Title:
Built-up frame for supporting of a portable water pool
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Disclosed herewith is a built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool. The built-up frame is attached to the circumferential edge of the portable water pool. The built-up frame includes a plurality of fence rods each having a predetermined length. The fence rods are arranged one after another to form a polygonal shape. Each of the connectors has a through hole. Each pair of the connectors are fitted into the inner ends of two neighboring fence rods, and are overlapped together to be connected to each other at a predetermined angle. A plurality of support rods each have an upper end portion and at least one engaging projection projected from the upper end portion. Each of the support rods is inserted into and vertically supports two overlapped connectors. A plurality of tightening caps each accommodates the upper end portion of each of the support rods, and is each engaged with and disengaged from the upper end portion by rotating the cap by a predetermined angle regardless of direction.



Inventors:
Choi, Soo-hong (Seoul, KR)
Application Number:
09/805613
Publication Date:
11/08/2001
Filing Date:
03/14/2001
Assignee:
CHOI SOO-HONG
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04C3/40; E04H4/00; E04H4/04; (IPC1-7): E04C5/16
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, CHI Q
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
NIXON & VANDERHYE, PC (ARLINGTON, VA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool, said built-up frame being attached to the circumferential edge of the portable water pool, comprising: a plurality of fence rods each having a predetermined length, said fence rods being arranged one after another to form a polygonal shape; a plurality of pairs of connectors, each of said connectors having a through hole, each pair of said connectors being fitted into the inner ends of two neighboring fence rods and being overlapped together to be connected to each other at a predetermined angle; a plurality of support rods each having an upper end portion and at least one engaging projection projected from said upper end portion, each of said support rods being inserted into and vertically supporting two overlapped connectors; and a plurality of tightening caps, each of said caps accommodating the upper end portion of each of said support rods and being engaged with and disengaged from said upper end portion by rotating said cap by a predetermined angle regardless of direction.

2. The built-up frame according to claim 1, wherein each of said connectors comprises: a cylindrical body tightly fitted into each end of the fence rod; a connector plate extended from the front surface of said connector body, said connector plate further comprising a stopper portion that is forwardly projected from one side of the front surface of said connector plate so as to restrict the relative rotation of each pair of two neighboring fence rods; a step portion formed on one surface of a connector plate at a position where said connector body and said connector plate are connected to each other to transverse the connector body, a portion of the front surface of said stepped portion being curved to correspond to the curved portion of the front surface of said connector plate of another neighboring connector plate; a through hole formed through the center portion of the connector plate; and at least one notch radially outwardly extended from the circumferential surface of said through hole to allow the engaging projection of said support rod to pass through.

3. The built-up frame according to claim 1, wherein said tightening cap comprises: a receiving hole comprised of a small diameter hole portion, and a large diameter hole portion inwardly extended from said small diameter hole, thus forming a stepped surface between said small and large diameter hole portions; and at least one notch radially outwardly extended from the circumferential surface of said through hole to allow the engaging projection of said support rod to pass through; wherein said engaging projection of said support rod is held tightly against said stepped surface by rotating said engaging projection by a predetermined angle when said engaging projection is inserted to a predetermined depth.

4. The built-up frame according to claim 3, wherein said step surface is provided with a seat portion, said seat portion being comprised of peripheral convex sub-portions and a center concave sub-portion, so as to hold said engaging projection of said support rod tightly when said tightening cap is rotated by a predetermined angle.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates generally to frames for supporting portable water pools, and particularly to a built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool, which is capable of facilitating the assembly and disassembly of the frame as well as suppressing the undesirable rotation of the components of the frame.

[0003] 2. Description of the Prior Art

[0004] A conventional water pool such as a portable swimming pool includes a frame 9 so as to maintain the top-open circular container shape of a portable water pool 1. As depicted in FIG. 1, the frame 9 is comprised of a plurality of fence rods 2 for supporting the upper end of the upward bent portion of the portable water pool 1 and a plurality of support rods 3 for connecting and supporting the fence rods 2.

[0005] A connection portion “C” of the frame 1 for supporting the upper end of the upward bent portion of the portable water pool 1, which is shown in FIG. 1, is described in more detail with reference to FIG. 2.

[0006] A plurality of fence rods 2 that support the upper end of the upward bent portion of the portable water pool 1 are each provided with two end plate portions 5 and two through holes 6 so that the fence rods 2 are connected to one another with two neighboring fence rods 2 overlapped at their neighboring end plate portions 5.

[0007] A threaded portion 7 is formed at the upper end of each of the support rods 3. The fence rods 2 are connected to one another, with two neighboring fence rods 2 being overlapped at their inner end plate portions 5 and the threaded portions 7 of the support rods 3 being inserted into the through holes 6 of the overlapped end plate portions 5 of the fence rods 2. A tightening cap 4 is engaged with the threaded portion 7 of each support rod 3 that passes through the through holes 6 of the overlapped end plate portions 5. As illustrated in FIG. 3, the tightening cap 4 fastens two connected fence rods 2 on one support rod 3 while pushing them tightly.

