US 1081800 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Patented Dec. 16, 1913.
2 SHEETS-SHEET l.
R. R. (Kc W. K. WILEY & W. S. HOUGH, JR.
APPLICATION FILED JUNE 21, 1911.
lllllll wvi/Mwooeo r R. R. (1c W. K; WILEY & W. S. HOUGH, JR.
APPLIOATION FILED JUNE 21,1911.
2 SHEETS-$115111 21 Patented Dec. 16, 1913.
lvi li'rwooco ROY R. WILEY AND WALLACE K.
WILEY, OF BUFFALO, NEW YORK, AND WILLIAM S.
HOUGH, JR., OF ST. CATHERINES, ONTARIO, CANADA.
Specification of Letters Patent.
Patented Dec. 16, 1913.
Application filed June 21, 1911. Serial No. 634,602.
To all whom it may concern:
.Be it known that we, RoY R. WILEY and WALLACE K. WILEY, citizens of the United States, residing at Buffalo, county of Erie, State of New York, and WILLIAMS. HouoH,
J r., a citizen of the United States, residing at St. Catherines,Province of Ontario, Canada, have invented anew and useful Illuminated Sign, of which the following is a specification.
This invention has reference to improvements in illuminated signs, and its object is to provide an illuminated sign which shall be clearly visible both in da light and at night, and inthe'latter case w en illuminating means is utilized, the source of light will so affect the parts to be lighted asto produce a sensibly even illumination of all parts of each letter .or character of the'sign without blurring,-all portions of each character receiving a due proportion of light.
In accordance with the present invention the characters are formed of'transparent or translucent material, such as glass, with the inner Walls, that is the walls remote from the observer, or, if desired, the outer walls, prismatic, so that the light "rays are broken up, and blurring, which is liable to occur when intense light is directed through the front of the latter, is avoided. The prismatic effect may be produced by ridges or otherwise, and greatly enhances the brilliancy of the letters as viewed by daylight.
The light source or sources are commonly in the form of electric lights of any suitable character, and the light rays emanating from the source or sources of light are modified by a screen interposed between the character to be illuminated and the source of light, this screen being usually in the form of a perforated plate, although it may be otherwise constructed so long as it is capable of transmitting some of the light comingfrom the source of light and reflecting a portion of the light. In conjunction with the screens there are provided reflecting surfaces so related to the letters, that the light rays will find their way through the inner walls of the letters in lines varying from a close approach to perpendicularity with relation to the front of the characters to angles which will cause the light rays to pass through the light transmitting portions of the characters at the sides thereof in lines at considerable angles to the first named rays. By the present invention the light rays are so distributed that the letters or characters, the surfaces of which are raised,
receive the light in such an evenly distributed manner that whether the observer views the letters directly in front or above or below, or to one side, the illumination appears to be equally brilliant.
The invention will be best understood from a consideration of the following detailed description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings forming a part ofithis specification, with the understanding, however, that while the drawings illustrate several practical embodiments of the invention, the latter is susceptible of other practical embodiments, and, therefore, is not limited to the exact showing of the drawings, but may be variously modified within the scope of the invention as expressed in the claims.
Referring to the drawings: Figure 1 is a front elevation of a portion of a sign showing particularly one character thereof. Fig. 2 is a section on-thelinc 2-2 of Fig. 1. Fig. 3 is a section on the line 3-3 of Fig. 1. Fig-4 is a face view of one element of the sign with the character portion removed. Fig. 5 is-a view similar to Fig. 2, but showing sin-arrangement wherein the sign is provided with but a single light transmitting face. Fig. 6 is a section on the line 6-6 of Fig. 5. Fig. 7 is asection similar to Fig.
-5, but showing still another form of the in vention. Fig. 8 is a section on the line 88 of Fig. 7. Fig. 9 is a sectional view of a modifiedform of screen or-light toning down means.
