US 3862505 A
An advertising device comprising a light transmitting cover and tray-like support structure therefor. The support structure having an inwardly directed bead and the cover having a U-shaped groove which receives the bead whereby the cover is retained in position on the support structure. The edges of the support structure having lesser depth at the corners thereof than elsewhere, to facilitate mounting of the cover thereon. The support structure may include dovetail-shaped connections for modular assembly.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Jeroma 1 Jan. 28, 1975 1 ADVERTISING DEVICES  Inventor: Rudolf Jeroma, 60 Stresemanni fiezfifi Germany 22 Filed: Feb. 26, 1973 211 App]. No.: 336,095
 Foreign Application Priority Data 3,154,870 11/1964 Hopp ct =11. 40/125 R x 3,263,071 7/1966 Fabbri 240/51.1l R 3,566,946 3/1971 MacDonald 1 220/74 X 3,711,978 1/1973 Conrad 1 40/152 3.727.335 4/1973 Rochelt 40/156 3,737,654 6/1973 Hawley 240/52 R FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 596,675 4/1960 Canada Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Olson, Trexler, Wolters, Bushnell & Fosse, Ltd.
 ABSTRACT An advertising device comprising a light transmitting cover and tray-like support structure therefor. The support structure having an inwardly directed bead and the cover having a U-shaped groove which receives the bead whereby the cover is retained in posi-  References Cited tion on the support structure. The edges of the sup- UNITED STATES PATENTS port structure having lesser depth at the corners 2,2 ,1 2 1/1942 p) 81 /5 R thereof than elsewhere, to facilitate mounting of the Schepmoes t t cover thereon The support tructure may include 2323'475 2/1958 Packard 40/130 R dovetail-shaped connections for modular assembly. 2,940,198 6/1960 Ressel 40/1522 X 15 Claims, 17 Drawing Figures 2 I0 4 5 l4 l3 m 2 Z W, a
4 II I 16 A I 16 I6 l6 PATENTEB JAN 2 8 I975 SHEET 2 OF 4 PATENTED JAN 2 8 I975 SHEET 3 0F 4 Fig. 9
PATENIEU JAH28 ms SHEET 4 UF 4 Fr ll ADVERTISING DEVICES This invention relates to an advertising device adapted to be internally illuminated and particularly to such a device comprising a support structure and a cover of a light transmitting material.
In the past illuminated advertising devices of this type have been usually produced by shaping or welding a support of galvanized sheet metal and attaching the cover thereto by any of a number of methods. Illuminated advertising devices of this kind suffer from the drawback that the cover cannot be mounted on the support structure from the front, which makes it difficult or impossible to mount a number of such devices side by side to form large-area illuminated advertising installations, in addition to which maintenance operations (cleaning and repairs) are difficult to perform, although the cleaning is the very task which, in the case of these known devices, has to be carried out with particular frequency and thoroughness.
The purpose of the invention is therefore to adopt, with an advertising device of the type described, measures by which the erection and assembly will be facilitated, both in the first instance and in the case of subsequent maintenance operations, and also to render the device far less sensitive, from the outset, to weather influences, such as humidity and dirt.
According to the invention, an advertising device, which is adapted to be internally illuminated, comprises a tray-like support structure; an inwardly directed bead which is carried by, and extends right round, the edges of the support structure and which at each of at least two corners of the structure has a smaller depth than elsewhere; and a light transmitting cover having on its side walls an outwardly opening groove adapted to receive the bead in order to hold the cover in position; the reduction in depth of the bead at the said corners facilitating entry of the cover walls within the bead until the bead is received in the groove.
It is desirable that the bead on the support structure should also take the form of an outwardly opening U- groove engaging the U-groove of the cover, and that its depth should constantly decrease as it approaches each corner, starting at distances from the corners. In addition, the edges of the support structure are preferably bowed inwards, thus being elastically prestressed inwardly when installed in the straight position.
In order to ensure that any liquid which has entered the gaps between the U-groove of the cover and the bead on the support structure will not find its way into the interior of the advertising device, thus carrying particles of dirt into the latter and causing contamination which is visible from the outside, the groove of the cover is preferably formed with a heading integrally extending from the base of that groove. In particular, the beading may be so formed that a narrow slit connects the interior of the beading with the groove of the cover. The beading is thus circular or tear-shaped, for instance, in cross section.
