US 3591940 A
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United States Patent  Inventor John W. Slemmons 19142 Glen Albyn, Orange, Calif. 92667  Appl. No. 808,591  Filed Mar. 19,1969  Patented July 13,1971
 SUPPORTING FRAME 3 Claims, 19 Drawing Figs.
 U.S.C1 40/125G  G091 7/18  Field ol'Search 40/125 G;
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,297,820 3/1919 Fitzgerald. 40/125 G 1,771,532 7/1930 Ford 40/125 G 1,863,594 6/1932 Glende... 40/125 G 2,069,484 2/1937 Stuebing.... 40/125 G 2,160,456 5/1939 Evans et a1 40/125 G 2,353,625 7/1944 Moore 40/125 G 2,521,604 9/1950 Provost 24/244 2,861,309 11/1958 Saviolides... 24/67 X 3,031,784 5/1962 Stein 40/128 3,399,429 9/1968 Goodman 24/244 X 3,434,686 3/1969 Aoi 24/244 X 3,141,221 7/1964 Faulls 24/243. 10 X FOREIGN PATENTS I s 562.397 40/125 G 6/1944 Great Britain Primary Examiner- Lawrence Charles Attorney-Hinderstein & Silber ABSTRACT: Two opposite edges of a collapsible sheet such asa poster are releasably clamped to previously sized frame members. A spring member also previously sized is wedged between the frame members to force the members apart. As a result, the poster is suspended under tension between the frame members. In other embodiments, the poster may be suspended with only one clamped edge and without the spring member.
PATENTEU JUL 1 3 15m SHEET 1 OF 4 FIG FIG. 4
INVENTOR. JOHN w. summons W11 2 .1
ATTORNEY PATENTED JUL 1 3 l97l 3,591. 940
sum 2 OF 4 INVHNTOR. JOHN W. SLEMMONS F!G.9 I BY M g. W
ATTORNEY PATENTEU JUL 1 31971 SHEET 3 BF 4 INVENTUR JOHN W. SLEMMONS BY 6251x105 9J ATTORNEY PATENTED JUL] 3197! SHEET [1F 4 INVENTOR'. JOHN W. SLEMMONS BY Wfi ATTORNEY SUPPORTING FRAME I BACKGROUND or THE lNvs no 1. Field ofthe Invention I The invention relates to a supporting structure for non selfsupporting forms, and more particularly toeasily assembled, disassembled and reusable supporting frames for posters which are relatively unstable absent a frame or similar support.
2. Description of Prior Art I Posters, prints, scrolls, tapestries and other art forms are not always self-supporting and must be secured to a frame structure or taped orglued to a wall beforethey can be properly displayed. For example, a poster must be fastened to a frame and hung on a wall before it can be viewed. Absent the frame, it would be difficult to display the poster without having it warp, roll, or show wrinkles. It would also be more susceptible to tearing. I I
Notwithstanding the advantages of using frames, several problems result. For example, often a poster must be glued to a frame specifically fabricated for the poster. As a result, the poster may be damaged if it is removed for shipment, storage, replacement, etc. In addition, the frame may not be reusable unless posters of similar size are available. Ordinarily, frames are not easily disassembled so that it is difficult to ship and store the frames. i i I I Posters of different thicknesses also present aproblem Special display frames are often required.
A preferred frame can be easily-assembled and disassembled without damage to the poster. Itshould be compact so that all the members fit inside a mailing tube or similar enclosure for mailing and storage. The frame shouldpermit relatively easy and high-speed framingand hanging of prints, posters, etc. without the necessity for. special assembly tools or slow-drying adhesives. The size of the frame should be somewhat adjustable to fit other posters and to accommodate posters of different thicknesses. The present invention overcomes the problems described above and provides a frame with the preferred features.
SUMMARY or THE INVENTION Briefly, the invention comprises frame means and clamping means for releasably securing at least oneedge of a poster, chart, bulletin, or similar articles tothe frame means. The type of article involved would be relatively unstableabsent a supporting frame. The frame means and the clamping means may be sized to the width of a poster prior to use. One embodiment of the clamp and frame means includes means for preventing article skew. I I I In one embodiment, two opposite edges of a poster are secured to the frame means by the clamping means. A spring member is wedged or clamped between the frame means after the poster edges are clamped to the frame means for suspending the poster under tension between the means. A spring clamp means may be included to secure the spring member in place. The spring member may also be sized before being inserted between the frame means to adjust the tension on the poster. y
In the other embodiments, a plurality of articles are secured by the frame and clamping means.
