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Title:
SUPPORTING GRILL FOR HOUSEHOLD APPLIANCES
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2013/061235
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A supporting grill for household appliances has a frame (4) with a plurality of upper support elements (3) and a plurality of lower protection elements (10) for resting on a surface of the appliance. The frame (4) has a plurality of coupling regions having a thickness, associated to each of which is a protection element (10), each coupling region and the corresponding protection element (10) having means for mutual engagement (14, 15). Each protection element (10) has a body made of elastically deformable material that defines a first lateral portion (1 1), a second lateral portion (12), and an intermediate portion (13), which extends between the first and second lateral portions (11, 12), the first and second lateral portions being generally opposite to one another and each having a respective engagement means (14, 15). The engagement means of the coupling region (4; 2, 3) comprise a first through opening (4a) and a second through opening (4b), which extend between two opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region. The intermediate portion (13) of the body of the protection element (10) bridges the lateral portions (11, 12), the lateral portions (11, 12) and the intermediate portion (13) each having a front and a back. The engagement means of the lateral portions (11, 12) comprise a first engagement element (14) and a second engagement element (15), each of which projects from the back of the respective lateral portion (11, 12). The first and second engagement elements (14) are each fitted in a respective through opening (4b, 4a) of the coupling region, with the back of each lateral portion (11, 12) that faces a respective said side (la, lb) of the coupling region, and with the back of the intermediate portion (13) that at least partially faces a further side (lc) of the coupling region, which extends between said two opposite sides (la, lb), in such a way that the protection element (10) embraces the frame (2-4; 2-3) externally in the corresponding coupling region.

Inventors:
BUCCI DINO (IT)
FERRETTI SIRO (IT)
Application Number:
IB2012/055795
Publication Date:
May 02, 2013
Filing Date:
October 22, 2012
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
INDESIT COMPANY S.P.A. (Viale Aristide Merloni 47, Fabriano, 60044, IT)
International Classes:
F24C15/10
Domestic Patent References:
WO2004023043A12004-03-18
Foreign References:
EP0981989A12000-03-01
EP0981989A12000-03-01
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SANTONICOLA, Paolo (Via Lamberto Corsi 55, Fabriano, 60044, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
k

CLAIMS

1. A supporting grill for household appliances, in particular cooking appliances, having a frame (2-4; 2-3) with a plurality of upper support elements (3) and a plurality of lower protection elements (10) for resting on a surface of the appliance, wherein the frame (2-4; 2-3) has a plurality of coupling regions having a thickness, to each of which a protection element (10) associated, each coupling region and the corresponding protection element (10) having means for mutual engagement (4a, 4b, 4, 15), wherein each protection element (10) has a body made of elastically deformable material that defines a first lateral portion (1 1), a second lateral portion (12), and an intermediate portion (13), which extends between the first lateral portion (11) and the second lateral portion (12), the first lateral portion and the second lateral portion being generally opposite to each other and each having a respective engagement means (14, 15), characterized in that:

- the engagement means of the coupling region (4; 2,3) comprise a first through opening (4a) and a second through opening (4b), which extend between two opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region;

- the intermediate portion (13) of the body of the protection element (10) bridges the lateral portions (1 1, 12), the lateral portions (11 , 12) and the intermediate portion (13) each having a front and a back;

- the engagement means of the lateral portions (11 , 12) comprise a first engagement element (14) and a second engagement element (15), each of which projects from the back of the respective lateral portion (11, 12); and

- the first engagement element (14) and the second engagement element (15) are each fitted in a respective through opening (4b, 4a) of the coupling region, with the back of each lateral portion (1 1, 12) that faces a respective said side (la, lb) of the coupling region, and with the back of the intermediate portion (13) that at least partially faces a further side (lc) of the coupling region which extends between said two opposite sides (la, lb) in such a way that the protection element (10) embraces the frame (2-4; 2- 3) externally at the corresponding coupling region.

