US 3371166 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Feb. 27, 1968 R. A. WOLFE 3,371,166
SWITCH CONTROL APPARATUS WITH TILTABLE ACTUATOR AND CONTACT STRUCTURE Original FiledApril 17, 1964 3, Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. fioaepr/l W04? A77 AJNEYS Feb. 27, 1968 R. A. WOLFE 3,371,166
SWITCH CONTROL APPARATUS WITH TILTABLE ACTUATOR AND CONTACT STRUCTURE Original Filed April 17, 1964 3 Sheets-$h6et 2- 92 666 we v 2 /00 INVENT/ER. Pose/WA. OLFE Feb. 27, 1968 R. A. WOLFE SWITCH CONTROL APPARATUS WITH TILTABLE ACTUATOR AND CONTACT STRUCTURE Original Filed April 17, 1964 3 Sheets-Sheet /24 Jaw m VIIIIIIIIIII/IIII T INVENT R. 055,074 04 FE United States Patent ()fiice 3,371,166 Patented Feb. 27, 1968 3,371,166 SWITCH CONTROL APPARATUS WITH TILTABLE ACTUATOR AND CONTACT STRUCTURE Robert A. Wolfe, 455 Elizabeth Ave.,
Newark, NJ. 07112 Original application Apr. 17, 1964, Ser. No. 360,711, new
Patent No. 3,292,304, dated Dec. 20, 1966. Divided and this application Oct. 3, 1966, Ser. No. 596,034
11 Claims. (Cl. 200-6) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A switch assembly comprising stationary a-rcuate electrical contacts arranged in a plane along concentric circles, and an actuator having a conical surface with elongated circumferentially spaced contact bars thereon and tiltable in planes perpendicular to the plane of the circles. When the actuator is tilted at least one of the contact bars will interconnect two stationary contacts to establish a preselected electric circuit.
This application is a division of copending application Ser. No. 360,711, filed April 17, 1964, now Patent No. 3,292,304, and entitled Toy Space Ship.
The present invention relates to toys.
More particularly, the present invention relates to toys which move in the air.
One of the primary objects of the present invention is to provide a toy which will simulate a space ship.
A further object of the present invention is to provide a toy which will simulate a space ship and which will enable the operator of the toy to cause movement of the toy space ship in a controlled manner.
In particular, it is an object of the invention to provide a toy of the above type which will permit the operator to maneuver the toy space ship through a wide range of movements including up and down movements to change the elevation of the space ship, forward and rearward movements, and in addition right turns and left turns.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a toy of the above type which enables the operator to control the space ship from a location remote from the space ship.
The objects of the present invention also include the provision of a toy which is madeup of simple electrical components which can be operated to bring about the desired maneuvering of the space ship.
Furthermore, an object of the present invention is to provide a toy which is harmless to operate and which can not injure any objects which it may encounter.
The invention includes a container which is adapted .to be filled with a gas which is lighter than air and which, I when filled with this gas, will float in the air in a state .of substantial equilibrium. The container carries a plurality of propellers driven by reversible electric motors,
" and these motors are electrically connected through a suitable conductor means with a manually operatable selecting means which is distant from the container means during use of the toy and which can be manipu lated by the operator to provide through the conductor tion and in which:
FIG. 1 is a schematic perspective illustration of the toy of the invention;
FIG. 2 is a bottom plan view of the container means of the invention and the structure carried thereby, the container means being shown in FIG. 2 as it appears when looking upwardly toward the bottom of the container means when it has the position shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary sectional plan view showing the details of one motor and propeller assembly carried by the container means, the particular motor and propeller assembly of FIG. 3 being situated at the left side of the container means;
FIG. 4 is a sectional elevation taken along the line 4-4 of FIG. 2 in the direction of the arrows and showing the bottom motor and propeller assembly which is eflective for raising and lowering the floating container means, FIG. 4 showing also additional details;
FIG. 5 is a wiring diagram of the structure of the invention;
FIG. 6 is a transverse sectional elevation showing details of the manually operatable selecting means which enables the operator to select the type of movement which will be carried out by the floating container means, FIG. 6 being taken along the lines 66 of FIG. 7 in the direction of the arrows but showing structure in addition to that which is shown in FIG. 7;
FIG. 7 is a sectional plan view taken along the line 77 of FIG. 6 in the direction of the arrows;
FIG. 8 is a bottom plan view taken along the line 8-8 of FIG. 6 in the direction of the arrows and showing a stationary contact means of the invention as it appears when looking toward the underside thereof;
FIG. 9 is a fragmentary plan view taken along line 9--9 of FIG. 6 and showing the configuration of a cutout in the top wall of the control assembly which controls the movement of tiltable contacts of the invention.
