US 3572870 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
[5 6] References Citd UNITED STATES PATENTS Inventors Lou F. Marks;
Bela G. Szabo, Pittsburgh, Pa. Appl. No. 830,053
United States Patent PTENTED MARSO |97l SHEET 1 UF 2 PATENTEU M30 Ism SHKU 2 DF 2 INVENTORS ou Mae/ 6 53,450
BY /WWM A ORNEY EXTENSHBLE AND RETRACTABLE HANDLE ASSEMBLY WITH lLATCll-lllNG MEANS THEREFGR This invention relates to an extensible and retractable handle assembly for portable cases of all types, which is adapted to be moved from its extended operative position to its retracted inoperative position in close proximity to the body of the case by a simple pressing movement of the handle towards the case. rl'he return of the handle to its extended position is effected by a like movement, by releasing a spring biasing force which moves the handle outwardly.
Itis the object of the present invention to provide a rugged and reliable handle assembly for easy mounting on portable cases and containers of all types, which permits the positioning of the handle in its either retracted or stored position, or in its extended and operative position by a simple pressing movement of the handle towards the case. When the handle is in its inoperative position, a slight pressure thereon causes it to be extended by a spring-biasing means therefor in a rapid manner, which functions as a popup handle."
It is a further object of the invention to provide a compact latching mechanism which is connected to the portable case and the handle mechanism, which is operative alternatively to latch the handle in stored position, and to release it into raised position where it is convenient as a hand-hold for carrying the portable case, or where it is extended to a height to render it readily manipulatable for further extension to bring it into a more extended position for the accommodation of the hand. It is another object of the invention to simplify handles for portable cases which may be snapped into nested position by the depression of the handle itself, and which is similarly released for extension. This construction presents a marked simplication over such arrangements as is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,l09,687, Nov. 5, i963.
The invention proceeds upon the principle of combining with a spring-biased handle assembly, which normally tends to spring the handle into extended position, a latching device which retains the handle in retracted or nested position upon the depression of the handle, and which upon a slight depressing movement of the handle serves to automatically release the handle for springing to its extended position. The automatic operation of the latching mechanism is effected by a compact camming cylinder containing fixed upper and lower camming discs provided with opposed circumferential camming surfaces and seats, between which is moved a part of the latching mechanism, which serves to vconvert the rectilinear movements of the handle and said part of the latching mechanism into incremental rotary movements of the latter, to position one or more radial lugs at the upper end of the latching mechanism relative to a suitably apertured flange, which selectively permits or restrains the movement of the handle.
Other objects and purposes will appear from the detailed description of the invention following hereinafter, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FlG. l is a front elevation, partly in section, showing the handle in retracted or storing position in solid lines, and in operative or extended position in dotted lines;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged vertical sectional view of the latching device shown at the central portion of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a vertical sectional view along line 3-3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. d is a horizontal sectional view along line 4-4 of FIG.
FIG. 5 is a horizontal sectional view along line 5-5 of FIG. 2, showing the device in latched position;
FIG. 6 is a sectional view similar to FIG. 5, showing the latching device in open or released position;
FIG. 7 is a developed view of the upper and lower camming discs Within the camming cylinder cooperating with the advancing arm at the inner end of the rotary shaft of the latching device for convening the rectilinear movements thereof to incremental rotary movements; and
FIG. 3 is a front elevation, partly in section, similar to FIG. l, showing a modified form of handle with spring-biasing means therefor, and separate latching devices on each end thereof.
In the drawings is shown a case or container C which may be an item of luggage or any other portable receptacle for housing specialty items such as radio and television receivers, typewriters, record players, etc., and to which is connected a handle H capable of assuming a nested or inoperative position within a handle frame l forming part of the frame 2 of the portable case, or which may be extended from the frame to make possible the gripping of the handle for convenient transport thereof.
The main part of the handle l0 is provided with legs ll, Il' extending downwardly from the opposite ends of the handle l0 for accommodation within the receptacles 3, 3' at the opposite ends of the mounting frame lfor the handle.
A circular bore l2, l2 is provided in each of the legs ll, ll', respectively, for the accommodation of coil springs l5, i5 connected between retaining lugs 113 i3 at the base of the receptacles 3, 3' and lugs 14, 14' within the bores of the handle, respectively. As indicated by the arrows in FIG. l, the springs l5, l5' serve to bias the handle H into its outwardly extending position indicated in dotted lines and are adapted to be compressed by a downward movement of the handle when the upper level of the handle l0 is substantially coincident with the outer surface of the case C, as indicated in solid lines in FIG. l.
A latching mechanism is provided at the central portion of the handle and mounting frame therefor for the purpose of retaining the handle in its nested position against the force of the biasing springs l5, l5', which'is released for extension by these springs upon a limited downward movement of the handle which is made possible by the clearance between the lower ends 17, 17 of the legs l1, 1I' and the bottom of the receptacles 3, 3' of the mounting frame. This latching mechanism consists of a compact camming cylinder 2l) affixed to the mounting frame l from which protrudes a rotary shaft provided with stop lungs at the upper endl thereof which lugs are designed to cooperate with a retaining device 50 constituting part of the handle, as described more fully below.
The camming cylinder 20 may be affixed to the frame 1 by the protrusion of mounting flanges 2l through openings in the mounting frame which are bent transversely, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, to affix the cylinder to the mounting frame l on the interior of the portable case. An annular camming disc 22 is tixedly mounted at the upper end of the cylinder adjacent to the frame l by the provision of diametrally opposed pins or projections 23 seated within corresponding openings 23 at the upper end of cylinder 20. A second annular camming disc 25 is affixed to the lower end of the cylinder by the provision of downwardly extending studs 27 forming part of the annular camming disc 25 which fit within corresponding openings at the base of the cylinder and which is additionally centered by means of a central stud 26 fitting within a central opening at the bottom of cylinder 20.
A rotary shaft 40, formed with enlarged radial arms 4l, 41' at the lower end thereof and with stop lugs 42 at the upper end thereof, is adapted to extend through the central opening 28 ofthe annular disc 22 and through an opening 6 in the frame l for cooperation with the latching flange fomiing part of member 50 in the lower part of the handle H. A coiled spring 32 with its lower end seated within the central recess 3l of camming disc 25 and its upper end within the central recess between radial arms dll, 41 serves to bias the latter upwardly into yielding contact with camming disc 22.
The radial arms 4l are rounded along the upper and lower edges thereof, as clearly shown in FIG. 2 and these top and bottom edges are adapted to move reetilinearly between the camming discs 22 and 25 in response to rectilinear movements of the shaft 40 as the same experiences the to-and-fro moves ments indicated by the vertical arrows in F lGS. 2 and 3, as the handle moves inwardly and outwardly. These rectilinear movements are, in tum, converted into rotary movements of shaft 40, as described below.
The retaining de'vice Sil, shown in FIG. l, may be seated in handle H, or molded as an integral part ofthe latter if the handle is formed of plastic material. This device may be of cylindrical formation with the bottom thereof shaped as an annulus of four quadrants with the central opening Si for the passage of the reim shaft dit into the interior of chamber 52. Two of the quadrants are formed as diametrally opposed flanges 52, 52 while the alternating quadrants 53, 53 merge with the central opening 5l and are of enlarged diameter so that when the stop lugs l2 are coincident with the quadrants 53, 53 the handle llll is free to move upwardly by the action of the biasing springs l5, l5'. On the other hand, when the rotary shaft is turned 93 to bring the stop lugs 42 behind the flanges 52, 52', the handle is latched, and is incapable of outward movement despite the force exerted by the biasing springs l5, l5'.
FIG. 7 illustrates a developed view of the circumferential edges of the upper and lower camming discs 22 and 25, respectively, and the interaction of the radial arms dl, al therewith, which convert the to-and-fro movements of the handle to incremental rotary movements of the rotary shaft to bring the locking lugs 42 into latching or released positions with respect to alternating quadrants at the bottom of the retaining device 50.
