Futon. Saturday , September 16th , 2017 - 06:35:51 AM
In 1990 Gary Shaffield & Robert Fireman filed a futon design patent utilizing a tension spring to facilitate movement from position to position. (Patent Number 4996730). This design was very similar in look to the 1985 patent involving Robert Fireman and many of the structural components and aesthetics of these two designs featured in both patents when compared were similar. The design of this frame however focused on the legs built into the seat section that when pulled out would engage and then when the frame was retracted featured a stop that helped prevent the legs from becoming entangled with the base. Incorporated into this design was a tension spring that helped with the operation of the frame. Many early futons would go through refinements in design and function and this is often how improvements in frames would be created and how they found their way into the products we would purchase. It should be noted that in my studies of futon patents many other patents in futon designs are held by Robert Fireman in both tri-fold and bi-fold designs. He is considered one of the early pioneers in futon design throughout the industry.
Finally, you can help ensure your futon gives you years of pleasure by periodically inspecting it. Make sure that all the bolts are tight and that no part wiggles excessively. Also, when you convert your futon to a bed, do not let the back slam down on the rear stretcher rail. Wipe up any spills that might get on the wood and keep your futon clean and dry as much as possible.
During the 1990's however cheap import futon frames made from hollow tubular steel were introduced into the American retail market. These came with imported mattresses that were constructed to be no more than 5\" to 6\" thick and contained ground up textile or fabric scrap. Various colored outer coverings that were not removable were tufted around the mattress materials making these difficult to clean. They retailed very cheap and individuals on a budget recognized the futon design from higher end wood models and felt these were indeed bargains since futons had a very good reputation for longevity and quality construction. Unfortunately these black tubular frames would begin to give futons a bad name.
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