Title:
Collapsible folding chair
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A collapsible chair device is provided including a seat portion, a backrest portion hingeably attached to the seat portion, two or more front leg members hingeably attached to the seat portion, two or more rear leg members hingeably attached to the backrest portion, a base portion pivotally attached to the two or more front leg members and the two or more rear leg members, and a brace member attached on one end to the front support member by a hinge and attached on the other end to the seat portion by a hinge. The device can be converted from a compact and readily portable state to a stable and sturdy chair by an unfolding action wherein all of the components unfold in unison. The device can further include a backrest brace portion and a carrying handle portion.



Inventors:
Shabram, Lyle F. (Carmel Valley, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/650605
Publication Date:
08/16/2007
Filing Date:
01/08/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47D1/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
CRANMER, LAURIE K
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Eric Hanscom / InterContinental IP (Carlsbad, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A collapsible chair device comprising: a) a seat portion; b) a backrest portion attached to the seat portion, the backrest portion including a cross-member wherein the seat portion is attached to the cross-member by at least one hinge; c) two or more front leg members each attached on one end to the seat portion, the two or more front leg members structurally connected by a front support member; d) two or more rear leg members, where each of the two or more rear leg members is attached on one end to the backrest portion by a rear leg member hinge, the two or more rear leg members structurally connected by a rear support member; e) a base portion pivotally attached to the two or more front leg members and the two or more rear leg members; and f) a brace member attached on one end to the front support member by a first hinge and attached on the other end to the seat portion by a second hinge, the brace member comprising two brace sections connected by a brace member locking hinge whereby, when in a locked position, the seat portion, the backrest portion, the front leg members, the rear leg members, the base portion, and the brace member form a stable chair device, wherein the releasing and folding of the brace member causes the backrest portion to fold toward the two or more front leg members until the rear leg member hinges are released, thereby allowing the backrest portion and the two or more rear leg members to further collapse until the two or more front leg members, the seat portion, and the backrest portion lie flatly together, such that they may be folded back over the two or more rear leg members, forming a compact configuration.

2. The collapsible chair of claim 1, where two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members has a terminal end, which is the end which is not attached to the seat portion, and where the two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members are attached to the base member at a terminal end of each of the two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members.

3. The collapsible chair of claim 1, where two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members has a terminal end, which is the end which is not attached to the seat portion, and where the two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members are attached to the base member at a location above the terminal end of each of the two or more rear leg members and the two or more front leg members.

4. The collapsible chair of claim 1 further comprising a handle portion attached to the seat portion.

5. The collapsible chair of claim 1, wherein the backrest portion comprises at least two backrest upright members and a first backrest cross-member and a second backrest cross-member attached between the at least two backrest upright members.

6. The collapsible chair of claim 5, wherein the first backrest cross-member is attached between the at least two backrest upright members on one end of the at least two backrest upright members and the second backrest cross-member is attached between the at least two backrest upright members on the other end of the at least two backrest upright members.

7. The collapsible chair of claim 5, wherein the rear leg member hinge is a locking hinge.

8. The collapsible chair of claim 1, wherein the two or more front leg members are attached on one end to the seat portion by a double hinge mechanism to allow the two or more front leg members to both pivot and lift off of the base portion.

9. The collapsible chair of claim 8, wherein the double hinge mechanism comprises: a) a mounting bracket having a base portion and a hinge portion coupled to the base portion, the hinge portion perpendicular to the base portion, the hinge portion having a pin accepting portion on the distal end thereof; b) a hinge plate pivotally secured to the mounting bracket by a pin, the hinge plate having a first end with a mounting bracket pin receiving portion therein and a second end with a front leg pin receiving portion therein, wherein the pin is disposed through the mounting bracket pin receiving portion and the pin accepting portion to secure the hinge plate to the mounting bracket.

10. The collapsible chair of claim 9, wherein each of the other ends of the two or more front leg members contain a pin receiving portion and a hinge plate slot disposed therein, wherein a front leg pin can be inserted through each of the pin receiving portions to secure the hinge plate to the two or more front leg members and the hinge plate slots can receive the hinge plate to enable the chair to be securely positioned into a fully extended position.

