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Publication numberUS2211818 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 20, 1940
Filing dateJan 3, 1938
Priority dateJan 3, 1938
Publication numberUS 2211818 A, US 2211818A, US-A-2211818, US2211818 A, US2211818A
InventorsInnis Robert I
Original AssigneeInnis Robert I
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Wall switch
US 2211818 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

R. '1. INNIS WALL SWITCH Aug. 20; 1940.

` Filed Jan. 3, 1938 4 Sheets-Sheet l lllllu.

40 a. NNs ,2,2,8s

' WALL swmcn Filed Jan. 3. 1938 4 Sheets-Sheet 3 a&

.I TS/ ITEDY':

R. I. INNIS WALL SWITCH Aug. 20, 1940.

Filed Jan; 3, 1938 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 WE? a Patented Aug. 20, 1940 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 15 Claims.

My invention relates to wall switches such as are installed in homes, oces and other places for controlli'ng electric lighting circuits and the like, and to ornamental cover attachments for existing switches of that class.

The invention has for its object to improve the construction and appearance of electric switches of the class described.

To this end I provide a switch of the class described having a supplemental cover member, preferably ornamental, forming an exterior part thereof which is supported close to the outer surface of the wall and which incloses the usual Operating mechanism, said cover member having associated therewith auxiliary means operable through movement imparted thereto manuaily to operate the switch.

The cover member is preferably provided as an attachment for existing switches and may be either fixedly or movably supported thereby.

. In the accompanying drawings:

Figure 1 is a front elevation of a wall switch mechanism constructed in accordance with my invention. v

Figure 2 is a section on line 2-2 of Flg. 1.

Figure 3 is a view similar to Fig. 1 but with the cover member removed.

Figure 4 is a section on line fl-fl of Fig. 2.

Figure 5 is a vertical sectional view illustrating a second form of the invention.

Figure 6 is a section on line 6-6 of Fig. 5.

Figure 7 is a central vertical sectional view of a third form of switch mechanism constructed in accordance with this invention. e

Figure 8 is a front view of the mechanism shown in Fig. 7 but with the cover member removed.

.Figure 9 is a section on line 9-9 of Fig. 7.

Figure 10 is a rear elevation of the cover member shown in Fig. 7.

Figure 11 is a vertical sectional view illustrating a fourth form of this invention.'

Figure 12 is a central vertical sectional View of a fifth form of switch mechanism constructed in accordance with this invention.

Figure 13 is a front elevation of the mechanism shown in Fig. 12 but with the cover mem ber removed.

Figure 14 is a section on line M-M of Fig. 12.

Figure 15 is an elevation of the lower end of the mechanism shown in Figs. 12 and 16.

Figure 16.is a central vertical sectional view illustrating a sixth form of the invention.

Figure 17 is a central vertical sectional view of a Seventh form of the invention.

Figure 18 is a rear elevation of the cover member of the -mechanism shown in Fig. 17.

A common form of wall switch comprises a porcelain body o fastened to a metal bridge bar !2 which in turn is fastened at its opposite ends' face plate l'l.

- by push buttons !5, i, Figs. 2, 3, 7, `8, 12, 13

and 17, and sometimes by a lever IB, Figs. 5, 11 and 16. Two screws H secure a face plat'e l'l to the bridge bar fl2, the marginal portion of v said plate overlying the part of the wall adjacent to box 13. 'In the case of the push-button switches the face plate IT is made near its middle with two holes or apertures as shown in Fig. 7, through which the push-buttons &5 project-to the exterior where they were heretofore accessible for direct manual operation, while in the case of the lever switches the face plate il was made with a single aperture as shown in Fig. 5 through which the lever !6 projected to the exterior where it was heretofore accessible for direct manual operation. i

The face plate !1 with the push-buttons IS or the lever !6 projecting outwardly therefrom was not an ornamental feature of the room within which the switch was arranged and one of the chief objects of this invention is to provide an ornamental cover for these devices which will add to the attractiveness of the room.

