Title:
Quick assembly furniture
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A bookcase includes a furniture carcass (1) having a bight panel (1a) and two wing panels (1b, 1c). The bight panel (1a) has hinge edges (2a, 2b), and one of the wing panels (1b, 1c) may be hinged with each of the hinge edges (2a, 2b). The wing panels (1b, 1c) and the bight panel (1a) form a U-shaped open sided case configuration, with the wing panels (1b, 1c) and hinges (2a, 2b) capable of being folded from the U-shaped configuration to an at least semi-flat panel configuration. A pair of interlocking shelves (3a, 3b) form a box panel which interconnects the two wing panels (1b, 1c) and holds the furniture carcass (1) in the U-shaped configuration. A base (4a) and a top (4b) mate with the furniture carcass (1).



Inventors:
Krieger, Douglas P. (Archbold, OH, US)
Application Number:
12/075150
Publication Date:
10/09/2008
Filing Date:
03/10/2008
Assignee:
Sauder Woodworking Company (Archbold, OH, US)
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47B43/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WILKENS, JANET MARIE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
VARNUM, RIDDERING, SCHMIDT & HOWLETT LLP (GRAND RAPIDS, MI, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A quick assembly case good furniture, comprising: a first panel having opposite first and second side edges, and a top edge; a second panel having opposite third and fourth side edges, the third side edge being hingedly connected with the second side edge; a third panel having opposite fifth and sixth side edges, and a top edge, the fifth side edge being hingedly connected with the fourth side edge; and a top that is supported upon and connected with the top edges.

2. The furniture of claim 1, wherein the first, second, and third panels are oriented so as to define a generally vertically extending open sided channel with the first and the sixth edges defining the open side, and further including a fourth panel having opposite seventh and eighth side edges, the seventh side edge being connected with the sixth side edge and the eighth side edge being connected with the first side edge.

3. A method of manufacture and delivery of quick assembly case good furniture, comprising the steps of: providing a three sided furniture carcass with a bight panel and two wing panels, the bight panel having two opposing hinge edges and the wing panels being hinged with the hinge edges, so the wing panels hinge relative to the bight panel to a generally U-shaped open sided case configuration, the wing panels being generally parallel with one another and generally perpendicular to the bight panel, and hinge from the U-shaped configuration to an at least semi-flat panel configuration; providing a box panel that interconnects between the two wing panels and holds the three sided furniture carcass in the U-shaped configuration; and providing at least one of a base and a top, the one further interconnecting between and securing at least the two wing panels.

4. A method of manufacturing and delivery of quick assembly case good furniture comprising the steps of: assembling a plurality of furniture sub-assemblies; interconnecting the plurality of furniture sub-assemblies to form an item of completed case good furniture; inspecting the item of completed case good furniture; disconnecting at least one of the furniture sub-assemblies from the completed item of case good furniture to form a partially disassembled case good furniture item; and packaging the partially disassembled case good furniture item.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/893,943 filed Mar. 9, 2007.

STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT

Not applicable.

PARTIES TO A JOINT RESEARCH AGREEMENT

Not applicable.

REFERENCE TO A SEQUENCE LISTING

Not applicable.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to furniture case goods, which are known to include desks, dressers, shelving cabinets, and the like, and, more particularly, to adaptation of furniture case goods so that they may be collapsed to achieve efficiency in transportation and convenient reassembly.

2. Background Art

Supply chain management is a critical aspect of how goods, including furniture, are made readily available and provided at low cost to customers. Fully assembled case goods are difficult to manage and are thereby relatively expensive to ship and deliver. Fully assembled case goods are not easily delivered to a customer's home, because of stairs, small rooms and other “obstacles” which are typically large, cumbersome items. Fully assembled case goods also occupy large volumes of space in transit from their source of origin to the ultimate customer, and volume increases shipping costs. On the other hand, while unassembled units may be easier to deliver, they require too much time and too much skill to assemble in the customer's home, making this a non-option in supply chain management consideration.

Thus, one appreciates a need for furniture case goods that are efficiently transported, delivered, and placed in a customer's possession for use.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Accordingly, quick assembly furniture of the invention introduces a semi-flat philosophy that addresses the challenges of transportation, delivery, and placement into service discussed above. Quick assembly furniture of the invention provides furniture case goods that comprise various sub-assemblies that are quickly assembled at the location of use, and assembled without requiring special skills. The various sub-assemblies required are in accordance with the nature of the goods being a desk, a book case, and the like.

