US 3906686 A
A self-contained pre-assembled utility module having plumbing, electrical and heating components positioned in place therein and adapted to be operatively connected to the plumbing, electrical and utility supply lines of a multistory building whereby installation of the utility module and connection with the main utility supply lines of the building at the construction site are accomplished with minimal loss of time. The module is completely pre-assembled, and includes a floor slab, side walls and all utility connections so that all that is required at the building site is connection with the main utility supply lines. The module also is of such a dimension that the floor slab effectively spans the distance between the main load-bearing walls of the building and when assembled in place, becomes a structurally integral part of the overall building.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
ited States Patent 1 1 Dillon Related US. Application Data  Continuation of Serv No. 363,191, May 23, 1973, abandoned, which is a continuation of Ser. No. 142,526, May 12,-1971, abandoned.
 US. Cl. 52/79; 52/259; 52/262  Int. Cl. E04H 1/12; E04B 5 /17  Field of Search 52/79, 236, 745, 262, 251,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,501,288 7/1924 Morley 52/259 3,566,560 3/1971 Wakefield 52/236 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS Switzerland 52/79 1 Sept. 23, 1975 Primary ExaminerJohn E. Murtagh Attorney, Agent, or FirmFreeman & Taylor  ABSTRACT A self-contained pre-assembled utility module having plumbing, electrical and heating components positioned in place therein and adapted to be operatively connected to the plumbing, electrical and utility supply lines of a multi-story building whereby installation of the utility module and connection with the main utility supply lines of the building at the construction site are accomplished with minimal loss of time. The module is completely pre-assembled, and includes a floor slab, side walls and all utility connections so that all that is required at the building site is connection with the main utility supply lines. The module also is of such a dimension that the floor slab effectively spans the distance between the main load-bearing walls of the building and when assembled in place, becomes a structurally integral part of the overall buildmg.
3 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures Sept. 23,1975 Sheet 1 of 8 3,906,686
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ATTORNEYS US Patent Sept. 23,1975 Sheet 2 of8 3,906,686
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THOMAS J. DILLON JM MV% v m n w ATTORNEYS US Patent Sept. 23,1975 Sheet 3 of8 3,906,686
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l H @533 THOMAS J. DILLON I H 11 ll LL IL JL IL JJ J Lmmv ATTORNEYS US atent- Sept. 23,1975
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ATTORNEYS US Patent Sept. 23,1975 Sheet 6 of8 3,906,686
'1 THOMAS J. DILLO) ATTORNEYS 6 8 8 5 6 1 O IIII; O1 3 22221 00 S Patent INVENTOR. THOMAS J. DILLON mmuw FIG. 8
ATTORNEYS US Patent Sept. 23,1975 Sheet 8 of8 3,906,686
FIG [0 THOMAS J. DILLON BY /em -vb k ATTORNEYS I PRE-ASSEMBLED UTILITY MODULE This is a continuation of application No 363,191
filed May 23, 1973, now abandoned, which was in turn BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In high-rise construction, it has been typical in the past to provide a series of vertically extending utility supply lines with the individual utility components then being installed in place following casting of the floor, for example. Once the installationlof the utility components, such as water closet, sink,.ba th tub, etc., have been completed on thc.premises,-they must still be con nected to the main supply source. As a result of these numerous operations, installation of the utility components of the living quarters are normally considered the most time consuming operation on the construction site, with the result that theoverall progress of the building is delayed and construction costs rise. l
DESCRIPTION OF THEPRIOR ART SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Applicant has discovered that if all of the normal utility components that are found in a house or dwelling can be grouped together and assembled into a single component at a site other than the construction site, the actual installation time of the utility ,module will involve a matter of hours rather than days withall of the components having been pre -arranged for rapid connection to the main utility supply lines,
It has also been found that the objectives can be achieved by providing a concrete floor slab with the walls and ceiling for the kitchen and bathroom areas mounted thereon. I I I I In this regard, it is a feature of the invention to transversely offset or notch the slab throughout at least a portion of its length. The walls which are mounted on the periphery of the slab would, of course, also be'offset in this region. In this fashion, the plumbing and heating conduits can be pre-assembl'ed as a unit and then mounted on the exteriorof the wall in the area of the offset so as to avoid adding materially to the overall width dimension of the module. I
In this fashion,v also the utility.,: connections are mounted on an exposed wall for inspection purposes and can be enclosed by doors or awall or non-load bearing partition with access openings after installation, making them readily available for repair ye t out of sight. Furthermore, this construction permits the central plumbing and heating conduits for the entire building to be stacked",-thereby again minimizing construction costs and time. M
It has also been found that by dimensioning the floor slab correctly, the same will span the distance between parallel vertical load-bearing walls and become a structurally integral part of the overall building.
