US 3309774 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
,BQEJ M COMBINATION SPIRIT AND HYDROSTATIC LEVELS AND CHALK LINE PATENT A E/v7" 5 6 9 R l E 1|. 0 T 2 U t w C S A w l 1 TL March 21, 1967 United States Patent 3,3G9,7 7 4 CQIVIBiNATiON SPiRlT AND HYDRGSTATIC LEVELS ANi) CHALK LINE Andi- Cloutier, 168 St. Faustin St., St. Jerome, Quebec, Canada Filed Sept. 29, 1965, er. No. 488,395
- 2 Claims. (Cl. 3387) The present invention relates to an instrument for carpenters and other similar tradesmen and is more specifically directed to a spirit level.
The general object of the present invention resides in the provision of a spirit level embodying means at one end for constituting a chalk line and also means for storing a hydrostatic level and means for illuminating the general area where levelling is effected when said area is in the dark.
Another important object of the present invention resides in the provision of a level of the character described, having a novel construction to accommodate the spirit level tubes and the chalk line.
Another object of the present invention resides in the provision of a level of the character described, which is more specially designed to be made of a synthetic resin reinforced with fibreglass to provide a level of light weight, and yet of rigid construction and which will not warp with time.
Another object of the invention resides in the provision of a level of the character described, which is very simple and inexpensive to manufacture.
The foregoing and other important objects of the present invention will become more apparent during the following disclosure and by referring to the drawings, in which:
FIGURE 1 is a side elevation of the level;
FIGURE 2 is a plan section taken along line 22 of FIGURE 2;
FIGURE 3 is a partial plan section, on an enlarged scale, of the end of the level containing the chalk line; and
FIGURE 4 is a plan section, on an enlarged scale, of the end of the level containing the lighting means.
Referring now more particularly to the drawings in which like reference characters indicate like elements throughout, the level in accordance with the invention consists of an elongated body, generally indicated at 1, of rigid construction and molded in one piece and made of a light weight metal, such as aluminum or magnesium alloy, but preferably made of a synthetic resin reinforced with fibre glass.
Body 1 is composed of a web 2 joining together to flanges 3 extending in spaced parallel planes along the entire length of body 1 and providing flat and straight outside surfaces 4 parallel to each other.
Body 1 is further provided with end flanges 5 and 6 forming outside flat and straight surfaces 5' and 6 which are at exactly right angles to the outer surfaces 4.
It will be noted that flanges 3, 5, and 6 form a complete frame and that web 2 is located on one side of said frame joining with the flanges and integral therewith at one edge of said flanges.
In the center of body 1 and integral with center area of web 2, is located a flange 9 forming a rectangular frame which serves as a support bracket for a spirit level tube 10.
Frame 9 is open on the side opposite web 2, while the latter is provided with a window opening 11 opposite the inside frame 9. Spirit level tube will indicate level when outside surfaces 4 are horizontal.
Tube 10 is inserted through an opening 12 made in one end of frame 9 until its end is engaging an opposite cavity 13 made at the other end of the frame 9.
The level tube is firmly held in adjusted position by conventional means.
Hole 12 is closed by a conventional threaded plug, not shown.
Equally spaced on each side of central rectangular frame 9, are located additional rectangular frames 14, the long axes of which are at right angles to surfaces 4. Rectangular frames 14 are integral with web 2 and protrude within the space defined by the flanges 3, 5, and 6.
One end of each frame 14 has a cavity 15, While the other end is provided with an opening 16 for the insertion and positioning of a spirit level tube 17, which are adjustably positioned and secured by screw plugs in such a way that they will indicate level when surfaces 4 are vertical, or surfaces 5' and 6' are horizontal.
Intermediate central level tube 10 and its rectangular frame 9 and the outer level tubes 17 and their rectangular frames 14, are positioned cylindrical studs 18 protruding within the cavity between the flanges 3 and integral with web 2. Furthermore, spring clamps 19 are secured to web 2 intermediate studs 13 and central rectangular frame 9.
The cavity defined by Web 2, flan es 3 and rectangular frame 14, is normally closed by a cover 20 fitted within the free edges of flanges 3 and rectangular frames 14 so as to be flush with the outside edges of said flanges 3 and frame 14.
Cover 20 is removably held in position by permanent magnets 21 embedded within studs 18. If cover 20 is not made of a paramagnetic material, they will be provided with small pieces of such material opposite the magnets 21.
Naturally, cover 20 is provided with a window opening 24 opposite spirit level tube 10 to enable the reading of the latter from either side of the level, even when cover 20 is in cavity-closing position.
The cavity 22 thus defined serves as a storage for a hydrostatic levelling tube assembly, generally indicated at 23.
Hydrostatic level 23 consists of a flexible tube 25, made of rubber or the like flexible material, and fitted at its outer ends with bulbs 25, of transparent material, such as plastic or the like, said bulbs having a pin hole to allow atmospheric pressure within the top of the bulbs 26. This assembly is filled with a liquid.
At the end of body 1 provided with end flange 5, there is formed between said end flange and the outer wall of rectangular frame 14, Web 2 and flanges 3, a circular cavity 27 for housing a chalk line 28.
Chalk line 28, which consists of a flexible rope, is wound on a spool 29, being secured to said spool at its inner end and having its outer end attached to a knob 30, after having passed through a hole 31 made in the end thickened portion 32 of the end flange 5.
