US 2877527 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 17, 1959 s. R; BOND 2,877,527 CURTAIN coma EQUALIZER Filed May 25, 1954 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 I6. FIG.5 Sam? HIS ATTORNEYS March 17, 1959 s. R. BOND 2,877,527
CURTAIN CORD EQUALIZER Filed May 25, 1954 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 F|G.|O FIG.
47 35 52 INVENTOR SCOTT R.BOND F|G.|2 F|G.|3 FIG; aim/M HIS ATTORNEYS 2,877,527 CURTAIN CORD EQUALIZER Scott R. Bond, North Plainfield, N. J., assignor to Levolor orentzen, Inc., New York, N. Y., a corporation of New York Application May 25, 1954, Serial No. 432,284 7 Claims. (Cl. 24-123) This invention relates to a cord equalizer that is used for equalizing the two lift cords of a curtain that is raised by the simultaneous, equal movement of two such cords. The term curtain is used herein in its broad sense of a hanging device which blocks or obscures the view, e. g., the view through a window.
Among the specific types of curtains which are customarily raised by two lift cords are porch shades and Venetian blinds. A porch shade is in the nature of a hanging mat and is often made with thin strips of wood or bamboo which are flexibly held in edge-to-edge relation by interlaced strings that act as warp. It and similar shades wardly under the action of two lift cords under the bottom edge of the shade. in a Venetian blind, the two lift cords pull the bottom bar of the blind upwardly, and the bottom bar picks up the slats one after the other.
The two lift cords of a curtain are customarily reeved to exert their raising. action at the bottom of the curtain near the two vertical edges thereof, respectively. The two lift cords must be moved in unison to keep the bottom of the curtain horizontal as the curtain is raised. For this reason, it is common practice to connect the two lift cords together with an equalizer, which is usually located some distance above the point where the two cords are grasped by the operator to raise the curtain. In many installations, the two lift cords are the two branches of a long cord that is doubled back upon itself below the point Where the operator grasps the cords, each branch constituting one lift cord of the curtain.
Equalizers used heretofore have had various disadvantages or limitations. Some could not be applied to the cords as quickly as is desirable, and some could only be applied'by threading the cords through the equalizer. Some could be applied only with the aid of tools, sometimes special tools. Some could not be removed from the cords and thereafter replaced. With some the relative position of the two cords could not be readily adjusted, and the position of the equalizer on the two cords could not be readily adjusted. Some did not keep the two cords reliably equalized when a strong pull was exerted by the operator on one cord only. Some were more exensive than was desirable, and some were of unattractive appearance.
Among the objects of the present invention are to provide a cord equalizer of improved construction and appearance, the equalizer being particularly characterized by the security of its gripping of the cords, by the ease with which it may be applied to the cords, adjusted longitudinally thereof, and removed therefrom; to provide a cord-equalizer that may be readily applied to the cords and removed therefrom manually without the use of special tools, the equalizer being reusable, as in reeving new lift cords in a curtain; to provide a cord equalizer in which the lift cords may be laterally inserted thereinto without the necessity of threading the lift cords therethrough; to provide a cord equalizer which may be rapidly and inexpensively manufactured by molding from a plastic material; and generally to improve-cord equalizers of the type described.
. Further objects and objects relating to details and economies ofconstruction, operation, and use will more definitely'appear from the detailed description to follow:
which are looped may be raised by rolling the shade up- 2,817,522? Fatented Mar. 17, 1959 My invention is clearly defined in the appendedclaiinis' Where parts are, for clarity and convenience, referred to on the basis of their oriented position shown in the accompanying drawing, no limitation as to the use of the cord equalizer in other suitable positions is to be implied, since the equalizer may be inverted and may also be applied to the lift cords from either the front or the rear. Also in both the description and the claims, parts at times may be identified by specific names for clarity and convenience, but such nomenclature is to be understood as having the broadest meaning consistent with the context and with the concept of my invention as distinguished from the pertinent prior art. The best modes in which I have contemplated carrying out my invention are illustrated in the accompanying drawing forming part of this specification, in which:
Fig. 1 is an elevation of a curtain, specifically a Venetian blind, showing a cord equalizer in accordance with a first embodiment of the present invention applied to the lift cords of the blind. A portion of one of the ladder tapes of the blind is broken away to show one of the lift cords extending to the bottom bar of the blind.
