|Publication number||US3404548 A|
|Publication date||Oct 8, 1968|
|Filing date||Jun 29, 1966|
|Priority date||Jun 29, 1966|
|Publication number||US 3404548 A, US 3404548A, US-A-3404548, US3404548 A, US3404548A|
|Inventors||Keefer Owen F|
|Original Assignee||Owen F. Keefer|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (12), Referenced by (16), Classifications (9)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
l Oct. 8, 1968 o. F. KEEFER 3,404,548
Filed June 29, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 7 I r l/ 1.45.1. l y AA24 FIG. ll
FIG I2 INVENTOR. OWEN E KEEFE United States Patent O ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE This invention is directed to a lock for doors, cabinets and the like, and more particularly to locks of a small size using a cylindrical key and providing a very large number of combinations. The tumblers are removable with any one of the tumblers interchangeable to change the lock combination. The tumblers have specially designed radially outward and radially inward projecting ears each one of which is cut into any one of six different cuts which may be arranged in any combination of cuts desired. The shell of the lock barrel has an internal annular groove permitting the spindle to rotate in the unlocked position only when all of the outwardly projecting ears of the several tumblers are depressed so as to rotate in the groove. The key is provided with radial iins of two different diameter portions along the shaft With those of the entering end portion being smaller in diameter than the portion immediately above. The radial lengths of the upper portion are cut so they will just pass a cut portion of the inwardly projecting ears of its corresponding tumbler and each of the smaller portions is cut to a linear length to engage the corresponding tumbler to move the outwardly projecting ear of its corresponding tumbler into the annular groove to the unlocked position.
One of the principal objectives of this lock is to give maximum security. By varying only twelve cuts on the tumbler and using eight separate tumblers the number of possible combinations becomes eight to the twelfth power, which far exceeds the number of possible combinations with any lock which is presently known.
When a key becomes lost, stolen or falls into unauthorized hands, there is no need to chang the locks. All that is required is to remove the head and shift the positions of the tumblers and make a new key for the new combination. Thus, there is no necessity for replacing the locks and virtually a new lock is provided merely for the price of a key.
The lock is completely adaptable not only as a cabinet lock with a bar latch, but it is easily converted to houser hold hardware and various kinds of other similar locks.
The simplicity of the construction and the virtually limitless combinations make the lock substantially pick-proof.
Further objects are to provide a construction of maximum simplicity, economy and ease of assembly and disassembly, also such further objects, advantages and capabilities as will fully appear and as are inherently possessed by the device and invention described herein.
The invention further resides in the combination, construction and arrangement of parts illustrated in the accompanying drawings, and while there is shown therein a preferred embodiment thereof, it is to be understood that the same is illustrative of the invention and that the invention is capable of modification and change and cornprehends other details of construction without departing from the spirit thereof or the scope of the appended claims.
Referring to the drawings:
FIGURE 1 is a vertical section of the assembled lock with the key partially inserted therein;
FIGURE 2 is a side elevational view of a single tumbler;
3,404,548 Patented Oct. 8, 1968 ICC FIGURE 3 is a rear elevational view of a single tumbler;
FIGURE 4 is a top plan view of the rotatable spindle;
FIGURE 5 is a vertical sectional view of the spindle shown in FIGURE 4 taken on the line V--V thereof;
FIGURE 6 is the top plan view of the shell;
FIGURE 7 is the side elevational view of the cylindrical shell;
FIGURE 8 is the top plan view of the retainer;
FIGURE 9 is the side elevational view of the retainer;
FIGURE 10 is a bottom plan view of the retainer;
FIGURE 11 is the top plan view of the head;
FIGURE 12 is a side elevational View of the head;
FIGURE 13 is a side elevational view of the key with the upper portion or handle broken away;
FIGURE 14 is a bottom plan view of the key; and
FIGURE 15 is a fragmentary upper portion of a tumbler on an enlarged scale to illustrate the cutting of the various portions to provide the large number of combinations.
