Title:
EZ bar
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention is a floor-framing device that eliminates the need for excess material and installation time required in conventional wood or metal flooring systems. The device has a substantially Z-shaped cross section and mainly comprises a horizontal top leg planar member, a horizontal bottom leg planar member, and a vertical side planar member. The top leg member rests on top of a floor truss as a hanger, while the bottom leg member serves as a means to support a metal deck/pan, which receives concrete. The side planar member abuts the inside of the floor truss. The weight of the poured concrete is distributed onto the inside plane instead of entirely on the top of the floor truss, thus providing strength to the design. Subsequent floors can be continuously erected without waiting for the concrete to dry, thereby reducing the construction time for multistory structures.



Inventors:
Blount, Michael (Apopka, FL, US)
Application Number:
11/187479
Publication Date:
01/26/2006
Filing Date:
07/22/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04B1/00
View Patent Images:
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20050252132System and method for laying floor coveringsNovember, 2005Sieber et al.



Primary Examiner:
GLESSNER, BRIAN E
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
John Alumit (135 South Jackson Street, Suite 200, Glendale, CA, 91205, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An improved floor-framing device having a z-shaped cross section, comprising a first horizontal member that acts as a decking support for a conventional metal pan on which concrete is poured to form a slab; a vertical member attached to the top of said first horizontal member and extending upwardly in a direction parallel to a conventional floor truss or load-bearing wall, wherein said vertical member allows the concrete to bear on the inside plane of the floor truss and thereby reducing the stress on top of the floor truss; a second horizontal member attached to the top of said vertical member and resting on top of the floor truss as a hanger, wherein said second horizontal member extends in a direction parallel to and away from said first horizontal member; and means to fasten said second horizontal member to the top of the floor truss.

2. The improved floor-framing device of claim 1, wherein said vertical and horizontal members are planar in nature.

3. The improved floor-framing device of claim 2, whereby the gauging of said device is approximately 12 GA to 14 GA depending on the opening width of the floor.

4. The improved floor-framing device of claim 2, whereby said device is preferably made of high-grade galvanized steel that comes in grades galvanizing thickness of G-60 to G-90.

5. The improved floor-framing device of claim 1, wherein the fastening means comprises screws, bolts, nails, adhesive or any customarily used industrial fastener.

6. An improved floor-framing device having substantially a z-shaped cross section, comprising a first horizontal member that acts as a decking support for a conventional metal pan on which concrete is poured to form a slab; a first vertical member attached to the top of said first horizontal member and extending upwardly in a direction parallel to a conventional floor truss or load-bearing wall, wherein said first vertical member allows the concrete to bear on the inside plane of the floor truss and thereby reducing the stress on top of the floor truss; a second horizontal member attached to the top of said first vertical member and resting on top of the floor truss as a hanger, wherein said second horizontal member extends in a direction parallel to and away from said first horizontal member; a second vertical member attached to the bottom of said second horizontal member and extending downwardly in a direction parallel to the floor truss, wherein said second vertical member will enable distribution of the load to a larger area and secure the device firmly on to the floor truss; and means to fasten said second horizontal member to the top of the floor truss.

7. The improved floor-framing device of claim 6, wherein said vertical and horizontal members are planar in nature.

8. The improved floor-framing device of claim 7, whereby the gauging of said device is approximately 12 GA to 14 GA depending on the opening width of the floor.

9. The improved floor-framing device of claim 7, whereby said device is preferably made of high-grade galvanized steel that comes in grades galvanizing thickness of G-60 to G-90.

10. The improved floor-framing device of claim 6, wherein the fastening means comprises screws, bolts, nails, adhesive or any customarily used industrial fastener.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPPLICATION

This is a utility patent application which claims benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/590,497 filed on Jul. 23, 2004.

FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH

Not Applicable

SEQUENCE LISTING OR PROGRAM

Not Applicable

STATEMENT REGARDING COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL

Portions of the disclosure of this patent document contain material that is subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to the facsimile reproduction by anyone of the patent document or the patent disclosure as it appears in the Patent and Trademark Office file or records, but otherwise reserves all copyright rights whatsoever.

BACKGROUND

The present invention relates to an improvement in floor framing, and more particularly, to an improvement in floor framing that eliminates the need of excess material and installation time required in conventional flooring systems, while still providing a safe and maintenance free floor assembly.

Conventional floor framing is a very labor intensive, material intensive, and time consuming. For example, conventional wood floor systems require the following: (1) wood ledgers (normally 2×6 through 2×10) and installation thereof; (2) joist or floor truss material (typically 2×8 to 2×8 and 18″ and less) and installation thereof; (3) joist hangers; (4) through bolts and labor to attach the ledgers; (5) ¾″ to ⅝″ plywood (sub-floor) exterior or 5¼″×6 pressure treated decking; and (6) ⅝″ to ½″ type X Gypsum board for the ceiling.

