US20050284342A1 - Table with table top and layer - Google Patents

Table with table top and layer Download PDF

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Publication number
US20050284342A1
US20050284342A1 US11150890 US15089005A US2005284342A1 US 20050284342 A1 US20050284342 A1 US 20050284342A1 US 11150890 US11150890 US 11150890 US 15089005 A US15089005 A US 15089005A US 2005284342 A1 US2005284342 A1 US 2005284342A1
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Prior art keywords
layer
table top
table
portion
constructed
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Abandoned
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US11150890
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L. Curtis Strong
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Lifetime Products Inc
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Lifetime Products Inc
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47BTABLES; DESKS; OFFICE FURNITURE; CABINETS; DRAWERS; GENERAL DETAILS OF FURNITURE
    • A47B13/00Details of tables or desks
    • A47B13/08Table tops; Rims therefor
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47BTABLES; DESKS; OFFICE FURNITURE; CABINETS; DRAWERS; GENERAL DETAILS OF FURNITURE
    • A47B3/00Folding or stowable tables
    • A47B3/08Folding or stowable tables with legs pivoted to top or underframe
    • A47B3/091Folding or stowable tables with legs pivoted to top or underframe with struts supporting the legs
    • A47B3/0911Folding or stowable tables with legs pivoted to top or underframe with struts supporting the legs the struts being permanently connected to top and leg or underframe and leg
    • A47B3/0912Folding or stowable tables with legs pivoted to top or underframe with struts supporting the legs the struts being permanently connected to top and leg or underframe and leg the strut being of two parts foldable relative to one another
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47BTABLES; DESKS; OFFICE FURNITURE; CABINETS; DRAWERS; GENERAL DETAILS OF FURNITURE
    • A47B96/00Details of cabinets, racks or shelf units not covered by a single one of groups A47B43/00 - A47B95/00; General details of furniture
    • A47B96/20Furniture panels or like furniture elements
    • A47B96/205Composite panels, comprising several elements joined together

Abstract

A table may include a table top and a layer or sheet of material may be attached to an upper portion of the table top. The table top and the layer preferably have different properties, characteristics and qualities, which may allow the layer to modify or change the attributes of the table and/or the table top. For example, the table top may be constructed from blow-molded plastic and the layer may be constructed from flooring material and/or laminated material. Advantageously, the layer may change the appearance, design, aesthetics, functionality and/or potential uses of the table. The layer may be attached to the table top by an adhesive and the layer may be at least partially disposed within a receiving portion in the table top.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • This application claims priority to and the benefit of U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/579,590, filed Jun. 14, 2004. This application also claims priority to and the benefit of U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/579,338, filed Jun. 14, 2004. These applications are incorporated by reference in their entireties.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • 1. Field of the Invention
  • This invention generally relates to furniture and, in particular, to tables.
  • 2. Description of Related Art
  • Many different types of tables are known and used for a variety of different purposes. For instance, it is known to use tables in homes, offices, businesses and other types of establishments. It is also known to use tables that are specially designed and manufactured for a particular use, function or environment. For example, tables that are intended to be used as a work table in a garage or outdoor furniture may have a different design and configuration than tables intended to be used in more formal occasions, such as entertaining guests for meals or hosting a celebration. In particular, tables that are intended to be used in more formal situations are often constructed from materials such as wood, metal and/or glass in order to increase their decorative appeal. For instance, more formal tables may include a table top that is constructed entirely from glass or the table top may be constructed entirely from wood such as cherry wood or oak. More formal tables may also include table tops constructed from wood with metal accents or features. It is also known to construct table tops from different types or combinations of wood. The wood, metal and/or glass portions of more formal tables are often designed to create an aesthetically pleasing table. In addition, these materials may allow a wide variety of different shapes and types of table to be constructed.
  • Disadvantageously, these more formal tables constructed from materials such as wood, metal and/or glass are often much more expensive than many other types of tables. In particular, the materials and craftsmanship required to manufacture these more formal tables may significantly increase the costs of the table. Additionally, the materials used to manufacture these more formal tables are often much heavier than those used for less decorative tables. In addition to being relatively heavy, these more formal tables are often quite large. For example, many more formal tables have a length of six to eight feet and a width of two to three feet. The large size and weight of these tables may make the tables very awkward and difficult to move or transport, especially for one person. Thus, many of these types of tables require at least two people to move or transport the table. Therefore, these more formal tables are generally more difficult to move (often requiring additional time, manpower and physical exertion), more complicated to move (frequently these tables have sharp edges, protruding legs and other outwardly extending structures), more hazardous to move because of there large size and weight (increasing the likelihood that moving the table will cause injury to those moving the table because, for example, the heavy table may be more easily dropped) and more likely to damage other objects (such as walls or other furniture when the table is being moved) than conventional, less formal tables.
  • Many conventional tables, whether used in more or less formal situations, are often used periodically or only for a sort period of time. Thus, the owners of such tables may desire to store them during the interim periods or move the tables into other locations when the tables are not being used. In order to facilitate movement of these types of conventional tables, the legs may be movable between an extended position in which the legs extend away from the table top and the legs support the table top above a surface such as the floor or ground, and collapsed position in which the legs are positioned near or adjacent to the underneath portion of the table top.
  • Conventional tables may also have a variety of sizes and configurations depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table. For example, smaller sized tables may be designed for use by a single person. On the other hand, conventional tables may have a larger size to allow multiple people to simultaneously use the table. For example, conventional tables may be sized and configured to allow six or eight people to sit down at the table and eat a meal. Conventional tables may also be sized and configured to perform different tasks such as working, writing, typing, drafting, reading or crafting. In addition, conventional tables may be designed to be used for activities such as eating meals, making crafts or pursuing hobbies.
  • It is also known to use conventional tables for a variety of different purposes. In fact, the same table may be used for one or more different purposes and in one or more different locations. A conventional type of table that can be used for different purposes and in different locations may be referred to as a utility table. A utility table typically has a length of about six to eight feet and a width of about two to three feet. These utility tables may be used in areas such as schools, churches, offices, hotels and conference rooms. Conventional utility tables may allow a group or organization to maximize the efficiency and utility of a particular space.
