Title:
Slotted roof flange offset conduit support
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A slotted roof flange offset conduit support in accordance with the present invention includes a support member including a mounting portion, a flange portion, and a peripheral edge having an opening therein. The support member includes an elongated slot therein the support member for receiving a conduit. The elongated slot extends from the opening through the mounting portion and into the flange portion. At least one engagement member is disposed in the flange portion for securing a conduit in the elongated slot.



Inventors:
Toma, Robert E. (Grosse Pointe Woods, MI, US)
Application Number:
11/509275
Publication Date:
03/15/2007
Filing Date:
08/24/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B61D17/12
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
STERLING, AMY JO
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Christopher J. Fildes (Grosse Pointe Woods, MI, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A slotted roof flange comprising: a support member including a mounting portion, a flange portion, and a peripheral edge having an opening therein; an elongated slot therein said support member for receiving a conduit, said elongated slot extending from said opening through said mounting portion and into said flange portion; and at least one engagement member disposed in said flange portion for securing a conduit in said elongated slot.

2. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, wherein said support member includes an angular bend generally extending across said support member.

3. The slotted roof flange of claim 2, wherein said angular bend defines a boundary between said mounting portion and said flange portion.

4. The slotted roof flange of claim 3, wherein said angular bend is a 160° bend.

5. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, wherein each engagement member is disposed at an angle relative to said slot.

6. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, wherein each engagement member is proximate said slot.

7. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, including two engagement members disposed on opposite sides of said slot.

8. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, wherein each engagement member projects from a surface of said support member and includes an aperture therethrough and a fastener engaged with said aperture.

9. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, including a plurality of apertures in said mounting portion to allow for securing of said support member to a support surface.

10. The slotted roof flange of claim 9, including eight apertures, four of said apertures being disposed on each side of said slot.

11. The slotted roof flange of claim 1, wherein said support member is generally U-shaped.

12. A slotted roof flange comprising: a support member having a bifurcation defining two prongs and a slot therebetween; said slot having an open end and a closed end; and at least one engagement member disposed proximate said slot closed end for securing a conduit in said slot.

13. The slotted roof flange of claim 12, including an angular bend in said prongs.

14. The slotted roof flange of claim 13, wherein said angular bend is generally perpendicular to said slot.

15. The slotted roof flange of claim 12, wherein each of said prongs includes at least one aperture to allow for securing of said support member to a support surface.

16. The slotted roof flange of claim 12, wherein each engagement member projects from a surface of said support member and includes an aperture therethrough and a fastener engaged with said aperture.

17. The slotted roof flange of claim 12, wherein said support member is generally an angled plate.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/716,094, filed Sep. 12, 2005.

TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention relates to roof flanges, roof flashing, and more particularly to roof flanges or flashings that support offset electrical conduit risers.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

It is known in the art relating to roof flanges for the support of electrical risers, such as service entrance conduit risers, that to install such flanges certain pieces of the electrical conduit must first be removed. Commonly, prior to installation it is necessary to remove the weather head located at the head of the conduit and to cut the electrical wires leading into the conduit from the electrical utility pole. These steps are necessary because the roof flange must be inserted over the top of the electrical conduit such that the roof flange receives the conduit into an aperture located therein the flange.

This difficulty with conventional roof flanges is encountered by electricians during either installation of electrical conduit or repair of existing electrical conduit. This difficulty is also encountered by roofers who damage existing roof flange riser supports during roof repair, necessitating replacement of the damaged roof flange. Hence, there is a strong-felt need for a roof flange riser support that may be installed without having to remove and cut existing parts of an electrical conduit riser.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a slotted riser support flange that can be installed onto a roof without the need for tampering with the existing construction of an electrical conduit riser, such as the power attachments from utility companies. The present invention is advantageous to both electricians and roofers alike during installation of new support flanges or replacement of damaged support flanges. The present invention is also desirable in that by eliminating the need to cut the electrical wires leading into the conduit, the present invention avoids potentially permanent reduction in the integrity of those wires.

