US 3877085 A
There is disclosed an above-ground modular swimming pool of the type employing a wall supported by inner and outer vertical posts secured to radially, extending horizontal supporting base members. The pool includes prefabricated deck sections, each of which are formed from a plurality of interlocking slats and are prefabricated at the factory to a desired length and then secured to the inner and outer vertical posts by means of a splicing brace and post-clip assemblies. The outer vertical posts, being longer than the inner posts, also support prefabricated fence assemblies, including solid privacy panels and fence support channels, by means of clip sections which are secured to the fence channels and the vertical posts by press or friction fits.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
fin 1m 5 M1 n A um mm m t n e t a P S e t a t. SH. d mm Ola k m B 3,789,435 2/1974 Heisner.............................. 3,815,162 6/1974 Ha11.........
[ ABOVE-GROUND MODULAR SWIMMING POOLENCLOSURES  Inventors: Finley M. Bukaitz, Clifton, N.J.; Primary Examiner' Robert L Smith George Neuser! Sprmg Valley Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Arthur L. Plevy .m w S r m U d 0 m d n U T m M m 8 mm 5% H 3 0 e S 1 C .m d .n e m 7 ming pool of the type employing a wall supported by inner and outer vertical posts secured to radially, extending horizontal supporting base members. The pool includes'prefabricated deck sections, each of which are formed from a plurality of interlocking slats and are prefabricated at the factory to a desired length and 1 nn 4 u m mmH "n mmh .r Ha "N 1 rm l.
WM .m UIF 12 2 00 555 1.1.1..
then secured to the inner and outer vertical posts by means of a splicing brace and post-clip assemblies. The outer vertical posts, being longer than the inner  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS posts, also support prefabricated fence assemblies, in-
cluding solid privacy panels and fence support channels, by means of clip sections which are secured to the fence channels and the vertical posts by press or friction fits.
Hosmer Katzman................ 10 Claims, 13 Drawing Figures 3,518,704 7/1970 3,555,575 1/1971 Schwarz et a1......... 3,574,870 4/1971 Orelind............................. 3,638,245 2/1972 PATENIEBAPR I 51975 snzimnfq Fig. 6A.
7C Fig. 7A.
ABOVE-GROUND MODULAR SWIMMING POOL ENCLOSURES BACKGROUND OF INVENTION The prior art is replete with a plurality of patents relating to above-ground swimming pool enclosures. Generally such references relate to a bathing or swimming facility or area having a tank or pool, the walls of which are constructed in situ from a plurality of prefabricated sections, pieces or panels. As evidenced by such prior art a typical pool enclosure provides a tank or pool supporting frame which frame is above-ground for in situ installation. The frame may include a deck and an access ladder and a walk around so that the user can gain access to the bathing area. Most enclosures include a fence to prevent a user from falling from the above-ground enclosure while further providing privacy. The fence may be integrally formed with the frame or be supported by or attached thereto due to the prefabricated nature of the enclosure.
The prior art was and is cognizant of the fact that in lieu of screws or bolts and accomodating braces, one could use clips and/or clamps to facilitate assembly, as well as panels or portions which interlock. Such prior art devices generally differ by the clips or panels utilized. For example, US. Pat. No. 3,225,362 entitled SECTIONAL ABOVE GROUND SWIMMING POOL CONSTRUCTION issued on Dec. 28, 1965 shows a round or oval pool assembly using clips to interconnect the top and bottom frame members and such clips being used as snap locks. Others as US. Pat. Nos. 3,335,430, 3,447,168, US. Pat. No. 3,534,414, US, Pat. No. 3,555,575 shows additional prefabricated structures including deck portions and using channel frames and angle bars, ribs and gussets to support and ease the assembly of such structures.
In any event there is a need for a more reliable and economical structure to enable easy assembly at a relatively modest cost. There is a further need to provide as strong an enclosure and as economically as possible.
Since such pools are generally assembled and are utilized outdoors it is important that strength be afforded to prevent collapse of the structure and to further prevent noise from the structure when the same is con-- structed or being utilized.
The presence of noise as will be defined is very disturbing to both the user and persons in the vicinity of the enclosure. Noise as utilized herein is caused by the vibration, rubbing or movement of the metal or hard plastic parts of the structure during use or due to wind forces. Such noise is attendant with most of the prior art structures, as they are mass-produced loosely fit assembly and are prone to vibration and so on both during actual use and due to wind or other natural forces when not in use. A major factor in regard to noise is the fence assembly, which often-times, is not rigidly secured to the frame and is free to vibrate or move. The walk around or deck is also prone to producing noise due to the activity of the user and so on.
