|Publication number||US3675527 A|
|Publication date||Jul 11, 1972|
|Filing date||Jul 17, 1970|
|Priority date||Jul 17, 1970|
|Publication number||US 3675527 A, US 3675527A, US-A-3675527, US3675527 A, US3675527A|
|Inventors||Reeder George H Jr|
|Original Assignee||Reeder George H Jr|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (5), Referenced by (20), Classifications (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent Reeder, Jr. [451 July 11, 1972 I 1 PIANO CONSTRUCTION Primary Examiner-Richard B. Wilkinson Assistant Examiner-John F Gonzales  Inventor: George H. Reeder, Jr., Rte. No 3, South Haven, Van Buren County, Mich. 49090 Imam) w Blanchard and Flynn 22 Filed: July 17, I970 Appl. No.: 55,742
ABSTRACT A fold-out light structure for illuminating the music rack of a piano and having an L-shaped support structure disposed in front of the music rack and comprising a portion of the piano shelf when in the closed position. The support structure has a light mounted on one of the interior walls thereof and is pivotably connected to the vertical portion of the shelf which extends upwardly from the rear of the keyboard, whereby the support structure is pivotably movable outwardly away from the shelf to permit the light to illuminate the music rack located adjacent the rear of the shelf. A switch is preferably disposed for energizing the light, which switch may be automatically actuated when the support is moved to the open position 6 Clalrm, 8 Drawing figures PIANO CONSTRUCTION FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to an improved lighting device for illuminating the music rack of a piano and, in particular, relates to a fold-out light structure which comprises a portion of the piano shelf when in the closed position.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In many situations there exists a need to illuminate the music rack of a piano. However, the illumination must preferably be confined to the vicinity of the music rack so as not to present an unsightly appearance, particularly when the piano is being utilized for a public performance.
In order to satisfy the above need, various types of lighting structures have been designed for illuminating the music rack of a piano, which lighting structures have been designed either as an integral portion of the piano or as an attachment therefor. While these known lighting devices have partially solved the problem of how to effectively illuminate the music rack, nevertheless the prior known devices all possess different disadvantages which make their use undesirable and thus have prevented their wide-scale adoption and use.
One of the primary disadvantages of the known lighting devices has been their inability to effectively illuminate the complete music rack. In an attempt to maintain the known lighting devices small so as to minimize the unsightliness thereof, most of the known lighting devices have utilized only a single small light which, while effective in illuminating the center portion of the music rack, is totally unable to effectively illuminate the end portions of the music rack. Further, many of the known lighting devices have resulted in a direct glare of the light on the player's eyes, which obviously discourages utilization of such lighting structures.
A still further disadvantage of the known lighting devices is that they are unsightly and disrupt the beauty or lines of the piano. Most people consider a piano to be a piece of furniture and, as such, it must be an object which is pleasing to the eye. One of the main disadvantages of many of the known lighting devices has been their inability to blend into the lines of the piano so as not to detract from the beauty thereof, not only when the lighting device is not being utilized, but also when the lighting device is being used to illuminate the music rack.
In order to overcome this latter mentioned disadvantage, many attempts have been made to design a piano which would have a lighting device built therein which would not materially detract from the beauty of the piano. Most of these attempts have involved the provision of a lighting device which, when not in operation, could be completely concealed within the piano cabinet. While known lighting devices of this type may not detract from the beauty of the piano when in the closed or nonoperative position, nevertheless they have proven undesirable since the provision of such concealed lighting devices has generally required that substantial changes be made in the outside design of the piano or, alternatively, in the design of the internal working parts.
Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide an improved lighting device for illuminating the music rack of a piano, which device overcomes the disadvantages of the known devices as mentioned above.
Particularly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a lighting device for a piano which completely blends into the piano design so as not to detract from the beauty thereof.
A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved lighting device, as aforesaid, which extends along the full width of the music rack so as to provide for complete illumination thereof and does not obstruct the view of the keyboard.
Still a further object of the present invention is to provide an improved lighting device, as aforesaid, which can be built into most modern pianos without requiring any outside design changes and/or without requiring any change in the internal working parts of the piano.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved lighting structure, as aforesaid, which pivotably swings or folds outwardly away from the piano shelf for directly illuminating the music rack, with the light being positioned within an L-shaped supporting member which blends in with and substantially comprises a part of the piano shelf when in the closed position, and which substantially prevents the light from glaring into the eyes of the player when in the open position.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide an improved lighting device, as aforesaid, which is automatically turned on and off as it is pivotably swung into its open and closed positions, respectively.
