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Publication numberUS3787677 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 22, 1974
Filing dateAug 21, 1972
Priority dateAug 21, 1972
Publication numberUS 3787677 A, US 3787677A, US-A-3787677, US3787677 A, US3787677A
InventorsMolitor B
Original AssigneeNu Pro Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Lock and key light
US 3787677 A
An automatic, door frame mounted, lock and key light having a button operated, battery powered light operable to illuminate the key and lock area upon opening of a screen door or the like. The button is spring loaded with the spring comprising part of the battery power circuit and moving into contact with a battery terminal upon movement of the button.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 91 Molitor [451 Jan. 22, 1974 LOCK AND KEY LIGHT [75] Inventor: Bernard A. Molitor, Saint Paul,


[73] Assignee: Nu-Pro Corporation, St. Paul, Minn.

[22] Filed: Aug. 21, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 282,425

[52] US. Cl. 240/2.13, 240/10.65 [51] Int. Cl E05b 17/10 [58] Field of Search 240/2 R, 2.13, 10.65; 339/4 [5 6] 7 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,813,195 11/1957 Willey et al 240/2.13

3,479,498 11/1969 Lasseigne 240/2 R 2,604,814 7/1952 Smith 240/l0.65 X 2,817,753 12/1957 Corin et a1. 240/2 R X Primary ExaminerFred L. Braun Attorney, Agent, or FirmRobert M. Dunning 57 ABSTRACT An automatic, door frame mounted, lock and key light having a button operated, battery powered light operable to illuminate the key and lock area upon opening of a screen door or the like. The button is spring loaded with the spring comprising part of the battery power circuit and moving into contact with a battery terminal upon movement of the button.

3 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures LOCK AND KEY LIGHT BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION It is a common experience to approach a locked door at night and encounter a large amount of difficulty in locating the correct key and properly inserting it in the lock due to the lack of light. In the prior art this problem has generally been solved by the provision of expensive and bulky porch lights which are wired into the conventional power circuits of the building and usually operate in response to a switch inside the building. Such a light is, of course, useless to a person approaching from the outside since he must open the door before he can turn the light on. It would be most desirable if a small light could be provided which would operate to illuminate the key and lock area and to do so only when it is necessary. The system should be easy to install requiring no alterations in the building itself nor any connections to the building power circuits. My invention provides such a device as indicated below.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Briefly, my invention contemplates providing a small plastic housing with a battery powered light source mounted inside which can be simply attached to the door frame between the main door and the screen door. A spring loaded sliding member passing through the housing and resting against the screen door turns on the light upon the opening of the screen door. The spring which urges the sliding member against the screen door is incorporated as, a part of the battery power supply circuit and, in the action of moving the button member, moves itself into contact with a battery terminal so as to close the circuit to the light and illuminate the lock and key area. The housing may be mounted to the door frame by means of a small fastening bracket or a layer of adhesive material. Since the device operates only when the screen door is held open long battery life is assured. The use of batteries in turn eliminates the necessity of alterations to the building or connections to the main power circuit. The novel combined use of a spring both as an electrical circuit switch and a mechanical spring enables the device to be built very simply and inexpensively. It may therefore be seen that it is an object of my invention to provide an improved key and lock light. Further objects and advantages will become apparent upon consideration of the following detailed description and drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective exploded view of the apparatus of my invention showing in particular the arrangement of parts inside the housing and how the cover of the box is fastened down.

FIG. 2 is a sectional top view of a typical door frame installation of my invention showing how the device operates to illuminate the lock area upon opening of the screen door.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT In the preferred embodiment of FIG. 1 a housing is shown in perspective with a secondary support member 12 positioned in the bottom thereof. Support member 12 may be constructed from plastic or any other suitable material. Secondary support member 12 is formed with a pair of pedestals 14 and 16 extending upwards therefrom. Secondary support member 12 is also provided with a series of battery positioning risers l8,

19, 20, 21, 22 and 23 which operate to locate a pair of batteries 25 and 26 as shown. Secondary support member 12 is further provided with a central post 27 with a threaded hole 28 therein. Hole 28 is used to secure cover 40 as will be explained later.

An actuating button 30 is positioned to rest on a pair of landings 31 and 32 on pedestals 14 and 16. Button 30 is also inserted through small holes in extensions 33 and 34 on the top of pedestals 14 and 16. Button 30 may slide in and out of housing 10 through small notches in the side. Secondary support member 12 is further provided with two generally rectangular shaped holes 35 and 36 as shown in FIG. 1. A small metal tab 37 is best as shown and provided with a hole to accept a light bulb 38. The light bulb 38 is thereby grounded by means of its contact with tab 37. The ground circuit is completed to battery 26 by bending tab 37 to form a flat portion 60 which extends underneath support member 12 and is bent upward to form a tab 55 contacting the base of battery 26. The remainder of the circuit to the other terminal 39 of bulb 38 is provided by a small piece of spring wire 50 which extends through a hole 53 and back up through a hole 54 in secondary support member 12 to contact bulb terminal 39. Spring member 50 extends upward through a small transverse hole in button 30 as shown. Spring member 50 is normally inclined to position itself directly in line with terminal 61 of battery 25 so that when button 30 is displaced to the position shown in FIG. 1 by the closing of the screen door, spring 50 not only resists the movement of button 30, thus, providing a springing action, but also moves out of contact with terminal 61 on battery 25. Thus, no current can flow to bulb 38. The two batteries are connected together in series by means of a small metal tab 64 positioned over another vertical riser 65 which extends upward from support member 12.

