Title:
Sectional sofa including convertible unit
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A sectional sofa and a convertible unit is disclosed. The sectional sofa includes a stationary portion and a moving portion. The moving portion is adjacent to the stationary portion and the moving portion is capable of moving relative to the stationary portion. The moving portion and the stationary portion are also connected to one another by a common base. The sofa also includes provisions for joining the moving portion with the stationary portion and for facilitating and accommodating the motion of the moving portion.



Inventors:
Friedman, Alan (Chicago, IL, US)
Application Number:
10/117086
Publication Date:
10/09/2003
Filing Date:
04/08/2002
Assignee:
FRIEDMAN ALAN
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
297/248, 297/344.21, 297/344.22, 297/233
International Classes:
A47C3/18; A47C15/00; A47C17/04; (IPC1-7): A47C1/02
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
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20090127900CUSHION COVER APPARATUS WITH CONNECTION MECHANISMSMay, 2009Balchunas
20070257532Chair with interchangeable upholsteryNovember, 2007Bukowski
20100033001SINGLE RETRACTOR LOWER ANCHOR CONNECTION SYSTEMFebruary, 2010Boyer
20070158986Adjustable sun loungeJuly, 2007Adams et al.
20030025366Distributed weight massage power reclining chairFebruary, 2003Armando Jr.
20090230743Rehabilative exercising chairSeptember, 2009Derakhshan et al.
20090072607Vehicle seat having buckle holding structureMarch, 2009Tsuda et al.
20050161985Electrically heated mineral or masonry material seatJuly, 2005Austin
20070040430Rocker and booster child seatFebruary, 2007Flannery



Primary Examiner:
WHITE, RODNEY BARNETT
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Ip Group, Shaw Pittman (1650 TYSONS BOULEVARD, MCLEAN, VA, 22102, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A sectional sofa comprising: a stationary portion including a first upholstered cushion adapted to support an occupant; a moving portion including a second upholstered cushion adapted to support an occupant, the moving portion being adjacent to the stationary portion; the moving portion capable of moving relative to the stationary portion; the moving portion and the stationary portion connected to one another by a base.

2. The sectional sofa according to claim 1, wherein the base includes a moving sub-frame capable of rotating with respect to the base.

3. The sectional sofa according to claim 2, wherein the moving portion is associated with the moving sub-frame.

4. The sectional sofa according to claim 1, wherein the moving portion and the stationary portion include backrests.

5. The sectional sofa according to claim 4, wherein the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion are matching.

6. The sectional sofa according to claim 4, wherein the moving portion includes a first position wherein the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion abut one another.

7. The sectional sofa according to claim 6, wherein the moving portion includes a second position wherein the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion are separated from one another.

8. A sectional sofa comprising a convertible unit including a stationary portion and a moving portion; the stationary portion having a stationary backrest with a first profile; the moving portion having a moving backrest with a second profile; the stationary portion and the moving portion both being mounted to a common base; wherein the first profile of the stationary backrest and the second profile of the moving backrest match; and wherein the moving portion moves relative to the stationary portion.

9. The sectional sofa according to claim 8, wherein the base includes a moving sub-frame capable of rotating with respect to the base.

10. The sectional sofa according to claim 9, wherein the moving portion is connected to a moving sub-frame.

11. The sectional sofa according to claim 8, wherein the motion of the moving portion is substantially rotational.

12. The sectional sofa according to claim 11, wherein the rotational motion of the moving portion is limited and a stop prevents the moving portion from rotating 360°.

13. The sectional sofa according to claim 8, wherein a rotary bearing associates the moving portion with the base.

14. The sectional sofa according to claim 13, wherein the rotary bearing includes protrusions that limit the rotation of a portion of the rotary bearing.

15. A convertible unit comprising a base supporting a stationary portion and a moving portion, the stationary portion having a backrest and seating surface, the moving portion having a backrest and a seating surface; wherein the moving portion moves relative to the stationary portion, and wherein the moving portion has a first position where the backrest of the moving portion is adjacent and defines a generally continuous backrest with the backrest of the stationary portion and wherein the moving portion has a second position such that the backrest of the moving portion is separated from the backrest of the stationary portion.