The embodiment of my invention illustrated in Figs. 1 to 4, inclusive, comprises a rockersupporting bar or member !9 which is Secured in position against the outside of the face plate i'll by the original screws ll, ll after said piate has been removed and replaced in reversed position as shown, it being understood that ordinarily the face plate is disposed relatively to the wall as shown in Fig. 7.

- The bar IS is made with a central rectangular aperture 20 adjacent to the middle of which are two outstanding ears 2l, one at each side of aperture 20, between which is arranged a rocker 22 having oppositely disposed arms each co-operatively associated with the outer end of one of the push-buttons IS. This rocker 22 is pivotally connected 'with the ears or lugs ?ey a pintle 23 and near its outer' end is formed with apertures which are loosely occupied by the intermediate portionof a wire bail 24 whose legs havetheir end portions firmly embedded within a handle or fingerpiece 25 whereof the upper portion is slidably mounted within a groove 25 formed upon the inner side of a supplemental cover member 21. The bail 24 and rocker 22 also e occupy this groove while the push-buttons IS are free to move back and forth into and out of the same.

Upon its inner side the cover member Eiis formed with a recess 28 to receive within it the This recess 28 is open at its bottom but at its top and opposite sides is bor- 2 4 dered by walls 29 and 29', respectively, the inner sides of said walls being beveled as shown -adjaceit to the wall u.

After securing the rocku-supporting member |9 and the reversed face plate I'I in position by means of the original screws il, the cover member 2`| is first placed against the wall l4 above the switch mechanism with its open end lowermost and then is slid downwardly so that face plate I'I slidingly enters the recess 28, Fig. 4, with its outwardly flaring flanges fltting against the opposite beveled side walls of the dovetail groove provided by the side walls 23' of the cover member 21. Downward movement of the cover member is arrested'by the engagement of its top wall 29 with the beveled top portion of the face plate nism is now in condition foruse and is operated by manually moving the fingerpiece up and down relatively to cover member 21 and faceplate ll in a direction parallel with wall I 4. 4

The cover member 21 is preferably a molded product designed, as shown in Fig. 1, for ornamental effects, particularly upon its exterior, and

so as to cover and hide from view all of `the original switch mechanism and all of the switch operating mechanism except the flngerpiece 25. This fingerpiece is also preferably a molded product. suitable materials for use in producing molded parts and 21 are "Bakelite," hard rubber, glass. metal, etc.,` but said parts may. of course, be produced otherwise than by moIding and from other materials.

In Figs. 5 and 6 of the drawings the bridge member l9a is made with a slot 30 that is occupied by the switch lever IS while the fingerpiece 25 is made with a' metal extension slidably held in position against said bridge member by ears 3| 'provided at the opposite sides of the latter. The extension is made with an aperture 32 through which lever IS extends and as will.be

clear the opposite ends of this aperture provide abutments by which the lever IS is operated by back and forth movement of the fingerpiece and extension.`

In Figs.- 7, 8,- 9 and 10 the face plate is applied to the wall in its usual un-reversed position'and the cover member 21a is held in posi-` tion by flanges 33, one at each side of a supplemental plate member I9b on which the rocker 22 ispivotally mounted. The flanges 33 are dis posed vertically and overiie flanges 34 provided upon the inner side of the cover member 21a so that said cover member can be placed in position and removed by sliding the same vertically as will be clear, the upper end of the face plate serving as a stop to limit the downward movement of the cover member as in Fig. 2 Also, in this form of my invention the plate member lab is made at one end with an outstanding apertured extension 35 through which extend loosely the legs of the bail 24 so that the latter is guided thereby in its up and dow`n' movements.