  • Conventional utility tables may be manufactured from relatively lightweight and inexpensive materials such as plywood, fiber board or particle board. In addition, conventional utility tables may be constructed from relatively lightweight and inexpensive materials such as plastic. Disadvantageously, conventional utility tables constructed from these relatively lightweight and inexpensive materials often have limited aesthetic appeal. For example, these tables typically have a very simple, straightforward, plain and/or unimaginative design. Accordingly, these tables may not be appropriate for more formal occasions such as parties and celebrations. Further, these tables may not be suitable for use in some situations and environments because of the design and/or aesthetic appeal of the table.
  • Another type of conventional table is a card table and card tables typically include a table top constructed from fiber board, particle board or pressed wood. Card tables are generally sized and configured to allow for people to sit at the table (one person along each side of the table) and four legs are independently, pivotally connected to the table top. Conventional card tables often include a vinyl or fabric covering that covers the upper surface of the table top. Disadvantageously, these vinyl or fabric coverings may be easily torn, ripped, frayed or otherwise damaged, which greatly decreases the usefulness and appearance of the table. In addition, these torn or damaged vinyl or fabric coverings are often very difficult to repair or replace. Accordingly, once conventional card tables are damaged, the table is often discarded and replaced rather than being fixed or repaired. Further, the vinyl or fabric coverings are often connected to the table top by a frame. Disadvantageously, this may increase the cost and difficulty in manufacturing the table. In addition, because the vinyl or fabric coverings may not be securely attached to the table top by the frame, that may undesirably allow items to be positioned between the covering and the upper portion of the table top. This may also allow the covering to be more easily torn or damaged if it is not securely connected to the table top by the frame.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION
  • A need therefore exists for a table that eliminates or diminishes the above described disadvantages and problems.
  • One aspect is a table that may include a table top with a layer or sheet that is attached to an upper portion of the table top. The layer is preferably a layer of material that covers at least a substantial portion or at least a majority of the upper portion of the table top. The layer may also cover the entire upper portion of the table top, if desired, or only a portion of the table top. Advantageously, the layer may be securely and/or permanently attached to the table top to prevent, for example, the layer from being inadvertently removed. The layer may also be selectively attached to the table top, if desired, and all or a portion of the layer may be replaceable. Significantly, the layer may consist of only a single layer or it could include multiple layers and, for example, the multiple layers could be stacked in a generally vertical arrangement and/or attached to different portions of the table.
  • Another aspect is a table that may include a table top that has a first set of properties, characteristics or qualities and a layer with a different set of properties, characteristics or qualities. For example, the table top may be constructed from plastic and, in particular, from blow-molded plastic. Thus, the table top may have certain properties, characteristics or qualities because it is constructed from blow-molded plastic. The layer, on the other hand, may be constructed from different materials and/or processes so that it has different properties, characteristics or qualities. For example, the layer may be constructed from materials and/or processes other than blow-molded plastic so that the layer has different properties, characteristics or qualities that the blow-molded plastic table top.
  • Advantageously, the layer may be used to improve, change or modify the appearance, design, decorative features and/or aesthetics of the table. For instance, the layer may have different colors, designs, patterns, graphics, textures, configurations and the like than the table top. Thus, the layer may be used for decoration, ornamentation and/or aesthetic purposes to create a table with a different appearance. That is, the layer may be used to provide one or more colors, designs, patterns, graphics, textures, configurations and the like that contrast with those of the table top. The layer, however, does not have to contrast or have a different color, design, pattern, graphic, texture, configuration or the like from the table top. Therefore, the layer and the table top could have matching colors, designs, patterns, graphics, textures, configurations and the like, which may help the layer to blend into the table top.
  • The layer may be used to improve, change and/or modify the functionality and/or uses of the table by having properties, characteristics or qualities that are distinct from the table top. For example, the layer may be used to change the wear resistance or cut resistance of the table top. The layer may also be used to provide a stronger or more durable surface. In addition, the layer may be used to indicate specific locations or positions on the table, which may allow the table to be used to play games or the like. Further, the layer may be used to provide a surface that may facilitate various activities such as writing, drawing, drafting, typing, organizing papers, eating, drinking, crafting, pursuing hobbies and the like. For example, the upper surface of the layer may have a generally smooth and/or generally planar surface that may facilitate writing, drawing and/or drafting. Significantly, the generally smooth and/or planar surface may be easy to clean. The layer may also have other characteristics that may make it easier to clean, write-on and the like.
  • Still another aspect is a table that may include a laminated layer attached to the table top. For example, the layer may include a number of components or sheets that are bonded together to create the laminated layer. Advantageously, the different components and/or sheets may be used to create a layer with the desired characteristics or qualities. Advantageously, the laminated layer may provide a variety of desired functional and/or aesthetic characteristics. For instance, the laminated layer may have improved strength, durability, wear resistance and the like. The laminated layer may also have various desired appearances, designs and aesthetics.
  • Yet another aspect is a table that may include a table top and a layer that is attached to the table top by an adhesive. The adhesive, which may be a paste, glue, cement or the like, preferably securely and permanently attaches the layer to the table top. Advantageously, the adhesive may already be disposed on the layer and/or the table top, which may allow the layer and the table top to be quickly and easily attached. For example, one side of the layer may include an adhesive material and a protective covering or backing may cover the adhesive until the layer is ready to be attached to the table top. When the layer is ready to be attached to the table top, the backing may be removed and the layer attached to the table top. Thus, the layer may have a peel-and-stick configuration in which the backing is removed to expose the adhesive. The layer could also be attached to the table top using other suitable methods such as fasteners, mechanical interfaces, melting and the like.
  • A further aspect is a table that may include a layer attached to a portion of the table top and the layer may have one or more outer edges. The outer edges of the layer may have a tapered and/or generally rounded configuration. Advantageously, the tapered and/or generally rounded configuration may help reduce the risk that the layer may be inadvertently detached from a table top. In addition, if the layer is attached to the upper portion of the table top, then the tapered and/or rounded edges of the layer may help create a smooth transition between the table top and the layer. Thus, the tapered and/or rounded edges may help prevent an abrupt transition between the layer and the table top. An abrupt transition or contrast, however, may be desired in some circumstances.
  • A still further aspect is a table that may include a table top with one or more receiving portions that are preferably sized and configured to receive at least a portion of the layer. Significantly, by disposing at least a portion of the layer in the receiving portion, then that may help prevent the layer from being inadvertently removed from the table top. Additionally, this may help create a smooth transition between the table top and the layer. Advantageously, the height of the receiving portion may be generally the same size as the thickness of the layer so that the upper portion of the layer is generally aligned with the upper portion of the table top. This may create a table top with a generally smooth upper surface. On the other hand, the height of the receiving portion may be larger or smaller than the thickness of the layer to create a table with a different design or aesthetics.
