US 2527601 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 3l, 1950 w. o. TURNIDGE SUSPENDED CLOSURE FOR MAILBOXES Filed Aug. 19, 1948 Wil l iam O. Turnidge INVEWOR Patented Oct. 31, 1950 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 2 Claims.
My invention relates to improvements in suspended closures for mailboxes of the type commonly used in rural mail delivery for receiving mail and deposit of mail therein for collection.
The primary object of my invention is to provide a self-closing closure for such boxes especially designed to render the box storm proof and proof against being blown open and which is of simple, practical construction and not liable to get out of order from prolonged use.
Other and subordinate objects, within the pur- View of my invention, together with the precise nature of my improvements will be readily understood when the succeeding description and claims are rea-d with reference to the drawing accompanying and forming part of this specication.
In said drawing:
Figure l is a View in perspective of a mailbox equipped with my improved self-closing closur in a preferred embodiment thereof Figure 2 is a fragmentary View in vertical 1ongitudinal section taken on the line 2 2 of Figure 1 and drawn to a larger scale;
Figure 3 is a fragmentary View in section taken on the line 3 3 of Figure 1 and drawn to a larger scale;
Figure 4 is a fragmentary view in plan of the bottom of the box and frame illustrating the notch therein; and
Figure 5 is a fragmentary view in side elevation, partly in transverse section, illustrating one of the side notches in the box for seating the mounting rod of the closure flap.
Referring to the drawing by numerals, I designates one conventional type of mailbox to which my invention is shown applied, for illustration purposes, the box being formed with straight sides 2, a iiat bottom 3, a transversely rounded top 4, and an open front end 5.
According to my invention, the box I has its iront end 5 tted in a rectangular, flat metal, closure carrying frame E adapted to be attached in upright position to a suitable support, not shown, so as to hold the box I by said end in horizontal position on the support. The front end 5 of the box I is suitably provided with side edge aps, as at l, bent around and over the front edges of the sides 8 of said frame 6 and flattened against said sides, said flaps being coextensive with the flat sides 2 of said box. A iront edge ap 9 on the bottom 3 of the bex I is similarly bent over and around the bottom I0 of the frame 6 which is separate from the rest of the frame for assembly purposes and has its end riveted, as at I l, to bottom, lateral ears I2 on the sides 8 of the frame Ei. The bottom I of the frame 5, and the ears l2 are apertured, as at I3, for securing, by bolts, not shown, to the beforementioned support. A central, front edge notch i4 is provided in the bottom 3 of the box I and in the bottom ill of said frame 5 for a purpose presently clear. Rivets, as at I5, extend through the bottom 3 of the box I and through the bottom end of the frame 6. Th@` rivets shown in Figures 2 and 4 and designated I5 are for securing a seam in the bottom 3 of the box l together and which forms no part of my invention. A rivet I'I extends through the top 4 of the box I and the top of the frame t.
A closure liap I3 of the same shape as the cross sectional shape of the box I is provided for the front end 5 of the box I. The closure ap I8 is pivotally mounted at opposite sides thereof, slightly above its horizontal center, in free ends oi a pair of suspension links I9 disposed at the side;` 8 of the frame 6 and having the other ends thereof'pivoted, as at 2t, to said sides 3 adjacent the top of the frame 5 so that said links I9 are swingableforwardly and Iupwardly oi said box, or downwardly and rearwardly to swing the closure flap i8 upwardly and downwardly therewith away from and toward said end 5 of the box I, respectively.
The pivotal mounting for the closure flap i8, on the links I9, comprises a horizontal rod 2| in the rear of said nap I8 extending through keepers 22 on said ap and having ends suitably journaled in said links I 8 and upset, as at 23, to prevent endwise play of the rod in said links. Side notches, as at 3B, in the front end 5 of the box I and said sides B seat the ends of the rod 2I to limit downward swinging of the links I9 and the closure `flap i8 therewith. The pivotal mounting of the closure flap i8 on the links IQ being above the horizontal center of said iiap, provides for that portion of said flap below said pivotal mounting overbalancing said flap I8 to close into vertical position when the rod 2l is seated at its ends in the notches 3l), .said flap swinging about a horizontal axis to seat the p0rtion thereof below that axis against the front end 5 of the box I, as shown, for instance, in Figure 2.
