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Publication numberUS3161158 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date15 Dec 1964
Filing date2 May 1963
Priority date2 May 1963
Publication numberUS 3161158 A, US 3161158A, US-A-3161158, US3161158 A, US3161158A
InventorsLurey Emanuel R
Original AssigneeE R Lurey Company
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Display rack with vertically adjustable shelves
US 3161158 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 15, 1964 3,161,158-


DISPLAY RACK WITH VERTICALLY ADJUSTABLE SHELVES Filed May 2, 1963 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 1- kulmuw g: a R? g United States. PatentO 3,161,158 DEPLAY RAQK WlTll VERTICALLY ADIUSTAh -LE SHELVES Emanuel R. Lurey, Slrolrie, Ill, assignor to E. R. Lurey Company, Chicago, Ill., a corporation of Illinois Filed May 2, 15 63, Ser. No. 277,566 3 Claims. {11 1tl8-2} This invention relates generally to merchandise display racks and, more particularly, relates to an improved display rack of the character described for displaying articles supported in superposed layers or tiers on vertically adjustable, springback ledges or shelves for self-service business establishments.

Display racks of the general type with which the invention is concerned are widely used in self-service type business establishments for bottled porducts, such as carbonated drinks. Such products today are commonly sold in cartonswhich are used to transport the bottled products. The racks have a plurality of shelves on which the bottled beverages in the cartons are storaged for display. The customer desiring the product merely lifts the carton from a shelf of the rack. When the shelf is empty of cartons, spring means provided on the shelf bias the empty shelf to a retracted position so that the lower shelf adjacent thereto is accessible.

The primary object of the invention is to provide a display rack of the character described in which the shelves are selectively adjustable in a verticle direction one relative to the other so that the same rack can be used for merchandise of different size.

An important part of the invention is to provide such display rack in which each shelf has novel means associated therewith which cooperate with a wall of the rack for permitting such adjustment in the position thereof as well as to engage said wall to limit lateral movement of the shelf and thereby stabilize the shelf in its installation on the rack.

Another object of the inven'tion is to provide a display rack as described in'which said shelf thereof has novel hinge and spring means for realizing the vertical ad: justability and lateral stability of the shelf.

A'further object of the invention is to provide a display rack as described having a back wall provided with a pair of channels along oppositelateral edges thereof and said shelf has guide means engaged in said channels for permitting vertical adjustment in the position of the shelf.

Another object of the invention is to provide a display device which is compact and economical, constructed of relatively few parts, is readily assembled and disassembled, and functions simply and reliably.

These and other objects, advantages and functions of the invention will be apparent on reference to the specification and to the attached drawings illustrating a pre- 7 ferred embodiment of the invention, wherein likev parts are identified'b'y like reference symbols'in each. of the views, and wherein:

FIG. 1 is aperspective view of a display device, illustrating several partitionsythereof in their extended poi 60 sitions and supporting cartons of bottled goods, and other partitions in their retracted positions and fr e'e of goods; if

FIGZ'Z -is an end elevationalview'thereofcon' a re'duced scale, {illustrating the adjustability of the partitions for I different. sizes of the, goods on display; FlGL'fB is an enlargedfragmentaryhorizgin viewtaken on line 3. 33o f FIG. 2;

l sectional FIG. 4 is a fragmentary'verticalsectional view taken on line 4-4 ofFIG. 3; and I p FIG; 5 is a fragmentary end elevationalview similar to tlie view fofFlG. 4.

*stitnte U-shaped metal plates, as seenin FIG. 4-.' jEach j 'Broadly,.the display rack embodyingith'e invention inchannel member 54 embraces the marginal portion '50,:

dfi ld Patented Dec. 15, 1964 "ice received in the groove means for biasing the partition into its retracted position when unrestrained, and the spring meansfrictionally engages the groove means While .being slideable therein to hold the partition in place while per- 7 mitting forcible adjustment thereof.

Referring to the drawings, the display device or rack embodying the invention is identified generally by the reference character It Said display rack 10 includes a display stand constructed of a horizontal base 12 and a vertical back wall 14. A plurality of partition or shelf assemblies 16 is mounted on the wall 14 overlying the base 12 in extended positions of said shelves.

The base 12 is a fiat rectangular member sturdily constructed of wood, metal or other suitable material to support 'a considerable Weight of merchandise stacked thereon.) Casters 18 are mounted at the four corners of the base for achieving convenient mobility for the rack 10. Alternatively, the casters may be omitted and the rack supported directly on the floor or on a gondola of the type sometimes employed in stores, or the rack may be arranged in any other convenient manner, alone or together with other devices or display facilities.