  • Yet still another aspect is table that may include a table top and a layer that could be attached at any suitable time to the table top. For example, the layer may be attached to the table top during the manufacturing process. The layer may also be attached to the table top by the retailer and/or consumer. Significantly, because the layer may change the appearance, design, aesthetics, properties, characteristics, qualities, functionality and/or uses of the table, this may allow the manufacturer, retailer and/or consumer to quickly and easily change or modify the table.
  • A still further aspect is a table that may include a table top and a layer that is attached to the table top. If the layer is damaged, then all or a portion of the layer may be repairable or replaceable. This may greatly increase the life of the table because it may allow the table top to be quickly and easily repaired.
  • Advantageously, the layers may have different sizes and/or configurations depending, for example, upon the type or intended use of table. For example, the layer may consist of a single sheet of material that covers all or a portion of the table top. The layer may also include any number of smaller sections that are attached to the table top. This may allow, for example, the layer to be used with tables of different sizes and configurations. This may also allow different types of layers to be attached to different portions of the table top. Significantly, this may allow different portions of the table to have different appearances, designs, aesthetics, properties, characteristics, qualities, functionality and/or uses. In particular, a layer with one type of characteristics or qualities may be attached to one side of the table and another layer may be attached to the other side of the table with different characteristics or qualities. This may significantly increase the potential uses and functionality of the table.
  • Another aspect is a table that may include a table top constructed from blow-molded plastic with a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process, the table top including an upper portion and a lower portion, the blow-molded plastic table top having a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities. The table may also include at least one leg assembly connected to the table top, and a layer attached to an upper portion of the table top, the layer having a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the table top. An adhesive layer may be used to attach the layer to the table top. The table may also include a receiving portion in the upper portion of the table top that is sized and configured to receive at least a portion of the layer. A thickness of the layer may be substantially equal to a depth of the receiving portion so that at least a portion of an upper portion of the layer is generally aligned with at least a portion of an upper portion of the table top. Additionally, the receiving portion is integrally formed during the blow-molding process as part of a unitary, one-piece structure.
  • Advantageously, the layer may have a different appearance than the table top to provide a contrast between the layer and the table top. The layer may also provide different functionality than the table top. For example, the layer may be constructed from a flooring material and/or a laminated material. Additionally, the layer may include multiple layers that are attached to the table top. Further, the layer may include at least one outer edge with a generally tapered configuration and the layer may be attached to the table top using a peel-and-stick process. In addition, the layer may have a thickness in the range of about one millimeter to about five millimeters and the table top has a thickness in the range of about one centimeter to about ten centimeters.
  • Still another aspect is a table that may include a table top constructed from plastic and the plastic table top may include a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities. The table may also include at least one leg assembly connected to the table top; and a laminated layer attached to the table top, the laminated layer including a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the plastic table top. The table top may be constructed from blow-molded plastic and includes a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process.
  • Yet another aspect is a method of constructing at least a portion of a table. The method may include providing a table top constructed from blow-molded plastic and including a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process, the table top including an upper portion and a lower portion, the blow-molded plastic table top having a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities. The method may also include providing at least one leg assembly that is connected to the table top. In addition, the method may include providing a layer with an adhesive disposed on at least one portion of the layer, the layer having a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the table top. The method may further include attaching the layer to an upper portion of the table top.
  • These and other aspects, features and advantages of the present invention will become more fully apparent from the following detailed description of preferred embodiments and appended claims.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The appended drawings contain figures of preferred embodiments to further illustrate and clarify the above and other aspects, advantages and features of the present invention. It will be appreciated that these drawings depict only preferred embodiments of the invention and are not intended to limit its scope. The invention will be described and explained with additional specificity and detail through the use of the accompanying drawings in which:
  • FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a table, illustrating an exemplary layer attached to an exemplary portion of a table top;
  • FIG. 2 is an exploded side view of the table shown in FIG. 1, illustrating an exemplary layer and table top in an unattached configuration;
  • FIG. 3 is another side view of the table shown in FIG. 2, illustrating the layer and table top in an attached configuration;
  • FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional side view of the table shown in FIG. 1, illustrating another exemplary layer and table top in the unattached configuration;
  • FIG. 5 is another cross-sectional view of the table shown in FIG. 4, illustrating the layer and table top in the attached configuration;
  • FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional side view of an exemplary layer that may be used in connection with the table shown in FIG. 1; and
  • FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional side view of a portion of the exemplary layer shown in FIG. 6, illustrating an exemplary configuration of the edge.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EXEMPLARY EMBODIMENTS
  • The present invention is generally directed towards tables. The principles of the present invention, however, are not limited to tables. It will be understood that, in light of the present disclosure, the invention disclosed herein can be successfully used in connection with other types of furniture, fixtures and equipment.
  • Additionally, to assist in the description of the table, words such as top, bottom, front, rear, right and left may be used to describe the accompanying figures, which are not necessarily drawn to scale. It will be appreciated, however, that the table can be located in a variety of desired positions—including various angles, sideways and even upside down. A detailed description of the table now follows.
  • As shown in FIG. 1, an exemplary embodiment of a table 10 includes a table top 12 with one or more leg assemblies 14 that may be used to support the table top above a surface such as the floor. As shown in the accompanying figure, the leg assembly 14 includes two legs 16, 18 that are interconnected by a crossbar. The legs 16, 18 may include two elongated sections and a curved section, but the legs could have other suitable shapes and configurations. In addition, the leg assembly 14 may include only a single leg or multiple legs depending, for example, upon the design and intended use of the table 10. The leg assembly 14 may also include other parts and components depending, for example, upon the design of the leg assembly. Thus, a leg assembly 14 may include one or more legs 16, 18 and other parts and components, such as connecting members, feet and the like. It will be appreciated that the leg assemblies 14 and the legs 16, 18 may have a variety of suitable shapes, sizes and configurations. In addition, if desired, the leg assemblies 14 and/or legs 16, 18 may have a fixed or adjustable length.
  • The leg assemblies 14 are preferably movable between a collapsed position and an extended position relative to the table top 12. In particular, the leg assemblies 14 preferably extend outwardly from the table top 12 when in the extended position, and the leg assemblies 14 are preferably generally adjacent and parallel to the lower portion of the table top when in the collapsed position. When the leg assemblies 14 are in the collapsed position, all or a portion of the leg assemblies may contact or abut the lower portion of the table top 12, if desired. Advantageously, this may facilitate shipping and/or stacking of the tables 10.
