Title:
System for supporting and leveling paving stones
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A system of pieces for adding to variable height and variable angle supports made by cutting standard pipe to a desired height for supporting square or rectangular paving stones or other solid materials (pavers) for making a planer surface. The system includes a spacer with spacer vanes for setting spaces between stones and a web that holds the spacer vanes in relationship to each other. The spacer, consisting of the spacer vanes and the web, may sit on a base and engage with the base against any sideways forces, or a section of pipe may be inserted between them with engagement at both ends against sideways forces. The system includes several thicknesses of shims that may be added between the stone and the base or at either end of the pipe.



Inventors:
Cheung, Woon T. (Mercer Island, WA, US)
Application Number:
11/110125
Publication Date:
10/20/2005
Filing Date:
04/19/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E01C3/00; E01C5/00; E01C19/48; E02D29/14; (IPC1-7): E02D29/14
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
EPPES, BRYAN L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Jablonski Law PLLC (Redmond, WA, US)
Claims:
1. A spacer for supporting pavers at variable heights adapted on a bottom side for receiving, and receiving support from, a cut end of a section of pipe having the dimension and adapted on a top side for receiving at least two pavers at edges of the pavers and providing a spacer vane that maintains a space between the pavers, wherein the spacer allows each supported paver to rest on a cut end of pipe.

2. The spacer of claim 1 wherein the spacer is adapted for receiving corners of at least four pavers and includes four spacer vanes that maintain spaces between the pavers.

3. The spacer of claim 1 wherein the spacer is adapted to resist any horizontal shear force between itself and a cut end of a pipe on which it rests.

4. A set of components for supporting pavers at variable heights, comprising: a. a base adapted for receiving and supporting a cut end of a section of pipe having a dimension, b. a spacer adapted on a bottom side for receiving, and receiving support from, a cut end of a section of pipe having the dimension and adapted on a top side for receiving at least two pavers at edges of the pavers and providing a spacer vane that maintains a space between the pavers wherein the base and the spacer are adapted for receiving each other and bearing weight directly from a paver to the base without an intervening section of pipe.

5. The set of components of claim 4 wherein the spacer and the base are adapted to resist any horizontal shear force between them.

6. A set of components for supporting pavers at variable heights, comprising: a. a base adapted for receiving and supporting a cut end of a section of pipe having a dimension, b. a spacer adapted on a bottom side for receiving, and receiving support from, a cut end of a section of pipe having the dimension and adapted on a top side for receiving at least two pavers at edges of the pavers and providing a spacer vane that maintains a space between the pavers; and c. at least one base shim adapted for inserting between the base and a cut section of pipe.

7. The set of components of claim 6 wherein the base shim is round and fits inside a round rim protruding from a top side of the base.

8. A set of components for supporting pavers at variable heights, comprising: a. a spacer adapted on a bottom side for receiving, and receiving support from, a cut end of a section of pipe and adapted on a top side for receiving at least two pavers at edges of the pavers and providing at least two spacer vanes that maintain space between the pavers; and b. at least one quarter shim adapted for inserting under a paver wherein the shim is retained by interlocking with nearest ends of two vanes that are at right angles to each other.

9. The set of components of claim 8 wherein the spacer allows each supported paver to rest on a cut end of a pipe or on a shim that rests on a cut end of a pipe.

10. The set of components of claim 8 wherein the spacer supports the weight of each supported block and transmits that weight to a cut end of a pipe.

11. A spacer adapted on a bottom side for receiving and receiving support from a cut end of a section of pipe and adapted on a top side for receiving at least two pavers at edges of the pavers and providing a spacer vane that maintains a space between the pavers wherein V notches are configured to allow at least one spacer vane to be broken off leaving at least two vanes.

12. The spacer of claim 11 adapted for receiving corners of at least four pavers and including four spacer vanes that maintain spaces between the pavers.

13. The spacer of claim 11 wherein the spacer allows each supported paver to rest on a cut end of a pipe.

14. The spacer of claim 11 wherein the spacer supports the weight of each supported paver and transmits that weight to a cut end of a pipe.

