US20120049033A1 - Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof - Google Patents

Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof Download PDF

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Publication number
US20120049033A1
US20120049033A1 US12872139 US87213910A US20120049033A1 US 20120049033 A1 US20120049033 A1 US 20120049033A1 US 12872139 US12872139 US 12872139 US 87213910 A US87213910 A US 87213910A US 20120049033 A1 US20120049033 A1 US 20120049033A1
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Patent type
Prior art keywords
platter
support
surface
apparatus
bottom
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US12872139
Inventor
Teresa Gee Mosley
Original Assignee
Teresa Gee Mosley
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
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Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47GHOUSEHOLD OR TABLE EQUIPMENT
    • A47G19/00Table service
    • A47G19/02Plates, dishes or the like
    • A47G19/08Plate-holders
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47GHOUSEHOLD OR TABLE EQUIPMENT
    • A47G23/00Other table equipment
    • A47G23/08Food-conveying devices for tables; Movable or rotary food-serving devices

Abstract

A slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof, wherein the platter support apparatus comprises a single ring having a U-shaped channel therewithin with bearings disposed within the channel, and wherein the channel opens to the bottom portion of the ring. The ring further comprises a gripping material on the surface of the ring opposite the bearing channel, thereby forming a top surface for securing a platter to the platter support apparatus.

