US 2176285 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 17, 1939. w. A. wHmNG 2,176,285
VEHICULAR TRAFFIC SIGNAL Filed June 24, 1937 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Oct. 17, 1939. w. A. wHrrlNG VEHICULARv TRAFFIC SIGNAL Filed June 24, 1937 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Patented cit. 17, 1939 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE I 6l Claims.
The present invention relates to improvements in vehicular traic signals, and has particular reference to mechanically operable signals of the type which is adapted to be mounted in the roadway, and in which the signal element normally assumes an erect position and is movable downwardly to the general level of the roadway upon being engaged by a wheel of a passing vehicle.
Trac signals of the foregoing type have Well recognized advantages, such for example as convenient location directly in the normal line of vision of the driver, and permanency in construction, but to be satisfactory must satisfy exacting requirements as 'to strength, durability and re- "2 liable operation under all street, tralc and Weather conditions.
'One of the objects of the present invention resides in the provision of a novel trafc signal which is indestructible in use, and which more particularly is of suflicient strength to withstand the heavy impact forces to which it is subjected, and is adapted to be hit from any direction without being damaged or damaging the vehicle.
Another object is to provide a. new and improved traic signal which comprises a minimum of separate parts, and in which none of the parts is subject to objectionable wear or to functional deterioration in use. v v
4A further object is to provide a novel trame signal in which the relatively movable parts are in substantially interfitting relation in all positions of movement to exclude foreign matter, such as dirt, rocks, ice, etc.
A general object is to provide a new and improved mechanically operable trafc signal which is simple and inexpensive in construction, and which is efficient and reliable in operation.
Other objects and advantages' will become apparent as the description proceeds.
In the accompanying drawings, Figure 1 is a perspective View of a traflic signal embodying the features of my invention. A
Fig. 2 is a transverse vertical sectional view taken along line 2-2 of Fig. 1.
' Fig. 3 is a longitudinal vertical sectional View taken substantially along line 3-3 of Fig. 2 and illustrating the signal element in front elevation.
Fig. 4 is a horizontal sectional view of the signal element taken along line 4-4 of Fig. 3. v
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary transverse sectional view of the signal element taken along line 5-5 of,ng.4.- Y
Fig. 6 isa perspective view of a detail.
VVWhile the invention isl susceptible of various modifications and alternative constructions, I`
(C1. Lio- 1.25)
have shown in the drawings and will herein d'escribe in detail the preferred embodiment, but it is to be understood that I do not thereby intend to limit the invention to the specic form disclosed, but intend to cover all modifications and alternative constructions falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as expressed in the appended claims.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, the traffic signal constituting the exemplary embodiment of the invention comprises generally a supporting base I adapted to be mounted in fixed position on a solid support, such as the pavement of a roadway, and a signal element II suitably mounted on the base for self-movement into a generally erect position and for movement into a depressed position during engagement with the wheel of a passing vehicle. The signal may be'located at any place where a traffic notice, rule or warning is desirable, and is particularly useful at important street intersections. Any desired traine indicia I2, such as one of the words Stop, Slow, Boulevard, Danger, may be provided on the signal element I I for observation by approaching drivers.
The base I0 may be of any suitable form, and in the present instance is shown as a flat rectangular reenforced plate having a central opening I3 for the signal element I I, and adapted to be mounted on a solid street or road pavement I4 and over a space or pit 'I5 in the latter. Preferably, the surrounding marginal edge of the plate I0 is seated in a notch I6 formed in the upper edges of the vertical walls of the space I so that the top of the plate will be substantially flush with the pavement I4. Formed on the underside of the plate I0 and spaced inwardly fromthe marginal edge is a depending ange Il adapted to interfit with the top of the space l5. Two ribbed legs I8 are integral respectively with the intermediate portion of the plate III at the front and rear, and each has a foot I9 resting on the'bottom of the space I5 to provide additional support.
` The plate I0 is secured in position by four corner bolts 20. Preferably, the bolts extend through bottom apertures in depressed circular sockets 2l located outside of the flange I'I and receiving the bolt heads.
A The signal element II may be of any suitable form or shape, but preferably comprises a rectangular front Wall or plate 22 which is mounted along one longitudinal edge in the opening I3 for pivotal movement about a horizontal axis normally into an elevated position above the pavement I4 or into a depressed position ilush with the pavement upon engagement by a vehicle. In the present instance, the signal plate 22 is provided at opposite ends with sturdy trunnions or pivot pins 23 which are suitably journaled in closed bearings in the base plate I at opposite ends of the opening I3. Each bearing comprises a bracket 24 integral with the base plate,` II) and defining an upwardly opening rectangular recess on the bottom wall of which the associated pivot pin 23 is seated. A rectangular bearing cap 25 is removably secured' in the recess by screw bolts 26, and is formed in the lower side with a transverse groove 21 snugly receiving the pin 23. The bearing cap 25 fully closes the recess,and islush at the top with the base plate I0. If desired, the underside of the bracket 24 may be reenforced by a strengthening rib 28 extending to the adjacent end section of the flange I'I.
