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Publication numberUS1804297 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 5, 1931
Filing dateSep 11, 1929
Priority dateSep 11, 1929
Publication numberUS 1804297 A, US 1804297A, US-A-1804297, US1804297 A, US1804297A
InventorsWintz George E
Original AssigneeWintz George E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Talking billboard
US 1804297 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 5, 1931. G. E. WlNTZ TALKING BILLBOARD Filed Sept. 11, 1929 4 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR ficorgel'z il z'nl'z BY ATTORNEY y 1931- G. E. WlNTZ TALKING BILLBOARD Filed Sept. 11, 1929 4 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR Georgeg 9. K ATTORNEY WITNESSES y 1931. G. E.. WINTZ 1,804,297

TALKI NG B ILLB CARD Filed Sept. 11, 1929 4 SheetS-Sheet 4 INVENTOR ATTORNEY wnwzssrzsaM Georygli uvtze 2 3m Patented May 5, 1931 GEORGE E. WINTZ, OF NEW YORK, N. Y.

TALKING BILLBOARD Application filed September 11, 1929. Serial No. 391,952.

This invention relates to improvements generally in advertising apparatus but specifically in billboards and other forms of display advertising, and it consists of the constructions, combinations and arrangements herein described and claimed.

An object of the invention is to provide a billboard with features that will compel attention for more than a brief period.

Another object of the invention is to provide a billboard with a pictorial illustration and some broadcasting apparatus for producing sounds characteristic of the illustration.

A further object of the invention is to provide a billboard with the picture of a human figure, at least in part, and an apparatus which will cause the features to simulate speech both as to sound and action.

A still further object of the invention is to provide the combination of a billboard and a phonograph, with means on the billboard forming part of a pictorial illustration and being moved either by the motor of the phonograph or by a disk complemental to the phonograph record but having a deeper groove cut therein, with means to be actuated by the rise and fall in the contour of the groove so that the motion of said means on the billboard and the sounds issued by the phonograph will occur in synchronism and be characteristic of said illustration.

Other objects and advantages will appear in the following specification, reference being had to the drawings, in which Figure 1 is a perspective view of a part of the improved billboard particularly exemplifying the invention by the illustration of a part of a human figure.

Figure 2 is a sectional View of the cabinet immediately behind the billboard, the apparatus for simulating speech by sound and action being shown'in elevation.

45 Figure 3 is a vertical section taken on the line 3-3 of Figure 2.

Figure 4 is a detail view illustrating how motion is imparted to one of the eyes.

Figure 5 is a detail vertical section taken on the line 55 of Figure 2.

Figure 6 is a detail perspective view of the so-called lip plate. Figure 7 is a detail front elevation illustrating the action of the lip plate in simulating speech.

Figure 8 is a plan view, partially in section, illustrating a modification in which a disk complemental to the phonograph record is employed in the operation of the lip plate and eye disks. Figure 9 is a section taken on the line 99 of Figure 8.

Figure 10 is a detail cross-section taken substantially on the line 1010 of Figure 8.

Figure 11 is a perspective view of the pinion and a portion of the rack bar, particularly illustrating the retainer by which the two areloosely connected.

Figure 12 is a cross-section of the telescopic shaft taken on the line 1212 of Fig- 7 i ure 8.

Figure 13 is a cross-section taken on the line 1313 of Figure 8.

As has been indicated already in the foregoing brief statements, the purpose of the invention is to produce a more compelling advertising medium. To this end, use is made of a billboard of any'size and when periodical displays are intendedon a small scale, the billboard can be stood up in a window or lob- 30 by of a theater, at a stand, or put in a box in front of business places. The idea is to enable utilization of the invention on any size of billboard so that the advantages of the invention may be had both indoors and outa; doors. But rather than to rely on such pictures or printed matter which may be applied, to .the billboard for bringing the advertised matter to the attention of the public, an apparatus is associated with the billboard for imparting some degree of animation to the picture by causing motions and sounds including the voice characteristic of the picture.

While these premises intentionally permit a wide range for the application of the principles of the invention, the illustration of the latter is con fined to that of a part of a human figure which is made to, s'mulate speech. A phonograph is used for t e purpose, and in addition to producing the characteristic characteristic manner.

Attention is directed to the drawings. A.

billboard 1 is supplied with a picture 2 of the head and bust of a woman. The billboard has eye openings 3 and a mouth'opening 4.

