Title:
Reclining chair
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A reclining chair (10), having a frame (16) including first and second angled members (32) and first and second upright members (34). A support surface (18) has a back portion (15) which is held in position by the first and second upright members (34). Each of the first and second upright members (34) is attached to one of first and second angled members (32) by reversible joints (39), so that the reclining chair (10) is movable from an upright position (12) when the reversible joints (39) are in a first position, to a reclining position (14) when the reversible joints (39) have been reversed to a second position.

Also a collapsible reclining chair (100).




Inventors:
Choi, Sang Byong (Xiamen City, CN)
Byun, Ho Sik (Xiamen City, CN)
Application Number:
09/791320
Publication Date:
02/07/2002
Filing Date:
02/23/2001
Assignee:
CHOI SANG BYONG
BYUN HO SIK
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
297/354.12
International Classes:
A47C4/42; A47C4/46; (IPC1-7): A47C7/40
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20100059199Combined beverage cooler and car seat coolerMarch, 2010Court
20020074847Covering for protecting users of motor vehicle seat beltsJune, 2002Terpselas
20060103227SwingMay, 2006Jorg
20070176475LIGHTWEIGHT JUVENILE TRANSPORT PRODUCT WITH PROTECTIVE AND DECORATIVE MICROSHELL COVER AND METHODAugust, 2007Nakhla et al.
20100052391Fold Flat Seat Assembly with Rearward Folding MotionMarch, 2010Hurst III et al.
20100052387Infant Care ApparatusMarch, 2010Hopke et al.
20020060481Seat back panel having stowable utility support memberMay, 2002Jones
20080030053Massage machine of chair typeFebruary, 2008Kamba et al.
20060267393Utility benchNovember, 2006Benites
20090212605Bouncey chairAugust, 2009Buckner
20080265643Seat Belt Fitting For A Reversible SeatOctober, 2008Haas et al.



Primary Examiner:
VU, STEPHEN A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
IPSG, P.C. (SAN JOSE, CA, US)
Claims:

While various embodiments have been described above, it should be understood that they have been presented by way of example only, and not limitation. Thus, the breadth and scope of a preferred embodiment should not be limited by any of the above described exemplary embodiments, but should be defined only in accordance with the following claims and their equivalents.



1. A portable reclining chair, comprising: a frame including angled members and upright members, each of said upright members having a lower end; a support surface, having a back portion, said back portion being held in position by said upright members; and each of said upright members being attached to one of said angled members by a reversible joint, so that said reclining chair is movable from an upright position when said reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when said reversible joints have been reversed to a second position.

2. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: an extension member having first and second ends; a sleeve housing having a sleeve pivot, said sleeve housing being attached to one of said angled members; a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said first end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said second pivot of said pivot housing, said second end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said sleeve pivot of said sleeve housing.

3. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said second pivot of said pivot housing being pivotally attached to one of said angled members.

4. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, further comprising a footrest.

5. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, further comprising armrests.

6. The portable reclining chair as in claim 5, wherein: said armrests are pivotally attached to said upright members and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position so that they remain roughly horizontal.

7. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, further comprising: upper angled members which are pivotally attached to said upright members, and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position.

8. The portable reclining chair as in claim 1, wherein said chair is collapsible.

9. A portable reclining chair, comprising: a frame including angled members and upright members, each of said upright members having a lower end; a support surface, having a back portion, said back portion being held in position by said first and second upright members; and reversible joints, wherein each reversible joint includes an extension member having first and second ends, a sleeve housing having a sleeve pivot, said sleeve housing being attached to one of said angled members, a pivot housing having first and second pivots, said lower end of one of said first and second upright member being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said first end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said second pivot of said pivot housing, said second end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said sleeve pivot of said sleeve housing; each of said upright members being attached to one of said angled members by a reversible joint, so that said reclining chair is movable from an upright position when said reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when said reversible joints have been reversed to a second position.

10. The portable reclining chair as in claim 9, further comprising a footrest.

11. The portable reclining chair as in claim 9, further comprising armrests.

12. The portable reclining chair as in claim 9, wherein said chair is collapsible.

13. A portable reclining chair, comprising: a frame including angled members and upright members, each of said upright members having a lower end; a support surface, having a back portion, said back portion being held in position by said first and second upright members; and reversible joints, wherein each reversible joint includes a pivot housing having first and second pivots and said lower end of one of said upright members is pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said second pivot of said pivot housing being pivotally attached to one of said angled members; each of said upright members being attached to one of said angled members by a reversible joint, so that said reclining chair is movable from an upright position when said reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when said reversible joints have been reversed to a second position.

