US 3553877 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Jan. 12, 1971 WELCH ET AL 3,553,877
SAFETY LOCK FOR FIREARMS Filed June 28, 196.8 1 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 "H: /V M v INVENTOR5 NICHOLAS A. WELCH J05PH R. FRRARA BY MW,
United States Patent 3,553,877 SAFETY LOCK FOR FIREARMS Nicholas A. Welch, West Hartford, Conn., and Joseph R. Ferrara, Agawam, Mass., assignors to Ernhart Corporation, Bloomfield, Conn., a corporation of Connecticut Filed June 28, 1968, Ser. No. 741,098 Int. 'Cl. F41c 17/00, 17/02, 17/08 US. Cl. 42--70 8 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A safety lock for firearms having a safety movable to and from positions of blocking relationship relative to movement of the safety of the guns firing mechanism, and a key lock carried within the stock of the gun and having a bolt movable in response to operation of a key for selective engagement with the safety to prevent release of the safety unless the bolt of said lock is first released by operation of the key.
BACKGROUND Numerous types of safety devices have been used for firearms over a great many years. Of course, the safety latch or lever is well known in the design and manufacture of firearms. In addition to this, however, it has long been desired to prevent the unauthorized or accidental use of firearms and to this end a great many locking mechanisms have been suggested. Most commonplace among these mechanisms are the separate and removable locks which are designed to be fitted over or onto the trigger or trigger guard of the gun. While these locks have proved effective, they are not as widely used as would normally be expected, and this is thought to stem from the fact that they are entirely separate from the gun and thus somewhat awkward and inconvenient to use. Thus despite the fact that these locks greatly reduce the chances of unauthorized or accidental use of firearms, there is a tendency for many gun owners to forego the purchase or use of these locks.
There have also been proposed in recent years built-in locks. In general, these have substantially increased the cost of the manufacture of the gun and require special lock mechanisms and modification of one or more elements of the firing mechanism for operative cooperation with the lock mechanism. These locks have not found broad commercial acceptance since their construction appreciably increases the assembly procedures and manufacturing costs for guns so equipped.
The principal object of this invention is the provision of a built-in gun lock which can be assembled in a number of existing gun models without the need for extensive tooling or modification of the action of the gun.
It is another object of this invention to provide a builtin gun lock which can be installed either by the manufacturer, gun dealer or purchaser without the use of any special tools or equipment.
Another object of this invention is to provide a built-in gun lock which may be fitted into the stock of a gun without requiring modification of any of the components of the guns firing mechanism.
A yet further object of this invention is to provide a built-in gun lock arrangement which adapts a conventional key lock to existing model gun stocks with minimum modification.
The above and other objects and advantages of this invention will be "more readily apparent from the following description and with reference to the accompanying drawings:
Patented Jan. 12, 1971 FIG. 1 is a cross section elevational view of a firearm of this invention in a locked condition;
FIG. 2 is an elevational view similar to FIG. 1 showing the gun in an unlocked condition;
FIG. 3 shows the stock of the firearm shown in FIGS. 1 and 2; and
FIG. 4 is an exploded view of one type of suitable lock for use of this invention.
Referring in detail to the drawings, in FIG. 1 a gun is shown generally at 6 equipped with a built-in lock 8. The purpose of the lock is to prevent operation of the firing mechanism when locked, and permit normal operation of the gun and its safety mechanism when unlocked. As shown, the lock is approximately flush with the undersurface of the stock to the rear of the trigger guard.
The gun comprises a stock 10 and a firing mechanism 12 fitted through a well 14 provided in the stock. The firing mechanism comprises a trigger 16, sear 18, hammer 20, safety lever 22, and a sear spring 24. For firing the gun, the trigger is rotated against the pressure of spring 24 until the front end of the sear 18 is released from the notch 26 of the hammer. The upper limb of spring 24 urges the hammer toward striking engagement with the firing pin (not shown). The safety lever 22 is pivotable about a pin 28 so that its lower end 30 is selectively engageable with the upper surface of the trigger extension 32. When the safety is engaged with the trigger extension, as shown in FIG. 1, the trigger is blocked from rotating, thus locking the sear 18 in the notch 26 of the hammer 20, thereby preventing firing of the gun. In the embodiment shown, upward rotation of the bolt 23 automatically operates safety 22, since the bolt cams lever 25 rearwardly and through linkage 27 causes lever 22 to pivot to its safe position.
