US 2491184 A
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Dec. 13, 1949 D. Joss MOTION-PICTURE BILVLBOARD 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Nov. 19, 1948 YOUR NAME PRODUCT NVENTOR. DOUGLAB Joss .Dec. 13, 1949 D, Joss 2,491,184
MOTION-PICTURE BILLBOARD- Filed Nov. 19, 1948 3 Sheets-Sheet 2.
D. JOSS Dec. 13, 1949 MOTION-PICTURE BILLBOARD 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Nov. 19, 1948 JNVENTOR. DUGLA'i Joss Patented Dec. 13, 1949 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE MOTION-PICTURE BILLBOARD Douglas Joss, Miami, Fla.
Application November 19, 1948, Serial No. 61,049
This invention relates to animated advertising billboards.
A main object of the invention is to provide a billboard structure, for use at a roadside or on a roof top or at some other selected city or country location, for displaying advertising messages, in the daytime and also at night.
The display in the daytime is a painted or other fixed advertisement, and means, including a movable curtain, are provided in association with this display such that when darkness comes said display is covered and a portion of the curtain on which motion pictures may be projected is substituted at the location of said display.
The curtain could be one which might be alternately raised and lowered; for instance, when the curtain is lowered, the fixed display is exposed and when the curtain is raised, the fixed display is covered and at the same time the curtain provides a motion picture screen.
As here shown, however, the curtain, by way of example, is an endless one, guided over upper and lower rollers, and the daytime advertising message is painted or otherwise carried by the curtain and so arranged thereon that when the curtain is in one position its fixed advertising message will be seen in proper location, and when the curtain is advanced for a distance equal to half its length there will be substituted for the part of the curtain carrying the fixed advertisement the other part of the curtain to constitute the motion picture screen, or there will be substituted for the last-mentioned part of the curtain its part carrying the fixed advertisement, as the case may be.
Automatic means, governed by a time clock, are provided for thus modifying the billboard for daytime and night use, and for controlling the motion picture projection, so that this last cccurs only while the curtain is positioned to act as a motion picture screen. The motion pictures are preferably colored ones, and may advertise a single product, or a number of different products, successively.
The feeding of the motion picture film is not done by power drive at the projector, which latter is mounted on a suitable framework projected forwardly of the top of the billboard. Instead, the major length of the film is given a circuitous guidance within the billboard, and preferably in a chamber therein substantially of the same height and length as the billboard; thus allowing a film of very great length to be practicably handled. The film vis an endless one, held toA travel over sprockets and thence in various angularly related directions through said chamber; and it isguided along and within a protective chute or tube from said chamber to and into the projector and thence from the latter along and within a second protective chute or tube from the projector back to the billboard chamber.
A feature of the invention also is a power means for moving the film through its path to and from the projector and through its billboard chamber; this means incorporating a power-drive to a sufiicient number of a multiplicity of fllm engaging sprockets in said chamber to insure smooth steady advance of the film without. drag.
For further comprehension of the invention, and of the objects and advantages thereof, reference will be had to the following description and accompanying drawings, and to the appended claims in which the various novel features of the invention are more particularly set forth.
In the accompanying drawing forming a material part of this disclosure:
Fig. 1 is mainly a front elevation of a now favored embodiment of the invention, being also a section taken on the line I-l of Fig. 2.
Fig. 2 is a side elevation of said embodiment.
Fig. 3 is a transverse vertical section, taken on the line 3-3 of Fig. 4.
Fig. 4 is a longitudinal vertical section, taken on the line 4-4 of Fig. 3.
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary perspective, showing a common journalling means for the stub shafts of certain groups of certain of the rotatory lm engaging members of Figs. 3 and 4.
Fig. 6 is a similar view, showing one of the belt connections between certain pairs of said rotatory members; the upper rotatory member in this view, and comprising a motion picture film sprocket and a pulley fixed thereto for rotation therewith, being one of the types of rotatory members pluralities of which are supported by said common journalling means.
Fig. 7 is a longitudinal vertical section, 'taken on the line 1 1 of Fig. 3.
Fig. 8 is a diagrammatic view, showing an electric circuit, the time-clock for controlling the same, and various devices, including the curtain motor and the film feeding motor, associated with said circuit.
Referring to the drawings in detail, a suitable billboard structure is marked generally I0. The face thereof can be variously embellished as de sired, and also, as in the night time, can be illuminated in any suitable or selected way, as,
for instance, by a top border of three neon tubes of different colors as indicated at I I.
A large portion of the front of the structure I presents an advertising area, here shown as dened by a rectangular opening I2, which may well be of the usual size of a motion picture screen, 24 feet long and 16 feet high.
The billboard I is here shown as comprising a main lower boxlike structure divided into three compartments I4, I and I6, and a superstructure I6.
