US 2731316 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
P, COHEN 2,731,316
CKDOWN WORK TABLE Jan. 1?, 1956 PREFABRICATED METAL-FRAME KNO Filed April 22, 1954 INVENTOR. PHILIP COHEN 0% ran ATTORNEY United States Patent PREFABRICATED METAL-FRAME KNOCKDOWN WORK TABLE Philip Cohen, Philadelphia, Pa. Application April 22, 1954, Serial No. 424,870 8 Claims. (Cl. 311-4) The present invention relates generally to industrial work tables or the like and it relates more particularly to prefabricated knock-down work tables.
An object of the present invention is to provide a novel construction for an industrial work table or the like, having a relatively inexpensive prefabricated knock-down metal frame which can be compactly packaged for convenience in storing and shipping and which can be quickly and easily assembled to give a strong, rigid structure capable of standing up under heavy industrial use. Another object of the present invention is to provide a table of the character set forth wherein a separate sectional top can be separately packaged and subsequently quickly and easily mounted upon the frame, with its edges fully enclosed and protected by the frame and with novel fastening means for securely locking the top sections to the frame in abutting end-to-end relationship.
A further object of the present invention is to provide a prefabricated knock-down work table having a frame made up of individual standard elements, of pressed steel or the like, capable of being compactly packaged for convenience in storing and shipping, which can be quickly and easily assembled to give a continuous, more or less rectangular frame which is sturdy and rigid and capable of standing up under heavy industrial use. Still another object of the present invention is to provide a table of the character set forth having a separate twopiece top of non-warping plywood panels or the like,
with novel means for securely locking the top panels to the frame in abutting end-to-end relationship, with the outer edges of the top panels fully enclosed and protected by the metal frame.
Still a further object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful construction for a prefabricated knock-down metal frame work table having novel structural elements or aprons of pressed steel or the like capable of being secured to corner supporting legs or the like and having inwardly-directed bottom flanges to facilitate the connection of sway-braces thereto, and also having outwardlyand upwardly directed generally L- shaped flanges capable of meeting to form a rnitre corner and adapted to enclose and protect the outer edges of separate top panels of plywood or the like;
Another object of the present invention is to provide a prefabricated knock-down metal frame work table with novel spline means for securing a pair of separate nonmetal top panels to the frame in abutting end-to-end relationship. Other objects and advantages of the present invention are apparentin the following detailed description, appended claims and accompanying drawlngs.
In my Patent No. 2,605,150, granted July 29, I have shown a sectional table made up of metal frame elements of pressed steel or the like capable of being shipped in completely knock-down form, in relatively small packages. In the construction of my aforesaid patent, the structural elements ran be readily assembled to give a frame section whichis adapted to receive and support a non-warping wooden top; any number of such sections being capable of assembly in end-to-end relationship, so as to give a work table of any desired length. The construction of my aforesaid Patent 2,605,150 has proven particularly useful where tables of relatively great length (as for example tables ranging in length from 50 feet to several hundred feet) are needed, as for example in the garment industries.
However, Where relatively shorter tables are needed (as for example tables having a length of 8 to 16 feet), I have found that it is more convenient and less expensive to provide structural frame elements which will fully enclose and protect all of the outer peripheral edges of the separate plywood or other non-metal top panels and which are capable of forming a right-angular mitre corner.
According to the present invention, I have perfected a novel prefabricated knock-down metal frame work table having structural frame members designed particularly for use in relatively shorter length tables, as aforesaid, and constructed and arranged to provide the desired mitre-corner and top panel protection.
I have also perfected a novel spline connection whereby two separate top panels of plywood or other nonmetal can be securely connected, in abutting end-to-end relationship, to intermediate transversely extending members forming part of the metal frame.
For the purpose of illustrating the invention, there is shown in the accompanying drawings one form thereof which is presently preferred and which has been found in practice to give satisfactory results; it being under stood, however, that the present invention is not limited to the precise instrumentalities and arrangements illustrated, and that the several structural. elements can be variously arranged and organized without departing from the spirit or essential attributes of the invention.
Referring to the accompanying drawings in which like reference characters indicate like parts throughout:
Figure .l is a perspective view of a table forming one embodiment of the present invention; parts being broken away better to reveal the construction thereof.
Figure 2 is a fragmentary vertical cross-sectional View, on an enlarged scale, taken generally along the line 2-2 of Fig. 1.
