Title:
Insulated concrete form system and method for use
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An insulated concrete form system for receiving poured concrete to form a unitary, insulated concrete wall. A novel tie bracket, spaced on one foot centers, space the two sides of he forms apart from one another. The tie brackets extend fully from top to bottom of the forms, thereby providing increased structural strength to the formed wall and providing “studs” at regular intervals for the fastening of structural elements, such as paneling or sheetrock. A rebar attachment piece may be attached to the a rebar receptacle formed in the tie bracket such that rebar may be offset to either side of the poured wall, as necessary. The forms are in straight, corner and Tee configurations to aid in the quick laying of the forms and to provide increased strength to the formed wall. A combination of tongue and groove joints and interlocking protrusions and notches add further strength and integrity to the formed wall.



Inventors:
Schmidt, Donald L. (Oronoco, MN, US)
Application Number:
10/778225
Publication Date:
08/19/2004
Filing Date:
02/17/2004
Assignee:
SCHMIDT DONALD L.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04B2/86; (IPC1-7): E04C1/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
KATCHEVES, BASIL S
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
CANTOR COLBURN LLP (Hartford, CT, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A wall form for receiving poured concrete, said wall form comprising a first insulating panel formed from expanded foam, a second opposed insulating panel formed from expanded foam, and a tie bracket spanning and connecting said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel, wherein said tie bracket includes a web having a securing plate at a first end embedded within said first insulating panel, and a securing plate at a second end embedded within said second insulating panel, said first and second insulating panels having a height, and said first and second securing plates extending the full height of the first and second insulating panels; said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel each have an upper edge, a lower edge, two side edges, an exterior surface and an interior surface, with said interior surface of each insulating panel facing the interior surface of the other insulating panel; one of said side edges of each insulating panel having a tongue, and the other of said side edges of each insulating panel having a groove sized for receiving said tongue, whereby adjacent panels in a wall can be interlocked by inserting the tongue of one side edge of a first panel into the groove of a side edge of an adjacent panel; said upper edge of each insulating panel having a longitudinally extending tongue and at least one projection of a given size extending laterally from said longitudinally extending tongue; said lower edge of each insulating panel having a longitudinally extending groove and at least one notch of a given size extending laterally from said longitudinally extending tongue, said longitudinally extending groove sized for receiving said longitudinally extending tongue, and said at least one notch sized for receiving said at least one projection, whereby vertically stacked panels can be interlocked by cooperation between the longitudinally extending tongue and at least one projection of the upper edge of the lower panel being received within the longitudinally extending tongue and at least one notch of the lower edge of the upper panel.

2. The wall form of claim 1, wherein said at least one projection and said at least one notch comprise a plurality of projections and a plurality of notches, said projections and notches being located symmetrically at regular intervals along the length of each insulating panel.

3. The wall form of claim 2, wherein said plurality of projections and said plurality of notches are located at 12 inch intervals, starting 12 inches from one side edge of each insulating panel, the interval being measured from the centerline of one projection or notch to the centerline of an adjacent projection or notch.

4. The wall form of claim 3, wherein said plurality of projections and said plurality of notches are vertically aligned with respect to one another.

5. The wall form of claim 3, further comprising a half projection extending laterally from each end of said longitudinally extending tongue of each of said insulating panels and a half notch extending laterally from each end of said longitudinally extending groove of each of said insulating panels, the half projections and half notches being located such that their ends closest to the respective side edge of each insulating panel is 12 inches from the centerline of the closest respective projection or notch, whereby when two wall forms are interlocked in side-by-side relationship, two of said half projections from adjacent wall forms can be received within a full-sized notch of another wall form, and two of said half notches can receive a full-sized projection from another wall form.

6. The wall form of claim 5, further comprising additional projections extending laterally from said longitudinally extending tongue and situated respectively at the midpoint between each half projection and the projection closest thereto, the size of said additional projections being the same as one another, but of a different size from said projections and said half projections.

7. The wall form of claim 6, further comprising additional notches extending laterally from said longitudinally extending groove and situated respectively at the midpoint between each half projection and the projection closest thereto, and between each pair of adjacent projections on the lower edge of each insulating panel, the size of said additional notches corresponding to the size of said additional projections.

8. The wall form of claim 1, further comprising bulkhead retainers at both ends of each panel, said bulkhead retainers designed to retained a bulkhead at each end of the wall form to stop concrete flow out of said wall form at a desired void in the wall, such as a door or window.

9. The wall form of claim 1, further comprising a plurality of said tie brackets, wherein a first tie bracket is located such that the vertical centerline of its securing plates are located at 6 inches from a side edge of each insulating panel, and the remaining tie brackets are positioned at 12 inch intervals along the length of the form, the interval being measured from the vertical centerline of one securing plate to the vertical centerline of an adjacent securing plate, thereby providing securing plates which are positioned at regular and predictable locations along the length of, and extend the full height of, a wall created by any number of said wall forms interlocked together, said securing plates acting as studs and being suitable for receiving fasteners therein to secure sheathing or other items to a finished wall.

