Title:
Illuminated drinking vessel
United States Patent 2224319


Abstract:
My invention is concerned with drinking vessels or glasses, and its primary object is to provide them with a self-contained source of light, the rays from which are directed into the beverage within the vessel and induce in it beautifully luminous effects, especially in colored or effervescent...



Inventors:
Schroyer, Robert M.
Application Number:
US21789238A
Publication Date:
12/10/1940
Filing Date:
07/07/1938
Assignee:
Schroyer, Robert M.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
215/377, 362/190, 362/802
International Classes:
A47G19/22
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Description:

My invention is concerned with drinking vessels or glasses, and its primary object is to provide them with a self-contained source of light, the rays from which are directed into the beverage within the vessel and induce in it beautifully luminous effects, especially in colored or effervescent liquids.

To effect this purpose, I employ a drinking vessel having a beverage holder of glass or some LO other light-transmitting material, this holder being supported upon a hollow base member.

Immediately below'the beverage holder and in the top of the base member, I place a small electric lamp, for my source of light. Within the base member are arranged a necessary electric battery and suitable means, such as a switch, for closing a circuit through the lamp and battery and controlling the flow of electricity.

Rays of light emitted by the lamp pass upward through the beverage holder, whose bottom thus functions, for the purposes of my invention, as a light-transmitting element or lens. Since this lens may be cast in any desired shape, it is apparent that the rays of light entering the beverage may be given any desired directive pattern and may create any one of innumerable luminous effects. Thus, for use with an effervescent beverage, the lens may be so made that a bright shaft of light is sent up through the center of the beverage, brilliantly illuminating the rising bubbles of gas. On the other hand, for use with a dark red beverage, it may be so constructed that light rays are concentrated toward the outside of the beverage, and a bright glow beneath a darker top achieved. Innumerable designs and effects are conceivable.

My present embodiment of this invention is disclosed in Figs. 1 and 2, the latter being a sectional view along the vertical axis II-II of Fig. 1; Fig. 3 is an enlarged sectional view along the vertical axis II-II of Fig. 1, showing a modified form of switch; and Figs. 4, 5, 6, and 7 are plan views taken from the line IV-IV of Fig. 3, and show the modified switch from beneath.

In the embodiment disclosed in Figs. 1 and 2, a glass beverage holder I is supported upon a hollow base member 2, there being upon the bottom of beverage holder I a circular flange 3 which makes engagement with the outer surface of base member 2. I now employ a screw connection 4 in joining these two members, but it is apparent that many other common devices could serve equally as well.

Base member 2 is composed of a broad circular foot 5, a relatively thin stem or shank 6, and a flat top 1. At present for this base member I use brass, which gives a light, thin, and cheap construction; yet, I contemplate the possible use of other metals, or materials such as plasticized resin, or even glass, in which latter case base member 2 might be cast integrally with beverage holder I.

An electric lamp 8 is detachably supported by top 1 of base member 2, passing through an aperture in said top. Also supported by top 1 is a reflector 9 which serves to direct rays of light from lamp 8 upward.

A metallic cup 10 is detachably secured to the lower portion of base member 2 by a screw or similar connection. One function of cup 10 is to support a battery 12, which effect it accomplishes through an intermediate insulating cylinder 11, battery 12 being thus forced tightly up against the bottom contact of lamp 8. The bottom of cup 10 is provided with an aperture 13 2( and a vertical flange 14, which depends from the edges of said aperture. A non-conductive pushbutton 15, capable of easy vertical reciprocation, passes through aperture 13 and flange 14. Fixed vertically within push-button 15 is a metallic pin 2t 16, to the top of which is fixedly attached a flat electrical contact plate 11, which, when pushbutton 15 drops down, rests upon and makes electrical contact with the metallic bottom of cup 10.

