Title:
Folding shelf
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A rack-type shelf having means of folding against its installed wall surface or remaining open at generally any angle between horizontal and vertical. The folding shelf of the present invention comprises: a wall mount portion, a shelf portion and brace members. The shelf portion is provided with a pivotal axle member protruding sidewardly from each rear side of said shelf. These axle members thus mate rotationally within a similarly sized protrusion within both side bottom members of the wall mount portion thus creating a hinge. Support members are rotationally yet securedly attached to a central horizontal wall mount member, and gravitationally suspend the shelf member by means of hooking around any of the shelf portion's plurality of shelf wire rod members.



Inventors:
Drake, Gary (Sudbury, CA)
Application Number:
10/851734
Publication Date:
11/24/2005
Filing Date:
05/24/2004
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B46/00; A47B57/04; A47F5/08; (IPC1-7): A47F5/08
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PUROL, SARAH L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MIKE M. GAUTHIER (SUDBURY, ON, CA)
Claims:
1. A folding shelf comprising:— a. a wall mount portion having two vertical end members and two horizontal members, b. a shelf portion having two or more support frames, support rods and shelf wire rods members, c. brace members having a top rotational attachment and a hooked lower end,

2. The folding shelf of claim 1 wherein the vertical and horizontal members of the wall mount portion are fixedly attached to each other.

3. The folding shelf of claims 1 and 2 wherein the vertical members' lower ends are extendedly curled forwardly to extend a shelf pivot point away from a mounting surface.

4. The folding shelf of claims 1 and 3 wherein the pivot point comprises a fixedly attached washer-like disk adapted to mate with a hinge axle of the shelf member.

5. The folding shelf of claim 1 wherein the shelf portion's lower support rod extend outwardly from each side of the shelf to form a hinge axle member.

6. The folding shelf of claim 5 wherein the hinge axle member has an outside diameter slightly lesser than the inner diameter of the washer-like disk of the wall mount portion.

7. The folding shelf of claim 1 wherein the upper ends of the brace members are curled around the central horizontal member of the wall mount portion so as to allow rotational movement of said brace members around said central horizontal member.

8. The folding shelf of claims 1 and 7 wherein the lower ends of the brace members are formed into a hook so as to allow embracing a horizontal shelf wire rod for angle selection therewith.

9. The folding shelf of claims 1 through 8 wherein the use thereof is to provide users with a collapsible shelf and drying rack having means of optimally placing boots, shoes or the like for proper and faster drying thereof.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a rack-type shelf having means of folding against its installed wall surface or remaining open at generally any angle between horizontal and vertical. The folding shelf of the present invention comprises: a wall mount portion, a shelf portion and brace members. The shelf portion is provided with a pivotal axle member protruding sidewardly from each rear side of said shelf. These axle members thus mate rotationally within a similarly sized protrusion within both side bottom members of the wall mount portion thus creating a hinge. Support members are rotationally yet securedly attached to a central horizontal wall mount member, and gravitationally suspend the shelf member by means of hooking around any of the shelf portion's plurality of horizontal shelf wire rod members.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

It is common for most persons, to, from time to time, wet their shoes or boots. Not only is this very discomforting, it can lead to physical ailments such as foot fungus, blisters and the like. It is also proven difficult to hold boots sole-up away from a floor surface as is commonly desired by those attempting to dry boot or the like over a radiator or air vent.

The inventor sought to provide users with a folding shelf that allows multi-angular shelf positioning while also providing means of easily folding up said shelf so as to prevent an obstruction.

The applicant is aware of an attempt in prior art to provide means of folding away a wall-mounted shelf.

Such an example of prior art may be had when referring to U.S. Pat. No. 5,125,517 of Martinell, issued Jun. 30, 1992 depicting a wall-mountable storage rack that can collapse into a folded-down compact state. Although this rack may be quite functional for many purposes, it does however, fail to provide the multi-angular shelf positioning required to securedly nestle items such as boots or shoes. Furthermore, when collapsed, said rack's support extends drastically downwardly past the lowest portion of the rack/mount assembly.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is thus the object of the present invention to provide users with a folding shelf that allows multi-angular shelf positioning while also providing means of easily folding up said shelf so as to prevent an obstruction. In addition, the folding shelf of the present invention collapses in a neater assembly.

In one aspect of the invention, an elbow may be provided in a central region of the support members so as to further prevent a downward extension of said supports below the collapsed assembly.

In another aspect of the invention, the hinge portion at the lower region of the wall mount may be extended distally from the wall by means of an additional folding hinge extension therefrom. This will provide a deeper throat area at the hinge region.

Accordingly, the system of the present invention provides users with a folding shelf that allows multi-angular shelf positioning while also providing means of easily folding up said shelf so as to prevent an obstruction when not in use.

The utility of the present invention includes but is not limited to boot and shoes.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other advantages of the invention will become apparent upon reading the following brief description and upon referring to the drawings in which:—

FIG. 1 is a front perspective view from above of the folding shelf of the present invention in a collapsed position.