Referring now more particularly to the figures of the drawings in which like reference numerals are used to designate like parts therein, and with particular reference to FIGURE 1, the lock of the present invention and many of its qualities and capabilities are centered around the assembly of a few necessary parts. The first of these is the outer shell 20, shown in more detail in FIGURES 6 and 7, which is cylindrical in form and all other elements or portions are received in or associated with and cooperate with this one portion. Centrally and axially within the shell is the spindle 21 which rotates therein and is shown separately in more detail in FIGURES 4 and 5. Riding within the slots 22 of the spindle 21 are the eight tumblers 23 which are individually shown in detail in FIGURES 2, 3 and in fragmentary enlargement in FIGURE 15. The retainer 24 which holds the tumblers within the spindle 21 is shown separately in detail in FIGURES 8, 9 and 10. Head 25 threadably engages the upper portion of the shell 20 and bears against the top of the retainer 24 separated by a spring disc or washer 26. Formed passages are provided in the head 25, in the spring disc 26, and all the other intermediate members for the passage therethrough and into the axial portion of the spindle 21 of a key 274 shown in more detail on an enlarged scale in FIGURES 13 and 14. The key is cylindrical in shape with a solid core and has eight radial vanes with varying diameters 81 and 82 calculated to bear against certain projections cut in the tumblers 23 in a pre-determined combination so as to operate the lock and rotate the spindle 21 in the shell 20. At the operative end of the spindle is a trunnion 28. All of the elements set forth above are assembled in the manner shown in FIGURE 1 and all must operate in cooperation to make the lock of this invention function. It will be noted that there is a space or separation between the top edge 30 of the shell 20 and the under edge of the fread 25. This space is to accommodate the thickness of the outside wall through which the lock must pass in order to function as a lock for the container. Variations in thickness of the walls may be accommodated by washers so that the head 25 fits tightly against the outer wall.
With particular reference to FIGURES 6 and 7, the shell 20 is cylindrical in form having :a flush top edge 30 to bear against the inner face of the wall of a container in which it is mounted. It is hollow axially with the bottom portion 31 being closed with the exception of an axial through hole 32 for the free but precise receiving of the spindle trunnion 28 therein. The internal wall of the shell 20 is precisely shaped. The bottom is stepped axially outwardly from the bottom hole 32 to provide a shoulder 33 to -bear against the bottom of the increased diameter 34 of the spindle 21. The shoulder 33 is deep enough laterally to accommodate the diameter of the spindle 21 and provide a bearing surface for the necessary rotation of the spindle therein. Above the shoulder 33 the shell has an axial bore represented by the diameter 39. Vertical radial grooves are cut outwardly from the bore 39. All are of the same width, but with various depths or diameters. It will be observed from FIGURE 6 that grooves 35 are of minimum depth, that grooves 36 are of maximum depth and that grooves 37 and 38 are of ditferent median depths. These radial axial grooves are each open at their inner face 40 on diameter 39 and approach the outer face of the spindle 21. Above the midpoint of the shell the diameter 39 is cut back outwardly to form a step 41. Above the cut back step 41 the inner diameter is still further increased at 42 and is internally threaded at 43 adjacent the top portion. There is an elongated hole 44 laterally through the wall of the shell 20 to receive a set screw (not shown).
The spindle 21 shown separately and in greater detail in FIGURES 4 and 5, is cylindrical in shape having a maximum diameter slightly less than the diameter 39. It has two reduced diameters at the bottom to form the trunnion 28 and the extended portion 29 which is threaded but with its opposing vertical faces flattened as at 45 to operate the locking and unlocking device such as a -bar (not shown). The bottom portion 46 of the spindle 21 is solid and due to the various cuts or grooves 22 which stop short of the solid bottom 46, a specific shape is presented at the bottom thereof, as will be more particularly described. It has an axial bore 47 which starts at the top and continues axially but terminates short of the bottom at 48. The vertical cuts 22 extend from the perimeter directly through to the axial bore 47. These do not extend vertically the entire distance to the bottom but stop short thereof terminating angularly downward as indicated by the line 50. It wil be observed particularly with reference to FIGURE 4 that the cuts 22 between the perimeter and the bore 47 have vertical circular vbores 51 which intersect the cuts and make a circular or cylindrical enlargement of the cut in a vertical plane. As will be observed from FIG- URE l, when the spindle 21 is inserted within the shell 20 the threaded portion of the trunnion 28 passes through the opening 32 and the shoulder 34 rests against the shoulder 33 of the shell to form bearing surfaces for the rotation of the spindle within the shell at this point. The threaded and attened trunnion passing through is available then for connection with the locking and unlocking means. It will also be observed from FIGURE l that the spindle 21 positioned axially within the shell 20 rests substantially below the top surface 30 of the shell.
