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Title:
CONVERTIBLE FURNITURE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/229305
Kind Code:
A9
Abstract:
The invention relates to a convertible furniture (1), which comprises - a first furniture part (2a) comprising a frame (11 a) with end supports (12a, 12b) and thereto supported a bed (3a) and a table part (4a); - a second furniture part (2b) comprising a frame (11b) with end supports (12a, 12b) and thereto supported a bed (3b) and a table part (4b); - pivoting means, such as hinges (5a, 5a') and gas springs (5b) between the furniture parts, arranged to guide their movement between at least a table position and a bed position; - an openable table lock (6) with a first and a second locking member (6a, 6b) arranged to secure the furniture parts in the table position, and when opened, allowing movement of the furniture parts towards the bed position. The table lock is operated with an elongated shaft (6c), which is supported on the first or the second furniture part (2a, 2b). A first end (9a) of the shaft is connected to the first and/or second locking member (6a, 6b). The shaft extends from there past the first or second bed (3a, 3b) and towards a second edge (8a, 8b) of the table part (4a, 4b). There the second end (9b) of the elongated shaft (6c) is arranged to be manually engaged by a user situated by the second edge (8a, 8b). The shaft is adapted to be moved in the direction of the plane of the first or second table part (4a, 4b).

Inventors:
RENFORS DINE (FI)
BACKAS JOHAN (FI)
RYTMAN MARK (FI)
SVÄRD KIRSI (FI)
Application Number:
FI2019/050420
Publication Date:
October 29, 2020
Filing Date:
May 31, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
TABLEBED OY (FI)
International Classes:
A47B85/04; A47B85/06; A47C17/62; A47D11/00
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
AHREMAA OY (FI)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A convertible furniture (1 ), comprising

- a first furniture part (2a) comprising a first frame (11 a) with a first and a second end support (12a, 12b) and thereto supported a first bed (3a) and a first table part (4a);

- a second furniture part (2b) comprising a second frame (11 b) with a first and a second end support (12a, 12b) and thereto supported a second bed (3b) and a second table part (4b);

- pivoting means (5a, 5b) between the first furniture part (2a) and the second furniture part (2b) arranged to guide their movement between at least

o a table position, where the first and second table parts are arranged horizontally, thereby forming a horizontal table surface (4), and the beds are unusable; and

o a bed position, where the beds are usable, and the table parts are not usable;

- a table lock (6) arranged to secure the first and second furniture parts (2a, 2b) in the table position and comprising a first locking member (6a) on the first furniture part (2a) and a second locking member (6b) on the second furniture part (2b), and adapted to be moved with an actuator between

o a locked position, where the locking members (6a, 6b) are interlocked with each other, thereby securing the furniture parts (2a, 2b) in the table position and

o an open position, where the locking members (6a, 6b) are not interlocked with each other, thereby allowing movement of the furniture parts (2a, 2b) towards the bed position;

whereby the actuator is an elongated shaft (6c), which shaft is:

- connected to the table lock (6);

- supported on the first or the second furniture part (2a, 2b);

- adapted to be moved in the direction of the plane of the first or second table part (4a, 4b); whereby the table parts (4a, 4b) comprise at least mainly parallel

- first edges (7a, 7b) which are in the table position against each other at the middle of the table surface (4), and in bed position are arranged as upper edges of the sides of the beds; and

- second edges (8a, 8b) which are in the table position arranged as outer edges of the table surface (4), and in bed position are arranged as lower edges of the sides of the beds,

characterised by that a first end (9a) of the elongated shaft (6c) is connected to the first and/or second locking member (6a, 6b) and shaft is arranged to extend from there past the first or second bed (3a, 3b) and towards the second edge (8a, 8b) of the table part (4a, 4b), whereby in table position the second end (9b) of the elongated shaft (6c) is arranged to be manually engaged by a user situated by the second edge (8a, 8b).

2. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 1 , characterised by that

in the table position:

- the upper surfaces of the first and second table parts (4a, 4b) are arranged substantially flush with each other, thereby forming the horizontal table surface (4); and

- the first and second beds (3a, 3b) are arranged mainly vertical and unusable under the table parts (4a, 4b); whereas

in the bed position:

- the first and second beds (3a, 3b) are arranged horizontal and usable; and

- the first and second table parts (4a, 4b) are arranged as vertical sides of the beds.

3. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 1 or 2, characterised by that the first and second locking members (6a, 6b) are situated at the first edges (7a, 7b) of the table parts (4a, 4b) so that in the table position they are against each other at the middle of the table and in bed position they are arranged on top edges of the sides of the beds.

4. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 3, characterised by that the elongated shaft is or comprises a lever (6c) adapted to be turned in the direction of the plane of the table surface (4) around a pivot point (13).

5. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 4, characterised by that the elongated shaft (6c) is supported on an inner surface (10a, 10b) of the first or second table parts (4a, 4b).

6. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 5, characterised by that the elongated shaft (6c) is arranged and movable between a table part (4a, 4b) and a bed (3a, 3b) of a furniture part (2a, 2b).

7. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 6, characterised by that each table part (4a, 4b) is arranged perpendicularly to its end supports (12a, 12b), whereby each end support (12a, 12b) functions

- in table position as a vertical support against a floor and

- in bed position as a vertical bed end.

8. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 7, characterised by that each end support (12a, 12b) of a frame comprises

- a first end support edge (131 ), which is arranged

o in table position mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame; o in bed position as a mainly horizontal upper edge of the bed end;

- a second end support edge (132), which is arranged

o in table position mainly vertical and situated away from the other frame; o in bed position as a mainly horizontal lower edge of the bed end;

- a third end support edge (133), which is arranged

o in table position as a mainly horizontal lower edge of the vertical support against a floor;

o in bed position mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame;

- a fourth end support edge (134), which is arranged o in table position as a mainly horizontal upper edge of the vertical support, supporting the table part (4a or 4b) on top of it;

o in bed position as mainly vertical and situated away from the other frame.

9. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 8, characterised by one or more partly hidden wheels (14) attached to the end supports (12a, 12b), a part of the wheels (14) protruding over at least one, or one or two edges (132, 133) of the end support in order to ease movement of the furniture against a floor beneath it.

10. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 9, characterised by that the one or more wheels (14) are arranged

- at the corner where the second and third end support edges (132, 133) meet; and/or

- to protrude only over the second end support edge (132).

1 1 . A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 9 or 10, characterised by that the one or more wheels are arranged mostly or partly inside the end panels (12a, 12b).

12. A convertible furniture (1 ) according any previous claim 9 to 1 1 , characterised by that the wheel is arranged as the point of contact between the furniture (1 ) and a floor at any given stage of the movement between bed and table positions.

13. A convertible furniture (1 ) according any previous claim 9 to 12, characterised by that the wheel (14a, 14b) is attached to a support plate (16a, 16b) which is attached to the end support (12a, 12b) of the furniture part (2a, 2b).

14. A convertible furniture (1 ) according claim 13, characterised by that the support plate (16a, 16b) supports the wheel (14a, 14b) and the pivoting means (5a, 5b).

15. A convertible furniture (1 ) according claim 13 or 14, characterised by that the support plate (16a, 16b) is attached at and along an edge (133) of the end support.

16. A convertible furniture (1 ) according any previous claim 13 to 15, characterised by that in table position the support plate (16a, 16b) is at a mainly horizontal lower edge (133) of the end support.

17. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 16, characterised by that a movable extra support (15) is arranged under the table part (4a, 4b) and fixed to the table part and/or to the end support (12), whereby at least a part (15b) of the extra support is movable onto an end support edge (132) or onto a table part edge (8a, 8b), so that in the bed position the second end (15b) of the extra support, situated on the edge (132, 8a, 8b), is arranged to engage the floor.

18. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 17, characterised by that the at least a part (15b) of the extra support is movable onto the second end support edge (132) or onto the second table part edge (8a, 8b).

19. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to claim 18, characterised by that when preparing to move the furniture into bed position, an outer end (15b) of the extra support (15) is turned around a vertical axis (15a) to be engaged with the second end panel edge (132).

20. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 19, characterised by that

- in bed position, every part or every moving part of the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) is arranged under upper edges (131 ) of the end supports (12a, 12b); and/or

- in table position, every part or every moving part of the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) is arranged over lower edges (133) of the end supports (12a, 12b).

21 . A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 20, characterised by that the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) are turnably supported to the end supports (12a, 12b) of the furniture parts.

22. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 21 , characterised by that the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) are arranged on both ends of the furniture (1 ).

23. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 22, characterised by that in table position the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) are attached on or near edges (133) of the end supports that are mainly horizontal lower edges of the end supports.

24. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 23, characterised by that pivot point (P) of the hinge structure is arranged outside the end supports (12a, 12b) of the furniture parts.

25. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 24, characterised by that the pivoting means comprises two hinge arms (5a, 5a’), each arm attached turnably on the first and the second furniture parts (2a, 2b), whereby fastening points (19) of the hinge arms (5a, 5a’) are located symmetrically on the furniture parts.

26. A convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 25, characterised by that the pivoting means comprises two hinge arms (5a, 5a’) on both ends of the furniture (1 ).

27. A convertible furniture (1 ) according any previous claim 1 to 26, characterised by that the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) are attached to support plates (16a, 16b) which are attached to the end supports (12a, 12b) of the furniture parts (2a, 2b).

28. A convertible furniture (1 ) according claim 27, characterised by that each support plate (16a, 16b) supports a wheel (14a, 14b) and the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b).

29. A convertible furniture (1 ) according claim 27 or 28, characterised by that the support plate (16a, 16b) is attached at and along an edge (133) of the end support.

30. A convertible furniture (1 ) according any previous claim 27 to 29, characterised by that in table position the support plates (16a, 16b) are at the mainly horizontal lower edges (133) of the end supports. 31. A method with a convertible furniture (1 ) according to any previous claim 1 to 30, the method comprising

- moving a first and a second furniture part (2a, 2b) between at least a bed position and a table position, each furniture part comprising two end supports (12a, 12b) and thereto supported a bed (3a, 3b) and a table part (4a, 4b);

- guiding said moving with pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) between the first furniture part (2a) and the second furniture part (2b);

characterised by that

- in bed position, keeping every part or every movable part of the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) under upper edges (131 ) of the end supports (12a, 12b); and/or

- in table position, keeping every part or every moving part of the pivoting means (5a, 5a’, 5b) over lower edges (133) of the end supports (12a, 12b).

