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.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3393311 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date16 Jul 1968
Filing date9 Sep 1965
Priority date9 Sep 1965
Publication numberUS 3393311 A, US 3393311A, US-A-3393311, US3393311 A, US3393311A
InventorsDahl Frank L
Original AssigneeFrank L. Dahl
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Adjustable trouble lamp means
US 3393311 A
Abstract  available in
Images(6)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

July 16, 1968 F. L. DAHL ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS 6 Sheets-Sheet mdE m2. W on .5 To; Om Om Hem 2 mm -1- m mm 72. 3 ow mn w mn Ill I j N INVENTOR July 16, 1968 DAHL 3,393,311

ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS Filed Sept. 9, 1965 6 Sheets-Sheet FIG] "imiii 2224! INVENTOR.

F. L. DAHL July 16, 1968 ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS 6 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed Sept. 9, 1965 2 4 d nu /IlIl,,

F|G.l5 24b ,933,, 94 FIG. l3

FIG. [4

FIG. I6

July 16, 1968 L, DAHL 3,393,311

ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS Filed Sept. 9, 1965 6 Sheets-Sheet 4 FIG. I?

I NVEN TOR.

y 1 68 F. L. DAHL 3,393,311

ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS Filed Sept. 9, 1965 6 Sheets-Sheet IN VEN TOR.

United States Patent 3,393,311 ADJUSTABLE TROUBLE LAMP MEANS Frank L. Dahl, 5248 W. 119th Place, Inglewood, Calif. 90304 Filed Sept. 9, 1965, Ser. No. 486,048 7 Claims. (Cl. 24010.6)

ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An electrically energized lamp structure embodying a base which may be held manually or attached to a support as by a magnetic device. A device for delivering electrical energy is provided in the base. A head is detachably secured to the base by an adjustable interconnecting device arranged between the base and head. The interconnecting device carries an electrical conductor and has sufiicient rigidity to support the head in a selected position away from the base.

Generally speaking, the present invention relates to a portable lamp means of an extremely adjustable type, as to the position of a light-emitting head portion thereof with respect to a base means or base portion thereof, which is provided with attachment means adapted for temporary attachment to any suitable auxiliary supporting means at virtually any desired locations. In one preferred exemplary form of the invention, the attachment means of said base means or portion comprises magnetic attachment means cooperable for temporary magnetic mounting attachment in virtually any selected position with respect to any suitable ferromagnetic auxiliary mounting surface.

From the above very general description of the broad nature of the present invention, it will be recognized that it is ideally suited for emergency illumination purposes and may be said to comprise an emergency or trouble lamp means, such as is extremely desirable for nighttime automotive repairs of a variety of different types, such as repairs having to do with the engine, transmission, or the like, repairs having to do with flat tires, or the like, or, indeed, virtually any type of repair or investigation conducted under conditions of poor ambient lighting and which will be facilitated through the use of the novel apparatus of the present invention for providing full illumination directly on the region or area where the investigation or repair work is to be done.

It will be understood that since most conventional motor vehicles are very largely made of ferromagnetic materials, the magnetic attachment means provides a very convenient arrangement for attaching the device to virtually any portion of a motor vehicle body or engine closely adjacent to the region which it is desired to illuminate and that then the light-emitting head means or portion of the novel apparatus of the present invention can be moved with respect to said magnetically attached base means or portion into virutally any desired position relative thereto within a certain predetermined distance of the point of magnetic attachment of said base means or portion to the ferromagnetic portion of the motor vehicle, which is temporarily serving as an auxiliary mounting surface or structure. This makes it possible to direct the light, in just the desired manner, into or onto a particular desired region or area for optimizing the illumination thereof while substantially completely preventing glare, or the like, from impinging directly upon the eyes of a user of the device.

It will be understood that the novel apparatus of the present invention, as broadly and genetically described above, provides major advantages over pre-existing conventional'prior art emergency or trouble lamps or the like, since, normally, all such prior art devices which are of a portable nature and which have magnetic attachment means are so arranged that the light-emitting portion thereof is in a fixed relationship with respect to the magnetic attachment means thereof, thus making it impossible to provide a desired positional readjustment of the light-emitting portion with respect to the magnetic attachment portion thereof when mounted in magnetically held engagement with respect to any desired ferromagnetic surface portion of a motor vehicle. Therefore, it will readily be understood that such prior .art arrangements make it possible to mount the emergency or trouble lamp on the ferromagnetic body of the motor vehicle, on the engine thereof, or an adjacent ferromagnetic fender or inside hood portions or the like, but very often it will be found that it is impossible to provide the requisite degree of adjustment of the emitted light by adjusting the magnetic attachment of the complete unit with respect to the ferromagnetic portion of the motor vehicle carrying same. Thus, it will be found that only illumination in the general region desired can, in many cases, be provided by such prior art arrangements, and precisely the desired directional adjustment of the emitted light cannot be pro vided in such prior art arrangements.

However, as pointed out above, the above-mentioned major disadvantage of such magnetically attachable prior art emergency or trouble lamp means is completely eliminated and overcome in and through the use of the present invention, where the final positioning of the emitted light for optimum illumination purposes is not accomplished by attempting to readjust the magnetic attachment means or portion with respect to the ferromagnetic portion of the motor vehicle carrying same, but is accomplished entirely by adjusting the light-emitting head into virtually any desired positional relationship with respect to said base means or portion and said magnetic attachment means carried thereby. Thus, the apparatus of the present invention provides optimum illumination under the emergency type conditions referred to above in a manner which heretofore has been impossible to achieve with conventional prior art magnetically attachable emergency or trouble lamps or lights.

With the above points in mind, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel adjustable emergency and/or trouble lamp means having a base means capable of attachment with respect to an auxiliary supporting surface in virtually any desired manner and having a light-emitting head means or portion effectively interconnected with respect to said base means or portion by positionally adjustable interconnecting means adapted to be controllably positionable into any of a plurality of different positions whereby to correspondingly position the light-emitting head means relative to said base means in a manner such that said light-emitting head means will direct light rays therefrom into a desired region in a manner such as to provide optimum illumination of said desired region and in a manner such as to minimize glare reaching the eyes of a user of the device.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to in the preceding object, wherein the complete adjustable emergency and trouble lamp means is of a readily portable nature and wherein the means for attaching the base means or portion thereof with respect to an auxiliary supporting surface comprises magnetic attachment means.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to hereinbefore, wherein the base means is provided with a self-contained source of electrical energy comprising battery means, and wherein the entire device closely simulates a conventional flashlight when the light-emitting head means and said base means are in effectively collapsed, closely adjacent, and effectively engaged relationship, and yet wherein said light-emitting head means can be quickly and easily effectively disengaged from such closely adjacent relationship with respect to the base means or portion and can be extended and moved into virtually any position permitted by the maximum length of said positionally adjustable interconnecting means connected between said base means and said light-emitting head means, thus making it possible to cause light emitted from said light-emitting head means to be directed in an optimum illumination manner on any selected region lying Within a predetermined maximum distance (corresponding to the length of said interconnecting means) of said base means or portion and its attachment with respect to said auxiliary supporting surface or structure, which usually comprises a portion of a motor vehicle.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide a novel type of construction for said base means wherein it comprises housing means of generally cylindrical form simulating in appearance a conventional flashlight and having at least two substantially semicylindrical, molded plastic portions longitudinally interconnected along one pair of adjacent edges by flexible, effective hinge means of the same integral molded plastic material as said housing portions and provided along opposite longitudinal edge means thereof with resiliently engageable interlock means cooperable for forcible resilient closing engagement whereby to maintain the previously open semi-cylindrical portions of said housing in closed relationship thereafter so as to comprise and define said complete cylindrical housing means.

