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Publication numberUS2262806 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 18, 1941
Filing dateFeb 20, 1940
Priority dateFeb 20, 1940
Publication numberUS 2262806 A, US 2262806A, US-A-2262806, US2262806 A, US2262806A
InventorsKempf Herman H, Lavietes David P
Original AssigneeKempf Herman H, Lavietes David P
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
US 2262806 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 18, 1941. H. H. KEMPF Erm.

LIGHTER Filed Feb. 20, 1940 www ATTORNEY,

Patented Nov. 18, 1941 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE LIGHTER Herman H. Kempf and David P. Lavietes, Brooklyn, N. Y.

Application February 20, 1940, Serial No. 319,855

1 Claim.

Wick confined by a cupped snuier. It is a common experience with such lighters to have the volatile lighter fluid (gasoline, benzine or naphtha) escape from the snufer while the lighter is not in use, thus not only necessitating the frequent refilling of the lighter, but creating a disagreeable odor in one's clothes.

Furthermore, in some of such lighters, the case is so formed as to necessitate either the use of both hands when striking a spark, or awkwardness in handling the lighter if one hand only is attempted to be used.

With the above conditions in mind, we have produced a lighter of the type above referred to, the case or body of which is so formed as to be conv-eniently grasped by the ngers and palm of one hand, with the thumb piece for actuating the friction element or steel and the snuffel conveniently located to the thumb and so formed, without the presence of unnecessary protuberances at the back of the casing, as to not only conveniently accessible to the thumb of the hand grasping the lighter, but to permit an easy movement of this member to a position which will ensure the full exposure of the flame.

Following the actuation of the friction member or steel and the snufler, the member carrying both of these parts will remain in the position given the member by pressure from the thumb, requiring no effort of the user to prevent the snufer from accidentally descending to about the wick.

Convenience in holding and operating the lighter is highly desirable, but of equal importance is the formation about the exposed portion of the wick nipple of a substantially gas tight joint, so as to always have an adequate supply of the highly combustible gas within the snuifer to assure reliability in the ignition of this gas with actuation of the steel.

We secure this result by a particular construction of the snuffer itself and by the use of a spring acting through the friction member or which spring is so formed and so mounted as to permit economy in the production of the lighter and to develop sufficient frictional resistance to the initial turning of the friction member to secure the desired snap in the action of this member while at the same time holding the member carrying same in the raised position after the actuation of the lighter.

The construction is also such that ,the spring acting to yieldingly engage the stick of pyrophoric alloy with, and automatically advance it toward, the friction member or steel, supplements the action of the forked spring in maintaining a tight joint between the snuifer and the wick nipple.

While, with most lighters, the common practice is to use an absorbent filler, adapted to be saturated with the lighter fluid, occupying the entire casing, in the lighter of the invention we provide a small quantity only of such an absorbent ller adjacent the top of the casing, and mount in the casing, below this filler, a small reservoir having no ller therein but provided at its top with a capillary feed washer about the closure for the filler opening, so as to ensure a continuing supply of the lighter uid to said absorbent filler and thus avoid the necessity for frequent refilling of the lighter with such fluid.

Since the tube carrying the stick of pyrophoric alloy or other friction material and its spring must extend -throughout the casing with the closure means thereof conveniently accessible to permit the replacing of a worn stick of such material when required, it is essential to so construct said reservoir as to not only provide proper clearance for this tube, but to provide a tight fit between the bottom thereof and the case to avoid the escape of volatilized lighter fluid from the easing at the bottom thereof.

The invention consists primarily in a lighter embodying therein the combination with a lighter fluid supply casing having a flat top carrying a wick nipple, means for retaining and feeding a stick of pyrophoric material. and bearing lugs upon and adjacent one end of the top of said casing upon opposite sides of said last named means, of a lever member having a flattened inner top adjacent said lugs, downwardly directed lugs, and a thumb piece projecting upwardly from said top at the end thereof adjacent said lugs, a friction member having a central flange, the upper part of which is flattened to engage the fiattened portion of the top of said lever, and arcuate portions upon opposite sides of said flattened porsteel upon the member carrying the snuffel', 55 tions, the edge ofthe arcuate portion presented leaf spring mounted upon the top of said ,casing and having its arms straddllng the central flange `of said friction member and engaging the lower flattened portions of said hubs respectively, and a bearing pin passing through said friction member and said lugs; and in such other novel features of construction and combination of parts as are hereinafter set forth and described, and more particularly pointed out in the claim hereto appended.

`Referring to the drawing:

Fig. 1 is a vertical section through a lighter embodying the invention, with parts thereof broken away;

Fig. 2 is a plan view of the top of the casing;

Fig. 3 is a rear view of the friction member or steel;

Fig. 4 is a side view thereof and Fig, 5 is a side view, partly broken away, of the top lever member removed from the lighter.