Therefore, it is an object of this invention to provide a reusable and an easily assembled and disassembled frame for displaying posters and similar articles.
It is another object of this invention to provide a supporting frame for nonsupporting articles which can be disassembled for storage and shipment without damage to the article.
Still another object of this invention is toprovide a frame,
the edges of which can also be used as decoration for the article supported.
Still another object of this invention is to provide a frame which can be sized to the dimensions of a particular art fonn.
:AjSIIIIfUIIhGI object of this invention is to provide an im- ...proved frame for art forms wherein-releasable clamps secure I the art forms to the frame members. 7
Another object of this invention is to provide an article-supporting frame usingan' adjustable spring member to apply tension to-the article.-
. ,.-A;still further-object of this invention is to provide a These and other objectsof thisinvention will becomeapparent from a reading of-the specification in view of the releasable clamp'tothe upper frame member and drawings, a brief description ofwhich follows:
l BRIEF mastitis-non or DRAWINGS FIGJ is a perspective view of one embodiment of an improved frarne in which a posteris 'releasably secured under tension between frame members. I
FIG; la is a cross-sectional view of the FIG. 1 embodiment showing the spring member and the engagement of the I I I poster edge. -FIG. lb in side view of a clamp shown in FIG. 1.
FIG. 2 illustrates an embodiment of a connector used in as- .sembling a'springmember. I I I I I FIG. 3lillustrates anothe rembodiment of a clamp having protrusions along its inner'surfaces for providing additional clamping" force andfor preventing disengagement of the locking member when'assembled; I I FIG. 4 illustrates an end view, partially sectioned, of another embodiment of a clamp fo'r displaying the edge of the member;
' of a clamp havinga toothed poster-engagingchannel.
' FIG. 6- illustrates a perspective view'of a clipon member usable with the FIGS. 4, 5 7 ,8 a'nd 9 embodiments for engaging the spring tensioning member. I
FIG." 7 illustrates mend view, partially sectioned, of a clamp using a rotating membe'rto clamp on a poster.
' FIGLiillustrates an end view of an embodiment of a frame member including a sliding member for clamping a poster. FIG. 9 illustrates an end view of an embodiment of a frame member including slots for the poster edge and the spring FIGI-10 illustrates one end of aframemember including slots for-adjusting the lengthof the locking member.
FIG. 11 illustrates one embodiment of ameansfor hanging aposter. 1 I I v FIGrlZ is an illustration of a flexible sheet type of spring means usable with the frame members for supporting an article. i
FIG'.-- 13 is an illustration of how theinvention can be used to apply tension to posters, etc. along a horizontal axis. 7
FIG. 14 illustrates an invention useda s a support for two articles. i v
FIG. 15 illustrate the invention supporting multiple posters.
F I6. 16 illustrates a clamp for a spring member and a frameengaging receptacle for' suspending articles from a wall. I
FIG. 17 is an end view of a preferred clamp including separated slots for preventing article skew when assembling the frame.
place the poster under tension.
FIG. 1 4 is anend view of a portion of the FIG. l embodirnent showing frame member 2, clamp member 4', the upper' edge 7 of poster 1 and end 8 of spring member 6. The edge 7 of the poster I is clamped against frame member 2 by the spring action of, clamp 4. End 8 of spring member 6 is also clamped inplace against .the bottom surface of frame-member 2 by the clamp 4. Although clamp 4 (see FIG. 1b), is shown as having a U-shape, and the frame an spring members as being circular dowels, other configurations are within the scope of the invention.
When ready to disassemble, the spring member is removed and the clamp legs are flexed outward to release member 2 which eliminates the pressure on the poster. When the pressure is reduced, the poster edge is remove so that a new poster can be displayed. It may also be necessary to disassemble the poster for shipment or for storage.
The clamp 4 may be comprised of plastic produced in the form shown by molding, extruding, vacuum forming, etc. The frame and spring members may be simply made of wood, although metal and plastic are equivalent materials. The clamp could also be stamped from metal or other materials. As shown in the other figures, the frame and clamp members may be integrally produced as a single member.
