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Número de publicaciónUS3696855 A
Tipo de publicaciónConcesión
Fecha de publicación10 Oct 1972
Fecha de presentación16 Oct 1970
Fecha de prioridad16 Oct 1970
Número de publicaciónUS 3696855 A, US 3696855A, US-A-3696855, US3696855 A, US3696855A
InventoresKira Hiroshi
Cesionario originalGen Telephone Co Of Calif
Exportar citaBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
Enlaces externos: USPTO, Cesión de USPTO, Espacenet
Interior modular panel assemblies
US 3696855 A
Resumen
An interior modular panel assembly for office landscaping includes several identical panels having edge railings defining cylindrical recesses for cooperation with cylindrical inserts integrally formed on a hinge structure. Several such hinge structures are provided, all of identical construction and each including four cylindrical inserts so that from one to four panels may be pivotally mounted to a single hinge structure and pivoted with respect to each other to form a desired angular configuration. The assembly is completed by corner and leg pieces cooperating with the end portions of the edge railings to finish off the overall appearance of the assembly.
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United States Patent Kira [451 Oct. 10, 1972 [54] INTERIOR MODULAR PANEL FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS ASSEMBLIES 576,448 5/ 1958 Italy ..52/586 [72] Inventor: Hiroshi Kira, Canoga Park, Calif. [73] Assignee: General Telephone Company of f Examme""Davifi wimalflowsky m Assistant Examiner-David H. Corbm t P 1 22 Filed: on. 16, 1970 At omey astonzaa Ke 1y [21] Appl. No.: 81,201 [57] ABSTRACT An interior modular panel assembly for office land- [52] US. Cl ..l60/135, 52/586 scaping includes several identical panels having edge [51] Int. Cl. ..A47g 5/00 railings defining cylindrical recesses for cooperation [58] Field of Search.l6/ 171; 287/ 189.36 D, 97, 92.4, with cylindrical inserts integrally formed on a hinge /9 160/ 1 3 256/65; 2/586 structure. Several such hinge structures are provided, all of identical construction and each including four References cued cylindrical inserts so that from one to four panels may UNITED STATES PATENTS be pivotally mounted to a single hinge structure and pivoted with respect to each other to form a desired 3,605,851 9/1971 Miles ..l60/351 X angular configuration, The assembly is completed by X corner and leg pieces cooperating the end pot- 3,486,287 12/1969 Gulllon ..52/282 X {ions of the edge railings to finish off the overall 3,333,823 8/ 1967 Geraver et al. ..256/65 pearance f the assembly 3,592,289 7/1971 Aysta ..52/586 X 2,866,235 12/1958 Couse et al. ..52/586 X 3 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures PATENTEUum 10 an INVENTOR. HIROSHI KIRA A TTOANE Y5 INTERIOR MODULAR PANEL ASSEMBLIES This invention relates generally to panel assemblies and hinge structures therefor, and more particularly to an improved panel and hinge structure assembly useful for interior office landscaping.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Temporary wall structures for dividing up interior office spaces in the form of panels are well known in the art. Usually, some conventional type of hinging arrangement is provided between adjacent edges of panels so that a series of panels may be assembled to define a partition of a desired overall length.

There are many situations in which it, is desired to have more than two partitions extend from a central point. For example, in two adjacent interior office spaces to be set off by partitions, a common wall to the two offices would intercept another wall normally at right angles thereto at a mid portion. There may even be situations in which it is desired to have four panels radiating from a single point to which additional panels may be affixed.

Any such arrangements as the foregoing should be so designed that the panels may be pivoted with respect to each other to form angles other than 90 if desired. Further, all of the components making up the structures should be modular in form so that a variety of different configurations can be realized with a minimum number of basic component parts.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE PRESENT INVENTION With the foregoing in mind, it is a primary purpose of the present invention to provide an improved modular panel assembly particularly useful for interior office landscaping which enables up to four panels to be hinged from a single location wherein the panels are readily pivotable with respect to each other so that desired angular configurations can be realized.