[0008] The built-up frame 9 constructed as described above forms a polygonal shape, and supports the upper end of the upward bent portion of the portable water pool 1. As a result, the built-up frame 9 prevents the portable water pool 1 from being deformed and maintains the suitable shape of the portable water pool 1.

[0009] However, in the conventional built-up frame, the tightening caps 4 should be fastened and unfastened in a bolt-nut manner, so much effort and time are required for the assembly and disassembly of the frame and the degree of fastening of the caps is difficult to recognize. Additionally, when the conventional built-up frame is utilized after being assembled, the tightening caps 4 are undesirably unfastened and the fence rods 2 are rotated, thereby causing the desirable shape of a portable water pool to be deformed.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0010] Accordingly, the present invention has been made keeping in mind the above problems occurring in the prior art, and an object of the present invention is to provide a built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool, which is capable of being easily and simply assembled and disassembled, thereby allowing the assembly and disassembly of the frame to be rapidly performed with less effort.

[0011] In order to accomplish the above object, the present invention provides a built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool, the built-up frame being attached to the circumferential edge of the portable water pool, comprising: a plurality of fence rods each having a predetermined length, the fence rods being arranged one after another to form a polygonal shape; a plurality of pairs of connectors, each of the connectors having a through hole, each pair of the connectors being fitted into the inner ends of two neighboring fence rods and being overlapped together to be connected to each other at a predetermined angle; a plurality of support rods each having an upper end portion and at least one engaging projection projected from the upper end portion, each of the support rods being inserted into and vertically supporting two overlapped connectors; and a plurality of tightening caps, each of the caps accommodating the upper end portion of each of the support rods and being engaged with and disengaged from the upper end portion by rotating the cap by a predetermined angle regardless of direction.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] The above and other objects, features and other advantages of the present invention will be more clearly understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which:

[0013] FIG. 1 is a perspective view showing a conventional portable water pool with a conventional built-up frame;

[0014] FIG. 2 is a detailed, exploded perspective view showing a connection portion indicated in section “C” of FIG. 1;

[0015] FIG. 3 is a partially cross section showing an assembled conventional frame;

[0016] FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view showing a connection portion of a built-up frame in accordance with the present invention;

[0017] FIG. 5 is a cross section showing a tightening cap in accordance with the present invention;

[0018] FIG. 6 is a cross section taken along line VI-VI of FIG. 5; and

[0019] FIG. 7 is a cross section showing the assembled frame of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0020] Reference now should be made to the drawings, in which the same reference numerals are used throughout the different drawings to designate the same or similar components.

[0021] FIG. 4 is an exploded perspective view showing the connection portion of a built-up frame in accordance with the present invention.

[0022] As shown in the drawing, the built-up frame of the present invention is comprised of a plurality of fence rods 10, a plurality of pairs of connectors 20 with each pair of connectors 20 fitted into both ends of each of the fence rods 10, a plurality of support rods 30, and a plurality of tightening caps 40.

[0023] The fence rods 10 each have a cylindrical shape of a predetermined length. The fence rods 10 form a polygonal shape, and are attached to the upper end of the upward portion of a portable water pool, such as a portable swimming pool.

[0024] Each pair of connectors 20 are fitted into both ends of each fence rod 10. Each connector 20 is comprised of a cylindrical connector body 21, a connector plate 22 projected from the cylindrical connector body 21, a stopper portion 23 projected from one side of the front surface of the connector plate 22, and a step portion 24 formed on one surface of the connector plate 22 at a position where the connector body 21 and the connector plate 22 are connected to each other. The connector 20 further comprises a circular hole 25, and two first notches 26 communicating with the circular hole 25.

[0025] The connector body 21 of the connector 20 has a cylindrical shape, and is fixedly fitted into one end of each fence rod 10. The connector body 21 may be secured to the fence rod 10 by rivets.

[0026] The connector plate 22 is extended from the outer end of the connector body 21, and has a plate shape of a certain thickness.

[0027] The stopper portion 23 is formed by forwardly extending one side portion of the front edge of the connector plate 22.

[0028] The stepped portion 24 is formed on one surface of a connector plate 22 at a position where the connector body 21 and the connector plate 22 are connected to each other to transverse the connector body 21. A portion of the front surface of the stepped portion 24 is curved to correspond to the curved portion of the front surface of the connector plate 22 of another neighboring connector plate 22.

[0029] As shown in FIG. 4, the stepped portion 23 is formed to be situated on the lower surface of one connector plate 22, if another stepped portion 24 is situated on the upper surface of the other connector plate 22 when the two corresponding connector plates 22 are overlapped.

[0030] The first notch 26 is outwardly extended from the circumferential surface of the through hole 25, and forms a concave portion. When the fence rods 10 are connected to one another at a predetermined angle, the first notches 26 formed in one connector plate 22 of one connector 20 and the first notches 26 formed in the corresponding connector plate 22 of another connector 20 coincide with each other while the two connectors 20 are overlapped.

