Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3227948 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 4, 1966
Filing dateApr 22, 1963
Priority dateApr 22, 1963
Publication numberUS 3227948 A, US 3227948A, US-A-3227948, US3227948 A, US3227948A
InventorsWalter C Cheshire
Original AssigneeWalter C Cheshire
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Multi-purpose flashlight structure
US 3227948 A
Images(1)
Previous page
Next page
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. 4, 1966 w. c. CHESHIRE 3,

MULTI-PURPOSE FLASHLIGHT STRUCTURE Filed April 22, 1963 INVENTOR.

[Va "lief 61 61265451 6 x44 ww zw' A TTORNE YS United States Patent C) MULTl-PURPOSE FLASHLIGHT STRUCTURE Walter C. Cheshire, 9000 S. Main, Hometown, Ill. Filed Apr. 22, 1963, Ser. No. 274,535 8 Claims. (Cl. 324-53) The present invention relates to improvements in flashlight structures and more particularly concerns a new and improved rnulti-purpose flashlight of simple, rugged construction and adapted to be produced and sold at low cost.

An important object of the present invention is to provide a new and improve-d flashlight structure provided with a novel interrupted circuit peripheral casing construction.

Another object of the invention is to provide a multipurpose flashlight structure having novel means whereby it is readily adaptable for not only ordinary flashlight uses, but also for a large variety of testing purposes.

A further object of the invention is to provide a new and improved flashlight structure having an interrupted circuit casing and combination pocket clip and switch device cooperative to adapt the assembly for a variety of different uses which ordinarily require different instrumentalities to attain.

Still another object of the invention is to provide a new and improved multi-purpose flashlight structure having a novel arrangement of longitudinally interrupted outer peripheral electrical contact means and longitudinally slidable and reversible combination switch, pocket clip and prove device.

A yet further object of the invention is to provide a new and improved flashlight structure having a novel externally electrically conductive casing construction and longitudinally slidable ring switch means.

Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will be readily apparent from the following detailed description of certain preferred embodiments thereof taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing, in which:

FIGURE 1 is a longitudinal sectional elevational view through a flashlight structure embodying features of the invention;

FIGURE 2 is an elevational and partially sectional view of the flashlight showing the combination ring switch and clip-probe member in circuit closing position on the casing;

FIGURE 3 is an elevational view of the flashlight showing the same equipped to serve as a testing probe;

FIGURE 4 is an elevational view of the flashlight showing how the same is adapted for testing electrical components such as fuses; and

FIGURE 5 is an elevational view of a modified form of a flashlight structure.

Referring to FIGURES 1 and 2, a flashlight structure 7 embodying features of the invention comprises a tubular casing including by way of example a continuous body tube 8 of dielectric material such as fiber, synthetic plastic, and the like of an internal diameter to receive and support one or more flashlight batteries 9 disclosed as a pair of such batteries in tandem.

Engaged about the dielectric body tube 8 is a pair of electrically conducting and desirably metal outer peripheral tubes 10 and 11 disposed in coaxial alignment and of the same outside diameter. In this instance, the peripheral casing tube 10 is on the front end portion of the flashlight assembly and has its front end portion projecting beyond the front end portion of the dielectric supporting body casing tube 8 a limited distance to accommodate a head ring 12 rigidly carried thereby and providing a concave reflecting surface 13 about a central opening 14 through which projects the lens portion of "ice a flashlight lamp bulb 15 having an externally threaded plug base 17 with the usual rearwardly axially projecting contact boss 18 which engages the contact of the front battery 9 in the assembly. A thrust ring flange 19 is threadedly engaged about the plug base of the lamp and extends forwardly about its ferrule and engages the inner face of the head ring 12 to maintain the flashlight lamp against axially outward displacement through the opening 14 within which it is centered.

In the present instance, the front end external casing tube 10 is aflixed to the body casing tube 8 against longitudinal displacement and the rear external casing tube 11 is frictionally slidably engaged with the body tube 8 and carries on its rear end a retaining closure member 20 having an inner concentric boss 21 about which is seated and centered a coiled compression spring 22 providing a resilient thrust member engaging the rear end of the rearmost battery 9 and thrusting it into electrical engagement with the foremost battery 9 and the contact 18 of the lamp bulb 15.

