Title:
Bed Assemblies
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Provided are, among other things, bed assemblies, components thereof, and systems, methods and techniques for constructing the same. According to one representative embodiment, a bed assembly includes an upper frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the upper frame and that is hinged so that the upper frame can be folded; a lower frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the lower frame and that is hinged so that the lower frame can be folded; and a number of vertical supports, each attached at one end to the upper frame and at an opposite end to the lower frame, so as to provide a mattress box foundation.



Inventors:
Nguyen, Vy (Los Angeles, CA, US)
Miller, Jeffrey (Whittier, CA, US)
Application Number:
12/355764
Publication Date:
07/23/2009
Filing Date:
01/17/2009
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
5/690, 5/482
International Classes:
A47C19/12; A47C27/14; A47C31/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
SANTOS, ROBERT G
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
JOSEPH SWAN, A PROFESSIONAL CORPORATION (MANHATTAN BEACH, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A bed assembly, comprising: an upper frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the upper frame and that is hinged so that the upper frame can be folded; a lower frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the lower frame and that is hinged so that the lower frame can be folded; and a plurality of vertical supports, each attached at one end to the upper frame and at an opposite end to the lower frame, so as to provide a mattress box foundation.

2. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the lateral support of the upper frame is provided with a plurality of hinges, and the lateral support of the lower frame is provided with a plurality of hinges.

3. A bed assembly according to claim 2, wherein all of the hinges are disposed on one of an upper surface of the lower frame and a lower surface of the upper frame.

4. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the hinged lateral support of the upper frame permits the upper frame to be folded to approximately one half its length.

5. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the hinged lateral support of the lower frame permits the lower frame to be folded to approximately one half its length.

6. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the upper frame is provided with a plurality of slats extending across its width.

7. A bed assembly according to claim 6, wherein the upper frame further comprises a plurality of receptacles and each of the plurality of slats has each of its ends removably inserted into one of the receptacles.

8. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein at least some of the vertical supports are attached at corresponding corner positions near the perimeter of the upper frame and the perimeter of the lower frame.

9. A bed assembly according to claim 8, wherein at least some of the vertical supports are attached at corresponding positions along the lateral support of the upper frame and the lateral support of the lower frame.

10. A bed assembly according to claim 1, further comprising a foam mattress disposed on top of the mattress box foundation.

11. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the vertical supports are bolted to the upper frame and to the lower frame.

12. A bed assembly according to claim 1, further comprising a fabric cover stretched over the mattress box foundation.

13. A bed assembly according to claim 12, further comprising a mattress disposed on top of the mattress box foundation and a mattress cover that covers the mattress, and wherein the fabric cover over the mattress box foundation matches the mattress cover.

14. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the perimeter of the upper frame and the perimeter of the lower frame are rectangle are in shape.

15. A bed assembly according to claim 14, wherein at least some of the vertical supports are attached to diagonal corner braces, which are located at corners of the upper frame and the lower frame.

16. A bed assembly according to claim 1, wherein the vertical supports are detachably attached to the upper and lower frames.

Description:

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 61/021,982, filed on Jan. 18, 2008, and titled “Mattress Foundations”, which application is incorporated by reference herein as though set forth herein in full.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention pertains, among other things, to various bed assemblies, such as mattress foundations, parts of mattress foundations, and various structures that preferably can be used in multiple different ways to create a mattress foundation, as well as to methods for constructing a mattress foundation or other bed assembly.

BACKGROUND

A variety of different beds and other sleeping structures exist. Probably the most common arrangement is a metal or wooden frame into which a box spring is placed, with a mattress then laid on top of the box spring. Other arrangements include pullout sofas, futon frames and mattresses, platform beds, and waterbed frames and mattresses. However, improved bed assemblies remain desirable.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present inventors have observed that many conventional bed assemblies are large and bulky, leading to difficulties in storage and transportation. Further exacerbating these problems is the fact that many conventional bed assemblies and components of such assemblies have very limited uses and, in fact, often are limited to just a single purpose.