Production of an improved utility module that permits cost savings and erection time accordingly becomes the principal object of this invention,- with other 2 ered and interpreted in the light ofthe accompanying drawings. 7 i
OF THE DRAWINGS:
FIG. I is a perspective view showing the module installed so as to span a pair of parallel vertical loadbearing walls.
FIG. 2 is a plan view of the module shown in FIG. 1.
FIGS. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,8, 9, and 10 are vertical sections taken on the lines 3-3, 44, 55, 6--6, 7 7, 8-8, 9-9 and 10-10 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 11 is a schematic view of the plumbing tree that is attached to one side wall of the module as will be described,
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings and in particular to objects of the invention becoming more apparent upon v a reading of the following brief specification, considthe numeral 10, includes a concrete floor slab 20 of generally rectangular configuration, with the module normally being eight foot wide and varying in span depending upon the area available. In this regard, the module, including the slab, spans the distance between adjacent vertical load-bearing walls and 81 and becomes an integral part of the overall building.
A perimeter vertical wall member 21 is connected to and extends from one end 20a of the slab and terminates in what will be referred to as a forward edge 21a which is spaced from the remaining longitudinal end 20b of slab 20.
A rear wall 22 and a utility wall 23 also are connected to the slab 20 as shown in FIG. 2, for example. The partition wall 24 of FIG. 2 serves to divide the area between ,walls 21 and 23 into a kitchen area 24a and a bathroom area 25, with the kitchen area 240 including such, utilities as a stove 26, a sink 27, and a refrigerator 7 28, while the bathroom includes the water closet 29, sink 30, and tub 31, all of which are prepositioned and installed.
i It should be noted at this point that the positioning of the various components just described is a matter of choice and they could be rearranged within the module if desired. Furthermore, the relative positioning between the kitchen area 24a and the bathroom area 25 could be reversed if desired.
Again referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, it will be noted that astorage unit 35 extends transversely across the slab 20 adjacent the longitudinal end 20b thereof, with the member 35 being shown longitudinally spaced from the forward edges 21a and 23a of the wall members 21 and 23 respectively so as to form a passageway between the storage unit and the kitchen area.
In building the unit, however, and shipping it to the site, the storage unit 35 is positioned in abutment with the ends2la and 23a of walls 21 and 23 so as to, in effect, serve as a cap or cover for the entire unit and thus .make the same substantially theft-proof during trans- .FIG. 1 1 of the drawings is provided with the edge of the slab being transversely offset as at 41 (FIG. 2) and the wall 23, which is mounted along the edge of the slab, is also offset to facilitate insertion of the unit 40 into place without materially increasing the transverse dimension of the overall module. The use ofa tree of this type in a location of the type described has the further advantage of leaving this wall open for inspection by the various inspecting agencies as the building progresses and after it is enclosed by a wall or partition with an access opening, it is still accessible for repair purposes.
The tree 40 includes a main drain member 42 that will connect with similar units above and below, with a series of feeder drains 43 and 44 connecting into the main drain 42 and with an appropriate stack or revent unit 45 being provided for similar connection to units on floors above and below. Feeder stacks 46 and 47 connect with the stack 45 as shown in FIG. 2. It should be noted that a two-pipe system is illustrated, but a conventional single pipe system could also be utilized.
The insulated pipes 50 and 51 serve as water supply and return lines from the main boiler. This water may be either heated or chilled depending upon the season of the year and whether heating or cooling is desired. These pipes 50 and 51 connect to a fan coil unit 55 (FIG. with the pipes extending transversely through the partition 24 as best shown in FIG. 6 of the drawings. In this regard, of course, the water would pass through the fan coil unit 55 and the unit would force air through the heat supply registers 58,58 into the apartment. An air return 59 is also provided for conventional purposes.