10. The wall form of claim 1, wherein said interior surface of each insulating panel has a principally flat surface comprising a series of male extensions protruding therefrom collectively to thereby form a void between said interior surfaces of said insulating panels such that a plurality of spaced apart posts, a plurality of spaced apart beams disposed to intersect said posts, and a plurality of webs spanning and joining adjacent said posts and adjacent said beams are formed when said void is filled with poured concrete and the concrete cures.

11. The wall form of claim 10, wherein the series of protrusions of said first and second interior surfaces are substantially rectilinear and face one another in an opposing manner such that said posts and said beams are parallelepiped.joined where said posts and said beams intersect one another; and wherein said posts have exterior surfaces disposed perpendicular to said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel, and said beams have exterior surfaces disposed parallel to said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel.

12. The wall form of claim 1, wherein said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel both are straight, whereby said insulating concrete form is a straight insulating concrete form.

13. The wall form of claim 12, wherein said first insulating panel and said second insulating panels have a length of 48 inches.

14. The wall form of claim 1, wherein said first insulating panel and said second insulating panel each include a long leg and a short leg, each said short leg disposed at an angle to each said long leg, and together forming a unitary panel, whereby said insulating concrete form is a corner insulating concrete form.

15. The wall form of claim 14, wherein one of said legs has a length of 30 inches, and the other of said legs has a length of 18 inches.

16. The wall form of claim 1, wherein said first insulating panel is straight, and said second insulating panel is formed in two parts that are a mirror image of one another, each part of the second insulating panel having a first leg which is substantially parallel to said first insulating panel and extends from a point opposite one of said side edges of said first panel parallel to a second point partway along the length of said first insulating panel, and a second leg which is perpendicular to said first leg and said first panel, said second leg extending from said second point to an end point remote from said first leg and opposite the end point of the second leg of the other part of the second insulating panel, whereby together the first panel and the first and second parts of the second panel form a void whose overall shaped when viewed from above is in the shape of a “T”.

17. The wall form of claim 16, wherein the length of the first panel, and hence the length of the top bar of the “T” shape, is 48 inches long, and the length of the vertical leg of the “T” shape, as measured from the first insulating panel to the end point remote from said first leg, is 18 inches long.

18. The wall form of claim 16, wherein the length of the first panel, and hence the length of the top bar of the “T” shape, is 24 inches long, and the length of the vertical leg of the “T” shape, as measured from the first insulating panel to the end point remote from said first leg, is 30 inches long.

19. The wall form of claim 1, wherein the web of said tie bracket includes an upwardly open receptacle formed by two upwardly-pointing legs; further comprising a rebar attachment piece comprising a “U” shaped receptacle and an attachment means for removably mounting the rebar attachment piece to one of the two upwardly-pointing legs to enable rebar to be supported by the “U”0 shaped receptacle.

20. The wall form of claim 19, wherein the attachment means of said rebar attachment piece comprises an opening designed to receive therein one of the upwardly-pointing legs of said upwardly open receptacle of said tie bracket.

21. The wall form of claim 19, wherein the rebar attachment piece comprises a plurality of said “U” shaped receptacles.

Description:

REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application is a continuation in part of applications Ser. No. 09/932,096, FORM BRACING TIE BRACKET FOR MODULAR INSULATING CONCRETE FORM SYSTEM AND FORM USING THE SAME; Ser. No. 09/932,095, CORNER FORM FOR MODULAR INSULATING CONCRETE FORM SYSTEM, now U.S. Pat. No.______; and Ser. No. 09/932,081, MODIFIED FLAT WALL MODULAR INSULATED CONCRETE FORM SYSTEM; all filed on Aug. 20, 2001.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] 1. Field of the Invention

[0003] The present invention relates to modular insulating concrete forms of the type which receive poured concrete and are left in place after pouring, thereby becoming an integral part of a static structure being built. The invention is particularly applicable to residential and light commercial construction. The novel forms are usable by homeowners, contractors, municipal, industrial, and institutional personnel in building and improving existing structures wherever insulated load bearing walls are to be built from poured concrete.

[0004] 2. Description of the Prior Art

[0005] Left-in-place insulting concrete forms for building foundations and load bearing walls from poured concrete are known. In commercial practice, courses of forms are stacked until the final desired height of a wall is attained. Concrete is poured into the erected forms and allowed to cure. The resultant wall must provide both strength and also insulative protection against the elements. A variety of different insulating concrete forms have been proposed to answer these needs. In order to maximize both strength and insulation values within a given volume dedicated to a left-in-place form wall, the concrete elements must be carefully designed to utilize a minimum amount of concrete, so that the balance of the available volume may be filled with the insulating form.

