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Publication numberUS2746192 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 22, 1956
Filing dateOct 30, 1953
Priority dateOct 30, 1953
Publication numberUS 2746192 A, US 2746192A, US-A-2746192, US2746192 A, US2746192A
InventorsNorton Thomas L
Original AssigneeNorton Thomas L
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Flexible and conforming finger printing device
US 2746192 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

May 22, 1956 T. NORTON 2,746,192


8? w Qt United States Patent FLEXIBLE CON'FGRMING FINGER PRINTING DEVICE Thomas L. Norton, Fort Lauderdaie, Fla. Application October 30, 1953, Serial No. 389,220

3 Claims. (Cl. 41-4) This invention relates to the art of finger-printing and has particular reference to a new and novel conformable platen that is particularly efiective in preparing fingerprints in post-mortem work, although not necessarily restricted to such work.

The invention has for its object the provision of a platen that is flexible and compressible in a manner to substantially engage the finger to be printed for covering substantially the entire pattern area from one side of the fingernail to the other.

A further object of the invention resides in a novel platen that is provided with finger-supporting and positioning means that is spring loaded to support the finger in the correct position for printing directly above a conformable pad over which a strip of paper is extended and with the finger-supporting means being shiftable downwardly when pressure is exerted upon the upper portion of the finger to simultaneously engage the paper and the conformable pad to provide a very effective print upon the paper over substantially the entire pattern area, and with the finger and the finger-supporting means being automatically elevated when pressure is released upon the upper surface of the finger.

It has been extremely diificult, especially in postmortem finger-printing, to obtain a print of an adequate area of the finger, since the finger is obviously bent inwardly and relatively stifi, making it difiicult to obtain a print by a rolling contact therewith. With the device of the present invention, the operator may place the finger over the finger-supporting means and with one of the finger supports being arranged substantially under the first joint of the finger, it beingunderstood, of course, that the area to be printed has been previously manually inked after which the operator presses the finger downwardly by exerting force against the upper side, which action normally straightens the finger outwardly and a continued pressure thereon forces the inked area of the finger downwardly to contact the underlying strip of paper and the conformable pad, and by continuous downward pressure the finger will force the pad into a recess that is shaped to cause the pad and the paper to conform closely to the finger throughout that area from one side of the finger only to the other; and, upon release of the finger spring means will function to shift the finger guides and the finger upwardly to its original position, after which the paper is shifted transversely of the device and the process repeated for the other fingers.

Novel features of construction and arrangement of parts will be more clearly apparent during the course of the following description, reference being had to the accompanying drawings wherein has been illustrated a preferred embodiment of the device and wherein like characters of reference are employed to denote like parts throughout the several figures.

In the drawings:

Figure 1 is a perspective view of a device constructed in accordance with the invention,

Figure 2 is a transverse vertical section taken sub-f stantially on line 22 of Figure 1,

Figure 3 is a longitudinal vertical section taken substantially on line 3-3 of Figure 1,

Figure 4 is a top plan view of the device and,

Figure 5 is a perspective view of a preferred form of compressible and conforming pad.

Referring specifically to the drawings, the numeral 5 illustrates a preferably integral block, formed of metal, plastic or other desirable material. The block is generally rectangular in top plan and is cut away longitudinally for its full length to form side walls 6 and shoulders 7 From the shoulders 7 the block is longitudinally and semicyclindrically grooved as at 8 for its full length.- The groove 8 as clearly shown is substantially centrally disposed with respect to the block. The block is further cut away as at 9 and 10 to form vertically disposed guide channels that extend through the shoulders 7 and the bottom of the block 11. The channel 9 slidably supports a finger plate 12 for vertical movement. The upper end of the plate 12 is formed upon an inwardly directed are 13 for the resting support of the first joint of the finger to be fingerprinted, indicated at A. The opposite channel 10 slidably supports a combined finger-supporting plate and gauge means 14 for limiting the engagement 'of the finger in the correct position for printing. The plate 14 at its upper end is arcuately recessed at 15 and is offset outwardly and extended upwardly at 16 to form an abutment for the proper positioning of the finger. The plates 12 and 14 are urged upwardly by a preferably flat spring 17, connected intermediate its ends upon a suitable lug 18 carried by the bottom wall 11 centrally of the block. A screw 19 serves to prevent displacement of the spring. Any desirable means may be employed to positively engage the opposite ends of the spring with the plates 12 and 14 whereby the plates may not become disengaged from their channels in the event the block is inverted; As

