US 3613189 A
Beschreibung (OCR-Text kann Fehler enthalten)
Oct. 19, 1971 D. R. KIRBY I 3,613,189
END EJECTING COFFIN Filed March 19, 1970 INVENTOR. DONALD R. KIRBY L1 4? aw/L ATTORNEY.
F'TT' lj m United States Patent 3,613,189 END EJECTING COFFIN Donald R. Kirby, 637 Carey Place, Lakeland, Fla. 33803 Filed Mar. 19, 1970, Ser. No. 21,088 Int. Cl. A61g 17/00 US. Cl. 2735 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A cofiin adapted for use in mausoleum burials. The device comprises an inner coffin of inexpensive construction, enclosed Within an outer, reusable coffin which is of ornate construction. An end of the outer coffin is openable and the inner coffin is rollably mounted within the outer coffin to move longitudinally into an above the ground mausoleum vault without being seen by the funeral party.
This invention relates generally to coffins and in particular to a combination outer, reusable coffin and a smaller inner coffin which is end ejected into a mausoleum vault.
What has been called the high price of dying is never more true than it is today. The expense of even a modest funeral today can be several thousand dollars. One of the major cost factors of funerals is the price of the burial cofiin itself. The burial coffin is usually ornate and expensively decorative so as to add dignity and beauty to the funeral service. It is felt by many people that the extra expense of an elaborate burial coffin, for use only once, is wasteful. However, there are many pressures on the family of the deceased to provide their departed loved one with the most elaborate and decorous funeral possible.
In an attempt to lower the cost of the burial coffin, while maintaining elegance and decorum, it has been suggested that an outer, ornate, reusable coffin be used in combination with an inner, burial coffin.
The concept of utilizing two coffins in this manner is shown in US. Pats. 2,167,001, 1,065,579, 188,296, 1,048; 361 and 3,050,818. In the prior art devices shown therein, an ornamental outer shell without a bottom is provided which has the appearance of a standard coffin. A burial coffin is suspended within the outer shell and adapted to be lowered into a concrete vault at the bottom of the grave. After the ceremony, the outer ornate shell is removed and is available for re-use. While these open bottom cofiins are suitable for subterranean burials, they are unsatisfactory for burials above ground.
Above ground interment, in mausoleums, has become an increasingly popular method of burial. Among the reasons for this is the more economical use of burial space in cemeteries, in addition to the fact that the cost of upkeep of the burial site is considerably less.
Most mausoleums comprise a series of rectangular concrete vaults, above the ground, into which the coffin is placed. The vaults have an open end which is sealed shut by a flanged head piece after the cofiin has been placed therein. Frequently, to make better economic use of the cemetery area and thus lower the cost per vault, these vaults are built contiguous to one another and are stacked three or four high.
It should be apparent from the above that since the prior art burial devices lower the burial cofiins from the bottom, they are unsatisfactory for use in above ground, mausoleum interments since the inner coffin would have to be removed in view of the funeral party, before insertion into the vault. In an attempt to circumvent this disadvantage, U.S. Pat. 3,133,334 provides for a combined burial cofiin and reusable outer coffin which is adapted for use in mausoleum burials. This patent teaches the concept of utilizing an outer, ornamental shell that has no bottom and an openable end. In use, both the outer ornamental shell and the inner coffin are placed within the vault. The inner coffin is then lowered and the outer ornamental coffin withdrawn from the vault.
Although the device taught by this patent does allow the re-use of the ornate outer coffin, it has the disadvantage of needing a much larger dimensioned vault since both the large ornamental shell and the inner coffin must both be inserted into the vault before the inner cofiin can be lowered from the bottom and the outer coffin withdrawn. This means that the extra volume needed to receive the outer, ornamental coffin shell will decrease the number of vaults per given area and hence decrease the cost per unit.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide an inner cofiin which is adapted to be ejected longitudinally from an outer coffin.
Another object is to provide an ornate, outer cofiin which is adapted to be re-used.
Still another object is to provide an ornate, outer coffin which is adapted to hold and eject a smaller coffin from its end.
A further object is to provide a combination ornate outer and inner coffin which are adapted for use in mausoleum burials.
