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Publication numberUS3851507 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 3, 1974
Filing dateMay 14, 1973
Priority dateMay 14, 1973
Also published asDE2421997A1
Publication numberUS 3851507 A, US 3851507A, US-A-3851507, US3851507 A, US3851507A
InventorsGehrie C
Original AssigneeKidde & Co Walter, Kidde Co Presto Lock Div
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Combination lock
US 3851507 A
Abstract
A combination lock is constructed which utilizes a ratchet action principle. A plurality of longitudinally spaced assemblies are cooperable with a manually operable latching slide member. Each assembly is made up of a shaft, a non-rotatable ratchet member, a rotatable dial member, a rotatable ratchet and a sleeve. The sleeve of each assembly has a radial slot. The latching slide member has longitudinally spaced fingers adapted to be received in the radial slot of each sleeve when the fingers and slots are in alignment or when the lock is "on combination." When the lock is "off combination" a sleeve blocks movement of the slide member to maintain the device in locked condition.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191 Gehrie 14 1 Dec. 3, 1974 [52] US. Cl. 70/316, 70/312 [51] int. Cl E05b 65/52 [58] Field of Search 70/70, 312, 316, 317, 330,

70/332, 442, 443; 116/DIG. 39

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 347,618 8/1886 Knowles 70/28 1,763,224 6/1930 Davis 116/1243 1,781,510 11/1930 Hatch 70/312 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 272,895 4/1914 Germany 70/312 Primary ExaminerAlbert G. Craig, Jr. Attorney, Agent, or FirmShapiro and Shapiro 5 7] ABSTRACT A combination lock is constructed which utilizes a ratchet action principle. A plurality of longitudinally spaced assemblies are cooperable with a manually operable latching slide member. Each assembly is made up of a shaft, a non-rotatable ratchet member, a rotatable dial member, a rotatable ratchet and a sleeve. The sleeve of each assembly has a radial slot. The latching slide member has longitudinally spaced fingers adapted to be received in the radial slot of each sleeve when the fingers and slots are in alignment or when the lock is on combination." When the lock is off combination a sleeve blocks movement of the slide member to maintain the device in locked condit1on.

The essential latching slide member is used to change the relationship of a dial and its respective sleeve to thereby enable one to select a combination of ones own secret choice.

10 Claims, 15 Drawing Figures PATENIEL Bic 3mm SHEET 10F 4 PATENTE BEE 31974 SHEET 2 BF 4 PATENTEL DEC 3 4 SHE! 30F PATENTELBEB 3|974 I v 3 515 7 sum MP 4 COMBINATION LOCK operable with a latching slide member.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Combination locks of the type which permit the selection of a combination of ones own secret choice employ a lever or similar element to enable the separation of sleeves or the like from their respective dials so that the relationship of the sleeves with respect to the dials may be changed. The presence of the lever or a like element seems to invite tampering. It has been found that prospective customers of equipment provided with combination locks, for example luggage or other containers or receptaclesfare tempted to manipulate the locks before becoming familiar with the written instructionswhich accompany the locks. As a result of the tampering, the on combination is lost. The luggage case, receptacle or the like with the lock thereon must be returned to the manufacturer. In addition to the shipping charges, the manufacturer must bear the expense of trying to salvage the locks, if possible.

A' primary object of the invention is to overcome or eliminate the foregoing problem. A combination lock made in accordance with the invention is constructed without a lever or any other visible part which may suggest that the lock is of the type which may have the combination set by the user. Only by reading the written instructions may one learn that it is possible to change or setthe combination to a combination of ones own secret choice, and then, how this may be accomplished. v

Another object of the invention is to provide a combination lock with dials having indicia thereonwherein the dials have magnifying elements related thereto to enable one to very easily read the indicia.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A combination lock made in accordance with the invention comprises a plurality of longitudinally spaced assemblies. Each assembly comprises a shaft, a nonrotatable ratchet member, a rotatable dial member, a rotatable ratchet and a sleeve. The dial member has two series of teeth. The rotatable ratchet has two series of teeth, one series being cooperable with the nonrotatable ratchet member and the other series being cooperable with a series of teeth of the dial member. The sleeve has a series of teeth cooperable with the second series of teeth of the dial member. The sleeve has a radial slot. A spring acts to bias the non-rotatable ratchet member, the dial member, ratchet and the sleeve toward one another or into resilient assembled relationship.