14. The portable reclining chair as in claim 13, further comprising a footrest.

15. The portable reclining chair as in claim 13, further comprising armrests.

16. The portable reclining chair as in claim 13, wherein said chair is collapsible.

17. A portable reclining chair, comprising: a frame including angled members and upright members, each of said upright members having a lower end; a support surface, having a back portion, said back portion being held in position by said upright members; and each of said upright members being attached to one of said angled members by a reversible joint, so that said reclining chair is movable from an upright position when said reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when said reversible joints have been reversed to a second position; each of said reversible joints being moveable from a first position to a second position, and in moving from said first position to said second position, said pivot housings move from a first vertical minimum at said first position through a vertical maximum to a second relative vertical minimum at said second position, such that once rotation of said reversible joints has moved said upper portion center of gravity so that it is on either side of said vertical maximum, the weight of the chair maintains the chair in one of the relative vertical minimums at first and second positions.

18. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: an extension member having first and second ends; a sleeve housing having a sleeve pivot, said sleeve housing being attached to one of said angled members; a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said first end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said second pivot of said pivot housing, said second end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said sleeve pivot of said sleeve housing.

19. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said second pivot of said pivot housing being pivotally attached to one of said angled members.

20. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, further comprising a footrest.

21. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, further comprising armrests.

22. The portable reclining chair as in claim 21, wherein: said armrests are pivotally attached to said upright members and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position so that they remain roughly horizontal.

23. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, further comprising: upper angled members which are pivotally attached to said upright members, and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position.

24. The portable reclining chair as in claim 17, wherein said chair is collapsible.

25. A collapsible reclining chair comprising: a frame including angled members and upright members, each of said upright members having a lower end; a support surface, having a back portion, said back portion being held in position by said upright members; and each of said upright members being attached to one of said angled members by a reversible joint, so that said reclining chair is movable from an upright position when said reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when said reversible joints have been reversed to a second position; each of said reversible joints being moveable from a first position to a second position, and in moving from said first position to said second position, said pivot housings move from a first vertical minimum at said first position through a vertical maximum and on to a second relative vertical minimum at said second position, such that once rotation of said reversible joints has moved said upper portion center of gravity so that it is on either side of said vertical maximum, the weight of the chair maintains the chair in one of the relative vertical minimums at first and second positions; upper angled members which are pivotally attached to said upright members, and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position; and armrests, said armrests being pivotally attached to said upright members and which pivot when said chair is moved from said upright position to said reclining position.

26. The collapsible reclining chair as in claim 25, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: an extension member having first and second ends; a sleeve housing having a sleeve pivot, said sleeve housing being attached to one of said angled members; a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said first end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said second pivot of said pivot housing, said second end of said extension member being pivotally attached to said sleeve pivot of said sleeve housing.

27. The collapsible reclining chair as in claim 25, wherein each of said reversible joints comprise: a pivot housing having first and second pivots; and said lower end of one of said upright members being pivotally attached to said first pivot of said pivot housing, said second pivot of said pivot housing being pivotally attached to one of said angled members.

Description:

[0001] This application claims priority from U.S. Provisional Applications Serial Nos. 60/184,726, filed Feb. 24, 2000 and 60/238,664, filed Oct. 4, 2000.

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0002] The present invention relates generally to portable furniture used in recreational activities, and more particularly to camping chairs.

BACKGROUND ART

[0003] Reclining chairs provide a restful opportunity for the user to “put their feet up” at the end of a long work day without the necessity of providing a foot stool, or other prop which may take up floor space unnecessarily when not in use. By having a foot rest built into the chair, the amount of discrete pieces of furniture in a room may be reduced.

[0004] Users may wish to enjoy the comforts of a reclining chair in an outdoor setting, perhaps on a back porch, or by a pool. As traditional reclining chairs are generally too heavy for easy portability, there have been certain types of folding chairs developed which may include foot rests. Some of these may fold down completely flat, with a hinged portion which allows a back portion to be inclined, perhaps at a variety of angles. One familiar style was the “deck chair” covered with either a canvas or plastic mesh surface and with a frame structure including notches on the backs of the rear legs into which a cross-bar may fit to retain a certain inclination angle.

[0005] This type of structure has the disadvantage that the cross-bar may become dislodged from the notches, in which case the back may fall unimpeded to the horizontal position, startling or even injuring the user. The older style of deck chair is also well-known for having the components tangle together when collapsed or in the process of being constructed.