Figure 3 is a fragmentary enlarged perspective view showing one corner of the frame, as it appears before installation of the top panels.
Figure 4 is a fragmentary perspective view showing the centerpart of the frame, including the cross members, as it appears before installation of the top panels.
Figure 5 is a fragmentary perspective view showing the frame of a modified embodiment of the present invention, in which the center supporting legs are eliminated.
One embodiment of the present invention is shown gen erally in Fig. 1. In this embodiment, may provide a prefabricated knock-down generally rectangular frame made up of a number of parts, formed of pressed sheet steel or the like, to be more fully described hereinbelow, which are capable of being compactly packaged for convenience in shipping and storing, and which can be quickly and easily assembled into a strong rigid supporting structure, capable of standing up under heavy industrial use.
The main metal frame elements of the embodiment of Fig. l are as follows: six substantially identical legs 20,
of which four are located at the corners and two are located at the sides; a center top cross bar or brace 22 connecting the upper ends of the center legs 20 in a manner to be more fully described hereinbelow; three lower cross bars or braces 24 connecting the corner legs and the center legs respectively in a manner to be more fully described hereinbelow; two end frame members 26; and two pairsof left and right side frame members 28 and 30 respectively. a I
Each of the legs 20 is of generally U-shaped channel cross-section, as best shown in Figs. 3 and 4, with the main web or base 32 disposed at the side of the table and with the parallel sides. 34. directed inwardly. An extensible" vertically-slotted foot 36, also of U-shaped cross-section, is adjust-ably connected. at the lower end. of each leg'2'0' by means, of bolts 36. to permit the height of the table. tobe varied somewhat and also to permit compensation for unevenness of the floor.
The lower cross bar 2.4,, which are also of U-shaped cross-section but with a slightly narrower web, are adapted to be, fitted. snugly within, the. flanges 34 of the legs 20 and. to be secured to, the legs somewhat above the extensible feet 36 by bolts 42 extending through aligned openings in the: leg flanges. 34. and the brace. flanges 44, as bestindicatedin Fig. 4.
The. center top. brace. 22. which is also of U-shaped crossrsection. has a plurality of, spaced openings 46. formed in its web 48;, the flanges. 50 extending downward from the web. The two ends, of the. center top brace 22 are bent at right angles so: as to provide a pair of downwardly directed portions 52 intended to fit over and enclose the uppermost ends. of the center legs.
The end frame members26. have a main vertically disposed web 5.6 with an: inwardly directed generally horizontal flange 58 formed at the lower edge thereof. At the upper edge of the webv 5.6. there is formed an integral generally L-shaped flange having an outwardly directed generally horizontal portion 60 and an upwardly directed generally vertical portion 62, as best shown in Fig. 3. v
The web 56 is constructed and arranged to fit outside of the endmost flange 34 of. each of the corner legs 20 and tobe connected thereto by a pair of bolts 64 which extend through. aligned openings in the two members, as indicated in Fig, 3. The inwardly directed lower flange 58 terminates somewhat shortv of the ends of the web 56 to accommodate the aforementioned corner leg flange 34,
as also indicated in Fig. 3.
the end of the side frame members as will be more fully described hereinbelow.
A diagonal sway-brace66 is bolted, at one end, to the endmost flange 34 of the corner leg 20, and at the other end, to. the lower flange 58 of the end frame member 26, as shown in Fig. 3, so. as to provide a more rigid connection between each end of the frame. member 26 and the corresponding corner leg 20.
A plurality of spaced holes 68 are provided in the outwardly extending portions 60 of the L-shaped top flange to permit the table top to be connected to the frame member in a manner to be described hereinbelow.
Each of the left. and. right side frame members 28 and 30 has a vertically disposed web 70, an inwardly directed lower flange 72, and an upper generally L-shaped flange including an outwardly directed, generally horizontal portion 74- and an upwardly directed generally vertical portion 76, so that the side frame members have generally the same cross-section as the end frame members, as best indicated in Fig. 3.
The web 70 of each of the side frame members 28 and 30 is adapted to overlie the. web 3.2 of the corresponding corner leg 20, and, is. secured thereto by a plurality of bolts 78., the lower flange 7, 2: terminating somewhat short of the end of the web 7010, accommodate the innermost flange 34- of the leg; as. indicated in Fig. 3..