  • As shown in FIG. 1, the table top 12 may have a generally rectangular shape and may be sized to form a utility-type table. For example, if the table 10 is a utility-type table, then the table top 12 may have a length of about six to about eight feet and a width of about two to about three feet. Advantageously, the utility-type table may be used for a wide variety of purposes and functions. It will be appreciated that the table top 12 may be larger or smaller, if desired. For instance, the table 10 may include a table top 12 that is sized and configured for use by a single person. This type of table may be referred to as an individual or personal sized table. On the other hand, the table top 12 may be larger so that the table 10 can be used by any suitable number of people.
  • The generally rectangular-shaped table top 12 may allow the table 10 to be used for a number of different purposes and events. The table top 12, however, could have other appropriate configurations such as circular, square and the like depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10. Thus, the table top 12 may be sized and configured for numerous suitable purposes and functions, such as a personal table, computer table, game table, bedside table, night stand, television table, utility table, card table, conference table and the like. While the table 10 may be sized and configured for a particular use or activity, the table could also have a general shape, design and/or configuration to allow it to be used in a variety of situations and circumstances.
  • The table top 12 is preferably constructed from a lightweight material and, more preferably, the table top is constructed from plastic, such as high density polyethylene. The plastic table top 12 is desirably formed by a blow-molding process because, for example, the blow-molding process may allow a strong, lightweight, rigid and sturdy table top to be quickly and easily manufactured. Advantageously, a blow-molded plastic table top 12 may have a lighter weight than a conventional table top, which may allow the table 10 to be more easily moved, transported and stored. The blow-molded plastic table top 12 may also be constructed from less plastic than a conventional plastic table top, which may reduce manufacturing expenses and consumer costs. In addition, the blow-molded plastic table top 12 may be constructed with thinner outer walls and that may allow the table top to cool more quickly during the manufacturing process. This may decrease the time required to create the table top 12 and may increase the efficiency in which the table 10 is manufactured.
  • The blow-molded plastic table top 12 may be relatively lightweight because it may include a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process. Advantageously, the lightweight table top 12 may allow a lighter weight table 10 to be constructed. The lighter weight table 10 may reduce shipping costs and may allow the consumer to more easily move the table. One of ordinary skill in the art will appreciate that the hollow interior portion formed during the manufacturing process may be subsequently filled with material, such as foam or other types of materials, and that the table top 12 does not have to be formed with a hollow interior portion.
  • The table top 12 is preferably constructed from blow-molded plastic because blow-molded plastic table tops may be relatively durable, weather resistant, temperature insensitive, corrosion resistant and rust resistant. In addition, blow-molded plastic generally does not deteriorate over time and can be used in a wide variety of environments. One skilled in the art, however, will appreciate that the table top 12 does not have to be constructed from blow-molded plastic and other suitable materials and/or processes can be used to construct the table top depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10. Thus, the table top 12 could be constructed from other materials with suitable characteristics, such as, other plastics, composites, synthetics, wood, plywood, particle board, metal, metal alloys, fiberglass, ceramics and the like. Additionally, the table top 12 could be constructed using other suitable processes such as injection molding, extrusion molding, rotary molding and the like.
  • The table top 12 may include one or more features and these features may be integrally formed in the table top as part of a unitary, one-piece structure. For example, the table top 12 may include one or more recesses that are sized and configured to receive at least a portion of the leg assemblies 14 when the leg assemblies are in the collapsed position. The table top 12 may also a generally downwardly extending lip that may be disposed at or near an outer portion of the table top 12. The lip may include a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process. Advantageously, these features, such as the recesses and lip, may be formed with the table top 12 during the blow-molding process. It will be appreciated, however, that these and other features do not have to be integrally formed with the table top 12 during the blow-molding process. In contrast, these and other features may be formed from other suitable processes and materials. For example, these features could be separate components that are subsequently attached to the table top 12. It will also be appreciated that the table 10 could have a variety of suitable features and these features could have any appropriate arrangement and/or configurations. Exemplary features that may be used in connection with the table 10 and/or table top 12 are disclosed in Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/409,273, which was filed Apr. 8, 2003, entitled EDGE AND CORNER FOR A TABLE TOP; Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/051,933, which was filed on Feb. 4, 2005, entitled EDGE AND CORNER FOR A STRUCTURE CONSTRUCTED FROM BLOW-MOLDED PLASTIC; Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/964,096, which was filed Oct. 13, 2004, entitled TABLE WITH BLOW-MOLDED TABLE TOP; and Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/963,919, which was filed Oct. 13, 2004, entitled UTILITY TABLE WITH INTEGRAL RECEIVING MEMBERS; each of which are incorporated by references in their entirety.
  • As discussed above, when the leg assemblies 14 are in the collapsed position, the leg assemblies are preferably positioned generally adjacent and parallel to a lower portion of the table top 12. In addition, all or a portion of the leg assemblies 14 may contact the lower portion of the table top 12 when the leg assemblies are in the collapsed position. Advantageously, when the leg assemblies 14 are in the collapsed position, the leg assemblies may be sized and configured so that the leg assemblies do not extend beyond a plane that is generally aligned with a lower portion of the table top 12, such as the lip. The leg assemblies 14 may also be sized and configured so that the leg assembles are at least substantially disposed within an envelope generally defined by the lower portion of the table top 12, the lip and a plane generally aligned with a lower portion of the lip. Advantageously, these configurations may facilitate stacking of the tables 10, which may allow the tables to be more easily shipped and stored.
  • The table top 12 may also include other features such as one or more depressions 20, which are also known as tack-offs or kiss-offs. Advantageously, the depressions 20 may be integrally formed as part of a unitary one-piece table top 12, such as during the blow-molding process. As shown in FIGS. 2-5, a plurality of depressions 20 may be disposed in the lower surface of the table top 12. The depressions 20 preferably cover at least a substantial portion of the lower surface of the table top 12 and the depressions preferably extend towards and/or contact an opposing surface, such as the upper surface of the table top. For example, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the ends of the depressions 20 may be spaced apart from the opposing surface. On the other hand, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, the ends of the depressions 20 may contact or abut the opposing surface. It will be appreciated that, if desired, some of the depressions 20 may contact the opposing surface while other depressions do not contact the opposing surface. It will also be appreciated that the table top 12 could include any suitable number of depressions 20 in any desired portions of the table top, but the depressions are not required.