It is a further object, in one specific exemplary form of the invention wherein said base means simulates in appearance a conventional flashlight defined by a substantially cylindrical, longitudinal, outer housing means, to provide said longitudinal outer housing means with longitudinal recess means along at least one side thereof in one version of this modification of the invention and along opposite sides thereof and a rear end thereof in another version of this modification of the invention, with said recess means being adapted to receive corresponding portions of said interconnecting means (which is connected between the light-emitting head means and said base means) when said interconnecting means is in fully collapsed, retracted relationship with respect to said base means, thus providing an arrangement such that said collapsed interconnecting means will lie Within said recess means in a manner substantially exteriorly fiush with laterally adjacent outer surface portions of said housing means.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to hereinbefore wherein the means for attaching the base means, or portion, with respect to an auxiliary supporting surface may take a form other than magnetic attachment means or, even though it may comprise magnetic attachment means, it may effectively cooperate with a non-ferromagnetic auxiliary supporting surface in a non-magnetic manner. In other words, even in that form of the invention wherein said means comprises magnetic attachment means, under some conditions of use it may merely rest upon a supporting surface and may be of sufiicient mass to function as an effective gravity-type attachment means similar to any weighted base, or the like. In certain forms of said attachment means, whether of a magnetic type or a non-magnetic type, it may be of substantial mass to facilitate engagement thereof with respect to an underlying supporting surface by reason of the action of gravity and/or, in certain forms, may be of a type defining an attachment bottom or foot portion of substantial width and/or length, in some cases having substantially laterally and/or longitudinally and/ or otherwise separated, supporting contact or foot portions adapted to engage or rest upon an auxiliary supporting surface at spaced points whereby to provide a very stable type of engagement therebetween adapted to effectively support the lightemitting head means even when it has been attached and moved to a very substantially olfset remote location with respect to said attachment means. In other forms of said attachment means wherein it is not magnetic, it might, for example, comprise one or more suction cup means made of elastomeric or rubber material, or the like, adapted to be placed in suction-type engagement with any relatively smooth supporting surface. Indeed, various different types of attachment means other than those specifically referred to hereinbefore (which, in some cases, may be controllably separable from the rest of the base means) may be employed in lieu thereof, and all such are intended to be included and comprehended within the scope of the present invention and it should be understood that specific references throughout this application to the exemplary magnetic type or form of said attachment means and to the magnetic attachment or engagement thereof with respect to a ferromagnetic type of supporting surface are to be broadly construed and read in the light of the preceding statement as including and comprehending all such attachment arrangements and means as referred to above.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to hereinbefore which may be employed for a great variety of different illumination purposes other than for illuminating various portions of a motor vehicle in the manner of a trouble light or emergency light, as referred to hereinbefore and hereinafter. For example, it may be employed for illuminating a fuse box at night when a fuse is to be replaced. It may be employed for reading maps at night. It may be employed for appliance repair work or for any of a great variety of other purposes where proper illumination is not conveniently available, and it should be clearly understood that wherever reference is made in this application to the device as comprising a motor vehicle trouble or emergency light and to being mounted on a ferromagnetic surface of a motor vehicle for emergency repair purposes, or the like, said reference is to be broadly construed in the light of the above statement relative to the broad application and field of usage of the present invention.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to hereinbefore wherein said base means simulates in appearance a conventional flashlight when the entire device is in the effectively collapsed retracted relationship referred to hereinbefore and wherein, when in said configuration, the device can be used to perform all of the normal functions of a conventional prior art flashlight.

It is a further object to provide apparatus of the character referred to herein, wherein said base means and/ or said light-emitting head means may be remotely electrically energized.

It is a further object of the present invention to provide apparatus of the character referred to herein, having the advantages referred to herein, and including the features referred to herein, generically and/or specifically, and individually or in combination, and which is of extremely simple, inexpensive, easy-to-use construction adapted for ready mass manufacture at very low cost whereby to be conducive to widespread use thereof.

Further objects are implicit in the detailed description which follows hereinafter (which is to be considered as exemplary of, but not specifically limiting, the present invention), and said objects will be apparent to personsskilled in the art after a careful study of the detailed description which follows hereinafter.

For the purpose of clarifying the nature of the present invention, several exemplary embodiments of the invention are illustrated in the hereinbelow-described figures of the accompanying drawings and are described in detail hereinafter.

FIG. 1 is a side view, partly in elevation and partly in section, illustrating one exemplary form of the present invention in fully retracted and collapsed relationship and with the separable light-emitting head means in engaged relationship on the left end of the housing means of the base means whereby to very closely simulate in appearance a conventional flashlight.

FIG. 2 is an elevational view of the form of the invention illustrated in FIG. 1 after the light-emitting head means has been controllably detached from the engaged relationship shown in FIG. 1 and has been moved away from the housing means a portion of the complete distance to which it is ultimately to be displaced. In other words, the detachable light-emitting head means and the interconnecting means and coupling means mechanically and electrically connecting same to the base means are shown in solid lines in FIG. 2 in the process of being moved into a final position such as is shown in solid lines in FIG. 11. Of course, said final position may be virtually any position desired by a user of the device.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-sectional view of the interconnecting means or coupling member of FIG. 2 taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 33 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 3 but illustrates a slightly modified form of the yieldably bendably deformable longitudinal interconnecting means and coupling member.

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view similar to FIG. 3 but illustrates a further slight modification of the yieldably bendably deformable longituidnal interconnecting means and coupling member.

FIG. 6 is a side elevational view similar in many respects to FIG. 1 except for the fact that it is in full elevation and except for the fact that the entire device is oppositely directed from its orientation in FIG. 1, and this view illustrates a slight modification of the first form of the invention with said modification pertaining primarily to the interconnecting means and coupling member mechanically and electrically connecting the light-emitting head means and the base means. In this view, said lightemitting head means and said base means are shown in engaged flashlight-simulating relationship in a manner generally similar to the showing of FIG. 1.

FIG. 7 is a view similar to FIG. 6 but illustrates the apparatus after the light-emitting head means has been controllably disengaged from the right end of the housing means of the base means and is in the process of being repositioned as allowed by unfolding, extending, and/ or rotary movement of the interconnecting means or coupling member.

FIG. 8 is an enlarged fragmentary, partly-broken-away view of a typical one of the bendable hinge means, such as the one shown at the left side of FIG. 6 and at the left side of FIG. 7 taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 88 of FIG. 6 and clearly illustrates the fact that electric circuit means is interiorly carried therein and passes along the length of the complete interconnecting means or coupling member.

FIG. 9 is a fragmentary, cross-sectional view taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 9-9 of FIG. 6 and clearly illustrates the corresponding two laterally adjacent portions of the modified form of interconnecting means and coupling member of the version of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 69 and also clearly illustrates a resilient locking snap engagement bracket member carried by the upper surface of the housing means and adapted to resiliently hold the two laterally adjacent portions of the interconnecting means or coupling member in the completely collapsed or retracted relationship most clearly shown in FIGS. 6 and 9.

FIG. 10 is an exterior three-dimensional view illustrating a slightly modified form of the invention and shows it in fully retracted and collapsed flashlight-simulating relationship similar to FIG. 1 of the first form of the in- 6 vention and similar to FIG. 6 of the second form of the invention.

FIG. 11 is a greatly-reduced-size three-dimensional pictorial view illustrating one typical exemplary mode of use of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10- 13, although it is also exemplary of the usage of any of the other forms of the invention.

FIG. 12 is a fragmentary view, partly in section and partly in elevation, taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 12-12 of FIG. 10 and with a lower portion of the yieldably bendable longitudinal interconnecting means and coupling member being shown broken away and with the left end of the remaining upper portion shown extending outwardly toward the left of FIG. 12. This is done in order to clarify the detailed structure of the modified form of the apparatus as shown in FIG. 12.

FIG. 13 is an enlarged fragmentary view of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-12 taken substantially along a plane such as that indicated by thearrows 1313 of FIG. 10. For purposes of drawing simplicity and clarity, no portion of the housing means or the contents thereof below the upper part thereof or behind the plane of the view comprising FIG. 13 is illustrated in this view.

FIG. 14 is a view very similar to FIG. 13 but illustrates a slight modification thereof.

FIG. 15 is a view-very similar to both FIG. 13 and FIG. 14 but illustrates a further slight modification thereof.

