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Publication numberUS3009052 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 14, 1961
Filing dateApr 14, 1960
Priority dateApr 14, 1960
Publication numberUS 3009052 A, US 3009052A, US-A-3009052, US3009052 A, US3009052A
InventorsRobert S Holbrook
Original AssigneeRobert S Holbrook
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Decorative electrical lighting system for christmas trees
US 3009052 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 14, 1961 R. S. HOLBROOK DECORATIVE ELECTRICAL. LIGHTING SYSTEM FOR CHRISTMAS TREES Filed April 14, 1960 FIG. 3

FIG. 2

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R BER S.HO BROOK H I S ATTO N Y Nov. 14, 1961 R. s. HOLBROOK 3,009,052

DECORATIVE ELECTRICAL LIGHTING SYSTEM FOR CHRISTMAS TREES Filed April 14, 1960 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 g I0 8 a 29 as g r 21 E g as 29 33 FlG. IO .q' 33 R W i.== mi' {:i| lltallll i i INVENTOR.

ROBERT 3. HO BROOK HIS ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,009,052 DECORATIVE ELECTRICAL LIGHTING SYSTEM FOR CHRISTMAS TREES Robert S. Holbrook, 239 E. South Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah Filed Apr. 14, 1960, Ser. No. 22,347 6 Claims. (Cl. 240-461) This invention relates to decorative electrical lighting systems for Christmas trees and, more particularly, to a new and improved electrical lighting system of the type conveniently mountable and removable from the top stem of a Christmas tree wherein the mounting portion of the ring structure associated with the top stem of the tree is free of wires, lights, and other incumbrances, thereby enabling the easy mounting of the ring structure to the tree and also providing a pleasing, outwardly draped effect in the light strings employed.

An object of the present invention is to provide a decorative electrical lighting system for Christmas trees, for example, in which the system exhibits a top, light ornament and, if desired, one or more light strings depending therefrom, the manner of attachment of the light strings to the ring structure of the system being such as not to interfere with the mounting of the ring structure to a tree.

Another object of the invention is to provide a pleasing disposition of the top lights of the light strings used relative to the ring structure.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a decorative electrical lighting system wherein the ring structure unit is very inexpensively manufactured, both from the cost of materials used and, in particular, the fabrication employed.

According to the present invention a light socket device is used which, in a preferred embodiment of the invention, has a recessed base suflicient for mounting the same to the top stem of a Christmas tree. Preferably, the device consists of a pigtail-type socket with a mounting tube disposed in press-fit relationship. Where this structure is employed, then the input leads connected to the terminals of the socket are routed through side apertures of the mounting tube and are tied together against the mounting tube to make the structure secure. Even where a unitary, light socket device is employed, the recessed base of the socket should include radial, side apertures for input lead routing; preferably here also the input leads are tied together or otherwise engaged for convenience of assembly and, in particular, for the attachment of other wires thereto.

Retaining means such as a disc is mounted upon and surrounds the light socket device of the invention. Other retaining means such as a rubber band may be employed. Where the retaining means is a perforated disc, then the disc may be mounted either upon the socket proper or upon the mounting tube of the socket device.

Of importance is the fact that the input conductors from the energy source and also the electrical leads of the several light strings are connected together in two junctures with the input leads of the socket, with the input conductors and electrical leads being routed upwardly through the retainer means and downwardly and outwardly therefrom. In this way, conjestion at the mounting tube area which otherwise would interfere with mounting the system on a tree is avoided; additionally, the light strings fan out radially in a draped effect so as to be very pleasing in appearance.

The features of the present invention which are believed to be novel are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. The present invention, both as to its organization and manner of operation, together with further objects and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is an elevation, partially sectioned for purposes of clarity, of a light socket which may be used in the present invention.

FIGURES 2 and 3 are elevation and plan views, respectively, of the light string retaining disc of the invention.

FIGURES 4 and 5 are elevation and plan views, respectively, of the mounting tube utilized in the invention.

FIGURE 6 is an elevation, partially sectioned and cut away for purposes of clarity, of an assembly consisting of the socket, mounting disc, and mounting tube heretofore described together with component parts associated therewith.