Description:
CONVERTIBLE FURNITURE

TECHNICAL FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates to a convertible furniture, i.e. a piece of furniture which can be changed into another piece of furniture. The invention is especially related to a furniture which can be converted from a bed to a table and vice versa.

TECHNICAL BACKGROUND

Patent publications US 60339 A, HU 195416 B, FR 1420300 A, US 277637 A and US 4277856 A show pieces of furniture that can be arranged either as a table or as a bed. The prior art solutions are complex and difficult to use.

OBJECT OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to reduce or even eliminate the abovementioned problems appearing in prior art.

It is an object of the present invention to provide an easy and reliable way to secure furniture parts immovable when needed and to allow their movement when needed.

It is an object of the present invention to enable an easy and reliable movement of furniture parts when converting the furniture from a bed to a table and vice versa.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Among others, in order to realize the objects mentioned above, a convertible furniture and other objects according to the invention are characterized by what is presented in the enclosed independent claims. The dependent claims present some embodiments of the invention.

The embodiments, examples and advantages mentioned in this text relate, where applicable, as well to convertible furniture or any methods when using it, as to any other aspect of the invention, even though it is not always specifically mentioned. A simple way to describe the basic idea of the invention is, that a convertible furniture comprises

- a first furniture part comprising a frame with end supports, such as panels and thereto supported a bed and a table part;

- a second furniture part comprising a frame with end supports, such as panels and thereto supported a bed and a table part;

- pivoting means, such as hinges, rails and gas springs between the furniture parts, arranged to guide their movement between at least a table position and a bed position, the pivoting means may be attached e.g. to the end supports;

- an openable table lock arranged to secure the furniture parts in the table position and when opened, allowing movement of the furniture parts towards the bed position.

The inventiveness of this basic idea can be enhanced e.g. by adding to it one or more of the following technical ideas:

1 ) The lock is used with an elongated actuator i.e. a shaft operatively connected to the lock; the shaft is supported movable on a furniture part, e.g. below a table part, and adapted to be moved only, or at least mainly, in the direction of the plane of the table part. The shaft may extend from the lock at the middle of the table and past the bed under the table part all the way close to the outer edge of the table part. E.g. a sideways turnable relatively long lever facilitates the use of the lock. The shaft may be a lever turning around a pivot point. These features make the opening and closing of the table lock easy and reliable.

2) One or more wheels are attached to the end supports. The wheels may be partly hidden, i.e. only a part of the wheel is visible, i.e. the wheels protrude over an edge or one or more edges of the end support. The wheels ease the movement of the furniture against a floor or other support beneath it. Advantageously these wheels are situated in table position at the lower outer corner of the end supports. More advantageously the wheels are at the corners but protrude only over vertical end support edges. 3) The pivoting means between the furniture parts are constructed in such a way that in bed position, no part or no moving part of the pivoting means reaches over the upper edges of the end supports. This makes the use of the furniture safe and comfortable.

4) Movable extra supports to be engaged with the floor or other support are arranged under a table part e.g. on to the end support. When preparing to move the furniture into bed position, the support is engaged with the end support edge that is meant against the floor in bed position. Now, the support will engage the floor. The weight of the furniture in bed position rests on possible wheels and at least partly on the extra supports. There may be more of these extra supports on different points of the furniture.

5) One or more support plates may be attached to the end supports of the furniture parts. Support plates are separate of the end supports, made e.g. of metal or plastic. Each support plate may support a wheel and the pivoting means. A support plate may be attached at and along an edge of the end support. A support plate may form an edge of the end support. In table position the support plates may be situated at the mainly horizontal lower edges of the end supports.

The listed technical ideas and many more embodiments are explained in detail below, also in reference to the drawings. All the ideas are combinable with each other, also in ways not separately mentioned.

An embodiment of a typical convertible furniture according to the invention comprises

- a first furniture part comprising a first frame with a first and a second end support and thereto supported a first bed and a first table part;

- a second furniture part comprising a second frame with a first and a second end support and thereto supported a second bed and a second table part;

- pivoting means, such as hinges, rails or gas springs, between the first furniture part and the second furniture part arranged to guide their movement between at least o a table position, where the first and second table parts are arranged horizontally, thereby forming a horizontal table surface and the beds are unusable; and

o a bed position, where the beds are usable, and the table parts are not usable;

- a table lock arranged to secure the first and second furniture parts in the table position and adapted to be moved with an actuator between

o a locked position, securing the furniture parts in the table position and o an open position, allowing movement of the furniture parts towards the bed position.

The actuator is an elongated shaft connected to the table lock. The shaft is:

- supported on the first or the second furniture part; and

- adapted to be moved in the direction of the plane of the first or second table part.

In an embodiment the table lock comprises a first and a second locking member situated on different furniture parts. The first and second locking members are adapted to be moved between

- a locked position, where the locking members are interlocked with each other, thereby securing the furniture parts in the table position and

- an open position, where the locking members are not interlocked with each other, thereby allowing movement of the furniture parts towards the bed position.

