US 3596880 A
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i 1 mane l 1 Stats a t  lnvenlor Morton Gr-ember;
Sarasota, 11 1a. [211 App]. No. 786,376 [22} Filed Dec. 17, 1.968  Patented Aug. 3, 19711  Assignee American Metal .1 w Corporation Sarasota, 11%.
 lltltllLllNG SYSTEM 3 (llnirns, 16 Drawing 11  US. (11 256/65, 256/59  lint. Cl E0611: 17/1 1 [50) llield ollrcllr 256/2l,22, 24, 32, 65-70, 59
 Meter-mm (Iited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,771,276 11/1956 Constance, et a1. 256/22 2,808,233 10/1957 Spescha .1 256/22 3,037,593 6/1962 Webster 256/24 UX 3,305,221 2/1967 liling 256/24 X 3,385,567 5/1968 Case et a1. 256/65 X FOREIGN PATENTS 964,048 7/1964 Great Britain 256/65 1,319,369 1/1963 France 256/24 1,383,621 11/1964 France 256/65 1,475,039 2/1967 France 256/65 Primary Examiner-Dennis L. Taylor Attorneys-Clarence A. OBrien and Harvey B. Jacobson AEETIRACT: This disclosure pertains to railing systems comprised of extruded modular units which may be connected to form various lateral rail and post members. A first composite type construction is assembled by means of threaded fasteners. A second type is assembled by means of welded connections. In both construction types the connection means are concealed from view by means 011 dressing plates.
Patented Aug. 3, 1971 4 Sheets-Sh t 1 Marion Greenberg \\\\\\v Patented Aug. 3, 1971 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 Fig. 7
Patented Aug. 3, 1971 4 Sheets-Sheet S Fig ./0
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MAILING SYSTEM The present invention relates to extruded rail members and more particularly to modular units which may be assembled in various configurations to serve as lateral rail and post members.
The construction art includes a great many rail constructions which may be interconnected to form a railing system. These prior art devices generally require the interconnection of differently shaped elongated extruded members to form the various lateral rail and post structures of a railing system. As will be appreciated, the builder is required to store a large variety of parts thus demanding storage facilities. Utilization of many different rail and post members increases the assembly time thereof on jobs. From the manufacturers point of view, fabrication of a large variety of parts increases produc' tion cost which must be passed on to purchasers. Further, prior railing structures include threaded fastener connections and welded joints at interconnected surfaces of rails and posts. Generally, these prior constructions have failed to render an esthetic or decorative structure because of the exposure of aforementioned connections. Inasmuch as the building industry is increasingly requiring the decorative appearance of functional structure members, it is desirable to conceal fastening elements and welded joints from view.
The present invention is divided into two principle types. The first type of railing structure utilizes only three basic extruded sheets for assembling top and bottom rails (lateral rails) and post sections. Therefore, three basic shapes or modules permit composite assembly of basic building structures. Unlike certain prior constructions, the present invention requires no brackets, fittings or fixtures. The esthetic value of a railing system is enhanced by means of insertion paneling, picketing, or the like between post and rail members. Panel members are conveniently retained in slots formed within rail surfaces and attachment by such means as gluing or other suitable contact fastening obviates the necessity of time consuming utilization of screws or the like.
The present invention also includes a second type of railing structure which employs welded joint connections. This second type basically includes a composite system comprising a plurality of rail members having an identical cross-sectional configuration connected with a basic post member. In fabricating a system, the rails and posts are welded together. Then, a dressing plate is mounted to conceal the welded joints from view thereby increasing the esthetic value of the railing system as compared with those of the prior art.
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:
FIG. I is a perspective sectional view of one embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 2 is an exploded view of modular rail members.
FIG. 3 is a vertical sectional view taken along a plane passing through section line 3-3 of FIG. I.
FIG. I is a horizontal sectional view taken along a plane passing through section line l4 ofFIG. I.
FIG. 5 is a horizontal sectional view taken along a plane passing through section line 5-5 of FIG. I.
FIG. 6 is a partial perspective view of a second embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 7 is an exploded view of the structure shown in FIG. 6.
FIG. 6 is a vertical partial sectional view taken along a plane of section line M of FIG. 6.
FIG. 9 is a partial perspective view of a third embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. 10 is a partial vertical cross-sectional view taken along a plane passing along section line Ill-I0 of FIG. 9.
FIG. Ill is a partial perspective view illustrating a fourth embodiment of the present invention.
FIG. III is a vertical cross-sectional view taken along a plane passing through section line III-III of FIG. I I.
FIG. I3 is a partial vertical cross-sectional view of the lateral rail members shown in FIG. 6 with an intervening panel connected therebctween.
FIG. M is a perspective view of a rail structure that is a modification of the embodiment of FIG. 111.
FIG. I5 is a vertical sectional view taken along a plane passing through section line I545 of FIG. M.
FIG. I6 is a partial elevational view taken along a plane passing through section line ll6-1l6 of FIG. I5.
