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Publication numberUS3573479 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 6, 1971
Filing dateNov 17, 1967
Priority dateNov 17, 1967
Publication numberUS 3573479 A, US 3573479A, US-A-3573479, US3573479 A, US3573479A
InventorsRieth Harold F
Original AssigneeRieth Harold F
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Generator flashlight
US 3573479 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [72] Inventor Harold F. Rieth 911 22nd St., Santa Monica, Calif. 90403 [211 App]. No. 683,866 [22] Filed Nov. 17, 1967 1 [45] Patented Apr. 6, 1971 [54] GENERATOR FLASHLIGHT 13 Claims, 5 Drawing Figs.

[52] US. Cl. 290/1, 310/83, 310/156, 310/51, 322/] [51] Int. Cl 1102p 9/04 [50] Field ofSearch 322/1, 100; 290/1,1 (SN); 74/25, (lnquired); 310/156, 163, 164,162, 83, 51

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,333,129 7/1967 Kohlhagen 310/156X 410,964 9/1889 Fitch ..290/l (SPRNG) 4.5 V 4/w/a/are 40 44 Primary Examiner-G. R. Simmons Attorney-Smyth, Roston & Pavitt ABSTRACT: A reciprocating actuator meshes with a pinion and during an actuating stroke in one direction the pinion is placed first in a first position and rotates. A gearwheel rotates with the pinion and meshes with a second pinion on the shaft of a rotor when the first pinion rotates in the first position. At the end of the stroke the pinion meshing with the actuator rolls into a second position in which the gearwheel is disengaged from the pinion on the rotor. During the return stroke of the actuator, pinion and gearwheel rotate in the opposite direction and disengage from the pinion on the rotor. The disclosure shows a generator powering the lamp in the flashlight.

GENERATOR FLASHLIGHT The present invention relates to a new and improved device in which an oscillatory or reciprocating motion is utilized to produce rotary motion for driving, for example, an electrical generator. The invention relates particularly to a device for converting intermittent, reciprocation motion into a continuous, rotary motion by means of a new oscillating gear engaging and disengaging device. A hand-held and hand-operated device can utilize the present invention to drive a small generator for generating electric voltage and current powering a flashlight, a miniature transmitter or receiver, a transistor radio, or the like.

Handoperated flashlights are known in which pawls and ratches, centrifugal or any other type of one-way clutches, etc., are used for converting reciprocal motion into rotary motion for a generator. The generator is coupled to a handoperated actuator, or the like, when the actuator is moved in one direction, for example, pressed by the hand towards the main body of the device. The generator is to be decoupled from the actuator during the return stroke of the latter. Only part of the effort exerted by the user is used to generate useful power. Another part of his effort is dissipated, so to speak, for actually coupling the generator to the actuator, still another part of the effort is often dissipated in the coupling itself, and most importantly, at termination of the actuator stroke, the generator is usually braked. It is desirable that particularly at the end of the actuating stroke the generator should continue to move in free reeling motion, but usually its momentum is partially dissipated in maintaining the one-way clutch decoupled after termination of the actuator stroke. In some cases the generator is strongly braked or even stopped (by the actuator) unless the actuator is released very quickly in order to permit its immediate return as developing is effective only during the return stroke of the actuator. In either case, a substantial portion of the mechanical energy is dissipated unused.

It is apparent that the overall efficiency of such a device is of the utmost importance as it is a direct factor in the degree of fatigue experienced by the operator. Thus, practically all of the effort exerted by the operator in moving the actuator should be converted, so to speak, into electrical energy. As soon as the actuator is stopped, the generator should continue to rotate completely unimpeded in free reeling rotation, subject only to the electrodynamic braking effect experienced by the generator when rotating.

The device, in accordance with the present invention, is

designed particularly towards obtaining such efficiency. The

device is provided with an element undergoing reciprocating motion under the influence, for example, of an actuator. The actuating stroke results from manually pressing the actuator, for example, in a clenching action. A spring tensioned by the actuator stroke provides the return motion of the actuator and of the reciprocating element upon release of the actuator. That portion is, per se, conventional, but the operation performed by the actuator constitutes the novel feature.

