US 2877340 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 10, 1959 J. H. SPAULDINGI 2,877,340
ILLUMINATOR Filed April 17. 1956 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 INVENTOR. JOSEPH H SPAULDl/VG BY I .. MTMJ United States Patent Ofiice 2,877,340 Patented Mar. 10, 1959 ILLUMINATOR Joseph H. Spaulding, Fort Mitchell, Ky. Application April 17, 1956, Serial No. 578,670 8 Claims. (Cl. 240-3) The present invention relates to an illuminator, and
is concerned particularly with improvements in construction and assembly of an illuminating device borne upon one or more upright posts or fixed standards.
An object of the invention is to provide improved means in a post-supported illuminator, whereby is obtained a highly flexible construction permitting wide variations in spacing of the supporting posts, to avoid interference with surrounding objects or structures.
' Another object of the invention is to provide in a canopy-type illuminator, simple and elfective adjustable means for attaching the illuminator in selected positions atop a supporting post or standard.
A further object is to provide improved means in a multiple-unit illuminator, for aligning or leveling the units with ease and dispatch, such means being capable of easy readjustment from time to time if necessary.
Another object is to provide for the simple and inexpensive manufacture and assembly of an illuminator, by making use of constituent parts which are identical, reversible and substitutable one for another in the as sembly.
Another object of the invention is to incorporate maximum durability and serviceability in an outdoor illuminator which is exposed to the elements of weather in any climate.
The foregoing and other objects are attained by the means described herein and illustrated upon the accompanying drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is a side elevational view of a typical two-fixture illuminator installation illustrating a condition of central sag which the present invention is adapted to overcome.
Fig. 2 is a view similar to Fig. 1, with part thereof broken away, showing the sag eliminated from the structure.
Fig. 3 is an enlarged bottom view taken on line 3-3 Fig. 11 is a perspective view of an endplate comprising a detail of the invention. 1 I
The illuminator of this invention is of the type which may serve the purpose of a canopy, as suggested by Figs. 1 and 2, partly covering and illuminating the pumps or dispensers 12 of motor fuel at a service station, for example. The pumps or dispensers are commonly dis posed outdoors, and are often supported upon a platform 14. with many pumps, and carries other equipment in addition, so that some limitations may be encountered in placement of the posts or standards 16 which support the illuminator units 20. That is to say, it may sometimes be necessary, when erecting illuminating equipment in connection with existing pump arrangements, to place the supporting standards or posts at various distances from the ends of the units, so as not to interfere with other equipment located upon the platform. Moreover, situations will arise wherein a single post supporting a single illuminator unit, is all that the situation requires in the way of illumination. In that event, the post'may support the illuminator at some point at or near the center of the latter. Provision is made for meeting the varying requirements simply and effectively, in'the structure of the improved illuminator herein disclosed.
When the installations requires post support near the ends of the composite illuminator as indicated upon Fig. 1, there is a natural tendency for the assembly to sag at the middle as shown; and conversely, if both posts are necessarily placed near the middle point of the composite illuminator, or between the pumps 12-12, for example, the tendency will be the opposite, causing the far ends of the assembly to droop to a lower elevation than the middle portion. Either of the conditions mentioned is simply and effectively overcome by means of a single compensating device incorporated in the assembly as herein disclosed.
The various illuminator units indicated generally by the character 20 may be identical, so that a description of one will suflice for the others also. Each unit may include a pair of identical end plates 22, one of which is shown in Fig. 4 carrying lamp socket mounts 24-24 at opposite sides of the center of the plate. An identical end plate such as 22 is to be spaced from the plate shown, and in parallelism therewith, so that the two end plates define opposite ends of an illuminator unit. The
of Fig. 2, part being broken away to expose the interior of two abutting units.
Fig. 4 is an enlarged cross-sectional view taken transversely of an illuminator unit, on line 4-4 of Fig. 3. Fig. 5 is a longitudinal cross-section taken on line 5-5 of Fig. .4, and indicating sag between the units as depicted in Fig. 1. Fig. 6 is a view similar to Fig. 5, showing the method of sag correction embraced by the present invention. Fig. 7 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken on line 7-7 of Fig. 6.
Fig. 7a isja fragmentary view generally similar to Fig. '7, showing a modification.