11. The collapsible chair of claim 5 further comprising: a) a backrest portion brace attached to the seat portion, the backrest portion brace comprising a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member attached on one end to another side of the seat portion, and a cross-brace attached on one end to the other end of the first brace member and on the other end to the other end of the second brace member, the backrest portion brace configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the cross-brace is positioned on the side of the backrest portion opposite the seat portion; and b) a brace support attached to each of the at least two backrest upright members for supporting the cross-brace when the chair is positioned in a fully extended position.

12. The collapsible chair of claim 5 further comprising a backrest brace pivotally attached to two sides of the seat portion, the backrest brace comprising a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member pivotally attached on one end to the first brace member and attached on the other end to one of the two or more upright members, the backrest portion brace configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the backrest brace is straightened to secure the backrest portion to the seat portion.

13. The collapsible chair of claim 1, wherein the base portion is substantially x-shaped.

14. The collapsible chair of claim 1, wherein the seat portion, backrest portion, two or more front leg members, two or more rear leg member, and base portion are made of wood.

15. A collapsible chair device comprising: a) a seat portion; b) a backrest portion attached to the seat portion, the backrest portion comprising at least two backrest upright members and a first backrest cross-member and a second backrest cross-member attached between the at least two backrest upright members; c) two or more front leg members each attached on one end to the seat portion by a double hinge mechanism, the two or more front leg members structurally connected by a front support member; d) two or more rear leg members each attached on one end to the backrest portion by a rear leg member locking hinge, the two or more rear leg members structurally connected by a rear support member; e) a base portion pivotally attached to the other end of the two or more front leg members and the other end of the two or more rear leg members; and f) a brace member attached on one end to the front support member by a first hinge and attached on the other end to the seat portion by a second hinge, the brace member comprising two brace sections connected by a brace member locking hinge whereby, when in a locked position, the seat portion, the backrest portion, the front leg members, the rear leg members, the base portion, and the brace member form a stable chair device, wherein the releasing and folding of the brace member causes the backrest portion to fold toward the two or more front leg members until the rear leg member hinges are released, thereby allowing the backrest portion and the two or more rear leg members to further collapse until the two or more front leg members, the seat portion, and the backrest portion lie flatly together, such that they may be folded back over the two or more rear leg members, forming a compact configuration.

16. The collapsible chair of claim 15, wherein the first backrest cross-member is attached between the at least two backrest upright members on one end of the at least two backrest upright members and the second backrest cross-member is attached between the at least two backrest upright members on the other end of the at least two backrest upright members.

17. The collapsible chair of claim 15, wherein the double hinge mechanism comprises: a) a mounting bracket having a base portion and a hinge portion coupled to the base portion, the hinge portion perpendicular to the base portion, the hinge portion having a pin accepting portion on the distal end thereof; b) a hinge plate pivotally secured to the mounting bracket by a pin, the hinge plate having a first end with a mounting bracket pin receiving portion therein and a second end with a front leg pin receiving portion therein, wherein the pin is disposed through the mounting bracket pin receiving portion and the pin accepting portion to secure the hinge plate to the mounting bracket.

18. The collapsible chair of claim 15, wherein each of the other ends of the two or more front leg members contain a pin receiving portion and a hinge plate slot disposed therein, wherein a front leg pin can be inserted through each of the pin receiving portions to secure the hinge plate to the two or more front leg members and the hinge plate slots can receive the hinge plate to enable the chair to be securely positioned into a fully extended position.

19. The collapsible chair of claim 15 further comprising: a) a backrest portion brace attached to the seat portion, the backrest portion brace comprising a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member attached on one end to another side of the seat portion, and a cross-brace attached on one end to the other end of the first brace member and on the other end to the other end of the second brace member, the backrest portion brace configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the cross-brace is positioned on the side of the backrest portion opposite the seat portion; and b) a brace support attached to each of the at least two backrest upright members for supporting the cross-brace when the chair is positioned in a fully extended position.

20. The collapsible chair of claim 15 further comprising a backrest brace pivotally attached to two sides of the seat portion, the backrest brace comprising a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member pivotally attached on one end to the first brace member and attached on the other end to one of the two or more upright members, the backrest portion brace configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the backrest brace is straightened to secure the backrest portion to the seat portion.