Referring to FIG. 1, there is illustrated therein the container means A which is adapted to be filled with gas which is lighter than air and which, when filled with this gas, will float in the air in a state of substantial equilibrium. The container means A carries a moving means B in the form of motor driven propeller assemblies, for example, so that during operation the moving means B will displace the container means A in the air. An electrical flexible conductor means C is electrically connected with the motors of the moving means B and extends from the container means A to a location remote from the container means A where a manually operatable selecting means D is situate-d, this selecting means being operated in a manner described below to provide at the option of the operator any one of a number of different types of movements of the container means A. The conductor means C and the selecting means D together form a control means which is operatively connected to the moving means B for controlling the manner'in which the container means A is moved by the moving means B. The container means A is made from a gas-tight sheet material 10 which may be any suitable, flexible plastic such as polyethylene, although any one of many available flexible gas-tight plastics may be used, and the sheet material 10 is formed of one or more pieces which are fluid-tightly joined to each other at suitable seams so that when the interior of the container means is inflated the container means will have a configuration, as shown in FIG. 1, simulating the configuration of a space ship.
The sheet material 10 carries at a suitable location a nonreturn valve 12, shown diagrammatically in FIGS. 2 and 4, and a can, which contains a gas which is lighter than air and which is under pressure in the can, can be applied in a well known manner to the valve 12 so as to admit the gas which is lighter than air into the interior of the container means A in order to inflate the latter. For example, a can of pressurized helium may be applied to the valve 12 in order to fill the container means A with helium, and when filled in this manner the container means will rise into the air. When the buoyant force is exactly opposed by the weight of the sheet material plus the weight of the various components described below and carried by the container means A, this container means will float in the air in a state of substantial equilibrium. As will be apparent from the description below, the container means carries in addition to valve 12 various motors and propellers as well as frames for supporting them and electrical conductors, and when the Weight of all of these components is balanced the con tainer means A will float in the air substantially in a state of equilibrium.
One of the motors which is carried by the container means A is a reversible electric motor 14 (FIG. 4) carried by the container means at its underside, and the reversible electric motor 14 is operatively connected with a two or three blade propeller 16 which will be rotated in one direction or the other depending upon the direction in which the motor 14 runs. Suitable electric conductors 30 and 32 are connected electrically with the windings of the motor 14 and form a pair of conductors of the conductor means C. The motor 14 is fixedly mounted on a wall of a substantially open frame 18 which is made of a plastic material, for example, and fixed to the underside of the container means A in any suitable way as by a suitable adhesive or by heat sealing, for example, and the frame 18 has a downwardly directed side wall which extends partly around the propeller means 16 so as to determine in part the limits of the stream of air produced thereby and so as to reduce the possibility of any objects being engaged by the propeller 16 or of the operator accidentally touching the rotating propeller 16.
At its left side the container means A carries a reversible electric motor 201., shown most clearly in FIG. 3, and this reversible electric motor ZtlL drives a propeller 22L in one direction or the other depending on the direction in which the motor L runs. The motor ZtBL is connected to a pair of conductors 34L and 38 which are connected into the circuit in a manner described below. The motor 20L is fixedly carried by a relatively .open frame 24L which is made of plastic, for example, and fixed by adhesive, heat sealing, or the like to the exterior left side of the container means A, and, in order to provide a substantially open framework which will not obstruct the ,flow of air to any appreciable extent, the frame 24L is not only open at its right end, as viewed in FIG. 3, but in addition it is formed with a pair of openings 26 located forwardly of the motor 20L and one of which is shown in FIG. 3. In precisely the same way there is mounted on the right side of the container means A a frame 24R which is a mirror image of the frame 24L and which houses in its interior a reversible electric motor 20R which drives a propeller 22R, identical with the propeller 22L, the motor 20R being identical with the motor 20L, and these elements at the right side of the container means are indicated only in the schematic wiring diagram of FIG. 5.
Within the frame 18 container means A carries at its underside a fitting 28 which is fluid-tight fixed to the container means A and through which all of the conductors from the motors extend in a fluid-tight manner, and all of these conductors form the conductor means C which if flexible and which extends to the manually operable selecting means D which may be located remote from the container means A during operation of the toy, as is apparentfrom FIG. 1.
As may be seen from FIG. 5, the conductor means C is made up of five conductors, namely the conductors 30 and 32 which are electrically connected with the motor 14 for providing up and down movement ,of the craft, the conductors 36 and 38 which are respectively connected electrically with the side motors 20R and 20L, and a fifth conductor 34 which has branches 34L and 4 34R respectively connected electrically with the motors 28L and 20R. Thus, the five conductors 30, 32, 34, 36 and 38 extend in a suitable flexible casing, for example, from the container means A to the manually operable selecting means D.
The manually operable selecting means D carries a pair of contacts 40a and 40b which are adapted to be connected to a suitable source of current such as replaceable dry cell batteries any number of which may be grouped together and mounted within the box 70 which houses the components of the selecting means D, this box 70 having any suitable removable cover which can be removed in a well known manner to give access to the interior of the box so that, when necessary, the batteries can be replaced. The contacts 40a and 4012 which are connected to the source of current are respectively connected by conductors 42a and 42b to a manually operable switch member 44 which when turned in one direction will connect the conductors 42a and 4212 with a pair of contacts 46a and 4611, respectively, and which when turned in the other direction will connect the conductors 42a and 42b respectively with the contacts 48a and 48b to which the conductors 32 and 30 are connected in the manner shown most clearly in FIG. 5. The contacts 46:: and 4612 are respectively connected with the contacts 481) and 48a by the conductors 59 and 52, as shown in FIG. 5, so that when the switch 44 is moved forwardly, for example, to place the conductors 42a and 42b in engagement with the contacts 46a and 46b, respectively, the current will flow in one direction through the motor 14 while when the switch 44 is moved rearwardly toward the operator to place the conductors 42a and 42b in engagement with the contacts 48a and 48b, the current will flow in the opposite direction through the motor 14.
The movable switch member 44 extends to the exterior of the container 7 0 through a suitable slot in the top Wall 122 thereof, as shown in FIG. 1, and any suitable indicia may be provided on the top wall 122, for example, to indicate to the operator that forward movement of the switch 44 will produce downward movement of the container means A, for example, while rearward movement of the switch member 44 toward the operator, assuming that the box 70 is oriented as shown in FIG. 1 in front of the operator, will produce upward movement of the container means A. Thus, depending upon the direction in which the operator moves the switch member 44 of the switch assembly 45, the propeller 16 will be driven in one direction or the other to produce either upward or downward movement of the container means A The structure for controlling the motors 20R and 20L includes a stationary contact means and a movable contact means which is tiltable in a manner described below to cooperate with the stationary contact means. The stationary contact means is made up of a plurality of elongated contact members which extend at least part of the way along a plurality of concentric circles. As may be seen from FIG. 5, the stationary contact means includes an inner circular contact 54 which extends through a complete circle, and next to the inner contact member 54 a pair of contacts 56a and 56b which form part of the same circle but which are spaced from each other as indicated in FIG. 5. These contacts 56a and 56b are surrounded by a contact 58 which extends along a complete circle concentric with the circles along which the contacts 54 and 56a, 56b extend, and beyond the contact 58 are a pair of contacts 60a and 60b which extend along the same circle but which are spaced from each other as indicated in FIG. 5. Finally, an outer contact 62, which extends along a complete circle, surrounds the contacts 60a and 66b.
The box '70 of the selecting means D also carries a pair of contacts 64:: and 64b which are connected to the source of current, which may be the same source of ,current that is connected to the contacts 40a and 46b, and these contacts 64a and 64b are permanently connected with the contacts 601) and 56a by a pair of conductors 66a and 66b, respectively, as indicated in FIG. 5. Thus, the source of current to the side motors will always flow through the contacts 60b and 56a and through the conductors 66a and 66b to the source of current which is connected to the contacts 64a and 64b.