2. The grill according to Claim 1, wherein the first lateral portion (11), the second lateral portion (12), and the intermediate portion (13) have a generally flattened configuration.

3. The grill according to Claim 1 or Claim 2, wherein the body of the protection element (10) is made of a single piece.

4. The grill according to Claim 1 or Claim 2, wherein the first engagement element (14) and the second engagement element (15) extend substantially parallel to each other.

5. The grill according to Claim 4, wherein the first through opening (4a) is at a greater height than the second through opening (4b), the two openings being substantially parallel to each other within the corresponding coupling region.

6. The grill according to Claim 5, wherein the first engagement element (14) extends in a position which is generally under the second engagement element (15).

7. The grill according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the first engagement element (14) and the second engagement element (15) each have a widened head end (14a, 15a), and wherein:

- the head end (14a) of the first engagement element (14) projects externally from the first through opening (4a) at one of said opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region, for engagement therewith; and

- the head end (15a) of the second engagement element (15) projects externally from the second through opening (4b) at the other one of said opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region, for engagement therewith.

8. The grill according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the intermediate portion (13) of the body of the protection element (10) is at least in part curved, in particular at least partly C-shaped.

9. The grill according to Claims 6 and 8, wherein a part of the back of the intermediate portion (13) faces one of said opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region.

10. The grill according to Claim 9, wherein one of the first engagement element (14) and the second engagement element (15) has a head end (14a, 15a) facing said part of the back of the intermediate portion (13).

11. The grill according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the back of the first lateral portion (1 1) and the back of the second lateral portion (12) of the body of the protection element (10) are generally parallel to each other and to said opposite sides (la, lb) of the coupling region.

12. The grill according to any one of the preceding claims, wherein the frame (2-4) has a plurality of lower legs (4) and the coupling regions are defined at the lower legs (4).

13. The grill according to any one of Claims 1 to 11 , wherein the frame (2-3) has a peripheral base part (2), from the upper support elements (3) branch off, at least one of the through openings (4a, 4b) of each coupling region being defined at least at one of the peripheral base part (2) and a corresponding upper support element (3).

14. The grill according to Claim 12, wherein one through opening (4a) of each coupling region is defined at the peripheral base part (3) of the frame (2-3), and the other through opening (4b) is defined in a corresponding upper support element (3).

15. A household cooking appliance, comprising a grill according to one or more of the preceding claims for resting on a top surface of the appliance.

Description:
"Supporting grill for household appliances"

TEXT OF THE DESCRIPTION

Field of the invention

The present invention relates to a supporting grill for household appliances, in particular cooking appliances, according to the preamble of Claim 1.

Prior art

Various types of electrical household appliances, and in particular cooking appliances such as cooking hobs and stoves, are provided with supporting grills. These grills are generally configured so as to rest on a top surface of the appliance, defined on which are one or more cooking places, each comprising at least one heating element, such as a gas burner or an electric hot plate.

The aforesaid grills have a frame, generally made of metal, having a series of upper supports, configured for supporting the cooking containers at a height greater than that of the heating elements. Said grills simply rest on the top surface of the appliance so that they can be removed manually, for example for cleaning the top surface or said grills. According to the cases, a respective grill can be associated to each heating element, or else one and the same grill can be configured for co-operating with a number of heating elements. Generally, the frame of the grills has a peripheral base part, from which there depart the upper supports. In some solutions the aforesaid peripheral base part is provided to rest directly on the top surface of the appliance, whereas in other cases bottom legs or feet are associated to said peripheral part.

As has been said, the grills rest in a removable way on the top surface of the cooking appliance, which is aesthetically finished (for example, enamelled, painted, or polished), and for this reason it is preferable to prevent direct interference between the metal material constituting the frame of the grill and the top surface of the cooking appliance: otherwise, any possible sliding of a grill on said surface could cause damage to the latter, such as scratches or scrapes.