The camming disc 22 is provided with a plurality of seats 22a, 22h, 22C and 22d which are circumferentially displaced @tlf from each other, and also with alternating camming surfaces 22m, 22m 220 and 22p. Likewise, the camming disc 25 is provided with seats 25a, 25h, 25C and 25d which are displaced from each other as well as from the seats in the upper camming disc 22, but which are in line with the camming surfaces of the upper camming disc as shown in FIG. 7. Thus, for example, when the handle Il is in extended position, and the locking lugs d2 are in alignment with the quadrants of enlarged diameter 53, 53', as indicated in FlG. 6, the handle is in raised position. When it is desired to move the handle to its nested or inoperative position, the same is pressed down and when the retaining device S0 arrives in the field of operation of the rotary or pivot shaft dd, the latter'is moved downwardly from position A (FIG. 7), to bring the advancing arms di, 4l into ach'on against camming surface 25m, which, by virtue or" the inclination as well as the curved contour of the camming edge, as shown in FlGS. 2 to d, effects a partial rotation of the rotary shaft of approximately 62. This movement is arrested when the bottom edges 17, i7' of the legs ll of the handle come into abutment with the bottom of the receptacles 3, 3', respectively. However, the extension of spring 32 seated within the center of the lower camming disc 25 forces the radial arms upwardly into the path of the camming surface 22m of the upper annular disc to impart a supplemental rotation to the rotary shaft dll amounting to approximately 25, to complete the seating of the locking lugs d2 behind quadrants 52, 52', as illustrated in FIG. 5. With this condition of the parts, the locking handle remains in retracted or nested position until such time as it is desired to release it.
To etcct the release of the handle, which is now in locked position, and in which the radial arms 4l, 431 are now at position B, the handle is depressed from the position shown in FIG. l until the bottom edges 17, i7' strikethe bottom of the receptacle which causes a movement of the rotary shaft, of approximately 62, by the interaction of the radial arms against camming edges 25n, which ultimately is seated in seat 25h and which is moved upwardly by the action of spring 32 to cause the upper edge of the radial ami to move along carnming edge 2211 of the annular camming disc 22 to impart a supplemental rotation thereto amounting to 2%", which ends in the seating of the radial arm at seat 22e, corresponding to position C which is indicated in FlG. 6, and which permits the handle l to be extended by the action of the biasing springs i5.
A repeated depression of the handle gives rise to a downward movement of the radial arms lll, ll' to effect a rotary movement of the rotary shaft by the interaction of the arms with camming edge 25o to impart a rotation of 62 to the shaft, which is followed by the rise of the radial arms and the rotary movement thereof by the action thereof against camming edge 22o, to complete the seating of the radial arms at position D, to latch the handle in its locked position.
ln a similar manner, the handle I-l may be released by the depression thereof to move the radial advancing arms from position D to position A which permits the handle to be moved into extended position. Thus, the successive rectilinear movements of the handle effect the latching thereof while in nested position, and this latching may be released by the depression of the handle for a limited extent indicated in dotted lines at the bottom of the receptacles 3, 3 (FIG. l) to permit the release of the handle into extended position.
In FIG. 8 is shown a modified form of handle assembly which employs toggle springs 6l at each end of the handle in lieu of coil springs to actuate the handle into its extended position. Also, this embodiment makes use of two cylindrical housings, one at each end of the handle frame, wherefrom extend the rotary shafts 65 which cooperate with suitably apertured retaining flanges 67 which may be molded integrally with the handle 60 and which extend into the field of action of the rotary shafts d5. The openings 68 at the ends of the flanges 67 may be contoured similarly to those shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, or differently therefrom, to alternately permit the passage of the stop lugs at the top of the shafts l65, so that the handle may be extended to the position shown in dotted lines or alternatively to lock the handle against movement by the rotation of the stop lugs, for example, to the position shown in FIG. 8, when the lugs may extend transversely to a longitudinal slot in the plates or flanges 67.
l. A readily extensible and retractable handle assembly for a portable case adapted to be set into its alternate positions by a movement in the same direction, comprising:
a. a handle;
b. means for connecting said handle to said case including spring-biasing means for normally, urging said handle to an extended position spaced from said case to provide a convenient hand-hold therefor;
c. latching means on said handle and case for the retention of the handle in proximity to said case in the inoperative retracted position of said handle, comprising a rotatable and reciprocable post provided with radial lugs at the upper and lower ends thereof;
a receptor on said handle having a central opening for said post and a radial opening emanating from said central opening greater in size than the radial lug at the upper end of said post, whereby the alignment of said lug and said opening permit said spring-biasing means to force said handle to its extended position remote from the case, while the misalignment of said lug and opening blocks the movement of said handle to its extended position; and e. an annular camming assembly at the lower end of said post provided with a plurality of camming faces adapted to cooperate with the lug at the lower end of said reciprocable post to impart incremental rotary movements to the latter to successively bring the upper lug into alignment and misalignment with said radial opening in said receptor of said handle, in response to successive manual movements of said handle towards said case.
