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In the thirty years in which the inventor has been in or around the construction industry he has not seen a device specifically designed for supporting a worker while he or she works under sinks. A plumber will almost always lie on his back and look up to work on pipes.
A big problem in situating oneself to work on sinks and pipes under a cabinet is that the bottom of the cabinet is typically about four (4) inches off the floor. So there is a sharp corner of the cabinet upon which a worker must lie while working. That corner can be extremely uncomfortable and physically dangerous for the backs of workers.
In new construction and in remodeling or repair, a plumber, while working on pipes under a sink in a cabinet, will typically lie on a pillow or blanket, or other padding not originally designed for this kind of work. This sort of support has many drawbacks: (1) It is not convenient; a plumber needs to have a platform that he or she can put quickly into his or her truck. (2) It is not weather-resistant; a pillow or blanket will get wet in rain, and the plumber usually does not have the time or patience to put it somewhere out of the weather. (3) It is not durable; a cloth object will easily tear and will quickly need to be replaced. (4) It is not firm; a pillow or blanket, while soft, does not supply any real support, and the worker will often come away from a day's work with a sore back and cramped muscles.
The Plumber's Back Support (the “Support”) is a platform made so that a plumber or homeowner can lie on it on his or her back and look up under a cabinet at the pipes or other parts of a sink that he or she will be working on. One part of the platform is a ramp which extends into the room at an angle such that it will reach the floor, and bridge the gap between the bottom of the cabinet, usually called a “kickplate.” The other part of the platform lies inside, on the floor of the cabinet. The worker can then lie on it and have a solid surface on which to lie. This surface has only a small bend in it between the ramp down to the floor and the horizontal section which lies inside the cabinet. It will be durable, made of wood or hard rubber. It will withstand being placed quickly into a truck bed or other harsh environment. Being in one piece, it can be taken hold of quickly and moved to the work location. The Plumber's Back Support will withstand inclement weather.
Best of all, the support supplies an interface between the floor of the room and the bottom of the cabinet, which is typically four inches high. It eliminates the sharp corner of the cabinet and provides a healthier work environment.
The worker will have a relatively smooth surface upon which to lie as he works. The entire surface upon which the plumber lies will have a rubber padding (in the case of the wood model) or will be all rubber (in the case of the rubber version). There will be an angle of approximately twenty degrees between the ramp which extends into the room and the ramp which extends into the cabinet; and the overall comfort and safety will be increased dramatically. This design, while simple, can improve the effectiveness and safety for plumbers and other workers.
FIG. 1—a top view of the wood version of the Support, indicating placement of screws, with the middle support indicated by dotted lines in the usual manner of such drawings. The left half of this view, with the dimension indicated of 15¼inches, is the ramp to the floor. The right half of this view, with the dimension indicated of 12 inches, is the horizontal portion which rests inside the cabinet on the floor of the cabinet.
FIG. 2—a side view of the wood version of the Support, showing the sturdy central section which connects to the ramp to the floor and to the horizontal platform which rests inside the cabinet, thereby providing an interface with the bottom of the cabinet, the underside of which is commonly known as a “kickplate.”
FIG. 3—a top view of the rubber version of the Support, indicating dimensions. Because the rubber version is a solid piece, this view, while accurate, does not provide a good visual idea. Therefore, below is provided:
FIG. 4—a side view of the rubber version of the Support. This view shows dimensions, and gives a good representation of the solid support.
FIG. 5—another top view of the rubber version of the Support, with cross-checks instead of solid black, so that the viewer can get a clearer picture of the construction.
FIG. 6—another side view of the rubber version of the Support, with cross-checks for a clear view of the construction of the Support. All surfaces of this version are solid; any lines inside the left half of this view are due to the limitations of the program which created this drawing.
This Plumber's Back Support (“the Support”) is a platform upon which plumbers and homeowners can lie while working on pipes under sinks, which are usually enclosed in cabinets. The Support shall be constructed in two materials, one of wood and one of molded rubber. When constructed, either version shall be in one piece.
In the center of the Support there is a center support, made of wood or hard rubber, which when being used will be situated parallel to the front of a cabinet, commonly known as a kickplate. This center support is one and one-half (1½) inches thick and eleven (11) inches long, standing upright on the one and one-half (1½) inch dimension and four (4) inches tall, running the width of the Support. This center support butts up against the front surface of the bottom of the cabinet, referred to above as a kickplate.
Another surface of the Support, made of the same substance as the center support, lies on top of the center support. This surface shall be twelve (12) inches long (the dimension which extends into the cabinet) and eleven (11) inches wide. It shall be three-fourths (¾) of an inch thick (top to bottom, vertically).
The bottom of this surface will be approximately four inches from the floor of the room. The bottom of this surface is therefore high enough to clear the bottom of the cabinet. This surface enters the cabinet and rests on the floor of the cabinet, thereby providing a solid surface upon which to lie while working (a worker will almost always lie on his or her back and look up while working on pipes inside a cabinet).
Another surface of the Support, made of the same substance as the center support, extends outside the cabinet into the room, directly away from the surface that extends into the cabinet. This surface is diagonal and extends from the top of the center support, which is typically four (4) inches high, diagonally down to the floor, thereby creating a slanted ramp upon which the worker will lie. When a worker is in place, he or she will be lying mostly on the slanted ramp and perhaps partly on the surface which is inside the cabinet, parallel to the floor of the cabinet.
The portion of the Support which extends into the cabinet shall be twelve (12) inches long and eleven (11) inches wide. That portion of the Support will be one half (½) an inch thick, made of wood or molded rubber.
The portion of the Support which extends from the bottom of the cabinet diagonally down to the floor of the room shall be fifteen and a half (15½) inches long, eleven (11) inches wide and one half (½) of an inch thick. There will two models, one of wood and one of molded rubber. In the version of molded rubber the diagonal ramp shall be constructed in one piece, and the dimension of it shall go from four and a half (4½) inches at the top down to one (1) inch at the bottom, where it rests on the floor of the room.
Most cabinets which house a sink have a vertical support member, called a “stile.” Any doors in the cabinet under the sink come to rest against the stile when they are closed. The space between the stile and the sides of the cabinet is typically twelve (12) inches wide. The support will fit between the stile and the side of the cabinet in most cases. The support can be constructed in different sizes, such as a version in which the horizontal width is ten (10) inches for particularly small cabinets.