FIGURE 7 is a plan view taken along the line 7-7 in FIGURE 6.

FIGURES 8 and 9 are elevations, a portion of the latter being shown in section, of the assembly shown in FIG- URE 6 when the same is processed in forming the completed structure contemplated by the invention.

FIGURES l0-13 are elevations of the electrical lighting system of the invention and illustrate additional, various embodiments thereof.

In FIGURE 1 light socket 10 is of the conventional, pigtail type and is provided with terminals 11 and 12 and a casing 13 exhibiting recessed area 14. Input leads 15 and 16 are soldered or otherwise connected to the terminals 11 and 12, respectively.

In FIGURES 2 and 3 the light string retaining means of the invention is constituted by a disc 17 which includes a central mounting aperture 18 and a plurality of mutually spaced admittance apertures 19. The placement and operation of this disc 17 will be considered hereinafter.

The invention also comprehends the possible use of a mounting tube 20 (see FIGURES 4 and 5) which consists simply of a tube segment having side apertures 21 and 22.

One manner of assembling the structure illustrated in FIGURES 1-5 is illustrated in FIGURE 6 wherein it will be seen that" the mounting tube 20 carries disc 17 and is press fitted into the recess area 14 of socket 10. Immediately prior to the assembler urging the upper end of mounting tube 20 into the base of the socket 10, leads 15 and 16, preliminarily, are afiixed to terminals 11 and 12 and are caused to proceed through apertures 21 and 22 as shown so that they may be available for connection exterior of mounting tube 20.

The combination of socket 10 and mounting tube 20 may be thought of as a light socket device 23, with mounting tube 20 being the hollow mounting portion 24 thereof. Thus, socket 10 and mounting tube 20 may be manufactured as a unitary part (i.e. light socket device 23) rather than as two separate parts. Electrical leads 25 of light strings 26 proceed upwardly from their electrical junctures with input leads 15 and 16 through apertures 19 of mounting disc 17 and from thence upwardly and outwardly from the central structure of the system. Correspondingly, the input conductor pair 27 and 28 proceed through admittance aperture 19 of disc 17 in a similar fashion and thus are ready for joining to the several wires as illustrated hereinafter. Interposed in the input conductor pair 27, 28 is a conventional, manually operated switch 29 (which may be of the type having needle contacts which pierce the casing of the electrical conductors 27 and 28 to make electrical contact therewith; this also applies to the attachment of the several sockets 30 of the light strings 26 to the electrical lead pairs 27, 28).

Immediately prior to the time of the insertion of the tures 19 of disc 17, the input leads 15 and 16 should be caused to engage each other in a manner such as that illustrated in the (semi) knot 31 of FIGURE 8. Knot 31 serves to insure the retentive engagement of mounting tube 20 with socket 1t additionally, disc 17 is appropriately positioned and secured for the molding process by the knot 31 thrusting it against the plug 18- proper. Thus, the input leads 16 and 17 are now secure so as to be available for easy electrical connection to the remaining leads, now to be described.

Referring now to FIGURE 8, electrical junctures X and Y are formed by input conductor 27, connected to input lead 15 to form juncture X, and by input conductor 28, connected to input lead 16 to form juncture Y. Additionally, one of the leads 25 of each light string 26 :is connected to juncture X, and the remaining electrical lead 26 of each light string pair is connected to juncture Y. The two junctures X and Y are preferably twisted junctures, having friction tape 32 wrapped individually therearound. The friction tape 31 is removed from juncture X merely for purposes of convenience of illustration.

FIGURE 9 illustrates the final steps in the fabrication of the system; it is shown therein that the wrapped junctures X and Y are bent and urged inwardly, and friction tape 32 is wrapped therearound, securely retaining the spaced, insulated junctures X and Y against mounting tube 20. Subsequently, fill material 33 is supplied to encase disc 17, socket 1t and the electrical junctures X and Y, structure and also to provide the outer contour of the completed ring R to be placed over the top stem of the Christmas tree.

