Title:
FOLDABLE HIGHCHAIR
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A foldable highchair includes a chair frame, a seat unit mounted on the chair frame, and a latch unit provided on the chair frame. The chair frame is in a form of a four-link mechanism, and is convertible between upright and collapsed states. The chair frame includes a base, a front leg unit, a coupling link unit, and a rear leg unit. The latch unit is operable to prevent pivoting movement of the front leg unit, the coupling link unit and the rear leg unit relative to the base, thereby locking the chair frame in the upright state. The latch unit is further operable to unlock the chair frame and permit pivoting movement of and collapsing of the front leg unit, the coupling link unit and the rear leg unit together with the seat unit on the base, thereby converting the chair frame to the collapsed state.



Inventors:
Lan, Red (Taipei Hsien, TW)
Application Number:
11/951947
Publication Date:
06/11/2009
Filing Date:
12/06/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47D1/02
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
EDELL, JOSEPH F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FOX ROTHSCHILD LLP (LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A foldable highchair comprising: a chair frame in a form of a four-link mechanism, said chair frame being convertible between upright and collapsed states and including a base, a front leg unit having a pivot end part connected pivotally to said base, extending upwardly from said base when said chair frame is in the upright state, and further having a coupling end part opposite to said pivot end part, a coupling link unit connected pivotally to said coupling end part of said front leg unit and extending rearwardly and inclining upwardly relative to said front leg unit when said chair frame is in the upright state, and a rear leg unit having a pivot end portion connected pivotally to said base, said rear leg unit being spaced apart from and being disposed rearwardly of said front leg unit, said rear leg unit extending upwardly from said base and inclining forwardly when said chair frame is in the upright state, said rear leg unit further having a coupling end portion opposite to said pivot end portion and connected pivotally to said coupling link unit; a seat unit mounted on said chair frame; and a latch unit provided on said chair frame and operable to prevent pivoting movement of said front leg unit, said coupling link unit and said rear leg unit relative to said base, thereby locking said chair frame in the upright state, said latch unit being further operable to unlock said chair frame and permit pivoting movement of and collapsing of said front leg unit, said coupling link unit and said rear leg unit together with said seat unit on said base, thereby converting said chair frame from the upright state to the collapsed state.

2. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 1, wherein said coupling link unit has a leg coupling end, and said front leg unit includes left and right front leg rods that are spaced apart from each other, each of said front leg rods being connected pivotally to said base and to said leg coupling end of said coupling link unit, and extending upwardly from said base and inclining forwardly when said chair frame is in the upright state.

3. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 1, wherein said rear leg unit further has left and right rear leg rods that extend from said pivot end portion, that are spaced apart from each other, and that have terminating ends opposite to said pivot end portion, said terminating ends of said left and right rear leg rods being disposed at left and right sides of said coupling link unit and serving as said coupling end portion of said rear leg unit, said coupling link unit being disposed between said left and right rear leg rods when said chair frame is in the collapsed state.

4. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 1, wherein said rear leg unit includes a rear leg rod that is connected pivotally to said base and to said coupling link unit, and a latch seat that is mounted on one end of said rear leg rod opposite to said base and that is disposed in front of said coupling link unit, said latch unit being provided on said coupling link unit to engage releasably said latch seat.

5. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 4, wherein said latch unit includes a hook member mounted to said coupling link unit for engaging releasably said latch seat, and an operating component operable to drive said hook member to disengage from said latch seat.

6. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 5, wherein said latch seat is formed with a latch hole to engage releasably said hook member.

7. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 1, wherein said seat unit includes: a backrest plate mounted on one side of said coupling link unit; a seat member connected pivotally to said backrest plate; a dish tray connected pivotally to said backrest plate and disposed above and spaced apart from said seat member; a link rod mechanism connected pivotally to said seat member and said dish tray; and at least one pull rod connected pivotally to said seat member and said chair frame; wherein said backrest plate, said seat member, said dish tray and said link rod mechanism cooperate to form a second four-link mechanism; and wherein said coupling link unit and said pull rod cooperate to collapse said backrest plate, said seat member, said dish tray and said link rod mechanism toward said base when said chair frame is converted from the upright state to the collapsed state.

