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Publication numberUS3416247 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 17, 1968
Filing dateJun 16, 1966
Priority dateJun 16, 1966
Publication numberUS 3416247 A, US 3416247A, US-A-3416247, US3416247 A, US3416247A
InventorsHerbert B Sternberg
Original AssigneeHerbert B. Sternberg
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Identification apparatus and improved seal element
US 3416247 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 17, 1968 H. B. STERNBERG INDENTIFICATION APPARATUS AND IMPROVED S EAL ELEMENT Filed June 16, 1966 FIG.|

United States Patent Oifice 3,416,247 Patented Dec. 17, 1968 3,416,247 IDENTIFICATION APPARATUS AND IMPROVED SEAL ELEMENT Herbert B. Sternberg, 265 Quentin Road, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11223 Filed June 16, 1966, Ser. No. 558,109 9 Claims. (Cl. 402.2)

ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The invention is concerned with apparatus for providing a permanent record of information pertaining to a vehicle or other type of machinery and includes a bracket adapted to be fixed to a part of the vehicle or machinery and a cover adapted to be removably engaged over the bracket, the cover and bracket each being provided with several panels and the panels on the cover being adapted to receive printed information, and a seal which is connected with a tongue on the bracket and which passes through a pair of openings in both the cover and the bracket and is adapted to encircle the cover so as to lock the cover to the bracket and reduce the possibility of tampering with the printed information on the cover.

This invention relates to a novel system for permanently recording the history of a vehicle or other type of apparatus. More particularly, the invention is especially concerned with apparatus providing a permanent record of information identifying the vehicle or other type of machinery.

This invention is an improvement over the inventions disclosed and claimed in my US. Patents Nos. 2,973,596 and 3,006,092.

As is known from the aforementioned two prior patents, the apparatus for providing the permanent information record generally includes a bracket adapted to be fixed to and project from a part of the vehicle or machinery, a cover removably engaged over the bracket and fabricated of embossable material capable of being imprinted with identifying indicia, and a seal element to prevent tampering or removal of the cover from the bracket.

It is an object of the invention to provide an apparatus of the type described whereby to provide an improved connection of the seal element with the bracket and cover, thereby to reduce the opportunity for tampering with the aforesaid apparatus, and provide for ease of detection of any tampering with the aforesaid seal element of the apparatus.

Another object of the invention is to provide a snap-type lock on the seal element while maintaining the seal element in a substantially flush-mounted relationship with the cover.

A further object of the invention is to secure the seal element to the bracket through the cover.

A still further object is to provide for a seal element which is fixed to an inner portion of the bracket.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide an apparatus of the type described in which the seal element includes a strap which is adapted to be flush-mounted with the cover, or recessed mounted within the cover, thereby to decrease the amount of space required for the aforesaid apparatus.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide apparatus of the type described which is simple in construction and durable and reliable in use throughout the vehicle or machinery life, capable of being readily incorporated in the vehicle or machinery itself and easily provided with the indicia itself.

Other objects of the invention will become apparent upon reading the following specification and referring to the accompanying drawing whih forms a material part of this disclosure.

The invention accordingly consists in the features of construction, combinations of elements, arrangements of parts, which will be exemplified in the construction hereinafter described, and the scope of which will be indicated by the appended claims.

In the drawing:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating a recording apparatus according to the present invention as assembled and installed in a vehicle or on other type of machinery;

FIG. 2 is a partial perspective view of the bracket and cover separated from each other, but bracketed together in position for the cover to engage the bracket, the seal element being omitted for purposes of explanation;

FIG. 3 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along section line 33 of FIG. 1, but with the seal element omitted;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view similar to that of FIG. 3 taken on section line 3-3 of FIG. 1, with the seal element included and shown in its sealed condition;

FIG. 5 is a plan view of the seal element; and,

FIG. 6 is a side elevational view of the seal element as shown in FIG. 5.

Referring now more particularly to the accompanying drawing, which indicates the presently preferred mode of practicing the invention, the recording apparatus includes a bracket element 12 adapted to be fixed to the structural part of a vehicle as described in the aforementioned U.S. Patents 2,973,596 and 3,006,092, a cover element 14 adapted to receive embossed information on its outer periphery and adapted to be received on the bracket element 12, and a seal element 16 for locking the cover element 14 to the bracket element 12. While the recording apparatus is being described in connection with a vehicle, it is to be understood that it may also be applied to any type of apparatus for information identification purposes.