FIG. illustrates wooden frame member 9 which has a circular cross section and notches 10 at one end of the member. The notches may be spaced, for example, one-half inch apart to permit the member to be easily cut to a size which matches the width of a poster.
Regardless of the configuration of the frame and spring members, they can be easily cut to size, particularly if they are comprised of wood or plastic. A metal member can also be cut although metal clippers or a saw would be required. The spring member is usually cut slightly longer than the length of the poster as clamped to the frame members, so that when the spring member is bowed, the poster is placed under tension.
It is pointed out that the clamp legs can be flexed open to accommodate posters having various thicknesses. In addition, by making the clamps, spring members, and frame members of relatively small, lightweight materials they are relatively compact and can be easily packaged and shipped.
FIG. 11 shows one embodiment of means for hanging the poster on a wall after the members have been assembled. Notch 11 is formed, for example, by cutting the clamp 4 near its center. A looped string 40 with the knotted end inserted in the notch may be used to hang and display the poster.
FIG. 2 illustrates connector 41 which may be a plastic cylinder having a diameter equal to the diameter of a spring member. In certain cases, it is desirable to frame a poster having a relatively long length. In those cases, it is not practical to have a single spring member. Therefore, two shorter members can be used to form a longer member by inserting the ends of the spring members into connector 41, as shown.
FIG. 3 illustrates a clamp 12 which is similar to clamp 4 except for the inclusion of protrusions 13 and 13' along the inner surfaces of the clamp. Tip 15 of the clamp is formed at an angle relative to the clamp so that it can be easily flexed to permit disassembly of the poster 16 from the frame. Frame member 17 is secured within the area bounded by the protrusions. End 18 of the spring member 19 is also engaged by clamp 12.
FIG. 4 illustrates a preferred embodiment of a clamp 20 which permits the edge 21 of frame member 22 to be viewed with the display of poster 23. As a result, the aesthetic qualities of the frame member can be used to enhance the poster display.
Frame member 22 has a circular cross section which is pressed into the mating receptacle 2 4 of clamp 20. The receptacle is curved slightly inward at its tip portion 25 so that the frame member is firmly gripped in the receptacle. In addition, the bottom 14 of the receptacle includes a U-shaped slot which acts as a hinge to permit the curved portion t0 flex and unflex without breaking The clamp 20, which may be produced from plastic, includes channel 26 in its bottom portion 27. The channel 26 may be formed with teeth 28 for improving the clamping force on the poster 23 in the channel.
The poster 23 is inserted into the channel 26 prior to pressing the frame 22 into the receptacle 24. When the frame 22 is pressed into the receptacle 24, the space formed by the channel is reduced for pressing down on the surfaces of the poster 23.
In addition, slot 29 is formed in curved receptacle portion 30 for receiving the end of a spring member (not shown). In order to produce the clamp 20 with relatively small dimensions, the spring member should be made from metal. As a result, the width of the slot could be made smaller. It is pointed out that the spring clip shown in FIG. 6 could also be adapted for use with the FIG. 4 embodiment that the slot 29 could be eliminated.
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional end view of a combination frame and clamp member 31 comprising centrally located and toothed channel 32 for clamping poster 33 inside the channel. The poster edge is pushed inside the opening and when pulled downward, the toothed surfaces 34 and 34' clamp the poster inside the channel 32. Spring engaging clamp 35 includes clip 36 which snaps on the bottom portion 31 of member 31. The clamp 35 has a width, or spacing, slightly less than the diameter of a spring member so that when the spring member is inserted, the clamp 35 holds it in place. The length of clamp 35 is substantially narrower than the length of the clamp and frame member 31. Protruding edge 37 is provided so that clamp 35 can be easily flexed for disassembling the poster 33 from member 31.
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of clamp 35 (see FIG. 5) showing the clip 36 and protruding edge 37. The protruding edge, as previously described, permits the clamp to be fixed for removing the poster from the frame.
FIG. 7 is an embodiment of a clamp member 4 and frame member 44 enclosed within central opening 43. The frame member 44, in the form of a toothed pawl, is disposed inside the opening 43 so that when poster 45 is inserted through channel 46 into the opening 43 and pulled downward, the toothed edge of the pawl (frame member 44) holds the poster against the inside surface of the clamp member 42. Slot 47 is also provided for the spring member (not shown). Clip 35 of FIG. 6 could also be used.
