US 3348628 A
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Oct. 24, 1967 G. E. WON Em. 3,348,628
ACOUSTICAL FOLDING DOOR Filed May 14, 1965 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Guy E Dixon Thomas M Dixon Russell Geyer IN VEN TORS Oct. 24, 1967 DIXON T 3,348,628
ACOUSTICAL FOLDING DOOR Filed May 14, 1965 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 \lj kg 1 i 0 i ,5: Q A '-Q\ I n Q; s" w w U Q g Guy E. Dixon Thomas M. Dixon Russell Geyer' INVENTORS BY V United States Patent ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOURE A folding door constructed from two parallel and spaced folding panel assemblies with each assembly including a plurality of rigid panels interconnected along their vertical edges by a continuous flexible hinge strip so that each panel assembly may move between a retracted position in which the rigid panels are stacked alongside of each other to an extended position in which the rigid panels are disposed in an accordion folded position. The two parallel and spaced panel assemblies are interconnected at the points thereof which are adjacent to each other by a rigid member having the ends thereof pivoted to the edge portions of a pair of rigid panels. The rigid connecting member is provided with a supporting roller assembly attached to the center thereof for engagement with an overhead trackway and the panel assemblies each have sealing members at the ends thereof to provide a double walled insulating door for reducing transmission of sound, light, air and heat through the door.
The present invention relates generally to a folding door structure of the acoustical type which employs a sound insulating or retarding structural arrangement.
Folding doors are employed for various purposes and in some instances, it is desirable to use such folding doors in areas where sound insulation or retardation is desirable. Heretofore, folding doors of this type have included a framework consisting of lazy tong assemblies covered with a flexible covering material and provided with sound insulating panels supported from the frame. Such structures are relatively expensive in view of the complex nature of the lazy-tong assemblies. Further, the flexible covering material sometimes wrinkles, sags and is subject to damage when used in certain installations. In view of the foregoing, it is the primary object of the present invention to provide a sound insulating accordion-type folding door structure which, in effect, includes a pair of foldable doors with rigid panels forming each of the folding doors and with the panels being supported by interconnecting hinge structures which not only facilitate relative pivotal movement of the panels in each panel assembly but enable the panel assemblies to move in relation to each other thereby enabling a folding door of this type to be readily moved from the contracted or folded position to the extended or unfolded condition while presenting a very attractive appearance in view of the rigid structure and one which is quite dependable, long lasting and trouble-free due to the simplicity of the supporting plate and hinge assembly for the rigid panels.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a rigid panel assembly used in a double accordion fold door interconnected by flexible hinge strips and a continuous insulating member for sound-deadening purposes with the hinge strip forming a finished appearance to the edges of the rigid panel throughout the range of pivotal movement of the panels.
Another object of the present invention resides in its simplicity of construction, long-lasting and trouble-free operation and a construction which not only enhances the appearance characteristics but effectively insulates against passage of sound and heat.
3,348,628 Patented Oct. 24, 1967 These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:
FIGURE 1 is an elevational view illustrating the folding door of the present invention installed in an opening desired to be closed thereby;
FIGURE 2 is a plan view taken generally along a plane passing along section line 2-2 of FIGURE 1, on an enlarged scale, illustrating the orientation of the structural components of the invention when in the unfolded or extended position;
FIGURE 3 is a plan view similar to FIGURE 2 but with the door in the folded or retracted position for illustrating the orientation of the components;
FIGURE 4 is a transverse, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 4-4 of FIGURE 2 illustrating the structure of the supporting track and the hinge structure which interconnects the panels across the space between the two sides of the folding door;
FIGURE 5 is a detailed sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 55 of FIGURE 4 illustrating further structural details of the supporting hinge structures and their relationship to the overhead trackway;
FIGURE 6 is an enlarged fragmental plan view of the end of the folding door fixedly attached to a door frame;
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged plan view illustrating the head post structure and its relationship to the door jamb; and
FIGURE 8 is a fragmental sectional view illustrating the construction of the sweep-type air sails at the top and bottom of the folding door.
