 297/294, 297/440.22
International ClassificationA47C4/02
Cooperative ClassificationA47C3/023, A47C4/028, A47C4/02
European ClassificationA47C4/02U, A47C4/02, A47C3/023
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Apr 26, 1982ASAssignment
Owner name: STEELCASE, INC., 1120- 36TH ST., S.E. GRAND RAPIDS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:VECTA CONTRACT INC.;REEL/FRAME:003994/0580
Effective date: 19820315