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Publication numberUS945512 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 4, 1910
Filing dateApr 12, 1909
Priority dateApr 12, 1909
Publication numberUS 945512 A, US 945512A, US-A-945512, US945512 A, US945512A
InventorsRichard Thomas Gates
Original AssigneeRichard Thomas Gates
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Field-firing or surprise target.
US 945512 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


94:5 ,5 1 2. Patented J an. 4, 1910.. 3 SHEETS-SHEET 1.

WITNESSES INVEN'I'OR ANDREW. a mum 00.. nwm-ummmmus. vlAsmuotoN. I: a

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APPLICATION rum) APR. 12. 1909.

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Patented Jan. 4, 1910.


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Specification of Letters Patent.

Patented Jan. 4, 1910.

Application filed April 12, 1909. Serial No. 489,380.

To all whom it may concern:

Be it known that I, RICHARD THOMAS GATES, a subject of the King of Great Britain, residing at 20 Copthall avenue, in the city of London, England, secretary of public company, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in or Relating to F ield-Firing or Surprise Targets, of which the following is a specification.

This invention relates to apparatus for actuating field firing or surprise targets which are controlled electrically from a distance and consists essentially in certain improvements in the apparatus described in the specification to British Letters Patent No. 16,483 of 1905.

The chief features of novelty according to the present invention are an improved construction of electromagnetic controlling device and the substitution for the electrically fired detonator apparatus of an ordinary revolver mechanism in which the detonators are fired in the ordinary way by the revolver hammer. The revolver mechanism is usually of the self-cocking type and is actuated from the rock shaft which elevates and lowers the targets to fire a blank cartridge each time the target is raised, the cocking and releasing of the hammer and rotation of the cartridge cylinder being effected by means of an oscillating shaft which takes the place of the usual trigger and which is oscillated from the rock shaft by means of suitable linkage, as for example by means of a pin projecting laterally from the trigger shaft and sliding in ablock pivotally mounted on an arm projecting laterally from the rock shaft, or as explained hereinafter. The (shortened) barrel of the revolver projects through the rear plate of the casing which is also pierced for the insertion of a rod for the ejection of the cartridges from the chambers of the revolver.

The improved construction of the rock shaft controlling apparatus renders it impossible for the rock shaft to be actuated more than once for each closure of the electric control circuit, and further it involves as compared with the former apparatus a reduction of the resistance opposed by the locking lever to the movement of the electromagnet armature when the magnet is energized and also the range of movement of the armature necessary for the release of the locking lever.

With these objects in view, instead of the locking lever engaging the armature itself it engages a pivoted latch which extends more or less parallel with the armature and is displaced to release the locking lever by means of a bar which is pivoted at one end to the armature, while the other end extends to a longitudinal slot in the latch and is notched or stepped to engage the latch at one end of the slot under the action of a spring and to displace the latch when the armature is attracted by the energized magnet.

The apparatus in its most approved form is illustrated in the accompanying drawings, Figure 1 being a plan View; Fig. 2 a plan View and Fig. 3 a side elevation with the lid of the casing removed the parts of the apparatus being shown in the position they have when the target or targets are withdrawn from view; and Fig. 4 a detail showing the device used for announcing the exposure of the target or targets.

The casing containing the apparatus is a fiat box consisting of a bottom plate a of steel on which the whole of the mechanism is mounted, and a steel lid portion t hinged at the front edge to the bottom plate and having a sloping front 25 and sloping sides 6 to deflect the bullets which may strike it.

The target frame or frames are detachably secured in any suitable manner to the end or ends of a rocking shaft 12 which is journaled in bearings Z) secured to the base plate a and is arranged to be oscillated through a right angle or thereabout so as alternately to expose the target or targets by raising them to the vertical position and to withdraw them from View by turning them flat on or close to the ground.

The rock shaft may carry a single target frame, or there may be one or more frames on the shaft on each side of the casing toward the front, which frames lie normally parallel or nearly so, with the base of the casing.

The motive power for oscillating the shaft Z) is supplied by a powerful spring contained in the casing 0, one end being fixed to the winding spindle d and the other to the casing 0 which is rotatable around the spindle (Z. The usual ratchet and pawl detent is applied to the winding spindle. The spring casing which constitutes the driving disk is provided with two diametrically opposite lugs e e which are alternately engaged by the hooked nose f of a detent lever f,

the engaging surfaces being formed so that when a lever locking device hereinafter described is withdrawn from engagement with the tail of the lever f the nose of the lever is thrust aside and the driving disk allowed to rotate. In this movement of the driving disk the second lug thereon encounters the part on the tail part of the lever displacing the latter and returning it into the position in which the nose 7 engages the lug in which position it is held by the lever locking device again becoming operative, thereby arresting the driving disk when it has completed half a revolution.