Description

    CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
  • [0001]
    None
  • FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
  • [0002]
    None
  • PARTIES TO A JOINT RESEARCH AGREEMENT
  • [0003]
    None
  • REFERENCE TO A SEQUENCE LISTING
  • [0004]
    None
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0005]
    1. Technical Field of the Invention
  • [0006]
    The present invention relates generally to dinnerware platter support apparatuses, and more specifically to a slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus.
  • [0007]
    2. Description of Related Art
  • [0008]
    During a meal set at a table, it is often necessary to move food disposed on a platter from person to person at the table in order that each person may select from the platter their food item of choice. Unfortunately, platters of food are often hot and thus difficult to transport from person to person, and may also cause harm to the persons handling them. Further, when being moved, such platters are at risk of disgorging their contents if mishandled.
  • [0009]
    Various attempts have been made to overcome the problem of moving food on a platter from location to location or to allow access to all parts of a platter. Typically to move a platter from one location to another, it is either passed from hand to hand, which lends itself to the likelihood of mishandling and spillage of contents, or via use of an external transport, such as a trolley that is stationed outside of the persons seated at a table, thereby requiring additional space and being generally inconvenient to those at the table who must turn around to use it.
  • [0010]
    In attempting to solve the problem of access to all parts of a platter that is located on a table surface, the common method is use of a “Lazy Susan” device; that is, a device that comprises a base portion that rests on the table surface, a pivot axis and a support portion. The pivot axis may be a simple axle or may comprise a configuration containing ball bearings housed between two retaining horizontal plates. While such may overcome the problem of rotating a platter for access to all sides, it limits the movement of the platter from location to location on the table, and is thus inconvenient.
  • [0011]
    One previous devices teaches a service tray for use on a table, wherein the service tray has disposed therethrough a shaft, such as for an umbrella. The service tray further comprises rollers that are positioned on the underside of the tray member to facilitate rotation on a supporting surface. However, this device is prevented from moving from location to location via the securing central shaft around which it rotates.
  • [0012]
    Another previous device is an independent rotary supportive pad for supporting dinner dishes utilizing concentric rings. The rings can be rotated within each other to allow rotation of a dinner dish supported thereon. Unfortunately, this device lacks the ability to be slidably positioned.
  • [0013]
    Yet another previous device teaches a bearing on a shaft, wherein a platform is secured around the bearing, thereby permitting the platform to rotate around the shaft on the bearing. However, this device does not permit slidable positioning of the device at different locations on a table or other surface.
  • [0014]
    Yet still another device comprises a table platform that is itself rotationally secured to an arm that can be maneuvered. While the table platform can be rotated completely, it requires movement of the arm and table platform from position to position, thereby inconveniently moving a person's place setting and plate to another person.
  • [0015]
    Still a further device comprises a pair of rings having bearings disposed therebetween. However, such device cannot be slidably positioned on a flat surface, only rotated.
  • [0016]
    Therefore, it is readily apparent that there is a need for a platter support apparatus that is capable of both sliding across a flat table surface and spinning to provide access to all portions of a platter disposed thereupon.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0017]
    Briefly described, in a preferred embodiment, the present invention overcomes the above-mentioned disadvantages and meets the recognized need for such a device by providing a slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof, wherein the platter support apparatus comprises a single ring having an inverted U-shaped channel therewithin, with bearings or other rolling elements disposed within the channel, wherein the channel opens to the bottom portion of the ring. The ring further comprises a gripping material on the surface of the ring opposite the bearing channel, thereby forming a top surface for securing a platter to the platter support apparatus. At least a portion of the rolling elements extends outside of the bearing race channel and below the edges of the ring.
  • [0018]
    According to its major aspects and broadly stated, the present invention in its preferred form is a slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus comprising a ring with a top surface, a bottom surface and a bearing race disposed within the bottom surface. At least three spherical rolling elements are disposed within the bearing race to provide rolling support of the ring, and a grip coating is disposed on the top surface of the ring. It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the rolling elements could be, for exemplary purposes only, and without limitation, cylindrical, elliptical or spherical. The rolling elements have a diameter that is substantially identical for all rolling elements. For uses where slidability of the platter support apparatus is desired, spherical rolling elements are preferred.
  • [0019]
    The ring further has an inner bottom edge and an outer bottom edge separated from each another by a gap. The rolling elements each comprises a center, and the bottom edges of the ring extend below the centers of the rolling elements when the platter support apparatus is disposed on a flat surface and the rolling elements are disposed within the race channel. The diameter of the rolling elements is greater than the gap between the inner bottom edge and the outer bottom edge. The inner bottom edge or lip and the outer bottom edge or lip are each distally disposed from the top surface, and are disposed a distance apart from each other, that is less than the diameter of the rolling elements, and the bottom edges or lips extend below the centers of the rolling elements. Additionally, the bearing race has a maximum width that is narrower than the gap between the inner bottom edge and the outer bottom edge, wherein the maximum width is dimensioned to confinedly receive the roller elements. The ring further has a cross-section that may be generally rectangular, generally circular or generally triangular, wherein for triangular cross-section rings, the top surface is selectively narrower or wider than the bottom surface.
  • [0020]
    A method of moving a platter is also provided, wherein the slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus is placed on a flat surface and a platter is placed upon the platter support apparatus. The platter is retained on the platter support apparatus by the grip coating. The combined platter and platter support apparatus may subsequently be moved by applying force to the edge of the platter, thereby moving the combination. By applying force generally perpendicular to the edge of the platter, the combination can be made to slide across the table surface from one location to another. By applying force generally tangentially to the edge of the platter, the combination rotates to allow access to different parts of the platter.
  • [0021]
    It will be recognized by those skilled in the art that the present invention could be utilized to relocate and/or rotate any device across or on a flat surface, such as, for exemplary purposes only, a computer on a conference table.
