Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.


  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS856843 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 11, 1907
Filing dateApr 2, 1906
Priority dateApr 2, 1906
Publication numberUS 856843 A, US 856843A, US-A-856843, US856843 A, US856843A
InventorsAlphonso B Carlisle
Original AssigneeAlphonso B Carlisle
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Indicator for locks.
US 856843 A
Previous page
Next page
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)





Specification of Letters Patent.

Patented June 11, 1907.

Application filed April 2,1906. Serial No. 309,422.

To all when it may concern/.-

Be it. known that l, Atrnouso B. CAR- LisLE, a citizen of the United States, residing at Atlanta, in the county of Fulton and State of Georgia, have invented new and useful Improvements in indicators for Locks, of which the following is a specification.

This invention relates to indicators for locks and the same may be advantageously employed in many different connections, al though it is of prime utility when employed in hotels. Preferably it is mounted upon a door and it may be so operated as to indicate whether or not the room to which access is had by way of said door is occupied or not.

I prefer to use the indicator in combination with a lock, by reason of which the indicator can be actuated by the key employed for operating locks. The indicator is preferably of such character that it can be determined from it whether a room is occupied or not by the sense of touch, which is an advantage when it is considered that frequently hotel corridors and halls are dark. In the present instance the indicator works entirely independently of the locking mechanism and may be used in connection with any door lock or can be added to doors already in use having locks of any type.

In the drawings accompanying and forming a part of this specification I show one form of embodiment of the invention which to enable those skilled in the art to practice said invention, 1 will set forth in detail in the following description, while the novelty of said invention will be included in the claims succeeding said description.

Referring to said drawings, Figure 1 is a perspective view of a portion of a door from the outside thereof equipped with an indicater including my invention and with a lock, showing the lock and indicator as operatively associated. Fig. 2 is a vertical sectional elevation of the parts shown in the aforesaid figure. Fig. 3 is an inside view of the outer escutcheon plate. Fig. t is a detail view of a key LOT operating the lock and indicater.

Like reference characters refer to like parts throughout the several views:

In the drawings 1 have shown a portion of a door and have denoted the same by 2. This door has suitably fastened to its opposite faces the inner and outer escutcheon plates 3 and i. Between these plates are arranged the usual parts of the lock, the belt of which is designated by 5.

The key for operating the lock is designated by 6. Except that the outer escutcheon plate constitutes a carrier for the indicator and that the key 6 has a bit, auxiliary to the one for causing the operation of the bolt 5, the lock parts may be as usually constructed. The key and outer escntcheon plate therefore form a part of the locking mechanism.

1 deem it unnecessary to go into detail any further with. respect to the construction of the lock for the same forms no part in itself of the present invention, although when the nature of the invention is better understood, it will be obvious that I. produce really an indicating lock, although i may use the indicator separate from the lock. From what has been hereinbefore stated, however, an 7 5 advantage follows the directassociation between the indicator and the lock, for by this relation 1. am enabled to use the key that causes the operation of the lock for actuating the indicator.

The outer escutchcim plate ti is represented as having a slot 7. This slot may be located at any place in the plate, altl'iough .it is repre sented as being substantially in vertical line with the key slot in said plate.

The indicating device or indicator proper is designated by S and in the present case is movable through this slot. hen the indicating device is out it protrudes beyond the outer face of the plate 4 and necessarily beyond the outer face of the door 2. \Vhen said indicating device is in, its toe will be substantially ilush with the outer surface of said plate 4. The indicating device may take any suitable form, although it is repre sentcd as consisting of substantially a triangular or wedge piece. The indicating device shown, as will be understood, moves depthwise of the door by reason of which the advantages hereinbefore set forth can be accomplished. in the present instance when the indicating device is out this will indicate that the room provided with the door is not occupied, while when the indicating device is in, this will indicate that the said room is occupied by a guest. The advantage of this in hotels will be obvious in that I provide not only for the convenience and comfort of a hotel guest, but also for a chambermaid, whose duty it is to clean such room. It in- 110 variably occurs that when a guest sleeps a little late in the morning, the chamber-maid having charge of the room and not knowing that the guest is in the room tries the door thereof by inserting the key in the lock of said door. If the guest wishes to sleep late this act annoys him and breaks his sleep. By the employment of my invention this annoyance can be overcome for the unlocking of a door by a guest to enter his room throws the indicator into position to show that the room is occupied.

The indicating device 8 may be carried in any desirable way. For this purpose I have shown a yieldable carrier consisting of a spring 9 having an elongated stem or body suitably fastened at its upper end to the inner face of the plate 4. The foot 10 of the spring 9 directly supports the indicating device 8, the latter being located at substantially a right angle to and extending outwardly from said foot 10. The spring therefore automatically throws the indicating device 8 forward so as to cause it to protrude or extend beyond the outer face of the plate 4. This is really the normal relation. hen the lock is operated from outside the door the indicating device Sis drawn back so as to put the spring under tension. When the indicating device is released from its retracted position the spring immediately shoots the same forward. Any suitable means may be employed for actuating the indicating device 8 to move it backward or to bring its toe flush or substantially flush with the outer surface of the plate 4. For this purpose I have shown a key-operated actuator 11 consisting of an elongated plate shown as sup ported for vertical sliding motion against the inner face of the plate 4 and as having at 7 its lower end a lateral extension 12 whichdirectly engages the indicating device to retract the latter on the downward movement of said actuator 11. The latter is held in place and guided by several lugs each designated by 13 on the plate 4 and. overlying said actuator.

