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Publication numberUS3883199 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 13, 1975
Filing dateJul 25, 1972
Priority dateJul 25, 1972
Publication numberUS 3883199 A, US 3883199A, US-A-3883199, US3883199 A, US3883199A
InventorsJr Charles R Cawley, Gerald M Wiseman, John T Gabel
Original AssigneeKnoll International
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
File drawer interlocking and locking mechanism
US 3883199 A
Abstract
A file drawer interlocking and locking mechanism that includes an elongated rod that carries a plurality of projections thereon. Each file drawer carries thereon a channel member to engage a corresponding one of the projections to prevent more than one drawer from being opened when another drawer is already in an extended position. The elongated rod pivots between drawer closed and drawer opened positions as part of the drawer interlocking action. To provide for drawer locking, the rod is moved in the direction of its elongation to engage all of the channel members on the drawers and to prevent any drawer from being opened.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Cawley, Jr. et al.

1 FILE DRAWER INTERLOCKING AND LOCKING MECHANISM [75] lnventors: Charles R. Cawley, Jr., Barto;

Gerald M. Wiseman, Hatfield; John T. Gabel, East Greenville, all of Pa.

[73] Assignee: Knoll International, Inc., New York,

[22] Filed: July 25, 1972 [2]] Appl. No.: 274,969

[52] US. Cl. 312/216 [51] Int. Cl... E05b 65/46; E05c 15/04; EOSc 13/04 [58] Field of Search 312/216-222 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 950,813 3/1910 Bodenstern 312/222 1,280,183 10/1918 Donathan 312/221 2,276,197 3/1942 Houston et a1. 312/218 X 2,528,910 11/1950 Poe 312/217 2,743,149 4/1956 Abrahamson et a1 312/219 2,793,927 5/1957 Reitzel 312/219 2,842,419 7/1958 Howard 312/218 2,886,392 5/1959 Stegmaier 312/217 2,992,056 7/1961 Thielker 312/221 1 May 13, 1975 Primary ExaminerPaul R. Gilliam Attorney, Agent, or FirmCooper, Dunham, Clark, Griffin & Moran [57] ABSTRACT A file drawer interlocking and locking mechanism that includes an elongated rod that carries a plurality of projections thereon. Each file drawer carries thereon a channel member to engage'a corresponding one of the projections to prevent more than one drawer from being opened when another drawer is already in an extended position. The elongated rod pivots between drawer closed and drawer opened positions as part of the drawer interlocking action. To provide for drawer locking, the rod is moved in the direction of its elongation to engage all of the channel members on the drawers and to prevent any drawer from being opened.

10 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures Ill] i, n, I. l i I 1 i l I 1 l FILE DRAWER INTERLOCKING AND LOCKING MECHANISM BACKGROUND AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to file drawer mechanisms. More particularly, it relates to a mechanism for providing drawer interlocking as well as locking. Drawer interlocking is defined herein as preventing one or more drawers in a multi drawer file from being opened when another drawer is already in an extended position. Drawer locking means the locking of all drawers in the closed position.

To briefly explain the presently preferred embodi ment of the invention, an elongated rod is employed that carries a plurality of projections thereon. The rod is positioned adjacent the sides of file drawers in a multi drawer file. Each file drawer carries a clip thereon which constitutes a channel element. In particular each clip provides a channel through which the corresponding projection on the elongated rod is free to move. When all drawers are in the closed position, any one drawer may be opened. During the opening of that drawer the channel in the clip engages the corresponding projection on the elongated rod. causing the rod to pivot. All the other projections on the rod are now positioned in front of the corresponding clips of the other drawers. Should any of these other drawers be moved in an attempt to be opened, a surface on the clip will engage the projection, preventing the drawer from being opened. In this fashion when one drawer is extended the remaining drawers are restricted, thereby obviating problems of tipping which arise when one inadvertently opens a second drawer before first closing the one previously extended.

Locking is provided in the presently preferred embodiment by moving the elongated rod in the direction of its elongation. The projections on the rod are thereby moved so that they no longer may pass through the channels of the channel-defining clips on the drawers. Instead, each projection strikes a corresponding part of the corresponding clip, preventing the drawer from being opened. Thus all drawers are locked in the closed position.

The invention will be more completely understood by reference to the following detailed description, to be read in conjunction with the appended drawing.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a multi drawer file incorporating the invention.

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the file system of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a part of an elongated rod useful in the invention.

FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken along the section 4-4 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 5 is a view similar to that of FIG. 4 showing the action of the drawer interlocking mechanism.

FIG. 6 is a sectional view taken along the section 6-6 in FIG. 2.

FIG. 7 is a sectional view taken along the section 7-7 in FIG. 6.

FIG. 8 shows the elongated rod and projection and a corresponding channel-defining clip, illustrating the drawer interlocking function as carried out by the present invention.