Further, a unit according to the invention may be easily transported to its final destination, even if such destination is the penthouse suite of a 200-year-old apartment building. While this semi-flat approach to the solution may have a larger carton than traditional ready to assemble (RTA) or knock down, flat pack furniture, typically about 50% larger, quick assembly furniture of the invention will be much smaller than a comparable pre-assembled case good, typically about 75% smaller. Thus, this inventive provides notable improvement, including smaller cartons for easier logistics and a high level fit and finish of the end product.

It will be understood that case goods in accordance with the present invention are susceptible to and facilitate full assembly in the factory prior to packaging and shipment of the case good with the fully assembled case goods being subsequently partially or fully disassembled and thereafter packaged and shipped. The fit, completeness and compatibility of all components of each item of case goods in accordance with the present invention may thereby be positively checked with respect to all other mating components of said item of case goods prior to packaging and shipment.

These and other features, objects, and benefits of the invention will be recognized by one having ordinary skill in the art and by those who practice the invention, from this disclosure, including the specification, the claims, and the drawing figures.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS OF THE DRAWING

FIG. 1 is an exploded schematic representation of a bookcase of the invention;

FIG. 2 is an exploded schematic representation of a bookcase of the invention;

FIG. 3 is the view of FIG. 2 in a mostly assembles condition;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a drawer according to the invention;

FIG. 5 is a plan view of a back, a first side and a second side of the drawer;

FIG. 6 is a plan view of the back of a front of the drawer;

FIG. 7 is a plan view of a bottom of the drawer;

FIG. 8 is a perspective view illustrating assembly of the drawer;

FIG. 9 is a cross section view taken along line 6-6 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 10 is a cross section view taken along line 7-7 of FIG. 5; and

FIG. 11 is a cross section view taken along line 8-8 of FIG. 5.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

A preferred embodiment of quick assembly furniture according to the invention is generally shown in the drawing figures and discussed below. Generally, the inventive concept is premised on hinging multiple panels together sub-assemblies, configuring the sub-assemblies as desired in a partial finished case good configuration, and completing the case good with further panels or sub-assemblies.

Thus, a bookcase of the invention may have a basic sub-assembly of a three sided furniture carcass 1 with a bight panel 1a and two wing panels 1b, 1c (FIG. 1). The bight panel 1a may have two opposing hinge edges 2a, 2b, and one of the wing panels 1b, 1c may be hinged with each of the hinge edges 2a, 2b. In assembly, the wing panels 1b, 1c hinge relative to the bight panel 1a to a generally U-shaped open sided case configuration as shown in FIG. 1. The wing panels 1b, 1c are noted to be generally parallel with one another and generally perpendicular to the bight panel 1a. Alternatively for shipping, the wing panels 1b, 1c and hinges 2a, 2b may be folded from the U-shaped configuration to an at least semi-flat panel configuration, not shown.

A box panel that interconnects between the two wing panels 1b, 1c and holds the three sided furniture carcass in the U-shaped configuration may be provided in the form of interlocking shelves 3a, 3b. A post and keyhole slot bracket interconnection (not shown) as is known in the furniture industry or various other hardware may be used to interconnect the box panel with the shelves 3a, 3b as is understood by one having ordinary skill in the art. One may consider the interconnection of the box panel and the three sided furniture carcass basic sub-assembly 1 to form an intermediate assembly.

At least one of a base 4a and a top 4b may mate with the intermediate assembly of the three sided furniture carcass basic sub-assembly 1. The top 4b and the base 4a may further interconnect between and secure at least the two wing panels 1b, 1c. The top 4b and the base may optionally or alternatively interconnect with the bight panel 1a as well.

A desk 5 of the invention may have at least one basic sub-assembly of a three sided furniture carcass 1 with a bight panel 1a and two wing panels 1b, 1c that define a desk pedestal (FIGS. 2 and 3). Again, the bight panel may have two opposing hinge edges 2a, 2b and the wing panels 1b, 1c may be hinged with the hinge edges 2a, 2b. In assembly, the wing panels 1b, 1c again hinge relative to the bight panel 1a to a generally U-shaped open sided case configuration as shown.

The wing panels 1b, 1c are noted to be generally parallel with one another and generally perpendicular to the bight panel 1a. Alternatively for shipping, the wing panels 1b, 1c and hinges may be folded from the U-shaped configuration to an at least semi-flat panel configuration, not shown.

Some distinctions from the bookcase in implementation of the inventive concept for a desk are noted. One of the wing panels 1b is adapted as a front panel of the desk pedestal 6 and is configured to accept drawers or doors to provide concealable access to an interior of the pedestal. Also, while the bight panel 1 a defined a back panel of the bookcase above, the bight panel 1a defines a desk pedestal side panel. Further, the box panel 7 in the desk 5 interconnects between the two wing panels 1b, 1c and holds the three sided furniture carcass 1 in the U-shaped configuration. The box panel 7 as used in the desk defines a desk 5 pedestal side panel, rather than a shelf, as in the bookcase embodiment. Additional box panels in the form of shelves may also be used in the desk pedestals 6, although not specifically shown in the drawing figures.

Again, various hardware may be employed. A post and keyhole slot bracket interconnection (not shown) as is known in the furniture industry or various other hardware may be well used to interconnect the box panel with the wing panels 1b, 1c as is understood by one having ordinary skill in the art. Various hinging arrangements 2a, 2b may be used to hinge connect the wing panels with the bight panel.

By providing a second, mirror image, quick assembly desk pedestal 6 of the invention as discussed above, a second pedestal for a two pedestal desk is provided. A modesty panel 8 may interconnect and position the two pedestals 6. Then, a top 9 may mate with the pedestals. The top 9 may further connect with any or all of the vertical panels, including the wing panels 1b, 1c, the box panels 7, and the modesty panel 8.

Referring to FIGS. 4-8, a drawer 10 for the desk 6, or the like, may have a front 12, a back 14, a first side 16, a second side 18 and a bottom 19. The back 14 has a back first end 60 and a back second end 62 (FIG. 5). The back first end 60 has a plurality of back first end projections 64. The back first end 60 includes back first end top projections 68 and 70. Back first end top projections 68 and 70 include openings 72 and 74, respectively. The back first end 60 further includes back first end bottom projections 76 and 78. Back first end bottom projections 76 and 78 include openings 80 and 82, respectively.

Further, the back second end 62 has a plurality of back second end projections 66 (FIG. 5). The back second end 62 includes back second end top projections 84 and 86. Back second end top projections 84 and 86 include openings 88 and 90, respectively. The back second end 62 further includes back second end bottom projections 92 and 94. Back second end bottom projections 92 and 94 include openings 96 and 98, respectively. The back 14 also includes a back slot 100 extending between the back first end 60 and the back second end 62.

The first side 16 has a first side front end 102 and a first side back end 104 (FIG. 5). The first side front end 102 has a plurality of first side front end projections 106. The first side front end includes first side front end top projections 110 and 112. The first side front end top projections 110 and 112 include openings 114 and 116, respectively. The first side front end 102 further includes first side front end bottom projections 118 and 120. The first side front end bottom projections 118 and 120 include openings 122 and 124, respectively.

The first side 16 has a first side back end 104 (FIG. 5). The first side back end 104 has a plurality of first side back end projections 108. The first side back end 104 includes first side back end top projections 126 and 128. The first side back end top projections 126 and 128 include openings 130 and 132, respectively. The first side back end 104 further includes first side back end bottom projections 134 and 136. The first side back end bottom projections 134 and 136 include openings 138 and 140, respectively. The first side 16 includes a first side slot 142 extending between the first side front end 102 and the first side back end 104.

The second side 18 has a second side front end 144 and a second side back end 146 (FIG. 5). The second side front end 144 has a plurality of second side front end projections 148. The second side front end 144 includes second side front end top projections 152 and 154. The second side front end top projections 152 and 154 include openings 156 and 158, respectively. The second side front end 144 further includes second side front end bottom projections 160 and 162. The second side front end bottom projections 160 and 162 include openings 164 and 166, respectively.

The second side 18 has a second side back end 146 (FIG. 5). The second side back end 146 has a plurality of second side back end projections 150. The second side back end 146 includes second side back end top projections 168 and 170. The second side back end top projections 168 and 170 include openings 172 and 174, respectively. The second side back end 146 further includes second side back end bottom projections 176 and 178. The second side back end bottom projections 176 and 178 include openings 180 and 182, respectively. The second side 18 includes a second side slot 184 extending between the second side front end 144 and the second side back end 146.

The back 14 is assembled to the first side 16 by inserting a first member 186 through the openings 72, 74, 130 and 132 and inserting a second member 188 through the openings 80, 82, 138 and 140 (FIGS. 5, 8, 10, and 11). The back 14 is assembled to the second side 18 by inserting a third member 190 through the openings 88, 90, 172 and 174 and inserting a fourth member 192 through the openings 96, 98, 180 and 182. The members 186, 188, 190 and 192 allow the first and second sides 16 and 18 to pivotally move with respect to the back 14 from a flat position as shown, to a position in which the first and second sides 16 and 18 are at right angles with respect to the back 14 as shown.

The back first end projections 64, 68, 70, 76, and 78 include radiused inside edges 194 to allow clearance for the above-described pivotal movement (FIGS. 5, 10, and 11). The back second end projections 66, 84, 86, 87 and 92 include radiused inside edges 194 to allow clearance for the above-described pivotal movement. Similarly, the first side projections 108, 126, 128, 134 and 136 and the second side projections 150, 168, 170, 176 and 178 also include radiused inside edges 194 to allow clearance for the above-described pivotal movement.

The members 186, 188, 190 and 192 can be inserted in the respective openings during manufacture. The members 186, 188, 190 and 192 can also be inserted in the respective openings by the assembler during assembly.

As shown, the front 12 has a front first end 20 and a front second end 22 (FIG. 6). The front first end 20 has a plurality of front first end projections 24. The front first end 20 includes front first end top projections 28 and 30. Front first end top projections 28 and 30 include openings 32 and 34, respectively. The front first end 20 further includes front first end bottom projections 36 and 38. Front first end bottom projections 36 and 38 include openings 40 and 42, respectively.

The front second end 22 has a plurality of front second end projections 26 (FIG. 6). The front second end 22 includes front second end top projections 44 and 46. Front second end top projections 44 and 46 include openings 48 and 50, respectively. The front second end 22 further includes front second end bottom projections 52 and 54. Front second end bottom projections 52 and 54 include openings 56 and 58, respectively. The front 12 also includes a front slot 100 extending between the front first end 20 and the front second end 22.

The bottom 19 has a bottom front 198, a bottom back 200, a first bottom side 202 and a second side 204 (FIGS. 4, 7, and 8). The bottom 19 is sized and adapted for insertion in the slots 59, 100, 142 and 184 of the front 12, the back 14, the first side 16 and the second side 18, respectively.

The drawer 10 is assembled by pivotally moving the first and second sides 16 and 18 to right angle positions with respect to the back 14 as shown (FIGS. 8 and 9). The bottom 19 is positioned in the slots 59, 100, 142 and 184 as shown. The front 12 is attached to the first and second sides 16 and 18. A first front member 206 is inserted through the openings 32, 34, 114 and 116 and a second front member 208 is inserted through the openings 40, 42, 114 and 116. Similarly, a third front member 210 is inserted through the openings 48, 50, 156 and 158 and a fourth front member 212 is inserted through the openings 56, 58, 122 and 124.

The front 12, back 14, first side 16 and second side 18 include projections having openings for attaching the respective components together (FIGS. 4-6 and 8). In this embodiment, the projections are illustrated as a plurality of fingers. Alternatively, the projections could be any structure, such as a single finger, sufficient to attach the front 12, back 14, first side 16 and second side 18 together.

The members are illustrated as cylindrically-shaped pins for insertion in corresponding openings (FIGS. 5 and 8). The pins can be made of any suitable material such as steel, brass, plastic, or other materials sufficient to be inserted into the projections and allow for pivotal movement. In another embodiment, the members could be any fasteners sufficient to be inserted into the projections and allow for pivotal movement.

The first and second members 186 and 188 are used to connect the first side 16 to the back 14 (FIGS. 5 and 8). Similarly, the third and fourth members 190 and 192 are used to connect the second side 18 to the back 14. In another embodiment, the back 14 and the first and second sides 16 and 18 include projections, all of which having openings extending through the projections. In this embodiment, a single member could be inserted through all of the projections to make the movable connection.

One having ordinary skill in the art and those who practice the invention will understand from this disclosure that various modifications and improvements may be made without departing from the spirit of the disclosed inventive concept. One will also understand that various relational terms, including left, right, front, back, top, and bottom, for example, may be used in this detailed description of the invention and in the claims only to convey relative positioning of various elements of the claimed invention without limitation to the invention.