In response to these problems, the present invention concerns, among other things, bed assemblies that can be constructed from relatively small and lightweight components. In addition, in the preferred embodiments those components can be configured in a variety of different ways to produce a corresponding variety of different bed assemblies, thereby limiting the number of components that must be kept in inventory. For example, one approach according to the present invention is to use frames that can be folded up for storage and/or transportation and then subsequently unfolded and used to assemble different kinds of bed platforms and/or box foundations, as desired by the user.

Thus, one embodiment of the invention is directed to a bed assembly that includes: an upper frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the upper frame and that is hinged so that the upper frame can be folded; a lower frame having a perimeter and also having a lateral support that extends across the perimeter of the lower frame and that is hinged so that the lower frame can be folded; and a number of vertical supports, each attached (e.g., detachably attached, such as by using bolts and nuts) at one end to the upper frame and at an opposite end to the lower frame, so as to provide a mattress box foundation.

By virtue of the foregoing arrangement, it often is possible to provide a mattress foundation that is relatively easy to store, transport and then later assemble. In addition, in various embodiments of the invention, the individual components that are used to assemble one particular kind of mattress foundation can also be used (e.g., with different support hardware) to assemble a different kind of mattress foundation. As a result, the manufacturer and the seller often can maintain reduced inventories, while at the same time providing the end user with flexibility in terms of the particular type of mattress foundation that he or she would like to construct and use.

The foregoing summary is intended merely to provide a brief description of certain aspects of the invention. A more complete understanding of the invention can be obtained by referring to the claims and the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments in connection with the accompanying figures.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the following disclosure, the invention is described with reference to the attached drawings. However, it should be understood that the drawings merely depict certain representative and/or exemplary embodiments and features of the present invention and are not intended to limit the scope of the invention in any manner. The following is a brief description of each of the attached drawings.

FIG. 1 is a top perspective view of a foundation frame.

FIG. 2 is a top perspective view of a portion of a foundation frame.

FIG. 3 is a bottom perspective view of a foundation frame that has been partially folded.

FIG. 4 is a front elevational view of a plurality of support legs for attachment to a foundation frame.

FIG. 5 is an exploded view showing an exemplary installation of a corner support leg onto a foundation frame.

FIG. 6 is an exploded view showing an exemplary installation of a lateral support leg onto a foundation frame.

FIG. 7 is a top perspective view of a mattress platform that includes a foundation frame with support legs attached.

FIG. 8 is a top perspective view of a mattress platform supporting a foam mattress.

FIG. 9 is a top perspective view of a bottom frame that has been completely folded.

FIG. 10 is a front elevational view of a plurality of corner and middle supports for attachment to top and bottom foundation frames.

FIG. 11 is an exploded view of a mattress box foundation that includes a top frame, a bottom frame and a plurality of corner and middle supports securing the top and bottom frames to each other.

FIG. 12 is an exploded view showing an exemplary installation of a corner support onto a foundation frame.

FIG. 13 is a perspective view showing a corner support secured to top and bottom frames.

FIG. 14 is an exploded view showing an exemplary installation of a middle support onto a foundation frame.

FIG. 15 is a perspective view showing a middle support secured to top and bottom frames.

FIG. 16 is a top perspective view showing a mattress box foundation having a top side that is almost fully covered by a removable cover.

FIG. 17 is a bottom plan view showing a mattress box foundation having a top side that is fully covered by a removable cover.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT(S)

In the preferred embodiments, a mattress foundation according to the present invention uses one or two foundation frames together with supporting hardware. An example of one such frame 10 is shown in FIG. 1. Frame 10 has a main structure that includes a perimeter portion 12, a lateral support 13 and a longitudinal support 14, and preferably is fabricated from rectangular-cross-section steel tubing or from a similarly strong but relatively lightweight metal.