one means of connection the ends of the spring 17 extend through slotted openings 20 of the plates 12 and 14.

Supported upon the shoulders 7 is a generally rectangular conformable and compressible pad 21, preferably formed of sponge rubber or the like. The pad is frictionally held upon the shoulders against displacement by the engagement of its ends in compressing relation to the side walls 6. Inwardly of each end, the pad 21 is thickened as at 22 and extends partially into the groove 8 in conforming relation thereto. The pad is further arcuately formed upwardly from its opposite sides from each of the thickened portions 22. The pad 21 has a length substantially equal to the spacing between the plates 12 and 14 and in use the pad is adapted to be compressed into the groove 8 by the finger to be printed with the thickened portions 22 acting to substantially mold the pad around the finger to a point extendingsubstantially from one side of the finger-nail to the other. and, when the finger is elevated, the pad will assume its normal flat position, as shown.

Each of the side walls 6 at a point slightly above the pad 21 are longitudinally slotted at 23' for the passage of a strip of paper 24 upon which the fingerprint impression is to be imposed. The paper 24 may be fed as needed from a roll 25 upon one side of the block 5 with the roll being supported in suitable brackets 26. From the opposite side of the device, the paper may be wound upon a roll 27 supported in brackets 28 carried by the block or the paper may be pulled through the device and, as each print is made, may be severed and suitably filed. The use of the rolls for the paper 24 may be dispensed with and a single strip of paper having printed indicia thereon for finger-print classification may be projected through the slots 23 and progressively moved forwardly after each print has been Patented May 22, 1956 made. Howeverjtheinveiition is not restricted to any particular arrangement of the printing papersince vari--- ous automatic means may be employed for such purpose, especially when the device "of the present invention is incorporated in-an" auto'matic-"mafchine- 011 11116 likef It should be here noted th'at the spring 17"is sufiicie'ritly' strong 'as"'to require a relatively heavy pressure to be exerted upon the figure in order "tofdre the finger and the papei downwardly to compress the pad 21. The pilrpo's'e of forming '-this spring 17 "of such'strength is to cause the finger of a deceased person to be'str'aighten'ed out when pressure isexerted thereonl' and this straightening' of the finger'verymaterially aids in producing an acceptablei fingler-print for'classification purposes and obviously, when straightening the finger by pressure thereon, it is desir able-that' the plates 12 and '14' be in such position 'as"to prevent compressive engagement with the paper 24. The necessary pressure to straighten the finger is'no't excessive and'does not re'quire too great an additional force" downwar'dly 'to'" produce the print.

In the useof'the'device,theoperator first inks that area of the finger covering the'desir'ed pattern to" be this'positio'n the plate'12 substantially underlies'the first joint of the "finger. Now, by-pr'essihg downward upon thetop ofthe finger, the finger will first straighten outwardly and a continued'downward pressure forces the paper 24 into contact with the pad 21 and as the finger andpaperare continuously forceddownwardly, the pad 21 will be compressedinto-the'groove' 8 causing the upper-'surface'of the pad to'wrap or' conform to the contour of" the finger. Obviously compressing the paper over the entire area that has beeninked when the finger has been compressed downwardly to the lowermost-point, the pad and the paper will'have conformed to the finger substantially over the entire pattern area extending from one'side of the finger-'nail'to the other. Upon release of thefinger, the spring -17 will automatically project the plates 12 and 14 upwardly to a'point where the pad is completely released and the paper is free of'engagernen't with the finger; Obviously in' 'post-mortem fingerprintingythe 'operator'will be obliged'to hold the device in vario'us positions depending" on the position of the hands -'of the-individual'to be printed. v