16. The convertible unit according to claim 15, wherein the base includes a moving sub-frame capable of rotating with respect to the base.

17. The convertible unit according to claim 16, wherein the moving portion is connected to a rotating sub-frame.

18. A convertible unit comprising: a base associated with at least one leg; a first side of the base supporting a stationary portion and a second side of the base supporting a moving portion, the second side of the base including a moving sub-frame capable of rotating with respect to the base.

19. The convertible unit according to claim 18, wherein the motion of the moving portion is substantially rotational.

20. The convertible unit according to claim 19, wherein the rotational motion of the moving portion is limited and a stop prevents the moving portion from rotating 360°.

21. The convertible unit according to claim 18, wherein a rotary bearing associates the moving portion with the base.

22. The convertible unit according to claim 21, wherein the rotary bearing includes protrusions that limit the rotation of a portion of the rotary bearing.

23. The convertible unit according to claim 18, wherein the stationary portion and the moving portion include respective seating surfaces.

24. The convertible unit according to claim 23, wherein the seating surface of the moving portion includes a substantially circular outer periphery and wherein the seating surface of the stationary portion includes a concave portion matching the outer periphery of the seating surface of the moving portion.

Description:

BACKGROUND

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention generally relates to the field of furniture and, more particularly, to seating systems.

[0003] 2. Background of the Invention

[0004] There are various forms of seating systems. Some classifications are made by function or the intended use of the seating system. These categories include dining chairs, office chairs, side chairs, bar stools and recliners. Other categories are formed by the overall structure and construction of the seating system. These categories include hard seating and soft seating. Hard seating systems generally do not include cushions or upholstery while soft seating systems include cushions and upholstery.

[0005] Sectional sofas have been popular for some time. Because sectional sofas are generally comprised of several pieces, they offer flexibility both in terms of placement or arrangement and in terms of quantity. Sectional sofas offer a flexibility of placement and arrangement because the various pieces can be separated from one another and moved individually. This permits the owner to arrange the various pieces in a manner best suited for the room or the situation. Their modular nature also permits rearrangement to suit different needs and situations. For example, the various pieces can be scattered or placed against a wall of a room to create a large open space, or the various pieces can be arranged close to one another to create a smaller more intimate space. Sectional sofas also offer flexibility in terms of quantity because users can purchase only those units they need for a particular room or situation. Generally, vendors do not require users to purchase every single unit or a pre-designated quantity or product mix of sectional sofa units.

[0006] With all of their advantages, sectional sofas are generally large and are usually the dominant furniture in a room. Because of their size and scale, rooms that have sectional sofas generally do not have other items of soft furniture, although they sometimes include a coffee table and perhaps a few side chairs. It is often difficult to add additional items of furniture due to space limitations. One example of an item of furniture that is sometimes omitted due to space considerations is a chaise. While comfortable and attractive, chaises, with their long forms, generally take up considerable space.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] The present invention is directed to a sectional sofa that includes a stationary portion and a moving portion. The moving portion is adjacent to the stationary portion and the moving portion is capable of moving relative to the stationary portion. The moving portion and the stationary portion are also connected to one another by a common base.

[0008] In an aspect of the invention, the base includes a moving sub-frame that is capable of rotating with respect to the base.

[0009] In another aspect of the invention, the moving portion is associated with the moving sub-frame.

[0010] In another aspect of the invention, the moving portion and the stationary portion include backrests.

[0011] In another aspect of the invention, the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion are matching.

[0012] In another aspect of the invention, the moving portion includes a first position wherein the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion abut one another.

[0013] In another aspect of the invention, the moving portion includes a second position wherein the backrest of the moving portion and the backrest of the stationary portion are separated from one another.