[0006] There are three distinct types of insulated concrete form systems in the prior art which produce three distinct types of walls.

[0007] Flat wall systems, as their name implies, consist of a flat sheet of foam on both sides, which produce a flat concrete wall therebetween. Assuming 1½″ thick foam on each side, an 11″ thick form would produce an 8″ thick concrete wall.

[0008] Waffle grid systems have a series of rounded posts and beams formed in the foam such that when a poured concrete posts and beams are formed with a web of thinner concrete therebetween. Since the strength of a waffle grid wall is based on the square that can be described within the rounded columns, the same 11″ thick form with 8″ round columns only has the strength of a 6″ straight wall.

[0009] In screen grid systems the forms are generally formed of foam with the two sides of the form joined by foam which, after the concrete pour leaves holes in the concrete which are filled with foam. An 11″ screen grid wall with an 8″ concrete pour doe not have the strength of an 11″ flat wall because the concrete wall is broken at the foam connectors, thereby reducing the fire rating of the wall and its effectiveness as a sound barrier.

[0010] The present invention presents a cross between the flat wall system and the waffle grid system in which a flat wall with square posts and beams, providing greater strength than the rounded waffle grid system.

[0011] Each of the above referenced form systems must, ideally, address several needs.

[0012] First is the necessity for each form be properly aligned with respect to adjacent forms, both vertically and horizontally, to assure that finished wall surfaces are flat and flush. Also, opposing exterior panels of each form section must be held in place without distortion of overall configuration of the finished wall.

[0013] Secondly, it is desirable for the tie brackets within the forms to be aligned vertically, preferably form a continuous vertical structure (a stud), at regular intervals which conforms to standard dimensions of building products (typically, multiples of one foot). It is especially desirable that this uniform placement of tie brackets be consistent in both inside and outside measurements in corner forms. If a form section has tie brackets and associated plates or flanges serving as a structural members which can receive driven and threaded fasteners, and these plates or flanges are located at each end of the form section, then abutment of two form sections results in abutting plates or flanges. This arrangement will likely interfere with even spacing apart of tie brackets at even distance intervals of a whole number of feet since the two abutting end brackets will be spaced on either side of the center line. Thus, if a fastener is driven at the point of abutment, there will be no solid structural member to receive the fastener.

[0014] Flat wall systems are taught by Severino (U.S. Pat. No. 6,308,484), Moore, Jr. (U.S. Pat. No. 6,170,220), Cymbala, et (U.S. Pat. No. 5,896,714), Boeshart (U.S. Pat. No. 5,658,483), Mensen (U.S. Pat. No. 5,657,600), and Young (U.S. Pat. No. 4 730,422), while waffle grid systems are taught by Vaughan, et al. (U.S. Pat. No. 5,845,449), Vaughan, et al. (U.S. Pat. No. 5,709,060), Mensen (U.S. Pat. No. 5,657,600), and Sparkman (U.S. Pat. No. 5,459,971). None of the above references cite a combinations of the flat wall and waffle grid system, as does the present invention, the unique tie bracket of the present invention, which further serves as “studs” spaced at regular intervals, or the combination of spacing and joint reinforcing elements of the present invention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0015] The present invention provides insulating concrete forms which provide the best features of both the “flat wall” and the “waffle grid” type forms which satisfy two practical needs. One need is that of forms which can be erected in interlocked stacks which oppose sliding and disengagement of one form with respect to both its vertical and horizontal neighbors. Another need is to provide forms which favor current U.S. building practices with regard to dimensions. It is frequently the case that buildings are designed in increments of one foot and even in increments of four feet. The novel forms satisfy both needs.

[0016] Interlocking is achieved by forming male interlocking members in the top surface of each form, and corresponding female interlocking members in the bottom surface of each form. The male and female interlocks are a combination of tongue and groove edges on respective upper and lower surfaces of each form, and vertically aligned projections and notches extending laterally from the respective tongue and groove so that a stack of forms will enable each form to interlock with a form placed directly thereon and also with the form located directly below, thereby preventing horizontal shifting between vertically stacked forms and ensuring alignment of the tie brackets.

[0017] The forms are configured such that pouring concrete into the void formed between the opposing panels of insulating material generates a modified flat wall configuration having a substantially flat surface with vertical posts and horizontal beams at regular intervals.

[0018] Preferably, the posts and beams are configured as parallelepipeds so that all constituent material thereof contributes to compressive strength in at least one direction of an orthogonal or Cartesian system. No concrete is thus ineffectually used. Overall building costs and weight are minimized, while still affording maximal strength. Also, volume within the form devoted to insulating material is maximized, thereby maximizing temperature insulating value of the form.

