Title:
CAR TOP RACK
United States Patent 3722765


Abstract:
A rack for the top of the vehicle comprising longitudinally spaced parallel bars containing transversely spaced holes, spaced parallel bars situated between the longitudinally spaced bars non-rotatably received in said holes, spaced parallel rails having reversely bent ends mounted at opposite sides of the longitudinally spaced bars with the bent ends sprung into the holes in said longitudinally spaced bars, said rails being supported by said bent ends above the plane of the longitudinally extending bars and being rotatable into the plane of the longitudinally extending bars, and tie rods connecting the rails operable to hold them erect or to hollow them to be rotated into the plane of the longitudinally extending bars.



Inventors:
BINDING K
Application Number:
05/200429
Publication Date:
03/27/1973
Filing Date:
11/19/1971
Assignee:
Beatrice Foods Co. (Chicago, IL)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
224/325, 224/331
International Classes:
B60R9/04; (IPC1-7): B60R9/04
Field of Search:
224/42
View Patent Images:
US Patent References:
3561653BAGGAGE RACK FOR AUTOMOBILE TOPSFebruary 1971Eriksson
3512082ROOF RACK FOR CARSMay 1970Joos
2663472Cargo carrier for motor vehiclesDecember 1953Belgau



Primary Examiner:
Spar, Robert J.
Assistant Examiner:
Forsberg, Jerold M.
Claims:
I claim

1. An automobile top rack comprising longitudinally spaced parallel bars containing transversely spaced non-circular holes in their confronting sides, transversely spaced, longitudinally extending bars situated between the longitudinally spaced bars with their opposite ends non-rotatably received in said holes, said longitudinally spaced bars containing end openings and having near their opposite ends at their outer sides outwardly facing holes, a pair of rails having at their ends reversely bent portions, the distance between the ends of the reversely bent portions being less than the longitudinal spacing of the longitudinally spaced bars, said ends being sprung into said outwardly facing holes in the longitudinally spaced bars and rotatable therein, and fastening means telescopically engaged with said end openings of said longitudinally spaced bars for fastening said longitudinally spaced bars to the top of an automobile.

2. A rack according to claim 1, wherein said rails, when sprung into said outwardly facing holes, clamp the longitudinally spaced bars onto the ends of the longitudinally extending bars and wherein the portions of the rails intermediate the bent ends are situated above the plane of the longitudinally extending bars.

3. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the longitudinally extending bars have adjacent their ends outwardly divergent ears adapted to be sprung into said holes in the transversely extending bars to lock the ends of the longitudinally extending bars to the transversely extending bars.

4. A rack according to claim 3, wherein said outwardly divergent ears are provided in the side walls of the longitudinally extending bars.

5. A rack according to claim 1, wherein tie rods connect the rails to each other at opposite ends.

6. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the rods and means at the opposite ends of the tie rods slidably receive the rails such that the tie rods are movable longitudinally along said rails to position them at the end or any desired intermediate position along the said rails.

7. A rack according to claim 6, wherein said tie rods are movable along the bent ends of the rails onto the reversely bent portions thereof such as to permit the rails to be rotated about said rearwardly bent ends into the plane of the longitudinally extending bars.

8. A rack according to claim 1, wherein said end openings are of non-circular configuration and wherein said fastening means comprise brackets having right-angularly disposed legs adapted, respectively, to be telescopically received in said end openings and to be clamped to the top of the automobile.

9. A rack according to claim 8, wherein the legs, by means of which the brackets are attached to the top of the automobile, support the longitudinally spaced bars above the top.

10. A rack according to claim 1, wherein there are resilient blocks attached to the longitudinally spaced bars in transversely spaced relation for engagement with the top of the automobile.

11. A rack according to claim 10, wherein said block contains longitudinally disposed holes such that when clamped against the top of the automobile the blocks conform to the contour of the top.

12. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the longitudinally spaced bars are hollow and contain longitudinally extending spaced slots in their lower sides and there are resilient blocks provided with attaching flanges adapted to be slidably received in said slots.

13. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the longitudinally extending bars are of M-shaped cross-section.

14. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the longitudinally extending bars are comprised of metal rolled to an M-shaped configuration.

15. A rack according to claim 1, wherein the rails are of tubular metal stock and are flattened on their inner sides.

16. A rack according to claim 5, wherein the tie rods have at their ends loops for slidably receiving the rails and there is means for clamping the loops on said rails.

17. A rack according to claim 5, wherein the tie rods are hollow, plugs are fixed in their opposite ends, a screw-threaded pin is threaded into each plug with a portion extending from the rod, and a loop is fixed to the projecting ends of the pins, said screw-threaded pins at opposite ends of the rods being threaded left and right so that rotation of the rods draws the loops toward each other to hold the rails against the ends of the tie rods.