The trapping of liquid may be aided by a notch provided on at least one of the side walls of the cover and in the vicinity of the front panel and parallel to this latter. That notch prevents any rainwater running down the front panel from causing any uncontrolled deposits of dirt on the lower wall of the cover (and of the support structure) by carrying dust and particles of dirt with it. Water of this kind is kept away, together with any extraneous matter carried with it, by the notch, in which the dirt is deposited; the resulting dark streak parallel to the front disc does not detract from the appearance of the installation.
In a further development of the invention, projections and/or cavities may be formed on the side walls of the support structure and can be interconnected with similar elements on an adjacent device or devices, in order to form larger installations. This enables largearea advertising installations to be formed by placing a number of individual devices side by side. As a rule, one of two abutting side walls of the support structure is provided with grooves and the other with tongues, this applying particularly to rectangular devices of which the upper and left-hand walls may be provided with grooves and the right-hand and lower side walls with tongues. Particularly with devices which are triangular in plan or which are circular or part circular in plan, however, grooves may be provided on all side walls, shaped connecting bars serving to interconnect adjacent grooves of devices next to each other.
In particular, the system can be so arranged that the projections or cavities are situated at a fixed and invariably equal distance from one another. This provides a raster configuration enabling an almost universal combination of advertising devices to be obtained, even if they differ in their individual shapes.
The invention will be more readily understood by way of example from the following description of an illuminated advertising device in accordance therewith, reference being made to the accompanying drawings, in which FIG. 1 is a cross sectional view of the advertising device;
FIG. 2 is an exploded view, in perspective, of the lefthand upper corner of the advertising device;
FIG. 3 is a reduced perspective view of the advertising device showing the operation of mounting the cover on the support structure;
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the right-hand lower corner of the support structure;
FIGS. SA-D show a number of alternative ways ofinterconnecting adjacent advertising devices to form a large-area installation, shown in section and on alarger scale;
FIG. 6 is a partial cross section through a cover provided with a sealing lip;
FIG. 7 is a rear view of the support structure, again on a reduced scale;
FIG. 8 is an installation made up of a number of basic elements and taking the form of an oval in plan view;
FIG. 9 shows another advertising installation made up of different basic devices, also in plan view;
FIG. 10 shows the construction of the plugs and sockets for fluorescent tubes;
FIG. 11 shows in section the addition of a sealing foil to the cover;
FIG. 12 is a section on the line XIIXII of FIG. 11, and
FIGS. 13 and 14 show in section and in plan a further form of sealing foil.
The advertising device shown in the drawings consists essentially of a tray-like support structure 1, deep drawn from a sheet or plate of resiliently deformable plastic, and a transparent or translucent cover 6 which carries the advertising matter. A bead in the form of a U-shaped groove 2 is provided around the entire edge of the structure 1. As may be seen from the upper part of FIG. 2, the U-groove 2 is drawn in at all four corners of the installation support 1, so that starting at a distance from each corner the groove constantly decreases in depth as it approaches that corner. Furthermore, the U-groove 2 of the support structure 1 and, to a certain extent, the side walls are drawn inwards, i.e., they are bowed inwardly, their shape being that shown by broken lines in FIG. 7 when they are in the position of rest.
The cover 6 is formed with an outwardly opening U- shaped groove 5 at the free ends of the side walls; when the cover 6 is mounted on the structure 1 with bead 2 in the groove 5, the edges of the supporting structure are forced into the operational straight position, the resilience of the structure casusing the edges to be prestressed inwardly against the cover and the bead 2 to be pressed elastically into the U-groove 5.
When the cover 6 is mounted on the support structure 1, the free limb 4 of the U-groove 5 is first of all (as shown in FIG. 3) moved into position behind the corresponding U-groove 2 of the support structure 1 at one end, after which the cover 6 is closed, in the direction shown by the arrow in FIG. 3. In this process the inwardly biased edges of the structure 1 can be opened out elastically and the edges of the cover 6 can be correspondingly pressed elastically inwards to the extend required to ensure that the free limb 4 of the U-groove 5 engages the rear of the U-groove 2 on the structure 1, along the remaining side walls. In the zone of the corners 3, which cannot of course be stretched outwardly, the reduction of the depth of the U-groove 2, in conjunction with the reducing of the corners 7 of the limbs 4, as shown at the bottom of FIG. 2, ensures that the corners of the cover 6 can move into position behind the U-groove 2 and engage the support structure 1.