FIG. 8 illustrates an embodiment of clamp member 48 and frame member 50 enclosed within opening 49 of the clamp member. The frame member 50 is in the form of a toothed wedge which mates with the configuration of the opening 49. When the poster 51 is inserted inside the opening 49, the member 50 is pushed upward. When the poster is pulled downward, the teeth of the member 50 clamp the poster against the inner surface of opening 49 for holding the poster in place. Slot 52 is provided for the spring member (not shown) Alternatively, clip 35 of FIG. 6 could be used.
FIG. 9 is an embodiment of a clamp-frame combination 53 in which the poster edge 54 is folded over and inserted into channel 55 in the top portion of the combination. The channel width is approximately the thickness of the poster. The poster is held inside the channel by the friction of the poster surface against the channel surface and the top edges of the combination member. Slot 57 is provided for the spring member (not shown) or for clip 35 of FIG. 6.
FIG. 12 illustrates a different embodiment of the spring means 6 shown in FIG. 1. The spring means 58 of FIG. 12 is comprised of a continuous sheet of a flexible material such as plastic. It is assembled for placing poster 59 under tension, as described in connection with FIG. 1. The sheet is bent slightly and its upper and lower edges are inserted inside clamps 60 and 61. The sheet is released and the poster is placed under tension.
FIG. 13 illustrates a different application of a FIG. 1 supporting frame. Instead of the frame members being disposed in a horizontal direction and the spring members disposed in a vertical direction, the directions are reversed. Frame members 62 and 63 with clamps 64 and 65 engage the edges of the poster 66 along a vertical axis. The spring member 67 is inserted between the clamps along a horizontal axis. String 68 is affixed to the center of the spring member for permitting the poster to be hung, for example, on a wall.
FIG. l4 illustrates an application of the invention for supporting two posters simultaneously without the necessity for using additional clamps. frame and spring members. Opposite edges of two posters 69 and 70 are inserted inside clamps 71 and 72 when the legs ofthe clamps are flexed open. After the poster edges are inserted inside. frame members 73 and 74 are pushed inside the clamps to secure the poster edges to the sides of the frame members. Spring member 750 is inserted (slightly bowed) between the clamps with is ends contacting the bottom surfaces of frame members 73 and 74 to place posters 69 and 70 under tension.
FIG. is an illustration of the invention used for supporting four posters 75, 76, 77 and 78. The edges of posters 75 and 76 are inserted into clamp 79 and clamped against frame member 80. The other edge of poster 76 and one edge of poster 77 are clamped inside clamp 81 against frame member 82. The other edge of poster 77 and one edge of poster 78 are clamped inside clamp 83 against frame member 84. The other edge of poster 78 and the remaining edge of poster 75 are clamped inside clamp 85 against frame member 86 to complete the supporting frame.
Spring member 87 (slightly bowed) is disposed between clamp 85 and clamp 81 and spring member 88 is disposed between clamps 79 and 83 for placing the four posters under tension. As shown by the figure, the frame member and clamp are vertically disposed and the spring members are horizontally disposed. String 89 is tied to the crossover point of spring members 87 and 88. 1
Although FIG. 15 illustrates a continuous supporting frame for four posters, it should be understood that a plurality of posters can be similarly supported by increasing the number of clamps, frame members and spring members. If the number of posters increases by an equal number, i.e. six, eight, l0, etc., only one extra spring member and two extra clamps and frame members are needed for each two extra posters. If the increase is by an odd number, i.e. five, seven, nine, etc., then the spring member arrangement shown in FIG. 15 must be modified slightly. The spring members w0uld have to extend between each set of clamps and frame members as shown in FIG. 13, with one extra spring member disposed diagonally, as shown in FIG. 15, for added support in that axis and to provide a connecting location for hanging the frame.
The FIG. 15 embodiment was described in terms of supporting posters, etc. It is pointed out, however, that the posters could be replaced by translucent panels and a light suspended from the intersection of the spring members for implementing a lamp. Suitable conductors could be connected to the lamp and could be used to support the lamp from, for example, a ceiling. Other uses and similar embodiments are also within the scope of this invention.
