Title:
Slotted Tabbed Rim Track and Building Method
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Adjustable slotted rim track for securing peripheral edges of a joist-floor panel assembly has a generally U-shaped planar web with interior depending tabs and opposite depending flanges normal to and separated by the web. The depending flanges may have a series of parallel adjustment slots for receiving fasteners through the flanges to connect and secure the rim track to a framing member such as a floor joist or floor panel assembly. Another design provides adjustment slots on the tabs instead of flanges. The slotted tabbed rim track design allows the joist-floor panel assembly to move relative to the rim track. Tabbed slots or angle clips affixed to the interior planar area of the rim track web are utilized for secure fastening of the adjustable rim track to the joist framing member during final installation of the assembly.



Inventors:
Schroeder Sr., Robert (Newburgh, NY, US)
Gitlitz, Harry (Spring Valley, NY, US)
Schroeder Jr., Robert (Walden, NY, US)
Application Number:
12/324515
Publication Date:
06/04/2009
Filing Date:
11/26/2008
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/745.05
International Classes:
E04C3/09
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
HIJAZ, OMAR F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
CALHELHA & DOYLE LLC (CORNWALL, NY, US)
Claims:
1. An adjustable slotted tabbed rim track for securing peripheral edges of a joist and floor panel assembly comprising: a generally U-shaped planar web of steel track having a pair of depending side flanges normal to and separated by the web, where the depending flanges have a plurality of parallel adjustment slots for receiving fasteners through the flanges to thereby connect and secure the adjustable rim track to joist framing members of a floor panel assembly, the adjustment slots having elongated openings in the direction the flanges depend from the central web, thereby facilitating adjustment between the rim track and joist framing members; and a plurality of tabs affixed to the interior of the planar area of the U-shaped rim track web and depending therefrom for securely fastening the rim track to a joist framing member in a floor panel assembly.

2. The adjustable rim track of claim 1 wherein the interior tabs are punched tabs integral to the web.

3. The adjustable rim track of claim 1 wherein the interior tabs are clip angles affixed to the interior of the web.

4. The adjustable rim track of claim 1 further comprising a framing member fastened to the rim track.

5. The adjustable rim track of claim 4 wherein the framing member is a flooring joist member.

6. The adjustable rim track of claim 5 further comprising a floor sheathing member.

7. An adjustable slotted tabbed rim track for securing peripheral edges of a joist and floor panel assembly comprising: a generally U-shaped planar web of steel track having depending side flanges normal to and separated by the web; and a plurality of tabs affixed to the interior of the planar area of the U-shaped rim track web and depending therefrom, the tabs having a plurality of parallel adjustment slots for receiving fasteners through the flanges to thereby connect and secure the adjustable rim track to joist framing members of a floor panel assembly, the tab slots having elongated openings in the direction the tabs depend from the central web, thereby facilitating adjustments between the rim track tabs and the framing members and for securely fastening the rim track to a joist framing member during final installation of the assembly.

8. The adjustable rim track of claim 7 wherein the interior tabs are punched tabs integral to the web.

9. The adjustable rim track of claim 7 wherein the interior tabs are clip angles affixed to the interior of the web.

10. The adjustable rim track of claim 7 further comprising a framing member fastened to the rim track.

11. The adjustable rim track of claim 10 wherein the framing member is a flooring joist member.

12. The adjustable rim track of claim 11 further comprising a floor sheathing member.

13. A method of building construction comprising the steps of: affixing a joist framing member to an adjustable slotted tabbed rim track member where said rim track is a generally U-shaped planar web of steel track having a pair depending side flanges normal to and separated by the web; and a plurality of tabs affixed to the interior of the planar area of the U-shaped rim track web and depending therefrom, wherein at least one of the tabs or side flanges have a plurality of parallel adjustment slots for receiving fasteners therethrough to thereby connect and secure the adjustable rim track to a joist framing member of a floor panel assembly, the slots having elongated openings in a direction away from the central web; adjusting the rim track and the framing members; and fastening the rim track to the joist framing member.

14. A method as in claim 13 further comprising the step of affixing a floor sheathing member to provide a joist and floor panel assembly.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of co-pending provisional applications Ser. No. 60990,215 filed Nov. 26, 2007 and Ser. No. 61088,132 filed Aug. 8, 2008 which are incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to improvements in building construction using steel rim track and joist framing assemblies.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Light gauge steel framing construction techniques utilize conventional rim track at the periphery of floor joist assemblies. Rim track is intended to connect the ends of an array of joists to load bearing studs, walls or other weight bearing elements thereby securing the floor joist assemblies. Such joist assemblies may be framed in-place or prior to final assembly, but in either case, the assemblies are subject to the vagaries of imperfect installation conditions.