15. The spacer of claim 11 wherein the spacer is adapted for use with round pipe.

16. The spacer of claim 11 wherein the spacer is adapted for use with square pipe.

17. The spacer of claim 11 further comprising a set of components including a shim for bearing weight from the paver to the pipe.

18. The set of components of claim 17 wherein the spacer has four spacer vanes and the shim is a quarter shim that can be used to shim one of four pavers placed on the spacer.

Description:

RELATION TO PREVIOUS APPLICATION

The present application claims priority from U.S. Provisional Application 60/563,861, filed Apr. 19, 2004, which is incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND

For millennia, stonemasons have paved architectural spaces with slabs of stone cut to square or rectangular shapes so that they fit closely together. Since Roman times, it has been known to place variable height supports under the stones so that their top surfaces are level with respect to each other. The supports can vary in height to accommodate an uneven substrate below the stones or varying thicknesses of the stones themselves.

A modern system of plastic support components called the AWS Pedestal System is marketed by Appian Construction of Seattle, Wash. It includes bases (“bottom caps”) and top caps with vanes, along with cut sections of 4 inch PVC pipe, to create supports. Drawbacks of this system include: (1) Base shims attach to the bottoms of the bases, requiring that the base be lifted and reset to add a shim. (2) Weight from the paver passes though the structure of the top cap to rest on the top end of the section of pipe, rather than resting directly on the end of the pipe. (3) The spacer vanes are not adapted to be broken off, so the top cap cannot be used to support and provide space between two pavers at a mid point along a side of a paver. (4) The top shims are retained by a close fitting protrusion that interlocks with a hole in the cap, such that the shims must be carefully placed or they will be higher than intended because they have not fully interlocked and then they are likely to settle if they shift to achieve full interlocking. (5) The top cap and base cannot be used together without a section of pipe; instead an alternate base must be substituted, which requires an excessive number of parts in the kit.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The invention is a system of variable height and variable angle support components with integrated spacers for supporting square or rectangular paving stones or other solid slab materials (pavers) for making a planer surface. In one embodiment, the system includes a spacer with spacer vanes for setting spaces between stones and a web that holds the spacer vanes in relationship to each other. The spacer, consisting of the spacer vanes and the web, may sit directly on a base, in which case it engages with the base against any sideways forces. In one embodiment, weight of the stone (paver) passes directly to the base. In another embodiment, the base supports the spacer which supports the paver.

The base and the spacer are configured so that a section of pipe can be cut to a preferred length and angle for a particular corner where stones meet and inserted between the base and the spacer. The cut section of pipe engages both the base and the spacer against sideways forces (horizontal shear forces) while holding them apart from each other by the preferred distance. The section of pipe can be cut with an angle on one or both ends to accommodate a supporting surface location that is not level. The pipe may be standard round pipe or may be square pipe. The spacer may be adapted to allow the supported paver to rest directly on the pipe or it may be adapted to receive the weight of the paver and pass the force through the spacer to the pipe.

For fine adjustment, base-shims may be inserted to sit inside a rim on the base under the section of pipe. Once the base has been placed, it need not be disturbed to insert a shim. Also, stone adjustment quarter-shims may be placed on top of the section of pipe and between the spacer vanes to raise a single stone. The quarter shims interlock with and grip the spacer vanes to retain the spacers against shear forces. They do not need to be interlocked with a hole in the spacer so they always provide the correct amount of space and cannot settle.

The spacer is configured with V grooves for breaking off one or more spacer vanes for use at an edge or where the corners of two stones meet the side of a third stone or where the sides of two adjacent stones need support in between their corners.

An alternative embodiment omits the base. That is, the lower cut end of each section of pipe rests directly on a supporting surface below and the spacer sits on top of the pipe to hold the stones in proper place relative to each other.

These and various other features as well as advantages of the present invention will be apparent from a reading of the following detailed description and a review of the associated drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1a shows a top view of the base.

FIG. 1b shows a side cross-section, of the base.

FIG. 2a shows a top view of the spacer with spacer vanes and a web.

FIG. 2b shows a side view of the spacer with spacer vanes and a web.

FIG. 2c shows a bottom view of the space with spacer vanes and a web.

FIG. 3a shows pipe adjustment ring shim top or bottom view.

FIG. 3b shows a side view of pipe adjustment ring shim.