Extending across the width of the main structure is a number of slats 15, which preferably are made of wood or plastic. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, each slat 15 preferably is held in place by removably inserting its ends into receptacles 16 which preferably are securely attached to appropriate positions on the main structure. As shown, in the preferred embodiments, for each slat 15 one of the end receptacles 16 is disposed on the perimeter 12 and another is disposed on the longitudinal support 14, such that each slat extends across half the width of the frame's main structure. In the present embodiment, each of these slats 15 is slightly larger than the distance between the end receptacles 16, so that it bows upwardly a slight amount, thereby providing a certain amount of springiness.

As shown in FIG. 3, one aspect of frame 10 is that lateral support 13 is hinged along its entire length, using multiple hinges 100, so that the entire frame 10 can be folded, e.g., to half (or approximately half) its length. As a result, the frame 10 can be easily transported and stored. Although frame 10 instead could be hinged along its longitudinal support 14, hinging along the lateral support 13 generally results in a smaller maximum dimension, thereby facilitating storage and transportation.

Frame 10 preferably is provided with mounting holes at its corners and along its lateral support 13. More preferably, such mounting holes preferably can be used in a variety of different ways to produce a variety of different mattress foundations.

As shown in FIG. 3, the main structure of frame 10 preferably is provided with a diagonal corner brace 37 at each of its corners, and each such diagonal corner brace 37 preferably includes a pair of mounting holes 39 for attaching a corner leg 34 (such as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5). At the same time, each such corner leg 34 preferably is provided with a cross member 35 that includes a pair of holes 36 which are sized and spaced so as to align with the holes 39 in any of the corner braces 37. Accordingly, installation of each corner leg 34 preferably involves simply dropping a pair of bolts through the holes 39 in corner brace 37 and then through the holes 36 in cross member 35 of the corresponding corner leg 34, and then using a wing nut to secure the connection.

Each of the middle legs 32 (shown in FIGS. 4 and 6) preferably has a pair of upwardly extending tabs 33 with through-holes 31. Similarly, lateral support 13 preferably has corresponding through-holes 30 at three approximately equally spaced locations along its length. Accordingly, installing the middle legs 32 preferably involves simply inserting a bolt through one of the tabs 33, through lateral support 13 and then through the other tab 33, and finally securing the attachment with a wing nut. In addition to attaching the middle legs 32, the bolts used for this purpose can help stabilize hinged lateral support 13.

Thus, in the present embodiment, a mattress platform 40 (e.g., as shown in FIG. 7) can be provided by simply: (1) unfolding frame 10 so that it is substantially flat; and then (2) attaching middle legs 32 and corner legs 34 to frame 10 in the manner described above. Such a platform 40 can be used, e.g., for supporting a memory foam mattress 42, as shown in FIG. 8.

In the preceding embodiment, a single frame 10 is used together with relatively easily attachable/detachable legs 32 and 34 in order to construct a platform. In another embodiment, an additional frame 70 (shown in FIG. 9 in its fully folded state also is used. As also shown in FIG. 9, frame 70 preferably also is hinged along its lateral support 83 (e.g., in the same manner as frame 10, using four equally spaced hinges 100) so that it can be folded (e.g., for transportation and/or storage) in the same manner as frame 10. As with frame 10, frame 70 instead could be hinged along its longitudinal support 84. However, unlike frame 10, frame 70 (which forms the bottom of box foundation 80) generally does not need to be provided with slats.

In the present embodiment, the supporting hardware includes a plurality of rigid middle supports 72 and rigid corner supports 74 (e.g., as shown in FIG. 10), each preferably fabricated from rectangular-cross-section steel tubing or from a similarly strong but relatively lightweight metal. As discussed in more detail below, in the present embodiment the middle supports 72 and the corner supports 74 are used as vertical supports in a mattress box foundation 80. Each middle support 72 preferably is similar to the middle leg 32 (discussed above), but instead of terminating in a leg bottom as does middle leg 32, middle support 72 preferably has identical top and bottom portions (with upwardly extending tabs 33) for attaching to similarly configured frames, e.g., frames 10 and 70 in the present embodiment. Each corner support 74 preferably is similar to the corner leg 34 (discussed above), but again instead of terminating in a leg bottom as does middle leg 34, middle support 74 preferably has identical top and bottom portions (with a cross member 35) for attaching to similarly configured frames, e.g., frames 10 and 70 in the present embodiment, having similar diagonal corner braces 37.