A manually operable latching slide member is mounted for movement perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of each of the assembly shafts. The slide member has longitudinally spaced fingers adapted to be received in the radial slot of each sleeve when the lock is on combination), or when the fingers and slots are .in alignment. When the device is locked or off combination, a finger and a slot are out of alignment; the sleeve blocks movement of the latching slide member.

The latching slide member is formed for engagement with a hasp in its latched position.

The dial member, which has the indicia or numbers 0 to 9 thereon, turns with the sleeve because these two components have their teeth in meshing engagement. To set the device to a new combination, the latching slide member is manually held in unlatched position against the action of the spring which normally urges the slide member toward latched position. The device is on combination" and the fingers of the latching slide member are held within the slots of the sleeves.

- Whereas a dial and its respective sleeve rotate together because their teeth are meshed, with the latching slide member holding the sleeves against rotation, each dial may be rotated, or the teeth therof may be cammed with respect to the teeth of the sleeve to thereby change the relationship of the dial with respect to the sleeve. The resilient connection of the dial and sleeve of each assembly, which is furnished by the spring acting to urge the parts together, permits the camming action.

The combination change is effected from thereadily accessible top side of the lock, and it is accomplished without the inclusion of any element for this purpose. The essential latching slide member is used to set the combination. It is essential that one actually read the written instructions in order to set the combination. Tampering is completely discouraged.

Another aspect of the invention is that the dial members'are each formed with the indicia positioned on a diameter other than the diameter which is engaged by the finger to rotate the dial, and such indicia are positioned for viewing through a window provided in the face plate of the-device. A magnifying lens is positioned within each window, whereupon the indicia appear larger and are more easily seen.

These, and other advantages and improved results will be apparent from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment of the invention, taken in conjunction with the drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 3 is a transverse vertical cross-sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 3-3 of FIG.

FIG. 4 is a longitudinal vertical cross-sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 4-4 of FIG.

1, this view showing the device in off combination condition;

FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4, this view showing the device in on combination or in unlatched and unlocked condition;

FIG. 6 is a bottom view of the device, this view having the bottom plate or frame member removed for clarity in the illustration;

FIG. 7 is an end view of the dial member;

FIG. 8 is an end view of the ratchet;

FIG. 9 is an end view of the sleeve;

FIG. 10 is an end view of the non-rotatable ratchet member;

FIG. 11 is a vertical cross sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 11-11 of FIG. 7;

FIG. 12 is a vertical cross-sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 12-12 of FIG. 8;

FIG. 13 is a vertical cross-sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 1313 of FIG. 9;

FIG. 14 is a vertical cross-sectional view taken approximately in the plane of line 14-14 of FIG. and

FIG. 15 is a top plan of the latching slide member.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT As shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, a combination lock A is cooperable with a hasp B. The combination lock comprises a face plate member C secured to a back cover or frame D. Within the cavity 18 provided by the face plate member and the frame, except for a protruding portion of each dial member, there are provided a plurality of longitudinally spaced assemblies E. Each assembly comprises a shaft F, a non-rotatable ratchet member G, a rotatable dial member H, a rotatable ratchet .l, a sleeve K, and a spring L which acts to resilient maintain the nonrotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve in assembled relationship.

