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Publication numberUS3881770 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 6, 1975
Filing dateJul 29, 1974
Priority dateJul 29, 1974
Publication numberUS 3881770 A, US 3881770A, US-A-3881770, US3881770 A, US3881770A
InventorsCardenas Antonio Luis
Original AssigneeHoover Ind Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Folding chair
US 3881770 A
Abstract
A folding chair having a seat unit with opposite arms, a back unit pivoted between the arms to be folded down over the seat, and front and rear leg units pivoted to each side of the seat unit on the outside for adjustment between downwardly-extending, floor-engaging, support positions and folded-up positions extending up on opposite sides of the seat unit at the front and back and overlying the folded-down back unit.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

I Umted States Patent 11 1 [111 3,881,770

Cardenas May 6, 1975 [5 1 FOLDING CHAIR 3,306,659 2/1967 Greiner 297/19 [7 5] Inventor: Antonio Luis Cardenas, North FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS Beach 1,220,346 1/1971 United Kingdom 297/16 73 Assignee; Hoover Industries, Inc" Miami, Fla 329,407 9/1935 Italy 297/52 [22] Filed: July 1974 Primary Examiner-Francis K. Zugel [21] Appl. No.: 492,785 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Oltman and Flynn [52] US. Cl. 297/51; 297/379 [57] ABSTRACT [5 Int. Cl- A g chalr havmg a seat umt w1th oppos1te arms, Fleld of Search 51, 574, a back unit pivoted be the a t e f ld d own over t e seat, an ront an rear eg unlts pw- 5 6 R f oted to each side of the seat unit on the outside for ad- 1 e erences cued justment between downwardly-extending, floor- UNITED STATES PATENTS engaging, support positions and folded-up positions 1,386,612 8/1921 Farah 297/54 extending up on opposite sides of the seat unit at the 2,141,475 12/1938 Johannsen 297/51 front and back and overlying the folded-down back 2,423,309 9 1949 Amaducci 297 54 unit 2,528,676 11/1950 Walters 297/19 2,751,970 6/1956 Smith 297/ 19 12 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures SHED 1- BF 2 PATENIED MAY a $75 PATENIED HAY 61975 SHEET 2 OF 2 &

FOLDING CHAIR BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Various folding chairs have been proposed heretofore, such as for use in sleeping compartments on passenger trains to be stored in a compact, folded condition under the bed when the bed is to be used and to be erected in an upright condition when the bed is out of the way. In general, the prior folding chairs have been unduly complex structurally, typically having rather complicated linkages for converting the chair from the normal, erect condition to the folded condition, and vice versa. Typically. the linkages in the previous folding chairs have included racks and pinions, catches and levers, which tend to malfunction after considerable use.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is directed to a novel and improved folding chair of simplified construction which adapts it for conversion between a normal upright position and a more compact, folded position in which it may be stored under a fold-down bed in a sleeping compartment on a passenger train, for example.

A principal object of this invention is to provide a novel and improved folding chair.

Another object of this invention is to provide a novel folding chair having a minimum of moving parts and requiring relatively little maintenance to keep it functioning properly.

Another object of this invention is to provide a novel folding chair whose simplified mechanical design enables it to have a pleasing contemporary appearance.

Another object of this invention is to provide a novel volding chair in which the upholstered or cushioned parts are protected when the chair is folded.

Further objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of a presently preferred embodiment, shown in the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of the present chair;

FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of this chair;

FIG. 3 is a rear elevational view of this chair;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary section taken along the line 4-4 in FIG. 1 where the front and rear leg units of the chair abut against each other;

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view of the chair in its folded condition;

FIG. 6 is a perspective view showing the folded chair stored under a fold-down bed in a sleeping compartment on a passenger train; and

FIG. 7 is a fragmentary vertical section taken along the line 77 in FIG. 2 and showing one of the latches for releasably locking the front and rear leg units together.

Before explaining the present invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and arrangement of parts illustrated in the accompanying drawings, since the invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology or terminology employed herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation.

Referring first to FIGS. 1 and 2, the present chair has a seat unit with integral arms on each side. This seat unit has a seat cushion l0 and a rigid frame 11 attached to the bottom of the cushion and supporting it from below. This frame presents opposite, horizontal, bottom side pieces 12 (FIG. 1), which extend directly below the opposite side edges of the cushion, and a horizontal, bottom front piece 13 (FIG. 2), which is joined to the front ends of the side pieces and extends between them below the front end of the seat cushion.

