US 2915621 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
E. J. GARLAND Dec. 1, 1959 FLASHLIGHT 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed July 8, 1954 INVENTOR.
0 WARD J GA RL A ND ATTORNEYS E. J. GARLAN D FLASHLIGHT Dec. 1, 1959 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed July 8, 1954 ATTORNE Y5 United States Patent FLASHLIGHT Edward .1. Garland, Shrewsbury, Mass., assignor, by mesne assignments, to The Electric Storage Battery Company, Philadelphia, Pa., a corporation of New Jersey Application July 8, 1954, Serial No. 442,164
4 Claims. (Cl. 24010.66)
This invention relates to an improved and simplified socket and switch structure for use in connection with a reflector-type portable lamp or flashlight which is adapted to throw either a dispersed or a concentrated beam of light.
More particularly, this invention relates to an improved type of socket structure or lamp holder which is designed to position a multi-filament incandescent electric lamp with respect to a reflector. The invention also relates -to an improved switch mechanism which is adapted to cooperate with the improved lamp holder in order to provide for independent control of each filament in a multi-filament lamp.
Multi-filament lamps are described in detail in United States Patent 2,245,793, issued to J. H. Kurlander, on June 17, 1941. Incandescent lamps of the type described in this patent have a plurality of filaments permanently positioned within each lamp bulb. One filament is so situated with respect to the lamp base and reflector support elements as to provide a dispersed, wide area of light. A second filament is arranged within the lamp so as to provide a concentrated beam of light. Both filaments have one electrical terminal in common, through a cylindrical metallic jacket surrounding the base of the lamp. Each filament has an additional, independent electrical terminal through a flat face in the base portion of the lamp. Kurlander also discloses a flashlight designed for use with this lamp, providing for independent operation of each filament, so that the operator may obtain either a floodlight or a spotlight effect.
The object of the present invention is to provide an improved and simplified flashlight structure adapted for use with a multi-filament lamp to provide, independently, a floodlight or a spotlight effect.
Another object of the invention is to provide an improved socket or lamp holder structure to position a multi-filament lamp in a flashlight and to cooperate with a simplified switch mechanism for simplified manual control of the operation of the flashlight.
Still another object of the invention is to provide a socket structure for a multi-filament lamp which may be readily adapted for use with multi-filament lamps containing any desired number of filaments.
Yet another object of the invention is to provide an improved socket structure which is simple in construction yet extremely sturdy and capable of withstanding extremely hard wear.
Still a further object of the invention is to provide a switch mechanism for manual control of a flashlight containing a multi-filament lamp which is simple in construction, has a minimum number of moving parts,
and is capable of withstanding considerable abuse without failure.
These and other objects of the invention are achieved by providing a flashlight containing an improved and simplified socket structure in which a multi-filament incandescent electric lamp is positioned within a socket of a peculiar and simple construction. This novel socket has spaced and mutually insulated conductor members exposed on its surface, and each conductor member is electrically connected with one filament within the multifilament bulb. The simplified switch structure which may be employed in conjunction with this novel socket may take a variety of forms. In each form, in order to energize a particular filament of the lamp, electrical current is passed through a conductor which is in electrical contact with one of the metallic conductor members which are exposed on the surface of the socket.
In one form of the invention, the switch mechanism comprises a plurality of mutually-insulated, permanently positioned conductors, each in electrical contact with a corresponding metallic contact member on the surface of the socket. Selective electrical control over the filaments is achieved by movement of a slide-operated connector to complete electrical contact with one of the permanently positioned conductors.