21. A collapsible chair device comprising: a) a seat portion; b) a backrest portion attached to the seat portion, the backrest portion comprising at least two backrest upright members and a first backrest cross-member and a second backrest cross-member attached between the at least two backrest upright members; c) two or more front leg members each attached on one end to the seat portion by a double hinge mechanism, the two or more front leg members structurally connected by a front support member; d) two or more rear leg members each attached on one end to. the backrest portion by a rear leg member locking hinge, the two or more rear leg members structurally connected by a rear support member; e) a base portion pivotally attached to the other end of the two or more front leg members and the other end of the two or more rear leg members; f) a brace member attached on one end to the front support member by a first hinge and attached on the other end to the seat portion by a second hinge, the brace member comprising two brace sections connected by a brace member locking hinge; and g) a backrest brace pivotally attached to two sides of the seat portion, the backrest brace comprising a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member pivotally attached on one end to the first brace member and attached on the other end to one of the two or more upright members, the backrest portion brace configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the backrest brace is straightened to secure the backrest portion to the seat portion whereby, when in a locked position, the seat portion, the backrest portion, the front leg members, the rear leg members, the base portion, and the brace member form a stable chair device, wherein the releasing and folding of the brace member causes the backrest portion to fold toward the two or more front leg members until the rear leg member hinges are released, thereby allowing the backrest portion and the two or more rear leg members to further collapse until the two or more front leg members, the seat portion, and the backrest portion lie flatly together, such that they may be folded back over the two or more rear leg members, forming a compact configuration.

22. The collapsible chair of claim 21, wherein the seat portion contains a handle portion located therein.

23. A double hinge mechanism for use in a collapsible chair, comprising, a) a mounting bracket having a base portion and a hinge portion coupled to the base portion, the hinge portion perpendicular to the base portion, the hinge portion having a pin accepting portion on the distal end thereof; b) a hinge plate pivotally secured to the mounting bracket by a pin, the hinge plate having a first end with a mounting bracket pin receiving portion therein and a second end with a front leg pin receiving portion therein, wherein the pin is disposed through the mounting bracket pin receiving portion and the pin accepting portion to secure the hinge plate to the mounting bracket, wherein the two or more front leg members are attached on one end to the seat portion by a double hinge mechanism to allow the two or more front leg members to both pivot and lift off of the base portion.

24. The double hinge mechanism for use in a collapsible chair of claim 23, wherein each of the other ends of the two or more front leg members contain a pin-receiving portion and a hinge plate slot disposed therein, wherein a front leg pin can be inserted through each of the pin receiving portions to secure the hinge plate to the two or more front leg members and the hinge plate slots can receive the hinge plate to enable the chair to be securely positioned into a fully extended position.

Description:

PRIORITY

This application is related to and claims priority from U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/771,718, filed on Feb. 10, 2006, entitled “Collapsible Folding Chair”, the entire application being expressly incorporated herein by reference.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

This invention was not federally sponsored.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The embodiments of the invention relate to portable furniture. More specifically, the embodiments of the present invention relate to portable furniture that is foldable.

2. Description of the Related Art

Furniture is a necessary component of modern living. Items such as sofas, tables, chairs, desks, bookcases, and dressers can be found in almost every home to provide comfort and convenience. Most furniture however, is rather bulky and requires more than one person to transport the furniture item from room to room. To help provide versatility and transportability, certain furniture has been developed that could be folded into compact and readily transportable positions. One type of folding furniture in particular, folding chairs, were developed to allow users to conveniently and comfortably sit or lounge near various locations, such as by the pool or on a lawn, or to quickly and readily increase the seating capacity of a room, by providing a chair that could easily be folded and carried to such a location.