The frame of the seat unit also provides arms on opposite sides of the seat cushion. Each arm comprises a back end piece 14 extending up from the back end of the respective bottom side piece 12 (FIG. 1) at the back end of the seat cushion, and an arm rest piece 15 extending horizontally forward from the upper end of the respective back end piece 14 on opposite sides of the seat cushion 10 and above it. These arm rest pieces carry respective arm cushions 16.

Preferably, as shown, the entire seat unit frame, consisting of the bottom front piece 13, the bottom side pieces 12, the upstanding back end pieces 14, and the forwardly extending, horizontal, arm rest pieces 15, is formed of a single piece of tubular metal stock, preferably stainless steel, that is bent to the overall frame configuration shown.

A back unit 17 (FIG. 1) is pivoted near its lower end between the upstanding back end pieces 14 on the arms of the seat unit frame. This back unit comprises a cushion 18 and a frame 19 attached to the back of this cushion and extending around its entire periphery. The opposite sides of the frame 19 of the back unit extend closely inside the upstanding back end pieces 14 of the seat unit frame and are pivotally connected to them by horizontal pivot pins 20. At each of these pivot pins a predetermined friction is established between the back unit frame and the seat unit frame, and this friction can be adjusted in any desired fashion, such as by means of a nut threaded on the pivot pin at one end.

Normally, the back unit extends up from the back end of the seat unit as shown in FIG. 1, with the bottom edge of the back cushion l8 touching the top of the seat cushion 10 at the latters back end, and with the lower portion of the back unit passing up between the back end pieces 14 and the rear portions of the arm rest pieces 15 on the frame of the seat unit. When the chair is to be stored, the back unit may be pivoted about the pins 20 and folded down to the position shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, in which it extends forward across the top of the seat cushion l0 and between the upstanding back end pieces 14 and the arm rest pieces 15 of the frame of the seat unit. The friction between the back unit frame 19 and the seat unit frame at the pivots 20 requires the user to exert a certain amount of effort to convert the chair from its erect position to its folded position, or vice versa, and this friction should be sufficiently great to prevent the back unit from being folded down inadvertently or too easily.

Referring again to FIGS. 1-3, a rear leg unit 21 of tubular metal is pivoted to the outside of the seat unit frame near the back end of the seat unit. This rear leg unit has at each side an upstanding, vertical leg 22 whose lower end is joined integrally through a rightangled bend 23 to a rearwardly extending, flat, floorengaging, bottom piece 24 which is generally U- shaped, viewed from above. This bottom piece 24 extends behind the vertical legs 22 and extends from side to side between them to provide a stable, floorengaging support for the chair at the back. A horizontal cross-piece 25 extends between the vertical legs 22 near their lower ends to enhance the rigidity of the rear leg unit.

The upper end of each vertical leg 22 in the rear leg unit is joined through a right-angled bend 26 to a rearwardly-extending horizontal, top piece 27 that extends contiguously along the outside of the adjacent bottom side piece 12 of the seat unit frame and is pivotally connected to that side piece by a respective horizontal pivot pin 28 (FIGS. 1 and 3). A suitable adjustable friction is provided at each of these pivots between the back leg unit 21 and the frame of the seat unit.

The back leg unit 21 may be pivotally adjusted about the pins 28 from the downwardly-extended support position shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, in which it extends down to the floor, to a folded up position, shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, for convenient storage of the chair. In this folded up position the cross-piece 25 on the back leg unit extends next to the right-angled bend on each side of the seat unit frame between the upstanding back end piece 14 and the forwardly extending, horizontal, arm support piece 15. Also, in this folded up position the generally U-shaped bottom piece 24 of the back leg unit extends closely along and across the arm cushions on the seat unit.

The friction at the pivots 28 between the rear leg unit 21 and the seat unit is sufficiently great that a deliberate effort is required to fold up the rear leg unit.

Finally, the chair has a front leg unit 31 that is generally similar to the back leg unit 21 and is pivoted to the outside of the frame of the seat unit toward the latters front end. This front leg unit has at each side an upstanding vertical leg 32 whose lower end is joined integrally through a right-angled bend 33 to a forwardly extending, flat, floor-engaging bottom piece 34, which is generally U-shaped in outline, viewed from above. The vertical legs 32 of the front leg unit lie in the same vertical plane as the corresponding vertical legs 22 of the back leg unit 21. The bottom piece 34 of the front leg unit extends in front of its vertical legs 22 and extends from side to side between them to provide a stable, floor-engaging support for the chair at the front. A horizontal cross-piece 35 extends between the vertical legs 32 near their lower ends at the same level as the crosspiece 25 on the back leg unit.

