Title:
Multimedia storage tray and method of making the same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention provides an improved multimedia storage tray including at least two support rails that are independent or separate, i.e. not directly connected. The support rails advantageously are identical in shape with each generally including a top surface having a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge and a plurality of divider walls. The support rails are adapted to be attached to a furniture surface by a securing means in parallel, spaced apart, physically non-contacting relationship to each other. The divider walls are spaced apart substantially along the length of each support rail and cooperate with the top surface to provide storage spaces that accommodate different sized multimedia. The storage tray may be sold to the public already assembled in a furniture piece or sold directly to the do-it-your consumer as an after-market kit.



Inventors:
Yang, Tony S. (Gahanna, OH, US)
Application Number:
10/881179
Publication Date:
01/05/2006
Filing Date:
06/30/2004
Assignee:
American Signature, Inc.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
G9B/23.017, G9B/33.017
International Classes:
B65D85/575
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
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20070187278INFLATABLE PACKAGINGAugust, 2007Krachtus
20080000803PACKING SYSTEMJanuary, 2008Tseng et al.
20090107863High-low adjustable lumber pad deviceApril, 2009Tan
20050011778Cone cozyJanuary, 2005Thomas
20050241983Monitored medication packageNovember, 2005Snyder et al.
20090200189Ladder capAugust, 2009Fields
20070095698Apparatus for storing biological prosthesesMay, 2007Cambron
20080245694Packaging containerOctober, 2008Shibata et al.
20090134058Combined shipping and display deviceMay, 2009Alexander
20070125683End cap packaging material, packaging and method for protecting products against damageJune, 2007Stegner et al.



Primary Examiner:
NOVOSAD, JENNIFER ELEANORE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WOOD, HERRON & EVANS, LLP (CINCINNATI, OH, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A multimedia storage tray, comprising: at least two independent support rails adapted to be attached to a furniture surface in spaced, parallel, physically non-contacting relationship to each other, the at least two support rails including: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; and a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes.

2. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein each of the at least two support rails include at least one aperture adapted to receive a means for securing the at least two support rails to the furniture surface.

3. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein the at least two support rails are identical.

4. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein two of the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

5. The storage tray of claim 4 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

6. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

7. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

8. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

9. The storage tray of claim 1 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

10. A method of making a multimedia storage tray, comprising; providing a first support rail; providing a second support rail, each of the first and second rails adapted to be attached to a furniture surface and including: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes; and mounting the first and second support rails in spaced, parallel, physically non-contacting relation to each other on the furniture surface.

11. The method of claim 10 wherein providing the first and second support rails includes plastic mold injecting the first and second support rails.

12. The method of claim 10 wherein the first and second support rails include at least one aperture adapted to receive a means for securing the first and second support rails to the furniture surface.

13. The method of claim 10 wherein the first and second support rails are identical.

14. The method of claim 10 wherein two of the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

15. The method of claim 14 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

16. The method of claim 10 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

17. The method of claim 10 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

18. The method of claim 10 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

19. The method of claim 10 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

20. A multimedia storage tray assembly, comprising: a furniture piece including an upper surface; and a multimedia storage tray including at least two support rails being equally spaced apart in opposing parallel relation and attached to the upper surface of the furniture piece at one of a plurality of desired widths wherein the at least two support rails are devoid of an interconnecting framework which connects the at least two support rails in direct physical contact with each other and are adapted to support and store a plurality of multimedia having different sizes.

21. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein the at least two support rails are removably attached to the upper surface.

22. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein the upper surface includes a drawer or shelf surface.

23. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein the storage tray is moveably secured from a first storage position to a second position.

24. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein the upper surface is flat.

25. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 further including a means for securing each of the at least two support rails to the upper surface.

26. The storage tray assembly of claim 25 wherein the means for securing includes a nail, screw, tack, staple, adhesive, or combination thereof.

27. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein each of the at least two support rails include at least one aperture therein, and further including a means for securing each of the at least two support rails to the upper surface, the means for securing being received within the at least one aperture of each of the at least two support rails and cooperating with the upper surface such that each of the at least two support rails are attached thereto.

28. The storage tray assembly of claim 20 wherein the at least two support rails includes: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; and a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes.

29. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the at least two support rails are identical.

30. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

31. The storage tray assembly of claim 30 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

32. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

33. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

34. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

35. The storage tray assembly of claim 28 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

36. A method of assembling a multimedia storage tray assembly, comprising: providing a multimedia support tray including at least two independent support rails; providing a furniture piece having an upper surface; and attaching the at least two support rails to the upper surface of the furniture piece, the at least two support rails being equally spaced apart in opposing parallel relation at one of a plurality of desired widths and devoid of an interconnecting framework which directly physically contacts the at least two rails to each other, whereby multimedia having different sizes may be supported and stored therebetween.

37. The method of claim 36 wherein the at least two support rails are removably attached to the upper surface.

38. The method of claim 36 wherein the upper surface includes a drawer or shelf surface.

39. The method of claim 36 wherein the storage tray is moveable from a first storage position to a second position.

40. The method of claim 36 wherein the upper surface is flat.

41. The method of claim 36 further including providing a means for securing the at least two support rails to the upper surface and attaching the at least two support rails to the upper surface with the means for securing.

42. The method of claim 41 wherein the means for securing includes a nail, screw, tack, staple, adhesive, or combination thereof.

43. The method of claim 41 wherein each of the at least two support rails include at least one aperture, and wherein the means for securing are received within the at least one aperture of the at least two support rails and cooperate with the upper surface such that each of the at least two support rails are attached thereto.

44. The method of claim 36 wherein providing the at least two support rails includes plastic mold injecting the at least two support rails.

45. The method of claim 36 wherein the at least two support rails include: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; and a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes.

46. The method of claim 45 wherein the at least two support rails are identical.

47. The method of claim 45 wherein two of the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

48. The method of claim 47 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

49. The method of claim 45 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

50. The method of claim 45 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

51. The method of claim 45 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

52. The method of claim 45 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

53. A multimedia storage tray kit, comprising: at least two independent support rails adapted to be attached to a furniture surface, the at least two support rails including: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; and a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes; and a means for securing the at least two support rails to the furniture surface in space apart, parallel, physically non-contacting relationship to each other.

54. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the means for securing includes a nail, screw, tack, staple, adhesive, or combination thereof.

55. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein each of the at least two support rails includes at least one aperture therein adapted to receive the means for securing.

56. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the at least two support rails are identical.

57. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein two of the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

58. The storage tray kit of claim 57 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

59. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

60. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

61. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

62. The storage tray kit of claim 53 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

63. A multimedia support rail adapted for use in a multimedia storage tray, comprising: an elongated base having a length and a width, first and second laterally spaced side edges, first and second longitudinal ends, and a top surface, the top surface including a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, the raised ledge extending along the first side edge between the first and second longitudinal ends; a side wall disposed adjacent the first side edge of the base and extending therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base, the raised ledge projecting inwardly from the side wall such that the edge of the ledge is situated between the first and second side edges; and a plurality of alternating first and second parallel divider walls being spaced equally apart along the length of the base, the first divider walls extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the raised ledge and second side edge, the second divider walls further extending inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall and terminate between the edge of the ledge and the first side edge, wherein opposing divider walls define storage space adapted to receive multimedia having different sizes.

64. The rail of claim 63 wherein two of the plurality of divider walls define first and second end walls disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends of the base and extending substantially perpendicularly therefrom, adjacent the side wall, each of the first and second end walls having a side edge joined to the side wall to form a corner.

65. The rail of claim 64 wherein the two of the plurality of divider walls are first divider walls.

66. The rail of claim 63 wherein the support rail is adapted for use with an identical second support rail as a multimedia storage tray.

67. The rail of claim 63 wherein the first divider walls further extend away from the top surface, and wherein the second divider walls further extend away from the raised ledge.

68. The rail of claim 63 wherein the first divider walls are equal in size and wherein the second divider walls are equal in size.

69. The rail of claim 63 wherein the first and second divider walls and the side wall are equal in height.

70. The rail of claim 63 wherein the lower surface and raised ledge are flat.

71. The rail of claim 63 wherein the support rail includes at least one aperture adapted to receive a means for securing the support rail to a furniture surface.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to storage structures, and more particularly, to a storage tray that is adapted to support and store a variety of multimedia, alone or in conventional packaging, having a plurality of different sizes.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Storage structures for supporting and storing multimedia such as CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, and cassette tapes are known, and these structures have been provided with storage compartments configured to the dimensions and contours of the object to be supported and stored. However, with the increase and popularity of packaged multimedia, new unfilled needs for multimedia storage structures, such as storage trays, have arisen including the need for fewer parts and easier assembly thereof. These storage trays, accordingly, should be adapted to provide storage and support for packaged as well as unpackaged multimedia having a plurality of different sizes.