'The end. of the: outwardly extending portion 74. of the L-shaped topflange is' cutv at a 45-deg-ree angle so that it forms. a QQ-degree. miter. corner. with the corresponding end of the adjoining, frame member 26-.
p The. centermost. ends. of the left. and right side frame members. 28 and 30 are square, cut andare adapted to meet in end-to-end relationship generally at. the center of, and overlying the downwardly bent end 52 of the center top brace 22. Four bolts 54' extend through aligned openings in the web of each of the side frame members 28 and 30, the downwardly bent portion 52 and the upper end of the center leg, so as to interconnect the aforesaid elements, as best shown in Fig. 4.
The centermost ends of the lower flanges 72 of the left and right side frame members 28 and 30 are cutback somewhat to accommodate the center leg, as indicated in Pig. 4.
A pair of diagnal sway braces connect the two flanges 34 of each center leg to the lower flange, 72 of the corresponding side frame member 28 or 30; the ends of the sway braces being suitably bent to abut the flange and being secured thereto by bolts, rivets or other suitable fastening means.
A second pair of diagonal sway braces 82 connect the two flanges 34 of each center leg to the corresponding flanges 50 of the center top brace; the ends of the sway braces 82 to the center leg flanges 34 by the same bolts.
or other fastenings which secure the lower ends of the sway braces 80 to said flanges 34. This not only expedites assembly but also serves to give an extremely rigid and strong connection intermediate the side frame members, the center leg and the center top brace.
Thus, the use of two pairs of sway braces which are angular-1y related (the braces 80 extending generally laterally and upwardly, while the braces 82 extend generally inwardly and upwardly) and which are secured to the center leg flanges at identical points gives a more or less continuous reinforcing structure which has proved to be extremely effective in withstanding both lateral and transverse stresscs, and which can stand up under many years of hard use to which work tables are customarily subjected in industry.
I prefer to provide a pair of rectangular top panels 84 of non-warping plywood or other suitable non-metal. As indicated in Fig. l, the two panels 84 are generally rectangular and, when placed in end-to-end abutting relationship, fit snugly within, the rectangular frame formed 62 and 76, so that, when installed on the assembled frame. 7
as indicated in Fig. 1, the top panels will have their upper surfaces substantially flush with the upper edges of the top flange portions.
in order. to provide a secure and non-shifting interconnection at the abutting edgesof the top panels 84, I provide said edges with spline slots 86 running along the entire length of said abutting edges. A metal spline 38, best shown in Fig. 4- and' having threaded. holes 90 corresponding to the opening 46 in the. web. 48 of the center top brace 22 is constructed and arranged to be fitted within the juxtaposed slots 86' and to be tightened to the center top brace 22 by means of a plurality of threaded bolts 92 directed upwardly through the openings 46 and engaging with the'h oles 90; the unde'rsideof each of the thereby converting the two top panels into what is virtually a single continuous uninterrupted and continuous the two top panels are secured to the top flange portions that, when the spline88 is fitted into the er-k.
60 and 74 by a plurality of screws 96, shown in Fig. 4, directed upwardly through holes 68 and 98 formed in said portions 60 and 74.
All of the metal frame elements of my novel table can be placed in a compact package of relatively small crosssection and of a length just suflicient to accommodate the longest frame elements, which are usually the side frame members 28 and 30 and/or the end frame members 26. It is rather common to construct industrial work tables so that their length is about double their width. In such case, the length of the end frame members and the side frame members is about the same, since there are two of the latter on each side. This obviously makes for greater compactness and efliciency in packaging. The two plywood top panels 84 are, of course, separately packaged in side-by-side relationship so as to give a thin, fiat, easily handled item, which can be conveniently shipped and stored.
In Fig. 5, there is shown a modified embodiment of the novel table of the present invention, which is adapted particularly for use in smaller sizes than the embodiment of Fig. 1.
This embodiment resembles that of Fig. 1 except in those particulars set forth below. Thus, as shown in Fig. 5, in this embodiment the center legs and their connecting braces are eliminated and, in place of the halflength side frame members 28 and 30 described above, I provide full length side frame members 29 which have the same cross-sectional configuration, with a vertical web 70, an inwardly directed lower flange 72, and a generally L-shaped top flange including an outwardly-directed portion 74 and an upwardly-directed portion 76; both ends of the outwardly-directed portion 74 being cut at a 45-degree angle so that 90-degree miter corners are formed with the end frame members 26.
In this embodiment, a single, full-length non-warping top panel 85 is provided, in place of the two half-length top panels 84 of Fig. 1. There is, of course, no longer any need for the center spline connection; the single top panel 85 now being peripherally secured to the frame members 26 and 29 by screws passing upward through the holes 68 and 98, in the manner described hereinabove.
