US 3645227 A
A peg or annunciator board device for offices and plants to indicate disposition of personnel. Aligned rows of pegs of light-transmitting material which glow, when pressed inwards, from light from a source within the device. Automatic latching of a single peg or group of pegs when pressed inwards and individual or multiple peg release.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Lahmer Feb. 29, 1972  KLLUMINATED PEGBOARD  References Cited 72 Inventor: Arthur A. Lahmer, Suite 217, 1300 King UNITED STATES PATENTS rt 81.. coquiflam, Canada 451,860 5/1891 Hatfield ..116/114 22 l d 6 1 Kaplan l ..1 l l June 1,773,392 8/1930 EiChen8U8l'.... ....116/130 ux 211 App]. No.2 871,778 2,062,259 11/1936 Thomas ...116/124.1 x 2,331,590 10/1943 Andres ..116/124 Related Application Data 2,527,631 10 1950 Gordon... ...116/1 15.5 x 2,614,162 10/1952 Smith ..116/124 x  Continuation of Ser. No. 642,875, June 1, 1967, abandoned- Primary ExaminerLouis J. Capozi Attorney-Lyle G. Trorey  us. c1 ..ll6/128,40/130, 116/136,
240/1 ET, 340/372  ABSTRACT [51 1 Int. Cl. ..G08b 5/00 A peg or annunciator board device for offices and plants to in-  Field ofSearch ..116/114, 124, 124.1, 124.4, dicate disposition of personnel- Aligned rows of P of light- 116/128, 136; 40/331, 130; 200/167 A; 240/225, 23, 1 El; 250/72, 75; 340/147, 162, 366, 311, 324, 372
transmitting material which glow, when pressed inwards, from light from a source within the device. Automatic latching of a single peg or group of pegs when pressed inwards and individual or multiple peg release.
4 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures ILLUMINATEI) PEGBOARD CROSS-REFERENCES TO RELATED APPLICATIONS This is a continuation of my copending US. application Ser. No. 642.875. now abandoned.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The invention relates to a pegboard used, for instance, in an office to record information as to whether an individual is in or out and, if out, at what time he is expected to return, and particularly to structure adapted for use in an illuminated pegboard, while not being thereto restricted.
Rather than a simple peg to be inserted in one of several holes to give information as above, constructions are known wherein buttons, which still are referred to herein as pegs, are depressed and in which the button becomes illuminated when it is depressed-thus to serve as an indication. Some previous constructions employ sophisticated electrical and mechanical arrangements. Such devices are effective and well serve the required purpose, but tend to be expensive both in first cost and in maintenance cost.
I reduce the difficulties and disadvantages above, and other difficulties and disadvantages associated with prior art apparatus, by using vertically movable pegs of light-transmitting material. The plastic known as Lucite, obtainable from ordinary trade sources, and other generally similar materials are, as is well known, suitable for such purposes. The pegboard of the present invention is constructed and arranged so that, when a peg is depressed, illumination from a light source strikes an inner end of the peg so that a portion thereof extending outwards of an upper surface of a housing of the device becomes illuminated by light transmitted axially through the peg. The use of light-transmitting materials of the above kind axially to transmit light from a source impinging upon an end thereof is well known, and forms no part of my invention; nor are the illuminating means and the arrangements thereof to attain this result parts, per se, of my invention.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention discloses a pegboard device having pegs of light-transmitting material movable axially of holes of a front wall of an otherwise substantially lighttight enclosure, the movement being from an outer, or normal, position to an inner position. The device is constructed and arranged so that when a peg is moved inwards from the normal position it will latch and, in the latched position, light from a light source will strike an inner end of the peg so illuminating it as before described. The device is characterized by a latch bar assembly pivoted within a frame having upper and lower members and end members, the upper member suitably being the front wall of the enclosure aforesaid through which outer ends of the pegs extend. The pegs are constrained to be movable axially through aligned holes of the frame upper and lower members aforesaid. In the normal position inner ends of the pegs