FIG. 16 is a fragmentary view generally similar to the right end portion of FIG. 1, although the modified form of the invention shown in FIG. 16 is positionally reversed from the showing of FIG. 1 and primarily illustrates a dilferent form of the interconnecting means and coupling member from the first form of the invention shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 17 is a top plan view of a form of the invention very similar to that shown in FIG. 1, although positionally reversed, and in this case the longitudinal interconnecting means and coupling member is slightly modified from the FIG. 1 showing thereof and the attachment means and switch means are also slightly modified from the FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 showing thereof to provide an attachment means having certain additional advantages thereover.

FIG. 18 is a slightly enlarged cross-sectional view taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 1818 of FIG. 17, with the interior batteries or cells, and portions behind the plane of the section, being removed from FIG. 18 for reasons of drawing simplicity and clarity.

FIG. 19 is a view very similar to FIG. 18 but illustrates a further slight modification of the attachment means and switch from the showing of FIG. 18.

FIG. 20 is a fragmentary view illustrating a slightly modified type of magnetic attachment means shown in fully retracted relationship in side elevation.

FIG. 21 is a bottom plan view of the modified type of magnetic attachment means of FIG. 20 and shows, in phantom, one of the magnetic elements in laterally extended relationshipit being understood that the other three magnetic elements (shown retracted in FIG. 21) may be similarly laterally extended in order to increase the overall width of the attachment means and to, therefore, greatly increase the stability thereof.

FIG. 22 is a side elevational view similar to FIG. 1, although positionally reversed, and illustrates a further slight modification thereof wherein the light-emitting head means can be detachably engaged with respect to either end of the housing means of the base means.

FIG. 23 is a view similar to FIG. 22, but shows the alternate engaged position of the light-emitting head means of FIG. 22, which causes the intervening portion of the interconnecting means and coupling member to form a convenient mounting or carrying loop.

FIG. 24 is an enlarged cross-sectional view of one form of light-emitting head means different from the first form thereof best illustrated in FIG. 1 and which can be employed with the housing means of any of the various other forms of the invention illustrated in the drawings and described in detail hereinafter and which effectively provides for the storage of extra or spare lenses within said modified light-emitting head means.

FIG. is a fragmentary sectional view illustrating a slightly modified form of the invention wherein the magnetic attachment means takes the form of an electromagnet and wherein the switch means is adapted to energize either or both of the light-emitting head means and the attachment electromagnet means by effectively connecting same with respect to the batteries or cells adapted to be carried Within the housing means in a manner similar to the showing of FIG. 1.

FIG. 26 is a fragmentary view, with certain portions removed for drawing simplicity and clarity, taken substantially along the plane indicated by the arrows 26-26 of FIG. 25.

FIG. 27 is a view, largely in elevation, with a right end portion partially broken away into a substantially central sectional plane, and illustrates a slight modification of the invention wherein the attachment means is adapted to be remotely extended relative to the base means, if desired, so that it may be mounted by either of tWo different types of attachment means, comprising magnetic attachment means or suction cup attachment means, with respect to a supporting surface for appropriately positioning the interconnecting means and coupling member and the light-emitting head means carried at the opposite end thereof in the manner most clearly shown in FIG. 28.

FIG. 28 is a fragmentary View illustrating the attachment means of FIG. 27 after it has been disengaged from the housing means of the base means and has been moved to a location remote therefrom and has been magnetically mounted by the magnetic attachment means portion thereof to a ferromagnetic supporting surface.

FIG. 29 is a fragmentary, partially-broken-away view similar to FIG. 28, but illustrates the remote attachment means positionally reversed with respect to the supporting surface from the showing of FIG. 28, thus placing the suction cup attachment means portion down and in attaching engagement with respect to said supporting surface, which need not be ferromagnetic.

FIG. 30 is a fragmentary enlarged view of a slight modification of the form of the invention shown in FIGS. 6-9 taken on a plane generally similar to that of FIG. 9. In FIG. 30 no resilient retention clip is shown similar to the showing of FIG. 9, but it should be understood that it may be employed, if desired. For purposes of drawing simplicity and clarity, no portion of the housing means below the upper part thereof and no portion of the apparatus behind the plane of the view are illustrated in this view.

FIG. 31 is a somewhat simplified three-dimensional view of a modified type of housing means with all other portions of the apparatus removed for reasons of drawing simplicity and clarity since it should be understood that the housing means of FIG. 31 may be employed with any of said other portions of the apparatus illustarted in various of the other figures and/ or described hereinafter. In this view, the housing means comprises effectively hinged half portions (with one of said half portions being provided with similar complete opposite end closures). The effectively hinged half portions are shown in open relationsip in FIG. 31 prior to closure and locking engagement thereof in the manner shown in FIG. 32.

FIG. 32 is a cross-sectional view of the modified type of housing means illustrated in FIG. 31 which shows the half portions thereof after they have been effectively closed and interlocked so as to comprise a completely closed cylindrical housing means functionally equivalent to any of those illustrated in connection with the other forms of the invention described herein.

Generally speaking, the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. l3 inclusive may be said to comprise an electrically energizable light-emitting head means, such as is generally designated by the reference numeral 20, a base means adapted to be supplied with electrical energy, and one exemplary flashlight-simulating form of which is generally designated by the reference numeral 22 in FIGS. 1 and 2, with said light-emitting head means 20 and said base means 22 being effectively provided with positionally adjustable interconnecting means, such as is generally designated at 24, connected therebetween in a manner such as to be controllably repositionable into any of a plurality of different positions whereby to correspondingly position said light-emitting head means 20 relative to said base means 22 in a manner such that said light-emitting head means 20 will direct light rays emitted therefrom into a desired region, when electrically energized, and in a manner providing optimum illumination of said region with an absolute minimum of glare directly reaching the eyes of a user of the complete adjustable emergency trouble lamp means comprising said three elements 20, 22, and 24.

Also, the apparatus of the present invention may be said to generically include attachment means for effectively attaching the base means 22 in a selected position with respect to a suitable auxiliary mounting surface or structure, not shown in connection with said first form of the invention but shown in FIG. 11 illustrating a slightly modified form of the invention which will be described in greater detail hereinafter.

In the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated, said attachment means is generally designated by the reference numeral 26 and takes the form of magnetic attachment means comprising one or more permanent magnets cooperable for temporary magnetic mounting attachment in any selected position with respect to any suitable ferromagnetic auxiliary mounting surface, which effectively defines most surfaces associated with a motor vehicle, for example.

It will be understood that the exemplary first form of the invention generically described above provides an arrangement ideally suited for use as an adjustable emergency or trouble lamp means of a portable nature which may be carried by a motorist so that, in the event that his motor vehicle breaks down or has some sort of difficulty after dark, he may stop the motor vehilce and find the source of the difficulty by electrically energizing the light-emitting head means 20 and, after locating the source of the difficulty which might comprise a fiat tire or some minor mechanical trouble under the hood of the automobile, or the like, the motorist may then appropriately mount the base means 22 adjacent to a region where the motor vehicle malfunction exists and/ or where the motorist will attempt to effect minor repairs, and the base means 22 may be maintained in this position by magnetic attachment and engagement of the magnetic attachment means 26 with respect to any convenient near at hand portion of the motor vehicle body, fenders, hood, inside engine compartment surface, or even a portion of the engine or adjacent accessories so that the base means 22 will subsequently remain in firmly mounted relationship with respect thereto until subsequently manually removed by the motorist after completion of his investigation or minor repair work.