Referring now specifically to the drawings, the numeral 10 generally designates the folding door assembly of the accordion fold type having acoustical properties for insulating against passage of sound and inherently against passage of heat. The folding acoustical door is installed in an opening in a building structure that is defined by vertical frames 12 and 14 and horizontal frames or surfaces 16 and 18 respectively which may be the floor and ceiling or which may be framing structures built into an area to be sub-divided or the like for receiving the folding door 10. The folding door 10 extends between a stationary frame member 20 at the vertical frame 12 and a stationary jamb 22 attached to the vertical frame 14 in a conventional manner so that when the door 10 is in the extended position illustrated in FIGURE 2, the space between the frames 12 and 14- and the surfaces 16 and 18 is closed. When the door 10 is orientated in its retracted position illustrated in FIGURE 3, the area defined by the frame members and surfaces will be open. The over-all width and height of the door may vary depending upon the installational requirements.
The folding door 10 includes, in effect, two folding panel assemblies 24 and 26 which are substantially identical to each other and are interconnected at spaced points. Each folding panel assembly includes a plurality of elongated rigid panels 28 constructed of insulating material such as Wood or a pressed board or hard board having a wood veneer laminated thereon to provide a wood finish exteriorly of each panel 28. Each of the panels 28 is longitudinally and transversely continuous and each longitudinal edge thereof is provided with a groove 30 having an undercut bottom for receiving a flexible hinge strip member 32 such as that illustrated in copending application Ser. No. 268,785, filed Mar. 28, 1963 for Foldable Door with Hollow Double Hinge, now Patent No. 3,232,-
J 333. Other types of sealing strips may be employed such as shown in prior Patent No. 3,131,753, issued May 5, 1964, disclosed in copending application Ser. No. 250,647 filed I an. 10, 1963, for Folding Door with Flexible Joint, and Patent No. 2,579,910 issued Dec. 25, 1951.
Extending along the inner surface of the rigid panels 28 is a continuous insulating member 34 of flexible material such as foam rubber, foam plastic, felt or the like which is in sheet form and cellular in construction and attached to the inner surface of the panels 28 and across the interior of the hinge strips 32 as illustrated in Various figures of the drawings with the insulating panel 34 forming a sound barrier. Adjacent the upper end of each of the panel assemblies 24 and 26, the panel assemblies are articulately interconnected by connecting assemblies 36 which are disposed at alternate joints between panels 28. At the lower ends of the panel assemblies 24 and 26, the assemblies are interconnected by an articulate connection 38 for controlling the relative movement between the panel assemblies 24 and 26.
As illustrated specifically in FIGURES 4 and 5, each connected assembly 36 includes a rigid connecting plate 40 having a notch 42 in the upper edge thereof for partially receiving an overhead track 44 secured to the top surface 18 in any suitable manner. The track 44 is generally channel-shaped in configuration with inwardly and upwardly turned free edges 46 thereon to define a slot 48 movably receiving an elongated support rod 50 which extends upwardly therethrou-gh and which extends downwardly through a plurality of partial cylindrical projections 52 that are struck oppositely from the plate 40 to form a cylindrical socket for pivotally supporting the plate 40 on the mounting rod 50 by virtue of a retaining nut 54 threaded onto the lower end of the rod 50. Theupper end of the rod 50 extends through an axle or shaft 56 having supporting wheels or rollers 58 thereon thus forming a carriage for supporting the connecting means 36 which in turn movably supports the panels and the entire door when being folded or unfolded.
At each outer end of the plate 40, supporting plates 60 are connected thereto by hinge structures 62. The hinge barrels may be formed integrally with the hinge plate 60 and the connecting plate 40 or the hinge structure may be provided with a flange 64 integral with the hinge barrels with the flange 64 in turn being connected to the hinge plates 60. Regardless of the connection, the hinge plates 60 are pivotally attached to the connecting plate 40 for relative pivotal movement about a vertical axis defined by hinge pins 66. The hinge plates 60 are secured to the inner surface of the panels 28 by suitable fasteners 68 which also extend through and secure the insulating sheet material member 34 in place.
