Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3884159 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 20, 1975
Filing dateNov 19, 1973
Priority dateNov 19, 1973
Publication numberUS 3884159 A, US 3884159A, US-A-3884159, US3884159 A, US3884159A
InventorsFaria Carmen V
Original AssigneeFaria Carmen V
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Folding table
US 3884159 A
Abstract
A foldable table includes a series of parallel slats which are connected together by transverse pieces of non-rigid material permitting the slats to be collapsed onto each other when the table is folded. A diagonal cross-support is provided for supporting the slats when the table is open.
Images(2)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [191 Faria [4 1 May 20, 1975 1 FOLDING TABLE [76] Inventor: Carmen V. Faria, 353 E. 83rd St.,

New York, NY. 10028 [22] Filed: Nov. 19, 1973 211 App]. No.: 416,988

[52] US. Cl 108/112; 108/67 [51] Int. Cl A47b 3/04 [58] Field of Search 108/115, 67, 112, 38;

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 70,668 11/1867 Wolfinger 108/67 283,119 8/1883 Knapp 108/112 1,209,421 12/1916 Ferguson 108/112 1,262,356 4/1918 Kirkland 108/112 1,572,282 2/1926 Grignon 108/112 1,618,327 2/1927 Dewey 108/112 2,198,661 4/1940 Dubilier 108/112 2,549,242 4/1951 Ross 108/112 X 2,681,841 6/1954 Sperry 108/112 X 3,079,875 3/1963 Hasler 108/67 Primary Examiner-Francis K. Zugel Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Gottlieb, Rackman, Reisman & Kirsch [57] ABSTRACT A foldable table includes a series of parallel slats which are connected together by transverse pieces of non-rigid material permitting the slats to be collapsed onto each other when the table is folded. A diagonal cross-support is provided for supporting the slats when the table is open.

3 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures PATENTED HAY 2 0 i975 A awnnnm FOLDING TABLE This invention relates generally to pieces of furniture and, more particularly, to folding tables and the like.

Folding tables are generally well-known in the art. One type of folding table, commonly known as a bridge table, includes a one-piece table top and legs which are adapted to collapse beneath the table top when the table is folded or closed. The principal drawback with this type of table is that the size of the table when closed is limited by the size of one-piece table top. Thus, even when this type of table is closed, the table is still relatively large and therefore difficult to carry. Other types of folding tables have been proposed in attempts to provide a folding table which is small or compact when the table is closed. For example, it has been suggested to'provide a folding table having a col- Iapsable table top, the table top being folded or collapsed to reduce the size of the table in its folded or closed position. Specifically, it has been proposed to provide a folding table having a table top formed of leaves or slats. However, these slatted-top folding tables have been less than satisfactory since they have been difficult to assemble, have not been sufficiently strong or rigid when the table is open, and have been expensive to manufacture.

Accordingly, it is a broad object of the present invention to provide a folding table having an improved construction.

A more specific objection of the invention is to provide a folding table which is compact when closed yet strong or rigid when open.

Another object of this invention is to provide a folding table having a slatted-top, with the folding table being relatively inexpensive to manufacture.

In accordance with the present invention, there is provided a folding table having a table top formed of a series of parallel slats adapted to collapse onto each other when the table is folded. The slats are connected together by two transverse pieces of flexible material, which are secured'to the slats by stitching. A diagonal cross-support for supporting the slats when the table is open includes two connecting members which extend from respective diagonal corners of the table top. Means are provided for coupling the connecting members together at substantially the center of the table top. The table top is supported, when the table is open, by foldable legs which depend downwardly from the four corners of the table top; The legs are of widths substantially equal to the width of the slats and the folding table is constructed and arranged such that the folding table may be folded or closed to the width of one of the slats.

Further objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be more fully apparent upon consideration of the following detailed description, when considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a front perspective view of a carrying case for use with the folding table of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a front perspective view showing a folding table according to one embodiment of the present invention, with the table folded or closed;

FIG. 3 is a front perspective view of the folding table of FIG. 2, and showing the table opened;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged sectional view, taken substantially along the line 44 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a bottom plan view, slightly enlarged in scale, of the folding table of FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view, slightly enlarged in scale, taken substantially along the line 66 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a section view, slightly enlarged in scale, taken substantially along the'line 7-7 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 8 is a sectional view, slightly enlarged in scale, taken substantially along the line 88 of FIG. 5; and,

FIG. 9 is a perspective view, similar to the view of FIG. 2, but showing a folding table according to a second embodiment of the present invention.