As disclosed in the aforementioned US. patents, the bracket element 12 and cover element 14 are of similar polygonal cross-sectional configuration of an odd number of sides with all sides equal as disclosed in Us. Patent No. 2,973,596 or with one of the sides having a width differing from the width of the outer sides as disclosed in US. Patent No. 3,006,092.

The bracket element 12 includes a back plate or mounting device 20 adapted to mount the bracket element onto the structural part of a vehicle, an inner shell 21 of generally hollow prismatic configuration having a polygonal cross-sectional configuration formed from a plurality of generally rectangular longitudinally extending faces or panels 22, the faces 22 intersecting with each other along parallel longitudinally extending lines of intersection, the lines of intersection forming ridges 24. The inner shell 21 is suitably freely rotatably coupled to the mounting device 20 as disclosed in the aforementioned US. patents.

The bracket element 12 is provided in one of its faces or panels 22 with a single opening 26 substantially mid way between the back plate 20 and the outer end 28 of the bracket element.

The bracket element 12 is also provided with a projecting tongue member 30 having a width approximately equal to the width of opening 26 and a length somewhat less than the length of the opening 26. In the construction of the tongue member 30, it is possible to stamp out the tongue member from one of the plurality of rectangularly extending faces 22, with a portion of the tongue member being pivoted on one of the lines of intersection or ridges 24. The tongue member 30 extends inwardly of the panels 22 and the edge 32 of the tongue member 30 extends backwardly so that it is beneath the next adjacent panel connected to the line of intersection or ridge 24 about which the tongue member 30 is pivoted inwardly, the ridge 24 forming one side of the opening 26.

The cover element 14 includes an outer shell which is generally of hollow prismatic configuration, having a polygonal cross-sectional configuration similar to and just slightly larger than that of bracket element 12 for snug conforming engagement about the latter. The outer shell 41 of the cover element is formed of a plurality of longitudinally extending, generally rectangular, angularly disposed panels or faces 40, each adjacent pair of which is joined together by a longitudinally extending rib 42. The outer end of the cover element 14 is closed by an end wall 44 while the inner end 46 is open to extend over the bracket element 12 and receive therethrough the bracket element 12 in mating engagement therewith. The end wall 44 closes the one end of the shell 41 while the other end 46 is open. Registration between the bracket element 12 and cover element 14 being suitably provided.

The cover element on the outer face portion of shell 41 may be provided with an undercut or recessed portion 48 extending circumferentially about the outer surface portion of the cover element 14 and positioned substantially midway between the end wall 44 and the inner end 46. The shell 41 of the cover element is provided in one .of its faces or panels 40 with a single opening 50, which opening 50 is in registry with and overlies the single opening 26 in the faces of the bracket element 12 when the cover element 14 is in mating engagement with the inner shell 21 of the bracket element 12. If the undercut or recessed portion 48 is provided for, it is suitably aligned with the opening 50 such that the opening 50 lies within the confines of the circumferentially undercut or recessed portion. The opening 50 is substantially equal in length and width to the length and width, respectively, of the opening 26. The openings 26 and 50 being of a size suflicient to enable the seal element 16 to pass therethrough as will be explained further hereinafter. The cover element 14 is fabricated of material capable of being embossed or otherwise suitably marked, so that any alteration or defacement of the markings is readily apparent; the undercut or recessed portion 48 being free of any markings or embossment and being adapted to receive the seal element 16.

The seal element 16 generally is of flexible strip material and includes an elongate or strap portion 60 adapted to be bent into circular form to surround the outer peripheral surface of the cover element 14. When the undercut 48 is provided for, it may be suitably positioned within such undercut or recessed portion to form a uniform substantially continuous surface with the outer peripheral surface of the cover element 14. The strap portion is provided at one end with an eye portion 62 which is adapated to receive and engage the tongue portion 30 as will be explained further hereinafter. The strap portion 60 also carries a locking member, forming part of the seal element 16, comprised of a male snap element 64 adapted for locking engagement within a complementary female snap element 66. The male snap element 64 is attached to the strap portion 60 near the eye portion 62 and the female snap element 66 is attached to the elongate portion 60 on the same side thereof as the male snap element 64 but at the end opposite to the eye portion 62. The male snap element 64 is provided with a plurality of inwardly curved barbs 68 which are adapted for overlying and locking engagement with a like plurality of outwardly and backwardly curved teeth 70 on the female snap element 66. The barbs 68 being adapted for interlocking engagement with the backwardly curved teeth 70 when interengaged to lock the snap elements 64 and 66 together.