Referring now to FIGURES 2 and 3, the tumblers 23 are of essential configuration not only to the operation but to the variations and combinations which this lock has in great abundance and far beyond anything accomplished by any other locking mechanism. The tumblers 23 are irregular in shape and are flat except for two spherical projecting portions 52, one at either side. It will be observed that the thickness of the tumblers 23 is precisely formed so that it will ride in vertical movement within the cuts 22 of the spindle 21. The spherical portions 52 ride within the cylindrical cuts 51 of the spindle. In this manner the tumblers are positioned vertically at all times but are capable of slight rotative movement even though the travel is vertical. The vertical outer face 53 of the tumbler 23 is so shaped as to be substantially coplanar with the outer periphery of the spindle 21. Extending outwardly from this face 53 but of the same thickness, and beyond the limits of the spindle when the tumbler is in position, is a land area 54. The top of the tumbler is curved as at S in its primary form. As shown in FIG- URE 2 and also shown in FIGURE l5, the curvature 55 extends inwardly defining an overhang or land area 56 the inner surface of which is vertically aligned with the vertical cut 57, the same being separated by an inwardly cut neck portion 58. The cut of the tumbler is angular asat 60, between the neck and the face 57, the angle thereof being downwardly and inwardly. Extending inwardly beyond the face 57 is a foot 61. The foot has an inner face which is substantially vertically aligned with the diameter of the inner bore 47 of the spindle. It will be observed that the bottom surface 62 of the tumbler 23 is cut at an angle which is downwardly and inwardly. The purposes of these angular cuts 60 and 62 and the basic land areas 54 and 56 will become apparent as this description proceeds.
It should be noted particularly in FIGURE 5, the cylindrical bores 51 extend vertically into the solid base 46 of the spindle 21 as at 63. In assembling the lock, springs 64 are positioned vertically within the wells 63. The top of the springs 64 when assembled as shown in FIGURE 1, bear against the angled surface 62 of the tumbler 23.
Referring now more particularly to FIGURES 8, 9 and l0 which show the retainer 24, the retainer is formed of a circular cap member having an axial through bore 65 with radial cuts 66 extending outwardly toward the perimeter but short thereof. The axial cuts 66 are uniform but are slightly greater in radial depth than the maximum diameter of the key vanes 81 as shown in FIGURE 10. The top 67 has a diameter to iit snugly within the shell in the lower area of the portion 42 and adjacent the threads 43. It may be provided with ears 68 to fit in grooves appropriately provided in the shell 20. These ears prevent rotation of the retainer and position it solidly with relation to the shell and the spindle. It will be observed particularly in FIGURE l0 that the depending cylindrical wall 70 of the retainer 24 has radial through cuts 71 which align vertically with the through cuts 22 of the spindle 21. The retainer 24 as shown in FIGURE 1 ts down within the shell 20 so that the bottom edge of the wall 70 engages the shoulder formed by the diameter 42. It is to be observed that the fit of the retainer within the shell is such that not only do the slots 71 align with the through cuts 22 of the spindle, but they also align with the slots 35, 36, 37 and 38 of the shell leaving an annular passage 41 within the shell and beyond the perimeter of the spindle 21. Above the top of the retainer 24 when it is positioned within the shell as explained, is a disc washer or spring washer 26. The through opening of the washer 26 is of suicient diameter to accommodate the largest diameter of the slots in the retainer 24.