Figs. 2 through 5 show the equalizer of Fig. 1 on a larger scale. Fig. 2 is a perspective showing the rear of the equalizer per se. Fig. 3 is a rear elevation showing the equalizer applied to the lift cords. Fig. 4 is a View taken on the line 4-4 of Fig. 3. Fig. 5 is a cross section taken on the line 55 of Fig. 3.
Fig. 6 is an exploded view in perspective of a second embodiment of the cord equalizer of the invention.
Fig. 7 is a front elevation of the body of the equalizer of Fig. 6. v
--Fig. 8 is a rear elevation of the cap or cover member of the equalizer of Fig.6.
' Fig. 9 is a front elevation showing the cord equalizer of Fig. 6 applied to a pair of lift cords.
' is such that a pull on either one Fig. 10 is a view on the line 10-10 of Fig. 9.
Fig. 11 is a cross section on the line 1111 of Fig. 9, the stem of the cap or cover member being shown in plan.
Fig. 12 is an exploded view in section through the cord equalizer of the second embodiment, the plane of the section being indicated by the line 1212 in Fig. 7.
Fig. 13 is a view in section taken along the same plane as in Fig. 12 through the assembled cord equalizer of Fig. 6, the lift cords being omitted.
Fig. 14 is an enlargement of a portion of Fig. 13, showing the latching of the cap or cover member to the body of the equalizer.
Fig. 15 is a fragmentary section taken on the line 1515 of Fig. 14.
Referring now to the drawings, the Venetian blind 10 of Fig. 1, which is of the simple-lift variety, has a head bar 11, a bottom bar 12, and slats 14, the bottom bar and the slats being supported by ladder tapes 15, 15. The lift cords 16, 16 are reeved through the head bar and passed through the slats 14 between the two branches of the ladder tapes 15, 15, one lift cord 16 being associated with each ladder tape 15.
' The lower ends of the-lift cords the head bar when the blind is in the lowered position shown in Fig. 1. .The function of the cord equalizer 20 of the lift cords 16, 16
be transmitted to each lift cord above the equalizer so that both cords will be pulled equally and the bottom bar 12 will remain level as it is raised. The cord equalizer 20 also serves to keep the lift cords 16, 16 hanging in orderly side-by-side arrangement in substantially vertical lines, and thus aids in preventing the cords 16, 16 and the loop 17 from becoming entangled with the ends of the slats 14.
The cord equalizer of the present invention preferably has the single, body part 20 of the first embodiment and the body part 34 and the cover part 35 of the second embodiment formed as bodies molded from plastic material of suitable mechanical strength and impact resistance. Parts 20, 34, and 35 made of molded high-impact polystyrene have proved to be entirely satisfactory. In the first embodiment, shown in detail in Figs. 2 to 5, inclusive, the one-piece body 20 has a broad generally fiat base 21, the body being preferably mounted on the lift cords with the base 21 facing the interior of the room, that is, facing forwardly, as shown in Fig. 1. Projecting rearwardly from base 21 is the longitudinally disposed cord-separating partition member 22, which has a central thickened diamond-shaped portion 24. Portion 24 is preferably molded with a central hole 25 to reduce shrinkage of the molding upon solidification. Thickened portion 24, which is symmetrical with respect to a longitudinal central plane through and parallel to the sides of partition 22, has the oppositely laterally directed cord-snubbing edges 26.
- The body 20 is provided on each of the outer edges of the base 21 with a longitudinally curved flange 27 projecting from the base in the same direction as partition 22, each flange forming, with the partition and the portion of base 21 adjacent thereto, a longitudinally curved cordreceiving-and-gripping channel 30. The upper and lower ends of each of flanges 27, as shown in Figs. 2 and 3, is curved inwardly so that its free edge partially overlies the channel, thereby stably retaining the cords in the channels in the positions shown in Fig. 3.