While folding furniture has been useful, many drawbacks presently exist. One drawback relating to foldable furniture is durability. Many items of foldable furniture are not designed for long-term use, but rather are comprised of fabric material that easily wears over time. Additionally, many items of foldable furniture, such as chairs, do not provide designs that allow for stable use of the furniture, but rather opt to provide simple folding and unfolding features that are not designed for optimized support capacity. These chairs can result in a user falling out of the chair as the user attempts to sit down in the chair, possibly leading to serious injury. Another problem with foldable furniture is that it often does not provide for the ability to be used outside one particular setting. For example, beach chairs do not offer the ability to be used, at least fashionably, in a home environment, such as in a guest room or a family room. Therefore, because of the limited purpose of the foldable furniture, a consumer must purchase additional furniture to achieve the desired result, costing additional time, effort, and not to mention money.

A further problem associated with folding furniture is the lack of convenient carrying means. To carry a folding chair, for example, one must generally grasp a leg member, the edge of the seat portion, or carry the whole chair using both hands, which can result in an awkward carrying position for the user. Folding chairs have also presented the problem of not remaining in a compact and folded position during transport. Due to the lack of strong hinge members that can lock a chair into position, combined with the awkward carrying position that users generally have to use when transporting a folding chair, often results in a user being inconvenienced by the chair falling out of the compact and folded position.

Therefore, there is a current need for a chair device that provides for a compact, easily storable and easily transportable device that may be easily unfolded and that that allows the unfolded components to be locked in place to form a stable chair that may not accidentally collapse when a person attempts to sit in the chair.

In this respect, before explaining at least one embodiment of the invention in detail it is to be understood that the embodiments of the invention are not limited in their application to the details of construction and to the arrangement of the components set forth in the following description or illustrated in the drawings. The embodiments of the invention are capable of being practiced and carried out in various ways. In addition, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purpose of description and should not be regarded as limiting.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

The preferred embodiment of the invention provides a collapsible chair device comprising a seat portion, a backrest portion, two or more front leg members, two or more rear leg members, a base portion, and a brace member. The backrest portion is attached to the seat portion and includes a cross-member, with the seat portion being attached to the cross-member by at least one hinge. The backrest portion comprises at least two backrest upright members, a first backrest cross-member, and a second backrest cross-member attached between the at least two backrest upright members. The first backrest cross-member is attached between the backrest upright members on one end of the backrest upright members and the second backrest cross-member is attached between the backrest upright members on the other end of the backrest upright members. The backrest upright members are attached to each of the two or more rear leg members by a hinge.

The two or more front leg members are attached on one end to the seat portion. The front leg members are structurally connected by a front support member. The front leg members are attached on one end to the base portion by a double hinge mechanism to allow the two or more front leg members to both pivot and lift off of the base portion. The double hinge mechanism comprises a mounting bracket having a base portion and a hinge portion coupled to the base portion, the hinge portion perpendicular to the base portion. The hinge portion has a pin accepting portion on the distal end thereof, and a hinge plate pivotally secured to the mounting bracket by a pin, rivet, bolt or other similar attachment mechanism. The hinge plate also contains a first end with a mounting bracket pin receiving portion therein and a second end with a front leg pin receiving portion therein, wherein the pin is disposed through the mounting bracket pin receiving portion and the pin accepting portion to secure the hinge plate to the mounting bracket. Each of the other ends of the front leg members contain a pin receiving portion and a hinge plate slot disposed therein, wherein a front leg pin can be inserted through each of the pin receiving portions to secure the hinge plate to the two or more front leg members and the hinge plate slots can receive the hinge plate to enable the chair to be securely positioned into a fully extended position.

The rear leg members are attached on one end to the backrest portion. The rear leg members are structurally and pivotally connected by a rear support member through a hinge mechanism. The base portion is pivotally attached to the other end of the front leg members and the other end of the rear leg members. The brace member is attached on one end to the front support member by a hinge and attached on the other end to the seat portion by a hinge. The brace member comprises two brace sections attached by a locking hinge.

When in a locked position, the seat portion, backrest portion, front leg members, rear leg members, base portion, and brace member form a stable chair device. Releasing and folding of the brace member causes the pivoting members to pivot and fold in a forward direction until the locking hinges between the rear leg members and backrest portion must be released, thereby allowing the member to continue to collapse forward until the front leg members, seat portion, and backrest portion lie flatly together, such that, with the allowance of the double hinging mechanism, may be folded back over the rear leg members therein forming a compact configuration where the various members lie substantially flat and parallel to the adjoining members.