Within the front compartment I4, behind the opening I2, is the endless curtain I1, on the upper roller I8 and the lower roller I9, respectively journalled in the bearings 28 and 2l. The roller I8 at each of its ends has fixed thereon a sprocket 22, and the roller I9 at each of its ends has fixed thereon a sprocket 23. Each pair of sprockets 22 and 23 is connected by a chain 24.
The roller I9 at one end has fixed thereon a pulley 25 connected `by a belt 26 to the motor 21, the latter shown as mounted in the compartment I5 on a shelf 28; the wall 29 between compartments I4 and I5 having an opening 30 for passage of the belt 25.
As the curtain I1 is shown in Fig. l, it has been positioned by the motor 21 for use of the billboard Vin the daytime; that is, to display, as shown, some fixed advertisement painted or oth erwise suitably carried by the curtain.
As the curtain is seen in Fig. '1, the half of the curtain for use as a motion picture screen is the one here viewed. Operation of the motor 21 for changing the curtain to transfer the part thereof seen in Fig. 7, to the opening I2 of Fig. 1, and also for changing the curtain to the condition shown in Figs. l and 1, will be later explained; atwhich time also will be explained the purpose of the clock-work mechanism in the casing 3l of Figs. '7 and 8, which mechanism is operated through one cycle, by drive from the spur gear 32 fixed on the shaft 33 of roller I9, incidental to turnings of the rollers I8 and I9 to advance the curtain I1 a distance equal to exactly half the length thereof.
The billboard I0 is shown as supported on posts 34, assisted by a rear strut 35, stayed at 35.
A projector 31 is supported in proper forward elevated position yby an overhead frame-work including a pair of forwardly converging angle irons 38 and a top lift guy 39.
Referring to Fig. 4, the film 40 is shown as guided serpentine fashion over a number of Inotion picture lm sprockets 4I (see also Figs. 3 and 6). As will be noted from Fig. 4, there is ample room to lower the lower tier of said sprockets considerably, as well as ample room for placing the sprockets of each tier much closer together; so that a very great length of film 40 may be in the magazine provided by the compartment I6. The showing of Fig. 4 in this connection is merely diagrammatic, to keep the drawings as clear as possible.
`The direction of lm travel is indicated by the arrow 42 of Fig. 4, and the tube 43 at the upper left in Fig. 4 is the film return tube from the projector, while the tube 44 at the upper right in Fig. 4 is the lm feeding tube to the projector. These tubes, forward of the billboard, desirably are within the angle irons 38, as ndicated in Figs. l and 4; although not so shown in Fig. 2, which latter view, in this regard, is diagrammatic, so as more clearly to bring out the relations of the tubes 43 and 44 to the prolector 31. As will be understood, the tubes are tra carefully made, without abrupt curvatures; and they are preferably suitably lined to prevent film scratching.
Referring to Figs. 3 6, the various sprockets 4 I, and which, in the magazine compartment I6, provide what may be called the lm rack, are journalled by way of their stub shafts 45 in mountings in the compartment i5. Two of these mountings are provided, one for the upper' tier of sprockets 4I and another for the lower tier of such sprockets. Each of these mountings cornprises a pair of bars 46 and 41 shaped to be laterally spaced at their upper portions when suitably secured, by way of their matching apertures 46 and 41', to the wall 48 between the compartments I5 and I6. Thus, the stub shafts 45 of the sprockets 4I of the upper and lower tiers thereof are in spaced bearings such as those marked 50 and 5I in Fig. 5.
For power drive of a sufficient number of the sprockets 4I to eliminate any drag on the lm at any point along the latter, the means shown includes a pair of horizontal shafts 52 and 53 rotatable in bearings 54 and 55. The shaft 53 is driven from the motor 54, by way of its pulley 55, the belt 5B, and the pulley 51 fixed on said shaft. On said shaft 53 is also fixed the pulley 58 connected by a belt 59 to the pulley 60 fixed on the shaft 52.
suitably spaced along the shaft 52 and fixed thereon are the pulleys 6I, and suitably spaced along the shaft 53 and fixed thereon are the pulleys B2. Each of the pulleys 6I is vertically below a sprocket gear 4I which has joined thereto for rotation therewith a pulley B3 (Fig. 6); and a belt 64 connects each such pair of pulleys 6I and 63. Each of the pulleys 62 is vertically above a sprocket gear 4I which has joined thereto for rotation therewith a pulley like the pulley 63 and shown at 63 in Fig. 3; and a belt 65 connects each pair of pulleys 62 and 63.
The various ibelts are engaged with the various pulleys so that all the belt driven sprockets 4I rotate in the directions required to feed the film 40 in the direction of the arrow 42.