As most clearly seen in Fig. 3, the central portion of each of flanges 27 is substantially straight in a direction normal to base 21, to allow the easy entry of a cord 16 into the central part of the channel laterally through the below the equalizer will equalizer, however,
permanently defaces or mars the cords, which by reason of their elasticity, regain substantially their original shape when the equalizer is removed from them. No deformation of the equalizer itself is necessary to cause it to grip the cords. Consequently, the equalizer may be removed from and reapplied to the same lift cords in a dififerent location if desired, or the equalizer may be reused with different, such as renewed, lift cords.
The second embodiment of the cord equalizer of the invention, shown in Figs. 6 to 15, inclusive, employs a channel-covering cap member which somewhat improves the appearance of the equalizer, retains the cords in the channels somewhat more positively, and allows the equalizer to be applied to the lift cords from either the back or front of the lift cords without a substantial change in the general appearance of the applied equalizer. In the following description, it will be assumed that the equalizer is applied from the rear of the lift cords, that is, toward the (forward) direction facing into the room.
The equalizer of the second embodiment is designated as a whole generally by the reference character 32. Such equalizer has a body (rear) portion generally designated 34, and a cap (front) portion 35. Body portion 34 has a broad circular flat base 36 from which there projects forwardly the central vertical cord-separation partition 37 having the central thickened diamond-shaped portion 39. Portion 39 is provided with a central passage 40 and with the symmetrically oppositely laterally directed cord-snubof the inner surface of each of open side of the channel 30. The longitudinal curve of i the central part of each flange 27 is on a shorter radius than the curve of the outwardly diverted portion 31 of the cord in the equalizer, and the radial distance from an edge26 to the central portion of the inner surface of its confronting flange 27 somewhat exceeds the diameter of cord 16, so that the cord may readily be entered into the central portion of the channel. After each of the cords 16 has thus been entered into: the central portion of its corresponding channel, the cord may readily be compressed sufficiently for it to snap under the overhanging end 29 of the channel. The ends of channels 30 snugly but not tightly receive the cords 16.
The lateral diversion of portions 31 of the cord by edges 26 causes such edges elastically to indent the inner surfaces of the cords to some extent, and causes the equalizer to grip each cord, when the cord is pulled relative to the equalizer, primarily at three points or zones, that is, at the outer edges of the upper and lower ends of flanges 27, which with partition 22 cause the cords to enter the equalizer and to leave it in substantially parallel vertical position, and the central cord-diverting-and-snubbing edge 26. The gripping of the cords by the equalizer is such that, if a down pull is exerted upon only one cord 16 below the equalizer, the pulled cord is itself more strongly forced into contact with edge 26 and thus more strongly gripped in its channel, and a part of such pull is transmitted through the equalizer to the other cord 16 above the equalizer, which likewise is more strongly gripped by its channel in the same manner. None of the edges or surfaces engaging the cords at the the central portions of the 'the cords beneath the ends of bing edges 41. Each lateral edge of the body is provided with a side flange 42 curved to conform to the base 36 and projecting forwardly from the base. The inner top and bottom edges 44 of each of flanges 42 are fairly sharp, as shown in Figs. 6 and 7.
Each flange 42, with its confronting side of the parti tion 37 and the adjacent portion of base 36, forms a curved cord-receiving-and-gripping channel 45. As in the case of the first embodiment, the radius of curvature flanges 42 is somewhat less than the radius of curvature of the outwardly diverted portions 46 of the cords, and the radial distances from the central cord-snubbing edges 41 to the central portion of the inner surface of its confronting flange 42 somewhat exceeds the diameter of the cord 16, so that the cord may readilybe entered into the central portion of the channel through the open side thereof. At both ends of the channels there are provided cord-retaining means in the form of transverse members 47 connected to the forward upper and lower edges of partition 37, so that the ends of members 47 partially overlie the channels 45.