In another embodiment, the device can also include a backrest portion brace attached to the seat portion. The backrest portion brace includes a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member attached on one end to another side of the seat portion, and a cross-brace attached on one end to the other end of the first brace member and on the other end to the other end of the second brace member. The backrest portion brace is configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position—that is, the position in which a person can sit in the chair—the cross-brace is positioned on the side of the backrest portion opposite the seat portion, and connects the two at an approximately 45 degree angle. A brace support is also attached to each of the two backrest upright members for supporting the cross-brace when the chair is positioned in a fully extended position.

In a further embodiment, the device can include a backrest brace pivotally attached to two sides of the seat portion. The backrest brace contains a first brace member attached on one end to one side of the seat portion, a second brace member pivotally attached on one end to the first brace member and attached on the other end to one of the upright members. The backrest portion brace is configured such that when the chair is positioned in the fully extended position the backrest brace is straightened to secure the backrest portion to the seat portion.

While the figures enclosed herein illustrate iterations of the invention teaching a chair which rests on the ground utilizing either the base member or the legs, it is envisioned that the invention could be manufactured utilizing a variety of terminal objects attached to the base member or legs. Such terminal objects could include wheeled casters, pads which can be attached through sticky surfaces or tacks/screws, and other items well known in the art.

There has thus been outlined, rather broadly, features of the embodiments of the invention in order that the detailed description thereof may be better understood, and in order that the present contribution to the art may be better appreciated. There are additional features of the embodiments of the invention that will be described hereinafter and which will form the subject matter of the claims appended hereto.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings, which are incorporated in and form a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention and together with the description, serve to explain the principals of the embodiments of the invention.

FIG. 1 shows a front perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair.

FIG. 2 shows an angled side perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair.

FIG. 3 shows a side view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair.

FIG. 4A shows a rear perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair in a beginning collapsed position.

FIG. 4B shows a rear perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair in an intermediate collapsed position.

FIG. 4C shows a rear perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair in a final collapsed position.

FIG. 5 shows a side perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair including a backrest brace which serves to strengthen the support for the backrest and place less wear and tear on the hinges.

FIG. 6 shows a rear perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair including a backrest brace where the chair rests upon its legs rather than on the base member.

FIG. 7 shows a detailed view of a double hinged mechanism for use with the embodiments of the device.

FIG. 8A shows a side perspective view of the brace locking hinge for use with the embodiments of the device.

FIG. 8B shows a top view of the brace locking hinge for use with the embodiments of the device.

FIG. 9A shows a rear perspective view of another alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair.

FIG. 9B shows a side perspective view of the chair of FIG. 9A.

FIG. 9C shows a perspective view of the chair of FIG. 9A in its collapsed position.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring now to the drawings, wherein similar parts are identified by like reference numerals, FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the collapsible folding chair device 10. Device 10 includes a seat portion 20, a backrest portion 30, front leg members 40 and 42., rear leg members 50 and 52, a base portion 60, and a brace member 70. These components are preferably comprised of a wood material, but can also be comprised of a durable plastic material, lightweight metallic material, or other material that provides for a durable and lightweight device.

Backrest portion 30 is attached to seat portion 20 and includes a cross-member 80 attached thereto, where seat portion 20 is attached to cross-member 80 by at least one hinge 82. Backrest portion 30 comprises backrest upright members 32 and 34, a first backrest cross-member 36, and a second backrest cross-member 38 attached between backrest upright members 32 and 34. Backrest cross-member 36 is attached between backrest upright members 32 and 34 on ends 33 and 35 of backrest upright members 32 and 34 respectively. Backrest cross-member 38 is attached between backrest upright members 32 and 34 on ends 37 and 39 of backrest upright members 32 and 34 respectively. Backrest upright members 32 and 34 are attached to each of the rear leg members 50 and 52 by hinges 84 and 86 respectively, where hinges 84 and 86 are locking hinges in this iteration of the invention. Although as shown, backrest cross-members 36 and 38 are attached between backrest upright members 32 and 34 to form a square-shaped pattern, other configurations of backrest cross-members 36 and 38 between backrest upright members 32 and 34 are contemplated by this invention, such as a cross-pattern or other patterns that may be obvious to one with ordinary skill in the art. It should be noted that backrest portion 30 is not limited to two backrest cross-members, but can comprise more than two to accomplish different objectives.