In accord with the invention, there are required only four basic components. First, the panel itself with edge railings about its peripheral edges, each of the edge railings having an identical cross-section and defining a cylindrical recess opening out in a front slot; second, a hinge structure preferably in the form of a hollow square column extrusion, the corners thereof including extending integrally formed hollow cylindrical inserts opening out in slots and each being dimensioned to be received in any one cylindrical recess in a railing; third, corner pieces for finishing off the upper comers where the ends of side and top railings meet; and fourth, leg pieces for finishing off the points where side and bottom railings meet and to provide a support for the panel.

With the foregoing modular components, a variety of different configurations for defining separate office spaces in a central interior office area can be realized with great ease and a substantial savings from the standpoint of manufacture of component parts.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS A better understanding of the invention as well as further features and advantages thereof will be had by now referring to a preferred embodiment as illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a panel assembly made up of the basic modular components of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary perspective view of a portion of the modular panel assembly of FIG. I looking in the direction of the arrow 2, certain component parts being exploded in order to facilitate description thereof; and,

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a leg piece looking in the direction of the arrow 3 of FIG. 1 but shown separated from the panel assembly.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to FIG. 1, the basic modular components of the panel assembly include a panel 10 having an edge railing ll cooperating with a hinge structure 12. An upper corner piece 13 abuts against the ends of the side and top railings for the panel 10 and a lower leg piece 14 similarly abuts against the lower end of the side railing and the end of the bottom railing for the panel and additionally serves as a support.

An additional panel 15 identical to the panel 10 and provided with identical side, top, and bottom railings corresponding to 11 in cross section is shown coupled to the same hinge structure 12. A third panel 16 is also illustrated as coupled to the hinge structure 12 and includes on its opposite side a further hinge structure 17 for hinging a panel 18. The hinge structures 12 and 17 are identical as are the side railings for the various panels 16 and 18.

From the foregoing, it will be evidentthat there are four basic modular components. First, the panel 10 and associated side top and bottom railings; second the hinge structure such as 12 or 17; third, the upper comer pieces such as 13; and, fourth, the lower leg pieces such as 14.

A better understanding of the actual construction of these basic components will be had by now referring FIG. 2. Considering first the panel structure 10, it will be noted that this panel may include a central core of polyurethane foam 19 with side sheets of a suitable stiff material such as fiberglass as indicated at 20 and 21. A further base sheet 22 which might constitute masonite for example provides further structural strength to the panel and may support a carpet backing 23 which in turn is over laid with a carpet material 24 of a desired texture and color. The structure of the panel, of course, may vary without departing form the spirit of this invention. The particular construction described is merely one example.

The edge railing 11 defines a cylindrical recess 25 opening out in a front slot defined between front edges 11a and 11b of the railing. Behind this cylindrical recess 25 is a rectangular recess 26. The entire rail structure may constitute a single extrusion of aluminum and is shaped as shown to be secured to an edge of the panel. A top railing shown at 27 is of identical construction but will be of a length corresponding to the overall width of the panel.

The hinge structure 12 of FIG. 1 in the preferred embodiment takes the form of a hollow square column 28 in the form of an extrusion, the corners thereof including extending integrally formed hollow cylindrical inserts opening out in slots such as indicated at 29, 29',

29", and 29". These cylindrical inserts are dimensioned to be received in any one cylindrical recess in a railing for any one of the panels. Preferably, the extruded hinge structure constitutes a plastic material such as polyethylene. The slotted structure of the cylindrical inserts permits some give such that a snug fit of the outer surface portions of the insert with the inner cylindrical wall surfaces of the cylindrical recess in the railings takes place. On the other hand, the geometry is such that swinging movement over a given arc between the railing and the associated cylindrical insert can take place about the axis of the cylindrical insert and cylindrical recess when the insert is received within the recess.

Referring now to the exploded corner piece 13 as shown in FIG. 2, this piece includes projections 30 and 31 at right angles to each other so positioned as to be received within the rectangular recesses such as 26 for the side railing 11 and the corresponding rectangular recess in the top railing 27. When fully inserted and the various pieces assembled, the corner piece 13 finishes off the corner of the panel and also overlies the upper end of the cylindrical recess 25.

