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Nov. 19, 1946. 2,411,425 F. H. HAGNER OBSERVATION AND ANGLE-DETERMINING INSTRUMENT Filed Dec. 5, 1940 2 Sheets-Sheet l NOV. 19, 1946. F_ H_ HAGNER 2,411,425 OBSERVATION AND ANGLE-DETERMINING INSTRUMENT Filed Dec. 5, 1940 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 3 wuc/wbo’b FREDERICK H. HA G/VE/i’ Patented Nov. 19, 1946 2,411,425 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 2,411,425 OBSERVATION AND AN GLE-DETERMINING INSTRUMENT Frederick H. Hagner, San Antonio, Tex., assignor to Arohbold-Hagner Instrument Laboratory, Inc., a corporation of Delaware Application December 5, 1940, Serial No. 368,698 10 Claims. 1 . (01. 33—-206) 2 of a hollow tube suspended in threaded engage ment with a head H. An observation tube 12 is carried by the upper end of the head II and extends at right angles to the handle I0, the handle normally extending substantially in a tion, the angular position of a ship, plane and vertical position and the observation tube l2 nor the like, at a given time with respect to a hori mally extending in a horizontal position. A stop zontal or vertical plane. ' Watch may be carried by the observation tube l l A further object of this invention is the produc to record the exact time at which the observation tion of a. simple and efficient means for record ing the angular position of a plane, ship and the 10 is being made. This invention relates to an observation and angle-determining instrument, and has for one of its objects the production of a simple and efli cient means for determining, by direct observa like, at a given time relative to a horizontal or vertical plane, whereby the readings while taking observations of celestial bodies and the like, by direct observation may be conveniently checked with the record of the angular position of the observation instrument at the time of observa tion to more accurately obtain a proper calcula tion as to an observer’s position with respect to the body being observed. The observation tube ll preferably comprises an elongated tubular member having an eye piece [4 at its inner end, which eye-piece sup ports a plain glass panel l5. A light-varying segment [6 is pivotally secured, as at IT, within the eye cap l4, and is provided with a knurled ?nger-engaging portion 18 at its upper end to facilitate the swinging of the light-varying seg ment IS. The light-varying segment l6 prefer A still further object of this invention is the 20 ably is provided with three light openings i9, 20 and 2|, arranged on an arc with respect to production of a simple and e?icient recording means for providing a permanent record of the the pivot I? so as to be swung across the center angular position of the device with respect to of the glass panel l5. The light opening I9 may be a clear opening, the light opening 20 a shaded time,~thereby recording the angle of tilt of the 25 opening, and the opening 2| a shaded opening with a clear small center opening 22. In this instrument in all directions, away from the true way, the light-varying segment it maybe swung vertical, while making an observation. to a position over the center of the panel [5 to Qther objects and advantages of the present the vertical and horizontal planes, at a given correspond with the intensity of the light which inventionwill appear throughout the following speci?cation and claims. 30 is being viewed through the observation tube II. In the drawings: Figure 1 is a side elevational view of the obser vation and angle-determining instrument; Figure 2 is a rear elevational view thereof; The outer end of the observation tube H is provided with a glass panel 23 having a luminous spot 24 formed in the exact center thereof, this luminous spot being of transparent luminous Figure 3 is a vertical sectional view, certain 35 material, so that at night when a star is sighted parts being shown in elevation; through the observation tube H the brilliancy of . Figure 4 is a vertical section taken on line 4-4 of Figure 3; > the star may be viewed through the transparent spot to enable an observer to place the spot in a Figure 5 is a vertical sectional view taken on line 5—5 of Figure 3; ' Figure 6 is a fragmentary side elevational view of the micrometer release; Figure '7 is a vertical sectional view taken on line '|—‘l'of Figure 1; dead-center with respect to the object being 40 viewed, such as a star of a smaller relative size. - When viewing larger objects the luminous spot will facilitate the placing of the spot in the exact center ‘of the object being viewed, for instance as when viewing the sun which is a 32-minutes Figure 8 is an end elevational view looking at 45 are the luminous spot or dot has a dimension with respect to the celestial body of a 20-minutes the outer end of the observation tube; Figure 9 is a top plan view of the glass or trans arc, In this