The wall 14 is constructed of an elongated, rectangular panel 29 and a pair of elongated, rectangular posts 22 on the back side of the panel at each of its vertical end margins, as seen in FIG. 3. The panel 20 and the posts 22 are secured together by screws 24 or other suitposts by screws 30, as seen in FIG. 1. The braces 28 are bent outwardly adjacent their lower ends, as indicated at 32, to afford clearance for the merchandise and have inwardly bentupper ends 34 for securing them to the backs of the posts.

As best seen in FIGS; 1 and 3, the front face 36 of the wall panel 20 is provided with a pair of elongated grooves 38 adjacent to and spaced from the respective vertical side edges 4! of the panel 20. The grooves extend vertically in spaced parallel relation for the entire height of the panelZtl, that is, from the bottom edge 42 to the 'top edge 44 thereof. Each of the respective vertical side edges 49' of the panel 2% is provided in the post 22 thereat, with anelongated vertical channel 46 which extends for the entire height of the wall from the bottom edge 42 to the top edge 44. The grooves 38 open forwardly on. the panel 26, and the channels 46 face laterally outwardly from opposite sides edges of the-wall 14;

As seen in FIG. 3 each of the assemblies 16 includes a a-flat partition or shelf 47' constructed in one piece of suitably rigid wood, for instance, and having parallel opposite top and bottom surfaces 48 and 49. Each shelf includes a central rearwardly projecting marginal portion Eii bordered by corner notches or recesses 52 inthe rear Ledge ofthe shelf and on 'opposi-tesides of theiex tension-or portion 59. A channel rnember- 54 is secured to each partition at'the marginalportion, by rivets 56 oriother suitable means. Thechannelm'e-rnber's 54' com and the channel member projects rearwardly from the edge 58 of the portion 50 to form a hinge sleeve or holder therewith.

A hinge rod 60 is journalled on each shelf 47 in the hinge sleeve formed by theassociated channel member 54 and the marginal portion 50. The rod has opposite bent ends each including a reverse bend 62 and an inwardly directed terminal portion 64. The terminal portions are slidably received-in the respective end channels 46, with the bends 62 closely adjacent to the wall end 40 to provide a snug fit "thereon. The rod normally extends horizontally between its ends, overlying the front side 36 of the wall 14 and spaced a short distance forwardly thereof. The snug fit of the rod permits of but little departure or canting from its normal horizontal position. The shelf 47 is hingedly or swingingly mounted on the rod adjacent the front side 36of the wall, for movement about a horizontal axis between extended and retracted positions with respect to the wall. In use, the shelves 47 extend horizontally forwardly and overlying the base 12, as illustrated by the positions of the lower shelves in FIGS. 1 and 2. The shelves are capable of movement over 180 degrees, from downwardly projecting substantially vertical positions alongside the wall 14 and the front side 36 thereof, to upwardly projecting substantially vertical positions alongside of'the wall. The latter positions areillustrated for the upper shelves in FIGS. 1 and 2, and they constitute the retracted positions of the shelves.

Referring to FIG. 3, a pair of torsion coil hinge springs 66 is mounted around the hinge rod 66. The springs are respectively mounted on opposite sides of the marginal extension portion 50 and the channel member 54 thereon, and received inthe notches 52. Each spring 66 includes a straight terminal end or finger 68 extending from one side thereof and forwardly on the partition, and a shallow convex curved opposite terminal end 70 extending in anotherdirection and rearwardly from the shelf. The inner margin of each spring abuts against the channel member 54 with the straight end 68 engaging the. bottom surface 49 of the shelf along the end of the channel member. The curved spring end 76 includes an arcuate glide portion 72 and a terminal reverse bend 74. The glide portion of each spring is slideably received in one of the wall grooves 38 with the spring under torsional stress. The springtension causes the inner spring end bear on the bottom surface of the shelf 47 for normally biasing the shelf into the vertical, retracted position illustrated by the upper shelves in FIGS. 1 and 2, when unrestrained. At the same time, the spring tension produces substantial frictional engagement of the glide portion 72with the Wall panel 20 in the groove 38, to hold the shelf in place. It will be noted further that the springs fit closely between the Wall panel grooves 38 and the ends of the channel member 54, toserve as lateral spacers or locators for the shelf.