[0014] In another aspect, the invention includes a sectional sofa that comprises a convertible unit including a stationary portion and a moving portion, the stationary portion having a stationary backrest with a first profile and the moving portion having a moving backrest with a second profile. The stationary portion and the moving portion are both mounted to a common base. In this aspect, the first profile of the stationary backrest and the second profile of the moving backrest match. The moving portion moves relative to the stationary portion.

[0015] In another aspect of the invention, the motion of the moving portion is substantially rotational.

[0016] In another aspect of the invention, the rotational motion of the moving portion is limited, and a stop prevents the moving portion from rotating 360°.

[0017] In another aspect of the invention, a rotary bearing associates the moving portion with the base.

[0018] In another aspect of the invention, the rotary bearing includes protrusions that limit the rotation of a portion of the rotary bearing.

[0019] In another aspect, the invention includes a convertible unit that comprises a base supporting stationary portion and a moving portion, the stationary portion having a backrest and seating surface, the moving portion having a backrest and a seating surface. The moving portion moves relative to the stationary portion, the moving portion has a first position where the backrest of the moving portion is adjacent and defines a generally continuous backrest with the backrest of the stationary portion, and where the moving portion has a second position where the backrest of the moving portion is separated from the backrest of the stationary portion.

[0020] In another aspect, the invention includes a convertible unit that comprises a base associated with at least one leg, the base having a first side supporting a stationary portion and a second side supporting a moving portion, the second side of the base including a moving sub-frame that is capable of rotating with respect to the base.

[0021] In another aspect of the invention, the stationary portion and the moving portion include respective seating surfaces.

[0022] In another aspect of the invention, the seating surface of the moving portion includes a substantially circular outer periphery, such that the seating surface of the stationary portion includes a concave portion matching the outer periphery of the seating surface of the moving portion.

[0023] Additional features and advantages of the invention will be set forth in the description which follows, and in part will be apparent from the description, or may be learned by practice of the invention. The objectives and advantages of the invention will be realized and attained by the structure and steps particularly pointed out in the written description, the claims and the drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0024] FIG. 1 is an isometric view of a preferred embodiment of a sectional sofa in accordance with the present invention.

[0025] FIG. 2 is an isometric view of a preferred embodiment of a sectional sofa in a second position in accordance with the present invention.

[0026] FIG. 3 is a front view of a preferred embodiment of a convertible unit in accordance with the present invention.

[0027] FIG. 4 is a front view of a preferred embodiment of a convertible unit in a second position in accordance with the present invention.

[0028] FIG. 5 is an exploded isometric view of a preferred embodiment of a convertible unit in accordance with the present invention.

[0029] FIG. 6 is an enlarged view of one side of a preferred embodiment of a rotary bearing in accordance with the present invention.

[0030] FIG. 7 is an enlarged view of the other side of a preferred embodiment of a rotary bearing in accordance with the present invention.

[0031] FIG. 8 is an isometric view of another embodiment of a sectional sofa in accordance with the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0032] FIG. 1 is a preferred embodiment of a sectional sofa 100 in accordance with the present invention. Sectional sofa 100 includes several separate pieces including an end unit 102, a comer unit 104 and a convertible unit 106.

[0033] End unit 102, includes a first module 202. First module 202 includes a seating surface 204 and a backrest 206. First module 202 can also include an armrest 208. Preferably, seating surface 204 comprises a cushion 210. End unit 102 also includes a second module 220. Second module 220 also includes a seating surface 224 and a backrest 226. Preferably, seating surface 224 of second module 220 comprises a cushion 230.

[0034] In some embodiments, end unit 102 includes a sofa bed and in other embodiments, end unit 102 can include one or more recliners. If end unit 102 includes a sofa bed, both first module 202 and second module 220 participate in forming the sofa bed. In the case of one or more recliners, first module 202 operates independently of second module 220 so that one or both of the modules can operate as a recliner regardless of the configuration of the other.

[0035] Similar to end unit 102, comer unit 104 includes a seating surface 304 and backrest 306.

[0036] Convertible unit 106 includes a stationary portion 402 and a moving portion 404. Stationary portion 402 of convertible unit 106 includes a seating surface 406 and a backrest 408. Moving portion 404 includes a seating surface 410 and a backrest 412.

