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Publication numberUS3885147 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 20, 1975
Filing dateJan 17, 1974
Priority dateJan 17, 1974
Publication numberUS 3885147 A, US 3885147A, US-A-3885147, US3885147 A, US3885147A
InventorsChacon Julian
Original AssigneeLightcraft Of California
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Multiple lighting fixture display system
US 3885147 A
Abstract
A display system for lighting showrooms that permits the rapid mounting and removal of lighting fixtures at close spacings on a wall or ceiling, including a channel member running along the wall or ceiling and having electrical outlets spaced along its length and fixture-supporting brackets which can be rapidly installed on the channel member. Cross-tee clips and panel clips are provided that permit the rapid mounting of ceiling cross-tees or wall panels, respectively, on the channel member. Fixture-supporting brackets which are installed on wall-mounted channel members, are provided with barbs so that when the bracket is swung into place in the channel member the bracket is prevented from sliding downwardly.
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United States Patent [1 1 Chacon MULTIPLE LIGHTING FIXTURE DISPLAY SYSTEM [75] Inventor: Julian Chacon, San Gabriel, Calif.

[73] Assignee: Lightcrait of California, Los

Angeles, Calif.

[58] Field of Search.... 240/9 R, 78 R, 73 OD, 52.1, 240/78 DA, 85 R; 174/48; 248/342, 343

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,888,113 5/1959 Schwartz et al. 240/9 X 3,719,818 3/1973 Porter et al. 240/78 R X [In 3,885,147 [4 1 May 20, 1975 Primary Examiner-Richard A. Wintercorn Attorney, Agent, or Firml .indenberg, Freilich, Wasserman, Rosen & Fernandez [57] ABSTRACT A display system for lighting showrooms that permits the rapid mounting and removal of lighting fixtures at close spacings on a wall or ceiling, including a channel member running along the wall or ceiling and having electrical outlets spaced along its length and fixturesupporting brackets which can be rapidly installed on the channel member. Cross-tee clips and panel clips are provided that permit the rapid mounting of ceiling cross-tees or wall panels, respectively, on the channel member. Fixture-supporting brackets which are installed on wall-mounted channel members, are provided with barbs so that when the bracket is swung into place in the channel member the bracket is prevented from sliding downwardly.

4 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures MULTIPLE LIGHTING FIXTURE DISPLAY SYSTEM BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to apparatus for the mounting of multiple light fixtures.

Lighting fixtures showrooms require display systems that permit the mounting of lighting fixtures at closely spaced intervals and in an attractive manner. The display systems should permit the rapid removal of a fix ture when it is sold, and permit the rapid mounting of another fixture in its place. The display system also should permit most of the showroom ceiling to be covered by an attractive acoustic tile and permit most of the wall area to be covered by attractive paneling, and should permit installation of the ceiling tile and wall paneling in an easy manner.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with one embodiment of the present invention, a lighting fixture display system is provided which facilitates the installation of tiles and paneling near the rows of fixtures and which facilitates the mounting of fixture-holding brackets. The system includes channel members which run along the ceiling or wall and which are nearly flush with ceiling tiles and wall panels that cover most of the adjacent area. The channel member has electrical outlets spaced along its length and is capable of rapidly receiving brackets which hold lighting fixtures. In a ceiling display system, rapid connections are made to cross-tees that support adjacent ceiling tiles, by the use of cross-tee clips. Each cross-tee clip is formed from a sheet of metal with a base portion that is securely locked between a pair of flanges formed on a side wall of the channel member, the clip also having a projecting portion with a foldedover receiver part which receives the hook at the end of a cross-tee. The clip rapidly receives the cross-tee to make a secure joint therewith, and holds the cross-tee so it lies flush with a lower surface of the channel member.

In a wall-mounted display system in which the channel members extend vertically on the wall, panel chips are mounted on the channel member to securely hold the edges of wall panels nearly flush with the outer surface of the channel member. Each panel clip includes a base portion which is received between flanges on the channel member, and a projecting portion extending in a reverse curve to press a panel edge against the back of a flange of the channel member. The fixture-holding bracket is an elongated member which fits in an open ing formed in the channel member between two inturned flanges thereof. The bracket has a pivot end with a pair of sidewardly extending projections which lie behind the inturned flanges, and an opposite end which has a latch that can move a pair of latch parts outwardly behind the inturned flanges. The pivot end is also provided with a locking cross member that lies against the front surface of the inturned flanges. The locking member lies a distance forward of the pivot projections which is less than the thickness of the inturned flanges, so that the pivot projections bite into the flanges to act as barbs that prevent the bracket from sliding downwardly along the channel member even when the bracket is supporting a heavy lighting fixture.