It may be seen in FIGS. 1 and 2 that my invention is utilized in the following way. Batteries 25 and 26 are inserted as shown. Cover 40 is affixed in place and secured by means of a screw 42 inserted through a hole 41 in cover 40 and into threaded hole 28 in post 27. The light from source 38 emerges through a hole 43-so that when the box is mounted to the door frame 76 as shown in FIG. 2 the light rays, as indicated by dashed lines 73, are directed downward and across the door 74 onto the lock area around the door knob 72. Button 30 projects out of housing 10 as shown unless the outer or screen door is closed. If the screen door 70 is closed it presses button 30 inward to the position shown in FIG. 1 thus holding spring 50 out of contact with battery terminal 61 and preventing the light from receiving current. When screen door 70 is opened button 30 is no longer restrained. Thus, spring member 50 can move button 30 outward and spring member 50 itself can come into contact with battery terminal 61 thus completing the circuit to bulb 38.

In the embodiment shown in FIG. 1 a small bracket I 75 is affixed to the back side of housing 10 and provided with holes 78 therethrough to facilitate mounting the housing to door frame 76. In another embodiment of the present invention it was found that double sided adhesive tape could be used on the backside of housing 10 to secure the housing to the door frame 76. The small size and weight of my invention permit it to be suitably mounted with a minimum of mounting apparatus. It may be seen that cover 40 is provided with an interior lip 45 about its circumference which is sized to fit inside housing 10 and provide a betterseal thereto.

Clearly the specific structure of the housing and battery positioning elements may be varied widely without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Also the position and direction of the bulb and the various circuit elements could be altered significantly with.- out departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Consequently, the invention is not intended to be limited to the specific structure shown except as defined by the appended claims.

I claim: v 1. A lock and key light adapted to operate in response to the opening of a door comprising:

an electrically non-conducting housing with mounting means affixed thereto adapted to mount the housing to a door frame between first and second doors including a non-conducting secondary support member adapted to fit in said housing, said secondary support member having battery positioning means thereon and a plurality of holes therein for locating circuit elements; a light source positioned in said housing in a position to direct light out of said housing in a direction to impinge upon the lock area of said second door when the housing is mounted on the door frame; a battery power circuit in said housing for supplying current to said light source; and a spring urged electrically non-conducting button in said housing positioned to be moved by the open- I ing of said first door, said button comprising a member slideably supported by and extending through the housing and having a generally transverse hole;

an electrically conducting wire spring secured through at least one of said holes in said secondary support member and inserted through said transverse hole with one end in a position to contact the light source and the other end in position to contact a battery terminal upon movement of said button member, the spring comprising part of said battery power circuit.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 in which said circuit elements include a metal tab adapted to hold said light source and provide one electrical contact for the light source.

3. The apparatus of claim 2 in which said metal tab extends through a second one of said holes in said secondary support member, under the secondary member, and back through a third one of said holes in the secon dary member into contact with a battery terminal.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2604814 *Feb 14, 1950Jul 29, 1952Sawyer S IncLighting attachment for stereoscopic viewers
US2813195 *Oct 28, 1955Nov 12, 1957Willey Ralph MalcolmDoor lock illuminator
US2817753 *Jul 26, 1955Dec 24, 1957Corin IrvingBattery operated closet light
US3479498 *Mar 16, 1967Nov 18, 1969Sears Roebuck & CoAutomatic closet light
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4032773 *Dec 18, 1975Jun 28, 1977Halliday & Co., Inc.Flashlight
US4779171 *Jul 18, 1986Oct 18, 1988Ferguson Larry DKeyhole and room illuminating apparatus
US4788631 *Jun 1, 1987Nov 29, 1988Fuller Raymond CWrist mounted flashlight
US4872095 *Mar 7, 1988Oct 3, 1989Dubak Glenda AEntrance door night light
US4926300 *Mar 13, 1989May 15, 1990Key Industries, Inc.Disposable flashlight with improved activator field of the invention
US5558429 *Jun 13, 1994Sep 24, 1996Cain; ScottPortable lighting device
US5685630 *Jun 28, 1995Nov 11, 1997Herman; Trent S.Battery-operated automatically switched lighting device
US6439732Oct 3, 2000Aug 27, 2002Mark A. WeisbachTheft-proof removable door handle illumination device
US7180021Apr 5, 2005Feb 20, 2007Desa Ip, LlcLED illuminated door chime push button with adjustable task light
US7576292Jan 5, 2007Aug 18, 2009Heathco LlcLED illuminated door chime push button with adjustable task light
US8021012May 18, 2009Sep 20, 2011Tracy DunbarAssembly for doorway illumination
US20060219541 *Apr 5, 2005Oct 5, 2006Desa Ip, LlcLED illuminated door chime push button with adjustable task light
US20100289434 *May 18, 2009Nov 18, 2010Tracy DunbarAssembly for Doorway Illumination
U.S. Classification362/100, 362/200
International ClassificationE05B17/00, E05B17/10
Cooperative ClassificationE05B17/10
European ClassificationE05B17/10