way an observer may determine parent. plate which supports the recording strip whether or not the spot is toward the edge of the of paper and illustrating a fragment of the re arc of the sun or is in the dead-center. The ob cording strip of- paper;~ 50 server also in this Way may utilize the optics of the eye to replace the usual lenses which are em Figure _10 is a front. elevational view of the transparent plate or glass carried by the obser ployed in many instruments of this character. vation tube near the outer end thereof. A graduated quadrant 25 is hung from the ob By referring to the drawings it will be seen that servation tube in the manner shown and this It! designates handle which may ‘be in the nature 55 quadrant is provided with rack teeth 26 upon its 2,411,425 4 periphery which teeth are adapted to be engaged magnet 38 is mounted for bodily sliding longi by a suitable micrometer screw 21, this screw being so adjusted as illustrated in dotted lines in Figure 6 to permit the release of the screw from the rack teeth 23 by compressing the trigger 28. Any well-known type of means may be utilized for this purpose to permit the micrometer screw 2? to be properly adjusted by rotating the knob 29 or to permit the hanger frame 36 to be tudinal movement withrespect to the casing or housing 33, in a direction away from the missile to release the missile. V A ball-guiding tube 45 is carried by the hous ing 33 and extends to a point adjacent the lower end of the channel 39. A rotating valve 46 is carried near one end of the tube 45 and commu nicates with a spring-pressed ball-carrying mag freely swung when the trigger 28 is compressed 10 azine 3'! extending vertically of the housing 33 to release the screw 27 from the rack teeth 25. . in a manner as shown in Figure 3. Balls 58 are The quadrant 25 as above stated, is hung from carried within the magazine 41 and are carried the observation tube and is also hung upon the to the valve 46. This valve 46 is rotated bymeans shaft 35 which extends transversely throughthe of'a trigger 49, the valve 43 having an open side head II. This quadrant is ?xed at its lower end 1.5 for receiving theballs 48. As the trigger 49 is in any suitable manner to the handle it to hold depressed and the valve 43 rotates the open side the quadrant 25 in anchored relation with re of ‘the valve 45 Will be brought into registration spect to the handle “I. with the end of the tube 45, and the ball will be fed down through the tube 35 to a position to contact with the lower end 50 of the depending tube 5!. Before rotating the valve 46, however, a supporting element 52 which is journaled, as at 53, is swung from the position shown in full lines to the position shown in dotted lines in Figure 3 by depressing the trigger 54. The sup porting element 52 when in the position shown in dotted lines will prevent the ball when contacting with the lower end 50 0f the tube 5! from drop ping momentarily until the ball is acted upon by the magnetic force of the magnet 38 and ?rmly held in position thereby. The trigger 34 is then released and the supporting element 52 drops to the position shown in full lines. The magazine a‘! may be of a conventional type but is preferably held in threaded engagement v V The hanger 33 is journaled for free swinging movement upon the shaft 31 and is held in slid 20 able engagement with the quadrant 25, as shown in Figure 3, and may be connected thereto in any convenient or desired manner; The micrometer screw 2‘! is also anchored in engagement with the hanger 39 in the manner shown or in any 25 other suitable manner so as to permit the screw 2'!‘ to contact with the rack teeth 23 or to be moved out of engagement with these rack teeth ' by compressing the trigger 28. The shaft 31 carries a ball-bearing journa1'32 30 adjacent the hanger 3B and a ball-dropping hous ing or casing 33 is journaled upon the ball-bear ing journal 32, as indicated at 313, for constitut ing a bearing journal. A brake mechanism com prising the shaft 3l is employed, which shaft 3| 35 is movable longitudinally by means of a cam with the lower end 33a of the housing 33 as trigger 35'Which when swung to the position shown. A channel 55 leads from the lower end shown in Figure 3 will lock the brake shoe 36 of the bore 3‘? to a point near the lower end 33a againstwthe outer end of the bearing section 32a of the housing 33 to provide a pocket to permit of the bearing journal '32 and hold the journal 40 accumulated balls within the bore 31 to pass to portion as against rotating movement, and there a position where the balls may be placed within by lock the ball-carrying housing against swing the magazine (ii. The magazine 47 may be with ing movement when desired. drawn from the housing 33 to receive the balls The ball-dropping housing 33 is carried by the journal 33 as shown, and the trigger 35 may be swung to the position shown in dotted lines to release the brake shoe 36 and permit the housing 33 to freely swing in a pendulum-like manner to-v gether with the hanger 39. The ball-dropping housing 33 is provided with a vertical bore 3'l'the, upper end of which car ries an Alnico magnet 38 which is in the nature of magnetized metal and is of any desired or usual'shape, and is slidably mounted within the channel, 39 carried by the cap 40 of the ball di'opping housing 33. This magnet 38 is con nected to a bell crank lever 4!, which bell crank lever M is actuated by a cam 42 the cam being carried by‘ a shaft 43 and in turn being operated by a spring-pressed trigger 43 carried by the han dle it as shown in Figure 5.’ Consequently, by compressing the trigger 44 the shaft 453 will be within the channel 35 and may then be replaced to the position shown in Figure 3 for feeding the balls4~8 to a point where they may be en gaged individually at selective intervals by the magnetic force of the magnet 38’. A glass plate 53 is supported ‘at the bottom of the bore 31 and is engaged by the upper end of‘ a viewing tube 57, which tube extends up into the socket 558 of the housing 33. Paper reels 59 are rotatably mountedwithin the housing 33 upon ‘ opposite sides of the socket '58 so as to causes. strip of paper 69 to be reeled over the glass plate 56 at the upper end of‘ the viewing tube 57. A suitable knurled knob 3'! may be employed for operating the reel or reels 59. A hinged ribbon carrying plate 62 is hingedly secured, as at 63,,v near one side of the bore 31 adjacent the plate 56 and is adapted to be swung down over the panel 56 and paper 60 from; the position shown rotated in turn rotating the cam 42 swinging the in full lines in Figure 3 in the direction of the bell crank lever 4-1 and lifting the magnet 38 arrow, and a suitable knob 34 is utilized for this bodily in a vertical direction in a manner for 65 purpose. This, ribbon-carrying plate 32 carries a the’ purpose hereinafter described. suitable strip of inked ribbon 62a and when the ‘t will be noted that the casing or ball-drop ribbon 62a is drawn in contact with the strip of ping housing 33 has a pronounced longitudinal extent and that; the retractible missile-support ing means or magnet 38 is longer than it is wide. This magnet 33 is carried near one end of the casing or housing 33, as-shown in Figure 3. A paper 63, ‘a ball dropping thereon. will cause an impression to be made on the‘ strip of paper. The housing 33 is provided with a window upon one side and a hinged window 63 on the opposite side. The hinged window 66 maybe swung upwardly to permit an operatorv to place a suitable mark is‘ rcleasably- held by the missile-supporting means across the strip of paper 60 at‘the center- of the ormagnet 38. The missile-supporting means or 75 viewing tube 51 to-pr-ovide a gauge. The viewing free-falling missile, such as one of the balls 48, 2,411,425 tube 51 is slidably mounted through a guide 61 anchored upon the lower end of the hanger 30 and this viewing tube 51 is vertically slidably withdrawn from the housing 33 permitting the housing 33 to freely swing in a pendulum-like manner through the force of gravity. The balls 48 by dropping through the housing 33 will record the angle of swing and the hanger 30 may then be swung to this angle and locked in position mounted through the guide 61 so that the upper end of the tube 5'! may be moved into and out of the socket 58 to hold the housing 33 in proper alignment with the viewing tube 51. to obtain a proper reading upon the quadrant 25 and the relative markings upon the strip of It, should be understood that any suitable or paper at may be viewed through the medium of desired type of means may be employed for rais ing the magnetized element or magnet 38 to with 10 the viewing tube 51. Attention is called to the fact that in Figure 1 draw the magnetic force away from the ball 50 the housing 33 is swung away from the viewing and that any desired type of trigger arrangement tube 5'! for the purpose of showing the parts may be utilized for this purpose without depart of the device and to emphasize the fact that this ing from the spirit of the invention. When taking an observation, the operator will 15 housing 33 may swing upon its journal inde pendent of the hanger 38 and the housing 33 view an object through the observation tube H being also adapted to swing upon the shaft 3| in a manner to cause the spot 24 to center upon when the housing 33 is secured in the position the center of the object as accurately as possible shown in Figure 3. and when the proper sight is taken the trigger The observation tube carries a transparent 44 is compressed bodily moving the magnet 38 plate or glass panel 23a as shown in Figure 1, upwardly and urge the magnetic force away and this transparent plate or glass panel 23a from the ball supported thereby, thereby releas