Title:
TOOL FOR INSTALLING LARGE SHEETS OF MATERIAL ON A CEILING AND METHOD
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A tool for installing sheets of drywall and the like on a ceiling has a base with a pivot member thereon. The tool can be mounted on a ceiling joist and pivots between an open and closed position.



Inventors:
Graham, Gavin (Omemee, CA)
Application Number:
11/469306
Publication Date:
03/06/2008
Filing Date:
08/31/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/511
International Classes:
E04F21/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
BARTOSIK, ANTHONY N
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DARYL W SCHNURR (WATERLOO, ON, CA)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A tool for use in manually installing large sheets of material on a ceiling, said ceiling having a plurality of supports thereon, said supports being spaced to receive a width of said sheets substantially from center to center of two or more supports, said tool comprising a base and a pivot member pivotally connected to said base, said pivot member having a free end extending beyond said base, said base being removably connected to a support, said pivot member being rotatable by at least 90° relative to said base, said base being removably connectable to one of said supports, said base being above said pivot member when said base is connected to one of said supports, said base and said pivot member being sized and shaped so that a vertical distance from a top of said base to a top of said free end of said pivot member is at least equal to a thickness of one sheet of material, said tool having an open position to receive said one sheet of material and a closed position to support said one sheet of material.

2. A tool as claimed in claim 1 wherein said pivot member has two levels, a higher level in an area of said base and a lower level in an area beyond said base.

3. A tool as claimed in claim 2 wherein said pivot member is pivotally connected to said base at a pivot point.

4. A tool as claimed in claim 3 wherein there is an opening through said pivot point through which said tool can be affixed to said supports.

5. A tool as claimed in claim 4 wherein said pivot member has a pivot end opposite to said free end, said pivot end and said free end being separated by two substantially 90° bends so that said free end is substantially parallel to said pivot end.

6. A tool as claimed in claim 4 wherein said pivot member has a pivot end opposite to said free end, said free end being at a lower level than said pivot end when said tool is in an upright position, there being two 90° bends in said pivot member between said free end and said pivot end.

7. A tool as claimed in claim 4 wherein there is a handle extending downward from said free end.

8. A tool as claimed in claim 4 wherein there are two tools used with each sheet.

9. A tool as claimed in claim 1 wherein there are retainers located to support a first side of said sheet with said tool supporting the second side of said sheet.

10. A tool for use in manually installing large sheets of material on a ceiling, said ceiling having a plurality of supports thereon, said supports being spaced to receive a width of said sheet substantially from center to center of two or more supports, said sheets having a thickness, said tool comprising of a base and a pivot member pivotally connected to said base, said pivot member being pivotable between an open position and a closed position relative to said base, a vertical distance between a lower surface of said base and an upper surface of an outer portion of said pivot member being at least equal to said thickness of said sheets to support said sheet adjacent said supports in said closed position.

11. A tool as claimed in claim 1 wherein there are two tools for each sheet.

12. A tool as claimed in claim 1 wherein there are retainers located to support a first side of said sheet, with said tool supporting a second side of said sheet.

13. A method of installing large sheets of material on a ceiling, said ceiling having a plurality of supports thereon, said supports being spaced to receive a width of said sheet substantially from center to center of two or more supports, said tool having a base and an elongated member pivotally connected to said base with at least two retainers that are connectable to said supports, said method comprising installing said retainers on one of said supports at a location to receive a first side of said sheet, installing said tool on a support at a location to receive a second side of said sheet, moving said tool to an open position, lifting said sheet and inserting said first side of said sheet into said retainers, raising said second side of said sheet to said supports and while holding a second side of said sheet in position, adjusting said tool from said open position to said closed position, thereby holding said sheet adjacent to said supports inserting fasteners into said sheet to permanently hold said sheet against said supports and removing said retainers and said tool.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of Invention

This invention relates to a tool for use in manually installing large sheets of material on a ceiling and to a method of installation. More particularly, this invention relates to a tool and method for installing large sheets of drywall on a ceiling.