Asign constructed in accordance with the present invention may be either double face or single face-and both forms are illustrated in the'drawings. The sign may be made up of units each of which embraces a single character if of the single face t pe, or two like or different characters if 0 the double face type, and one or more light giving units may be housed in each sign unit the usual mode of illumination being in the orm of an electric lamp of appropriate type.
In the drawings there is shown a sign unit 1 in the form of an appropriate frame or casing in size and general shape being the same for all the several characters of the sign. The frame of the unit may be made of metal or other suitable material with a border flange 2 adapted to embrace the edges of a plate 3 u on which is produced a sign character 4, s iown in the particular illustration of the drawing-as comprising the 5 letter E, but, of course, it will be understood that this is simply indicative of any sign character of any kind.
The plate 3 is usually though not necessarily made of some transparent or translucent material capable of transmitting light either freely or partially, and the ma' terial best adapted for the purpose is glass. The character is produced upon the glass plate 3 in raised relation thereto, the portions of.the character being in cross section preferably semi-circular or approximately so, although this does not preclude the formation of the character in a different shape. By so forming the character, and at the same time producing on the inner walls of the character ribs 5 or other shapes, the inner wall of the character is made more or less prismatic. The plane portion of the plate may be made opaque to light, so that lightra s emanating from a source of light on one Slt e'of the plate will find passage therethrough only where the light transmitting portions agreeable to the shape of the character are present. That side of the plate toward the light source presents a reflecting surface.
In the particular double structure shown in the drawings there are reflectors (3 at the top and bottom -of each element 1 slanting from the respective top and bottom margins of the sign character toward an intermediate plane about midway between the two sign characters so that these reflectors, which are straight reflectors extending from side to side of respective sign characters, are each at an acute angle to the plane of the inner face of the sign character. At each side of the element 1 there are reflecting walls or reflectors 7 each composed of sections 8, 9
a5 and 10 each at an obtuse angle one to the other and at an acute angle to the plane of the rear face of the respective signcharacter, the reflectors 7 having a general slant inwardly toward the center of the element from the sides of the respective si n char acter. The section 10 of each reflector 7, which section is next to the inner wall of the sign character, is related to the general plane of the rear wall or face of the sign as character, so as to be at an angle thereto of a little less than ninety degrees. The section 9 is at an obtuse angle to the section 10 but at a less angle to the plane of the rear face of the sign character. The
to section 8, which is the most distant of the sections of the reflector 7 from the sign character, is at an obtuse angle thereto intermediate ofthe angles of the sections 9 and 10.
In the particular structure shown in Figs.
to a there are two light sources 11, indicated as the filament of an incandescent electhe light transmitting walls of the character 4 in direct lines from the light sources, some portions of the character will be strongly illuminated and other portions will receive much weaker light rays, with the result that the character will appear to be unevenly illuminated. To cause a distribution of the light whereby the light rays will reach with substantially equal intensity all parts ofthe light transmitting portion of the sign character, there is introduced between the inner wall of the plate 3 and the lamp 11 a screen 13 in the form of a flat or other shaped plate, such' screen in the particular showing of Fig. 4; being provided with n11- merous perforations 14. The screen 13 is of a height and breadth suflicient to interpose or come between the eye of the observer and the light source at substantially -all angles of-direct'vision through the strokes of the sign character. The inner walls of the members (3 and 7 and these walls of the screens 13 toward the lamps 11 are reflecting surfaces, while the screens are supported by narrow stems 15 outstanding from the respective walls 6.