Unfortunately, today's multimedia storage trays appear to have failed to meet these needs. Most notably, current storage trays include multiple parts that must be manufactured, supplied, tracked, shipped, inventoried and eventually assembled to form the complete product. These multiple part assemblies lead to significant administrative and labor costs, which increases the overall costs of production and, ultimately, the cost of the end product. In addition, multimedia storage trays that are available for purchase as after-market kits for do-it-yourself consumers tend to discourage consumers if they contain too many parts.

Accordingly, there remains a need for an improved storage tray that includes a reduced number of parts, is easily manufactured and assembled, and is adapted to provide storage and support for a variety of multimedia, alone or packaged, having a plurality of different sizes.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides an improved storage tray having a reduced number of parts that is easily manufactured and assembled, and adapted to store and support a variety of multimedia, alone or packaged, having a plurality of different sizes.

To this end, the multimedia storage tray includes at least two support rails that are independent or separate, i.e. not directly connected. The support rails advantageously are identical in shape with each generally including a top surface having a lower surface and a raised ledge having an edge, and a plurality of divider walls. The support rails are adapted to be attached to a furniture surface by a securing means. The means for securing may include a nail, screw, tack, staple, adhesive such as tape or glue, or combinations thereof, and the like. Notably, the divider walls are in parallel, spaced apart relationship substantially along the length of each support rail and cooperate with the top surface to provide storage spaces that accommodate different sized multimedia.

The storage trays of the present invention may be easily manufactured by methods commonly known in the art and may be sold pre-assembled in a furniture piece or to the do-it-yourself consumer as an after-market kit. As indicated above, the support rails of the storage tray are adapted to be secured to a piece of furniture, such as the upper surface of a drawer or shelf of an entertainment center. To assemble, two independent support rails, advantageously, are equally spaced apart at a desired width and in opposing parallel relationship and simply attached to a furniture surface using the means for securing, such as by inserting a screw within each of two spaced-apart apertures of each of the support rails and into the upper furniture surface. Accordingly, the attached support rails are devoid of an interconnecting framework, i.e. extra parts, and further cooperate to support and store a variety of packaged or unpackaged multimedia, e.g. CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, cassette tapes, and the like, having a plurality of different sizes.

By virtue of the foregoing, there is thus provided an improved storage tray having a reduced number of parts that is easily manufactured and assembled, and adapted to store and support packaged or unpackaged multimedia having a plurality of different sizes.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and constitute a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and, together with a general description of the invention given above, and the detailed description given below, serve to explain the invention.

FIG. 1 is a top perspective view of an embodiment of the multimedia storage tray of the present invention, incorporating two identical tray components in spaced parallel relationship.

FIG. 2 is a top perspective view of the multimedia storage tray of FIG. 1 showing assembly thereof onto an upper surface of a retractable shelf.

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the assembled tray of FIG. 1 showing a variety of multimedia being stored therein having different widths measured in a direction transverse to the length of the identical tray components.

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of FIG. 3 taken along the line 4-4.

FIG. 5 is a partial cross-sectional view of FIG. 3 taken along the line 5-5.

FIG. 6 is a partial cross-sectional view of FIG. 3 taken along the line 6-6.

FIG. 7 is a partial cross-sectional view of FIG. 3 taken along the line 7-7.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

With reference to FIGS. 1-3, there is shown an embodiment of the multimedia storage tray 10 of the present invention. The storage tray 10 includes at least two support rails 12 and 14 that are independent or separate, i.e. not directly physically connected to each other. As best shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, these support rails 12, 14 are adapted to be attached by a securing means, advantageously, to an upper surface 18 of a shelf 19 or drawer of a furniture piece (not shown) in spaced apart, parallel, physically non-contacting relationship to each other to support and store a variety of multimedia, alone or packaged, having a plurality of different sizes. The means for securing may include a screw 20, nail, tack, staple, adhesive such as tape or glue, or combinations thereof, and the like. The furniture piece may be of any variety such as an entertainment center, desk, table, bookshelf, armoire, and the like, and the shelf 19 or drawer may be retractable such that the storage tray 10 may be moved from a first storage position to a second position. The multimedia may include CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, cassette tapes, and the like, and advantageously includes packaged CDs 21, DVDs 22, and/or VHS tapes 23 and 24 (See FIG. 3), and the like.