Referring now to the drawings and, particularly to FIGS. l-8 thereof, a folding table according to the present invention is generally designated 10. Folding table 10 is constructed and arranged so that the table may assume either a folded or closed position, illustrated in FIG. 2, or an open or unfolded position, illustrated in FIG. 3.

For purposes of storage or transportion from one place to another, when folding table 10 is closed, a carrying case, generally designated 12, is provided. The carrying case may be of molded plastic construction having a case body 14 adapted to receive the closed folding table (which is illustrated in FIG. 1 in dashed line), with the closed folding table being inserted into the case body through a zipper opening 16. A handle 18 is provided, secured to the top of case body 14, and is provided to facilitate the transportation of carrying case 12.

Folding table 10 includes a series of parallel slats 20 which are adapted to be next to each other, in a single plane, when the folding table is opened (FIG. 3) to form a table top, generally designated 22. The slats 20 are connected together by two transverse pieces of flexible material 24, such as canvas strips or the like, which are disposed at the ends of the slats, on the upper surface of table top 22. The flexible material strips 24 are secured to the ends of slats 20 by stitching the strips to the slats. Specifically, and as illustrated in FIG. 4, the flexible material strips 24 are secured to slats 20 by stitching 26 which extends from the flexible material strips 24 through the slats. Thus, the stitching 26 extends from the top or upper face or surface of table top 22 to the bottom or lower face or surface of the table top. Advantageously, two rows of stitching 26 are provided to secure each flexible material strip to slats 20, with the stitching being near the edges of the flexible material strip. Thus, although it may be contemplated that there will be other ways of connecting the slats together, it has been found that the use of flexible material strips, secured to the slats by stitching, is economical and also adequately and securely connects the slats together. Importantly, and as shown in FIG. 2, this construction providies a folding table in which the series of parallel slats 20, which form the table top when the folding table is open, can collapse onto each other when the table is folded. Accordingly, folding table 10 is compact and may be carried quite easily, when the table is closed.

In order to support slats 20 when the folding table is open, at least one diagonal cross-support, generally designated 28, is provided. As illustrated in FIG. 5, cross-support 28 includes two connecting members 30a, 30b, which are pivotally connected at diagonal corners of table top 22, for example by rivets 32 which extend through the connecting members, slats 20 and the flexible material strips 24 (see FIG. 6). Each connecting member 30a, 30b, should be of width no wider than the width of a slat 20, and should also be of a length no longer than the length of a slat 20, thereby enabling the connecting members 30a, 30b, to pivot about respective rivets 32 so that the connecting members lie beneath the end slats when the table is closed. Specifically, and referring to FIG. 5, connecting member 30a is adapted to pivot in a clockwise direction about rivet 32, from the position illustrated in FIG. 5, such that the connecting member lies directly beneath the left-hand slat, when the folding table is closed. Similarly, connecting member 30b is adapted to pivot in a clockwise direction about rivet 32, from its position illustrated in FIG. 5, such that this connecting member lies beneath the right-hand slat 20 of FIG. 5, as the table is closed.

Connecting means, generally designated 34, are provided for coupling the connecting members together, substantially at the center of table top 22, at the bottom thereof, when folding table is open. Referring to FIGS. 5, 7 and 8, the ends of connecting members 30a, 30b are formed such that connecting member 30b defines a male projection 36. which is adapted to fit between corresponding projections 38 formed at the end of connecting member 30a. Projection 36 and projections 38 include circular bores, which extend in the plane of the connecting members, and which define, when projection 36 is inserted between projections 38, a passageway 40 extending through the connecting members. The connecting means 34 includes a substantially U-shaped pin member 42 having a straight leg 44a, which is adapted to be inserted through passageway 40 to couple connecting member 30a to connecting member 30b, and a bent leg 44b. Bent leg 44b bends towards straight leg 44a thereby adequately securing leg 44a within passageway 40. However, both the legs of the pin member 42 are flexible to faciliate the insertion of the pin into and out of passageway 40.

