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Патент USA US2113415

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April 5, 1938.
B. w._ WALLACE
_
2,113,415 -
SIGN MECHANISM
Filed Feb. 5, 19:8
15
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2 Sheets-Sheet 2
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H15 ATTORNEY.
Patented Apr. 5, 1938
~ 2,113,415
UNITED STATES
PATENT oFFice
2,113,415
SIGN MECHANISM
Bruce vW. Wallace, Chicago, Ill.
Application February 3, 1938, Serial No. 188,522
12 Claims.
This invention pertains to improvements in
advertising devices and animating mechanism
therefor, and has as one of its principal objects
the provision of an animated sign adapted for
5 display in vehicles and provided with a simple
mechanism for moving various sign elements
automatically responsive to various changes in
motion of the vehicle and without any external
source of power.
10
Another object is the provision of a sign for
mounting in vehicles, the sign having moving
elements to provide an animated display and
having an improved form of inertia motor
adapted to effect movement of the moving ele
ments automatically and with a quick, positive
positions, together with power driven means for
rocking an end of said spring back and forth
for the purpose aforesaid.
}
Other objects and novel aspects of the inven
tion reside in certain details of construction and
operation of the apparatus hereinafter particu
larly described as a preferred embodiment of the 10
invention in view of the drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is a front elevation of an animated sign
embodying the invention;
,
Fig. 2 is a rear elevation of the sign of Fig. 1
and showing the animating mechanism;
_ 15
Fig. 3 is a fragmentary section along lines
3—3 of Fig. 2;
invention to provide ‘an advertising device with
wardly along lines 4-4 of 'Fig. 2;
snap-action spring element arranged to snap
into and out of opposite positions by movement
through predetermined distances and having
driving connection with said sign element so
that the latter may be quickly and positively
snapped into and out of various positions with
each operation of the snap-action spring, to
gether with means for automatically snapping
the spring, responsive to changes in motion of a
member, such as a vehicle, in which the sign is
mounted, said means including a .housing pro
viding a runway in which there is a .freely- mov
able element, such as a ball, arranged to engage
a rocker arm connected with the snap-action
spring to cause the latter to snap into opposite
positions each time the vehicle changes speed or
direction of movement, the moving element be
ing operable by inertia movements to engage and
40 pivot the .rocker arm for this purpose.
Yet another object is the provision of snap
operating mechanism including an elongated
spring member pivotally mounted at its end and
having a yoke rocker-connection at one of its
ends cooperable with a rocker arm having exten
sions arranged in a runway for engagement by a
rolling element therein, such as a ball, whereby
the rocker arm may be pivoted in opposite direc
tions by movement of the rolling element back
50 and forth in the runway to move said one end
,
f _
Fig. 4 is a fragmentary section looking up
‘
‘
,
Fig. 5 is a vertical section in detail of the piv
otal mounting means at one end of the spring,
viewed along lines 5-5 of Fig. 4;
,
Fig. 6 is a vertical fragmentary section
through the sign and ball runway or housing,
taken along lines 6—6 of Fig. 2;
v
.
_
Fig. 7 is an enlarged fragmentary verticalsec
tion along lines 1—'l of‘Fig. 6;
,
’
I I
Fig. 8 is a fragmentary. detail of a modi?ed
form of inertia‘motor;
I
_
Fig. 9 is a rear elevation of a power driven
actuating means for the spring snapping mech
anism;
,
-
V
_
Fig. 10.is a perspective view of another form
of animated sign with which the driving mech
anism may be used;
Fig. 11 is an enlarged vertical section along
lines ll—ll of Fig. 10;
Fig. 12 is a fragmentary rear elevation, look
ing in the direction of lines'-l2—l2 of Fig. 11;
while
40
Fig. v13 is a fragmentary horizontal section
along lines l3—l3 of Fig. 12.
_,
The invention as shown in the embodiment
of Fig. 1 includes a substantially rigid mounting
or backing member 15 constructed of heavy .45
cardboard or the like and upon the front side
of which. there is delineated various advertising
matter ‘including, in the present instance,‘an
animated sign element in the form of a stop or
signal light It having two light openings l1 and ,
of the spring in opposite directions, the spring
l8 behind which is a movable element l9 suit- ‘
‘being normally bowed so as to snap back and
ably colored, such that when this movable-ele
ment I9 is shifted in opposite directions, the
forth responsive to such movements, the spring
being adapted for driving connection with a
driven means, such as a sign element, so that the
latter may be quickly and positively moved.