Push-button 15 is of such length that its lower end projects below the lower edge 18 of base member 2, whenever plate 17 makes contact with the bottom of cup 10. Within cup 10 and contacting both battery 12 and plate IT is a spring 19, which acts as an electrical conductor and tends to force plate I7 down into contact with the bottom of cup 10. With the mechanism thus shown, whenever the drinking vessel is raised from a supporting tray or table, spring 19 forces plate I1 down into contact with the bottom of 46 cup 10 and creates an electrical circuit from battery 12 through lamp 8, base member 2, cup 10, plate II and spring 19. Upon the other hand, whenever the drinking vessel is placed upon a tray or table, push-button 15 is forced upward, contact between plate 17 and the bottom of cup 10 is broken, and the circuit through lamp 8 ceases to exist.

While at present I prefer the above described switch for controlling the emission of light, it is apparent that equally desirable luminous effects may be achieved through the substitution of somewhat different switches. Thus, if it is desired to illuminate the beverage only while the drinking vessel is resting upon a table, I use an automatic push-button switch whose action is just the reverse of that which I have described, or, if it is desired to make the emission of light independent of the position of the glass relative to a supporting table, a positive switch is substituted. A switch which accomplishes several of these alternatively desired results is illustrated in Figs. 3 through 7. In Fig. 3, metallic cup 10 has an aperture 13 as in the embodiment illustrated in Fig. 2, but a vertical flange 30 extends upwardly from the edges of aperture 13, instead of downwardly as in Fig. 2. A non-conductive pushbutton 31, capable of easy vertical reciprocation, passes through aperture 13 and flange 30 and has fixed vertically within it a metallic pin 32, which extends slightly below the bottom of pushbutton 31. A flat electrical contact plate 33 is fixedly attached to the top of metallic pin 32.

Extending horizontally through non-conductive push-button 31 and securely attached to metallic pin 32 is a metallic pin 34, which acts as an electrical contact in a manner hereinafter to be described. Just.above metallic pin 34, push-button 31 is cut away slightly to form a recess 35 topped by a shoulder 36. Fixed vertically in the bottom of cup 10 is a small metallic pin 37, which supports and acts as a fulcrum for a rotatable metallic plate 38. Plate 38 is stepped downwardly at 39.

As shown in Figs. 4, 5, 6, and 7, metallic plate 38 is roughly in the form of a segment of a circular plane, having pin 37 as its axis. An aperture 40 in plate 38 is, with metallic pin 32, equidistant from axial pin 37 and is of sufficient size to receive the end of metallic pin 32, but not of sufficient size to receive the lower end of nonconductive push-button 31.

When it is desired that the drinking vessel be illuminated only when it is raised from a supporting tray or table, plate 38 is rotated to the position illustrated in Fig. 4. Push-button 31, being entirely disconnected from plate 38, acts in the same manner as push-button 15 described in Fig. 2. When the drinking vessel is raised, spring 19 depresses push-button 31 and makes an electrical contact between plate 33 and flange 30, whereupon an electrical circuit is set up through lamp 8.

When it is desired that the drinking vessel be illuminated only when it is resting on a table or tray, plate 38 is rotated to the position illustrated in Fig. 5, the edge of plate 38 entering recess 35 in push-button 31. When the drinking vessel is resting upon a table, push-button 31 is forced upward until contact is made between horizontal pin 34 and plate 38, whereupon an electrical circuit is set up through lamp 8. On the other hand, when the drinking vessel is raised from the table, spring 19 forces plate 33 downwardly, breaking the contact between pin 34 and plate 38. Pushbutton 31 descends only until shoulder 36 comes to rest upon the top of plate 38; and it remains in this non-circuit forming position.

When it is desired that the drinking vessel be illuminated none of the time, plate 33 is rotated to the position shown in Fig. 6. The lower end of metallic pin 32 falls within aperture 39, and non-conductive push-button 31 comes to rest T0 upon plate 38 in such position that no electrical circuit can exist, plate 33 being maintained above flange 30.

When it is desired that the drinking vesssel be constantly illuminated, plate 38 is rotated to the position shown in Fig. 7, so that pin 32 rests upon the upper side of plate 38, which position effects a circuit through lamp 8.

