|Publication number||US3704365 A|
|Publication date||Nov 28, 1972|
|Filing date||Jan 25, 1971|
|Priority date||Jan 25, 1971|
|Publication number||US 3704365 A, US 3704365A, US-A-3704365, US3704365 A, US3704365A|
|Inventors||Earl A Miller|
|Original Assignee||Earl A Miller|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (3), Referenced by (12), Classifications (7)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent [151 3,704,365 Miller 5] Nov. 28, 1972  ARTIFICIAL LIGHTED ICICLE FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS [721 Imam Earl l BOX 0mm, 744,263 10/1966 Canada ..240/10 R Utah 84057  Filed: Jan; 25, 1971 Primary Examiner-bouis R. Prince Assistant Examiner-Joseph W. Roskos [21 1 App! 109d Attorney-Thomas E. Beall, Jr.
 US. Cl. ..240/l0 R  ABSTRACT  Int. Cl. ..F21v 3/02 The artificial icicle device has a plurality of hollow ICI-  Field of Search ..240/1O R, 10 T cles depending from a base that is to be secured to the  References Cited eaves of a building, with the icicles being aligned and interconnected to form a chamber into which one or UNITED STATES PATENTS more electric lights extend for lighting the interior of 3 302 013 1/1967 Richardson 24O/1'R the translucent icicles. Cooling air flows through holes 20429O5 6/1936 in the bottom-most tips of the icicles, upwardly McCluskey ..240/1 R X around the lights and into the base from which it flows upwardly from holes in the base side walls.
11 Clains, 6 Drawing Figures PATENTEDnnv 28 I972 3,704,365
sum 1 OF 2 mvsm'on EARL A. MILLER av jzamas ,Bea/[ifr ATTORNEY 1 ARTIFICIAL LIGHTED ICICLE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION At ski lodges, restaurants, private homes I and the like, it is desirable to provide some outside lighting. Further, it is desirable that this lighting be as uniform as possible around the periphery of the building in many instances. In the past, flood lights and the like have provided the necessary lighting, but they have provided a considerable glare for observers and they generally detract from the appearance of the building.
Artificial decorations have generally been applied to buildings or their vicinity to provide a more pleasing appearance.
SUMMARY oF THE INVENTION With the present invention, icicles may be provided for decorative purposes to the eaves of a building so that they will greatly enhance the looks of the building during the day, particularly a building associated with winter sports. At night, the icicles are lit from within so that they cast a soft light over the walls of the building and the surrounding area, which light adequately illuminates the area without producing an undesirable glare. The lighted icicles at night further have a particularly pleasing appearance, especially when compared with conventional flood lights.
Preferably, identical units are molded from a translucent plastic so that they may be abuttingly secured around the entire periphery of a buildings eaves or over various spaced portions as desired. Each unit has a plurality of hollow icicles depending from a generally rectangular base, with a chamber being formed by the interconnected bases of the icicles for the reception of one or more electric lights that are hung from brace members in the base. The lights may be on a string having a plug at one end and being of a length to serve more than one unit. Cooling is obtained by air convection currents passing upwardly through holes in the bottom of the hollow icicles, around the electric lights and through holes in the side walls of the base.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the drawings, a detailed description of one icicle unit will be provided and in usage several of these identical icicle units will be connected together for securement to the eaves of a building around its entire periphery or in spaced random groupings, as desired. To further change the effects, either the front or back of the units may be exposed to provide variation from one unit to the other.
the unit shown in FIG. 1;
- aligned with abuttingly adjacent icicles units 3 and 4.
The icicle units 1, 3 and 4 are identical in structure so that only one will be shown and described in detail with the understanding that the others may be secured in the same orientation or placed in alignment so that the opposite surface will show. In general, the back surface of the unit 1 is a mirror image of its front surface, but when the back surface is showing a different effect will be produced because the order of presenting the different sized icicles will be reversed.
As shown, the icicle unit 1 includes a base 5 having a plurality of depending icicles 6, .7, 8, 9,10, 11 and 12. Preferably, the individual icicles 6 12 and the base 5 are molded in one piece from a translucent synthetic plastic so that the bases of the icicles 6 12 are interconnected generally at areas 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, and 18. The icicles 6 12 are hollow and do not have common walls extending upwardly beyond the interconnected areas, 13 18 so as to form a continuous chamber 19 from one end 20 to the opposite end 21 above the interconnected areas 13-18 and below the base 5.