It is advantageous in the fabrication of the device to prepare a mold which has a base bore into which mounting tube 20 may fit. Particularly if this means of fabrication is supplied, then a suitable plastic insert S should be deposited into the interior of mounting tube 20 to seal the apertures 21 and 22 of mounting tube 20 so as to prevent the fiow of molten, plastic material therethrough during the molding process.

Completing the sy tem is a plug 34 which is securely aflixed to leads 27 and 28.

FIGURES 10-13 illustrate various other forms which the present invention may take. In FIGURE 10, for example, the ring structure R of the invention which mounts the top of the Christmas tree is provided with no light strings; hence, the input conductors 27 and 28 may be integral with input leads 15 and 16 so as to constitute unitary leads 35 and 36. In this configurement, as in some of the others, the double, side aperture (21, 22, see FIGURE arrangement is advantageous where the production of a knot engagement 3-1 is desirable. However, and particularly in this embodiment of the invention, the portion 24 of the light socket device 23, (i.e. mounting tube 20) may include but one of side apertures 21, 22.

FIGURE also illustrates a variation in thepositioning of disc 17, the latter this time engaging socket 1t proper; this positioning may be preferred for all other embodiments as well as this.

In FIGURE 11 the system is shown to include merely one light string 26 (a three-socket unit) instead of the two light strings 26 (one-socket units) is illustrated in FIGURE 6.

FIGURE 12 illustrates a four, light string system with the same structural approach as illustrated in FIGURES 6-9.

Alternatively, the FIGURE 13 configuration is possible and is substantially identical with the FIGURE 9 structure, excepting that two additional light strings 26 are added and star bulbs S are employed. The appearance is very novel in connection with the system shown in FIG- URE 13 since a wreath of stars surrounds the tree top, this in addition to the presence of the top star ornament S. If star-type lights are not employed, then conventional lights L may be used.

While it is deemed preferable to employ the disc 17 of FIGURES 2 and 3 in preference to any other light string retaining means, conceivably a simple device such as a rubber band may perform the same function. Nevertheless, it is desirable that the electrical leads of the light string and also the input conductor pair proceed upwardly through the retaining means and then outwardly and downwardly therefrom. As before explained, this is for the purpose of reducing the structure of the system in the region of mounting tube 20 so that the tree stern may be easily positioned therewithin. Additionally, a pleasing draping effect may be effected by the up-and-out configurement of the light strings in the region of the socket 10.

While particular embodiments of the present invention have been shown and described, it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that changes and modifications may be made without departing from this invention in its broader aspects, and, therefore, the aim in the appended claims is to cover al such changes and modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of this invention.

I claim:

1. A decorative, electrical lighting system for mounting to the top stem of a Christmas tree, including, in combination, a light socket device having a pair of electrical terminals and provided with a hollow mounting portion, circumscribing and extending beyond said terminals, for mounting the system to the top stem of a Christmas tree, said hollow mounting portion being provided with side aperture means; a pair of leads respectively passing through said side aperture means into said hollow mounting portion and connected to said electrical terminal pair; a plug coupled to said leads; means for retaining said leads in proximity with said socket device said leads proceeding from said socket terminals, through said side aperture upwardly through said retaining means, and outwardly and downwardly from said retaining means; and fill material molded immediately about said socket device encasing said socket device and said retaining means.

2. Structure according to claim 1 wherein said light socket device comprises a socket provided with said terminals, with said hollow mounting portion thereof comprising a mounting tube coaxial aligned with and engaging said socket about said terminals and extending therebeyond, said mounting tube being provided with a pair of apertures, said leads respectively proceeding from said terminals, passing through said apertures, respectively, and retentively engaging each other against said mounting tube.

3. A decorative, electrical lighting system for mounting to the top stem of a Christmas tree, including, in combination, a light socket device having a pair of electrical terminals and provided with a hollow mounting portion, circumscribing and extending beyond said terminals, for mounting the system to the top stem of a Christmas tree, said hollow mounting portion being provided with side aperture means; a pair of input leads respectively passing through said side aperture means into said hollow mounting portion and connected to said electrical terminal pair; a pair of input conductors respectively connected to said input leads and forming electrical junctures therewith; at least one light string having a pair of electrical leads respectively connected to said junctures; means for retaining said light string, near the region of said junctures, in proximity with said socket device, said electrical leads proceeding from said junctures upwardly through said retaining means and outwardly and downwardly therefrom; and fill material molded immediately about said socket device encasing said socket device and said retaining means.