The flanges 33 and 34 provide, in eiect, a dove- -tail tongue and groove connection between the cover member 210, and the supplemental plate member l9b which permits of ready application or removal of the cover member. and holds the latter against sidewise displacement. i

In Fig. 11 a supplemental plate member l9c is The switch mechaprovided having a single aperture 36 'through which the switch Operating lever li extends inte an eye 31 provided at the upper end of a wire stem 38 forming part of the fingerpiece 25. This stem extends loose'ly through an aperture provided in an outstanding extension 35 of the supplemental plate lac. Also, in' this form of my invention the cover member 2'Ia is held in position by the supplemental plate and the supplemental plate is fastened to the existing switch mechanism by the screws ll as described in connection with Figs. '1, 8 and 9.

In Figs. 12 to 15, inclusive, the usual screws ll of the existing switch mechanism are employed, as before, to fasten an apertured supplemental plate lSd in position upon the 'outer side of the usual face plate' I 'I and this plate |9d is made with two pairs of flanges 33 overiying complemental flanges 34 on the interier of the cover member 211 whch is formed upon its inner side with a cavity or recess for the accommodation of face plate IT and the push-button Operating mechanism.

The push-button Operating mechanism referred to includes a rocker member 22 11 made with oppositely projecting arms to engage the outer ends of the push-buttons !5. This rocker member is pivotally mounted at 23 upon the supplemental plate 'member l9d' and at its outer end is pro vided with a radial pin or stud 39 occupying 'an .aperture 40 formed at the middle of a longitudinally' disposed resilient metal strip 4| flxedly mounted within the cover member 21b.

In this form of my invention the switch is operated by manually sliding the cover member up and down on the face plate I'I, the rim or chime of the cover member engaging 'the upper end oi the face plate to limit the downward movement of said member and also engaging the lower end of supplemental plate member led to-limt the upward movement thereof.

At the lower end of the cover member 2'lb the rim or skirt thereof is formed with an indenture opassageway 42 through which the faceplate I'I and the lower end'portion of supplemental plate l9d, can-'pass when the cover member is first shoved downwardly' from above to apply it to the existing switch after the latter has been.

equipped with the supplemental plate member 1911. The lower end portion 43 of supplemental desired to remove the cover member 2'Ib upward'- ly. It. will be understood that when the cover member is being applied to the switch by down-,.

ward movement thereof the portions 44 of the coverpass over and depress the spring stop portion 43 until the portions 44 pass below the same whereupon the spring-stop 43 springs outwardly and remains in position to serve as an up stop.

During the application and during the removal of cover 2'lb the pin or stid 39 will bend or flex the strip 4| so that the pin is forced into and out of the aperture 40. During the normal operation of the device, however, the pin 39 'remains within the-aperture 40. I

`In Fig. 1'6 a bowed resilient strip dla is sublid Sid

stituted for the straight strip M of Fig. 12 and said strip ila is made adjacent to its middle with an aperture 400, that is occupied by the switch Operating lever iii. Otherwise the construction illustrated in Fig. 16 is approximately the same as that of Fig. 12.

In the form of my invention illustrated in Figs. 17 and 18 a supplemental plate member or element me is employed which is made with a central aperture 36 at the opposite sides of which are provided ears or lugs ti between which a button-Operating rocker ?22 is pivotally mounted upon a pintle 23. The outer end of rociter 22 has pivotally connected to it a wire bail 25 carrying a fingerpiece 25 at the lower ends of its two legs.

The two plates li a and ill are fastened to the switch body iii by two screws iia as in the other forms of this invention but, while the original screws i i, not shown, can be utilized, I may employ two screws Ma whose heads project outwardly beyond plate me a substantial distance to occupy vertical slots i? and i& provided in two sheet metal plates 39 and 58, respectively, fastened in position within the cover member 270 by screws as shown in Fig. 18.

The upper slot ill opens into a cavity or recess i provided upon the interier of the cover member while the lower end of slot 18 is made with an enlargement 52 sucientiy large to serve as a passageway for the head of the lowermost screw Ma. The heads of the screws i la are of inverted conical shape so as to interlock with the side walls of the slots l'i and &3 thereby to hold the cover member Z'lc in position on the switch and stationary while the fingerpiece 25 is moved up and down to operate the switch mechanism.