[0006] Other styles of reclining chairs may include various locking mechanisms, such as spring-loaded pins that engage holes in the chair frame, or locking knobs that screw down to fix moveable elements in place. There may be problems with these types of locking mechanisms. These chairs, being designed to be portable, naturally attempt to minimize weight by using hollow tubing of lightweight materials, such as aluminum, as the frame structure. When holes are made in this material, the structural strength of these members can be compromised. Additionally, the holes in the members may be subject to tearing out, as these lightweight materials generally do not have great sheer strength. Under repeated stress, the locking pins can perhaps be forced out of the holes, causing the frame to be additionally weakened, and perhaps allowing the chair to fall freely to its horizontal position.

[0007] Locking knobs which operate by forcing a screw to tighten on a hollow frame member, can also cause the frame member to flatten or even collapse, again causing the back to be suddenly unsupported.

[0008] Thus there is a need for a portable reclining chair that can securely retain either an upright or reclining position without the need for locking devices, yet is lightweight enough to be easily portable.

DISCLOSURE OF INVENTION

[0009] Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a chair that easily and quickly adjusts from an upright position to a reclining position.

[0010] Another object of the invention is to provide a chair that securely remains in either an upright or a reclining position.

[0011] And another object of the invention is to provide a chair that remains in either position without a locking mechanism.

[0012] Briefly, one preferred embodiment of the present invention is a portable reclining chair, having a frame including first and second angled members and first and second upright members. A support surface has a back portion which is held in position by the first and second upright members. Each of the first and second upright members is attached to one of first and second angled members by reversible joints, so that the reclining chair is movable from an upright position when the reversible joints are in a first position, to a reclining position when the reversible joints have been reversed to a second position.

[0013] A second preferred embodiment is a collapsible reclining chair.

[0014] An advantage of the present invention is that completion of movement from an upright to reclining position, or vice-versa, is aided by gravity.

[0015] Another advantage of the invention is that retention of the chair in either upright or reclined position is aided by gravity.

[0016] And another advantage of the invention is that no external locking mechanism is required to maintain the chair in position, and when loaded by the weight of an occupant, retention of the position is aided.

[0017] A further advantage of the invention is that it is simple to manufacture, and collapses to a compact shape for shipping or storage.

[0018] These and other objects and advantages of the present invention will become clear to those skilled in the art in view of the description of the best presently known mode of carrying out the invention and the industrial applicability of the preferred embodiment as described herein and as illustrated in the several figures of the drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0019] The purposes and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following detailed description in conjunction with the appended drawings in which:

[0020] FIG. 1 illustrates a front perspective view of the reclining chair of the present invention in upright position;

[0021] FIG. 2 shows a detail view of the pivot mechanism shown in circle A of FIG. 1, FIG. 3 illustrates a front perspective view of the reclining chair of the present invention in reclining position;

[0022] FIG. 4 shows a detail view of the pivot mechanism shown in circle B of FIG. 3;

[0023] FIGS. 5A and B show details views of the pivot mechanism of the present invention moving from upright to reclined position;

[0024] FIGS. 6A-C shows simplified diagrams of the members and forces involved in the reversible joint when the chair is moved from a first, upright position in FIG. 6A to a reclining position in FIG. 6B;

[0025] FIG. 7 illustrates a collapsible reclining chair;

[0026] FIG. 8 shows a four-pivot foot used in a collapsible reclining chair;

[0027] FIG. 9 shows a two-pivot foot used in a collapsible reclining chair;

[0028] FIG. 10 shows an upper pivot assembly used in a collapsible reclining chair; and

[0029] FIG. 11 shows a rear pivot assembly used in a collapsible reclining chair.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

[0030] A preferred embodiment of the present invention is a reclining chair having a reversible joint or pivot mechanism by which the chair can be converted from an upright position to a reclining position. As illustrated in the various drawings herein, and particularly in the view of FIG. 1, a form of this preferred embodiment of the inventive device is depicted by the general reference character 10.

[0031] FIG. 1 illustrates a portable reclining chair 10 which is in upright position 12. The reclining position 14 is shown in FIG. 3. Referring to both of these figures, there is generally a frame assembly 16, which is covered by a support surface 18 having a material covering 20. For purposes of orientation, the chair will be considered to have a head end 22 and a foot end 24 and a right arm 26 and a left arm 28. The chair will be considered to have generally a back portion 15, and preferably a foot rest 17, although this is not a necessity, and variations may exist which recline without the presence of a foot rest, and also without arm rests. The chair 10 also includes four feet 30, two angled members 32 and two upright members 34. The angled members 32 will be considered to have lower 36, and an upper end 37, and the upright member 34 will be considered to have a head end 35 and a foot end 38.

