US 3704674 A
A flat topped support useable as a table and as a seat is made of lumber. A top is made of a plurality of short boards side-by-side and two spaced apart wood strips which extend across the undersides of the boards and is secured to all of them. The edges of the strips that face each other are undercut to form channels or recesses. Two or more pairs of crossed wooden legs support the top. A pivot bolt pivotally secures the legs of each pair together. Outside the legs at the top of the leg pairs a brace board connects the adjacent pairs and seat in the recesses. A locking bar is suspended from the top midway between the strips by a coiled spring and has its ends notched to provide seats for the lower edges of the brace boards. The spring is of such length that it is under tension when the notches of the bar seat on the lower edges of the brace boards. Lower brace boards may be used to hold the spacing between adjacent pairs.
Description (Le texte OCR peut contenir des erreurs.)
United States Patent Johnson [541 FOLD-UP FLAT TOPPED SUPPORTS  App1.No.: 186,189
I52] US. Cl. ..l08/ll8, 108/157, 108/159 151 1 Int. Cl. ..A47b 3/02  Field of Search ..108/l57, 159,118,124;
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 5/1910 McGuigan ..l08/l57X 1/1915 M01161 ..l08/l57 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS Germany ..l08/l18 51 Dec. 5, 1972 Primary Examiner.1ames C. Mitchell AttorneyGreek Wells et al.
 ABSTRACT A flat topped support useable as a table and as a seat is made of lumber. A top is made of a plurality of short boards side-by-side and two spaced apart wood strips which extend across the undersides of the boards and is secured to all of them. The edges of the strips that face each other are undercut to form channels or recesses. Two or more pairs of crossed wooden legs support the top. A pivot bolt pivotally secures the legs of each pair together. Outside the legs at the top of the leg pairs a brace board connects the adjacent pairs and seat in the recesses. A locking bar is suspended from the top midway between the strips by a coiled spring and has its ends notched to provide seats for the lower edges of the brace boards. The spring is of such length that it is under tension when the notches of the bar seat on the lower edges of the brace boards. Lower brace boards may be used to hold the spacing between adjacent pairs.
3 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures 1 FOLD-UP FLAT TOPPED SUPPORTS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION A search of the prior patents in this field disclosed the following U.S. Patents as most closely approaching the invention disclosed herein:
Gordon 316,142 Fisher 521,211 Abraham 1,237,269 Reid 326,455 Garret 867,816 Smith 1,706,192 Morgan 393,339 McGingan957,439 Parmelee 3,229,735
The novel features of the present invention over the teachings of these prior patents appear to lie in the cooperation of the parts in securing the top and supporting legs firmly together when the structure is erected and in the way they separate into two flattened units for storage.
It is the purpose of this invention to provide a fold-up flat topped support wherein the flat top of the support is composed of short boards laid side-by-side and secured together by two spaced apart parallel wood strips each secured to each of the boards at or near one end thereof, and, this top is secured firmly to a plurality of pairs of pivotally joined crossed legs, by means of brace boards interconnecting the corresponding legs of the leg pairs, the brace boards being spread against the side edges of the wood strips where they are held in spread condition by a locking bar notched to receive the lower edges of the brace boards and spring them out against the edges of the wood.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a flat topped support embodying my invention and adapted to be used as a table;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of another flat topped support such as may be used as a bench with the table of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an end view of the support shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged sectional view taken on the line 44 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is an enlarged sectional view taken along line 55 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 6 is an end view of the top unit of the support;
FIG. 7 is an end view of the leg unit of the support;
FIG. 8 is a plan view showing the leg unit flattened and stored on the top unit which is turned over with respect to FIG. 1; and
FIG. 9 is an end view of a series of short benches or stools stacked together.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION The present device is a flat topped support with a leg unit which carries the flat top unit at the desired height. In the drawings, FIGS. 1 and 2; the adaptability of the support is illustrated by the same constructional features being used for a picnic table and for a bench or seat to be used with the table. The construction is such as to utilize generally short and small pieces of lumber which has generally been considered of little value at the lumber mills. The pieces may be boards either glued together as in plywood or finger-jointed short pieces or otherwise built up scrap pieces of lumber.
The top unit 1 is made up of a plurality of boards 2 laid side-by-side and two wood strips 3 which are alike.