While the pulleys 63 and 63' are shown in Fig. 3, the only one of the belts just mentioned there shown is the belt 56; in order to simplify the drawing.
If merely the number of booster-drive pulleys 6I and 62 shown are to be employed, the sprockets 4`I other than those vertically above a pulley 6I or vertically below a pulley 62 need not be supplied with a pulley 63 or 63'. On the other hand, all the sprockets 4I may be supplied with the pulleys last referred to, so that at any time deemed desirable, one or more additional belts 64 and/or 65 may be added, to augment the booster action.
At 68 is indicated a time clock, as the familiar Torck time clock; the coaction of which with the apparatus of the present invention will be explained when Fig. 8 is described.
The billboard I0 will preferably be constructed of prefabricated readily movable sections, connectable by wing nuts, for quick erection and partial take-down, as when the interior of the billboard should be made accessible for inspec tion and repair. Adjustable flood-lights 61 are provided, for use when night repairs are to be4 made.
About 1,000 feet or somewhat more of motion :fie-mu may be successively shown, with 150 to '20D feet of nim to each advertisement.
Referring now to'Fig. '8, the circuit for the 'cur tain operating motor r21 `may be tr-'a'ced as 'includ ing the leads '58 and '69 to the motor, "and thence asincluding the lead 1li) to one contact oi l'a switch 1|, :and the leads '1,2 and 13 from the other con tact of said switch. 'The circuit for the 'fil-m reeding motor 54 maybe traced fas including leads 63 and 12| to the motor, and thence as `including the lead 155 to the switch 16, and thence a's inclu-d ing leads 11 and 13.
The switch 11| is thrown to closed condition by the solenoid 18, and to open condition by the solenoid 19; these solenoids tor `'swing-ing switch arm BD pivoted at 8|. The switch `5 is thrown to Aclosed condition by the solenoid 82. and tc open lcondition by the solenoid LA'83; these solenoids for swinging the switch arm 81| pivoted at 85.
The time clock 66 is shown as including a pai-r of independently settable cams '3B and B1, the former iixed on the shaft 88 and the Vlatter on the sleeve shaft 89. In accordance with the season, the cam '86 is manually set to have its lobe 9U close a normally open Iswitch 9| at the selec-teL hour of twilight or darkness, and the cam f3? is manually set to have its lobe S2 close a normally open switch 93 at the selected hour of dawn or daylight.
The clockwork mechanism in the casing 3| im cludes the cam 94, the lobe 'S5 oi which is ai ranged to close the normally open switch iii when the motor 21 has operated to move the cud tain 'I1 through exactly half its length, following energization of this motor to move the curtain either to substitute its motion 'picture screen portion for its portion iixedly carrying an advertisement, to change over from daytime advertising to night time advertising., or vice versa.
Assume that night time is approaching.
In that case, the cam 8S is about to close the switch 9|. Immediately this occurs, the solenoid 82 is energized, by way of the leads 58, 91 and 88, the switch 3|, and the leads S9, IGEL lei, and 13.
The switch 16 is thereby closed, and left closed.
Closing of the switch i6, as already made plain, energizes the lm feeding motor 54.
Such closing of the switch 16 also results in the energization oi the neon lights H, by way of the circuit for the motor 54 up to and including the lead 15, and thence by way of the leads m2, |03, and 13.
Also the solenoid 18 is energized, by way of the circuit including the leads 68, 91, S8, 9g, |94, |35, |06, 11 and 13.
The switch 1| is thereby closed.
As soon, however, as the motor 21 has advanced the curtain exactly through half the length of the latter, now to arrange the curtain as a motion picture screen, said switch 1l will again be opened; as above explained-that is, this reopening of the switch H is caused by the closing of switch 95, thereby energizing the solenoid 19, which last is in the circuit including the leads E8, |01, |08, |09,11 and 13.
Assume that daytime is approaching.
In that case, the cam 81 would be about to close the switch 93.
Immediately this occurs, the solenoid 83 is energized, to open the switch 16; the circuit here including the leads E8, 91, ||0, ||2, 11 and 13.
Thereby the neon lights '1| are extinguished, and the motor $4 is deenergized.
Also, the `solenoid 1.8 is energized, again 'to cics'e the switch 1| (said switch having previously been reopened, Aas explained in the lifth paragraph preceding); the circuit Afor energize.- tion ci the 'solenoid 18 -including `the leads '68. 51 H0, fl 1H III-4, m5, 105,11 an'dl.
The closing of the switch 1l, as already explained, energizes the curtain changing motor 2l.
As soon fas such curtain change has been eifected, the switch '96 is closed by the cam 94, also as previous-ly explained.; and the solenoid 1!) is energized and the switch 1| once more opened, again to stop the motor y21.