After magnetic mounting of the base means 22 in a selected position with respect to a motor vehicle in the manner generally described above, the motorist may then disengage the light-emitting head means 20 from the cylindrical left end cap 28 of the housing means 30 comprising parts of said base means 22, such a disengaged relationship being clearly shown in FIG. 2, and then the motorist may positionally readjust said lightemitting head 20 into an optimum position for directing light rays emitted from the light-emitting head means 20 into a desired region where the motorist intends to investigate the source of the motor vehicles malfunction or to attempt minor repair work. This repositioning operation is made possible by the positionally adjustable interconnecting means 24 having a remote head end 32 connected mechanically and electrically to the light-emitting head means 20 and having a base end 34 connected to the opposite or right cylindrical end cap 36 carried by the housing 30 of the base means 22. Of course, it will be understood that the connection at 34 is also both a mechanical and electrical connection in a manner similar to the connection at 32 and that since the base means 22 carries Within the housing 30 a source of the previously mentioned electrical energy comprising, in the exemplary form illustrated, one or more battery means 38, the operation of the controllably operable electrical switch means 40 slidably carried by the housing 30, which is effectively in circuit with the electric light bulb 42 of the light-emitting head means 20, will cause effective electrical energization of said electric light bulb 42 which will emit light rays in the conventional relatively narrow desired conical angle with respect to a central light ray thereof, directed toward the desired region where the motorist intends to make an inspection of the cause of the motor vehicle malfunction or attempts to repair same, such as to provide optimum illumination with a minimum of glare.

In the exemplary form illustrated, the light-emitting head means 20 may additionally include light directing and/or focusing means, such as generally designated at 44, which may comprise a reflective mirror means 46 which, in one preferred form, may comprise a substantially parabolic mirror, although not specifically so limited, and, additionally, it may include a front focusing lens or window panel 48 which, in certain forms of the invention, may be relatively positionally adjustable with respect to the location of the electric light bulb 42 and/or with respect to the reflective mirror 46 for the purpose of modifying, in a focusing manner, the emitted light rays. However, the invention is not specifically limited to any particular type of light directing means 44 and, in some cases, it may be of a non-adjustable nature.

It will be understood that, in the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated and described above, the interconnecting means 24 comprises both a physical interconnecting structural means interconnecting the light-emitting head 20 and the base means 22, and also comprises an electrically interconnecting electric circuit means electrically interconnecting the electric light bulb 42 of said lightemitting head means 20 with the base means 22 and the electric power source 38 carried thereby. As is best illustrated in the cross-sectional view comprising FIG. 3, in said exemplary first form of the invention, the abovementioned electrical interconnecting electric circuit means of said interconnecting means 24 comprises the two wires 50 which are made of yieldably deformable, malleable, electrically conductive material, while the above-mentioned physical interconnecting structural means of said interconnecting means 24 comprises the flat sheath-like member 52 carrying said wires 50 comprising said electric circuit means portion and which, together with said wires 50, provides a longitudinal yieldably deformable, bendable, and twistable member adapted to be deformed into any desired relationship or position relative to the base means 22, whereby to correspondingly position the lightemitting means 20 in any desired relationship with respect to said base means 22.

In certain cases, in order to further enhance the yieldably deformable characteristic of said interconnecting means 24, said sheath 52 may effectively, in itself, comprise yieldably deformable material and/or may be provided with additional yieldably deformable structural material such as is, for example, indicated in broken lines at 54 in FIG. 3, and which may be positioned in any desired manner in, around, or dispersed through the crosssectional area of the sheath 52 and extending along the length thereof.

It will be noted that, in the exemplary first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, the housing means 30 may be of conventional cylindrical configuration having the batteries 38 positioned therein in similar aligned seriesconnected relationship at their intermediate junction with each other, and having the rear end of the rear .or left battery or cell 38 shown in FIG. 1 connected to an interior contact element 56, taking the form of an electrically conductive compression spring, which seats upon and makes electrical contact with an annular ring-shaped electrically conductive connection element 58 which has slidably movably engaged therewith, when the switch 40 is in the closed solid line relationship shown in FIG. 1, the left end of a longitudinally directed flat, electrical connector member 60, which has its right end connected to the previouslymentioned switch member 40 which, in turn, is slidably mounted within the slot S in the housing 30 for movement of said member 60 between the leftward switchclosed relationship shown in solid lines in FIG. 1 and a rightward extreme switch-open position, such as is indicated fragmentarily in phantom with respect to the switch member 40 in FIG. 1. It should be noted that the right end of said spatulate electrical connector member 60 is at all times in slidable electrical contact with a fixed spatulate electrical connector member 62 which extends rightwardly therefrom, as shown in FIG. 1, to a position radially just inside of and extending slightly beyond the right end of the housing 30 (when the right end member 36 is removed therefrom) and there effectively comprising and defining a right end contact terminal 64 positioned radially outwardly from the forward or right battery central terminal 66.

It will be noted that the previously-mentioned cylindrical end member or cap 36 carried by the right end of the housing 30, as shown in FIG. 1, is adapted to be threaded thereonto and has one of the previously-mentioned electrical circuit portions 50 from the interconnecting means and coupling member 24 connected to a centrally positioned contact element 68 which is adapted to centrally engage and electrically contact the previously-mentioned right centrally positioned effective battery end contact terminal 66. Also said end cap member 36 has another ringshaped contact member 70 adapted to electrically connect the other electric circuit means portion 50 .of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24 to the previously-mentioned right end contact terminal 64 of the longitudinal spatulate electrical connector member 62.

The opposite ends of the two different electric circuit portions 50 of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24 enter the interior of the light-emitting head means 20, as is best shown at the left end of FIG. 1, and each is then connected to the two different effective terminals of the electric light 42 by corresponding electric contact elements 72 and 74; contact element 72 comprising an electrically conductive rear surface portion at the back of the previously-mentioned mirror 46 which extends toward the right and centrally in a generally parabolic manner and into contact with an electrically conductive flange 73 carried by the base 78 of the light bulb 42 and effectively comprising, or being in effective electrical contact with, one terminal of said light bulb 42. The other contact element 74 comprises a centrally positioned contact element adapted to engage in a conventional way the central base end connector element 76 of the electric light bulb 42 which effectively comprises the other terminal of said light bulb 42.

In fact, in connection with the above, it should be noted that the right hand end member or cap 36 threadedly carried by the cylindrical housing 30, and the electrical connector elements 68 and 70 thereof, simulate a conventional flashlight head which normally is adapted to similarly threadedly engage the right end of the housing 30 in lieu of the end member 36 shown in FIGS. 1 and 2.

Therefore, it will be understood that the housing 30 I I may actually comprise a completely conventional flashlight housing with the flashlight head portion and threaded part thereof normally closing one end of the housing being removed therefrom and replaced by the right end member 36 of the present invention.

Also, it should be noted that the previously mentioned left end member 28 is similarly threadedly engaged on the left end of the housing 30 and is adapted to be removed when the batteries 38 need to be replaced.

It should be noted that the light-emitting head 20 is effectively provided with engagement means 79 adapted to allow the interconnecting means or coupling member 24 to be moved into the fully effectively retracted or collapsed relationship shown in FIG. 1 with said lightemitting head 20 engaged on the rear end 28 of the base means 22 so that the complete device simulates, in appearance, a conventional flashlight. This is clearly shown in FIG. 1 wherein the device appears from the exterior to comprise an entirely conventional flashlight operable in the manner of a conventional flashlight for the purposes of a conventional flashlight, with the sole unusual feature being the provision of the magnetic attachment means 26. However, this is not too unusual, since certain conventional prior art flashlights have been provided with magnetic attachment means.

However, the apparently conventional flashlight shown in FIG. 1 can, whenever desired, have the light-emitting head means 20 disengaged from the left or rear end cap 28 of the cylindrical housing 30 of the base means 22 in the manner shown in FIG. 2 and can then be moved into any desired position, in which position it will remain by reason of the yieldably deformable nature of the sheath 52, best shown in FIG. 3, comprising the interconnecting means or coupling member generally designated at 24.

FIG. 4 illustrates a slight modification of the first form of the longitudinal interconnecting means and coupling member generally designated at 24 in the first form of the invention and designated by the reference character 24' in the modified form shown thereof in FIG. 4. Parts of the modification shown in FIG. 4 which correspond functionally or structurally to the first form thereof shown in FIG. 3 are designated by similar reference numerals, primed, however, and it will be noted that the major difference of this modification is the fact that the twao electrical conductor means 50' comprise an inner central exteriorly insulated wire and the complete rectangularly shaped plastic or elastomeric material surrounding the wire and comprising the sheath 52' which, in the FIG. 4 modification of the invention, comprises an electrically conductive plastic or rubber material whereby to provide both electrically conductive leads of the electric circuit means functionally corresponding to the two wires 56 shown in FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4 and illustrates a further modification of the interconnecting means and coupling member, which in this case is generally designated by the reference numeral 24" and which corresponds to the reference numeral 24 of FIG. 4 and the reference numeral 24 of FIG. 2. In fact, all functionally or structurally corresponding parts of this modification are designated by similar reference numerals, doubly primed, however. It should be noted that, in this modification, each of the two electrically conductive leads 50" takes the form of an electrically conductive portion of the plastic or rubber sheath 52" which has an intervening or separating portion of electrical insulating material which is designated by the reference numeral 51.

