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Publication numberUS2132647 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 11, 1938
Filing dateOct 9, 1935
Priority dateOct 9, 1935
Publication numberUS 2132647 A, US 2132647A, US-A-2132647, US2132647 A, US2132647A
InventorsRobins May J
Original AssigneeRobins May J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Toy construction kit
US 2132647 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

M. J. ROBINS TOY CONSTRUCTION KIT Filed Oct. 9, 1935 2 Sheets-Sheet l Ma J.

BY f


I olu/ns,

,Oct.- 11, 1938:

M. J. RO'BINS TOY CONSTRUCTION KIT Filed Oct. 9, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR, J Rabi/n8,

Patented Oct. 11, 1938 I 2,132,647 fl TOY CONSTRUCTION KIT "May J. Robins, Katonah, N. Y.

Application cowbel- 9, 1935, Serial him 44, 153 10 Claims. [(01. 46-26) My present invention relates generally to toys, and has particular reference to an improved type of construction kit. The present toy is of the building block variety, the elements being composed preferably of wood or equivalent material. One of the main objects of the invention is to provide 'a novel combination of elements, cooperable in a unique manner, to permit the assembly of selectedelements into a variety of toy structures.

The invention is primarilydlr'ected toward the Very young child, and aims to provide a toy of high educational value, the elements and their mode 01 assembly being characterized by unusual simplicity, yet embodying novel features which confront the child with problems of varying diil'l- -culty, requiring and enabling him to employ a certain amount of ingenuity in assembling the" elements in diiferent ways.

The interconnection and mutual assembly of the elements is grounded upon the iundamental'-' ly simpl'e interengageme'nt o! a rod-like element .or pin witha hole or recess. The kit makes provision for two different basic cross-sections of 2. pins, .every stepof interconnection or assembly involving, in one form or another, the engage ment of a pin element oi! particular cross-section with an opening or bore of corresponding crosssection. Accordingly, one of the first things which the child learns, in using the present kit,

is that a large pin will not go into a smiallhole; or, stated more generally, that a pin of particular cross-section fits snugly and accurately only into a bore of corresponding cross-section. Briefly, the present toy comprises a variety of diflferent elements which may be conveniently classified as main structure elements, pins, and

' connectors. The main structure elements consist primarily of slabs-like members having a variety of different bores therein, including marginal keyhole bores; The pins are provided in two sets, one set having cross-section #1, the other set having 'a'diflerent cross-section #2.

Preferably, one of the cross-sections is smaller in areathan the other." The connectors are unique bodies, prismatic 'in nature, and of dumb-bell shape, thereby enabling them to be engaged within the keyhole bores hereinbefore mentioned. f

In accordance with the fundamental concept of the present invention, the connector heads,

and the bores all conform to thebasic cross-sections defined by the two sets of pins.

Various other auxiliary elements enter into the present hit,- and will be described in greater glee tall hereinafter.

I achieve the foregoing objectaand such other objects as may hereinafter appear or be pointed out, in the manner illustratively exemplified in the accompanying drawings, wherein-=- Figures l'through 1e are perspective'views, re- 'spectively, of various slab members embodying the features of the present invention;

Figures Zithrough 2b are perspective views, re-f spectively, of auxiliary blocks;

Figures 3 through 311 areperspective views, re-' spectively, of different female-type connectors? Figures 4 through 4e are-perspective views,- re spectively, of diflerent typeset dumb-bell-ty'pe' connectors; v e x I -1 v Figures 5 and 5a. are perspective views, respecf- 15 tively, of the type of pins entering into thekit;

e Figure 6 13 a perspective view: of a" wheel -elev ment;

Figure'fia is a perspective view oi. retaining;

Figure! is a p rspective view of a simpleassembled structure; I Figure 8 is across-sectional view taken substantially along theline 8-8 ot'Figm-g']; a g i Figure 9 is a perspective viewer-another pos- 2 5 *sible'structure'; a

Figurelo is" a perspective view 0! an extreme ly simple toy structure;

Figure 11 is an exploded view showing another illustrative assembly of elements; I

ther illustrative assembly of elements;jand" Figure 13 is a'perspective view of a group of slabs showing their possible utility as form boards. I 35 In Figure 1 I have illustrated a slab ill whic is substantially rectangular and which is provided, v at its opposite ends I I with the marginal keyh le 1 bores l2 and I3. By the term keyhole bore -I' refer to an opening or recess 'having an enlarged '40 5.5; inner portion and a narrowed shankportionar ranged perpendicular to the edge.