Motion is communicated from the driving disk 0 to the shaft Z) by linking a crank pin (Z on the driving disk with a pin Z2 projecting from the shaft 7). For this purpose trunnion blocks 9 are mounted to oscillate freely on the crank d and the end of the pin 6 and their trunnions g are connected by a pair of links it which are braced and secured in position.

The tail 7' of the lever in its normal po sition is engaged by a latch i pivotally mounted at i on the base plate and displaceable so as to disengage the tail f by means of a bar j pivoted at one end 7' to the armature Z of magnet Z; When the electric circuit is closed and the magnet energized, the armature Z is attracted and by means ofbar jdisplaces the latch 2' so as to free the tail of detent lever f; the nose f of this lever is then thrust aside by one of the lugs e e on the driving disk and as it swings on its pivot 7 its tail 7 strikes the bar j and pushes it aside into the slot 6* formed on the latch which then becomes free to be moved by spring 2' into its initial or operative position, Jreferably against a stop 2' and again automatically lock the detent lever f, which will have been meanwhilereturned to its initial or engaging position by one or other of thelugs e e contacting with the part 7' of the lever. As soon as the circuit is opened and the magnet deenergized the armature Z is retracted by its spring Z carrying with it bar which can then be moved by the spring urged plunger 7' into its first position so that when the magnet is again energized it can operate to displace the latch 2' and free lever f as before.

The electromagnet Z is arranged to be energized by current controllable from the firing point or other convenient position, the current carrying leads being connected to the coils of the magnet by means of binding posts at insulatingly fixed in the rear plate a of the apparatus casing.

The signaling device by which attention is called to the fact that the target or targets are raised or lowered comprises a repeating pistol mechanism a, which as shown is of the revolver type, and the barrel n of which projects through a hole in the rear plate a of the casing. The frame of the revolver is secured to the base plate a, and the mechanism is actuated from the target rocking shaft 0, an oscillating shaft p, which takes the place of the usual trigger, is oscillated from the rock shaft by linkage which may consist of a link 0 pivotally connecting an arm Z2 projecting laterally from the rock shaft Z) and sliding in a block 79 which forms an extension of shaft 7). An arm 29 on this shaft carries two spring urged pawls g g which actuate the hammer 1 and revolving chamber u in the usual manner of a self cocking revolver. As shown in the drawings, the forward movement (with respect to the revolver) of the link 0 will give rise to the firing of the revolver as the target or targets are raised and the return movement brings the pawls in position to actuate their respective cooperating parts on the next forward movement. A spring 8 having one end attached to arm 79 and the other end to the base plate may be employed to aid this return movement.

In using the apparatus in field firing, the casing or boxes containing the actuating mechanism may be, as customarily, distributed over the practice ground and the targets aflixed' to the rocking shafts at the be ginning of each practice, in. accordance with the instructions of the oflicer directing the practice, .and the driving spring wound up and the electrical control connected to the controlling circuit leads.

The apparatus being portable and not requiring any preparation of the ground, there is no diiiiculty in placing the targets from day to day in accordance with any scheme which may be prepared to vary the practice.

Having thus described the nature of this invention and the best means I know of carrying the same into practical effect, I claim i 1. An apparatus for actuating targets comprising a motor mechanism intermittently operative to raise and lower the targets, a revolver mechanism, means actuated by the said motor mechanism to cock andrelease the revolver hammer each time the target is raised, and electrical means for controlling the motor mechanism from the directing position, substantially as described.

2. An apparatus for actuating targets comprising a motor mechanism, a detent lever therefor, a locking latch, a controlling electromagnet, and a pivoted member on the magnet armature cooperating with the locking latch in the release of the detent lever so as to allow the locking latch to reengage the detent lever, substantially as described.

3. an apparatus for actuating targets comprising a motor mechanism, a rock shaft coupled therewith and intermittently operated thereby to raise and lower the targets,

a revolver mechanism having an oscillating shaft, and means connecting the said rock shaft and oscillating shaft whereby the revolver is fired when the rock shaft is actuated to raise the targets, substantially as described.

4. An apparatus for actuating targets, comprising a motor mechanism, a target shaft actuated thereby, electrically controlled means operating to release the target shaft and means automatically operating to 1 prevent the target shaft being actuated more than once for each closure .of the electric circuit; substantially as described.

In testimony whereof I have signed my 15 name to this specification in the presence of two subscribing witnesses.



Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4232867 *Mar 29, 1979Nov 11, 1980Tate Sr Edward DPortable target raising and lowering device system
Cooperative ClassificationF41J7/00