A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved lighting device, as aforesaid, which is of extreme mechanical and structural simplicity so as to be operable for a long period of time without requiring any maintenance or repair, and which can be easily and simple incorporated into conventional pianos without requiring any major change in the design thereof or without substantially modifying the external appearance of the piano.
Other objects and purposes of the invention will be apparent to persons acquainted with devices of this type upon reading the following specification and inspecting the accompanying drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional piano, such as of the spinet or console type, incorporating therein the improved lighting device according to the present invention.
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary, sectional, elevational view of the keyboard portion of the piano illustrated in FIG. 1 and showing the lighting device in the closed position.
FIG. 3 is an enlargement of a portion of the structure illustrated in FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary, elevational, sectional view similar to FIG. 3 and showing the lighting device according to the present invention in the open position.
FIG. 5 is an enlarged, fragmentary, elevational view taken along the line V-V of FIG. 3.
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary, sectional, elevational view similar to FIG. 3 and illustrating a modified lighting device constructed according to the present invention, same being illustrated in the closed position.
FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6 and showing the lighting device in the partially open position.
FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIGS. 6 and 7 but showing the lighting device in the fully open position.
Certain terminology will be used in the following description for convenience in reference only and will not be limiting. The words "upwardly", "downwardly", rightwardly", and leftwardly will designate directions in the drawings to which reference is made. The words front" and rear" will respectively refer to the left and right sides of the piano as appearing in FIG. 2. The words inwardly and outwardly" will refer to directions toward and away from, respectively, the geometric center of the device and designated parts thereof. Said terminology will include the words above specifically mentioned, derivatives thereof and words of similar import.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The objects and purposes of the present invention are met by providing a lighting device which is disposed adjacent the piano shelf and is hingedly movable between an inoperative position wherein the lighting device is substantially concealed within the piano shelf and an operative position wherein the lighting device is pivotably swung outwardly relative to the piano shelf for illuminating the music rack. As is conventional, the piano shelf includes a vertical wall portion extending upwardly adjacent the rear of the keyboard and a rearwardly extending horizontal wall portion fixedly secured to the upper edge of the vertical wall portion. The horizontal wall portion supports a music rack thereon toward the rearward edge thereof. The piano shelf is provided with an elongated cut-out or recess in the center portion thereof, which recess extends rearwardly and downwardly, respectively, from the juncture of the horizontal and vertical wall portions. The lighting device includes an L-shaped support member which is positioned within the recess so as to blend in with and substantially form a continuation of the horizontal and vertical wall portions of the piano shelf. The lower edge of the support member is hingedly connected to the piano shelf and is swingable outwardly whereby a light mounted on one or both of the interior surfaces of the L-shaped support member is positionable for illuminating the music rack. The lighting device preferably utilizes a switch which is automatically actuated when the support member is swung outwardly for energizing the light.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION FIG. 1 illustrates a substantially conventional piano having a cabinet 11 and a conventional keyboard 12. The keyboard 12 is adapted to be covered by a movable keyboard cover or fallboard 13, also of conventional construction. While the fallboard 13 is shown (FIG. 2) as pivotally mounted on a cabinet 11, it will be apparent that the fallboard can also be slidably mounted on the cabinet in a conventional manner if so desired.
The piano is provided with a shelf 14 disposed upwardly and rearwardly of the keyboard 12. The shelf 14 includes a vertical wall portion 16 which extends upwardly adjacent the rear of the keyboard 12. The shelf also includes a horizontal wall por' tion 17 which is fixedly interconnected to the vertical wall portion 16 adjacent the upper end thereof and extends rearwardly therefrom. A music rack 18 is mounted on the piano adjacent the rear of the horizontal wall portion 17.
The piano structure, as described above, together with the internal working mechanism of the piano, can be of any conventional type and, thus, additional description there is be lieved not necessary.