The former possess the more or less characteristic shape of elliptical slits, while the opening 4 is of rectangular formation. Another opening 5 in the billboard is the point at which sounds from the reproducer 6 of a phonograph 7 are issued. This opening is screened at 8, partly to prevent the entrance of foreign matter, but more particularly to enable painting thereover so that the presence of the opening will be disguised.

A tube 9 connects the opening with the tone arm 10 of the phonograph. The stylus of the reproducer 6 traverses the record 11 in the In practice, the

' phonograph will be equipped with a repeatstuds 26 guide the slide.-

ing device of which there are several types on the market, the purpose of which is to return the tone arm 10 to the starting position at the periphery of the record when the inner end of the sound groove has been reached by the stylus.

The motor 14, which in practice may either be of the spring or electrical type. but preferably is of the latter, drives both the turntable 15 and a countershaft 16 which, in turn. has gear connections 17 with a driven shaft 18 which is mounted in bearings 19 on one side of the phonograph casing 20; A cam 21 on the shaft 18 bears against a roller 22 which is journaled" on the upstanding arm 23 of a slide 24.

Aslot 25 in the slide 24 receives a pair of studs 26 which are driven into the back of the billboard 1 (Figure 5) and carry sleeves 27 by which the slide 24 is spaced an appropriate distance from the back of the board. The The motion of the slide is rectilinear and this motion is imparted by the action of the cam 21 against the roller 22. A spring 28, attached at its respective ends to the slide 24 and toa wall of a cabinet 29 by which the apparatus is enclosed, exerts a pull on the slide in one direction, thus maintaining the roller 22 in proper contact with the periphery of the cam.

Links 30 loosely connected with the slide 24 by means of pins 21 and slots 32 are secured to so-called eye disks 33 each of which has an eye-ball 34 painted or otherwise indicated on the front surface at a point near the lower periphery. Both a screw 35 and a pin 36 serve to secure the upper end of the link 30 to the respective disk (Figure 3) the screw 35 serving as a pivot upon which the disk rocks behind the eye openinig 3. To this end, the screw 35 is driven into the bulletin board, and in order that the eye-ball 34 may appear as near to the front surface of the billboard 1 as possible, the latter is recessed at 37 to receive and contain the eye disk 33.

As the disks 33 rock upon the pivots 35, the

eyeballs 34 traverse the openings 3 from the full line position in Figure 4 to the dotted line position 38, thus imparting a degree of animation to the figure. The mouth is also animated in part, and to this end, the lower lip 39 (Figures 1, 6 and 7) is painted upon the front flange 40 of a so-called lip plate generally designated 41. The inner portion 42 of this plate which is parallel to the flange 40 has slots 43 (Figure 2) to receive screws 44 by which the lip plate is not only guided but by which the inner portion 42 isheld in bearing engagement against the back of the billboard 1. Y

A roller 45, carried by the inner portion 42, engages an edge of the slide 24, being pressed into such engagement by a spring 46 which is seated upon a rest 47 and bears against a heel 48 in whichthe portion 42 terminates. The foregoing edge of the slide 24 is provided with a plurality of lobes 49 which are spaced apart and are intended to intermittently depress the lip plate 41 against the tension of the spring 46 as the slide 24 moves back and forth, thus imparting a quivering motion to the lip 39 to simulate the act of talking.

Attention is now directed to the modified form of the invention in Figures 8 to 13. The principle is identical with that of the form of the invention already described but the specific mode of operating the lip plate 41 and the eye disks 33 is different. A disk 50, complemental to the phonograph record 11, is carried by a turntable 51 which is driven in synchronism with the turntable 15 by gearing groove 53 becomes the medium by which the lip plate and eye disks are actuated through an intermediary mechanism. The purpose is to move the lip plate and'eye disks, especially the lip plate, in harmony with the speech or song so that the impression of animation will become more realistic. Forex ample, if the record 11 contains a sales talk or a song, the lips will move in accordance with the voice.

This is accomplished by providing a secondary stylus 54 to follow the contour of the groove 53. The stylus is carried by an arm 55 that has connection with a rack bar 56.- The rack 57 of this bar engages a pinion 58 fixed on one component of a telescoping shaft 59. The other componentof the shaft carries a gear 60 which is larger than the pinion 58. .The gear actuates the lip plate 41, for which purpose the inner portion 42is regularly perforated at 61 to provide teeth with which the gear 60 meshes.

vides a pivotal mounting for the arm 55. A

ate movement.

very light spring 64, afiixed at one end to the stud and hooked over the arm 55 at the other end, supplies suflicient pressure to keep the stylus 55 in engagement with the groove 53. A swivel connection 65 of the stud with a fixed bracket 66 accommodates the necessary arcuate turning of the arm 55 as the stylus follows the groove.