[0019] Forms may be either straight or angled, the latter being known either as corner forms or as Tee forms, because angled forms are usually used to form the corner of intersecting walls. Straight forms, corner forms and Tee forms are all dimensioned with regard to modular building. That is, the length of a straight form is preferably four feet, and a Tee form has a length of either two feet or four feet. A corner form has a combined length of both legs of four feet. These dimensions favor building designs laid out in increments of one, two, and four feet. This characteristic minimizes the number of forms which must be cut in length to achieve a desired wall length, thereby saving labor and tending to promote straightness and integrity of the finished poured wall, although forms can be cut to allow for walls of other than even foot lengths.

[0020] Similarly, tie brackets connecting inner and outer walls of each form section are located at one foot intervals along the length of the form, the first being one half foot from the end of the form. This location prevents tie brackets of adjacent abutting forms in one course from interfering with regular spacing of the tie brackets along the entire length of the wall. Rather, tie bracket spacing remains constant. As a consequence, location of concealed flanges or plates of each tie bracket, which is employed to receive and support driven fasteners for fixing plywood and dry wall sections to the wall, is predictable. Effort and expense of mounting either interior or exterior finishing materials on the finished concrete wall is minimized.

[0021] Interlocking members of the form are spaced apart and dimensioned so that clogging with concrete is not a problem when the top of the forms are exposed during concrete placement. If the notches, or female interlocking members, were too small, it would be difficult to dislodge concrete overflow and other materials therefrom. They are spaced apart so that an inordinate number of notches, which would otherwise require cleaning, is avoided.

[0022] Accordingly, it is one object of the invention to provide insulating concrete forms which readily interlock when vertically stacked.

[0023] It is another object of the invention that the novel forms facilitate construction of building designs laid out in increments of one, two, and four feet, as measured from the outside corner of the form system.

[0024] It is a further object of the invention to minimize labor required to erect the forms.

[0025] Still another object of the invention is to enable ready location of concealed tie bracket flanges or plates when driving fasteners into the wall built by the novel forms.

[0026] An additional object of the invention is to maximize strength of the wall for the amount of concrete consumed.

[0027] It is again an object of the invention to maximize insulation value of the wall.

[0028] It is an object of the invention to provide improved elements and arrangements thereof in an apparatus for the purposes described which is inexpensive, dependable and fully effective in accomplishing its intended purposes.

[0029] These and other objects of the present invention will become readily apparent upon further review of the following specification and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0030] Various other objects, features, and attendant advantages of the present invention will become more fully appreciated as the same becomes better understood when considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which like reference characters designate the same or similar parts throughout the several views, and wherein:

[0031] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the tie bracket of the present invention.

[0032] FIG. 2 is a cross sectional detail view of the tie bracket of the present invention at line 2-2 of FIG. 1.

[0033] FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the rebar attachment piece of the present invention.

[0034] FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the rebar attachment piece of the present invention in place on the rebar receptacle of the tie bracket of FIG. 1.

[0035] FIG. 5 is a top perspective view of the straight form of the present invention incorporating the tie brackets of FIG. 1.

[0036] FIG. 6 is a bottom perspective view of the straight form of FIG. 5.

[0037] FIG. 7 is a plan view of the straight form showing spacing of various elements.

[0038] FIG. 8 is a diagramatic view of several of the straight forms stacked as a wall segment.

[0039] FIG. 9 is a top perspective view of the corner form of the present invention incorporating the tie bracket of FIG. 1.

[0040] FIG. 10 is a bottom perspective view of the corner form of FIG. 9.

[0041] FIG. 11 is a partial, perspective view of the corner bracket of the corner form.

[0042] FIG. 12 is a plan view of a corner form of the present invention showing spacing of various elements.

[0043] FIG. 13 is a diagramatic view of two of the corner forms and a straight form stacked as a wall segment.

[0044] FIG. 14 is a plan view of a first embodiment of the Tee form of the present invention.

[0045] FIG. 15 is a plan view of a second embodiment of the Tee form of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0046] FIG. 1 of the drawings shows a wall tie bracket 10 according to the present invention. Tie bracket 10 comprises a first elongate plate 12, a second elongate plate 14 spaced apart from plate 12, and a web 16 securing plates 12, 14 in spaced apart relation. Web 16 includes a plurality of vertically spaced apart spanning members 18, 20, 22, 24 which extend horizontally, in the depiction of FIG. 1, from plate 12 to plate 14, to join plates 12 and 14 structurally. Spanning members 18, 20, 22, 24 are connected to one another by braces 26, 28. Spanning members 18, 20, 22, 24 and braces 26, 28 are preferably formed by intersecting ridges selectively orthogonally oriented to one another, as shown in FIG. 2. That is to say, that each of the spanning members 18, 20, 22, 24 and braces 26, 28 are formed of a plurality of orthogonal ridges extending along substantially the full length of the spanning member or brace, such that each spanning member or brace has cross-sectional shape of a “T”(as shown at FIG. 2) or a “+”. First elongate plate 12 and second elongate plate 14 can also each be seen in FIG. 1 to have an orthogonal ridge extending substantially along the full length of each. This cross sectional configuration maximizes strength of the respective member while minimizing the amount of constituent material thereof. Circumferentially closed openings 30, 32, 34, 35, 36 are thus formed in web 16.