According to the present invention, the piano 10 is also provided with an improved fold-out lighting device 21, a preferred embodiment of which is illustrated in FIGS. 2-5. The lighting device 21 includes an elongated L-shaped decorative support member 22. The mounting member 22 substantially comprises a portion of the piano shelf 14 because it has a configuration which corresponds to and blends in with the piano shelf when the lighting device 21 is in the closed position as illustrated in FIGS. 1-3. The support member 22 includes vertical and horizontal leg portions 23 and 24 which are fixedly interconnected and are disposed substantially flush with the vertical and horizontal wall positions 16 and 17, respectively, when the lighting device is in the closed position illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 2. The support member 22 also preferably includes opposite end walls or end shields 36 and 37. These can be made of wood for decorative purposes and they also serve as a mounting base for the light and associated parts as described below. The support member 22 is positionable within an elongated L-shaped cut-out or recess formed in the central portion of the piano shelf 14, which cut-out includes a first elongated recess 26 formed in the center portion of the upper edge of the vertical wall portion 16, and a second recess 28 formed in the central portion of the forward edge of the horizontal wall portion 17. The recesses 26 and 28 communicate with one another to permit the L-shaped support member 22 to be positioned therein. The support member 22 is pivotably connected to the piano shelf 14 by means of a plurality of hinges 27 which coact between the lower end of the vertical leg portion 23 and the vertical wall portion 16, as illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 4. The hinges 27 are preferably of the concealed or semi-concealed type so as not to destroy the external lines or beauty of the piano.
One of the end shields, such as the shield 37, is preferably provided with a stop member or pin 38 secured thereto. The
stop pin 38 is disposed so as to extend outwardly beyond the external surface of the end shield 37 and is disposed for contacting the lower surface 39 of the horizontal wall portion 17 when the lighting device 21 is swung outwardly so as to limit the outward swinging movement of the lighting device sub stantially to the desired open position as illustrated in FIG. 4.
The lighting device 21 further includes a pair of spaced brackets 29 and 30 fixedly mounted on the interior surfaces of the support member 22, the brackets 29 and 30 in the illustrated embodiment being mounted on the interior surfaces of the vertical end shields 36 and 37. A light 31, such as an elongated fluorescent light tube, extends longitudinally of the support member 22 and is mounted on the spaced brackets 29 and 30. The light 31 is disposed substantially directly under the horizontal leg portion 24. The L-shaped support member 22 thus functions not only as a decorative cover and as a mounting member for the light 31, but also substantially functions as a shield for directing the illumination outwardly onto the music rack 18 when the lighting device 21 is in the open position illustrated in FIG. 4.
The lighting device 21 is preferably automatically energized whenever the support 22 is pivotably moved into the open position illustrated in FIG. 4. To permit such automatic energization of the lighting device, there is preferably provided a switch 32 (FIG. 5), which switch is preferably of the silent mercury type. The switch 32 is disposed for automatic actuation whenever the lighting device is moved to its open or its closed position. In the illustrated embodiment, switch 32 is mounted on the end shield 37, the switch being normally maintained in the open position when the lighting device 21 is in the closed position illustrated in FIG. 3. Upon pivotal movement of the lighting device 21 to the open position of FIG. 4, the mercury within the switch 32 will automatically cause a closure of the switch contacts for causing automatic energization of the light 31. Thus, the mercury switch 32 is sensitive to the angular orientation of the end shield 37 so as to energize the light 31 whenever the support 22 is pivotally moved away from the closed position.
OPERATION While the operation of the device embodying the invention should be apparent from the detailed description set forth above, nevertheless the operation will be described in detail hereinbelow for a better understanding of the invention.
When the lighting device 21 is in the closed position illustrated in FIGS. 13, the elongated L-shaped support member 22 substantially occupies and completely fills the recesses 26 and 28 whereby the support member 22 thus substantially constitutes, in terms of external appearance, a portion of the piano shelf 14. Further, when in this closed position, the light 31 is totally concealed and thus the lines and beauty of the piano are substantially the same as if the lighting device 21 were not present. Further, since the lighting device 21, and particularly the light 31, is disposed in the space directly under the horizontal wall portion 17 of the shelf 14, which space is normally not occupied by working parts of the piano, the lighting device does not require any rearrangement or redesign of the internal working mechanism of the piano.
When the lighting device is to be utilized so as to illuminate the music located on the music rack 18, the support member 22 will be manually pivotally swung from the closed position illustrated in FIG. 3 into the open position illustrated in FIG. 4, which swinging movement causes the upper portion 24 to move angularly away from the horizontal wall portion 17 so as to partially open the upper recess 28, which recess 28 is located in front of and extends substantially along the complete length of the music rack 18. Further, since the light 31 also extends along substantially the complete length of the music rack 18, the light 31 will effectively illuminate the complete length of the music rack 18 when energized. The swinging movement of the support member 22 into the open position illustrated in FIG. 4 is limited by means of the stop pin 38 contacting the lower surface 39 of the horizontal wall portion 17, thereby preventing the lighting device 21 from being pivotally swung open an excessive amount.