Still another object is the provision of a snap
action mechanism including an elongated spring
member pivotally mounted between its ends in
O
of said ends is moved in opposite directions a
predetermined distance, the spring will be caused
to snap correspondingly into oppositely bowed
action responsive to changes in speed or direc
tion of movement of the vehicle.
Stated more particularly, it is an object of the
a moving element and motor means for moving
said element in the form of an over-center or
CI
(01. 40-138)
normally bowed condition, such that when one
colored portions will be correspondingly moved
into view through the openings I1 and I8 tosime
ulate a change of color for the signal lamp. It
will be obvious, of course, that the invention is
not limited to the particular form of ‘moving .ele
ment illustrated in Fig. 1, but may‘be‘applied to
a great variety of arrangements such, for exam 60
2
2,113,415
ple, as that shown in Fig. 10 hereinafter to be
described.
The sign member I5 is adapted to be used in
a vehicle, such as a street car or bus or the like,
and there is provided a novel motor means for
automatically actuating the movable element of
the sign whenever the speed of the vehicle is ap
preciably changed and also when the vehicle
changes its direction of movement in certain
acting means or spring unit 33-34-35 includes
ways.
a yoke-shaped member 48 (Fig. 3, particularly)
This motor mechanism, in the embodiment of
Fig. 2, includes a chamber or housing provided
by a closed tubular element 20 mounted by brack
having its bight portion 49 secured to the mov
able sign element l9 and having its open or yoke
portion ?tted over the middle portion of the
et means 2| on the rear side of the panel I5
spring assembly, such that when the spring unit
snaps back and forth, this motion will be trans~ 15
mitted to the yoke member 48 and hence to the
sign element l9, causing the latter to move cor
and having arranged therein a freely movable
element, preferably a rolling element in the form
of a ball 22 (see also Fig. '7) adapted to roll back
and forth in the runway or chamber in accord
ance with the laws of inertia, whenever the
respondingly.
'
mounting member |5 is shifted adequately along
It may be pointed out that the particular con
struction of the spring unit is of importance in
a horizontal line.
that it not only provides a very satisfactory piv
Referring particularly to Fig. 7, there is piv
otally mounted as at 23 upon an intermediate
bracket member 24 attached to the panel mem
ber l5 as at 25 and supportably embracing the
tubular member 20, a spur-shaped rocker mem
ber having oppositely extended arms 26 and 21
disposed within the runway chamber 20 for en
gagement by the rolling element or ball 22 there
in as the same moves back and forth toward op
posite ends of the runway. The rocker arm in
cludes a driving or crank arm 28 having a later
ally extending roller 29 (Fig. 6) movable in the
yoke portion 36 of a spring mounting arm 3|
35 also pivotally mounted as at 32 on the interme
diate bracket 24.
A quick-acting tension member is provided for
driving the movable sign element |9 back and
forth, this tension member being actuated by the
40 inertia mechanism heretofore described, and be
ing preferably in the form of an over-center or
snap-action spring unit comprising an elongated
piece of spring metal bent back upon itself to
provide spaced spring elements 33 and 34 be
45 tween which is secured an intermediate elon
gated spring member 35 secured thereto by means
such as the rivets 36 and having at one right
hand end a looped portion 31 ?tted within the
bight portion 38 of the outer spring elements and
50 pivotally mounted upon a stud 39 secured to a
bracket member 40 mounted upon the rear side
of the panel I 5. The opposite end 4| of this
over-center or snap-action spring unit is secured
by means of rivets 42 in the bifurcated end por
55 tion 43 of the driven rocker arm 3|. It will be
apparent that the opposite ends of the spring unit
33-34-35 are pivotally mounted, and this spring
unit is normally bowed to one side of a center
otal mounting arrangement 31-38 (Fig. 5), but
the leaf or laminate arrangement of the spring
elements through a portion of the length of the
unit, leaving a relatively more ?exible spring ele 25
ment 35 extending through the rest of the length
of the unit for attachment to the snapping means
3|, constitutes a sensitive and easily actuated
over-center or snap~action means.
In Fig. 8, there is shown a modi?cation of the 30
arrangement of Fig. 2 wherein the snap-action
motor means includes instead of the rolling ele
ment 22, a weighted member or pendulum 50 piv
oted as at 5| on the panel l5 and having a lateral
extension 52 for driving engagement with the
yoke portion 36 of the driven rocker element 3|.
The action of this form of motor is substantially
that described in conjunction with Fig. 2 in that
archange of speed in the movement of the mount
ing member l5 in the plane in which the pendu
lum pivots, will effect operation of the snap mech
anism for the purpose aforesaid.
The novel snap-acting mechanism may be ac
tuated by power driven means as illustrated in
Fig. 9, wherein an electric motor 53 drives a ,
toothed member 54 through a reduction gear
55, there being a second toothed member or gear
56 driven by the first gear member 54, and each
of the gear members being provided with lateral
pin means 51 and 58 positioned with relation to 50
the oppositely extending rocker arms 26 and 21
so as to engage the latter in their opposite posi
tions as the pin means 51 and 58 travel in their
opposite cyclic paths so as to rock the arms 26 and
21 in opposite directions to transmit this move
ment to the spring rocker member 3|.
Further illustrative of the applications to which
the novel inertia motor may be adapted, is the ar
line through the pivotal axes at its opposite ends,
rangement of Figs. 10 through 13, wherein there
as seen in Fig. 2, for example, so that if the
driven rocker arm 3| is pivoted toward the oppo
site side of this center line from that seen in Fig.
is provided a sign in the form of a panel 69 also
adapted for mounting in a vehicle and having
2 a sufficient distance, the spring assembly
arranged in spaced relation and tilted at the same
angle (see also Fig. 13). Slidable between the
spaced slat member 6| are movable sign ele 05
ments 62, each pivotally attached at their inner
ends by means 63 to a tandem bar 64 arranged
33-34-35 will be moved over center and will
65 tend to snap quickly into oppositely bowed posi
tion.
The foregoing snap action of the spring as
sembly 33-34-35 is effected by movement of
the rolling element or ball 22 in opposite direc
70 tions to engage and pivot the rocker arm mem
ber 26 and 21, this action being automatic when
thesign is mounted in a vehicle and when the
vehicle changes its speed appreciably as hereto
fore set forth.
75
able sign element I9 is mounted for reciprocation
along a diagonal line by means of spaced aligned
eye members 44 attached thereto and through
which extend corresponding slide rods 45 and 46
mounted in spaced relation to the back of the
panel |5 by brackets 41.
Means for establishing a driving connection
between the movable element I9 and the snap
-
In the arrangement of Figs. 1 and 2, the mov
an arrangement of vertical slats or louvers 6|
for simultaneous horizontal shifting and trans
lation by means of a pin member 65 (see also
Fig. 11) attached to the o?set portion of a bifur
cated bracket member 61 which in turn is secured
to the tandem bar 64, the pin 65 being slidably
seated in opposite slots 68 provided in a bracket
69 secured to the back side of the panel 60. The
slots 68 are arranged in parallel horizontal planes
‘2,113,415
andare diagonally extended relative to the long
axisof the tandem bar ‘6‘4,_such that when ‘the
latter is shifted toward the left .in Fig. 13, .the
right-handend portion of the bar 84 will ‘tend
to move or translate toward the mounting mem
ber 60 while shifting at the same time axially
toward the left, such movement being effective
10
to slide 'the several movable sign elements 62 in
between the stationary, elements ‘6! to providean
animated effect in'the sign or change the message
of the same.
A-driving connection between the tandem bar
64 and the snap-action motor means is effected
15
by‘the yoke member '61, into the yoke portion of
which is ?tted the middle portion of the spring
unit 33, the latter being mounted in a vertical
position, as seen in Fig. .12, on the backof the
member 60. Thus, as the movable element ‘22
shifts back and forth in the runway 20, the
20 spring unit33 will shift‘the tandem bar 64 back
and forth in opposite directions for the purpose
aforesaid.
Various modi?cations may be‘made in the spe
ci?c form of invention herein set forth for pur
poses of illustration, and it is to be understood
that the invention isnot limited to any particu
lar type or arrangement-of construction except as
may be'providedin the :appended claims.
Having thus described ‘my ‘invention, What I
'30 claim as new and ‘desire to protect by Letters
Patent is:
_
1. An animated sign ‘including a stationary
member adaptedto be mounted in a vehicle, said
sign including a movable element andlmeans for
moving said element in the form of a snap-action
over-center device ‘drivingly connected with the
movable element and actuated :byan inertia’ ele
ment mounted on said stationary sign member for
movement back and forth in the direction of
40 movement of said vehicle, whereby changes in the
movement of the vehicle will effectloperation of
said snap-action means for the :purpose afore
said.