In addition to the marginal bores l2 audit-the slab it is provided with the medial bores l4, l5,

and It. The bores I4 and I5 extend transversely 45 through 'the'block, while the bore It extends downwardly into the upper face but does not necessarily'continue all the way through the block, e a While the elements may obviously be of varyso ing sizes, it is preferable-to make the wldthof each rectangular slab bear a simple proportion to the-length. Thus, the slab illustratively shown in Figure i has a width'exactly half of the length.--

I'hebore Itzis preierablyarranged at. the., mid- 55 30 Figure 12 is an exploded view *shoWing afur- -ofthepinilshowninl"lgure5. Thispinicrms point, andthe bores II and II are preferably ranged midway between the center of the slab and the ends-thereoi.

'For purposes of illustration, I have shown the hates it and ii of relatively-large diameter, corresponding to the diameter of the pin l1 shown inFlgure 5a. Thispinformsone ofasetoi similar pinsoi varying lengths, yet all of uniform cross-section. I have shown also the bores", II, and ll, of relatively smaller cross-section or diameter, this cross-section conforming to that one of the second setoi pins, also of varying lengths, yet all oi uniiorm cross-section.

' For illustrative purposes, I have shown the pins 11 and ll of circular cross-section, andthe bores shown in the other drawings are, therefore, of corresponding circular configuration and area.

It will be understood, however. that the main features of the invention do not-require circular cross-sections to beemployed. The pinsoi one.

set, e. g., of thetype shown in Figure. 5a, might be oisquare, triangular, or other particular crosssectional configuration: whereas the pins of the -:other set might also have cross-sectional conilgurations other than circular. It is not even essential, iromall aspects, that one set of pins be smaller in cram-section than the other; nor

that the-configuration of one set be the. same as" that oithe other. In-its simplest-form, however, and hence in a preferred embodiment of the in- .vention. the basic to the fundamental circular cross-section, and it is for reason that the. pins and-bores and other corresponding elements'have been illustrated .hereinoicircularcross-sectiom- 1, Theslab ll ofFigure lismerelytypical of simv ilar slabs that may have different lengths and widths. All of the slab elements, however, are cpreferabiy oi the same thickness- InFigure-Ia I have shown a slab it which has I the; shape of a'right-angle 45 triangle. n the edge II, constituting the hypothenuse, I provide 1 a marginal keyhole bore 2! which I have shown identical withthe bores l2 and of Figure 1. Ill mm ID, the 'Slflb 1! 18' identical with the slab It. with the exception that themarginal keyhole bore 13' is of a smallersize, whereby the inner or main portion conforms to the basic cross-section of the pin lloi Figure 5. Preterably. the distance between the center of the. bore and the edge II is the same as thecorresponding distancefin Figure la. In general, 'it may be statedthat where bores oi one or the other di-I meter or cross-section are alternativelyprm vided, the distances between centers are maintained constant.

m Figure 1c, the slab" a iii-every similar to that of Figure 1d, :except' that-the slab is semi-circular in configuration, instead oi triangular. The marginal keyhole, bore 28 is identical with the bore II and conforms to the basic cross-section of the pin l'l of Figure 5a.

' In Figure 1d a slab 21 is shown, identical in every respect with the slab of Figure 1,- except I that the medial bore 20 is of" the larger size, as compared with the bore it of Figure 1. The

bore 2| may or may not extend all. the way 1 through theslab, and it preferably'does not extend all the way through; and it conforms to the basic cross-section of Figure to.