The light 31 will be automatically energized when the lighting device 2l is moved to the open position illustrated in FIG. 4 since the forward swinging movement of support member 22 will close the switch 32, whereupon the switch will then permit the light 31 to be energized. The illumination from light 31 will then pass upwardly through the recess 28 so as to be directed onto the music rack 18 substantially as illustrated by dotted lines in FIG. 4. The light is substantially confined to the music rack since the light must pass between the adjacent edges of the upper leg portion 24 and the upper wall portion 17. Since the light 31 is still substantially enclosed by the wall portions 23 and 24, the light 31 will not glare into the player's eyes, nor will it cause an undesired illumination of other portions of the piano. However, the light 31 will result in sufficient indirect illumination so as to partially lighten the keyboard to facilitate playing thereof. Further, the amount of light which is to be directed onto the music rack 18 can be controlled by varying the amount of opening (that is, the angular displacement) of the lighting device relative to its closed position.
When the lighting device 21 is no longer desired, it can then be manually swung into the closed position illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, whereupon the switch 32 will close, thereby causing a de-energization of the light 31.
MODIFICATION FIGS. 6-8 illustrate therein a modified lighting device which is similar to the lighting device illustrated in FIGS. 25 but which utilizes a different hinge structure for permitting the lighting device to be pivotally mounted on the piano cabinet. The lighting device illustrated in FIGS. 6-8 utilizes many parts which substantially correspond to parts of the lighting device illustrated in FIGS. 2-5, and said parts will be referred to with the same reference numeral but with the suffix A" added thereto.
Specifically, FIG. 6 illustrates a piano cabinet having a shelf 14A, which shelf again includes vertical and horizontal wall portions 16A and 17A, respectively, with a music rack ISA extending upwardly from the horizontal wall portion 17A adjacent the rearward edge thereof. A modified fold-out light structure 21A is pivotally mounted on the piano shelf 14A and specifically includes an L-shaped mounted member 22A which includes vertical and horizontal portions 23A and 24A, respectively. The mounting member 22A also includes end walls or end shields provided adjacent opposite ends thereof only one shield 37A being illustrated in the drawings. One of the end shields, such as the shield 37A, has a stop pin 38A projecting therefrom, which pin cooperates with the lower surface 39A of the horizontal wall portion 17A for limiting the outward swinging movement of the lighting device 21A to the open position illustrated in FIG. 7. The pair of end shields also have brackets mounted thereon, which brackets support a light 31A, such as a conventional fluorescent light bulb, in substantially the same manner as illustrated in FIG. 5.
One of the end shields can also have a conventional silent mercury switch 32A mounted thereon, as in the manner described relative to FIGS. 2-5 above, so as to cause automatic energizing of the light 31A whenever the support member 22A is swung outwardly from the closed position illustrated in FIG. 6.
The support member 22A is pivotally interconnected to the piano shelf MA by means of a pair of hinge assemblies 27A (only one hinge assembly shown in the drawings), which hinge assemblies are disposed adjacent the opposite end of the support member 22A. The hinge assembly 27A is of the double pivot type and specifically includes a first hinge plate 41 fixedly secured to the lower surface 39A of the piano shelf 14A, and a second hinge place 42 fixedly secured to the support member 22A, such as by being fixedly secured to the lower surface 43 of the end shield 37A. The hinge plates 41 and 42 are each pivotally interconnected to an intermediate, elongated hinge plate 44 by means of pivots 46 and 47, respectivel The lighting device 21A is operated in a manner similar to the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 2-5 in that same is utilized by first swinging the L-shaped support member 22A outwardly into the open position illustrated in FIG. 7, which outward swinging movement is limited by means of stop pin 38A contacting the surface 39A. This outward swinging movement from the closed position of FIG. 6 into the open position of FIG. 7 is additionally constrained by means of the pivotal movement of the intermediate hinge plate 44, which plate swings about the pivot 46, the pivot 47 being floatable or movable within the support member 22A when same is swung into the open position.
The embodiment illustrated in FIG. 7 can additionally be swung outwardly into a service position as illustrated in FIG. 8 by removing or withdrawing the stop pin 38A from the end shield 37A, thereby eliminating the interference between the stop pin 38A and the surface 39A so as to enable the support member 22A to be swung outwardly into a completely upwardly opening position (FIG. 8 which is substantially displaced from the closed position illustrated in FIG. 6. When in the FIG. 8 position, the interior of the support member 22A is readily exposed so as to permit the light 31A to be readily changed if desired.