As best shown in FIG. 1, the two support rails 12, 14 include an elongated base 26 having a length (L) and a width (W), first and second laterally spaced side edges 28 and 30, first and second longitudinal ends 34 and 36, and a top surface 38. Although the length (L) and width (W) of the base 26 may vary, the length (L) of the base 26 advantageously is 335.0 to 345.0 mm, more advantageously, 340.0 to 343 mm, and most advantageously 341.5 mm, and the width (W) of the base 26 advantageously is 35 to 45 mm, more advantageously, 40 to 43 mm, and most advantageously 41 mm. As best shown in FIG. 4, the top surface 38 includes a lower surface 40 and a raised ledge 42 having an edge 44. Returning again to FIGS. 1-3, the raised ledge 42 of the top surface 40 is shown to further extend along the first side edge 28 between the first and second longitudinal ends 34, 36. The lower surface 40 and raised ledge 42 advantageously are flat. The height of the raised ledge 42 advantageously is no greater than 6 mm.

A side wall 48 is disposed adjacent the first side edge 28 of the base 26 and extends therealong in a direction substantially perpendicular to the base 26. The height of the side wall 48 advantageously is 26 to 29 mm, more advantageously, 27 to 28 mm, and most advantageously 27.5 mm. The raised ledge 42 further projects inwardly from the side wall 48 such that the edge 44 of the ledge 42 is situated between the first and second side edges 28, 30. The width of the raised ledge 42 advantageously is 15 to 18 mm, more advantageously, 16 to 17 mm, and most advantageously 16.7 mm. A beveled edge region 30A is situated adjacent the second side edge 30, intermediate the second edge 30 and lower surface 40, and extends the length (L) of each rail 12, 14. The beveled edge region 30A shapes downwardly toward the second edge 30, i.e. downwardly and inwardly toward the opposite rail when the storage tray 10 is assembled.

As further shown in FIGS. 1-3, a plurality of alternating first and second divider walls 54 and 56, advantageously, are spaced equally apart along the length (L) of the base 26. Although spacing may vary, the spacing between each of the divider walls 54, 56 advantageously is 14 to 17 mm, more advantageously, 15 to 16 mm, and most advantageously 15.5 mm. The first divider walls 54 extend inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall 48 and terminate between the raised ledge 42 and second side edge 30. The first divider walls 54 further extend away from the top surface 38. The width of the first divider walls 54 advantageously is 9 to 11 mm, and most advantageously 10 mm. The second divider walls 56 similarly extend inwardly and in a transverse direction from the side wall 48 and terminate between the edge 44 of the ledge 42 and the first side edge 28. The second divider walls 56 further extend away from the raised ledge 42. The width of the second divider walls 56 advantageously is 33 to 41 mm, and most advantageously 35.5 to 39.5 mm. With respect to height and thickness, the height of the first and second divider walls 54, 56 advantageously is 26 to 29 mm, more advantageously, 27 to 28 mm, and most advantageously 27.5 mm wherein the thickness of each is advantageously 1 to 2 mm, and most advantageously 1.5 mm. The plurality of divider walls 54, 56 cooperate with the top surface 38 of the base 26 to provide storage space 58 that accommodates multimedia 21, 22, 23, 24 (See FIG. 3) having different sizes including different thickness (t) and widths (w).

With continuing reference to FIGS. 1-3, two of the plurality of divider walls 54, 56 define first and second end walls 62 and 64 that are disposed on the first and second longitudinal ends 34, 36 of the base 26. These first and second end walls 62, 64 further extend substantially perpendicularly from the first and second ends 34, 36, adjacent the side wall 48, with each 62, 64 having a side edge 66 joined to the side wall 48 to form a corner 68. Advantageously, the end walls 62, 64 include first divider walls 54. In addition, all of the second divider walls 56 advantageously are the same size, all of the first divider walls 54 are the same size, and the first and second divider walls 54, 56 and side wall 48 are equal in height. While FIGS. 1-3 show each of the support rails 12, 14 including twenty-one total divider walls 54, 56 being equally spaced apart and each of the first and the second divider walls 54, 56 being similar in size, it is understood that one may provide any number of divider walls 54, 56 having a variety of equal or unequal spacing and/or having the same or different sizes.