[0047] At least two horizontal rows of circumferentially closed openings are formed when plates 12, 14 are oriented vertically, as shown in FIG. 1, there being at least two adjacent openings in each horizontal row. The arrangement of openings between horizontal and vertical members results in a very useful array of openings. First, it will be seen that outer openings 30, 36 and inner or central openings 32, 34, 35 all formed between spanning members 20, 22, are oriented such that their lengths extend horizontally. Additionally, it can be seen in FIG. 1 that the orthogonal ridge which extends down one side of each plate 12, 14 has a break therein which coincides with the outer openings 30, 36. As a consequence, with the center lines of outer openings 30, 36 and central openings 32, 34, 35 arranged in line, and the break in the orthogonal ridge of plates 12, 14, it is easy for a mechanic to saw through tie bracket 10 horizontally without diminishing structural integrity of either remaining section of the tie bracket and of the entire form module. This must occasionally be done to create a form half the height of the uncut form to limit form height to the desired height of a finished wall. Furthermore, location of end openings 30, 36 where they terminate respectively at plates 12, 14 creates convenient electrical cable and conduit chases. To protect cables, openings 30, 36 are bounded by horizontally oriented ridges. It will be seen that outer openings 30, 36 each has a height greater than that of central openings 32, 34, 35. The extra height of openings 30, 36 accommodates plural cables and conduits, whereas central openings 32, 34, 35 require only nominal height for accommodating a saw blade. Openings 45, 47 are each dimensioned and configured to receive an electrical work box (not shown) which may be installed by sawing away an appropriate portion of plate 12 or 14.

[0048] Uppermost spanning member 18 has an upwardly open receptacle 38 for receiving reinforcing bars (rebar)(not shown). The height of receptacle 38 is greater than the width, so that two sections of rebar can be laid in receptacle 38 and supported in overlying, overlapping relationship to facilitate splicing. Uppermost spanning member 18 also has a small circumferentially closed openings 40, 42, 43 located above spanning member 18. Openings 40, 42, 43 accommodate tie wires and tethers for scaffolding (not shown), bracing (not shown), and general purpose securement to tie bracket 10 and larger elements such as plumbing and HVAC conduits. Lowermost spanning member 24 similarly has two openings 44, 46 formed therein.

[0049] It is often desirable that the rebar within a poured concrete wall be offset from the center of the wall toward one surface of the wall. For this purpose, a rebar attachment piece 50, shown at FIG. 3 and 4 may be used. Formed of the same material as the tie bracket 10 consists of at least one, preferably two, “U” shaped receptacle 52, with an attachment receptacle 54 adapted to fit over one arm of receptacle 38, as at FIG. 4. It would, however, be evident to one skilled in the art that rebar attachment piece 50 could have any number of “U” shaped receptacles 52, each variation in number being adaptable to different applications. The base 56 of the rebar attachment piece 50 is formed to snugly fit the contour of the exterior of receptacle 38. It would be evident to one skilled in the art that other methods of attaching the rebar attachment piece to the tie bracket 10 without departing from the spirit of the present invention.

[0050] Use of a rebar attachment piece 50 allows for economy in production of form in that the tie bar 10 need only have provision for a central rebar, with provision being made for offset only in the locations when and where it is needed.

[0051] It would be evident to one of ordinary skill in the art that while the rebar attachment piece 50 is designed for use with the insulated concrete form system of the present invention, it could easily be adapted for similar systems currently known in the art or to be developed.

[0052] Referring now to FIG. 5 through 7, the principal function of tie bracket 10 is to connect opposing insulating panels 110, 112 of insulating concrete forms 100 for the purpose of holding panels 110, 112. Panel 110 is an insulating panel preferably formed from expanded foam. Panel 112 is a second insulating panel formed from expanded foam, and is located on the opposed side of the final form 100, which comprises panels 110 and 112 and a plurality of tie brackets 10. Tie brackets 10 span and connect panels 110 and 112. Panels 110 and 112 are dimensioned and configured such that the height of each plate 12 or 14 (see FIG. 1) of the various tie brackets 10 are equal to the height of each panel 110 or 112. This characteristic improves vertical load bearing strength of the form, and further, forms a “stud” which may be used to attach structural elements, such as paneling or sheetrock, to a finished wall.