2. A device as set forth in claim l, wherein said rotatable and reciprocable post is provided with'a pair of diametrally opposed radial lugs at the upper and lower ends thereof, and said receptor on said handle is provided with a pair of diametrally opposed radial openings emanating from the central opening sufficiently large to permit the passage of said lugs therethrough, said radial openings alternating with diametrally opposed 'blocking segments therebetween for restraining the movement of said handle into extended positron.
3. A device as s et forth in claim l, wherein said annular camming assembly comprises:
a. a cylindrical housing on said case for containing the lower portion of said post;
b. annular camming discs iixedly mounted at the opposite ends of said housing, each provided with alternating'seats and camming edges therebetween facing each other, with the radial lug at the lower end of said post between said camming discs;
. spring means in said housing for biasing said last-mentioned lug in a direction towards said handle; and
d. said camming edges being so contoured that said manual movement of said handle towards said case effects a rotation of said radial lug to bring the post with the radial lug at the upper end thereof into cooperative action with the receptor on the handle to effect the alternate blocking and release thereof.
4. A device as set forth in claim 3, wherein said camming edges on said camming discs are so contoured that the inward movement of said handle effects a partial rotation of said post which is followed by an additional incremental rotation of said post caused by the distention of said spring means and consequent rectilinear movement of said post in the reverse direction.
5. A device as set forth in claim 4, wherein said seats in the 6. A readily extensible and retractable handle assembly for a portable case comprising:
a. a handle;
b. means for connecting said handle to said case including spring-biasing means for normally urging said handle to an extended position spaced from said case to provide a convenient hand-hold therefor;
c. latching means on said handle for the retention thereof in proximity to said case in the inoperative retracted position of said handle, having an opening with a retaining flange adjacent thereto;
d. means for operating said latching means comprising a rotary member with an abutment thereon 'adapted to effectuate said latching means by interposing said abutment in the path of said retaining flange in response to the inward movement of said handle from its extended position to its retracted position proximate to the case, and to release said latching means by moving said abutment from the path of said retaining flange in response to another limited inward movement of said bundle in the same direction, to pennit the extension of said handle from the case by the operation of said spring-biasing means;
e. said last-mentioned operating means comprising a cylindrical housing on said case for containing the inner portion of said rotary member;
f. annular camming discs fixedly mounted at the opposite ends of said housing each provided with alternating seats and camming edges therebetween facing each other with said seats in said camming discs displaced circumferentially at intervals;
g. a radial advancing arm at the inner end of said rotary member between said camming discs h. spring means in said housing for biasing said advancing arm in a direction towards said handle;
i. said cammingedges on said camming discs being so conj. said last-mentioned blocking effective at alternate 90 intervals.
7. A device as set forth in claim 6, wherein said latching means comprises a pair of stop lugs extending from the outer end of said rotary member at diametrally opposite points, and a flange on said handle in overlying relation to said member and provided with openings of alternating quadrants surrounding said rotary member, the radial dimension of two of said quadrants being suicient to permit passa e of said stop lugs while the alternate quadrants restrain t e movement thereof, the positioning of said stop lugs at said quadrants being coincident with the positioning of said advancing arm within said circumferentially displaced seats.
8. A device as set forth in claim 7, wherein said latching means and cylindrical housing are mounted at approximately the midportion of the handle assembly.
9. A device as set forth in claim 7, wherein said latching means and cylindrical housing are mounted at each end of the handle assembly.
lt). A device as set forth in claim l, wherein said springbiasing means comprises a coil spring seated within a recess at each end of said handle.
ll. A device as set forth in claim l, wherein said springbiasing means comprises a toggle-joint leaf spring connected between each end of said handle and case.