[0032] The area within circle A in FIG. 1 is shown in detail in FIG. 2. Generally, the parts contained within this view, which enable the chair 10 to reposition from an upright position 12 to a reclining position 14, will be referred to as a reversible joint 39. A double-barreled sleeve housing 40 is shown positioned on angled member 32. A pivot housing 42 is shown to be connected to the lower end 38 of upright member 34 at a first pivot 44, and is connected to the first or outer end 46 of an extension member 48 at a second pivot 50. The second or inner end 52 of the extension member 48 is connected to the sleeve housing 40 at a sleeve pivot 54. In this description, “inner” and “outer” can be thought of as relative to a pair of radial arms 55, one at each side, originating at the sleeve pivots 54. Each of these radial arms 55 thus includes an extension member 48, a pivot housing 42 and an upright member 34.

[0033] Returning to FIG. 1, the upright member 34 has attachment points for joining to an upper angled member 56, and one of the arms (in the figure, left arm 28 is most easily seen) at lower pivot 58, and upper pivot 60, respectively.

[0034] FIGS. 3 and 4 show the chair 10 in reclining position 14, with FIG. 4 being a close up detail of circle B in FIG. 3. Once again, the sleeve housing 40 is shown on the angled member 32. The extension member 48 is again shown connected at the inner end 52 to the sleeve pivot 54 and to the pivot housing 42 at the second pivot 50. The upright member 34 is attached to the pivot housing 42 at first pivot 44.

[0035] FIGS. 5A and B repeat FIGS. 2 and 4, with the addition of direction arrows clockwise 2 and counterclockwise 4. As shown, when the chair 10 is moved from upright position 12 to reclining position 14, extension member 48 is pivoted in a clockwise direction about sleeve pivot 54 approximately 180 degrees until the pivot housing 42 contacts the angled member 32. It is to be understood that 180-degree rotation is not required, and that there may be a mechanical stop in the sleeve housing 40 or other device, which may be used to limit or extend rotation to any other appropriate position. As the extension member 48 is rotated clockwise 2, the upright member 34 also rotates counterclockwise 4 about the first pivot 44 in the pivot housing 42. The pivot housing 42 is thus rotated to a position higher from the ground on the angled member 32, but the upright member 34 is now tilted at an angle a 62 measured counterclockwise from vertical reference line 6. This angular tilt allows the upper portion 64 (see FIGS. 1 and 3) of the chair 10 to recline in an angle roughly corresponding to angle a 62. When this angle is assumed, the arms 26, 28 pivot slightly at upper pivot 60 so that they remain roughly horizontal. The upper angled members 56 also pivot slightly at the lower pivots 58. Additionally, there may be pivots (not shown) in the feet 30 which allow the attached members to adjust to the reclining angle.

[0036] The sleeve housing 40 shown is preferably fixed in position on the angled member 32 by crimps, bolts or other attachment devices. It is possible however that the sleeve housing 40 may be slideably attached to the angled member 32, and may travel up and down to provide a range of reclining angles. There may be a locking device such as a clamp that could be engaged to fix the sleeve housing 40 in the desired position, and later released for further adjustment.

[0037] One feature of the reclining chair 10 which is especially advantageous is its ease of assembly and its ability to remain in either position without a locking mechanism. In this regard, the design relies on gravity to maintain position. Looking at FIG. 5A, the weight of the chair and occupant is supported in a nearly vertical force vector in the upright member 34. Assuming that the occupant is removed, the weight of the upper portion 64 of the chair will still tend to maintain the upright position until clockwise rotation 2 is applied to the radial arm 55. Once it passes the vertical 6, however, it will tend to fall to the extreme of clockwise rotation 2, until pivot housing 42 contacts angled member 32 or is otherwise mechanically stopped. The weight of the chair 10 will then tend to urge the upright member 34 to the extreme of the counterclockwise rotation 4, and thus remain in the reclining position 14. Thus no “locking mechanism” as such is required to keep the chair 10 in position, although it is obvious that such a mechanism could be added.

[0038] FIGS. 6A-C shows simplified diagrams of the members and forces involved in the reversible joint 39 when the chair 10 is moved from a first, upright position 12 to a reclining position 14. The bottom line in each diagram models one of the angled members 32. Each reversible joint 39 includes an extension member 48 which is pivotally attached to a sleeve housing 40 at a first end and pivotally attached to a pivot housing 42 at a second end 52, the pivot housing 42 being also pivotally attached to one of the upright members 34. Each of the sleeve housings 40 is also attached to one of the angled members 32.