Means to lock the gun is provided, in addition to the safety lever 22 which otherwise could be operated at will or accidentally by anyone who comes into possession of the gun. In accordance with this invention, a key lock is disposed so that its bolt will prevent unauthorized, inadvertent or accidental release of the safety mechanism. As shown, the locking means comprises the lock 8 which may be of conventional construction with a lock cylinder 32 fitted into a bore or hole 34 extending into the stock 10 from a point behind the trigger guard. The stock is also provided with a second bore, channel or passage 36 extending transversely from the first bore into communication with the well 14 of the stock.
The lock 8 includes a rectilinearly reciprocable bolt 40 which may be of conventional T-shaped configuration, including a head 42 and a shank 44 (FIG. 4). The shank is slidably disposed in slot or guideway 46 of the lock cylinder. A key plug 48, shown in FIG. 4, includes a number of spring loaded tumblers 49 operated by the bitted edge of a key blade, is rotatably disposed within the lock cylinder, and includes a cam pin 50 which projects from its inner end face. The plug is also provided with a spring loaded retainer 56 to releasably retain the plug in the lock cylinder. The cam pin projects into a slot 52 formed in the undersurface of the shank portion of the bolt 40 and extending transversely of the shank. With rotation of the key plug by an appropriate key 54, the cam pin is rotated from a position adjacent one edge of the cylinder to a diametrically opposite position. The diametrical throw of the cam pin is parallel to the axis of the transverse bore 36 so that the head of the bolt is moved into engagement with the after edge portion of the safety lever when the gun is locked as shown in FIG. 1, and is sufficiently clear of the safety lever as shown in FIG. 2 to permit normal operation thereof when the gun is unlocked by the use of the key.
The lock selected is preferably one of conventional construction, but in which the locking bolt is removably carried directly in the lock cylinder so the bolt and cylinder can be assembled in situ in the bores 34 and 36 of the gun stock. Thus, in the embodiment shown, the lock may be assembled into the gun by screwing cylinder 32 into the threaded bore 34 which extends into the structure until a compressible collar, such as an O-ring 35, is compressed by the head of lock 8 with the slot or guideway 46 registered in alignment with transverse slot 36.
The O-ring 35 thus allows the cylinder to be screwed in tightly to the correct angular position for reception of the lock bolt 40 despite lack of orientation of the threads provided in the bore 34. Another purpose of the O-ring is to act as a braking member between the gun stock of the cylinder body to prevent loosening of the lock. This is important because even though the cylinder cannot be unscrewed from the stock after the lock bolt is installed, even a small amount of looseness of the lock cylinder would connote inferior workmanship.
The cylinder 32 is fitted to the bore with the bolt 40 and key plug 48 removed. Once the cylinder is correctly positioned in the stock, the lock bolt is fitted into the guideway 46 of the cylinder with its transverse slot 52 oriented downward to receive the cam pin 50 on the end face of the key plug. Thereafter, the key plug is inserted so that the cam pin fits into the transverse slot of the locking bolt. The retainer 56 is pressed in for installation of the plug in the lock cylinder. A cooperating slot in the inner surface of the cylinder receives the retainer to hold the key plug in place. The plug can be removed by presssing the retainer inward using a pointed implement through hole 57 provided in the lock cylinder or barrel. After the lock bolt and cylinder have been installed in the gun stock, as described, the firing mechanism is installed in the well 14 of the stock in the conventional manner.
In the manufacture of those guns which are not to be equipped with a key lock, the manufacturing procedure related to the drilling of the holes 34 and 36 may be merely omitted. Alternatively, if desired, locks may be provided separately for installation by the dealer or consumer. In such cases a small blank plug of any suitable material, such as plastic or wood, may be screwed into the bore 34 to provide an essentially flush finish with the surrounding areas of the gun stock. The plug may be provided with a groove so that it can be readily removed by a screw driver or other suitable means.
In the operation of a gun equipped with a key lock, the manufacturer would package the guns in a locked condition, such as shown in FIG. 1 of the drawings. Preparatory to operation, the key 54 would be fitted into the lock 8 and rotated to unlock the lock, as shown in FIG. 2.
The key may then be removed and when the user is prepared to fire, the gun is loaded in the usual manner and the safety lever 22 moved forwardly so that its lower end 30 clears the trigger extension 32. The gun may then be fired in a normal fashion. After any firing is completed, the safety is moved to safe. For the gun shown, the safety would automatically be in this position, since each operation of the bolt 23 pivots lever 25 rearwardly and by linkage 27 the safety lever 2'2 is automatically moved to the safe position shown in FIG. 2. The key would then be inserted in the lock and rotated so that the head of the lock bolt is moved into juxtaposition with the after edge of the safety lever 22. Consequently, the safety lever cannot be disengaged without the use of the appropriate key. This simple but most effective locking arrangement, if properly used by the consumer would greatly reduce accidental or unauthorized use of firearms, and hopefully would reduce the number of accidents which occur as the result of such improper use of firearms.