FIG. 2 is a left side elevation view of the folding shelf of the present invention in a collapsed position.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view from above of the folding shelf of the present invention in a partially opened position.

FIG. 4 is a left side elevation view of the folding shelf of the present invention in a fully opened position.

FIG. 5 is a left side elevation view of the folding shelf of the present invention in an partially opened position.

FIG. 6 is a front perspective view from above of the folding shelf of the present invention in an opened position shown nestling a boot.

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken from FIG. 6 of the folding shelf of the present invention illustrating an exemplary wall-fastening embodiment.

While the invention is described in conjunction with preferred illustrated embodiments, it will be understood that it is not intended to limit the invention to such embodiments. On the contrary, it is intended to cover all alternatives, modifications and equivalents as may be included within the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

In the following description, similar features in the drawings have been given similar reference numerals.

Turning to the drawings, in particular, FIG. 1, a front perspective view from above of the folding shelf of the present invention in a collapsed position wherein the invention comprises: a wall mount portion 2, a shelf portion 4, and support members 6. The wall mount portion 2 having two vertical end member 22, each top end 3 thereof is curled frontwardly to form an inner circular opening equal to the outer diameter of the horizontal members 12 and 5. The vertical and horizontal members 22 and 12 and 5 are fixedly attached to one another by means of a weld or other suitable method. The lower portion of the vertical members 22 are adapted with a curl extending distally from the wall surface wherein said curl is further adapted with a washer-like ring 11 welded thereto so as to form a hinge 10 with a shelf member 4. The shelf portion 4 having two or more support frames 7 in which three support rods 8 and 13 are fixedly attached perpendicularly thereto, and a plurality of wire rods 9, which together with the support rods 8 and 13, comprise the shelf surface. Two or more brace members 6 are rotationally attached to the central horizontal member 5 and formed in such a manner to allow a bend at near said attachment to conform to the outside of the central support rod 13 wherein, when the folding shelf is in a collapsed arrangement, said brace members 6 hold the shelf member 4 frictionally and gravitationally against the wall mount portion 2.

Turning now to FIG. 2, a left side elevation view of the folding shelf of the present invention further illustrated in a collapsed position wherein it can be seen that in using present wire-shelving manufacturing technologies, the arrangement of the components of the present invention provide the thinnest profile possible by recessing the shelf portion 4 within and between the two vertical members 22 of the wall mount portion 2, and the brace members 6 extend through and outwardly around the central support rod 13 and shelf wire rods 9 thereunder. The lower portion 10 of the vertical members 22 of the wall mount portion 2 is formed in such a way to extend the hinge rod 8 so as to allow correct alignment of the collapsed shelf member 4 within said wall mount portion 2. A washer-like disk 11 is fixedly attached to the inner surface of said hinge portion 10 so as to provide pivotal engagement with the hinge rod 8. The wall mount portion 2 would therefore be mounted to a vertical surface by means of wrap strap fasteners using wall mount rods 5 and 12.

In reference now to FIG. 3, a perspective view from above of the folding shelf of the present invention in a partially opened position illustrating the arrangement of the components of the present invention wherein, to erect the shelf from a collapsed position, user simply pulls out the upper edge of said shelf portion 4, in which case the brace members 6 will be rotationally lifted until such a time when initially, the hooks at the extremity of said brace member grasp the central rod 13.

Turning now to FIGS. 4 and 5, both left side elevation views of the folding shelf of the present invention, FIG. 4 in a fully opened position and FIG. 5 in a partially opened position wherein it can now be clearly seen how the shelf's angle can be modified simply by altering the hook placement of the brace members 6 at different shelf wire rods 9.

FIG. 6 depicts a typical usage arrangement of the present invention wherein the wall mount portion 2 is a mounted using wrap-strap fasteners 30 onto a wall surface above a conventional heat source 21. The illustration also illustrates the placement of a boot 20 onto the shelf portion 4. When not in use, user simply collapses the assembly into a neatly condenses package, unobtrusive to the area.

In reference now to FIG. 7, a cross-sectional view taken from FIG. 6 of the folding shelf of the present invention illustrating an exemplary wall-fastening embodiment, a wrap-strap fastener wherein said fastener 30 embraces the horizontal member 12 and having two perforated tabs extending upwardly and downwardly from a central curved portion thereby allowing secure attachment of the wall mount portion to a vertical wall surface.

Therefore, a user attaches the wall mount portion 2 to a wall surface above a conventional source of heat or air ventilator 21 using a sufficient number of wrap strap fasteners 30 onto both horizontal members 5 and 12 of said wall mount portion 2, inserts each end of the shelf portion's hinge rod 8 within the washer-like disks 11 at each lower inner side vertical members 22 of the wall mount portion 2, hooks two or more brace members 6 to any of the shelf wire rods 9 to support said shelf 4 at a desired angle between horizontal ninety and vertical zero degrees.

Thus a user may now, with the present invention, place boots, shoes or the like at an optimal position to enhance drying from warm air below.

The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property of privilege is claimed are defined as follows: