US 2355247 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug- 8, 1944- H. M. sLocUM 2,355,247
LIFE FRESERVERl LIGHT I Filed Aug. 27, 1942 2 Sheets-Sheet `1 Jenrg .MJ/'Zocum Aug- 8, 1.944- H. M. sLocUM LIFE PRESERVER LIGHT Filed Aug. 27, 1942 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 44.. 1 lfm MQW C w3 k/ f 6 S/ o. f 3 \1 ,ry u .04 m 3 w H Patented Augt 8, A1944 UNITED STATES PATENT ori-lcs f. 2,355,241
Colvin-Slocum Boats, Inc., New York, N. corporation of New Jersey Application August 27, 1942, Serial No. 456,392
The present `invention relates to new and im- ;proved constructions in portable, self-contained illuminating devices, commonly referred to as vflashlights. Although not confined to such use,
the light of the present invention has been designed especially for use with life preservers on ships at sea, or for use with life rafts, collapsible boats or the like, carried by aircraft, or surface or submersible vessels.
A primary object of the inventionis to provide a ashlight which will not be adversely affected by long exposure to salt water or sea air. The invention aims to provide a light which will never fail to operate, even under the most adverse conditions and after long periods of nonuse. Tol this end the invention provides a flashlight of extreme simplicity of design, having no exposed metal parts and having all of the electrical connections and contact elements substantially hermetically sealed in a noncorrosive casing.
Thus, an important object of the invention is to greatly simplify the construction of flashlights, to reduce the number of parts thereof, and
lto simplify their assembly into complete units.
A further object of the invention is to prolvide aflashlight constructed substantially entirely of molded plastic materials.
-Another object ofthe invention is to provide a flashlight wherein the internal, metallic parts are substantially hermetically sealed, so that water and external gases, such as sea air, can not gain access thereto and exercise a corrosive effect thereon.
A further object of the invention is to provide an improved, simplified electric switch construction for controlling the blb circuit, characterized by the absence of-switch buttons or other elements extending through the casing.
A further object is to -provide a novel closure member for a flashlight, adapted to function as a closure, as a lens element,v and asa switch operating member for controlling the bulb cir- (Cl. 24o-10.68)
Fig. 4 is a'fragmentary detail showing certain parts in one position;
Fig. 5 is a similar view showing the parts in another position and Fig. 6 is an exploded sectional view.
As mentioned above, the invention of the present application is particularly adapted for use with life preservers, life rafts, or other life-saving devices, the primary objectbeingto enable a person in distress in the water to signal airplanes or surface vessels searching for him. It is con'- templated that a light will be attached to each life preserver on a ship, and one or more lights similarly attached'to collapsible life rafts or boats in airplanes. To this end, a cord I0 is looped through an aperture II in a lug I2 pro-- jecting rearwardly from the end I3 of the 'c'ylindrical case Il. At its other end the'cord III is securely attached to a safety pin I5 or other securing device, preferably constructedof noncorrosive metal such as brass.
The Acase I4 also is provided with a second lug I5 having an aperture I1 therein through which av link I8 is' looped, for the attachment of a clamp I9, of the type used for storage battery connectors or the like. 'I'he safety pin I5 may be secured to the life preserver or the like and the clamp I9 attached, when in use, to some convenient part of the wearers apparel. Thus, by releasing the clamp I9 the person in distress may handle the ashlight, for instance, for signaling purposes; without any danger of losing it. The cord I0 provides a permanent connection to theA life preserver while still afford freedom of manipulation of the light.
As pointed out above, the lightof the present invention is preferably constructed of molded plastic materials. The case I4 may be made from Aany suitable plastic material, such as synthetic resin, Bakelite, Celluloid, cellulose acetate or any of the other standard plastics of commerce. The case includes a substantially cylindrical side wall 2 5 having outwardly projecting ribs or flutes 26, a closed rear end I3 and an open end 21. Adjacent to but spaced from the open end there is an outwardly projecting threaded section 28, leaving an'annular recess 29 beyond the thread for the reception of a sealing gasket 30 as hereinafter, explained.