A still further object is to provide a burial device whereby the inner cofiin will not be readily observable as it is moved into the burial vault.
Another object is to provide a burial device which, while lowering the cost of the burial, will maintain dignity and the solemnity of the occassion.
Another object is to provide a coffin of simple and inexpensive construction whereby the cost of funerals will be diminished.
Another object is to provide a smaller coflin whereby the dimensions of mausoleum vaults may be diminished hence the cost per vault will be less.
Another object is to provide an ornate, outer cofiin which has a bottom and an openable end.
Another object is to provide in combination with an ornate, outer cofiin, an inexpensive, small, functional inner cofiin which is adapted to be moved longitudinally from the outer coffin into a mausoleum vault without being observed by the funeral party.
Other objects of the invention will in part be obvious and will in part appear hereinafter.
The above and other objects not specifically enumerated are efficiently obtained by providing a device for utilization in mausoleum burials wherein an ornate, reusable outer coffin shell is provided with an openable end. The outer coffin is further provided with a relatively smaller, inexpensive inner coffin, rollably mounted within and adapted to be ejected from the end of the outer cofiin. The construction is such that when the open end of the outer coffin is placed flush with the open end of a mausoleum vault, the inner coffin may be inserted into the burial vault without being observed from Without.
The invention accordingly comprieses an article of manufacture possessing the features, properties, and the relation of elements which will be exemplified in the article hereinafter described, and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the claims.
For a fuller understanding of the nature and objects of the invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the end ejecting cofiin.
FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view through line 2-2 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a partial cross sectional view through lines 3-3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a broken, partial cross sectional view of a second embodiment of the coflin motive apparatus.
FIG. 5 is a broken, partial cross sectional view of a third embodiment of the coffin motive apparatus.
FIG. 6 is the same as FIG. 5, with motive apparatus actuated.
FIG. 7 is a partial side view of one type of openable closure.
FIG. 8 is a partial side view of a second type of openable closure.
Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawing.
Referring now to the drawing wherein FIG. 1 illustrates a perspective vview of the reusable outer coffin 10, having side walls 12 and 14 with hand rails 16 or other similar carrying device fixedly attached. Outer coffin 10 further includes bottom 18 and closed end wall 20 as well as openable top 22. These elements are sturdily constructed and are made of conventional coffin ma.- terials such as expensive woods and the like. Because this cofiin shell will be used many times, it is contemplated that it would be embellished even more than most cofiins used today. For instance, it could be inlayed with expensive materials such as gold, mahogany, walnut or silver. In addition, a second openable top 24 is attached so that the deceased may be viewed while in repose. An openable closure 26 is provided on the end of coffin shell 10 in order that inner, burial coffin 32 may egress from outer shell 10. Closure 26 may be attached in several ways, for instance, it may be attached by a hinge 28 so that it may be swung open as shown in FIGS. 1 and 7 or it may be removed from the outer coffin completely by sliding closure 26 up a dove-tail track 30 or the like, as shown in FIG. 8.
Inner coffin 32 is of any simple, conventional coffin design, preferably it is a generally rectangular shape with an openable top 34. The inner coffin can be constructed of any inexpensive, yet functional material such as metal, wood, Fiberglas, a molded or laminated plastic and the like. In addition, the interior contains suitable decorous cushionings and trappings (not shown) as in conventional coflins.
Referring now to FIGS. 2 and 3, outer coffin 10 is shown with inner coffin 32 inthe pre-interment condition. Inner coffin 32 is rollably mounted on rollers 36 within coffin .10. These rollers 'are located along the length of coffin 10 on supports 38, which are bolted to outer coffin bottom 18. An electric motor 40' is also provided to drive friction wheel 42. by means of belt 44. Electric motor 40 is conventional and powered by a battery (not shown) or an external power source.