In an embodiment the elongated shaft is connected to the first or second locking member. This makes it easy to move one or more of the locking members between the locked position and the open position, even with a small gesture or movement a distance away from the actual locking mechanism. The table lock may be manually or automatically operable. In an embodiment, the lock is a is a simple latch. A latch can be opened and closed with a simple movement, e.g. manually with a lever.

The first and second table parts are in their general form more or less planar. The plane of the first or second table part is the general plane’s direction. In table position that plane would normally be the direction of the table surface, i.e. horizontal.

In an embodiment, in the table position:

- the upper surfaces of the first and second table parts are arranged substantially flush with each other, thereby forming the horizontal table surface; and

- the first and second beds are arranged mainly vertical and unusable under the table parts; whereas

in the bed position:

- the first and second beds are arranged horizontal and usable; and

- the first and second table parts are arranged as vertical sides of the beds.

In an embodiment the table parts comprise at least mainly parallel first and second edges. The first edges are in the table position against each other at the middle of the table surface, and in bed position arranged as upper edges of the sides of the beds. The second edges are in the table position arranged as outer edges of the table surface, and in bed position arranged as lower edges of the sides of the beds. In an embodiment the first and second locking members are situated at the first edges of the table parts. This way in the table position they are against each other at the middle of the table and in bed position they are arranged on top edges of the sides of the beds.

The elongated shaft may be supported on an inner surface of the first or second table parts, i.e. in table position on the lower surface of the table part. This way it stays mostly hidden during normal use of the furniture. The elongated shaft may be movably arranged in a space between the table part and the bed of the furniture part. This makes it possible for a user to easily reach the shaft from outside the table.

In an embodiment a first end of the elongated shaft is connected to the first and/or second locking member. The shaft then extends from there past the first or second bed and towards the second edge of the table part. There the second end of the elongated shaft is arranged to be manually and easily engaged by a user situated by the second edge.

The elongated shaft may be made of different materials and in different sizes and forms. Metals, such as aluminium or steel, plastics, wood are some examples of possible materials. The length of the shaft may vary depending on the situation, e.g. more than 20 cm, more than 30 cm, 20 to 40 cm, 20 to 50 cm are possible. Suitable shaft length is decided especially by the width of the table part it is mounted on.

The elongated shaft is a way to transmit power to be used at the lock from near the outer edges of the table. The shaft may be formed as a rod or another kind of rigid component. It is also possible that the shaft comprises an outer core or shell and a wire or another flexible shaft or belt inside it for power transmission.

In an embodiment each table part is arranged perpendicularly to its end supports. Each end support functions in table position as a vertical support against a floor and in bed position as a vertical bed end. If the table part and end supports are fixed together firmly, simply and immovably relative to each other, the frame becomes robust and easy to arrange to withstand the movements of the furniture.

Some possible dimensions for the furniture are as follows. In table position:

- Table part length 160-220 cm (in bed direction, i.e. direction between end supports)

- Table part width 30-60 cm (in direction between its first and second edge) - Table height 60-100 cm;

In bed position:

- Bed length 160-220 cm (in bed direction)

- Bed width 120-200 cm (double bed)

- Bed height 30-60 cm.

Some possible materials for the different plate-like parts or panels in the furniture, such as table parts and end supports, are wood, plastic, honeycomb panels or other cellular panels. Panel surfaces may be coated, e.g. with thin wood or plastic layer.

In an embodiment the furniture comprises two at least almost similar furniture parts. The furniture parts maybe near mirror images. The furniture parts each comprise a frame, which comprises two end supports, such as generally planar vertical panels and a generally planar table part, forming half of the whole table surface supported between the end supports. A bed is supported on the frame, possibly immovably. The two frames are attached to each other pivotably, to be turned around a turning axle, defined e.g. by hinges. The turning axle of the pivoting movement is horizontally at the bottom of the furniture, near or at its centre line. The frames can be turned against each other in the table position where the table parts are horizontally on the top, supported by vertical end supports and the bed is vertically under the table part. From there the both frames can be turned 90 degrees, into the bed position. In bed position the two frames, i.e. the end supports and the table parts form vertical sides for the now horizontal beds. There is no need to have a fourth side for the bed in a frame, because in bed position the two frames lie side by side, forming a double bed with panels around it, but without a panel between the two beds.

One way to define the inventive conversion movement of the furniture between the table and bed positions is to define what happens to the edges of the mainly planar end supports in the two furniture positions. Each end support comprises an outer and inner larger surface parallel to each other and vertical during normal use of the furniture. The outer and inner surfaces are connected by edges, as follows: - a first end support edge, which is arranged

o in table position mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame; o in bed position as a mainly horizontal upper edge of the bed end;

- a second end support edge, which is arranged

o in table position mainly vertical and situated away from the other frame; o in bed position as a mainly horizontal lower edge of the bed end;

- a third end support edge, which is arranged

o in table position as a mainly horizontal lower edge of the vertical support against a floor;

o in bed position mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame;

- a fourth end support edge, which is arranged

o in table position as a mainly horizontal upper edge of the vertical support, supporting the table part on top of it;

o in bed position as mainly vertical and situated away from the other frame.