By the construction and arrangement whereby the adjacent ends of the external casing tubes 10 and 11 are in limited spaced relation an interrupted circuit is provided between the rear end of the battery assembly through the electricallyconductive spring 22 and the electrically conductive thrust member 20 and the tube 11 at one side of the switch gap between the ends of the external tubes, and between the front end of the battery assembly, the lamp contact 18, the threaded plug ferrule 17, the electrically conductive retaining ring 19, the electrically conductive head ring 12 and the front casing tube 10 at the other side of the switch gap. Through this arrangement, it is necessary in order to complete a circuit for lighting the lamp bulb 15 to bridge the switch gap between the adjacent ends of the external casing tubes 10 and 11.

According to the present invention, switch means are provided adapted to bridge the gap between the tubes 10 and 11, and more particularly means to bridge such gap at the periphery of the tubes. In a desirable form, such switch means comprise a frictionally embracing longitudinally slidable electrically conducting member 23 conveniently in the form of a split metallic ring of a width greater than the switch gap and adapted to be carried by either of the tubes 10 and 11 to be digitally slid into bridging, circuit closing relation across the gap.

In a highly convenient and advantageous form, the frictionally slidable switch ring 23 carries a combination pocket clip, switch arm and probe finger 24 which may be formed integrally in one piece with the ring and projects from one side thereof to a substantial length and has intermediate its length an inwardly bowed gripping portion 25 normally spaced from the perimeter of the underlying casing tube but in relatively close relation thereto so as to grip a pocket P between it and such portion of the perimeter to retain the flashlight in the pocket as shown in FIGURE 1 wherein the ring portion 23 is on the forward portion of the front tube 10. In this relation ship, the portion of the pocket P interposed between the switch-clip finger extension 24 and the surface of the conductive casing tube serves as an insulator to prevent closing of a circuit through the flashlight.

Although the switch gap may be located adjacent to either end of the flashlight casing, a preferred arrangement has the gap adjacent the front end, whereby the tube 10 is shorter than the tube 11, as illustrated, and in this arrangement it will be observed that the clip-switch finger 24 projects across the switch gap and the indentation 25 opposes the adjacent end portion of the sleeve tube 11 while the retaining switch ring 23 is disposed conveniently about the casing sleeve tube 10. Accordingly, when the flashlight assembly 7 is to be used as a flashlight, the clipswitch finger 24 is adapted to be readily resiliently flexed as a switch lever toward and into electrical contact with the casing sleeve 11 whereby to complete a circuit across the switch gap. The particular construction and relationship disclosed in FIGURE 1 makes it quite convenient to actuate the switch lever 24 manually at will while the flashlight is held in one hand. Due to its resilience, the switch lever clip 24 springs out of circuit closing relation to break the circuit whenever switch closing flexing pressure is released from it.

When it is desired to maintain the circuit through the flashlight closed indefinitely and independently of the clipswitch lever 24, it is a simple matter to slide the switchclip ring 23 longitudinally along the perimeter of the casing sleeve into bridging relation across the switch gap between the casing sleeves 10 and 11 as seen in FIGURE 2. A simple digital manipulation to slide the ring 23 forwardly or rearwardly to clear the adjacent end portion of one of the sleeves 10 or 11 at the gap, breaks the circuit at will.

Another advantage of the casing sleeve switch gap resides in the ability to use the flashlight 7 without operation of the self-carried gap closing switch device 23, 24, by laying the flashlight on an electrically conducting surface S as depicted in FIGURE 3 whereby such surface bridges the gap and closes the lamp illuminating circuit through the flashlight. This is a convenience where spot illumination is desired in working on metallic apparatus of any kind as in a machine shop or on a work bench.