In operation, closure 26 is removed and the open end is placed adjacent to the open end of the burial vault (not shown). When motor 40 is actuated, friction roller 42 gently moves inner coffin 32 slowly into the vault. In order to prevent scraping and noise from the bottom of inner coflin 32 as it comes in contact with the floor of the vault, additional rollers may be provided within the vault or a sheet of cloth, smooth runners of wood or plastic or even some substance such as wax may be placed on the floor of the vault. In the alternative, additional rollers may be placed on the bottom of inner coifin 32- in order that the inner coffin will roll easily into the vault.
Referring to FIG. 4, another method of ejecting coffin 32 is illustrated. Here handcranlc 46 is bolted to floor 18 and has rope 48 attached to the trailing end of inner cofiin 32. As crank 46 is turned, the cofiin is rolled into the vault as discussed above.
FIGS. 5 and 6 disclose still another method of ejecting cofiin 32. Here a series of parallel spaced rollers 50 are rotatably attached to a frame 52. Frame 52 comprises a pair of spaced parallel members which are connected to each end of the spaced parallel rollers 50. The frame 52 is pivoted at one end to the outer coffin side walls 12 and 14 at 54. The other end of frame 52 rests on eccentric cam 56 to which is attached hand crank 58. When hand crank 58 is turned, the eccentric cam 56' lifts frame 52 and cofin 32 gently moves from outer coflin 10.
In addition to the above enunciated means toremove the inner coffin it is within the contempltion of the instant invention that a hydraulic or pneumatic pump mechanism could be used to move burial coffin 32 into the vault. Further, it is within the contemplation of the present invention to utilize other closable openings. For instance, a slidable curtain of the general type of rolltop desks, made of slats or narrow, articulated, laterally extending panel sections of a plastic or a light metal may be utilized. The curtain could be placed in guide slats and pulled up by a rope or crank.
In addition, since the vaults into which the inner cofiin will be placed may be several feet off the ground, it is contemplated to utilize this device on a lift platform to raise the outerco-ffin to the appropriate height whereby the opening in the coffin may be placed tflush with that of the burial vault.
It will thus be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent from the preceding description, are efiiciently attained and, since certain changes may be made in the above article without departing from the scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
It is also to be understood that the following claims are intended to cover all of the generic and specific features of the invention herein described, and all statements of the scope of the invention, which, as a matter of language, might be said to fall therebetween.
Now that the invention has been described, what is claimed is:
1. A combination of an inner coffin and an outer coflin wherein said outer coffin comprises a generally rectangular enclosure having two side walls, a bottom, and one end wall fixedly assembled, and further wherein the top and one end wall are openable, said inner coflin comprises a generally rectangular enclosure with at least one openable side, said inner cofiin adapted to receive a corpse for burial, power means mounted in said outer cofiin whereby said inner coffin may be ejected from the end of said outer coflin.
2. The structure of claim 1 wherein said power means comprise electric motor means aifixed to said outer coffin and frictionally engaged with said inner cofiin whereby upon actuation said inner coffin will be ejected from said openable end Wall.
3. The structure of claim 1 wherein said inner coffin is rollably mounted within said outer coffin.
4. The structure of claim 3 wherein said power means comprise a crank affixed to said outer coffin, said crank operatively attached to said inner coffin by a flexible, connector whereby when said crank is turned, said inner coffin will egress from the openable end of said outer cofiin.
5. The structure of claim 3 wherein said power means includes an outer coffin frame means pivoted at said openable end of said cofiin, said frame being coextensive with said outer cofiin, said frame having roller means mounted transverse to said frame and adapted to rollably support said inner coflin, eccentric cam means rotatably attached to said outer cofiin and adapted to support said frame and, crank means operatively attached to said eccentric cam means whereby upon rotation of said crank means said cam will lift one end of said frame and eject said inner coflin.
6. The structure of claim I wherein said openable end wall is hingedly attached to said outer cofiin whereby said end wall may be swung open when said inner coffin is being ejected.
'7. The structure of claim 1 wherein said openahle end 6 wall is slidably attached to said outer cotfin whereby said wall may be removed from said outer cofiin.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 595,461 12/1897 Snader.
973,608 10/1910 Young. 1,194,810 8/1916 Bellis. 3,133,334 5/1964 Johnsen.
RICHARD A. GAUDET, Primary Examiner J. B. MITCHELL, Assistant Examiner