US 2223678 A
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3, 1940' H. J. ELLIOTT ELECTRIC DIRECTION INDICATOR 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed June l, 1959 INVENTOR WITNESS 3, 1940. H. J. ELLIOTT ELECTRIC DIRECTION INDICATOR Filed June 1, 1939 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Zl'agvm ...quil
ATTORNEYS WITN Ess Patented Dec. 3, 1940y UNITED. STATES PATENT OFFICE .3 Claims.
This invention relates to an electricdirection indicator and has for an object to provide a simplined warning signal for motor vehicles adapted to indicate to other drivers and to pedestrians the intentions of a driver to turn to the right or left, to stop or to back.
A further object is to provide improved means for controlling the rotation ofthe legend displaying drum, the same including essentially a pair of solenoids having a common endwise movable core geared to the drum, and an additional solenoid having a core disposed to engage the first named core and limit endwise movement thereof for controlling the drum todisplay a left or back signal. 1
A further object is to provide an improved manually operable switch electrically connected to the solenoids and to a pilot bulb and a bulb for illuminating the legends, the switch when in one position serving to connect the source of current to a brake pedal operated switch so that the signal "back and stop may be also controlled by the brake pedal.
A further object is to provide a device of this character'which will be formed of a few strong, simple and durable parts, ywhich will be inexpensive to manufacture, and which will not easily get out of order.
With the above and other objects in view the invention consists of certain novel details of construction and combinations of parts hereinafter fully described and claimed, it being understood that various modifications may be resorted to within the scope of the appended claims without departing from the spirit or sacrificing any of the advantages of the invention.
In the accompanying drawings forming part of this specification:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of the signal lamp constructed in accordance with the invention.
Figure 2 is a cross sectional view of the lamp taken on the line 2-2 of Figure 3.
Figure 3 is a longitudinal sectional view of the signal lamp. Y
Figure 4 is a perspective view of the drum and displaying the signal legend as well as the initials v of the vehicle owner.
Referring now to the drawings in which like l characters of reference designate similar parts in the various views, I designates a cylindrical lamp casing having the open ends closed by transparent panes il. A sight opening I2 is formed longitudinally of the casing and is provided with a transparent pane I2 through which the legends of the signal drum Il are exposed. Diametrically opposite the sight opening, the casing is provided with a bracket I5 through the medium of which the casing may be secured to the motor vehicle, as for example to the door of the baggage compartment as shown in Figure l.
The signal drum il is in the form of a cylinder having substantially one-half thereof cut away longitudinally to near the ends.` A transparency Il closes the cut away portion and bears the legends Right," and Left, then the initials of the owner of the vehicle, then the legends Back and Stop, arranged in a vertical row as shown in Figure 4. The drum is provided at the ends with radially extending brackets Il, best shown in Figures 3 and 4, these brackets being substantially a radius of the drum in length. The brackets extend from the drum in the same general direction and are provided with openings iB at the inner ends to receive the reduced ends of a shaft I2.
The shaft i9 extends axially in the lamp casing I0 and is rotatably supported at the ends in bearings 2n disposed on the upper ends of a pair of standards 2l which rise from an inverted U-shaped base bar 22. The bar 22 extends longitudinally through the drum, parallel to theshaft i9, and is provided with out-turned ends 22 which are fixed to the casing I0 as shown at 24. The openings I8 in the brackets l1 are each provided with a straight wall 25, best shown in Figure 4, to receive a nat portion 26 on the respective encl of the shaft IQ to mount the drum for rotation with the shaft as a unit. Nuts 2l' are threaded on to the ends of the shaft and detachably secure the drum to the shaft. The shaft is provided with a pinion 28, best shown in Figures 2 and 3, for rotating the shaft as will now be described.
Two solenoids 28 and 20 are mounted in axial alignment transversely of the drum through the medium of respective strap brackets 3`| and 32 which are secured to the base bar 22 as shown at 2l and Il. The axis of the solenoids extends at a right angle to the shaft I9. A hollow armature 2l, common to both solenoids, is mounted for endwise movement in the solenoids and is limited in endwise movement by caps 36 and 3l which close the outer ends oi' the solenoids. Rack teeth Il are formed on the upper surface of the armature and mesh with the teeth of the pinion 28.
When the armature is moved endwise in either direction, the drum Il is consequently rotated armature in neutral position, a pin 39 is disposed longitudinally in the bore of the armature and is secured stationary through the medium oi' nuts .40 threaded onto the ends of the pin and en-` gaging the caps 36 and 31. The pin is provided with a central projection 4I which is disposed within an annular collar 42 formed at the center of the bore of the armature. A pair of helical springs 43 and 44 are sleeved on the pin, the outer ends of the springs bearing against the caps 36 and 31 and the inner ends of the springs bearing against respective washers 45 and 46 disposed loosely on opposite sides of the projection 4|.
