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Sept. 18, 1962 s. slERPlN 3,054,205 LETTERPLATE ASSEMBLY FOR FLUORESCENT TUBES Filed July- ll, 1960 ,f2 2z /5 2 2| so L," „15 zlfy’/ 25 zo z5 /6//5/7 /5 Y?? _3 4336 .5 /3/ 37 35' 5 INVENToR. 19'. STAM/.s s/¿ßP/A/ „fw QM United States ice 1 3,054,205 Patented Sept. 18, 1962 2 3,054,205 LETTERPLATE ASSEMIÉìLY FOR FLUORESCENT T BES Stanis Sierpin, 2266 E. Kirby, Detroit, Mich. Filed July 11, 196i), Ser. No. 42,097 2 Claims. (Cl. 40-131) This invention relates to a letterholder construction for signs and more particularly to a letterholder adaptable for mounting upon fluorescent lighting tubes. It is the object of the present invention to provide a letterholder adapted to have removably positioned thereon a letterplate, with suitable lettering thereon, whereby a as particularly illustrated in FIG. 2. The present letter holder includes a pair of upright parallel spaced end walls 16 having a pair of vertically aligned circular apertures 17 adapted to slidably and cooperatively receive the re spective tubes 12, as best illustrated in FIG. 2. The respective apertures 17 defined in the end walls 16 terminate in the diverging cutouts or gates 18, said end wall 16 also being horizontally slotted as at 19 for venti lation. The letterholder 15 also includes the respective parallel spaced top and bottom walls 20 completing the boxlike assembly and defining >the rectangular aperture 21 at the front thereof, and arranged inwardly thereof the rectan combination of these holders with letters mounted there gular opening 26 adapted to cooperatively receive the up on, or other message when slidably provisioned upon one 15 right letterplate 27 as hereafter described upon which suit or more fluorescent illuminating tubes provides an illu able indicia 28 is provided as for example the lettering minated sign. shown. It is the further object of the present invention to pro It is contemplated the letterplate, for example, may be vide an novel form of letterholder housing consisting of a of an opaque material or opaque plastic as at 27, and hollow apertured boxlike formation having one or more 20 with the letters therein provided by transparent or trans longitudinally opposed apertures in its side walls to slid luscent portions as at 28 to define the lettering shown. It ably receive one or more fluorescent tubes forming the is contemplated also as a part of the present invention part of a lighting iixture, providing a means for holding that the letterplate 27 may merely have cutouts therein the letterholder upon the lighting tube. to define the respective letters or series of letters to make It is a further object of the present invention to pro 25 up the intended sign to be mounted upon the fluorescent vide a novel form of letterholder assembly with means for tubes. removably receiving a particular letterplate for retaining the same upon a letterholder but at the same time provid ing for readily removable or replacement thereof. Projecting inwardly from the respective top and bottom walls 20 and side walls 16 is the continuous inwardly tap ered retaining flange 22, adapted to retainingly engage the It is an object of the present invention to provide a 30 continuous outer edge of the letterplate 27 upon one side letterholder housing wherein letterplates may be remov ably provisioned and wherein one or more letters may be thereof. Transverse horizontally disposed inwardly di rected tapered flanges 25 project respectively from the applied to a particular letterplate, and wherein a plurality of said letterholder housings may be slidably provisioned upper and lower walls 20 of the housing and are adapted to retainingly engage interior upper and lower edge por upon one or more illuminating tubes for the purpose of 35 tions of the respective letterplate 27. deiining an advertising message and wherein the tubes are It is noted for example in FIG. 2 that the spaced pair arranged rearwardly of the letters for the purpose of pro of ñanges 25 are of less extent than the corresponding viding illumination to the said letterplates. front flange 22 so that the letterplate 27 may be snapped It is contemplated in this instance that the letterholder into the deiined rectangular slot 26 from the interior of plates vmay be in the nature of opaque plastic material or 40 the letter housing. The letterplates 27 are of a flexible the like and wherein the letters formed therein may be of clear plastic, or may be apertures therein through which the light source is readily discernible to the observer to thus provision the required lettering or wording, as the case may be. ‘ These and other objects will be seen from the following specification and claims in conjunction with the appended drawing in which: material such as metal or plastic, like polystyrene, for il lustration, and accordingly are self-supporting once pro jected within the retaining slot 26 which is arranged in an upright plane with respect to the front face of the hous 45 ing. Flanges 25 as a pair could instead be arranged on opposite sides on the interior of the housing rather than at the top and bottom. As viewed in FIG. 1, the righthand side wall 16 of each of the housings adjacent its front surface, has a lateral pro FIG. l is a front elevational view of one form of the present letterholder housing as mounted upon a pair of 50 jection 29. The corresponding opposite side edge of the fluorescent tubes, fragmentarily shown. housing has formed therein an elongated aperture 30. FIG. 2 is a fragmentary section taken on line 2*2 of Accordingly, when a pair of the said housings are assem FIG. 1. bled side by side, the projection 29 of one assembly co FIG. 3 is a fragmentary section taken on line 3_3 of operatively nests within the recess 30 in the opposite side 55 FIG. l. of the adjacent assembly as best shown in FIG. 1 to thus FIG. 4 is a front elevational View of a slightly different create an innerlock between the sign holders. form of a sign holder. In operation the sideholders must be slidably provis FIG. 5 is a section taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 4. ioned over the ends of the tubes 12. For this purpose, the FIG. 6 is a section taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 5. end wall gates 18 are laterally aligned with the individual 60 It will be understood that the above drawing illustrates tube holders 11 and the housing slidably positioned there merely a preferred embodiment of the invention and that on. other embodiments are contemplated within the scope of In view of the fact that a pair of vertically spaced tubes the claims hereafter set forth. 