ing the ball and permitting the ball to drop as has crossed etched lines 23b formed thereon to facilitate the alignment of the junction of these a free-falling mass upon the strip of ribbon 6211, which will cause a mark to be impressed upon the 25 crossed lines with the luminous spot carried by the transparent plate or glass panel 23. strip of paper 61! directly thereunder. By op The glass panel or plate 55 is preferably pro erating the triggers 54 and 49 the valve .46 will vided with a pair of spaced transverse etched be opened and the supporting element 52 moved lines 532' and a central crossed line 56b. The to a proper position to feed an additional ball 48 to a proper point, below the lower end of the 30 recording strip 60 is provided at spaced intervals tube 5! where the ball will be suspended by magnetic force by the magnet 38. The support ing element 52 is then dropped to the position with transverse short lines which are adapted to register with a similar line carried by the panel or plate 55. The dots in Figure 9 indicate the markings from the ball 48 upon the record shown in full lines in Figure 3. A second read ing may then be taken and a second ball dropped 35 strip 58. The operator may reach in through the window 65 and write on the strip ‘58 a suitable to make a further impression upon the paper. memorandum as to time, or make other notations In this way, a number of readings may betaken if desired. _ in a manner similar to that described in my As shown in Figure 4, the housing 33 may be previous Patent #2,219,990 issued October 29, provided with a closure plate 33b adjacent the 1940, and relating to an angle determining device. strip 60 to permit access to the strip 60 for re It should be understood that the magnet in the placement and access to the reels 59 by the re present instance constitutes a piece of highly moval of the plate 33”. magnetized material which will retain its magne tism over a maximum period of time, and that the The micrometer screw and Vernier 29 is pro ball is released by bodily moving the magnet to a vided with a rotatable band 29a which may be position whereby the magnetic force will be weak set independent of the Vernier and locked in ened with respect to the ball and will permit the position by manipulating the member 29 so that ball to drop by force of gravity to impress a mark the amount of turn of the Vernier or micrometer upon the strip of paper 63 to obtain a reading screw may be observed after the setting for a of angle variance with respect to the vertical comparison with the other readings of the instru ment. and horizontal planes. If the instrument is held in a true vertical, the ball which is dropped within The instrument above described constitutes a the housing 33 will strike the center of the record recording and averaging sextant and provides a ing unit or recording means, but if the instru very light instrument for recording the altitude ment is tilted at an angle to either side of the of celestial bodies by employing a ball-dropping line of vision of the object observed, the impact device in the nature of a missile and a means of the ball when dropped upon the recording for averaging the groups of dots on the recording means during observation will record the angle of strip or tape 60 and this instrument embodies tilt. The degree of this angle of tilt must be an observation tube I l, the recording mechanism computed and subtracted from the altitude angle 60 and housing 33, the altitude quadrant or are 25 and the viewing or averaging unit 51. T which is measured on the instrument to deter mine the true angle of the object observed, meas The observation tube I! is preferably con ured from the true vertical or horizontal plane. structed of a light material such as Dural having It should be understood that means may be an overall length preferably eight inches, and a provided if desired to automatically and periodi diameter of one and one-fourth inches. The eye cally drop a series of balls one after another can or piece [4 consists of a small peep-hole de upon the recording means to give a reading of scribed above. The transparent panel or glass 23a has etched or engraved crossed lines 23b and an average angle. This mechanism may em is placed in the tube l l preferably ?ve inches body a timing device for releasing these balls one at a time over a selected period of time and 70 from the peep-hole. The glass or transparent panel 23 at the outer end of the tube H has the may be set in motion by pulling the trigger 44 exact center thereof etched to provide a one or by any other means such as electrical release sixteenth of an inch circle which is ?lled with means. luminous paint one-thirty-second of an inch It should be understood that in timing the observation, the viewing tube 51 is released or 75 thick. The yellow glare from this luminous paint Q3151 1,4125 7 8 