More particularly, a slotted roof flange in accordance with the present invention includes a support member including a mounting portion, a flange portion, and a peripheral edge having an opening therein. The support member includes an elongated slot therein the support member for receiving a conduit. The elongated slot extends from the opening through the mounting portion and into the flange portion. At least one engagement member is disposed in the flange portion for securing a conduit in the elongated slot.

In a specific embodiment, the support member may include an angular bend generally extending across the support member. The angular bend may define a boundary between the mounting portion and the flange portion. The angular bend may be approximately a 160° bend.

Each engagement member may disposed at an angle relative to the slot and each engagement member may be proximate the slot. The slotted roof flange may include two engagement members disposed on opposite sides of the slot. Each engagement member may project from a surface of the support member and may include an aperture therethrough and a fastener engaged with the aperture.

The slotted roof flange may also include a plurality of apertures in the mounting portion to allow for securing of the support member to a support surface. Optionally, the slotted roof flange may include eight apertures, four of the apertures being disposed on each side of the slot.

The support member may generally be U-shaped or similar.

In an alternative embodiment, a slotted roof flange in accordance with the present invention includes a support member having a bifurcation defining two prongs and a slot therebetween. The slot has an open end and a closed end. At least one engagement member is disposed proximate the slot closed end for securing a conduit in the slot.

The slotted roof flange may include an angular bend in the prongs. The angular bend may be generally perpendicular to the slot. Each of the prongs may include at least one aperture to allow for securing of the support member to a support surface. Each engagement member may project from a surface of the support member and may include an aperture therethrough and a fastener engaged with the aperture. The support member may be generally an angled plate.

These and other features and advantages of the invention will be more fully understood from the following detailed description of the invention taken together with the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a slotted roof flange offset conduit support in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side view of the slotted roof flange of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is an environmental view of the slotted roof flange of FIG. 1 illustrating the use of the slotted roof flange to support a conduit;

FIG. 4 is side elevational view of an engagement member of the slotted roof flange of FIG. 1 engaging a conduit; and

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view of an alternative embodiment of an engagement member engaging a conduit.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring now to the drawings in detail, numeral 10 generally indicates a slotted roof flange offset conduit support in accordance with the present invention. The slotted roof flange 10 is easily fittable around existing conduit, such as an electrical conduit riser, without tampering with the conduit or wires that enter into the conduit. The slotted roof flange 10 thereby facilitates the installment of new support flanges or the replacement of existing support flanges with minimal interference with cooperating structures.

Turning to FIGS. 1 and 2, the slotted roof flange 10 includes a support member 12 including a mounting portion 14, a flange portion 16, and a peripheral edge 18 having an opening 20 therein. The support member 12 may be a generally plate-like member and may be constructed of a galvanized metal material or a similar sturdy, weather-resistant material. The support member 12 further includes a bifurcation defining two prongs 22 and an elongated slot 24 therebetween. The slot 24 is adapted to receive a conduit therein. The slot 24 has an open end 26 corresponding with the opening 20 and a closed end 28 disposed in said flange portion 16. The slot 24 thereby extends from the opening 20 through the mounting portion 14 and into the flange portion 16. The support member 12 may therefore be generally U-shaped, V-shaped, or a combination of a U and V shape, but may also be rectangular shaped, square shaped, triangular shaped, or similar.

At least one engagement member 30 is disposed in the flange portion 16 proximate the slot closed end 28 for securing a conduit in the slot 24. As shown in FIG. 4, each engagement member 30 may project from a surface 13 of the support member 12 and may include an aperture 32 therethrough and a fastener 34 engaged with the aperture 32. Each engagement member 30 may itself be a flange-like member, such as a 90° angle iron or similar. The engagement member(s) may be mounted on the support member 12 by welding or similar, or may be integral with the support member 12. The fastener 34 may be a bolt, a set screw, or similar, that is engagable with a feature of the aperture 32, such as threads, or with a feature of a nut 35 or similar mounted adjacent the aperture 32. Tightening of the fastener 34 allows the fastener to engage a conduit 42 that has been received into the slot 24 and is adjacent the slot closed end 28. Each engagement member 30 may disposed at an angle relative to the slot 24 and each engagement member 30 may be proximate the slot 24. The slotted roof flange 10 may include two engagement members 30 that are each disposed on an opposite side 36 of the slot 24.