  • [0022]
    More specifically, the present invention is a slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus, wherein the platter support apparatus preferably comprises a ring having bearings disposed therewithin. The ring is preferably generally rectangular in cross-section and has a bearing race of generally U-shape, a top surface and a bottom surface, wherein the bearings have a uniform diameter and are preferably disposed within the bearing race. The bottom surface of the ring is preferably disposed below the center of the bearings. The bottom surface has an inner bottom lip and an outer bottom lip that curl inwardly toward one another and which are separated by a gap that is less in width than the diameter of the bearings.
  • [0023]
    The ring may alternatively have a generally circular cross-section or a generally triangular cross-section. In the latter case, the top surface is selectively wider than the bottom surface or narrower than the bottom surface.
  • [0024]
    In use, the platter support apparatus is placed on a table, wherein the bearings are in contact with the surface of the table. Subsequently, a platter is disposed on the platter support apparatus and the grip coating retains the platter thereon and restrains the platter from sliding relative to the platter support apparatus.
  • [0025]
    By applying force perpendicular to the edge of the platter, platter/platter support apparatus combination can be urged across the table surface from one location to another, thereby facilitating provision of food on the platter to persons seated at the table. Further, by applying force tangentially to the edge of platter/platter support apparatus combination, the combination can be made to spin to provide access to food on a different portion of the platter.
  • [0026]
    Accordingly, a feature and advantage of the present invention is its ability to slide across a flat surface from location to location.
  • [0027]
    Another feature and advantage of the present invention is its ability to be rotated to provide access to all parts of a platter disposed thereupon.
  • [0028]
    Still another feature and advantage of the present invention is its ability to prevent or reduce mishandling of a platter.
  • [0029]
    Yet another feature and advantage of the present invention is its inherent safety in reducing the need to transport a platter by a person carrying same.
  • [0030]
    Yet still another feature and advantage of the present invention is its convenience in taking up no additional space at a table.
  • [0031]
    A further feature and advantage of the present invention is its ability to be utilized with a wide variety of platters.
  • [0032]
    These and other features and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent to one skilled in the art from the following description and claims when read in light of the accompanying drawings.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0033]
    The present invention will be better understood by reading the Detailed Description of the Preferred and Selected Alternate Embodiments with reference to the accompanying drawing figures, in which like reference numerals denote similar structure and refer to like elements throughout, and in which:
  • [0034]
    FIG. 1 is a bottom perspective view of a platter support apparatus according to a preferred embodiment;
  • [0035]
    FIG. 2A is a cross-sectional view of a platter support apparatus according to the preferred embodiment of FIG. 1 taken at A-A;
  • [0036]
    FIG. 2B is a cross-sectional view of a platter support apparatus according to an alternate embodiment of FIG. 1 taken at A-A;
  • [0037]
    FIG. 2C is a cross-sectional view of a platter support apparatus according to an alternate embodiment of FIG. 1 taken at A-A;
  • [0038]
    FIG. 2D is a cross-sectional view of a platter support apparatus according to an alternate embodiment of FIG. 1 taken at A-A; and
  • [0039]
    FIG. 3 is a top perspective view of a platter support apparatus according to the preferred embodiment, shown in use.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED AND SELECTED ALTERNATE EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION
  • [0040]
    In describing the preferred and selected alternate embodiments of the present invention, as illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, specific terminology is employed for the sake of clarity. The invention, however, is not intended to be limited to the specific terminology so selected, and it is to be understood that each specific element includes all technical equivalents that operate in a similar manner to accomplish similar functions.
  • [0041]
    Referring now to FIGS. 1-3, the present invention in a preferred embodiment is platter support apparatus 10, wherein platter support apparatus 10 preferably comprises ring 20 and bearings 40. Ring 20 is preferably generally rectangular in cross-section. Ring 20 preferably comprises generally U-shaped bearing race 30, top surface 65 and bottom surface 60 (both best shown in FIG. 2A), wherein bearings 40 comprise diameter 75 and are preferably disposed within bearing race 30, and wherein bottom surface 60 of ring 20 is preferably disposed below center 70 of bearings 40. Bottom surface 60 comprises inner bottom lip or edge 80 and outer bottom lip or edge 90, wherein inner bottom edge 80 and outer bottom edge 90 curl inwardly toward one another and are separated by gap 95, and wherein gap 95 is less in width than diameter 75. Bearings 40 extend below edges 80, 90 and slightly outside of bearing race 30.
  • [0042]
    Ring 20 further comprises alternate cross-sectional embodiments, wherein ring 20 is generally circular in cross-section (best shown in FIG. 2B) or generally triangular in cross-section (best shown in FIGS. 2C and 2D). Further, in the alternate embodiment of FIG. 2C, top surface 65 is wider than bottom surface 60, while in the alternate embodiment of FIG. 2D, top surface 65 is narrower than bottom surface 60.
  • [0043]
    In use, platter support apparatus 10 is disposed on table T, wherein bearings 40 are in contact with surface S of table T. Subsequently, platter P is disposed on platter support apparatus 10, wherein grip coating 50 retains platter P on platter support apparatus 10 and restrains platter P from sliding relative to platter support apparatus 10.
  • [0044]
    By applying force perpendicular to edge E of to platter P, platter P combined with platter support apparatus 10 can be urged to slide across surface S from one location to another, thereby facilitating provision of food on platter P to persons seated at table T. Further, by applying force tangentially to edge E of platter P, platter P in combination with platter support apparatus 10 can be made to spin to provide access to food on a different portion of platter P.
  • [0045]
    The foregoing description and drawings comprise illustrative embodiments of the present invention. Having thus described exemplary embodiments of the present invention, it should be noted by those skilled in the art that the within disclosures are exemplary only, and that various other alternatives, adaptations, and modifications may be made within the scope of the present invention. Merely listing or numbering the steps of a method in a certain order does not constitute any limitation on the order of the steps of that method. Many modifications and other embodiments of the invention will come to mind to one skilled in the art to which this invention pertains having the benefit of the teachings presented in the foregoing descriptions and the associated drawings. Although specific terms may be employed herein, they are used in a generic and descriptive sense only and not for purposes of limitation. Accordingly, the present invention is not limited to the specific embodiments illustrated herein, but is limited only by the following claims.