Fig. 8 is a fragmentary enlarged cross-sectional view of the underside of the assembly, as viewed upon line 8-8 of Fig. 2. Fig. 9 is an enlarged cross-sectional View taken on line 9-9 of Fig. 8, showing an adjustable mount which constitutes part of the invention.
Fig. 10 is an exploded view in perspective, showing certain elements of the adjustable mount.
distance between end plates is not a critical dimension but for the purposes of this explanation the distance may be said to approximate six or eight feet. Aswill be understood, the end plates extend transversely of the unit, and -may substantially close the opposite ends thereof. I
The means employed as the principal spacer for end plates 22-22 is a spine member indicated generally at 26. This spine member comprises a pair of identical metal stampings or shapes having upright flat walls 28-28 joined together flatwise in any suitable manner, as by means of screws 30 (Fig. 9), to form a strong vertical Web for the spine member. Each upright wall 28 has an outwardly extending head wing 32 formed integrally therewith, the wings being coplanar with one another, and coextensive with the spine member web as to length. At a distance from each head wing 32, and beneath the same, the material of the web is developed to provide a lower reinforcing box 34,-constituted of top walls 36, side walls 38 depending therefrom, and the inwardly directed rails 40. The rails 40 are disposed in spaced parallelism beneath the web, and the rails as well as the box walls previously mentioned, are coextensive in length with the length of web 28.
From the foregoing, it will be understood that the In some instances, the platform is provided spine member is a composite structural shape inherently strong and rigid, with a bottom slot between the opposed parallel rails 40-40, As will be explained, and as shown in Fig. 9, the rails-accommodate a post cap 42 which mounts the illuminator unit upon a post or standard 16.
.Suitable means are provided for securing opposite ends of the spine member to the spaced parallel end plates 2222. As shown by Figs. 4 and 9, the end plate 22 has a circumferential flange constituted of an upper portion 44, side portions 46-46, and a lower portion 48, the latter being divided by a bridge 50 having the same configuration as the cross-sectional shape of box 34, so that the top wall 36 and the side walls 38-68 of the box may fit beneath the bridge 50 and be secured flatly thereto by means of suitable fasteners 52-52, Fig. 9. The flange at the middle point of bridge 50 may be slotted as at 54, Figs. 9 and ll, to receive the end of web 2828 and permit overlapping of the bridge 50 and walls 36 and 38, so the fasteners 52 may pass through the parts joined thereby. In the preferred form of the invention, the fasteners 52 are screws which enter tapped holes 56 in the bridge 50, while the heads of the screws abut the box walls 38-38.
At intervals along the flange portion 44 of the end plate 22, bored and tapped bosses 58 may be provided for the reception of a series of screws 60 which pass through the illuminator cover 62 and secure the same to the flanges 44, 46, 48. The cover may be a preformed metallic sheet spanning the length and width of the unit, and having depending side skirts 64-64 overlying the end plate flanges 46. The skirts preferably have side marginal portions 66 which are screwed or otherwise secured to the ends of flanges 48--48. The cover lends rigidity to the whole structure, and performs as a hood covering the long tubular electric lamps 68. As will be understood, opposit'e ends of the cover are each secured to an end plate 22, by means of fasteners such as 60. v
In most instances, it may be considered desirable to close the underside of the illuminator unit, as well as the top thereof, for excluding dirt and other foreign substances from the lamp area. For this purpose, suitable rectangular frames 70 carrying panels 72 of glass or similar translucent material, may be mounted on the unit beneath the lamps. The glazed frames, if desired, may each carry suitable hinges 74 mounted upon the rails 40 of the spine member, permitting swinging displacement of the glazed frames whenever access to the lamps is required. The swinging edges 76 of the frames may carry screws or latches 78 (Fig. 4), normally holding the frames against the skirt flanges 66. The glazed frames may be tightly fitted to the underside of the unit with the use of suitable gaskets, not shown, to prevent passage of dust and moisture to the lamp chamber. The glass used in the frames is preferably light-diffusing in character.