Front leg members 40 and 42 are pivotally attached on ends 41 and 43 respectively to seat portion 20. Front leg members 40 and 42 are structurally connected by a front leg support member 90. Front leg members 40 and 42 are attached to base portion 60 by a double hinge mechanism 100 to allow front leg members 40 and 42 to both pivot and lift off of base portion 60. Rear leg members 50 and 52 are attached on ends 54 and 56 to backrest portion 30 by locking hinges. Rear leg members 50 and 52 are structurally connected by a rear support member 58. Base portion 60 is pivotally attached to the other ends 45 and 47 of the front leg members and the other ends 55 and 57 of rear leg members 50 and 52. Base portion 60 can comprise various shapes, including a square, cross, circle, rectangle, and other shapes as recognized by one with ordinary skill in the art. Preferably, base portion 60 is substantially x-shaped. In this configuration, the ends 45 and 47 of the front leg members and the other ends 55 and 57 of rear leg members 50 and 52 are each attached to a corner of the x shape. Ends 55 and 57 are attached to base portion 60 by hinges 59 and 61. Brace member 70 is attached on one end 72 to front leg support member 90 by a hinge 92 and attached on the other end 74 to seat portion 20 by a hinge 94. Brace member 70 comprises two brace sections 76 and 78 attached by a locking hinge 79.

When in a locked position, seat portion 20, backrest portion 30, front leg members 40 and 42, rear leg members 50 and 52, base portion 60, and brace member 70 form a stable chair device 10. The releasing and folding of brace member 70 causes backrest portion 30 to fold toward front leg member 40 and 42 until locking hinges 84 and 86 are released, thereby allowing backrest portion 30 and rear leg members 50 and 52 to further collapse until front leg members 40 and 42, seat portion 20, and backrest portion 30 lie flatly together, such that, with the allowance of double hinge mechanism 100, they may be folded back over rear leg members 50 and 52, forming a compact configuration where the various members lie substantially flat and parallel to the adjoining members. Device 10 further can include a carrying portion 130 therein or attached thereto. Carrying portion 130 is preferably incorporated into cross-member 80, but could also, in different iterations, be located proximate to seat portion 20 or incorporated as part of seat portion 20. Carrying portion 130 preferably comprises a handle portion integrated within seat portion 20. Carrying portion 130 can also comprise a handle portion pivotally attached to seat portion 20, such that carrying portion 130 can be folded up or down depending on whether device 10 is in an extended position for seating or a carrying position for transport. Carrying portion 130 may also be connected to cross-member 80 attached to backrest portion 30.

The hinges described herein are preferably metallic in nature, but can comprise durable and strong plastic or other materials with similar characteristics. It should be noted that there are numerous other configurations and hardware arrangements for device 10 that fall within the scope of the embodiments of the invention, and that the configurations can components shown are chosen for convenience, appearance, manufacturability, and compatibility with other types of folding furniture.

Referring now to FIGS. 2 and 3, FIG. 2 shows an angled side perspective view of device 10 in a fully extended position, and FIG. 3 shows a side view of device 10 in a fully extended position. FIG. 2 illustrates the attachment of seat portion to cross-member 80 by at least one hinge 82. This figure also illustrates the attachment of brace member 70 to cross-member 80 by hinge 94, as well as the attachment of front leg members 40 and 42 to seat portion 20 via hinges 48 and 49 respectively. In an alternative configuration, brace member 70 could be connected to seat member 20 by hinge 94. FIG. 3 illustrates the angular positioning of brace member 70 in relation to seat portion 20, backrest portion 30, and base portion 60, when device 10 is in a fully extended position. Regarding the direction brace portion 70 folds, or the size or straightness of front leg members 40 and 42, or rear leg members 50 and 52, numerous other configurations are contemplated that fall within the scope and spirit of this invention.