In another form of the invention, the switch mechanism may comprise a single connector which is selectively movable into separate electrical contact with each contact member at the surface of the socket.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention, particularly adapted for use in conjunction with the common type of portable, cylindrical flashlight, the improved socket structure comprises a cylindrical body of insulating material. The cylindrical body is preferably provided on one flat face thereof with a receptor adapted to receive and position the multi-filament lamp. Withlin the receptor are spring-like members which may make electrical contact with a separate terminal for each filament on theflat face of the lamp base. These springlike members are in electrical contact with a group of serially-arranged contact rings which encircle the surface of the cylindrical body of insulating material. On the lower face of the body of insulating material, that is, the face opposite to the bulb receptor, there is provided a contact plate which is adapted to rest upon the centrally-disposed electrode of a dry cell within the flashlight. This contact plate is placed in electrical contact with the terminal which is common to all of the lamp filaments, by means extending through the cylindrical insulating body. Selective electrical control of the operation of each filament within the lamp may be obtained by placing the container electrode of a dry cell within the flashlight inelectrical contact with a selected contact ring from the group which is arranged on the surface of the cylindrical insulating body. In this preferred form of the invention, the insulating body may be made of a synthetic plastic material.
The essence of the invention is, in a sense, a mechanical magnification and more accessible disposition of the individual terminals of the filaments in the flat face of the lamp base. This is achieved by a socket structure which securely positions the lamp in place, and provides electrical contact means which make electrical contact with each separate filament terminal in the flat face of the lamp base and connect these terminals individ ually to relatively large, mutually insulated contact members exposed upon the surface of the socket for selective electrical energization through an appropriate switch mechanism. The relatively large areas available through the use of these contact members assures good electrical contact with the terminal of each filament throughout the entire life of the flashlight. The relatively wide physical separation which is possible between the contact members on the surface of the socket also assures a high degree of selectivity which would not be possible with smaller clearances, such as those between the terminals on the flat base of the lamp, unless precision-type controls were employed. The present invention may thus be embodied in a socket structure which is readily adaptable to mass production techniques, which is sturdy and compact, and which eliminates the need for precisiontype controls of a delicate nature.
The invention may be best understood by reference to the accompanying drawings, in which various forms of the invention are illustrated.
Figure 1 is a disassembled view showing the various parts which make up the preferred form of socket structure of the present invention, and their relation to each other.
Figure 2 is a side elevation of an assembled socket structure in conjunction with a reflector assembly.
I Figure 3 is a sectional view taken on line 3-3 of the Figure 4, and showing in addition a reflector assembly in conjunction therewith.
Figure 4 is a top plan view of the socket structure.
Figure 5 is a partial view of a fiashlight embodying the improved socket structure and specifically illustratihg, in section, a switch mechanism adapted to be employed with the improved socket structure.
Figure 6 is an enlarged sectional view of the switch mechanism illustrated in Figure 5.
Figure 7 is a partial sectional view of the upper end of a modified form of switch mechanism adapted for use in conjunction with the improved socket structure of the present invention.
Referring now to the drawings in greater detail, in which like reference numerals refer to similar structural features, the several components which make up a preerred embodiment of the socket structure of the present invention are illustrated in Figure l in proper relation for assembly with each other. In the specific example of a preferred form of the invention, as illustrated in Figure 1, the cylindrical insulating body which is the main structural component of the improved socket structure is made up of a plurality of separate insulator discs 27 and 33 respectively. It should be understood throughout the entire description that the specific structural details described and illustrated are set forth for purposes of illustrating the invention only and that many structural modifications thereof may be made which are within the scope of the invention. Thus, while the cylindrical insulating portion of the socket is portrayed in Figure 1 as being constructed of two separate insulator discs, it would be within the scope of the invention to make the insulating portions of the body from a greater number of separate components or to make the cylindrical insulating body from a single casting of plastic material.
7 For simplicity in describing and illustrating a preferred form of the invention, a socket structure is described which is particularly adapted for use with a lamp bulb containing two filaments, which are adapted to produce either a spotlight or a fioodlight effect. However, it should be understood that the invention described and illustrated may be employed, with minor modifications within the skill of the art, in conjunction with multi-filament bulbs having any number of separately-controlled filaments desired.