To mount one of the assembled units upon a post or standard such as 16, a cap such as that shown in Figs. 9 and may be employed. The post cap may comprise a hollow sleeve 80 the open lower end of which accommodates the upper end of post 16. Cast integrally with the sleeve is a transverse slide plate 82, elongate in form, and of sufficient width to span and overlap the coplanar rails 40-40 of the spine member. To center the plate 82 and preclude rotation thereof relative to the rails, the upper face of the plate may be provided with a pair of upstanding transverse ribs 84 located in spaced parallelism near the ends of the slide plate, the ribs being of a length slightly'less than the space between the rails. The ribs extend upwardly between the rails while the rails rest upon the upper face of the plate, so that the ends of the ribs abut against the inner edges of the rails to preclude rotation of the plate.
One or more clamp plates 86 serve as means to secure the slide plate to the rails 40. Each clamp plate may consist of a rigid block provided with internally threaded holes 88 spaced in correspondency with the plain holes 90 drilled or formed in the slide plate, to receive screws or bolts 92. When the clamping structure is assembled upon the rails 40 of Figs. 8 or 9, tightening of the screws 92 serves to rigidly and securely mount the illuminator unit upon the post cap. The cap, in turn, may be securely fixed to the top of the post or standard in any suitable manner, as by means of set screws 94 threaded into the material of sleeve 80.
It may here be noted that with the screws 92 loosened, the post cap structure of Figs. 9 and 10 may be slid lengthwise along the rails 40 of the spine member to any selected location intermediate the ends of the illuminator unit. Thus, if a given installation requires only one illuminator unit on a single post, the cap structure may be slid to a position approximately midway between the unit ends, or to one side of the middle point of the unit, as may be required. In an alternaitve single unit installation, two post caps may be utilized if desired, placed anywhere along the length of the unit. Another typical installation may involve the use of two or more illuminator units arranged in line, or in tandem as suggested by Figs. 1 and 2, utilizing two or more posts and caps as will be explained.
When arranging two illuminator units in tandem, the installation requires connecting the units end to end. This is to be accomplished preferably at the spine member, and may involve the use of an elongate connector plate 98 having reinforcing side flanges 99, the width of the plate being slightly less than the width of the box 36, so that the plate may rest flush against the lower face of top 36. A series of registering holes in the box top and in the connector plate, receive a series of bolts or other fasteners 100 whereby the connector plate may be secured to the spine members of the two adjoining illuminator units, preventing separation thereof. A post cap may be applied to each unit as previously explained, for rigidly supporting the units upon posts such as 16. The posts may be located near the remote ends of the units as illustrated by Fig. l, or under other circumstances, it may be necessary or desirable to locate the posts in closer proximity to one another, leaving the remote ends of the units unsupported. In either case, a leveling or aligning of the units will generally be in order, to overcome any possible center sag or end droop of the units, as presently will be explained.
Referring to Figs. 4 to 7, inclusive, and 11, attention is directed to the four equally spaced bosses 101, 102, 103 and 104 formed integrally upon the juxtaposed end plates 2222, close to the upper flange 44. The bosses are disposed interiorly of the units, and alternate ones thereof may be drilled and interiorly threaded to receive adjusting screws 105, 106, 107 and 108. The remaining alternate bosses are undrilled, or solid, and serve as reinforcing studs taking up any strain imposed upon one end plate when the screws of the other end plate are advanced, as will be understood by reference to Fig. 7.
In the event of center sag of the illuminators, as suggested by Figs. 1 and 5, the adjusting screws may be advanced in their respective threaded bosses, until the space between the juxtaposed end plates 22 and 22 is made uniform from top to bottom, resulting in leveling and aligning the units according to Fig. 6.
If instead of a sag between the units of Fig. 5, the units tend to droop toward the outer ends, leaving a relatively wide space between the end plates in the region of the bosses, the correction will involve a diiferent treatment. In such event, the solid bosses would be drilled slightly oversize for the adjusting screws, as indicated at 114 in Fig. 7a, and the screws would be inserted in the holes so drilled, to threadedly engage the tapped holes for pulling the end plates together in the region of the bosses, thereby to produce uniformity in the space between the end plates and align the units with a leveling effect. In any case, therefore, the end plate bosses and adjusting screws constitute the leveling or aligning means for a multiple unit assembly. It will readily be understood that illuminator units may be connected end to end indefinitely, and supported upon posts such as 16, to provide any desired extent of lighting.