are shielded from the light source. Compression spring means are provided to urge the pegs to the normal positions. Latching means, including a latch bar, are provided to retain a peg in a partially depressed position whereat an inner end thereof is exposed to light from the source. The latch bar is disposed transversely of the pegs of a row being aligned with a said row. The latch bar is hinged, having a latch element urged by spring means to engage a part of a cam secured to each peg, downward movement of the peg as aforesaid swinging the latch bar about hinges so that the latch element of the said bar may engage a cam portion, so securing the peg in the latched illuminated position aforesaid.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a fragmented plan view of an illuminated pegboard embodiment of the invention,
FIG. 2 is a fragmented detail of a portion of a latch bar assembly some parts being shown in section,
FIG. 3 is a section on line 3-3 of FIG. 2 the peg unit not being shown in section,
FIG. 4 is a detail showing a means of attachment of a latch bar spring to the latch bar, and to illustrate cam action,
FIG. 4-A is a fragmented detail elevation further to illustrate latch bar spring attachment,
FIG. 4-B is a fragmented detail showing an alternative cam,
FIG. 5 is a partly sectioned fragmented elevation showing a means to reduce stray illumination effects,
FIG. 6 is a view as seen from 6-6 of FIG. 5.
DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT By way of example, the invention not being limited to the example, an illuminated pegboard embodying a latch bar assembly according to the invention is now described in detail with reference to the drawings.
In an embodiment of the invention shown in FIG. 1, the numeral 10 indicates generally a pegboard characterized by structure described in detail herein below. The device has an enclosure having a front wall 11 which wall has a side edge 12, the enclosure having end walls of which the end wall 13 only is seen in FIG. 1. The front wall has a plurality of spaced holes severally 14, through which, as best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, pegs 15.1, 15.2, 15.3, etc., extend. Referring again to FIG. 1, the holes 14 are arranged in a plurality of horizontal rows a centerline of a row being designated by the numeral 16, which centerline is normal to the edge 12 aforesaid. The holes of each horizontal row are so spaced as to lie along a centerline 17 at right angles to the centerline 16, forming columns. The front wall edge 12 is spaced from the end wall 13 for insertion of removable panels 18, one panel being provided for each horizontal row aforesaid. Beneath the panels 18 and obviously secured to a backwall 19 of the enclosure is an illuminating means which, with electrical ancillaries thereto, is generally designated by the numeral 20. The illuminating means is suitably a fluorescent tube 21 disposed generally parallel to the end wall 13, constructed and arranged to direct light towards inner ends of latched pegs. Connection of the illuminating means to a source of electric power, not shown, is effected by a flexible lead 22. Operation of the illuminating means is discussed later.
The enclosure has sidewalls of which one only, designated 23, is shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. A row of holes adjacent the sidewall 23 is designated 16.1, and it is seen that a space 23 is provided between the row 16.1 and the sidewall for designations placed on an outer surface of the front wall 11 which designations are aligned with the centerlines 17 of the columns aforesaid. Suitably these designations might read; IN, OUT, l0, ll, 12, 1 etc. as illustrated in FIG. 1.
As best seen in FIG. 2 the pegs extend outwards of the front wall 11. The pegs 15.2 and 15.3 are in normal, that is to say fully outwardly extending, positions. The peg 15.1 is shown in a latched position pressed inwards towards the front wall 11, but still extending outwards thereof. Referring now to FIG. I and 2, when the peg 15.1 is depressed to the FIG. 2 position the top of the peg will appear to be illuminated by light from the illuminating source 20 aforesaid, as later described. The indication thus given by the pegboard is that Mr. Jones is IN. If he is out, the peg 15.2 is depressed when the peg 15.1 will automatically release. If it is desired to indicate that Mr. Jones is expected to return at 10, the peg 15.3 may be depressed simultaneously with the peg 15.2 to latch, when both will become illuminated.