The contacts 56a and 60a are in permanent electrical connection with each other through a jumper 68a, and l a second jumper 68b places the contacts 56a and 60b in permanent electrical connection with each other.
Referring now to FIG. 6, it will be seen that the box 70 has in its interior a ledge 72 on which a plate 74 is mounted. The box 70 as well as the plate 74 is made of a suitable electrically'nonconductive material such as a suitable plastic, and the several stationary contacts referred to above are embodied partly within and thus carried by the plate 74, as indicated in FIG. 6.
As is apparent from FIG. 8, which shows the plate 74 as it appears when-looking toward its bottom surface, this plate 74 is formed with the elongated radially extending openings 76 which are of a substantially rectangular configuration so that the several stationary contacts are freely accessible in these openings, and it is in these openings that the conductor 66a and 66b are conveniently connected electrically with the contacts60b and 56a, respectively, and also the jumpers 68a and 6812 are connected to the contacts 600! and 56a, on the one hand, and
60b and 56b, onthe other hand, in a pair of these openings 76.
The tiltable contact means includes four radial rows of electrically conductive, relatively short bars 78 which are embedded in a circular tiltable plate 80 which is also made of an electrically nonconductive, plastic ma- 1 terial. The rows of contacts 78 which are visible in FIG.
6, are aligned over the stationary contacts, and it is apparent that in these rows there is one extra inner contact 78 which will not engage any of the stationary contacts. When tilted to the right, as viewed in FIG. 6, the five contacts 78 shown at the right of FIG. 6 and located over the stationary contacts will respectively engage the stationary contacts 54, 56b, 58, 60a and 62. In the same engage the five stationary contacts therebeneath, and when the plate 88 is tilted rearwardly toward the operator, who is situated in front of the box 70, the rear row of five contact. elements 78 will respectively engage the five contacts therebeneath.
The several tiltable rows of contacts 78 are electrically interconnected with each other in the manner shown most clearly in FIG. 7. Thus, as may be seen from FIG.
7, the plate 80 carries sets of contacts having springy fingers .82 which resiliently press against the several contact members 78 so as to be in electrical engagement therewith. These contacts 78 extend into four radial openings 84 formed in the plate 80, and there is visible in FIG. 7 inclined surfaces 86 which form one side of the openings 84.
Referring first to the upper part of FIG. 7, the springy contact fingers 82 of a contact member 88 respectively engage ,the outermost pair of contacts 78 of the front row of five contacts, and a contact member 90 has one springy finger 82 engaging the middle contact 78 of the front row of five contacts 78, while the other springy finger of the contact 90 directly engages the springy finger of the contact 88 which engages the second oneof the contacts 78, so that in. this way the second contact 78 of'the front row of contacts 78 is in electrical engagement with both of the contacts 88 and 90, The contact 92 has its springy fingers 82 engaging the two innermost contacts 78 of the front row of contacts. Shown at the lower portion of FIG. 7 is an inner contact 94 having its springy fingers 82 engaging the two innermost contacts 78 of the rear row of five contacts 78, and in addition there are contacts 96 and 98 fixed to the plate and having their outermost springy fingers engaging the middle and outermost contacts 78 of the rear row of contacts 78. The contact member 96 has one of its fingers extending over and engaging the finger of the contact 98 which engages the second contact 78 of the rear row of contacts.
Referring now to the right of FIG. 7, it will be seen that there is an outermost contact 100 having its springy fingers 82 engaging the two outermost contacts 78 shown at the right of FIG. 6, and the next contact 102 has its springy fingers engaging the pair of intermediate contacts 78 shown at the right of FIG. 6, while the innermost contact 104 has its springy fingers engaging the pair of innermost contacts 78 of the right row of contacts shown in FIG. 6.
Referring now to the left of FIG. 7 it will be seen that the innermost contact 106 has its springy fingers engaging the innermost pair of contacts 78 of the left row shown in FIG. 6, while the next contact 108 engages the intermediate pair of contacts 78 and the outermost contact 110 has its springy finger engaging the outermost pair of contacts 78 of the left row of contacts 78 visible in FIG. 6.