FIGS. 9 and 10 show a channel-defining clip, a projection, and a locking rod illustrating the locking function as carried out by the present invention.

FIG. 11 is a perspective view of part of the file drawer assembly used to mount the elongated rod for pivotal movement.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION Referring to FIG. I, a multi drawer file is shown, which includes a plurality of file drawers 22 therein. The present invention is directed to the providing of drawer interlocking as well as locking. Drawer interlocking is the preventing of more than one file drawer from being opened when another drawer is already in an extended position. Drawer locking is to provide for a locking of all drawers in the closed position.

As shown in FIG. 2 an elongated rod 24 is mounted between the sides 25a and 25b of the file 20 and adjacent to the sides of the file drawers 22. The rod 24 is shown in FIG. 3 and includes a plurality of projections 26 spaced therealong, with one projection for each file drawer. The projections may be attached by any means to the elongated rod. for example, by resistance welding. The projections 26 include upwardly extending portions 26a at the ends thereof remote from the elongated rod 24. The elongated rod 24 includes an extension 240 at the upper end thereof which is substantially at right angles to the direction of the elongation of the rod.

As shown in FIG. 2 the rod 24 is mounted by brackets 28 so that it is positioned adjacent to the sides of the drawers 22. A representative bracket 28 is shown in FIG. 11 and includes a bottom portion 30 that has a hole 32 therein through which the elongated rod 24 passes. The supporting bracket 28 may include tabs 34 thereon to be positioned within corresponding slots 36 in the side walls 25a of the filing system. The bottom portion 30 of the bracket 28 is initially flat; the end 30a is bent from the position shown in dashed lines to the full line position after the tabs 34 have been inserted in slots 36. The bracket bottom portion 30 also may be cut as at 40 to provide tabs 42 shown in dashed line in FIG. 11. The tabs 42 may be in the positions shown in dashed line prior to the insertion of the elongated rod 24 against the bracket. Following the positioning of the rod, the tabs 42 may be bent downwardly so that the bottom bracket portion 30 is as shown in full lines in FIG. 11. With reference to FIG. 2, the bottommost one of the brackets 28 includes a portion 44 that supports the bottom of the elongated rod 24. By the mounting of the rod 24 in the brackets 28, that rod is free both to pivot and to move in the direction of its elongation. The projections 26 extend through corresponding cutouts 25c in side wall 25a.

With reference to FIGS. 4 to 6, a channel-defining clip 46 is attached to a side of each of the drawers 22. The clip 46 itself is perhaps best shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, and includes a first portion defined by parts 48a and 4812 that are adapted to be attached to the side 22a of a file drawer 22. The clip 46 includes a generally U- shaped portion 50. The U shape is in cross-section; the angle designated 52 in FIG. 8 between plane 55 through the U-shaped portion and the plane of the first portion defined by parts 48a and 481) (or the plane of drawer side 22a) is an acute angle. The U-shaped portion 50 is attached at one end to the first portion part 48a. At its other end it is joined to the first portion part 48b by a second portion 54. The U-shaped portion '50 includes sides 50a and 50b as well as a top 500. These two sides and top define a channel 56 as shown in FIG. 9 through which the projection end 26a may pass, to be described in more detail below. The top 500 of the U-shaped portion 50 includes an edge portion 500-1 that is shaped with a curvature that corresponds to the curvature of the projection ends 26a.

Drawer interlocking is provided by the projections and channel-defining clips as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5. Assume that all drawers 22 are in the closed position as shown in FIG. 1. In this instance each channeldefining clip 46 and corresponding projection 26 are in the positions shown in FIG. 4. Assume now that one of the file drawers, i.e., the file drawer shown in FIG. 4 is to be opened. As the drawer is moved to the opened position (to the right in FIG. 4) the projection end 26a enters into the channel 56 shown in FIG. 9 and is engaged by the channel wall 50a. As the projection moves through the channel, caused by the movement of the I file drawer to the opened position, the elongated rod 24 is caused to pivot so that it and all the projections 26 ultimately assume the position shown in FIG. 5. In this position of the elongated rod 24 and projections 26, no other file drawer may be opened, inasmuch as the projection end 26a will be struck by the portion 54 of the clip 46 in the case of each of these closed drawers. The portion 54 constitutes a surface that strikes or engages the corresponding projection end 26a to provide for drawer interlocking. When the open drawer is moved to the closed position the corresponding projection end 26a again enters into the channel 56 and is engaged by the channel side 50]; shown in FIG. 9. As the file drawer is finally moved to its closed position the projection end 26a causes a pivoting of the elongated rod 24 so that all of the projections 26 again assume the po sition shown in FIG. 4. At this time any other file drawer may be opened.