By referring to Figure 2 it will be seen that when the solenoid 29 on the right of the ligure is energized, the armature 35 will be drawn thereinto with resultant rotation of the pinion 28 and drum I4 counter-clockwise to display the legends back or stop selectively through the sight opening I2. During this movement of the armature the annular collar 4I moves the washer 45 outwardly and compresses the spring 43. As soon as the solenoid is deenergized thespring expands and returns th'e armature and drum to neutral position, in which position of the drum the initials of the owner, for example, "J F D are displayed through the sight opening.
When the solenoid 30 on the left of Figure 2 is energized, the armature 36 will be drawn thereinto with resultant rotation of the pinion 26 and drum I4 clockwise to display either the legend right or the legend left selectively through the sight opening I2. The annular collar 42 impinges against the washer 46 to compress the spring 44 when the solenoid is energized and when the solenoid becomes deenergized the spring expands and returns the armature 35 to neutral position.
'I'he legend right or stop will be displayed when the drum is permitted to advance to its 1 limit of stroke in either direction. For limiting yoo movement of the drum to one-half stroke in either direction, and `thus selecting the legend left or back to be displayed, a third solenoid 41 is secured to the base bar 22 through the medium of bracket arms 48 best shown in Figure 3. The solenoid is provided with an armature 49 having a projection 50 at one end adapted to enter a recess 5I in the hollow armature 35, as best shown in Figures 3 and-5, and limit rotation of the drum to one-half stroke when the solenoid 41 is energized.
A helical spring 52 is sleeved on the armature 49 and at one end bears against a ilange 53 secured to the end of the armature and at the other end bears against a flange 54 projecting from a guide tube 55 disposed in the bore of the solenoid 41. The tube is closed at the outer end through the medium of a cap 56 which forms a stop to limit withdrawal of the armature, under urge -of the spring 52, from the recess 5I when the solenoid 41 is deenergized.
For controlling the solenoids a selective switch is provided, as shown in Figures 6, 'I and 8. The switch may be located within convenient reach of the driver and comprises a casing 51 having a switch base 58 of insulating material disposed longitudinally therein. The top wall459 of the casing is provided with a cruciform slot 60, the arms of which are designated by respective characters, L for left, R for right, B for back, and S for stop. A switch arm 6Iv projects through the slot and is equipped outside of the casing with a knob 62. l
, The switch arm is provided inside of the casing with a ball 63 formed of metal and which is loosely conned in a metal socket 64 which is secured to the insulating base 58 by screws 65. Diametrically opposite the arm 6I the ball is formed with an integral arm 66 through the medium o f which current from the source of supply 61, such as a battery, is brought through a wire 68, to any one of four stationary switch contacts 69, designated as shown in Figure 8, as, R for right, L for left, B for back and S" for stop, arranged a quadrant distance apart in an insulated iiange 1I) which projects downwardly from the insulating base 68 concentric with the axis thereof.
Each switch contact- 69 is formed of four resilient metal tongues embedded at the outer ends in the ange 10, the two inner tongues forming switch contacts to be bridged by the arm 66, and the other two forming stops to limit expanding movement of the inner contacts, one of the other two also forming a switch contact to be energized when the inner two switch contacts are spread apart by the arm 66. The electrical connections are such that when the selective switch is operated, one of the aligned solenoids is energized to give a respective signal, the other solenoid oi' the aligned solenoids is energized to give another selectivesignal. Either of the two remaining signals is given by energizing one of the aligned solenoids and by simultaneously energizing the third solenoid as will be seen by reference to Figure 9.
Right tum The stationary switch Contact designatedv Ry corresponding to the right legend, is connected by a wire 1I to the solenoid 30 of the aligned solenoids for actuating the signal drum to display the right legend indicative of a right turn.
Stop signal The stationary switch contact designated S, corresponding to the stop" legend, is connected by a Wire 12 to the other aligned solenoid 29 for actuating the signal drum to display the stop legend indicative of the drivers intention to stop.
Left turn to one-half 'so that it will display the legend left at the sight opening I2.
Back signal One of the outer tongues of the switch contact designated B," corresponding to a back legend, is connected by a wire 16 to the other solenoid 29 of the aligned solenoids while one of the inner tongues of this switch contact is connected by a wire 16 to the third solenoid 41. Consequently when the selective switch is operated to engage the stationary switch contact corresponding to a back" signal the solenoid 28 of the aligned solenoids will be energized and simultaneously the third solenoid 81 will be energized to limit the stroke of the signal drum to one-half stroke so that the legend back will be displayed at the sight opening.
The remaining inner tongue of each stationary switch contact is connected to a common circuit wire 'l1 which is in series with a pilot bulb 18 in the selective switch casing and a legend illuminating bulb 19 on the bar 22.