A latch bar assembly is now described in detail, disclosing a specific example of structure constructed and arranged to ef fect the foregoing.
Referring to FIG. 2 and 3, the numeral 30 indicates generally a latch bar assembly, the latch or trip bar being designated 31. A frame 32 is defined by: a first lower member 33, a second lower member 34 spaced from the first lower member, end members 35 of which one only is seen in FIG. 2, and by the front wall 11 aforesaid.
Referring now to the peg 15.2, the said peg extends outward above an outer surface of the front wall 11 through one of the holes 14 aforesaid. Aligned holes 36 and 37 are provided in the first and second lower members respectively so that the peg is capable of axial movement through the said holes. Spaced from the end of the peg which extends through the front wall 11, and secured to the peg, is an inverted truncated conical cam 38, a base 39 of which is urged by a helical compression spring 40 against an inner surface 41 of the front wall 11, the spring extending between the base 39 and the lower member 33 as shown. The normal position of a peg is as described, namely urged outwards to the full line outer position indicated in FIG. 3 by the numeral 15.2, being urged to that position by the spring 40. Referring to FIG. 2, the trip bar 31 is disposed transverse of the pegs to be actuated by downward movement of the cam 38 as is later explained.
As seen in FIG. 3 and 4, the latch bar has an upper portion 42 disposed to be nearly tangential to an outer surface of the conical cam 38, and a channel portion 43, a sidewall of which adjoining a lower edge of the upper portion 42 aforesaid forms a latch 44. A lower portion of the latch bar is formed to receive a hinge pin 45 which hinge pin, see now FIG. 2, is secured in the end member 35. It is to be understood that a hinge pin is provided, and similarly secured, at each end of the trip bar. A light helical spring 46 has a lower end 47 attached to the first lower member 33, an upper end of the spring being secured to the trip bar upper portion 42 as best seen in FIG. 4. Thus the upper portion of 42 of the trip bar 31 is urged by the spring in a direction lightly to contact the outer surface of the conical cam 38.
A method of attachment of the spring 46 to the portion 42 is shown in FIG. 4. Attachment is effected in the following manner. The lower end of the spring 47 being secured as aforesaid, the spring is drawn upwards to extend above an upper end of the member 42 which member, being thin, may
readily be inserted between convolutions of the extended spring a few turns from the end thereof. When the extended spring is released, the few turns 49 will extend beyond an outer edge of the member 42 as shown. In this way, a nice adjustment of the tension of the spring 46 may readily be effected. FIG. 4-A shows an elevation of a fragment of the latch bar upper portion 42 in the vicinity of the point of attachment of the spring 46, illustrating alternative attachment means. An upper edge of the aforesaid portion 42 may be notched as seen at 50. The notch serves to secure the spring, attachment being otherwise effected as above described.
Referring again to FIG. 3, when the peg 15.2 is pressed downwards from the full line position shown to a broken line position 15.2-A the latch bar will be caused to swing clockwise, as viewed in FIG. 3, by downward travel of the cam 38 and, when the peg is depressed to just past the broken line position 15.2-A the spring 46 will retract the trip bar 31 so that, when downward pressure on the peg 15.1 is released, the base 39 of the cam will be engaged by the latch 44 securing the peg in the broken line position 15.2-A shown.
Each peg, which as before explained is of Lucite or similar material, has a conical lower extremity 51. In the broken line depressed position 15.2-A, the said conical end extends through the second lower frame member 34 so that substantially the whole of the said conical end is exposed to the light source.