In the form of the invention illustrated in Figure 1, the socket structure is adapted to cooperate with a lamp .10 of conventional exterior structure, having a glass bulb 11 secured in a base 12. By a method of lamp construction common in the art, the lamp is provided with two filaments 13 and 14, one filament 14 being arranged for the production of a concentrated beam of light, and the other filament 13 being disposed so as to produce a diffused or scattered ray of light. Each filament is joined to a common electrical terminal, which is electrically connected with the metallic jacket 15 which surrounds the base 12 and terminates in a flared collar 16, adjacent the expanding portion of the bulb 11. Each filament, through its respective support member opposite that which iselectrically connected to the common terminal and the metallic jacket 15, is also separately connected to one of the two separated and insulated terminals 17 and 18 which appear on the flat face 19 of the base of the lamp.
For purposes of illustration, there is shown a lamp 10 in which the common terminal of the filaments 13 and 14 is secured to the base metallic jacket 15 by a soldered joint 21, which protrudes a small amount from the surface of the metallic jacket. This slight protuberance of the soldered joint 21 may be employed as a key to position the bulb relative to a receptor member 26 by seating the soldered joint 21 in a slot or keyway 25. The receptor element 26 is preferably formed as an integral part of the upper insulator disc 27. This upper insulator disc 27 has a recessed area 28 (Figure 3) within which are seated the spring-like contact members 15 and 3%. These contact members are so disposed as to rest against the filament terminals 17 and 18 in the base of the lamp when the lamp is properly positioned within the receptor 26 by the soldered joint 21 riding in the keyway 25.
A spring-like contact member 29 is secured firmly within a recess 29 in the insulator disc 27. The recess 29' is preferably formed in such a way as to be somewhat less in depth than necessary to accommodate the entire thickness of the contact member 29. In this way, when the metallic contact ring 31 is placed over the corresponding portion 32 of the insulator disc 27, in what would otherwise be a snug fit, the protruding portion of the contact member 29 should be sufiicient to change the snug fit to a slightly forced fit. This forced fit has the advantages of insuring good electrical contact between the contact ring 31 and the contact member 29, and in addition, provides a more firm assembly between the insulator disc and the contact ring which in turn provides for a more secure positioning of the spring-like contact member.
While the relative positions of the keyway 25 in the receptor and recess 29' in the bottom of the insulator disc may be such that the spring-like contact member 29 makes electrical contact with either of the filament terminals 17 or 18, for purposes of illustrating the invention, he spring-like contact member 29 is shown in such a position that it is adapted to make contact with the filament terminal 17.
A similar provision is made for electrical contact with the other filament terminal 18. The lower insulator disc 33 is provided with an internal channel or recess 30' through which a spring-like contact member 30 protrudes in two directions. The uppermost end 30a of the contact member is adapted to make resilient contact with the filament terminal 18. The opposite end 30b of the contact member protrudes from the recess 3% by a very slight amount. When the contact ring 41 is placed over the corresponding portion 34 of the insulator disc 33, in what would normally be a snug fit, the protruding end 3% of the contact member 30 changes the snug fit into a forced fit. This assures good electrical contact between the contact member 30 and the contact ring 41, and also provides a strong and tight assembly between these two components, which in turn holds the contact member 30 tightly in place.