FIG. 16 illustrates two posters 95 and 96 which have two of their opposite edges clamped against frame members 94 and 97 by clamp means 98 and 99. Spring member 100 is wedged between the frame members with a slight bow to place the posters under tension.
Adapters I01 and 101' are clipped onto the frame members near the center of the members for holding the spring member in place between the frame members. Each of the adapters 101 and 101' includes clamp members 103 and 103' that fit securely around the circumference of the frame members. Openings 102 and 102 (not clearly shown) are provided through the top surfaces of the adapters I01 and 101' for receiving the ends of the spring member 100 so that the spring member is less susceptible to slipping or being jarred loose from the engagement between the frame members.
End portion 93 of frame member 94 extends out of clamp 98 and mates with socket 91 of frame holder 90. The frame holder includes base 92 which is secured to a surface such as a wall or post from which the posters are to be displayed. The base maybe secured to a wall by nails, screws, an adhesive, or other suitable means.
It is pointed out that the FIG. 16 embodiment could be used to display posters, etc. without the necessity for the frame member 97, clamp 99, adapters 101, 101' and spring member 100. For that embodiment, one o both of the posters and 96 would hang from clamp 98 and frame member 94. The weight ofthe poster, etcv would enable it to hang freely.
FIG. 17 illustrates another preferred embodiment of a clamp member, clamp 104. The clamp 104 includes separated channels 107 and 107' for preventing the skewing of posters 105 and 106 inside the clamp. In the usual case. several adjustments are required before a poster is evenly clamped against a frame member. Skewing usually results because the edge of the poster is free to assume any position within a clamp. In the FIG. 17 embodiment, skewing is eliminated by providing clamp 104 with the channel 107 which has a width for accommodating the thickness of poster 105. The poster edge can only be pushed inside the channel as far as the bottom. When frame member 108 is pressed inside clamp 104, an outward pressure is exerted so that the poster is prevented from moving. The frame member 108 does not exert a frictional force on the poster when being inserted because of leg member 109. The frictional force is extended against leg member 109. The poster is secured inside the separate channel 107. The leg 1 member 109 is relatively longer than the outer clamp leg 11 to make it easier to insert the frame member 108 inside the clamp.
Protrusion 110 is provided along the top inner surface of clamp 104 for preventing the frame member from being pressed too far inside the clamp. At the position shown, pressure is exerted outwardly against the poster for securing the poster inside the clamp.
Clamp 104 also includes leg member 109' adjacent to channel 107' in which poster 106 is secured. Outer leg clamp 111 is also shown.
Both sides of the clamp 104 are symmetrical. The channels and leg members extend the length of the clamp which is equal to the width of the poster. Ordinarily, the clamp 104 is formed during a single extrusion process. It is pointed out that although clamp 104 is shown for securing two posters, only one channel and leg member need be provided in other embodiments in which it is desired to secure only a single poster. In addition, the clamp member for gripping the opposing poster edge and spring-tensioning member such as shown in previous figures has been omitted from FIG. 17 for convenience. It should be obvious that a spring member and another clamp member are required to implement structure as shown for example in FIG. 1. It should be equally obvious that where it is desired to let the poster, etc. hang by its own weight or an added weight such as an additional clamp, a spring member is not required. In that case, it would be necessary to hang the poster-clamp combination by means such as that shown in FIGS. 16, 14 or 11.
In other embodiments, the channels 107 and 107 could be formed without the width shown in FIG. 17 In that case, the edge of the article being supported would be wedged between the two legs which would be joined together in a V-shape.
1. A frame for a poster or like article comprising:
an elongate clamp member having generally U-shaped cross section including a pair of outer legs and provided with at least one inner leg separated from the inner surface of an outer leg to form a longitudinally extending channel, an edge of said article being insertable within said channel, and
a dowel, the diameter of said dowel being slightly greater than the interior width of said clamp member, insertion of said dowel within said clamp member subsequent to insertion of said article into said channel clamping said article to said frame.
2. The combination recited in claim 1 wherein said channel has a width at least equal to the thickness of an article to be supported, thereby preventing said article from being skewed when said dowel is inserted within said clamp member.
3. The combination recited in claim 2 including a second inner leg separated from the inner surface of the other outer leg to form a second longitudinally extending channel inside said clamp member for receiving an edge of another article.
Citations de brevets