18. A rack according to claim 14, wherein a U-shaped part is mounted on each screw-threaded pin between the end of the tie rod and the loop with its legs disposed at opposite sides of the loop for clamping engagement with the rail and the rails have flattened portions on their inner sides with which the ends of the legs are engaged for non-rotatably clamping the rails.

19. A rack according to claim 17, wherein said means for clamping the loops are engaged with the flattened portions of the rails.

20. A rack according to claim 1, wherein there are fastening members securing the ends of the longitudinally extending bars in the holes in the longitudinally spaced bars.

Description:
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Automobile top racks are available in many forms and for the most part are satisfactory for the purpose intended; however most of such racks are supplied in knock-down form and must be assembled and attached by the customer. Assembly entails the use of instruction sheets and an assortment of hardware such as washers, cotter pins, nuts, and the like which may or may not be supplied in the right quantity and which confuse the customer who is not mechanically inclined so that the mere thought of assembly becomes a deterrent to many prospective customers. Moreover, the lack of careful control in packaging the racks often results in too few or too many fastening members which becomes a costly matter for the manufacturer for racks which are received by a customer with too few fastening elements are returned and those which are supplied to a customer with too many fastening elements represent a substantial cost to the manufacturer. The purpose of this invention is to provide a rack which can be assembled with a minimum number of fastening elements thereby not only making it attractive to the customer but also to the manufacturer since he will have fewer returns and less loss.

SUMMARY

The rack comprises longitudinally spaced parallel bars containing transversely spaced holes in their confronting sides and transversely spaced holes at their opposite ends at their outer sides. A plurality of longitudinally extending bars are mounted between the longitudinally spaced bars with their ends non-rotatably received in the holes. Longitudinally spaced parallel rails provided with reversely bent ends are mounted between the longitudinally spaced bars at their opposite ends with the bent ends sprung into the holes at the outer sides. The rails are rotatably received by said holes and there are tie rods connecting the rails to each other to hold them above the plane of the longitudinally extending bars, said tie rods being slidably connected to the rails so as to be positionable at any desired place intermediate the ends and to be moved around the bent ends onto the rearwardly bent portions thereof to enable rotating the rails to positions in the plane of the longitudinally extending bars. There are fastening brackets engaged with the ends of the longitudinally spaced bars for fastening the rack to the top of the automobile.

The invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of the rack;

FIG. 2 is an elevation of a part of one of the four corner supports and clamps for fastening the rack to the top of the vehicle;

FIG. 3 is a side view of FIG. 2, partly in section, showing its engagement with the gutter at the top of the vehicle, the gutter being shown in phantom;

FIG. 4 is a plan view of the rack broken away showing the side rails perpendicular to the plane of the longitudinally extending bars;

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary view transversely of the top of the vehicle taken on the line 5--5 of FIG. 4, showing the rails perpendicular to the top, -- the top being shown in phantom;

FIG. 6 is a view taken on the line 6--6 of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a plan view of the rack broken away showing the side rails rotated into the plane of the longitudinally extending bars;

FIG. 8 is a view taken on line 8--8 of FIG. 7;

FIG. 9 is an elevation of one of the longitudinally spaced bars;

FIG. 10 is an end view of FIG. 9;

FIG. 11 is an isometric of a portion of one of the longitudinal bars;

FIG. 12 is a section showing an end of one of the longitudinal bars engaged with one of the transverse bars;

FIG. 13 is an elevation of one of the side rails;

FIG. 14 is a fragmentary view taken on the line 14--14 of FIG. 13;

FIG. 15 is a plan view of one end of one of the tie rods showing the clamping loop at said end;

FIG. 16 is a view taken on the line 16--16 of FIG. 15; and

FIG. 17 is a view taken on the line 17--17 of FIG. 8.

Referring to the drawings (FIG. 1), the rack comprises longitudinally spaced parallel bars 10--10 disposed transversely of the top; longitudinally extending spaced parallel bars 12 extending longitudinally of the top; spaced parallel rails 14--14 extending longitudinally of the top at opposite ends of the longitudinally spaced bars; tie rods 16--16 connected at their ends to the rails at opposite ends and supports 18--18 at the opposite ends of the transversely extending bars at the four corners by means of which the rack is supported and secured to the top.

The longitudinally spaced, transversely extending bars 10--10 (FIGS. 9 and 10) are hollow metal bars of substantially rectangular cross-section containing at their undersides longitudinally extending slots 20, at their inner or confronting sides transversely spaced holes 22 of non-circular configuration, herein shown as rectangular, and at their outer sides adjacent their opposite ends round holes 24.