As shown in FIG. 4, an electric light bulb 22 is received within the chamber 19, so that its light will project towards the ends 20, 21 to provide light for each hollow icicle 6 12. The bulb 22 is secured within a conventional socket portion 23. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 5, the socket portions 23 are electrically interconnected by wires 24, which have only been partially shown to avoid obstructing other details. As seen in FIG. 2, two socket portions 23 are preferably provided for each icicle unit. Preferably, the socket portions 23 are connected in sufficient number to the wires 24 that they may form a single string of lights sufficient to light a large number of icicle units. Each string of lights may have a plug at one end and a socket at its-opposite end so that a plurality of strings may be connected together in the conventional nature of Christmas tree lights Thus, a composite string of lights may be fashioned to provide power for icicle units extending around the entire periphery of a buildings eaves so that only one plug may be used to power the entire composite string of lights. The short end walls 25, 26 of the base 5 are each provided with cut-out areas 27 to allow passage of the wire 24 from one icicle unit to an adjacent icicle unit or a power outlet.
As shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, the socket portions 23 are secured within a synthetic socket ring 28, which ring 28 has an outer annular flange 29 and a tubular portion 30. A plurality of braces 31 are tightly secured by a snap fit, heat welding or the like between opposed long walls 32, 33 of the base 5. Each of the braces 31 has a generally central hole for tightly receiving the inwardly tapered mating tubular portion 30 of respective rings 28 with the flanges 29 overlapping the braces 31. The base 5 further has a generally horizontally extending wall 34 that extends completely inwardly from the entire perimeter of the walls 25, 26, 32, 33 to join with the entire perimeter of the bases of the icicles 6 12. This wall also forms a support for the braces 31.
For mounting each unit to the eaves of a building,
that also extends through the adjacent portion of the wall 34 for receiving a screw or nail fastener to be driven upwardly into the eaves of the building. Most likely, only the two holes that are furtherest away from the wall of the building will be used for securing the icicle unit, although all four may be used if desired and have particularly been provided so that there will be outer holes no matter which side of the icicle unit faces the building wall-To prevent wind or theflike from bending the icicles outwardly from the building wall to put considerable stresses upon the bases, there is provided at least one hole 37 in, the longest icicle 11 so that a fastener may be driven horizontally through the hole 37 into the wall of the building if desired.
To provide cooling for the icicles and the bulbs 22, each icicle 6 12 is provided with a vertically or axially extending hole 38 in its lower most tip so that air may move by convection upwardly into each hollow icicle 6 12. The air will then move between walls 25, 26 and braces 31 to the interior of the base 5. Further,- each of the socket rings 28 is provided with a plurality of holes 39 that extend completely vertically therethrough at a radial distance less than the greatest radius of the bulb 22 so that air will pass closely adjacent to the bulb 22 and upwardly through the holes 39 to the interior of the base 5. From the base 5, the heated air will move outwardly through one or more of the side walls 32, 33 through holes or slots 40. These holes or slots 40 are provided in each of the walls 32, 33, so that when the unit is mounted on the eaves of a building the holes in one of the walls 32, 33 will be facing outward and will be of a sufficient size to provide adequate ventilation even if the holes in the other wall 32, 33 are blocked by the building structure. As seen in FIG. 4, the upper most portion of the socket-unit 23, 28 is spaced considerably below the upper most portion of the base so that there will be an air space between the socket structure and the eaves of the building when the unit is mounted. Although the various holes that have been mentioned and cut-out portions provide the only access to the interior of the unit, moisture may still collect within the icicles due to condensation or the like. Thus, it is seen that the holes 38 will also serve as drain holes to remove any moisture thus collected.
In simulating a true icicle structure, each of the individual icicles 6 12, is provided with a plurality of generally longitudinally or axially extending ribs 41 as specifically shown in FIGS. 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6. In addition, the outer surface of the icicles 6 12 may be generally roughened to further simulate real icicles. When in their operative position, the aligned and abutting bases 5 may give the appearance of merely an additional wooden trim strip on the eaves of the building, particularly when the icicles extend around the entire periphery of the building and they are viewed from the ground at a considerable distance. Further, the icicles of one unit may in fact touch the icicles of an adjacent unit when their bases are abutting to further simulate a continuous row of real icicles.
Various modifications are contemplated, for example, the-holes 40 may merely be cut-out slots, that is, they may open upwardly through the respective walls 32, 33. Further, the holes in some of the smaller icicles, for example and 12, may not be provided since any moisture that would collect in these areas would overflow the ridge formed by the connecting portions 17, 18 to drain through the adjacent hole 38 of the icicle 11. Also, adequate ventilation would be provided by the main icicle 11 if holes were not provided in the icicles 10, 12. Further modifications, variations and embodiments are contemplated within the spirit and scope of the .present invention as defined by the following claims. v
What is claimed is:
1. An artificial icicle unit, comprising: a base portion; a plurality of hollow simulated icicles depending from said base portion and being constructed of a material that will at least partially pass light therethrough; means for holding an electric lightbulb for'projecting light within said hollow simulated icicles; and means, including a hole in the lower most portion of atleast some of said hollow simulated icicles and a plurality of holes in the side of 'said base, for circulating air upwardly through the holes in said at least some of said hollow simulated icicles, around said means for holding an electric lightbulb and outwardly through said side holes of said base portion.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein said means for holding an electric light bulb includes at least one socket having a plurality of peripherally arranged generally vertical vent holes forming a part of said means for circulating air; and a light bulb operatively received within said socket and extending radially outwardly beyond the periphery of said socket vent holes.