It should be noted that such electrically conductive plastic as designated at 50' in FIG. 4 and at 50" in FIG. 5 may be of any of the types well-known in the art, such as an ionic-conduction type of plastic wherein the Plastic contains free ions adapted to bring about effective electrical conduction, an electron-conduction type of plastic wherein the plastic contains free electrons adapted to bring about effective electrical conduction, or a filled through particles of any of various different types of electrically conductive material which are in contact with each other-such electrically conductive materials comprising metal particles, carbon particles, or the like.

FIGS. 6-9 illustrate a slight modification of first form of the invention wherein the major difference from said first form of the invention is the fact that the positionally adjustable interconnecting means, generally designated at 24a differs in structure and function to some degree from the corresponding positionally adjustable interconnecting means of the first form of the invention generally designated at 24. In this modified form of the invention, said interconnecting means 24a comprises a longitudinal physical coupling member, also designated by said reference numeral 24a, incorporating therealong effective bendable hinge means adapted to effectively provide for relative bending of longitudinally displaced portions of said coupling member 24a with respect to each other; said coupling member 24a also being provided with twistable, effective torsional connection means adapted to provide for relative twisting of longitudinally displaced portions of said coupling member with respect to each other. In the exemplary modified form illustrated in FIGS. 6-9, said bendable hinge means are generally designated by the reference numeral and comprise a plurality of longitudinal spaced hinge means interconnecting the longitudinal rigid members 82, with said bendable hinge means 80 each having an axis of rotation substantially transverse to the longitudinal direction of the adjacent longitudinal rigid members 82.

In said exemplary modification illustrated in FIGS. 6-9, the above-mentioned twistable effective torsional connection means comprises at least one swivel connection member, such as is generally designated at 84, interconnecting adjacent portions of at least one of said longitudinal rigid members 82, with each such swivel member 84 being rotatable around a longitudinal axis substantially parallel with respect to the longitudinal direction of the adjacent interconnected portions of said longitudinal rigid member 82. In the example illustrated, it will be noted that the arrangement is such that the swivel connection members comprising the twistable torsional connection means 84 of FIGS. 7 and 8 allow the upper rigid member 82 and the left bendable hinge means 80 and, of course, the light-emitting head means 20a to be twisted around a longitudinal axis coaxial with the lower rigid member 82 and relative to said lower member 82 and the base means 22a of the complete device. If desired, an additional twistable torsional connection means similar to the one shown at 84 may be positioned adjacent to the upper bendable hinge means 80 and/or adjacent to the lower bendable hinge means 80. In other words, any desired number of such torsional connection means 84 may be employed in lieu of the specific showing of just one of such torsional connection means 84 in FIG. 8.

It will be understood that the arrangement illustrated in FIGS. 6-9 with respect to the modified interconnecting means or coupling member 24a, is such that the light-emitting head 20a can be controllably moved intovirtually any desired position with respect to the base means 22a, in which position it will remain by reason of the frictional nature of each of said bendable hinge means 80 and torsional connection means 84, thus providing a functionally analogous type of interconnecting means 24a to the corresponding interconnecting means 24 of the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 and described in detail hereinbeforeOtherwise, this modified form of the invention is generally similar to the form illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 with the exception of the fact that normally, when in fully collapsed relationship, the light-emitting head means 20a engages the right end member 36a of the base means 22a rather than the left end member 28a in the manner of the first form of the invention.

It should be noted, as is perhaps best illustrated in FIG. 8, that electric circuit means portions 50a comprising two insulated wires are carried within the rigid members 82, the torsional connection means 84, and the bendable hinge means 80 of the modified interconnecting means or coupling member 24a.

Because of the similarities of the modification of the invention shown in FIGS. 6-9 to the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, similar reference nu merals, followed by the letter a, however, are used to designate parts which correspond structurally and/or functionally thereto.

FIGS. 10-13 illustrate a further slight modification of the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 inclusive and because of its similarity thereto, similar reference numerals, followed by the letter b, however, designate parts which correspond structurally and/or functionally thereto. In this modification, the major difierence from the first form of the invention is the fact that the interconnecting means or coupling member 24b is slightly more than twice as long as the interconnecting or coupling member 24 of the first form of the invention and actually extends along the length of one side (an upper side, as shown in FIG. 10) of the housing means 30b of the base means 22b, across the outer surface of the left end cap member 28b, and then back along the opposite side (the bottom side, as shown in FIG. 10) of said housing means 30b, at which location at 34b it is effectively connected both physically and electrically to the right end cap 36b in a manner similar to the corresponding connection at 34 to the right end cap 36 of the interconnecting means 24 of the first form of the invention as best shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. In other words, this arrangement is such that when the light-emitting head 20b is disengaged from the right end cap 36b, the interconnecting means or coupling member 24b will be found to be slightly more than twice as long as the coupling member 24 of the first form of the invention, and this will allow a greater freedom in repositioning said lightemitting head 20b. There is one other difference between the modified form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-13 and the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 and that is the fact that interconnecting means 24b lies within a shallow recess or groove 94 which passes along both the upper and lower outer surfaces of the housing means 30b and in somewhat broadened form across the outer surface of the end cap 28b, thus providing a partial recessing of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24b as is perhaps best shown in FIG. 12 and in FIG. 13. Otherwise, this modified form of the invention is substantially identical to the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3 and no further detailed description thereof is thought necessary.

However, FIG. 11 is included in order to illustrate particularly and specifically one exemplary type of usage of the modification of the invention shown in FIGS. 10-13, although it is also exemplary of the usage of any of the other forms of the invention illustrated, and should be so understood.

As shown in FIG. 11, it will be understood that the attachment magnet 26b is placed against the ferromagnetic surface 86 of the conventional fuse box housing, generally designated at 88, which will, of course, firmly mount the entire base means 22b in the position shown in FIG. 11. Either prior to said mounting or subsequently, the light-emitting head 20b is disengaged from the end cap 36b of the housing 30b of the base means 22b and is moved into an optimum illumination position, such as is clearly shown in FIG. 11, where it will direct light right into the open fuse box 88 so that the user of the device, generally designated at 90, may closely examine the transparent panels in the back ends of the plurality of fuses 92 to determine which fuse has been blown so that he may replace same.

FIG. 14 is a view very similar to FIG. 13 but illustrates a slight modification thereof with respect to the positioning of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24c of FIG. 14 as compared to the corresponding interconnecting means and coupling member 24b of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-13.

It should be noted that the upper and lower interconnecting means or coupling member portions 24c, and also the portion which passes across the outer surface of the end cap, similar to the end cap 28b of FIGS. 10 and 12, are adapted to lie in substantially flush relationship within corresponding recess means 94c which extend along top and bottom surfaces of the housing means 300 and across the outer surface of said end cap, thus providing a continuous connected longitudinal recess means of a width and depth such as to receive the corresponding portions of the interconnecting means or coupling member 240 therein in a substantially flush manner insofar as the outside surface of said interconnecting means and coupling member 24c and adjacent outside surface portions of the housing 300 and the end surface of the end cap are concerned. This is a particularly advantageous very slight modification of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-13 since, when in fully collapsed relationship, the interconnecting means and cou pling member 241: will not protrude from the surface of the housing means 30c in the manner of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24b with respect to the outer surface of the housing 3012 as shown in the FIG. 10 form of the invention. Otherwise this version of the invention is substantially identical to the FIG. 10 modified form of the invention, and, therefore, no further detailed description thereof is thought necessary. Incidentally, it should be noted that parts of this modification corresponding to those of the FIG. 10 modification are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter c, however.

