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This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/960,117, filed Sep. 17, 2007.
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention relates to wine racks and to hangers for pots and pans, and particularly to a combination wine rack and pot holder that is suspended from a ceiling and provides both a wine rack and a support for hangers that can hold pots and pans.
2. Description of the Related Art
Bottles of wine, as well as pots and pans, are often stored in kitchen environments. However, in the typical household kitchen, space is very limited, and conventional cracks for storing wine bottles, pots, pans and the like are often quite bulky. Thus, it would be desirable to provide a multi-functional storage rack, capable of storing multiple types of items, such as both wine bottles and pots, in order to save space within the kitchen. Further, it would be desirable to provide a hanging support system that can be suspended from a ceiling, thus saving floor and counter space.
Additionally, racks for bottles, pots, pans and the like are commonly utilitarian in appearance and are designed purely for functionality. It would be desirable to provide a rack-type storage system that has an aesthetically pleasing design and ornamental features. Thus, a combination wine rack and pot holder solving the aforementioned problems is desired.
The combination wine rack and pot holder is a hanging support for storing wine bottles and cooking pots and pans. The combination wine rack and pot holder includes a wooden frame that preferably has a substantially rectangular shape. Hooks or other anchors are attached to opposite ends of the frame so that chains or other flexible members can be attached thereto for suspending the frame from a ceiling. Substantially arcuate metal bands extend below both opposite ends and the middle of the rectangular frame. A plurality of elongate, spaced apart slats or rails are attached to the outer surface of the bands and extend in the longitudinal direction, being secured to the bands on edge and forming an arcuate cradle to support wine bottles. A plurality of thin, flexible laths extend transversely through aligned holes in the rails to provide lateral support between the rails. Hooks are attached to the sides of the rectangular frame for suspending pots and pans.
These and other features of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.
FIG. 1 is an environmental, perspective view of a combination wine rack and pot holder according to the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the combination wine rack and pot holder according to the present invention.
FIG. 3 is a top view of the combination wine rack and pot holder according to the present invention.
FIG. 4 is an end view of the combination wine rack and pot holder according to the present invention.
Similar reference characters denote corresponding features consistently throughout the attached drawings.
The present invention is directed towards a combination wine rack and pot holder, designated generally as 10 in the drawings. As best shown in FIG. 1, the combination wine rack and pot holder 10 is a hanging support for storing wine bottles W and holding cooking pots and pans P. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the combination wine rack and pot holder 10 has a substantially rectangular wooden frame 14 formed from a pair of longitudinally extending frame rails 22 and a pair of laterally extending cross members 24. As shown in FIG. 3, the frame rails 22 may extend beyond the cross members 24, the ends of the frame rails 22 extending beyond the rectangular frame 14.
Rings, U-shaped loops, or other anchors 25 are attached to opposite ends of the rectangular frame 14. Chains H or other elongated flexible members H may be attached to the anchors 25 by S-hooks or the like in order to suspend the frame 14 from a ceiling C. In the preferred embodiment, four chains H are provided, with each chain H being secured to an anchor 25 adjacent the four corners of the frame 14. In the preferred embodiment, four 3/16″ fused link chains 12 are utilized for attachment to ceiling joists on either 16-inch or 24-inch centers.
Substantially arcuate bands 16 extend below both the opposite ends and the middle of the rectangular frame. The bands 16 may be attached to the frame by screws or other suitable fasteners, with support blocks being placed behind the frame rails 22 opposite the bands 16, the screws extending into the support blocks to ensure that the bands 16 are firmly affixed to the bands 16 for supporting a load attached to the rack 10. Preferably, the bands 16 are made from a lightweight, polished aluminum alloy, although other material may be used. Only a single such band 16 is shown in the Figures, though it should be understood that any suitable number may be utilized. Additionally, the blocks shown on either end of band 16 in FIG. 3 may be removed.
A plurality of wooden slats or rails 18 are attached to the arcuate bands 16, with each slat 18 extending in the longitudinal direction. As shown in FIG. 4, the slats 18 are evenly spaced over the outer surfaces of the arcuate bands 16. The slats 18 are attached to the bands 16 by screws or other fasteners that extend into the edges of the slats 18. Preferably, as shown, slats 18 are secured to outer faces of the arcuate bands 16. The ends of the slats 18 and the ends of the frame rails 22 preferably have rounded corners, both for safety and for ornamental purposes. Frame rails 22 may have any desired dimensions, for example, cross-sectional dimensions of ¾ inches by 2½ inches.
A plurality of spaced apart, thin, flexible wooden laths 21 extend transversely through aligned holes in the slats 18 and are secured thereto by epoxy or the like in order to provide lateral support to the slats 18.
The bands 16 and the slats 18 form an arcuate cradle for supporting wine bottles W. The wine bottles W may be placed in the cradle from both ends of the rack 10 with the necks of the bottles W extending beyond the ends of the rack 10. The open lattice construction of the rack 10 due to the spacing of the slats 18 permits the user to see enough of the label to identify different types of wine without removing each bottle W from the rack 10 until the desired wine is located. Further, a plurality of hooks 20 are attached to the frame rails so that pots and pans P may be suspended from the frame 14. Hooks 20 are secured via screws or the like. In FIG. 4, the facing ends of members 22 may alternatively also include quarter rounds fixed thereto, dependent upon the needs of the user.
Representative dimensions may be as follows. The rectangular frame 14 may be approximately thirty-six inches long by twenty inches wide. The cradle formed by the arcuate bands 16 and slats 18 may be approximately twelve inches deep. The slats 18 may be formed from ½″×¼″ lumber, and may extend substantially the length of the frame 14, or at least the spacing between the bands 16 at the opposing ends of the frame 14. A combination wine rack and pot holder 10 having these dimensions is capable of supporting a safe load of about one hundred pounds, which might comprise; e.g., sixteen 750 mL. bottles of wine and fifty pounds of assorted pots and pans. The above dimensions are representative only, and not intended to limit the scope of the invention as claimed.
The frame 14 and slats 18 may be made from any suitable wood or other sturdy materials, with red oak, poplar, and clear pine being preferred. The wood components may be hand rubbed or stained with a polyurethane finish. The hardware, other than the bands 16, is preferably stainless steel. The frame 14 is preferably formed with mortise and tenon joints.
It should be understood that additional design elements, such as floral vines or the like, may be added without departing from the spirit or scope of the present invention.
It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the embodiments described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.