US 3704367 A
There is herein disclosed an outdoor, lighted, Christmas star display device comprising a rigid, lightweight, skeleton structure of tubular members having three main support legs forming a tripodic configuration, the legs being secured together at their outermost ends and evenly spaced apart at the lowermost ends, said legs being secured in position by a plurality of horizontal truss members. Within the upper half of the structure is affixed a horizontal cross bar which is connected to the two forward legs thereof.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent NOV. 28, 1972 Korb  LIGHTED CHRISTMAS STAR DISPLAY  Inventor: Lawrence J. Korb, 251 Violet Lane,
Orange, Calif. 92669  Filed: Nov. 12, 1971  Appl. No.: 198,264
 US. Cl. ..240/10 S, 161/16, 240/52 R, 248/ 165  Int. Cl ..F2lp l/02, A47g 33/00  Field of Search ..240/10 R, 10 S, 10 T,52 R;
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,541,322 11/1970 Bennett ..240/10 R 3,184,366 5/1965 Claude ..161/14 2,91 1,748 11/1959 Rodgers ..248/165 X 2,894,345 7/1959 Bushnell ..240/10 S 1,869,321 7/1932 Block ..240/10 S Primary ExaminerJoseph F. Peters, Jr. Attorney-Francis X. Lojacono, Sr.
[ ABSTRACT There is herein disclosed an outdoor, lighted, Christmas star display device comprising a rigid, lightweight, skeleton structure of tubular members having three main support legs forming a tripodic configuration,
the legs being secured together at their outermost Removably attached to the skeleton structure is a string of electrical wires provided with evenly spaced light sockets and lights which are lit when the inlet plug secured thereto is operably connected to a commonly used electric power source. I
8 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures PATENTEBNHV 2 I912 3. 704 367 SHEET 2 UF 2 INVENTOR Lawrence J lforb 1 LIGHTED CHRISTMAS STAR DISPLAY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to lighted Christmas decorations and relates more particularly 'to an outdoor, lighted, Christmas star decoration for use as an exterior Christmas display.
2. Description of the Prior Art There are various kinds of lighted Christmas decorations used. However, these decorations do not solve many problems associated with those that are placed outside of a house and exposed to various structural and weather conditions. The average outdoor Christmas decoration is not capable of being supplied with electrical current and those that are consist, generally, of the home-made, do-it-yourself type that cannot be used a second time, or cannot withstand adverse weather conditions which include sun, rain, snow and, particularly, high winds without danger of structural or electrical failure. Other problems are also inherent with a large decoration because simple erection of the structure becomes a long, tedious and dangerous job involving many and various hardwares and tools which the average individual does not possess nor has the ability to use. In addition, many of the large complicated structures are designed to be erected on the roofs of houses or other buildings, requiring the use of ladders or other elevating devices Also, these elevating devices provide hazardous conditions which should be eliminated where possible.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention comprises an ornamental Christmas star decoration, said star being designed for erection outside buildings rather than indoors. The star decoration includes a rigid, lightweight, tubular structure having three main leg members secured together at their uppermost ends, and as they project downwardly said legs are held in spaced relationship to each other by means of a plurality of horizontal truss members, the overlapping ends of which are secured to the adjoining leg member, forming a triangular configuration therebetween and at the same time forming a tripodic configurations of the three main legs. The truss members are positioned within the lower half of the tripodic configuration while a horizontal cross bar member is secured to the two forward legs along the upper half of the structure. The horizontal cross bar extends outwardly from each attached leg and generally beyond the widest portion of the spaced apart lower feet members provided on each leg. These feet members can be secured by any means suitable for a particular area in which the star is to be erected. If a base board is used screws can be provided for attaching the structure. However, if the structure is to be erected on a ground surface spikes can be driven through the opening in each foot and into the ground surface a sufficient distance to hold the structure in a firm manner.