[0031] The support rod 30 is comprised of a cylindrical hollow body portion like the fence rod 10, an upper end portion 35 formed on the upper end of the cylindrical hollow body to be inserted into and support the fence rods, and a plurality of engaging projections 36 radially outwardly projected from the upper portion of the side surface of the upper end portion 35.

[0032] The tightening cap 40 is comprised of a head portion 41 and a body portion 42.

[0033] The head portion 41 has a disk shape. The head portion 41 is provided at its side surface with a plurality of round recesses 49 that allow a user to easily hold and rotate the tightening cap 40.

[0034] The body portion 42 is provided with a receiving hole 45 and two second notches 46. The body portion 42 is described in more detail with reference to FIGS. 5 and 6.

[0035] FIG. 5 is a cross section of each tightening cap. FIG. 6 is a cross section taken along line VI-VI of FIG. 5.

[0036] As illustrated in these drawings, the receiving hole 45 is comprised of a small diameter hole portion 43 and a large diameter hole portion 44. The small diameter hole portion 43 accommodates the upper portion of the support rod 30 that has passed through the through holes 25 of the overlapped connectors 20 and is projected upwardly. The large diameter hole portion 44 having an enlarged diameter is connected to the small diameter hole portion 43, thereby forming a step surface 47.

[0037] The second notches 26 are outwardly extended from the circumferential surface of the small diameter hole portion 43 over a depth “h”. The second notches 26 function to allow the engaging projections 36 to pass through the small diameter hole portion 43 when the upper end portion 35 of the support rod 30 is accommodated in the receiving hole 45.

[0038] As indicated in FIG. 5, the step surface 47 has a width that corresponds to a difference “d” between the radii of the small diameter hole portion 43 and the large diameter hole portion 44. The step surface 47 is provided with a seat portion 48. The seat portion 48 is comprised of peripheral convex sub-portions and a center concave sub-portion so as to hold the engaging projections 36 of the support rod 30 (shown by phantom lines in FIG. 5) tightly when the tightening cap 40 is rotated by a predetermined angle.

[0039] Additionally, the step surface 47 on which the seat portion 48 is formed, as shown in FIG. 6, is comprised of two symmetrical portions that are separated by the second notches 26.

[0040] FIG. 7 is a cross section showing the assembled frame of the present invention. With reference to FIG. 7, the operation of the frame for supporting a portable water pool in accordance with the present invention.

[0041] In FIG. 7, two connectors 20 are overlapped together, the upper end portion 35 of the support rod 30 is inserted into the through holes 25 of the connectors 20, and the tightening cap 40 is engaged with the upper end portion 35 of the support rod 30 with the engaging projections 36 resting on the step surface 47 of the tightening cap 40.

[0042] As depicted in FIG. 4, two connectors 20 are connected to each other at a predetermined angle with the stopper portion 23 of one connector 20 brought into contact with the stepped portion 24 of the other connector 20, so the relative rotation of the two connectors 20 is prevented. Accordingly, the fence rods 10 are continuously connected to one another at a predetermined angle to form a polygonal shape, resulting in the frame for supporting a portable water pool.

[0043] The upper end portion 35 of the support rod 30 is inserted into the overlapped connectors 20, and, thereafter, the upper portion of the upper end portion 35 of the support rod 30 is accommodated in the receiving hole 45 of the tightening cap 40. In this case, the engaging projections 36 of the support rod 30 are accommodated in the second notches 46 of the tightening cap 40.

[0044] At this time, when the head portion 41 of the tightening cap 40 is rotated by a predetermined angle, in this embodiment, of 90°, regardless of direction, the engaging projections 36 of the support rod 30 are moved along the step surface 47 while pushing the tightening cap 40 toward the connectors 20. In this case, a user can easily rotate the tightening cap 40 using the recesses 49 formed on the side surface of the tightening cap 40.

[0045] When the engaging projections 36 of the support rod 30 reach the seat portion 48 of the step surface 47 of the tightening cap 40, the tightening cap 40 and the support rod 30 tightly hold the two connectors 20 together therebetween. Since the seat portion 48 is formed, a user can recognize the completion of the engagement of the tightening cap 40, and the entire frame is strongly assembled together.

[0046] When the frame is desired to be disassembled after being used, the tightening cap 40 is rotated by a predetermined angle to allow the engaging projections 36 of the support rod 30 to be removed from the step surface 47. Consequently, the tightening caps 40 can be separated from the fence rods 10, and, thereafter, the support rods 30 and the other elements can be easily disassembled.

[0047] As described above, the present invention provides a built-up frame for supporting a portable water pool that is capable of being easily assembled and disassembled by rotating tightening caps by a predetermined angle regardless of direction, thereby facilitating the assembly and disassembly of the built-up frame and reducing the time and effort required for the assembly and disassembly.

[0048] In addition, in accordance with the present invention, fence rods supporting a water pool are prevented from being undesirably rotated while being connected to one another, so the suitable shape of the water pool can be stably maintained.

[0049] Although the preferred embodiments of the present invention have been disclosed for illustrative purposes, those skilled in the art will appreciate that various modifications, additions and substitutions are possible, without departing from the scope and spirit of the invention as disclosed in the accompanying claims.