The actuation stroke pursuant to what can be called the first phase of the reciprocating motion of the reciprocating element is transmitted to a rotatable element such as a gear. The reciprocating element itself may be a segment gear meshing with the rotatable gear element. That first rotatable gear element is also capable of undergoing limited translatory motion. A shaft for the first rotatable gear element can move along a path parallel to the path of that part of the reciprocating element coupled to the periphery of the first rotatable gear element. During the first part of the actuating stroke, the reciprocating gear element provides translatory motion to the first rotatable gear element until the shaft of that first rotating rotatable element is impeded from moving further translatorily.

As the actuator stroke continues, the first rotatable gear element continues to receive at its periphery motion from the reciprocating element in the same direction as before. Thus, the first rotatable gear element will now rotate about the axis of its shaft. The axis of the shaft is then in what can be termed a first terminal position. Hence, during the actuator stroke the first rotatable gear element is first shifted so that its axis assumes the first terminal position, and subsequently the first gear rotates about its axis in that first terminal position. A second rotating element, such as second gear, is mounted on the same shaft of the first gear and follows both translatory and rotary motion of the first rotating gear element. As a result of the common translatory motion the second rotating element is coupled to a third rotating element; that coupling is completed when further translatory motion of the first and second rotating elements is impeded. The rotating motion imparted subsequently upon the first rotating element which is faithfully followed by the second rotating element is now imparted as rotating motion upon the third rotating element.

The third rotating element, possibly a third gear, is mounted on the shaft, for example, of the rotor of a generator. Thus, during the first or actuator phase of the reciprocating action the rotor is being driven for rotation in a particular direction, the transmission being provided, in that sequence, from the actuator to the reciprocating element, to the first (and second) rotatable elements, and from the second rotatable element to the third rotatable element which is coupled to the rotor. That transmission requires the axis of first and second rotatable gear elements to be in the first terminal position.

As the reciprocating element reaches the end of its stroke, it stops. The third rotatable gear element rotating with the rotor, continues to rotate therewith due to the inertia thereof. As the first and second rotating elements are stopped when the reciprocating element has reached the end of its stroke, the third rotating element becomes a driving element for the second rotating element. As the third rotatable gear element is still coupled to the second gear element, first and second gear elements will undergo a combined, translatory and rotary motion. The first rotatable element will thereby roll on and along the reciprocating element opposite to the translatory motion during the beginning of the actuator phase. As a consequence, the second rotatable element rolls out of engagement with the third rotatable element. The third rotatable element is, as stated, the driving element here and thus pushes the second rotatable element out of engagement. The first rotatable element rolls on and along the reciprocating element until stopped by a second impediment for translatory motion. The translatory motion of the first and second elements as a unit is thus impeded in both directions, but that second impediment becomes effective only after the second element is completely disengaged from the third element.

The second and third rotatable elements are thus automatically decoupled very shortly after termination of the actuator stroke, permitting now free reeling operation of the rotor. Most importantly, no force has to be exerted by the rotor to maintain the decoupling of the second and third rotatable gear elements. Actually, the rotation of the second rotatable gear element out of engagement with the third element results to some extent from the inertia of the second gear element itself.

Any position of the common shaft of the first and second rotatable gear elements relative to the reciprocating element and within the range of permissible translatory motion is possible as long as (l) the reciprocating element does not impart any force upon the first rotating element and (2) no other force is imparted upon the first and second rotatable elements. After the third gear element has pushed the second gear element out of engagement, the first and second elements move translatorily until being impeded; they come to a stop at that impediment in which can be termed a second terminal position for the axis of the shaft of the first and second gear elements. As long as no further forces are exerted upon them, they are maintained in that position, which is an out-of-engagement or decoupled state as between the second and the third elements.