The body 34 of the equalizer is applied to the lift cords, preferably from the rear, by introducing the cords into channels and then snapping members 47 at the ends of the channels. When thus applied, the body 34 itself functions satisfactorily as a cord equalizer, the cords being gripped primarily between the upper and lower inner edges 44 of the flanges 42 and the central cord-diverting-andsnubbing edge 41. As in the case of the first described embodiment, when one lift cord 16 is pulled down below the equalizer body, it is more firmly gripped by its channel in body 34 and transmits a portion of the pull to the other cord, which is also gripped more firmly by the to employ therewith plate 48. Stem 49 has equalizer. The cords are stably retained in the body by the cord-retaining means 47.
It is preferred with this embodiment, for the sake of better appearance, added strength of the flanges, and added security of retention of the cords in the body 34, the cap member 35. Such cap has a round flat plate 48 of substantially the same diameter as the body 34, the plate having a rearwardly directed centrally located mounting stem 49 normal to the plane of a plurality (four shown) of thin, somewhat resilient, radially directed longitudinal fins 50 thereon, as shown most clearly in Figs. 6, 8, 14 and 15, for
the purpose to be described. The cap '35 is applied to body 34, after the cords 16 have been engaged in the body as described, by entering the stem 49 in the central passage 40 in body 34. When the cap is fully applied, the rear surface of plate 48 lies in contact with the forward edges of flanges 42, as shown in Fig. 13, and the upper and lower edges of plate 48 lie between and at the same level as the cord-retaining members 47, as shown in Figs. 9, l0, and 13 and indicated in Fig. 12.
To strengthen the ends of flanges 42 against lateral deflection by the cords, the flanges are provided with forwardly projecting pins 52 adjacent the inner edges 44 of the flanges. Such pins are snugly received within the annular groove 54 in the rear surface of plate 48 of the cap, as shown in Fig. 13, thereby in effect to connect the flanges at their outboard ends. The central passage 40 in portion 39 of body 34 has an annular constricted zone 51 toward the rear thereof. At the constricted zone 51 the forward surface slopes gradually radially inwardly and the rear surface is formed as a sharp shoulder. Constricted zone 51 extends inwardly of the passage 40 a distance somewhat less than the radial height of the fins 50. When the stem 49 has been entered into passage 40 far enough for the rear ends of the fins 50 to engage the constriction the fins are progressively deformed by the constriction. Fig. 14 shows the relation between the stem, the fins thereon, and the passage 40 when the cap is fully applied to the equalizer body. .Because of the described configuration of the constriction 51, no undue amount of force is required to deform the fins 50 when the stem is thrust into the passage as the cap is being applied to the body, since the constricted portion 51 then deforms the fins 50 with a gradual camming action. Withdrawal of the stem from the passage upon removal of the cap from the body, however, requires a somewhat deforms the fins upon movement of stem 49 to the left (Fig. 14) with respect to the body portion 39. Thus the fins 50 and constricted portion 51 of the passage 40 provide a means for securely retaining the cap against fortuitous removal from the body, but does not prevent the removal of the cap, when desired, by initially slightly separating the plate portion 35 from the body 34 as by the insertion of ones fingernail therebetween, and then grasping the cap by the fingers and pulling it away from the body.
1. In a curtain having a pair of lift cords, a cord equalizer at least partially embracing said cords and adjustable on and removable from the cords, the equalizer having a one-piece body comprising a generally flat base, longitudinally curved continuous flanges projecting in the same direction from the opposite edges of the base and extending along the cords, a centrally located generally straight elongated partition on the base midway between the flanges and extending at least as far along the cords as the flanges, the ends of the flanges being laterally spaced from the partition, the inner surface of each flange and the corresponding confronting side surface of the partition forming with the intervening portion of the upper surface of the base a longitudinally curved cordreceiving channel open on one side and permitting entry of the cord thereinto through the open side of the channel, and means to retain the cords in the channels, the ends of said flange providing each of the channels with two cord-diverting-and-snubhing edges on one side thereof and said partition having midway of its length a formation providing each of the channels with a corddiverting-and-snubbing edge on the other side thereof.