It is therefore an object of the present inventor to provide an economical and strong pool enclosure employing interlocking panel and frame assemblies including a rigid fence assembly. The enclosure provided being strong and reliable while eliminating a great deal of attendant noise due to the interconnected of said assemblies and the apparatus employed.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF INVENTION A modular pool structure for above-ground installation comprises a peripheral base track member having a wall receiving channel therealong, an endless wall having a bottom edge seated in said receiving channel, a plurality of base channel members secured to said base track and extending radially therefrom at predetermined intervals, each base channel member having an inner vertical post secured thereto at said end closest to said base track and an outer vertical post of a greater length than said inner post secured thereto at said end further removed from said base track a plurality of deck sections coupled between a different one of said inner and outer posts at a position substantially above said base track to form a peripheral walkway about said enclosure, and a plurality of fence sections each including at least one privacy panel fabricated from a sheet of material, each one of said sections coupled between a different pair of said outer vertical posts and extending relatively perpendicular to and above said walkway to provide a vibration-free fence assembly for said pool structure.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF FIGURES FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a modular pool assembly according to the invention.
FIG. 2 shows a partial assembly perspective view of a horizontal supporting member and a vertical inner and outer post assembly.
FIG. 3 shows an assembly view of the apparatus of FIG. 2 with a pool wall retaining member.
FIG. 4 shows a cross sectional view through line 4-4 of FIG. 3 to depict the clip assemblies shown therein.
FIG. 5 is a perspective plan view of a deck assembly according to the invention.
FIG. 6A & 6B are a front plan view, a cross sectional view of the deck assembly.
FIG. 7A is a front view of a privacy fence assembly.
FIG. 7B is a cross-sectional view of the fence assembly taken through line 7B-7B of FIG. 7A.
FIG. 7C is a cross sectional view of the fence assembly taken through line 7C7C of FIG. 7A.
FIG. 8 is a partial perspective view of a fence assembly with top and bottom locking clips.
FIG. 9A & B is a side and front of a top locking clip.
FIG. 10A & B is a side and front view of a bottom locking clip.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF FIGURES FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of an above-ground swimming pool enclosure 10. The swimming pool enclosure 10 typically contains an outside wall 11, which in this case is a single sheet of a corrugated metal of a suitable diameter. The frame comprises a series of vertical ribs 12 which are secured to the frame and deck assembly sections, to be described. The vertical ribs 12 are coupled and joined to a plurality of horizontal ribs on base support members 14, which are coupled to a second plurality of vertical outer ribs or posts 16. The
posts 16 are secured to both the deck brackets 17 and are dually utilized, to support the fence sections 18. The fence consists of a plurality of sections 18 which interconnect to the posts 16 via aunique clip arrangement. The pool 10 includes a walk around deck portion comprised of a plurality of interconnecting sections as 19 which are preformed of interlocking slat assemblies.
The pool enclosure includes a sunning deck extension, which consists of a plurality of interlocking deck panels as which, as will be described are joined to the aforementioned posts by means of interconnecting clip sections. The sunning deck includes a swivable staircase 22 to provide access to the enclosure and is also enclosed by a series of fence or privacy panel sections as 18 above described.
As one can see while the pool appears relatively circular it is in fact a polygon wherein each of the deck sections, as 19, employ a plurality of slats interlocked between two braces and terminated in a trapezoidal slat to afford the curvature required.
Shown in FIG. 2 is a section of a horizontal base support member 23 (as member 14 of FIG. 1). The base member 23 comprises a U-shaped channel fabricated from a strong structural material such as steel. The U- shaped channel 23 is dimensioned to accommodate a vertical outer post 24 (16 of FIG. 1) and a inner vertical post 25 (12 of FIG. 1). Each post 24 and 25 has two apertures at the base end therein as 27, for insertion and securing to the base member 23 by means of a nut and bolt as 28 and 29 via the accommodating apertures 30 in the base member 23.
The inside edge of the U-shaped base member 23 terminates in a flat flange section 31 forming a T end with the base channel member 23. The flange has two apertures 32 on each arm of the T. A base track member 33 is fastened by means of a bolt assembly to the flange to provide a continuous base track assembly about the inside of the pool for accommodating the outside pool wall. As can be seen the base track member 33 as secured provides a continuous channel formed by the channel apertures 34 to permit insertion therein of the outside pool wall (as 11 of FIG. 1). The horizontal base support members 23 extend radially outwards from the base track with the inner vertical post 25 closest to the pool wall and the outer vertical post 24 furthest therefrom.