Table top 22 is supported by foldable legs 46 which are hingedly supported at the ends of outermost slats (see FIG. 3). Specifically, each of the legs, which are of the same overall construction, are connected to the outermost slats of the table top by a hinge 48 disposed at the junction of the leg and the slat (see FIG. 6). Pivotal hinge arms 50a, 50b, which extend between the slats and the legs, are also provided to maintain the legs 46 in a perpendicular position, relative to slats 20, thereby supporting the table top when the folding table is open. Referring to FIG. 6, hinge arm 50a is pivotally connected to slat 20 at pivot 52, while hinge arm 50b is pivotally connected to leg 46 at pivot 54 and the hinge arms 50a, 50b are connected to each other at pivot 56. A pivot stop 58, carried by one of the arms, cooperates with the other arm, as is generally understood in the art, to keep the hinge arms in alignment to support the legs 46 when folding table 10 is open. Upward pressure or force at pivot 56 causes hinge arm 50a to rotate about pivot 52 with the hinge arm moving in a clockwise direction twards slat 20; similarly, hinge arm 50b is caused to rotate about pivot 54 in a counterclockwise direction towards leg 46. Accordingly, as is generally understood, leg 46 rotates about hinge 48 towards slat 20. This enables leg 46 to be folded beneath slat 20, with the pivotal hinge arms 50a, 50b closing onto each other and fitting into a notch 60, formed in legs 46. As was the case with the connecting members a, 30b of diagonal cross-support 28, the width of legs 46 should be no wider than the width of one of the slats 20 so that the entire folding table may be closed or folded to a width substantially equal to the width of one of the slats.

FIG. 9 illustrates a folding table 10 according to a second embodiment of the present invention. According to this embodiment, folding table 10 is formed with an even-number of slats, i.e., 20a, 20b, 20c and 20d. Legs 46a, 46b, with each leg being approximately onehalf the length of one of the slats are also provided. This configuration is especially advantageous for providing a folding table which is very compact when folded since a table having an even-number of slats enables all slats to be collapsed one on top of the other, when the table is folded, with the connecting members 30a, 30b being on the outside surfaces of the collapsed slats followed by the foldable legs 46a, 46b which collapse on top of the connecting members. (If an oddnumber of slats is used, the connecting member and two of the foldable legs must necessarily lie between the slats, rather than at the outside of the slats. This results in a less compact table). Connecting means, such as a clap or hook and eye 62, is provided in order to secure the foldable legs 46a and 46b to each other at the outside of the collapsed slats. This helps maintain the folding table in its folded or collapsed position; while the fact that the legs are no greater than half the length of the slats prevents overlap of the legs further provid ing a compact table when the table is closed or folded.

Obviously, numerous embodiments according to the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings. For example, it has been found advantageous to fabricate the folding table with legs and slats formed of plastic material, such as lucite or the like, since this provides a table which is economical to fabricate, relatively strong or rigid in construction and lightweight to carry. Of course, other materials may be utilized. Similarly, it may be possible to connect the connecting members 30a, 30b, by other than the pin-type connecting means disclosed.

It is apparent, therefore, that other embodiments according to the teachings of the present invention may be contemplated within the scope of the present invention as set forth by the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. A folding table comprising an even-number of parallel slats adapted to collapse onto each other when the table is folded, said slats connected together by two transverse pieces of flexible material secured to the slats at the ends thereof by stitching, at least one diagonal cross-support for supporting the slats in a common plane to form a table top when the table is open, said diagonal cross-support including two connecting members of widths no greater than the width of one of the slats independently pivotally extending from two diagonal corners of the table top, means for coupling the connecting members together at substantially the center of the table top, foldable legs hingedly connected to the slats at the four corners of the table top, each of said legs of a width no greater than the width of one of the slats and of a length substantially equal to one-half the length of one of the slats, latch means for connecting the ends of the legs together when the table is folded, and hinge means connected between said slats and said legs for maintaining said legs substantially perpendicular to said slats when the table is open.

2. A folding table according to claim 1 wherein said connecting means includes a passageway extending through said connecting members at the ends thereof and a pin member insertable through said passageway to maintain the connecting members together at substantially the center of the table top.

