US 2485051 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct., 18, 1949. w. E. JosLlN 2,485,051
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KEY CASE Filed June 24, 1946 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 A tlnmeys oct. 18, 1949. w, E JosLlN 2,485,051
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w. E. JosLlN KEY CASE Filed June 24, 1946 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Patented er. 18,1949
UNITED STATES PATENTI OFFICE KEY CASE William E. Joslin, Granby, Mo.
Application June 24, 1946, Serial No. 678,793
(Cl. 'Z0-456) Claims. l
This invention relates generally to key cases and more particularly to a new and improved key case or holder for accommodating two or more keys and having means for readily identifying each of the keys according to the specific use thereof and under conditions in which identifying means on the case may not be visible to the user thereof.
An important object of the present invention, therefore, is to provide a key case in which the several keys contained therein may readily be separately identified either by means visible to the user or means responsive to his sense of touch.
Another object is to provide a new and improved key holder in which the keys thereof may -be identied in the absence of light, as during the night, by illuminated indicia means individual thereto, or by one or more depressions and/or projections on the key case and identifiable by the users sense of touch whereby the keys may be identified independently of the visible means, thus rendering the key holder an indispensable aid to blind persons, for example.
Another object is to provide a key holder 'which is readily manipulatable to discharge any one of several keys therefrom into a position in which the key may conveniently be used to serve the purpose thereof and in which the key may be restored to its normal position within the holder with a minimum of effort.
An additional object resides in the provision of a key case which is simple in construction and readily adaptable for pocket use or for manufacture in a form suitable for use in womens purses and according to designs and color schemes appealing to their individual tastes and desires.
Still other features, objects and advantages of the present invention are those relating to the novel construction, combination and arrangement of parts, as will become more clearly apparent as the description proceeds, reference being had to the accompanying drawings wherein,
Figure 1 is a plan view of a key case according to the preferred embodiment thereof,
Figure 2 is a right elevational view of the key case of Figure 1,
Figure 3 is a sectional view taken along the line 3-3 of Figure 1,
Figure 4 is a somewhat enlarged sectional view taken along the line 4-4 of Figure 1,
Figure 5 is a view similar to Figure 4 but illustrating the key-discharge position of the key compartment shown therein,
Figure 6 is a fragmentary sectional view as seen along the line 6-6 of Figure 4,
Figure '7 is a sectional view taken along the line 'l-'I of Figure 5,
Figure 8 is a sectional view taken along the line 8-8 of Figure 4,
Figure 9 is a perspective view of the lid assembly.
Figure 10 is a sectional view taken along the line lll- Ill of Figure 5,
Figure 11 is a perspective view similar to that of Figure 9 but illustrating the top side of the lid assembly,
Figure 12 is a fragmentary perspective view of one corner of the key case,
Figure 13 is a fragmentary perspective view of the opposite corner of the key case on the same side thereof appearing in Figure 12,
f Figure 14 is an enlarged sectional view of the iamed plate taken along the line ll-ll of Figure Figure 15 is a plan view of an alternate embodiment of the invention.
Referring now to the drawings for a more complete understanding of the invention and more particularly to Figures 1 to 14, there is shown thereon a key case I8 in the form of an enclosed container which is partitioned into several compartments or chambers each individual to one of the several keys adapted to be releasably retained therein.
To this end, the case comprises a bottom member 20, front and rear side wall members 2| and 22, respectively, end wall members 23' and 24, and a plurality of similarly formed intermediate partition members 25, all connected together to form a single unit as by a process ofl fabrication or by being pressed, molded, welded.: or soldered into an .integral unit, as is desired.
Members 23, 2l and 25 are generally L-shaped, each having an upwardly extending portion 2:0 adjacent front wall member 2i and upon which a name plate 21 is supported and secured in any suitable manner as by screws, welding, soldering, etc. Name plate 2l extends across the entire length of the key case and is C-shaped in cross section, as -best seen in Figure 14, so as to form a longitudinal channel 28 in which an indicia bearing member 29, a strip of isinglass or other transparent material 30, and a multi-windowed frame member 3l are slidably retained, a small countersunk head screw 32 being employed to prevent these members from moving out of position within the channel and permitting their removal upon removal of the screw when it is desired to change the printed matter appearing on member 20,
which printed matter is visible through the windows 33 in frame member 3 I.
The printed matter appearing on member 28 may be in any suitable form adapted to identifl7 the keys retained within the compartments individual thereto, this preferably being accomplished, as shown, by indicating the use for each key, one being Iused for the house, another for the barn, garage, truck, car, etc. The printed matter also preferably is provided with, or formed of, phosphorescent, or other luminous material, or otherwise illuminated, whereby the printed matter is visible to the user in the absence of light, as during the night, or in a darkened room.
Each of the compartments formed by the end walls 23 and 24 and the partitions 25 is normally closed at the top by `a lid assembly generally designated 34. Each lid assembly comprises a pair of spaced members or joists 35 and 36 adapted to beslidabiy received between adjacent pairs of partition members 25, or between a partition member iand either of end wall members 23, 24 as the case may be. Each of members 35, 36 is rounded at one end thereof yas at 31 and is of the proper length to clear name plate 21 when the lid assembly is pivotally moved about the hinge or rod support 38 therefor, members 35, 36 being provided as at 39, 40 respectively with suitable openm ings for receiving rod 38. Rod 38 extends across the entire length of the case through members 23, 24 and 25 and preferably is riveted `as at 4I .and 42 to end wall members 23 and 24 respectively.
Members 35 and 36 are secured in any suitable manner to a fiat member 43 which projects laterally of these members whereby member 43 along the side portions thereof lies above and is supported by adjacent partition members 25, -or by a partition member and either of the end wall members 23, 24 as the case may be. Since each partition member 25 thus serves to support both members 43 of adjacent lid assemblies 34, the partition members are preferably formed twice the thickness of the end wall members 23, 24, as clearly appears in Figure 3, for example.
Each of members 43 has secured thereto along the upper side edges thereof a pair of members 44 and 45 which are L-shaped in cross section so as to form with member 43 a channel therebetween in which a second iiat member 46 is adapted to be slidably received. A projection 41 is secured to the front end of each lid member 46 and is of such width as to freely pass between the raised portions of -adjacent partition or end wall members 23, 24 land 25, as the case may be. Projection 41, in turn, carries on the upper surface thereof a projection 48 which preferably is in the form of a half-cylinder yadapted to be received into the cylindrical hollow or groove 48 provided on the under side of name plate member 21.
A thumb slot or groove 50 is provided in the upper surface of each lid member 46 to facilitate sliding movement thereof with respect to lid member 43 to move lid member 46 so as to bring projection 48 thereof either into, or out of engagement with its coacting groove 48 upon either closing or opening the lid assembly 34, lid member 46 necessarily being moved sufficiently rearwardly so thatI projection 41 clears the name plate 21 to permit the lid assembly to open under power of a leaf spring I which is secured at one end thereof to bottom member 20, as by rivets 52, and is doubled back well in front of rod 38 as at 53 such thaft the other end thereof lies under membei' 43. Spring 5I is preferably of sulcient width and length so that a, key 54 carried at the forward end of member 43 does not engage the edges thereof to prevent closing of the lid assembly. Spring 5| also preferably is bent inwardly so at 55 to prevent any binding with member 43. Spring 5| lalso is provided with optimum resilience such that the lid assembly moves freely and quickly to `dis-charge the key from the case while being sufliciently flexible as to require a minimum of effort in closing the lid assembly.
Either lid member 43 or the partition and/or end wall members 23, 24, 25 lying thereunder, or both, are rtapered as indicated at 56, 51 in Figure 2 in order that the lid assembly may be closed suiiiciently to permit projection 48 of lid member 46 to pass under name plate member 21 upon moving lid member 46 with respect to lid member 43.
A slot 58 is provided in lid member 43 to receive thereinto a pin or screw 59 carried by lid member 46, the slot being sufficiently long Ito permit the required movement between the lid members while preventing disengagement thereof. Lid member 46 also is of suiiicient length such that upon opening of the lid assembly the rear end of lid member engages the bevelled edge y6I) of rear wall member 22, as best seen in Figure 5, thereby to limit the opening movement of the lid assembly.-
Each key preferably is releasably secured to the lid assembly 34 individual thereto by means of a snap hook 6I which makes a conventional swivel connection as at 62 with a pair of coacting link members 63 and 64, of which link 64 is secured in any suitable'manner to lid member 43.
It will be understood that the lid `assembly comprising members 35, 36, 43, 44 and 45 may be formed as a single unit, if desired, this being accomplished either by molding, pressing, welding, soldering, or the like. Moreover, it will be further understood that any suitable materials may be employed for the lid assembly as well as for the other parts of the key case.
Each lid member 46 on the top surface thereof also is provided with one or more rectangular projections 65 simulating dashes as in a deafdumb alphabet and one or more circular projections 66 sinulating dots thereof whereby upon touching such projections with his fingers', the user of the key case may identify the key associated with the lid assembly having the particular projections under examination by the user. The projections may not necessarily take a specific geometrical form or conform to any particular alphabet, it being sufficient that the user be familiar with the particular combination of projections associated with any one key.
In Figure 15, for example, a unitary key case I 9 is provided in which I0 key compartments are provided on each side of a common center portion and circular projections 66 are provided on one side thereof and circular depressions 61 are provided on the other side thereof. Similarly, rectangularV projections 65 are associated with the circular projections 66 and rectangular depressions 68 are associated with the circular depressions 61.
In the use of either key case I8 or I9, a desired 1 key to'be discharged therefromis identied either by reading the indicia means provided on the nam'e plate 21, or by examining the projections or depressions, as the case may be, on the lid, this examination being either by vision or by the users sense of touch. The case is then turned so that the hinge end of the particular compartment housing the desired key is up whereby the key automatically ies out of the compartment to the position of Figure 5 after lid 46 is depressed and slidably moved rearwardly, thumb depression 50 being used to facilitate this movement. In closing the case, the case is held with the hinge end down and the lid assembly 34 is forced into closed position against the opposing force of spring 5| so that the key moves freely into the compartment and lid 46 thereafter is moved forward under name plate 21 until projection 48 snaps into engagement with its coacting slot 49.
From the foregoing it should now be apparent that a key case has been provided which is well adapted to fulll the aforestated objects of the invention. Moreover, while the invention has been described in particularity with two examples thereof it will be understood that additional embodiments and modifications thereof may occur to those skilled in the art to which the invention more nearly appertains without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the appended claims.
What I claim as my invention is:
1. In a key case of the character disclosed, the combination of unitary means for enclosing a plurality of keys in a plurality of compartments individual thereto, a, plurality of hingedly supported lids for said compartments respectively, each of said lids having means for yieldably urging the same into the open position thereof, means on each of the lids for releasably locking the same in the closed position thereof, the key in each said compartment being secured to the inner side of the lid individual thereto, and means associated with each of said lids and responsive to human sense of touch for identifying the key carried thereby.
2. In a key case of the character disclosed, the combination of unitary means for enclosing a plurality of keys in a plurality of compartments individual thereto, a plurality of lid assemblies individual to said plurality of compartments, a unitary means for hingedly supporting said lid assemblies with respect to the compartments individual thereto, resilient means within each compartment for yieldably urging the lid assembly individual thereto into open position, a lid member slidably supported on each lid assembly for releasably locking the same in closed position, the key in each compartment being secured to the lid assembly individual thereto, and means on each said lid member and responsive to human sense of touch for identifying the key carried by the lid assembly associated therewith.
3. In a key case of the character disclosed, the combination of unitary means for enclosing a plurality of keys in a plurality of compartments individual thereto, a plurality of lid assemblies individual to said plurality of compartments, a unitary means for hingedly supporting said lid assemblies with respect to the compartments individual thereto, resilient means within each compartment for yieldably urging the lid assembly individual thereto into open position, a lid member slidably supported on each lid assembly for releasably locking the same in closed position, coacting means associated with each said lid member and its lid ,assembly for limiting the sliding vmovement therebetween, the key in each compartment being secured to the lid assembly individual thereto, and means on each said lid member and responsive to human sense of touch for identifying the key carried by the lid assembly associated therewith.
4. In a key case of the character disclosed, the combination of unitary means for enclosing a plurality of keys in a plural/ity of compartments individual thereto, a plurality of lid assemblies individual to said plurality of compartments, a unitary means for hingedly supporting said lid assemblies with respect to the compartments individual thereto, resilient means within each compartment for yieldably urging the lid assembly individual thereto into open position, a lid member slidably supported on each lid assembly for releasably locking the same in closed position, swivel hook means for detachably securing the key in each compartment to the lid assembly individual thereto, and means on each said lid member and responsive to human sense of touch for identifying the key carried by the lid assembly associated therewith.
5. In a key case of the character disclosed, the combination of a container including means for dividing the same into a plurality of laterally disposed compartments, a plurality of lid assemblies individual to said plurality of compartments for normally enclosing the same, unitary means for hingedly securing all of the lid assemblies with respect to the compartments individual thereto, a name plate secured to the container and extending laterally of the compartments thereof at the ends of the lid assemblies opposite to the hinge ends thereof, a leaf spring within each compartment and doubled substantially into U-shape so as to yieldably urge the lid assembly associated therewith into open position, a lid member slidably carried by each said lid assembly and having a portion adapted to be moved into releasable engagement with said name plate, coacting means between the lid member and the lid assembly individual thereto for limiting the sliding movement therebetween, coacting portions of 'said lid member and container for limiting the opening movement of the lid assemblies, detachable means for securing the key in each compartment to the lid assembly individual thereto, indicia means carried by said name plate for identifying the key associated with each compartment, and means responsive to human sense of touch and carried by each lid member for identifying the key carried by the lid assembly corresponding thereto.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,835,793 Lurie Dec. 8, 1931 1,924,134 Segal Aug. 29, 1933 1,934,889 Segal Nov. 14, 1933 1,943,844 Slotnick Jan. 16, 1934 1,965,472 Shook July 3, 1934 2,006,286 Waller June 25, 1935 2,197,053 Meincke Apr. 16, 1940