Currently available products do not allow adjustability when panelizing floor systems in light gauge steel. This necessitates either framing a floor system in the field, which can be very expensive and time consuming, or panelizing the assembly in advance. Panelizing in advance requires a built-in degree of variance from actual desired lengths, due to the fact that field conditions are never perfect and often do not match construction plans and drawings with adequate precision. In some applications this would not be an acceptable engineering practice. When prefabricated panels arrive on a jobsite and the installing contractor finds that the installation space is too small, it is very time consuming and costly to alter each panel to fit the permissible space.

A similar but worse situation would arise if the installing contractor discovers that the space where the panels are to be installed is too large. In such instance, the panels cannot be used at all.

Conventional rim track products typically do not have tabs for fastening or slots for adjustments. Conventional rim track products also typically have equal length flanges. One rim track product (Dietrich's Trade Ready Track) has flanges of different length, thereby defining a top and bottom orientation of each segment of the track. This causes a problem for users of the product who must constantly monitor the orientation of the track as well as the spacing of the fastening tabs.

The improved adjustable rim track product disclosed herein has equal length side flanges and therefore there is no set top or bottom. This design offers interchangeability and makes the subject improved rim track product more versatile and easier for contractors to use.

Another conventional product used in head of wall applications is a horizontal slotted track used in non-load bearing wall applications. It does not have fastening tabs and therefore is not useful in the subject rim track applications where floor joist assemblies require solid attachment to load bearing elements.

Conventional rim track products and horizontal slotted track can be obtained from a variety of sources, which include Dietrich Industries' Trade Ready Track, Construction Innovations, Inc.'s “Sliptrack” and Brady SLP-TRK branded products.

The subject adjustable track design eliminates several of the aforementioned problems and minimizes the need for a contractor to stock some types of track. The subject rim track design and its use in combination with floor joist assemblies allow for adjustability, stability and strength in a single system. Use of the present design can speed up the process of framing floors in many types of steel framed buildings and, therefore, can greatly lower the costs associated with such construction.

The subject adjustable rim track design also permits fabrication of adjustable floor panels and the system may be used where vertical deflection needs to be incorporated into the design of a wall system. Further, however, the design also allows for the fabrication of panels that can be installed in locations where deflection properties may not be required but which offer less than optimal field installation conditions. Panel installation is difficult when an uneven surface is presented or where either the top or bottom of a panel is not level.

The subject adjustable rim track design also allows for quick and efficient installation of interior curtain wall systems, whereby the track tabs act as stops for quick stud placement. Further, pre-punched holes coupled on either side of the tabs permits screw attachment of the studs to take less time than when two layers of material need to be fastened or screwed through.

An additional benefit of the equal length flanges utilized in the present design is that the product can be efficiently stacked for storage purposes. Commercially available track, having unequal flange lengths, does not nest or stack properly.

The multi-purpose nature of the subject adjustable rim track product allows for its use in place of four different existing track products, namely, asymmetrical ready track, over-track, slip track and standard track. The present design permits distributors and businesses to stock fewer types of track items, streamline building industry practices and greatly increase industry efficiency.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The subject design is directed to an improved adjustable slotted tabbed rim track. The adjustable rim track is used in new rim track-floor joist assemblies, such assemblies being part of an improved building construction system. The system may also include prefabricated, panelized assemblies having pre-fastened adjustable slotted tabbed rim track installed therein.

The subject adjustable rim track product has equal length side flanges so that there are no preset top or bottom edges. This design affords interchangeability, versatility and makes the product easier for building contractors to use. The subject rim track design also will help absorb and displace vertical and horizontal movement in light steel framed buildings. Movements caused by ordinary wall and floor movement, such as compression or extension, can be handled by a floor joist assembly utilizing the subject adjustable slotted tabbed rim track design in connecting with the wall or load bearing elements. The simple design provides a positive attachment for wall strength and permits vertical and horizontal movement where necessary.

In a first embodiment, the subject rim track for securing peripheral edges of a joist-floor panel assembly has a generally U-shaped planar web with depending side flanges normal to and separated by the web. In this embodiment, the depending flanges have a series of parallel slots for receiving fasteners through the flanges to connect and secure the adjustable rim track to joist framing members of a floor panel assembly. As will be seen in the drawings described below, the slots have their elongated openings in the direction the flanges depend from the central web, thereby facilitating adjustments between the rim track and the framing members.

