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Publication numberUS3921324 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 25, 1975
Filing dateJun 24, 1974
Priority dateJun 24, 1974
Publication numberUS 3921324 A, US 3921324A, US-A-3921324, US3921324 A, US3921324A
InventorsFlannery Joe W
Original AssigneeRaymond Lee Organization Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Illuminated license plate
US 3921324 A
Abstract
An illuminated license plate for use with vehicles or for other purposes which employs spaced apart vertical parallel outer and inner members connected by a flexible hollow translucent tube extending between the plates along the peripheries thereof. Light producing means are disposed within the tube. The outer member has openings defining letters, numbers or other indicia. The tube produces the effect of a light emitting frame and light also passes out through the openings to define the indicia.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Flannery Nov. 25, 1975 [54] ILLUMINATED LICENSE PLATE 2,562,740 7/1951 Rizer 40/204 [75] Inventor: Joe W. Flannery, Toronto, Canada 05c 40/204 [73] Assignee: The Raymond Lee Organization, Primary Examiner-Robert W. Michell Inc., a part interest Assistant Exaniiner-Wenceslao J. Contreras [22] F1led: June 24, 1974 [57] ABSTRACT [21] Appl- 4811958 An illuminated license plate for use with vehicles or for other purposes which employs spaced apart verti- 52 U.S. c1. 40/204; 40/133 R eel parallel outer and inner members connected y a 51 1111. (:1. G09F 13/02 flexible hollow translucent tube extending between the 58 Field of Search 40/209, 204, 133 Plates along the peripheries thereef- Light Producing means are disposed within the tube. The outer mem- [56] References Cited ber has openings defining letters, numbers or other in- UNITED STATES PATENTS dicia. The tube produces the effect of a light emitting frame and 11ght also passes out through the openmgs 1,487,548 3/1924 Esters 40/133 R X e to defme the 1nd1c1a.

l,664,302 3/1928 Leopold et a1... 40/209 X 1,792,635 2/1931 Gropper 40/133 R X 1 Claim, 2 Drawing Figures Q 4 e i III-lung US. Patent Nov. 25, 1975 ILLUMINATED LICENSE PLATE SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Conventionally, license plates used on vehicles or for other purposes carry indicia such as numbers, letters or the like which are illuminated by directing light from an adjacent lamp thereon.

In the present invention, the indicia are defined by openings through which light passes to provide illumination. Moreover, the member carrying these openings is provided with a peripherally disposed translucent frame which itself has light passing therethrough to define an illuminated frame.

Typically, one or more incandescent lamps provide light but also provide heat to melt snow or ice. The indicia are more clearly defined at greater distances than is the case with conventional plates. The structure has an enhanced appearance and is easily manufactured at low cost.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the drawings: FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the invention; and FIG. 2 is a view taken along line 22 in FIG. 1.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 2, a flat horizontally elongated sheet or plate is secured to a vehicle by bolts, clips or the like (not shown). The outer surface 12 of the plate is treated as for example by polishing to be light reflective.

An outer parallel spaced apart aligned plate 14 has cut outs or openings 16 defining letters, numbers or other indicia.

A flexible hollow translucent plastic tube 18 defining a hollow rectangle has parallel vertical extensions 20A and 20B defining a clip detachably engaging the front surface of plate 10. Tube 18 also has a removable inner spacer liner 22 which is disposed between the plates. The tube extends between the plates peripherally thereabout.

The liner carries one or more sockets 24 with incandescent lamps 26 removahly disposed therein. Wiring 28 connected to the sockets extends outward through an opening 30 in plate 10 to make connection through the headlight switch to the battery.

The tube, being flexible and somewhat stretchable, is easily pulled off or snapped on.

The tube must pass light and can be transparent if desired. The tube can be colored or clear.

While the invention has been described with detailed reference to the drawings, the protection sought is to be limited only by the terms of the claims which follow.

