US 3895720 A
A basic component, i.e. modular section, capable of a variety of applications to form racks to receive cards and like thin, flat articles in a systematic manner is disclosed. The component is preferably cut to required lengths from extruded plastic composition. In its principal aspect the basic component is multiplied by interengagement of tongue and groove joints.
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[451 July 22, 1975 United States Patent [1 1 Presberg 3.581.932 6/1971 Kreeger et a1. 211/126 3,612,292 10/1971 Nervig 211/55 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 1 1 RACK FOR TICKETS AND THE LIKE inventor: Charles D. Presberg, 400 N.
Michigan Ave. Deerfield, 111. 6061 1 Oct. 15, 1973 Appl. No.: 406,299
n U 49 43 99 H 30  Filed:
variety of applications to form racks to receive cards and like thin, flat articles in a systematic manner is References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS disclosed. The component is preferably cut to required lengths from extruded plastic composition. In
its principal aspect the basic component is multiplied by interengagement of tongue and groove joints.
3 Claims, 16 Drawing Figures 5 85 BN 3 5 O2 4 v 2 1,954,242 Heppenstall 2,532,600 Broersmzi.l.........
2,71047? 6/1955 Kress et 2,879,899 3/1959 Shenkin PATENTED JUL 2 2 197$ SHEET Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q PATENTED JUL 2 2 I975 FIG, 9
RACK FOR TICKETS AND THE LIKE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Presently, racks for receiving cards such as employee time cards, certain merchandise such as greeting cards and similar uses are custom made by cutting and forming sheet metal to form pockets for the articles, thereby necessitating the fabrication of special tools for blanking and forming, as well as joining sections into an assembly and fastening these thus-fabricated units into a frame or other form of mounting. As a result the user's choice is somewhat limited and the cost is often disproportionate when considered in relation to the convenience gained. Consequently there has been a demand for a rack of the kind referred to which is capable of being manufactured in an infinite variety of shapes and sizes by employment of easily assembled modular components.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention, in one aspect, comprehends the provision of extruded stock of some convenient commercial length cut into sections suited to the width of the rack under consideration. Regarded in cross section the extruded stock has a spine or rear panel, and wings projecting unilaterally or bilaterally therefrom at some acute angle. Between them the spine and wings define pockets of essentially triangular cross section to receive the articles to be supported, e.g. greeting cards. The spine has an abutment surface at the top and bottom edges and also has a groove in either the top or bottom abutment surface and a tongue in the companion surface so that, by assembling the modular sections in edge-to-edge relation, the pockets may be provided over some desired extent of storage area. The tongue of the tongue-and-groove joint may be rendered transversely resilient in order that adjacent sections may be interengaged readily and thereafter held in rigid rela tion. In the bilateral embodiment the wings extend from both faces of the spine to provide a rack accessible from both sides.
In another aspect the invention includes a novel adjunct which will hold a card identifying the contents of a particular portion of the rack and which includes a divider for the otherwise continuous pockets to segregate articles of different kinds.
The modular section referred to above may be provided with one or more wings and, if desired for special purposes, these may be staggered vertically. Preferably the margin of a section will be such in relation to the wings that the joints between sections will lie midway between two adjacent wings. In the event a finished edge, rather than one having a tongue or a groove is desired, that much of the section carrying the tongue or groove may be sheared off.
In most cases the assemblage of sections will be finished marginally by a frame, as is common in this art. However, the present specification does include frames especially adapted to support the modular sections.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a combined cross section and side elevation of a rack structure embodying the modular sections of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 but including a bilateral arrangement of pockets;
FIG. 3 is a partially exploded perspective of an as sembly similar to FIG. 2, installed in a frame;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional detail of one form of the tongue-and-groove joint;
FIG. 5 is a similar detail of a modified form of FIG. 4'.
FIG. 6 shows a top plan view of a typical rack assem-' bly utilizing units such as those of FIG. 3;
FIGv 7 is a perspective view of a combined separator and label holder constituting one aspect of the invention;
FIG. 8 is a cross section illustrating a modified form of the device of FIG. 7;
FIGS. 9 to 14 inclusive are perspective views illustrating various assemblies in which the invention sections may be embodied;
FIG. 15 illustrates, in perspective, a combined outer frame member to receive the modular sections; and
FIG. 16 shows a double-sided frame member to receive the bilateral type of modular section.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Turning now to the drawings, FIG. 1 shows an assembly of three of the modular sections 10a, 10b and 10(- in interlocked relation. together with a finishing cap 11. Each of the sections, as pointed out above, is capable of use in multiple, and is an extrusion, preferably of a tough plastic composition such as a styrene. Desirably, the extrusion is made in continuous stock lengths and includes a spine or back panel 12 and a wing 14 extending therefrom at an acute angle. At the junction of the members 12 and 14 a fillet 16 is desirably provided for reinforcement. The angular relation between the members 12 and 14 defines a V-shaped space S to receive time cards and similar articles (not shown). Obviously, the arrangement is such that a portion of the card will protrude at the entrance to the space S to facilitate access. To preclude stress cracks and to improve the finish the distal edge of the wing 14 is formed as a bead 18.