When the peg 15.2 is in the broken line position 15.2-A of FIG. 3, if now for instance the peg 15.1 is pressed inwards it will be latched in the same manner. It will be understood that, in the latching action, the trip bar will be moved clockwise as before explained, hence to release peg 15.2 the peg 15.1 being secured in the down position above. Each conical cam has a cylindrical base portion 52, which base portion may suitably have an axial dimension of about one-sixteenth of an inch. Consequently, when a peg is depressed, see now FIG. 4, the trip bar 31 will be urged clockwise by the cam when the cylindrical base portion 52 passing the junction of the cam upper portion 42 and the latch 44. In the FIG. 4 position the trip bar is in the above described position and, since the junction between the latch 44 and the upper portion of 42 is rounded, as seen at 53, and since the spring 40 of the depressed peg is then compressed, in the FIG. 4 position the peg will be urged from the engaged position 15.2-A by its spring 40 to resume the position at which the peg 15.2 is shown in FIG. 2, namely the normal position aforesaid. This will occur before the peg 15.1 latches. Latching of the peg 15.1 will occur only when it is depressed until the latch 44 engages the base 39 of the cam. Thus, when one peg is latched-in which position it is illuminatedpressing another peg of the same row into the latched position-when the latter peg in turn will be illuminated-automatically releases the previously latched peg which resumes the normal unilluminated position. The trip mechanism also provides that two or more pegs may be placed simultaneously in engaged positions, by simultaneously pressing the said members downward to latch, and all may be disengaged by pressing any unlatched peg downwards so that the cam 38 is in the FIG. 4 position.
It may be required to latch all pegs simultaneously, in which case all latched pegs may be released by pressing any one peg fully inward. Referring to FIG. 4, when any peg, whether in the latched or in the normal position, is pushed fully inward the cam will travel downwards to a broken outline position 38.1, causing the latch bar to assume a broken outline position 31.1 at which the latch is positively disengaged from all latched cams. In FIG. 4, the amount of rotation to the broken outline position is exaggerated for clarity of illustration.
To effect the foregoing nicely, relative strengths of the springs 40 and 46, and related parameters, are required to have particular relative values. I have found that satisfactory results are obtainable by structure as under:
EXAMPLE Strength of spring 40, 36 oz./in., preloaded to 6 02. That is, an initial load of 6 oz. is required to cause a peg to move from the normal position. Vertical travel of a peg to latch, 0.3 in. To latch, travel of a point at the junction of the latch bar elements 42 and 44 (see 53 FIG. 4) measured normal to the peg axis, 0.12 in. Force exerted spring 46, measured at 44 normal to the peg axis, 4 02.
While other relative and absolute values may be used, mechanism according to the example above gives satisfactory results in practice.
A conical cam has been described and illustrated. What is required is a cam secured to the peg, the cam having a base or other latching element adapted to engage a latch of a latch bar, and a cam portion extending from an edge of the base remote from the peg and inclined towards the peg, the cam being in such operative engagement with the latch bar latch that the latter shall latch on the cam latching element when the peg is moved inwards from the normal position to the latch position. The cam may thus be a inverted truncated pyramidlike member, or a rod generally in the shape the numeral 7," the bar of the numeral being the base and the remainder of the character constituting the sloping portion aforesaid. These are equivalent to the cam illustrated, and may obviously be used. FIG. 4-B illustrates an alternative cam element shaped as above, wherein the alternative cam is designated generally 61, having a cam latch element 62 and a sloping portion 63. The cam portions 62 and 63 are equivalent to the base and surface respectively of the conical cam 38.
Referring now to the latch bar 31 best seen in FIG. 4, the bar has an upper portion 42 extending generally tangential of the cam conical surface. This construction adds to the moment of the bar section so to strengthen it, and provides line contact tending to reduce cam wear. The upper portion is not however necessary to obtain the latching action and, so, may
be omittedin which case obvious means are provided to attach the spring 46 in the position shown in FIG. 4.