Claims (20)

    What is claimed is:
  1. 1. A slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus comprising:
    a ring having a top surface, a bottom surface and a bearing race disposed within said bottom surface;
    at least three rolling elements disposed within said bearing race; and
    a grip coating disposed on said top surface.
  2. 2. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 1, wherein said at least three rolling elements are spherical.
  3. 3. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 1, wherein said ring further comprises an inner bottom edge and an outer bottom edge, and wherein each of said at least three rolling elements comprises a center, and wherein said bottom edges extend below said centers.
  4. 4. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 3, wherein said at least three rolling elements each comprises a diameter, and wherein said inner bottom edge and said outer bottom edge are separated from one another by a gap, and wherein said gap is narrower than said diameter.
  5. 5. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 1, wherein said ring further comprises a generally rectangular cross-section.
  6. 6. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 1, wherein said ring further comprises a generally circular cross-section.
  7. 7. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 1, wherein said ring further comprises a generally triangular cross-section.
  8. 8. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 7, wherein said top surface is narrower than said bottom surface.
  9. 9. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 7, wherein said top surface is wider than said bottom surface.
  10. 10. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 4, wherein said bearing race comprises a maximum width, and wherein said bottom edges are separated from each other by a gap, and wherein said gap is narrower than said maximum width.
  11. 11. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 10, wherein said maximum width is dimensioned to confinedly receive said at least three rolling elements.
  12. 12. A method of moving a platter, said method comprising the steps of:
    obtaining a slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus comprising a ring having a top surface and a bottom surface, a bearing race disposed within said bottom surface, rolling elements, and a grip coating disposed on said top surface;
    disposing said slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus on a flat surface;
    disposing a platter on top of said slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus, wherein said platter is retained on said slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus by said grip coating, thereby forming a combination of said platter and said platter support apparatus; and
    applying force to move said slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus.
  13. 13. The method of claim 12, wherein said step of applying force further comprises the step of:
    applying force generally perpendicular to an edge of said platter, wherein said force causes said combination to slide across the flat surface.
  14. 14. The method of claim 12, wherein said step of applying force further comprises the step of:
    applying force generally tangentially to an edge of the platter, wherein said force causes the platter to rotate.
  15. 15. A platter support apparatus comprising:
    a ring having a top surface, a bottom surface and a bearing race disposed within said bottom surface;
    a plurality of rolling elements; and
    a grip coating disposed on said top surface.
  16. 16. The platter support apparatus of claim 15, wherein said ring comprises a cross-section selected from the group consisting of generally circular cross-sections, generally triangular cross-sections and generally rectangular cross-sections.
  17. 17. The platter support apparatus of claim 16, wherein each roller element of said plurality of roller elements has a substantially identical diameter, and wherein said bottom surface comprises an inner lip and an outer lip, and wherein said inner lip and said outer lip are each distally disposed from said top surface, and wherein said lips are disposed a distance apart from each other, and wherein said distance apart is less than said diameter.
  18. 18. The platter support apparatus of claim 17, wherein each of said roller elements comprises a center, and wherein said lips extend below said centers of said roller elements, and wherein at least a portion of each of said plurality of rolling elements extends outside of said bearing race.
  19. 19. The platter support apparatus of claim 18, wherein said plurality of rolling elements comprises rolling elements selected from the group consisting of cylindrical rolling elements, elliptical rolling elements, spherical rolling elements, and combinations thereof.
  20. 20. The slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus of claim 15, wherein said plurality of rolling elements comprises generally spherical rolling elements.
US12872139 2010-08-31 2010-08-31 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof Abandoned US20120049033A1 (en)