The light rays emanating from the light giving elements of the lamps will in part pass through the perforations 14 and in part will be reflected by the adjacent surfaceof one or the other of the screens 13.. Tholse light rays which pass through or b screens will either reach a light transmitting portion of a character or will strike one of the reflecting walls of the element 1, and
those light rays which do not pass through or strike the screen will directly reach the reflecting walls of the sign element 1, and by these walls will be diverted 'to the light transmitting, portions of the character-at.
different angles, ranging from lines almost perpendicular to thefront surface of the character to lines varying sufficient-1y from the first named lines to traverse the sides of the raised'portion of the character, so as to reach the eye of the observer, whether above or below the character, or to either side thereof, apparently as coming directly from the light source. The diversity of angles at which the light is. directed is caused by the different and many angular positions of the reflector surfaces, all of which; are straight and flat and inclined to the general plane of the rear of the sign character, so that light is multi-directionally reflected to the inner walls of the hollow strokes of the relief character and is further dispersed by the prismatic inner walls of the hollow relief strokes of the sign character. There is, however, loss of light due to reflection and varying distances of portions of the sign character from the source of light, but by properly proportioning the parts the differences in illumination of the various portions of the character are so slight that these differences are not sensible, to the observer, wherefore the illumination by reflection may be said to be equal throughout the light transmitting portion of the character. The screens 13 by cutting off a large portion of the direct rays from the character further equalize the light and prevent that intensity of illumination of the character which would otherwise be apparent when the character is viewed from in front, and this modification and toning down of the direct light rays contributes to the even distribution of light resulting in the even illumination of the character, while the prismatic effect due to the ribbed or other shaped inner walls of the light transmitting portion of the character contributes to the prevention of blur.
The angular form of the reflecting walls of the casing or receptacle for the light giving element, which walls are presented to- Ward the character carrying face of the receptacle, causes the distribution of the light in the manner stated, without the necessity of makingthe light receptacle of so great a depth as necessary Where parabolic reflectors are used, while the spread of the light whereby the sides, as well as the front of the characters, are illuminated,-is found to be better accomplished than with a parabolic reflector.
So far the sign element described has been of the double face type. With a single face sign there is provided a casingor sign element 1 as shown in Figs. 5 and 6, or 1 as shown in Figs. 7 and 8. The plate 3 and the transparent portions definingthe character 4 are the same as in the other forms, and the light element 11 and the screen 13 are the same as in the other form already described. In this structure the light element 11 may be arranged say at the top of the casing of the sign element and the top wall may be inclined as shown. at 16, while the lower wall may be oppositely inclined as shown at 17 and the back of the casing may be in the form of a reflecting wall 18 substantially parallel with the plate 3. The in- -ner faces of the walls 16, 17 and 18 are made reflecting, and the parts are so disposed that in conjunction with the screen 13 light rays ar e rlirected through the light transmitting portions of the character in various directions to approximately evenly distribute the light throughout these light transmitting portions, wherefore the character appears to be brilliantly illuminated from whatever angle it be viewed. In the structure shown in Figs. 5 and 6 the upright walls of the easing are indicated at 7 and have angle portions 9 and 10 corresponding to the like portions 9 and 10 of the structure shown in Figs. 1 to 4, and serve a like purpose, while the reflecting portion of the screen 13 and the reflecting portion of the backing 18 of the casing contribute toward the oven illumination of the entire visible surface of the character.
In the structure shown in Figs. 7 and S the plate 3 and character 41, as well as the light element 11 and screen 13, are substantially the same as the like parts in the structures shown in the other figures. In the structures shown in Figs. 7 and 8, the light giving element 11 is at the top of the sign element, although, of course,'it will be understood that by a reversal of the parts in this form of the invention, as well as in the other form shown in Figs. 5 and t), the light giving element might be located at the bottom of the sign element. .In the structure shown in Figs. 7 and 8 the casing indicated at 19 is approximately parabolic in cross section, such section being taken transversely of the longitudinal axis of the lamp 11, and also transversely to the length of the sign character, although the walls of the casing where approaching the plate 3 may be approximately flat as indicated at 20, while disposed at an angle to the plane of the plate 3. The end of the casing 19 remote fromthc lamp 11 is formed with inner walls 21, 22 at an angle to each other, and to both the main portion of the casing 19, and'the plate 3, so that a number of reflecting surfaces are provided directing the light at various angles through the corresponding portion of the sign character.