While I have ,illustrated and described the preferred embodiment of my invention, it is to be understood that I do not .limit myself to 'the precise constructions here-in disclosed and the right lis reserved to all changes and vmodifieations coming within the scope 'of the invention as defined in the appended claims.
Having thus described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by United States Letters Patent is:
1. An advertising apparatus comprising a billboard structure, a curtain, supporting and `gulding means for the curtain whereby it may be movedan advertising sign, means for moving the curtain to expose 'said sign or 'to hide `said sign and act :as a motion picture screen, and means including a motion picture projector forward ci the upper part ofthe billboard structure yfor projecting motion pictures on said screen, there being an automatically operating means for pericdically moving the curtain to change over 'from daytime 'to night time advertising and vice versa, and a second automatically operating 'means for causing motion picture iili'n to feed 'to and through 'the projector when the curtain is moved to act as said screen and for ceasing such feed when the 'curtain is moved to expose said sign.
2. An advertising apparatus comprising a bill'- i board structure, a curtain, suppcrtingand guiding means for the curtain whereby it may be moved, an advertising sign, means lfor moving the curtain to expose said sign or to hide said sign and act as a motion picture screen, and means including a motion picture projector forward of the upper part of the billboard structure for projecting motion pictures on said screen, there also being an endless motion picture lm for being fed through the projector, the billboard structure having a magazine chamber traversed by the film, there being means within said chamber for guiding the film therein through a circuitous path, and there being tubes between said magazine chamber and the projector through which the film is guided in passing to and from the projector.
3. An advertising apparatus comprising a billboard structure, a curtain, supporting and guiding means for the curtain whereby it may be moved, an advertising sign, means for moving the curtain to expose said sign or to hide said sign and act as a motion picture screen, and means including a motion picture projector forward of the upper part of the billboard structure for projecting motion pictures on said screen, there also being an endless motion picture film for being fed through the projector, the billboard structure having a magazine chamber traversed by the film, there being means within said chamber for guiding the iilm therein through a circuitous path, the means last-named comprising a plurality of tiers of spaced sprocket wheels.
4. An advertising apparatus comprising a billboard structure, a curtain, supporting and guiding means for the curtain whereby it may be moved, an advertising sign, means for moving the curtain to expose said sign or to hide said sign and act as a motion picture screen, and means including a motion picture projector forward of the upper part of the billboard structure for projecting motion pictures on said screen, there also being an endless motion picture lrn for being fed through the projector, the billboard structure having a magazine chamber traversed by the film, there being means within said chamber for guid ing the film therein through a circuitous path, the means last-named comprising a plurality of tiers of spaced sprocket wheels, there being booster lm advancing means in the magazine chamber, and means including a motor and connections between the motor and a plurality of said sprocket wheels whereby a sufficient number of the latter are power driven to eliminate drag on the film.
5. An advertising apparatus comprising a hollow billboard structure having a front wall formed with a central opening, a continuous flexible curtain arranged behind the central opening and having one half imprinted with advertising matter and its other half forming a movie screen, rotative means within said structure supporting said curtain for movement relative to said central opening, electrically controlled mechanism for operating said rotative means to turn said cur tain to expose the half carrying the advertising matter in said central opening during the day and to expose the half forming the movie screen in said central opening during the night, a motion picture projector supported from said structure above and in front of said central opening for projecting pictures on the half of said curtain which forms the movie screen when exposed in said central opening, a lm feeding tube connecting the interior of said structure to said projector, a film return tube connecting said projector with the interior of said structure, and means for feeding a continuous strip of movie film from the interior of said structure through said lm feeding tube to and through said projector and from said projector through said film return tube back into said structure.
6. An advertising apparatus comprising a hollow billboard structure having a front wall formed with a central opening, a continuous flexible curtain arranged behind the central opening and having one half imprinted with advertising matter and its other half forming a movie screen, rotative means within said structure supporting said curtain for movement relative to said central opening, electrically controlled mechanism for operating said rotative means to turn said curtain to expose the half carrying the advertising matter in said central opening during the day and to expose the half forming the move screen in said central opening during the night, a motion picture projector supported from said structure above and in front of said central opening for projecting pictures on the half of said curtain which forms the movie screen when exposed in said central opening, a film feeding tube connecting the interior of said structure to said projector, a iilm return tube connecting said projector with the interior of said structure, and means for feeding a continuous strip of movie film from the interior of said structure through said iilm feeding tube to and through said projector and from said projector through said film return tube back into said structure, and guide means within said structure to feed the continuous lm from said film return tube to said lm feeding tube behind said curtain.
DOUGLAS J OSS.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 877,286 Birnbaum Jan. 21, 1908 1,465,753 Angel Aug. 21, 1923 1,913,870 Briggs June 13, 1933 1,940,148 Scott Dec. 19, 1933