After the contact rings have been placed over their corresponding insulator discs, with the spring-like contact members secured in place, the entire socket structure is ready for assembly. For ease of assembly, each element of the socket, with the exception of the contact rings, is provided with a pair of guide holes 42. During assembly, pins may be temporarily placed within these guide holes for later removal after the socket structure is riveted together by the rivets 43, through the preformed riveting apertures 44. r
The contact rings 31 and 41 are adapted to provide electrical contact between the individual, separated filament terminals 17 and 18 and the container electrode of a dry cell through a suitable switch mechanism. In order to make electrical contact with the centrally disposed electrode of a dry cell, two additional elements in the socket structure are provided. Superposed on the upper insulator disc 27 is a metallic sleeve indicated generally by the numeral 45. This sleeve has a flat portion 46 adapted to be superposed over the corresponding flat portion of the insulating disc 27, and contains guide holes 42 and preformed riveting apertures 44 for ease of assembly. The second additional component is a flat plate 47 which is also provided with guide holes 42 and preformed riveting apertures 44. This flat plate has a centrally raised area 48 which is adapted to receive the centrally-disposed electrode of a dry cell. The raised portion 48 of the fiat plate is adapted to seat within a corresponding aperture 48 in the insulator disc 33 when the two are assembled (Figure 3). The rivets 43 which secure the socket structure together also provide electrical contact between the flat plate 47 and the flat portion 46 of the metallic sleeve 45. The metallic sleeve has a substantially cylindrical portion 49 which is adapted to make electrical contact, either directly or indirectly, with the common electrical terminal of the two filaments within the lamp. The common terminal of the filaments is thus placed in electrical contact with the centrally-disposed electrode of a dry cell, by means of the flat portion 46 of the metallic sleeve 45, the rivets 43, and the flat plate 47, with its centrally recessed portion 48.
It is essential, of course, that the rivets are so located in the structure as to avoid all electrical contact with the spring-like contact members 29 and 30. Since the contact members 29 and 30 are relatively narrow metallic strips, this is easily arranged by arcuate displacement of these four elements, as illustrated in Figure 4.
Electrical contact between the common terminal of the filaments and the cylindrical portion 49 of the metallic sleeve 45 may be made through a metallic threaded member 50 which forms the base of the reflector assembly. The cylindrical portion 49 of the metallic sleeve 45 may be threaded to receive the threaded member 50. The reflector assembly is preferably provided with an inturned flange portion 51 which bears against the flared collar 16 of the lamp, thus securing it in position against the upper wall surface 26' of the plug 26. At the same time, the metallic reflector assembly provides electrical contact between the flared collar 16, which represents 'the common terminal for the filaments, and the cylindrical portion 49 of the metallic sleeve 45. This arrangement also positions the filaments 13 and 14 with respect to the reflector bowl 52.
The insulating discs 27 and 33 are preferably each provided with recessed cylindrical areas 32 and 34 respectively, which are of a size to produce a snug fit with the contact rings 31 and 41 respectively. For ease of assembly, on a production line basis, the discs of insulat ing material are each provided with ridges 27' and 33' respectively-against which the upper edges of the contact rings abut during assembly. The contact rings may be cut from stampings in the form of shallow cups, in such a way that a portion of the bottom is removed, thus producing the small, inwardly-turned flange on each ring. The inwardly-turned portions 31a and 41a, respectively, assist in providing a tight and strong assembly between the contact rings and the discs of insulating material. The turned-under edges also eliminate the safety hazard which would be presented by an exposed sharp edge.
In assembling of the socket structure, each insulating disc, spring-like contact member and contact ring may be assembled as separate sub-assembly units. These subassembly units may then be combined with the other structural components to form the final socket structure.
The assembled socket structure, generally denoted in the drawings by the numeral 1, permits ready selective control of the operation of each bulb filament through any suitable switching structure which completes electrical contact between the contact rings and the container electrode of the dry cell or other source of power which I is employed. In one form of the invention, the switch mechanism may take the structure illustrated in Figures 5 and 6. In this structure, two connecting members 51 and 61 are permanently positioned on the contact rings 61 and 41 respectively. These permanently positioned connecting members are insulated from each other and from the flashlight casing by protective coatings of insulating varnish or paint, or by fiber or other thin strips of insulating material sandwiched between the connecting members (not shown in the drawings). Electrical contact with the individual contact rings 31 and 41 is preferably established by means of a spring-like inwardlybent terminal portion 51a and 61a of each of the connecting members respectively. As is more clearly shown in the enlarged view of Figure 6, each of these connecting members 51 and 61 is secured to the flashlight casing by a group of rivets which also function as an effective part of the electrical circuit of the switch mechanism.
