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Publication numberUS2611981 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 30, 1952
Filing dateMay 19, 1948
Priority dateMay 19, 1948
Publication numberUS 2611981 A, US 2611981A, US-A-2611981, US2611981 A, US2611981A
InventorsNed B Whitebread
Original AssigneeKolite Plastics Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Combination advertising sign and illuminating device
US 2611981 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 30, 1952 N. B. WHITEBREAD V 2,

COMBINATION ADVERTISING SIGN AND ILLUMINATING DEVICE Filed May 19, 1948 MW 5 [vi/#5514240 Patented Sept. 30, 1952 COMBINATION ADVERTISING SIGN AND ILLUMINATING DEVICE Ned B. Whitebread, Sterling, 111., assignor to Kolite Plastics 00., Dixon, Ill., a partnership consisting of Jack Penhall, Henry E. Whitebread, and Ned B. Whitcbread Application May 19, 1948, Serial No. 27,987

The present invention relates to improvements in advertising signs and more particularly concerns improvements in advertising signs that can also be utilized for illuminating purposes.

An important object of the present invention is to provide an improved advertising sign device in which provisions are made for not only an advertising sign display of more or less permanent character, but also an advertising sign display of temporary and quickly and conveniently replaceable character.

Another object of the invention is to provide an advertising sign device in which a common source of illumination transmitted directly through one sign bearing member also illuminates a second sign bearing member.

Still another object of the invention is to provide in a display sign device improved means for replaceably mounting temporary sign cards.

Yet another object of the invention is to provide an improved display sign device which will se ve not only as an advertising medium but also as a lighting fixture.

It is also an object of the invention to provide in an advertisin display sign device an improved casing and sign. supporting structure.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be readily apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment thereof taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

Figure l is a front elevational View of an advertising display sign device embodying the features of the invention;

Figure 2 is a rear elevational view of the device, With certain parts broken away and in section for clarity ofillustration; and

Figure 3 is a vertical, fragmental sectional view on an enlarged scale, taken substantially on the line III-III of Figure 2.

As shown on the drawings:

The device accordin to the present invention, described generally, is so constructed and arranged that a hidden source of illumination, such as a fluorescent lighting tube 5 supported within a housing 5 is completely concealed from view at the front of the device, but affords illumination for a sign-carrying plastic panel I supported by the housing 5 and located in spaced edgewise parallel opposition to the fluorescent tube 5. At the same time, light from the light source of fluorescent tube 5 escapes from and is directed rearwardly from the housing 6 for illumination of a space behind the device or a merchandise display or other advertising device or sign or the 5 Claims. (01. 40-130) like. For example, the rearwardly directed illumination may be utilized to illuminate the interior of a store as a night light.

Within the housing 6, the fluorescent lighting tube 5 is supported in a more or less conventional way replaceably carried by electrical contact end brackets 8 projecting from base structure '9 associated with the usual ballast, etc; connected to a source of electricity. The base structure ii is supported by a carrying panel I0 forming part of the housing structure and. preferably of channel shape extending the length of the housing and having right angularly disposed parallel side flanges II and I2.

As the principal component of the housing 6, a sheet metal body-member I3 is provided having a front panel Hi from one edge of which extends right angularly rearward horizontal panel I5 having a terminal panel I! extending in spaced parallel relation to the front panel I4 and adapted to receive the carrying panel Ill therebetween. From the opposite edge of the front panel I4 extends a preferably diagonal panel I8 projecting generally rearwardly to oppose the forward portion of the fluorescent tube 5 on the side opposite to the supporting panel I0 and terminating in a display panel supporting flange I9 extending parallel to the front panel I4 and projecting away from the fluorescent tube I5. I

End closure panels 20 at the respective opposite ends of the housing assembly are constructed to fit Within the confines of the body memher It and respectively include an inturned front flange 2i engaging the approximate end margin of the front panel M, an inturned marginal flange 22 engaging the rearwardly extending panel I5, a rear attachment flange 23 engaging the rear panel [1, and an attachment flange 2 5 engaging the adjacent margin of the panel It. The several attachment flanges of the end panels 212 are secured to the housing panels in any appropriate manner,as by welding. This provides a sturdy housing structure within which the illuminating source assembly is adapted to be supported in a concealed relation with respect to the front of the sign device.

At the rear of the'housing, a substantial light escape opening is afforded by having the rear panel ll substantially narrower than the front panel It and preferably not much wider than the side flanges I I and i2 of the supporting panel It. This leaves a relatively large horizontal space back of the front panel It between the edge of the back panel I7 and the rearwardly extending sign supporting panel is from which light from the illuminating tube 5 can escape rearwardly for illumination purposes.

In order to support the light source assembly removably within the housing 6, the supporting panel is preferably detachably secured therein. To this end, the rear flange l2 of, the supporting panel is detachably secured to theiback panel I! of the housing by means of screws 25.