There must be some degree of looseness between the rack 57 and the pinion 58 because the arcuate motion of the outer end of the arm 55 must be taken into account. The bar 56 is pivoted'to the arm 55 at 67. A retainer 68 makes a loose connection between the bar 56 and the shaft 59. This retainer is nothing more than a strap ofmetal provided with an elongated perforation 69 through which one ofthe components of the shaft 59 extends and having its ends looped around the rack bar.

The purpose of the retainer 68 is to cause the slidable component of the telescoping shaft as well as the pinion 58 to move with the rack bar as the latter traces an arcuate path while thestylus 54 is traversing the groove 53. It is the slight change in position of the rack 57 in respectto the pinion 58 that must be compensated for by the loose engage ment of the rack with the pinion during the foregoing period. A pin 70 in the slidable component provides a bearing for one side of the retainer. The pinion 58 provides a hearing for the other side, while the retainer pushes against one or the other to slide the shaft.

A bracket 71.supports the outer end of the slidable shaft component. This end occupies a slot 72 in the bracket. The slot is necessary to permit a slight shifting of the shaft as the outer end of the arm 55 makes its a rcu- The components of the telescoping shaft 59 are slidably connected at a cross-sectional non-circular place (Figure 12). This permits relative sliding but compels uniform turning. e

The other component of the telescoping shaft has support on a bracket 73. It has a pin 74 on each side of the bracket for the purpose of preventing longitudinal displacement. The bearing of the shaft in the bracket 73 is loose so that any horizontal swinging at the right. end is readily compensated for. A crank pin 75 on the gear 60 has connections 76 and 77 with one of the eye disks 33, the links 30 of which are connected by a rod 78 so that there may be uniform turning of the disks as in thefirst instance.-

The operation is readily understood. The motor 14 is the common source of motive power for the phonograph 7, the supplemental turntable 51 (in the instance of the modification), and for the designated features of the picture 2. Considering first the first form of the invention, the phonograph record 11 will have recorded thereon such sounds as may be deemed most appropriate for the particular advertisement on the billboard 1. These sounds may comprise either.

speech or song.

When speech is employed, it will be composed to address the passerby in a purely informal manner, for example: Hello, Fred, have you had your Lucky today etc. Any passerby will be attracted by the voice, and since Fred is a popular name, there is the possibility that quite-,anumber of persons will be particularly attracted by hearing themselves so familiarly addressed.

As the sounds of speech continue to issue at the o ening5, they will be accompanied by a roc ting motion of the eye-balls 34, thus further directing attention to the particular advertisement. At the same time, the lower lip 29 will quiver, thus making it appear as though the woman were actually speaking. In practice, the front flange 40 will'not be nearly so prominent as in the drawings, and by countersinkin the flange, its presence could be made a most imperceptible. All that the observer would then see would be the moving lower lip.

Consider next the modification in Figures 8 to 13. The sole idea of the supplemental disk 50 is to make it appear as though the lower lip 39 were actually articulating the speech or song. With the arrangement in these are connected with the gear 60, the mo-v tion will be variable rather than uniform as in Figure 2.

To these ends, the groove 53 is cut with somedegree of similarity to the sound groove in the record 11. Of course, the multitudinous microscopic undulations of the sound groove will be omitted but the main characteristic of the groove 53 will be the same as that of the sound groove. The groove 53 will be much coarser. It will be much deeper in places, as suggested in Figure 10, so that it will produce a suificiently distinct action of the arm 55 to be transmitted through the intermediary mechanism 56, 59 and 60 to the lip plate.

It has been stated in respect to the first construction that some known type ofrepeating device will be used to return the tone arm 10 to the original position after the record has been played. A similar arrangement will be employed in connection with the modification. A pair of the repeating dev ces will be used, one for the return of the tone arm 10, the other for the return of the arm 55. These devices are not illustrated because thereare several known types on the market and such one as will best serve the purpose will be selected for actual use.

The source of speech is not necessarily confined to a phonograph record. Any broadcasting apparatus may be employed. The combination then comprises a billboard with a pictorial illustration and suitable advertising matter and a broadcasting apparatus for producing sounds appropriate to said illustration.

While the construction and arrangement of the improved talking billboard is that of a generally preferred form, obviously modifications and changes may be made without departing from the spirit of the invention and the scope of the claims.