FIG. 4a shows a quarter shim top or bottom view.

FIG. 4b shows a quarter shim side view.

FIG. 5 shows a side view of a cut section of standard pipe.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The features of the present invention which are believed to be novel are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. Aspects of the invention may best be understood by making reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. In the several figures, like referenced numerals identify like elements.

An embodiment of the base is shown in FIG. 1. FIG. 1a is a top view showing a preferred size with an outer diameter of 133 millimeters and an inter diameter of 88.5 millimeters. At a midpoint between the diameters there is a raised short section of cylinder 3 that retains the spacer or the adjustment pipe against sideways movement relative to the base. As shown in FIG. 1b, the height of the short cylinder in one embodiment is 9.8 millimeters. In one embodiment, the base is made of injection molded thermoplastic, such as ABS.

FIG. 2a shows a top view of the spacer with spacer vanes 6 and a web 7 which holds them in relationship to each other. FIG. 2b shows a bottom view of the spacer wherein the web blocks from view most of the spacer vanes. Breaking grooves or notches 12 allow two of the spacer vanes to be easily broken off.

FIG. 2c shows a side view of the spacer, including a retaining tab 20, the inner surface of which engages the outer surface of the short cylinder 3 which is a part of the base to prevent sideways slippage. FIG. 2c also shows a notch 42 which engages the upper end of a cut piece of standard pipe when the spacer is supported by a length of pipe.

Like the base, in one embodiment, the spacer is formed of injection molded thermoplastic such as ABS.

FIG. 5 shows a side view of a cut section of standard pipe. The dimensions shown on the drawings for the base and spacer are adapted to standard American four-inch diameter pipe. The width of the notch 22 is adapted to the standard wall thickness of four-inch PVC pipe. Standard ABS four-inch diameter pipe may be used in place of PVC pipe. The section of pipe sits inside the short cylinder 3 which is part of the base and fits into the four notches 22, one notch being in each spacer vane of the spacer. If the surface below is not level, the pipe may be cut with a matching angle.

For installation, the base is set at the preferred location, the preferred length of standard pipe is cut and one end is fit into the base inside the short cylinder 3. The spacer is then placed on top of the pipe with the notches 22 engaging the upper rim of the pipe. If the pipe was cut to the preferred length, stones may now be placed. Note that the weight of each stone is supported by the rim of the pipe rather than by the web which connects the spacer vanes. If no section of pipe is used, the weight of the stones is supported by the short cylinder 3 of the base.

If the pipe was cut a bit too short, a pipe adjustment ring shim as shown in FIG. 3 may be placed inside the short cylinder 3 underneath the pipe. (If square pipe is used, the shims are also square.) If the cut on the pipe does not match the angle of the surface underneath the base, the ring shim may be broken at notches 41 in the ring shim to create a variable height support. Then one-half of the ring shim may be used or both halves may be used with a partial overlap. In one embodiment of the system, the ring-shims are produced in two thicknesses, 3 millimeters and 1.5 millimeters. In this embodiment, the ring-shims are made of injection molded thermoplastic, which may be ABS.

As an alternative to placing a ring shim beneath the pipe, a quarter shim as shown in FIG. 4 may be placed between any two adjacent spacer vanes of the spacer. A lip 51 on the quarter shim retains an inner edge of the spacer vane to restrain the quarter shim against sideways movement relative to the spacer. Each quarter shim includes an arcuate section of plastic 53 that rests on top of the section of pipe, if it is included, or rests on top of the short cylinder 3 if no section of pipe is included. The weight of each stone is carried through the arcuate section of plastic.

If the stones are of varying thicknesses, different thicknesses of quarter-shims may be used under each stone. In one embodiment, the quarter-shims are provided in thicknesses of 2.5 millimeters and 1.2 millimeters. Two or more quarter-shims may be stacked together to achieve preferred adjustments.

Like the other components, in one embodiment, the ring-shims and quarter-shims are made of injection molded thermoplastic, such as ABS.

The above specification, examples, and details provide a complete description of the manufacture and use of an embodiment the invention. Since many embodiments of the invention can be made without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention, the invention resides in the claims hereinafter appended which shall not be limited by the above description.





 
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