2. Description of the Prior Art

Four by eight sheets of drywall or large sheets of material of similar size can be difficult to install on a ceiling particularly when one person is working alone. It is known to construct T-shaped holders that are often made from wood two by fours. The T-shaped holders are sized to be able to extend essentially from the floor to ceiling with the T-shaped portion at the upper end. An installer manipulates a sheet of drywall and the T-shaped holder to wedge the drywall between the holder and the supports (joints) located at the ceiling. The installer inserts screws through the drywall into the ceiling supports while manually holding up the end of the drywall located away from the holder. The installer then inserts sufficient fasteners to hold the drywall in position and the holder is removed. The method is then repeated for the next sheet of drywall and so on. Difficulties can be encountered with this method and it can be very time consuming to manipulate the drywall and/or the holder into the proper position and the proper location on the ceiling. The use of the holder can also be unsafe and sometimes drywall will fall off the holder and cause injury to a worker or become damaged by the fall.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to provide a tool that can be used to install large sheets of material on a ceiling enabling the installation to be efficiently performed by one person. It is a further object of the present invention to provide a tool and method for installing drywall on a ceiling where the tool has an open and closed positions the closed position enabling the drywall to be retained adjacent to the ceiling supports before any screws or other fasteners are inserted.

A tool is used to manually install large sheets of material on a ceiling. The ceiling has a plurality of supports thereon, the supports being spaced to receive a width of the sheets substantially from center to center of two or more supports. The tool comprises a base and a pivot member pivotally connected to the base, the pivot member having a free end extending beyond the base. The base is removably connected to a support, the pivot member being rotatable by at least 90° relative to the base. The base is above the pivot member when the base is connected to one of the supports. The base and pivot member are sized so that a vertical distance from a top of the base to a top of the free end of the pivot member is at least equal to a thickness of one sheet of material. The tool is strong enough to support one sheet of material and has an open position to receive one sheet of material and a closed position to support the one sheet of material.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of two tools supporting a partial sheet of drywall;

FIG. 2 is a side view of a tool and support with the tool in a closed position;

FIG. 3 is a side view of the tool and support with the tool in an open position;

FIG. 4 is a top view of a base of the tool;

FIG. 5 is a top view of a pivot member of the tool;

FIG. 6 is a side view of a retainer and support; and

FIG. 7 is a top view of the retainer.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

In FIG. 1, there are two tools 2. Each tool 2 has a base 4 and pivot member 6 that are pivotally connected to one another along a pivot axis 8. The pivot axis 8 has an opening 10 along a center thereof. The opening 10 is sized to receive a screw (not shown in FIG. 1) to removably connect the tool 2 to a support (not shown in FIG. 1) in a ceiling (not shown). When the tool is installed in the supports the base 4 is located above the pivot member 6. The pivot member 6 has an upper level 12 in an area of the base 4 and a lower outer level 14 in an area beyond the base 4. The pivot member 6 has a free end 16 and has two substantially 90° bends 18 at an approximate midpoint thereof. A vertical distance between a lower surface of the base 4 and an upper surface of the pivot member 6 in an area of the lower level 14 is at least equal to a thickness 20 of a large sheet 22 of material. The material is preferably drywall. It can be seen that the drywall rests on the lower level 14 of each tool 2. The lower level 14 extends from beyond the base 4 to the free end 16. Both tools 2 shown in FIG. 1 are in a closed position.

In FIGS. 2 and 3, the tool 2 is shown as being installed within a ceiling support 24 and held in place by a screw 26 that is shown as not being inserted, but would be inserted through the opening 10 of the base 4 and pivot member 6. The tool 2 is in a closed position in FIG. 2. In FIG. 3, the tool 2 is in an open position, in which the pivot member is rotated substantially 90° from the position shown in FIG. 2. The base 4 has a beveled corner 28, which is more clearly shown in FIG. 4. FIG. 4 is a top view of the base 4. FIG. 5 is a top view of the pivot member 6. The pivot member 6 is elongated and has a handle at a turned down edge 29. The same reference numerals are used in FIGS. 2, 3, 4 and 5 as those used in FIG. 1 for those components that are identical.

In FIG. 6, there is shown a side view of a retainer 30 which slopes downward at a free end 32. The retainer 30 has an opening 34 therein and is designed to fit within a support 36 of a ceiling (not shown). The retainer is held in place on the support 36 by the screw 26. The support 36 is parallel to the support 24 but located apart therefrom by a width of the large sheet of material. A typical size of drywall and other large sheets of material is substantially four feet by eight feet. The supports 24, 36 (only support 36 is shown in FIG. 6) will therefore be four feet apart from one another from center to center. Usually, supports in a ceiling will have sixteen inch centers so that there will be two additional supports (not shown) between the supports 24 and 36. FIG. 7 is a top view of the retainer 30. The same reference numerals are used in FIG. 7 as those used in FIG. 6 to refer to those parts that are identical.

In using a method of the invention, an installer installs two retainers 30 that are spaced apart from one another by approximately five feet in one support 36. The installer also installs two tools 2 in substantially opposing positions to the retainers 30 in the support 24 which is a width of material apart from the support 36. The tools 2 are in a closed position in FIG. 1 when the pivot member 6 extends approximately 90° relative to the support 24 and an open position when the pivot member 6 is substantially parallel to the support 24. A closed position can be any position where the free end 16 of the pivot member 6 extends toward a large sheet of material that is being installed by a sufficient distance to support that sheet of material. Preferably, the closed position is substantially 90° to the support 24. Similarly, an open position can be any position where the large sheet of material being installed can be moved above the pivot member 6 after the sheet 22 is inserted into the retainers 30. The handle allows for easier rotation of the pivot member 6 relative to the base 4.

With the tools in the open position, the installer places a first side of a large sheet of material onto the sloped surfaces 32 of the retainers 30 so that an edge of the sheet is located approximately beneath a center of the support 36. The installer then raises up a second side of the large sheet of material so that it is adjacent to the support 24. While manually holding the second side against or at least adjacent to the support 24, the installer moves the tools 2 from the open position to the closed position. The large sheet of material is then held in position against or at least adjacent to the supports 24, 36 by the retainers 30 and tools 2. The installer can then insert screws or other fastening devices through the sheet of material and into the supports 24, 36 as well as other supports located between the supports 24, 36. When the fasteners have been inserted, the retainers 30 and tools 2 can be removed from the supports 36, 24 respectively and moved to a new location either on the same supports or on different supports to install another large sheet of material. This method can be repeated until large sheets of material have been installed on the entire ceiling. There may be some areas of the ceiling that require the sheets to be cut into smaller sheets and the installer may be able to install the smaller sheets without using the retainers 30 and tools 2 of the present invention.

The retainers and tools of the present invention can be used in the same manner as described for large sheets or smaller sheets of material.

While two retainers and two tools are preferred for each sheet of material, more than two retainers and/or more than two tools can be used for each sheet. Similarly, while two retainers are preferred, an installer may decide to install sheets of drywall or other material using only one tool with the retainers. Further, one retainer can be used or one retainer can be much wider than that shown in the drawings or a single retainer can have two sloped surfaces that are spaced apart from one another. While the retainers and tools of the present invention can be used by one person to install heavy materials such as a four by eight foot sheet of drywall, the retainers and tools can be used by more than one installer working together on the same sheet. If the retainers and tools are used by one installer, the installer must have sufficient strength to be able to life the sheet of drywall or other material into position.

The tool can be designed in various ways to achieve the function required to install large sheets of material. For example, if the base is made thicker or is U-shaped to achieve the same effect as a thicker base, the pivot member can be straight rather than bent as along as the distance from the uppermost part of the base to the upper surface of the free end of the pivot member is at least equal to a thickness of the sheet of material being installed. Preferably, the vertical distance from the uppermost part of the base to the upper surface of the free end of pivot member is slightly greater than the thickness of the sheet of material to be installed.