  • The depressions 20 may be sized and configured to increase the strength and/or structural integrity of the table top 12, which may permit the thickness of the table top's walls to be reduced and thus allow the table top to be constructed with less plastic. Advantageously, the less plastic may allow a lightweight table top 12 and corresponding table 10 to be constructed. Further, the thinner walls may reduce the amount of time required to manufacture the table top 12. For example, when a blow-molded structure such as the table top 12 formed, a certain amount of time must elapse before the structure can be removed from the mold. Advantageously, the blow-molded table top 12 with thinner walls may have a shorter cooling period than corresponding table tops with thicker walls. Thus, the depressions 20 may allow the table top 12 to be constructed with thinner walls and the cooling time to be decreased. Significantly, a reduced cycle time may increase the efficiency of manufacturing process and the reduced amount of plastic may decrease the cost of the table 10.
  • Additional details regarding the size, shape and configuration of depressions that may suitable for use in connection with the table top 12 are disclosed in Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/409,000, which was filed Apr. 8, 2003, entitled HIGH-STRENGTH, LIGHTWEIGHT BLOW-MOLDED PLASTIC STRUCTURES; and Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/963,895, which was filed Oct. 12, 2004, entitled HIGH-STRENGTH, LIGHTWEIGHT BLOW-MOLDED PLASTIC STRUCTURES, which are incorporated by reference in their entireties. It will be appreciated that the depressions 20 may have a variety of suitable sizes, shapes and configurations depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10. It will also be appreciated that the table top 12 may include other features and structures, but these other features, structures and depressions 20 are required.
  • The table top 12 of the table 10 may consist of a single, unitary, one-piece structure. The table top 12, however, could be constructed from any suitable number of sections to form, for example, a fold-in-half table. Advantageously, this may allow the table top 12 to be moved between a folded position and an unfolded position, which may facilitate transportation and storage of the table 10. Of course, the table top 12 may be constructed with any suitable number of components or sections depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10.
  • The table 10 may also include a frame that is connected to the table top 12. The frame may be sized and configured to increase the strength and/or rigidity of the table top 12 or the frame may simply allow, for example, the leg assembles 14 to be attached to the table 10. The frame may include a first side rail and a second side rail. The first and second side rails are preferably disposed proximate the outer edges of the table top 12 and the side rails may extend along all or a portion of the table top. In particular, the side rails preferably extend along at least half of the length of the table top 12; however, the side rails could be longer or shorter. The side rails may also be connected to and/or disposed adjacent to a lip or outer portion of the table top 12. The side rails may have a generally S-shaped, U-shaped, circular, oval, planar, or other suitable configurations, and the side rails may be connected to any desired portions of the table top 12.
  • The frame is preferably constructed from a relatively strong material, such as metal. Advantageously, the metal may be easily formed into the desired configuration by known operations, such as stamping and bending, and the metal may be coated or painted as desired. The frame may be connected to the table top 12 using one or more suitable fasteners, such as rivets, bolts or screws, adhesives and the like. Further, the side rails may be attached to the table top 12 using a snap fit, an interference fit, a friction fit and the like. The frame may also be attached to the table top 12 without mechanical fasteners. Other exemplary embodiments for connecting the frame to the table top are disclosed in Assignee's pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/409,259, which was filed on Apr. 8, 2003, entitled FRAME THAT CAN BE ATTACHED TO A TABLE TOP WITHOUT MECHANICAL FASTENERS, which is incorporated by reference in its entirety. It will be appreciated that while the frame and side rails may have a variety of suitable sizes, shapes and configurations, neither the frame nor the side rails are required.
  • As shown in FIGS. 1-5, the table 10 may include a sheet or layer 22. The layer 22 may consist of a relatively thin, sheet-like expanse that covers a portion of the table top 12. As discussed in greater detail below, the layer 22 may have a generally uniform thickness and the layer may have a generally homogenous structure or composition. The layer 22, however, can have any desired thickness, structure and composition. In addition, the layer 22 may consist of a single layer of material or the layer may include two or more layers of materials and the layers of materials may have the same or different structures or compositions. Advantageously, these and other features may allow the layer 22 to have various suitable characteristics and qualities.
  • In particular, as shown in the accompanying figures, the layer 22 may include an upper portion 24, a lower portion 26 and one or more outer edges 28. The layer 22 is preferably sized and configured to cover at least a portion of the table top 12. In particular, the layer 22 is preferably sized and configured to cover at least a portion of the upper surface of the table top 12. For example, as shown in FIG. 1, the layer 22 may cover a substantial portion of the upper portion 24 of the table top 12 and leave a boarder or boundary between the layer and the perimeter of the table top. Thus, if the table top 12 has a generally rectangular configuration, then the layer 22 may similarly have a generally rectangular configuration. Advantageously, the layer 22 may be sized and configured to cover all or just a portion of the table 22 depending, for example, upon the intended design and/or use of the table 10. Accordingly, the layer 22 may have a generally square, rectangular, circular, oblong, oval, polygonal or otherwise suitable shape depending, for example, upon the shape of the table top 12 or the intended use of the table 10.
  • Significantly, if the outer edges 28 of the layer 22 are disposed away from the perimeter of the table top 12, then that may allow a more decorative, formal and/or aesthetically pleasing table 10 to be created. For example, the layer 22 and the table top 12 may have different colors, textures, designs, patterns and the like, and these different characteristics may allow a table 10 with improved aesthetics to be created. It will be appreciated that while the edges 28 of the layer 22 may be spaced inwardly from the outer perimeter of the table top 12, one or more of the edges of the layer may be generally aligned with the outer perimeter of the table top.
  • The layer 22 preferably has a generally uniform thickness so that the upper surface 24 and the lower surface 26 are separated by a generally constant distance. In addition, the layer 22 preferably has a generally planar upper surface 24 and a generally planar lower surface 26. Advantageously, this may allow the layer 22 to be attached to the table top 12 in a generally uniform manner and create a generally planar upper surface. The layer 22, however, could have a varied or different thickness and upper or lower surfaces 24, 26 depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10.