Like numerals refer to'like parts throughout the several views.

In the embodiment of the invention shown in the accompanying drawing, a casing I0, having "flat sides and rounded front and rear walls, is lused as a source of supply for lighter fluid. This casing has an open bottom and a top closure plate II having, adjacent the front wall, an upwardly projecting wick nipple I2, the top surface of which may be bevelled or domed as shown. The side walls of the casing, spaced inwardly from the rear wall thereof, have two upwardly directed integral lugs or ears I3.

Mounted in said lugs or ears, by means of a `bearing rivet I4, is a lever member I5 having downwardly directed lugs or ears I8 provided with openings in which said rivet has a free sliding llt so as to permit turning of the lever i upon said rivet as a bearing.

Between said lugs I8 is a friction member or `steel I1 having a special construction which will be more fully referred to hereinafter. This friction member also has a free sliding flt with said rivet I4.

' The lever member I5 is preferably in the form lof a sheet metal plate, conforming generally in shape to the contour of the top II of the casing I0.

Upon theunder face of the long arm of the lever I4 is a snufier I8 of particular construction, and about this snuffer is a dependingflange I9 having a gap therein between the snuiler and the friction member so as to not interfere with the spark emitted as a result of the actuation of the lever. The short arm of the lever, which terminates substantially above the rear wall of the casing, has projecting from the top thereof from side to side, a raised, curved, milled or roughened thumb piece 2U, the height oi which is such as to permit the simultaneous application of a rearward and downward pressure thereupon by the thumb of a user.

The casing I0 is of a length to be conveniently l grasped between the middle-and ring fingers and the palm of the hand, with the lever member positioned above the foreilnger where the thumb :piece 20 will be conveniently accessible to the thumb.

The friction member or steel I1 is a block having a central flange 2l and hubs 22. An opening extends through this block for the reception of the rivet I4, and the hubs 22 are of shorter radius than the central flange 2l. The tops of the central flange 2I and. of the hubs 22 are flattened, as shown at 23, s o as to bear upon the un'- der face of the lever member I5 upon opposite sides of the axis of the rivet I4, and the entire width of the block is such as to have the two hubs 22 engage the pendent ears I6. In this manner, any movement of the lever member I5 is imparted to the friction member 0r steel I1, whether this movement results from pressure upon the thumb piece 20 or upon the lever member I5 adjacent the snuier I8 when the lever is actuated to extinguish the flame.

The lower face of each of the hubs 22 is flattened, as shown at 24, to form spring seats, while the lower face of the flange 2| is'fiattened upon a slight incline, as shown at 25, throughout a distance where, when the snuffer is engaged with the wick nipple, the sticlg` of pyrophoric material or flint will engage said member.

Extending through substantially 90" of the perimeter of the member I1 are a sequence of sharp! teeth 26 adapted, by rubbing contact with the stick of pyrophoric material or flint, to cause the emission of sparks toward the wick nipple I2. These teeth 26 are toward the back wall of the casing I0.

Extending vertically throughout the casing I0 is a tube 21, the upper endrof, which opens through the top II of the casing. This tube has within it a spring 28 exerting a normal thrust toward the member I1, and the bottom of the tube is closed by a screw plug 29 for tensioning the spring 28 while permitting the removal of this spring when placing a stick of pyrophoric material or flint in the tube. The bottom of the tube extends to a point closely adjacent the bottom of the casing I0.

The wick proper is shown at 30, and in the upper part of the casing I0, about this wick, is an absorbent filler 3| of cotton or other similar material.

The bottom of the casing Ill/is closed by a metal fitting 32 having an outwardly directedl flange 33. The body of this fitting has an opening therein'adapted to receive the lower end of the tube 21 and the plug 29, so that with'the removal of the fitting, access may be readily had to said plug.

Carried by the fitting 32 is a reservoir 34, one wall of which, to the left of Fig. l, has a close sliding t with the inner wall of said casing. The other wall thereof is vertically recessed to provide clearance for the tube 21. This reservoir has an interiorly screw threaded filling nozzle 35, which nozzle is partially closed by a screw plug 36, the threads of which have a loose fit with the threads about the nozzle.

The head of said plug 36 is spaced from the top of the reservoir by a washer 31 of absorbent material, such as felt, which, in the assembled lighter, is imbedded in the absorbent filler 3i toward the top of the casing I0.