FIG. 15 is a view similar to FIGS. 13 and 14 but illustrates a further modification of the positioning of the interconnecting means or coupling member, which is designated generally by the reference numeral 2411 in FIG. 15 and which corresponds to the interconnecting means designated at 24c in FIG. 14 and at 24b in FIG. 13. In FIG. 15 it will be noted that said interconnecting means or coupling member 24d is positioned completely exterior of the corresponding portion of the housing 30d in a manner similar to the showing of the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3. In other words, there is no recess such as the recess 94 in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-13 or the recess 94c in the form of the invention illustrated fragmentarily in FIG. 14.

Incidentally, it should be noted that the showing of each of FIGS. 13, 14, and 15 is not limited to the double length type of interconnecting means or coupling member such as first illustrated at 24b in the form of the invention shown in FIGS. 1-0-13 inclusive, but each may be said to also provide an illustration of, and to include and comprehend within the scope of the disclosure thereof, a single length type of interconnecting means and coupling member such as the one generally designated at 24 in the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3.

FIG. 16 fragmentarily illustrates a modified form of the invention which may have an interconnecting means of the single length type, such as is generally designated at 24 in the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, or which may have an interconnecting means and coupling member of the double length type similar to the showing of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 10-13. Also, said modified interconnecting means of FIG. 16, which is generally designated by the reference numeral 242, may be partially recessed in a manner similar to the showing of FIG. 13, fully recessed in a flush manner similar to the showing of FIG. 14, or not recessed at all in a manner similar to the showing of FIG. 15. In the exemplary arrangement illustrated in FIG. 16, it is of the partially recessed type similar to the showing of FIG. 13.

The major difference of this modification of the invention comprises the different structure of the interconnecting means and coupling member 242, which comprises a flexible hollow metal cable of a type well-known in the art which is conventionally made of a spirally wound outer strip forming a helix having edge portions thereof movably interconnected and effectively joined together whereby to form what might be called effective expansion and contraction joint means therebetween. In the example illustrated fragmentarily in FIG. 16, said spiral strip is specifically designated by the reference numeral 96 and an exemplary one of said expansion and contraction joint means is specifically designated by the reference numeral 98. Each of the inner wires or electrically conductive leads is specifically designated by the reference numeral 50e. Functionally the modification of FIG. 16 is similar to the previously-described forms of the invention and no further detailed description thereof is thought necessary or desirable in view of the complete description set forth hereinbefore of the functionally similar forms of the invention set forth in the earlier figures of the drawing. Parts of this modification which correspond structurally or functionally to the earlier forms of the invention are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter e, however.

FIGS. 17 and 18 illustrate a modified form of the invention very similar to the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, with some differences with re spect to the attachment means 26 of the first form of the invention and the base or connection end 34 of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24. In the case of the modified form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 17 and 18, all of said parts are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter f, however, and it will be noted that said attachment means generally designated at 26 and best shown in FIG. 18 actually comprises an enlarged engagement portion 100 of substantial width and length whereby to provide a substantial measure of stability when in engagement with a supporting surface (not shown). Also, said enlarged engagement portion 100 carries a pair of permanent magnets 26f' along the laterally spaced bottom edge portions thereof for appropriate magnetic engagement with a ferromagnetic supporting surface (not shown). However, it will be noted that even when the supporting surface is not of a ferromagnetic nature, the broad and lengthy contact portions of said engagement means 100 will provide a relatively stable gravity-type engagement and support with respect to an underlying supporting surface (not shown) and quite irrespective of the permanent magnet means 26 It will also be noted that, in the modification of FIGS. 17 and 18, the outer manually actuatable portion of the switch means 40 actually comprises a longitudinally and slidably movable portion of the right part of said engagement portion 100 illustrated in FIG. 18 and the right permanent magnet 26 carried thereby, as shown in FIG. 18, although an independent exterior actuating portion of said switch 40 may be provided, if desired.

Additionally, it should be noted that the base end 34 of the interconnecting means and coupling member 241 is broadened in the modification of FIGS. 17 and 18 in order to provide greater strength at the point of maximum bending and greatest stress concentrations when the device is in an opened-up operative relationship rather than in the fully retracted and collapsed relationship shown in FIGS. 17 and 18.

FIG. 19 is a view similar to FIG. 18 illustrating a very slight modification thereof and similar parts are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter g, however. In this modification, it will be noted that the entire bottom engagement portion g is'slidably movably mounted with respect to the housing means 30g and comprises the exterior manually actuatable portion of the switch means 40g. It should be noted that said engagement portion 100g may be of a gravity type having no permanent magnets similar to the showing of FIG. 18 or may include magnets similar to those shown at 26]" in FIG. 18. Therefore, such permanent magnets are shown in phantom only in FIG. 19 and are designated by the reference numeral 26g. Otherwise, the FIG. 19 modification is similar to the FIGS. 17 and 18 form of the invention.

FIGS. 20 and 21 illustrate fragmentarily a further modification of the invention, primarily with respect to the attachment means, which in this case is generally designated by the reference numeral 2611. In this modification, said attachment means 26h comprises an enlarged bottom engagement portion or means 100k adapted to provide a very stable engagement with an auxiliary supporting surface (not shown) and said engagement portion 100k is provided with four pivotally mounted swing-out permanent magnet members or elements 26h, each of which is mounted on a thin pivot arm 102 which is pivotally attached by a pivot pin or screw 104 to each of the four corners of said engagement portion 100k as is clearly apparent upon careful examination of FIGS. 20 and 21. The arrangement is such that either magnetic or gravitytype engagement of the engagement portion 10011 with respect to an auxiliary supporting surface may be effected in either the retracted position shown in solid lines in FIGS. 20 and 21, or in a magnetically extended relationship with each of the permanent magnets 26h outwardly extended in the manner of the exemplary one shown in phantom in FIG. 21. This has the effect of increasing the lateral width of the effective engagement or contact with such an auxiliary supporting surface and, therefore, greatly increasing the stability of the engagement therewith. Otherwise, this modification of the invention is similar to forms previously described herein and illustrated in the earlier figures of the drawing and, therefore, no further detailed description is thought necessary. Similar parts of this modification are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter h, however.

FIGS. 22 and 23 illustrate a further very slight modification of the invention which is very similar to the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 1-3, and similar parts are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter j, however. The major difference of this modification of the invention from the first form of the invention is the fact that the light-emitting head means generally designated by the reference numeral 20 may be controllably engaged with respect to either end cap 36j (as shown in FIG. 22) or 28f (as shown in FIG. 23). The major purpose of this is best illustrated in FIG. 23 wherein the engagement of said light-emitting head means 20 with the end cap 28f causes the intervening portion of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24j to form the loop clearly shown in FIG. 23, which may be employed for mounting or carrying purposes. In other words, it may be placed on a hook for mounting the entire device or may be looped over a users wrist or belt, or the like, for carrying the complete device.

FIG. 24 illustrates one exemplary type of the lightemitting head means which differs somewhat from the first form thereof as illustrated in the first form of the invention and as best shown in FIG. 1. In this modification, parts which are functionally or structurally similar to earlier forms of the invention are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter k, however. It should be understood that the modified lightemitting head means generally designatedat 20k may be employed in lieu of, or as a replacement of, any of the other light-emitting head means shown in the other forms of the invention, and it is primarily for the purpose of providing a spare or extra lens storage space 106 wherein one or more spare or extra lenses 48k may be stored for interchangeable or replacement use when the operative lens 48k is either broken or is inadequate for the proposed use of the deviceas, for example, when various different colored lenses, such as a red danger-warning lens, or the like, might be employed under emergency or dangerous conditions. In other words, the spare or extra lenses 48k may merely be ordinary replacement lenses or may be lenses having different optical characteristics with respect to providing narrow or broad band focussing and/ or dispersion of light, or for coloring the light in any desired manner, or for producing various other desired optical effects and/ or results.