  • As illustrated in FIG. 1, the layer 22 could consist of a single sheet of material that covers at least a portion of the table top 12. Advantageously, if the layer 22 is a single sheet of material, that may allow the layer to be quickly and easily positioned in the desired location and/or attached to the table top 12. In addition, the layer 22 may have generally uniform features and generally uniform upper and/or lower surfaces if the layer consists of a single sheet of material. The layer 22, however, could also consist of two or more sections or pieces. For example, the layer 22 may include a first part that is attached to a first section of the table top 12 and a second part that is attached to a second section of the table top. The layer 22 may also include any suitable number and size of sections. For example, the layer 22 may include a number of sections that have a generally uniform size and the number of sections that are attached to the table top 12 may depend upon the size and configuration of the table top. Significantly, this may allow the layer 22 to be easily attached to table top 12 with different sizes and configurations by, for example, varying the number of layers 22 that are attached to the table top. Thus, for a table top that is sized and configured to be used as a card table, nine, sixteen or twenty-five sections of the layer 22 may be attached to the table top. For a larger table such as a utility table or conference table, the layer 22 may include more sections. It will be appreciated that the number of the sections of the layer 22 may depend upon the size of the sections, area to be covered and size of the table top 12.
  • The layer 22 may be constructed using materials such as plastics, composites, synthetics and the like. The layer 22 may also be laminated and include one or more layers. Advantageously, the layer 22 may be constructed from flooring materials or floor coverings such as linoleum, laminate, floor tiles and the like. Significantly, flooring materials have a wide variety of types, such as smooth, textured and the like. In addition, flooring materials are available in many different species, such as colored, wood patterned, tile and the like. Flooring materials are also available in many different colors, shades, patterns and the like. Additionally, flooring materials may have excellent wear, stain and/or fade resistant properties. Further, flooring materials may be moisture and water resistant. These different elements and features may be very useful in creating a layer 22 with the desired characteristics and qualities. While the layer 22 may be constructed from flooring materials, the layer could also be constructed using other suitable materials and processes.
  • The layer 22 may also be bendable or flexible, which may facilitate attachment of the layer to the table top 12. For example, the layer 22 may be rolled up or folded for storage and/or shipping, and then attached to the table top 12. The layer 22 may also be resilient and/or impact resistant so that if a force is applied to or an object strikes the layer, the layer may help prevent damage to the table top 12 and/or table 10. Additionally, the layer 22 may have a high wear resistance, which may help prevent the table top 12 for being damaged. It will be appreciated that the layer 22 may also have other suitable features and properties.
  • Desirably, the layer 22 has one or more characteristics or qualities that are different than the table top 12. For example, the layer 22 may be constructed from materials that are different from the materials used to construct the table top 12. In particular, if the table top 12 is constructed from blow-molded plastic and the layer 22 is constructed from flooring materials, then the table top and layer may have different characteristics or qualities. The layer 22 may also be constructed using a process that is different from the process used to construct the table top 12. Thus, the table top 12 may be constructed from blow-molded plastic and the layer may be constructed using a different process.
  • Advantageously, if the table top 12 and the layer 22 are constructed using different materials and/or processes, the table top and layer may have different characteristics, properties and/or qualities. These different characteristics, properties and/or qualities may be used to create a table top 12 and/or table 10 with various designs, aesthetics, improvements, changes and/or advantages. For example, the layer 22 may have colors, designs, patterns, graphics, textures, configurations and the like for decoration, ornamentation or aesthetic purposes. In particular, the layer 22 may colors, designs, patterns, graphics, textures, configurations and the like that may contrast with those of the table 10 and/or table top 12. This may allow, for example, a more formal, decorative or elaborate table 10 to be constructed. Significantly, this may increase the possible uses of the table 10. The table 10, however, may still be relatively inexpensive, lightweight and portable.
  • In addition, if the table top 12 and the layer 22 have different characteristics, properties and/or qualities, the layer 22 may be used to change the functionality and/or potential uses of the table 10. For example, the layer 22 may be used to increase the wear resistance or cut resistance of the table top 12. The layer 22 may also be used to provide a stronger or more durable surface. In addition, the layer 22 may be used to indicate specific locations or positions on the table top 12. Further, the layer 22 may be used to provide a desired surface that may facilitate various activities, such as writing, drawing, drafting, typing, eating, drinking, making crafts, pursuing hobbies, and the like. For example, the upper surface 24 of the layer 22 may have a generally smooth and/or planar surface that may facilitate writing and drawing. The layer 22 could also have a more textured or uneven surface, if desired. It will be appreciated that the layer 22 may have any characteristics, properties and/or qualities that are different than the table top 12 depending, for example, upon the intended use of the table 10.
  • Advantageously, the layer 22 may allow a table top 12 with different characteristics to be constructed. For example, if the layer 22 provides increased strength, wear resistance and/or impact resistance, then the table top 12 may be constructed with thinner walls. Significantly, this may allow the table top 12 to be more quickly manufactured and with less material, but still have the same characteristics. This may also allow the same table top 12 to be manufactured, but the table top may have improved or changed characteristics because of the layer 22. The layer 22, however, does not have to be used to create a table top 12 with different characteristics.
  • As shown in the accompanying figures, the layer 22 is preferably attached to an upper portion 30 of the table top 12. For example, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the lower portion 26 of the layer 22 preferably contacts or abuts at least a portion of the upper portion 30 of the table top 12. Thus, in this configuration, the layer 22 is simply attached to the upper portion 30 of the table top 12. Therefore, the layer 22 extends outwardly from the upper portion 30 of the table top 12. As shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, all or a portion of the layer 22 may be disposed in a receiving portion 34. As discussed in greater detail below, the receiving portion 34 is preferably sized and configured to receive all or at least a portion of the layer 22. This may allow, for example, the upper portion 24 of the layer 22 to be generally aligned with the upper portion 30 of the table top 12. It will be appreciated that the upper portion 24 of the layer 22 does not have to be aligned with the upper portion 30 of the table top 12 and neither the layer nor the table top require any planar portions. It will also be appreciated that the layer 22 could be attached to any suitable portions of the table top 12.
  • The layer 22 is preferably securely attached to the table top 12 to prevent the layer from being inadvertently removed. In particular, the layer 22 is preferably permanently attached or attached in a manner to prevent the inadvertent removal of the layer, but the layer could be selectively attached if desired. The layer 22 is preferably attached to the table top 12 by an adhesive. Advantageously, the adhesive may securely and permanently attach the layer 22 to the table top 12. An adhesive may also be used to selectively attach the layer 22 to the table top 12, if desired.