As a retainer to prevent unauthorized removal of the light tube 5 and also as additional support for the advertising panel I, strap membersf21 are provided at the respective opposite'ends of the housing 6, such members being connected at one of their respective ends: between theiflange l2 and the rear panel I! as by means of the screws 25, while the opposite end portions of the "strap members are formed with forwardlyand-diagonally outwardly extending intermediate panel portions 23 terminating in respective advertising panel engaging flanges 29. As best seen in Figure .3, the general shape of the strapmembers 27 may .eonform'tothat of the front panel l4 and the rearward panel iii of the housing main body oasingand with the-terminal-flange 29 extending in spaced parallel relation to the terminal flange I9 so as to receive the margin of theadvertising panel I therebetween. Bolts 30 secure the margin of the 1 advertising panel; I I between the flanges 19.- and 29 with the adjacent edge of the adver- Jtising; panel in rparallelhclosely spaced. relation adjacent to and medially longitudinally of 'the illuminating tube 5.

.i'l'heplasticpanel'l maybe formed from the plastic material which is sold under the trade .name of .fLucite, which-is amaterial that:has

the property of freely passing light .therethrough. An appropriate permanent .sign may be applied .to the'back side of the plastic panel I: as by painting the -same thereon, applying decalcomania, or the like, such sign showingthrough the plastic during thedaylight hours or when the source of .illuminationisturned: ofibut being illuminated by.-: the. light passing. through the plastic panel when the light source is turned. on. Merely by 'way of illustration, the Word sign has been shownas applied to the back of the-plastic panel -1 which in the presentinstance isindicated as formed 'fromclear plastic, but it will. be understood that any appropriate wording, symbols, pictures'or other illustrations may beapplied to the. back of the panel as desired.

The sign on the back of the panel 7 is caused to stand out prominently by securing an'opaque sheetorpanel 3| to the back of the panel 1. vFor example, thetopaque backing sheetorpanel 3| may :comprise a: thin--metal panel of identical dimensions as'to width and length soas to register. with and-appear from the front to be a part of the advertising panel. :Along the attached edge of the panel 1,. the screws.- 30- serve as the Vmeans for connecting thebackingpanel 3| in :place. -Adjacent to theopposite. edge of .theadvertising. panel assembly additional screws 32. may be employed for securingthe advertising or indicia carrying panel assembly together.

While the panel assembly comprising. the 'plastictpanel 1 and the backing panel 31 are adapted tocprovide apermanent type of sign, temporary sign facilities are adapted to be provided by-a replaceable card orother sheet 33 adapted to be held on the advertising panel assembly by means of spring clips 35 carried by the baokingpanel 3| adjacent to the free longitudinal edge thereof as best-seen in Figures 2 and 3. The clips 34. may

comprise sheet metal resilient strips having base portions 35 welded onto the backing panel 3| and -.vertising card; 33 between theclips 34 and the radjacentxmargin of the backing panel 3|.

In this manner, the temporary advertising card 33 is adapted to be supported with the major portion thereof projecting beyond the edge of the permanent-advertising panel 1 so that light emanat- "ing from the edge of the plastic panel I will fall upontheface oi the, temporary advertising sign card: 33:and illuminate the same so that in the darkappropriate'awording or other indicia on the card 33 will beprominently visible. Merely by slidablyrdisengaging the temporary advertising card 33 it can be changed or replaced by another CBIdL'Whibh is adapted to be assembled with the permanent advertisingidisplay by sliding it into .-place.between-. the :clipsv and. the margin of the backing-panel 3! where it will be held by the clips .untilitdsldesired-to remove the same.

In order to improve. the illuminating qualities ofthe-device rearwardly of the housing 5, the

interior of the. housing-assembly insofar as the surfaces.thereofopposing. the light tube 5 are concerned may befinished in a light shade such a as white for reflecting. purposes. .served,.- for example, that theiinner surface of It will be obthe panel M, the inner surface of the rearwardly extending panel I Band the tube opposing surface ofthe. supportingpanel It! all provide effective reflecting: surfaces.

-:The front surfaceof the backing panel 31 may be finished in anyappropriate manner... In one practical form this-front surface has been finished in black.sosthatnthe:signindicia on the back surfaceofetheplastic panel 1 comprising contrasting colors-will stand out prominently. In the .illuminatedcondition of the device, the black surface of. the backing panel being absorptive of light therefore affords a very neutral background to make the indicia on the plastic panel stand outquite prominently.

As shown, the-device isadapted to be suspended innuse. as,. for example, in the show window-ofastore. For. :this purpose the unit is provided with a pair of hanger brackets 38 which vmay be secured-as by means of screws 39 medially to the outer. faceof the upper housing panel I5 .adjacent to theends of thev housing 6. Apertures 40 :in the brackets. are adapted to receive a suspending medium such as wire, chain; hooks or the like. for hanging the: device where desired.

.On:the.o.ther hand, the device may just as well be adapted'for use. standing upon a support --with'. the;epanel :l5.-at.-.the bottom and with the advertising-panels. extending upwardly.

.'otherwisezthamnecessitated by the scope of the appended claims.