The storage space 166 is provided by making the lightemitting head means 20k of FIG. 24 in two portions. One of said portions of the light-emitting head means 20k comprises the rear part 20k, which is provided with the engagement means 79k for engaging a flashlight end in a manner similar to that described hereinbefore. The other of said portions of the light-emitting head means 20k comprises the front or left part 20k" as shown in FIG. 24, which carries the electric light bulb 42k, the previously-mentioned lens 48k, and the reflective mirror means 46k. It will be noted that said rear portion 20k and said front portion 20k of said light-emitting head means 20k are th'readedly engaged with respect to each other, as indicated at 108, and effectively define between the opposed inner faces thereof said extra lens storage space 166, which can be opened by merely disengaging the threadedly engaged portions thereof indicated at 108.

FIGS. 25 and 26 fragmentarily illustrate a very slight modification of the invention and parts which are functionally and/or structurally similar are designated by similar reference numerals, followed by the letter m, however. -In this modification, the major change is the fact that the switch 40m is arranged to electrically energize the magnet 26m which, in this case, is an electromagnet having a coil 110 in circuit with the switch 40m and arranged so that when said switch 40m is in the position shown in solid or full lines in FIG. 25, the fixed electrically conductive strip members 112 and 114 and the movable electrically conductive member 60m effectively close the circuit between the coil 110 and the conventional batteries adapted to be carried within the housing 30m in a manner similar to the showing of the batteries 38 in the first form of the invention as best shown in FIG. 1.

It should be understood that when the switch 46111 is in the position shown in FIG. 25, while the electromagnet 26m is energized and is, therefore, on, the light-emitting head means 20m is not energized. However, when the switch 40m is moved from the solid-line position shown in FIG. 25, toward the left into the broken-line position shown therein, the light-emitting head means 26m also becomes electrically energized by being effectively connected in circuit with said battery means by said switch means 40m in a manner similar to the showing of the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. l3. it should be noted that no light bulb, such as that shown at 42 in the first form of the invention, and no batteries, such as those shown at 38 in the first form of the invention, and also various other previously described and illustrated elements, are shown in the modification of FIGS. 25 and 26 since it is not believed necessary to repeat the showings of said elements and structure because they have previously been illustrated and described in detail.

FIGS. 27-29 illustrate a slightly modified form of the invention wherein an extension electrical cord 116 is electrically connected between the base means, generally designated at 22:2, and the attachment means generally designated at 2611 so that they may be physically separated by a distance corresponding to the length of the coiled wire or electrical extension cord 116 shown in FIG. 27 in its stored or retracted relationship. Also, in this modification, said attachment means 2622 has a magnetic attachment portion 2611' and a suction cup attachment means portion 2611" on opposite surfaces of the complete attachment means 2611. This allows said complete attachment means 2611, which normally is fastened onto one end of the housing 30n, as shown in FIG. 27, to be removed therefrom and extend to a remote location and then fastened to an auxiliary ferromagnetic supporting surface 118 by placing the permanent magnet attachment portion 26n' thereagainst in the manner fragmentarily illustrated in FIG. 28, although not necessarily limited to the particular positional orientation shown in said figure. As an alternative arrangement, the entire remote attachment means 26n may be turned over from the position in FIG. 28 into the position shown in FIG. 29 and the suction cup attachment portion 261-1 may be pressed into suction engagement with respect to a supporting surface which need not necessarily be ferromagnetic and which is designated by the reference numeral 118' in FIG. 29.

After use in either of the manners illustrated in FIGS. 28 and 29, the engaged portion of the attachment means 2611 may be removed from the supporting surface and the extension cord 116 may be wound around the suc tion cup portion 2611 and the complete attachment means 2611 may then be replaced in end-engaged relationship with respect to the housing 30!: in the manner clearly shown in FIG. 27.

Of course, if desired, the other magnet 2611" carried by the sidewall of the housing 3611 may be used for attachment purposes in a manner similar to that described hereinbefore in connection with other forms of the invention and, in such case, the end-mounted removable attachment means 25n need not be disengaged from the end of the housing 30%. 'Under such conditions, the device of FIG. 27 may be used in a manner very similar to that described in detail hereinbefore in connection with the first form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. l3 and similar parts are designated by similar reference numerals, followed 'by the letter n, however.

FIG. 30 is a fragmentary enlarged view of a slightly modified version of the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 69 and is a view taken along a plane very similar to the plane of FIG. 9. For purposes of drawing simplicity and clarity, no retaining bracket of the type shown in FIG. 9 is illustrated in FIG. 30 and no portion of the housing means 30p below the upper part thereof or behind the plane of FIG. 30 is illustrated in this View. It will be noted that, in this form of the invention, the two rigid longitudinal members 82p of the interconnecting means and coupling member 24p, when in folded relationship, lie in side-by-side adjacent positions with respect to each other, which is permitted by reason of the fact that the bendable hinge means, which is of the same type as that shown at in FIGS. 6, 7, and 8 (although such a hinge means is not shown in FIG. 30), is an offset type of hinge effectively offsetting the two rigid longitudinal members 82p from each other so that when folded down, they lie in the collapsed sideby-side relationship clearly shown in FIG. 30. It should be noted that said two rigid members 82p are of substantially segment-shaped configuration so that, when in the relationship shown in FIG. 30', they effectively define a substantially curved outer surface fairing into the adjacent ortions of the outer surface of the housing means 30p in a relatively unobtrusive manner. However, it should be noted that rather than having this type of arrangement with the arcuate outer configurations of the adjacent rigid members 82p, they may be of a slightly dilferent cross-sectional configuration and be adapted to 19 fold into groove or recess means of the type best shown in FIGS. 13 or 14, if desired.

FIG. 31 is an open three-dimensional 'view of just the housing portion 30: of a modified form of the invention wherein parts which structurally or functionally correspond to earlier described forms of the invention are designated by the same reference numerals, followed by the letter q, however. In this modification, the interconnecting means or coupling member, such as that shown at 24 in the first form of the invention and designated by similar reference numerals (followed by different small letter subscripts, however) in the various other modifications of the invention, may take any of said forms. This is also true with respect to various other elements of the invention and, therefore, for purposes of drawing simplicity and clarity, all of said elements and structures are omitted from and are not shown in either FIG. 31 or FIG. 32. In this modification, the housing means 30: takes the form of two substantially semi-cylindrical molded plastic housing half portions 30g and 30g" longitudinally interconnected along a pair of adjacent edges 120 by flexible efifective hinge means generally designated by the reference numeral 122, as is perhaps best shown in FIG. 32, made of the same integral molded plastic material. An opposite or outer pair of edges 124 is provided with effectively resiliently engageable interlock means 126 cooperable for forcible resilient closing and locking engagement whereby to maintain the previously open semicylindrical portions 304 and 30q of the housing means 301 as shown in FIG. 31, in the closed relationship shown in FIG. 32 after the closing of same whereby to comprise and define the complete cylindrical housing means 30q. It should be noted that the bottom housing portion 30g" is integrally provided with the cylindrical end cap or end portions 28q and 36: although they could be carried by the top housing portion 30q or each of said housing portions 301 and 30g" could carry a half of said end portions 28: and 36q, if desired.

It will, of course, be understood that batteries of the type shown at 38 in the first form of the invention may be placed Within the housing half portions 30q' and 30g when in the open relationship shown in FIG. 31, after which said housing half portions may be closed into the interlocked relationship shown in FIG. 32, thus providing a closed battery-containing housing 30: functionally equivalent to any of the housing means of any of the other forms of the invention illustrated and described hereinbefore. Therefore, the closed housing means 30q of FIG. 32 may be considered to be capable of being employed in lieu of any of the other housing means of the various other forms of the invention disclosed in the drawings or in the present specification and may, if desired, be provided 'with recess means of the type best shown in FIGS. 13 or 14, or may be provided with rigid, external arms, either of the type illustrated at '82 in the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 69 or of the externally arcuately contoured type shown at 82;; in FIG. 30. In other words, any of the various types of interconnecting means and/or coupling means in any of the other variant forms of the other portions of the present invention may have a housing means of the type illustrated in FIGS. 31 and 32.