3. The device of claim 2, wherein the upper most portion of said sockets extends below the upper most portion of said base.
4. An artificial icicle unit, comprising: a base portion; a plurality of hollow simulated icicles depending from said base portion and being constructed of a material that will at least partially pass light therethrough; means for holding an electric lightbulb for projecting light within said hollow simulated icicles; a plurality of fastener receiving hole means extending through said base portion outwardly spaced from said icicles for passing therethrough fasteners to secure said icicle unit to building eaves and the like; each of said hollow simulated icicles being substantially difierent in size and shape from the other of said hollow simulated icicle; at
least two additional substantially identical icicle units for securement to a building so that opposite ends of said base are aligned and tightly abutting; said base being generally rectangular and having a front long side wall and two opposed short side walls having cut-out portions to provide for the passage of electric wire from one icicle unit to the adjacent icicle unit solely within the confines of said base; said base portion further having wall means extending completely from all of said side walls completely to the entire perimeter of said hollow simulated icicles generally in a horizontal plan generally perpendicular to said side walls. 1
5. The device of claim 4 wherein said icicles are substantially completely enclosed around their perimeter from their lower tip to their upper most connections to said base; and said base further having a second long side wall substantially identical to and opposed to said first mentioned long side. wall to form an interior freely opening to said icicles and a configuration that may be reversed and will simulate icicles three-dimensionally from all sides.
6. The device of claim 5 wherein said hollow simulated icicles are in alignment and have their bases connected at areas spaced below said base portion to form a continuous horizontal passage for all of said icicles; at least one light bulb extending downwardly into said passage and having its lower most portion spaced upwardly from the connected areas between icicle bases so that light from said bulb will be freely projected through said passage into the hollow interior of each of said simulated icicles.
7. An artificial icicle unit, comprising: a base portion; a plurality of hollow simulated icicles depending from said base portion and being constructed of a material that will at least partially pass light therethrough; means for holding an electric lightbulb for projecting light within said hollow simulated icicles; said base portion and all of said hollow simulated icicles being formed in one piece of a synthetic resin; said means for holding an electric lightbulb including a plurality of separate brace members being fixedly received within said base portion and having a generally central vertically extending hole; and said means for holding an electric lightbulb further including a corresponding plurality of lightbulb sockets having an outer most flange overlapping the corresponding holes in said brace members on the opposite side from said icicles and further having an axially extending tubular portion with an outer wall tapered inwardly away from said flange tightly received within the corresponding holes of said brace members.
8. An artificial icicle unit, comprising: a base portion; a plurality of hollow simulated icicles depending from said base portion and being constructed of a material that will at least partially pass light therethrough; means for holding an electric lightbulb for projecting light within said hollow simulated icicles; said base being generally rectangular and having two long opposed side walls provided with a plurality of vent holes therein and two opposed short side walls having cut-out portions to provide for the passage of an electric wire from one icicle unit to an adjacent abutting icicle unit; and said hollow simulated icicles extending in alignment completely from one short side wall to the opposite short side wall.
9. The device of claim 8, wherein said base portion further has wall means extending completely from all of said side walls completely to the entire perimeter of said hollow simulated icicles in a horizontal plane generally perpendicular to said side walls.
10. The device of claim 8, including means for circulating air upwardly through at least some of said hollow simulated icicles, around said means for holding an electric lightbulb and outwardly through said base portion vent holes; said simulated icicles being substantially completely enclosed around icicles their entire perimeter from their lower most tip to said base portion; and said means for circulating air further including a hole in the lower most portion of each of said at least some icicles.
11. An artificial icicle unit, comprising: a base portion; a plurality of hollow simulated icicles depending from said base portion and being constructed of a material that will at least partially pass light therethrough; means for holding an electric lightbulb fordprojecting light within said hollow simulated icicles; an the longest of said hollow simulated icicles having a horizontally extending hole therein for receiving a fastener to be driven into the wall of a building on which said icicle light is mounted.
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|US3302013 *||Jan 4, 1965||Jan 31, 1967||Maxwell T Richardson||Simulated icicle decorations|
|CA744263A *||Oct 11, 1966||Ted O Batsch||Icicle illumination|
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|EP1424524A1 *||Nov 28, 2002||Jun 2, 2004||Heshan Jian Hao Lighting Ind. Co., Ltd.||Decorative light|
|U.S. Classification||362/294, 428/15, 362/806|
|Cooperative Classification||F21W2121/006, F21W2121/00, Y10S362/806|