The novel features that are considered characteristic of this invention are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. The invention will best be understood from the following description when read in connection with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. I is a perspective view of a ceiling display system, showing the manner in which a fixture-holding bracket is installed thereon;

FIG. 2 is a sectional end view of the system of FIG. 1, with the fixture-holding bracket fully installed thereon;

FIG. 3 is a front elevation view of the cross-tee clip of the system of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a top view of the cross-tee clip of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a partial perspective view of a wall display system, constructed in accordance with another embodiment of the invention, showing how a fixtureholding bracket is installed thereon;

FIG. 6 is a partial side view of the system of FIG. 5 showing the fixture-holding bracket in a fully installed position;

FIG. 6A is a view of a portion of the bracket of FIG.

FIG. 6B is a front view of a portion of the bracket of FIG. 6;

FIG. 7 is a partial top view of the system of FIG. 5 showing the manner in which a wall panel is installed on the channel member so it can be held thereon by the panel clip of the system;

FIG. 8 is a side elevation view of the panel clip of FIG. 7', and

FIG. 9 is a reverse side elevation view of the panel clip of FIG. 8.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS FIG. 1 illustrates a ceiling display system which includes a main runner or channel member 10 that is held to a structural beam of the ceiling by a support bracket 12, a hanger rod 14 and a hanger bracket 16. The channel member 10 serves, in turn, as a structural member of a typical drop ceiling" installation which includes acoustic tiles or panels 18. The panels 18 are supported on the channel member 10 and on cross-tees 20, as well as on wall angle members (not shown) at the perimeter of the ceiling system. The cross-tees 20 extend between parallel spaced channel members 10 and form a grid to hold the tiles 18. The channel member 10 has multiple electrical outlets 22 spaced along its length. A lighting fixture 24 can be easily mounted on the channel member by first mounting the fixture on a fixture-supportin g bracket 26, and then installing the bracket in a bracket opening 28 of the channel member with a plug 30 of the fixture installed in an electrical outlet 22. The display system enables rapid mounting and removal of lighting fixtures in an economical and attractive installation. The lower surface of the channel member 10 is flush with the lower surface of the cross-tees 20, and these surfaces are nearly flush with the surfaces of the ceiling wall panels 18, so that the installation is highly attractive.

The channel member 10 is an extruded member having the cross-sectional shape illustrated in FIG. 2. The member includes a base wall 31 and a pair of side walls 32, 34 lying on either side of the base wall. The side walls 32, 34 extend downwardly to the lower surface 36 of the channel member, which is the surface seen by persons in the room. Each side wall has a pair of mounting flanges 38, 40, one of them 38 extending downwardly and the other 40 extending upwardly. The downwardly-extending flange 38 receives the support bracket 12 that holds the channel member in place. The two flanges 38, 40 together serve to firmly capture a cross-tee clip 42 which permits the rapid mounting of the cross-tees 20, as will be explained below. The flanges 38, 40 also can receive splicer members (not shown) for connecting a pair of channel members in tandem.

The lower ends of the side walls 32, 34 of the channel members are provided with broad out-turned flanges 44 which extend away from one another, and with thick but narrow inturned flanges 45 that extend towards one another. The space 28 between the inturned flanges receives the bracket 26, while the upper surfaces of the flanges 46 are utilized to support the bracket 26 and therefore the lighting fixture thereon. As shown in FIG. 1, the bracket 26 has a pivot end 48 with a pair of sidewardly-extending pivot projections that rest on the flanges 46 to support the bracket 26 during its installation. The bracket also has a latch end 52 with a rotatable latch member 54 thereon that carries a pair of latch parts 56. When the latch member 54 is turned 90 from the position of FIG. 2, the latch parts can fit through the opening 28. When the latch member 54 is released, a spring 58 turns it to the position of FIG. 2 wherein the latch parts 56 lie on the inturned flanges 46. The bracket 26 is installed by tilting it so the pivot end 48 passes up through the opening 28 in the channel member, and then tilting it back so its projections lie on the inturned flanges 46. After the fixture plug 30 is inserted in an outlet, the bracket is pivoted up and the latch member 54 is turned to pass up through the opening 28. When the latch member 54 is released, the bracket 26 is securely held in position in the channel member.