As shown in FIGS. 7 and II, the dial member H has two series of teeth 20 and 22, the teeth 22 are l0 in number and on a diameter which is larger than the diameter upon which the teeth 20 are situated. The rotatable ratchet J (FIGS. 8 and 12) has two series of teeth 24 and 26. The ratchet is in the nature of a ring having teeth on opposite sides. One series of teeth is cooperable with the teeth 28 on the non-rotatable ratchet member G (FIGS. 10 and 14), and the other series of teeth is cooperable with the series of teeth 20 on the dial member H. The sleeve K (FIGS. 9 and 13) has a series of 10 teeth 30 cooperable with the series of teeth 22 of the dial member H. Each sleeve has a radial slot 32.

As shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, a manually operable plug or latching slide member M is mounted for movement perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of each of the assembly shafts F. The latching slide member has longitudinally spaced fingers 34 adapted to be received in the radial slot 32 of each sleeve K when the fingers and slots are in alignment as shown in FIG. 5. When the device is off combination a sleeve blocks movement of the slide member, as shown in FIG. 4. As shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 15, the latching slide member M is provided with longitudinally spaced notches 36 which are adapted to receive the spaced hook portions 38 of the hasp B when the device is in the latched condition shown in FIG. 4.

In the embodiment of the invention illustrated, the combination lock includes three assemblies E. The dial member H of each assembly is provided with indicia or numbers equidistantly spaced about its circumference with the numbers 0 to 9. Where, as illustrated, there are three assemblies, there are 1,000 different possible combinations available. It will be understood that any desired number of assemblies and associated dials may be used to furnish the desired number of combinations.

In greater detail, and as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2, the face plate member C has a top plate portion 40. The top plate portion has a plurality of aligned longitudinally spaced slots 42, one for each of dial member H of each assembly. In the preferred embodiment of the invention the top plate portion also is provided with a window 44 transversely spaced from each slot. Preferably, the face plate member is die cast so that the part may serve a plurality of functions with ease and economy of manufacture. One of the functions of the face plate member is to provide integral spaced pins 46 which bear against ears 48 on each of the ratchet members G to render such members non-rotatable, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, while allowing these ratchet members to slide along their respective shafts F when setting the combination, as will be subsequently explained.

Referring to FIG. 2, the non-rotatable ratchet member G is slidable on shaft F, and the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member H, ratchet .l and sleeve K are related so that the spring L acts to urge the sleeve axially toward the dial member, the non-rotatable ratchet member axially toward the ratchet, and the rotatable ratchet axially toward the dial member. The assembly of these components is preferably maintained in position by forming the face plate member C to furnish spaced bearings for the ends of the shaft F upon which these components are mounted. Accordingly, the face plate member is cast with the requisite number of pairs of opposite open bearings 50, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 6. After positioning the ends of the shafts F therein, with the components of the shafts, the frame member D is connected to the face plate member so that in their connection to one another the bearings for each of the shafts are closed or completed. Such connection of the parts may be accomplished by providing the face plate member with integral connecting studs 52 near one end of the plate and a connecting stud 54 near the opposite end of the part. As shown in FIGS. 4 and 5, the latter connecting stud may be extended through an opening 56 in the frame member and then headed over for the connection of the parts to one another. The same kind of connection is made for the studs 52 (not shown). Also, such connections are used to maintain the desired spacing of the face plate portion 40 from the base of the frame member to provide the desired height of the cavity 18.

If desired, and as illustrated, the underside of the top plate portion 40 may be provided with integral connecting studs on the central axis near the extremities of the face plate member so that the entire assembly or combination lock A may be secured to the wall W of a luggage case or the like or to a valance member by extending the connecting studs through aligned openings, and then heading over the ends of the studs, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5.