The longitudinally extending bars 12 (FIG. 11) are metal bars of substantially rectangular cross-section comprised of metal stock rolled to have an M-shaped configuration. The bars 12 are of a size to be non-rotatably received by the holes in the transverse bars 10 and have tangs 26 struck out from their opposite sides adjacent their ends which are adapted to be sprung into the holes in the transverse bars (FIG. 12) so as to prevent withdrawal of the ends of the longitudinally extending bars from the transversely extending bars once they are interengaged. There are six such longitudinally extending bars; however, there may be a greater or lesser number.

The rails 14--14 (FIGS. 13 and 14) comprise hollow tubes of circular cross-section having a straight length 28 corresponding substantially in length to the distance between the transverse bars and reversely bent ends 30--30, the distance between the ends of the reversely bent portions 30--30 being less than the distance between the transverse bars so as to be sprung into the holes 24 in the outwardly facing sides of the transverse bars 10. The reversely bent ends are rotatably received in the holes 24 in the transverse bars and can be rotated to dispose the rails in the plane of the longitudinally extending bars (FIGS. 7 and 8) or erected to position it perpendicular thereto (FIGS. 4, 5 and 6). The rails 14 are held disposed perpendicular to the longitudinally extending bars with the portions 28 above and parallel to the longitudinally extending bars by the tie rods 16--16 and to provide for securing the tie rods 16--16 the inner sides of the rails 14--14 have flattened portions 34--34 (FIG. 14).

The tie rods 16--16 (FIGS. 15 and 16) are hollow and have fitted into their opposite ends plugs 36 to which are threaded screw-threaded pins 38 which extend from the ends of the rods. A U-shaped part 40 is mounted on the projecting end of each pin and a loop 42 is welded or otherwise fixed to the end of each pin. The pins 38 are threaded left and right-handed at opposite ends of the rods and hence by rotating the rods about their longitudinal axes the loops may be drawn against the outer sides of the rods and the U-shaped parts pressed against the flat portions thereof to lock them onto the rails. The tie rods when drawn tightly hold the rails at right angles to the longitudinally extending bars and may be placed at the ends or at some intermediate position to enable holding a plurality of pieces of baggage placed on the rack or a single piece of baggage. If it is desirable to rotate the rails into the plane of the longitudinal bars in order to accommodate some large flat object on the rack the tie rods are slid along the bent ends onto the reversely bent portions whereby the rails may be rotated outwardly into the plane of the longitudinally extending bars (FIG. 4).

The brackets 18 (FIGS. 2, 3, 5 and 6) for mounting the rack and fastening it to the top comprises right-angle members 44 having legs 46, 48. The legs 46 are of rectangular configuration and are adapted to be telescopically interengaged with the open ends of the longitudinally spaced bars as shown in FIGS. 5 and 6. A fastener 50 is screwed into the inner end of each leg 46 with a washer 52 beneath its head, the screw being left loose so that its head and the washer may be engaged with the outer side of the bar through the slot therein. When the legs are inserted a proper distance the fasteners are tightened to lock the legs in place. The other leg 48 has adjustably bolted to it a splayed foot 54 (FIG. 2), the lower edge 56 of which is adapted to rest in the gutter at the edge of the roof (FIG. 3) and to be held rigidly fixed therein by a clamp plate 57, the latter having a hook 58 adapted to be drawn against the lower side of the gutter by a screw 60 connecting the clamp plate to the foot. The lower part of the clamp foot has an arcuate protrusion 62 on its outer side and the clamp plate has a bent part 64 which is engaged with the upper side of the protrusion so that the screw 60, when tightened, draws the clamp plate upwardly thereon thereby pulling the hook against the lower side of the gutter and pulling the foot into the gutter into clamping engagement therewith. A knob 66 provides for tightening the screw. Other means may be employed for fastening the rack to the top in lieu of that just described without departing from the broader aspects of the rack structure, although the specific clamping means herein illustrated is considered to be of special merit.

In order to support the longitudinally spaced bars 10--10 intermediate their ends there are provided blocks 68 (FIGS. 8 and 17) of elastomer of substantially rectangular configuration having at one side a T-shaped head 70 adapted to be slidably interengaged within the slots in the bars 10--10. As many of such blocks may be employed as necessary to support the load. To permit configuration of the blocks to the contour of the roof they contain holes 72 which allow the lower sides of the blocks to be displaced upwardly when pressed into engagement with the roof.

The rack as thus described is comprised of parts which are adapted to be assembled with a minimum number of fastening elements to provide a structure which is rigid and durable, a structure adapted to carry a maximum number of pieces of luggage or a single piece with simple adjustment, a structure which can be easily converted for use in carrying relatively large flat and/or long articles, is economical of manufacture and because it requires little ingenuity on the part of the customer to install provides customer appeal.

It should be understood that the present disclosure is for the purpose of illustration only and that this invention includes all modifications and equivalents which fall within the scope of the appended claims.