The base track members as 33 are secured to the T- shaped flange 31 of member 23 by means of the accommodating apertures 35 therein located by suitable nut and bolt assemblies or fasteners as 37 and 38. When so secured they are relatively continguous and form the above mentioned channel due to the apertures or center channels 34 in the base track member 33.
It is noted that in the above description similar functioning parts were given the same reference numeral for the sake of clarity of explanation and ease of description. To this end similar reference numerals will be retained to describe other similar parts as further shown in the following figures.
FIG. 3 shows the vertical outer post 24 secured to the outer edge of the U-shaped horizontal member 23 and the inner vertical post 25 also secured as described. The base track sections 33 are shown bolted to the T flanged end 31 of member 23 as described.
The vertical posts 24 and 25 extend upwardly to the desired deck position or height and at that position there are apertures to secure to each' post 24 and 25 a deck clip assembly. The deck clip assembly is designated as 40 for the outer post 24 and 41 for the inner post 25.
Referring to FIG. 4 there is shown a top view taken through line 44 of FIG. 3 to more clearly show the nature of the deck 'clip' assemblies as 40 and 41. The deck clip 40 or 41 has a back U-shaped section 44 including 2 holes. The U-shaped section fits about the front and side edges of post 24 and is secured thereto by means of a nut and bolt assembly 43 via accommodating apertures in the posts 24 and 25. The front end 45 (shown clearly in FIG. 3) of the deck clip 40 or 41 has a V like cross section and is integrally formed with or welded to portion 44 of the clip assembly 40. The V- shaped portion of the clip has at least two apertures 46 located thereon to coact with corresponding apertures in a deck mounting brace 47, to be described, and a deck splicer plate 48 for strength and rigidity. The entire assembly is secured together as shown by means of nuts and bolts or other suitable fasteners.
Referring to FIG. 5 there is shown a perspective assembly view of a typical deck section as 19 or 20 of FIG. 1 including a front deck mounting brace or bracket as 47 of FIG. 4 and a back bracket 47'.
The pool 10, as indicated, comprises a plurality of deck sections 19, each of which comprises a series of rectangular portions as 51 interlocked to each other and the brackets 47' and 47 by means of coacting flanges. Each section as 19 includes one trapezoidal portion 50 to obtain the desired overall curvature for the pool assembly as shown in FIG. 1, while affording great strength and rigidity due to the interconnection of sections. In actual practice the deck mounting brace 47 secured to the inner deck post 25 is designated as a coping deck channel or brace 47 while the outer brace 47' is designated as a regular deck channel. Referring to FIG. 6B these differences are more clearly indicated.
FIG. 6A shows a top view of an assembled deck section (as 19 of FIG. 1).
A plurality of rectangular slats 51 are interlocked and terminated at both ends with a trapezoidal slat 50. The braces 47 and 47' have slat accommodating channels to secure the interlocking slats within the braces 47 and 47 In FIG. 6B the central portion shows a cross-sectional view ofa typical deck slat as 51. The deck slats 51 have inverted U configurations with the sides being perpendicular to the base of the U. Each slat 51 has a flange 56 on one side thereof which flange cooperates and coacts with, and is inserted into a channel 55 on the other side of the succeeding slat members 51. The trapezoidal section 50 may be of similar cross-section. Hence the slats 51 are prefabricated and interlocked as shown. The ends are inserted into the slat accommodating apertures of the deck channel 47 and the coping channel 47 as seen in FIG. 63 at the right and left thereof. The sections 47 and 47 are selected at predetermined lengths (FIG. 6A). The slats are interlocked therein by means of the flanges and channels 56 and 57 and the assembly is rigidly secured together by means of four or more metal screws in each corner (FIGQ6A and FIG. 6B).
Thus a sectionalized deck portion as 19 of FIG. 1 is prefabricated utilizing interlocking slat sections and a minimum of retaining elements to assure a tight and accurate assembly practically vibration free.