The foregoing embodiments are to be considered, in all respects, merely as illustrative and not restrictive; reference being made to the appended claims as indicative of the scope of the present invention.
Having thus described my invention, I claim as new and desire to protect by Letters Patent the following:
1. A knock-down table comprising a generally rectangular non-metal non-warping top; and a prefabricated sectional frame of pressed steel or the like, said frame including four generally vertical corner legs of U-shaped channel cross-section with a main web disposed at the side of the frame and with a pair of inwardly-directed flanges one of which is disposed at the end of the frame, a plurality of end frame members and side frame members extending generally horizontally between the upper ends of the corner legs and detachably secured thereto, each of said frame members having a generally vertically disposed web and a top flange of generally L-shaped cross-sectional configuration with a horizontal outwardlyextending portion of substantial width and a vertical upwardly-extending portion, means for releasably securing the ends of the side frame members to the outer face oft he main web at the upper end of the corner leg, means for releasably securing the ends of the end frame members to the outer face of the endmost leg flange at the upper end of the corner leg, the corner ends of the outwardly-extending horizontal portions being cut at 45-dagree angles so that the adjoining ends of the end frame members and the side frame members meet to form 90- degree miter corners, the upwardly-extending flange portions forming a generally continuous frame into which the top is adapted to fit in snug generally flush relation- 6 ship; and means for releasably securing the edges of the top to the underlying outwardly-extending top flange portions.
2. A construction according to claim 1 wherein the frame includes a generally vertical center leg intermediate the corner legs on each side of the frame, there being two half-length frame members on each side of the frame with their center ends detachably secured to the upper end of the center leg in aligned end-to-end relationship, the upper ends of the two center legs being connected by a top brace which extends transversely of the table and also serves to support the table top.
3. A construction according to claim 2 wherein two pairs of diagonal sway braces connect each center leg to the top brace and to the half-length side frame members respectively.
4. A construction according to claim 3 wherein each of the legs is of U-shaped cross-section with inwardlydirected flanges, and wherein the top brace is of inverted U-shaped cross-section with downwardly-directed flanges, and wherein one pair of diagonal sway braces extend upwardly and inwardly from the flanges of each center leg to the flanges of the top brace while the other pair of sway braces extend upwardly and divergently from the flanges of the center leg to the lower edge of the two halflength side frame members, both pairs of sway braces being secured to the center leg flanges at the same points to give a counter-braced structure.
5. A construction according to claim 2 wherein the top is made up of two half-length panels with their center edges disposed in abutting relationship above, and supported by, the top brace, and wherein fastening means detachably connect the abutting center edges of the top panels to each other and to the top brace.
6. A construction according to claim 5 wherein the fastening means comprise a spline constructed and arranged to fit into aligned grooves formed along the abutting center edges of the top panels, and a plurality of threaded bolts or the like constructed and arranged to extend upwardly through openings in the top brace and to make adjustable engagement with the spline, the abutting edges of the top panels being recessed along their under sides to accommodate the bolts, tightening of the bolts operating to cause the spline to pull the abutting edges of the top panels together and also locking said abutting edges securely to the top brace.
7. In a table having a prefabricated generally open frame including vertical corner legs and generally horizontal end and side members extending intermediate the upper ends of the legs and including a top brace extending transversely generally at the center of the frame, said table having a separate top made up of two half-length panels with their center edges disposed in abutting relationship above, and supported by, the top brace; fastening means for detachably connecting the abutting edges of the top panels to each other and to the top brace, said fastening means comprising a thin flat elongated spline constructed and arranged to fit into aligned grooves formed along the abutting center edges of the top panels somewhat below the top surface of the panels, and a plurality of individual connecting elements extending upwardly from the top brace and making adjustable engagement with the spline whereby tightening of the connecting elements causing the spline to pull the abutting edges of the top panels together with the spline concealed thereby and also locking the abutting edges securedly to the top brace.
8. A construction according to claim 7 wherein the individual connecting elements comprise threaded bolts or the like which extend upwardly through openings in the top brace, and wherein the abutting edges of the top panels are recessed along their under sides to accommodate the bolts.
(References on following page) References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Gorsline Nov. 13, 1923 Wedge July 15, 1930 Rosenberg July 18, 1939 Rosenberg July 18, 1939 Bales Feb. 9, 1943