As shown in FIG. 2, the shaft F extends through a bore 60 in the dial member H and through a bore 62 in the non-rotatable ratchet member G. The nonrotatable ratchet member is provided with a counterbore 64 within which is positioned the spring L, which is in the form of a helically coiled compression spring. One end of the spring bears against the shoulder 66 of the member (FIG. 14), and the opposite end bears against the wall 68 provided by the frame member or the side wall 70 of the face plate member. The side wall of the face plate member is provided with spaced apertures 71 (FIG. 3) to allow the spaced portions 38 of the hasp B to enter the cavity 18 for cooperation with the latching slide member. As also shown in FIG. 2, the sleeve K surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member G, and the rotatable ratchet member .I surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member on a reduced diameter thereof. The teeth 22 of the dial member H and the teeth 30 of the sleeve K are in constant engagement so that in turning the dial member in either direction the sleeve moves with it. The only time the sleeve and dial member are out of meshing engagement is during a combination change, as will be subsequently explained.

The described arrangement of components furnishes a true stop position for each number on each dial member, together with a desirable audible clicking sound upon turning of the dial member. When the dial member H is rotated in one direction, the teeth 20 are engaged with the teeth of the rotatable ratchet J and the rotatable ratchet rotates with the dial member. The teeth on the opposite side of the rotatable ratchet ride up and down over each tooth of the non-rotatable ratchet member G. There is a clicking sound at each drop, and at the same time, there is a positive stop position for each number and each tooth. When the dial member is turned in the opposite direction, the ratchet teeth 20 on the dial member slip with respect to the teeth on the ratchet member, while the teeth of the non-rotating ratchet member and of the ratchet J remain solidly engaged and non-rotating; The dial member and its associated sleeve member are rotatable because there is no direct connection between the dial member and the non-rotating ratchet member.

In the preferred and illustrated form of the invention, the dial member H is provided with one diameter which is knurled or otherwise formed at 72 to facilitate rotation of the part. It is this diameter which extends partially out of the slot 42. As shown for example in FIGS. 3 and 6, the dial member H has an area 74 of reduced diameter upon which are inscribed the indicia, in this case the numbers through 9, there being a number or indicia for each of the IQ teeth 22 which are in engagement with a like number of teeth on the sleeve K. The indicia'are located beneath the windows 44 in the face plate portion 40. To enable one to better see the indicia a magnifying lens 0 (FIG. 2) isset directly in each of the windows 44. Preferably, the magnifying lens is made of a clea r resin composition molded to furnish the magnifying property; for example, methyl methacrylate, a styrene compound or other resin composition which is capable of furnishing the magnifying function as known in the art.

If desired, the windows and the magnifying lenses may be omitted, whereby the numerals would be equidistantly positioned on the diameter 72 of the dial which extends partially out of each slot 42.

In the illustrated and preferred embodiment of the invention, resilient means N biases or urges the latching slide member M toward latched position. As shown in FIG. 6, theresilient means is preferably in the form of a bent leaf spring having one end anchored in the face plate member C at 76 and the other end extended through an opening 78 in the latching slide member. As shown in FIGS. 4 and the slide member is provided with longitudinally spaced cut-outs 80 into which extend the fingers 34. The cut-outs allow the slide member to clear the assemblies E when the member is moved longitudinally between latched and unlatched positions. As best shown in FIG. 3, the slide member is guided at top and bottom by surfaces provided by the face plate member C and the frame member D and on the sides thereof by surfaces provided by the face plate member at 82 and surfaces 84 provided by the dial members H. If desired, the latching slide member may be mounted to provide a dead bolt action, that is, to require manual movement from latched to unlatched position and vice-versa.

To move the latching slide member M from latched to unlatched position, a puller 86 is positioned on the face plate member and connected to the latching slide member by means 88 extended through an opening 90 in the face plate member, as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5. One simply grasps the puller between the fingers and moves it from the position shown in FIG. 4 to the position shown in FIG. 5 against the action of the spring N. This may be done only when the lock is on combination," or when the radial slots 32 in the sleeves K are all oriented or aligned to receive the fingers 34 of the latching slide member. To enable additional puller and slide member movement which may be negligible if dependency were placed on the sleeve hub alone, a slot 92 may also be provided in the non-rotatable ratchet member so that the fingers 34 have a deeper throw or movement, as shown in FIG. 5.

