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Support Clip for Ceiling Panels

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000004762D
Publication Date: 2001-May-03
Document File: 12 page(s) / 40K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Mary F. Boulanger: SUBMITTER

Abstract

A support clip is provided for pressing into an edge of a ceiling panel to support the edge of the ceiling panel on a suspended ceiling grid member. The support clip comprises a generally J or C-shaped frame having a first leg, a second leg, and a stop disposed between said first and second legs. The first leg is formed to define at least one prong configured to pierce and advance into an edge of a ceiling panel. The second leg is spaced from the first leg a predetermined distance such that the second leg rests on an upper surface of the ceiling panel as the first leg advances into the edge of the ceiling panel. The pierce depth of the first leg is limited by the top and a thumb flange is provided to facilitate the manual application of pressure.

This text was extracted from a Microsoft Word 97 document.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 16% of the total text.

SUPPORT CLIP FOR CEILING PANELS

TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention relates generally to suspended ceiling systems and, more particularly, to devices for supporting a cut edge of a ceiling panel on an adjacent grid member.

BACKGROUND

As the service sector of the economy grows, more and more workers find themselves in offices rather than manufacturing facilities. The need for flexible reconfigurable space has resulted in open plan workspaces; large rooms with reduced ceiling height and, in many cases, modular office partitions that can be moved and reconfigured with relative ease. Modular ceiling panels or suspended ceilings allow lighting, paging, and other ceiling mounted systems to be reconfigured and provide accessibility to equipment within the plenum space between the suspended ceiling and the hard ceiling. The ceiling panels of suspended ceilings provide fire and visual barriers between the plenum and people below.

Suspended ceilings installed in buildings typically consist of a plurality of individual ceiling panels supported by a suspended gridwork made up of mutually perpendicular inverted T-shaped cross supports. L-shaped wall moldings support the ceiling panels around the periphery of the room. The cross supports that extend in one direction are oriented parallel to each other, but perpendicular to the cross supports that extend in the other direction. This arrangement of the cross supports forms a plurality of square or rectangular openings each being sized to receive and support a ceiling panels around its peripheral edges. In this regard, the dimensions (i.e. length and width) of the openings generally are slightly less than the dimensions (i.e. length and width) of the ceiling panels so that the peripheral edges of the panels rest on the supports.

Ceiling panels usually are manufactured in standard square and rectangular sizes. Some ceiling panels have simple square cut edges and each panel is supported within a ceiling opening around the periphery of its face. Other more decorative ceiling panels are, in some cases, formed with a reverse rabbetted edge treatment sometimes referred to as a kerfed edge. Kerfed edges on ceiling panels generally have an inverted L-shaped cross section that forms a flange or a lip configured to rest on the cross supports and/or wall moldings surrounding an opening. When a ceiling panel with tegular edges is positioned within its grid opening, the face of the panel resides slightly below the plane of the support grid. This provides a clean decorative appearance while permitting the panels to be installed quickly and easily after the gridwork is hung.

A problem commonly encountered when installing kerfed edged ceiling panels that border the walls of a building is that the openings formed in the gridwork for receiving these border panels often are odd shaped with dimensions that do not match the dimensions of a standard size ceiling panel. Accordingly, it is necessary to cut standard size ceiling panels in order to m...