4. A decorative, electrical lighting system for mounting to the top stem of a Christmas tree, including, in combination, a light socket device having a pair of electrical terminals and provided with a hollow mounting portion, circumscribing and extending beyond said terminals, for mounting the system to the top stem of a Christmas tree, said hollow mounting portion being provided with side aperture means; a pair of input leads respectively passing through said side aperture means into said hollow mounting portion and connected to said electrical terminal pair; a pair of input conductors respectively connected to said input leads and forming electrical junctures therewith; at least one light string having a pair of electrical leads respectively connected to said junctures; insulating means disposed about said junctures, insulating one from the other, means for retaining said light string, near the region of said junctures, in proximity with said socket device, said electrical leads proceeding from said junctures upwardly through said retaining means and outwardly and downwardly therefrom; and fill material molded immediately about said socket device encasing said socket device and said retaining means.

5. A decorative, electrical lighting system for mounting to the top stem of a Christmas tree, including, in combination, a light socket device having a pair of electrical terminals and provided with a hollow mounting portion, circumscn'bing and extending beyond said terminals, for mounting the system to the top stem of a Christmas tree, said hollow mounting portion being provided with a pair of side apertures; a pair of input leads retentively engaging each other against said hollow mounting portion and respectively passing through said side apertures into said hollow mounting portion, connected to said electrical terminal pair; a pair of input conductors respectively connected to said input leads and forming electrical junctures therewith; a plurality of mutually spaced light strings each having a pair of electrical leads respectively connected to said junctures; insulating means wrapped around said juncture and said device, insulating and spacing said junctures; means for retaining said light string in proximity with said socket device at a region near said junctures, said electrical leads proceeding from said junctures upwardly through said retaining means and outwardly and downwardly therefrom; and fill material disposed about said socket device encasing said junctures, said socket device and said retaining means.

6. Structure according to claim 5 wherein said retaining means comprises a disc having a central aperture engaging said socket device and a plurality of admittance apertures receiving said electrical leads of said light strings and said input conductor pair.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,510,230 Johnston Sept. 30, 1924 2,092,520 Nielsen Sept. 7, 1937 2,863,041 Steinbach Dec. 2, 1958

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1510230 *Jan 28, 1924Sep 30, 1924Johnston JohnLight for christmas trees and the like
US2092520 *Oct 14, 1936Sep 7, 1937Nielsen RichardChristmas tree appendage
US2863041 *Jan 8, 1957Dec 2, 1958Stiffel CompanyLighting fixture
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3118618 *Jan 3, 1962Jan 21, 1964Robert S HolbrookLighting device for trees
US3277291 *Mar 9, 1964Oct 4, 1966Robert S HolbrookDevice for christmas trees
US3723723 *Jan 4, 1971Mar 27, 1973Small World Importing CorpChristmas tree electric light decoration set
US4228486 *Dec 1, 1978Oct 14, 1980Towa Dengyo Co., Ltd.Miniature electric light bulb sets for decorative illumination
US4720773 *May 27, 1986Jan 19, 1988Ahroni Joseph MDecorative light assembly
US6203171May 5, 1997Mar 20, 2001Robert T. Sherman, Jr.Apparatus for creating an ornamental lighting display
US6457839 *Feb 2, 2001Oct 1, 2002Jean J. GrandoitArtificial electric christmas tree
Classifications
U.S. Classification362/249.1, 362/249.19, 174/72.00A, D13/134, 362/123, 362/806
International ClassificationH01R33/00
Cooperative ClassificationH01R33/00, Y10S362/806, F21S4/001, F21W2131/40, F21S8/035, F21W2121/00
European ClassificationH01R33/00, F21S8/03G1, F21S4/00E