The foregoing construction serves to maintain the shelves 47 properly in their desired positions on the wall 14; The hinge rods 60 and thus the; shelves maybe tilted only a small amount from the horizontalpositions of the rods, due to the snug fit of the rods. At the same time, the tendency for even such small displacement is resisted by the engagement of the curved outer spring ends'70in the vertical grooves 38. The spring tension produces frictional engagement of the curved spring ends in the grooves, together with frictional engagement of the rod terminal portions 64 in the channels 4 6'. In this -manner, vertical displacement of the shelves is restricted,

and additional resistance to tilting is provided. How- (eventhefxictiohal forcesmay be overcome manually to adjust the shelves vertically. The disposition of the springs 66' centers theshelves over the base 12 and prevents lateral shifting of the-shelves. V

The di'splay rack lt) is constructed for transportation and storage in knock-down condition. Itis assembled and is rugged and durable.

simply by securing the wall 14 to the base 12 by means of the wing nut and bolt fasteners 26, and securing the side braces 28 to the wall and base. The partition assemblies 16 are mounted on the wall by inserting the rod terminal portions 64 in the channels 46 at the top edge 44 of the wall, and bending the curved spring end and inserting them into the grooves 38 thereat, The shelf assemblies then may be moved downwardly on the wall to desired locations thereon, overcoming the frictional forces of the springs. Once the shelf assemblies are in their desired locations, the frictional forces hold them in place. The display rack 1t) is'loaded by first filling the base 12 with a layer of merchandise, such as the cartons 76 illustrated in FIG. 1. A shelf assembly 16 is then manually extended and adjusted to a position in'which the shelf 47 i substantially horizontal and adjacent to the top of the merchandise (see FIG. 5). A second layer of merchandise is placed on the upper surface 48 of the shelf in its extended position, with the shelf seated on the first layer of merchandise. The weight of the merchandisc will cause the shelf to adjust itself to the height of the merchandise therebelow, and the ability of the shelf to swing below the horizontal will cooperate to cause all of the weight to be transmitted to the base 12. Similarly, additional shelves are placed on the second and successive layers. of merchandise, until the merchandise is stacked in a columnof superposed layers or tiers individually supported by shelves with the weight transmitted to the base.

When used in the intended manner, the merchandise is all of the same type and size, so that the customer will remove it starting from the top, and there will beno tendency to remove articles from lower layers before the upper shelves are emptied. Various types or sizes of merchandise may be displayed individually at different times, as illustrated in FIG. 2, showing three layers made up of respective cartons 78, 80 and 82 holding bottles of different height. This view is illustrative. only of the versatility and adaptability of the display device, since it is not intended that more than one type and size of merchandise be displayed at the same time on one rack.

Should it be desired to add or remove shelf assemblies 16 at any time, they may be added as described above, or 1 removed by merely pulling them up to the top 44 until the rod and spring ends leave the respective channels and grooves. Such changes in the number of shelves may be occasioned by changes in the number of layers to be displayed, or by changes in the type or size of merchandise to be displayed with resulting requirements for different spacing and number of layers.

As each shelf is cleared of merchandise, it is automatically retracted by the force of the springs 66. At this time, the bottom surface 390f the shelf is visible, and it may be provided with suitable advertising matter or other indicia for performingan auxilia1y function. The shelves may be refilled with the same merchandise at any time. Alternatively, the display rack may be cleared of one line of merchandise and filled with another, requiring at most, a simple adjustment of the shelves.

The invention thus providesa very useful, attractive and economical display rack which compactly displays a substantial'quantity of merchandise for convenient selfservice. The rack 10 includes but a few working parts It'is readily and conveniently assembled, used, adjusted and moved about. I

It will be apparent that various changes and modifications maybe made in the preferred embodiment of the display raclc which has been described and illustrated, within the spirit-and; scope of the invention. It is intended that such changes and modifications be included within thescope of the appended claims.

What it-is desired to secureby LettrsPatent of the sliupwardly extending channel means on each of said ends,

and upwardly extending groove means on said front side,

a plurality of partitions, a hinge rod journalled on each partition, and hinge spring means mounted on said rod to engage said partition, said rod having opposite ends slideably received in said channel means and extending horizontally for adjustably mounting said partition on said wall adjacent said front side, said partition being hingedly movable on said rod about a horizontal. axis between a position extending over said base and a retracted position alongside of said'wall, said spring means being received in said groove means for biasing said partition into said retracted position .when unrestrained, said spring means frictionally engaging said groove means while being slideable therein to hold said partition in place while permitting forcible adjustment thereof, whereby individual superposed layers of articles may be supported on said base and said partitions in their extended positions with each partition seated on the layer therebeneath, and each partition moves to its retracted position when the layer thereon is removed.