t the forward open end of the case there vis a combined closure and lens member 32, comprising an internally threaded sleeve or collar 33 and a dome shaped end member 34 connected Amarginally to the collar by an integral, annular shoulder 35. This member is preferably made from a transparent or translucent plastic, suitably colored if desired, for instance, to produce a red beam of light. The exterior surface 36 of the dome shaped end member is preferably substantially semi-spherical, while the marginal porxtion 35' of the inner surface thereof is concentric therewith. `Thecentral portion of the innerl surface, however, is substantially plane, as indicated at 31, thereby providing a lens 38 at the end of the closure, between the plane inner surface and the curved outer surface. y v
The gasket 3o of rubber or other compressible,
water and gas resistant material, may be compressed between the bottom of the annular recess 29 and the inner surface of the collar 33, the latter being non-threaded at this portion. The
gasket provides a substantially hermetic seal be- 43', to provide a spring seat for the battery 44 disposed within the case. It will be apparent that the strip 42, with its forward end hooked over the end of the case and with its rear end behind the battery, urges the battery forwardly, when the rear end is placed under stress, as hereinafter explained. Moreover, the strip is in electrical connection with the bottom end or negative terminal of the battery and will, therefore, be negatively charged.
In the space between the annular shoulder 35 and the open end of the case there is positioned a circular plate having a centrally positioned bulb socket 46-carried thereby. A bulb 41 is threaded in the socket and preferably retained therein by a locking sprlngl43. These parts are of such size and are so proportioned that the margin of plate 45 is engaged by shoulder 35 and the central terminal 49 of 4the bulb 41 is in contact with the positive pole 50 of the battery, urging the battery rearwardly against the stress of the spring end 43' of the strip 42. In other words, when the parts are Ain the normal position, the spring 43 is stressed, thereby urging the battery forwardly and, through bulb 41, urging the plate 45 into contact with the shoulder 35, so that the margin of the plate is spacedl outwardly from the hooked end 4I of the strip I 4 2, out of electrical contact therewith.
In order to complete the bulb circuit and energize the light 41, it is simply necessary to screw the closure member 32 and the collar 33 rearwardly upon the case. The shoulder 35 forces the plate 45 rearwardly until the margin thereof makes contact with the hooked end 4l of the strip 42. Hence, the circuit is completed from the positive terminal 50 of the battery through the central terminal 49 of the bulb, the bulb filament, the bulb sleeve, the socket 46, the plate 45, and the strip 42, back to the bottom end or negative terminal of the battery.
In order to facilitate screwing the cap 32 on the case, the collar 33 is provided with a plurality of outwardly projecting utes 55. In addition, an externally projecting lug 58 may bel molded integrally with the lens `and collar, in order to provide a positive abutment for the thumb of the user and to prevent slippage.
The extreme simplicity and fool-proof char acter of the light of the present invention will be apparent from the foregoing description. I'he construction includes only four essential parts, in addition to the standard bulb and battery. 'I'here are (a) the case I4, (b) the closure 32, (c) the socket-carrying plate 45, and (d) the strip 42 of springmetal. Each of these four parts is separate and independent of the others and may be manufactured separately. The assembly of the parts into cooperative relationship to form a complete ashlight is an extremely simple operation. The spring strip 42 is inserted in the case with the hooked end 4| in the recess 40, and the battery is dropped into place. The bulb'ls screwed into the socket, and .the plate 45 placed in the cap 32. The cap and case are screwed together and the-assembly is finished. When it is desired to illuminate the light, the cap 32 is simply screwed tightly upon the case, thereby completing the bulb circuit, as previously explained. Obviously the light may be extinguished by simply unscrewing the cap slightly to permit the plate 45 to move away from the hooked end 4| of the strip 42, under the influence of the force of the spring provided at the end 43 of the strip, acting through the battery and the bulb.