8. The foldable highchair as claimed in claim 7, wherein said seat unit further includes a footrest mounted to said link rod mechanism.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to a highchair, more particularly to a foldable highchair.

2. Description of the Related Art

As shown in FIG. 1, a conventional foldable highchair 1 includes a pair of U-shaped leg members 11 spaced apart from each other in a front-to-rear direction, a seat unit 12 mounted between the leg members 11, and a dish tray 13 mounted on the seat unit 12. To fold the highchair 1, the leg members 11 are pivoted toward each other, thereby causing the seat unit 12 and the dish tray 13 to pivot relative to the leg members 11 so as to convert the highchair 1 from an upright state to a collapsed state. However, during the folding process, independent folding operations are needed to fold the seat unit 12 and the dish tray 13, or a relatively complicated link mechanism must be employed to fold the seat unit 12 and the dish tray 13 simultaneous with pivoting movement of the leg members 11 toward each other.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, the object of the present invention is to provide a foldable highchair that can attract the attention of consumers and that is convenient to use.

Accordingly, a foldable highchair of the present invention comprises a chair frame, a seat unit mounted on the chair frame, and a latch unit provided on the chair frame.

The chair frame is in a form of a four-link mechanism, and is convertible between upright and collapsed states. The chair frame includes a base, a front leg unit, a coupling link unit, and a rear leg unit. The front leg unit has a pivot end part connected pivotally to the base, extends upwardly from the base when the chair frame is in the upright state, and further has a coupling end part opposite to the pivot end part. The coupling link unit is connected pivotally to the coupling end part of the front leg unit, and extends rearwardly and inclines upwardly relative to the front leg unit when the chair frame is in the upright state. The rear leg unit has a pivot end portion connected pivotally to the base, and is spaced apart from and is disposed rearwardly of the front leg unit. The rear leg unit extends upwardly from the base and inclines forwardly when the chair frame is in the upright state. The rear leg unit further has a coupling end portion opposite to the pivot end portion and connected pivotally to the coupling link unit.

The latch unit is operable to prevent pivoting movement of the front leg unit, the coupling link unit and the rear leg unit relative to the base, thereby locking the chair frame in the upright state. The latch unit is further operable to unlock the chair frame and permit pivoting movement of and collapsing of the front leg unit, the coupling link unit and the rear leg unit together with the seat unit on the base, thereby converting the chair frame from the upright state to the collapsed state.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional foldable highchair;

FIG. 2 is an assembled perspective view to illustrate an upright state of the preferred embodiment of a foldable highchair according to the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a side view of the preferred embodiment when in the upright state;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary perspective view of the preferred embodiment, illustrating how a latch unit locks the highchair in the upright state;

FIG. 5 is a partly sectional, side view of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a view similar to FIG. 5, but illustrating the latch unit when operated to permit conversion of the highchair from the upright state to a collapsed state;

FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 4, but illustrating how the highchair is converted from the upright state to the collapsed state;

FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIG. 3, but illustrating the highchair when half-collapsed;

FIG. 9 is a view similar to FIG. 8, but illustrating the highchair in the collapsed state; and

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a latch seat of the preferred embodiment.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIGS. 2 to 4, the preferred embodiment of a foldable highchair according to the present invention is shown to comprise a chair frame 2, a seat unit 9 mounted on the chair frame 2, and a latch unit 7 provided on the chair frame 2.

The chair frame 2 is in a form of a first four-link mechanism, and is convertible between upright and collapsed states (see FIGS. 2 and 9). The chair frame 2 includes a base 3, a front leg unit 4, a coupling link unit 5, and a rear leg unit 6.

In this embodiment, the base 3 includes a ring-shaped base member 31, and a rigid metal ring 32 fixed to the base member 31.

The front leg unit 4 has a pivot end part connected pivotally to left and right sections of an intermediate portion of the base 3, extends upwardly from the base 3 when the chair frame 2 is in the upright state (see FIGS. 2 and 3), and further has a coupling end part opposite to the pivot end part.

