Patent application title: Fixture for securing a balustrade
Bernhard Feigl (Lochau, AT)
IPC8 Class: AE04B138FI
Class name: Assembled in situ-type anchor or tie socket type helical anchoring feature
Publication date: 2011-09-15
Patent application number: 20110219722
A fixture for securing a glass balustrade to masonry comprises at least
two panes of glass forming a safety glass panel and a U-section rail in
which the panes of glass are secured by means of a coat of adhesive
filled into the inside surfaces of legs and a bar of the U-section rail,
so as to provide reliable protection against falling, and which absorbs
forces acting on the balustrade by mechanical means and passes the forces
on to the masonry and offers an adjusting means in order to allow the
balustrade to be aligned plumb.
1. A fixture (1) for securing a glass balustrade (2) to masonry (12) as
protection against falling, comprising at least two panes of glass (3, 4)
forming a safety glass panel (3, 4, 5) and a U-section rail (7) in which
the panes of glass (3, 4) are secured by means of a coat of adhesive (11)
filled into the inside surfaces of legs (8, 9) and a bar (10) of the
U-section rail (7), wherein at least one support plate (13) is attached
to the U-section rail (7) and extends parallel to the masonry (12) and is
aligned in an extension to a force (F) acting essentially horizontally on
the balustrade (2), and said support plate (13) is connected to an
adjusting device (15) by means of which a distance between said support
plate (13) and the masonry (12) can be adjusted, and support plate (13)
is secured to the masonry (12).
2. The fixture in accordance with claim 1, wherein the adjusting device (15) comprises a threaded pin (16), a free end of which is in contact with the masonry (12), directly or by means of intermediate elements, or is screwed into the masonry (12), preferably in a threaded hole (28), a through-hole (20) is worked into said support plate (13), and the threaded pin (16) passes through the through-hole (20), and a female thread is worked into the through-hole (20), or a box-shaped channel (18) is provided adjacent to it, into which a nut (19) or a threaded block is inserted, and said threaded pin (16) is screwed into the female thread or into the nut (19) or threaded block.
3. The fixture in accordance with claim 1, wherein support legs (14) spaced apart from one another are formed on said support plate (13) which faces towards the masonry (12), and the adjusting device (15) is arranged between two adjacent support legs (14).
4. The fixture in accordance with claim 1, wherein grout (25) is filled in between said support plate (13) and the masonry (12), and the grout (25) and an expanding wall plug (16') which passes through the support plate (13) secure the balustrade (2) onto the masonry (12).
5. The fixture in accordance with claim 2, wherein at least one support bar (21) running at an angle, or a holding plate (21') extending over the entire length of the balustrade (2') is arranged between a free end of said support plate (13) and a free end of an outwardly pointing leg (8) of the U-section rail (7), and the support bar (21) or the holding plate (21') absorbs forces (F) acting on the balustrade (2).
6. The fixture in accordance with claim 5, wherein one or more recesses (22) is/are worked into the holding plate (21'), and running flush with the adjusting device (15).
7. The fixture in accordance with claim 1, wherein the two legs (8, 9) of the U-section rail (7) which run vertically are the same size, or the leg (8) pointing towards the incoming force (F) is smaller than the leg (9) located opposite to the incoming force.
8. The fixture in accordance with claim 3, wherein said support plate (13) projects at right angles from the U-section rail (7) and the underside of said support plate (13) facing the masonry (12) is arranged in one plane with the bar (10) of the U-section rail (7) or the support legs (14) projecting from the support plate (13) extending in the same plane as the bar (10) of the U-section rail (7).
9. The fixture in accordance with claim 5, wherein said support plate (13), the U-section rail (7) and the support bar (21) or the holding plate (21') are configured as a one-piece component.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
 The invention relates to a fixture for securing a balustrade to masonry as protection against falling.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART
 A holding fixture of this kind for a panel attached to a floor in order to form a balustrade is disclosed in DE 10 2006 028 766 A1. Normally, the panel consists of two panes of glass which are firmly connected together by a composite intermediate layer, thereby forming a safety glass panel. The balustrade serves as a means of preventing falling which is attached to masonry, for example to an intermediate floor in a building, on an exterior or interior balcony or to a wall segment comprising masonry which is not in itself sufficiently tall to form a means of preventing falling.
