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.


  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3338511 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 29, 1967
Filing dateOct 20, 1965
Priority dateOct 20, 1965
Publication numberUS 3338511 A, US 3338511A, US-A-3338511, US3338511 A, US3338511A
InventorsCvar Harry J
Original AssigneeCvar Harry J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Mail signal device
US 3338511 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

ug. 29, 1967 H. .1. cvAR MAIL SIGNAL DEVICE Filed Oct. 20, 1965 INVENTOR HARRY J. CVAR ATTORNEYS United States Patent O 3,338,511 MAIL SIGNAL DEVICE Harry J. Cvar, 13160 Tremont, Brookfield, Wis. 53005 Filed Oct. 20, 1965, Ser. No. 498,625 1 Claim. (Cl. 232-35) ABSTRACT F THE DISCLOSURE A signal attachment `for mailboxes utilizing a one-piece spring arm having an integral clamp on one end attached to the top front edge of the mailbox. The -free end of the spring arm is normally 'held down in a non-use position by the swinging front door of the box, opening of the box releasing the free end to signal the presence o-f mail.

My invention relates to a mail box signal device, and more particularly to a mail signal device that may be applied as an accessory to a rural mail box for signaling the presence of mail in a mail box.

The object of my invention is to provide a signal device that may be applied to a rural mail box without any mechanical equipment or skill.

Another object of my invention is to provide a device of the character described that is actuated by the manipulation of the cover or door of the mail box when depositing the mail in the box.

A still further object is to provide =a device that is a one piece structure, designed to fit any type of rural mail box.

It is manifest to anyone familiar with the delivery of mail in rural areas, that the mail box is normally located at a distance from the residence, and is usually equipped with some signal device that is manually 'operated by the mailman when delivering the mail, to inform the occupant that mail has been deposited into the mail box. However, the undesirable feature of prior mail signal devices was that at times the mailman would forget to raise or actuate the signal device. It is therefore a prime object of my invention to provide a mail indicator device that automatically moves into a signalling position to indicate the presence of mail when the door of the mail box is opened for depositing mail therein.

The device is simple in construction, economical to manufacture. It may be constructed of a single piece of material and requires no mechanical skill when applying to a conventional rural mail box.

Other and further objects of my invention will become more apparent as the description proceeds, when taken in conjunction with the drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the mail box signal device with the top portion thereof in a signalling posit-ion;

FIG. 2 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view of the device attached to a mail box, shown partly in crosssection, with the device held in a downward position, by the upper edge 'of the door of the mail box;

FIG. 3 is a similar View of the device as shown in FIG. 2, but with the top portion of the mail box signal device in a signalling position when the door of the mail box is opened;

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view of a modied version of the mail signal device; and

FIG. 5 is a lateral cross-section of the top portion of 31,338,51 l Patented Aug. 29, 1967 ICC the signal device taken on the line 5 5 in FIG. 1 to illustrate the arcuate construction.

Similar characters of reference indicate corresponding parts throughout the several views, and referring now to the same, the character 10 shows the body of the device constituting my invention. The body 10 may lbe constructed of a band of spring steel, or other suitable material, and includes a clamp portion 11 at the forward end of a horizontally disposed bottom portion 13, for engagement with a section of a mail box 12 as shown in FIGS. 2 and 3.

The bottom portion 13, terminates into a radial portion or joint 14. A crease 14a is 'formed' at the junction of the top portion 15 with the joint 14.

The free end 16 of the top portion 15 is clamped by the upper edge of door 17 of the mail box 12 when it is in a closed position (FIG. 2). The door 1'7 is hingedly supported at 18, to the mail box 12, (FIG. 2).

When the door 17 of the mail box is opened (see FIG. 3), the top portion 15 is automatically released, and moves upward (see FIGS. 1 and 3) to an outward signailing position to indicate mail in the mail box by the position of a signal flag 19. Signal flag 19, may be of any form, size, or contour and attached in any practical manner to the portion 15 of the device.

If desired the bottom 1an-d top portions 13 and 15 may be arcuated or radially formed .as shown in FIG. 5, to -add to their rigidity.

In as much as the open end of the I'ural mail box i-s usually equipped with a ridge, or lbead `shown as 20, the clamp portion 11 as shown in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 is designed to resilient-ly t over the ridge, or bead 20. In FIG. 4 is shown modied clamp arrangement in which the clamp portion 11 has a member 21 folded for engagement with the ridge, or bead 20 of mail box 12.

From the above description it should become manifest that the device is simple in construction, easy to apply and positive in its actuation and function. The upper edge of the door of the mail box overcomes the outward biasing of the top portion 15 of the mail signal device. When the door of the mail box is opened, the resilient force of the top portion 15 of the signal devices urges the signalling device to yan outward signalling position to indicate the presence of mail.