The upper end of each vertical leg 32 of the front leg unit is joined through a right-angled bend 36 to a forwardly-extending, horizontal, top piece 37 that extends contiguously along the outside of the adjacent bottom side piece 12 of the seat unit frame and is pivotally connected to that side piece by a respective horizontal pivot pin 38 (FIG. 1). A suitable. adjustable friction is provided at each of these pivots between the front leg unit 31 and the frame of the seat unit, and this friction is high enough to require a deliberate effort to fold up the front leg unit.

When the front leg unit 31 and the back leg unit 21 are both in their downwardly-extended support positions (FIG. 1), their respective vertical legs 22 and 32 on each side of the chair abut against each other, and their horizontal cross-pieces 25 and 35 also extend immediately contiguous to each other from side to side across the chair, as shown in FIGS. 1 and 4.

Two identical spring latches L (FIG. I) are provided for releasably locking front and rear leg units together at the respective cross-pieces 35 and 25. As best seen in FIG. 7, at each of these latches a downwardly-facing channel 29 on the cross-piece 25 of the rear leg unit abuts against a similar channel 39 on the cross-piece 35 of the front leg unit. A locking plate 40 is attached to the top of channel 29 and it presents a rearwardly inclined, upwardly projecting lip 41. A latch member 42 is pivoted on a U-shaped support 43 on top of the channel 39. This latch member has fo. wardly inclined, depending lip 44 at its back and for engagement behind the upstanding lip 41 on the locking plate 40. A coil spring 45 is engaged under compression between the latch member 42 and its support 43 to bias the latch member 42 clockwise in FIG. 7.

When the front and rear leg units are brought together, the depending lip 44 on the back end of latch member 42 rides up over the upstanding lip 41 on latch plate 40 and then snaps down behind it (due to spring 45) to lock the two halves of the latch together. The latch may be released by pushing down on the front end of the latch member 42.

When the chair is to be stored, the front leg unit 31 may be folded up to the position shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, in which it has been pivoted up about the pivot pins 38 to extend up in front of the seat unit, the folded down back unit 17, and the folded up rear leg unit 21. The normally front end of the bottom piece 34 of the front leg unit extends closely in front of the normally back end of the bottom piece 24 of the rear leg unit, and both of these ends closely overlie the arm cushions 16 on the seat unit, as best seen in FIG. 5.

From FIGS. 5 and 6 it will be apparent that, when the chair is folded, the arm cushions 16 are shielded by the bottom piece 24 of the rear leg unit 21 and the bottom piece 34 of the front leg unit 31, the seat cushion 10 is shielded by the foldeddown back unit 17, and the back side of the back unit is shielded by the bottom piece 24 and the cross piece 25 of the rear leg unit 21. Consequently these padded parts of the chair are protected by the rigid tubular metal parts.

In one practical embodiment of this chair, in its folded position its overall dimensions are: length, approximately 30 inches; width, 24 inches; height, l3 inches. This compact size and the generally rectangular outline of the folded chair enable it to be stored conveniently under a fold-down bed B in a sleeping compartment on a passenger train, as shown in FIG. 6.

The present chair is extremely simple mechanically, having only three moving parts, namely, the back unit 17, the rear leg unit 21, and the front leg unit 31, each having relatively simple pivotal connections to the seat unit which enable the chair to be folded readily into the compact, generally rectangular configuration shown in FIGS. 5 and 6.

I claim:

1. A folding chair comprising:

a seat unit presenting a horizontal seat and opposite arms extending up from the back of the seat and then forward substantially horizontally on opposite sides of the seat;

a back unit having its lower end received between the upwardly extending arms and pivoted to the latter for adjustment between an upright position in which it extends up from the back of the seat and a folded-down position in which it extends forward across the top of the seat between the arms;

a rear leg unit pivotally connected to the opposite sides of the seat unit toward the back end of the latter on the outside for adjustment between a floorengaging support position extending down from the seat unit and a folded-up position extending up around the outside of said arms and forward across the folded-down back unit;

and a front leg unit pivotally connected to the opposite sides of the seat unit toward the front end of the latter on the outside for adjustment between a floor-engaging support position extending down from the seat unit in front of said rear leg unit and a folded-up position extending up around the outside of the seat unit at the front and back across the folded-down back unit.

2. A folding chair according to claim 1. wherein said rear leg unit and said front leg unit in their floorengaging support positions abut against each other at a front-to-back location along the chair between their respective pivotal connections to said seat unit.