  • In greater detail, as shown in FIG. 6, an adhesive 42 and a backing 44 may be applied or attached to the layer 22. The backing 44 preferably conceals and is removably attached to at least a portion of the adhesive 42. Accordingly, the backing 44 may be removed to expose at least a portion of the adhesive 42 and the adhesive may be used to attach the layer 22 to the table top 12 in any suitable fashion. Advantageously, the adhesive 42 and the backing 44 may be used to construct a peel-and-stick layer 22 that allows the layer to be quickly and easily attached to the table top 12.
  • The adhesive 42 may be a pressure-sensitive adhesive that attaches the layer 22 to the table top 12 when the layer contacts the table top. This may provide a very straightforward and easy attachment of the layer 22 to the table top 12. It will be appreciated that other types of adhesives, cements, glues and the like may also be used to connect the layer 22 to the table top 12. It will also be appreciated that the adhesive 42 may include other components, such as micro-spheres or other spacers, that allow the layer 22 to properly spaced apart from the table top 12.
  • The adhesive 42 and backing 44 may allow the layer 22 to be attached at any suitable time during the manufacturing process. For example, the adhesive 42 and the backing 44 may allow the layer 22 to be attached to the table top 12 immediately or promptly after the table top is manufactured. Thus, this may allow the table top 12 with the layer 22 to be quickly manufactured. The layer 22 could also be attached at a later time by the manufacturer.
  • The adhesive 42 and backing 44 may also allow the retainer to attach the layer 22 to the table top 12 according, for example, to the desires of a particular customer. For example, the retainer may have a quantity of table tops 12 and layers 22 that may be attached in any desired manner or order. Thus, if a consumer has a request for a particular style or color of table top 12 and/or layer 22, then the retailer may simply and easily attach the layer to the table top according to the wishes of the consumer. Therefore, the retailer may be able to customize the table 10 for a customer according to the needs and requirements of that customer.
  • In addition, the adhesive and backing 44 may allow the consumer to customize their table 10 according to their specific requirements. For instance, the consumer may select a layer 22 with a particular color, pattern or design according to their aesthetic requirements. The consumer may then attach the layer 22 to the table top 12 to customize their table 10. The consumer may also select a particular layer 22 to satisfy other requirements such as wear resistance, impact resistance, resiliency, etc. Advantageously, because the consumer can readily modify the design and/or characteristics of the table 10, the table may be used in a wide range of environments and purposes.
  • Significantly, because different layers 22 may be used with different table tops 12 to create tables 10 with different designs, aesthetics, characteristics and/or properties, the potential uses of the table may be greatly increased. In addition, because the manufacturer, retailer and consumer may attach the layer 22 to the table top 12, the functionality and potential uses of the table 10 may be greatly increased.
  • It will be appreciated that the layer 22 does not require the backing 44. For example, the layer 22 may be attached to the table top 12 as soon as the adhesive 42 is applied to the layer. In addition, it will be appreciated that the adhesive 42 and/or backing 44 may be connected to the table top 12, if desired. The layer 22 could also be attached to the table top 12 by other suitable means, such as fasteners or other types of mechanical connections. In addition, the layer 22 could be attached to the table top 12 by a combination of suitable components, methods or manners, such as adhesives and fasteners.
  • It will also be appreciated that the layer 22 could be attached to the table top 12 without using an adhesive. For example, a portion of the table top 12 and/or the layer 22 may be melted to attach the layer to the table top. In particular, a portion of the table top 12 and/or layer 22 may be melted and when the melted portions may cool they may solidify to attach the layer 22 to the table top 12. These melted portions may be formed in a variety of ways. For example, heat emitting devices (such as soldering irons) or friction generating devices (such as spin-friction bits or vibrating tools) may be used to melt portions of the layer 22 and/or the table top 12. In addition, the layer 22 and/or the table top 12 may be vibrated or rapidly moved to generate heat or friction that is sufficient to melt portions of the sheet and/or the table top. Advantageously, the melted portions may be quickly and easily formed. In addition, the melted portions may securely and efficiently secure the layer 22 to the table top 12. It will be appreciated that any appropriate portions of the layer 22 and/or the table top 12 may be melted to form the desired attachment points. Additionally, the attachment points may be formed in any suitable portions of the layer 22 and/or the table top 12. Further, it will be appreciated that the melted portions may be formed in any other suitable fashion or manner.
  • Advantageously, the melted portions may allow the layer 22 to be attached to the table top 12 without the use of adhesives or fasteners, which may help prevent stress concentrations or other discontinuities from being created in the table top. The melted portions may help form a solid and secure bond between the layer 22 and the table top 12 that permanently attaches the layer to the table top. It will be understood, however, that the layer 22 and the table top 12 may be attached by any suitable process or manner such as adhesives, fasteners, snap fit connections, friction fit, interference fit, over-molding; painting, sonic welding and the like.
  • The receiving portion 34, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, may also be sized and configured to attach the layer 22 to the table top 12. For example, the receive portion 34 may be sized and configured to receive and/or retain the layer 22 to create an inlaid configuration. In greater detail, the receiving portion 34 may include a lower portion 36 and one or more walls 38. The lower portion 36 and one or more walls 38 of the receiving portion 34 may define an envelope or recessed portion that is sized and configured to receive and/or retain all or at least a portion of the layer 22.
  • The receiving portion 34 of the table top 12 may provide many advantages. For example, by disposing the layer 22 within the receiving portion 34, a potentially aesthetically appealing contrast between the layer and the table top 12 may be created. In particular, the upper surface 32 of the table top 12 may form a border about the layer 22 and, because the layer and the table top may have different designs, characteristics and qualities than the table top, different portions of the table 10 may have distinct designs, characteristics, etc. The receiving portion 34 may help prevent the edges of the layer 22 from being damaged or inadvertently detached from the table top 12. Further, the receiving portion 34 of the table top 12 may help provide a generally consistent working surface. For example, as shown in FIG. 5, at least a portion of the upper portion 32 of the table top 12 and at least a portion of the upper portion 24 of the layer 22 may be generally aligned to create a generally consistent working surface 40. It will be appreciated, however, that the table 10 does not require the upper portion 32 of the table top 12 and the upper portion 24 of the layer 22 be generally aligned.