The width and length of openings 26 and 50 are sufficiently large to enable the eye portion 62 to be inserted into the openings 26 and 50, respectively, so that the substantially rectangular opening 72 in the eye portion 62 can engage and surround the tongue member 30, and yet the width of the openings 26 and are small enough so as to be covered by the seal element when in its locked condition. The eye portion 62 is hooked or attached onto the tongue member 30, and the strap portion extends from the inner portion of the inner shell 21 out through the opening 26 and through the opening 50 in the outer shell 41 to maintain the outer shell 41 in position over the inner shell 21. The strap portion 60 is then wrapped around the outer shell 41. When the undercut or recessed portion 48 is provided for, the strap portion 60 is placed into the undercut or recessed portion 48. When the strap portion 60 is in the recessed portion 48, the top of the strap portion may either be flush with the outer surface of the outer shell 41 or slightly recessed within the recessed portion 48. When no recessed portion 48 is provided for, the strap portion 60 overlies the outer surface of the outer shell 41. Since the strap portion 60 is of flexible strip material, it will conform to the outer configuration of the recessed portion 48.

After the strap portion 60 is engaged with the tongue member 30, and placed into the recessed portion 48, if such recessed portion is provided, the locking element formed by snap elements 64 and 66 are engaged with each other by merely forcing the female snap element 66 over the male snap element 64 for the barbs 68 to be engaged by the backwardly curved teeth 70. After engagement between the barbs 68 and the teeth any attempt to separate the snap elements 64 and 66 results in a destruction of the snap elements, the barbs 68 and teeth 70, thereby providing an indication if any tampering with the snap elements takes place.

In the assembled condition, it will be understood that the seal element 16 locks the cover element 14 to the bracket element 12 and is freely rotatable with the inner shell 21, the back plate 20 being adapted to be fixed to the fire wall of a motor vehicle or any other apparatus. Any tampering with the seal element 16 is sufficient to break the same, yet the connection between the tongue member 30 and the seal element 16 is sufficiently strong with the seal element 16 in its locked condition to maintain the cover element 14 connected with the bracket element 12 for rotation with the inner shell 21 relative to the back plate 20.

With the present construction, it is possible to emboss or print on the outer shell 41 with the :seal element 16 thereon. The panel portion 74 over which the snap elements lie in their closed condition may be used to include column headings for the various identifying indicia. Accordingly, imprinting may take place by means of an embossing member such as the embossing member 45 disclosed in US. Patent Nos. 2,973,596 and 3,006,092 or an embossing die holder substantially circular in shape may be passed over the outer shell 41 to effect the necessary embossing. Furthermore, since there is a direct connection between the seal element 16 and the tongue member 30 of the bracket element 12, it is not possible to open the seal element and leave it loosely arranged on the cover element 14 to give the appearance of the seal element 16 as being connected thereto and to the bracket element 12. The elongate member 60 has sufiicient spring tension so that if the eye portion 62 is not engaged with the tongue member 30, or if an attempt has been made to open the seal element 16, the elongate portion 60 will not be flush with the outer surface of the outer shell 41 or recessed within the recessed portion 48.

The seal element 16 may only be opened by the destruction of the elongate member 60 or by the destruction of the seal elements 64 and 66.

Although the present invention has been described in some detail by way of illustration and example for purposes of clarity of understanding, it is understood that certain changes and modifications may be made within the spirit of the invention and the scope of the appended claims.

What I claim is:

1. In a recording and identifying apparatus for a vehicle or other type of machinery, the combination comprising a bracket element adapted to be fixed to and project from a part of the vehicle or machinery, a cover element removably engaged over said bracket element, a seal element connected with said bracket element and receivable within said cover element for fixedly connecting said cover element with said bracket element to lock said cover element to said bracket element, said cover element being fabricated of embossable material to be imprinted with identifying indicia, said cover element conformably receiving said bracket element to preven relative movement therebetween, said cover element having several panels providing areas for said imprinting, said bracket element comprising an inner shell having the same number of panels as said cover element, one of said panels having an opening therethrough to provide a single openin in said inner shell, a ridge interconnecting each pair of adjacent panels, one of the ridges having a tongue portion projecting therefrom inwardly of said inner shell, said one ridge being adjacent said opening and forming a side thereof, said seal element substantially conforming to the outer surface of said cover element and including an eye portion adapted to receive said tongue portion in the locked condition of said cover and said bracket elements.

2. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1, wherein said seal element includes a strap portion, said eye portion forming one end of said strap portion, and complementary male and female snap elements attached to said strap element adapted for locking engagement with each other, said snap elements being positioned on the same side of said strap portion.

3. The apparatus as claimed in claim 2, wherein said male snap element is attached to said strap portion at said eye portion thereof, said male snap element having a plurality of inwardly curved barbs, and said female snap element is attached to said strap portion at the end opposite to said eye portion, said female snap element having a like plurality of backwardly curved teeth engageable with said inwardly curved barbs to lock said snap elements together.

4. In a recording and identifying apparatus for a vehicle or other type of machinery, the combination comprising a bracket element adapted to be fixed to and project from a part of the vehicle or machinery, a cover element removably engaged over said bracket element, a seal element connected with said bracket element and receivable within said cover element for fixedly connecting said cover element with said bracket element to lock said cover element to said bracket element, said cover element being fabricated of embossable material to be imprinted with identifying indicia, said cover ele ment conformably receiving said bracket element to prevent relative movement therebetween, said cover element having several panels providing areas for said imprinting, said bracket element including an inner shell having a single opening in the outer surface, a tongue member connected to said inner shell adjacent said Opening and extending inwardly of said shell, said cover element in cluding an outer shell, said outer shell having a single opening in its outer surface, said last-mentioned opening being in registry with said first-mentioned opening when said inner shell is positioned within said outer shell, said seal element substantially conforming to the outer surface of said cover element, said seal element being attachable with said tongue member and passing through said openings for coupling said cover element with said bracket element.

5. The apparatus as claimed in claim 4, said seal element including an elongate portion, an eye portion at one end of said elongated portion for engagement with said tongue portion, and a locking device on said elongate portion, said locking device comprising one member positioned near said eye portion and a second member on the same side of said elongate portion positioned at the other end of said elongate portion.

6. The apparatus as claimed in claim 5, said projecting tongue and said openings being substantially equal in width, said tongue being stamped from one of the panels of said inner shell and being positioned substantially midway between the ends thereof, said tongue extending inwardly of said panels of said inner shell and backwardly of said panel from which said tongue is stamped and beneath said next adjacent panel, a ridge interconnecting each pair of adjacent panels, said tongue projecting from the ridge connecting the panel having said opening and the aforesaid next adjacent panel.

7. The apparatus as claimed in claim 4, wherein said outer shell is provided with a circumferential undercut portion aligned with said second-mentioned opening, said seal element passing through said aligned openings and being positioned within said undercut portion to form a substantially flush outer surface with said outer shell, said undercut portion being substantially midway between the ends of said outer shell.

8. The apparatus as claimed in claim 7, said seal element including an elongate portion, an eye portion at one end of said elongated portion for engagement with said tongue portion, said projecting tongue being stamped from one of the panels of said inner shell and being positioned substantially midway between the ends thereof, said tongue extending inwardly of said panels of said inner shell and rearwardly of said panel from which said tongue is stamped and beneath said next adjacent panel, and a locking device on said elongate portion, said locking device comprising one member positioned near said eye portion and a second member on the same side of said elongate portion position at the other end of said elongate portion.

9. The apparatus as claimed in claim 8, said second mentioned opening lying within the confines of said circumferential undercut portion, said elongate portion of said sealelement in its locked condition substantially conforming to the outer surface of said outer shell and being substantially flush with the outer surface thereof, destruction of said locking device moving said elongate portion out of flush engagement with the aforesaid outer surface.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,973,596 3/1961 Sternberg 402.2 3,006,092 10/1961 Sternberg 402.2

EUGENE R. CAPOZIO, Primary Examiner. \V. I CON'DRERAS, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2973596 *Jul 17, 1958Mar 7, 1961Auto Facto Systems IncVehicle identification system
US3006092 *Mar 23, 1960Oct 31, 1961Auto Facto Systems IncVehicle identification apparatus
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3768185 *May 10, 1972Oct 30, 1973Automated Reference CorpVehicle identification apparatus and indenting method and mandrel
US5941019 *Dec 23, 1997Aug 24, 1999Nursery Supplies, Inc.Nursery container with attachment device
Classifications
U.S. Classification40/632, 40/911
International ClassificationG09F3/00, G09F3/03
Cooperative ClassificationY10S40/911, G09F3/0305, G09F3/00
European ClassificationG09F3/03A, G09F3/00