12 are shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2, letter housings 15 are Referring to the drawing and particularly FIGS. 1, 2 and retainingly provisioned in the upright position shown. 65 A slight variation is shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 wherein 3, there is shown one form of sign holder. A pair of vertically aligned fluorescent illuminating tubes 12 have the letter housing 31 is more simpliñed and is adapted their terminal ends 13 mounted within a pair of upright for mounting upon a single tube. For this purpose there is provided the upright parallel side walls 32 with arcu conventional supports 11, which are suitably mounted or secured to a wall surface as at 14. 70 ate apertures 33 therein adapted to cooperatively receive The present sign holder generally indicated at 15, is adapted to be slidably mounted upon the pair of tubes 12, a fluorescent tube. The aperture 33 opens in the rear wardly extending gate 34. The housing includes the re 3,054,205 3 spective top and bottom walls 35 which towards their forward ends and in conjunction with the end walls 32 define the rectangular opening 36 in the front of the casing. i Rearwardly thereof and of slightly increased dimension is the rectangular opening 37 within which is positioned a corresponding letterplate 43 with suitable indicia or letter ing or numbers, or the like, 44, as above described. The letterplate 43 at its rear is retained within the rectangular opening 37 by the continuous ñange 38 which extends inwardly from the top and bottom walls 35 and side walls 32. Front portions of the letterplate 43 are retained at their top and bottom by the inwardly tapered pair of flanges 40 which additionally form a part of the top and bottom walls 35. It is contemplated as a part of the present invention that the said letterplate may be manually projected with a slight flexing of the top and bottom edges of the letter plate into the Yslot 37 from the front of the casing. This is provided for by the outer tapered top and bottom v ñanges 40 being of smaller extent than the correspond ing rear continuous flange 38. In the present construction employing a single tube for mounting on the letterhousing, normally some means should `be employed for retaining the said housing in the upright position shown in FIG. 5. A engages and connects with one of the ends of the tube and an opposite end secured to the wall, the end supports each being arranged substantially horizontally and being elongated in its horizontal direction and of a uniform vertical height which is less than the diameter of the tube, the end supports thus being radially arranged rela tive to the tube axis and normally arranged relative to the wall and holding the tube parallel to but spaced a short distance from the wall; said letterplate mounting device comprising a tbox-like housing having a vertically arranged front wall, centrally apertured to form a pic ture frame, top and bottom horizontal walls, identical vertical end walls, and an open back, all of the walls being rigid and immovably connected together; said end walls each having a circular opening of a size to slidably receive the ñuorescent tube, the openings being horizon« tally aligned; each end wall having a notch horizontally extending from its rear edge into its opening and axially aligned with the center of its opening, the width of the notches in the vertical direction being slightly greater than the vertical height of the end supports, the circular edges defining the openings being otherwise uninterrupted and engaging the periphery of the tube in a circular line con tact, whereby the housing is mounted upon the fluorescent tube by sliding it endwise upon the supported fluorescent tube with the end wall openings slidably receiving the tube and the notches slidably passing the support for thus holding the housing upon the tube; and means for mount~ ing a letterplate within the front wall picture frame form It is contemplated that as a part of the present inven tion that the said housing may engage the wall surface as indicated at 14. Accordingly, as shown in FIG. 5, the assembly or housing 31 is retained in the upright posi 30 ing aperture. 2. A construction as defined in claim 1, and said end tion shown by the rear end portions of the side walls 32 walls, above and below the notches, extending rearwardly engaging the wall surface 14. a sufficient distance to bridge the space between the tube Instead of employing the pair of top and bottom flanges and flat wall so that their ends Contact the ñat wall above 40 of FIG. 5, there may be used a pair of side iianges for and below the axis of the tube for non-rotatably holding retaining a `pair of outer edges of letter plate 43 with the housing relative to the tube. respect to the inner continuous ñange 38. A translucent strip 41 of plastic material of any de References Cited in the file of this patent sired color may be employed as in FIG. 5 to give color UNITED STATES PATENTS to the lettering on the letter plate 43. In operation, the housing 31 is slid over tube 12 with the tube support 40 2,583,939 French ______________ _.. Ian. 29, 1952 11 received within gate 34. Thus the sign housing is mounted on the tube without disconnecting said tube. Having described my invention, reference should now be had to the following claims. 45 I claim: 1. In combination a letterplate mounting device and a iiuorescent tube supported upon a ñat wall by a pair of fluorescent tube end supports each having an end which 2,740,216 Lieberman ____________ -_ Apr. 3, 1956 2,893,148 Figman ______________ __ July 7, 1959 2,928,198 Madanic ____________ __ Mar. 15, 1960 493,601 1,057,547 572,555 Belgium ............. _- Feb. 15, 1950 France ______________ __ Oct. 28, 1953 Canada ______________ __ Mar. 17, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 1.