Title:
Expandable/convertible sofa chair
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of a base, backrest, two armrests, four small corner cushions, four long edge cushions, centre cushion, two straight connector cushions, two L shaped connector cushions, four feet, four decorative front/back side plates, tabletop plate, centre support board, and four locking mechanisms. The base is a hollowed out square box with a bottom and thick walls that house several cavities symmetrically aligned to mate with the parts that have extruding prongs. When two units are placed side by side the four small corner cushions are removed and replaced with two connector cushions twice the size. The armrests of the touching walls are replaced with long edge cushions and all are locked into place by a locking mechanism at the bottom of the base walls, creating a loveseat. Repeating this procedure creates several different styles, shapes and sizes of furnishings.



Inventors:
Barbosa, John (Kitchener, CA)
Application Number:
12/151988
Publication Date:
11/12/2009
Filing Date:
05/12/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C13/00
View Patent Images:
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20030111888Vehicle passenger seatJune, 2003Brennan
20030052524Connector for a wooden backrest of a chairMarch, 2003Chiang
20030011227Chair with reclinable seatJanuary, 2003Markus
20080088160TRANSLATABLE AND ROTATABLE PASSENGER SEATApril, 2008Johnson



Primary Examiner:
GARRETT, ERIKA P
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
John Barbosa (Kitchener, ON, CA)
Claims:
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:

1. An expandable and convertible sofa chair unit which is packed unassembled and consists of a base, one backrest, two armrests, four small corner cushions, four long edge cushions, one centre cushion, two straight connector cushions, two L shaped connector cushions, four feet, four decorative front/back side plates, one tabletop plate, one centre support board, and four locking mechanisms.

2. An expandable and convertible sofa chair which when assembled, consists of a base with a support board installed in the centre, a tabletop plate slightly raised on the inner lips of the base, two armrests, a backrest, four small corner cushions, one long edge cushion on the front portion of the base, a centre cushion, four decorative front/back side plates flush with the outer base walls, and four feet.

3. An expandable and convertible sofa chair which mates together with backrest, armrests, small corner cushions, long edge cushions, and connector cushions by means of prongs that are half the height of the base wall in claim 8 and squared with slits close to the bottom so they can fit any small wall cavity and be locked into place by the locking mechanism.

4. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, which converts to an ottoman by simply removing backrest, armrests and replacing them by the long edge cushion found in the combination of claim 1.

5. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, which converts to an end table by simply removing all the cushions that rest on the base and revealing the tabletop, then removing the long edge cushion tile like plates and the corner cushion tile like plates and mating them with the base from claim 8.

6. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, with decorative front/back and side plates which mate with large rectangular indents on the outer side of the base walls so that when the decorative plates are in place they sit flush.

7. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, elevated by four square shaped feet listed in claim 1, with centred upward prongs that mate with the bottom corner cavities of the base in claim 8.

8. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of a base which is a perfect hollowed out square box with a bottom and very thick walls that house several cavities, slits, cut outs, and lips symmetrically aligned to mate with the combination of parts from claim 1.

9. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, that includes a backrest and two armrests, which have a T shaped bottom that replaces the long edge cushion and overlaps the small corner cushions when mated on any wall of the base by means of prongs.

10. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of cushions from claim 1 that are the thickness of the base wall and comprised of cushion covers, cushion foam, and a tile like plate with prongs that mate with any wall of the base from claim 8.

11. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 2, which includes a locking mechanism consisting of a block with upward L shaped prongs that is encased and insert in the bottom cavities of the base in claim 8 and can be moved side to side to slip through an opening and into the slits of the prongs in claim 3 that mate with the base.

12. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 1, the two straight connector cushions are double the length of a small corner cushion and comprised of cushion cover, cushion foam, and a tile like plate extruding two prongs perfectly aligned with the corner cavities of two different bases placed side by side to lock the bases together to form a loveseat design.

13. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting of the combination in claim 1, the two connector cushions that are of an L shape are double the length of a small corner cushion in both directions and comprised of cushion cover, cushion foam, and a tile like plate extruding three prongs perfectly aligned with the corner cavities of three different bases placed side by side to lock the bases together in a sectional design.

14. An expandable and convertible sofa chair consisting essentially of interchangeable parts that allows the uniting of units from claim 1 to create furnishings of different styles, colours, and sizes to match any room or décor, without compromising the safety and strength of a solid piece of furniture by using the connectors in claim 12 and 13 to lock everything into place.

Description:

This invention consists of a sofa chair that can be expanded into various seating arrangements and converted into many other household furnishings.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Sofa chairs have been around for centuries and through the years many improvements have come into play to make them more appealing, comfortable and to increase their functionality. Inventors have turned them into beds, added swivels, rockers, slides, changed the way they are assembled and unassembled, reconstructed their frame assembly and even just put some cushions of different shapes together to form a unique style. Improvements of this nature are shown, for example, in the following International patents:

International Patent Number.