The coupling link unit 5 is connected pivotally to the coupling end part of the front leg unit 4, and extends rearwardly and inclines upwardly relative to the front leg unit 4 when the chair frame 2 is in the upright state (see FIGS. 2 and 3).

In this embodiment, the coupling link unit 5 includes a hollow link rod 51 with a leg coupling end, and the front leg unit 4 includes left and right front leg rods 41 that are spaced apart from each other. Each of the front leg rods 41 is connected pivotally to the base 3, has the coupling end part that is connected pivotally to a respective one of left and right sides of the leg coupling end of the link rod 51, and extends upwardly from the base 3 and inclines forwardly when the chair frame 2 is in the upright state. The coupling link unit 5 further includes a positioning seat 52 that is connected to a rear side of the link rod 51, that extends rearwardly and that inclines downwardly from the link rod 51, and that is disposed above the front leg rods 41.

The rear leg unit 6 has a pivot end portion 611 connected pivotally to a rear portion of the base 3. The rear leg unit 6 is spaced apart from and is disposed rearwardly of the front leg unit 4, extends upwardly from the base 3 and inclines forwardly when the chair frame 2 is in the upright state (see FIGS. 2 and 3) and further has a coupling end portion 613 opposite to the pivot end portion 611 and connected pivotally to the link rod 51 adjacent to the leg coupling end. In this embodiment, the rear leg unit 6 further has left and right rear leg rods 612 that extend from the pivot end portion 611, that are spaced apart from each other, and that have terminating ends opposite to the pivot end portion 611. The terminating ends of the rear leg rods 612 are disposed at the left and right sides of the link rod 51, are disposed above the front leg rods 41, and serve as the coupling end portion 613 of the rear leg unit 6. The rear leg unit 6 further includes a latch seat 62 mounted to the terminating ends of the rear leg rods 612 and disposed in front of the link rod 51. As shown in FIG. 10, the latch seat 62 includes a horizontally extending top wall 621 formed with a latch hole 622.

Referring to FIGS. 3 to 5, the latch unit 7 is provided on the link rod 51 to engage releasably the latch seat 62. The latch unit 7 is operable to prevent pivoting movement of the front leg unit 4, the coupling link unit 5 and the rear leg unit 6 relative to the base 3, thereby locking the chair frame 2 in the upright state. The latch unit 7 is further operable to unlock the chair frame 2 and permit pivoting movement of and collapsing of the front leg unit 4, the coupling link unit 5 and the rear leg unit 6 together with the seat unit 9 on the base 3, thereby converting the chair frame 2 from the upright state to the collapsed state, as best shown in FIGS. 6 to 9.

In this embodiment, the latch unit 7 includes a spring-loaded hook member 71 mounted pivotally to the link rod 51 of the coupling link unit 5 and biased to engage releasably the latch hole 622 in the latch seat 62, a driving block 72 disposed in the link rod 51 and movable along an axis of the link rod 51, a connecting rod 73 connected to the driving block 72 and extending upwardly from the driving block 72 along the axis of the link rod 51, and an operating component 74 (see FIG. 3) disposed operably on a rear side of an upper end of the link rod 51 and connected to the connecting rod 73.

The hook member 71 has a rear side formed with an inclined push surface 711. The driving block 72 abuts against the inclined push surface 711. When the operating component 74 is operated to move the connecting rod 73 and the driving block 72 upwardly in the link rod 51, the hook member 71 is driven to pivot relative to the link rod 51 so as to be disengaged from the latch hole 622 in the latch seat 62, as best shown in FIG. 6.

The foldable highchair further comprises a positioning stud 8 passing through the rear leg unit 6 and inserted removably into the positioning seat 52 for enhancing safety when the chair frame 2 is in the upright state. In this embodiment, the foldable highchair further comprises a spring (not shown) for biasing the positioning stud 8 toward the positioning seat 52.

