US 2302667 A
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Nov. 24, 1942. c. H. DUNCAN 2,302,667
ILLUMINATED S I GN Filed March 15, 1939 2 sheets-sheet 1 NOV. 24, 1942. C, H, DUNCAN 2,302,667
ILLUMINATED S IGN Filed March l5, 1939 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Z6 INVENXmR. m im W BY 7);?, iQ/6 -/4 AmRNEY Patented Nov. 24, 1942 UNITED STATES: PATENT OFFICE ILLUMINATED SIGN Charles H. Duncan, Erle, Pa.
Application March 15, 1939, Serial No. 261,936
(Cl. l0- 130) 2 Claims.
The present invention is designed to utilize electric glow tubes in providing a. more eiiicient,
available and durable sign.
In carrying out the invention, glow tubes are arranged in chambers in close association with transparent plates, portions of which are blanked off against illumination to concentrate the light at the openings which depict the characters desired. In this invention the support of the tubes is taken care of more efIciently in arranging lling pieces along the edges of the tubes. Preferably these filling pieces are provided with deecting surfaces, thus giving an outline of different characteristic to the illumination of the characters. In the preferred form the tubes are shaped to conform to the characters utilized on the sign thus concentrating the illumination at the character, the parts of the transparent wall of the chamber being blanked off in the manner of those having other forms of tubes. In utilizing these letter shapes and blanking off portions of them, the same tube shape may be utilized in many instances for several letters by merely blanking off portions of such letters. Preferably also the entire chamber which carries the tubes is completely insulated, all the contacts being of insulating material. Features and details of the invention will appear from the specification and claims.
Preferred embodiments of the invention are illustrated in the accompanying drawings as follows:
Fig. 1 shows a perspective view of a sign showing a tube conforming to the letter and a letter fonned by blanking out a part of the tube.
Fig. 2 a similar view, parts being broken away to show the tube form.
Fig. 3 a section on the line 3-3 in Fig. 1.
Fig. 4 a sectional view similar to Fig. 3 showing a slight modification.
Fig. 5 a further modification.
Fig. 6 shows a view similar to Fig. 2 indicating a series of connected units, the view indicating a manner of carrying the wires to the terminais.
'7 a section on the line I-'I in Fig. 6.
Fig. 8, a perspective view of a completed sign of modified form.
Fig. 9 a section on the line 9-9 in Fig. 10.
Fig. 10 a, section on the line Ill-I0 in Fig. 8.
Fig. il a cross section showing a variation.
Fig. 12 a perspective view showing a structure similar to Fig. 8 with attachments for blanking olf sheets.
Referring to the drawings, I marks a chamber having the transparent walls Ia preferably of glass. These plates of glass are secured within the channel frame 2, rubber or other sealing material 3 being arranged between the glass and4 the filler. An electric glow tube l is arranged in the chamber, the form shown being the letter 0. Terminals la extend to the transformer 5 which is connected with lead wires 6. Filler pieces l shaped to conform to the inner outlines of the tube 4 are provided and filler pieces 8 are shaped to conform to the outer outlines of the tube. These filler pieces and the tube practically fill the space in the chamber, the walls of the tube being practically in contact, if not in contact, with the transparent walls Ia.
A blanking material such as an opaque coating 9 is arranged on the faces of the walls Ia and conforms to the shape of the tube preferably, however, giving a slightly wider opening III than the diameter of the tube. Where it is desired to form a letter C from an O conformation, the blanking oif material is carried through the space Ilia so as to blank out a suiiicient part of the O to give a C conformation. This blanking off is alternated on opposite sides of the sign so that it will read correctly at both sides.
The edges II of the filler pieces are preferably coated at IIa or treated to provide a reflecting surface and may be so treated as to give a distinguishing color from that of the glow tube so that an outline effect may be given to the letter as indicated in Fig. 1.
In the structure shown in Fig. 3 the edges II are convex. In Fig. 4 the edges IIb present an inclined substantially fiat surface and in Fig. 5 the edges IIc are concave. 'Ihis variation in shaping the edges gives slightly different effects.
In Fig. 6 the glow tube l is of similar configuration to that of Fig. 2 but there are a series of such figures, all electrically connected in series, the wiring extending through grooves IId in the filler pieces. Inasmuch as these pieces are of insulating material and the entire chamber is insulated, the wires may be free from insulating material and can be more readily handled and occupy less space.
In the alternative construction shown in Figs. 8 to 10, the chamber is similar to that in Fig. 1 except that the chamber 4I2 has a frame I3 of insulating material which is secured by the channel frame I4. The channels are mounted on A brackets I5 and the channels are slightly extending from a chamber -I6 at the supporting end of the sign. The transformer I-I is arranged in this chamber and the lead wires I8 lead from the terminals 20a of a grid shaped tube 2l arranged in the chamber, the walls of this tube having substantially a diameter equal to the cross dimension of the chamber. Preferably reflecting tubes 2l are arranged between the convolutions of the glow tube. These reflecting tubes are treated internally with a reflecting surface thus the illuminated effect of the glow tubes is increased.
In Fig. 11 the shape of the reflecting tubes 2| a is modified, the interior being treated to provide reflecting surfaces. Here `these surfaces are slightly concave and tend to more evenly reflect the light.
In Fig. 12 devices are shown for securing blanking out plates. Here the blanking out plates 23 each contain a letter so that theslgn .may be readily changed. The bottom channel of the frame forms a space 24 for receiving the downwardly extending flange 25 of a bracket 26. The bracket has an edge which is slightly spaced from the wall la of the chamber to receive the plates 23. A hood 28 -is arranged over the top and this has the skirts 29 which provide slots 20 for receiving the upper edgesof the plates. I'he plates may be readily assembled by sliding the upper edge up under the skirt 29 far enoughv to clear the bracket 26. They are then allowed to drop into slots or openings 25 and are thus firmly readily changed and where the illumination is confined or localized directly at the openings by the shape oi' the tubes, different letters may be formed by the blanking operation from one connguration of the tube.
What I claim as new is:
1. In a sign. the combination of a chamber having transparent walls; electric glow tubes within the chamber in close proximity to the walls thereof and having character outlines; means for blanking of! portions of the tubes leaving exposed desired illuminated outlines on the remaining portions of the tubes; and reflecting walls having reflecting surfaces along the sides and separated from the tubes, said surfaces being'inclind to the walls receiving the sidewise projected light rays from the tubes and deilecting the saine toward the walls.
2. In a sign, the combination of a chamber having a transparent wall; electric glow tubes within the chamber having character outlines;