As also shown in FIGURE 3, the finger 24 is adapted to be conveniently utilized as a probe in testing electrical wiring, circuitry and the like. For this purpose, the finger is reversed from its pocket clip relationship to the flashlight casing and is engaged about the front end portion of the casing to project forwardly from the front end as shown. Cooperatively related to the probe finger is a flexible electrical lead 27 having at one end a plug jack 28 adapted to be secured through a jack socket hole 29 in the rear closure and the boss 21 into electrical contact with the rear portion of the electrically conductive casing. At its opposite end, the electrical lead 27 has means such as an alligator clamp 30 by which it can be electrically attached to an electrical conductor, lead, terminal and the like in a lead, apparatus and the like to be tested. Through this arrangement, when the clamp 30 is attached at one place in or to an electrically conductive device, the probe 24 contacting such device at another point shows by whether or not an electrical circuit is completed through the flashlight 7 to light the bulb 15 whether the electrically conductive object or device is complete between the two points of contact. This testing arrangement is useful, for example in testing electrical circuits in radio and television servicing, low voltage vacuum tube filament testing, testing small rectifiers, phasing and testing radio speakers, testing electrical cords and switches, and even small batteries wherein a live battery will cause the flashlight lamp 15 to burn brightly while a dead battery will cause a drain on the flashlight batteries and cause the flashlight lamp to glow dimly.

For testing various plug-in or detachable electrical items such as fuses, plug-in rectifiers, flashlight bulbs, and the like, the flashlight '7 may be utilized as a testing device in the manner depicted in FIGURE 4. Thus, by moving the frictional clamping ring 23 toward the rear end of the electrically conductive casing sleeve 11 so that the tip of the finger 24 overlies the conductive casing sleeve 10 a convenient relationship is afforded for quick testing of plug fuses, flashlight bulbs and the like in the manner schematically depicted. On the other hand, elongated devices such as small cartridge fuses, simply bridging the switch gap and engaging the contact ends of the fuse against the perimeter of the casings 10 and 11 will complete a circuit if the fuse is sound. Of course, for larger sizes of cartridge fuses the electrical lead or extension 27 may be utilized for testing purposes to reach one end of the fuse while either the probe 24 or the casing sleeve 10 are engaged against the opposite end of the fuse.

All of the several exemplary testing uses to which the flashlight and its appurtenances can be used as recited are suggestive of numerous testing uses to which the flashlight can be applied.

Instead of equipping the flashlight with external conductive sleeves, the arrangement of FIGURE 5 may be employed wherein a flashlight 7 is depicted which is essentially similar to the flashlight 7 but has a casing tube 8 of a dielectric material and providing the major external periphery of the housing or casing of the flashlight while longitudinally extending electrically conductive discontinuous strips 10' and 11' are mounted in longitudinally extending spaced alignment on or in the perimeter of the casing tube 8', with the forward end of the strip 10 being in electrical contact with the flashlight lamp 15 through or at the head closure member ring 12' fixedly secured to the front end of the casing tube 8', and the conductive strip 11 is either attached to or at least in electrically conductive association with the rear or bottom end closure member 20' for electrical connection with the batteries within the flashlight body or casing.

A combination clip, resilient switch lever and probe device including the slidably frictionally clampingly embracing switch ring 23 and finger extension 24' functions in the same manner as already described for the switchprobe device 23-24 of the flashlight assembly 7 as described. In this instance, the ring portion 23' electrically contacts the electrically conductive area provided by either the strip 10' or the strip 11' or bridges the switch gap therebetween, as may be desired at any given time. One advantage of this modified arrangement resides in that by turning the clip-switch device 23'24 either to the left or to the right to clear the finger 24' from making contact with the underlying conductive strip area, positive assurance is had that it will not accidentally close the flashlight circuit to illuminate the lamp 15.

A feature that may be utilized either on the finger 24 of the flashlight 7 or on the finger 24 of the flashlight 7, and is shown as applied to the finger 24, is a small permanent magnet tip 31 thereon to serve the useful purpose of probing for or fishing out and retrieving magnetically attractable small articles. For this purpose, the finger and clamping ring structure is disposed to project the finger forwardly in the manner depicted in FIGURE 3, and the ring 23 can then be manipulated into switch closing relation similarly as depicted in connection with FIG- URE 2 so that the lamp 15' or 15, as the case may be, will cast a retrieval assisting light beam into the area into which the probe is directed for engaging the article or articles on the magnetic tip 31.