For this purpose, grills have been proposed provided with lower protection elements, made of relatively soft material, such as for example rubber, which provide surfaces for resting the frame of the grill on the top surface of the electrical household appliance: in this way, said top surface is protected from any possible damage due to displacements of the grill.

A supporting grill according to the preamble of Claim 1 is known from EP-A- 981989, which illustrates various possible alternative solutions of protection elements, associated to the lower ends of respective legs of the grill.

In a first embodiment described in the aforesaid prior document (Figures 1, 2, 4 and 8), the lower end of the leg of the grill is shaped so as to define two opposed reshaped appendages. The corresponding protection element has a generally tubular configuration; i.e., it has a body with an axial through cavity. The protection element is mounted so that the horizontal parts of the two appendages are each inserted in a respective end portion of the through opening.

In a second embodiment described in the aforesaid prior document (Figures 3 and 9) the conformation of the lower end of the leg of the grill is similar to that of the first embodiment, but in this case the protection element has, at each end, two coaxial blind cavities, instead of having a single through cavity that extends between the two ends. The assembly of the protection element is similar to that of the first embodiment.

In a third embodiment described in the aforesaid prior document (Figures 5-7), the lower end of the leg of the grill is shaped so as to present a single L-shaped appendage, larger than the ones envisaged in the first two embodiments. The protection element is tubular, with a corresponding axial through cavity, inserted in which is the horizontal part of the aforesaid appendage. The distal end of said horizontal part has a widened head, with a substantially tooth-shaped configuration, for withholding the body of the protection element in position.

The specific conformation assigned to the lower end of the leg, in the three solutions proposed in the prior document referred to, is relatively simple to obtain, for example via punching or pressing. Said conformation presents, however, the drawback of weakening the structure of the legs of the grill precisely at their lower ends: for example, in the case where the grill is accidentally dropped and in the case where this hits the floor with the lower end of one of its legs, a corresponding bottom L-shaped appendage can undergo deformation with relative ease. Said risk is maximum in the case of the third embodiment, since there remains the presence of the widened head that projects with respect to the protection element. Assembly of the protection element according to the first and second solutions proposed in the prior document is relatively inconvenient in so far as it imposes the need for compression of the element itself and the risk, in the course of coupling, of it possibly getting damaged at one of its ends, thus interfering with the corresponding horizontal part of one of the L-shaped appendages. The second embodiment proposed then presents the drawback that, unlike the first two embodiments, the protection element cannot be obtained starting from a component formed by extrusion of synthetic material.

The embodiments referred to the cited prior document envisage that the coupling regions or interfaces for the protection elements are made at the lower ends of the supporting legs of the grill. Said embodiments cannot, however, be implemented - except at the expense of complications of production and weakening of the structure - in those grills that are without supporting legs.

Summary of the invention

In view of what is set forth above, the aim of the present invention is to provide a grill for household appliances, in particular cooking appliances, that is relatively simple and inexpensive to produce and that is distinguished by a high degree of sturdiness of the frame of the grill and a considerable simplicity of assembly of the lower protection elements and in which the protection elements can be obtained, if need be, starting from a component obtained by extrusion.

An auxiliary aim of the invention is to propose a solution that is applicable in a simple and economically advantageous way both to grills provided with lower legs and to grills the frame of which is not provided with said legs.

The above and other aim still, which will emerge more clearly hereinafter, are achieved, according to the present invention, by a grill for household appliances having the characteristics specified in Claim 1. Particularly advantageous characteristics of the invention are specified in the dependent claims. The claims form an integral part of the technical teaching provided herein in relation to the invention.