PCT/EP2007/006184 LORE, Vitantonio

PCT/CN2005/000994 GU, Yuewen

PCT/CN2002/000135 WU, Tony

PCT/AU2007/000328 JEFFARES, James

PCT/IB2004/002752 TOFFOLONI, Werther

Even though so many improvements have been made to the sofa chair throughout the years, no one invention has captured the true versatility of a sofa chair and neatly packaged it together with all its styling capabilities. There are still many problems with living room sets that still need improvement, from arranging sets to fit a room to moving bulky sets from house to house. It would be so nice to totally control a sets size, shape and style while matching it to any room or décor. After all these years it can now finally be done.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Considered broadly, this invention is a sofa chair consisting of several parts that when mated together with an equal sofa chair can be expanded and converted into several furnishings. The invention when unassembled consists of a base, backrest, armrests, several cushions, feet, tabletop plate, centre support, locking mechanisms, and decorative front/back and side plates. The base is a perfect hollowed out square with very thick walls that house several cavities. The top six cavities are symmetrically aligned on each of the four walls to allow mating with the backrest, armrests and edge cushions which all have extruding prongs with horizontal slits on each side close to each end. The bottom two cavities are also symmetrically aligned but mate with the locking mechanism and the feet of the invention. The centre of each inner wall has a slit running vertically the height of the wall so a support board can be installed in any desired direction. Each inner wall also hosts a thin horizontal lip mat runs the length of each wall to support the centre tabletop plate, adding to the strength of the overall support of the invention. All edge cushions are comprised of three parts, a cushion cover that is kept in place by Velcro, cushion foam, and a tile like plate that matches the tabletop plate in colour and texture. The plate of the cushion extrudes a vertical prong or more, (depending on the cushion size), with minor horizontal slits close to each end. The corner cushions are a perfect square extruding only one prong and each sofa chair comes with two replacements, a set of two cushions that are twice the length of the corner cushions extruding two prongs, and a set of L shaped cushions that are twice the length and twice the depth extruding three prongs. These replacement cushions are the secret to this invention. When two sofa chairs are placed side by side the four corner cushions of the touching walls are removed and replaced with the set of cushions that are twice the length. Each prong of these cushions is mated with the corner cavity of the separate sofa chair; the two armrests mat are side by side are then removed and replaced with the longer edge cushions. The locking mechanism is then engaged to lock everything into place by simply inserting itself into the slits of the prongs and a loveseat is created. By repeating this procedure the loveseat can be expanded into a couch of desired size or shape, without the fear of sitting in the centre of a unit and having each one go its separate way. Removing armrests, replacing them with the longer edge cushions and adding more sofa chair units, the consumer can create a bed. People can convert the chair into an end table or coffee table of desired size simply by removing backrest, armrests and cushions and replacing them with the tile plates from the edge cushions.

This invention allows people to control the size of their furnishings, mix and match colours and styles limiting all creations only to the imagination and creativity of the consumer.

In the drawings, which are parts of the said invention

FIG. 1 is an exploded view of an isometric drawing that describes the mating of parts to one sofa chair.

FIG. 2 is a drawing of the base from different views to show the cavities that other parts will mate with.

FIG. 3 is an isometric drawing of each part associated with one sofa chair.

FIG. 4 is an isometric drawing of the three parts that each edge cushion is comprised of.

FIG. 5 is a drawing of the locking mechanism, showing the locking component and its casing.

FIG. 6 is a drawing of the inside of the wall of the base to show the cavities and how the locking mechanism interacts with the prongs to lock them in place.

FIG. 7 is an isometric drawing of the parts associated with the mating of two sofa chairs.

FIG. 8 is an isometric drawing of the most common styles of furnishings that can be created by this invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

The invention as seen in FIG. 3, when unassembled consists of one base 1, two armrests 2, one backrest 3, four small corner cushions 4, four long edge cushions 5, one centre cushion 21, two straight connector cushions 20, two L shaped connector cushions 19, four decorative front/back and side plates 6, four feet 7, one tabletop plate 18, one centre support 22, and four locking mechanisms FIG. 5.

Referring to FIG. 2 the base 1 can be constructed of wood or a plastic composite and is a perfect hollowed out square box with a bottom and very thick walls mat house several cavities 8, 9, 13, and 14. These walls must be the same thickness as each long edge cushion 5, small corner cushion 4 and either connector cushion 19, 20. The top has three cavities 8 mat are perfectly square and run the depth of the wall. The cavities are also symmetrically aligned on each of the four walls to allow mating with the backrest 3, armrests 2, small edge cushions 4, long edge cushions 5, straight connector cushions 20 or the L shaped connector cushions 19. These parts all have extruding prongs 25 that are about half the height of the base wall and squared to fit the cavities 8 of the wall. The prongs also have horizontal slits 27 on each side close to each end. The bottom cavity 14 is squared to the dimensions of the feet prongs that it mates with and the bottom cavity 13 which is the length, width, and height of the locking mechanism casing 17 minus the fastening Up is inserted and fastened into the cavity 13 by screws. These cavities 13, 14 are also symmetrically aligned along the bottom of the walls of the base. The centre of each inner wall has a slit 11 running vertically the height of the wall so a support board 22 can be installed in any desired direction. Each inner wall also hosts a thin horizontal lip 12 mat runs the length of each wall to support the centre tabletop plate 18, adding to the strength of the overall support of the invention. The depth of tile lip from the top of the base is slightly less then the thickness of the tabletop plate 18. The reason for this is so a person can easily remove it by grabbing any edge and lifting. The tile like plate that is attached to every small corner cushion 4, long edge cushion 5, or connector cushions 19, 20 is then the thickness of the distance between the top of the base 1 to the top of the tabletop plate 18 to ensure a nice flat surface. The outer wall of the base 1 has a slight rectangular indent 15 leaving a minor border on all four walls.