In Figure is, I have shown a slab 2! having thesamewidth as'the slabs II and 21, but having a length twice as great as either of the latter. The slab 2! has a marginal keyhole bore ll amass-1 II is oi'the larger variety. I

. Obviously, many other auxiliary adjacent to the edge Ii, a similar bore I! ad- J iacent to the edge 33, and a bore 34 adjacent to the edge 36. The bores 8| and N are of the cross-section conforming to Figure 50, while the bore 32' is of the other basic cross-section conforming to the pin ll of Figure 5. The slab 20 is merely illustrative oi the large variety of difierentslabs-that may be constructed, and it will .be understoodthat the pomible variations in arrangement oi bores is very great. Bsentially,

and'fimdamentally, however. all of the 'boresin the slabs conform to the basic cross-sections oi I the two setsoi pins. i1 and-ll.

n is within the purview any invention to embellish the' slabs and other elements, and,

under certai'ncircumstances, to provide relativelylargerecesses ill. in the upper faces oi the slabs, as shown" in Figure 13. This renders the slabs useful as "form boards", 1. e., the recesses I" would be triangular, square, circular, etc., for the purpose ofenabling a child'to insert blocks ill of corresponding cross-section into the recesses- In Figure 2,-I have illustrated an auxiliary block OI which ispreierablm though not necessarily. oi square vcross-section. and is thus difierent from the stalls oi Figures l-le. I have shown the block-ll with a medial transverse bore. l'l oi the-larger'variety.

The auxiliary block ll of Figure 2c is identical II is of the smaller variety;

The auxiliary block l of Figure 2b is in cross-section, and the medial transverse bore bloom of this character may be provided, the confi urations and lengths of Figures 2-2!) being merely illustrative; Other bores may also be provided, in a large variety of diiierent relationships, but, es-

sentia'lly. all oi the'bores conform to the basic cross-sections oi the two-sets oi pins.

1 In Figure ,8, I have illustrated a female-type connector whose utility will be; hereinafter described. "It consists oi a flat it having spaced-bores it. These bores have" been shownv oi the larger The connector 46 oi Figures-is similar, exce that only two bores ll are. provided. The connector oi FigureSbisin everyrespectsimilarto that oi Figure 8a, the bores be'ing the same as the bores I, but the exterior-contour oi the 'connector'is somewhat diiierent.

The bores'oi Figures 3-30 may be oi-the-larger or the smaller variety, or, more accurately, of

the type #1 or type #2 cross-section, depending the pins i1 upon the basic cross-sections which and II are caused to embody.

a. v with the block it, except that the medial bore In Figures-He, 1 have illustrated various modiiied forms oi the main type oi connector. in

Figure 4, I have shown a prismatic body I oi dumb' beil shape, whereby the. opposite heads I) and II are provided, interconnected by the integral medial web portion II. The body 48 is preferably of the same thickness as the slabs oiwFigures' l-le; and the connector heads 0 and BI conform to the basic cross-sections here- I the centers of the heads and ll.

cross-section of the pin ll.

In' F'igure 4b, I have illustrated a connector I in which one head it conforms to one basic cross-section, while the opposite head l1 conforms to the other basic cross-section.

In Figure 4c, the connector I is in every respent the same as that of Figure 4, except that the head {I has beenshown provided with an axial bore OI, this bore conforming to the basic- Obviously, other. variations will readily suggest themselves. Both heads might, for, example, have axial bores therein? or the larger head of Figure ibmight have an axial bore. Similarly,

where the basic cross-section of the pins It is a other than circular, the bore would conform in cross-section.

In Figure 4a, 1 have shown a; modification which is desirable in assembling certain structures. The connector II is identical with that.

' of Figure 4, except that a marginally projecting shoulder element 62 is fastened or mounted to one end of the connector head ",while a similar ,marginally projecting shoulder 64 is arranged on the opposite end of the connector head It. me use of this connector will beexplained here- ,inafter. I

In Figure 4e, a further modification has been. shown in which the connector has the oppo site heads I! and I, and is also provided with cross-sections. conforming to the cross-section of the pin II.

the additional pin-like projection It mounted on the midportion of the body, with the axis of the projection 0! parallel to the axes of theheads l1 and II. Needless to say. the projection N conforms: in cross-section to one of the basic I have illustratively shown it The pins l1 and it have already been'alluded to, and in passing I draw attention to the fact that the smaller pin it will preferably have the transverse bores it near its ends, for the purpose of receiving retaining pins Ii (Figure -60) designed to hold a wheel 12 (Figure 6) on the pinii. The wheel I2 is in the form of a disc having a 'centralopening II which, obviously, conforms to the cross-sectionof the pin Fundamentally, every assembly involves the engagement of some pin-like element with a corresponding opening or bore. This may be ac-' Y companied by a stacking of the slabs or blocks,

one above the other, or by arranging them in juxtaposition; or it may partake of the extremely simple assembly shown for illustrative purposes in Figure 10. In this figure, a slab 14, similar to the slabs IO and II yet of an intermediate length, is assembled with a pin it selected from the set to which the pin ll belongs. To a very young child, the toy structure thus produced might well constitute a steam locomotive. This structure illustratesgthe cooperability between the pins and the keyhole bores, notwithstanding the fact that these bores are also adapted for engagement by connectors of the type illustrated in Figures 4-4e.