Brief description of the drawings Further purposes, characteristics, and advantages of the present invention will emerge clearly from the ensuing detailed description, with reference to the annexed drawings, which are provided purely by way of non-limiting example and in which:

- Figure 1 is a partial and schematic perspective view of a grill according to the invention;

- Figure 2 is a perspective view of a coupling interface or region of the grill of Figure 1 and of a corresponding bottom protection element, in the unassembled condition;

- Figure 3 is a view of the components of Figure 2, from a different angle;

- Figure 4 is a partial and schematic perspective view of the components of Figures 3 and 4, in the course of an assembly step;

- Figures 5 and 6 are partial and schematic views of the components of Figures 3 and 4 in a condition where they are assembled together, from opposite angles;

- Figures 7 and 8 are partial and schematic views, from different angles, of a grill according to a variant embodiment of the invention;

- Figures 9 and 10 are details at an enlarged scale of Figures 8 and 9; and

- Figure 11 is a partial and schematic view of a portion of a grill according to another possible embodiment of the invention.

Description of preferred embodiments of the invention

Reference to "an embodiment" or "one embodiment" in the framework of the present description is meant to indicate that a particular configuration, structure, or characteristic described in relation to the embodiment is comprised in at least one embodiment. Hence, phrases such as "in an embodiment" or "in one embodiment" and the like that may be present in various points of the present description do not necessarily all refer to one and the same embodiment. Moreover, the particular configurations, structures, or characteristics may be combined in any adequate way in one or more embodiments. The references used in what follows are provided only for convenience and do not define the sphere of protection or the scope of the embodiments.

In Figure 1, the reference number 1 designates as a whole a supporting grill for a household appliance, according to the invention. In the preferred embodiment exemplified, the grill is a grill of a cooking appliance, such as a hob, or a range or a stove, which form the preferred sphere of application of the invention.

The grill 1 has a frame, preferably made of metal, which in the example shown includes a peripheral base part 2, associated to which is a plurality of upper support elements 3, here in the form of metal bars, according to a technique in itself known in the field. The grill 1 further comprises a plurality of lower protection elements 10, for resting of the grill 1 on a surface of the appliance, in particular a top surface of the cooking appliance.

In the example of embodiment illustrated, the frame of the grill 1 also comprises a plurality of lower legs, some of which are designated by 4, with the protection elements 10 that are associated to the aforesaid legs. For this purpose, the frame of the grill 1 has, at the legs 4, respective coupling regions or interfaces for assembly of the corresponding protection elements 10. As will emerge hereinafter, each coupling region or interface and the corresponding protection element have means for mutual engagement.

Visible in Figures 2 and 3 are a leg 4 of the grill 1 and a corresponding lower protection element 10, in perspective views from opposite sides. For requirements of greater clarity, the protection element 10 is in a condition where it is not mounted on the leg 4.

In said figures a lower end portion of one of the legs 4 may be seen, defined in which is the aforesaid coupling region or interface. In Figures 2 and 3, designated by la and lb are two opposite sides of the coupling region or, more in general, of the leg 4 represented, and more in particular the outer side and the inner side (i.e., the surfaces or faces of the leg 4, or of the corresponding coupling region, which generally face the centre of the grill and the outside thereof, respectively). Designated, instead, by lc is the side that extends between the faces la and lb, corresponding to a thickness of the leg 4, i.e., the bottom face of the leg itself or of the corresponding coupling region (i.e., the face of the leg that, during use of the grill, generally faces the top surface of the electrical household appliance).

According to one characteristic of the invention, the engagement means of the coupling region comprise a first through opening 4a and a second through opening 4b, which extend axially in the direction of the thickness of the leg 4, i.e., between the two opposite sides la and lb, advantageously set at different heights from the peripheral base part 2. Alternatively, said first through opening 4a and second through opening 4b can extend in the direction of the thickness of the leg 4, in a position where they are set alongside one another, i.e., substantially equidistant from, the peripheral base part 2.