In this embodiment, the rim track has punched tabbed slots or angle clips affixed to the interior planar area of the U-shaped rim track web which are utilized for secure fastening of the rim track to a joist during final installation of the assembly.

In another embodiment, the rim track adjustment slots may be located on tabs depending from and orthogonal to the planar web, thereby providing slotted tabs instead of slotted flanges. It would be possible, but not necessary, to incorporate both slotted flanges and slotted tabs in a rim track design. Inasmuch as a framing member can be securely fastened to either side of a depending tab, there is no right-left symmetry requirement and the improved adjustable rim track is therefore easier to use.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be apparent when the detailed descriptions of the preferred embodiments of the invention are considered with reference to the accompanying drawings, which should be construed in an illustrative and not limiting sense as follows:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of adjustable slotted tabbed rim track in an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of an adjustable slotted tabbed rim track and joist assembly in a compressed panel mode.

FIG. 3 is a detail of a fastened rim track and joist assembly.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of an adjustable slotted tabbed rim track and joist assembly in an expanded panel mode.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of an alternative adjustable slotted tabbed rim track and joist assembly.

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a further alternative embodiment of adjustable slotted tabbed rim track.

FIG. 7 is a detail of a fastened rim track and joist assembly.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

In a first embodiment of the subject design, a generally C- or U-shaped section of slotted tabbed rim track has a planar web and depending side flanges normal to and separated by the web, the flanges having vertical parallel slots for receiving screws or fasteners through the flanges which connect and secure the rim track to a framing member such as a flooring joist thereby providing an improved dual mode adjustable. The adjustable rim track and framing member assembly is capable of use or adjustment in either a compressed or expanded mode, as will be described below in connection with the figures. The adjustable slotted tabbed rim track also has fasteners along the interior web of the track, such as pre-punched tabs or angles for affixing the framing joists at predetermined intervals along the track, thereby restricting movement of the joist in a direction along the length of the adjustable rim-track.

The joist may move or be deflected along the direction of a flange slot or tab slot in response to adjustments or environmental deflection forces. The joist is restricted in its movement in the slotted rim track flanges or tabs.

FIG. 1 depicts a length of rim track 10 having a planar web 11, opposite parallel side flanges 12 and 14 depending from and normal to web 11. The web and opposite flanges form a track having a generally U-shaped (or C-shaped) cross-section. In this embodiment, each of the depending flanges has a series of parallel slots, for example slots 13 and 15, running the length of the flanges, the slots oriented generally with one elongate end near the web and the other slot end near an edge of the flange. Rim track 10 also has a series of joist fastener tabs, which in this embodiment are provided by pre-punching tabs 18 through to the interior of web 11, thereby leaving holes 19 in web 11. These tabs, or other joist fasteners such as clip angles, are usually conveniently located as may be required for specified on-center joist placement in a given construction application.

The subject rim track product is preferably manufactured by pre-punching and roll forming a suitable length of metal web in a manner similar to conventional light gauge steel framing products. Modern light gauge steel construction design is dictated principally by size and load bearing requirements. Galvanized steel framing members such as joists, studs, columns and posts are specified by a construction engineer to have performance characteristics which vary by size, weight and thickness required for a given installation. For example, a joist will be specified in view of the span it must cross and the load it must carry. The adjustable slotted tabbed rim track and assemblies of the present design can be used in all such applications from light to heavy duty. A key feature of the subject design being the ease in which the rim track may be affixed and adjusted, whether in panel assemblies or when installed in the field.

Depending upon weight and span requirements, a light gauge steel floor joist might have a thickness of 33 to 112 mils and will be galvanized according to industry engineering standards and ASTM specifications. Slotted tabbed rim track used in connection with the joist may be the same steel material but is typically lighter in weight and thickness. The slotted tabbed rim track may be fabricated on a conventional roll forming machine and appropriate punch presses may be used for tabs and slots as desired. Tabs may be punched and bent inward, or clips may be affixed to the web. Other light steel framing members and elements are entirely conventional such as studs, clips, angles and tracks. The expressions “tab” or “tabbed” herein are intended to be inclusive of similar angle clip fasteners.

At a frequency to be determined by an engineer, there will be a tab created by cutting a “U” shape in the web of the track with a punch machine, which will be bent towards the interior of the track to form a “tab” at a ninety-degree angle. The length of this tab as a proportion of the length of the web of the track will be determined and specified by the design requirements. The depth of the tabs will generally approximate the depth of the side flanges.