Referring specifically to the drawings, FIG. I illustrates one embodiment of the present invention denoted by III which is seen to include a lateral extruded rail I2 connected to a perpendicularly oriented extruded post. M. An extruded post 116 is perpendicularly connected to the lateral rail I2 and maintained in spaced parallel relation with the first mentioned post Id. A panel member I6 is mounted between the rail members I2, Id and I6. It is noted that the panel member may be fabricated from metal, glass, picketing or the like. FIG. 1 further shows the retention of an additional panel member llb along its bottom edge by means of an inverted rail I2, identical in structure to rail 12. The inward end of the rail I2 is at tached to the vertical rail member I6 by means of welding or the like.
Attention is directed to FIG. 2; which shows two modular rail members utilized in assembling llateral rail and post structures. A first modular member is denoted by reference numeral 2'0 and the second modular member is denoted by reference numeral 22. The modular member 20 is characterized by a channel member having a generally U-shaped cross section. In particular, the member includes elongated spaced parallel sides 24 and confronting bight flange sections 26 extending toward one another in coplanar spaced relation. The inner edges of the aforementioned flanges 26 integrally append downwardly to a web flange 26 which completes the bight portion of the rail member 20. The latter mentioned web flange ZII renders additional rigidity to the rail member 20. Two elongated flanges extend from both connecting flanges 26 in parallel spaced relation to the rail sides 24L. Elongated arcuate sleeve sections 32 are integrally mounted to the respective outward edges of flanges 30. These latter mentioned arcuate sections permit insertion of self-tapping screws therein as explained hereinafter. Modular rail member 20 further includes elongated key or dog portions 34 respectively and integrally extending from the free edges of the sides 24. These latter mentioned keys permit interlocking engagement with other modular members and explained hereinafter.
Still referring to FIG. 2, it will be noted that the modular rail member 22 includes two spaced confronting coplanar flange portions 36 integrally mounted at respective edges thereof to an elongated generally U'shaped receptacle 38 which is disposed to open downwardly toward the aforementioned flange portions 36. This aforementioned U-shaped section in cludes parallel spaced side portions ilt) and an elongated bight portion d2. Elongated keys or dogs Ml are integrally formed to extend upwardly from respective flange portions 36 in spaced relation to the receptacle sides d0. Thus, when assembly of the aforementioned modular members MI and 22 is desired, they are snapped or slid together in a manner permitting frictional engagement of mating dogs or key portions 1% and 36, as shown by the composite top lateral rail I2 of FIG. 11. Likewise, the connection between modular members 20 and 22 may be utilized for forming a post denoted by MI and shown in cross section in FIG. 5 and in perspective in FIG. I.
FIG. 5 also illustrates, in phantom, the disposition of two identical posts M and I I in back to back relation whereby the respective U-shaped receptacles 3d are outwardly disposed in opposite directions. This arrangement permits the insertion of a panel member 19 adjacent panel member I8, these panel members assuming a coplanar relation.
A second post structure may be assembled by retaining two modular members 20 in back to back relation with the sides thereof extending in opposite directions as shown in FIG. 4i. A
third modular member 46 shown in FIG. 4 is employed to connect the free edges of parallel side 24. This latter mentioned modular member includes an elongated web flange 47 terminating at the lateral edges thereof in elongated key or dog portions 48 identical with those key portions 34 and 44 previously mentioned. The connection of two modular members 46 to respective back to back modular members 20 is accomplished by the sliding or snapping action previously mentioned.
Attention is directed to FIG. 3 which shows the connection of rail and post structures in cross section. Apertures 50 are formed within the flange portions 36 of modular member 22. These apertures are arranged in vertical alignment with the elongated arcuate sections 32 of modular member 20. As previously explained, these arcuate sections permit ready engagement by self-tapping screws 52 inasmuch as the modular members are constructed from a suitably soft yet rigid material such as aluminum or the like. Accordingly, as will be appreciated the railing system denoted in FIG. 1 is assembled from the modular members 20, 22 and 46. Insertion of decorative panels 18 therebetween is shown in FIG. 3 where panel 18 is retained within the elongated slot portion 38 formed in the lateral top rail 12 shown in FIG. 1 and a mating lateral bottom rail (not shown).
The other edges of panel 18 are respectively retained at the outer ends thereof in U-shaped slots 38 of post member 14. Intermediate sections of panel 18 are frictionally supported by the spaced back to back flange portions 26 of modular member 28 as shown in FIG. 4.