I claim 1. Advertising apparatus comprising means having a pictorial aspect, a movable member being part of said means, a revoluble disc having a spiral undulated groove, movable, means having a stylus to follow the groove, linkage attached to said means to which its movements resulting from the action of the stylus are imparted, a telescopic shaft which is oscillated by said linkage by virtue of the undulations of the groove and telescoped by virtue of the radial displace-' ment of the stylus, and means for imparting the oscillation of the shaft to said movable member. e

2. Advertising apparatus comprising means having a pictorial aspect, a movable member being a part thereof, a telescopic shaft having means for imparting movements to said member, a revoluble disc having a spiral undulated groove, an arm having a stylus to follow the groove, means by which the arm is supported for rocking movements in two directions to compensate for the undulations of the groove and the radial displacement of the stylus, a meshing rack and pinion respectively carried by the arm and shaft, and means to keep-"the rack and pinion in mesh to maintain the oscillations of the shaft while said rack and pinion shift 1n accordance with said displacement of the stylus.

3. Advertising apparatus comprising means having a pictorial aspect, a movable member being part of said means, a revoluble disc having a spiral undulated groove, movable means having a stylus to follow the groove, linkage attached to said means to which its movements resulting from the action of the stylus are imparted, a telescopic shaft which is oscillated by said linkage by virtue of the undulations of the groove and telescoped by virtue of the radial d splacement of the stylus, means for impartlng the oscillation of the shaft to said movable member, apparatus for producing sounds to accompany the movements of the movable member, and means by which the revolutions of the revoluble disc are derived from said apparatus.

4. An apparatus comprising movable eye and lip members, sound reproducing apparatus, and means to produce irregularities. of movement of said members in approximate agreement with the irregularities of the sound reproduced by said apparatus.

5. An apparatus comprising movable eye and lip members, sound reproducing apparatus, and means operating in conjunction with said apparatus to impart continuously varied movements to said members in approximate conformity to the vibrational values of the sound of said apparatus. A 6.An'apparatus comprising movable eye and lip members, sound reproducing apparatus, an element simulating a phonograph recordfmeans to actuate said apparatus and record at the same time, and means to translate the irregularities of the record groove into irregular movements of said eye and lip members in accompanimentto the sound reproduction.

7. An apparatus comprising movable eye and lip members, an element simulating a phonograph record, means to rotate said element, and means for communicating the undulations of the groove in said element to said eye and lip members.

8. An apparatus comprising a movable member forming part of a pictorial representation, an element simulating ayphonograph ing said member, a shaft having connection with said movable member, rack and pinion elements, one of the elements being carried by the shaft, an arm carrying the other element, and means on the arm to'follow the groove.

10. A pair of revoluble elements each having a spiral, undulating groove of which one is a sound groove, a reproducer coacting with the sound groove, an element having a stylus coacting with the other groove, a movable member comprising part of an advertising apparatus, connecting and actuating means between the element and said member, and means for driving said revoluble elements at the same time thus to produce sounds in accompaniment to the movements of said member.

GEORGE E. WINTZ.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2610424 *Jun 14, 1949Sep 16, 1952Arza E MillardActivated sign
US3857191 *Nov 20, 1972Dec 31, 1974Talkies Usa IncVisual-audio device
US4793081 *May 18, 1987Dec 27, 1988Andrae Ralph NAnimated sign
US5920634 *Nov 13, 1996Jul 6, 1999Chiquette; Grace RojanActivatable audio advertising display standard
US7698841 *Oct 30, 2008Apr 20, 2010Alon VivatSinging and animated birthday cake
US7806745 *Dec 20, 2004Oct 5, 2010Hohl G BurnellApparatus to animate a flat picture or photograph
US8176663 *Feb 11, 2010May 15, 2012American Greetings CorporationElectronic greeting cards and novelties with moveable elements and manual electronic circuit activation
US20050155261 *Dec 20, 2004Jul 21, 2005Hohl G. B.Apparatus to animate a flat picture or photograph
US20100107460 *Oct 30, 2008May 6, 2010Alon VivatSinging and animated birthday cake
US20100199530 *Feb 11, 2010Aug 12, 2010Dave SappElectronic greeting cards and novelties with moveable elements and manual electronic circuit activation
WO1997006650A1 *Aug 9, 1996Feb 20, 1997Edwin M Knowles China CompanyPlate with audio apparatus
Classifications
U.S. Classification40/455, 40/421, 40/624, 40/416
International ClassificationG09F25/00
Cooperative ClassificationG09F25/00
European ClassificationG09F25/00