2. An animated sign including a stationary ele
ment arranged in a vehicle, said sign ‘having a
movable element.’ together with means ‘for auto
matically moving said element responsive to
changes in the movement of said vehicle, 'said
3
driving connection ‘with said movable rocking
element‘to- move the latter and actuate said'ten
sion means responsive to changes in movement
of said vehicle and the corresponding movement
of said pendulum means.
‘i. In a ‘sign, a stationary sign element adapted
to be mountedin a vehicle or the like, a'movable
sign element vcooperable with said stationary ele
ment and snapeaction mechanism for moving
said movable element back and forth, said means 10
including an elongated spring member having a
pivotal mounting at one end and connected at its
opposite end ‘to a rocking member, said rocking
member being pivotable into a position to bow
said spring at one side of a line through the axis 15
of said rocking member and said pivotal mount
ing of the other end of the spring member, said
rocking member being movable predetermined
distances in opposite directions to move said
spring member over-center relative to said line,
whereby said spring member may be caused to
snap into opposite positions, together with means
operatively connecting said spring member with
said movable sign element,.and mechanism ar
ranged as part of said sign and operable by
changes of movementof said vehicle to move. said
rocking element for the purpose aforesaid.
5. In a sign, a stationary sign element adapted
to be mounted in a vehicle or the like, a movable
sign element cooperable with said stationary ele
pivotal mounting at one end and connected at
its opposite end to a rocking member, said rock 13s
ing member being *pivotable‘ into a position to
bow said spring atone side of a line through the
axis of said rocking member and said pivotal
mountingiof the other end of the spring member,
said rocking member being movable predeter
mined distances in opposite directions to .move
saidspring memberlover-center relative to said
line, whereby said spring member may :be caused
to snap into opposite positions, together with
means operatively connecting said spring mem
ber with said movable sign element,,said means
including a chamber -.mounted on said station
means including a snap-action tension ‘member
ary sign element andzproviding a-runway extend
ing in the direction of movement of said ve
arranged when -moved ‘predetermined distances
‘hicle, a'freely movable inertia element arranged
in opposite directions to snap back and forth
in said runway for movement in opposite direc
tions therein, together with pivoted means driv
‘in said directions and having a driving connec
30
ment and snap-action mechanism for moving
said movable element backand forth, said means
including an elongatedspring member having a
tion with said movable sign'element, andlinertia
ingly connected with said rocking member and
operated means including a movable rocking
‘positioned with relation to said runway for en
’ element connected with said tension membenand
an inertia-operated element mounted for move
gagement and pivotal movement in opposite ,di
rections by said movable element.
ment in opposite directions responsive to changes
6. In a sign, a stationary sign element adapt
in speed of said vehicle and eifective to Lmove
ed to be mounted in a vehicle or the like, a mov
said rocking element in opposite ‘directions ‘to
able sign element cooperable with said station
ary element and snap-action mechanism ‘for 60
moving said movable ‘element back and forth,
‘actuate said tension means ‘for the purpose afore
said.
3. An animated sign'including a stationary'ele
ment arranged in a vehicle, said sign having a
movable element,together with means :for auto
said means including an elongated spring mem
her having a pivotal mounting at one end :and
connected at its opposite end to _-a rocking mem
- matically moving said element responsive to
ber, said zrockin'g zmember being pivotable into
changes in the movement of said vehicle, said
-a positionfto bow saidqspring at oneside of 'a‘line
through the axis of ‘said rocking member and
said pivotal ‘mounting of :the other end of the
means including a, snap-action tension member
arranged when moved predetermined ‘distances
in opposite directions to snapzback and forthin
said directions and having a driving connection
with said movable sign element, and inertia
operated means including a movable rocking ele
ment connected with said tension member, and
pendulum means arranged to swing in the direc
tion of movement of said vehicle and having
springzmember, said rocking :member beingmov
able predetermined‘distances .in opposite direc~
tions Ito.moveisai'd-‘spring.membergoverecenter rel
ative to said line, whereby said spring member
may be caused to snap into opposite positions,
together with means operatively connecting said
spring member with said movable sign element,
2,113,415
said means including a pivotally mounted inertia
device arranged to swing in a plane parallel to
the direction of movement of said vehicle and
having driving connection with said rocking
member to move the latter predetermined dis
stances responsive to changes in the speed of
movement of said vehicle for the purpose of ef
fecting snap action of said spring member.
7. In a sign, a stationary member and a mov
able sign member and snap-action mechanism
for moving said movable sign member back and
forth in opposite positions, said snap-action
mechanism including an elongated spring mem
ber mounted on said stationary member for snap
15 action over-center into and out of oppositely
bowed positions relative to its long axis, said
spring member having driving connection with
said movable element and being operable when
the same snaps back and forth as aforesaid to
20 change the position of said movable element, and
inertia-operated mechanism for moving said
spring member predetermined distances in oppo
site directions over-center to effect snap action
of the same for the purpose aforesaid.