Said second portion 32 forms on the outside a recess 33 for receiving knob 39 and completely housing the same in the wound condition of chalk line 28 on spool 29.
Spool 29 is provided with a cylindrical flange extension 34 defining a cavity for receiving a cylindrical boss 35 integral with Web 2. Spool 29 is retained against boss 35 by means of a bolt 36 and square nut 37.
The bolt 36 is rotatable Within a through hole made in boss 35 and is held against rotation with respect to spool 29 by means of the square nut 37. The latter is provided on the outside of spool 29 with a pivoted handle 38, which serves to rotate the spool 29.
The cavity 27 is closed by a removable cover 39 having a sliding fit with spool 29. Cavity 27 is adapted to be partially filled with chalk to coat the line 28.
The opposite end of the body, that is the end having the end flange 6, forms a circular cavity 40, normally closed by a removable cover 41 made of translucent material.
A light bulb socket 42 is secured within cavity 40 to receive a light bulb 43, and is connected to batteries 44 located in cavity 4-3 to provide a lighting system having a switch not shown.
The light bulb 43 will produce illumination through translucent cover 41 to illuminate a dark area Where it is desired to take a level reading, with the hand level consisting of body 1 and levelling tubes and 17.
The hand level is used in the usual manner and provides, whenever desired, a readily accessible hydrostatic level for establishing an absolute level line between points which are too far apart for the practical use of the hand level, even when associated with a straight bar.
The hydrostatic level 23 is removed from cavity 22 after the cover has been removed. Bulbs 26 are placed at the two points to be levelled and marked off.
After use, the hydrostatic level is wound back on studs 18 of cavity 22 and cover 20 replaced.
The level in accordance with the invention also provides, as previously noted, a chalk line 28 which is always readily accessible for marking off a straight line with chalk on any surface.
Knob 30 is pulled out to unwound chalk line 28 which is coated with chalk contained in cavity 27. The line 28 is tensioned and struck on the surface to be marked otf to leave a white line of chalk.
The body 1 is also preferably formed with a plurality of openings 45, made in web 2, for further decreasing the overall Weight of the instrument.
Body 1 is also provided at at least one corner thereof with an arcuate notch 46 for receiving a needle point to be used as a pivot around Which the body 1 may be rotated to describe circles. Thus, a pencil or other marking device may be held against the surface of the body 1 at any desired distance from notch 46 to describe a circle of the desired radius.
The level in accordance with the invention forms a very convenient instrument for carpenters and other similar tradesmen who have to perform often several times the same day the operations of levelling by a hand level, levelling by a hydrostatic level and marking off a straight line with a chalk line. All these instruments are combined in the same instrument in accordance with the invention. Furthermore, the light source formed by bulb 43 is very useful because, oftentimes, the levelling bulbs 10 and 17, or the hydrostatic level, have to be read off in dark areas.
While a preferred embodiment in accordance with the invention has been illustrated and described, it is understood that various modifications may be resorted to without departing from the scope of the appended claims.
What I claim is:
1. A spirit level comprising a body having parallel top and bottom flanges, end flanges normal to said top and E bottom flanges and a Web joining said flanges along an edge thereof, a plurality of elongated spirit level tubes disposed in frames formed by said web and at an angle to each other, said body forming a cavity adjacent one of said end flanges, a spool rotatably mounted within said cavity, a handle for rotating said spool secured thereto a rope wound on said spool passing through an 0pen ing made in said one end flange, a knob attached to the outer end of said rope, said cavity adapted to receive chalk or other powder material for coating said rope to be used as a chalk line; said end flange, provided with an opening for the passage of said rope, forming a small recess at the outside face thereof for completely storing the knob secured to the outer end of said rope in the wound condition of said rope on said spool, and a cover removably closing said cavity and having a sliding fit with said spool for retaining powdered material within said cavity.
2. A spirit level comprising a body having parallel top and bottom flanges, end flanges normal to said top and bottom flanges and a web joining said flanges along an edge thereof, a plurality of elongated spirit level tubes disposed in frames formed by said web and at an angle to each other, said body forming a cavity adjacent one of said end flanges, a spool rotatably mounted within said cavity, a handle for rotating said spool secured thereto, a rope wound on said spool passing through an opening made in said one end flange, a knob attached to the outer end of said rope, said cavity adapted to receive chalk or other powder material for coating said rope to be used as a chalk line, wherein one of said elongated spirit level tubes is disposed in substantially the center of said body, said body further defining a central large cavity defined by said web and by top and bottom flanges and surrounding said central spirit level tube, studs integral with and protruding from said web in said central cavity on each side of said central spirit level tube, an hydrostatic level consisting of a flexible elongated tube and of levelling bulbs fitted to the ends of said flexible tube, said flexible tube wound on said studs and surrounding said central spirit levelling tube, clamps secured to said body and removably retaining said bulbs in said cavity, and a cover for closing said cavity.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,098,033 5/1914 Friendship 33217 X 2,453,091 11/1948 Holloway et a1. 33-213 2,615,122 10/1952 Coombs 33211 X 3,016,616 1/1962 Matson 3387 FOREIGN PATENTS 266,920 5/1950 Switzerland.
LEONARD .FORMAN, Primary Examiner. H. N. HAROIAN, Assistant Examiner.