In Figs. 8 and 10, the character 110 indicates an aperture in the slide plate 82 adapted to register with the open upper end of post 16, to accommodate any electric wiring for the lamps passing through the hollow interior of the post. 'It may be mentioned also that the upright web 28 of the spine member furnishes a long unbroken surface against which the ballast boxes for the lamps conveniently may be secured.
In the finished assembly illustrated by Fig. 3, the characters 112 indicate longitudinal. closure plates applied to the rails' 40 intermediate the connecting plate and the post caps, to close the bottom of the spine member box and thereby enhance the appearance of the structure.
In conclusion, it is to be noted that the structural improvements herein disclosed result in great savings of time and labor in the assembly of the illuminator units, as well as in the manufacture of the constituent parts. Because of the ease with which assembly and erection are performed, the devices may be supplied to the installer in package form, with considerable saving of shipping and storage expenses.
What is claimed is:
1. An illuminator comprising, in combination, a pair of transverse end plates each having an upper marginal flange and a lower flange, the lower flange being developed midway between its ends to provide a bridge having a top and depending side walls, an elongate spine member for maintaining the plates in spaced substantial parallelism, said spine member comprising an upright central web, outwardly directed substantially coplanar wings extending from the upper edge of the web in opposite directions, said wings being substantially coextensive with the length of the spine member, and having ends abutting the upper flanges of the end plates, a lower reinforcing box formed integrally with the lower edge of the web, said box including a top wall, a pair of side walls depending from the top wall, and coplanar flanges on the side walls directed toward one another to provide a pair of rails, the rails being parallel and spaced apart one relative to the other, said top wall, side walls, and rails of the box being substantially coextensive in length with the length of the upright web, ends on the box overlapping the flange of each end plate bridge, and fasteners securing said box ends to the bridges for maintaining the aforesaid spaced parallelism of the end plates, means for supporting the illuminator atop a post, including an elongate slide plate having a pair of spaced fiat margins to abut and slide upon the parallel rails of the box, and transverse upstanding ribs near the ends of the slide plate, said ribs being slightly shorter in length than the space between the parallel rails, to project between said rails while the slide plate margins abut the rails, thereby precluding rotation of the plate in the plane of the rails, means for fixedly clamping the slidable plate to the rails at selected locations upon the rails, and means depending from the slidable plate for attachment thereof to a supporting post.
2. A device as specified in claim 1, in which the spine member is constituted of two identical parts each consisting of a web, a wing, a rail, a box side wall, and half of the box top, with the webs of the identical parts secured one to the other in fiatwise contact.
3. An illuminator comprising, in combination, a pair of transverse, substantially fiat end plates each having an upper marginal flange and a lower flange substantially coextensive with the length of the plates, the lower flange being developed midway between its ends to provide a bridge having a top and depending side walls, an elongate spine member for maintaining the end plates in spaced substantial parallelism, said spine member comprising an upright central web, outwardly directed substantially coplanar wings extending from the upper portion of the upright web in opposite directions, said wings being substantially coextensive with the length of the spine member, and having ends abutting the upper flanges of the end plates, a series of bosses at opposite faces of each end plate in close proximity to the upper flanges thereof directly above the bridge, alternate ones of said bosses being bored and internally threaded to accommodate a plurality of end plate adjusting screws, a lower reinforcing box integral with the web, and comprising a top wall; a pair of side walls depending from the top wall, and coplanar flanges on the side walls directed toward one another to provide a pair of rails, the rails being parallel and spaced apart relatively, said top wall,.side walls, and rails being substantially coextensive in length with the length of the upright web, ends on the box overlapping the flange of each end plate bridge, and means securing said box ends to the bridges, means for supporting the illuminator atop a post, including an elongate slide plate having a pair of spaced flat margins abutting the parallel rails of the box, means on the slide plate extending between said rails to preclude rotation of the slide plate in the plane of the rails, means for fixedly clamping the slidable plate to the rails at selected locations upon the rails, and means on the slidable plate for attachment thereof to a supporting post.
4. A device as specified in claim 3, in which the spine member is constituted of two identical parts each consisting of a web, a wing, a rail, a box side wall, and half of the box top, with the webs coinciding and secured one to the other in flatwise contact.