An embodiment of a typical convertible furniture according to the invention comprises

- a first furniture part comprising a first frame with a first and a second end support and thereto supported a first bed and a first table part;

- a second furniture part comprising a second frame with a first and a second end support and thereto supported a second bed and a second table part;

- pivoting means, such as hinges, rails or gas springs, between the first furniture part and the second furniture part arranged to guide their movement between at least

o a table position, where the first and second table parts are arranged horizontally, thereby forming a horizontal table surface and the beds are unusable; and

o a bed position, where the beds are usable, and the table parts are not usable;

- a table lock arranged to secure the first and second furniture parts in the table position and adapted to be moved with an actuator between

o a locked position, securing the furniture parts in the table position and o an open position, allowing movement of the furniture parts towards the bed position.

The pivoting means between the furniture parts may be constructed in such a way that in bed position, every part or every movable part of the pivoting means is arranged under the upper edges of the end supports. This makes the use of the furniture safe and comfortable.

In an embodiment, in table position, every part or every movable part of the pivoting means is arranged over the lower edges of the end supports. This makes the use of the furniture safe and comfortable and protects the floor or any support under the furniture.

In an embodiment every part or every movable part of the pivoting means is arranged both under the upper edges of the end supports and over the lower edges of the end supports during the whole movement between the bed and table positions. In an embodiment every part or every moving part of the pivoting means is arranged to stay between the edges of the end supports during the whole movement between the bed and table positions.

One aspect of the invention is a method with the convertible furniture according to the invention. In an embodiment the method comprises

- moving a first and a second furniture part between at least a bed position and a table position, each furniture part comprising two end supports and thereto supported a bed and a table part;

- guiding said moving with pivoting means between the first furniture part and the second furniture part;

- in bed position, keeping every part or every movable part of the pivoting means under upper edges of the end supports; and/or

- in table position, keeping every part or every moving part of the pivoting means over lower edges of the end supports. In an embodiment the pivoting means are turnably supported to the end supports of the furniture parts. Turnably supported means that the pivoting means allows turning or moving of the furniture parts between the table and bed positions. In an embodiment, e.g. in case of a hinge arm or a gas spring, one end of the pivoting means is supported on an end support of one furniture part and the other end of the pivoting means is supported on an end support of a second furniture part. In an embodiment the pivoting means is attached at or near an edge of the end support. In an embodiment in table position the pivoting means is attached on or near the edge that is the mainly horizontal lower edge of the end support.

One way to achieve the above-mentioned smooth movement of the furniture parts and the pivoting means is to arrange the pivot point or the point of rotation of the hinge structure slightly outside the end supports of the furniture parts. With this kind of a virtual pivot point arrangement no physical parts are needed at the pivot point P, i.e. situated outside the furniture parts. Now, no part of the pivoting means interferes with the floor or protrudes up from the table surface. This can be achieved e.g. with a hinge structure comprising two hinge arms on both ends of the furniture with fastening points of the hinge arms located symmetrically on the furniture part.

In an embodiment in table position, the hinge arms are arranged crossed with each other, i.e. one arm is attached at an upper position in the first furniture part and at a lower position in the second furniture part, whereas the other arm is attached at an upper position in the second furniture part and at a lower position in the first furniture part. In an embodiment in bed position, the hinge arms are arranged horizontally, at the same level with each other, i.e. the fastening or pivot points of the two hinge arms are at same level.

The hinge structure is an important if not the main support structure between the two halves of the furniture when they are moved between the table and bed positions. Strength and robustness of the hinge arms is important. They may be made e.g. of a metal such as steel, plastic or some other suitable material. All the pivoting means, such as the hinges or gas springs, as well as the wheels need to be robust enough to support movement of the furniture parts. Also, the supporting of these parts to the furniture parts needs to similarly robust. One good possibility is to arrange them supported on one or more relatively large support plates, which are easy to attach e.g. on the end supports of the furniture parts. The support plate may be made of e.g. metal, such as steel or aluminium plate or any suitable plastic or composite material. Every piece of pivoting means, e.g. hinges or gas springs may have their own support plates on each furniture part. Also, each wheel may be supported on its own support plate.

The support plate structure gives the furniture robust structure, high strength, easy assembly and increased accuracy in its movements. In an embodiment each support plate supports a wheel and pivoting means. Attaching all pivoting means and wheels of one end support to one large support plate enhances the benefits.

In an embodiment the support plate is attached at and along an edge of the end support. This strengthens the edge and simplifies the structure. In an embodiment in table position the support plates are at the mainly horizontal lower edges of the end supports. This strengthens the lower edge and makes it easy to arrange wheels on the support plate. In an embodiment the support plates are of the same length and form as edges of the end supports they are attached to. This further strengthens and simplifies the structure.

In an embodiment one or more wheels are attached to the end supports. In an embodiment the wheels are partly hidden in the end supports. The wheels may be supported and arranged between the inner and outer faces of the end support. In an embodiment the wheels are situated so that in the table position they are at the lower outer corner of the end supports. In an embodiment in table position the wheels protrude only over vertical end support edges. In an embodiment in table position the wheels protrude over both vertical and horizontal end support edges. In an embodiment the wheels are arranged as the point of contact between the furniture and a floor or other support it is situated on, at any given stage of the movement between bed and table positions. The wheels ease the movement of the furniture against a floor or other support beneath it.