  • The receiving portion 34 may be formed in the table top 12, if desired. Advantageously, if the table top 12 is formed from blow-molded plastic, then the receiving portion 34 may be integrally formed in the table top 12 as part of a unitary, one-piece structure. It will be appreciated that the receiving portion 34 does not have to be formed in the table top 12 and the receiving portion 34 is not required. It will also be appreciated that while the receiving portion 34 preferably has the same general size and shape as the layer 22 so that there are no large gaps or spaces between the layer and the receiving portion, the receiving portion and/or layer could also have other suitable sizes and shapes. Further, the table top 12 could include multiple receiving portions 34 depending, for example, upon the number of layers 22 that are intended to be connected to the table top or the intended use of the table 10. It will also be understood that only a portion of the layer 22 could be disposed within the receiving portions 34 and the receiving portions could have other sizes and configurations depending, for example, upon the number of layers and/or the size of the layers.
  • The layer 22 preferably has a generally constant thickness and it may have generally uniform characteristics. For example, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, the upper and lower surfaces of the layer 22 are preferably spaced apart at a generally constant distance to provide a generally consistent thickness t1; and the upper and lower surfaces of the table top 12 are preferably spaced apart at a generally constant distance to provide a generally consistent thickness t2. The thickness t1 of the layer 22 is preferably relatively small compared to the thickness t2 of the table top 12. That is, the layer 22 preferably has a thickness that is much less than the thickness of the table top 12. For example, the thickness t1 of the layer 22 is preferably within the range of about one millimeter to about five millimeters. The thickness t2 of the table top 12, however, is preferably about two centimeters to about ten centimeters. Also, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, the receiving portion 34 preferably has a depth that is generally equal to the thickness t1 of the layer 22, which may facilitate reception of the layer so that the upper portion of the layer is generally aligned with the upper portion of the table top. It will be understood, however, that the receiving portion 34 may have a larger or smaller depth. It will also be understood that the thickness t1 of the layer 22 and/or the thickness t2 of the table top 12 may be larger or smaller depending, for example, upon the desired configuration of the table 10. In addition, it will be appreciated that the table top 12, layer 22 and receiving portions 34 do not require a constant thickness or depth.
  • As shown in FIG. 7, the edges 28 of the layer 22 may be tapered and/or rounded. Advantageously, the generally tapered and/or rounded configuration may help reduce the risk that the layer 22 may be inadvertently detached from the table top 12. For example, if the layer 22 is not disposed within a receiving portion 34, then the tapered or rounded configuration may help create a smooth transition between the table top 12 and the layer. The tapered or rounded configuration may also be used to create a table with a particular design and/or appearance. It will be appreciated that the edges 28 of the layer 22 may have other suitable configurations depending, for example, upon the intended use or design of the table 10.
  • The table 10 may include other suitable aspects and features such as disclosed in Assignee's co-pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. ______ (Attorney Docket No. 15499.622.1), filed Jun. 13, 2005; and Assignee's co-pending U.S. patent application Ser. No. ______ (Attorney Docket No. 15499.652), filed Jun. 13, 2005; which are incorporated by reference in their entireties.
  • Although this invention has been described in terms of certain preferred embodiments, other embodiments apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art are also within the scope of this invention. Accordingly, the scope of the invention is intended to be defined only by the claims which follow.

Claims (20)

  1. 1. A table comprising:
    a table top constructed from blow-molded plastic and including a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process, the table top including an upper portion and a lower portion, the blow-molded plastic table top having a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities;
    at least one leg assembly connected to the table top; and
    a layer attached to an upper portion of the table top, the layer having a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the table top.
  2. 2. The table as in claim 1, further comprising an adhesive layer that is used to attach the layer to the table top.
  3. 3. The table as in claim 1, further comprising a receiving portion in the upper portion of the table top that is sized and configured to receive at least a portion of the layer.
  4. 4. The table as in claim 3, further comprising a thickness of the layer that is substantially equal to a depth of the receiving portion so that at least a portion of an upper portion of the layer is generally aligned with at least a portion of an upper portion of the table top.
  5. 5. The table as in claim 3, wherein the receiving portion is integrally formed during the blow-molding process as part of a unitary, one-piece structure.
  6. 6. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer has a different appearance than the table top to provide a contrast between the layer and the table top.
  7. 7. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer provides different functionality than the table top.
  8. 8. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer is constructed from a flooring material.
  9. 9. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer is constructed from a laminated material.
  10. 10. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer includes multiple layers that are attached to the table top.
  11. 11. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer includes at least one outer edge with a generally tapered configuration.
  12. 12. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer is attached to the table top using a peel-and-stick process.
  13. 13. The table as in claim 1, wherein the layer has a thickness in the range of about one millimeter to about five millimeters and the table top has a thickness in the range of about one centimeter to about ten centimeters.
  14. 14. A table comprising:
    a table top constructed from plastic, the plastic table top including a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities;
    at least one leg assembly connected to the table top; and
    a laminated layer attached to the table top, the laminated layer including a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the plastic table top.
  15. 15. The table as in claim 14, wherein the table top is constructed from blow-molded plastic and includes a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process.
  16. 16. A method of constructing at least a portion of a table, the method comprising:
    providing a table top constructed from blow-molded plastic and including a hollow interior portion that is formed during the blow-molding process, the table top including an upper portion and a lower portion, the blow-molded plastic table top having a first set of properties, characteristics and qualities;
    providing at least one leg assembly that is connected to the table top;
    providing a layer with an adhesive disposed on at least one portion of the layer, the layer having a second set of properties, characteristics and qualities that are different than the first set of properties, characteristics and qualities of the table top; and
    attaching the layer to an upper portion of the table top.
  17. 17. The method as in claim 16, further comprising attaching the layer to a receiving portion disposed in the upper portion of the table top.
  18. 18. The method as in claim 17, wherein a thickness of the layer that is substantially equal to a depth of the receiving portion so that at least a portion of an upper portion of the layer is generally aligned with at least a portion of an upper portion of the table top.
  19. 19. The method as in claim 16, wherein the layer is constructed from a flooring material.
  20. 20. The method as in claim 16, wherein the layer is constructed from a laminated material.
US11150890 2004-06-14 2005-06-13 Table with table top and layer Abandoned US20050284342A1 (en)

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Cited By (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20050277493A1 (en) * 2004-06-14 2005-12-15 Richard Hendricksen Two-piece structure including a blow-molded plastic portion
US20050274306A1 (en) * 2004-06-14 2005-12-15 Strong L Curtis Table with table top and layer
US20080078310A1 (en) * 2006-09-27 2008-04-03 Vannimwegen Edward G Table

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WO2005122829A8 (en) 2006-04-06 application
WO2005122829A3 (en) 2006-12-21 application

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