In some installations and circumstances stray illumination may cause a peg to appear dimly lighted when in the normal position. When this is objectionable, structure according to FIG. 5 and 6 is preferred. The numeral 55 designates an elastic flexible opaque material secured, suitably by an adhesive, to a lower surface of the lower frame member 34 as shown, covering the holes 37. Cuts 56 are made through the material central of the holes 37. When a peg is depressed to the latched position 15.2-A, the conical end Sl-A of the peg extends through the cuts 56 pushing flaps 57 defined by the said cuts outwards as shown. In the normal position the flaps close because of the elasticity of the material 55. The flaps associated with the peg 15.1 are shown closed. At least one cut 56 is required, more than two cuts may be used.
The frame illustrated in FIG. 2 has first and second spaced lower members 33, 34. This is so that when a peg is in the normal position, e.g., the peg 15.2, there is restraint by the member 33 notwithstanding the peg conical end 51 is clear of the lower member hole 36. A single thicker lower member may be substituted for the two lower members, or a single thin member having a collar extending upwards towards front wall 11 may be used.
There are uses other than those herein described, both for a pegboard configuration including a latch bar assembly according to the present invention and for the latch bar assembly. Electrical devices controlled by a multiplicity of indicating switch means, teaching devices wherein e.g., a letter of the alphabet is provided on an outer end of the peg, are examples.
It may be desirable, either that a rectangular peg be used or that means are provided to restrain a peg against axial rotation; for instance in teaching so that the illuminated letter shall be correctly oriented. Such alternatives are deemed to be obvious to those skilled in the art and, therefore, are not herein described.
1. In a pegboard device including; an enclosure having a front wall ill with an inner surface, the wall having spaced holes 14 arranged in horizontal rows; pegs having upper and lower ends, the pegs extending through the holes and being adapted for axial movement therethrough, normal to the front wall, from an outer position at which the upper end extends outwards a particular distance from the wall, to an inner latched position at which the outer end extends but a short distance outwards of the wall; the device being constructed and arranged so that when a peg is moved inward from the outer position it latches at the inner position; the device being characterized by a latch bar assembly 30 including in combination:
a. a frame 32 within the enclosure the frame including, a
first lower member 33 a second lower member 34 end members 35 and the front wall 11,
b. the first and second lower members having holes aligned with a particular hole of the front wall, so that each hole of the top wall is aligned with a pair of holes in the first and second lower members, for axial movement of the peg as aforesaid,
c. each peg in its outer position passing through a hole of the first lower member but not through the aligned hole of the second lower member,
(1. each peg in its inner latched position extending through the aligned hole of the second lower member,
e. a cam 38 secured to each peg, the cam having a base 39 disposed to face the inner surface of the front wall,
f. a compression spring 40 surrounding each peg, the spring having an outer end in contact with an inner end of the cam, and a lower end in contact with the first lower member of the frame, so as to urge the peg to the outer position at which the cam base is held against the inner surface of the front wall,
g. a latch bar 31 disposed transverse to the pegs of each horizontal row, the bar having an upper portion 42 and a lower portion formed to receive hinge pins 45,
i. hinge pins secured in the frame end members 45, the
latch bar being hin ed to swing about the pins, u. a tension spring 4 having an inner end secured to the first lower member, and an outer end secured to the latch bar, adapted to urge the latch bar upper portion against the cam,
iii. the latch bar having means 44 adapted to engage the base of the cam as a peg is pressed inwards from the outer position aforesaid, and to latch the peg in the inner position,
h. and means to unlatch a peg latched in the inner position.
2. Structure as defined in claim 1; the cam having a trun' cated conical portion, with the base being a short cylinder; the latch bar upper portion having a channel portion disposed hollow side inwards facing the pegs, an upper wall of the channel forming the latch bar latch means, which upper wall engages the upper surface of the cam base as the peg is moved inwards, so latching the peg as aforesaid.
3. Structure as defined in claim 2, the means to unlatch a peg being characterized by; the channel having a lower wall disposed so that when a peg is moved inwards past the latched position, the cam conical portion contacts the lower wall of the channel and swings the hinged latch bar, thus disengaging latched pegs.
4. Structure as defined in claim 3, and means to adjust tension of the tension spring.