In an embodiment the wheels are attached to support plates which are attached to the end supports of the furniture parts. In an embodiment the wheels are simple castors, i.e. rollers mounted to an axle pin. One end of the axle pin may be firmly attached, e.g. by welding, on the support plate.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

The invention is described in more detail below with reference to the enclosed schematic drawing, in which

Figure 1 shows a convertible furniture according to the invention in table position in a side view from above the furniture,

Figure 2 shows the furniture of Figure 1 during movement between the table and bed positions,

Figure 3 shows the furniture of Figure 1 in bed position,

Figure 4 shows the furniture of Figure 1 in table position in a perspective view from above the furniture,

Figure 5 shows the furniture of Figure 1 in bed position in a perspective view from above the furniture,

Figure 6 shows the locking mechanism of a furniture according to the invention in table position in a partly cut view from above the furniture, the locking mechanism in open position,

Figure 7 shows the locking mechanism of Figure 6 in locked position,

Figure 8 shows an outer top corner of a furniture according to the invention in table position, in a perspective view from below, with an extra support not engaged,

Figure 9 shows the top corner of Figure 8 with the extra support engaged,

Figure 10 shows support plates of one furniture end in table position,

Figure 1 1 shows the support plates of Figure 10 in bed position, and

Figure 12 shows a lower part of an end support with a wheel in bed position. DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE EXAMPLES OF THE FIGURES For the sake of clarity, in different embodiments same reference numerals are used for parts corresponding to each other. For the sake of clarity, every part and feature has not been numbered in every Figure.

A convertible furniture 1 comprises a first and a second furniture part 2a and 2b. Each of these comprises a frame 1 1 a, 1 1 b and thereto supported a bed 3a, 3b and a table part 4a, 4b. The depicted furniture parts 2a and 2b are almost mirror images of each other. In some embodiments there might be bigger differences between the furniture parts.

Pivoting means, i.e. hinges 5a and gas springs 5b are arranged between the first and second furniture parts 2a and 2b. They guide and assist the movement of the furniture parts between a table position and a bed position. The pivoting means 5a and 5b are attached to the first and second end supports, i.e. end panels 12a, 12b of the first and second furniture part.

In the table position, shown e.g. in Figures 1 and 4, the frames are standing on their side panels and arranged against each other. The side panels of the frames now on the top are the table parts 4a and 4b. They are now horizontally arranged and substantially flush with each other, forming a horizontal table surface 4 at the top of the furniture. At the same time, the beds 3a and 3b are arranged sideways inside the frames. In other words, the beds are in a vertical position under the table parts, and therefore unusable.

When moving from the table position to the bed position, the tops of the furniture parts 2a and 2b are turned away from each other, see Figure 2. The table surface 4 opens at its centre line between the two table parts 4a and 4b. As the frames are turned more and more towards the horizontal, the beds become more and more visible. Finally, as shown e.g. in Figures 3 and 5, the furniture is in bed position. This means that the frames 1 1 a and 1 1 b and in them the beds 3a and 3b are in a horizontal position. Beds are usable. At the same time, the table parts 4a and 4b have become side panels for the beds. This means that they are not usable.

The table parts 4a, 4b comprise first edges 7a, 7b and second edges 8a, 8b parallel to each other, on the opposite sides of the table parts. The first edges 7a, 7b are in the table position against each other at the middle of the table surface 4. In bed position the first edges are arranged as upper edges of the sides of the beds. The second edges 8a, 8b are in the table position arranged as outer edges of the table surface 4, and in bed position they are arranged as lower edges of the sides of the beds.

Each frame 1 1 a, 1 1 b comprises a first and a second end panel 12a, 12b. Each table part 4a, 4b is arranged perpendicularly between its end panels, whereby each end panel 12a, 12b functions in table position as a vertical support against a floor and in bed position as a vertical bed end. In the depicted embodiment, each end panel 12a, 12b comprises four edges. A first end panel edge 131 is in table position mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame. In bed position the first end panel edge 131 is a mainly horizontal upper edge of the bed end. A second end panel edge 132 is in table position mainly vertical and situated facing away from the other frame. In bed position second end panel edge 132 is a mainly horizontal lower edge of the bed end. A third end panel edge 133 is in table position a mainly horizontal lower edge of the vertical support against a floor. In bed position third end panel edge 133 is mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame. A fourth end panel edge 134 is in table position a mainly horizontal upper edge of the vertical support, supporting the table part 4a or 4b on top of it. In bed position the fourth end panel edge 134 is mainly vertical and situated away from the other frame. In this example the first and second panel edges are substantially parallel to each other. Similarly, the third and fourth panel edges are substantially parallel to each other, but perpendicular against the first and second. This means that in the depicted embodiment the end panels 12a, 12b are formed as a substantial rectangle, with rounded corners. This needs not to be the case; the furniture can be designed in many forms. To keep the furniture parts 2a, 2b safely in the table position, an easily operated table lock 6 is arranged between the frames 1 1 a, 1 1 b. In a locked position, the table lock secures the furniture parts together. In an open position the table lock allows the movement of the furniture parts 2a, 2b towards the bed position. The table lock 6, seen e.g. in Figures 6 and 7, comprises a first locking member 6a on the first table part 4a and a second locking member 6b on the second table part 4b. The locking members 6a, 6b are situated at or near the first edges 7a, 7b of the table parts so that in the table position they are against or very near to each other at the middle of the table. In bed position the locking members are arranged on top edges of the sides of the beds.