[0053] Form 100 is dimensioned and configured so that as adjacent forms are located beside one another, they interlock with one another and as succeeding courses of forms 100 are formed by stacking forms 100 on one another, they interlock with one another. This characteristic is enabled by a tongue 114 at one vertically extending edge of each of panel 110, 112 and a mating groove 116 at the other vertically extending edge, as well as a top tongue 118 with cooperating projections 120, 122, 124 and bottom groove 132 with cooperating notches 126, 128, 130. As previously state, the upper surface of panel 110 has a plurality of inward projections 120, 122, 124 formed therein, extending laterally inwardly of form 100 from tongue 118. Panel 112 is essentially a mirror image of panel 110, so that description set forth regarding panel 110 will be understood to apply equally to panel 112. The lower surface of panel 110 bears a bottom groove 132 with notches 126, 128, 130 corresponding to projections 120, 122, 124, extending inwardly of form 100 from groove 132. Each notch 126, 128, 130 is dimensioned and configured to receive one projection 120, 122 or 124 of another form 100 in close cooperation therewith such that a form 100 placed above can interlock with a form 100 located below when pressed into mutual engagement. To this end, notches 126, 128, 130 are located directly below respective projections 120, 122, 124, thereby ensuring proper offset in increments of one foot of forms 100 when stacked. Additionally, at each end of the upper surface of panel 110 is a half projection 134, 136, such than when two forms 100 are placed end to end, the two half projections 134, 136 form the equivalent of a full projection. Likewise, a half notch 138, 140 is located at each end of the lower surface of panel 110, such that when two forms 100 are place end to end, the two half notches 134, 136 form the equivalent of a full notch. Thus, when two forms 100 are stacked, the two half projections 134, 136 will mate with one of the full notches 126, 128, 130 and the two half notches 138, 140 will receive one of the full projections 120, 122, 124. In a four foot form 100, the projections 120, 122, 124 are space apart on one foot centers beginning from the end of the half projections 134, 136 adjacent the ends of the straight form 100 (FIG. 7), with the notches 126, 128, 130, situated directly below projections 120, 122, 124 having the same spacing. Based on the spacing of the protrusions and grooves, the straight form 100 need not be limited to the four foot length disclosed, but rather, could be produced in any length which is a multiple of one foot, so long as the form is manageable.

[0054] In addition to the projections 120, 122, 124 (FIG. 5) on the upper surface of panels 110, additional projections 142, 144 are situated at the mid point between projections 120, 124 and the half projection 134, 136 adjacent each, respectively. Likewise, additional notches 146, 148, 150, 152 are formed in the lower edge of panel 110 at the midpoint between each of the notches 126, 128, 130 and half notches 138, 140. The additional projections 142, 144 and additional notches 146, 148, 150, 152 (FIG. 6) are of a length different from that of projections 120, 122, 124 and half projections 134, 136 and notches 126, 128, 130 and half notches 128, 140 to assure proper vertical alignment of forms 100, and thus the vertical alignment of tie brackets 10 and the “stud” of the elongate plates 12, 14 within the wall. The intent of additional projections 142, 144 and additional notches 146, 148, 150, 152 is to form a more solid connection between a straight form 100 and vertically adjacent corner forms 200 as they are stacked vertically in the wall assembly, as will be explained in greater detail, hereinafter. It is important to note that there are more additional notches than additional projections, as the additional projections are designed to reinforce the joints between forms and may line up with notches along the length of the form 100, not just at the ends, especially in the joint between straight forms 100 and corner forms 300.

[0055] It would be evident to one skilled in the art that other additional projections and notches would be equally effective, so long as the recurring, symmetrical pattern of twelve inches, on center, is maintained.

[0056] The present invention is susceptible to variations and modifications which may be introduced thereto without departing from the inventive concept. Illustratively, there is no necessity that the projections and notches be inwardly directed. They could be outwardly, upwardly, or otherwise directed if desired as long as they accommodate interlocking as described herein.

[0057] FIGS. 9 and 10 of the drawings shows the essential nature of a corner form 200, which forms a corner in the form system. Corner form 200 includes an interior insulating panel 210 formed from expanded foam, having a first leg 212 and a second leg 214. Legs 212, 214 are each straight and positioned to form an angle with respect to one another. Typically this angle is substantially 90 degrees, though any angle suited to a particular use of the form system would fall within the scope of the invention. An exterior insulating panel 220 formed from expanded foam has a first leg 222 and a second leg 224 which are preferably straight and positioned parallel to legs 212, 214 of panel 210, respectively, with legs 222 and 224 positioned to form a similar angle as that formed by legs 212 and 214. Panels 210, 220 are connected and held in spaced apart, parallel orientation by tie brackets 10 which include members embedded within panels 210, 220. Only cross members of tie brackets 10 spanning panels 210, 220 are visible.