The foregoing transpires at the end of the actuator stroke and independent from the beginning of the return stroke. As the reciprocating element is released subsequently, first and second rotatable elements are now rotated reversely by the reciprocating element during its return stroke or second phase of the reciprocating motion. The reciprocating element causes this rotation when the axis of first and second gear elements is in the second terminal position. This rotary motion, of course, is not transmitted upon the third rotatable element, as the reverse stroke of the reciprocating element does not provide translatory motion of the first and second rotatable gear elements towards the third element to permit reengagement. Translatory motion, if any, is provided in the reverse direction during the reverse stroke of the reciprocating element to positively maintain the out-of-engagement state of second and third rotatable elements. The third rotating element and the rotor of the generator continue free reeling under their own inertia, unimpeded by the mechanical transmission. The return stroke of actuator and reciprocating element is, of course, likewise limited and terminates the second phase of the reciprocating motion. Any tendency of the first and second rotatable elements to roll back into engagement with the third rotatable gear element will be prevented by the latter. As the user presses the actuator again, the operating cycle is repeated.

It should be mentioned that first and second rotatable gears could actually be combined in a single gear. However, the reciprocating motion may be relatively slow as in the case of a manually operated device, whereas the rotational speed for the rotor should be high. Hence, the first gear will be a small pinion gear and the second gear has a relatively large diameter, the third gear again being a small pinion gear.

The essential aspect of the invention is that the first and second rotating elements, taken as a unit, are joumaled in that their common shaft can undergo rotary motion as well as translatory motion over a limited range in between two terminal positions. That unit can rotate in one direction only in one of the two terminal positions while the unit can rotate in the opposite direction only in the other terminal positions. Any tendency to rotate it in the respective opposite direction shifts the unit to the respective other terminal position and vice versa. The two terminal positions are apart by a distance at least equal to (or larger than) the distance required for establishing complete coupling and decoupling between the second and third gear elements.

By operation of the translatory motion the unit comprised of first and second gear elements is simply shifted into and out of engagement of the second gear element with the particular rotatable element which is coupled to the generator. When out of engagement, the reciprocating element maintains the out-of-engagement position of the second gear element during the return stroke so that the free reeling rotor is not impeded by transmission of opposite rotation.

While the specification concludes with claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the subject matter which is regarded as the invention, it is believed that the invention, the objects and features of the invention and further objects, features and advantages thereof will be better understood from the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing in which:

FIG. 1 is an overall view of a flashlight, in the hand ofa user and incorporating the features of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a view into the flashlight shown in FIG. 1, with one of its covers removed;

FIG. 3 illustrates a view into the flashlight from a plane identified by 33 in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 illustrates a view into a flashlight as seen from a plane identified by 4-4 in FIG. 2; and

FIG. 5 illustrates a plan view of the rotor used in the generator of the flashlight.

Proceeding now to the detailed description of the drawings, there is illustrated a flashlight having a housing which may be made of plastic and may consist of two coverlike portions of matching contour in the main plane of extension of the device. FIG. 2 illustrates a view into the flashlight with one of the covers removed, the operating elements of the device are thus shown contained in the other cover, denoted 10a.

The housing 10 has a flared front portion 10b which forms at the front end a reflector 21 having a central aperture 24. A bulb 20 projects through aperture 24 from the interior of the housing. Each one of the covers, such as cover 100, defines one-half of the circular reflectors 21 and has an indentation which is half of aperture 24. The housing has a narrowed, central portion to facilitate gripping of the flashlight and placement of the thumb of the user. A bulged rear portion 10d is constructed to house the electrical power plant and mechanical elements needed for operation of the flashlight and it rests in the palm of the hand of the user, such as illustrated in FIG. 1. An actuator or handle 15 is positioned for reciprocating actuation by the fingers of the user and is thus located opposite to the indented portion 100.