The protection element 10 has a body preferably made of a single piece of generally elastic or resilient material, such as for example an elastomeric or silicone material. Defined in the body of the protection element 10 are a first lateral portion 1 1, a second lateral portion 12, and a connection portion 13, which extends between the two lateral portions 11 and 12, radiusing them to one another. In the embodiment exemplified, the lateral portions 11 and 12 and the connection portion 13 have a generally flattened configuration, with the portions 11 and 12 substantially parallel to one another. The portions 11 and 12 each have a front and a back, the front being designed to remain substantially in view on the outside of the leg 4, whilst the back is designed to be substantially set up against a side la and lb. Once again with reference to the preferred embodiment illustrated, also the connection portion 13 has a front and a back, and is generally curved, here at least in part C-shaped or U-shaped. The portion 13 thus substantially bridges the portions 11 and 12 so that at least part of its back faces the bottom side lc of the leg 4. Note that the use of the term "curved" to define the conformation of the connection portion 13 does not necessarily imply the presence of rounded portions. For the purposes of implementation of the invention, it is in fact sufficient for the portion 13 to be shaped in such a way as to bridge the portions 1 1 and 12 and cover the face lc of the leg 4, with the three portions 11-13, which thus embrace the bottom end of the leg 4: in said perspective, the connection portion 13 could also form substantially a right angle with each of the portions 11 and 12.

The two lateral portions 11 and 12 are each provided with at least one respective means for engagement with the coupling region defined in the respective leg 4, and said means comprise at least one appendage or engagement element that projects from the back of the respective lateral portion 11 and 12. Said appendages, designated by 14 and 15, extend in length substantially parallel to one another, set at a distance from one another. Preferably, the appendages 14 and 15 extend substantially orthogonal to the back of the corresponding lateral portion 11 and 12.

In the preferred embodiment illustrated, the through opening 4b of the coupling region of the leg 4 extends at a greater height than the through opening 4a: with such a configuration, also the lateral portions 11 and 12 are at different heights, with the appendage 15 that extends in a position generally higher than the appendage 14.

From Figures 2 and 3 it may moreover be noted that, in the embodiment exemplified, the two appendages 14 and 15 each have a widened head end, preferably defining a tip. The head ends, designated by 14a and 15a, are configured to define at least one engagement tooth, preferably two opposite teeth. It will likewise be appreciated that, since the lateral portion 12 is at a height greater than the lateral portion 11, the head end 14a of the appendage 14 generally faces a part of the back of the connection portion 13.

Exemplified in Figure 4 is a step for coupling a protection element 10 to the corresponding interface region of the corresponding leg 4 of the grill 1. As previously mentioned, the body of the protection element 10 is preferably made of an elastically deformable material, for example rubber, and can thus be easily brought into the configuration visible in Figure 4. For the purposes of assembly, the appendage 14 is fitted at the bottom in the through opening 4a, starting from the end of said opening that is at the side lb: since the body of the element 10 is made of elastically deformable material, and notwithstanding the presence of the widened head 14a, the appendage 14 can be easily pushed into the opening 4a until the head end 14a comes out of the opposite side, at the side la, as exemplified in Figure 4. In this way, the appendage 14 is coupled to the through opening 4b.

Exploiting the possibility of elastic deformation of the body of the element 10, also the projecting element 15 is then inserted into the corresponding through opening 4b starting from the side opposite to the side for insertion of the projecting element 15, i.e., starting from the side la. Also in this case, hence, the head end 15a will end up projecting externally from the through opening 4b, at the side lb of the coupling region, for coupling therewith.

The final result of the assembly may be clearly seen from opposite angles in

Figures 5 and 6, which illustrate the coupling region on which the corresponding protection element 10 is mounted (note that in Figures 5 and 6 the extent of the projection of the head ends 14a and 15a from the surfaces of the sides la and lb is emphasized to provide a clearer representation).