A second embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 6, to include an extruded hollow oblong tubular member 53 affixed to an extruded post member 54 shown in the figure by way of example to be right cylindrical. Reference is made to FIG. 7 which further shows that the tubular member 53 is further characterized by an oblong tubular surface 56 having one major surface thereof including integrally attached elongated flanges 58 disposed in spaced parallel relation. An enlarged aperture 60 is formed within said surface to receive post member 54 therethrough. Smaller apertures 62 are formed on a diametrical line through apertures 60, said lines being parallel with the aforementioned flanges 58. Further, the smaller apertures 62 are equally spaced from larger apertures 60. As shown in FIG. 8, one end of post member 54 is inserted through oblong member 56 to bearing engagement with an interior wall surface 64 opposite the enlarged aperture 60. The post and oblong members are connected by means of suitable welds denoted by 66 concealed from view by an elongated dressing plate 68 which is characterized by a generally U-shaped cross section having parallel arms extending from a bight portion thereof. The aforementioned arms are adapted for overlying relation with the outward surfaces of spacer flanges 58 as shown in FIG. 6. The dressing plate 68 includes apertures 70 and 72 in the bight portion thereof which are identical in dimension and location to apertures 60 and 62 respectively of oblong member 53. It is noted that the enlarged apertures 60 and 70 are of a diameter slightly larger than the outer diameter of post 54 to permit passage of the latter therethrough. Suitable fasteners 74 pass through dressing plate 68 and oblong member 73 through the apertures 72 and 62, respectively, thereby retaining the dressing plate in underlying parallel relation with tubular member 53.
FIG. 9 represents a third embodiment of the present invention as represented by reference numeral 76. This embodiment is seen to include an extruded elongated hollow member 78 characterized by a generally rectangular cross section. Post member 54 identical with the post member mentioned in the aforementioned paragraph provides vertical support. As seen in FIG. 10, the post member is mounted within the hollow member as hereinbefore explained in connection with FIG. 8. The connection between members 78 and 54 is by means of a welded joint 79. A dressing plate 68 previously mentioned is fastened to the underside of tubular member 78 as shown in FIG. 10, and is identical to the attachment shown in FIG. 3.
A fourth embodiment of the present invention is illustrated in FIGS. 11 and 12 and is represented by reference numeral 80 and the cross section thereof is seen to include an extruded elongated channel member 82 characterized by an elongated rounded surface 84 appending to slightly converging side flange portions 86. This latter mentioned cross section may be best compared to the cross-sectional outline of a conventional white broad loaf. The interior surface of side flanges 86 include elongated flanges 88 confrontingly extending perpendicularly inwardly, in spaced coplanar relation. This embodiment also includes a right cylindrical post 54 previously mentioned welded to the elongated hollow member in the same manner as previously described in connection with FIG. 9. However as will be noted from FIG. 11, the post 54 is extended vertically through the surface 84 of elongated member 82. Thus, the latter mentioned member may be disposed along an intermediate length of parallel spaced posts. As in the case of the latter two embodiments, the present embodiment includes a dressing plate 68 in overlying relation with the bottom of hollow member 82 in order to conceal the welded joint therein. The width of dressing plate 68 is less than the distance between flange sides 86 thereby permitting positioning of cover plate 68 therebetween, the dressing plate being mechanically stopped by the interiorly situated flanges 88. Although the latter mentioned embodiment is described in terms of vertical apertures within hollow member 82 to permit the vertical passage therethrough of post member 54, it will be appreciated that the respective apertures of the hollow member 82 and dressing plate 68 may be offset to permit the inclined passage of a post therethrough as shown in FIG. l4 l6 and generally indicated by 80'.
FIG. 13 illustrates a composite embodiment utilizing the elongated oblong member 52 and dressing plate 68 shown in FIG. 6 in parallel spaced relation with the elongated tubular member 78 and dressing plate 68 connected thereto shown in FIG. 9. A decorative panel 18 or the like is welded to confronting surfaces of the upper dressing plate 68 and tubular member 78 respectively. A post member 54 extends outwardly from the lower dressing plate 68 in an identical manner as shown in FIG. 9. Thus, the structure shown in FIG. 13 may be anchored by means of post 54 at the lower end thereof. Tubular members 78 and its respective cover plate 68 are fastened in the manner explained in connection with FIG. 10.
What I claim as new is as follows:
I. A railing system comprising a hollow inverted U-shaped rail having a bight portion connecting parallel spaced arms, elongated flanges extending confrontingly inwardly along the length of the rail arms, a tubular post generally disposed in interposing spaced relation to the arms of the rail, the flanges embracing the post and being welded thereto to form a secure joint between post and rail, a channel-shaped dressing plate being positioned between the arms and in flush relation to the lower outward end of the arms, the inner edge of the plate abutting the rail flanges, an intermediate point on the plate including an aperture to allow passage of the post therethrough, and fastening means for securing the plate to the flanges whereby the plate encloses the bottom of the rail and conceals the welded joint between post and rail.
2. The structure of claim 1 wherein an aperture is formed in the rail bight portion and in vertical alignment with the aperture in the plate for allowing extension of the post through the aligned apertures.
3. The structure of claim 2 wherein an aperture is formed in the rail bight portion and in vertical offset relation to the aperture in the plate for allowing angular extension of the post through the offset apertures.
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