It will be clear that the cover member may be applied to the switch by first placing the same in a position where the lower screw Ha occupies the enlargement 52 and the upp'er screw occupies the cavity hi directly beneath slot ti and then sliding the cover member downwardly until the heads of screws ita are at the upper ends of the slots ti? and 38. It will be clear that the cover member is as easily removed.

What I claim is:

1. The combination with a wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall: an apertured face plate fastened to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, and switchoperating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of an outer hollow supplemental cover attachment inclosing and concealing said face plate and said Operating mechanism; means entirely concealed beneath said supplemental cover' attachment for securing the latter to said wall switch, and means within said supplemental covv e r attachment that is manually operabl eto actuate said switch-Operating mechanism/ `2. The combination with a wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall, an apertured face plate fastened to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, and switch-operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior theref, of a hollow supplemental cover attachment outside of said face plate for inclosing' and concealing the latter and said Operating mechanism; means entirely concealed beneath said supplemental cover attachment for separably connecting the latter with said wall switch, and means withii said supplemental cover attachment that is manually operable to actuate said switch-Operating mechanism.

3. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall, an apertured face plate astened to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, and switch-Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow Supplemental cover attachment outside of said face i plate i'or inclosing and concealing the latter and said Operating mechanism, said cover attachment being made with a skii-t which extends around said face plate with its chime closely adjacent to said wall; means entirely concealed beneath said supplemental cover bywhich said cover attachment is connected with said wall switch, and means within said cover attachment that is manually operable to actuate said switch-Operating mechanism.

4. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall; a beveled apertured face plate fixed reversely to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, and switch Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow cover upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said Operating mechaism, said' cover being provided upon its inner side with a vertical dovetail groove slidingly engaged with the beveled edge of said face plate, and means within said cover that is manually operable to actuate said switch Operating mechanism.

5. The combination of claim 4 wherein said cover is provided at its upper end with means engaging the top of said face plate to position said cover vertically relativeiy to the latter.

6. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, and switch Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow cover upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said Operating mechanism, said cover being provided upon its inner side with a pair of vertical fianges; a member fixed in positioneupon the outer side of said face plate made with a pair of vertical flanges each slidingly engaged with one of the flang'es on the cover to hold the latter ln position; means for limiting downward sliding movement of the cover relatively to said face plate, and means within said cover that is manually operable to actuate said switch-Operating mechanism. e

7. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity of the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to said'cavity, and switch Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured faceplate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow cover upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said operating mechanism, said cover being provided upon its inner side with a pair of vertical flanges, 'a member fixed in position upon the outer side of said face plate made with a pair of vertical flanges each slidingly engaged with one of the flanges on the cover to hold the latter in position, a vertically movable actuator for said operating mechanism within said cover and supported by said member, the lower end of said actuator extending below said cover so that it is accessible for manual operation.

8. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity of the wall; an apertured face plate whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, screws fes-- tening said face plate to said body, and switch operaitng mechanism projecting from said body 'through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow cover upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said face plate, screws and Operating mechanism, means concealed between said cover and said face plate through which said cover is supported by said wall switch, and actuating means for said operating mechanism movably mounted within said cover and extending downwardly beyond the same so that it is accessible for manual operation.

9. The combination with an existing wall i switch of the character described comprising a a member fixed in position upon theouter side 'of said face plate by said screws, said member slidably engaging said cover to hold the same in position relatively to said face plate, and-means within said cover that is manually operable to actuate said switch-Operating mechanism;

10. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a.

body adapted to be fixed within a cavity of the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose ,marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, screws by which said face plate is fastened to said body, and switch Operating mechanism I projecting from said body through said apertured' face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow supplemental cover attachment upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said Operating mechanism, means entirely concealed from view beneath said supplemental cover attachment for holding the latter in position relatively to saidface plate, a member fastened in position upon the outer side of said face plate by said screws; and actuating means for said Operating mechanism which is movably supportl ed by said member, said actuating means extendtuates said operat ing mechanism.

ing below said cover so that it is accessible for manual operation.

11. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity of the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adJacent to and surrounding said cavity, screws by which said face plate is fastened to said body, and switch-Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of 'a hollow" Supplemental cover attachment outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said face plate, said screwsand said Operating mechanism,` the heads of said screws separably and slidably interlocking with said attachment cover to hold the same in position, and actuatingmeans for said Operating mechanism movably mounted within said cover attachment and accessible for manual operation.

12. The combination with an existing wall switch of the character described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity of the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, screws by which said face plate is fastened to said body, and switch operatlng mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured face plate to the exterior thereof, of a hollow Supplemental cover attachment upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said plate, said Operating mechanism and said screws, the heads. of said screws separably interlocking with said cover to hold the same in position,` and actuating means for said Operating mechanism which is movably supported within said cover, said actuating means being accessible for manual operation.

13. A wall switch of the charater described comprising a body adapted to be fixed within a cavity in the wall, an apertured face plate fixed to said body whose marginal portion overlies the outer face of the wall-adjacent to and surrounding said cavity, switch Operating mechanism projecting from said body through said apertured I face plate to the exterior 'thereof, a hollow cover movably mounted upon the outside of said face plate for inclosing and concealing said Operating, mechanism, and means upon the interior of said cover through which movement of the letter ac- 14. -A wall switch of the character described constructed in accordance with claim 13 wherein the means upon the interier of the cover through which the Operating mechanism is actuated consists of a resilient member by whichflthe operat- .ing mechanism is positively actuated.

' 15. A wall switch of the character described constructed in accordance with claim 13 wherein said cover is slidably and separably connected with said face plate and wherein the means upon the interior thereofthrou'gh which the Operating mechanism is actuated consists of a resilient member that'is sprung into interlocking engagement withsaid Operating mechanism when the cover is connected'with said face plate.

ROBERT I. INNIS.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2493581 *Jan 5, 1948Jan 3, 1950Hood Lawrence DDevice for actuating wall type switches
US2510745 *Nov 15, 1945Jun 6, 1950Charles R KilgoreCover for electric service outlets
US2526606 *Aug 30, 1947Oct 17, 1950Gregg Hendrick JProtective cover for electrical outlets
US2603734 *Feb 7, 1950Jul 15, 1952Crouse Hinds CoSwitch operating mechanism
US2746333 *Dec 21, 1950May 22, 1956John PenewellHawahan guitar volume control arm
US3077789 *Apr 6, 1960Feb 19, 1963De Lashmutt Robert FToggle switch extension actuator
US3081390 *Jan 11, 1960Mar 12, 1963Lasar WilliamSafety switch device
US3159048 *May 21, 1962Dec 1, 1964Square D CoTie means for operating handles of electrical control devices
US4234774 *Mar 19, 1979Nov 18, 1980American Publishing CorporationImitation wall switch
US4631354 *May 13, 1985Dec 23, 1986Harvey Hubbell IncorporatedCover assembly for electrical outlet box
US4731511 *Oct 1, 1986Mar 15, 1988Budd SteinhilberDecorative wall plates and slider caps for toggle-type electrical switches
US5099087 *Dec 10, 1990Mar 24, 1992John BarrellDecorative cover plate
US5875886 *Dec 2, 1997Mar 2, 1999Illumination S.L.E. Inc.Light switch extension
Classifications
U.S. Classification200/331, 74/503, 174/66
International ClassificationH01H23/00, H01H13/14, H01H23/14
Cooperative ClassificationH01H23/141, H01H13/14
European ClassificationH01H13/14, H01H23/14B