The lower connecting assembly 38 includes a transversely extending connecting bar 70 having a hinge pin 72 extending through each end thereof and extending downwardly into a hinge barrel 74 for pivotally connecting the pivot bar 70 to pivot plates 76 corresponding to the plates 60 which are secured to the panels 28 as by fasteners 78. The hinge barrels 74 may be formed integral with the hinge plate 76 or on a separate flange 80 connected to the hinge plate 76 and the panel 28 as by fasteners 82. The length of the bar 70 is equal to the length of the plate 40 so that the hinge axis defined by the hinge pins 56 coincides with the hinge axis defined by the hinge pins 72. Thus, the two panel assemblies 24 and 26 are articulately interconnected at the upper end and at the lower end thereof with the upper connecting plate being rotatably supported from a depending support rod 50 for rolling movement on the supporting trackway 44. When the folding door is retracted or stacked in the position illustrated in FIGURE 3, the connecting plate 40 and hinge plate 60 are generally in alignment but when the door is extended, then the hinge plates pivot into an angular relation to the connector plate 40 as illustrated in FIG- URE 2. The hinge plates 60 and 76 extend substantially throughout the width of the panels but are not connected to each other. The extent of the hinge plates in relation to the width of the panels may vary in that the hinge plates may in some instances only extend partially across the width of the panel 28.
For eliminating the pulling tension from being applied to the hinge strips 32, the supporting rods 50 between adjacent carriages are interconnected by a flexible tension member such as a chain 84 that is secured to the lower end of each of the rods 50 as by a retaining nut 86 jamming one link of the chain 84 against the retaining nut 54 as illustrated in FIGURE 5. When the door is moved from a collapsed position of FIGURE 3, the chains 84 will transfer the tension from the first connector plate or supporting rod to the next adjacent supporting rods 50 so that excessive forces will not be exerted against the hinge strips 32 and other components of the door.
The stationary frame member is provided with a pair of trim panels 88 which have grooves therein 90 corresponding to the grooves 30 for receiving a flange on a sealing strip 32. As illustrated, the sealing strip 32 is inverted in relation to the sealing strip at the next adjacent juncture between panels 28. Thus, alternate sealing strips either face inwardly or face outwardly depending upon the manner in which the panels move in relation to each other when moving to the unfolded position from the folded position. Also, the insulating member 34 is continuous across the stationary frame member 20 is indicated at 92 and is continuous under the hinge plate 60 as illustrated in FIGURE 6.
As illustrated in FIGURE 7, the lead post is generally designated by numeral 94 and includes a pair of panels 96 and 98 which are rigid and which have handle structures 100 mounted thereon for enabling opening and closing of the folding door. As illustrated, the insulating panel 34 extends alOng the inner surface of the panels 96 and the hinge strip 32 is in the same orientation as where the rigid panels 28 join with the stationary frame member 20 and the trim members 88. A suitable latch mechanism for securing the door into the door jamb 22 is provided within the lead post 94 and the details thereof are of no significance insofar as the present invention is concerned except that an operating handle 102 is provided for operating the latch mechanism.
Interconnecting the edges of the panels 96 and 98 at the outer free edge thereof is a generally V-shaped longitudinal member 104 having outwardly extending flanges 106 extending across the face edge of the panels 96 and terminating in a finishing or trim flange 108. Attached to the outer face of the flange 106 is a hollow sealing strip 110 which is generally perpendicular to the direction of movement of the lead post 94 during opening and closing movement. The door jamb 22 is provided with a corresponding V-shaped projection 112 having laterally extending flanges 114 associated therewith for engagement by the sealing strips 110 as illustrated in FIGURE 7. The jamb 22 may be secured in place in any suitable manner and the jamb 112 is also provided with a transverse member 116 orientated in opposition to a transverse member 118 on the lead post 94. The transverse member 118 is provided with openings 120 and a hollow sealing strip 122 is mounted on the transverse member 116 for sealing engagement with the flange 118. Also, the latch mechanism will project through corresponding openings in the flange 118, seal strip 122 and flange 116 for locking the door in closed position. This arrangement of seals will effectively seal the lead post edge of the door when it is in closed position in relation to the jamb 22.