:'aim. as; my invention:

f L lmcomloination in a:device of the character :.described,::-,a::housingrcomprising a front wall, a. rearwardlyiextendingpanel having a terminal panelextending.parallel to the front wall but 'narrowen than .the .front wall, a rearwardly extendingrpan'elat the margin of the front wall opposite ;the first. mentioned .rearwardly extending panel: and terminating in an outwardly extending flange parallel to the front wall, a light tube supporting structure including a supporting panel having parallel flanges receptive between said front wall and said back panel, end panel members having flanges attached to said front wall and said opposite panels extending rearwardly from the front wall, means for securing said supporting panel rear flange to the rear panel, and a light transmissive panel secured to said terminal flange for receiving illumination from the light source through the adjacent edge of the light transmissive panel.

2. A device as defined in claim 1 including in addition supporting straps extending between the back face of the attached margin of said light transmissive panel and said back panel to afford additional support for the light transmissive panel.

3. In a housing structure for a sign device of the character described, a housing member formed from a single piece of sheet metal and including a front panel, opposite generally rearwardly extending panels, one of which is formed with a rear panel extending generally parallel to the front panel, said rear panel being narrower than the front panel so as to alford a rearward opening from the housing, the remaining rearwardly extending panel having an outwarly extending terminal flange generally parallel to the front panel, a light transmissive panel carried by said terminal flange and having its edge exposed in said housing, end panels having flanges attached to the end margins of the front panel and said opposite panels, a carrying and reflector panel supported between the front and rear panels, an illuminating source supported within the housing by said carrying and reflector panel opposite the opening afforded at the back of the housing and in position to illuminate the edge of the light transmissive panel carried by the terminal flange.

4. In an advertising device of the character described, a housing comprising a sheet metal housing member having a front panel, opposite rearwardly extending panels one of which has aback panel turned angularly thereto and generally parallel to the front panel but substantially narrower than the front panel, a channel shaped sheet metal carrying panel'structure, an illumination source carried by the said carrying panel structure, means for detachably securing the channel shaped carrying panel structure between said back panel and the front panel and with the illumination source disposed in the housing but exposed at the back of the housing, and a light transmissive sign-carrying panel attached to said remaining one of said rearwardly extending panels and with an edge of the signcarrying panel exposed to the ilumination source. 5. In an advertising and illuminating device including an edge-lit, light-transmitting transparent panel having light reflective indicia on a face thereof, and a light source housing having light-obscuring and light-emitting portions on one side thereof, all other sides of said housing obscuring the passage of light, means for supporting said transparent panel along the lightobscuring portion of said one side of said housing to receive light therefrom, a first opaque panel coextensive with said transparent panel disposed therebehind and thereagainst, and a second opaque panel supported by said first opaque panel along an edge of said transparent panel remote from said light source, whereby said light source may simultaneously illumine the indiciabearing transparent panel by reflection, a face of the first opaque panel by direct light, and a face of the second opaque panel by edge-delivered light through said transparent panel.


REFERENCES CITED Ihe following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,440,096 Murray Dec. 26, 1922 1,930,359 Hilgenberg Oct. 10, 1933 2,142,200 Marshall Jan. 3, 1939- 2,206,866 Fuller July 9, 1940 2,251,861 Willer Aug. 5, 1941 2,276,114 Sture Mar. 10', 1942 2,276,185 Gauthier Mar. 10, 1942

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1440096 *Jun 27, 1922Dec 26, 1922Murray Ethelbert T RuthvenIlluminated sign
US1930359 *Nov 30, 1931Oct 10, 1933Hilgenberg DavidIlluminated sign
US2142200 *Jul 6, 1937Jan 3, 1939Marshall Hugh GSection directory sign for stores
US2206866 *Apr 1, 1939Jul 9, 1940Jr Thomas J D FullerHanging type of edge illuminated signs
US2251861 *Aug 3, 1940Aug 5, 1941Willer Edward AIlluminable display structure
US2276114 *Mar 26, 1940Mar 10, 1942Colorvision Ads IncIlluminated sign
US2276185 *Apr 25, 1939Mar 10, 1942Colorvision Ads IncIlluminated sign
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2779118 *Jul 6, 1954Jan 29, 1957G P Gundlach & Co IncAttachment for illuminated advertising sign
US3262223 *Jan 3, 1964Jul 26, 1966Stoffel Seals CorpMedallion clasp
US3896576 *Aug 1, 1973Jul 29, 1975Wolf Hugo MDental x-ray film and chart viewing apparatus
US4697365 *Sep 25, 1985Oct 6, 1987Xebron CorporationEdge-illuminated sign
US6073374 *Aug 10, 1998Jun 13, 2000Dongguan Universal Electronics Co., Ltd.Inserted screen type photo illuminator stand
US6305109 *Dec 9, 1999Oct 23, 2001Chi-Huang LeeStructure of signboard
US6665970 *Aug 25, 2000Dec 23, 2003Chong S. YunPhotograph quick-change display apparatus
EP0206472A2 *Apr 29, 1986Dec 30, 1986John MortenLighting fixture
EP0206472A3 *Apr 29, 1986Oct 14, 1987John MortenLighting fixture
U.S. Classification40/546, 40/617, 362/223, 362/812
International ClassificationF21V8/00
Cooperative ClassificationY10S362/812, G02B6/0091, G02B6/0071
European ClassificationG02B6/00L6U6R, G02B6/00L6S4E