5. A composite illuminator comprising, in combination, a plurality of elongate illuminator units disposed in alignment, said units each comprising a pair of transverse substantially flat end plates each having an upper marginal flange and a lower flange substantially coextensive with the length of the plates, the lower flange being developed midway between its ends to provide a bridge having a top and depending side walls, an elongate spine member including opposite ends, and means at said ends fixing the spine member to the bridge walls for maintaining the end plates in spaced substantial parallelism, a connecting plate fixed relative to the bridges of two aligned illuminator units, for connecting the units endwise with a slight space between proximate end plates of the two units, a series of bosses at opposite faces of each end plate in close proximity to the upper flanges thereof directly above the bridge, alternate ones of said bosses being bored and internally threaded, and others of said bosses being substantially solid with imperforate faces, and a plurality of end plate adjusting screws in one end plate, passing through the bosses having the threaded bores, and impinging upon the imperforate faces of the solid bosses of the other end plate, to force the proximate end plates apart at the bosses, for aligning the units horizontally.
6. A composite illuminator comprising, in combination, a pair of elongate illuminator units each including a transverse apertured end plate having upper and lower edges, a connecting member secured to the units near the lower edges of the end plates, for holding said end plates in slightly spaced substantial parallelism, an internal screw thread formed in an aperture of one end plate near the upper edge of the latter, and a screw threaded through said aperture to impinge upon the other end plate for forcing the end plates apart at their upper edges when the screw is advanced, a second screw passing loosely through an aperture near the upper edge of one end plate, and engaging internal threads in an aperture of the other end plate, for pulling the plates together and reducing the space between said end plates, near the upper edges thereof.
7. A composite illuminator comprisng, in combination, a pair of elongate illuminator units each including a transverse substantially flat end plate having upper and lower edges, elongate spine members fixed one to each endplate at right angles midway between the ends of said plates, a connecting member secured to the spine members and spanning both end plates at the lower edges of the latter, for maintaining said end plates in slightly spaced substantial parallelism, a pair of bosses near the upper edge of each end plate, one each of said pair of bosses being disposed at opposite sides of a central spine member, a pair of adjustable screws associated one with each of "said oppositely disposed bosses, and including means operative upon advancement of said screws to force the end plates apart at the upper edges to increase the space 'therebe'tween, a second pair of bosses near the upper edge of each end plate, one each of said second pair of bosses being disposed at opposite sides of a central spine member, a second pair of adjustable screws associated one eachwit-h each of the bosses of the second pair of bosses, and including means operative upon advancement of the screws of said second pair, to draw the end plates together at the upper edges thereof for reducing the space therebetween.
, 8. A device of the class described, comprising, in combination, a pair of duplicate, transverse end plates each having one side provided with upper lower, and end flanges, the lower flange being developed midway between its ends to provide a bridge having a top and depending side walls, a notch centrally of the top Wall, an elongate spine member comprising a pair of duplicate members each having a central web the upper end of which is outwardly directed and the lower end of which is outwardly,
downwardly and thence inwardly directed, means interconnecting the central webs of said members for disposing their respective outwardly-directed portions in opposed, coplanar relationship, and with the lower ends of the web forming an elongate reinforcing box having a top wall, a pair of side walls depending from the top wall and coplanar inturned bottom walls which provide a pair of rails having parallel, laterally spaced, continuous adjacent edges, and means securing the opposite ends 'of the top and depending side walls'of the reinforcing box to the lower faces of the corresponding walls of the endplate bridges with the central web of the spine member extending upwardly through the notches in the top wall of the end-plate bridges.
References Cited inure file or this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 740,347 Wood Sept. 29, 1903 901,284 Edmu'nds Oct. 13, 1908 1,682,693 Day Aug. 28, 1928 1,859,136 Goodrich May 17, 1932 2,336,414 Mitchell Dec. 7, 1943 2,545,307 P'r'etzer Mar. 13, 1951 2,625,646 Goebel Jan. 13, 1953 2,626,688 Lagaard Jan. 27, 1953 2,800,574 Belbes et al. July 23, 1957 FOREIGN PATENTS 623,992 Great Britain May 26, 1949