While the flashlight construction of the present invention is not limited as to particular dimensions, it will be appreciated. that in the form shown it is especially useful as a pocket size or, pencil type instrument. Its simplicity in ruggedness of construction are apparent. The manifest versatility of the flashlight structure has been indicated by various examples without any attempt to exhaust its possibilities.

It will be understood that modifications and variations may be effected without departing from the scope of the novel concepts of the present invention.

I claim as my invention:

1. A flashlight structure comprising:

a tubular casing providing a battery housing barrel having opposite ends,

electrically conductive means on the perimeter of the casing presenting substantial electrical contact areas defining a switch gap therebetween,

means at one end of the casing for connecting one of said areas electrically with battery means in the barrel,

means at the opposite end of the casing for connecting a flashlight lamp and the other of said areas electrically to the battery means,

and a combination pocket clip and switch lever structure comprising a frictional gripping ring slidably embracing the periphery of the casing and electrically contacting one of said areas and having a switchclip lever portion projecting across said gap and overlying the other of said areas and being flexibly movable into engagement with said other of said areas to complete a circuit through the flashlight as long as said lever portion is held in such engagement,

said ring being slidable into closing relation across said gap and thereby into circuit-completing engagement with both of said areas whereby to maintain the closed circuit relationship until the ring is slidably displaced to open said gap.

2. A flashlight structure as defined in claim 1 in which said electrically conductive means comprise metal tubes engaging about said tubular casing.

3. A flashlight structure as defined in claim 1 in which said electrically conductive means comprise longitudinally extending strips.

4. A flashlight structure comprising:

a tubular casing providing a battery housing barrel having opposite ends,

electrically conductive means on the perimeter of the casing presenting substantial electrical contact areas defining a switch gap therebetween,

means at one end of the casing for connecting one of said areas electrically with battery means in the housing,

means at the opposite end of the casing for connecting a flashlight lamp and the other of said areas electrically to the battery means,

and a combination pocket clip-switch lever-probe device comprising a frictional switch and clamping ring embracing the casing peripherally and a clip-switch lever-probe finger lever projecting from one side of the ring longitudinally,

said ring being slidably manipulatable along the perimeter of the casing into switch-closing bridging relation across said gap and being also adapted to engage only one of said areas with the lever finger extending into overlying relation to the other of said areas and movable thereinto for bridging the gap and, closing the circuit through the flashlight and being further maneuverable into position wherein the lever finger projects beyond the lamp end of the flashlight as a probe and the ring serves as a switch to bridge said gap for closing the circuit through the flashlight.

5. A flashlight structure as defined in claim 4 in which said electrically conductive means comprise metal tubes engaging about said tubular casing.

6. A flashlight structure as defined in claim 4 in which said electrically conductive means comprise longitudinally extending strips.

7. A flashlight structure comprising:

a tubular casing providing a battery housing barrel having opposite ends,

electrically conductive means on the perimeter of the casing presenting substantial electrical contact areas defining a switch gap therebetween,

means at one end of the casing for connecting one of said areas electrically with battery means in the housing,

means at the opposite end of the casing for connecting a flashlight lamp and the other of said areas electrically to the battery means,

a combination pocket clip-switch lever-probe device comprising a frictional switch and clamping ring embracing the casing peripherally and a clip-switch lever-probe finger lever projecting from one side of the ring longitudinally,

said ring being slidably manipulatable along the perimeter of the casing into switch-closing bridging relation across said gap and being also adapted to engage only one of said. areas with the lever finger extending into overlying relation to the other of said areas and movable thereinto for bridging the gap and closing the circuit through the flashlight and being further maneuverable into position wherein the lever finger projects beyond the lamp end of the flashlight as a probe and the ring serves as a switch to bridge said gap for closing the circuit through the flashlight,

said sleeve being in addition movable toward the lamp end of the casing in electrical contact with the adjacent of said areas with said gap remaining open,

and electrical lead. means having electrical connection with the end of the battery means remote from the lamp end of the flashlight and adapted to cooperate with said lever finger serving as a probe to test electrical devices or circuits which when closing a circuit through the probe and the lead will cause the flashlight lamp to illuminate.