The closure flap I8 is provided with an upper roundedportion 2li ntting in the end 5 of the box I whereby said flap may be grasped at its lower edge by the hand and swung about said horizontal axis into substantially horizontal position, as shown in broken lines in Figure 2, with the curved portion 24 extended into the box I. The described notch I4 facilitates insertion of a finger of the hand upwardly behind the closure flap I8 for so swinging said flap.
Below its horizontal axis of swinging movement on the links I9, the closure ilap I8 overlaps the front end 5 of the box I and ts against the same to seal said end. The portion 24 of the closure flap I8 slants inwardly, in the vertical closing position of the closure flap I8, and projects into the end 5 of the box I so that said end sheds rain and the like outwardly of said portion 24 above the horizontal axis of swinging movement of said closure flap on the links I9. A pair of lateral stop lugs 25, on the sides 8 of the frame 6, limit upward swinging of the links I9 into outstanding, substantially horizontal position, as shown by broken lines in Figure 2.
As will now be seen, the closure flap I3 is swingable on the down-swung links I9 into substantially horizontal position about a horizontal axis to open the end 5 of the box I above and below substantially the horizontal center of the box. When so opened, mail may be removed from the box I from above or below the open closure flap I8 and similarly deposited in said box I. Such swinging of the closure flap I8 may be accomplished either by pushing against the portion 24 above the horizontal axis of swinging movement of said closure flap on the links I9, or, by pulling outwardly on the lower edge of said flap. Obviously, as soon as the closure ilap is released in this open position, it will swing into vertical closing position and remain so closed. To remove or deposit large-size mail, the closure flap I8 may be pulled outwardly by its bottom edge to pivot on the links I9 and swing said links upwardly into the described limit of movement thereof, thereby causing said flap to be swung bodily forwardly and upwardly, as shown in broken lines in Figure 2, into a position at the top of the front end 5 of the box I in which the front end 5 of the box i is completely open for depositing large-size mail therein or withdrawing such mail therefrom. Obviously, when the closure ap I8 is released in this position, said links I9 and said ap will drop under the influence of gravity and the closure iiap will swing on the links I9 into vertical closing position and against the front end 5 of said box, in the manner previously described, lf desired, shoulders 26 may be provided on the closure flap I8 at opposite sides thereof for engaging the front end 5 of the box I to limit swinging of the closure flap into horizontal opening position, as shown in Figure 2 in broken lines.
A receptacle 2l for postage is attached by a chain 28, in any suitable manner, in the box I to be hung by said chain outside said box for the deposit of postage therein for collection. A flag or signal panel 29 on the receptacle 2'! signals that mail has been deposited in the box I for collection and/or that postage has been deposited in the receptacle 21.
The foregoing will, it is believed, suffice to impart a clear understanding of my invention, without further explanation.
Manifestly, the invention, as described, is susceptible of modification, without departing from the inventive concept, and right is herein reserved to such modifications as fall within the scope of the appended claims.
Having described the invention, what is claimed as new is:
1. A closure structure for a mailbox having a completely open front end comprising a frame straddling and xed to said front end, a pair of links having corresponding ends pivoted to opposite sides of said frame for swinging of the other ends of the links upwardly and forwardly of said front end and downwardly toward the same, a rod connecting said other ends of said links for swinging in unison and engaging said frame to limit downward swinging of said other ends of the said links, said rod having its ends journalled in said links, and a manipulative closure ilap fast on said rod between said links for upward swinging with said other ends of said links to completely open said front end, said flap in the limit of downward swinging movement of said other ends of the links pivoting on said links under the influence of gravity into closing position and being manually swingable in said limit of downward movement of said other ends of the links into substantially horizontal position to open said front end above and below the nap.
2. The combination of claim 1 with stops on said sides of the said frame for limiting upward swinging of said other ends of the links.
WILLIAM O. TURNIDGE.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date '728,401 Langford 1- May 19, 1903 1,256,543 Fish Feb. 19, 1918 1,628,881 Helm et al May 17, 1927 1,895,912 Bowers Jan. 31, 1933 2,156,858 Landis May 2, 1939