25
8. In a sign, a stationary member and a mov
able sign member and snap-action mechanism,
having operable connection with a rocking mem
5
ber at its opposite end adjacent said unitary
element, said spring unit having driving con
nection with said movable element, said spring
unit being normally bowed for over-center snap
action into opposite positions on either side of
its normal long axis, together with inertia-oper
ated means in the form of a pivoted inertia
member having driving connection with said
rocking member and mounted for pivotal move
ment in a plane parallel to the direction of 15
movement of said vehicle, whereby to rock said
spring unit in opposite directions over-center
to effect snap action of the same for the purpose
aforesaid.
11. A device of the class described including 20
a stationary member adapted to be mounted in
a vehicle, a movable member mounted on said
stationary member, and automatic snap-action
means for moving said movable member and
including an elongated spring unit having a 25
plurality of superposed spring elements through
a portion of its length and a unitary spring ele
forth in opposite positions, said snap-action
ment through the remainder of its length, said
spring unit being pivotally mounted at its end
adjacent said plurality of spring elements and 30
bowed positions relative to its long axis, said
spring member having driving connection with
said movable element and being operable when
the same snaps back and forth as aforesaid to
having operable connection with a rocking mem
ber at its opposite end adjacent said unitary
element, said spring unit having driving con
nection with said movable element, said spring
unit being normally bowed for over~center snap 35
change the position of said movable element, to
action into opposite positions on either side of
gether with power-driven means including a mo
its normal long axis, together with power-driven
tor-driven rocking member for moving said spring
member predetermined amounts .in opposite di
rections over-center to effect snap action thereof
for the purpose aforesaid.
9. A device of the class described including
a stationary member adapted to be mounted in
means including a powered driving device and
a ?rst cyclically operable member driven there
by, a second cyclically operable member driven 40
by said ?rst cyclically operable member in op
posite directions to the latter, and lever means
movable in opposite directions and drivingly con
a vehicle, a movable member mounted on said
nected with said rocking member, said lever
means being alternately engaged by means on 45
said ?rst and second cyclically operable mem
stationary member, and automatic snap-action
means for moving said movable member and in
cluding an elongated spring unit having a plu
rality of superposed spring elements through a
portion of its length and a unitary spring ele
ment through the remainder of its length, said
spring unit being pivotally mounted at its end
adjacent said plurality of spring elements and
having operable connection with a rocking mem
ber at its opposite end adjacent said unitary ele
ment, said spring unit having driving connection
with said movable element, said spring unit be
ing normally bowed for over-center snap action
into opposite positions on either side of its normal
long axis, together with inertia mechanism oper
ated by changes in movement of said vehicle for
actuating said rocking member to move said
spring unit predetermined distances relative to
its overc'enter position to effect snap action of the
($5
ele
said
vend
and
for moving said movable sign member back and
mechanism including an elongated spring member mounted on said stationary member for snap
action over-center into and out of oppositely
11:. 2.1
portion of its length and a unitary spring
ment through the remainder of its length,
spring unit being pivotally mounted at its
adjacent said plurality of spring elements
same for the purpose aforesaid.
10. A device of the class described including a
stationary member adapted to be mounted in a
vehicle, a movable member mounted on said
stationary member, and automatic snap-action
means for moving said movable member and in
cluding an elongated spring unit having a plu
rality of superposed spring elements through a
bers to rock the same back and forth and effect
snap action of said spring unit for the purpose
aforesaid.
-
12. In a sign or the like, a mounting member 60
and a movable sign element mounted thereon
for reciprocable movement, a rocking member
pivotally mounted on said mounting member, an
elongated spring member secured at one of its
ends to said rocking member, the opposite end 65
of said spring member being pivotally mounted
on said mounting member, said spring member
?tting into a yoke member attached to said
movable sign element and said rocking member
being pivotable in opposite directions to bow 60
said spring over-center on opposite sides of a
line joining the pivotal axis of the rocking mem
ber with the pivotal mounting of the opposite
end of said spring member, whereby said rock
ing member may be pivoted predetermined dis 65
tances in opposite directions to effect snap ac
tion of said spring over-center and change the
position of said movable sign element, and means
for pivoting said rocker member back and forth
for the purpose aforesaid.
70
BRUCE W. WALLACE.
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