In the centre of the rectangle indent there are three symmetrically placed cut through squares 16, these mate with three small prongs that hold the decorative front/back and side plates 6 in place. The decorative front/back and side plates 6 are the size of the indent on the outer walls and is wrapped in the same material used for the upholstery of the invention. When the decorative front/back and side plates 6 are in place in the indent of the outer wall they will rest flush with the outer walls.

All edge cushions are comprised of three parts as FIG. 4 illustrates, a leather or fabric cushion cover 22 that is kept in place by Velcro 26, cushion foam 23, and a tile like plate 24 that matches the tabletop plate in colour and texture. The plate of the cushion extrudes a vertical prong 25 or more, (depending on the cushion size) which is at least half the height of the base 1 wall, with minor horizontal slits 27 close to each end. All prongs 25 and plates 24 should be created from a solid, strong yet lightweight material like aluminium. The small corner cushions 4 are a perfect square extruding only one prong 25 and each sofa chair comes with two replacements, a set of two straight connector cushions 20, that are twice the length of the corner cushions extruding two prongs 25, and a set of L shaped connector cushions 19 that are twice the length and twice the depth extruding three prongs 25 each with slits 27 close to the ends. All edge cushions can be of desired height for added comfort but must remain the thickness of the base 1 wall. These replacement cushions are one of the secrets to this invention.

The other secret is in the shape of the armrests 2 and the backrest 3. They are constructed of a wooden frame, foam or some other form of stuffing and then upholstered in leather or fabric much like any other sofa chair would be. While the armrest 2 or backrest 3 is the full length of the base wall, the bottom of the armrest 2 or backrest 3 however has and extruded portion centred that is the exact size of the longer edge cushion 5 and shorter then the base 1 wall by one corner cushion 4 on each side This T shape allows the armrest 2 and the backrest 3 to replace the long edge cushion 5 and over lap the corner cushions 4 when it is mated with the base 1. The soft part and frame of the armrest 2 and the backrest 3 must also be created and stuffed in a manner that allows the ends to be pressed together in a way mat generates an approximately 45 degree angle on all ends.

Illustration FIG. 1 has an over exaggerated example of this angle. The extruded portion which is the size of the long edge cushions 5 of the armrest 2 and the backrest 3 have two prongs 25 which face downward and are the length of half the height of the base 1 wall with slits 27 close to the bottom. These prongs 25 are spaced to align with the two centre cavities 8 of the base 1 wall.

Explained in FIG. 5 the locking mechanism FIG. 5 is comprised of a solid block shorter in length men the casing 17 with three horizontal L shaped prongs extruding upward 28. This block is placed in a casing 17 with an opening in the bottom to allow the knob of the block 29 to be moved freely but snug, in a side-to-side motion. FIG. 6 illustrates that when the locking mechanism FIG. 5 is in place in its cavity 13 the locking mechanism FIG. 5 can be engaged by sliding the knob 29 to the side and causing the horizontal parts of the prongs of the solid block 28 to fit into small cut outs 30 in the cavity walls 9. This in turns locks everything into place by simply inserting me horizontal part of these prongs into the slits 27 of the mating prongs 25 of the armrest 2, backrest 3, corner cushions 4 and all edge cushions 5.

When two sofa chairs 35 are placed side by side the four corner cushions 4 of the touching walls are removed and replaced with the set of straight connector cushions 20 that are twice the length. Each prong 25 of the straight connector cushions 20 is mated with the corner cavity 8 of the separate sofa chair; the two armrests 2 that are side by side are then removed and replaced with the longer edge cushions 5. The locking mechanism FIG. 5 is then engaged and a safe solid loveseat has been created. This procedure is illustrated in FIG. 7. By repeating this procedure the loveseat can be expanded into a couch of desired size or shape, without the fear of sitting m the centre of a unit and having each one go its separate way. Removing armrests, replacing them with the longer edge cushions and adding more sofa chair units, the consumer can create a bed. People can convert the sofa chair 35 into an end table or coffee table of desired size simply by removing backrest, armrests and cushions and replacing them with the tile plates from the edge cushions. FIG. 8 is an illustration of the most common furnishings that can be created using this invention. These are just the more common styles known to most people, a sofa chair 35, a loveseat 33, a couch 32, a sectional couch 31, a lounger 34, an ottoman 36, and end or coffee tables 37. The invention allows people to control the size of their furnishings, mix and match colours and styles, creating furnishings only limited by imagination.