Patents Examined by Donald M. Gurley
  • Patent number: 6047440
    Abstract: A non-rotatable pinion cap for use on a non-handed door closer where both ends of the drive pinion extend beyond the cylinder body. The pinion cap has one exposed edge for engaging the door or door frame surface and includes a christmas tree plug for attaching the pinion cap to a threaded hole in one end of the drive pinion. The plug can either be free to rotate with the pinion or it can be fixed to the cap. The slippage of the plug permits the drive pinion to rotate while the pinion cap does not rotate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: April 11, 2000
    Assignee: Schlage Lock Company
    Inventors: James E. Jensen, Andy Current
  • Patent number: 6041476
    Abstract: Pulleys of a block and tackle window balance include hub steps that interact with other components to reduce the introduction of dirt and dust particles into areas vulnerable to wear. The hub steps of some of the pulleys are recesses formed about the axial bores of the pulleys that mate with protrusions on an axle and a washer. The hub steps of other pulleys are protrusions that abut a support plate and heads of rivets that act as axles. The hub steps allow inverse mounting of the window balance so that the balance can be mounted in a shoe channel for movement with a sash of the window, attached to the sash shoe, and the cord can be attached to the jamb or frame, thus increasing sash travel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 21, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Caldwell Manufacturing Company
    Inventor: Richard S. deNormand
  • Patent number: 6041478
    Abstract: A low-profile hinge for hingedly joining adjacent door sections of a sectional door. The low profile for the low-profile hinge is attained by using a relatively small diameter hinge pin fabricated from spring steel. The greater strength characteristic of spring steel compensates for the smaller diameter of the spring steel hinge pin to provide a hinge that has a lower profile while maintaining the necessary mechanical strength at a level equal to or greater than a conventional hinge. The spring steel hinge pin is fabricated to be incrementally shorter than the pin tube and the ends of the pin tube are crimped to retain the spring steel hinge pin in the pin tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: Martin Door Manufacturing, Inc.
    Inventor: David O. Martin
  • Patent number: 6038735
    Abstract: A handle for a compact tool which includes two handles and each of the handles has a tool member pivotally connected thereto. Each handle includes a connecting plate from which an operation end longitudinally extends, and two side walls bent downwardly from two respective opposite sides thereof. Each of the side walls has an engaging end extending longitudinally beyond the operation end and a tool member is pivotally connected between the two engaging ends. Two recesses are defined respectively between each of the engaging end and the operation end.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 21, 2000
    Inventor: Chung-Min Chang
  • Patent number: 6038733
    Abstract: An elongate, plastic housing has formed on the upper surface thereof two, spaced, parallel, longitudinally extending grooves the first of which has slidably positioned therein an elongate, metal, tackless carpet securing strip the opposed side edges of which extend slidably beneath elongate flanges that project from opposite sides of the first groove. Nails or the like are employed to secure the strips and the underlying portion of the housing to a floor, with the second groove facing upwardly to accommodate and secure therein the integral rib section of a conventional threshold insert. In a second embodiment a third groove is formed on the surface of the housing slidably to accommodate a second tackless carpet securing strip adjacent the side of the second groove remote from the first groove.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 21, 2000
    Inventors: William E. Carder, Timothy Carder
  • Patent number: 6035489
    Abstract: A hingeable and separable coupling device for coupling two objects together includes a first connectable member having a pair of holes, a shaft having an end which is slidably and biasedly extended through one of the holes of the first connectable member, a sleeve having a stub which is slidably and biasedly extended through another of the holes of the first connectable member, a pair of flanges one of which is mounted to the sleeve for the movement thereof and the other of which is mounted to the shaft for the movement thereof, a second connectable member having a pair of holes one for receiving the end of the shaft and another for receiving the stub of the sleeve, and a lever being pivotally attached to the first connectable member and having a pair of tapered projecting members for engaging and moving the flanges which in turn retracts the stub and the end of the shaft from the holes of the second connectable member and which uncouples the two connectable members.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: March 14, 2000
    Inventor: Thomas J. Adams
  • Patent number: 6032306
    Abstract: A device for limiting the intrusion of a shower curtain into a shower enclosure includes a clamp portion for releasably engaging the shower curtain rod, and an tail portion depending from the clamp portion for impinging on the shower curtain and urging it outwardly. The clamp includes an inverted U configuration adapted to extend about the curtain rod. The U-configuration includes one leg that is joined integrally to the tail portion, and the other leg is provided with a detent tip. A detent lever extends from the tail portion proximate to the detent tip, and includes an array of closely spaced detent teeth adapted to engage the detent tip. The detent lever is resiliently biased toward the detent tip, so that the tip remains engaged with the teeth unless otherwise disturbed. The two legs of the clamp may be squeezed together to engage the curtain rod frictionally to immobilize the device on the curtain rod, and the device will remain in this disposition until released.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2000
    Inventor: Mark A. Gummin
  • Patent number: 6032329
    Abstract: A device (10) designed to be placed between a gate (12) and a powered actuator (16) to permit release on command and free movement of the gate with respect to the actuator. The device comprises a first plate (11) designed to be fastened to the gate and a second plate (17) designed to be connected kinetically to the actuator. A first and a second plate are supported to rotate freely around a common rotation axis (13) designed to coincide with the gate rotation axis. Means of bolt engagement (18) are arranged to engage between them a first and a second plate to make them integral. Two operating levers (19,20) each arranged on one side of the device and having cam surfaces (31,32) to cause independent backing of the bolt (24) of the engagement means (18) against the thrust of elastic means (25) to move it towards a disengagement position upon movement of one of the two operating levers from a rest position to an operating position. Locks (22,23) can be provided to prevent inappropriate operation of the levers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2000
    Assignee: Automatica Casali s.r.l.