[0037] Preferably, all of the different units include common styling and stylistic elements. For example, the backrests of the different units have similar contours or profiles and the seating surfaces are similar. Additional stylistic elements that the various units might share include fabric material and color, arm rest designs, cushion density and size. Generally, while the various units are structurally different, it is preferred that they nonetheless have a family resemblance with one another.

[0038] Referring to FIGS. 1-4, convertible member 106 includes a stationary portion 402 and a moving portion 404. A first position of moving portion 404 is shown in FIGS. 1 and 3 and a second position of moving portion 404 is shown in FIGS. 2 and 4. In the first position, shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the backrest 412 of the moving portion 404 abuts 450 (see FIG. 3) or is adjacent to the backrest 408 of the stationary portion 408. In some cases, the respective backrests 412 and 408 may touch and in other cases, they may be slightly spaced. However, in the first position of moving portion 404 shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the backrest 412 of moving portion 404 and the backrest 408 of stationary portion 408 form a generally continuous backrest. It should also be noted that, in the preferred embodiment shown in FIGS. 1-4, the backrest 412 of the moving portion 404 and the backrest 408 of the stationary portion 402 include similar shapes and/or profiles. This also helps to create a generally continuous backrest that spans across the moving portion 404 and the stationary portion 402.

[0039] As shown in FIG. 2, moving portion 404 rotates about an axis and permits moving portion 404 to swivel and move to a second position. In the rotated configuration shown in FIG. 2, moving portion 404 has swiveled so that the backrest 412 of the moving portion 404 is separated from the backrest 408 of the stationary portion 402 and a gap 452 (see FIG. 4) is created between moving portion backrest 412 and stationary portion backrest 408. In this second position, backrest 412 of the moving portion 404 generally faces seating surface 406 of the stationary portion 402. In this configuration, convertible member 106 can be used as a chaise where a user can sit on moving portion 404 and put his or her feet and/or legs up on seating surface 406 of stationary portion 402.

[0040] While seating surface 410 of moving portion 404 can assume any desired shape, in the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, seating surface 410 of moving portion 404 preferably includes an outer periphery 415 that is generally circular. This shape avoids interference with the adjacent seating surface 406 of stationary portion 402. Additionally, to accommodate the rotation of moving portion 404, stationary portion 402 includes a concave portion 420. Concave portion 420 is designed to correspond to the generally circular shape of moving portion 404. In a preferred embodiment, concave portion 420 has the corresponding, complementary shape, namely a concave circular shape, as the generally circular seating surface 410 of moving member 404.

[0041] FIG. 5 shows an exploded view of convertible member 106. Preferably, convertible member 106 comprises an upper portion 502, a base 504 and a leg assembly 506. Upper portion 502 includes a stationary upper portion 510 that is the upper portion of stationary portion 402 (see FIGS. 1 and 2) and a moving upper portion 512 that is the upper portion of moving portion 404 (see FIGS. 1 and 2). Base 504 includes a first side 520 and a second side 522.

[0042] Preferably, stationary upper portion 510 is separate from moving upper portion 512. Both the stationary upper portion 510 and moving upper portion 512 are connected to base 504. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 5, stationary upper portion 510 is connected to a first side 520 of base 504 and moving upper portion is connected to a second side 522 of base 504.

[0043] Second side 522 includes provisions that permit base 504 to accept a moving sub-frame. Second side 522 includes at least one, and preferably two cross members, a first cross member 524 and a second cross member 526. These two cross members, 524 and 526, are used to retain a moving sub-frame 528. Many different configurations can be used to associate moving sub-frame 528 with cross members 524 and 526. However, a rotary bearing 530 is preferred. Rotary bearing 530 permits moving sub-frame 528 to rotate or swivel in relation to base 504.

[0044] Leg assembly 506 can be any suitable assembly that associates or connects one or more legs 535 with base 504. The precise construction, design, materials or arrangement of legs 535 can be selected to suit structural and/or aesthetic needs. In some cases, a frame 537 is used to assist in associating legs 535 with base 504.