Meanwhile, metal floor systems utilizing a similar metal deck requires: (1) wood ledgers (normally 2×6 through 2×10) and installation thereof; (2) fabricated 3×3×¼ structural angle with holes drilled 24″ O.C.; (3) bolting fabricated angle 24″ O.C. with 2½″ or longer lag bolts; and (4) MC Channel and welding of angles (deck support). Additionally, floor systems with metal decking that bears on top of the load-bearing wall requires the concrete to dry (between 7 to 10 days) before installing the wall to be placed above.

Several structural elements to support floor framings have been developed in the art. U.S. Pat. No. 6,418,693 to Ballard discloses a flooring assembly and fastener that comprises flooring planks and a clip fastener arranged between opposing longitudinal edges of planks. A plurality of clip units are used, wherein each clip has Z-shaped cross section, one end of which is attached to a groove of a plank and the other end acts as a base for fastening to a joist. This device differs from the present invention in that it operates in conjunction with a substrate used to hold the assembly and fastener, wherein the fastener is mounted on to the substrate. Also, this device operates on a much smaller scale and is intended for interior flooring or decking.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,881,516 to Luedtke discloses a new method of constructing multi-story buildings utilizing metal “Z” members or metal plate bearing surfaces that allow bearing walls to be continuous from foundation to roof without bearing upon the floor construction. Although the “Z” member has structural resemblance to the device of the present invention, there are additional components in the former device that are designed to prevent axial loads from passing through the floor.

U.S. Pat. No. 3,147,570 to Shanton discloses a metal brace for use in supporting masonry walls made of cinder block, concrete block, brick, or similar materials. This device is intended to prevent walls from collapsing due to external pressures such as from floods or high winds. Although this device operates on same hanging principle of the present invention, there are structural distinctions between the Shanton device and the device of the present invention. Moreover, the Shanton device caters to different applications.

In Intl. App. No. WO8402549 to Hellgren a wall unit that is included in an exterior wall in a house is disclosed. The wall unit has both load-bearing and heat-insulating functions. The bottom of the wall unit is carried by a horizontal Z-beam fixed to the building foundations, and the Z-beam of this device is structurally similar to that of the present invention. In the Hellgren device, however, the Z-beam supports the horizontal flooring above the position where it interfaces with the wall unit.

Although the above devices and methods are used in structural and constructional applications, there is a need for a more effective and simplified floor support system.

Therefore, it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved floor-framing device for use in flooring systems.

A further object is to provide an improved floor-framing device that eliminates the need for excess material and installation time required in conventional flooring systems.

A further object is to provide an improved floor-framing device that provides a safe and maintenance free flooring assembly.

Finally, it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved floor-framing device that allows to erect floors continuously without the need for the concrete to dry before erecting a next floor. These and other objects of the present invention will become better understood with reference to the appended Summary, Description, and Claims.

SUMMARY

The present invention is an improved floor-framing device that can be used in flooring systems. The floor-framing device eliminates the need for different materials used in conventional wood and metal flooring systems. This device also reduces the labor and installation time needed in building floor framing while still providing a safe and maintenance free floor assembly.

The floor-framing device mainly comprises a bottom leg member, a top leg member, and a side planar member. The bottom leg member of the floor-framing device acts as a decking support and the top leg member is attached to the top of the interior unit sub-floor as a hanger. The side planar member of the floor-framing device allows the concrete to bear on the inside plane of the load bearing wall instead of on top of the wall. Thereby, a second floor wall is erected on top of the floor-framing device, i.e. on the top leg member. This mechanism provides strength to the design by displacing the load bearing onto the inside plane, while the roof bearing wall weight holds the floor-framing device down along with appropriate fasteners.

The lengths of the floor-framing device can vary, while the gauging is 12 GA or 14 GA depending on the opening width of the floor. The floor-framing device is made of high-grade galvanized steel that comes in grades galvanizing thickness of G-60 and G-90. These coatings insure a long-term maintenance free product.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIG. 1 is a cross sectional view of one preferred embodiment of the improved floor-framing device of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view of an alternate embodiment of the improved floor-framing device of the present invention.

FIG. 3A is an illustration of the exterior of a building with metal decking that bears on the top of the load-bearing wall.

FIG. 3B is an illustration of the exterior of a building with an improved floor-framing device of the present invention.

FIG. 4 is an illustration of the improved floor-framing device of the present invention installed in a conventional floor system.