In an alternative embodiment shown in FIG. 5, the engagement member 130 is mounted on the support member surface 113 by welding or similar and is generally perpendicular to the surface 113. The threaded fastener 134 directly engages threads in the aperture 132.

The support member 12 may include an angular bend 38 disposed in the prongs 22 and generally extending across the support member 12 in a width direction thereof. The angular bend 38 may be generally perpendicular to the slot 24 and may generally define a boundary between the mounting portion 14 and the flange portion 16. The angular bend 38 may be an approximately 160° bend measured relative to the surface 13 of the support plate 12 on either side of the bend. In this embodiment, the support member 12 may be generally an angled, bent plate.

Each of the prongs 22 may include at least one aperture 40 to allow for securing of the support member 12 to a support surface, such as a roof or similar. The apertures 40 may be disposed in the mounting portion 14. In one embodiment, the slotted roof flange 10 may include eight apertures 40, four of the apertures 40 being disposed on one of the prongs 22 and the other four apertures 40 being disposed on the other of the prongs 22. The apertures 40 are thereby disposed on opposite sides 36 of the slot 24. Each set of four apertures 40 may be staggered about one of the prongs 22.

In a specific embodiment, the support member 12 may have a width of approximately 12 inches and a length of approximately 16 inches. The slot 24 may be generally 3 inches in width and may be disposed generally centrally in a widthwise direction of the support member 12. The slot may be approximately 14½ inches in length, thereby ending approximately 1½ inches from an end 19 of the support member 12 opposite the opening 20. The closed end 28 of the slot 24 may be curved, allowing for easier abutment of the closed end 28 with a tubular member such as a length of conduit. The prongs 22 may each have a width of approximately 4½ inches in the mounting portion 14. Each aperture 40 in the support member 12 may be 5/16 of an inch in diameter. In the case that there are four apertures 40 per prong 22, the four apertures may be spaced approximately 2 inches from each other in a lengthwise direction of the support member 12. The angular bend 38 may be 8 inches from either the end 19 or the opening 20 of the support member 12 in the lengthwise direction. In other words, the bend 38 may be centered about the support member 12 in the lengthwise direction. The engagement members 30 may be 1 inch by 1 inch 90° angle irons, wherein one of the 1 inch faces of the angle iron is mounted to the surface 13 of the support member 12 and the other 1 inch face includes the aperture 32 therethrough. The aperture 32 in the engagement member 30 may be ½ of an inch in diameter and the fastener 34 may be correspondingly sized to be engagable in the aperture 32. Each engagement member 30 may be mounted at approximately a 45° angle relative to the side 36 of the slot 24. The engagement members 30 may be disposed proximate the closed end 28 of the slot 24, approximately 4 inches from the end 19 of the support member 12 in the lengthwise direction. Such a slotted roof flange 10 may accept and support conduit ranging in size from around 1 inch in diameter to approximately 2½ inches in diameter.

Turning now to FIGS. 1 and 3, a method of using a slotted roof flange 10 in accordance with the present invention includes the following steps. A length of conduit 42, such as an electrical conduit riser, is received in the slot 24 of the support member 12 by sliding the support member 12 relative to the conduit 42 so that the conduit 42 enters the slot open end 26. Neither the conduit 42 nor any wires 43 running into the conduit need to be cut or severed to dispose the conduit in the slot 24. The support member 12 is adjusted such that the conduit 42 is positioned at the closed end 28 of the slot 24. The mounting portion 14 of the support member 12 is secured to a surface adjacent the conduit, usually a roof 44, by fasteners 46 fastened through the apertures 40 in the support member 12. The conduit 42 is secured to the flange portion 16 of the support member 12 by the engagement members 30, such as by tightening the fasteners 34 of the engagement members. In this way, the mounting portion 14 of the support member 12 lies flush with the mounting surface 44 and the flange portion 16 extends outwardly from the mounting surface 44.

Although the invention has been described by reference to a specific embodiment, it should be understood that numerous changes may be made within the spirit and scope of the inventive concepts described. Accordingly, it is intended that the invention not be limited to the described embodiment, but that it have the full scope defined by the language of the following claims.