These strips 3 are extended across the boards 2 next to the ends thereof and secured to each board by fasteners 4. The strips 3 are undercut or bevelled on the narrow surfaces 3a that face toward each other to provide with the boards secured thereto a V-shaped recess or channel 5.
The leg units of the support are made up of pairs 6 of narrow wood boards 7 and 8 which cross each other and are pivotally secured to each other about midway between their ends by pivot bolts 9 with wing nuts 10. Any other suitable pivot member obviously may be used. Two or more pairs 6 are secured to each other at their top ends by outside brace boards 11 and 12. These boards and the tops and bottoms of the boards 7 and 8 are bevelled as indicated so that the top edges 11a and 12a of the boards seat in the channels 5. These bevelled end surfaces are substantially parallel, the top end surfaces engaging the undersurfaces of the boards 2. 1
The engagement of the edges Ila and 12a in the channels 5 gives solid support of the top 1 on the leg pairs 6. However, the top 1 can easily be dislodged by lifting it. In order to complete the locking of the parts together a locking bar 13 is suspended from the top 1 and is provided with notches l4 and 15 at its ends to engage the lower edges of the brace boards 11 and 12. The bar 13 is of such length that its notches receive and hold the boards 11 and 12 firmly in the channels 5 so the top 1 cannot be lifted off top edges 11a and 12a of the brace boards 11 and 12. To keep the bar 13 in position a coiled spring 16 has one end secured to the underside of one of the boards 2 by an eye-screw l7 and its other end is secured to the bar 13 by an eye screw 18. The length of the spring 16 is such that it is under tension when the notches 14 and 15 engage the brace boards 11 and 12. The spring 16 need not be strong for it only carries the weight of the bar 13.
Foot supports 19 and 20 are often desired in a picnic table and are shown in FIGS. 1, 3 and 7. They serve to further reinforce the connection between leg pairs.
When the support is to be stored, the top 1 is used as a base upon which the leg units are placed. These leg units can be folded on the pivot bolts 9 until they are parallel. The outside brace board 12 rests on the boards 2 as shown in FIG. 8. The foot supports 20 also rest on the boards 2 with the leg pairs 6 extending across the strips 3. Thus, several of the units can be laid flat one on top of the other or they may he leaned against a wall with the right hand ends of the boards 2 on the floor adjacent to the wall. The stool units illustrated in FIG. 2 can be stored in the same way as the table shown in FIGS. 1 and 8. Also, if the stool units are short enough that two leg pairs 6 are used to support one stool top 1 and the distance between leg pairs is small enough they may be stacked as shown.
When erected as shown, the tops 1 are supported firmly. The brace boards 11 and 12, seating in the channels 5 and wedging there due to the weight of the top 1 tending to spread the legs 7 and 8 more, lock the leg pairs 6 and the top I together. When the locking bar 13 is in place the support can be picked up by grasping the top 1 and moved about.
All of the cuts that have to be made in the several boards and pieces are such that they can be made by a simple sawing operation since there are no inserts of one piece into another. The boards 2, 7, 8, 11 and 12 and the strips 3 need not be of any particular width and the thickness of boards in the leg units may vary considerably. This enables the use of much lumber that otherwise falls in the category of scrap lumber having very little value.
The invention, for which patent protection is sought, is defined in the following claims.
I claim: 1. A flat topped support useful for outdoor furniture, comprising:
a flat top piece made up of boards arranged side-byside; two spaced apart parallel wood strips, one strip engaging the underside of the top piece near one of the ends of the boards and the other strip engaging the underside of the top piece near the other end of the boards; means securing each of the boards to both strips; a plurality of pairs of wooden legs crossing each other intermediate their ends;
a pivot bolt passing through both legs of each pair where they cross each other and pivotally securing the legs of the pair together",
an outside brace board fixed to each leg of one pair and extending from that leg of one pair to the corresponding leg of the next adjacent pair whereby to connect the pairs of legs together;
the top edges of said brace boards seating against the facing edges of the strips and the top piece adjacent thereto; and
a locking bar having notched ends engaging the lower edges of the brace boards and holding the top edges of the brace boards against the top piece.
2. The structure defined in claim 1 wherein the facing edges of the strips are undercut where they receive the top edges of the brace boards engaged therewith.
3. The structure defined in claim 1 with spring means under tension securing the locking bar to the top piece;
Citations de brevets