[0045] The terms “associated” and “connected” in the context of the relationship between the stationary member and a leg means any connection where the stationary member is rigidly associated with a leg, semi-rigidly associated with a leg, or flexibly associated with a leg.

[0046] Base 504 is preferably constructed of a pair of angle irons 540 and 542 that span a substantial portion of the length of convertible unit 106. Cross members 524 and 526 are preferably constructed of metal square channels. Suitable mechanical fasteners or welds are preferably used to rigidly associate the various items that comprise base 504. Clearly, any construction or arrangement of any type of material can be used to form base 504. For example, wood, plastic, metal, composite materials, engineered wood products like laminated beams, or any other suitable material can be used to form base 504 or leg assembly 506.

[0047] FIG. 6 shows an enlarged view of rotary bearing 530. FIG. 6 shows the side of bearing 530 that faces leg assembly 506 (see FIG. 5). Thus, in the foreground of FIG. 6, the fixed portion 602 of bearing 530 is shown and in the background, the rotating portion 604 of bearing 530 is shown. Fixed portion 602 of bearing 530 is attached to base 540 by cross members 524 and 526. Rotating portion 604 is attached to moving sub-frame 528 (see FIG. 5). As shown in FIG. 6, fixed portion 602 includes a race 606 that forms a cavity between fixed portion 602 and rotating portion 604. Within race 606, a suitable arrangement and number of ball bearings (not shown) is disposed to permit smooth relative rotation between fixed portion 602 and rotating portion 604. Fixed portion 602 also optionally includes at least one, and preferably two bolts 608 that protrude towards rotating portion 604.

[0048] FIG. 7 shows an enlarged view of rotary bearing 530 as seen from upper portion 502 (see FIG. 5). FIG. 7 shows the portion of rotary bearing 530 facing upper portion 502. In FIG. 7, rotating portion 604 is in the foreground. Rotating portion 604 is attached to moving sub-frame 528. Rotating portion 604 includes at least one, and preferably two protrusions, a first protrusion 702 and a second protrusion 704. First and second protrusions 702 and 704 are designed to limit the rotation of moving sub-frame 528.

[0049] As moving sub-frame 528 is rotated, rotating portion 604 is also rotated. As rotating portion 604 is rotated, one of the protrusions 702 or 704 eventually engages one of the bolts 608 (see FIG. 6). This engagement between the bolts 608 and protrusion 702 or 704, depending on the direction of rotation, prohibits further rotation of moving sub-frame 528.

[0050] In this way, the rotation of moving sub-frame 528 and moving portion 404 (see FIG. 1) is limited. This rotation limiting feature is optional, and in some embodiments, this feature is omitted, permitting moving portion 404 (see FIG. 1) to rotate completely without limit.

[0051] Although the convertible unit 106 (see FIG. 1) is shown as a left arm facing section, other configurations of the convertible unit are also possible. For example, FIG. 8 shows a convertible unit 802 as a right arm facing section.

[0052] The foregoing disclosure of the preferred embodiments of the present invention has been presented for purposes of illustration and description. It is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise forms disclosed. Many variations and modifications of the embodiments described herein will be obvious to one of ordinary skill in the art in light of the above disclosure. The scope of the invention is to be defined only by the claims appended hereto, and by their equivalents.

[0053] Further, in describing representative embodiments of the present invention, the specification may have presented the method and/or process of the present invention as a particular sequence of steps. However, to the extent that the method or process does not rely on the particular order of steps set forth herein, the method or process should not be limited to the particular sequence of steps described. As one of ordinary skill in the art would appreciate, other sequences of steps may be possible. Therefore, the particular order of the steps set forth in the specification should not be construed as limitations on the claims. In addition, the claims directed to the method and/or process of the present invention should not be limited to the performance of their steps in the order written, and one skilled in the art can readily appreciate that the sequences may be varied and still remain within the spirit and scope of the present invention.