The U-shaped groove 5 of the cover 6 is formed with an integral beading 9 which extends from the base 8 of the groove over the entire length of that groove. The cross section of the heading 9 is approximately tearshaped, with its interior 10, which serves for the removal of any water which has entered, connected by a narrow slit 11 with the U-shaped groove 5. By capilliary action, the limited width of the slit 11 assists in drawing water into the interior l ifany has found its way in between the grooves 2 and 5. That water runs in the beading 9 to the deepest point, where drain holes may be provided.
A notch 14 is formed in the side wall 13 of the cover 6 and extends right round the cover parallel to the front panel 12 of the cover to intercept any dirty water that may be received by the cover and to deposit the particles of dirt as described above.
The back of the support structure 1 carries two sets of elongate hooks 15, 16 (FIGS. 1 and 7), the hooks of the two sets being mutually at right angles, so that the advertising device can be mounted optionally on either vertical or horizontal bars 17, as shown in brokent line in FIG. 7. Because of the disposition of the hooks 15, 16 as shown in FIG. 7, the hooks of one set do not obstruct the mounting of the other set on the bars 17, FIG. 1 shows how Z- or S- shaped metal reinforcements 18 are inserted into the hooks 15, 16.
The edge of the free limb 4 of the U-shaped groove on the cover 6 is provided with a lip 19 (FIG. 6), which is made of elastically resilient material and which forms a prolongation of the limb 4. The lip 19 may if necessary be formed at the same time as the limb 4. which is made of a harder material.
The upper and left-hand side walls of the supporting structure 1 are formed with dovetailed grooves 20 which are shown at the top of FIG. 2 and are complementary to correspondingly dovetail-shaped tongues 21 on the lower and right-hand side walls (FIG. 4). These grooves and tongues enable adjacent advertising devices to be connected together. As the distance between each corner and the centre of the first groove 20 or first tongue 21 and also between each two successive grooves 20 and each two successive tongues 21 is invariably l2.5cm, two of the advertising devices can be interconnected in an aligned disposition or offset relative to one another by multiples of l2.5cm.
FIGS. SA-D show different versions of this method of connecting together the devices. While FIG. 5A again shows the dovetail-shaped connections of FIGS. 2 and 4, the profile of the tongue in FIG. 5B is substantially circular and, if the material is suitably chosen. can be caused to snap into position instead of being merely inserted. As distinct from the examples illustrated in FIGS. 5A, B and D, the method of connection shown in FIG. 5C cannot be subjected to tractive stress; this. however, is frequently unnecessary, because it is only necessary to transmit vertical aligning and supporting forces between the individual advertising devices of an installation. FIG. 5D shows the combination of two advertising devices when two grooves 20 are situated opposite each other. In this case, the connection is effected by a double dovetail bar connector 22.
FIG. 8 shows the basic shapes for making up illuminated advertising installations from individual devices on the module principle. The basic shapes are squares and rectangles, together with the necessary triangles, as well as parts of circles and parts of rings. If the shortest side occurring has a length of a, then the smallest rectangular element is a square of which the other side has a length of b,. In the next greater module, the length of the side, b is twice as great as the basic length a; generally the length b of the longer side is given by b=na, where n is a whole number. For each square or rectangular element there is a triangular element, as shown for the case a b on the right-hand side in FIG. 8, by chain line 23.
The elements in FIG. 8 which have the shape of a quarter of a circular ring have an external radius R twice as great as the internal radius r, which in its turn is equal to the length a of a side. Generally the radii of a part-annulus are given by R r+na For a part-circular device, the radius r is given by r na The installation shown in FIG. 9 consists of three devices of two basic shapes, i.e., two quarter-circle elements and one rectangular element of which the longer side b is equal to twice the basic length a of a side. In the same manner, other installations can be made up of triangular and part-ring devices.
Needless to say, the dimension a may be smaller than shown in FIGS. 8 and 9, so that the square element a b, in FIG. 8 may consist of four square devices a/2 b,/2 or of two rectangular devices a/2-b,.