[0058] It will be seen that legs 212 and 214 of interior panel 210 are different in length. Similarly, legs 222, 224 of panel 220 are different in length. In most cases, to conform to general building practices, oblique angle 216 is a right angle. Legs 214, 224 of panels 210, 220 terminate in a plane normal to legs 214, 224. The effective length of legs 214, 224 is indicated by arrow 230 (FIG. 12). A groove 226 is formed in the length of the free vertical edge of leg 214 and a groove 228 in the length of the free vertical edge of leg 224. Grooves 226, 228 cooperate with the tongues 114 of an adjacent straight form 100 to ensure a tight fit between corner form 200 and an adjacent straight form 100.

[0059] In similar vein, second legs 212, 222 of respective panels 210, 220 terminate in a second plane which is normal to first leg 212 of panel 210. Effective length of legs 212, 222 of panels 210, 220, respectively is indicated by arrow 232 (FIG. 12). A tongue 234 is formed in the length of the free vertical edge of leg 212 and a groove 236 in the length of free vertical edge of leg 222. The tongues 234, 236 cooperate with the grooves 116 of a straight form 100 to ensure a tight fit between corner form 200 and an adjacent straight form 100. The combined effective lengths of legs 222 and 224 is four feet. The length indicated by arrow 232 is preferably thirty inches, while the length indicated by arrow 230 is preferably eighteen inches.

[0060] Panels 210, 220 each have a respective upper surface and a lower surface. A tongue 238, 240 is formed in the upper surface of each of panels 212, 220, respectively and a cooperating groove 242, 244 is formed in the lower surfaces of each of panels 212, 220, respectively. A projection 246 is formed in the upper surface of leg 224, and two projections 248, 250 are formed in the upper surface of leg 222. A projection 252 is formed in the upper surface of leg 212. Correspondingly, a notch 254 is formed in the lower surface of leg 224 and notches 256, 258 are formed in the lower surface of leg 222, while a notch 260 is formed in the lower surface of leg 212. Notch 254 is located directly below projection 246, notches 256, 258 are located directly below corresponding projections 248, 250, and notch 260 is located directly below corresponding projection 252. A half projection 262, having one half the length of projections 246, 248, 250 and 252, is located on each of the four upper ends of panels 212, 214, 222 and 224. Each half projection 262 is configured to occupy one half of a notch, with a half projection 165 of a straight form 100 occupying the other half of the same notch.

[0061] An additional projection 264 is situated on the upper surface of leg 222 at a point equidistant between projection 250 and half projection 262 and projection 252 and half projection 262, respectively. Additional projections 264 have a length different from both projections 246, 248, 250, 252 and half projections 262. Additional projections 264 and notches 266, which are vertically aligned with and sized to cooperate with one another, provide additional strength to the junction between vertically stacked corner forms 200 and adjacent straight forms 100. This added strength at the corners is important, as greater outward pressures are exerted at the corners than along the straight length of a wall as the wet concrete is poured.

[0062] Plural corner forms 200 can be stacked in the manner shown in FIG. 13 and interlocked by interfitting projections of one corner form 200 into notches of the corner form 200 above.

[0063] Projections 248, 250 and notches 256, 258 are spaced apart from one another by a distance interval 268 which is twice the magnitude of distance interval 270 existing between additional projections 264 and each of its neighboring projections, the half projections 262 and the projections 252 of panel 200.

[0064] FIG. 12 shows spacing of tie brackets 10. Measuring from the outside corner of exterior panel 200, center line 282 of a first tie bracket 10A is located at a distance interval 284 of one foot from the corner 275 at the juncture of leg 222 with leg 224. Center line 286 of tie bracket 10B is located at a distance interval 288 of one foot from center line 282, and at a distance interval 290 of six inches from the free end of leg 222. In a similar manner, center line 292 of tie bracket 10C is separated by a distance interval 294 of one foot from the corner 275, and by a distance interval 296 of six inches from the free end of leg 224.

[0065] It is important that center lines 282, 286, 292 pass through the centers of the plates 12, 14 of the tie brackets 10. It will be appreciated that tie brackets 10 have end plates 12, 14 which are embedded within insulating panels 212, 220 to anchor the tie brackets 10 within insulating panels 212, 220. These plates 12, 14 provide broad, flat surfaces typically parallel to the outer surfaces of legs 222, 224 of exterior panel 220 to which fasteners (not shown) may be engaged by threading and friction. It is strongly desirable that these plates be located on one foot centers, measuring from corner of the juncture of legs 222, 224 for the purpose of enabling craftsmen to affix construction elements such as paneling and gypsum wall board sheets (neither shown) to a wall built utilizing form 200. This is readily accomplished by placing a construction element against the form and nailing or otherwise fastening the construction element at one foot intervals to the form.