In the depicted embodiments the table lock is a simple latch, with a steel arc 6a, i.e. an arc-shaped steel form, as the first locking member and a pin 6b as the second locking member. The steel arc 6a can be turned in the direction of the plane of the first table part 4a it is arranged on. When the two table parts 4a and 4b are in contact with each other, the steel arc 6a may be turned to reach around and behind the pin 6b, thereby interlocking the steel arc 6a and the pin 6b with each other. This means the table lock 6 is in locking position and the furniture parts 2a, 2b are secured in the table position. When turning the arc 6a so, that the opening in the arc 6a is towards the pin 6b the table lock 6 is in open position. Now the furniture parts 2a, 2b may be turned away from each other.

To ease the functioning of the table lock 6, a lock actuator, i.e. an elongated shaft 6c is connected at its first end 9a to the steel arc 6a. The shaft 6c is a lever adapted to be turned in the direction of the plane of the first table part 4a. Turning the shaft 6c moves the steel arc 6a and thus the table lock 6 between the locked and open positions. That means that in table position the table lock is opened and secured by turning the shaft 6c horizontally near and under the first table part 4a. The shaft 6c is supported on the inner surface 10a of the first table part 4a with a pivot point 13. The second end 9b of the elongated shaft 6c is arranged towards the second edge 8a of the first table part 4a. The shaft 6c extends, from the table lock 6 past the bed 3a, which is arranged under the table part 4a, towards the second edge 8a of the table part. The second end 9b of the shaft may comprise a handle, where it can be manually engaged by a user, simply by reaching her/his arm under the second edge 8a of the table part. The shaft 6c is adapted to move close to the inner surface 10a. This way it is freely movable in the small gap between the first table part 4a and the first bed 3a situated under the table part. A recess may be formed in the side of the bed to make more space for the shaft to move. One possibility is to arrange the elongated shaft at least partly inside the table part. This may be done e.g. by forming a suitable open recess on the inner surface 10a of the table part 4a. The shaft 6c may also be situated totally or almost totally inside the table part 4a, so that only the second end of it, e.g. a handle is visible and ready to be engaged with a hand.

In order to ease movement of the furniture against a floor beneath it during the conversion between the table position and the bed position, one or more partly hidden wheels 14a and 14b can be attached to the end panels 12a, 12b. The wheels may e.g. be arranged mostly or partly inside the end panels 12a, 12b so that just a part of each wheel 14a, 14b is protruding over an edge of the end panel. It may be advantageous to arrange the one or more wheels 14a, 14b at the corners which are the outer and lower corners in the table position. That is, the corners where the second and third end panel edges 132 and 133 meet. A wheel may protrude over only the vertical or both the vertical and horizontal panel edges 132 and 133. In Figures 1 , 2 and 3 the corners where such wheels are positioned are shown with circles. In the depicted embodiments, the wheels 14a, 14b are arranged to protrude over the second and third end panel edges 132 and 133. The wheel may protrude e.g. under 2 mm, under 5 mm, under 20 mm, 2 to 5 mm, 2 to 10 mm, 5 to 10 mm or 2 to 20 mm over the panel edges 132, 133. Extra supports or feet may be arranged at the panel edge 133 so, that in the table position wheels 14a, 14b are not engaged with the floor, but as soon as the movement towards the bed position starts, the wheels 14a, 14b start to engage the floor. This way they facilitate the conversion of the furniture during practically the whole movement between the two positions. The wheels 14a, 14b may be constructed in many ways. It is possible to replace all or some wheels by some other movement facilitating or friction decreasing means, such as plastic glides. In Figures 8 and 9 is shown an outer top corner of the furniture 1 in table position. A turnable extra support 15 is arranged under the table part 4a. In Figure 8 it is hidden under the table part, against the corner of end panel 12 and inner surface 10a of the table part. In the drawings the support 15 is fixed to the table part 4a. When preparing to move the furniture into bed position, an outer end 15b of the support 15 is turned around a vertical axis 15a to be engaged with the second end panel edge 132. In the bed position the outer end 15b of the support, situated on the panel edge 132, will engage the floor. On that edge 132, the thickness of the outer end 15b of the support may be the same as the distance the wheels 14a or 14b protrude over the panel edge 132, that is, e.g. under 2 mm, under 5 mm, under 20 mm, 2 to 5 mm, 2 to 10 mm, 5 to 10 mm or 2 to 20 mm. This way, the weight of the furniture 1 in bed position rests on the wheels14a, 14b and on the extra support 15. There may be more of these extra supports 15 on different points of the furniture. That would e.g. make it possible to remove all weight from the wheels 14a, 14b in bed position. The support 15 may be manufactured e.g. from a suitable plastic. Also fixed feet or other fixed supports may be arranged in panel edges so that they contact the floor in table and bed positions. Feet or other supports may give extra friction between the furniture and the floor in order to prevent the furniture from unwanted moving of the furniture.