As is shown in FIG. 7, there are four sets of springy contact members each of which includes three contact members, and the three contact members are respectively connected with the conductors 34, 36 and 38, as illustrated in FIG. 7. Thus, the outermost contacts of the four sets are connected to the conductor 36, while the inter- F mediate contacts of the four sets are connected to the conductor 38, and the innermost contacts of the four sets are connected to the conductor 34. Actually these wires which are directly connected with the springy contact elements which are carried by the plate 80 are connected to a suitable set of bus barsflor the like which are in turn connected to the conductors 34, 36, and 38 which form part of the flexible conductor means extending to the motors carried by the container means A, and the result is the same as if the conductors 34, 36 and 38 were respectively connected with the several springy contact members carried by the plate 80 in the manner shown in FIG. 7, so that it is believed to be clearer to indicate the wires connected to the contacts as having the same reference characters as the wires which extend to the several motors with which the contacts are respectively electrically connected.
As is apparent from FIG. 6, the bottom central portion 112 of the plate 88 is convexly curved and extends into a central opening of the plate 74 so that in this way the plate 88 can tilt in all directions. A tubular extension 114 is fixed to the plate 80 at a central portion thereof and extends upwardly therefrom, and the tubular extension 114- as well as the central portion of the plate 80 is axially bored, as shown. A post 116 is fixed to and extends upwardly from the tubular extension 114 through an opening 124 which is formed in the upper wall 122 of the box 70, so that the upper end of the post 116 is accessible to the operator. An elongated coil spring 118 extends through the aligned bores of the plate 80 and the tubular extension 114 and is booked at its bottom end onto a rod 120 which extends across the central opening of the plate 74 and engages the plate 74 at its underside, while the top end of the spring 118 is hooked onto a cross pin which extends across the tubular extension 114 at its top end where the tubular extension 114 is fixed to the post 116. Thus, when the post 11 6 is not engaged by the operator the spring 118 will act, because of the fact that it is always under a certain initial tension, to turn the plate 89 to the neutral position shown in FIG. 6 where none 7 of the tiltable contacts 78 engage any of the stationary contacts carried by the plate '74.
Referring now to FIG. 5, it will be seen that when the operator tilts the post 116 forwardly along the forwardly extending branch of the opening 124, the pair of contacts 83 and 90 will place the stationary contacts 62, 60b, and 58 in electrical connection with each other, while the innermost contact 92 will place the stationary contacts 56a and 54 in electrical connection with each other, as shown diagrammatically in FIG. 5. Since the conductors 36 and 38 are respectively connected with the contacts 88 and 90, they will both be electrically connected with the contact 60b, and inasmuch as the conductor 66a is connected to the contact 6%, it is apparent that the contact 64a which is connected to the source of current will in this way be electrically connected with both the condoctors 36 and 38. As may be seen from FIG. 5, these conductors 36 and 38 both extend to the motors 29R and L, respectively, and the branches 34L and 34R continue the circuit from the motors to the conductor 34 which is connected to the contact 92. Because this contact 92 at this time engages the conductors 54- and 56a, it is apparent that the current will flow through the conductor 6612 back to the battery, and it is thus clear that at this time the manually operatable selecting means has through the conductor means C placed the pair of motors in a parallel circuit where they are connected in parallel with each other so that the motors simultaneously rotate in the same directions, and at this time the directions of rotation of the motors are such that the propellers 22R and 22L will be driven to advance the container means A forwardly.
If the operator tilts the post 116 rearwardly then the bars 78 which are engaged by the contact 94 will simultaneously engage the stationary contacts 54 and 56b, and
at the same time the bars engaged by the contacts 96 and 98 will engage the contacts 53, 60a and 62. The result is that the current from the source will flow through the conductor 66a to the stationary contact 6%, from the latter through the jumper 68b to the contact 561') and then through the springy contact 94 along the conductor 34 to the pair of branches 34R and 34L and thus through the windings of the motors 20R and 20L back along the conductors 36 and 38 to the pair of contacts 96 and 93 which are both connected electrically with the stationary contact 60a which by the jumper 63a is connected to the contact 56a which is in turn connected to the conductor 66b so as to complete the circuit in this way. Thus, at this time the motors 20R and 20L are also connected in parallel with each other but the current flows therethrough in the reverse direction so that the motors 22R and 22L are driven in a reverse direction and at this time the container means A will be moved rearwardly by the pair of propellers 22R and 22L which simultaneously rotate at this time in a direction which will move the container means A rearwardly.