With the lock on combination, the combination may be changed to a combination of ones own secret choice. This is accomplished by grasping the puller and holding the puller in its unlatched position against the action of the spring N. In this position the fingers 34 are positioned within the radial slots 32 of the sleeves K. With the fingers thus. positioned and holding the sleeves, any of the dial members may be rotated with respect to their respective sleeves by a camming action of the teeth which are in engagement with oneanother. Such camming action is permitted because of the resilient connection afforded'by the spring L between the dial and the sleeve of each assembly. The combination change is effected from the readily accessible top side of the lock and it is accomplished without the inclusion of any extraneous, element provided for this purpose. The essential latching member is used to set the combination. One must read the written instructions in order to set the combination.

It is believed that the advantages and improved results afforded by the combination lock of the invention will be apparent from the foregoing detailed description of a preferred embodiment of the invention. Various changes and modifications may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as sought to be defined in the claims.

I claim:

1. A combination lock comprising a plurality of Iongitudinally spaced assemblies, each assembly comprising a shaft, a non-rotatable ratchet member, a rotatable dial member having two series of teeth, a rotatable ratchet having two series of teeth, one series of teeth of the rotatable ratchet being cooperable with the nonrotatable ratchet member and the other series being cooperable with a series of teeth of the dial member, a sleeve having a series of teeth cooperable with the second series of teeth of the dial member, the sleeve having a radial slot, and a spring resiliently maintaining the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve in assembled relationship, and a manually operable latching slide member mounted for movement perpendicularly to the longitudinal axis of each of said assembly shafts, the latching slide member having longitudinally spaced fingers adapted to be received in the radial slot of each sleeve when the fingers and slots are in alignment, a sleeve blocking movement of the slide member when a finger and a slot are out of alignment.

2. A combination lock according to claim 1, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member is slidable on the shaft, and the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve are related so that the spring acts to urge the sleeve axially toward the dial member, the non-rotatable ratchet member axially toward the ratchet, and the ratchet axially toward the dial membet.

3. A combination lock according to claim 2, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member has a central bore and a counter-bore, the spring is a coiled compression spring positioned in the counterbore and surrounds the shaft, the sleeve surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member, and the rotatable ratchet surrounds the nonrotatable ratchet member on a smaller diameter thereof.

4. A combination lock according to claim 1 including a face plate member, the face plate member having a plurality of aligned longitudinally spaced slots, a window transversely spaced from each slot extending through the face plate member, the dial members each having a first diameter extending partially through the slots and formed to facilitate rotation of the member, the dial members each having a second and smaller diameter upon which indicia are located, the indicia being in alignment with the respective windows.

5. A combination lock according to claim 4, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member is slidable on the shaft, and the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve are related so that the spring acts to urge the sleeve axially toward the dial member, the non-rotatable ratchet member axially toward the ratchet, and the ratchet axially toward the dial memher.

6. A combination lock according to claim 5, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member has a central bore and a counter-bore, the spring is a coiled compression spring positioned in the counter-bore and surrounds the shaft, the sleeve surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member, and the rotatable ratchet surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member on a smaller diameter thereof.

7. A combination lock according to claim 4 including a magnifying lens in each of the windows.

8. A combination lock according to claim 6 including a frame member connected to the face plate member, the face plate and frame members being formed to provide bearings for each of the shafts.

9. A combination lock according to claim 1 including a face plate member, the face plate member having a plurality of aligned longitudinally spaced slots, a dial member extending partially through each slot, an opening in the face plate member, a puller positioned on the face plate member and connected to the latching slide member by means extending through the opening, the puller providing means for moving the latching slide member from latched to unlatched position, and resilient means normally urging the latching slide member toward latched position.