Referring now to FIGS. 4A, 4B, and 4C, FIG. 4A shows a rear perspective view of device 10 in a beginning collapsed position, FIG. 4B shows a rear perspective view of device 10 in an intermediate collapsed position, and FIG. 4C shows a rear perspective view of device 10 in a final collapsed position. To position device 10 in a beginning collapsed position, backrest upright members 32 and 34, first backrest cross-member 36, and second backrest cross-member 38 are folded against the top surface of seat portion 20. This motion causes front leg members 40 and 42 to contact against the bottom surface of seat portion 20, with brace member 70 folding along locking hinge 79. To next position device 10 in an intermediate collapsed position, as shown in FIG. 4B, backrest portion 30, along with seat portion 20 and front leg members 40 and 42, are folded along hinges 84 and 86 such that it is perpendicular with base portion 60. To position device 10 in a final collapsed position, backrest portion 30, along with seat portion 20 and front leg members 40 and 42, are folded along hinges 84 and 86 such that it lies flatly against base portion 60. Because hinges 84 and 86 are locking hinges, they can be configured such that device 10 can be securely locked in the compact final collapsed position and can be readily stored or transported from location to location.

FIG. 5 shows a side perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair including a backrest brace which serves to strengthen the support for the backrest and place less wear and tear on the hinges. Device 200 is similar to device 10 in that device 200 includes a seat portion 210, a backrest portion 220, front leg members 230 and 232, rear leg members 240 and 242, a base portion 250, a brace member 260, and various hinges to attach the members together. Backrest portion 220 is attached to seat portion 210 and includes a cross-member 270 attached thereto. Device 200 can also include a backrest portion brace 280 attached to the seat portion. Backrest portion brace 280 includes a brace members 282 and 284 attached to side 212 of seat portion 210, and a cross-brace 286 attached on the opposite ends of brace members 282 and 284. Backrest portion brace 280 is configured such that when device 200 is positioned in the fully extended position—that is when device 200 can be used as a chair—cross-brace 286 is positioned on the side of backrest portion 220 opposite seat portion 210. A brace support 292 is also attached to each of the two backrest upright members 222 and 224 for supporting cross-brace 286 when device 200 is positioned in a fully extended position. By providing additional support to backrest portion 220, backrest portion brace 280 takes some of the pressure off of hinges 287. Device 200 also contains a support slot 294 located on the back of each of rear leg members 240 and 242 at a position such that when device 200 is folded into a compact structure, brace supports 292 are disposed within support slots 294.

FIG. 6 shows a rear perspective view of an alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair including a backrest brace where the chair rests upon its legs rather than on the base member. Device 201 is similar to device 200 in FIG. 5, in that device 201 includes a seat portion 210, a backrest portion 220, front leg members 230 and 232, rear leg members 240 and 242, a base portion 250, a brace member 260, and various hinges to attach the members together. Backrest portion 220 is attached to seat portion 210 and includes a cross-member 270 attached thereto. Device 201 can also include a backrest portion brace 280 attached to the seat portion. Backrest portion brace 280 includes a brace members 282 and 284 attached to side 212 of seat portion 210, and a cross-brace 286 attached on the opposite ends of brace members 282 and 284. Backrest portion brace 280 is configured such that when device 201 is positioned in the fully extended position—that is when device 201 can be used as a chair—cross-brace 286 is positioned on the side of backrest portion 220 opposite seat portion 210. A brace support 292 is also attached to each of the two backrest upright members 222 and 224 for supporting cross-brace 286 when device 200 is positioned in a fully extended position. By providing additional support to backrest portion 220, backrest portion brace 280 takes some of the pressure off of hinges 287. Device 201 also contains a support slot 294 located on the back of each of rear leg members 240 and 242 at a position such that when device 200 is folded into a compact structure, brace supports 292 are disposed within support slots 294.

Base portion 250 in FIG. 6 is attached to front leg members 230 and 232, and rear leg members 240 and 242 in a different configuration that that shown in FIG. 5. In FIG. 5, the leg members rest upon base portion 250 and are pivotally attached to base portion 250 by hinges attached to the upper surface of base portion 250 and the terminal ends 295 of the leg members. The iteration of the invention shown in FIG. 6 illustrates a chair where base portion 250 is attached to the leg members at a position other than the terminal ends 295 of the leg members. Here, base portion is attached several inches upward from the terminal end of leg members 230, 332, 240, and 242. In this iteration of the invention the hinge mechanism will still allow for the chair to be laid flat for storage or transport, and provides additional advantages such as allowing for a simple strip of padding to be applied to terminal ends 295 to make chair 201 less damaging to carpet and tile floors.