Inside of cover 10a, and thus of the housing, there is a bottom plate 11. A mounting element 12 is secured to plate 11 by bolts 19a and 19b. The bottom plate 11 is essentially flat. The mounting element 12 has a flat portion 12b which can also be termed gear mounting plate; it extends essentially parallel to the bottom plate 11. A piece is upwardly bent from portion 12b and supports a socket 22 in which the incandescent lamp 20 is inserted. Element 12 has another upwardly bent portion 120 but forming an angle with the piece 12a. A flat portion 12d of element 12 is bent-off portion 120 and extends parallel to the gear mounting plate 12b and thus also parallel to the bottom plate 11 but at a greater distance than the gear mounting plate 12b. A fastener lug 12e extends from portion 12d. The portion 12d can also be termed generator mounting plate. As stated, mounting element 12 is connected to bottom plate 11 by means of two bolts 19a and 19b. The small bolt 19a connects the gear mounting plate 12b to plate 11 while the larger bolt 19b connects lug l2e thereto. The elements to be described in the following are all supported by the mounting elements 11 and 12 and particularly positioned in the space between the elements 11 and 12.

The actuator handle 15 is angularly linked to an arcuately shaped segment element 16 having a gear 16a along a portion of its outwardly extending periphery. The segment gear 16a extends around a pivot point 18. A lever element 17 is linked to and extends radially from pivot point 18; element 16 is an angular extension of lever 17. Elements 16 and 17 are an integral piece capable of pivoting around the pivot point 18. The segment 16 can be termed a reciprocating element and reciprocation occurs curvilinear on a circle segment, peripherally to segment gear 16a.

The segment 16 projects partially through an opening 10f in housing element 10a. The gear portion 16a of segment 16 is essentially inside of the housing, so is lever 17 and pivot 18, while the handle or actuator 15 is outside of the housing. The strokes in either direction of reciprocating element 16 is limited in that neither lever 17 nor actuator 15 as linked to element 16 can pass through opening 10f. However, a stop 17a in cover 10a limits projection of segment 16 beyond the illustrated position.

As the user of the flashlight grips around housing 10 while his fingers engage actuator 15, he can then proceed to press the lever 15 towards the housing. Among other functions a spring 25 is, for example, expanded thereby. Upon release of the pressing grip by the operator, spring 25 will contract and thereby tend to return the elements 15, 16 and 17 into the illustrated position. Thus, as the user altematingly presses and relaxes handle or actuator 15, segment 16 reciprocates around the pivot point 18.

The segment gear 16a is a first one in a train of gears which is ultimately destined to rotate a permanent magnet rotor. The segment gear meshes continuously with a pinion gear 30, which is the second gear within the gear train and can also be termed a first rotatable gear element. Pinion gear 30 is integral with or mounted on a shaft of which shaft ends 31 and 32 are used for journaling the pinion gear 30. The bottom mounting plate 11 and gear mounting plate 12b of element 12 are respectively provided with two aligned, elongated slots respectively denoted 13 and 14. The slots 13 and 14 have a somewhat arcuate configuration with the pivot axis of pivot 18 as center. The slots have rounded ends such as ends 14a and 14b of slot 14, the diameter matching the diameter of shaft ends 31 and 32.

As segment gear 160 meshes with pinion gear 30, the following operative relations are possible: If segment gear 16 pivots in counterclockwise direction, as of the view of FIG. 2, the teeth of segment gear 16a urge the teeth of pinion gear 30 in the same direction, essentially curvilinear to segment 16. This will move pinion 30 as a whole, i.e., translatory motion is imparted upon pinion 30, there being no place for a reaction force to set up a torque for the pinion. Soon shaft end 32 will abut arc-shaped end 140 of slot 14, while shaft portion 31 will then abut the corresponding end of slot 13. This can be termed now the first terminal position of pinion 30 with shaft ends 31-32 in bearing slots 13-14. Upon continued movement of the segment 16 in the same (counterclockwise) direction, a torque develops between the thus circumferentially provided force on pinion 30 and the reaction between its shaft ends 31 and 32 and the respective ends of slot 13 and 14. Accordingly, pinion 30 will now rotate and in the drawing of FIG. 2, in clockwise direction.

if segment 16 is stopped and if for any reason pinion 30 continues to rotate in clockwise direction, it will do so by rolling on segment 16a, whereby shaft ends 31 and 32 roll along in slots 13 and 14 until abutting the other ends, whereupon pinion 30 is impeded from further rotation. Pinion 30 with shaft ends 31 and 32 are then in what can be termed the second terminal position in bearing slots 13-14.