In Figure 7, for example, a slab I6, correspending in every respect to the slab ll of Figure 1, is assembled with an auxiliary block 'Il similar to the block shown in Figure 2b except that the medial bore is of the smaller.

variety. A pin 18, selected from the set to which the pin it belongs, passes through the bore in the block I1 and thence into the medial bore in the upper face of the slab It. This produces a structure bearing a certain resemblance to a tank car. For the purpose of enabling this. structure to be inter-connected. with other similar structures, a connector 19 may be engaged with one ofthe keyhole bores. This would permit another car" to be arranged in endwise relation to the slab It, the two being thereupon interconnected by the connector".

The transverse bores 80 of the structure of.

which the wheels "may be mounted. To hold the wheels in place, the retaining pins ll (like that of Figure 6a) are employed. In this structure, a slab I4 is used similar to the slabs- II and II, and a pin II constitutesan adornment.

for the car". 7

The structure of Figure 9 illustrates the util- Figure 7 fulfiil'no purpose, but in Figure 9 a structure is shown in which these bores accommodate pins ll, such pins serving as axles upon ity of the connector of Figure 4d. The project- 7 tion, and a triangular slab. 88, similar to-but larger than the slab of Figure 1a, is arranged of no avail in this assembly because, the keyhole bores 88,", and ii are not in aligned juxtaposition. However, the parts may be interconnected by selecting pins." from the proper set,

andthen applying the female-type connector 93. The latter will uitimately'rest upon the upper surface of the slabs", 81, and 88, and will interconnect the pins, 2.

Furthermore, the pins 84, selected from the :proper set, may be inserted transversely through the bores 95 provided in the slabs It and .1, thereby helping to hold these slabs in juxtaposed relation. I

In Figure 12, I have shown an arrangement of slabs as, 01, and "wherein the keyhole bores 99 and I" are in alignment, but wherein the keyhole bore III is not adapted, because of the position of the slab O0, to receive the ordinary type of connector. The parts may be assembled and -interconnected by employing the connector 08 (Figure 4e) which fits into the bores SI and Ill,

and by. employing a pin ill, which fits into the bore iii, and by thereupon interconnecting the pin I02 and the projection .60 by means of the female-type connector 44 (Figure 3a).

It will be obvious that the arrangement of parts, iilustratively exemplified in Figures 7-12,

and particularly inFigures 11 and 12, will in many cases present relatively dinlcult problems to the young child, calling upon his or her ingenuity in bringing the parts into interconnected relation. Nevertheless, the structures are all fundamentally simple. and sufficiently so to hold the child's interest; and the process of assembly,

, 40 at the end. An ordinary connector would be i once the ingenuity of the child has been called into play, is fundamentally of the simplest type,

involving nothing morethan the interengagementof a pin witha hole.

For these reasons, the present toy is admirably adapted for use by the pre-school child, and has unusual attractiveness, fascination, and educational value.

' 1 As hereinbefore mentioned, a will be under- ..plaining the nature of my invention, may he stood .that changes in the details, herein described and illustrated for the purpose of exmade by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as expressed in the appended claims. It is, therefore, intended that these details be interpreted as 11- lustrative, and not in a limiting sense.

. Having thus described my invention, and illustrated its use, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is-- 1. In a toy construction kit, a set of slabs, a

' set of connectors of dumb-bell shape, a set of pinshaving -a uniform basic cross-section, and

v ,a second set of pins having a different uniform basic cross-section, the slabs having medial bores and also marginal keyhole bores, the connector heads and the bores conforming to said basic cross-sections, whereby the medial bores accommodate pins and the marginal bores accommodate either pins or connector heads to permit the assembly of selected elements into various toy structures. 2. In a toyconstruction kit, the combination I with the elements of claim 1 of a set of auxiliary I to said basic cross-sections and being adapted to blocks having bores therein conforming to said basic cross-sections.