The outermost connecting member 51 is secured in position by a rivet 52 which securely fastens together the connecting member 51 and the metal shell of the flashlight casing 53, although the rivet- 52 is insulated from the flashlight casing 53 by a large piece of structural insulating material 54. The inner connecting member 61 is secured to the flashlight casing 53 by a second rivet 55 which is insulated from the metal flashlight casing 53 by the same large structural piece of insulating material 54. Each rivet is thus insulated from every connecting member except the specific member which it secures in place and with which it is in electrical contact. Thus, the rivet 52 is spaced from and insulated from the inner connecting member 61. Likewise, the rivet 55 is spaced from and electrically insulated from the outer connecting member 51. Electrical contact between the two connecting members 51 and 61 and the container electrode of the dry cell, or other power source, is obtained by means of a slide member 56. This slide member is secured to the flashlight casing and electrically connected therewith by a switch housing 57 which may be of a conventional appearance. When the slide member is moved into the position indicated at 56a, electrical contact is established between the container electrode of a dry cell of the flashlight and the lower contact ring 41, by means of current passage through the rivet 55 and the connecting member 61. When the slide is at the position indicated in the drawings by numeral 56b, electrical contact is established between the container electrode of a dry cell of the flashlight and the upper contact ring 31, by means of the rivet 52 and the connecting member 51. When the slide member is at the position indicated by numeral 56 in the drawings, the slide member is resting against the metallic flashlight casing 53, and the switch is therefore in the off position.
The switch mechanism illustrated in Figures 5 and 6 has the advantage that there is only one moving part, namely, the slide member 56. This slide member is controlled by means of a push button 60. Since there is only one moving part, there is very little danger of the switch getting out of order, and if trouble should arise, all of the moving parts are in an exposed position and are not in the interior of the flashlight casing. While this is the preferred embodiment of the switch mechanism, it will be readily understood that other suitable switch mechanisms, suitable for use with the novel socket 1, are within the scope of the invention. For example, the switch mechanism illustrated in Figure 7 is highly satisfactory.
In the modified form of switch illustrated in Figure 7, a conventional slide switch button (not shown) located on the outside of casing 53 is secured to a conductive strip mounted for longitudinal reciprocation against the inside wall of the casing. The strip terminates at its upper end in a contact member 71 which may be moved into contact with either of the contact rings 31 or 41, in the corresponding positions 71a and 7111 respectively. In this modified form of the invention, the ridge 33' on the lower insulating disc functions as an effective barrier between the contact rings 31 and 41 and prevents the simultaneous operation of both filaments which might be caused by contact between the connecting member 71 and both contact rings 31 and 41.
While the invention has been described above with particular reference to a multi-filament flashlight lamp having two filaments, it will be readily understood that the novel socket structure and switch mechanism which has been disclosed may be employed in connection with a multi-filament bulb containing any desired number of filaments, within the scope of the invention. It will also be understood that the invention should not be confined to any particular class of structural materials for the structures which have been described. However, the insulator discs are preferably made from synthetic plastic materials which are known to be good electrical insulators. Thus, polystyrene has been found to be highly satisfactory from a structural standpoint and from an electrical insulating standpoint. Polystyrene has the advantage that it is a transparent plastic, and the construction of the socket is readily visible to an observer. However, other synthetic plastic materials are also highly satisfactory, and the well-known older insulating materials, such as hard rubber and the ceramics, may also be employed in the manufacture of the insulator discs. The spring-like contact members 29 and 30 are preferably formed of heavy-gauge spring bronze ribbon, so that there is provided a resilient, spring contact between these contact members and the filament terminals 17 and 18 in the flat base of the lampbase.