3. A folding table comprising a series of parallel slats adapted to collapse onto each other when the table is folded, at least two transverse pieces of flexible material secured to the slats by stitching for connecting the slats together near the ends thereof, a diagonal crosssupport for supporting the slats in a substantially common plane to form a table top when the table is unfolded, said cross-support including two connecting members each of a width no greater than the width of one of the slats, said connecting members having first ends independently pivotally connecting to respective diagonal corners of the table top, said connecting members adapted to pivot to a position beneath the end slats of the table top when the table is folded, means for coupling the connecting members together at their other ends at substantially the center of the table top when the table is open, foldable legs hingedly connected to the end slats, each of said legs substantially equal in length to one-half the length of one of the slats and of a width no greater than than the width of the slats, said legs being constructed and arranged to fold beneath the connecting members when the table is folded, and locking means attached to the legs for maintaining the legs in position when the table is folded.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US70668 *Nov 5, 1867 Improved extension-table
US283119 *Jul 15, 1882Aug 14, 1883 Folding table
US1209421 *Feb 17, 1916Dec 19, 1916George J FergusonPaper-hanger's table-top.
US1262356 *Aug 21, 1917Apr 9, 1918Philip M KirklandCollapsible camp-table.
US1572282 *May 28, 1923Feb 9, 1926Grignon Ephraim PFoldable table
US1618327 *Jul 11, 1924Feb 22, 1927Dewey Clarence LFolding table
US2198661 *Nov 8, 1937Apr 30, 1940William DubilierCollapsible table
US2549242 *Sep 3, 1948Apr 17, 1951Ross Ronald ECollapsible combination screen and table
US2681841 *Dec 7, 1950Jun 22, 1954Sperry Nancy CTable leg pivot latch bracket structure
US3079875 *May 31, 1961Mar 5, 1963Hasler John TFoldable table frame and convertible cover therefor
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3993003 *Aug 11, 1975Nov 23, 1976James Joseph WCollapsible stool
US4341164 *Jun 13, 1980Jul 27, 1982Charles H. RubleFolding camp table
US4370767 *Apr 14, 1981Feb 1, 1983Commonwealth Of Puerto RicoBeach mat
US4392437 *Jan 21, 1981Jul 12, 1983Wallace John DFoldable table with foldable support frame
US4443034 *Aug 17, 1981Apr 17, 1984Mechanical Plastics Corp.Folding platform and shelves for use in vehicles
US4958577 *Jun 14, 1989Sep 25, 1990Richard DemaioRoll-up lap tray
US5180208 *Feb 5, 1991Jan 19, 1993Victor LawandiQuick-disconnect knockdown furniture having a flexible support with a plurality of frame member storage pockets
US5513576 *Jan 3, 1995May 7, 1996Ward; Thomas A.Adjustable lap table
US6283045 *Jan 24, 2000Sep 4, 2001On Way Co., Ltd.Foldable table
US6367393 *Jul 31, 2000Apr 9, 2002Diane KastenDrawstring table
US7096797May 14, 2004Aug 29, 2006Sharpe Melanie APortable collapsible table and game board
US7516706 *Jan 18, 2008Apr 14, 2009Illinois Tool Works Inc.Knockdown pallet structure, and method of erecting and knocking-down the same
US7644665 *Feb 23, 2009Jan 12, 2010Illinois Tool Works Inc.Knockdown pallet structure, and method of erecting and knocking-down the same
US7913630Sep 15, 2006Mar 29, 2011Illinois Tool Works Inc.Combination knockdown pallet structure and article container
US20120175918 *Jan 9, 2012Jul 12, 2012Lifetime Products, Inc.Folding table and chair set with portable carrying case
WO1983000665A1 *Aug 16, 1982Mar 3, 1983Mechanical Plastics CorpFolding platform and shelves for use in vehicles
WO2010146600A1Jun 14, 2010Dec 23, 2010Shreeyash PatankarFolding utility board
WO2012096964A1 *Jan 10, 2012Jul 19, 2012Lifetime Products, Inc.Folding table and chair set with portable carrying case
WO2012096983A1 *Jan 10, 2012Jul 19, 2012Lifetime Products, Inc.Folding table and chair set with partially open carrying case
Classifications
U.S. Classification108/168, 108/67
International ClassificationA47B3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47B3/00
European ClassificationA47B3/00