The independent, separate, unitary strip spring element 42 is an important feature of the present invention, since it, in combination with the socketed plate 45, contributes toV the simplicity of the construction and the ease of assembly of the parts. It is substantial improvement over construction where electrical conducting strips are moulded into flashlight cases or attached thereto by rivets or the like. Y
It is thought that the construction, operation and advantages of the embodiment of the present invention shbwn in the accompanying drawings will be entirely clear from the foregoing description. It must be understood, however, that the invention is not limited to the details of construction shown in the drawings and described above, since all modications coming within the scope of the appended claims and their equivalents are included.
l. A: substantially air tight and waterproof flashlight adapted for use by a person stranded at sea, comprising a cylindrical case having an an open end and a closed end, a strip of spring metal lying along the wall of the case and having one end hooked over the open end of the case in tight engagement therewith and the other end projecting inwardly from the side wall and spaced from the closed end and constituting a spring seat for a battery, a battery supported by said spring seat and urged outwardly toward the open end of the case, a. one piece molded cap having an imperforate substantially transparent face and an integral outwardly projecting collar threaded upon the open end of the case in substantially air and watertight relation, said collar -being joined to the lens b y a shoulder, a socketed plate disposed within the collar of the cap and having its margins normally spaced outwardly from the hooked end of the strip, and `a bulb in the socket enclosed by said cap and having its central terminal continuously contacted by the central terminal of the vbattery as the same is urged outwardly by said spring seat, the outward movement of the battery and the bulb being limited by the engagement of the socketed plate against said shoulder, whereby the plate may be brought into contact with the hooked end of the strip to complete the bulb circuit by t screwing the collar upon the case.
2. A substantially air tight and waterproof flashlight of the type adapted for use by a person stranded at sea, comprising a tubular case having a closed rear end and an open forward end. a flexible line of substantial length attached adjacent the closed end of the case and having means at its free end for attachment to a life preserver, clamping means permanently attached to the tubular side wall of the case for clamping the flashlight to the clothing of the person stranded at sea. a combined closure and lens for the case comprising a collar snugly threaded on the open end of the case in substantially air and water tight relation and having an inwardly projecting annular shoulder adiacent its forward end and integral with the closure, a circular plate mounted` within the collar and having a central bulb socket, a bulb in the socket projecting into the closure, a battery in the case, and a single strip of fiat spring metal lying along the inner surface of the case and attached thereto with its forward end exposed at the open end of the case and its rear end bent inwardly in outwardly spaced relation to the closed end thereof and acting as a spring seat for urging the battery outwardly and continuously into contact with the bulb and for urging the plate outwardly and continuously against the annular shoulder and normally in spaced relation from the forward end of the strip, whereby said plate may be moved into contact with the forward end of the strip by screwing the collar inwardly upon the case to complete the bulb circuit.
l3. A ashlight comprising a molded, plastic cylindrical case closed at its rear end and having an externally screw-threaded open forward end, a transparent one-piece cap comprising an internally threaded collar tightly screwed upon the threads of the case, an imperforate dome shaped lens of less diameter than the collar projecting outwardly from the forward end thereof and joined thereto by a shoulder projecting in wardhr from the collar, a ilat circular plate having a centrally positioned bulb socket disposed in said cap with the margins of the plate adjacent said shoulder, a bulb in said socket, a strip of spring metal lying along the inner surface of the side wall and the bottom of the case and having its forward end hooked over the open end of the case and its rear end bent upwardly from the bottom, and a battery having its base supported upon the rear end of the strip and its end terminal in contactv with saidl bulb, the rear end of said spring strip acting through the battery and the bulb, serving to urge the plate forwardly against the shoulder in the cap and out of contact with the forward end of the strip, the margin of the plate being movable into contact with the forward end of the' strip to complete the bulb circuit by screwing the collar upon the case.
4. A flashlight comprising a case having a cylindrical sidewall, a closed rear end and an exteriorly threaded open forward end and a lug projecting laterally from the side wall, a combined closure and lens element for the case comprising an externally nuted collar threaded on the open end of the case. a substantially semispherical, dome shaped member integrally joined thereto by a circular intermediate shoulder and a lug integral with the lens and projecting laterally therefrom and extending substantially from the center ofthe lens to the circumference of the collar, a battery in the case, a bulb and socket in the closure element, means for urging the battery outwardly into contact with the bulb and means for completing the bulb circuit when the closure element is screwed down upon the case, said lugs on the case and closure serving to provide nger grip abutments to facilitate such action.
HENRY M. SDOCUM.