[0066] In summary, it will be seen that the center line of each tie bracket 10A or 10C which is adjacent to corner 275 is spaced apart from the corner 275 by a distance interval which is a whole number multiple of one foot. Each tie bracket 10 of any one leg is spaced apart from every adjacent tie bracket 10 by a distance interval which is a whole number multiple of measurements of one foot. The foregoing holds true regardless of the actual number of tie brackets provided and of the overall length of each leg of the corner form. This also holds true along the length of a wall, as in relation to connecting and interlocking with adjacent straight forms. Like the straight form 100, while disclosed as having a combined length of four fee, the corner form 200 could be formed in any multiple of one foot, so long as the form remains manageable.

[0067] Looking now at the left of FIG. 12, it will be seen that corner 275 is formed at the intersection of legs 222, 224. A vertical bracket 300 (FIG. 11) is optionally embedded within exterior panel 220 in a vertical opening 298 (see FIG. 12) formed around bracket 300 at corner 275. Referring also to FIG. 11, bracket 300 includes a first plate 302 disposed parallel to leg 222 and a second plate 304 disposed parallel to leg 224 of panel 220. Plates 302, 304 both reinforce the corner of form 200 and also provide fastener receiving surfaces similar in function to the plates 12, 14 of tie brackets 10 (see FIG. 13). Bracket 300 preferably includes webs bracing 306, 308 and reinforcing plates 310, 312 to stiffen and strengthen bracket 300.

[0068] Corner form 200 also includes bulkhead retainers 314, 316 (FIGS. 9 and 10) formed on the ends of each leg of panels 210, 220. Retainers 314, 316 may comprise any structure which would surround or otherwise entrap a flat panel placed just within the ends of the form to close the otherwise open ends. The precise nature of retainers 314. 316 is not critical to their function.

[0069] Corner form 200 is intended to be formed in both right hand (R) and left hand (L) versions, to accomplish staggered joints, as at FIG. 13, each being a mirror image of the other, with the exception that tongue 234 and groove 246 would be reversed in position.

[0070] While the corner form 200 provides for two walls to meet in an “L”, concrete walls are often poured in a “T” configuration, as well, with a wall extending outwardly from the middle of a continuing wall. Straight forms 100 could be adapted, on site to create a “T”, but the Tee form 300 provides a ready made form for this purpose.

[0071] Referring now to FIG. 14 through 17, the Tee forms 400 and 400A are formed substantially like the straight form 100, with a first panel 410 having a tongue 414 at one end and a groove 416 at the other. An upper tongue 432 extends along the length of the upper surface of panel 410 and a lower groove along the lower surface, which is not visible, but is the same as the groove shown in lower edges of the other embodiments of wall forms. Projections 420 are situated at regular intervals of one foot on center, as in the straight form 100, with a half projections 434 at each end. The opposing panel 412 is a mirror image of panel 410 with the exception that a void is formed between the center most two of tie brackets 10 which join the panels 410 and 412. Tie brackets 10 are situated at regular intervals of one foot on center, commencing one half foot from the end of panel 410. As in the straight form, additional projections 146 are formed 6′ from the end of each panel, at the first tie bracket 10, additional projections 146 being of a different length than both projections 420 and half projections 434. Panels 410, 412 form what would be the top cross member of the letter “T”, and would typically be formed in 24″ (Tee form 400A)(FIG 15) and 48″ (Tee form 400)(FIG. 14) length versions. Corresponding notches 426 and half notches 440 are formed in the lower surface of panels 410, 412.

[0072] Extending outwardly from the void in panel 412 is what would be the vertical leg of the letter “T”, again consisting of a portion of a typical straight form 100. As in the cross segment, tie brackets 10 are spaced on one foot centers, commencing one half foot from the end, a half projection 434 is situated at the end of each panel. In Tee form 400 the vertical leg is typically 63/4″ long (18″ from the outer surface of panel 410), and therefore there is no projection along this leg. In Tee form 400A, however, the vertical leg is typically 183/4″ long (30″ from the outer surface of panel 410) and a projection 420 is used. Corresponding notches and half notches are formed in the lower surfaces, which are the same as the notches and half notches shown in the other embodiments of the form. In both the Tee form 400 and 400A, a tie bracket 10 is situated such that the “stud” formed by the elongate plates 12, 14 abut in both panels joining to form the wall corners.

[0073] As previously stated, the Tee form is formed in a 48″×18″ (Tee form 400) and 24″×30″ (Tee form 400A), thereby allowing staggering of the joints between the Tee forms 400, 400A and adjacent straight forms 100. As with the straight form 100, however, the Tee form 400/400A could be of any length in a multiple of one foot, so long as the size of the form remains manageable.

[0074] 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: