Title:
Gas Filled Art Encasement System
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An encasement system for a display article comprising a transparent top section, a bottom section, a side section disposed directly adjacent the transparent top section and bottom section, the side section having an extending arm, the extending arm having a top segment and a bottom segment and a channel defined there between, whereby a cavity is defined between the transparent top section, bottom section and side section for receiving the display article and whereby the channel is in communication with the cavity, an inert gas injected into the cavity through the channel. A valve system is provided to allow gas to fill the cavity.



Inventors:
Vihos, Georg A. (Hamtramck, MI, US)
Application Number:
12/170664
Publication Date:
01/15/2009
Filing Date:
07/10/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47F3/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
HOGE, GARY CHAPMAN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HARNESS DICKEY (TROY) (Troy, MI, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An encasement system for a display article comprising: a transparent top section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side and a sealant channel disposed on an opposite side; a bottom section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side and a sealant channel disposed on another side; an article carrier having an integral cavity defined therein for receiving the display article and a first interior sealant channel disposed on one side of said article carrier and a second sealant channel disposed on a second opposite side of said article carrier; a first sealant ring in contact with said transparent top section sealant channel and said first interior sealant channel; a second sealant ring in contact with said bottom section sealant channel and said second interior sealant channel; a first sliding side connecting one of said transparent top section sealant shoulder and one of said bottom section connection shoulders thereby compressing said first sealant ring; a second sliding side connecting the opposite transparent top section sealant shoulder and the opposite bottom section connection shoulder thereby compressing said second sealant ring wherein the compression of said first and second sealant rings retains said transparent top section and bottom section together to create an air tight cavity between said article carrier and said transparent top section and bottom section; and a first valve fluidly coupled to the airtight cavity.

2. The encasement system as in claim 1, wherein said first sealant ring is a rubber “O” ring having a compression force.

3. The encasement system as in claim 1, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an acrylic substrate.

4. The encasement system as in claim 1, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an ultraviolet protectant acrylic substrate capable of filtering at least 90% of ultraviolet light.

5. The encasement system as is claim 1, wherein said transparent top section connection shoulder and bottom section connection shoulder create a dovetail connector and first side includes a dovetail channel.

6. The encasement system as in claim 1, wherein said transparent top for section sealant channel is disposed around the outer circumference of said top section.

7. The encasement system as in claim 1, wherein said transparent top section connection shoulder and bottom section connection shoulder create a dovetail channel and first side includes a dovetail.

8. An encasement system for a display article comprising: a transparent top section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side and a sealant channel disposed on an opposite side; a bottom section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side; an article carrier having an integral cavity defined therein for receiving the display article and an interior sealant channel disposed on one side; a sealant ring in contact with said transparent top section sealant channel and said interior sealant channel; a first sliding side connecting one of said transparent top section sealant shoulder and one of said bottom section connection shoulders thereby compressing said sealant ring; a second sliding side connecting the opposite transparent top section sealant shoulder and the opposite bottom section wherein the compression of said first sealant ring retain said transparent top section and bottom section together to create an air tight cavity between said article carrier and said transparent top section and bottom section; and first and second valves fluidly coupled to the airtight cavity.

9. The encasement system as in claim 8, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an acrylic substrate.

10. The encasement system as in claim 8, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an ultraviolet protectant acrylic substrate capable of filtering at least 90% of ultraviolet light.

11. The encasement system as in claim 8, wherein said transparent top section connection shoulder and bottom section connection shoulder create a dovetail connector and first side includes a dovetail channel.

12. An encasement system for a display article comprising: a transparent top section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side; a bottom section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side and a sealant channel disposed on an opposite side; an article carrier having an integral cavity defined therein for receiving the display article and an interior sealant channel disposed on one side; a sealant ring in contact with said bottom section sealant channel and said interior sealant channel; a first sliding side connecting one of said transparent top section shoulders and one of said bottom section connection shoulders thereby compressing said sealant ring; and a second sliding side connecting the opposite transparent top section sealant shoulder and the opposite bottom section wherein the compression of said sealant ring retains said transparent top section and bottom section together to create an air tight cavity between said article carrier and said transparent top section and bottom section.

13. The encasement system as in claim 12, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an acrylic substrate.

14. The encasement system as in claim 12, wherein said transparent top section and bottom section are made from an ultraviolet protectant acrylic substrate capable of filtering at least 90% of ultraviolet light.

15. The encasement system as in claim 12 wherein said transparent top section connection shoulder and bottom section connection shoulder create a dovetail connector and first side includes a dovetail channel.

16. The encasement system as in claim 12 further comprising first and second valves fluidly coupled to an airtight cavity.

17. The encasement system as in claim 16 further comprising a source of compressed gas coupled to said first valve.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/958,969, filed on Jul. 10, 2007. The disclosure of the above application is incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD

This invention relates to an encasement system for various types of display articles and more particularly to an airtight encasement system for use in protecting display articles from detrimental environmental elements.

BACKGROUND

The statements in this section merely provide background information related to the present disclosure and may not constitute prior art. It is known that certain articles displayed over time begin to show the effects of harmful environmental elements. More particularly, certain display articles namely, works of art such as paintings, sketches, lithographs, pictures, drawings and certain works of historical significance require special care in their display mechanism. These works of art are, in most instances, meant for public display.

Similarly, works of historical significance are often coveted by the public and provide a basis for historical education and are therefore often displayed in various fashions in public areas for viewing. Similarly, certain family documents, such a family photographs, certificates, graduation documents and other noted articles are often displayed for the benefit of all the family members and guests. Lastly, certain display articles such as collectable items like, famous signatures, famous photographs, baseball cards, special or first edition magazines and comic books etc. are often of such importance or significance that a special display environment is desired.

These works of art, works of history, family documents and collectibles and other display articles are often flat articles made from or prepared on paper products. It is known that exposure to the air and sunlight has a detrimental deteriorating effect on the paper, colors, pigments and other aspects of the articles. U.S. Pat. No. 1,031,727 to Mussbeck discloses a means for preserving works of art such as oil paintings, water color paintings, graphic objects and similar articles. The invention consists in furnishing the article to be protected with an envelope of nitrogen gas and in providing a casing of peculiar construction which is adapted to contain the article and to be charged with gas.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,183,160 assigned to Applicant discloses a mount for a display object including drawings, paintings, thin sheets or other large thin sheets comprising a pair of opposed rectangular flexible plastic sheets arranged face to face and adapted to receive the display object there between. At least one of the sheets is transparent. The sheets have continuous opposed peripheral inner walls with peripheral recesses formed in the walls defining a peripheral cavity. A sealant fills the cavity throughout 360 degrees for securing and sealing together the sheets around the periphery. The space between the sheets is evacuated with the display object operatively sealed between the sheets. U.S. Pat. No. 4,848,014 to Yesbick discloses an air chambered frame assembly wherein the frame and viewing area are integrally formed of clear plastic or Plexiglas eliminating the need for a separate glass pane. Additionally, U.S. Pat. Nos. 6,688,030 and 6,990,763 disclose frame systems. These patents are incorporated herein by reference.

Consequently, a need exists for a low cost, easy to manufacture, highly reliable encasement system for a display articles that protects such articles from detrimental effects of the general environment.

SUMMARY

To overcome the deficiencies of the prior art, and an encasement system for a display article is provided. The encasement system has a transparent top section having a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side and a sealant channel disposed on an opposite side. Further, a bottom section has a pair of connection shoulders disposed on one side. An article carrier having an integral cavity defined therein for receiving the display article and an interior sealant channel disposed on one side. A sealant ring in contact with said transparent top section sealant channel and said interior sealant channel. A first sliding side connecting one of said transparent top section sealant shoulder and one of said bottom section connection shoulders thereby compressing said sealant ring. The system further has a second sliding side connecting the opposite transparent top section sealant shoulder and the opposite bottom section wherein the compression of said first sealant ring retain said transparent top section and bottom section together to create an air tight cavity between said article carrier and said transparent top section and bottom section.

Further areas of applicability will become apparent from the description provided herein. It should be understood that the description and specific examples are intended for purposes of illustration only and are not intended to limit the scope of the present disclosure.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The drawings described herein are for illustration purposes only and are not intended to limit the scope of the present disclosure in any way. The following description is merely exemplary in nature and is not intended to limit the present disclosure, application, or uses.

FIG. 1 represents a disassembled view of the gas filled art encasement system according to the present teachings;

FIG. 2 represent the valve subassembly shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 represents a back panel as shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 represents a central frame member shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 represents a cross-sectional view of the frame shown in FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 represents a cross-sectional view of an optional side member;

FIG. 7 represents a cross-sectional view of the system shown in FIG. 1 in an assembled configuration;

FIGS. 8A-8C represent an alternate back plate design;

FIGS. 9-11 represent an alternate front and back plate design;

FIG. 12 represents a front view of the plate shown in FIG. 11;

FIG. 13 represents an O-ring;

FIGS. 14A-14C represent an alternate encasement system;

FIG. 15 represents an exploded view of an alternate encase system; and

FIG. 16 represents a cross-sectional assembled view of the system shown in FIG. 15.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIGS. 1 through 16 represent various figures showing the teachings of the present disclosures. Generally, the figures represent the encasement systems of the present invention. These embodiments can have different components such as a bottom acrylic sheet or bottom section, an oxygen indicator filament, the side frame or side section, and a transparent top acrylic sheet or top section, and a valve assembly. The top acrylic top section can be made from Acrylite OP-2 Museum Quality ultraviolet filter sheets. Contemplated is the use of any transparent or semi-transparent ultraviolet filtering sheets depending on the specific display article to be protected and the length of protection required. The frame can be disposed between the upper and lower members. Disposed between the frame member and the upper and lower members is a gasket material disposed there between. The display article is a representative piece of artwork, but as described above the display articles may be works of art such as paintings, sketches, lithographs, pictures, drawings or any other artistic works. Display articles may also be certain works of historical significance requiring special care in their display mechanism. The present invention also contemplates any form of family documents, such a family photographs, certificates, graduation documents and other noted articles often displayed for the benefit of all the family members and guests. Lastly, the present invention contemplates certain display articles such as collectable baseball cards, special or first edition magazines or comic books etc. where a protective special display environment is desired.

FIG. 1 represents an exploded view of the gas filled art encasement system 20 according to the present teachings. The system 20 is formed of a back panel 21, central frame 22, and transparent top panel 23. Additionally shown is a pair of side rail members 24 which function to compress together and releasably couple the back panel 21, central frame 22, and top panel 23 together.

As described below, a seal 25 in the form of an O-ring, is placed between the back and top panels 21 and 23. Additionally shown is a pair of valves 26 and a pressurized gas source 27. As shown in FIG. 3, defined in the back plate 21 is a pair of orifices 28 which are fluidly coupled to the pair of valves. Optionally defined in the back plate 21 is a groove 29 about the periphery of the back plate 21.

The first valve 26a is a one-way valve which is fluidly coupled to the inert gas source 27 and allows the flow of gas into the system at a predetermined pressure. One-way valve 26b functions to allow the outflow of air from the encasement system at a predetermined pressure.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the central fame 22. The central frame 22 defines a through space which forms a document storage compartment 30. FIG. 5 represents a cross-sectional view of the frame 22. As can be seen, O-ring accepting grooves 29 can be found on medial 32 and proximal 33 faces of the frame 22.

As seen in FIG. 6, the side rails 24 define a front and back panel accepting channel 34. The channel 34 defines a pair of bearing surfaces 35. These bearing surfaces can be parallel or angled. The channel 34 functions to apply pressure to the front panel 23 and back plate 21 to cause compression of the O-ring 25.

FIG. 7 represents a cross-sectional view of the encasement system 20. Shown is the relationship of the valve 26 fluidly coupled to the cavity 30. Shown is O-ring 25 disposed within the groove 29. The O-rings 25 is sealably forced against the front and back panel. As shown, the back panel, top panel, and central frame are compressed to seal the system. It is envisioned the bearing surfaces 35 of the side rails 24 can be longitudinally tapered so as to facilitate compression of the assembly. As seen in FIGS. 8A-8C, the sides of the front and back panels 21 and 23 can have beveled sides 37 which can interface with angled bearing edges 35.

FIGS. 9-11 represent alternate back, frame, and front members having integrated corresponding O-ring bearing grooves. Additionally shown is a pair of angled locking slots defined along the periphery. FIG. 12 shows a front view of the frame with associated O-ring 25.

As best seen in FIGS. 9 through 14B, the upper and lower members can have dovetail structures which slidably accept a pair of side rail members. These side rail members (see FIGS. 1, 6, and 14C) have mating surface which function to hold the top and bottom members together and apply the proper sealing force to the seal.

A cavity 30 is formed between the top and bottom members. In this regard, as shown in FIG. 14A and 14B, the top and bottom members can for recesses which define portions form the cavity. In this embodiment, the top and bottom members can form the basis of the cavity, and a frame member is not needed.

FIGS. 14A-14C represent an alternate encasement system 50. The system 50 is formed of front and back panel members 51 and 52. The front and back members define a coupling mechanism formed of interlocking angled complementary surfaces 53 and 54. In this regard, the front and rear coupling members form a dovetail connection. The rear member 51 further defines a groove 29 which accepts an O-ring 25. Also defined within the rear member is a cavity 30 configured to hold a document. It is envisioned in this configuration that the O-ring accepting groove 29 would be in only one member to facilitate sliding interface of the two members 51 and 52. FIG. 14C shows a system using side members 24 defining a dovetail coupling.

FIGS. 15 and 16 represent an alternate encasement system 60. The system has a frame 61, glass 62, and low UV protection acrylic block 63. The system preferably uses an acid free mat board 64, upper UV protection acrylic block 65, and a T-frame 66. Disposed within the system is an oxygen indicator 67, which changes color when exposed to oxygen. As shown in FIG. 16, an inert gas fill valve 26 is disposed in the T-frame encasement.