I claim:

1. A license plate structure comprising:

a flat vertical inner member;

a parallel flat outer member spaced from the inner member, said outer member having openings defining letters, numbers or other indicia;

a flexible hollow translucent plastic tube defining a hollow rectangle and having two parallel vertically inwardly extending extensions with a removable translucent inner spacer liner disposed therebetween, said liner being disposed between said members and extending transversely between the outer edges of the two members to maintain spacing therebetween, said extensions detachably engaging the peripheries of both members along the outside surfaces of both members and functioning as a clip, said extensions and said liner holding the members together in spaced relationship;

a plurality of sockets extending through said liner into the space within the tube in spaced relationship;

a like plurality of incandescent lamps, each lamp being disposed removably in a corresponding socket; and

electrically conductive means extending through said inner member into the region between the members and connected to said sockets whereby when an electric current is caused to flow in said means, the lamps are energizied and illuminate said indicia forming openings and said tube.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1487548 *Feb 9, 1923Mar 18, 1924Jacques G EstersCombined automobile tail light and license-plate illuminator
US1664302 *Mar 7, 1927Mar 27, 1928Samuel E ClaneyLicense-plate holder
US1792635 *Nov 15, 1927Feb 17, 1931Gropper Otto SLicense-plate apparatus for automobiles
US2562740 *Mar 13, 1948Jul 31, 1951Charles E RoseIlluminating device for automobile license plates
US2618089 *Sep 17, 1949Nov 18, 1952Charles E RoseAutomobile license plate holder
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4490933 *Aug 19, 1982Jan 1, 1985Patent-Truehand-Gesellschaft Fur Elektrische Gluhlampen GmbhInternally illuminated display structure
US4819355 *Jul 28, 1987Apr 11, 1989Wolo Manufacturing CorporationMotorcycle license plate frame
US5150961 *Aug 6, 1991Sep 29, 1992Gonzalez Jaime De JesusApparatus for illuminating a vehicle license plate and method of using same
US5192125 *Feb 21, 1992Mar 9, 1993Gonzalez Jaime De JesusApparatus for illuminating a vehicle license plate and method of using same
US5255166 *Jan 19, 1993Oct 19, 1993Gonzalez Jaime De JesusApparatus for illuminating a vehicle license plate and method of using same
US5546290 *Jan 19, 1993Aug 13, 1996Jaime D. GonzalezNeon illumination apparatus and method of using same
US5615501 *Sep 29, 1995Apr 1, 1997Rice; Samuel A.Illuminated vehicle display device
US5692327 *Jan 23, 1996Dec 2, 1997Illuminating Cars Uniquely, Ltd.Illuminated license plate
US7182492 *Dec 22, 2003Feb 27, 2007Robert Louis WalterLicense plate system having enhanced illumination
US7937868 *Jun 28, 2007May 10, 2011Ray GalletDay/night safety sign using reflective internal lighting
US8733001Apr 26, 2011May 27, 2014Ray GalletDay/night safety sign using reflective internal lighting
US9662930 *Jan 25, 2016May 30, 2017Sheen Design, Inc.Painting structure and painting frame structure
US20040170026 *Jan 22, 2004Sep 2, 2004Chip Charles JosephMotor vehicle license plate illuminated spacer
US20050252050 *Mar 24, 2005Nov 17, 2005Menke Douglas ALicense plate frame
US20070070640 *Sep 26, 2006Mar 29, 2007Conrad SextonDisplay sign
US20090000166 *Jun 28, 2007Jan 1, 2009Ray GalletDay/night safety sign using reflective internal lighting
US20090077843 *Dec 14, 2007Mar 26, 2009Dayan Maurice SLicense plate frame with illuminated sculpture
US20160229225 *Jan 25, 2016Aug 11, 2016Sheen Design, Inc.Painting structure and painting frame structure
EP0598056A1 *Aug 6, 1992May 25, 1994Jaime De Jesus GonzalezApparatus for illuminating a vehicle license plate and method of using same.
EP0598056A4 *Aug 6, 1992Aug 24, 1994Jaime De Jesus GonzalezApparatus for illuminating a vehicle license plate and method of using same.
Classifications
U.S. Classification362/497, 40/204, 40/580
International ClassificationB60R13/00, B60Q1/56, B60Q1/26, B60R13/10
Cooperative ClassificationB60R13/10, B60Q1/56
European ClassificationB60R13/10, B60Q1/56