It is desirable that the brake pedal be utilized also to operate the stop signal. For this purpose a brake pedal operated switch is provided. comprising a bridging contact 80 which is connected to the brake pedal 8i by a link 82 and is adapted to bridge three stationary switch contacts 88, 84 and 85. A wire 88 is connected to the contact 83 and is connected to the solenoid 29. A wire 81 is connected to the contact 8l and is connected to the common circuit wire 81 which is in series with the bulbs 18 and 19. A wire 88 is connected to the contact 85 and is connected to a switch contact 80 to bring power from the power wire 88 through the switch arm 68, best shown in Figure 6.
When the brake pedal is depressed the bulbs will be energized and, at the same time, the solenoid 29 will be energized through its full stroke to actuate the signal drum for displaying the signal stop at the sight opening.
As best shown in Figure 7 the contact 90 comprises a dished metal plate which is supported upon an insulating base 9| carried by brackets 92 disposed on the bottom of the insulating ilange 10. 'I'he power wire 88 to the brake pedal switch is connected to a metal pin 99 which slidably extends through the insulating base 9i and which is iixed to the plate 90. Sleeved upon the pin is a helical spring 94 which holds the plate 98 in good electrical contact with the arm 88 of the selective switch when the selective switch is in neutral position to close the power circuit at this point to the brake pedal operated switch.
Since the operation of the device has been described, as the description of the parts progressed, it is thought that the invention will be fully understood Withoutfurther explanation.
What ls claimed is:
1. In an electrical direction indicator, a casing having a sight opening, a. rotatable drum in the casing adapted to display signal legends "right," left, back" and "stop through said opening. a shaft connected to the drum for rotating the drum, a pinion xed to the shaft, a pair of aligned solenoids disposed at opposite sides of the shaft, an amature movable endwise through both solenoids and having rack teeth engaging the pinion for rotating the drum when either of the solenoids is energized, a rod extending axially through the armature, supports carried by the solenoids to which the rod is nxed at the ends. a stop projection on the center of the rod, washers loose on the rod on opposite sides of the stop pro- ,iection, a collar on the inner wall of the arma- "/ture engaged between said collars, helical springs sleeved on the rod between the supports and the washers normally holding the drum in nonsignaling position, there being a recess in the side ot the amature, and a third solenoid having an armature adapted to engage in said recess and limit stroke of the toothed armature to onehalf stroke,'respective circuits corresponding to the signal legends connected to the first-named solenoids. a source of electricity. circuits connected to the source of electricity corresponding to said signal legends. two of the circuits being connected to one of the aligned solenoids and two of the circuits being connected to the other of the aligned solenoids, circuits corresponding to two of the signal legends connected to said third solenoid and connected in parallel with respective ones of the ilrst-named circuits, and circuit closers for said circuits.
2. In an electrical direction indicator, a casing having a sight opening, a rotatable drum in the casing adapted to display signal legends right, left, back and stop through said opening, a shaft extending axially through the drum, a pair of brackets extending from the shaft in the same direction and secured to the ends of the shaft and to the ends of the drum, standards having bearings rotatably receiving the shaft, a pinion fixed to the shaft, a pair of solenoids arranged at opposite sides of the shaft, a hollow armature common to both solenoids pro# vided with rack teeth engaging the pinion, a stationary rod extending axially in the hollow armature, supports for the rod, sliding washers on the rod, a stop projection at the center of the rod between the washers, an annular collar in the bore of the armature disposed between the washers, helical springs sleeved on the rod between the supports and the washers for normally holding the drum in non-signaling position, the armature being provided in a side thereof and centrally between its ends with a recess, and a third solenoid arranged perpendicular to the -hollow armature and having a spring pressed armature adapted to engage in said slot when the third solenoid is energized, respective circuits corresponding to the signal legends connected to the first-named solenoids, a source of electricity, circuits connected to the source of electricity corresponding to said signal legends, two of the circuits being connected to one of the aligned solenoids and two of the circuits being connected to the other of the aligned solenoids, circuits corresponding to two oi' the signal legends connected to said third solenoid and connected in parallel with respective ones of the first-named circuits, and circuit closers for said circuits.
3. In an electrical direction indicator, a casing having a sight opening, a rotatable drum in the casing adapted to display signal legends right, left, back and stop through said opening, a shaft connected to the drum for rotating the drum, a pinion fixed to the shaft, a pair of aligned solenoids disposed at opposite sides of the shaft, an armature movable endwise through both solenoids and having rack teeth engaging the pinion for rotating the drum when either of the solenoidsvls energized, means for yieldably holding thedrum in non-signaling position, there being a recess in the side of the armature, and a third solenoid having an armature adapted to engage in said recess and limit stroke of the toothed armature to one-half stroke, respective circuits corresponding to the signal legends connected to the first named solenoids, a source ofelectricity, circuits connected to the source of electricity corresponding to said signal legends two of the circuits being connected to one of the aligned solenoids and two of the circuits being connected to the other of the aligned solenoids,
circuits corresponding to two of the signal legends