The ceiling display system is installed by first mount ing the channel member 10 in place, attaching the cross-tees in extension between spaced channel members, and then installing the ceiling tiles 18. The installation of the cross-tees 20 on the channel member 10 is facilitated by the use of the cross-tee clips 42. Each cross-tee clip 42 is formed of a sheet of resilient material such as steel, with a base portion 60 and a projecting portion 62 extending largely perpendicular, or normal, to the base portion. The projecting portion 62 has a folded-over receiver part 64 which is designed to receive the hook 66 which is formed at the end of a typical cross-tee 20. The hook 66 is installed in an interference fit with the receiver part 64 by merely inserting the hook 66 into the receiver part.

The cross-tee clip 42 can be rapidly installed on the channel member 10 by placing the base portion 60 between the two flanges 38, 40 on a side wall of the channel member, and turning the base portion until it extends nearly vertically. In order to keep the clip in place thereon, the base portion 60 of the clip is formed with a pair of partially punched-out tabs 68, 70 that bear against a corresponding side wall 32 or 34 of the channel member. When the hook 66 on the crosstee 20 is installed on the receiver part 64 of the clip, the receiver part merely serves to resist free movement of the cross-tee. The actual position of the cross-tee is determined by the channel member 10, with the lower surface 72 of the hook abutting an out-turned flange 44 of the channel member to position the cross-tee with its lower surface 74 wlush with the lower surface 36 6f the channel member, and with the tip of the hook 66 bearing against the flange 40. The use of the cross-tee clips permits rapid installation of the cross-tees on the channel members, without the need for tools, and using clips that can be constructed at very low cost.

The channel member 10 can be utilized not only in ceiling display systems but also in wall display systems to hold lighting fixtures of the type that normally would be used in the home by mounting them on the wall. FIG. 5 shows a wall installation in which the channel member 10 extends vertically, to permit the lighting fixtures to be spaced vertically therealon g. The channel members 10 are held to posts or studs of the building by brackets 80, and the area between several spaced channel members is covered by a decorative wall panel 82. The edges of the panels 82 are held in place by panel clips 84 whose construction and operation will be described in detail below. A wall lighting fixture 86 can be easily installed on the vertically extending channel member by first mounting the fixture on a bracket 88 which is designed to be rapidly receivable in the opening 28 between the inturned flanges of the channel member.

The fixture bracket 88 operates in a manner similar to the bracket 26 which is utilized to hold ceiling light fixtures. However, a special problem arises in connection with the mounting of wall fixtures on a vertically extending channel member. Unless special steps are taken, the bracket 88 is likely to slide down along the channel member. Of course, separate stops could be provided to prevent such sliding, but this would require that such stops be readily available and would require the extra effort of installing them. In accordance with the present invention, however, the bracket 88 is constructed so that it automatically locks itself into position along the channel member 10 when it is installed thereon, in a manner that prevents downward sliding along the channel member.

The fixture bracket 88 has an elongated middle portion 90 which can be received in the channel member opening 28, a pivot end 92 which pivots on the inturned flanges 46 of the channel member, and a latch end 94 which can engage the inturned flanges 46. The middle portion 90 and latch end 94 are similar to those of the ceiling fixture bracket 26, although the latch end 94 is provided with a screw-like slotted latch member 96 instead of a finger-engageable knob to minimize tampering by customers in a showroom. The pivot end 92, however, is constructed so that it locks the bracket in place to prevent downward sliding. This is accomplished by providing a locking bar 98 that forms a pair of side-wardly extending locking parts 100, 102 that can rest against the outer surface 36 of the channel member. Also, the pivot end 92 is provided with a pair of sidewardly extending pivot projections 104, 106 which carry narrow protuberances or barbs 108, 110 that can bite" into the inturned flanges 46 of the channel member and that are longitudinally spaced from the locking parts. The channel member 10 may be made of aluminum while the fixture bracket 88 is constructed of steel, so that the barbs can readily bite into the channel member.