1. A socket structure for a flashlight lamp having a plurality of independently operable filaments, each filament having a separate insulated terminal in the lowermost face of the cylindrical base of the lamp and a common ground connection through a metallic, cylindrical side wall and flared collar of the base of the lamp, comprising a plurality of superposed discs of insulating material, the uppermost disc having a protruding cylindrical receptor on the exposed face thereof for receiving the lamp base, a metallic sleeve having a flat end portion resting on the exposed face of the uppermost insulating disc and a cylindrical portion encircling the receptor and adapted to complete an electrical circuit through the flared collar on the base of the lamp, a flat metallic plate on the undersurface of the lowermost insulating disc adapted to make electrical contact with the centrally-disposed electrode of a dry cell, the flat end portion of the metallic sleeve and said flat metallic plate being fastened together in electrical contact by metallic fasteners passing through the insulating discs and securing the discs in superposed alignment, each insulating disc having at its outer surface a metallic strip, each strip being spaced to prevent electrical contact with any adjacent strip, and mutually insulated means within the insulating discs providing electrical contact between each metallic strip and each corresponding filament terminal in the lowermost face of the base of the lamp, whereby an electrical circuit may be established through each filament independently of any other filament.
2. A SOCnLCt structure as described in claim 1 wherein a ridge is formed on one of said discs protruding outwardly beyond and between said metallic strips.
3. A flashlight adapted for use with a multifilament lamp comprising a flashlight casing containing a dry cell and a socket structure adapted to position a multi-filament lamp with respect to the flashlight casing, said socket structure comprising a substantially cylindrical body haw ing a. lamp receptor therein, means providing electrical, contact between a common terminal for all filaments within said lamp and the centrally disposed electrode of said dry cell, means disposed within said. receptor providing independent electrical contact between each insulated individual opposite terminal of each filament of the lamp and a corresponding metallic contact member of a group of mutually insulated contact members disposed at the surface of said cylindrical body, and switching means controlling completion of the electric circuit between a selected metallic contact member and the container electrode of said dry cell, whereby the filaments in the lamp may be independently operated, said switching means comprising a plurality of permanently positioned conductors which are insulated from each other and from the flashlight casing, each conductor being in the electrical contact with the different metallic contact members on the substantially cylindrical body, whereby each conductor is in electrical contact with a corresponding filament within the lamp, and a switch in electrical contact with the container electrode of a dry cell in the casing, said switch being selectively movable into individual electrical contact with each of the permanently positioned conductors whereby each filament of the lamp may be operated independently.
4. A socket structure for a flashlight lamp having a plurality of independently operable filaments, each filament having a separate insulated terminal in the lowermost face of the cylindrical base of the lamp and a common ground connection through a metallic cylindrical side wall and flared collar at the base of the lamp, comprising a plurality of superposed discs of insulating material, the uppermost disc having a protruding cylindrical receptor on the exposed face thereof for receiving the base lamp, a metallic sleeve having a fiat end portion resting on the exposed face of the uppermost insulating disc and a cylindrical portion encircling the receptor and adapted to complete an electric circuit through the flared collar on the base of the lamp, a metallic member on the undersurface of the lowermost insulating disc adapted to make electrical contact with the centrally disposed electrode of a dry cell, the flat end portion of the metallic sleeve and said fiat metallic member being electrically connected by conductive means passing through the insulating discs, each insulating disc having at its outer surface a peripheral metallic strip, each strip being spaced to prevent electrical contact with any adjacent strip, a ridge being formed on one of said discs protruding outwardly beyond and between said metallic strips, and mutually insulated means within the insulating discs providing electrical contact between each metallic strip and each corresponding filament terminal in the lower face of the base of the lamp, whereby an electric circuit may be established through each filament independently of any other filament.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,336,067 Burgess Apr. 6, 1920 1,377,477 Hambuechen May 10, 1921 1,421,093 Matson June 27, 1922 1,700,673 Eckhardt et al. Ian. 29, 1929 1,992,140 Barber et al. Feb. 19, 1935 2,245,793 Kurlander June 17, 1941 2,304,433 Zimmer Dec. 8, 1942 2,520,023 Allen Aug. 22, 1950