The signal plate 22 is rounded at the pivoted edge, as indicated at 29, and is complemental in shapel and size to the opening I3. The pivotal axis defined by the pins 23 is spaced below the top surface of the base plate IU and rearwardly from the front edge of the opening I3 at a distance substantially equal to the radius at 29. Hence, the signal plate 22 when in fully depressed position will closely interflt with the opening I3 and will lie flush with the base plate IIJ.
Normally, the signal plate 22 is inclined upwardly and rearwardly at a good striking angle. The opening I3 is closed along the front edge in all positions of the plate 22. Provision is also made to close the ends and the rear of the opening I3 at all times against the entry of foreign matter. Hence, the signal plate 22 is formed with an apron comprising `depending triangular endrwalls- 35 always extending closely across the end edges of the opening I3, and a depending rearange 3l arcuate about the axis 23 and always extending closely across the rear longitudinal edge of the opening I3. By reason of its curvature, the flange 3l is disposed at a striking angleto any vehicle passing over the signal from rear to iront. It will be evident that the signal element il, asconstituted by the parts 22, 30and 3i, isi-in the form of a hollow triangular block open at the bottom to the space I and vfully closing the opening I Sin all positions of movement. Suitable transverse strengthening webs 32- may beprovided within the block. The end walls` 33 and the ilange 3| also serve to strengtheny the element Il against deformation or breakage.
One of the important features of the invention resides in so constructing the signal element II ythatvit may be struck from any direction without likelihood of injury to itself or the vehicle. Since the plate 22 and the ilange 3l are inclined at Vsuitable striking angles, a vehicle may pass over the signalfrom front to rear or from rear to front with safety. However', .in coming aroundja street corner or` in turning around, a vehicle may strike one or the other of the ends ofthe plate 22. If these ends are disposed vertically or present sharp `vertical corners, serious damage may result. A trailic signal to be practicable must satisfyA all possible driving contingencies to which it may be exposed.
To avoid the foregoing diiiiculty, the signal element, I I j is provided at each end with suitable means.. having striking `surfaces shaped and inclined 'forenv'gagement from any direction, and particularlyY4 longitudinally of the pivotal axis. While this'zmeansmay be provided v in 'various forms withoutdeparting from the purpose or spirit of the invention, it preferably comprises one or more longitudinal projections at each end of the signal plate and which are hollow and open at the bottom and inner ends. The projections 33 and 34 have outer end walls 35 and 36 inclined at suitable end striking angles, and preferably arcuate or curved longitudinally of the signal element II to merge with the signal plate 22. The end wall 35 is rounded in cross section, and the wall 33 is laterally shaped to face not only in an endwise direction, but also forwardly of the signal element II.
Suitable notches 31 are formed in the end edges of the opening I3 to receive the projections 33 and 34 so that the intertting relationship between the base plate IU and the signal element II is substantially maintained at all times. These notches conform closely to the transverse form and dimensions of the projections 33 and 34, in theV plane of the base plate I0 when` the signal element lII is in fully elevated position.
The signal element II is automatically movable into elevated. position, and in the present instance is formed integral with a bifurcated triangular counterweight 38 movable in the space I5. and offsetl in relation to the axis 23 so as to extend substantially parallel with the underside of the base plate Ill when the signal element II. is fullyv depressed. Longitudinally projecting lugs 39 on the relatively large rearmost projections 35 are adapted for engagement with the underside of the base plate Il) to limit the upward movement ofthe signal element II.
Downward or inward movement of the signal element II is limited by yieldable impact means to prevent excess movement and hammering by reason of momentum. In the present instance, this yieldable impact means comprises two striking padsv 40 which may be made of any suitable material, such, for example, as rubber or rubber composition, and which preferably are mounted respectively on the uppermost surfaces of the counterweight arms for engagement' with the underside of` the base plate IU when the signal element II is depressed into a position flush therewith. Preferably,each of the resilient pads 40 is inthe form of an'elongated rectangular block secured to project from a recess or 'socket 4I in the associated arm of the counterweight 38. The ,pad extends transversely of the arm, and has an outer impact face inclined to lie substantially in a radial plane through the axis 23. To improve the lift of the material, the pad 40 is formed-in one or more of the sides, four sides in the present, instance, and immediately outside of the associated counterweight arm with suitable relief grooves 42. These grooves afford a relief for the'ready deection of the material under impact compression, and tend to prevent constant and repeated hammering from causing the material to harden and lose or suffer impairment in resiliency.
Itr will be understood that the traic indicia I2 are suitably mounted on or formed in the front face ofthek plate 22. In the present' instance,- recesses 43 denlng the letters of the word Stop are depressed` in the plate 22'.'