FIG. 7 shows a detailed view of double hinge mechanism 100. Double hinge mechanism 100 comprises a mounting bracket 102 having a base portion 104 and a hinge portion 106 coupled to base portion 104. Hinge portion 106 is perpendicular to base portion 104. Hinge portion 106 has a pin accepting portion 108 on the distal end 107 thereof, and a hinge plate 110 pivotally secured to mounting bracket 102 by a pin 112. Hinge plate 110 also contains a first end 114 with a mounting bracket pin receiving portion 116 therein (not shown), and a second end 118 with a front leg pin receiving portion 120 therein (not shown), wherein pin 112 is disposed through mounting bracket pin receiving portion 116 and pin accepting portion 108 to secure hinge plate 110 to mounting bracket 102. Each of the other ends 45 and 47 of front leg members 40 and 42 contain a pin receiving portion 46 and 48, and a hinge plate slot 51 and 53 disposed therein, wherein a front leg pin 49 can be inserted through each of pin receiving portions 46 and 48 to secure hinge plate 110 to front leg members 40 and 42. Hinge plate slots 51 and 53 can receive hinge plate 110 to enable device 10 to be securely positioned into a fully extended position.

Referring now to FIGS. 8A and 8B, FIG. 8A shows a side perspective view of locking hinge 79, and FIG. 8B shows a top view of locking hinge 79. Hinge 79 can also be used with devices 200 and 300. Hinge 79 includes a first hinge member 85 connected to brace 78 and a second hinge member 87 connected to brace 76. First hinge member 85 and second hinge member 87 are connected by a hinge pin 89. Hinge 79 is preferably a locking hinge to allow for a stable positioning of device 10 when in the fully extended position.

Referring now to FIGS. 9A-9C, FIG. 9A shows a rear perspective view of another alternate embodiment of the collapsible folding chair device 300, FIG. 9B shows a side perspective view of device 300, and FIG. 9C shows a perspective view of device 300 in the collapsed position. Device 300 is similar to devices 10, 200 and 201 in that device 300 includes a seat portion 310, a backrest portion 320, front leg members 330 and 332, rear leg members 340 and 342, a base portion 350, a brace member 360, and various hinges to attach the members together. Backrest portion 320 is attached to seat portion 310 and includes a cross-member 370 attached thereto. Device 300 can also include a backrest portion brace 380 attached to each side of seat portion 310. Backrest portion brace 380 includes a first brace member 382 attached to seat portion 310, a second brace member 384 attached to backrest portion 320 by brace attachment 386. Backrest portion brace 380 is configured such that when device 300 is positioned in the fully extended position, that is when device 300 can be used as a chair, cross-brace 386 is positioned on the side of backrest portion 320 opposite seat portion 310.

With respect to the above description it is to be realized that the optimum dimensional relationships for the parts of the invention, including variations in size, materials, shape, form, function and manner of operation, assembly, and use, are deemed readily apparent and obvious to one skilled in the art, and all equivalent relationships to those illustrated in the drawings and described in the specification are intended to be encompassed by the present invention. Therefore, the foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described. Accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents fall within the scope of the present invention.

The above description, together with the various features of novelty which characterize the invention, are pointed out with particularity in the claims annexed to and forming a part of this disclosure. For a better understanding of the invention, its operating advantages and the specific advantages attained by its uses, reference should be made to the accompanying drawings and descriptive matter in which there are illustrated preferred embodiments of the invention.

Further, the purpose of the foregoing abstract is to enable the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the public generally, and especially the scientists, engineers, and practitioners in the art who are not familiar with patent or legal terms or phraseology, to quickly determine the nature and essence of the technical disclosure of the application. The abstract is neither intended to define the invention of the application, which is measured by the claims, nor is it intended to be limiting, as to the scope of the invention in any way.