As may be seen, following upon coupling, the lateral portions 11 and 12 face, with their backs, the faces lb and la, respectively, of the coupling region, with the back of the intermediate portion 13, which instead faces, at least in part, the bottom side lc. Consequently, in this way, the portions 1 1, 12 and 13 of the protection element 10 substantially embrace the frame externally, in the corresponding coupling region, i.e., in the terminal portion of the leg 4.

The connection portion 13 extends between the two portions 11 and 12, at least in part underneath the end of the leg 4, and hence part of its front provides a surface for protected resting on the top surface of the cooking appliance, on which the grill is to be rested. It will be appreciated, that, with the embodiment exemplified, where the parts 11 and 12 are at different heights, a part of the back of the connection portion 13 will be facing one of the sides la and lb: in the example shown (which is preferable, merely for reasons of an aesthetic nature), the side in question is the outer side la, but it will be appreciated, of course, that with an assembly of the protection element 10 that is the reverse of the one just been described (which is in any case altogether equivalent from a functional standpoint), the aforesaid part of the back of the connection portion 13 could face the inner side lb. In such a case, on the outer side la there would then be in view the head end 15a of the coupling element 15 and the front of the lateral portion 11. It will moreover be appreciated how provision of the lateral portions 1 1 and 12 enables protection of the leg 4 from lateral contacts that might occur with a possible recess drawn in the surface of the cooking appliance on which the grill 1 rests or with a leg of a further grill possibly positioned adjacent to the grill 1.

The embodiment previously exemplified refers to a grill frame that has a plurality of lower legs 4, with the coupling regions for the protection elements 10 that are defined in a lower area of said legs. The invention can in any case readily be applied also to grills that are not provided with bottom legs, as exemplified in Figures 7-10.

With particular reference to Figures 7 and 8, it may be noted how in this embodiment the grill 1 presents just the peripheral base part 2, from which there extend above it the supporting elements 3, which are in particular butt welded on the peripheral base part 2. In such an embodiment, at least one of the through openings of the coupling region, and in particular the bottom through opening (previously designated by 4a) is defined in the peripheral base part 2. Once again with reference to the preferred embodiment exemplified, the upper through opening, is instead defined at a corresponding supporting element 3, which in this case will have a substantially vertical initial stretch. As may be appreciated from Figures 7 and 8, as well as from the details of Figures 9 and 10, the type of assembly and arrangement of the protection elements 10 is substantially similar to the one described previously.

In this embodiment, the protection element 10 prevalently embraces the peripheral base part 2, with the back of the lateral portion 11 facing one of the side la and the side lb of the peripheral part 2 (here the side lb), whilst the lateral portion 12 has the corresponding back facing the other one of the sides la and lb (here the side la). A part of the back of the connection portion 13 faces the bottom side of the base part 2 (here not indicated).

As may be appreciated, also in this case, a part of the front of the connection portion 13 will rest, in normal use of the grill 1 , on the top surface of the electrical household appliance, thus preventing any possible damage to its surface, in the absence of interference between metal parts of the grill and the surface of the aforesaid surface. Obviously, in some possible variant embodiments, both of the through openings 4a and 4b can be defined in the base part 2, when the latter's cross-sectional dimensions so enable. In this case, the through openings 4a and 4b can be arranged one above the other or else side by side.

Illustrated in Figure 11 is a further variant embodiment, according to which a protection element is coupled to a lower foot of a grill. Said foot, which is generally horizontal, can be constituted by a terminal part of a leg of the grill, or else as a horizontal element fixed directly with respect to the peripheral base part of a grill and preferably connected thereto so as to project towards the inside of the grill. Also in this embodiment, the through openings of the coupling region (not visible) extend between two opposite sides of the foot 5, i.e., between its upper side 5a and its lower side 5b, facing which sides are the backs of the portions 12 and 11 , respectively. A part of the back of the connection portion 13 instead faces the front side 5c of the foot 5, and another part of the back of the portion 13 faces the upper side la.