If the operator tilts the post 116 to the right along the right branch of the opening 124, as viewed in FIG. 9, the outer pair of stationary conductors 60a and 62 will be connected to each other by the contact 100 which is connected to the conductor 36, while the next pair of conductors 56b and 58 will be interconnected with each other through the contact 102 which is connected to the conductor 38. The innermost contact 104, which is connected to the conductor 34, will only engage the innermost contact 54 so that in this way the conductor 34 is effectively eliminated from the circuit. With the parts in this position the current from the source will flow through the conductor 66a to the stationary contact 6% and through the jumper 68b to the stationary contact 56]) and then through the contact 102 to the conductor 38 which thus places the motor 20L in the circuit. The conductor 34L at this time, because the conductor 34 is eliminated from the circuit, places the motor 20R in series with the motor 20L through the conductor 34R, and from the motor 20R the current flows through the conductor 36 to the contact which is electrically connected through the stationary contact 6% and the jumper 68a to the stationary contact 56:: which is connected to the conductor 6615 so that in this way tne circuit is completed. It is apparent that at this time not only are the electric motors 20R and 20L connected in series, but, in addition, they rotate in opposite directions. The motor 201 will rotate in the direction which drives the propeller 22L to tend to advance the container means A forwardly while the motor 20R is driven in a reverse direction to rotate the propeller 22R in a direction which tends to move the container means A. rearward-1y. Thus, there is at the right side of the container means A, a force tending to move it re'arwardly and. at its left side a force tending to move it forwardly with the result that the container means A at this time will execute a right turn.
If the operator chooses to move the post 116 along the left branch of the opening 124, shown most clearly in FIG. 9, then the contact will electrically interconnect the stationary contacts 62 and 60b, while the contact 108 will electrically interconnect the stationary contacts 58 and 56a. The innermost contact 106 will engage the inner ring 54 but since the innermost bar 78 of the left row of bar '78 shown in FIG. 6 does not engage any of the stationary contacts the conductor 34 will at this time also be effectively eliminated from the circuit. With the parts in this position, the current will flow along the conductor 66a to the conductor 60b and from the latter through the contact 110 to the conductor 36 to the motor 20R which is connected in series with the motor 20L at this time also, because of the elimination of the conductor 34 from the circuit, so that now the current will flow from the motor 20R to the motor 20L and from the latter along the conductor 38 back to the contact 108 which is connected electrically with the conductor 56a so that the current will now flow back to the battery through the conductor 66b, and in this way the circuit is completed. Thus, it is apparent that at this time also the pair of motors 20R and 20L will be connected in series and will simultaneously rotate in opposite directions so as to drive the propellers 22R and 22L in opposite directions, but with this connection the propeller 22R will tend to advance the container means A forwarly while the propellor 22L will tend to move the container means A rearwardly. Thus, there will be at the right side of the container means A a force tending to move forwardly and at the left side a force tending to move it rearwardly with the result that the container means A will at this time execute the left turn.
As may be seen from FIG. 7, the plate 80 is formed with a notch into which a springy wire 151 extends, this wire being fixed at its bottom end to the plate 74 and extending upwardly therefrom through the notch 150 for automatically returning the plate 80 to the angular position shown in FIG. 7. In the event that the operator should displace it from this angular position, the springy wire 151 will in no way interfere with the tilting of the plate 180.