It will be noted then that the elongated rod 24 pivots between a drawer closed position (shown in FIG. 4) and a drawer opened position (shown in FIG. In the drawer closed position as shown in FIG. 4, any file drawer may be opened as described above. In this regard, it is possible to open two or more file drawers if they are all moved simultaneously so that all the corresponding projection ends 26a enter into the corresponding channels 56 of the clips 46 at the same time. The chances of this occurring are quite slim, and hence the system just described provides an effective interlocking system to prevent more than one drawer from being opened at any one time.

It should be noted that in the event that more than one file drawer is opened, and a subsequent single drawer is closed causing a pivoting of the elongated rod 24 to the position shown in FIG. 4, the remaining open drawer (or drawers) may be closed. There is enough flexibility in the parts of the assembly so that the projection ends 26a may override on the outside surfaces of sides 50a of clips 40 on these opened drawers as they are closed.

The elongated rod 24 is biased on each of its drawer closed and drawer opened positions by means of a biasing spring shown in FIG. 7. The spring, designated 58, is mounted to the top bracket 28. The spring is V- shaped in a portion thereof, and includes sides 58a and 58b. The side 58a of the spring engages the top extension 24a of the elongated rod 24 when that rod is in the drawer closed positionshown in FIG. 6. The top extension 24a is held firmly by the spring side 58a, biasing the elongated rod 24 to the lrawer CluSCCl position. When one of the drawers is moved to the opened position and the elongated rod 24 is pivoted as described above, the end extension 24a thereof is free to move within the top bracket 28. The V-shaped end portion of the spring 58 moves upwardly during the movement of the end extension 24a from left to right with respect to FIG. 7 until the extension 24a is in a right-most position corresponding to the drawer opened position of the elongated rod 24. In this position of the elongated rod the spring side 58b bears against the rod extension 240, firmly holding the end extension and biasing the elongated rod in the drawer opened position.

Locking of all drawers in the closed position is achieved by vertical movement of the elongated rod 24. To this end a locking rod 60 is employed shown in FIGS. 2 and 10. The locking rod 60 includes a portion 62 that pivots on the top bracket 28 of the assembly. The pivoting action is caused by a locking mechanism 64 which is accessible from outside the multi drawer filelfrom outside the side wall 25a of the system as shown in FIG. 1), and which may be pivoted from the position shown in full lines in FIG. 2 to the position shown in dashed lines in that figure. When the locking mechanism 64 is in the position shown in full lines. in FIG. 2, the elongated rod 24 is in the lower or drawer unlocked position. When the locking mechanism 64 is moved to the position shown in dashed lines in FIG. 2, the locking rod 60 is pivoted about the portion 62 thereof to cause a raising of the elongated rod 24 as shown in FIG. 10 to an upper or drawer locked position of the rod. In this raised position of the elongated rod 24, the projection ends 2611 are as shown in FIG. 10 and are not free to move within the channels 56 of the corresponding channel-defining clips 46. Instead, the projecting ends 26a engage the curved edge portions SOC-1 of these clips, preventing the drawers from being opened. Unlocking of the drawers is provided by a I downward movement of the elongated rod 24 so that each of the projection ends 26a is in the position as shown in FIG. 9 with respect to its corresponding channel 56 in the channel-defining clip 46.

As will be noted the present invention provides for the interlocking of file drawers and their locking by common features, which include channel-defining clips on file drawers and an elongated rod with projections thereon. It will be appreciated that the presently preferred embodiment is subject to modification. Accordingly, the invention should be taken to be defined by the following claims.

What is claimed is:

l. A file drawer interlocking mechanism comprising an elongated rod pivotal about a longitudinal axis between drawer closed and drawer opened positions and extending parallel to one of the sides of each of a plurality of drawers of a multi drawer file and carrying a plurality of projections thereon spaced from and parallel to the rod and each positioned closely adjacent to a corresponding one of said drawer sides, channel means on each of said drawersides and positioned closely adjacent to and operatively associated with a corresponding one of said projections in the closed position of the drawer, each channel means having opposed sides defining a channel through which the corresponding projection passes as the drawer is moved between closed and opened positions, one of the sides of each channel engaging the corresponding projection to pivot said elongated rod about said axis from said drawer closed position to said drawer opened position as the projection moves through the corresponding channel during the opening of the corresponding drawer when all other drawers are in closed positions, the opposite side of each channel engaging the corresponding projection to pivot said elongated rod from said drawer opened position to said drawer closed position as the projection moves through the corresponding channel during the closing of the corresponding drawer when all other drawers are in closed positions, and each channel means having a striking surface which strikes the corresponding projection when the corresponding drawer is in the closed position but said elongated rod is in the drawer opened position to prevent the opening of any closed drawer when another drawer is in an opened position.

2. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 1, including spring means biasing said elongated rod into each of its drawer opened and drawer closed positions, and in which an end of said elongated rod includes an extension substantially at right angles to the direction of elongation of said rod, and said spring means includes a V-shaped spring engaging said extension, one side of said V-shaped spring engaging said extension in the drawer opened position of the rod and the other side of said V-shaped spring engaging said extension in the drawer closed position of the rod.

3. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 1, in which each of said channel means comprises a clip having a first portion attached to a side of the corresponding drawer, a generally Ushaped portion in section defining said channel and attached at one end to said first portion with the plane of said U-shaped section at an acute angle to the plane of said drawer side, and a second portion joining together the other end of said U- shaped portion and said first portion and defining said striking surface on the channel means which strikes the corresponding projection when the corresponding drawer is in closed positions.

4. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 1, in which said elongated rod is also movable in the direction of its elongation between drawer locked and drawer unlocked positions, each channel means having a striking part which strikes the corresponding projection when the corresponding drawer is in the closed position and said elongated rod is in the drawer locked position to provide for the locking of all drawers in closed positions.

5. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 4, in which said striking part of each channel means comprises an edge portion thereof shaped with a curvature corresponding to the curvature of said projection to interfit therewith when the projection is struck by said striking part of said channel means.

6. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 4, in which each of said channel means comprises a clip having a first portion attached to a side of the corresponding drawer, a generally U-shaped portion in section defining said channel and attached at one end to said first portion with the plane of said U-shaped section at an acute angle to the plane of said drawer side. and a second portion joining together the other end of said U- shaped portion and said first portion and defining said striking surface on the channel means which strikes the corresponding projection when the corresponding drawer is in closed position, an edge of said U-shaped portion at said other end thereof defining said striking part of said channel means that strikes the corresponding projection when the corresponding drawer is in the closed position and said elongated rod is in the drawer locked position, said edge being shaped with a curvature corresponding to the curvature of said projection to interfit therewith when.the projection is struck by said edge.

7. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 4, including locking means for moving said elongated rod between said drawer locked and unlocked positions.

8. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 7, in which said locking means comprises an extension of said elongated rod substantially at right angles to the direction of elongation of said rod, and a locking rod engaging said extension for moving said extension in the direction of elongation of said elongated rod.

9. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 8, in which said locking rod has an end thereof that engages said extension of said elongated rod, and said locking rod is pivotal about a portion thereof and when so pivoted said end thereof moves said extension in the direction of elongation of said elongated rod.

10. A file drawer mechanism according to claim 9, including a locking mechanism on an outer surface of said multi drawer file for actuating said locking rod to pivot the same about said portion thereof.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US950813 *Sep 27, 1909Mar 1, 1910Nat Desk CompanyLocking device for drawers.
US1280183 *Mar 26, 1918Oct 1, 1918Luther DonathanLocking means.
US2276197 *Oct 9, 1939Mar 10, 1942Automatic File & Index CoLocking mechanism for cabinet drawers and the like
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US3023066 *Oct 3, 1958Feb 27, 1962Brunswick CorpDrawer lock
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4465329 *Mar 15, 1983Aug 14, 1984The United States Of America As Represented By The Secretary Of The ArmyStorage cabinet travel lock
US4761045 *May 22, 1987Aug 2, 1988Metalworks, Inc.Drawer and cabinet assembly
US4772078 *Jun 4, 1987Sep 20, 1988Meridian, Inc.Drawer interlocking means for storage cabinet
US5333949 *Oct 5, 1992Aug 2, 1994Krueger International, Inc.File drawer interlock mechanism
US6634726May 30, 2001Oct 21, 2003Snap-On Technologies, Inc.Multiple drawer cabinet allowing one drawer opened at a time
US6722749Aug 14, 2001Apr 20, 2004Snap-On Technologies, Inc.Drawer open position controller
US6736468 *Dec 27, 2002May 18, 2004American Furniture CompanyLockable furniture article for storage of personal items
DE102012004665A1 *Mar 12, 2012Sep 12, 2013Beewatec GmbhLocking device for releasing subject matters stored in shelf wagon, has pressure spring to press locking element into vertical direction against stop, and guide element whose inner surfaces are pressurized with low friction surface
Classifications
U.S. Classification312/216, 220/902
International ClassificationE05B65/46
Cooperative ClassificationY10S220/902, E05B65/465
European ClassificationE05B65/46C2D
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Jan 15, 1991ASAssignment
Owner name: WESTINGHOUSE ELECTRIC CORPORATION, WESTINGHOUSE BU
Free format text: NUNC PRO TUNC ASSIGNMENT;ASSIGNOR:KNOLL INTERNATIONAL, INC., A CORP. OF DE;REEL/FRAME:005570/0598
Effective date: 19901127