In one embodiment, the slots (i.e., elongated holes) are punched in the flanges of the track at a frequency to be determined in view of construction design requirements. A construction engineer will determine the size of such slots and, within well known limits for light steel construction techniques, all of the following characteristics may be varied: gauge and height of tracks, height and width of tabs, width of flanges, and the size, number and spacing of slots.

FIG. 2 depicts rim track assembly 20 having perpendicular joists 21 and 22 installed therein at tabs 18 and 23, respectively, and secured in a panel-compressed configuration with fasteners such as screws 25 through the slotted flanges. Rim track web 11 in this embodiment utilizes punched tab joist fastener tabs 18 and 23, and therefore punched holes 19 and 24 are seen in this depiction of web 11. The expression panel-compressed configuration refers to the end 26 of the joist being located close to or contacting the interior surface of web 11. In such case, screws 25 would be used near the interior end of a slot, such as the inner end of slot 27.

FIG. 3 depicts a detailed portion of the assembly shown in FIG. 2 wherein slotted track 12, having slots 13, is affixed to perpendicular joist member 22 by fastener 25, which is preferably a metal screw. This detail depicts the adjustable slotted rim track 12 in compressed mode in that joist member 22 is fully installed therein and fastener 25 is seen to be flush with the compressed end of the adjustment slot 13.

FIG. 4 depicts rim track assembly 20 in a panel-expanded configuration having perpendicular joists 21 and 22 installed therein at tabs 18 and 23, respectively, and secured in the panel-expanded configuration with fasteners such as screws 25 through the slotted flanges of rim track 11. The expression panel-expanded configuration refers to the end of the joist, e.g. edge 26, being located away from the interior surface of rim track 11. In such case, screws 25 would be used near the exterior end of a slot, such as the flange edge end of slot 28. For clarity in this figure, tabs 18 and 23, and those nearby, are emphasized to show that each may extend behind an associated joist in such expanded configuration, and may be securely affixed to the joist with a fasteners such as screws 32 to provide a rim track floor joist assembly.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention wherein a floor assembly joist 55 is securely fastened, as by screws 51, to a slotted tab 52 depending from the planar web 51 of a length of rim track 50. In this embodiment, slotted tabs are sufficient and slotted flanges are unnecessary, although a locating screw may be optionally utilized in a guide hole 56 between the rim track flange 58 and the associated joist 55.

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention. Again in this embodiment, slotted tabs are sufficient and slotted flanges are unnecessary, although a locating screw may be optionally utilized between the rim track flange and an associated joist. Dimensions for a typical example of slotted tabbed rim track can be given with reference to FIG. 6 without limiting the scope of the present design. Although the rim track 60 may be manufactured from a continuous web in any desired length, lengths greater than twenty feet are relatively difficult to transport and handle. In the figure, a portion of rim track about 3.5 feet in length is shown. This track has a distance of 24 inches between the two illustrated tabs 62. In typical applications, the track may have a transverse width of 8 to 10 inches with each opposite parallel side (65, 67) depend from the web 61 by a distance of 2 inches. The tabs 62 can have a depth of 2 inches measured from the web, a width of 3 inches from side to side and each slot 64 can be 3/16 inch by one inch. In this figure, the sides 65 and 67 depict several 3/16 inch fastener guide holes 66 and 68. The guide holes are oriented on either side of the slotted tabs to facilitate fastening a perpendicular member on either side of the tabs as may be desired. In some embodiments the track will be formed from 16 gauge G-60 galvanized steel.

FIG. 7 is a perspective detail depicting slotted flange 12, having slots 13, where flange 12 is fastened from below with a metal screw 25a to joist member 22.

The various adjustable slotted tabbed rim tracks described above can be utilized in a construction system using such adjustable rim track in combination with additional framing members such as floor joist assemblies. The slotted adjustable rim track is suitably fastened to a framing member. In some systems, a joist-rim track assembly is installed on a load bearing stud having a header track. The adjustable configuration can be installed in compressed mode but will work equally well in expanded mode, as described above. Typically, a construction assembly is completed when appropriate floor sheathing is installed on a rim track-floor joist assembly. Such sheathing also may be fastened to the joist with screws or the like.

It will be recognized that providing the adjustment slots in either the depending flanges or tabs of the rim track, or both, will afford the designer similar results within a wide range of track size and material choices.

The invention now being fully described, it will be apparent to one of ordinary skill in the art that many changes and modifications can be made thereto without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention as set forth herein.