If the movement of the segment 16 is reversed pursuant to the second phase or return stroke of the reciprocating motion of the segment, now in clockwise direction, and due to, for example, relaxation of the grip by the user and the corresponding relaxation of the spring 25, then the engagement relation of the teeth of segment gear 160 and of pinion 30 is reversed. 1f the pinion is not yet in the second terminal position, the

' force applied from the segment gear 160 to the pinion 30 will not set up a torque for pinion 30 but at first pinion 30 with shaft will move along a translatory path, as defined by slots 13 and 14. This translatory motion terminates when pinion 30 with shaft ends 31 and 32 is in the second terminal position. if concurrently the pinion 30 continues to rotate clockwise, then the motion of pinion 30 with shaft ends 31 and 32 is a combined translatory and rotary motion leading from the first to the second terminal positions in the bearing slots.

When pinion 30 with shaft ends 31-32 are in the second terminal position, the return stroke of segment 16a (clockwise) causes pinion 30 to rotate in counterclockwise direction. After having described the relation between segment gear 16a and pinion 30, the gear train will be described further. A second rotatable element such as a gear 33 having a diameter considerably larger than the diameter of pinion gear 30 is mounted on the same shaft and follows the rotation of the pinion at the same angular rate. Moreover, gear 33 follows also the translatory motion of pinion 30.

Gear 33 meshes a pinion 35 provided the common shaft (shaft ends 31 and 32) of pinion 30 and of gear 33 is in the first terminal position, where, for example, shaft end 32 abuts slot end 140 to restrict further counterclockwise movement of the shaft ends 31 and 32 around the pivot 18. it should be noted that the coupling between gears 33 and 35 is maintained by the same force which causes pinion 30 to rotate in clockwise direction. No spring or the like is needed to maintain the engagement between gears 33 and 35. If pinion 30 with shaft ends 31 and gear 33 are in the second terminal position (wherein, for example, shaft end 32 abuts slot end 14b) gear 33 is, in effect, pivoted (around pivot point 18) out of meshing engagement with pinion 35. That disengagement is maintained as long as no force is exerted on pinion 30 tending to shift it counterclockwise around pivot 18.

Pinion 35 has an axially elongated configuration and is partially embedded in a central filling 36 of a rotor 42. The rotor 42 is a permanent magnet having a particular inertia. The

filling 36 is made, for example, of silicon rubber to provide an elastic coupling between rotor 42 and the gear train. Rotor 42 pertains to a generator which includes an armature structure 40 constituting the stator of the generator of which permanent magnet 42 is the rotor. The stator structure is comprised of two star wheellike elements 43 and 44 with four spokes each. The ends of the spokes are bent upwardly and constitute the stator poles. A coil is mounted in between elements 43 and 44. Rotor 42 has alternating magnetic poles along its periphery. The coil 41 is connected through connections 23 and to the socket 22 to provide electrical energy to a lamp 20 when inserted in the socket 22. As the permanent magnet rotor rotates at high speed within the stator pole pieces, the flux lines of rotating magnet 42 are cut by the stator pole pieces, and electrical energy is generated in coil 42 feeding lamp 20.