The channel lengths 47 and 47' are selected so that the inner channel or coping channel 47 is selected at a length dictated by the separation between two inner vertical posts; while the outer channel or deck channel 47' is selected of a length according to the separation between two outer vertical posts. The deck assembly (FIG. 6A) has an overall trapezoidal appearance and one can ascertain that the interconnection at the angled ends (see FIG. 1) follows and forms the desired pool curvature. It is also apparent that by eliminating the trapezoidal end sections one has a rectangular deck section using equal lengthed channels 47 and 47' to form rectangular deck sections if desired.
Referring to FIG. 6B there is a liner channel 66 associated with the coping deck brace or channel 47. The liner 68 for the inside of the pool is fabricated from a strong and relatively thick vinyl plastic and has a thickened edge portion 69 for pressure insertion into channel 66. This end 69 is sometimes referred to as a liner bead.
Referring briefly to FIG. 5, it should be clear on how the parts therein cooperate and are secured together. Hence one takes each prefabricated deck assembly together with the integral coupling channels 47 and 47 and fastens them to the deck clips 40 and 41 secured to the vertical posts 24 and 25 by means of the holes in the channels 47 and 47 and the clips 40 and 41. The bracket 48 is a splice assembly and is used to insure rigidity and provide strength to the final assembly.
As is seen from FIG. 1, the outer vertical posts 16 are longer than the inner vertical posts 12. The outer vertical posts 16 are utilized to couple the fence assembly sections 18 thereto. Referring to FIG. 7A there is shown a typical fence panel section 70. Each fence panel as 70 corresponds to a deck portion as 19 of FIG. 1, and hence the fence assembly unit 70 is prefabricated at the factory as are the deck panels 19 and and are shipped as shown in FIG. 7A.
Each section comprises a top fence channel member 72, a bottom fence channel member 73, two or more integral privacy panels 71, each of which are associated with right and left panel retainer channel members 74 and 75.
The fence as indicated must be strong, secure and afford privacy. The panels should not rattle due to pool use or wind and so on, which rattling would provide excess additional noise due to the vibration of the metal structures.
Each panel 71 is formed from a stock blank sheet of aluminum and are bent to provide a corrugated surface effect as shown in the cross-sectional view of FIG. 7B taken through line 7-B of FIG. 7A. The edges are also bent at an acute angle 76 (about 45). The bent ends are inserted into channels 74 and 75, which are C shaped metallic units. Due to the flexible nature of the metal material comprising panel 71 the ends are secured within the channels 74 and 75 by the expansive force of the aluminum. Hence C channels 74 and 75 firmly retain the edges of the privacy panel 71 as shown.
FIG. 7C shows a cross-section taken through line 7C--7C of FIG. 7A. The upper fence channel member 72 and the bottom fence channel member 73 both have T-shaped accommodating channels. The assembled privacy panel (FIG. 7A) is then inserted with the side channels 74 and 75 into the slots in channels 72 and 73 as shown. Thus the entire panel is rigidly secured on all four sides by friction, press fits and since the panel 71 is entirely framed it cannot vibrate or move to any deree. g Referring to FIG. 8 there is shown the prefabricated privacy panel assembly 70 in a perspective view.
The top and bottom fence T-shaped channels 72 and 73 have continuous central channels as indicated. A
top clip member is forced into the aperture of the top channel 72 as shown. The two flanged portions 81 and 82 are forced into the channel (FIG. 9A and 9B) and are compressed and retained tightly. The top clip 80 has a front flanged end 84 which has a channel for insertion between the side wall of a vertical pool post as 80 of FIG. 8. The bottom channel 73 has inserted therein a l-I-shape'd member 85. Member 85 also has two flanges 86 and 87 extending in a plane relatively transverse to the plane containing the flanges 81 and 82. These flanges 86 and 87 as inserted into the open end of channel 73 are also secured therein due to the compressive forces. The bottom fence clip 85 has two other accommodating flanges 88 and 89 extending from a front surface (FIG. 10A and B) and used to coact with the outer periphery of the vertical post 80, to surround the two sides and back portion of the post as shown clearer (clashed) in FIG. 10A.
The clips 81 and 85 serve to further assure that the vertical posts are drawn together to thus secure the entire structure as assembled. The fits depicted are all press fits and allow for all machining tolerances in regard to the aforementioned pool parity. Thus as shown in FIG. 1 the entire fence assembly as positioned further by the vertical posts and accommodating clip sections as 81 and 85 forms a reliable unitary structure with a minimum of typical fasteners as nuts and bolts.
