US 3803372 A
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United States Patent 1 1 1 1 3,803,372
Dijkstra v 1451 Apr. 9, 1974 [5 SWITCHING COUNTER 3,566,049 2/1971 Wright 200/11 TW x A 3,283,185 11/1966 Somers et al. 30/4392 X  Rem Hume Dllksira, Drachten 3,375,337 3/1968 Barrett et al 200/11 TW ux Netherlands 3,440,380 4/1969 Harasymiak 200/156 3,435,167 3/1969 Pfleger ZOO/ll TW  Ass'gnee' gf g New 3,654,413 4/1972 Jordan et al. 200/156  Filed: Sept. 1, 1 971 Primary Examiner-James R. Scott  Appl 188679 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Frank R. Trifari Related US; Application Data  Continuation of Ser. N0. 852,308, Aug. 22, 1969,
 ABSTRACT  US. Cl 200/52 R, 200/16 D, 30/DlG. l V  Int. Cl. H0lh 15/10 A switching-counter mechanism for switchin on batg  Field of Search 30/4392,- 34 A, DIG. l; tery-operated appliances, and automatically register- 200/1 1 TW, 156,, 52R, 16 C, 16 D ing the number of times the switch has been actuated, the counter indicia corresponding to the approximate ' References Cited degree of exhaustion of the battery.
UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,104,299 9/1963 Koci et al. 200/ 156 10 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures PATENIEDAPR 9 m4 SIEEI 1 0F 2 'INVENTOR. R El N HARMEN DIJKSTRA AGEN SWITCHING COUNTER Thisis a continuation of US. Pat. application Ser. No. 852,308, filed Aug. 22, 1969 now abandoned.
The invention relates to domestic appliances, especially dry-shavers, use batteries at least for certain periods of operation and devices for indicating the amount of use and degree of exhaustion of the batteries.
Users of such-domestic appliances provided with batteries frequently are greatly inconvenienced, because generally they cannot even approximately predict the instant at which batteries will become exhausted. This inconvenience is aggravated during week-ends or holidays, when such appliances are taken to places where it is uncertain whether an article like a battery will be obtainable, let alone whether there are facilities for re-' charging. I
It is an object of the invention to eliminate or at least obviate these disadvantages, and the invention is distinguished in that the device comprises a counting mechanism which registers the number of switching operations. Experience has shown that the number of switching operations performed on operative batteries of an appliance in order to cause them to deliver the electrical energy requiredfor the appliance, may be regarded as an i'ndication of the degree of exhaustion of these batteries. This applies especially to appliances which are used daily for a given period of time, such as dryshavers, tooth brushes, mixers, etc. With respect to such appliances this count of switching operations may accordingly be'used as a convenient standard.
The device according to the invention is further characterized in that the counting mechanism comprises a make-and-break switch for operating the appliance. This switch, designed as a slide switch, operates a resilient pawl which cooperates with a ratchet wheel; the wheel is arranged for rotation about its axis and actuates the counter of the counting mechanism. During one switching movement of the switch, the resilient pawl causes the ratchet wheel to move through a distance required to advance the counting position of the counter by one unit and a locking member locks the ratchet wheelduring the other switching movement of the switch.
The invention will be described more fully with reference to the accompanying diagrammatic drawings which show an embodiment from which component parts irrelevant to the invention have been omitted and from which further advantageous details will appear:
FIG. 1 is a front elevation of an embodiment of the device according to the invention in which the resilien pawl engages the ratchet wheel,
FIG. 2 'is an elevation similar to that of FIG. 1, in which the resilient pawl slides'over the teeth of the ratchet wheel which is in the form of a sprocket wheel, and v FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of the device according to the invention 1 FIG. 4 is a front perspective view of the invention. Referring now to FIG. 1, the reference numeral 1 designates an elevation of an embodiment of the device according to the invention. This-counting mechanism includes a switch 2 in the form of a slide switch which operates a resilient pawl 3: the pawl cooperates with a ratchet wheel 5 which is arranged for rotation about its axis 4 and in turn actuates the counter of the counting mechanism; the resilient pawl 3 during-one switching movement in the direction indicated by the arrow A of the switch 2 advances the ratchet wheel through a distance required to increase the figure indicated by the counter which is actuated by the ratchet wheel Sby one unit. During the other switching movement of the switch (in the direction indicated by the arrow B, see FIG. 2),the ratchet wheel 5 is locked'by a locking member 6. The ratchet wheel 5, which is in the form of a sprocket wheel having teeth 7, also acts as a counter. On actuation switch 2 is a first movable contact 17, a
second movable contact 18, and interconnection means 19, all of which move as an integral unit whenever actuator 2 is moved. FIG.' I shows the actuator 2 moved to the right with contact 18 engaging fixed contact 20, while contact, 17 engages fixed contact 21, whereby the circuit (shown in FIG. 2) is closed. When the actuator is moved to the left, to the position shown in FIG. 2, contacts 18 and 20 are separated, when opens the circuit, even though contacts 17 and 21 remain in contact. For convenience the actuator 2 has a knob or button 2a that may be pushed with the users finger.