The device as described operates as follows: As the operator presses actuator 15 the segment gear 164 being continuously meshed with the teeth of the pinion gear 30 moves the gear 30 with shaft ends to the first terminal position wherein the teeth of gear 33 engage the teeth of pinion 35 at the correct pitch diameter of the two gears. 1f the operator actuation is not the first one, rotor 42 rotates already, so does gear 35, but not gear 33. Bushing 36 serves as an elastic coupling between the two gears. As gears 35 and 33 engage then rotate together causing magnet 42 to rotate (first stroke) in counterclockwise direction. During the actuation stroke the larger gear 33 is a driving gear and gear 35 is a driven gear.

At the end of the actuating stroke segment 16 stops and thus ceases to drive pinion 30 and, therefore, gear 33 is likewise not driven anymore. Due to the combination of the weight (mechanical inertia) and large diameter of the permanent magnet rotor, and upon termination of driving gear 33 by segment 16, gear 35 becomes the driver and gear 33 becomes a driven member. Gear 35 continues counterclockwise tending to drive gear 33 clockwise, but gear 33 is immobilized once the actuator has reached the end of the actuating stroke, except that its shaft ends 31-32 can escape along slots 13-14. As a consequence pinion gear 30 rolls along stopped gear 16a and out of the first terminal position. Thus, the driving of gear 33 by gear 35 forces the former out of contact with the teeth of the latter, but the elastic bushing 36 is instrumental in a soft decoupling between gears 35 and 33. It is this, a very important feature of the novel structure; gear 33 is simply rolled out of engagement with gear 35 in that pinion 30 rolls along segment gear 16a and at the same sense of rotation as before. Very little power is thus required for the decoupling and magnet 42 will reel freely, very shortly after gear 33 ceases to drive pinion 35.

The disengaging action may be aided by the movement of gear 30 under the influence of segment gear 16a if the user relaxes immediately his grip of actuator 15. The return stroke of element 16, in clockwise direction, moves pinion 30 and gear 33 with associated shaft towards the second terminal position. As pinion gear 35 and large gear 33 are forced out of mutual contact they become completely disengaged due to the fact that the length of the elongated bearing slots exceed the depth of the teeth engagement between the large gear 33 and the pinion gear 35. After gear 33 and pinion gear 35 disengage, the permanent rotor is entirely free from the gear train and for a short period of time practically maintains its speed. If the user soon presses actuator 15 again, gear 33 quickly couples again into gear 33 and application of driving force to the rotor is resumed. The generation of electrical energy between the intermittent application of the fingers becomes necessarily constant and the light output is, for all practical purposes, continuous.

The elongated bearing, as defined by the two slots 13 and 14 permits pivoting into and out of engagement position of the gear 33 in relation to the gear 35. The slots define the translatory path for gears 30 and 33. That path must be parallel to the path of segment 16. As the latter is curved, slots 13 and 14 must be curved parallel thereto. Pivot 18 is the common center of these curves. However, slots 13 and 14 will be small,

particularly in relation to the distance (radius) from pivot 18, so that, within permissible tolerances, straight configurations for slots 13 and 14 may suffice as approximations. Nevertheless, the general rule requires parallelism between actuator path and the path of limited translatory motion of the disengageable and engageable gear. This feature eliminates the need for pawls, ratchets, and other types of one-way drive clutch mechanisms which, at the very best, do not approach the efficiency of this simple and novel approach. The efiiciency of such a device is of utmost importance as it is a direct factor in the degree of fatigue experienced by the operator. The complete system requires fewer parts and provides far greater dependability and as low as possible cost in comparison with the devices heretofore known. The simplicity of the gear arrangement permits a more compact design and the elongated, arc-type slot bearing permits a more compact design and the elongated, arc-type slot bearing permits the use of a gear segment and, therefore, simplifies the mechanical transfer of the intermittent lever pressing action into a continuous rotary gear movement with the least number of parts and occupies the minimum of space in the unit.