The head 25 is shown in enlarged detail in FIGURES ll and 12. This is the exposed member which is on the outside of the wall into which the lock is fitted and the exposed surface of which is best shown in FIGURE l. It has a through bore 72 with radial slots 73 extending outwardly a short distance therefrom. Here again the radial slots are of suflicient radial depth to accommodate the maximum diameter of any of the key vanes 81 referred to. The head 25 may be shaped in any desired manner useful in the prevention of picking or dislodging. It is shown as tapered. The head 25 has an inwardly directed barrel 74 which is hollow and threaded as at 75 on its outer surface. The threads engage the inner threads 43 of the shell 20 and the terminating end of the barrel 74 engages the spring disc 26. As will be observed, there is a threaded hole 76 laterally in the wall of the barrel 74 which is intended to register with the hole or groove 44 in the shell in order to lock the head to the shell against rotation. It is to be noted that there is no access to the set screw when the cabinet is closed and locked.
Of course, one of the most important features of the lock is the key. The key 27 shown is quite different from anything heretofore usual and is primarily based upon a single solid shaft 80. From the shaft 80 are radially outwardly directed vanes 81. The vanes 81 have a larger radial diameter than the vanes 82 which are coplanar therewith. The width of the vanes 81 and 82 is carefully designed to slide smoothly within the cuts and slots heretot'ore mentioned, but without any noticeable side movement. The radial distances of the vanes 8l and 82 are varied in accordance with the demands for each individual lock based upon the cutting of the tumbler land areas 54 and 56, as will be hereafter explained.
Eight slots 22 and eight tumblers 23 have been used in the drawings to illustrate this invention. It is obvious that any number of cuts may be used from one up to the limits of the available material. In the eight slots and tumblers shown in the drawings with the variations provided by the six different cuttings in each of the land areas 54 and 56, the combinations possible amount to more than 549,000,000,000. The importance of this is that it gives a maximum security of at leant 1,000 times greater than anything presently known or available.
Referring to the tumbler 23 and particularly to the land area S4 which is outwardly of the neck 58, six cuts are possible. These cuts are made in vertical increments. This is better demonstrated by reference to FIGURE l5. In the first position or first combination, the land area 54 is reduced in vertical size to that shown as A. It should be borne in mind that the vertical height of any remaining portion of the land area 54 can be no greater than the height or size of the annular passage 41 between the bottom of the retainer and the shoulder 41 of the shell. The remaining area A as shown in FIGURE for the next combination remains in the same height or size but is positioned lower vertically by the appropriate increment. This is illustrated by the portion B which represents the fifth cut out position for this land area in a total of six cuts or combinations provided for the land area 54. By the positioning of the remaining land areas 541 or S45, for example, it is practical to get six different positions on each tumbler in the vertical adjustment. The tumbler 23 also provides a horizontal or lateral adjustment for six additional combinations. This is also illustrated in FIGURE 15. The lateral adjustment is made by cutting back the projecting portion 56. Here again it is possible and practical to get six different lateral positions, the last one or the sixth position being indicated by the line 83 which is a few thousandths inwardly of the vertical face of the neck 58. The lateral adjustment is accomplished by cutting back the inner edge 84 in pre-determined increments. Reference to FIGURE 1 shows that the projection 56 is uncut and is therefore in the first combination. On the opposite side the projection 56 is completely cut back to the line 83 shown in FIGURE 15 and is therefore in the sixth position. The six cuts are represented by the letters a to f. To accommodate the key to the cuts made on the land areas 54 and 56, the varies 81 which are the radially larger vanes, are cut laterally shorter to coincide with the cuts on the land area 56. Thus, if the land area 56 of the tumbler 23 is cut to the sixth position shown by the dotted line 83, then the vane 81 is not cut back. However, if the land area is uncut so that the face 84 is untouched then the corresponding vane of the key is cut back almost to the shaft 80. On the other hand, the positioning of the land area illustrated by numerals 541 and 545 determines the depth to which the tumbler is pushed within the spindle for operation. It should be remembered that the remaining land area whether it be A or B or any one of the six increments thereof, must be moved downwardly vertically so as to be rotatable in the annular channel 41. Accordingly, if the remaining land area is that shown as A this Will require the maximum travel. Therefore the corresponding vane 82 will remain uncut vertically. However, if the distance of travel is shortened by the positioning of the remaining land areas the corresponding vane 82 will be cut upwardly and inwardly to the diameter of the shaft 80 to lessen the distance of travel. The movement of the tumber within the slots 22 of the spindle 21 is accomplished by the terminating end 85 of the lesser vanes 82 engaging the shoe 61, the shape of which remains constant. Upon engagement of the terminating end 85 of the vanes 82 engaging the shoe 61, that particular tumbler will be moved downwardly in its corresponding slot 22 against the resistance of the spring 64 until the remaining land area illustrated by A and B in FIGURE 15 is positioned for rotation within the groove 41. It is necessary to have all of the land areas of the eight tumblers moved so that they all come into operative position at the same time for rotation of the spindle and locking or unlocking. If any one of the land areas represented by A and B of the eight tumblers does not register within the groove 41 then the spindle will not be turned by the key. It is also necessary to point out that in the event the cutting of the vanes 81 does not correspond with the cutting of the land area 56 the varies will then push the tumbler laterally in one direction or the other so that they cock within the slots 22 and there is no possibility of turning the spindle 21. This provides the other group of combinations so that even if one cutting corresponds completely, that is the cuttings of the land area 54, it still will not unlock if the cuttings of the land area 56 do not also correspond.