In order to cause the barbs, such as 110, to bite into the flange 46 of the channel member, the depth-wise spacing S (FIG. 6A) between a barb 110 and locking part 102 is made slightly less than the thickness 1 (FIG. 6) of the inturned flanges 46. Thus, when the bracket 88 is fully installed and the latch 96 holds the bracket against pivoting out, a barb 106 and locking part 102 press hard against opposite faces of the inturned flange 46. This pressure can cause slight bending of the inturned flanges 46, in addition to some penetration of the barbs into the flanges. Actually, barbs that can bite into the flanges are not absolutely necessary although the slight penetration which a narrow barb can achieve provides further assurance against downward sliding of the fixture bracket even when a heavy lighting fixture is installed on it. Also, the penetrating barbs assure good electrical grounding of the lighting fixture, because they assure electrical connection of the bracket 88 to the grounded channel member 10 even if the surfaces of the flanges 46 have a layer of corrosion or oxidation thereon.

The panel clips 84, which are also shown in FIGS. 7-9, enable the rapid installation and removal of wall panels 82 from between spaced channel members 10. The panel clip 84 has a base portion 112 similar to the base portion 60 of the cross-tee clips, and also has a projecting portion 114 which is especially designed to hold the edge ofa panel. The base portion 112 fits between the oppositely extending flanges 38, 40 on a side wall 34 of the channel member, and has a pair of tabs 116, 118 that act as springs to hold the base portion in place. The projecting portion 114 extends in a reverse curve or loop, which has a tip 120 that bears against the out-turned flange 44, and which has an intermediate part 122 which lies slightly behind the position of the tip 120.

A panel 82 can be installed in the manner shown in FlG. 7, by inserting it behind the out-turned flange 44 and against the clip part 122. When the panel 82 is pivoted into position so that it lies parallel to the wall to be covered, the back surface of the panel presses against the clip part 122 to deflect it inwardly. Thereafter, the clip part 122 resiliently presses against the rear of the panel to hold it firmly against the rear surface of the out-turned flange 44, to thereby provide friction that holds the panel firmly in place. The extreme edge 82c of the panel presses against the clip end 123 immediately beside the tip 120. The clip end 123 can be resiliently pushed in towards the channel side wall 34, although it resiliently resists such inward movement. With opposite edges of the panel pressing against the ends 123 of panel clips, the panel clips serve to center the panel so that both of its edges engage sufficient area of the inturned flange 44 to prevent the panel from falling out. Thus, the panel clip not only presses the panel against the inturned flanges to hold the panel against sliding about, but also centers the panel so that both of its edges are engaged with channel members in a manner to prevent the panel from falling out. The panel clip 84 can be constructed of a resilient material such as sheet steel, in a simple bending and stamping operation that permits production at low cost. As described above, the panel clip can be installed in a simple manner without special tools and it also permits the rapid and reliable installation of wall panels without special tools. The rapid removal and installation of wall panels is useful not only in setting up or changing the layout of the system, but also in permitting rapid repair or replacement of a channel member 10 in case of a defect. It should be noted that in a wall-mounted system, the channel members can extend horizontally on the wall, as well as in the verticle direction which is illustrated.

Thus, the invention provides a system for displaying lighting fixture in a showroom, with the fixtures being easily installed at close spacings and being easily removed, and with the entire installation being easily constructed and having an attractive appearance. A ceiling installation is easily made using ordinary crosstees for holding acoustic tile, by the use of cross-tee clips that can be rapidly attached to the channel members and to the ends of cross-tees without the need for special tools. In a similar manner, a wall installation can be easily made through the use of panel clips which can be easily attached to the channel members and which permit the rapid and secure installation of wall panels on the channel members. Rapid and secure mounting of fixture-holding brackets on the vertically-extending channel members is accomplished through the use of brackets that have locking parts which press against the outside of the channel members while the pivot parts at the pivot end press against the inner surface of the inturned flanges of the channel members, so that when the bracket is fully installed with its latch end in place the bracket is securely held against sliding downwardly along the channel member.

Although particular embodiments of the invention have been described and illustrated herein, it is recognized that modifications and variations may readily occur to those skilled in the art and consequently, it is intended that the claims be interpreted to cover such modifications and equivalents.