While the lighting devices 21 and 21A as described above both preferably utilized silent mercury switches 32 or 32A mounted on the support member 22 or 22A, it is also possible to utilize a conventional mechanical plunger-type switch for energizing the light 31 or 31A although use of a mercury switch is preferred since same is silent in operation and has a long useful life. FIG. 8 illustrates therein a conventional plunger switch 51, which switch is of the normally closed variety and has a plunger 52 disposed for contacting the support member 22A, particularly one of the end shields thereof, when the lighting device is in the closed position for causing the plunger 52 to be depressed so as to open the switch. Pivotal movement of the lighting device away from the closed position permits the plunger to extend so as to close the switch and thus cause automatic energization of the light.
While the invention as described above has been disclosed as utilizing a switch 32, 32A or 51 for permitting automatic energization of the light upon opening of the device, it is also contemplated that the lighting device 21 or 21A could be provided with a manually controlled switch mounted externally of the piano, such as adjacent the keyboard 12, whereby the light could then be manually turned on and off as desired independently of the pivotal movement of the lighting device. Such a manual switch could obviously be provided as a substitute for the automatic switch or it could be provided in addition to the automatic switch for permitting additional control over the energization of the light.
Although a particular preferred embodiment of the invention has been disclosed in detail for illustrative purposes, it will be recognized that variations or modifications of the disclosed apparatus, including the rearrangement of parts, lie within the scope of the present invention.
The embodiments of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed are defined as follows:
I. In a piano having a music rack, a keyboard, and a piano shelf disposed rearwardly of the keyboard, the piano shelf including a vertical wall extending upwardly adjacent the keyboard and a horizontal wall extending rearwardly from the upper edge of said vertical wall toward said music rack, and a lighting device for illuminating the music rack, the improve ment comprising:
means defining an elongated cut-out in said piano shelf and extending substantially the entire length of said music rack, said cut-out including a first recess formed in the forward edge of said horizontal wall and a second recess formed in the upper edge of said vertical wall, said first and second recesses being of substantially the same length an?! in communication with one another;
an elongated L-shaped support member positioned within said cut-out for substantially and totally filling same and for blending in with the piano shelf so as to substantially constitute a portion thereof, said support member when disposed within said cut-out including a horizontal leg portion disposed within and substantially occupying said first recess and a vertical leg portion disposed within and substantially occupying said second recess, said horizontal and vertical leg portions being coplanar with said horizontal and vertical walls, respectively, and further being free of elongated guide means extending laterally away therefrom to thereby prevent a movement of the lower edge of said vertical leg portion laterally away from said vertical wall of said piano shelf in a direction parallel to said guide means;
hinge means interconnecting the lower end of said L-shaped support member to said piano shelf for permitting selective pivotal movement of said support member about an axis adjacent said lower edge of said vertical leg portion between a closed position wherein said horizontal leg portion and said vertical leg portion of said support member are disposed within said first and second recesses and an open position wherein said L-shaped support member is pivotally swung outwardly about said axis away from said piano shelf so that said horizontal leg portion is moved upwardly away from said horizontal wall of said piano shelf while said lower edge of said vertical leg portion remains generally in vertical alignment with said vertical wall of said piano shelf and the space between said horizontal and vertical leg portions on the interior of said support member opens toward said music rack;
elongated light means disposed directly under and extending substantially the entire length of the horizontal leg portion of said support member and fixedly secured to said support member for pivotal movement therewith,
said light means being disposed for illuminating said music rack when said support member is pivotally moved to said open position, the light means being completely concealed within the piano shelf when the support member is in said closed position; and
switch means interconnected to said light means for controlling the energization thereof.
2. The improvement according to claim 1, wherein said hinge means is hingedly interconnected between said vertical wall and said support member adjacent the lower free end of said vertical leg portion.
3. The improvement according to claim I, wherein said hinge means includes an elongated swingable member, first means hingedly connecting one end of said swingable member to said support member adjacent the lower end of said vertical leg portion, and second means hingedly connecting the other end of said swingable member to the lower surface of said horizontal wall of said piano shelf.
4. The improvement of claim 1 wherein said switch means comprises mercury switch means mounted on said support member and interconnected to said light means for automatically energizing said light means when said support member is pivotally moved away from said closed position and for deenergizing said light means when said support member is pivotally moved toward said closed position.
5. The improvement according to claim 4 including a pair of end shields mounted on the interior of said support member at the opposite ends thereof, said mercury switch being mounted on one of said end shields, brackets mounted on said end shields for supporting the ends of said light means, and a stop member mounted on one of said end shields and projecting longitudinally outwardly therefrom for engaging said horizontal wall to limit outward pivotal movement of said support member.
6. The improvement according to claim 4, including a manually operable switch for energizing and deenergizing said light means.
i i I I IUIO44 0229
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