permitsa‘star or planet (such as the moon and the‘l'il'se) to be centered thereon, This then be comes the horizon or reference line. The eye-cap posite-‘enact the casing, means for bodily moving the magnetie element away- from the 'mis'sile‘for ' releasingithefinis‘sile andvcausihg the missile to or piece [4 near the eye is provided‘ with a means may fall by-force of gravity and strike said re for varying the size of the opening to provide a cording means, and means for feeding a missile sun-shade, and the like. It should be borne in to a point within the magnetic ?eld of the mag; mind-that the ‘present device provides a very e?i netic element to cause the missile to lie-mag‘ netieally suspended within the magnetic ?eld. cient-structure wherein themissile or ball 48 may be released by simply pulling the trigger L34 there 4, An angle-recording device of the class de-' by avoiding dislocation or change of the position of 10 scribed ‘comprising a casing, a magnetic element the instrument to produce the desired record. mounted for bodily movement and carried by‘ the When using the device, the eye-piece I4 is casing, a free-falling, missile adapted to be suse placed near the eye of the observer and the brake pended in one end ofthe casing by the magnetic 36 is; released through the medium of the mem element, a recording device carried near the op‘ ber'35 to permit the recording mechanism to 15 posite end of the casing, means for bodily moving swing in a pendulum-like manner to a substan the magnetic element away from the missile for tially vertical position. A ‘ball is fed to a proper releasing the missile and causing the missile to position as described above to be suspended by freely fall by force of gravity and strike said re the magnet 38 and when the horizon line or ref cording means, means for feeding a missile to a erence line registers with the body being observed, 20 point within the magnetic ?eld of the magnetic the trigger 44 is operated releasing the ball 138 element to cause the missile to be magnetically which will drop upon the ribbon ‘section 62*1 and suspended within the magnetic ?eld, a missile res make a record upon the strip ?ll, to provide a per ervoir, and valve means for releasing the missiles manent record of contact. This may be repeated one-by-one to be fed to the magnetic element. for ten'shots to obtain an average. 5. An angle-recording device of the class de 25 The averaging device is moved to a position scribed comprising a casing, a magnetic element directly over the viewing tube 51 to obtain a read ing of the ten shots above mentioned, recorded on the strip of paper 6i}. This viewing tube 57 may be provided with a suitable magnifying lens. The‘ 'm'icrometer screw 27 is moved until the etched line is in the center of the group of dots—— then read the arc for’the. degrees and the microm eter screw drum forlthe minutes. This gives the altitude reading. _ V p The "instrument illustrated and described in this application is adapted to be used in substan mounted for bodily movement and carried by the casing, a free-falling missile adapted to be sus pended in one end of the casing by the magnetic element, a recording device carried near the op posite end of the casing, means for bodily mov» ing the magnetic element away from the missile for releasing the missile and causing the missile to freely fall by force of gravity and strike said re-‘ cording means, means for feeding‘ a missile to a point within the magnetic ?eld of the magnetic element to cause the missile to be magnetically suspended within the magnetic ?eld, a missile res ent instrument is constructed in such a manner ervoir, valve means for releasing the missiles one as to measure an angle within an arc of 90°. 40 by-one to be fed to the magnetic element, and a spring-pressed magazine ?tting in the reservoir. This instrument may be, if so desired, attached to a sextant or octant in any conventional manner 6. An angle-recordingrdevice of the class de tially the same manner as a sextant, but the pres for the purpose of furnishing an arti?cial horizon, from which an angle of elevation may be meas ured. ’ , fHaving‘ described the invention what I claim as new is: p ’ ' M V V _ ' ,1.