 The two panes of glass together with the intermediate layer are jointly inserted into a U-section support rail and are secured there by means of a coat of adhesive. The support rail is inserted into a U-section holding profile which is secured onto the masonry.
 Although a state-of-the-art holding fixture has proven effective, in particular for setting the angle of the panes of glass which form the balustrade, the holding profile and therefore the balustrade must be secured to the outside of the masonry. As a result, the forces predominantly acting horizontally outwards on the balustrade have to be supported by the attachment between the masonry and the holding profile. The forces often act on the balustrade in the area of its free top extremity, thereby giving rise to a considerable torque, because the distance between the point of action of the horizontal forces and the attachment point of the holding profile on the masonry can be regarded as a lever arm.
 Furthermore, the pane of glass in the support rail is exposed both to compression and to tension, with the effect that the coat of adhesive can be irreparably damaged, in particular in case of oscillating force profiles.
 Moreover, the attachment pins between the support profile and the masonry are exclusively exposed to tension in the horizontal direction and flexure in the vertical direction, with the effect that the forces acting there have to be absorbed by additional structural elements, for example washers or other constructive measures such as interlocking tooth profiles.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 It is therefore a task of the present invention to create a fixture of the aforementioned kind which provides a reliable protection against falling and optimally absorbs the forces acting mechanically on the balustrade and passes them onto the masonry, and which at the same time offers an adjustment possibility in order to align the balustrade in a plumb arrangement.
 These purposes are achieved in accordance with the present invention.
 The U-section rail is provided with one or more support plates which is/are aligned with its/their extension in the direction of the forces that act on the balustrade, therefore these forces can be absorbed by the support plate(s) and passed on to the masonry, because both the U-section rail and the support plate formed onto it are located on the top extremity of the masonry which runs in the horizontal direction. As a result, the forces are supported in an advantageous manner by the support plate and exactly predictable tensile and compressive forces arise in the coat of adhesive which is provided for attaching the panes of glass to the U-section rail.
 In this situation, the coat of adhesive, which is arranged adjacent to the force vector, is exposed to a tensile load, while the opposite coat of adhesive, between the outer pane of glass and the outer leg of the U-section rail, is exposed to a compressive load. Statutory provisions relating to safety make it compulsory for the coat of adhesive that is used to be shown to be resistant to irreparable damage, even over a lengthy period of time in service, and even when the balustrade and, therefore, the coat of adhesive, are exposed to oscillating force profiles. Such physical demonstrations can be provided if the tensile and compressive loads in the coat of adhesive are known in advance and there are no changes to the load vectors.
 A particularly advantageous embodiment of the balustrade in accordance with the present invention is provided if one or more support bars or a holding plate are provided between the outer leg of the U-section rail and the free end of the support plate, which are aligned diagonally in between these two components; in other words, at an angle of 45° in relation to the outer leg and the support plate. The support plate, support bar and/or holding plate absorb the forces acting on the balustrade, because their extensions are aligned with the force vectors. As a result, the U-section rail and the support plate are therefore stiffened by the support bar or the holding plate, and form a triangular cross section.
 As a result of fault tolerances in the manufacture of masonry, it is necessary to provide a tolerance for adjustment in order to enable the balustrade that is to be installed to be aligned both plumb and flush with adjacent balustrades, and consequently an adjusting device is allocated to the support plate. The adjusting device enables the distance between the support plate and the masonry to be adjusted. The adjusting device chiefly comprises a through-hole worked into the support plate and a threaded pin that passes through the through-hole and which contacts the horizontally aligned surface of the masonry with its free end. The through-holes in this case open into a space which is limited by a channel, into which a nut is inserted which is in a form-locking connection with the support plate. As a result, when the threaded pin is screwed into the nut, the position of the support plate is changed in relation to the masonry and the balustrade can be brought into alignment in relation to the perpendicular plane and also in relation to adjacent balustrades.
