Title:
Medicine cabinet
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A Medicine Cabinet Assembly that provides for easier use and storage of electrical appliances by having electrical outlets on the interior surface of the walls.



Inventors:
Lamar, Charles (Lacey, WA, US)
Application Number:
11/288877
Publication Date:
05/31/2007
Filing Date:
11/28/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B67/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20080203864ROTATABLE TOP SHELLAugust, 2008Moore et al.
20090086421FINE-PITCH, SPLAY-RESISTANT, FINGER-TO-FINGER CONTACT-CAPABLE, HDD EMI SHIELDApril, 2009Olesiewicz et al.
20040246735DRAGON ALUMINUM ATX COMPUTER CHASSISDecember, 2004Huang
20080042527Table for hiding displayFebruary, 2008Chen
20070177344Portable personal computerAugust, 2007Hsia
20060279182Assembleable and detachable metal storage cabinetDecember, 2006Chi Ming
20090015114Gas Filled Art Encasement SystemJanuary, 2009Vihos
20040032191Four in on counter barFebruary, 2004Brown
20070096610Retractable shelf for the cabinet of a refrigeration applianceMay, 2007Filho et al.
20090058240OVERHEAD STORAGE UNITMarch, 2009Stuwe
20090072687Drive mechanism for a furniture part which is mounted movably in or on an item of furnitureMarch, 2009Fitz



Primary Examiner:
HANSEN, JAMES ORVILLE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Johnnie R. Hynson (Port Townsend, WA, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. An improved medicine cabinet: that is mounted to a wall structure or stud with fasteners, said Medicine Cabinet Assembly further including a left side wall, and right side wall, a back wall, a top wall, a bottom wall, and a back wall, said walls having an interior and an exterior surface; and also including a shelve being vertically spaced and removably disposed in said medicine cabinet; and a mirror door being hingedly attached to said cabinet and being closable over said open front of said medicine cabinet; wherein an electrical outlet is mounted on the interior surfaces of said walls.

2. A Medicine Cabinet Assembly as described in claim 1, wherein said Medicine Cabinet Assembly has a multiplicity of shelves.

3. A Medicine Cabinet Assembly as described in claim 1, wherein said Medicine Cabinet Assembly has a multiplicity of outlets on the interior surfaces of said walls.

4. An improved Medicine Cabinet Assembly that is mounted to a wall structure with fasteners; said Medicine Cabinet Assembly further including a left side wall having a height of approximately of 24 inches, and right side wall having an approximate height of 24 inches, a back wall being approximately 24 inches by 24 inches, a top wall of approximately 24 inches, and a bottom wall also of approximately 24 inches; said wall having an approximately wide of 24 inches; and also including a shelve approximately 24 inches long with a width of approximately 6 inches, being vertically spaced and removably disposed in said medicine cabinet, and a mirror door being hingedly attached to said cabinet and being closable over said open fronts of said medicine cabinet, wherein an electrical outlet is mounted on the interior surfaces of said walls opposite form the point of attachment to a wall structure.

5. A Medicine Cabinet Assembly as described in claim 4, wherein said Medicine Cabinet Assembly is constructed of sheet metal.

6. A Medicine Cabinet Assembly as described in claim 4, wherein said Medicine Cabinet Assembly is constructed of wood.

Description:

FIELD OF INVENTION

The present invention relates to an improved Medicine Cabinet Assembly with built-in electrical outlets that provides for the use and storage of portable electrical appliances.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The use of a Medicine Cabinet Assembly heretofore devised and utilized are known to consist basically of familiar, expected and obvious structural configurations, notwithstanding the myriad of designs encompassed by the crowded prior art which have been developed for the fulfillment of countless objectives and requirements.

Known prior art includes U.S. Pat. No. 6,382,746 that is multi sectional Medicine Cabinet Assembly which cites a number of references that are also applicable to this application. These are, U.S. Pat. No. 4,610,489 and several design patents. While these devices fulfill their respective, particular objectives and requirements, the aforementioned patents do not disclose a new Medicine Cabinet Assembly that provides for the easy use and storage of portable electrical appliances.

Most electrical appliances used in bathrooms today require an electrical plugin for use. Once a house is wired for electricity it is difficult and expensive to rewire, and often requires the removal of the wall coverings such as sheetrock or lathing which can also be expensive.

There is a trend to use of more and more electrical appliances in a bathroom. For example, a beard or mustache trimmer, other hair trimmers, hair dryers, curling irons, electrical toothbrushes, contact glasses containers, sterilizers, etc. Other larger outlets on the typical bathroom counter can include lamps, humidifiers, deordirzers, and the like, which will also use up the existing outlets and create the need for more outlets. With only a set amount of outlets available a lost cost means to provide additional electrical outlets is therefore needed.

Since the typical bathroom counter is also an environment that is expected to have water, it would increase the safety of the user if a means to both power and store these items away form the water was available.

Additionally, as the number of the people that use the same bathroom increases, the need for additional storage and outlets also increases.

The instant invention is a medicine cabinet having from one to a multiplicity of shelves and power recepticals, and appliance storage positions, and also includes mirror doors being hingedly attached to the cabinet and being closable over the open fronts of the sections; and optionally includes drawers being removably disposed in the cabinet.

In these respects, the Medicine Cabinet Assembly according to the present invention substantially departs from the conventional concepts and designs of the prior art, and in so doing provides an apparatus primarily developed for the purpose of providing extra electrical outlets as well as easier storage and use of electrical appliances.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In view of the foregoing disadvantages inherent in the known types of existing medicine cabinets now present in the prior art, the present invention provides a new Medicine Cabinet Assembly construction wherein the same can be utilized for providing a means to power and stored electrical appliances. The general purpose of the present invention, which will be described subsequently in greater detail, is to provide a new Medicine Cabinet Assembly which has many of the advantages of the esiting medicine cabinets mentioned heretofore and many novel features that result in a new Medicine Cabinet Assembly which is not anticipated, rendered obvious, suggested, or even implied by any of the prior art medicine cabinets, either alone or in any combination thereof.