    Inventor: Celestino Casali
  • Patent number: 6029315
    Abstract: A handle intended to be used in conjunction with a conventional screwdriver that allows a user to operate on a screw without having to remove and reposition the screwdriver on the screw. The handle comprises a shaft having an elongated cavity disposed therein, wherein the handle of a conventional screwdriver is accommodated within the cavity in a lengthwise orientation. A spring attached to the end of the cavity is longitudinally disposed within the cavity, the spring having a rubber stopper disposed at its end opposite of the end of the cavity. When a screw is to be operated on, a downward normal force is applied to the screw in addition to the rotational force required to turn the screw. The downward force compresses the spring, and the rubber stopper contacts the top of the handle, thereby translating rotational motion of the shaft to the handle of the screwdriver, to the shaft of the screwdriver, and finally to the screw.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 29, 2000
    Inventor: Robert Flower
  • Patent number: 6026543
    Abstract: An expandable pull rod for luggage having two bottom tubes, two middle tubes, two top tubes, a handle provided with a pressing device, and an arresting device formed of two main control members and two auxiliary control members. When the expandable pull rod is extracted, the top tubes and the middle tubes are located by the main control members of the arresting device, whereas the middle tubes and the bottom tubes are located by the auxiliary control members of the arresting device. The arresting device can be triggered by the pressing device to release the top tubes, the middle tubes and the bottom tubes when the pull rod is retracted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 9, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 22, 2000
    Inventor: Shou Mao Chen
  • Patent number: 6018846
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a safety hinge mechanism for foldable play yard and that is used to pivotally connect a first frame rod and a second frame rod thereof. The connecting bracket can be selectively rotated along the longitudinal axis of the frame rod into a locking position, or a neutralized position. A locking device is provided and disposed onto any one of the first and second frame rods. The locking device can be moved along the longitudinal direction into a locked position, or a released position. Wherein in the locked position, the locking device is engaged with the connecting bracket and the connecting bracket is prevented from any rotational movement thereof. As a result, the first and second frame rods are allowed to fully extend while they are not allowed to fold together. However, when the locking device and the connecting bracket are disengaged, the connecting bracket is rotated to a neutralized position and the first and second frame rods can be folded in a side-by-side manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: February 1, 2000
    Inventor: Sieno Tsung-Ming Huang
  • Patent number: 6003201
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for counteracting the effects of warpage, distortion and/or tilting of a support track in a sliding closure assembly, such that a door in the sliding closure may be freely moved along the support track, but, when desired, may be secured in one or more locations such that an external force is required to move the sliding fixture from its desired position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 1997
    Date of Patent: December 21, 1999
    Assignee: Arthur Cox & Sons, Inc.
    Inventor: William F. Ryczek
  • Patent number: 6003911
    Abstract: The door stop comprises a stop block. One of the surfaces of the stop block has an angular recess therein with angular faces positioned at an acute angle with respect to the stop block surfaces. The stop block is configured to insert into the jamb when the door is opened and the angular faces engaged over the top corner of the hinge edge stile of the door to hold the door open. A handle is attached to the stop block so that it may be easily inserted and removed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 1996
    Date of Patent: December 21, 1999
    Inventor: Michael Robert C. Sowash
  • Patent number: 5996180
    Abstract: A handle assembly comprises two handle pieces. Each handle piece comprises a left section having left and right ends and inside and outside faces, a right section having left and right ends and inside and outside faces, and a center section containing a notch. The center section connects the right end of the left section to the left end of the right section in a generally diagonal manner. The handle pieces are capable of interlocking such that the center section of each handle piece fits into the notch of the other handle piece, the inside face of the left section of one handle piece is situated against the inside face of the left section of the other handle piece, and the inside face of the right section of one handle piece is situated against the inside face of the right section of the other handle piece. The handle assembly can be incorporated into a bag comprising two handle straps, each handle strap being associated with a different handle piece.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 7, 1999
    Assignee: Cyrk, Inc.