For sealing the top and bottom edge of the panel assemblies, there is provided a flexible panel of sheet plastic material or the like designated by numerals 122 and 124 respectively which are disposed interiorly and exteriorly of the continuous panel 34 and which projects above the top edge of the door and below the bottom edge of the door for sealing engagement with the surfaces 18 and 16 respectively in a sweeping manner for sealing the door against passage of sound, air, light and the like. The continuous insulating strip 34 may be stopped flush with the top edge of the panel 28 or project slightly thereabove to provide some degree of rigidity to the panels 122 and 124. As illustrated in FIGURE 4, the strip 34 extends throughout the width of each of the hinge plates 60 and 76 as does the panels 122 and 124. If desired for insulation purposes, the strip 3 3 may be a continuous sheet member from top to bottom of the panels 28. An additional means of insulating the doors where deemed desirable for insulation against sound, heat or the like may be provided by attaching an additional layer of insulation material 126 against the inner surface of each of the panels 128. Such insulation material 126 may be glued or otherwise bonded to the panel 28 for providing a greater degree of insulation depending upon the requirements of each individual installation.
Due to the change in volume enclosed by the door when in its retracted position illustrated in FIGURE 3 as compared with its extended position illustrated in FIGURE 2, means is provided for the escape of air from the interior of the door when the door is being opened and also for inlet of air when the door is being closed. This is accomplished by providing a top sealing surface 18 which extends to both sides of the track 44 but terminates inwardly of the outermost extremity of the door when in its retracted position. The width of the top surface 18 and possibly also the bottom surface 16 is designated by dotted line in FIGURE 3. Thus, as soon as the continuous strips or panels 122 and 124 are outwardly beyond the edge of the surface 18 as illustrated in dotted line in FIGURE 4, then air can egress from the interior of the door as indciated by the dotted line in FIGURE 4 since there will then be a space between the top edge of the door and the adjacent ceiling which is above the plane of the surface 18. Thus, when the door is in the normally closed or extended position illustrated in FIGURE 4, the panels 122 and 124 engage the surface 18 thus forming a continuous seal. However, upon only a relatively small movement toward the open position, and before a substantial pressure has been built up in the door, the sealing flaps 122 and 124 will partially ride off the edge of the sealing surface 18 thus venting the interior of the door. The opposite effect is accomplished when the door is being closed to prevent the buildup of a vacuum within the interior of the door. The same arrangement may be provided on the bottom of the door and other variations may be provided for venting the interior of the door. For example, the head post may be provided with a plurality of vertically orientated openings such as the opening 120 illustrated in FIGURE 7 for venting through the head post. Further, check valve arrangements may be provided in the provided in the panels 96 or hit or in any of the other panels for venting the door. Moreover, vent facilities may be provided through the header and track or through the floor surface 16.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.
What is claimed as new is as follows:
1. An acoustical folding door consisting of a pair of folding panel assemblies orientated alongside of and spaced from each other with each panel assembly including a plurality of rigid panels orientated in edge toedge relation and provided with a hinge strip interconnecting adjacent edges and forming a seal therebetween, means supporting said assemblies from a trackway for movement from an extended accordion folded condition to a retracted collapsed condition, said means including means articulately interconnecting the assemblies whereby the assemblies will move from the extended to the retracted position generally in a simultaneous manner, the endmost panels of each panel assembly being interconnected and adapted for engagement with the periphery of an opening, and means at the upper and lower edges of said panel assemblies for sealing engagement with a top and bottom surface, said means interconnecting the assemblies including a rigid connecting plate having the ends thereof hingedly connected to oppositely disposed rigid panels on the panel assemblies.
2. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said means for supporting the panel assemblies includes a supporting rod swivelly connected to the connecting plate, a carriage carried by the upper end of the rod and engaging a trackway for movably supporting the panels and articulately interconnecting the panel assemblies.
3. The structure as defined in claim 2 wherein the lower ends of said panels are interconnected by a connecting bar articulately connected to the adjacent edges of the same panels interconnected by the connecting plates.
4. The structure as defined in claim 3 wherein the means for sealing the upper and lower edges of the panel assemblies includes a pair of longitudinally continuous flexible strips attached to the upper edge portion of each panel and a similar pair of strips attached to the lower edge portion of each of said panels, a spacer disposed between each pair of flexible strips, the free longitudinal edge of said strips engaging top and bottom surfaces to provide a seal for the door.
5. The structure as defined in claim 4 wherein at least one of the top and bottom surfaces is provided with a width less than the width of the door when in retracted position so that a portion of the space enclosed by the panel assemblies is vented to the atmosphere to enable egress and ingress of air during portions of the opening and closing movement of the door.