3. A folding chair according to claim 2, wherein said rear leg unit has opposite legs located in front of its respective pivotal connections to the opposite sides of the seat unit and extending downward therefrom when the rear leg unit is in its floor-engaging support position, and said rear leg unit has a bottom, floor engaging piece extending horizontally rearward from the lower ends of said legs when the rear leg unit is in its floorengaging support position, said front leg unit has opposite legs located behind its respective pivotal connections to the opposite sides of the seat unit and extending downward therefrom in abutting engagement with the front of said legs on the rear leg unit when both said front and rear leg units are in their floor-engaging support positions, and said front leg unit has a bottom, floor-engaging piece extending horizontally forward from the lower ends of its legs when the front leg unit is in its floor-engaging support position.

4. A folding chair according to claim 3, wherein said rear and front leg units have respective horizontal cross-pieces extending laterally between their respective opposite legs and abutting against each other when both leg units are in their floor-engaging support positions.

5. A folding chair according to claim 3, wherein said bottom, floor-engaging piece on the rear leg unit extends above the substantially horizontal arms of the seat unit when the rear leg unit is folded up.

6. A folding chair according to claim 3, wherein said front and rear leg units and the bottom of said seat unit together form a generally rectangular outline at each side of the chair when said back unit is folded down over the seat unit and said leg units are folded up over the seat unit and the folded-down back unit.

7. A folding chair according to claim 1, wherein:

said rear leg unit in its floor-engaging support position has a top piece on each side pivotally connected to the seat unit and extending forward therefrom along the outside of the adjacent side of the seat unit, a leg on each side extending down from the front end of the top piece on that side, and a floor-engaging bottom piece extending rearward from the lower end of each downwardly extending and said front leg unit in its floor-engaging support position has a top piece on each side pivotally connected to the seat unit and extending rearward therefrom along the outside of the adjacent side of the seat unit, a leg on each side extending down from the rear end of the top piece of the front leg unit on that side in front of the downwardlyextending leg on that side of the rear leg unit, and a floor-engaging bottom piece extending forward from the lower end of each downwardly extending leg on the front leg unit.

8. A folding chair according to claim 7, wherein said bottom piece of the rear leg unit has a transverse leg extending horizontally from one side to the other rearward from the downwardly extending legs of the rear leg unit, and said bottom piece of the front leg unit has a transverse leg extending horizontally from one side to the other forward from the downwardly extending legs of the front leg unit.

9. A folding chair according to claim 7, wherein said downwardly extending legs of the front and rear leg units abut against each other on each side when the leg units are in their floor-engaging support positions.

10. A folding chair according to claim 9, and further comprising a horizontal cross-piece on the rear leg unit extending between the downwardly-extending legs of the rear leg unit toward the bottom, and a horizontal cross-piece on the front leg unit extending between the downwardly-extending legs of the front leg unit toward the bottom and abutting against said horizontal crosspiece on the rear leg unit when the leg units are in their floor engaging support positions.

11. A folding according to claim 7, wherein said front and rear leg units and the bottom of said seat unit together form a generally rectangular outline at each side of the chair when said back unit is folded down over the seat unit and said leg units are folded up about their respective pivotal connections to the seat unit to extend over the seat unit and the folded-down back unit.

12. A folding chair according to claim 7, wherein said bottom piece of the rear leg unit is generally U-shaped and has a transverse leg at the back which extends from one side to the other, said bottom piece of the front leg unit is generally U-shaped and has a transverse leg at the front which extends from one side to the other, said transverse legs on the rear and front leg units extending in close proximity to each other from side to side across the seat unit and the folded-down back unit when the leg units are folded up about their respective pivots to the seat unit.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1386612 *Sep 17, 1920Aug 9, 1921Kalil FarahFolding bed and/or chair
US2141475 *Dec 17, 1937Dec 27, 1938Udo K JohannsenFoldable metal furniture
US2483309 *Dec 13, 1945Sep 27, 1949Mario AmaducciCombination folding chair and table
US2528676 *Jan 21, 1948Nov 7, 1950Walters Harry JFolding chair
US2751970 *Apr 20, 1954Jun 26, 1956Marion J SmithFoldable lounge chair
US3306659 *Jan 27, 1964Feb 28, 1967Greiner OttoDeck chair with swingable back regulated by the supports
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5730495 *May 28, 1996Mar 24, 1998Sears Manufacturing CompanyFolding seat assembly
US6089651 *Jul 16, 1999Jul 18, 2000Carmen; NormanFolding chair anchoring system
US7527337 *Sep 29, 2006May 5, 2009Evolution Seating, LlcCollapsible chair and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification297/51, 297/378.1
International ClassificationA47C4/20, A47C4/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47C4/20
European ClassificationA47C4/20