Generally speaking, the present embodiment involves the attachment of two frames (e.g., frame 10 and frame 70 in the present embodiment) in order to construct a box foundation. An exemplary construction is illustrated in FIG. 11. As shown in FIGS. 11-13, corner supports 74 attach the corresponding diagonal corner braces 37 of the two frames 10 and 70 to each other. As shown in FIGS. 11, 14 and 15, middle supports 72 attach lateral support 83 of frame 70 to lateral support 13 of frame 10, one each near the outer edges and one near the center of lateral supports 83 and 13. The resulting structure is a mattress box foundation 80.

It is noted that several of the hinges 100 in frames 10 and 70 are visible in FIG. 15. Each such hinge 100 preferably is directed toward the interior of the box foundation 80. Although conventional door-style hinges are used in the embodiment shown above, any other hinging mechanism instead may be used.

Thus, in the present embodiment, a mattress box foundation 80 can be provided by simply: (1) unfolding frame 10 and frame 70 so that each is substantially flat; and then (2) attaching frame 10 to frame 70 using middle supports 72 and corner supports 74 in the manner described above. Such a platform 80 can be used, e.g., for supporting a memory foam mattress 42.

Once the box foundation 80 has been constructed, it can be covered using an optional fabric stretch-over cover 110, e.g., with one or more underside straps 112 and corresponding clasps 114 to secure the attachment, as shown in FIGS. 16 and 17. In certain embodiments, the foundation cover 110 matches a cover that is used for the mattress (such as foam mattress 42), e.g., in color, pattern and/or style.

In the preferred embodiments, each frame (e.g., 10 and 70) is packaged and/or sold separately. Typically, due to the small dimensions and light weight, the individual components can be taken directly out of the store by the customer; no truck delivery is required. Each major piece (e.g., frames 10 and 70) preferably weighs less than 25 pounds (lbs), for a total weight when assembled as a finished foundation of less than 50 lbs. Similar properties can make the present product (as well as its individual components) suitable for shipping via all conventional consumer freight carriers, such as UPS and FEDEX, thereby facilitating Internet and/or catalogue sales.

The design described above allows the product to be configured as a standalone bed base, a platform to convert a conventional bed to a platform bed, and a conventional foundation, which can be used with many types of mattresses. The present foundations are particularly suited for current memory foam type mattresses. Moreover, using the simple bolt and wing-nut construction described above, it often is possible to construct the desired end product in less than 15 minutes.

Additional Considerations.

Several different embodiments of the present invention are described above, with each such embodiment described as including certain features. However, it is intended that the features described in connection with the discussion of any single embodiment are not limited to that embodiment but may be included and/or arranged in various combinations in any of the other embodiments as well, as will be understood by those skilled in the art.

Similarly, in the discussion above, functionality sometimes is ascribed to a particular module or component. However, functionality generally may be redistributed as desired among any different modules or components, in some cases completely obviating the need for a particular component or module and/or requiring the addition of new components or modules. The precise distribution of functionality preferably is made according to known engineering tradeoffs, with reference to the specific embodiment of the invention, as will be understood by those skilled in the art.

Thus, although the present invention has been described in detail with regard to the exemplary embodiments thereof and accompanying drawings, it should be apparent to those skilled in the art that various adaptations and modifications of the present invention may be accomplished without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention. Accordingly, the invention is not limited to the precise embodiments shown in the drawings and described above. Rather, it is intended that all such variations not departing from the spirit of the invention be considered as within the scope thereof as limited solely by the claims appended hereto.