To complete the decoration a string of wire is strategically positioned about the frame structure in such a manner as to form one of two star designs. Thus, the lights which are attached to the light fixtures are spaced evenly along the length of the wire and lit at the proper time by a typical electrical plug attached to one end of the string of wire. Preferably, the wire is held in place by clamps formed to be disposed about the wire and tubular member and there held in place by a screw and nut arrangement.
OBJECTS AND ADVANTAGES OF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention to provide a lighted Christmas star that is readily displayed outdoors and that can be erected at an elevated position or on ground level.
It is another object of the invention to provide a lighted Christmas star that comprises a rigid, lightweight structure capable of withstanding high winds, sun, rain, sleet, ice and snow, as well as sub-zero and elevated temperatures, without danger of structural or electrical failure.
Still another object of the invention is to provide an apparatus of this character .wherein the structure is simple to erect without the need for hand tools, yet results in a relatively stable, non-tipping structure.
A further object of the present invention is to pro-- vide an apparatus of this character which permits the' stringing and attaching of lights from the ground, thereby avoiding the need for a ladder or some other elevating device and the danger resulting therefrom.
Another object of this invention is to insure that all lights are visible from all angles, unlike electrical decorations wherein the decoration shields the lights on the backside from view.
A still further object of the invention is to provide an outdoor, vomamental, lighted Christmas star decoration that is lightweight in structure and suitable for easy handling with maximum simplicity of manufacturing and assembling.
Other characteristics, advantages and objects of this invention can be more readily appreciated from the following description and appended claims. When taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, this description forms a part of the specification wherein like references and characters designate corresponding parts in several views.
. DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Referring more particularly to the accompanying drawings, which are for illustrative purposes only:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the skeleton structure before the electric lights are disposed thereon;
FIG. .2 is an enlarged, sectional view taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is an enlarged, cross-sectional view taken on line 33 of FIG. 1 showing one means of connecting the tubular members together;
FIG. 4 is, also, an enlarged, cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 3 showing an alternative means for connecting the tubular members together;
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of one arrangement of the lights relative to the skeleton structure;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view illustrating a second arrangement of the lights relative to the skeleton structure;
FIG. 7 is an enlarged, cross-sectional view taken on line 7-7 of FIG. 5 showing the clamp attached to a tubular member; and
FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the clamp member.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawings, there is illustrated an ornamental, lighted device or apparatus formed to represent a Christmas star, indicated generally at 10, the star being symbolic of the star of Bethlehem, for use as a home or commercial Christmas display by the employment of a rigid, lightweight, tubular, skeleton structure capable of withstanding exposure to high 'winds, sun, rain, sleet, snow and ice, as well as to subzero and ambient temperatures, without damage to the structure of electrical failure due to these conditions.
The skeleton structure comprises a plurality of elongated leg members, indicated generally at 12. These leg members are secured together at their uppermost ends by a bolt 14 and nut 16.
To better provide for securing the ends of each leg, which in this case is illustrated as three individual tubular members, the upper ends thereof are flattened in such a manner as to provide a snug fit between each flat shoe 18, 19 and 20, respectively, through which bolt 14 passes. The three legs are spread apart and evenly spaced from each other as in a stabilized tripodic formation. Each leg is held in this tripodic configuration by a plurality of horizontal truss members 22, as seen in FIGS. 1 and 2. Truss members 22 are disposed between each leg member just below the lower half. The ends of the truss 22 are provided with flat-end shoe members 24 having a radius to conform to that of the annular tn bular wall 25 (see FIG. 2). Any suitable means for securing the horizontal truss to the leg can be used. However, for all practical purposes a bolt 26 and nut 28 are illustrated as the preferred means.
To complete the skeleton structure there is included an elongated, horizontal cross bar 30 secured to the two forward legs by bolts 32 and positioned above the upper half of the tripodic structure, said cross bar extending outwardly from each attached leg a sufficient distance, whereby ends 33 project beyond thewidest point of the lower separated legs.
At this point in the construction of the skeleton frame structure it should be understood that when a larger frame is required legs 12 will be formed in two parts 12a and 12b, respectively. That is, 12a and 12b are connected as extension members, said connection being of any suitable means. However, two alternatives are shown, one in FIG. 3 and one in FIG. 4. The FIG. 3 arrangement shows the 12b portion of leg 12 received in the 12a portion by providing a reduced-diarneter end member 34 which is force fitted into the free end of leg portion 12a.
However, in FIG. 4 each leg portion 120 and 12b has the identical diameter with a dowel pin 36 disposed therebetween.
In addition, legs 12 are adapted at their lower, free ends with anchor shoes 38, each of which is provided with openings 40 therein to receive various hold-down means. The hold-down means will vary according to the area on which the structure is to be erected. Hence, when the frame is to be supported on a plate form screws can be used and, if the frame is to be supported directly on the ground surface, spikes of various lengths can then be used.
When the skeleton frame is completed a string of I electrical wire 42 is disposed about the frame structure to form an outline of a star. This star is readily seen at night when the evenly-spaced light sockets and lights 44 are connected to a power source (not shown). The connection is generally made by means of a typical male plug 46. The lights are held in place by a clamp 48, as shown in FIGS. 5 through 8. Various types of clamps may be used. However, the clamp as illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8 is designed to hold the wire firmly, thus preventing any sagging or sliding above the tubular members. The clamps'48 are somewhat circular in order to conform to the outer diameter of the tubes, and are provided along-the outer face with a flat portion 50 which is adapted to receive the strong wire 42 and to hold said wire in its proper position on each tube, the clamp also being provided with extending arms 52 having openings 53 therein to receive a bolt 54 and .nut 56, whereby the clamp is rigidly;tightene around the tubular member 12. 1
Depending on-the individual who erects the ornamental star, two arrangements can be made. These arrangements are shown in FIGS. 5 and 6. With the proper stringing of the lights and the correct clamping of the wire, it becomes a simple matter to erect and complete the ornament as designed with the very minimum or ordinary hand tools.
The invention and its attendant advantages will be understood from the foregoing description and it will be apparent that various changes may be made in the form, construction and arrangement of parts of the invention without departing from the spirit and scope thereof or sacrificing its material advantages, the arrangement hereinbefore described being merely by way of example, and I do not wish to be restricted to the specific forms shown or uses mentioned, except as defined in the accompanying claims.
1. An ornamental decoration forming a lighted star having a lightweight tubular structure comprising:
three leg members secured together at their uppermost ends and evenly spaced apart at their lowermost ends, forming a tripodic configuration;
a plurality of truss members horizontally secured between each of said legs; I
a horizontal cross bar attached to a pair of said legs at a point within the upper half of said structure;
a string of electrical wire removably affixed to said structure along portions of the pair of leg members and the horizontal cross bar and extending between the ends of said cross bar and the lowermost ends of said pair of legs thereby forming the configuration of said star; and
a plurality of light fixtures attached to said wire in an evenly-spaced relationship to each other along the wire forming the outline of the star configuration.
2. An ornamental decoration as recited in claim I, wherein said truss members are disposed within the lower half of said structure.
3. An ornamental decoration as recited in claim 2, including means for removably securing said electrical wire to said tubular structure.
4. An ornamental decoration as recited in claim 3, wherein each of said leg members has one end thereof flattened and adapted to be secured to an adjoining flattened leg member, and wherein the oppositelydisposed end of each leg member is flattened and bent 7. An ornamental decoration as recited in claim 6,
wherein said interconnecting means comprises a dowel pin interposed within the open ends of said leg members, said dowel pin having the outer diameter thereof equal to the inner diameter of said tubular members.
8. An ornamental decoration as recited in claim 6, wherein said interconnecting means comprises one end of one tubular member, with a reduced diameter portion adapted to be received within the inner diameter of the adjacent end of the tubular member.