The angular cut 60 is made to correspond with the bottom of the varies 81. On the smallest of locks the two Would just miss making contact by thousandths of an inch and if the cut at `60 was straight, it would cut into the hole made for the spherical insert in the tumbler. As to the angular cut 62, it will be noted that these are cut to the same angle as 50. In the locked position the springs tend to push the bottom surface outwardly.
Because of the enormous number of possible combinations in this particular lock it is completely practical to have the locks and their individual combinations registered with the manufacturer to a particular customer so that no one else may purchase a lock with a registered combination or purchase a key for such a lock. However, locks need to be changed from time to time for various reasons, a key may be lost or as so frequently happens in the expanding vending machine business, a route man quits and takes with him keys, or duplicate keys are made surreptitiously. The possibility of unlawful use of a key is important in the vending and laundry machine businesses because as many as fifty or sixty machines may be involved in any one particular combination. To replace the locks is not only a nuisance but it is extremely expensive and time-consuming. Here again the advantages of this lock become pre-eminent. All that is necessary is to notify the factory to have a new key made which will, for example, accommodate a switching of the twelve oclock tumbler and the four oclock tumbler. The ease and availability of the lock mechanism for this purpose provides a whole new lock and combination merely by the change of position of the tumblers and the changed position gives a whole new lock for the price of a single key, and if there is more than one lock with this combination then they are converted to the complete number of new locks, fty, sixty or more, for the price of a new rkey. The savings are enormous without in any way jeopardizing the security of the lock.
Furthermore, when the lock is positioned properly within the cabinet it is substantially pick-proof. So far as is presently known the lock described herein cannot be picked or operated without the exact key for the combination. The number of combinations is so extensive that passkeys, skeleton keys and such are of no use whatever.
Another lparticular feature involves the key itself. It is intended to be made of hardened sintered metal from unique dies which restricts the manufacture of the blanks to the manufacturer of the lock. There would be no place to which any Iunauthorized person could take a key and have it reproduced from a blank.
As has been stated earlier, the lock as shown in the -drawings is intended for use in vending machines, cabinets, les and such and is approximately one-third of the size shown in the drawings. It is easily adapted to larger sizes for use in doors and other common uses of locks Where a larger size would be desirable. Also, it is important to note that the shell, instead of being made individually as shown in the drawings, can be incorporated in the builders hardware and the head 25 and spindle 21 inserted therein to make it adaptable for this type of service. The simplicity of the structural elements for this lock and its ease of assembly coupled with the extensive combinations and the emphasis on security make it adaptable for any service with features heretofore not attainable.