It is of course apparent that the contacts 104 and 106 could be eliminated and in this way the conductor 34 will also be effectively eliminated from the circuit during execution of right and left turns, but the above-described construction is preferred since the three wires are required for the contacts which produce forward and rearward movement of the container means, and by maintaining three wires going to three contacts to execute right and left turns the operator will experience substantially the same resistance to tilting irrespective of the direction in which the operator chooses to tilt the post 116. If the innermost contacts 104 and 106 with the wires extending thereto were eliminated it would be easier to tilt the post 116 to the right and left than to tilt it forwardly and rearwardly, and such a change in the feel of the post 116 is undesirable. i
Also, it is clear that in the actual construction the wires 34, 36 and 38 could be connected directly to contacts 54, 62 and 58, respectively, as shown in FIG. 5, so that the above-described connections of these wires to the springy contacts carried by plate 80 could be eliminated. With such a construction, the springy contacts and the bars 78 which they engage, as described above, would serve only to interconnect the several stationary contacts in the manner shown diagrammatically in FIG. 5.
It is of course apparent that the operation can operate the switch 45 simultaneously with the post 116,so that in this way the container means A can change its elevation while moving forwardly or rearwardly or while executing a right turn or left turn.
What is claimed is:
1. A switch assembly comprising a stationary plate of electrically nonconductive material having an exposed surface, a plurality of stationary electrical contacts of arcuate configuration carried by said plate and extending respectively along a plurality of concentric circles with said stationary contacts having exposed arcuate contact surfaces in a common plane in the region of said exposed surface of said stationary plate, tiltable means having a central axis and a neutral position where said central axis extends perpendicularly to said plane through the common center of said circles, said tiltable means including a body of electrically nonconductive material having an exposed surface which forms part of a cone directed toward said contact surfaces and said cone tapering toward said plane and having an apex located in said central axis, movable contact means carried by said body and having at said exposed surface thereof contact surfaces radially arranged with respect to said central axis in tilt planes which contain said central axis and are perpendicular to said common plane of said contact surfaces of said stationary contacts, said tiltable means being tiltable in said tilt planes from said neutral position to one of a plurality of selected tiltpositions where a selected part of said movable contact meanshas said exposed contact surfaces thereof located in said common plane and bridging selected stationary contacts to place preselected pairs of said stationary contacts in predetermined circuits.
2. The combination of claim 1 and wherein the length of said stationary contacts is great enough to provide for closing of selected circuits even when said tiltable means is angularly turned about its central axis beyond a predetermined starting position through a given distance.
3. The combination of claim 2 and wherein a yieldable spring means coacts with said tiltable means to yieldably maintain the latter in said starting position.
4. The combination of claim 3 and wherein said yieldable spring means includes an elongated wire spring extending from said stationary plate through said body, and said body being formed with a cutout freely receiving said elongated wire spring, the latter extending parallel to said central axis when said tiltable means is in said neutral position thereof and acting to angularly return said tiltable means to said neutral position.
5. The combination of claim 1 and wherein said movable contact means includes a plurality of relatively short contact bars respectively arranged in a plurality of radial rows located in said tilt planes with said contact bars extending perpendicularly through said tilt planes and respectively aligned with said concentric circles and located in said common plane when a selected one of said rows of bars is situated at said common plane, and additional contacts forming part of said movable contact means and carried by said body in a position interconnecting predetermined ones of said bars, so as to provide for preselected circuits according to the direction in which said tends along a full circle and at least two other contacts which extend along different portions of a second circle.
9. The combination of claim 5 and wherein said stationary contacts extend beyond said exposed surface of said stationary plate so that said common plane is situated beyond said exposed surface of said stationary plate and said common plane being parallel to said exposed surface of said stationary plate, said movable contact bars also extending beyond said surface of said body and being exposed at the latter.
10. The combination of claim 1 and wherein a spring means coacts with said tiltable means to yieldably urge the latter to said neutral position thereof.
11. The combination of claim 1 and wherein more of said movable contacts are carried by said tiltable means than are required for the number of circuits which are produced, and flexible conductors extending to all of said movable contacts and providing equal resistance to tilting irrespective of the direction in which said tilting means is tilted by including in said conductors some which go to said contacts which are not required for the establishment of predetermined circuits, so that irrespective of the direction of tilt the same feel will be achieved.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,777,025 1/ 7 Bertaud 2006 X 2,808,476 10/ 1957 Elliott 2006 2,849,548 8/1958 Young 2006 3,193,628 7/1965 Wanlass 2006 ROBERT K. SCHAEFER, Primary Examiner. J. R. SCOTT, Assistant Examiner,