It should be noted that the switch means in the various forms of the invention, such as the exemplary one shown at 40 in the first form of the invention and best illustrated in FIG. 1 thereof, has been shown as an onofi type of switch and has not shown the inclusion therein of a momentary closure type of push-button switch, or the like, which is advantageous in connection with flashlights and has been conventionally used in connection therewith in the past. It should be understood that the detailed structure of such a momentary closure type of switch structure is not shown in the drawings of this application for reasons of drawings simplicity and clarity, and since such momentary closure type of switches are well-known in the art and do not touch upon the inventive aspects of the present invention. However, it should be clearly understood that the present invention contemplates the use of such momentary closure type of switch means in various forms of the present invention and no exclusion thereof is intended. Also, it should be noted that while the base means has been shown in various forms of the present invention as being made of plastic, it is not specifically so limited and the construction may be altered to be made of metal and may be made of various other suitable materials. This may be true with respect to the entire device or with respect to certain portions thereof only. In other words, certain portions might be made of metal and certain portions might be made of plastic and the various coupling or connection means for the end caps and/or the light-emitting head means may be correspondingly varied as needed, and all such variations are intended to be included and comprehended within the broad scope of the present invention.

It should be understood that the figures and the specific description thereof set forth in this application are for the purpose of illustrating the present invention and are not to be construed as limiting the present invention to the precise and detailed specific structure shown in the figures and specifically described hereinbefore. Rather, the real invention is intended to include substantially equivalent constructions embodying the basic teachings and inventive concept of the present invention.

I claim:

1. A convertible flashlight and trouble lamp, comprising:

(a) a flashlight body adapted to be conveniently gripped by an operator and to receive batteries therein, said body having a cap at the forward end thereof;

(b) an electrically energizable head having means for emitting light from the forward end thereof and having a socket at the rear thereof, said socket being adapted to receive said cap and to frictionally engage the same for removably mounting said head on the forward end of said body in axially aligned relation; and

(c) interconnecting means including a flexible elect-rical conductor for supplying current from said body to said head, said interconnecting means being attached at one end to said head and at the other end to a point adjacent the rear of said body, said interconnecting means being of a length approximately equal to the distance between said point and said head to thereby lie in fully extended position disposed along the length of said body when said head is mounted thereon, but having sufiicient rigidity to support said head in a variety of position remote from said body, whereby said head may be controllably repositioned with respect to said body.

2. A device as defined in claim 1, wherein said body carries attachment means comprising a magnet adapted for attachment to any ferromagnetic mounting surface.

3. A device as defined in claim 1, wherein said interconnecting means comprises an elongated member embodying manually bendable and twistable malleable material.

4. A device as defined in claim 3, wherein said elongated member comprises stilf but manually bendable and twistable electric conductors encased in manually bendable and twistable insulation.

5. A device as defined in claim 3, wherein said elongated member comprises manually bendable and twistable electric conductors encased in stiff but manually bendable and twistable insulation.

6. An adjustable trouble lamp means, comprising: electrically energizable light-emitting head means; a base means adapted to be supplied with electrical energy, said base means being provided with magnetic attachment means cooperable for temporary magnetic mounting at- 21 tachment in any selected position with respect to any suitable ferromagnetic auxiliary mounting surface; positionally adjustable interconnecting means having a base end connected to said base means and having a remote head end connected to said electrically energizable head means and adapted to be controllably repositionable into any of a plurality of different positions whereby to correspondingly position said head means relative to said base means and in a manner such that said head means will direct light rays emitted therefrom into a desired region when electrically energized, said interconnecting means comprising a physically positionally adjustable physically interconnecting structural means portion interconnecting said head means and said base means and electric circuit means electrically interconnecting said head means and said base means for transmitting said electrical energy adapted to be supplied to said base means, therefrom to said head means for controllably electrically energizing said head means; said head means taking the form of a remote projection lamp means physically adjustably carried at said remote head end of said interconnecting means and being movable into a collapsed retracted position with respect to said head means substantially aligned with and engaged with one end of said base means whereby to effectively become unitary therewith; and engagement means for efiectively causing positive engagement of said head means with respect to said end of said base means when said interconnecting means is in said collapsed retracted position; said base means comprising a longitudinal outer housing means of substantially cylindrical form having longitudinal recess means along at least one side thereof adapted to receive corresponding portions of said interconnecting means when in said fully collapsed retracted position with respect to said base means and said interconnecting means being adapted to lie substantially flush with laterally adjacent outer surface portions of said housing of said base means when in said fully collapsed retracted position.

7. A device as defined in claim 6, wherein said longitudinal recess means extends along opposite sides thereof and a rear end thereof.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,107,061 10/1963 Morgan 2408.2 3,310,673 3/1967 Fletcher 24081 3,315,073 4/1967 Araki 24053 XR 2,071,557 2/1937 Miyaoka 240-10.6 2,648,762 8/1953 Dunkelberger 24010.6 2,739,311 3/1956 Bullard 24059 2,886,664 5/1959 Graubner 24052.15 XR NORTON ANSHER, Primary Examiner.

D. L. JACOBSON, J. F. PETERS, JR.,

Assistant Examiners.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2071557 *15 May 193523 Feb 1937Miyaoka YasutakaCombination flashlight and headlight
US2648762 *16 Dec 195011 Aug 1953Dunkelberger Milton SCombined housing and flexible flashlight support
US2739311 *5 Jul 195227 Mar 1956Bullard CoSafety cap
US2886664 *11 Feb 195712 May 1959Union Carbide CorpFlashlight and switch therefor
US3107061 *10 Oct 196015 Oct 1963King Bee Mfg CoVehicle lighting system
US3310673 *12 Nov 196421 Mar 1967Fletcher MiltonCollapsible lamp
US3315073 *10 Jan 196618 Apr 1967Z & T Imp Ing Co IncHigh-intensity lamp
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3595222 *10 Jun 196827 Jul 1971Anthony James SearLaryngoscope
US3917940 *15 May 19744 Nov 1975Duddy James JMagnetic base utility lamp
US3961175 *23 Jan 19751 Jun 1976Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.Portable battery operated electric light
US5188450 *24 Sep 199123 Feb 1993George AndersonCushion grip and spare battery holder for flashlight
US5517392 *5 Aug 199414 May 1996Black & Decker Inc.Sleeve retention for flexible core of a flashlight
US5521803 *5 Aug 199428 May 1996Eckert; Lee H.Flashlight with flexible core
US5692268 *29 Jul 19962 Dec 1997Case; Richard N.Flexible securing device
US5749644 *28 Oct 199612 May 1998Black & Decker Inc.Flexible electrical device with attachable ends
US6042155 *18 Sep 199628 Mar 2000Lockwood Products, Inc.Ball and socket joint with internal stop
US662621011 Jan 200230 Sep 2003Water Pik, Inc.Flexible arm assembly
US662965113 Jul 20007 Oct 2003Water Pik, Inc.Flexible shower arm assembly
US664105712 Dec 20014 Nov 2003Water Pik, Inc.Shower head assembly
US70664119 Sep 200327 Jun 2006Water Pik, Inc.Flexible shower arm assembly
US71117989 Sep 200326 Sep 2006Thomas Gary JShower head assembly
US790542921 Feb 200615 Mar 2011Water Pik, Inc.Dispensing system and method for shower arm
US802482214 Jun 200527 Sep 2011Water Pik, Inc.Articulating shower arm
US862168126 Sep 20117 Jan 2014Water Pik, Inc.Articulating shower arm
US878921830 Apr 200829 Jul 2014Water Pik, Inc.Molded arm for showerheads and method of making same
EP0687851A1 *15 Jun 199520 Dec 1995Black & Decker Inc.Flashlight
EP0695907A1 *4 Aug 19957 Feb 1996Black & Decker Inc.Flashlight
Classifications
U.S. Classification362/190, D26/44, 362/198
International ClassificationF21L4/00, F21V21/32, F21V21/14
Cooperative ClassificationF21L7/00, F21V21/32
European ClassificationF21L7/00, F21V21/32