The reservoir 34 is adapted to be filled or partially fllled with lighter fluid for saturating the washer 31, so as to constantly supply the fillerforked leaf spring 38, the arms 39 of which straddle the flanged portion 2I of the friction member or steel. and are projected upwardly into engagement with the portions of the flattened surfaces 24 of the hubs at a point rearwardly of the axis of the rivet I4.

When the snuffer I8 is in operative relation to the wick nipple I2, these springs, alone or in conjunction with the spring 28, prevent any upward movement of the snuffer. When it is desired to cause sparking, the spring arms 39, again in conjunction with the spring 28, offer resistance to the turning movement of the lever member I5, first by direct tensioning of these springs, and second by a rubbing frictional contact between the hubs and the arms 39 of the spring.

When the flattened portions 24 of said hubs pass out of engagement with the arms 39, the springs will develop sufiiclent frictional engagement with the rounded portion of the hubs 22 to maintain the lever in the raised position, so as to avoid accidental engagement of the snuffer with the wick nipple.

In addition to the foregoing, the spring arms 39, during movement of the lever to engage the snuffer with the wick nipple, will facilitate this movement as the rounded portion of the hubs moves out of engagement with the spring arms, said arms being held under tension by this rounded portion after raising the snuffer. As a result of the spring action, there can be no looseness of the lever member I5, and there will always be a tight fit between the lower edge of the snuffer and the bevelled or domed top of the wick nipple.

Lighters of the type to which the invention relates must be manufactured at a fairly low cost, and all parts must be interchangeable. Certain tolerances must be allowed, and a re-finishing operation on any of the parts in the assembled structure is impracticable.

In the lighter of the invention, it is highly desirable to have a very close t between the lower edge of the snuier and the upper surface of the wick nipple, and to restrict the tolerance at this point we employ a special construction of snuffer.

As shown in Fig. 1 of the drawing, this snuffer comprises a cylinder 40, pendent from and opening downwardly of the lever member I5. Within this cylinder is a thimble 4I having a close friction fit with the cylinder III).I

In assembling the lighter, the thimble 4I is mounted in the cylinder 4D and allowed to project beyond the open end of said cylinder. The lever member I is then forced downwardly adjacent the wick nipple while the open end of the thimble is engaged with the bevelled or domed surface of the nipple to drive the thimble hard against the nipple and impart movement thereto inwardly of the cylinder to an extent to bring the flattened surfaces 24 of the hubs 22 .into the proper engagement with the spring arms 39.

The close fit between the thimble and the cylinder will prevent any subsequent relative movement of these parts, so that a tight joint will always be maintained about the wick projecting from the nipple.

The operation of the herein described lighter is substantially as follows:

The striking of the spark by rotary movement of the friction member or steel in relation to the stick of pyrophoric alloy Aor int is as in all lighters, the present invention relating more particularly to the construction, arrangement and operation of the parts for imparting this rotary movement to said member, and controlling and timing the functioning of the snuffer in relation to the sparking action or the suppression of the flame, coupled with ease and reliability in the operation of said member.

When it is desired to use the lighter, it is merely necessary to grasp the casing about midway of 'its height, between two fingers of the hand and the palm, with the little finger engaging the bottom of the casing. This automatically brings the thumb piece 20 above the forenger and adjacent the thumb, ii the lighter is properly held. With the lighter in this position, it is merely necessary to develop a downward and rearward pressure upon the thumb piece imparting turning movement to the lever member I5 against the tension of the spring arms 39 and the flint feeder spring 28, which latter spring has a very light tension.

Turning movement of the friction member or steel about the rivet I4 will be resisted to a` certain extent by the tension of the spring arms 39 and by the friction between these arms and the hubs 22. Since the thumb piece is carried upon a short arm of the lever member, the long arm of said member carrying the snuffer will impart a rapid upward movement to the snuffer, but resistance to the movement will require the development of suicient thumb pressure to ensure a rapid movement of the lever member. As the thumb piece turns downwardly, the thumb will pass out of engagement therewith, but this will occur only after the flattened portions 24 of the hubs pass out of engagement with said spring arms, and the rounded portion of the hubs is in engagement with the spring. The tension of the spring arms is increased by the turning movement of the hubs.

When the lever member has been actuated in this manner, it ywill remain in its vertical position until forced downwardly, either byy an under pressure upon the thumb piece or by a pressure upon the portion of the lever adjacent the snuffer. When theend of the flattened portion of the hubs during the snufling movement of the lever member has passed a short distance along the arms 39, the tension of said arms will snap the snuffer into engagement with the wick nipple.

We have found, in actual practice, that a lighter embodying the invention is highly dependable, and the construction and arrangement of parts is such that there is little or no likelihood of the breakage of any part, or such a disarrangement of parts as will interfere with the operation of the lighter.