lt should be noted that one-way type teeth could be provided either on gear 33 or pinion 35 or both, but that is not needed as the driving system cannot possibly provide reverse rotation to rotor 42. The correct sense of rotation (in H6. 2) for rotor 42 is counterclockwise driven by a clockwise rotating gear 33. Gear 33 can rotate counterclockwise (as a driving element driven from segment 16) only in the second terminai position, which is positively maintained as long as pinion 30 is driven counterclockwise. No engagement exists then between gears 33 and 35. lt is thus essential that gear 33 as driving element (for gear 35) can be driven by itself in the desired direction only when in the first terminal position and, thereafter, when in engagement with gear 35. Gear 33 as driving element can be driven by itself in the undesired direction only when in the second terminal position and, therefore, out of engagement with gear 35. Therefore, the driving force for gear 33 to operate as a driving element maintains the proper position relation of gear 33 to driven element 35, so that proper coupling and decoupling results automatically by the maintaining of the particular terminal positions. Neither position is to be maintained by particular, separate forces acting counter to any balancing forces.

The invention is not limited to the embodiments described above but all changes and modifications thereof not constituting departures from the spirit and scope of the invention are intended to be covered by the following claims.

lclaim:

l. A device for converting reciprocating motion into rotary motion of uniform direction, for driving the rotor of an electric generator, comprising:

first means for undergoing reciprocating motion along a particular path and which motion includes alternating actuating and return strokes;

second means having an axis and coupled to the first means and being driven by the first means, the second means capable of rotating about the axis;

third means for mounting the second means permitting rotation of the second means about the axis and positioning the axis along a path of limited extensions parallel to the path of the first means as undergoing reciprocating motion, the first means as coupled to the second means moving the second means with axis along said path of limited extension and imparting torque upon the second means at a first end of the path, when the axis is in a first terminal position, thereby maintaining the axis in the first terminal position; and

fourth means including the rotor of the generator and being rotatably coupled to said second means when the axis is in the first terminal position, to receive torque from the second means, and causing the second means to move out of coupling with the fourth means as the second means ceases to receive torque from the first means at the end of the actuating stroke in that the axis of the second means moves along the path of limited extension to a second end thereof defining a second terminal position of the shaft where the second means is decoupled from the fourth means, the first means transmitting torque to the second means in the opposite direction during the return stroke, thereby maintaining the axis in the second terminal position.

2. A device as set forth in claim 1, the third means being a slot bearing journaling the second means for rotation about a plurality of axes relative to the third means, the second means shifting in the bearing over said limited path, the bearing having stop means for limiting the translatory motion of the second means in the bearing, the stop means defining the first and second terminal positions of the axis of the second means.

3. A device as set forth in claim 1, the second means including fifth rotatable means geared to the first means, and including sixth rotatable means geared to the fourth means when the axis of the second means is in the first position, the fourth means including inertia means maintaining rotation of the fourth means beyond the reception of torque through the sixth means of the second means.

4. A device as set forth in claim 1, the second means including a pinion, a gearwheel and a common shaft;

the third means including a pair of registering slots extending parallel to the path of the first means for mounting the shaft of the pinion, the first means including a gear meshing the pinion to move the pinion and the shaft in the slots to one respective end of each slot during the actuating stroke, continuation of the actuating stroke causing the shaft with pinion meshing the gear of the first means to rotate, the gearwheel on the shaft rotating in engagement with the fourth means when the shaft with pinion and gearwheel rotate in the one ends of the slot; and

the gear of the first means maintaining the shaft with pinion and gearwheel at the opposite ends of the slots to rotate in the opposite direction during the return stroke, the gearwheel then being out of engagement with the fourth means.

5. A device as set forth in claim 1, the rotor having mass to continue rotation after an actuating stroke; the stator of the generator having coils connected to a lamp.

6. A device as set forth in claim 1, the fourth means including an inertia wheel, a gear for coupling to the second means, and resilient means connecting the gear to the inertia wheel.