While one can see that the principles involving the fence assembly can be modified, as the clips 81 and 85 have angled flanges to accommodate the trapezoidal terminal deck sections to thereby enable the construction of a relatively circular type pool by forming a polygonal figure. One can therefore apply the structure shown to form rectangular or square shaped pools or practically any configuration desired by altering the interlocked deck slat structures as well as the clip assemblies as 81 and 85 of FIG. 9 and 10.
Although several embodiments have been shown, others will become clearer to those skilled in the state of the art upon rendering this specification and the claims hereto appended.
1. In an above-ground swimming pool of the type including a plurality of horizontal base members extending outwardly from and supporting a pool enclosure, a plurality of inner vertical posts each secured to one of said base members closest to said enclosure to support said enclosure thereat and a plurality of outer vertical posts of a length greater than said inner vertical posts, the combination therewith of an integral deck and fence assembly comprising,
a. a given number of deck assemblies each comprising a plurality of interlocking slats secured within a first channel of a length determined by the distance between two inner vertical posts, and a second channel of a length determined by the distance between two outer vertical posts,
b. means for securing said deck assemblies about the periphery of said enclosure and positioned between the respective inner and outer vertical posts to provide a walk-way about said enclosure,
c. a given number of fence assemblies each comprising at least two panels secured between an upper fence channel and a lower fence channel, and
cl. clip means coupled at each end of said lower and upper channels and adapted to coact with the upper end of said outer vertical post at said upper fence channel and a lower end of said outer vertical post at said lower fence channel to clip and secure said given number of fence assemblies each respectively between two of said outer vertical posts to form a relatively vibration free assembly for said pool enclosure.
2. The pool combination according to claim 1 wherein each of said deck assemblies comprises a plurality of U cross-sectional shaped members, each member having a channel on one arm of said U and a flange on the other arm, for interlocking said members by insertion of the flange of a first member into the channel of a second succeeding member and so on.
3. The pool combination according to claim 1 wherein said means for securing said deck assemblies about the periphery of said enclosure include a plurality of clip assemblies, each one secured to one associated inner and outer post, said clip assemblies having a U-shaped back portion for insertion about a post and a V-shaped front portion to coact with the respective portion of said deck assembly.
4. The combination according to claim 3 wherein said arms of said U-shaped portion of said clip includes collinear apertures for insertion therethrough of a bolt, said bolt also passing through corresponding apertures in the associated sidewall of said associated vertical post.
5. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said upper and lower fence channels have T crosssections.
6. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said panels are fabricated from a blank metal sheet and have a corrugated type surface with two bends at each side forming an acute angle with the main plane of said sheet, and
a. first and second panel side channels each having a C shaped cross-section, said first channel inserted at one side of said panel securing said bend within the recess of said channel by a press fit and said second panel side channel inserted at said other side of said panel securing said other bend within the recess of said channel.
7. The combination according to claim 6 wherein said metal sheet and said first and second channels are fabricated from aluminum.
8. The combination according to claim 1 wherein said clip means comprises,
a. a top clip member for insertion into said upper fence channel, said top clip member having a back portion of a C shaped cross-section for insertion into said top fence channel and a front portion including a flange assembly for coacting with the top of said vertical outer post and,
b. a bottom clip member for insertion into said lower fence channel, said bottom clip member having a back portion of a C shaped cross-section for insertion into said bottom fence channel and a front portion also of a C-shaped configuration to coact and surround said outer post about at least two sides thereof.
9. A modular, above-ground pool structure comprising, a peripheral base track member having a wall receiving channel therealong, an endless wall having a bottom edge seated in said receiving channel, a plurality of base channel members secured to said peripheral base track and extending radially therefrom at predetermined intervals, each base channels member having an inner vertical post secured thereto at said end closest to said base track and an outer vertical post of a greater length than said inner post secured thereto at said end furthest from said base track, a plurality of deck sections, each one coupled between a different one of said inner and outer vertical posts at a position substantially above said base track to form a peripheral walkway about said enclosure, and a plurality of fence sections each including at least one privacy panel fabricated from a sheet of material each one of said section coupled between a different two of said outer vertical posts and extending relatively perpendicular to and above said walkway to provide a vibration free fence assembly for said pool structure.
10. The modular pool according to claim 9 wherein each of said deck sections comprises a plurality of interlocking U-shaped cross-sectional members, each member having a channel on one arm of said U and a flange on the other arm, whereby a first section flange is received by a second sections channel to provide a coupling therebetween and at least one triangular shaped section terminating an end of said deck section.