Having thus described the invention, what is claimed 1. Lock for firearm having a firing mechanism, an opening extending into said firearm in communication with said firing mechanism, a key having bitted edges, a key operable lock having tumblers operable by the bitted edges of said key, said lock being installed in the said opening and including a bolt and bolt operating means for moving said bolt into and out of juxtaposition with the firing mechanism to selectively lock and unlock the same in response to operation of said lock, said bolt b ing separable from the lock for assembly therewith after the lock is installed in the opening of said firearm.
2. Lock for firearm as set forth in claim 1 in which said firearm includes a stock having a first bore extending into said stock adjacent the firing mechanism to receive said lock, and a second bore extending from the first bore to the firing mechanism, said bolt being disposed in said second bore.
3. Lock for firearms having a stock and firing mechanism, a key having bitted edges, a key operable lock having tumblers operable by the bitted edges of said key, said lock being fitted into a first bore extending into said stock at a point adjacent said firing mechanism, a second bore in said stock opening from the first bore to said firing mechanism, said lock including a lock cylinder having a rotatable *key plug and a rectilinearly movable lock bolt, means for operating said lock bolt in response to rotation of said key plug by said key, said bolt being separable from the lock cylinder for assembly therewith after the cylinder is installed in said first bore.
4. Look for firearms having a stock and a. firing mechanism, a key lock fitted into a first bore extending into said stock at a point rearward of the firing mechanism, and a second bore in said stock opening from the first bore to said firing mechanism, a key having bitted edges, said key lock being operable by the bitted edges of said key and including a bolt rectilinearly movable into and out of juxtaposition with said firing mechanism to selectively lock and unlock the same in response to rotation of a key in said lock.
5. Lock for firearms having a stock and a firing mechanism equipped with a safety movable rearwardly from a safe position relative to the firing mechanism to permit firing operation of the same, a key having bitted edges, and a key operated lock being operable by the bitted edges of said key and disposed in said stock rearward of said firing mechanism and including a key plug rotatably disposed in a lock cylinder and including tumblers and a linearly reciprocable look bolt movable in response to rotation of said key plug into and out of a blocking position relative to said safety lever to prevent the rearward movement of said lever.
6. Lock for firearms having a stock and a firing mechanism equipped with a safety lever movable rearwardly to a firing position and forwardly to a safe position in which said lever is engaged with the trigger of said firing mechanism to prevent firing movement of the same, a key having bitted edges, and a key lock having tumblers operable by the bitted edges of said key and disposed in said stock, said lock including a separable bolt carried by said look and rectilinearly movable in response to rotation of a key in said lock, said bolt being disposed in a longitudinal channel in said stock extending to said safety lever.
7. Lock for firearms having a stock and a firing mechanism equipped with a trigger safety lever pivotable into and out of engagement with the trigger of said firing mechanism to prevent firing movement of the same, said stook having a well receiving said firing mechanism and a key lock fitted into a bore extending into the stock adjacent the after end of said firing mechanism, and a passage in said stock disposed transversely of said bore and providing communication between said bore and well, said key lock including a rotatable key plug and a reciprocable bolt movable longitudinally in said passage for movement into and out of blocking engagement with said safety lever to selectively prevent and permit movement of the safety in response to rotation by a key of said key plug.
8. Look for firearms having a stock and a firing mechanism equipped with a trigger safety movable into and out of engagement with the trigger of said firing mechanism to prevent firing movement of the same, said stock having a well receiving said firing mechanism and a key lock cylinder having a slot diametrically extending through the inner end thereof, said cylinder threaded into a bore extending into the stock rearward of the firing mechanism, a resilient ring compressed between the head of said cylinder and said stock for aligning said slot with a passage provided in said stock and extending diametrically through said bore to said well to provide communication therebetween, said cylinder having a rotatable key plug disposed therein and drivingly engaged with a separable lock bolt carried in said slot and reciprocably movable in said passage for movement into and out of blocking engagement with said safety to selectively prevent and permit movement of the safety in response to rotation of said key plug.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,174,971 10/ 1939 Crockett 42-70 2,742,726 4/ 1956 Feller 4270 2,945,316 7/1960 Mulno 4270 BENJAMIN A. BORCH-ELT, Primary Examiner C. T. JORDAN, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R.