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US12872139 US20120049033A1 (en) 2010-08-31 2010-08-31 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof

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US12872139 US20120049033A1 (en) 2010-08-31 2010-08-31 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof
PCT/US2011/048894 WO2012030591A3 (en) 2010-08-31 2011-08-24 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use thereof
US14257569 US20140224952A1 (en) 2010-08-31 2014-04-21 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use therof

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US14257569 Continuation US20140224952A1 (en) 2010-08-31 2014-04-21 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use therof

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US14257569 Abandoned US20140224952A1 (en) 2010-08-31 2014-04-21 Slidable, rotatable, platter support apparatus and method of use therof

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Cited By (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US9107493B2 (en) 2013-09-21 2015-08-18 Sunjoy Industries Group Ltd. Pop-up rotatable tray and a tabletop comprising the same
US9474415B2 (en) 2014-12-16 2016-10-25 Sunjoy Industries Group Ltd. Fire pit table with lazy susan tabletop portion

Citations (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1859352A (en) * 1930-12-20 1932-05-24 Fred H Albee Rotary plant support
US4206570A (en) * 1978-04-17 1980-06-10 Cooper William E Device for supporting a vessel
US4402108A (en) * 1981-02-17 1983-09-06 Pannwitz Hans U Reduced static castor
US5149043A (en) * 1990-05-26 1992-09-22 Grundmann Ernst H Turntable device
US5322023A (en) * 1993-04-16 1994-06-21 Hammond Timothy R Table tray adapted for installation around an umbrella pole
US5533857A (en) * 1993-03-23 1996-07-09 Ferrone; Rock A. Turntable for manipulating paper rolls
US6409388B1 (en) * 2000-12-29 2002-06-25 Chuan Duo Lin Ball support having a cleaning structure
US20060032416A1 (en) * 2004-08-12 2006-02-16 Marijke Vonck Table protector
US7644903B2 (en) * 2007-01-19 2010-01-12 Metra Electronics Rotating pedestal with lock

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* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4550894A (en) * 1982-11-05 1985-11-05 Barlics John J Trivet
US5018695A (en) * 1989-06-08 1991-05-28 Bishop Willis E Disposable coasters
US6997512B1 (en) * 2004-12-23 2006-02-14 Ming-Ming Yu 360 degree swivel cushion for bathroom use

Patent Citations (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1859352A (en) * 1930-12-20 1932-05-24 Fred H Albee Rotary plant support
US4206570A (en) * 1978-04-17 1980-06-10 Cooper William E Device for supporting a vessel
US4402108A (en) * 1981-02-17 1983-09-06 Pannwitz Hans U Reduced static castor
US5149043A (en) * 1990-05-26 1992-09-22 Grundmann Ernst H Turntable device
US5533857A (en) * 1993-03-23 1996-07-09 Ferrone; Rock A. Turntable for manipulating paper rolls
US5322023A (en) * 1993-04-16 1994-06-21 Hammond Timothy R Table tray adapted for installation around an umbrella pole
US6409388B1 (en) * 2000-12-29 2002-06-25 Chuan Duo Lin Ball support having a cleaning structure
US20060032416A1 (en) * 2004-08-12 2006-02-16 Marijke Vonck Table protector
US7644903B2 (en) * 2007-01-19 2010-01-12 Metra Electronics Rotating pedestal with lock

Cited By (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US9107493B2 (en) 2013-09-21 2015-08-18 Sunjoy Industries Group Ltd. Pop-up rotatable tray and a tabletop comprising the same
US9474415B2 (en) 2014-12-16 2016-10-25 Sunjoy Industries Group Ltd. Fire pit table with lazy susan tabletop portion

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Publication number Publication date Type
US20140224952A1 (en) 2014-08-14 application
WO2012030591A3 (en) 2012-06-07 application
WO2012030591A2 (en) 2012-03-08 application

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