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Title:
Modular wine rack
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A modular wine rack has multiple wine rack modules and multiple connectors. The wine rack modules are stacked to form the modular wine rack. The connectors are mounted between the wine rack modules to fasten the wine rack modules securely together. Therefore, the wine rack modules can be disassembled to many wine rack modules to occupy a small volume when stored or transported because the connectors keep the wine rack modules from inadvertently detach easily from each other. Furthermore, the modular wine rack will not collapse easily. The modular wine rack can have as many wine rack modules as the user needs.


Inventors:
Yang, Jason (Taipei, TW)
Application Number:
11/184705
Publication Date:
01/25/2007
Filing Date:
07/19/2005
Assignee:
Coast-To-Coast Int'l Corp.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B73/00
View Patent Images:
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Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Thomas E. Sisson;Jackson Walker, LLP (Suite 2100, 112 E. Pecan, San Antonio, TX, 78205, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A modular wine rack comprising multiple wine rack modules fastened together to form the modular wine rack assembly, and each wine rack module comprising two panels fastened together to form a wine rack module, and each panel having an edge; multiple through holes formed through the panel; and multiple fastening holes formed through the panel; multiple connecting tubes mounted between the panels to connect two panels together to form the wine rack module, and each connecting tube having two ends; and a fastening hole formed longitudinally through connecting tube and aligning with the fastening hole in the panel; and multiple fasteners extending respectively through the fastening holes in the panels and connecting respectively to the fastening holes in the connecting tubes; multiple linear connectors mounted between the wine rack modules to fasten the wine rack modules together and each having a core; and two arms formed on and protrude radially from the core of the connector, and each arm having a distal end; and a sleeve formed on the distal end of the arm and mounted around a corresponding connecting tube.

2. The modular wine rack as claimed in claim 1 further comprises at least one complex connector having a core; more than two arms formed on and protruding radially from the core, each arm having a distal end; and a sleeve formed on the distal end of the arm and mounted around a corresponding connecting tube.

3. The modular wine rack as claimed in claim 2, wherein the fastening holes are near the edge of the panel; each connecting tube has at least one neck formed on one end of the connecting tube and is thinner than the connecting tube; and the sleeve of the arm of each one of the linear and the at least one complex connectors corresponds to and is mounted around the a neck of a corresponding connecting tube.

4. The modular wine rack as claimed in claim 3, wherein each connecting tube has two necks formed respectively on the ends of the connecting tube.

5. The modular wine rack as claimed in claim 2, wherein each one of the at least one complex connector comprises two linear connectors fastened together to form the complex connector, and each linear connector having at least one hole formed in the core of the linear connector; and at least one pin mounted in the holes in the two linear connectors to fasten the two linear connectors together.

6. The wine rack assembly as claimed in claim 4, wherein each one of at least one complex connector comprises two linear connectors fastened together to form the complex connector, and each linear connector having at least one hole formed in the core of the linear connector; and at least one pin mounted in the holes in the two linear connectors to fasten the two linear connectors together.

7. The wine rack assembly as claimed in claim 1, wherein the fastening holes are threaded; and the fasteners are screws.

8. The wine rack assembly as claimed in claim 6, wherein the fastening holes are threaded; and the fasteners are screws.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a modular wine rack, especially to a modular wine that not only can be built and expanded easily but also has a compact packing size when being transported.

2. Description of the Prior Arts

Wines have been popular for thousands of years and are particularly popular modem beverages. High-quality wine is distributed and stored in a bottle with a cork stopper. To keep the wine from spoiling and turning to vinegar, the cork stopper must be kept wet so the cork will not shrink and allow outside air into the bottle of the wine. Consequently, bottles of wine have been stored horizontally for centuries so the wine keeps the cork stopper wet.

With reference to FIGS. 8 and 9, a conventional stackable wine rack module (60) to hold bottles of wine was invented to expand a wine rack for use in the home. Each conventional stackable wine rack module (60) comprises two panels (61), multiple connecting tubes (62) and multiple screws (70). Each panel (61) has an upper edge, a lower edge, multiple through holes (611), multiple fastening holes (612) and multiple notches (613). The through holes (611) are formed through the panel (61) and correspond to a bottle of the wine. The fastening holes (612) are formed through the panel (61). The notches (613) are formed in the top and bottom edges of each panel (61). The connecting tubes (62) are mounted between two fastening holes (612) panels (61), and each connecting tube (62) has a threaded hole (621). The threaded hole (621) is formed coaxially through the connecting tube (62). The screws (70) protrude through the fastening holes (612) in the panel (61) and screw into the threaded holes (621) to fasten the two panels (61) to the connecting tubes (62) to form a single stackable wine rack module (60). However, a single stackable wine rack module (60) only holds a few bottles of wine. A wine rack module that is big enough to hold more bottles of wine is not stored or transported easily. By placing used wine bottle corks (80) in the notches (613) on the top edge of the panels (61), another stackable wine racks (60) can be stacked on the first stackable wine rack (60) by placing the notches (613) in the bottom edges of the panels (61) on the corks (80) to expand the wine rack module to hold more bottles of wine. However, the stacked wine racks modules (60) easily collapse when shaken or bumped. The corks (80) and the notches (613) are not strong enough to hold the adjacent panels (61) in place.