10. A combination lock according to claim 9 wherein the face plate member has a window transversely spaced from each slot extending through the face plate member, the dial members each having a first diameter extending partially through the slots and formed to facilitate rotation of the member, the dial members each having a second and smaller diameter upon which indicia are located, the indicia being in alignment with the respective windows.

11. A combination lock according to claim 10, including a magnifying lens in each of the windows.

12. A combination lock according to claim 9, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member is slidable on the shaft, and the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve are related so that the spring acts to urge the sleeve axially toward the dial member, the non-rotatable ratchet member axially toward the ratchet, and the ratchet axially toward the dial member.

13. A combination lock according to claim 12, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member has a central bore and a counter-bore, the spring is a coiled compression spring positioned in the counter-bore and surrounds the shaft, the sleeve surrounds the nonrotatable ratchet member, and the rotatable ratchet surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member on a smaller diameter thereof.

14. A combination lock according to claim 10, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member is slidable on the shaft, and the non-rotatable ratchet member, dial member, ratchet and sleeve are related so that the spring acts to urge the sleeve axially toward the dial member, the non-rotatable ratchet member axially toward the ratchet, and the ratchet axially toward the dial member.

15. A combination lock according to claim 14, wherein the non-rotatable ratchet member has a central bore and a counter-bore, the spring is a coiled compression spring positioned in the counter-bore and surrounds the shaft, the sleeve surrounds the nonrotatable ratchet member, and the rotatable ratchet surrounds the non-rotatable ratchet member on a smaller diameter thereof.

16. A combination lock according to claim 15, in-

cluding a magnifying lens in each of the windows.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US347618 *Oct 22, 1883Aug 17, 1886 Permutation-lock
US1763224 *Oct 29, 1929Jun 10, 1930Wired Radio IncFrequency-adjusting means for high-frequency signaling systems
US1781510 *Jun 29, 1928Nov 11, 1930Sesamee CompanyPermutation lock
*DE272895C Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4114408 *Apr 4, 1977Sep 19, 1978Gee Victor LGate lock and latch
US4249469 *Jun 19, 1978Feb 10, 1981Crado Devices LimitedSafe having combination locking mechanisms
US4287734 *May 17, 1979Sep 8, 1981Herriott Leslie VCombination lock mechanism
US4385509 *Nov 10, 1980May 31, 1983S. Franzen Sohne (Gmbh & Co.)Permutation lock
US4462232 *Apr 20, 1982Jul 31, 1984Yang Gwo TCombination lock for luggage cases
US4519229 *Feb 22, 1983May 28, 1985Yang Yaw KuenCombination lock
US4669286 *Dec 9, 1985Jun 2, 1987Cheng Ching YuanCombination changing mechanism and combination lock used said mechanism
US6860126 *Sep 4, 2002Mar 1, 2005Renny Tse-Haw LingCombination lock with dial displaying window
US7269985 *Dec 20, 2005Sep 18, 2007The Sun Lock Company Ltd.Magnifying lens cover for combination padlocks
US7434430 *Apr 5, 2007Oct 14, 2008Chien-Yung HuangDial for a combination lock
EP1256674A2 *Apr 10, 2002Nov 13, 2002Sudhaus GmbH & CoCombination lock
Classifications
U.S. Classification70/316, 70/312
International ClassificationE05B37/12, E05B37/00
Cooperative ClassificationE05B37/12
European ClassificationE05B37/12
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Sep 10, 1982ASAssignment
Owner name: PRESTO LOCK, INC., 100 OUTWATER LANE, GARFIELD, NJ
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:PRESTO LOCK COMPANY, DIVISION OF WALTER KIDDE & COMPANY,INC., A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004044/0374
Effective date: 19811201
Owner name: PRESTO LOCK, INC., A CORP. OF NJ, NEW JERSEY
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:PRESTO LOCK COMPANY, DIVISION OF WALTER KIDDE & COMPANY, INC., A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004044/0374