US 2831959 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 2 2, 1958 K. G. JEFFERsoN 2,831,959
EEEEEEEEEE HT United States Patent z,s31,9s9
KEYHOLE LIGHT Karl G. Jefferson, Los Angeles, Application July 10, 1956, Serial No. 596,894 l 2 claims. (cl. 240-243) This invention relates to lights for illuminating keyholes, and more particularly' to a small fixture adapted 'for attachment to a door above a keyhole therein, having its own power source and bulb and switch menas including two sets of interposed parallel rods connected in series in the. battery circuit so that current is directed to the bulb when any two adjacent rods are touched by a metallic object such as a door key. In the past there have been a number of comparative] inetfective attempts to povercome the problem involved in finding a keyholein the dark. This problem has been difficult to solve particularly in the case of homes .which i have no porches, and consequently no porch lights. It
is also present in homes having outside lights adjacent the door, but having no outside switches fory them.
Furthermore, the idea of illuminating the keyhole Patented Apr. 22, 1958 "ICC keyhole illuminating device and a door key in position to make contact the'reon; i
Fig. 2 is a frontal elevational view of the device shown in normal positioning relative to the escutcheon plate of a cylinder lock shown therebelow;
Fig. 3 is a view similar to Fig. 2 showing-a variation of the grid assembly in whichrods from both -fork assemblies are extended downwardly to a point irnmediately above the keyhole; i i
Fig. 4 is a diagrammatic frontal view, somewh'atL enlarged, of the device with the hood removed to reveal i j the interior details, and
from the inside-by the method used in automobiles is impractical because the keyholes do not extend completely through the door, in fact, most keyholes in cylinder locks are completely enclosed and could not be illuminated from the inside even if some method of positioning a light and power source interiorly/ of the door could be devised.
Certain devices which have been intended to be operated. by the low voltage Lsupply serving the door bell circuit proved impractical since they were of necessity installed on the structure of the house rather than on the door, and consequently were too distantly spaced from the keyhole of the lock.
My invention has been made with the foregoing considerations in mind and will be seen to have a plurality provided with its own power source. v
A further important object 'of my invention is the provision of a'device of the character described being adapted with easily accessible switch means conveniently operable in the normal course of unlocking the door by' first Positioning the key thereon.
Y An additional important object of this invention is the provision of a keyhole lighting device ofy the character described which 'is substantially tamper-proof and cannot be operated manually or by pressure of the fingers on the switch means. i j
In brief, my invention consists of a small electric fixture including a low voltage bulb and a single cell battery disposed on a mounting plate and protected by a hood below which is a grid assembly including two fork-like assemblies of parallel rods oppositely positioned with the bars of one interposed between the bars of the other.
One terminal of the battery is connected to the'basal terminal of the bulb, the other battery terminal is conmovable Lattachment there'between.
Fig. 5 is a purely schematic diagram showing an alternate arrangement of the switch grid elements.
Reference ispagainmade vto Fig. l in which la keyhole lighting fixture constructed according to my invention is designated collectively 'by the numeral 10 and is seen to include a Lbase 11 provided with fastening means as at 12 for fastening the device to a door, a hood-13 disposed over the bulb Land battery assembly to direct the light downwardly upon the interspaced parallel bars of the grid assembly 14. Also shown in this figure is a typical door key 15 positioned to make a connection between i i two of the adjacent rods of the grid. i
For a better understanding of the various elements attention is directed to the enlarged diagram of Fig. 4 in which the cover 13 is seen to be removed from the 'base 11 to which it is removably attachable by means of two- .spring clips 16 and 17 -which engage detents dis-I pose'd'interiorly of the sides of thethood 13, andare effective to hold the inner edge ofthe hood 13 yinteriorly of the groove 18 which is seen to traverse the top of the base 11 and extend downwardly along both sides.
A second' pairl of spring clips shown at 19 and 20 are rightangular members'fixedly attached Lto the base 11 and tensioned inwardly toL engage the 'battery 21 in re- Current is directed from one battery contact point indicated at 22 by means of the conductor 23 through the spring contactor 24 to the'basal terminalof the bulb 25, and current from the second battery terminal 26 is carried through the body of the spring clip 20 to a transverse yoke member 27 sAs will readily be understood, touching the point of a key to any two of the adjacent rods is effective to direct current from the battery terminal 26 throughthe yoke member 27 into the rods 27-R thence through the key to the rods 28-R and therefrom through the connector 29 to the socket 30,'thus igniting the bulb 25.
Although 4it might normally be expected that the base 11 be conformed of some non-conductive material such as a ceramic or plastic, it can be seen that the base 11 might be brassor any other conductive material as long as the grid assembly 144 is properly insulated therefrom.