Preferably, the bottom Vwalls of the vletters are inclined downwardly and away from the normal plane ofthe' plate'to dispose the indicia I2` at a better angle for observation by the approaching driver. As herein shown, the indicia I2v may include a plurality, of light reflecting, buttons '44 arranged to dene the letters and suitably bolted to the bottom walls of the letter recesses. If desired, suitable traic indicia 45 may also be mounted on or formed in the rear flange 3| of the signal element ll.
It will be evident that I have provided a new and improved traflic signal which comprises but one movable operating part. The signal element Il will be depressed upon being struck from any angle, and the traffic signal as a whole is indestructible.
I claim as my invention:
l. A trailic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base plate adapted to be mounted upon a roadway over a pit in the latter and having a depending marginal flange adapted to intert with the upper edge of said pit, a rectangular opening in said base plate adapted to be over said pit and to be disposed transversely of said roadway, a normally upwardly and rearwardly inclined signal plate pivotally mounted at its lower forward longitudinal edge in the front of said opening for movement about a horizontal axis either into elevated position or into a depressed position iiush with said base plate, a depending arcuate flange on the rear edge of said signal plate extending closely across the rear edge of said opening and into the latter, depending end walls on said plate extending closely across the end edges of said opening and. into the latter, a pair of longitudinal projections formed on each of said end Walls and defining wheel engagement faces inclined longitudinally of said axis, notches formed in said base plate to receive said projections, a counterweight integral with said signal plate in said pit and tending to urge said signal plate yieldably into elevated position, means on said projections for limiting the upward movement of said signal element, and a yieldable abutment limiting downward movement of said element.
2. A traffic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base plate adapted to be mounted upon a roadway over a pit in the latter, a generally rectangular opening in said base plate adapted to be over said pit and to be disposed transversely of said roadway, a normally upwardly and rearwardly inclined signal plate pivotally mounted at its lower forward longitudinal edge in the front of said opening for movement about a horizontal axis either into elevated position or into a depressed position flush with xsaid base plate, a depending arcuate flange on the rear edge of said signal plate extending closely across the rear edge of said opening and into the latter, depending end walls on said plate extending closely across the end edges of said opening and into the latter, longitudinal projections formed on said end walls and defining wheel engagement faces inclined longitudinally of said axis, notches formed in said base plate to receive said projections, means tending to urge said signal plate yieldably into elevated position, and means for limiting the upward movement of said signal element.
. 3. A traffic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base plate adapted to be mounted upon a roadway over a pit in the latter, an elongated opening in said base plate adapted to be over said pit and to be disposed transversely of said roadway, a normally upwardly and rearwardly inclined signal plate pivotally mounted at one longitudinal edge closely adjacent one edge of said opening for movement about a horizontal axis either into elevated position or into a depressed position substantially flush with said base plate, an upwardly and forwardly inclined striking surface on the rear of said signal plate, depending end walls on said plate extending closely across the end edges of said opening, external longitudinal projection means on each of said end walls and dening wheel engagement faces inclined longitudinally of said axis, notches formed in said base plate and closely interiitting with said projection means when said signal plate is in elevated position, and means tending to urge said signal plate yieldably into elevated position.
4. A traffic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base adapted to be mounted upon a roadway, a signal element movably mounted on said base for disposition either in an elevated position or in a lowered position, a counterweight arm rigid with said element and tending to elevate said element, and a resilient pad mounted on said arm for engagement with the underside of said base to limit the downward movement of said element and being formed with relief recesses externally of said arm.
5. A traiiic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base adapted to be mounted upon a roadway and formed with a rectangular opening having slots in the end edges, a signal element pivotally mounted on said base within said opening for movement about a horizontal axis either into an upwardly and rearwardly inclined elevated position or into a lowered position, an upwardly and forwardly inclined depending flange on the rear longitudinal edge of said element, a downwardly and outwardly inclined projection on each end of said element and arcuate about said axis, said projections interltting closely with said slots, and counterweight means integral with said element and tending to urge said element yieldably toward said elevated position. l lj Il 6. A traflic signal comprising, in combination, a supporting base adapted to be mounted upon a roadway and formed with a rectangular opening with spaced longitudinal slots in the end edges, a signal element pivotally mounted on said base within said opening for movement about a horizontal axis closely adjacent one longitudinal edge either into an upwardly and rearwardly inclined elevated position or into a lowered position, said longitudinal edge of said element being rounded about said axis to interfit closely with the contiguous longitudinal edge of said opening in all angular positions of adjustment of said element, an upwardly and forwardly inclined depending fiange on the rear longitudinal edge of said element and in close intertting relationship with the rear longitudinal edge of said opening in all positions of angular adjustment of said element, end walls on said element in close interfltting relationship with the end edges of said opening, longitudinally extending projections on said end walls in close intertting relationship with said slots when said element is in elevated position, said projections being concentrically arranged about said axis and having downwardly and outwardly inclined surfaces adapted for wheel engagement, and means tending to urge said element yieldably toward said elevated position.
WILLIAM A. WHITING.