It isbelieved that my invention, its mode of const-ruction and assembly, and many of its advantages should be readily understood from the foregoing without further description, and it should `also be manifest that While a preferred embodiment of the invention has been shown and described for illustrative purposes, the structural details are nevertheless capable of wide variation Within the purview of my invention as defined in the appended claim.

What I claim Iand desire to secure by Letters Patent of the United States is:

In combination with a mailbox having a front door pivoted at the bott-om to the box, said door having a peripheral inwardly ydirected flange on its sides and its top adapted to overlie a portion of the sides and top of the box, the improvement comprising an automatic signal for indicating the presence of mail in said box, said sign-al comprising, a unitary one-piece device formed of spring steelI and including a bottom portion adapted to lie 'along the top of said box, a reverse bend on the free end of said bottom portion forming a spring clamp and adapted to be engaged over the top front edge of the box to rigidly attach said signal device to said mailbox, said device further including a top portion extending integrally from the remaining end of the bottom member, the area off joinder of said top and bottom portions defining an integral spring hinge, a signal flag mounted on the t'op surface of said top portion, said top portion being normally biased upwardly by said spring hinge, said top portion being adapted to overlie said bottom portion upon the application of an external `force thereto, said top ange of the mailbox door overlying the free end of said top portion of the device when the doo-r is closed and serving as said external tforce, ysaid t'op portion moving to an out- Ward signal position to indicate the presence of mail in the box when said door is opened.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 926,613 6/1909 sheets et ai 23234 1,992,275 2/1935 Zettler 294.99 2,433,992 10i/1949 Young 232-35 2,730,293 1/1956 Haserodt 232-35 2,374,395 2/1959 opp et a1 232-35 3,027,826 4/1962 Morris 294-99 3,042,293 7/1962 Miner 232-17 10 3,102,634 9/1963 Eging 232-35 FRANCIS K. ZUGEL, Primaly Examiner.

FRANK B. SHERRY, Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US926613 *Jun 13, 1907Jun 29, 1909Henry CollinsMail-box.
US1992275 *Jun 23, 1933Feb 26, 1935Zettler Mary ECurtain stretching and impaling device
US2483992 *Jun 24, 1948Oct 4, 1949Young Raymond CSignal attachment for rural mailboxes
US2730298 *Jan 21, 1953Jan 10, 1956Paul Haserodt OscarDetachable automatic mail box signal
US2874895 *Mar 28, 1955Feb 24, 1959Opp Fred WMailbox signal
US3027826 *Sep 17, 1958Apr 3, 1962Morris George AHand tool
US3042293 *Nov 23, 1960Jul 3, 1962Miller Rolford DNewspaper receptacle
US3102684 *Jun 1, 1959Sep 3, 1963Eging Henry BAutomatic mail box signal
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4412646 *Apr 28, 1982Nov 1, 1983Hollenbach David ATwo-piece mechanical flag
US4524905 *Mar 12, 1984Jun 25, 1985Crist Robert MMail box signal device
US4720042 *Apr 3, 1987Jan 19, 1988Tapy Wilbur FMailbox with door actuated signal flag
US4754918 *Dec 22, 1986Jul 5, 1988Rolirad Larry SSignal flag for use on rural mail boxes
US4896624 *Mar 22, 1989Jan 30, 1990Carnwath James RMail box signal apparatus
US5094386 *Mar 4, 1991Mar 10, 1992Josephine M. TabaccoMailbox signals flag apparatus
US5273207 *Dec 8, 1992Dec 28, 1993Johnson Stephen CDelivered mail indicator system
US5497940 *Dec 22, 1994Mar 12, 1996Vogt; Michael A.Mail box signaling device
US6065671 *Dec 14, 1998May 23, 2000Stepleton; FrankRoadside mailbox mail delivery signal
US7066381 *Jul 7, 2004Jun 27, 2006Bundy William JMail indicator
US7270260 *Apr 10, 2007Sep 18, 2007W H PowersMail alert flag
US7357297 *Feb 14, 2007Apr 15, 2008Crowson Ray EDevice for remotely indicating the opening of a mailbox door
US7552858 *Jun 30, 2009Owens Tony FMailbox flag apparatus
US9125507 *Jul 16, 2014Sep 8, 2015Lloyd BeachyMailbox alert system
US20060006218 *Jul 7, 2004Jan 12, 2006Bundy William JMail indicator
US20060102710 *Nov 17, 2004May 18, 2006Clarence Eldon GriffethYou have mail
US20070210146 *Feb 14, 2007Sep 13, 2007Crowson Ray EDevice for remotely indicating the opening of a mailbox door
US20150021384 *Jul 16, 2014Jan 22, 2015Lloyd BeachyMailbox Alert System
U.S. Classification232/35, D99/29
International ClassificationA47G29/122, A47G29/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47G29/121
European ClassificationA47G29/12R2