    Inventor: Alex D. Eisenzopf
  • Patent number: 5991976
    Abstract: A backing member includes locking structure for locking a Z-axis clip in alignment with the aperture of the clip aligned with aperture in the backing member. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the backing member includes a track with spaced inwardly projecting lips which overlie edges of the base of the fastening clip for holding the clip adjacent the backing member. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the backing member further includes an interlocking tab which can be ramped to snap-lock into an alignment aperture associated with the fastener clip for locking the fastener to the backing member against sliding motion within the track.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 30, 1999
    Assignee: Prince Corporation
    Inventors: Todd C. Adams, Thomas M. Kelley
  • Patent number: 5991975
    Abstract: A pinned hinge comprising with first and second hinged members respectively including first and second leaves. The leaves have knuckles that define first bores that extend through the knuckles in a longitudinal direction. A pin is received within the bores of both leaves, pivotably joining the leaves. A cover, defining a longitudinal channel, surrounds the knuckles, protecting them. The leaves are operatively connected to the cover such that pivotal movement of the leaves displaces the cover with respect to the pin. Shanks connecting the knuckles to leaf bodies preferably have at least a double bend to retard interference between the cover and the leaves during pivoting. In one embodiment, the knuckles have gear sectors meshed with racks in the cover. In another embodiment, leaf springs operatively connect the cover to the leaves. Further embodiments include a seal disposed for sealing the cover to the hinged members when the hinge is closed. End caps block the ends of the cover.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 30, 1999
    Inventor: Austin R. Baer
  • Patent number: 5983455
    Abstract: A pole for supporting a tool includes an elongate body extending along an axis. The elongate body defines a plurality of outwardly facing facets about the axis. The elongate body preferably includes a first tube and a second tube telescopically received within the first tube for adjusting a length of the pole. The two tubes are locked relative to one another by a locking mechanism that is fixedly coupled to the first tube with a detent engaging member that extends from the locking mechanism into engagement with a detent defined by the first tube. The locking mechanism preferably comprises a collet which is threadably coupled to a chuck that defines a plurality of outwardly facing facets. Rotation of the chuck causes the chuck to overlap the detent engaging member and to frictionally clamp the collet against the second tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1999
    Assignee: Newell Operating Company
    Inventors: Bruce C. Polzin, Anthony W. Gilbert, Robert A. Shaffer, Terrance M. Case
  • Patent number: 5983450
    Abstract: A through-wall bushing defines a protected passage through a wall or similar structure, and includes a first member having an axially extending threaded portion. A second ring member is threaded onto the first member and clamps the wall structure between opposing flanges of the first member and second ring member. At least one friction inducing locking mechanism is configured on at least one of the threaded surfaces of either the first or second member, or both members. This friction inducing locking mechanism has a configuration that increases the degree of torque required to tighten and loosen the respective members upon the threads engaging the locking mechanism. The locking mechanism has a shape so that, once engaged with opposite threads, the torque required to loosen the members is greater than the torque required to further tighten the members.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 16, 1999
    Assignee: Salem Vent International, Inc.
    Inventor: Randy L. Pratt
  • Patent number: 5970581
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a gripping device for a hand held article. The gripping device has an encasement assembly for fitting on a hand grip portion of the article. The encasement assembly contains a controllable fluid, such as magnetorheological and electrorheological fluids. The gripping device also has an activating assembly for selectively applying a field to the controllable fluid to change its Theological behavior, e.g., increasing its viscosity. Thus, the controllable fluid can maintain the shape of the encasement assembly until the activating assembly withdraws the applied field therefrom. The present invention further relates to a manual implement that has the above gripping device fitted thereon and a method for using a manual implement having the above gripping device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1999
    Assignee: BIC Corporation
    Inventors: Barry W. Chadwick, Michael T. Nowak
  • Patent number: 5971408
    Abstract: A vertically adjustable wheel assembly for movably supporting an appliance cabinet or the like upon a supporting surface includes a housing, a supporting bracket, a wheel unit, an adjusting rod, an adjusting screw and various elongated mounting members. The wheel unit is defined by a pair of spaced rollers that are interconnected by a reduced diametric portion. The wheel unit is rotatably attached to the support bracket by an axle member, while the adjusting rod is also mounted for rotary movement by the support bracket. The support bracket is pivotally mounted to the housing, with both the wheel unit and the adjusting rod being permitted to rotate relative thereto. The adjusting screw extends through a frontal portion of the housing and it is threadably connected to the adjusting rod such that rotation of the screw causes pivoting of the support bracket relative to the housing and movement of the wheel assembly between fully extended and fully retracted positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 4, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 26, 1999
    Assignee: Maytag Corporation
    Inventors: Sheldon W. Mandel, Douglas A. Heims