Figures show embodiments with two elongated support plates 16a and 16b on each end of the furniture. First support plates 16a are attached to the end support plates 12a and 12b of the first furniture part 2a. Second support plates 16b are attached to the end supports 12a and 12b of the second furniture part 2b. Each support plate 16a and 16b supports a wheel 14a or 14b, one end of the hinge arms 5a and 5a’ and one end of the gas spring 5b. The support plates 16a, 16b are attached to the end panels 12a, 12b with screws or bolts 17.

The support plates are attached at and along the third end panel edges 133, on the inside face of the end supports 12a, 12b. Thus, in table position the support plates 16a, 16b are at the mainly horizontal lower edge of the vertical support against a floor. And in bed position the support plates 16a, 16b are mainly vertical and situated towards the other frame, and against the support plate on the other frame. The support plates 16a, 16b are of the same length and form as the panel edges 133 they are attached to. As a matter of fact, they can be thought to form part of the panel edges 133. Figure 10 shows mere support plates 16a and 16b with hinge arms 5a, 5a’, gas spring 5b and wheels 14a, 14b of one furniture end in a table position, and Figure 1 1 shows the same in a bed position.

Figure 12 shows one example of a wheel 14b arranged at a corner of second and third end panel edges 132 and 133. The support plate 16b is attached at and along the third end panel edge 133, on the inside face of the end support 12a. Inside face means the face facing the bed 3a and the other end support 12b. The support plate is aligned with and actually forms parts of both the inner face of end support 12a and the panel edge 133. The wheel 14b is supported and arranged between the inner and outer faces of the end support 12a.

The wheels 14a, 14b may be simple castors, i.e. pivoting rollers mounted to an axle pin 19 on the support plate. The design of the support plate16a, 16b, the diameter of the wheel 14a, 14b and the position of the axle pin 19 can is chosen so that the wheels will be the outermost point, i.e. the point of contact at any given stage of the transition between bed and table positions.

One end of the axle pin 19 of the wheel is firmly attached, e.g. by welding, on the support plate 16. The other end of the axle pin 19 may be supported e.g. on the end panel 12a, 12b. Flowever, the axle pin 19 can be dimensioned thicker and of a sufficiently strong material so that it would not bend even without a support on its other end.

The gas spring 5b aids the transition between the table and bed positions. When moving the furniture between the two positions, the user normally needs most power when starting the movement from the bed position toward the table position. Therefore, the gas springs 5b may be arranged so that they provide some or maximum force, i.e. aid for the user when starting from bed position. The gas springs 5b may provide some or minimum force, i.e. smaller aid for the user when starting from table position. This would help in avoiding unintentional opening from the table position.

For a smooth movement of the furniture parts, a pivot point P or the point of rotation of the hinge structure may by arranged slightly outside the end supports 12a, 12b of the furniture parts 2a, 2b. An example of an approximate position of the pivot point P is shown with an arrow in Figures 10 and 1 1 . It would be problematic if the hinge structure would need any physical parts at the pivot point P, i.e. situated outside the furniture parts. This kind of parts would interfere with the floor or protrude up from the table surface. The hinge according to the Figures doesn’t protrude outside the end supports 12a, 12b in table or bed position. Hinge structure between the furniture parts 2a and 2b comprises two hinge arms 5a and 5a’ on both ends of the furniture. The hinge is constructed as a double arm hinge with fastening points 18 of the hinge arms 5a and 5a’ located symmetrically on support plates 16a and 16b. In table position, see Figure 1 1 , the hinge arms 5a, 5a’ are arranged crossed with each other, i.e. arm 5a is attached at an upper position in the first support plate 16a and at a lower position in the second support plate 16b, whereas the arm 5a’ is attached at an upper position in the second support plate 16b and at a lower position in the first support plate 16a. In bed position, see Figure 10, the hinge arms 5a and 5a’ are arranged horizontally, at the same level with each other, i.e. the fastening or pivot points 18 of the two hinge arms are at same level with each other.

The shown hinge structure with two hinge arms 5a and 5a’ and four hinge arm pivot points 18 ensures that turning motion is always the same.

The hinge arms 5a and 5a’ are located on opposite sides of the plates 16a, 16b to avoid collision with each other. The arms 5a, 5b may be mounted with bearings at their fastening points to avoid wear. If the support plate 16a, 16b is attached at an inner side face of the end support 12a, 12b, at least some of the movable pivoting means, e.g. one of the hinge arms, may need a cavity inside the end support 12a, 12b, to provide space for its moving. Also the wheels 14a, 14b need a cavity inside the end support 12a, 12b. The hinge structure is an important if not the main support structure between the two halves of the furniture when they are moved between the table and bed positions. Strength and robustness of the hinge arms 5a and 5a’ is therefore important. They may be made of a metal such as steel, plastic or some other suitable material.

Feet or other supports may be arranged in panel edges so that they contact the floor in table and bed positions. These feet or other supports may give extra friction between the furniture and the floor in order to prevent the furniture from unwanted rolling.

The figures show only a few preferred embodiments according to the invention. Facts of secondary importance with regards to the main idea of the invention, facts known as such or evident for a person skilled in the art, such as support structures possibly required by the invention, are not necessarily separately shown in the figures. It is apparent to a person skilled in the art that the invention is not limited exclusively to the examples described above, but that the invention can vary within the scope of the claims presented below. The dependent claims are not to be considered to restrict the scope of protection of the invention as such.