Returning to a more detailed description of beverage holder I, I have stated above that its bottom is cast with a circular flange 3, for purposes of joinder with base member 2. The outer surface 24 of flange 3 is preferably frosted to hinder the emission of any light from this area and also to conceal the mechanism contained within. The bottom portion of holder I which is surrounded by circular flange 3 (or roughly that lying between lines 20 and 21), constitutes, for the purposes of my invention, a lens 22 which transmits into the beverage light emitted by lamp 8. As before stated, lens 21 may be cast in any one of innumerable shapes in accordance with the known physical laws of lenses. Through an application of these laws, any desired pattern of light rays may be directed into the beverage and any desired luminous effect achieved. Thus, in some drinking vessels, I so construct lens 22 that numerous rays of light are bent toward the vertical axis of beverage holder I, and a brilliant shaft of light rises through the center of the beverage. In others, lens 22 concentrates most of the rays of light toward the outer portions of the beverage. In others, the light rays are. evenly distributed. Moreover, the side walls of beverage holder I may be cast in numerous forms and shapes, to concentrate or reflect light and to help create desirable luminous effects.

In this embodiment, it is noteworthy that the electrical circuit is positively insulated from the beverage; there is no direct contact between them, and any liquid which spills over the edge of beverage holder I can not pass beyond a drip flange 23 formed near the bottom of beverage holder 1. Also beverage holder I is detachably supported by base member 2, an arrangement of some advantage, since it permits easy removal of beverage holder I for washing and the immediate use of base member 2 with another beverage holder, thus reducing the requisite number of base members.

According to the provisions of the patent statutes, I have explained the principle and construction of my invention, and have illustrated and described what I now consider to represent its best embodiment. However, I desire to have it understood that, within the scope of the appended claims, the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically illustrated and described.

I claim: 1. A drinking vessel comprising a beverage holder formed of light transmitting material, a hollow member supporting at its top an electric lamp and containing an electric battery and means for closing a circuit through said battery and lamp, and the bottom of said beverage holder being provided with an integral downwardly extending exposed flange encircling the upper end portion of said hollow member and forming above it a recess for receiving said lamp whereby said flange is illuminated, the bottom of said holder directly above said lamp being in the form of a lens for controlling the rays of light from the lamp, and means inside of said flange for removably attaching it to said hollow member.

2. A drinking vessel comprising a beverage holder formed of light transmitting material and provided upon its bottom with a downwardly extending flange, a hollow stem member supporting at its top an electric lamp and containing an electric battery and means for closing a circuit through said battery and lamp, the upper end of said member being surrounded by said flange and the lower surface of said flange diverging downwardly to form a drip edge spaced from said member, and complementary means upon said member and upon the inner face of said flange removably attaching said holder and said member together in such relative positions that said lamp is positioned immediately beneath the bottom of said beverage holder.

3. A drinking vessel comprising a beverage holder formed of light transmitting material and provided upon its bottom with a downwardly extending flange, a hollow metal stem member supporting at its top an electric lamp and containing an electric battery, an electrical conductor button slidably mounted in the bottom of said stem member and adapted to engage it when the member is lifted whereby to close a circuit through the lamp and battery, a conductor spring compressed between the button and the bottom of the battery, and a rotatable metal plate electrically connected to the bottom of the stem member for maintaining said circuit closed when the plate is swung beneath the button for electric contact therewith, the side of said button being provided with insulating means for engaging the top of said plate when the plate is swung to one side of the button for maintaining said circuit open when the stem member is raised, said button being provided with conducting means for engaging the bottom of the plate when it is in said side position for closing the circuit while the stem member is resting on a support, and said button and plate being formed for maintaining the circuit open at all times when the plate is in a predetermined position below the button. 4. A drinking vessel comprising a beverage holder formed of transparent material, a hollow stem supporting at its top an electric lamp and containing an electric battery, means for closing a circuit through the battery and lamp, the bottom of said beverage holder being provided with an integral downwardly extending exposed flange encircling the upper end portion of said stem and forming above it a recess for receiving said lamp whereby the flange is illuminated, and means inside of said flange for removably attaching it to said stem, the outer surface of the flange being provided with a plurality of closely adjacent projections.

ROBERT M. SCHROYER.