It will thus beapparentthat-a very simple and highly effectiveplaten device has been provided' that' greatly facilitates the production of most-desirable finger prints' for: identification purposes. The device is relatively small tofore'accomplished 'by' the'old method of rolling the finger upon a sheet of paper fwith inking. The device, after'thefinge'rhas been'inked, is relatively automatic,

requiring onlythat the operator place the device "against the'finger'in the prop'er position and'press it downwardly to a point where the pad automatically forces the paper into conforming printing contact with finger. The

device is cheapto-manufacture,-- is strong durable'and most effective for the purposes described. While the device has been shown as an instrument for convenient transfer from place to place, it follows that the novel construction and method of producing finger-prints in this manner may be incorporated in a machine. having means to automatically shift the platen toward and from the fingers to be printed, in such'c'ase it will be apparent that the finger-printing will be fronrthe fingers of live persons and in such a machine better prints are available and a much more rapid printing is-possible:

It is to be understood that theinvention is not limited to the precise construction shown but that changes in the shape, size and arrangementofparts may be resorted to as clearly fall within the spirit of the invention or the scope of the subjoined claims.

Having described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to'se'cure by Letters Patent isz 1. A finger printing-device comprising 'a body portion of generally rectangulanform havingupstanding side walls, the side walls being slotted for' their'naajor leng'th adjacent their upper ends to form guide means for a strip of paper, the 'body. portion being ar'cuately grooved downwardly throughout: its lengtlt and with the groove opening upwardlyyshoulder's formed upon the upper sur- 1 face of the bodyl portion for its fulllength' and with" the shoulders being disposed at opposite-sidesof the groove, the body portionbeing islotted vertically and transversely adjacent eachhend and with the slotsextending throughout the heighvofthe'body, finger 'supporting and. positioning plates vertically 'shiftable in the slots of'the body and with-their upper 'endsbeing conl cave'for resting engagement-of the finger,:one end plate having its--upper -end-ofisetand extended upwardlyto form anabutrnent to limit the longitudinal positioning of the finger, spring means carried'by-the body portion and engaging -each of the ,end plates 'to' urge them upwardly, the end plates being simultaneously shifted down wardly when pressure is exerted upon 1 a finger supported thereon, a flexible and conforming pad having its.longi-- tudinal edges supported on" the shoulders and overlying the groove for its major length, the padpartially extend ing into the groove, the platesf,serving--to support'the' finger longitudinally of and substantially parallel to the groove and with'the finger and a strip ofpaper being in spaced relation-to the'upper' surface ofV-thepad. 1

2.,The device according toclairn-d, wherein the pad 1 is formed of sponge rubber and whereinthe pad upon its; under side is formed concave 'for its major width,

and with the concave extending for the full length-of the pad, the pad at-itspoints of extending partially intothe groove being thickened to form comprehensive marginal portions.

3. The device according to claim, 1, wherein the spring-

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2384018 *Apr 5, 1943Sep 4, 1945Doepner Herman JFingerprinting apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2853821 *May 14, 1956Sep 30, 1958Scholl William MFoot imprinting device
US3479987 *Oct 14, 1966Nov 25, 1969IbmApparatus for taking fingerprints
US3677223 *Oct 7, 1970Jul 18, 1972Kms Ind IncPressure sensitive fingerprint input for identification apparatus
US3971335 *Nov 26, 1975Jul 27, 1976Curtis Daniel LFingerprint inking device
US6298805 *Apr 6, 2000Oct 9, 2001Identicator, Inc.Fingerprint ink dispensing apparatus
WO1989001674A1 *Jul 28, 1988Feb 23, 1989Siemens AktiengesellschaftFingerprint detecting terminal comprising an ergonomically optimized finger location plate
U.S. Classification118/500, 118/31.5