[0039] Each of the reversible joints 39 is moveable from a first position 12 (FIG. 6A) to a second position 14 (FIG. 6C), and in moving from the first position 12 to the second position 14, the pivot housing 42 moves from a first vertical minimum 70 at the first position 12 through a vertical maximum 72 to a second relative vertical minimum 74 at the second position 14. The center of gravity of the upper chair portion 80 is shown in all three figures, with an arrow 82 indicating its line of action. Once rotation of the reversible joints 39 has moved the upper portion center of gravity 80 so that it is on either side of the vertical maximum 72, the weight of the chair maintains the chair 10 in one of the relative vertical minimums 70, 72 at first and second positions 12, 14. As shown by the direction arrows 84, the pivot housing 42 is urged by the action of the weight to remain in the direction of relative vertical minimums 70, 72, except that the members have reached a mechanical stop at this point, and can travel no further in the directions indicated. Thus no locking mechanism as such is necessary to keep the chair in either position, since its weight (and the weight of the user, when added), tends to keep the chair safely in either upright or reclining position 12, 14.

[0040] FIG. 7 shows a second embodiment of the reclining chair, which is collapsible. This collapsible reclining chair shall be referred to by element number 100, and where elements similar to those in the earlier embodiment are used, they shall be referred to by the same element numbers.

[0041] The collapsible reclining chair 100 again generally includes a back portion 15, which is supported by upright members 34. These upright members 34 are again attached to angled members 32 by reversible joints 39, which operate much as described before. The reversible joints 39 in this embodiment are slightly different, as the sleeve housing, pivot housing, and extension member on each side have been replaced by a unitary pivot housing 142, which includes a first pivot 44 and a second pivot 50. The first pivot 44 pivotally attaches the upright member 34 to the pivot housing 42, and the second pivot 50 pivotally attaches pivot housing 42 to the angled member 32, only directly, instead of through an extension member. The action when moving from an upright position to a reclining position is much the same, as the first pivot 44 passes through a vertical maximum 72 to reach vertical minimums 70, 74 at either the upright position 12 or the reclining position 14 (see FIG. 6A-C).

[0042] To make the chair collapsible, the frame members 16 are arranged in a series of “X” patterns with hinges or pivots 108 at the intersection of the members 16. Also included are upper pivot assemblies 136 (see FIG. 10), rear pivot assemblies 138 (see FIG. 11), four pivot feet 182 (see FIG. 8), and two pivot feet 184 (see FIG. 9), which allows the frame 16 to collapse towards a central point 8 when it is to be stored, or collapsed for easy transport.

[0043] While various embodiments have been described above, it should be understood that they have been presented by way of example only, and not limitation.

INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY

[0044] The present portable reclining chair 10 is well suited for application in the home, backyard, or on camping trips and picnics.

[0045] When the chair 10 is to be used, it is set up so that it rests in either the upright position 12 or the reclining position 14. Each reversible joint 39 includes an extension member 48 which is pivotally attached to a sleeve housing 40 at a first end 46 and pivotally attached to a pivot housing 42 at a second end 52, the pivot housing 42 being also pivotally attached to one of the upright members 34. Each of the sleeve housings 40 is also attached to one of the angled members 32.

[0046] Each of the reversible joints 39 is moveable from a first position 12 to a second position 14, and in moving from the first position 12 to the second position 14, the pivot housing 42 moves from a first vertical minimum 70 at the first position 12 through a vertical maximum 72 to a second relative vertical minimum 74 at the second position 14. The center of gravity of the upper chair portion 80 is shown in all three figures, with an arrow 82 indicating its line of action. Once rotation of the reversible joints 39 has moved the upper portion center of gravity 80 so that it is on either side of the vertical maximum 72, the weight of the chair maintains the chair 10 in one of the relative vertical minimums 70, 72 at first and second positions 12, 14. As shown by the direction arrows 84, the pivot housing 42 is urged by the action of the weight to remain in the direction of relative vertical minimums 70, 72, except that the members have reached a mechanical stop at this point, and can travel no further in the directions indicated.

[0047] The chair 10 is thus very simple to use and to move from one position to another, and requires no locking mechanism since its weight (and the weight of the user, when added), tends to keep the chair safely in either upright or reclining position 12, 14. The absence of locking mechanisms means that there are fewer moving parts to wear out, and thus the reliability and useful life of the chair 10 is enhanced. The chair 100 may also be collapsible, and is thus very convenient for use in camping and easily stored

[0048] For the above, and other, reasons, it is expected that the portable reclining chair 10 of the present invention will have widespread industrial applicability. Therefore, it is expected that the commercial utility of the present invention will be extensive and long lasting.