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Publication numberUS1231821 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 3, 1917
Filing dateDec 31, 1914
Priority dateDec 31, 1914
Publication numberUS 1231821 A, US 1231821A, US-A-1231821, US1231821 A, US1231821A
InventorsHerman F Walton
Original AssigneeHerman F Walton
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Variable electric sign.
US 1231821 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)




Patented July 3, 1917.


7, 1,23 1 ,821 Patented July 3, 1m




Specification of Letters Patent.

Application filed December 31, 1914. Serial No. 879.970.

To 0.2. whom it may concern:

Be it known that l, IIERMAN F. 'Ar'rox, a citizen of the Lnited b'tat-es, residing at South Bend, in the county of St. Joseph and Marc ol' lndiana, have invented acertain new and useful Improvement in Variable lrllcct-aiic Signs, of which the following is a specification.

My invention relates to that class of devices adapted to fiashilluminated signs for advertising or display purposes and provides means for producing any'desired form oi? display writing on the electric signhoard.

The object of my invention is to produce a device whereby an electric signhoard is caused. to show a form display of lights sin'ii'larto a form traced manually upon a specially constructed wiitingboard.

Another object of my invention is to provide means for making said form display permanent as long as desired.

Another object is to provide means for making the form display interchangeable by lighting the back ground on the board and leaving the outline of the form display dark, and by lighting the form display and leaving the back ground dark.

I attain these objects by the construction and devices illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which-- Figure l on Sheet 1. shows a general front view of the electric signboard and a diagrainmatic representation .of the equipment required to produce the variable display signs .upon said signboard.

Fig. 2- 011 Sheet 1 shows a sectional elevation of the parts of the equipment required and a diagrami'natic representation electric display onthe writing-board.

of the wiring-required for each individual light unit on said signboard.

Fig.3 on Sheet 2 shows a diagram of the circuit required for the operation of the signboard.

Fig. 4; on Sheet 2 shows a plan view of a part of the writing-hoard upon which the form display is outlined ,by manual operation. I

' Fi 5 on Sheet 2 shows an enlarged section of the equipment chamberillustrated in Fig. 2 and is a section on the line '55' thereof.

Fig. 6 on Sheet 2 shows a sectional view of the instrument used for tracing the form Fig. 7 is an elevation of means for actuating the resetting nu-chanism. being an amplification of Fig. I

Referring to Figs. 1 and 2 on Sheet 1, I provide an electric signboard l with'a plurality of electric lamps- J. closely set near each other to cover the entire face of the signboard An equipment chainher 3 having provided therein a plurality of electromagnct coils l each adapted to actuate the armature of a tripping pawl t3. mounted in the bus bar support T, and which holds in suspension the switch end 5 of a pivoted bar i mount-v laten'i ed July 3, 1917.

ed in the connector support 10, and having provided thereon an extension ear ll which may be acted upon by a suitably formed set bar 12 to restore said pivoted bar 9 in the suspended position. The set bar 12 is moved downward to act on extension bars 11 by manual or electrical means. F or the former a finger key :55 secured to a stem 33 may be used and for the latter a magnet 36 with a suitable push button and battery, not shown, may be employed. The stem 33 attached to the set bar 12 and may be guided in the upperwall of the equipment chamber as shown and a spring 3% or equivalent means serves to automatically raise the bar after the cars 11 of all the devices have been pressed down to restore the members 9 to a raised position. i A bus bar 13, is suitably supported in the equipment chamber 3 between the busbar support 7 and the connector supports 10, .upon which the switch end 8 of the pivoted bar 9 makes electric connection when the armature 5 of the trip ping pawl (3 is attracted by the coil -l, to which current is supplied by the circuit wire ll from the battery 13, when the return circuit wire 10, to which is attached the tracing instrument 17. becomes a closed circuit, by passing said tracing instrument over the contact'disks 18, which form with the insulating material 19, the tracing surface on .the writing-board 20..

Eachof the contact disks 18 has. provided thereon. a stem 21 extending through the writing-board 20 to the interior of the con'ipartment 22 upon which said writingboard 20 ismounted, and has attached thereto the circuit wire 23, which forms the other terminal of the coil 4.

Referring to the circuit diagram shown in Fig. 3' on Sheet 2, it will be seen that'each of the contact disks 18 forming a part, of 110' and the tracing instrument 17 formin contact with the contact disks 18, contros the lighting circuit of each lamp 2 comprising a positive circuit wire 24 connected to a dynamo 25 or other source of current, and a negative terminal 26 leading therefrom to a switch 27 which is adapted to form electrical connection with the contact 'button 28 attached to the circuit wire 29, which is-electrically connected with the bus bar 13, or with the contact button 30 attached to the circuit wire 31 which is electrically connected with the'bus bar support 7 to which are pivotally mounted the tripping pawl 6.