 Consequently, the support plate initially makes contact with the masonry by means of the threaded pins, and is furthermore held on the masonry by means of expanding dowels or wall plugs. The expanding wall plugs pass through a slot worked into the support plate and are inserted into a hole drilled into the masonry. Furthermore, a grout is used for filling slot-shaped openings located between the particular channels, which then hardens and thus provides a connection between the underside of the support plate and the masonry. As a result, a localised hold is established for the support plate by means of the expanding wall plugs and the grout.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 The drawings show a sample embodiment of a balustrade configured in accordance with the present invention, the details of which are explained below. In detail:
 FIG. 1 shows the balustrade mounted on a masonry structure of a building, by means of which a means of preventing a human being from falling is provided, with an adjusting device, in a section view,
 FIG. 2a shows the balustrade in accordance with FIG. 1, in a magnified view, in the area of an adjusting device,
 FIG. 2b shows the balustrade in accordance with FIG. 2a, in a further magnified view,
 FIG. 3a shows the balustrade in accordance with FIG. 1, in the area of the attachment to the masonry,
 FIG. 3b shows the balustrade in accordance with FIG. 3a, in a magnified view, and
 FIG. 4 shows a U-section rail of the balustrade in accordance with FIG. 1, in a perspective view.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
 FIGS. 1, 2a and 2b show a fixture 1 for securing a balustrade 2 that is mounted on a balcony in order to provide protection against falling. The fixture 1 consists of a U-section rail 7 into which two panes of glass 3 and 4 are inserted. A composite intermediate layer 5 is provided in between the two panes of glass 3 and 4, with the effect that the panes of glass 3 and 4 and the intermediate layer 5 forming the balustrade 2 represent a safety glass which does not break even when exposed to localised force loadings.
 The inside of the balustrade 2 is identified by the reference number 23 and the outside of the balustrade 2 by the reference number 24. If, for example, a person standing on the balcony supports himself or herself against the balustrade 2, then a force F can be exerted on the balustrade 2. The force vector of the force F is identified by reference number 6. A schematic format represented by the angle specification a shows that the force vector 6 can vary within the angle range α; nevertheless, the force F chiefly acts on the balustrade 2 in a horizontal direction from the inside 23 to the outside 24. This force profile gives rise to a torque acting on the U-section rail 7, which is composed of the force component in the horizontal direction multiplied by the lever arm between the force application point and the underside of the U-section rail 7.
 The panes of glass 3 and 4 used in the U-section rail 7 are secured to the inside of the two legs 8 and 9 and to a horizontal bar 10 of the U-section rail 7 by means of a coat of adhesive 11, with the effect that no additional attachment components are required in order to support the panes of glass 3 and 4 on the U-section rail 7. It is also feasible for an insulating mat or a silicone foil, or the like, to be provided between the panes of glass 3, 4 and the bar 10.
 The force F acting on the balustrade 2 therefore creates a compressive load in the coat of adhesive 11 which exists between the outer leg 9 and the outer pane of glass 4; on the other hand, the coat of adhesive 11 between the inner leg 8 and the inner pane of glass 3 undergoes a tensile load.
 In order to support the forces F acting on the balustrade 2 against masonry 12 by the optimum mechanical means, there is a support plate 13 formed onto the U-section rail 7 which extends along the entire length of the U-section rail 7, or which is formed by several individual support plates between which there is a specified gap. In a preferred embodiment, the U-section rail 7 and the support plate 13 are produced as a one-piece component running at an angle of 90° in relation to one another.
 Five support legs 14 are formed onto the support plate 13 which extend in parallel to one another along the entire length of the support plate 13. In the installed condition, the support legs 14 are secured at a distance from the horizontal surface of the masonry 12 by means of a grout 25.
 Often, there may be areas of unevenness over the length of the masonry 12 due to defects in manufacture, or the panes of glass 3 and 4 and the U-section rail 7 do not run precisely plumb with one another, therefore an adjusting device 15 is provided in order to allow the support plate 13 and thereby also the U-section rail 7 to be aligned in the vertical plane.
 The adjusting device 15 chiefly consists of a threaded pin 16 which is inserted through a through-hole 20 worked into the support plate 13 and has its free end 17 in contact with the horizontal surface of the masonry 12.