Identical components for the panel 15 to those described with respect to the panel are designated by corresponding numerals followed by a in FIG. 2. With respect to the panel 15, it will be evident that the same may form an angle different from 90 with respect to the panel 10 when assembled to the hinge structure.

Referring now to FIG. 3 there is shown a typical leg piece such as the piece 14 shown in FIG. 1. This structure is similar to the corner piece 13 in that it includes projections 32 and 33 at right angles to each other and of rectangular cross-section for reception in the rectangular recesses in the ends of the side and bottom railings. However, the body portion of the leg piece 14 may be somewhat longer in a vertical direction to provide a support leg for the panel.

OPERATION With the foregoing description of the basic modular components of the panel assembly in mind, the operation can easily be understood. Initially, the side railings are provided fixed to the edges of the panels so that the supply of panels already includes the side railings along its edges. In fact, the panel construction itself could be such that its edges are formed to define the cylindrical and rectangular recesses. However, by providing the extruded aluminum railing structure, they may be separated from the panel itself to change the carpet, for example, and insert some other type of finished wall surface appearance.

The corner pieces 13 and leg pieces 14 are provided separated from the panels along with the hinge structures such as 12 and 17 described in FIG. 1. Panels may then be assembled by simply urging the cylindrical inserts into the front slots of the corresponding cylindrical recesses in the panels, thecylindrical inserts themselves circumferentially contracting when passing through the slots and thence expanding in the cylindrical recesses, to function as journals. Thereafter, the corner and leg pieces are fitted into the adjacent ends of the side and top railings and side and bottom railings respectively. In this portion of the assembly, one of the f ifflli iii; 31% 3ia tifi fllfl'f front slot beyond the cylindrical recess and snapping into the corresponding rectangular recess. Therailings are sufficiently flexible to permit assembly in this manner.

From the foregoing description, it will be evident that the modularpanel assembly permits various different panel configurations to be temporairily provided to properly set off desired office spaces in a large interior office. As many as four panels may be secured to any one of the hinge structures and angulated with respect to each other in any desired position.

While not shown, it should be understood that the leg pieces such as 14 in FIG. 3 could be provided with a wide base or stand in the event it is desired to support only a single panel or several panels in a direct straight line. Otherwise, the leg piece 14 will suffice, the angulation of the panels providing adequate stabilized support on a flat floor surface.

What is claimed is:

1. An interior modular panel assembly comprising, in v combination: a plurality of identical rectangular panels, each panel having edge railings on its opposite side, top, and bottom peripheral edges, each of said edge railings defining a cylindrical recess opening out in a front slot parallel to the axis of the recess and edge of the panel to which the railing is affixed and a rectangular recess behind its cylindrical recess when viewed in cross-section; a hinge structure in the form of ahollow square column extrusion, the corners thereof including extending integrally formed hollow cylindrical inserts opening out in slots and each being dimensioned to be received in a snap-in fashion in any one cylindrical recess in a railing by circumferentially contracting and then expanding so that from two to four panels may be hinged to a single hinge structure and disposed at desired angles to each other by pivoting movement of any one of the inserts in its corresponding recess about an axis coinciding with the axis of the recess; and corner pieces of identical construction having projections at right angles to each other of rectangular crosssection for reception in the rectangular recesses at the ends of side and top railings to finish off the upper corners of the panels and cover the upper ends of the cylindrical inserts of the hinge structure when received in the cylindrical recesses of the railings.

2. The subject matter of claim 1, including leg pieces having projections at right angles to each other of rectangular cross section for reception in the rectangular recesses at the ends of side and bottom railings to provide legs for the panels and cover the lower ends of the cylindrical inserts of the hinge structure when received in the cylindrical recesses of the railings.

3. The subject matter of claim 1, in which the cylindrical recess and rectangular recess of the railings are defined by an integral extrusion of aluminum, the extrusion defining said hinge structure constituting a plastic material.

Citas de patentes
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Clasificaciones
Clasificación de EE.UU.160/135, 24/573.9
Clasificación internacionalA47G5/00
Clasificación cooperativaA47G5/00
Clasificación europeaA47G5/00