1. In combination a key lock comprising a cylindrical shell having a top, a bottom and internal vertical slots extending radially outwardly but short of the outer perimeter and short of the bottom thereof, and having an axial bore in the bottom formed with a surrounding bearing flange, a cylindrical spindle member received within said shell having a top, with an axial opening, a bottom and vertical radially disposed slots extending therethrough and registering with the Slots of said shell, said spindle slots stopping short of the bottom of said spindle and said spindle having an operating shaft extending from the bottom thereof penetrating the axial bore and engaging the bearing ange of said shell, a series of tumblers having various cuts, a retainer positioned above the top of said spindle within said shell having peripheral vertical grooves registering with the radial slots of said shell, said retainer having an axial opening having radial maximum depth slots extending in uniform length from said axial opening of said retainer, means preventing rotation of sai-d retainer relative to said shell, means mounting said tumblers in the slots of said shell and said spindle and in the grooves of said retainer for vertical movement between lo-cked and unlocked position, means on said tumblers preventing rotating of said spindle relative to said shell in the locked position, a spacer head adjustably engaging the said shell in accommodation with a thickness of a material in which the lock is set, said head having a central axial opening with equal maximum depth radial slots extending therefrom, said slots of the head registering with the slots of said retainer and said spindle, and a cylindrical key for said lock sized to pass through the axial opening of the said head, retainer and spindle and hav- -ing radial ns for riding in said slots of said head, retainer and spindle and engaging as well as passing various cut portions of said tumblers to position said tumblers in the unlocked position in order for said key to rotate said spindle.
2. The combination of claim 1 wherein the vertical slots of the spindle have vertical hemispherical grooves coextensive therewith and in each side of each slot, and wherein each tumbler is provided with outwardly extending hemispherical portions which ride and vertically guide therein.
3. The combination of claim 1 wherein the vertical slots of the spindle have vertical hemispherical grooves coextensive therewith and in each side of each slot forming a vertical cylindrical bore, said bore being extended into the base of said spindle, and wherein each tumbler is provided with outwardly extending hemispherical portions which ride and vertically guide therein7 and resilient means in said extended bores contacting a bottom edge of the tumblers biased to return and maintain the tumblers in the normal locked position.
4. The combination of claim 1 wherein the tumblers are removable and interchangeable.
5. The combination of claim 1 wherein each of the tumblers has a radially outward extending ear which is cut in at least one of six dilIerent horizontal cuts, and the shell has an annular groove to permit the outwardly extending ears to rotate therein in the unlocked positions of each tumbler.
6. The combination of claim 1 wherein each of the radial fins of said key has two different diameter portions, the portion adjacent the keys entering end being smaller than the other portion, and where each of the other portions is cut in the diameter to pass a cut portion of an inwardly projecting ear of its corresponding tumbler, and each of the smaller portions is cut to a linear length to engage the corresponding tumbler to move an outwardly projecting ear of said corresponding tumbler to the unlocked position.
7. The combination of claim 1 wherein the tumblers have a radially inward projecting ear which is cut in at least one of six different vertical cuts.
8. The combination of claim 1 wherein the tumblers are removable and interchangeable and where the tumblers have radially outward and radially inwardly extending ears each of which are cut into any one of six different cuts and which may be arranged in any combination of cuts desired, wherein the shell has an internal annular groove permitting the spindle to rotate in the unlocked position only when all of the outwardly extending ears of the several tumblers are depressed so as to rotate in said groove, and wherein each of the radial ns of said key has two different diameter portions, the portion adjacent the keys entering end being smaller than the other portion, and where each of the other portions is cut in the diameter to pass a cut portion of an inwardly projecting ear of its corresponding tumbler and each of the smaller portions is cut to a linear length to engage the corresponding tumbler to move an outwardly projecting ear of said corresponding tumbler to the unlocked position where the outwardly extending ear will arrive at the annular groove in the said shell at the same time as the other such outwardly projecting ears to permit rotation of the spindle.
9. The combination of claim 8 wherein each tumbler is constantly urged toward the locked position.
10. The combination of claim 1 wherein each tumbler is constantly urged toward the locked position.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,720,838 7/1929 Iznaga 70-411 X 1,804,955 5/1931 Schlumpf. 2,044,534 6/1936 Lejbowicz. 2,557,028 6/1951 Deutsch 70--363 3,251,205 5/1966 Kerr 70-404 X 3,258,945 7/1966 Kerr 70-404 X FOREIGN PATENTS 300,821 5/1900 France.
485,598 l/l918 France.
855,330 2/ 1940 France.
246,806 7/ 1911 Germany.
813,510 9/1951 Germany.
79,882 3/ 1952 Norway.
MARVIN A. CHAMPION, Primary Examiner.
PERRY TEITELBAUM, Assistant Examiner.
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|U.S. Classification||70/491, 70/366, 70/377, 70/409, 70/349, 70/404|