7. A device for converting reciprocating motion into rotary motion of a rotor of an electric generator, the combination comprising:

a first element for undergoing reciprocating motion comprised of alternating actuating and return strokes;

a second rotatable element coupled to the first element; first means mounting the second element, so that the second element can move parallel to the reciprocating first element and over a limited path, between first and second terminal position, the second element as coupled to the first element moving into the first terminal position at the beginning of the actuating stroke and rotating in the first terminal position about a particular axis transverse to said path and to a plane which includes said path for the remainder of the actuating stroke, the second element moving to the second terminal position subsequent to the termination of the actuating stroke and rotating in the second terminal position as coupled to the first element during at least most of the return stroke; and

a third rotatable element coupled to the rotor for rotation therewith, further coupled to the second element in the first terminal position for bidirectional transfer of torque and decoupled from the second element in the second terminal position.

8. A device for converting a reciprocal motion into electrical energy comprising:

an element operable for providing reciprocating motion along a particular path and in two alternating phases;

first means coupled to the element for moving along a path being the driven element in the one direction causing parallel to the particular path in one or the opposite decoupling of the second gear. direction when the element moves in accordance with 10. The combination as set forth in claim 9, the first gear one or the other of the two phases of reciprocating being resiliently coupled to the element permitting limited tion and for rotating in one or the opposite direction rotatory deflection Of the first gear relation to the element about an axis transverse to said path and in a plane which about their Common axesincludes Said path when f h movement along Said l1.A miniature generatorhavingstator and rotor, the rotor path is impeded and as long as the element continues to being a perwanem magne? d156, havmg a cefmal P j move in accordance with one or the other phases of a nonresillent shaft having a gear and being disposed in the 10 aperture for the gear to project axially from the aperture;

a resilient filler in the aperture separate and distinct from the shaft and embedding the shaft in the aperture; and means for providing rotation to the gear. 12. A generator as set forth in claim 11, the last means thereof including reciprocating means alternatingly coupled to and decoupled from the gear.

13. A device for providing intermittently motive power to the rotor of a generator, comprising:

first means drivingly coupled to the rotor for continuous rotation therewith;

reciprocating motion;-

second means for limiting motion of the first means in said parallel path to a particular, relatively small range to obtain rotation of the first means in one or the opposite direction;

third means coupled to the first means for bidirectional torque transfer and rotating in said one direction above a stationary axis and decoupled from the first means when the first means rotates in the opposite direction; and

a generator having a stator and rotor, the rotor being coupled to the third means for receiving rotation when coupled to the Second means and commumg rotate after the first means to provide rotation to or receive rotation decouPlmg of the mearfs from Seqmd from the first means, the second means rotating about a A devce for convemng reclpmcanng mono" mtfiry particular axis defining a plane of rotation transverse to motion of a rotor of anelectric generator, the combination the axis; compnsmg: third means for rotatably supporting the second means pera rotatable element including the rotor and exhibiting an mmining translatory motion f the second means including ema momentum; displacement of the axis in a direction transverse to the a first gear coaxially coupled to the element for rotation i andin id plane; d

therewith; fourth means for intermittently providing rotation to the a Second g with Shaft means; and second means in a direction causing the second means to an el ngated lot aring for t ha means enabling move translatorily into engagement with the first means coplanar rotatory motion about the axis of the shaft and and continuing rotation for driving the first means, the translatory motion of the second gear including the shaft first means causing the second means to leave engagewith axis transverse to the axis and defining first and mem y rotary P same dlrectlo" during second terminal portions of the second gear wherein the gagemem combmed wlth translatory mono" m the direction opposite to the translatory motion causing engagement, upon cessation of providing rotation to the second by the fourth means.

second gear is respectively coupled to and decoupled from the first gear, the second gear when a driving element imparting rotation on the first gear only in the first terminal position inone direction, the first gear when 40 second means for selective, bidirectional engagement with e

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Classifications
U.S. Classification290/1.00E, 310/83, 310/156.12, 310/51, 322/1
International ClassificationF21L13/00, F21L13/08
Cooperative ClassificationF21L13/08
European ClassificationF21L13/08