3. In atcy construction kit, the combination a with the elements of claim 1 of at least one female type connector comprising a flat element with spaced bores therein; said bores conforming engage over spaced pins, respectively.

4 Ina toy construction kit, the combination with the elements of claim 1 of a set of wheels with central openings adapted to accommodate said pins.

5. As an element of a toy construction kit of the character described, a connector comprising a prismatic body of dumb-bell cross-section, the opposite heads being adapted to engage within marginal keyhole bores of elements to be inter connected, and a projection on' the midportion of said body, said projection being parallel to the axes of said connector heads and conforming in cross-section to one of said connector heads.

6. As an element of a toy constructionkit of the character described, a connector comprising a prismatic body of dumb-bell cross-section, the opposite heads being adapted to engage within ,marginal'keyhole bores of elements to be interconnected, one connector head having an axial bore therethrough.

7. In a toy construction kit, a set of slabs, a

set of connectors of slab thickness and dumb-bell shape, a set of pins of uniform cross-section, and a second set of pins of smaller uniform crosssection, the slabs having medial bores to receive pins and also marginal keyhole bores to receive pins or connector heads, some of the con- .nector heads and some of the bores conforming in cross-section to the larger set of pins, the other'connector heads and bores conforming in cross-section to the smaller set of pins.

8. In a toy construction kit, a set of slabs, a set of connectors of slab thickness and dumb-bell shape, a set of pins of uniform cross-section, and

a second set of pins of smalleruniform cross-section, the slabs having medial bores to receive pins and also marginal keyhole bores to receive pins or connector heads, some of the connector heads and some of the bores conforming in cross section to the larger set of pins, the other connector heads and bores conforming in cross-section to the smaller set of pins, at least one of the larger connector heads having an axial bore conforming in cross-section to the smaller set of pins.

9. As an element of a toy construction kit of the character described, a connector comprising a prismatic body of dumb-bell cross-section, the

opposite heads being adapted to engage within MAY 'J. i'tOBINS.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2554704 *Feb 20, 1946May 29, 1951Hoppe William HChild's building block
US2596957 *Jan 8, 1949May 13, 1952Strombeck Becker Mfg CoWooden toy train construction
US2747324 *Apr 2, 1953May 29, 1956Zalkind Albert MEducational pull toy
US3074202 *Aug 9, 1955Jan 22, 1963Sloane Peppy MToy construction sets
US3314151 *Mar 26, 1964Apr 18, 1967Rubin James MOrthodontic face bow and method of making same
US3412519 *Dec 3, 1965Nov 26, 1968David L. BrettingenBuilding block structure
US3452959 *Aug 31, 1967Jul 1, 1969Ishikawa SadaoCombinational plastic hanger-board construction
US3473257 *Jul 24, 1967Oct 21, 1969Gambino Lawrence AChildren's build-it-yourself toy
US3755959 *Oct 26, 1971Sep 4, 1973Bielefelder HaushaltsgeraeteAxle connection member for construction toys
US3970812 *Nov 11, 1974Jul 20, 1976Contraves AgPlural, stacked side by side switch housing array having discrete housing coupling elements
US4171591 *Aug 15, 1977Oct 23, 1979Artur FischerAssembly kit and a connecting element for connecting structural elements thereof
US4189861 *Jan 20, 1978Feb 26, 1980Artur FischerAssembly kit and a connecting element for connecting structural elements thereof
US4510707 *Aug 16, 1982Apr 16, 1985Leroy GirardOrnamental assembly
DE1278312B *Feb 12, 1962Sep 19, 1968Dusyma Werkstaetten Kurt SchifAus zusammensteckbaren Einzelteilen bestehender Spielbausatz
DE3319213A1 *May 27, 1983Nov 29, 1984Fischer Artur Dr H CToy construction kit consisting of cubic components
DE3324484A1 *Jul 7, 1983Jan 24, 1985Fischer Artur Dr H CToy construction kit consisting of cuboid hollow bricks
U.S. Classification446/94, D21/500
International ClassificationA63H33/04, A63H33/10
Cooperative ClassificationA63H33/108
European ClassificationA63H33/10T