The support rails 12, 14 of the storage tray 10 of the present invention are formed of a relatively rigid material such as plastic, advantageously polypropylene, and may be manufactured by methods commonly known in the art including suitable thermoplastic molding or forming processes such as injection molding, compression molding, thermoforming or the like. The storage tray 10 may be sold to the public already assembled in a furniture piece (not shown) or sold directly to the do-it-your consumer as an after-market kit which may include two or more support rails 12, 14 and, optionally, one or more securing means such as screws 20, nails, tacks, staples adhesives such as tape or glue, or combinations thereof, and the like.

As best shown in FIG. 2, to assemble the support tray 10, the two independent support rails 12, 14, advantageously, are equally spaced apart at a desired width and in opposing parallel relationship and attached to the upper surface 18 of the shelf 19 of the furniture piece (not shown) using the means for securing. Specifically, the base 26 of the support rails 12, 14, shown in FIG. 2, includes two apertures 72 adapted to receive the screw 20. The support rails 12, 14 are easily attached by inserting the screw 20 within the apertures 72 of each of the support rails 12, 14 and into the shelf surface 18. It is understood that the support rails 12, 14 may include any number of apertures 72 or may include no apertures 72 and still be capable of being secured to the furniture piece by the securing means. Accordingly, the attached support rails 12, 14 are devoid of an interconnecting framework, i.e. extra parts, and further cooperate to support and store a variety of packaged 21, 22, 23, 24 (See FIG. 3) or unpackaged multimedia having variable thicknesses t1, t2 and t3 and/or widths w1, w2 and w3.

While it is understood that the support rails 12, 14 may be of different shapes and/or sizes, advantageously, the support rails 12, 14 are identical. It is further understood that more than two support rails 12, 14 may be provided for attaching to a furniture piece. For example, three support rails could be provided wherein two support rails placed end-to-end have a total length which is equal in length to a third support rail. Accordingly, these two rails may be adjacently attached to a furniture surface in a spaced-apart and opposing parallel relation to the third support rail.

As further shown in FIG. 3, the assembled support rails 12, 14 cooperate to store and support packaged multimedia 21, 22, 23, 24 having a plurality of different sizes including different thicknesses t1, t2 and t3 and/or widths w1, w2 and w3. FIG. 3 specifically shows packaged CD 21 and packaged DVD 22 wherein the packaging includes a conventional jewel case, and further shows packaged VHS tapes 23 and 24 wherein the packaging respectively includes a cardboard box and a plastic cartridge.

As best shown in FIGS. 3 and 5, the packaged CD 21 and DVD 22 are supported in a substantially upright position between opposing first and second dividers 54, 56 of the support rails 12, 14 with opposing ends 84 of the CD 21 and DVD 22 resting atop the raised ledge 42 of the support rails 12, 14 and substantially adjacent the side wall 48.

As best shown in FIGS. 3 and 6, the boxed VHS tape 23 is supported in a substantially upright position between opposing first dividers 54 of the support rails 12, 14 with opposing ends 88 of the VHS tape 23 resting atop the lower surface 40 thereof and substantially adjacent the edge 44 of the ledge 42.

As best shown in FIGS. 3 and 7, the boxed VHS tape 24 similarly is supported in a substantially upright position between opposing first dividers 54 of the support rails 12, 14 with opposing ends 90 of the VHS tape 24 resting atop the raised ledge 42 thereof and substantially adjacent a second divider wall 56. It should be understood that the multimedia may include unpackaged as well as packaged CDs, DVDs, VHS tapes, cassette tapes, and the like, having a plurality of sizes.

Accordingly, the storage tray 10 is adapted to accommodate each variety of packaged multimedia 21, 22, 23, 24 wherein each multimedia 21, 22, 23, 24 extends and is supported therebetween to allow for storage thereof.

By virtue of the foregoing, there is thus provided an improved storage tray 10 having a reduced number of parts that is easily manufactured and assembled, and adapted to store and support a variety of multimedia, alone or packaged, having a plurality of different sizes.

While the present invention has been illustrated by the description of one or more embodiments thereof, and while the embodiments have been described in considerable detail, they are not intended to restrict or in any way limit the scope of the appended claims to such detail. Additional advantages and modifications will readily appear to those skilled in the art. The invention in its broader aspects is therefore not limited to the specific details, representative apparatus and method and illustrative examples shown and described. Accordingly, departures may be made from such details without departing from the scope or spirit of the general inventive concept.