It will be remembered that the indicating device has been described as of triangular or wedge form and an advantage follows this construction, for there is produced an inclined face 14 cooperative with the lateral extension 12 of the actuator 11. It will be assumed that the indicating device 8 is in its forward position, at which time the actuator 11 will be up, the lateral extension 12 being in contact with the inclined face 14 near the top thereof. i/Vhen, therefore, the actuator 11 is moved downward the lateral extension 12 thereof will ride downwardly along the in clined face 14, so as to draw the indicating device back, the said indicating device reach ing its extreme backward position when the actuator comes to the limit of its downward movement.

In connection with the actuator I provide a suitable detent to lock the same. This detent in the present instance is not only keyoperated, but it holds the actuator 11 in both its positions, that is in its extreme upper and its extreme lower position. The detent for holding the actuator is denoted by 15, and it is shown as consisting of an elongated spring fastened at its lower end to a projection as 16 on the inside face of the plate 4, and as having between its ends a lug 17 to cooperate with a lug as 18 on the actuator 11 to lock the latter in its two positions. The resiliency of the detent normally holds the latter in its op erative position. l/Vhen the actuator 11 is down, the lug 17 will be over and in engage ment with the lug 18, while, when the actuator is up, lug 17 will be under and in engagement with the lug 18. YVhen the lug 17 is moved out of the path of the lug 18 the actuator 11 can be moved either down or up to cause the action of the indicating device 8. The detent 15 has its upper end provided with a return bend 19, the lower terminal of which is connected with the body of the detent or spring 15 by a connecting member 20. in the inner edge of the actuator or plate 11 I form a recess 21 to accommodate the auxiliary bit 22 of the key 6.

it will be assumed that the room provided with the door 2 is not occupied, that the door is locked and that the indicating device 8 is out. It will be assumed further that a guest is assigned to said room. To obtain access to the room, the key 6 is introduced through the ordinary slot in the outer escutcheon plate 4. hen this is done the lock may be operated. back or retracted the auxiliary bit 22 will enter the recess 21 where it can engage the bend 19 which crosses said recess so as to press the detent or spring 15 backward and carry the lug 17 from under the lug 18. WVhen this is done the auxiliary bit will engage against the wall of said recess and as the key continues to turn, the latter, through the auxiliary bit, becomes effective for moving the actuator downward or until the lug 18 reaches a point below the lug 17, at which time the auxiliary bit will have passed out of contact with the bend 19, so that the detent can by its resiliency cause the lug 17 to engage over the lug 18. On the downward movement of the actuator 11 the indicating device is drawn back I as previously set forth. The key is then withdrawn from the outside of the lock, the door having been unlocked. The guest will then enter the room and close the same. The indicating device will then be in. The lock may be freely operated from inside the room without touching any of the parts carried upon the plate 4.

When the guest is within the room as explained he may freely actuate the lock without disturbing the indicating device 8 which After the bolt of the lock is drawn as just set forth is in to indicate to those Without the room that the latter is occupied. it follows, therefore, that he may leave his room by unlocking his door and after he has emerged from the room and closed the door he will lock the door by the operation of the key and after the bolt 5 is shot forward the indicating device 8 will in the manner previously described be moved forward. As hereinbefore set forth it is my intention to have the indicating device out when the guest is out and the indicating devicein when the guest is in. This, however, is not essential.

The parts may be so constructed as to adapt the same to doors that swing to the right or to the left and to doors of different thicknesses, and other details may be considerably varied within the scope of my claims.

The indicating mechanism may be made to form part of a lock or can be adapted to any lock now in use.

\Vhat 1 claim is:

1. In an indicator, the combination of locking mechanism, an escutcheon plate having a slot, an indicating device movable through said. slot, and hey-operated means supported by said escutcheon plate for moving said indicating device through said slot to an indicating position whereby said indicating device can be felt from the exterior of said plate. I

2. The con'ibination of a door, locking mechanism connected with the door, a keyoperable indicating device associated with the locking mechanism, positively movable depthwise of the door, and operable by the key for said locking mechanism after the latter has been operated.

3. In an indicator, the combination of a eating device,

look, a plate, an imlicating device supported by said plate, and an actuator also supported by said plate, the actuator being adapted to directly engage the indicating device to move it to an ind 'atiug position and directly en gageable by the key which operates said lock.

r. ln an indicator, the combiiuttion of locking mechanism, a. plate having a slot, a spring-operated indicating device movable through said slot, and a key-operated actuator slidably supported by said plate for moving said indicating device to its indicating position and in opposition to the spring co operative with said indicating device.

5. In an indicator, a plate having a slot, an indicating device, a spring carrying the indithe spring serving to move the indicating device through said slot and the indicating device having an inclined surface, and an actuator to ride along said inclined surface to retract the indicating device and tension the spring.

(5. In an indicator, the combiin'ition of a plate having a slot, an indicating device movable through the slot, a spring carrying the indicator and serving to move the indicating device forward through the slot, an actuator slidable against said plate, for engaging the indicating device to retract the same in opposition to the spring, the actuator having a recess and a lng, and a spring detent provided with a lug to engage the other lug and having a return bend extending across the recess.

In testimony whereof .I. have hereunto set my hand in presence of two subscribing witnesses.



0.13. SIMMONS, Jas. A. (.aiurintuah

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US6047577 *Oct 9, 1998Apr 11, 2000Klimas; FrankAbnormal use indicator for door lock
US8201423Sep 17, 2010Jun 19, 2012The Eastern CompanyCombination and key operated locks with indicators
Cooperative ClassificationY10S70/59, E05B41/00