To overcome the shortcomings, the present invention provides a wine rack that not easily collapses to mitigate or obviate the aforementioned problems.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The main objective of the present invention is to provide a modular wine rack that can be disassembled to many wine rack modules to occupy a small volume when stored or transported. The modular wine rack has multiple wine rack modules and multiple connectors. The wine racks are stacked to form the modular wine rack. The connectors are mounted between the wine rack modules to fasten the wine rack modules securely together. Therefore, the wine rack modules can be disassembled to many wine rack modules to occupy a small volume when stored or transported because the connectors allow the wine rack modules to be detached easily from each other while keeping the modular wine rack from inadvertently collapsing. The modular wine rack can have as many wine rack modules as the user needs.

Other objectives, advantages and novel features of the invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a modular wine rack in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is an exploded perspective view of the modular wine rack assembly in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged exploded perspective view of a complex joint between wine rack modules of the modular wine rack assembly in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view of two linear connectors of the modular wine rack in FIG. 1 used to form a complex connector;

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of one-piece complex connector for the modular wine rack in FIG. 1;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged side view in partial section of a joint between wine rack modules in the modular wine rack in FIG. 1;

FIG. 7 is an enlarged side view in partial section of an alternate joint configuration between wine rack modules in a modular wine rack in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of a conventional stackable wine rack assembly in accordance with the prior art; and

FIG. 9 is an enlarged exploded perspective view of a complex joint in the conventional stackable wine rack assembly in FIG. 8.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

With reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, a modular wine rack in accordance with the present invention comprises multiple wine rack modules (100), multiple linear connectors (40) and at least one optional complex connector (400).

Each wine rack module (100) comprises two panels (10), multiple connecting tubes (20, 30) and multiple fasteners (50).

Each panel (10) has an outer edge, multiple through holes (11) and multiple fastening holes (12) and may be triangular, square, polygonal, etc. The through holes (11) are formed through the panel (10) and correspond to bottles of wine. The fastening holes (12) are formed through the panel (10) and may be near the outer edge of the panel (10).

With further reference to FIGS. 3 and 7, the connecting tubes (20, 30) are mounted between the panels (10) to connect two panels (10) together to form the wine rack module (100). Each connecting tube (20, 30) has two ends and a fastening hole (21, 311) and may have at least one neck (31). The fastening hole (21, 311) is formed longitudinally through connecting tube (20, 30), aligns with the fastening hole (12) in the panel (10) and may be threaded. The neck (31) is formed on an end of the connecting tube (30) and is thinner than the connecting tube (30). In the preferred embodiment, each connecting tube (20, 30) may have two necks (31) formed respectively on the ends of the connecting tube (30).

With further reference to FIGS. 6 and 7, the fasteners (50) extend respectively through the fastening holes (12) in the panels (10), connect respectively to the fastening holes (21, 311) in the connecting tubes (20, 30) and may be screws.

With further reference to FIG. 5, the connectors (40, 400) are mounted between the wine rack modules (100) to fasten the wine rack modules (100) together. Each connector (40, 400) has a core, and multiple arms (41). The arms (41) are formed on and protrude radially from the core of the connector (40,400), and each arm (41) has a distal end and a sleeve (411). The sleeve (411) is formed on the distal end of the arm (41), is mounted around a corresponding connecting tube (30) and corresponds to and is mounted around a neck (31) on the corresponding connecting tube (30). Linear connectors (40) have two arms (41) and connect two adjacent wine rack modules (100), and complex connectors (400) have more than two arms (41) and connect three or more wine rack modules (100) together at a complex joint. With further reference to FIG. 4, each complex connector (400) may comprise two linear connectors (40) and at least one pin (43). Each linear connector (40) has at least one hole (42) formed in the core of the linear connector (40). The pin (43) is mounted in the holes (42) respectively in the two linear connectors (40) to fasten the two linear connectors (40) together.

Since the connectors (40, 400) securely fasten multiple wine rack modules (100) together, the wine rack modules can be disassembled to many wine rack modules to occupy a small volume when stored or transported. Furthermore, the modular wine rack will not inadvertently collapse easily. The modular wine rack can have as many wine rack modules as the user needs.

Even though numerous characteristics and advantages of the present invention have been set forth in the foregoing description, together with details of the structure and features of the invention, the disclosure is illustrative only. Changes may be made in the details, especially in matters of shape, size, and arrangement of parts within the principles of the invention to the full extent indicated by the broad general meaning of the terms in which the appended claims are expressed.