FIGURES—REFERENCE NUMERALS

  • 10 . . . Floor-framing Device
  • 11 . . . Horizontal Bottom Leg Planar Member
  • 12 . . . Horizontal Top Leg Planar Member
  • 13 . . . Vertical Side Planar Member
  • 14 . . . Metal Decking/Pan
  • 15 . . . Floor Truss
  • 16 . . . Concrete
  • 17A . . . First Floor
  • 17B . . . Second Floor
  • 18 . . . Plywood Sub-floor
  • 19 . . . Exterior Sheathing
  • 20 . . . Water Proofing Membrane
  • 21 . . . Exterior of Veneer
  • 22 . . . Bottom Plate

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to the drawings, a preferred embodiment of an improved floor-framing device used in flooring systems, is illustrated and generally indicated as 10 in FIG. 1. The floor-framing device 10 has a Z-shaped cross section and mainly comprises a horizontal bottom leg planar member 11, a horizontal top leg planar member 12, and a vertical side planar member 13. The floor-framing device 10 eliminates the need for excess material and installation time required in conventional flooring systems.

Referring to FIG. 3A, a flooring assembly is illustrated and comprises a metal decking/pan 14 that bears on the top of a floor truss 15, which is also referred to as a load-bearing wall. Concrete 16 is poured on the metal decking 14 and is allowed to dry before installing a second wall to be placed above the wall of first floor 17A. This process is time consuming as it takes considerable amount of time for the concrete 16 to dry. Moreover, the entire weight of the concrete slab is distributed on the walls of the first floor 17A.

Referring to FIG. 3B, a flooring assembly using the preferred embodiment of the floor-framing device 10 of the present invention is illustrated. The bottom leg member 11 of the device 10 acts as a decking support for the metal pan 14 on which concrete 16 is poured to form a slab. The top leg member 12 of the device 10 is attached to the top of the wall with appropriate fasteners (not shown). The side planar member 13 allows the concrete 16 to bear on the inside plane of the floor truss 15 instead of on top of the wall as in the case of flooring assemblies with a metal decking 14 that bears on the top of the floor truss 15.

Referring to FIG. 2, an alternate embodiment of the floor-framing device 10 is illustrated. It is similar to the preferred embodiment described earlier except that; this alternate embodiment additionally includes another vertical side planar member 13 projecting downward from the top leg planar member 12.

The floor system, as seen in FIG. 4, mainly comprises metal pan 14, floor trusses 15, plywood sub-floor 18, exterior sheathing 19, water proofing membrane 20, exterior of veneer 21, and bottom plate 22. The plywood sub-floor 18 is placed on top of the floor truss 15, and the top leg member 12 of the floor-framing device 10 is then placed on the plywood sub-floor 18. The bottom leg member 11 supports the metal pan 14, which in turn acts as a platform for receiving concrete 16, while the side planar member 13 abuts the inside plane of the floor truss 15.

A second floor truss 15 is then erected on the top leg member 12, which holds the floor-framing device 10 down along with some appropriate fasteners (not shown). Concrete 16 is then poured on the metal pan 14 placed on the bottom leg member 11. Therefore, unlike in convention flooring systems, the weight of the concrete slab is distributed onto the inside plane instead of solely on top of the floor truss 15. This method distributes the load to a larger area thereby reducing stress on top of the floor truss 15.

A second floor-framing device 10 is placed on top of the second floor truss 15 in a similar fashion as described above. This process is continued and additional flooring trusses 15 are erected successively on top of each other in conjunction with the floor-framing devices 10. The erection of different floors does not affect the concrete slab whether it is dry or wet. Thus, the need for the concrete 16 to dry does not obstruct the erection of multiple floors, which is not the case for the conventional flooring systems.

The lengths of the floor-framing device 10 vary according to different wall dimensions. Also, the different dimensions of the bottom leg member 11, the top leg member 12, and the side planar member 13 are possible for accommodating wall trusses of various dimensions. The gauging of the floor-framing device is 12 GA or 14 GA depending on the opening width of the floor. The floor-framing device is made of high-grade galvanized steel that comes in grades galvanizing thickness of G-60 and G-90. These coatings insure a long-term maintenance free product that will not crack, warp, rot, or mildew.

Any element in a claim that does not explicitly state “means for” performing a specified function, or “step for” performing a specific function, is not to be interpreted as a “means” or “step” clause as specified in 35 U.S.C. § 112, paragraph 6. In particular, the use of “step of” in the claims herein is not intended to invoke the provisions of 35 U.S.C. § 112, paragraph 6.

Although preferred embodiments of the present invention have been shown and described, various modifications and substitutions may be made thereto without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Accordingly, it is to be understood that the present invention has been described by way of illustration and not limitation.