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US3696855A - Interior modular panel assemblies - Google Patents

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Publication number
US3696855A
US3696855A US3696855DA US3696855A US 3696855 A US3696855 A US 3696855A US 3696855D A US3696855D A US 3696855DA US 3696855 A US3696855 A US 3696855A
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Prior art keywords
panel
cylindrical
railings
recess
structure
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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.)
Expired - Lifetime
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Hiroshi Kira
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General Telephone Co of California
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General Telephone Co of California
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A47FURNITURE; DOMESTIC ARTICLES OR APPLIANCES; COFFEE MILLS; SPICE MILLS; SUCTION CLEANERS IN GENERAL
    • A47GHOUSEHOLD OR TABLE EQUIPMENT
    • A47G5/00Screens; Draught-deflectors
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y10TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC
    • Y10TTECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER US CLASSIFICATION
    • Y10T24/00Buckles, buttons, clasps, etc.
    • Y10T24/45Separable-fastener or required component thereof [e.g., projection and cavity to complete interlock]
    • Y10T24/45005Separable-fastener or required component thereof [e.g., projection and cavity to complete interlock] with third detached member completing interlock [e.g., hook type]

Abstract

An interior modular panel assembly for office landscaping includes several identical panels having edge railings defining cylindrical recesses for cooperation with cylindrical inserts integrally formed on a hinge structure. Several such hinge structures are provided, all of identical construction and each including four cylindrical inserts so that from one to four panels may be pivotally mounted to a single hinge structure and pivoted with respect to each other to form a desired angular configuration. The assembly is completed by corner and leg pieces cooperating with the end portions of the edge railings to finish off the overall appearance of the assembly.

Description

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

What is claimed is:

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

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

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

Claims (3)

1. An interior modular panel assembly comprising, in combination: a plurality of identical rectangular panels, each panel having edge railings on its opposite side, top, and bottom peripheral edges, each of said edge railings defining a cylindrical recess opening out in a front slot parallel to the axis of the recess and edge of the panel to which the railing is affixed and a rectangular recess behind its cylindrical recess when viewed in cross-section; a hinge structure in the form of a hollow square column extrusion, the corners thereof including extending integrally formed hollow cylindrical inserts opening out in slots and each being dimensioned to be received in a snapin fashion in any one cylindrical recess in a railing by circumferentially contracting and then expanding so that from two to four panels may be hinged to a single hinge structure and disposed at desired angles to each other by pivoting movement of any one of the inserts in its corresponding recess about an axis coinciding with the axis of the recess; and corner pieces of identical construction having projections at right angles to each other of rectangular cross-section for reception in the rectangular recesses at the ends of side and top railings to finish off the upper corners of the panels and cover the upper ends of the cylindrical inserts of the hinge structure when received in the cylindrical recesses of the railings.
2. The subject matter of claim 1, including leg pieces having projections at right angles to each other of rectangular cross section for reception in the rectangular recesses at the ends of side and bottom railings to provide legs for the panels and cover the lower ends of the cylindrical inserts of the hinge structure when received in the cylindrical recesses of the railings.
3. The subject matter of claim 1, in which the cylindrical recess and rectangular recess of the railings are defined by an integral extrusion of aluminum, the extrusion defining said hinge structure constituting a plastic material.
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Cited By (22)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3768222A (en) * 1971-10-12 1973-10-30 Mont Birum H Partition device
US3871153A (en) * 1971-10-12 1975-03-18 Jr Herbert L Birum Partition device
US3964707A (en) * 1974-12-23 1976-06-22 Lewis Gerald F Underground conduit holder
US3967734A (en) * 1974-07-23 1976-07-06 Kaiser Aluminum & Chemical Corporation Hand delivery truck
US4047342A (en) * 1975-05-05 1977-09-13 Paul Boulva Panel assembly
US4085789A (en) * 1976-07-27 1978-04-25 Steiner Industries, Inc. Modular welding screen apparatus
US4103465A (en) * 1977-08-25 1978-08-01 Greyhound Exhibitgroup, Inc. Modular panel display system
US4232724A (en) * 1978-10-23 1980-11-11 Nightingale Industries Limited Modular partition
US4785565A (en) * 1986-04-29 1988-11-22 Kuffner Reinhold O Framework and connective elements for display systems
US4995144A (en) * 1988-09-29 1991-02-26 Systemworks Limited Connector
USRE34738E (en) * 1991-03-15 1994-09-27 Brady; Jack R. Concealed portable display device fastener
US5638650A (en) * 1993-07-23 1997-06-17 Hollanding Inc. Retaining clips for office furniture partition
US5881518A (en) * 1993-10-15 1999-03-16 Hollanding Inc. Modular partition system
US5883341A (en) * 1997-03-27 1999-03-16 Terriss; Howard L. Message cube
US5905229A (en) * 1996-03-14 1999-05-18 Mckitrick; Mark A. Modular panel partition system
US6088981A (en) * 1993-07-23 2000-07-18 Office Specialty Inc. Recessed cover for partition
US6546675B1 (en) * 1998-01-16 2003-04-15 Harkk Pty Ltd Panel fixing system
US20060277858A1 (en) * 2005-06-13 2006-12-14 Inventec Corporation Installing structure for modularized electronic device
US20080080930A1 (en) * 2004-11-24 2008-04-03 Abc Display Industry B.V. Construction System For Seamlessly Adjoining Panels
US20090199509A1 (en) * 2006-03-23 2009-08-13 Doriano Lilli System for Fixing Panels, Slabs, Glass Walls, etc. to Supporting Surfaces in the Building Field and/or in the Furniture Field
US20150033648A1 (en) * 2012-02-12 2015-02-05 Fred Hobeyn Adaptable Panel Mounting System
CN106852614A (en) * 2016-12-12 2017-06-16 广东艾比办公设备制品有限公司 Combined type office table screen device

Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2866235A (en) * 1957-02-25 1958-12-30 Couse Mfg Inc Structural building element
US3132432A (en) * 1961-06-22 1964-05-12 Yee Elbert Frame assembly
US3333823A (en) * 1965-06-07 1967-08-01 Genauer Larry Components for constructing signs, railings and the like
US3486287A (en) * 1967-09-23 1969-12-30 Massey Ferguson Ind Ltd Wall assembling device
US3592289A (en) * 1968-09-06 1971-07-13 Conwed Corp Freestanding acoustical space divider
US3605851A (en) * 1969-09-22 1971-09-20 Rosemount Partitions Inc Divider screen assembly

Patent Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2866235A (en) * 1957-02-25 1958-12-30 Couse Mfg Inc Structural building element
US3132432A (en) * 1961-06-22 1964-05-12 Yee Elbert Frame assembly
US3333823A (en) * 1965-06-07 1967-08-01 Genauer Larry Components for constructing signs, railings and the like
US3486287A (en) * 1967-09-23 1969-12-30 Massey Ferguson Ind Ltd Wall assembling device
US3592289A (en) * 1968-09-06 1971-07-13 Conwed Corp Freestanding acoustical space divider
US3605851A (en) * 1969-09-22 1971-09-20 Rosemount Partitions Inc Divider screen assembly

Cited By (23)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3871153A (en) * 1971-10-12 1975-03-18 Jr Herbert L Birum Partition device
US3768222A (en) * 1971-10-12 1973-10-30 Mont Birum H Partition device
US3967734A (en) * 1974-07-23 1976-07-06 Kaiser Aluminum & Chemical Corporation Hand delivery truck
US3964707A (en) * 1974-12-23 1976-06-22 Lewis Gerald F Underground conduit holder
US4047342A (en) * 1975-05-05 1977-09-13 Paul Boulva Panel assembly
US4085789A (en) * 1976-07-27 1978-04-25 Steiner Industries, Inc. Modular welding screen apparatus
US4103465A (en) * 1977-08-25 1978-08-01 Greyhound Exhibitgroup, Inc. Modular panel display system
US4232724A (en) * 1978-10-23 1980-11-11 Nightingale Industries Limited Modular partition
US4785565A (en) * 1986-04-29 1988-11-22 Kuffner Reinhold O Framework and connective elements for display systems
US4995144A (en) * 1988-09-29 1991-02-26 Systemworks Limited Connector
USRE34738E (en) * 1991-03-15 1994-09-27 Brady; Jack R. Concealed portable display device fastener
US6088981A (en) * 1993-07-23 2000-07-18 Office Specialty Inc. Recessed cover for partition
US5638650A (en) * 1993-07-23 1997-06-17 Hollanding Inc. Retaining clips for office furniture partition
US5881518A (en) * 1993-10-15 1999-03-16 Hollanding Inc. Modular partition system
US5813178A (en) * 1993-10-15 1998-09-29 Hollanding Inc. Modular office furniture partition
US5905229A (en) * 1996-03-14 1999-05-18 Mckitrick; Mark A. Modular panel partition system
US5883341A (en) * 1997-03-27 1999-03-16 Terriss; Howard L. Message cube
US6546675B1 (en) * 1998-01-16 2003-04-15 Harkk Pty Ltd Panel fixing system
US20080080930A1 (en) * 2004-11-24 2008-04-03 Abc Display Industry B.V. Construction System For Seamlessly Adjoining Panels
US20060277858A1 (en) * 2005-06-13 2006-12-14 Inventec Corporation Installing structure for modularized electronic device
US20090199509A1 (en) * 2006-03-23 2009-08-13 Doriano Lilli System for Fixing Panels, Slabs, Glass Walls, etc. to Supporting Surfaces in the Building Field and/or in the Furniture Field
US20150033648A1 (en) * 2012-02-12 2015-02-05 Fred Hobeyn Adaptable Panel Mounting System
CN106852614A (en) * 2016-12-12 2017-06-16 广东艾比办公设备制品有限公司 Combined type office table screen device

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