2. In a curtain having a pair of lift cords, the combination with said lift cords of an adjustable and removable cord equalizer at least partially embracing said cords, said cord equalizer comprising a one-piece homogeneous body having a pair of curved continuous channels open on one side to permit the entry of the cords into the channels through the open sides thereof, the channels extending between two opposite ends of the body and terminating at both ends thereof, each of the channels having one of the cords lying therein, the channels each having snubbing edge diverting the intermediate portion of the cord therein outwardly from a straight line, the channels directing the cords in generally parallel side-by-side relation and generally in the same plane at each end of said channels.
3. A pair of curtain lift cords disposed in side-by-side relationship, a disc positioned adjacent to one face of the pair of lift cords, oppositely-positioned part-cylindrical walls integral with the periphery of the disc and extending perpendicularly therefrom, one wall being adjacent to the side of each lift cord with the ends of the wall in snubbing contact with the lift cord and with the center of the wall laterally spaced from the lift cord, and a par tition extending perpendicularly from the disc and lying between the two lift cords, the partition extending diametrically of the disc and being at least as long as the diameter of the disc, the partition having on its opposite sides centrally located protuberances which are laterally directed and which displace the cords away from each other, each cord being normally in snubbing contact with one of the protuberances, and the disc, walls and partition comprising a cord equalizer which normally grips and holds both cords, the cords being adjustable through the equalizer.
4. A pair of curtain lift cords disposed in side-by-side relationship, a disc positioned adjacent to one face of the pair of lift cords, oppositely-positioned part-cylindrical walls integral with the periphery of the disc and extending perpendicularly therefrom, one wall being adjacent to the side of each lift cord with the ends of the wall in snubbing contact with the lift cord and with the center of the wall laterally spaced from the lift cord, and a partition extending perpendicularly from the disc and lying between the two lift cords, the partition extending diam etrically of the disc and having on its opposite sides centrally located protuberances which are laterally directed and which displace the cords away from each other, each cord being normally in snubbing contact with one of the protuberances, and the disc, walls and partition comprising a cord equalizer which normally grips and holds both cords, the cords being adjustable through the equalizer.
5. An organization as in claim 4 in which the walls and partition form with the disc open channels into which the cords can be inserted sidewise and be brought into the specified relationships with the ends of the walls, the protuberances and the centers of the walls, and in which means are provided at the ends of the channels for normally retaining the cords therein.
6. An organization as in claim 5 in which the partition is provided with a central hole extending perpendicularly to the disc and a disc-shaped cover overlies the channels and is provided with a pin extending into said hole and making holding engagement therewith.
7. An organization as in claim 6 in which the pin is provided with radial fins and the wall of the hole is provided with an inwardly extending annular bead, and the holding engagement is between the fins and the bead.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 485,415 Kenyon Nov. 1, 1892 860,189 Chatfield July 16, 1907 914,768 Walker Mar. 9, 1909 1,371,932 Przybyla Mar. 15, 1921 1,811,704 Bayus June 23, 1931 1,891,947 Powell Dec. 27, 1932 2,090,860 Bonat Aug. 24, 1937 2,246,091 Forstner June 17, 1941 2,460,488 Brunetti Feb. 1, 1949 FOREIGN PATENTS 2,397 Great Britain June 17, 1879 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent N00 2,877,527 March 17, 195 9 Scott R, 7 Bond It is herebj certified that error appears in the-printed specification of the above numbered patent requiring correction and that the said Letters Patent should read as corrected below.
Column 5, line 52, for "comprising" read comprising: line 66, for "flange" read flanges column 6, line 5,, after "having" insert Signed and sealed this 23rd day of February 19600 SEAL kttestz KARL H AXLINE ROBERT C. WATSON Commissioner of Patents Attesting ()Pficer