6. A folding door comprising a pair of side-by-side but spaced folding panel assemblies, each panel assembly including a plurality of rigid elongated panels orientated in edge-to-edge relation, a hinge strip interconnecting adjacent edges of said panels and extending throughout the length of the panels to form a seal therebetween, means interconnecting the panel assemblies for permitting limited relative movement therebetween and means supporting said panel assemblies from a support for movement between an extended accordion folded position and a retracted collapsed position, said means interconnecting the panel assemblies including rigid connecting links extending across the space between the panel assemblies and pivotally connected at their ends to the panel assemblies.
7. The structure as defined in claim 10 wherein said links are orientated adjacent the upper and lower ends of said panel assemblies, said supporting means each including a roller assembly having a depending shank swivel- 1y supporting said link adjacent the center thereof for enabling pivotal movement of the link about an axis defined by the shank. p
8. The structure as defined in claim 10 wherein each of said panel assemblies includes a longitudinally projecting flexible seal extending continuously from edge to edge of each panel assembly for engaging upper and lower surfaces to form a sound barrier.
9. A foldable door assembly comprising a pair of coextensive folding panel assemblies disposed in spaced relation throughout their length, each panel assembly including a plurality of rigid panels orientated in edge-toedge relation, a flexible hinge strip interconnecting adjacent edges of adjacent panels and forming a seal therebetween, alternate hinge strips defining the outer extremities of said panel assemblies and the other alternate hinge strips defining the inner extremity of each folding panel assembly, a rigid member extending between at least some of the adjacent rigid panels in the folding asinterconnecting members from an overhead track for supporting the folding panel assemblies during opening and closing movement.
10. The structure as defined in claim 9 together with end members interconnecting the ends of the folding panel assemblies, each of the folding panel assemblies including 'a vertically extending sealing flap at both the upper and lower edges thereof for engaging the top and bottom surfaces of a closure opening to provide a seal for the closure opening when the folding door is in open position, said sealing strip being constructed of a pair of spaced flexible panels having aninsulating flexible panel disposed therebetween and extending partially above each of the panel assemblies but terminating below the edge of the spaced flexible members.
11. The structure as defined in claim 2 wherein a rigid connecting member is disposed between certain of the rigid panels at both the top and bottom thereof for retaining the folding panel assemblies in spaced relation at both the top and bottom thereof, said support for the folding door including a plurality of roller assemblies having a depending shank thereon, said depending shank being pivotally attached to the rigid connecting member at the upper end of the folding door to enable the connecting member to swivel about the vertical axis for enabling limited relative movement of the folding panel assemblies in longitudinal relation to each other.
12. The structure as defined in claim 3 together with a hinge plate on each end of the upper rigid connecting member forming the means for attachment to the rigid panels, said flexible insulating panel and flexible sealing members forming resilient means between the hinge plate and the rigid panels to isolate the rigid panels from the rigid connecting member thereby reducing transmission of sound vibrations from one folding panel assembly to the other folding panel assembly.
13. The structure as defined in claim 4 wherein at least one of the top and bottom surfaces defining the opening is provided with a width less than the distance between the hinge strips defining the outer extremities of the folding panel assemblies when disposed at their outermost position and a width greater than such hinge strips when they are in their innermost position so that the space between the folding panel assemblies is vented to the atmosphere to enable egress and ingress of air during at least portions of the opening and closing movement of the folding panel assemblies, a flexible member extending between adjacent rigid interconnecting members to limit the movement thereof away from each other thereby limiting the inward movement of the hinge strips defining the outer extremities of each folding panel assembly.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,373,146 4/1945 Shearer -84 2,903,055 9/1959 Merrill 181-33 2,915,115 12/1959 Reynolds 181-33 3,082,817 3/1963 Merrill 160-40 3,195,192 7/1965 Neisewander 160-40 X 3,223,147 12/1965 Holloway 160-84 3,229,750 1/1966 Reynolds 160-84 X 3,232,333 2/1966 Dixon 160-183 3,234,996 2/1966 King et al. 181-33 FOREIGN PATENTS 843,295 8/ 1960 Great Britain.
RICHARD B. WILKINSON, Primary Examiner.
ROBERT S. WARD, JR., Assistant Examiner.
Citas de patentes