As may be appreciated, with said arrangement, the element 10 will rest on the top surface of the appliance at the front of the portion 11 and at the at the front of the head end 15 of the appendage 15, thus guaranteeing the necessary protection with respect to the surface of the aforesaid hob. From the foregoing description the characteristics and advantages of the present invention emerge clearly.

The production of the metal parts of the grill is very simple and can be obtained using widely known technologies. In particular, the through openings 4a, 4b of the coupling regions may be obtained via simple operations of punching or pressing, in the course of the production of the metal frame of the grill, both when the coupling region is defined entirely in a leg 4, or in the peripheral base part 2, or in a foot 5 and when the coupling region straddles the base part 2 and an upper support 3 (as exemplified in Figures 7-10). In the latter case, the through opening 4a may be formed when the base part 2 is obtained, whereas the through opening 4b may be formed when the corresponding support 3 is obtained (the support 3 will then be welded to the part 2 in the area in which the opening 4a has been made).

The production of the protection elements 10 is simple and inexpensive. The cross-sectional profile of the elements 10 can be easily obtained by extrusion: in this way, it is possible to form by extrusion a single very long semi- finished product, having the profile in question, said semi-finished product being then "sliced", i.e., cut transversely to obtain a plurality of elements 10. This renders it preferable to envisage for the grill 1 mutual arrangements between the through opening 4a and the through opening 4b so that they are at different heights from the base part 2. In the case where the geometry of the part of the grill to which a protection element is to be associated does not enable formation of the through openings 4a and 4b at different heights, said openings can be formed substantially at the same height, with the protection elements shaped accordingly, i.e., with the appendages 14 and 15 that are also substantially at the same height, as already mentioned previously: in this case, the protection elements can be obtained via moulding.

Assembly of the protection elements is, as may be seen, extremely simple and convenient to carry out and does not entail risks of damage to exposed surfaces of the protection element.

The fact that the protection elements 10 of the grill according to the invention present two opposed engagement elements, i.e., the appendages 14 and 15, improves the anchorage of the element itself to the structure of the grill. Each element 10 is constrained on two opposite sides, and the risks of accidental removal of the element are very limited. The fact that the body of the protection element 10 substantially embraces the coupling region enables provision of a protection for the grills in said points.

Formation of the two through openings 4a and 4b in the coupling region does not substantially jeopardize the sturdiness of the latter. Consequently, also in the case where the grill is accidentally dropped, with the latter that hits the floor precisely at a coupling region, said region will never in any case be damaged, even in the event of temporary absence of the corresponding protection element.

It is clear that numerous other variations to the grill described herein by way of example are possible for the person skilled in the sector, without thereby departing from the scope of the invention as defined in the ensuing claims.

In the examples of embodiment provided herein, the openings 4a and 4b, as well as the appendages 14 and 15, have a quadrangular section, but it will be appreciated that said elements could have a circular section.

In the embodiments exemplified in Figures 1-6 and 7-10, reference is made to an arrangement of the protection elements 10 that embrace the coupling region substantially between the outer side la and the inner side la, thereby also involving the bottom side lc. As has been seen, this type of embodiment is particularly advantageous since it enables use of one and the same type of protection elements 10 both in the case of grills provided with legs 4 and in the case of frames of grills without legs. It is, however, clear that, in the case of grills provided with legs, the through openings 4a and 4b could be rotated through 90° with respect to the case illustrated in Figures 1-6, i.e., extend between the two lateral faces of the leg 4 (said lateral faces are designated by 1 d only in Figures 5 and 6). An embodiment of this sort is less satisfactory from an aesthetic standpoint, but in any case enables a protection element to be obtained that embraces the coupling region, i.e., the terminal portion of the corresponding leg of the grill 4, on the two opposite faces Id and on the bottom face lc. Of course, the dimensions of width and thickness of the legs 4 will be chosen accordingly. Similar considerations apply, obviously, in the case of assembly on a horizontal foot 5.

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