What is claimed is:

1. A light fixture display installation comprising:

an elongated channel with a base wall and a pair of side walls extending therefrom, and having a plurality of electrical outlets spaced along its length, each of said side walls having a pair of mounting flanges extending towards each other, and the end of each side wall having an outturned flange; plurality of support brackets for supporting the channel to a supporting wall; plurality of decorative wall panels; and plurality of panel clips for holding the edges of a wall panel securely in place immediately behind an outturned flange of the channel, each clip being formed of a sheet of resilient material with a base portion lying substantially against one of said channel side walls and extending between the mounting flanges thereof, and a projecting portion extending in a reverse curve to an end thereof which is resiliently biased against an outturned flange, said projecting portion having an intermediate part for pressing against the rear surface of the decorative wall panel, said intermediate part lying slightly behind the outturned flange to press the panel against the out-turned flange.

2. The installation described in claim 1 wherein:

the end of panel clip projecting portion that bears against the outturned flange, extends away from the outturned flange by a distance greater than the thickness of the wall panel edge and then curves towards the outturned flange in extending to said intermediate part which presses against the back of 7 the panel, and said end bears resiliently against the edge of the panel, 3. A multiple lighting fixture display apparatus for holding lighting fixture on a substantially vertically extending wall, comprising:

an elongated channel with a base wall and a pair of side walls, and having a plurality of electrical outlets spaced along its length for connecting to lighting fixtures, each of said side walls having an inturned flnge at its end which extends towards the inturned flange on the other side wall to leave a bracket opening between them;

a fixture bracket having an elongated middle portion received in said bracket opening, a first end of said bracket having a pair of pivot projections spaced apart by more than the width of said bracket opening and lying behind the inturned flanges, a second end of said bracket having a latch with a pair of latch parts which are movable between a first lateral spacing greater than the bracket opening, so that the latch parts lie behind the inturned flanges to hold the second bracket end in place, and a second lateral spacing less than the bracket opening to permit removal of the second bracket end;

said bracket also having a apir of sidewardly extending locking parts lying against the front surface of the inturned flanges, said locking parts being spaced longitudinally from the pivot projections, and the depthwise spacing of the pivot projections and locking parts being slightly less than the thickness of the inturned flanges, so that when the bracket is pivoted to a position between the inturned flanges and the latch parts are at said first spacing, the pivot and locking parts press hard against the inturned flanges to prevent the bracket from slipping along the channel.

4. The apparatus described in claim 3 wherein:

said pivot projections are tapered to form barbs that can slightly penetrate into the flanges, whereby to provide good electrical grounding as well as secure holding of the bracket.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2888113 *Sep 23, 1954May 26, 1959Stephen W LindheimCeiling and lighting construction
US3719818 *Apr 10, 1972Mar 6, 1973Thomas Industries IncMounting device for lighting fixtures
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4739460 *Oct 18, 1985Apr 19, 1988Cooper Industries, Inc.Spring clips for a recessed light fixture
US4775921 *Mar 31, 1987Oct 4, 1988Danbel Industries Inc.Lighting fixture display system
US5581448 *Aug 8, 1995Dec 3, 1996Harwood; Ronald P.Display lighting system for walls
US5941625 *Dec 11, 1997Aug 24, 1999Bazz Inc.Spring clip for a recessed light fixture assembly
US6896394 *May 31, 2002May 24, 2005#9060-0495 Quebec, Inc.Recessed light fixture
US7064269Nov 23, 2004Jun 20, 2006Smith David WQuick connect electrical junction box assembly
US7249872 *Oct 6, 2005Jul 31, 2007Catalina Lighting Inc.Method and system for displaying lighting fixtures
US20030223240 *May 31, 2002Dec 4, 2003#9060-0495 Quebec, Inc.Recessed light fixture
US20060108137 *Nov 23, 2004May 25, 2006Smith David WQuick connect electrical junction box assembly
US20070081347 *Oct 6, 2005Apr 12, 2007Catalina Lighting Inc.Method and system for displaying lighting fixtures
US20090188175 *Jul 30, 2009Waters James RCantilevered ceiling system
DE8911814U1 *Oct 4, 1989Jan 11, 1990Schmitt, Juergen, 6302 Lich, DeTitle not available
DE202014101989U1 *Apr 28, 2014Jul 30, 2015Zumtobel Lighting GmbhAbdeckung für die Trägeranordnung eines Lichtbandsystems, sowie Lichtbandsystem
Classifications
U.S. Classification362/408, 248/343, 362/150
International ClassificationA47F7/00, F21V21/02
Cooperative ClassificationF21V21/02, A47F7/00
European ClassificationF21V21/02, A47F7/00