The seat unit 9 includes: a backrest plate 91 mounted on a front side of the upper end of the link rod 51; a seat member 92 connected pivotally to a bottom end of the backrest plate 91 and extending horizontally therefrom; a dish tray 94 having left and right arm portions 941 connected pivotally and respectively to left and right sides of the backrest plate 91, and a tray portion 942 connected to front ends of the left and right arm portions 941 and disposed above and spaced apart from a front side of the seat member 92; a link rod mechanism 95 including a connecting tube 951 connected pivotally to a bottom side of the dish tray 94 and to a front end of the seat member 92, and an extension rod 952 connected telescopically to the connecting tube 951; a pair of pull rods 93 connected pivotally to a bottom side of the seat member 92 and to a respective one of left and right sides of the latch seat 62 of the chair frame 2; and a footrest 96 mounted to the extension rod 952 of the link rod mechanism 95. The backrest plate 91, the seat member 92, the dish tray 94 and the link rod mechanism 95 cooperate to form a second four-link mechanism. The coupling link unit 5 and the pull rods 93 cooperate to collapse the backrest plate 91, the seat member 92, the dish tray 94 and the link rod mechanism 95 toward the base 3 when the chair frame 2 is converted from the upright state to the collapsed state.

When the highchair is disposed in the upright state, the hook member 71 of the latch unit 7 engages the latch hole 622 in the latch seat 62, and the positioning stud 8 is inserted into the positioning seat 52. Accordingly, the front leg unit 4, the coupling link unit 5 and the rear leg unit 6 are prevented from pivoting relative to the base 3, thereby locking the chair frame 2 in the upright state.

Referring again to FIGS. 3, 6 and 7, to convert the highchair from the upright state to the collapsed state, the operating component 74 is operated to drive the hook member 71 to disengage from the latch hole 622 in the latch seat 62, and the positioning stud 8 is operated to disengage from the positioning seat 52 of the coupling link unit 5. At this time, the chair frame 2 is unlocked to permit pivoting movement of and collapsing of the front leg unit 4, the coupling link unit 5 and the rear leg unit 6 together with the seat unit 9 on the base 3.

As shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, by virtue of gravity, when the backrest plate 91 is pressed downward slightly, the upper section of the link rod 51 pivots downwardly about the coupling end portion 613 of the rear leg unit 6, and the lower section of the link rod 51 will cause the front leg rods 41 as well as the rear leg rods 612 to pivot forward and downward relative to the base 3 until they are collapsed on the base 3. The link rod 51 is disposed between the rear leg rods 612 of the rear leg unit 6 at this time.

In the meantime, the backrest plate 91 mounted on the link rod 51 moves rearwardly and downwardly and moves the dish tray 94 and the seat member 92 therewith. Since the seat member 92 is connected to the latch seat 62 through the pull rods 93, the seat member 92 moves toward the latch seat 62, and the dish tray 94 moves toward the seat member 92 so that the connecting tube 951 between the dish tray 94 and the seat member 92 is collapsed on top of the seat member 92. Finally, the extension rod 952 is retracted into the connecting tube 951.

To convert the highchair from the collapsed state back to the upright state, the back rest plate 91 is lifted upwardly relative to the base 3 such that the link rod 51 will cause the seat unit 9 as well as the other components of the highchair to move upwardly. At the upright state, the hook member 71 will engage the latch hole 622 in the latch seat 62 automatically. Then, the positioning stud 8 is inserted into the positioning seat 52 to once again lock the highchair in the upright state.

In this embodiment, the chair frame 2 and the seat unit 9 are in the form of four-link mechanisms, and the pull rods 93 are provided to connect the seat member 92 and the rear leg unit 6. The arrangement as such results in collapsing of the seat unit 9 when the chair frame 2 is collapsed. However, in practice, the structure of the seat unit 9 is not limited to what is disclosed herein. Moreover, although the front leg unit 4 is exemplified to include a pair of front leg rods 41 in this embodiment, in practice, a single front leg rod 41 having a modified connection with the base 3 can be employed without affecting the expanding and collapsing operations of the chair frame 2.

In sum, the chair frame 2 and the seat unit 9 in the form of four-link mechanisms can result in a different foldable highchair construction that can attract the attention of consumers. Moreover, the chair frame 2 and the seat unit 9 can be collapsed in a single and easy operation.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.





 
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