 A box-shaped channel 18 is provided in the area of the through-hole 20 and in alignment with this hole, in which case the channel 18 has a largely rectangular cross section and extends into the support legs 14. A nut 19 is pushed into the channel 18 and is positioned in alignment with the through-hole 20, with the effect that the threaded pin 16 can be screwed into the nut 19. The nut 19 in this case is located in a force or form-locking connection with the channel 18, and thereby also with the support plate 13, with the effect that when the threaded pin 16 is screwed in, the distance between the support plate 13 and the masonry 12 can be adjusted. If, namely, the threaded pins 16 are screwed into the nut 19 in the direction of the masonry 12 then the balustrade 2 pivots about the support leg 14 adjacent to the inside 23 in the direction of the inside 23. On the other hand, if the threaded pins 16 are screwed from the outside to the inside in the corresponding manner, then the balustrade 2 is angled in the direction of the outside 24. As a result, screwing in the threaded pins 16 allows the balustrade 2 to be set to a plumb angle. Furthermore, the balustrade 2 can also be set to be aligned with adjacent balustrades 2 and it is possible to compensate for areas of unevenness in the masonry 12.
 The force F acting on the balustrade 2 is therefore absorbed by the support plate 13 and the adjusting device 15 that is attached to it, and is passed on to the masonry 12 because the support plate 13 is arranged as an extension to the force vector 6 on the U-section rail 7 and chiefly forms a right angle with it.
 One or more support bars 21 are provided in order to render the connection between the U-section rail 7 and the support plate 13 more rigid. The support bar 21 runs between the outer leg 9 of the U-section rail 7 and the free end of the support plate 13, with the effect that a triangular cross section is established between the support plate 13, the U-section rail 7 and the support bar 21. The corresponding support bar 21 absorbs the horizontal force components exerted by the force F and the U-section rail 7 is stabilised with the effect that the outer leg 9 of the U-section rail 7 in particular cannot be pushed away outwards.
 For aesthetic reasons, the inner and the outer legs 8 and 9 of the U-section rail 7 are dimensioned with the same height. However, it is also possible for the inner leg 8 to be made smaller than the outer leg 9, because the compressive force absorbed by the inner leg 8 exclusively acts in the lower area of the leg 8.
 A plurality of cover sections 27 is provided in order to protect the fixture 1 against driving rain, UV light from the sun and other environmental influences, and these cover sections 27 can be clipped or screwed onto the fixture 1, in particular onto the outer legs 9. The cover sections 27 are, for example, weather protection rails or window sills made from metal.
 FIGS. 3a and 3b show the attachment of the support plate 13 onto the masonry 12. The support legs 14 of the support plate 13 are inserted in the grout 25 and are held by this grout 25. Furthermore, one of the through-holes 20' (FIG. 4) is provided by means of which the grout 25 (FIG. 3b) is filled directly into the channel 18 (FIGS. 2a and 2b) in question.
 FIG. 3b shows that the individual support bars 21 which are spaced apart from one another can also be configured as a continuous holding plate 21' (FIG. 4). In order to create access from the outside to the threaded pins 16 and the through-holes 20 or 20', it is necessary to work a recess 22 into the holding plate 21'.
 FIGS. 2a and 2b show the arrangement of the through-holes 20 for the threaded pins 16, and FIG. 4 shows the through-hole 20' for filling in the grout 25.
 Furthermore, FIGS. 3a, 3b and 4 show the anchoring of the support plate 13 on the masonry 12. An expanding wall plug 16' is inserted in a slot 29 worked into the support plate 13, and the wall plug 16' is inserted into a hole provided in the masonry 12 and then expanded in the hole by screwing on a nut in the normal way. To provide additional securing, a washer with a toothed profile 28 is provided between the nut and the upper side of the support plate 13. The toothed profile 28 is adapted to the surface contour of the support plate 13 in such a way that these components are connected to one another in a form-locking connection.
Patent applications by Bernhard Feigl, Lochau AT
Patent applications in class Helical anchoring feature
Patent applications in all subclasses Helical anchoring feature