The numeral 52 indicates the central cold domestic water supply line, while the numeral 53 indicates the central domestic hot water supply line, with these units being connected to the supply lines 52a,53a by the usual T-connections 54,54 as shown best in FIG. I 1 of the drawings. A frame 56 serves to support all of the just described components in the pre-assembled condition shown, with the result that when the frame 56 is attached to the offset wall portion as shown in FIG. 2, the unit is completely assembled in proper position so that field connection is reduced to a minimal matter, with the utility unit being accessible at all times for inspection and/or repair.
Doors (not shown) can be used to cover the plumbing tree when the dwelling unit is complete, thereby making it accessible for repair work but hidden for aesthetic purposes. In this regard, it is also contemplated that the entire area could be enclosed by a finished wall having an access door or opening therein.
The electrical supply for the utility module includes a main electrical conduit 60 (FIG. 2) that extends through the partition wall 24 to a fuse box 61. Conduit 62 leads from fuse box 61 through the wall 24, with the conduit 62 sloping downwardly through the same so as to be received in a recess 63 provided in the slab and thus emerges as at 65 into the open area where additional connection to the remaining electrical outlets in other rooms of the apartment may be made (See FIG. 7). With regard to the module itself, of course, the appliances and utilities which are preinstalled within the module all have their wiring completed at the factory so that the only operation required on the job site is to connect with the main building electrical supply by means of conduit 60. No internal wiring is required at the job site.
Exhaust outlet 70 is provided in the wall 23 as shown in FIG. 6, with this unit being adapted to connect with main exhaust duct 71 by pipe 71a in the building by opening into the exposed wall 23 as is apparent from FIGS. 2 and 3 of the drawings.
A roof member 75 (FIG. 1) covers the area enclosed by the walls 21, 22 and 23 and is connected thereto and serves to tie the unit together so that the same will be extremely stable during shipment. The member 75 also serves as a finished ceiling. A forward wall 90, leading inwardly from edge 23a of wall 23, completes the assembly of the utility core.
When the module 10 has been placed on the upright walls and 81 and the suitable connections have been made, the remaining floor slab F for the apartment can be poured in place in the fashion described in Applicants earlier filed application referred to above. The slab 20 of the module has projecting dowels so that when the remaining floor is poured, that floor is tied into the slab.
While a full and complete description of the invention has been set forth in accordance with the dictates of the Patent Statutes, it is to be understood that the invention is not intended to be limited to the specific embodiment herein shown. Accordingly, modifications may be resorted to without departing from the spirit hereof or the scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. In combination with a pair of erected and stabilized parallel, vertical bearing walls, each of which is of one-story height and each of which has a series of vertical voids extending from top to bottom thereof, with said walls being disposed in parallel relationship to each other and at predetermined spacing therebetween, the improvement comprising;
A. a self-contained, pre-assembled utility module adapted to be positioned in spanning relationship to said bearing walls, said module comprising:
1. a generally rectangular concrete slab having a. opposed parallel end surfaces,
opposed parallel side surfaces,
opposed parallel top and bottom surfaces,
substantially uniform thickness i. from said bottom surface to said top surface ii. between said end surfaces iii. between said side surfaces;
2. the distance between said opposed end surfaces of said slab being sufficient to permit said end surfaces of said slab to be supported on not more than half of each said bearing wall, whereby the end portion of another like slab may be positioned on the remaining half of said bearing wall in longitudinal alignment with said slab;
3. the thickness between said top and bottom surfaces being sufficient to support said end portions of said slab on said bearing walls in substantially perpendicular relationship therewith;
4. a full-height enclosure unit secured to the top surface of said slab and a. being of a different material than said slab b. having at least three vertical walls that are i. connected to the top surface of said slab ii. connected to each other in parallel relationship to the side and end surfaces of said slab,
c. roof means adapted to enclose the area of said slab that is surrounded by said walls;
5. said slab and said enclosure unit having adjacent portions thereof specifically contoured for interconnected reception of a utility connection.
6 2. The combination of claim 1 further characterized 3. The combination of claim 2 further characterized by the fact that the distance between said opposed side by the presence of projecting connecting means surfaces of said slab is considerably less than the length adapted to tie said side surfaces of said slab to any siteof said bearing wall, whereby said slab only spans a porpoured concrete adjacent thereto. tion of the length of said bearing walls. 5