The adjacent sections are arranged to be interlocked by means of a slide-in joint, e.g. a tongue-and-groove joint of the type exemplified by FIGS. 1, 2, 4 or 5. In FIG. 1 the tongue 21 has a neck and circular cross section congruent with a matching groove 22. Thus, two adjacent sections may be positioned end to end and slid into engagement. In order to facilitate such engagement and to insure against looseness, it is preferred to provide the tongue with a longitudinally continuous slot, such as 24 (FIGS. 4 and 5) whereby the portions of the tongue flanking the slot may flex within accept able limits. Thus, the tongue may be initially fabricated for a snug, permanent fit in its groove but so as to be capable of compression during sliding engagement of the parts. In any case the cross section of the tongue and groove will comprise a head and neck as typified in the several figures.
As heretofore mentioned the modular sections 10a, 10b, 10c may be bilateral as in FIG. 2. Details of construction will be evident from the preceding description. However, in this figure the distal edge is provided with a continuous channel member 31 having grooves 33 to receive a card bearing lettering to identify the na ture of the contents of the rack. This same feature may. obviously, be used in the unilateral embodiment.
FIG. 3 illustrates a typical assembly 40 comprising a plurality of bilateral. modular sections of the kind described in connection with FIG. 2. In this example, the assembly 40 is received in a simple channel frame 42, mitered and joined at the corners in any well known way whereby to provide a very simple structure which may be of any selected width and height. It will be evident that the modular sections may be stocked in selected unit lengths, say from l foot and up, in 1 foot increments, thereby saving considerable expense for labor involved in making special sizes. Similar considerations apply to the members comprising the frame 42. It will be apparent that the bilateral sections of FIG. 3 may be unilateral in those cases where only one face of the rack will be utilized.
An assembly such as that shown in FIG. 3 may be employed in various ways. For example, FIG. 6 shows three of such assemblies A affixed to a central post 70 rotatably supported on a base for straightforward access to both faces of the several racks without the operator having to change his position.
FIGS. 9 to 14 inclusive illustrate various other embodiments of the modular sections assembled with frames.
In FIG. 9 a special frame member 46 is provided with a pair of interior ribs 47 adapted to fit over the spine or back panel to rigidify the assembly. This feature is particularly useful in cases where the width is such as to allow springing of the rack assembly unless additional widthwise stiffness is provided.
FIG. 10 shows an arrangement including a rack embodying the invention arranged to clamp on a counter or similar surface. In this case the bottom edge of the rack has a channel member 48 to fit over the counter and a pair of thumb screws to secure the same.
In view of what has preceded the modifications of FIGS. 11, 12 and 14 are not deemed to require detailed description.
FIG. 13 shows a free-standing, fan-folded arrangement of racks which comprise either unilateral or bilateral sections hinged along the adjacent spines by suitable hinges (not shown). It will be understood that the leaves of the hinges will protrude sufficiently far from the hinge pin to preclude binding when the rack is folded to a flat condition.
FIG. 15 shows a modified form wherein the side frame member or members 51 have a groove 53 to receive the spine 12a and an adjacent recess 55 to receive an end portion of each of the Wings 14, these latter being coped to be received in the recess 55. A dovetail recess 57 longitudinally of the member 51 receives a card or cards bearing identification data.
.FIG. 16 shows another type of channel frame member 55 in which one or both of the flanges 5656 is provided with a longitudinal dovetail recess 57 to receive a card bearing indicia. It will be clear that the member 55 may be used either vertically or horizontally.
FIG. 7 is a detail in perspective of a combined label holder and divider having a slot 59 to clip over the free edge of a wing 14. The front has a dovetail slot 60 to receive a label and the rear has either one or two cars 58 extending rcarwardly to divide the space S into individual pockets. FIG. 8 shows an adjunct similar to that of FIG. 7 but adapted to fabrication in sheet metal. the slot 60a and ear 58a having the same functions as the corresponding elements 60 and 58 of FIG. 7. The slot 59 finds its equivalent in the U-shaped member 6] of FIG. 8.
Although. by way of example, the foregoing description has referred to the storage of articles of paper. cardboard and the like, it will be understood that the invention rack is readily capable of variation in frontto-back dimensions to accommodate -slim packages. such as magnetic tapes in cassette form. phonograph records and the like.
In addition to the several advantages previously pointed out, it will be understood that the pocket dimensions which are defined by the rack sections and dividers are capable of wide variation. Furthermore, it will be seen that one or several racks are selfsupporting and may be employed without a peripheral framework. If desired, the extrusion may be provided with a slot to receive a decorative strip.
1. A modular one piece, rack section adapted to be assembled in multiple to provide a plurality of racks to receive cards and like articles comprising a spine, at least one thin, flat wing outstanding from said spine at an acute angle therewith defining a pocket to receive the articles, adjacent sections having respective male and female members of elongated tongue and groove means, said means being adapted for end-to-end assem bly only by relative translational movement in the direction of the ends, at least a portion of the length of one of said means having an enlarged transverse cross section congruent with a corresponding cross section of the other of said means to preclude disconnection by force applied transversely of the assembly.
2. The combination in accordance with claim 1 wherein said means comprises a tongue and groove joint, the transverse cross section of the tongue and groove, when assembled, having a head portion and a neck portion, the neck portion being narrower than the head portion to preclude transverse separation of the interengaged sections.
3. The combination in accordance with claim 2 wherein the section comprises resilient but generally shape-retaining material, the tongue is provided with a slot longitudinally thereof to subdivide the tongue into two independent halves adapted for a snug, slide-in fit