The distance between two successive counter positions aand b (FIG. 1) which are situated on a circle corresponds as an angle at the centre to the spacing between two tooth roots 8, the pitch, of the ratchet wheel 5' in the form of a sprocket wheel, which tooth roots 8 lie on a circle concentric with the circle on which the counter positions are indicated.
The locking member 5 comprises a leaf spring 11 held between two studs 9 and 10. A part of the leafspring 11 lying between the studs 9 and 10 is provided with a bulge 12 the outer periphery of which fits in the space between two successive teeth 7 of the ratchet wheel 5 in the form of a sprocket wheel.
The resilient pawl 3 is constituted by a resilient arm 13 which forms part of the switch 2. During one switching movement of the switch 2 (in the direction indi cated by the arrow A) the free, hook-shaped end 14 of the arm 13 engages with the toothed rim of the ratchet wheel 5 in the form of a sprocket wheel (FIG. 1), whereas during the other. switching movement of the switch (in the direction indicated by the arrow B) this hook-shaped end 14 slides over this toothed rim.
The ratchet wheel 5, which acts as a counter is provided with a central boss 15 having a slot 16 in its free end. By means of, for example, a screwdriver the ratchet wheel acting as a counter may be set to zero, one unit of the counter being one tooth of the wheel.
of circumferentially spaced teeth and circumferentially spaced indicia corresponding to the teeth, a slide member slidably mounted to said base for cyclic movement between first and second positions, a pawl carried by said slide member and extending to and contacting a second position moves said pawl and said tooth that it contacts and thereby rotates said wheel, with the indicia likewise moved for indicating the number of times the switch has been operated, and resilient locking means on said base including a portion that releasably engages and restrains the wheel from rotating until same is driven by said slideand pawl between first and second positions, said slide member and base further comprising a make-and-break electrical switch within said electrical circuit, the slide in one of said positions closing said circuit, and in the other position opening said circuit. v
2. Apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said locking means comprises a spring having one part secured to the base and a second part that releasably engages at least one tooth.
3. Apparatus according to claim 2 wherein said locking means is a leaf spring, and said second part thereof is curved for extending into a space between two adjacent teeth of said wheel.
4. Apparatus according to claim 1 wherein said indicia indicate consecutive units, and each switching operation of the slide from first to second position rotates the wheel whereby the indicia indicates one additional unit. I
, 5. In a dry shaver using a battery for providing electric energy to operate the shaver, the battery having available a quantity of electrical energy which is sufficient for operating the shaver a predetermined approximate number of times, switch means on said shaver comprising a first part reversably slidable between of and on positions, the first part in on position closing the electrical circuit, thus electrically connecting the battery to operate said shaver and partially exhausting the battery, the first part in off position opening said circuit, and a second part having observable indicia formed as a sequence of symbols corresponding to the number of said switching operations for which the battery is sufficient, the second part being engaged and rotatable by the first part to register and indicate one of said symbols for each successive switching operation, whereby the second part automatically indicates the degree of exhaustion of the battery.
6. Apparatus according to claim 5 wherein said first part isa slidable make-and-break switch.
7. Apparatus according to claim 6 wherein said second part is a counting mechanism comprising a ratchet wheel rotatable about its axis, a resilient pawl carried by said first part and contacting said wheel, lateral movement of the first part and pawl driving said wheel to rotate an amount sufficient to indicate the next consecutive symbol of said sequence of symbols, and a locking member for restraining the wheels between switching operations.
8. Apparatus according to claim 7 wherein the ratchet wheel is a sprocket wheel.
9. Apparatus according to claim 6 wherein said resilient pawl extends from said make-and-breakswitch.
10. Apparatus according to claim 5 wherein said second part is re-settable to indicate the beginning of said sequence of symbols.
Q CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3, ,372 A Dated April 9, 1974 ln -(gi) REIN HARMEN DIJKSTRA It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:
In the title: 9
The FOREIGN APPLICATION PRIORITY DATA is as follows:
-Dutch Application No. 6812260, filed August 29,1968- Q Col. 1, line 6, before "use" insert -which- Signed and Sealed this ninth Day Of September 1975 SEAL] 0 Arrest."
RUTH C. MASON C. MARSHALL DANN Arresting Officer Commissioner ofParents and Trademarks O