Outlets are provided inside the Medicine Cabinet Assembly to power things like razors, trimmers, and other personal care items. For safety purposes the outlets should not point upward, and should be located on the interior surfaces of the walls of the medicine cabinet. The outlets should be identical to those used in house construction for the area of intended use.

An advantage of the instant invention is that a existing Medicine Cabinet Assemblyman be replaced with one with outlets, thereby avoiding costly construction in an effort to increase the ease in use of appliances. However, replacement is not necessary, an additional cabinet can easily be added to any existing bathroom.

Another advantage is that additional outlets and storage spaces for electrical appliances can be provided when replacing the existing medicine cabinet. Also, the storage spaces can be designed for currently popular appliances that are immediately needed. Yet another advantage is that existing commercial designs can easily be modified to include the advantages of the additional outlets with sacrificing shelves or storage space. This would allow the availability of the present invention to public on a economically viable basis.

To attain these advantages, the present invention generally comprises a Medicine Cabinet Assembly having outlets placed on the interior wall surfaces of the medicine cabinet.

The subject matter of the present invention is particularly pointed out and distinctly claimed in the concluding portion of the specification. However, both the organization and method of operation, together with further advantages and objects thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description taken in connection with accompanying drawings wherein like reference characters refer to like elements.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention will be better understood and objects other than those set forth above will become apparent when consideration is given to the following detailed description thereof. Such description makes reference to the annexed drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of the improved medicine cabinet.

FIG. 2 is an isometric view of a typical outlet assembly.

FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view along line A-A′ illustrating the attachment of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly to a stud or wall structure.

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view along line A-A′ illustrating the attachment of the outlet directly to the left side wall without the use of a outlet housing.

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view along line B-B′ illustrating the use of a hollow side wall that acts as both an outlet housing and a support.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Now referring to FIG. 1 the instant invention 1 is an improved Medicine Cabinet Assembly1, that has a first electrical outlet assembly 3 and a second electrical outlet assembly 5, mounted on the interior surface 9a of the left side wall 9, that is opposite from the right side wall 11, of said Medicine Cabinet Assembly1.

For ease of reference the left side wall 9 has interior surface 9a and an exterior wall surface 9b, the right side wall 11 has an interior surface 11a and exterior surface 11b, the top side wall 29 has an interior surface 29a and exterior surface 29b, the bottom wall 10 has an interior surface 10a and exterior surface 10b, and at the rear of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 a back wall 12 that encloses the interior volume of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly 14, and has a rear surface 12b and a front surface 12a. The vast majority of medicine cabinets have doors 41 that typically have a mirror front 43 and sheet metal back 45 that are attached to either the left side wall 9 or the right side wall 11 with hinges such as 47,49. When said walls are assembled the forward facing edges 51,53,55,57 form the front of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1.

Now referring to FIG. 2, outlets 13 are typical housed in an outlet housing 15, in which the outlet 13 is attached to lead wires 17,19 to provide power to the outlet for use with an appliance (not shown). The use of outlets are well know in the art, and existing outlets can be used in most applications.

Now referring to FIG. 3 the outlet assemblies 3,5 should be mounted opposite the wall structure such as a vertical stud 21 within, and part of the, wall structure to support the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 in order to allow for room for the outlet assemblies 3,5. The right side 11 wall would then be secured to left face of the wall stud 23, typically via fasteners such as bolts 25,27. The mounting of medicine cabinets 1 to wall structures is well know in the art, and the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 can be mounted with screws or nails as well to either metal or wood studs, or mounted to the wall surface itself (not illustrated).

Referring again to FIG. 1, outlet assemblies can also be placed facing downward on the top wall 29 of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1. However, it is not recommended to place electrical outlet assemblies facing upward on the bottom wall 10 of the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 due to the anticipated use of liquids in and around the instant invention 1. Liquids collecting in a prong receptacle could be an electrical shock or fire hazard. As is apparent shelves 33, can be added to the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 to increase storage capacity.

Now referring to FIG. 4, instead of using a outlet housing 15 the outlet 13 can be mounted directly to the side wall 9a of the instant invention 1. As illustrated a wire 16 with two lead wires 17,19 or three lead wires 17,19,35 is attached to the outlet 13. As is well known in the art, the third wire is a ground 35 wire. It is not recommended to use the Medicine Cabinet Assembly1 as ground. Code rules should be consulted to ensure compliance within the jurisdiction of intended use. If an outlet 13 is directly mounted to the side or top wall then a cover, preferable of non-conductive material, can be used to shield the receptacle from debris or other hazards. In either embodiment the outlets should be covered with a face plate 37.

A CONTEMPLATED EMBODIMENT

The use of electrical outlets 13 that are now commercially available is not required. It is contemplated that outlets 13 can be specifically designed for a Medicine Cabinet Assembly1. However, the prongs (not shown) at the end of nearly all commercially available appliances are universal in size and shape.

Now referring to FIG. 5, in the event that local electrical codes require the use of outlet housings 15, an alternative to using commercially available outlet housings 15 is to use hollow side walls 9,11 or top wall that would provide space 39 to insert an outlet 13 and to run the wire 16 and lead wires 17,19,35 through.

OTHER EMBODIMENTS POSSIBLE

While several embodiments of the present invention have been shown and described, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that many changes and modifications may be made without departing from the invention in its broader aspects.





 
Previous Patent: Polymer actuator

Next Patent: Article support divider system