2. A display device ,which comprises a stand' including a'base and an upright wall, said wall having a front side facing said base and two upwardly extending ends,

upwardly extending channel means on each of said ends,

and a pair of upwardly extending groove'means on said front side, a plurality'of partitions each having a prohinge sleeve therewith, a hinge rod journalled in each sleeve, and a pair of hinge springs mounted on each 6 rod on opposite sides of said marginal portion to engage the corresponding partition, said rod having opposite bent ends slideably received in said channel means and extending horizontallyfor adjustably mounting said partition on said wall adjacent said front side, said partition being hingedly movable on said rod about a horibe supported on said base and said partitions in their extended positions with each partition seated on the layer therebeneath, and each partition moves to its retracted position when the layer thereon is removed.

3. A display device as defined in claim 2 wherein said channel means extend upwardly to the top of said Wall, and said rod ends are insertable into and removable from said channel means at the top of said wall.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,637,445 5/53 Patterson 10859 2,775,352 12/56 Waite 108106 2,908,395 a 10/59 Paterson 108106 X 2,908,397 10/59 Patterson 108-111 2,982,419 5/61 Shiels 10859 3,045,831 7/62 Pendergast 108-111 X FRANK B. SHERRY, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2637445 *25 Jan 19525 May 1953Patterson Lawrence WDisplay rack for bottled goods
US2775352 *9 Feb 195225 Dec 1956American Mach & FoundrySelf-leveling, storing and dispensing apparatus
US2908395 *11 Jan 195713 Oct 1959Spring A Way Displays Of CalifDisplay racks with folding and vertically adjustable trays
US2908397 *23 Nov 195613 Oct 1959Spring A Way Displays Of CalifDisplay stand with folding trays
US2982419 *17 Feb 19582 May 1961Mead CorpSpring-lift combination display shelf
US3045831 *19 Jul 196024 Jul 1962Browning Jr Wayne FCommodity rack
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3612288 *27 Aug 196912 Oct 1971Lesley James RichardHinged display rack
US3631820 *24 Jul 19694 Jan 1972Taber Russell EDisplay device
US3688914 *16 Dec 19705 Sep 1972Taber Russell EDisplay device
US3868019 *29 Dec 197225 Feb 1975Xerox CorpTray apparatus
US4159831 *14 Dec 19773 Jul 1979The Coca-Cola CompanyMobile extra display container
US4322005 *27 Mar 198130 Mar 1982DisplaycoDisplay stacker with biased pivoted trays
US4359162 *4 Sep 198016 Nov 1982Erich LutherDevice for stacking board-staped articles
US4411367 *27 Jul 198125 Oct 1983Leggett & Platt, IncorporatedMobile display rack
US4415090 *21 May 198115 Nov 1983Leggett & Platt, IncorporatedAisle end merchandising display device
US4712691 *14 Oct 198615 Dec 1987Hans GrillRacking device
US4750623 *12 Mar 198714 Jun 1988Paul Flum Ideas, Inc.Stackable shelving system
US4919282 *13 May 198724 Apr 1990Duff Terry LMovable gondola shelving with hidden shelf adjustment mechanism
US6102496 *10 Feb 199815 Aug 2000Display Industries, Llc.Merchandising display cabinet
US64058802 Jul 200118 Jun 2002Rtc Industries, Inc.Rack merchandising system
US660708318 Jun 200219 Aug 2003Rtc Industries, Inc.Rack merchandising system
US7770751 *10 Jun 200810 Aug 2010Focus Products Group, LlcBaking tray
US8584872 *5 Aug 201119 Nov 2013Denise EisemanFolding utility tray
US20030170098 *5 Mar 200211 Sep 2003Fanuc Robotics North America, Inc.Parts feeding system
US20050000924 *19 Aug 20046 Jan 2005Rtc Industries, Inc.Rack merchandising system
US20050000925 *3 Jul 20036 Jan 2005Michael MuellerStacker
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US20100313769 *5 Aug 201016 Dec 2010Lou HenryBaking tray
USRE4383929 Aug 20114 Dec 2012Fpg, LlcBaking tray
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U.S. Classification108/2, 108/59, 211/59.4
International ClassificationA47F5/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47F5/0087
European ClassificationA47F5/00M1