In the variation shown in Fg. 3, two of the rods 27-R are shown to be extended below the base 11 to the top of the keyhole 31 with a downward extension 28-D from the yoke- 2-8 posi-tioned therebetween; 'I-'heY rods 27-R are bent outwardly at 32 to avoid contact with the transverse yoke 28.
A further variation of the grid 1'4 shown in previous figures is seen in Fig. 5 in'which thegrid' assembly is c'omprisedy of a plurality of concentric rings of progressively increased ldiameter whichk are connected alternately to opposite lead wires 35 and 36. The inner ring 34- is seen to I'be of suitabley diameter to fit* around the central cylinder 37 in which the keyhole 31 i's'disposed with the Circular grid completely covering' the escutcheon pla-te- 33 of a conventionall cylinder lock;
A circular grid of thistype-'could be utilized as an accessory to or an extension of a grid assembly such as 14, or it could completely replace agrid having a plurality of parallel bars and be mounted in its placel on the base 11 with a bore therethrough at the point indicated by 34, thus making the assembly 'attachable to a door over-the lock escutcheon plate 33 with the central cylinder 37 of the lock centered interiorly of the bore at 34.
In either arrangement, the nature of the grid provides a readily identifiable surface, making itanl easy matter to position the key upon it, lightv the bulb and thereby locate the keyhole. i
Numerous modifications and Variations of the present inventionwill occur to those skilled in the art after a careful study thereof. All such, properly within the4 basic spirit and scope of the present invention are intended to be included and 'comprehended herein as fully as if specifically described, illustrated and claimed herein.
The exact compositions, configurations, constructions, relative positionings, and cooperative relationships of the various component parts of the present invention are not critical, and can be modified substantially within the spirit of the present nvention.
The embodiments of the present invention specifically described and illustrated herein are exemplary only, and are not intended to limit the scope of the present invention, which is to be interpreted in the light of the' prior artand the appended claims only, with due consideration for the doctrine of equivalents.
1. A key-operated keyhole-illuminating apparatus, comprising: keyhole means; base means mounted transversely adjacent to said keyhole means and having clamp means forwardly extended therefrom and having forwardly positioned socket means; battery means removably received and supported by said clamp means in front of said base means; lamp means removably received and supported by said socket means in front of said base means; switch means including two sets of longitudinal spaeed substantially parallel electrically conductiverods carried by and at the front of said base means in a position longitudinally extendingv between said lamp means anda position adjacent said 4keyhole means, said two sets of rods being directly accessible from in front of said base means, the spaced rods of one of said' sets corresponding spaced rods of the other of said sets of rods, each of said two sets of rods being electrically connected in series with said battery means and said lamp means; electrically conductive key means in bridging series connection with a rod of one of said sets of rods and with an immediately spacedly adjacent rod of the other of said sets of rods and effectively connecting said battery means in closed circuit series relation with said lamp means and energizing saidv lamp means, said energized lamp means being physically positioned at similar first ends of said two sets of parallel longitudinal rods and being' optically spacedly adjacent to and in illuminating relationship with said keyhole means physically positioned immediately adjacent to opposite similar ends of said two sets of parallel longitudinal rods; and hood means removably carried by and at the front of said base means in covering relationship With respect to said battery means and defining light-directing means positioned on the opposite side of said lamp means from said' keyhole means and directing light from said energized lamp means onto said keyhole means adjacent the other ends of said two sets of longitudinal parallel rods.
2. A key-operated keyhole-illuminating apparatus, comprising: base means having clamp means forwardly extended therefrom and having forwardly positioned socket means; battery meansA removably received and supported by said clamp vmeans in front of said base means; lamp means' removably received' and supported by said'l socket means in front of said base means; switch means including two sets of longitudinal spaced substantially parallel eiectrically conductive rods carried by and aty the front of said base means in a position longitudinally extending between said lamp means and a lamp illumination region spacedV from said lamp means, said two setsl of rods being directly accessible from in front of said 'base means, the spaced, rods of one of said sets of rods being alternately spacedly positioned between corresponding spaced rods of the other of said sets'of rods, eachV of said two sets of rods being electrically connected in series with said battery means and said lamp means; said lamp means being positioned optically spacedly adjacent to and in illuminating relationship with respect to said lamp illumination region in response to bridging series connection by key means of a rod of one of said sets of rods with an immediately spacedly adjacent rod of the other of said sets of rods and the effective connection thereby of said battery means in closed circuitseries relationship with said lamp means; and hood means removably carried by and at the front of said base means in covering relationship with respect to said battery means and defining light-directing means positioned on the opposite side of said lamp means from said lamp illumination region and directing light from said. energized'lamp means into said lamp illumination region adjacent the other ends of said two sets of parallel rods.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,007,10l Vonderembse July 2, 1935 2,127,538 Seiger Aug. 23, 1938