In the forms shown in Figs. 5 and 7 the light element is near one end of the sign character, but instead of brilliantly illuminating this end of the sign character the intensity of illumination is modified by the screen 13, so as to substantially equalize the illumination of the character adjacent the light element with the illumination of the other end of the sign character where it is comparatively distant from the light element, and the light rays are directed at \'arions angles through the corresponding portions of the sign character, whereby the character is well illuminated from whatever angle it may be viewed, the prismatic form of the inner walls of the light clement preventing objectionable blurring liable to occur where such light distributing means are omitted, for by refracting and breaking up the general direction of the intense light from the reflectors, the letters appear uniformly and brightly lighted even from an angle. Not only is the effect from the front greatly improved, but, since most of the light rays are diverted from a path perpendicular to face of the letter where they issue therefrom, a minimum of rays are observed from a distance and the letter is not blurred.
The screen may be of perforated metal, as in Fig. 4 or may be of-glass, as shown at 13 in Fig. 9, different types of glass having been successfully used, but whatever be its character the puriosc of the screen is to modify by reduction the amount of light transmitted by the light element to the immediately adjacent portions of the sign character, whereby the illumination of such portions is approximately the same as the illumination of portions more distant with relation to the light giving element.
Generally speaking, the light where reflected is reflected at such angles that the rays will in part pass through the sign character at an angle but little removed from the perpendicular With relation to the plane of the sign character, while other rays pass through the sign character, at a considerably greater angle, so as to illuminate the sides of the raised character and the light is distributed approximately uniformly by means of the screens introduced between the sources oflight and the sign characters. It is found in practice that it is notadvisable to direct the li -ht rays actually perpendicular to the plane of the sign character, for the letters are liable to then unduly blur as seen by the observer. Furthermore, the pirevision of ridges or other prismatic forms on the inner walls of the sign characters contributes to the brilliancy of illumination, and the brilliancy of the letters or other characters when viewed by daylight.
What is claimed is? 1. In an, illuminated sign, a sign character of light transmitting material having the strokes of the-character in relief and each with one face prismatic-throughout and otherwise of constant thickness, light giv-- ing means back of the visible face of the sign character, reflecting means in partial surrounding relation'ito the light giving means and constructed to direct light from the light giving means through the strokes of the sign character, and light transmitting and toning down means between the light giving means and the sign character and re latcd to the reflector to permit reflected light to pass to the strokes of the sign character substantially without interference by any 1 ,oeneoo flector to be again reflected thereb to and through the strokes of the sign 0 aracter,
.lated and substantially flat reflectors surrounding the light giving means and shaped to direct light therefrom to and through the strokes of the sign character, and perforated light-screening means between the light giving means and the signcharacter and of a length and breadth to cover the light giving means from substantially all angles of direct vision through the strokes of the sign character.
3. In an illuminated sign, a sign character of light transmitting material having the strokes in relief with the rear faces of the strokes prismatic, light giving means on the side of the sign character remote from that to be observed, reflectors for directing light from the light giving means to and through the strokes of the sign character, and perforated light screening means between the light giving means and the sign character and located substantially in non-interfering relation to light coming from the reflectors, said perforated light screening means being provided with supporting means attenuated wherein the path of light rays'directed to a stroke of the sign character, and said light screening means where presented toward the light giving means being reflecting.
4. In an illuminated sign, a sign character of transparent material with the strokes in relief and each with one face prismatic throughout, light reflecting means back of the sign character, light giving means also back of the sign character and related to the reflectors to cause light reaching the latter from the light giving means to be directed through the strokes of the sign character, said light giving means being located within the limits defined by the upper and lower margins of the sign character, and light reducin means ervious to direct ra s of.