Contained within, and carried by, the support structure l are fluorescent tubes, shown diagramatically in FIG. 1, for the illumination of the advertisements on the cover 1. The mounting of the tubes is shown in detail in FIG. where one of the tubes is represented at 24 and where a socket for that tube is indicated at 23. The end of the tube 24 has pins 25 with thickened heads 26, which move into position behind resilient inserts 27 in the socket 23 and which cannot come out of the socket 23 unless subjected to excessive traction. A protective-cap 28 made of rubber or similar material surrounds the socket 23 and rests tightly against the glass body of the fluorescent tube 24 by a heading 29.
The protective cap 28 can, if necessary, be perforated to give passage to a cable'30.
FIGS. 11 to 14 show the construction and arrangement of a foil 31 of transparent material which is secured to the limb 4 of the U-shaped groove 5 of the cover 6 and which provides a dust-proof and water tight seal separating the cover 6 from the support structure 1. Both the version shown in FIGS. 11 and 12 and that shown in FIGS. 13 and 14 are provided with performed protrusions. In FIGS. 11 and 12 these consist of a multiplicity of stabilizing corrugations 32 of which the depth is not as great as that of the bent edge 33 affixed to the limb 4 of the U-groove 5.
In FIGS. 13 and 14 the protrusions have a pyramidal profile 34, which offers the advantage of ensuring an even distribution of the light emanating from the fluorescent tubes.
What is claimed is:
1. An advertising device having an internal source of illumination and which comprises a tray-like support structure; an inwardly directed bead which is carried by, and extends'circumferentially around the edges of the support structure and which at each of the corners of the structure has a smaller depth than elsewhere; and a light transmitting cover having on its side walls an outwardly opening groove adapted to receive the bead in order to hold the cover in position; the reduction in depth of the bead at the said corners facilitating entry of the cover walls within the bead until the bead is received in the groove; the groove having a U-shaped cross-section, and the bead also being in the form of an outwardly opening U-shaped groove but of smaller width; the depth of groove of the support structure decreasing towards the corners; the groove of the cover further being formed with a beading integrally extending from the base of that groove and opening thereinto.
2. An advertising device according to claim 1, in which the groove is formed at the extremities of the cover walls, and the free limb of that groove is reduced at least in the zone of the corners corresponding with those corners of the support structure at which the depth of the bead is reduced.
3. An advertising device according to claim 2, in which the free limb terminates in a lip of elastically resilient material.
4. An advertising device according to claim 1, in
' which there is a narrow slit connecting the interior of the beading with the groove of the cover.
5. An advertising device according to claim I, in
which in at. least one of the walls of the cover, a free and unobstructed notch is provided in the vicinity of the front face of the cover and parallel to a respective edge of that face.
6. An advertising device according to claim 1, in which a plurality of spacedparallel interfitting structures are provided on the side walls of the support structure, enabling adjacent advertising devices to be interconnected in order to form larger installations.
7. An advertising device according to claim 6, in which grooves of predetermined spacing are formed on two abutting side walls of the support structure and tongues of like spacing on the other side walls.
8. An advertising device according to claim 6, in which grooves are formed on all side walls of the support structure and profiled connecting bars are provided for the connection of grooves of adjacent support structures.
9. An advertising device according to claim 6, in which when the device is a right-angled triangular or rectangular in plane, the ratio between the lengths of the sides is in accordance with the equation b=na when it is in plan the shape of part of a circle, the radius r is in accordance with the equation r=na while, when it is in plan the shape of a part-annulus, the ratio between the radii R, r is in accordance with the equation wherein a is the shortest length of a side present, b is the length of the other side or sides, and n is a whole number.
10. An advertising device according to claim 1, in which the supporting structure carries rear projections, which enable it to be affixed to mounting means.
11. An advertising device according to claim 10, in which the projections comprise two sets of hooks arranged mutually at right angles, either set being adapted to receive mounting bars without being im peded by the other set.
12. An advertising device according to claim 1, in which a transparent foil is attached to the free extremities of the cover walls, to seal off the cover from the support structure in a dustproof and watertight manner, the foil being formed with protrusions.
13. An advertising device according to claim 12, in which the edge of the foil is provided with a bend which corresponds to the shape of the free limb of the cover groove, the depth of the bend being greater than that of the oppositely directed protrusions.
14. An advertising device according to claim 12, in which each protrusion has a pyramidal profile.
15. An advertising device according to claim 12, in
which the protrusions are in the form of corrugations.