Patent application title: STACKABLE CHAIR WITH CUPHOLDER AND FOLDING TABLE
Paul Martus (Grand Rapids, MI, US)
Eliott Copier (Grand Rapids, MI, US)
David Wolf (Cedar Springs, MI, US)
Douglas L. Fassett (Kentwood, MI, US)
IPC8 Class: AA47C304FI
Class name: Chairs and seats with table, desk, or easel tablet-arm type
Publication date: 2014-12-11
Patent application number: 20140361583
A stackable chair includes a writing table that can be folded to allow
the chairs to be stacked and a cup holder that is positioned adjacent the
table to also allow stacking of the chairs.
1. A stackable chair comprising a bracket capable of receiving a second
bracket of a second chair vertically stacked on said chair, a first
accessory mounted to said bracket for movement between a first
orientation and a second orientation which allows respective tables of
stacked chairs to be adjacent each other, and a second accessory mounted
to said bracket adjacent said first accessory and positioned to receive
another of said second accessories of a said second chair.
2. A stackable chair wherein said first accessory comprises a writing table and said second accessory comprises a cup holder.
3. A stackable chair according to claim 2 wherein said cup holder is mounted to said bracket such that it remains in a fixed orientation with respect to said bracket when said writing table is moved to said second orientation.
4. A stackable chair according to claim 3 wherein said cup holder is mounted to a forward portion of said bracket such that it is positioned forward of said writing table.
5. A stackable chair according to claim 4 wherein said cup holder is tapered.
 This invention relates to the art of seating, and in particular to stackable chairs.
 Stackable chairs are known. In some instances the chairs are provided with accessories that are above the seat or back portions of the chair. Thus, such an accessory poses a problem when stacking the chairs because it may prevent placement of the seat or back portion of an upper chair closely adjacent a corresponding portion of a lower chair. In one example, such an accessory is a writing table or tablet. In another example, the accessory is a cup holder that is mounted near the writing table. A particular problem has been to provide a stackable chair with accessories of different types, such as a writing table and a cup holder.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 In accordance with the invention, a stackable chair is provided with a writing table as an accessory that is mounted to the remainder of the chair whereby it can be moved to a position that allows the chair to be stacked with one or more similar chairs. In one embodiment the writing table is mounted to a frame member of a first chair such that it can be moved from an operational orientation usable by an occupant of the chair to a storage orientation that will allow a writing table of a second chair, which has been moved to a similar orientation with respect to the second chair, to be placed vertically adjacent to the first writing table when the second chair is stacked on the first chair. In this way, several chairs can be stacked.
 In accordance with a second aspect of the invention, an embodiment of a chair according to the invention is provided with a separate type of accessory, such as a cup holder, as well as an accessory such as a writing table. To facilitate stacking of chairs with both a writing table and a cup holder, a stackable chair in accordance with the invention is configured such that the cup holder is placed near the writing table to be convenient to the user but is arranged with respect to the writing table such that it nevertheless allows the chairs to be stacked.
 In an embodiment, a stackable chair includes a foldable writing table that can be moved from a somewhat horizontal orientation when functioning as a writing table to a somewhat vertical orientation to allow one chair to be stacked on another without the interference of a horizontal writing table. The cup holder, however, is mounted to the frame of the chair so that it does not change positions when the writing table is moved whereby the cup holder portion of one chair receives the cup holder portion of an upper chair when a second chair is stacked on a first chair.
 In an embodiment, the writing table is mounted to a frame member that extends forward of the seating portion of the chair for pivotal movement about an axis formed by the frame member, and the cup holder is mounted to a forward portion of the frame member. By this construction, the cup holder is easily accessed by the user by being adjacent the writing table, and the writing table can be rotated to a stackable orientation without changing the orientation of the cup holder. Moreover, the cup holder is easily assembled and can be an add-on feature, if desired.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a stackable chair in accordance with the invention.
 FIG. 2 shows several chairs in accordance with the invention stacked.
 FIG. 3 is a partial view of the stacked chairs of FIG. 2 showing the writing tables and cup holders.
 FIG. 4 is an assembly view of a preferred embodiment of the chair according to the invention showing assembly of the cup holder to the chair frame.
 FIG. 5 is a view of the chair of FIG. 4 showing the cup holder attached.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 In accordance with the invention a stackable chair is provided with a writing table that is capable of moving from a first position where it is horizontal and available for use by a person seated in the chair and a second position where it allows several chairs to be stacked. In an embodiment, the writing table moves to the second position by pivoting upward about an axis formed by a bracket that supports the table in the first position. The cup holder remains in a single position with respect to the chair frame and in the preferred embodiment extends forwardly from the bracket on which the writing table is mounted to permit easy access by the user when seated but facilitating stacking during periods of non-use.
 FIG. 1 shows a stacking chair 2 of a general construction known in the art. The chair, however, includes a writing table 4, and a cup holder 6. The cup holder extends forward of the writing table to provide ready access by a user seated in the chair and yet allow stacking as will be explained below.
 FIG. 2 illustrates several chairs of the invention stacked, for example, for storage. In order to place a chair in the configuration that allows stacking, the table 4 is first pivoted upward to an orientation just past vertical so that the flat upper surface of the table of an upper chair will lie adjacent the bottom surface of a lower chair. The cup holder, however, remains upright so it can engage a lower cup holder when stacked. Preferably the sides of the cup holders are tapered so the upper cup holder is easily received in the lower cup holder.
 FIG. 3 shows an enlarged view of the stacked cup holders shown in FIG. 2.
 With reference to FIGS. 4 and 5, a preferred embodiment of a chair in accordance with the invention is illustrated. In this embodiment, the table 4 is pivotally mounted to a horizontal portion 8 of a support tube 10 that is attached to the frame of the chair 2. The pivotal mount comprises a hinge having a stationary part 12, a movable part 14, and a hinge pin 16. The movable part 14 is secured to the table by screws or other fastening means. As noted earlier, the hinge allows the table to pivot to an orientation past the vertical to allow several chairs to be stacked.
 The end of the horizontal part of the support tube 10 is provided with a nut 18, and the cup holder 6 is secured to the support tube by a bolt 20 that passes through an opening in the end of the cup holder and is received in the nut 18. Other methods of attaching the cup holder to the bracket are possible. For example, the end of the cup holder can be elongated and received in a sleeve in the bracket. It will be appreciated that the end of the cup holder is configured to cooperate with the stationary part of the hinge to provide a simple but sturdy connection.
 Modifications within the scope of the appended claims will be apparent to those of skill in the art.
Patent applications by Douglas L. Fassett, Kentwood, MI US
Patent applications in all subclasses Tablet-arm type