light. fromthe light giving meansto and through the strokes of the sign character without modification of such direct rays and intermediate of the light givingmeans and the strokes of the sign character in spaced relation to both and having a spread to interpose between the observer and the source of light fromsubstantially all points of direct vision through said strokes of the sign character toward the light giving means and limited in the extent of spread to be in substantially non-interfering relation: to light strokes of the sign character and interior to' and spaced from the reflecting means, said light transmitting and toning down means being of a height and breadth with respect to the light giving means, the reflecting means and the strokes of the sign character to interpose in the direct line of vision to ward the light giving means through the strokes of the sign character at substantially any angle thereto and to be in substantially noninterfering relation to the reflecting means. t
6. In a sign, a sign character having hollow strokes of transparent material in convex relief with the inner faces of the strokes prismatic throughout, light giving means at the rear of the sign character, reflectors in partial surrounding relation to the light giving means, said reflectors having substantially flat multidirectional reflecting surfaces to reflect light from'the light giving means through the strokes of the character at various angles, and perforated light screening means of opaque material between the light giving means and the sign character and having a breadth and height to interpose between the light giving means and the eye of an observer from substantially any angle of direct vision through the strokes of the sign character and having the margins in spaced relation to the reflecting surfaces to hem substantially non-interfering relation with reflected light directed to ward the strokes of the sign character from the light giving means.
7. In a sign, a sign character having strokes of light transmitting material in relief and hollow with the rear faces of the strokes prismatic throughout, straight reflectors about the margins of the rear face of the character in acute angular relation thereto, light giving means back of the sign character located to be partially surrounded by the reflectors, and light screening means constructed to tone down the light and located between the light giving means and the rear face of the sign character with marginal portions in spaced relation to the reflectors and having a length and breadth to interpose between the eye of an observer in front of the sign character and the light giving means at substantially all angles of direct vision throughthe strokes of the sign character.
8. A sign having sign characters with hollow strokes of light transmitting mate rial in relief and prismatic over the entire inner surfaces of the strokes and arranged on opposite faces of the sign, reflectors adjacent to the inner wall of each sign character and arranged about the margins thereof at acute angles to the general plane of the inner wall of the sign'character, light giving means interior to the space defined by the reflectors and in position to direct light by way of the reflectors through the sign characters on opposite faces of the sign, and light screening means constructed to tone down the light and located between each sign character and the light giving means and of a length and breadth to interpose between the eye of an observer in front of the sign character and the light iving means from substantially all angles 0 direct vision through the strokes of the sign character.
9. A sign having sign characters on opposite faces, each with strokes in relief, and prismatic throughout the rear faces of the strokes,.illuminating means intermediate of the faces of the sign containing the sign characters and in position for direct illumination of the strokes of the sign character, reflectors in partial embracing relation to each source of light and in multi-angular relation to the sign characters to reflect light from the source of illumination at various angles through the strokes of the sign charactor, and light toning down means for each sign character interposed between the illuminating means and the strokes of the sign character and of a length and breadth to come between the eye of an observer of the sign and the illuminating means from substantially all angles of direct vision through the strokes of the sign character.
10. In a sign, a sign character havin its strokes of light transmitting materia in hollow relief and prismatic throughout the rear faces of the strokes, illuminating means back of the sign character in position to directly illuminate the strokes of the sign character, reflecting means for the indirect illumination of the sign character from the illuminating means, and light toning down means in the path of direct illumination of the sign character from substantially all angles of direct observation of the illuminating means through the strokes of the sign character, said tonin down means being related to the reflecting means to substantial y equalize the light reaching the strokes of the sign character both directly and indirectly.
11. In a sign, a sign-character having relief strokes of light transmitting material with the inner surface thereof dispersiveof light giving means and the strokes of the sign character to illuminate the sign charv acter by reflected light and shaped to direct the reflected light at various angles through the strokes of the sign character, and light transmitting and toning down means in the .path of direct illumination of the strokes of the sign character, the said light transmitting and toning down means being re-V In testimony,
1 memoir lated to the sign character and the light giv- 1n means to substantially equalize the illummation of the sign character by the light giving means. .a
that we claim the foregoing as our own, we have hereto affixed our signatures in the presence of two witnesses.
ROY R. WILEY.
- WALLACE K. WILEY.
WILLIAM S. HOUGH, JR. Witnesses:
GLENN A. STOOKWELL.