When the tracing instrument 17 is traced over the contact disks 18, as is illustrated in Fig. l on Sheet 1, each of the electrical circuits connected with said contact disks 18 causes the induction coils forming a part of the circuit, to attract the armature 5 of the tripping pawl 6, which operation releases the switch end 8 of the pivoted bar 9, and causes same to drop on the bus bar 13.

When the switch 27, attached to the negative terminal 26 is brought into contact with the contact button 30, current will flow through the current wire 31 to the bus bar support 7, and through the tripping pawls 6, which have the remaining pivoted bars 9 suspended thereon, from which the current is passed through the return circuit wires 32 to the lamps which form the back ground, and are thereby lighted leaving the display outline dark.

When the switch 27 is then brought into contact with the contact button 28, the lamps forming the back ground will have their circuit broken and become dark, while those lamps forming the display outline will have their circuit closed. through the circuit wire 29 attached to the bus bar 13 upon which the switch end 9 of the released pivoted bar 9 rests, and thus become lighted.

The circuits may thus be alternated at will and be the means of causing attraction to the display. The pivoted bars 9 which have been released upon the bus bar 13 may be restored into their suspended position on the tripping pawl (S. by moving the set bar 12 down upon the cars 11 on said pivoted bars 9, after which a new display design may be traced on the writing-board It will be seen from the general arrangement of the apparatus, that any desired design may be exhibited in either the lighted or darkened display thus producing an unlimited mcans of exhibition without making any mechanical changes in the equipment.

Having thus described my invention, what I claim as new, and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is

1, In an electric display sign, means for shown in dark outlines or dark when theform is luminous.

2. In an electric display sign, a signboaird consisting of a plurality of lamps, means comprising a contact surface upon which a display form may be traced for setting a series of primary circuit controlling devices,

means for holdin the said devices 1n position without efl'ecting the display lamps said means also adapted to hold a form composed of such lamps after its appearance on the board, and means for supplyin current through-selected groups of such do the corresponding lamps connected therewith.

3. In electric display signs, a contact surface upon which a disp ay form may be traced, a plurality of circuit closing devices actuated by the operation of tracing a display on the said surface, a sign board, electric circuits connecting the closing devices vices to and the sign board adapted to duplicatethe traced form on the sign board, a source of current therefor, and a separate switch adapted to control the supply of current either, to the lamps composing the back ground of the form or those constituting the form itself thus changing the lamp groups to either a-positive or negative display as 1 desired. N

4. In an electric sign, means for tracing a display form upon primary circuit closmg devices each providedwith an electromagnet capable of actuating an armature adapted to control the individual lamps of a sign board, a source of current, means for placing the lamps into arbitrary groups, and means for supplying current to the single lamps or a the groups independently of each other so that the display form is produced on the sign board in-a group of lighted lamps with a plurality of unlighted lamps forming the back ground, or to light the lamps forming the back ground group and leave the lamps representing the display form unlighted.

In an electric display sign a plurality of lamps mounted on a signboard, a circuit connecting the lamps to a source of current, an individual return wire leading from each lamp to a control switch, an electromagnet adapted to operate the control switch, a primary circuit connecting the magnet to a battery, a writir g board comprising a plurality of contacts formed fiush with the upper surface of the board and corresponding in number and position to the lamps on the signboard each contact connected separately to the battery circuits, a tracing device connected to the battery circuit and adapted to v close such circuit when tracinga display 139- sign board provided with a plurality of eleclighted or form on the writing board, and means for with, a circuit closing device adepted to 15 holding an invisible form Without efi'ecting trace a display form on the writing board the 1am s said meansalso being adapted to cooperating with the contacts so' as to close hold a leyed form as long as desired. said circuits" and cause the interplediate 6, An eiectric display sign comprising a mechanism tonpfi'oducea, like display form in tric lamps, a circuit for conveying current to board as desired. said 1am s, a duplicate return circuit, at. In testimony whereof I. hereunto afiix my switch a apted to connect the source of .cursignature in the presence of two subscribing rent to either circuit, a 'controHing device witnesses. 1 4 adapted to connect each lamp to e1ther return circuit, an electromagnet to operate the Witnesses: same, a. circuit including the electromagnet, ANNA Snno,- contacts on a writing board connected there- WILLIAM A. Onnnn.

ghted lamps on said, sign 2().


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3411151 *Mar 10, 1966Nov 12, 1968Bell Telephone Labor IncDisplay unit
US6526000 *Feb 27, 1995Feb 25, 2003Philip D. GuercioPattern display
US7729542Mar 29, 2004Jun 1, 2010Carnegie Mellon UniversityUsing edges and corners for character input
US20040196256 *Mar 29, 2004Oct 7, 2004Wobbrock Jacob O.Using edges and corners for character input
U.S. Classification345/179, 345/55
Cooperative ClassificationG06F3/03545