8. A flashlight structure comprising:

a tubular casing providing a battery housing barrel having opposite ends,

electrically conductive means on the perimeter of the casing presenting substantial electrical contact areas defining a switch gap therebetween,

means at one end of the casing for connecting one of said areas electrically with battery means in the housing,

means at the opposite end of the casing for connecting a flashlight lamp and the other of said areas electrically to the battery means,

and. a switch-probe device including a frictional gripping ring portion engageable about the casing and having projecting longitudinally from one side a probe finger provided at its tip with a magnet,

said ring portion being movable into switch closing relation across said gap and with the finger projecting beyond the lamp end of the flashlight whereby the lamp will illuminate an area in which a magnetically attractive article is to be picked up by the magnet at the tip of the finger.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,144,201 6/1915 Hipwell 240--10.68 2,272,902 2/1942 Bible 240----2.18 2,459,351 1/1949 Weincord 24010.68 X 2,540,402 2/ 1951 Mosier 324-53 2,550,233 4/1951 Duncan 24010.68 X 2,588,559 3/1952 Needham 240-1066 X 2,769,896 11/1956 Lambert 2006O X 2,780,722 2/ 1957 Lambert 240-106 2,916,699 12/1959 Eisenberg et al. 32453 X FOREIGN PATENTS 620,007 10/ 1935 Germany.

NORTON ANSHER, Primal Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1144201 *Mar 25, 1915Jun 22, 1915Harry H HipwellPortable flash-light.
US2272902 *Feb 1, 1941Feb 10, 1942Bible Roy CIgnition point checking device
US2459351 *Aug 14, 1944Jan 18, 1949Maurice WeincordIlluminated test device
US2540402 *Apr 4, 1947Feb 6, 1951Mosier Fern SElectrical testing probe
US2550233 *Dec 11, 1947Apr 24, 1951Duncan James JFlashlight, fuse, and circuit tester
US2588559 *Jun 20, 1950Mar 11, 1952Simon P NeedhamCombination flashlight and continuity fuse tester
US2769896 *Jan 7, 1953Nov 6, 1956Reuben B LambertFlashlight switch
US2780722 *Jan 7, 1953Feb 5, 1957Reuben B LambertFlashlight casing
US2916699 *Sep 25, 1956Dec 8, 1959Phaostron Insturment And ElectCombination probe and continuity tester
DE620007C *May 23, 1934Oct 11, 1935Gerhard JaegerElektrische Stableuchte mit aussen am Gehaeuse angeordneter und zugleich zur Kontaktherstellung dienender Halteklammer
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3506919 *Jul 21, 1967Apr 14, 1970Fistell David NModulated portable signaling or test transmitter
US3609262 *May 13, 1969Sep 28, 1971Hotchkiss Instr IncNeck-carried battery pack
US3634680 *Aug 3, 1970Jan 11, 1972Truman L MyrahPlug-in flashlight extension
US3737650 *Jul 18, 1972Jun 5, 1973Mallory & Co Inc P RDisposable flashlight
US4005362 *Jan 26, 1976Jan 25, 1977Fortino Samuel SElectrical circuit continuity tester
US4408263 *Dec 14, 1981Oct 4, 1983Wonder Corporation Of AmericaDisposable flashlight
US5460346 *Oct 5, 1993Oct 24, 1995Hirsch; NathanArticle holder
US5477434 *Jul 21, 1994Dec 19, 1995Fisher Tool Co., Inc.Extension bar with built-in light used in conjuction with a portable driving tool
US6685374May 9, 2003Feb 3, 2004Cotapaxi, Inc.Big clip pen
US7018123Jan 28, 2004Mar 28, 2006Cotapaxi Custom Design And Manufacturing, LlcBig clip pen
Classifications
U.S. Classification324/507, 362/203, 362/396, 200/60
International ClassificationF21V23/00, F21V33/00
Cooperative ClassificationF21L7/00, F21V33/00, F21V23/00
European ClassificationF21V23/00, F21L7/00, F21V33/00