‘ An angle-recording deviceof the class de scribed comprising a casing, a magnetic element mounted for bodily movement and carried by the ‘r casing, a free-falling missile adapted to be sus pended in one end of the casing by the magnetic element, a recording device carried near the op posite end of the casing, means for bodily mov scribed comprisinga casing, a magnetic element ing the magnetic element away from the missile mounted for bodily movement and carried by the casing, ,a free-falling missile adapted to be sus to freely fall by force of gravity and strike said pended inbne end of the casing by the mag netic element, a recording device carried, near for releasing’ the missile and causing the‘missile recording‘ means, means for feeding a missile to a point within the. magnetic ?eld of the magnetic element to cause the missile to be magnetically the opposite end of the casing’, and means for bodily moving the ‘magnetic element away from the missile for releasing thefmissile and causing the missile to freely fall by force of gravity‘ and suspended within the magnetic ?eld, a missile res ervoir, valve means for releasing the missiles one by-on'e' to beufed tothe magnetic element, and av strike said recording,‘ means. trigger for operating the valve means. _ '2. ' V . angle-recordingdevice of’ the class de 7. An angle-recording device of the class dee scribed comprising’ acasing, a magnetic element 601 scribed comprising a casing, a magnetic element mounted for bodily movement and‘ carried by the mounted for bodily movement and carried by the casing, a ‘free-falling ‘missile adapted to be sus casing‘, afree-falling' ‘missile adapted to be suspended in one end of the casing by the magnetic pended in one end- ofthe casing by the magnetic element, a recording devicegcarried" near the‘op element, a recording device carried near the op positevend of the casing,v a trigger‘m'echanism for .. posite end of the" casing‘, means for bodily moving bodily moving the magneticelement away from the magnetic el'e'n‘ient away from the missile far the missile for releasing'the missile and causing releasing the missile and causing‘ the missile to the missile to iallpfreely by force of gravity and strike said recording means. , _ 3. An angle-recording device of the class de scribed comprising av casing, a magnetic element mounted‘ for bodily movement and‘ carried‘ by the casing; a‘free-fall'ing" missileadapted to" be s‘us'e freely fall by force‘ of gravity and strike said re cording means,l means for feeding a missile to a point within the magnetic ?eld of the magnetic element'to cause the’ missile ‘to be magnetically suspended within the magnetic ?eld, a missile reservoir, valve means for releasing the missiles one-by-one to be'fed to the magnetic element, and pended in'o‘ne end of the‘ ‘casing by‘th'e magnetic element, a" recordingdevice carried near the’ nip- 75 movable means movable to a position‘uiider the 2,41 1,425 10 magnetic element for supporting a missile while it is being moved to a position within the magnetic ?eld of the magnetic element. 8. An angle-recording device of the class de scribed comprising a casing, a magnetic element held by said missile-supporting means, said mis sile-supporting means mounted for bodily sliding longitudinal movement with respect to said casing in a direction away from the missile to release the missile, a recording means carried near the op mounted for bodily movement and carried by the posite end of said casing, said missile being casing, a free-falling missile adapted to be sus adapted to impact with said recording means to pended in one end of the casing by the magnetic indicate the angle of incline and the angle of side element, a recording device carried near the op wise tilt of the casing during impact, means for posite end of the casing, means for bodily moving 10 releasing the missile from ‘the supporting means, the magnetic element away from the missile for means for feeding a missile to the supporting releasing the missile and causing the missile to means, a missile reservoir, and means for releas freely fall by force of gravity and strike said re ing the missiles from the reservoir one by one to cording means, means for feeding a missile to a be fed to the supporting means. point within the magnetic ?eld of the magnetic 10. An angle-recording device of the class de element to cause the missile to be magnetically scribed comprising a casing, a recording means suspended within the magnetic ?eld, a missile carried at one end of the casing, a reciprocating reservoir, valve means for releasing the missiles retractible missile-suspending element carried at one-by-one to be fed to the magnetic element, the opposite end of the casing, a free-falling mis~ and means forming a communication between the 20 sile adapted to be suspended by said suspending reservoir and the casing for directing the missiles element and also adapted to freely fall by force of from the interior of the casing to the reservoir. gravity and strike said recording means when the 9. An angle-recording device of the class de missile is released, and means for bodily moving scribed comprising a casing having a pronounced said suspending element away from said missile longitudinal extent, a retractible missile-support~ 25 and in a direction opposite to the direction of fall ing means longer than it is wide, said retractible of the missile for releasing said missile. missile-supporting means carried near one end of said casing, a free-falling missile releasably FREDERICK H. HAGNER.