By using a reservoir like that shown at 34, over-saturation of the absorbent filler 3I is prevented and aigradual supply of lighter fluid to said material is assured, the capacity of the reservoir being such, and the rate of fluid consumption being so controlled as to avoid the necessity for frequent relling of the lighter with the lighter uid.

By using a fitting 32 having a close sliding fit with the inner wall of the casing IIJ, and using this filler to close the bottom of the reservoir 34, said reservoir will be firmly supported within the casing, and leakage of gases through the bottom of the casing is reduced to a minimum, if not entirely prevented, particularly as any free gases or lighter fluid within the casing will be closely adjacent the top thereof.

.By actuating the screw. plug 36 to control the pressure upon the absorbent washer 31, the rate of ltransfer of fluid from the reservoir to the absorbent filler may be varied.

While the action of the4 arms 39 of the leaf spring 38 will be supplemented to a certain extent by the spring 28, the tension of this spring is so light that the arms 39 do most of the work in controlling the movements of the lever member I5.

By using a lever member I5 formed of a single piece of metal, and having associated therewith a friction member or steel and a snuffer, in the manner described, the thumb, when striking a spark or when extinguishing the llame, is remote from the wick and is never permitted to engage the member Il.

The use of a member I'I having side hubs engaging the ears I6, which ears in turn engage the top lugs or ears I3, affords a large bearing area and prevents such shifting of the member I5 as might'result in a loss of a proper joint between the snuffer and the wick nipple.

The member I'I is preferably of hardened steel,

. although other parts of the lighter may be made of sheet metal or tubing and the various parts united by soldering, sweating or welding. l

The pendent flange I9 serves as a shield to protect the llame upon initial ignition of the gases, and also limits the movement of the lever when snuffing the flame.

The member I5, the friction member or steel Il and the snuffer I8, in effect, provide a single unitary structure, so far as the operation of parts is concerned, which ensures a perfect timing in the operation of these parts and permits a structure of s'ulcient strengthto avo'id all likelihood of a loss inthis timing, or breakage, deformation or loss of adjustment of parts.'

It is not our intention to limit lthe invention to the particular designv of casing shown in the accompanying drawing, but -theconstructlon and f toothed,

arrangement of parts including the lever I5, the friction member or steel I1 and the forked spring 38 are essential to a proper operation of the lighter.

Having described the invention, what we claim top of said casing upon opposite sides of said last named means, of a lever member having a attened inner top adjacent said lugs, downwardly directed lugs, and a thumb piece projecting upwardly from said top at the end thereof adjacent said lugs, a friction member having a, central flange, the upper part of which is flattened to engage the flattened portion of., the top of said lever, and arcuate portions upon opposite sides of said flattened portions, the edge of the arcuate portion presented toward said nipple being smooth, and the opposite arcuate portion being said friction member having hubs formed integrally with and upon opposite sides of said flange, both the top and the bottom of said hubs being flattened, and the portions of the perimeter of said hub intermediate said flattened portions being curved upon a smaller radius than said ange, a forked leaf spring mounted upon the top of said casing and having its arms straddling the central flange of said friction member and engaging the lower flattened portions of said hubs respectively, and a bearing pin passing through said friction member and said lugs. y c


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2469507 *Jan 8, 1946May 10, 1949Kolter Sr Louis WCigarette lighter
US2490300 *Aug 22, 1947Dec 6, 1949Hettinger Francis KLighter
US2511434 *Oct 11, 1948Jun 13, 1950Evans Case CoSnuffer assembly for lighter wicks
US2539653 *Jul 17, 1945Jan 30, 1951Selig BackCigar and cigarette lighter
US3066515 *May 10, 1961Dec 4, 1962Rudolph J JurickSnap-action lighter
US3152460 *Aug 29, 1962Oct 13, 1964Firefly Lighter IncButane fueled lighter having throwaway plastic canister
US3301020 *Feb 26, 1965Jan 31, 1967Kruizenga Joseph HReserve fuel tank lighters
US5460516 *Aug 24, 1994Oct 24, 1995Polycity Industrial Ltd.Safety lighter with locking striker wheel
US5584683 *Mar 5, 1996Dec 17, 1996Polycity Industrial LimitedSafety lighter with striker wheel stopper
US5769625 *Nov 12, 1996Jun 23, 1998Polycity Industrial LimitedSafety lighter with smooth striker wheel edges
US6533576Mar 3, 1999Mar 18, 2003Polycity Enterprise LimitedLighter with child resistant actuating lever
U.S. Classification431/276, 431/321, 431/137, 431/138, 431/323
International ClassificationF23Q2/00, F23Q2/08
Cooperative ClassificationF23Q2/08
European ClassificationF23Q2/08