US 2146021 A
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Feb. 7, 1939. R. LOHR ET AL REVERSING TOY VEHICLE Filed May 29, 1936 2 Sheets-Sheet l I a $4 m w n. n. m w N J mwfr lg A n. 1% m f K T & m F 11:: w k mm Q Y .0 NM n. r1
Feb. 7, 1939.
R. LOHR ET AL REVERSING TOY VEHICLE Filed May 29, 1956 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTORS filo/Id ,50/11' I! A eZs'a/z Qu'uer ATTORNEYS.
Patented Feb. 7, 1939 UNITED STATES PATENT oFFics REVERSING TOY' VEHICLE Application May 29,
This invention relates to toys, and more particularly to a self-reversing'toy vehicle.
It has heretofore been suggested to" provide a toy with bumpersor feelers at the front and rear ends. thereof, which cause the toy to reverse on striking an obstruction. The primary object of thepresent invention is to generally improvereversing toy vehicles of this character.
' A more particular object resides in the provi- 101181011 ofreversing'mechanism which is simple andinexpensive in construction and'dependable in operation. Another object is to so arrange the reversing mechanism that it tends to automatically maintain itself in either extremeof its range of 15.. movement, that is; to maintain itself in mesh in the: direction in which the vehicle is running. This establishes a slight but definitely noticeable and'high'ly desirable resistance to shifting of the reverse mechanism from one extreme" to the'other,
action as though the parts were being held in one extreme or the other by means of resiliently pressed cam mechanism or the like, yet no such mechanism is employed or necessary, and the de-- sired'result is instead obtained byadvantageously selectingthe position and directionofrotation of the gears in the driving gear train. The resist-- ance to shifting is light enough so that the toy is readily reversedon striking an obstruction, yet is 30, effective to prevent accidental or undesired reversingof the vehicle as it'runs overirregularities or on'anincline.
Further objects center about the: governor and stop mechanism for the spring motor of thertoy, 35 and are to'provide a governor of inexpensivertype which may at the same time-be employed as a positive'stop or lockfor the motor, and, most'importantly, which willreadily afford a slight rearward movement of'a part of the-gear train in 40 order to'accommodate meshing of the teeth of the gears during-the reversing operation. Gener ally speaking, the governoris made in the form-of 55; struck thereby, from injury, and is also function-,
and in practice the shift takes place with a snap 1936,. Serial Nm 82,444
ally desirablein the "operation of the toy, in thatthe. resilient bumpers, while absorbing the impact, react toassist initiation of the reversing operation; Thereversing operation, once'carried half- Way,.is automatically. completedzby reason of the gear relationship referred to'above. In accordance with a'further feature'ancl object of our invention; the bumpers may be additionally provided with rubber pads, preferably simulating vertical' guards such as are commonly employed on automobile bumpers-to prevent the bumper of one car from ridingf over thati'of another car.
To the accomplishment of the foregoing and other objects which willhereinafter appear, our invention consists in the reversing toy vehicle elements-and their: relation one to the other, as are hereinafter more particularly described in the specification and sought to be defined in the claims; The specification is accompanied by drawings in I which:
Fig. l is a plan:view of a reversible toy automobile embodying -features of our invention;
Fig; 2' is a similarview, with the upper part of thebody. removed from the chassis or bottom wall;
' Fig-.- 3 is asection taken-in elevation in the plane of the line 33 of Fig. 2;
Fig; 4 is a transverse 'section'taken in the plane of the line l-lof- Fig. 2;
Fig. 5 is a section taken inthe plane of the line 5 5'of Fig..2; and
Fig. 6 is a side elevation of-a modified form of toy embodying a further feature of our invention;
Referring to the drawings, the invention is shownembodied-in a toy automobile the body l2 of whichsiinulates' a-coup, but it will be understoodthat other body forms may be used, and, in fact, the vehicle need not be an automobile. The vehicle'body l2zis providedwith front wheels l4 freely rotatableon a front axle l 6, and rear wheels l8 secured to-and driven bya rear axle 20. The toy is' further provided with adriving motor, here exemplified by a spring motor having a main spring 22 coiled about a suitable winding stem 24 geared to the rear axle 20 by a suitable train of step-up gearing. This gearing includes reversing mechanism indicated generally at R in Figs. 4 and 5.
The vehicle is further provided with front and rear bumpers B which are. connected to the reversingmechanism in order to reverse the direction of movement of thevehiclewhen it strikes an obstruction, The speed of the vehicle is limited by an escapement mechanismE rather than by governor mechanism of the inertia type, and the escapement mechanism is also used as a stop to lock the spring motor against unwinding, this being under the control of a stop lever S.
Considering the arrangement in greater detail and referring more particularly to Fig. 5, the reversing mechanism comprises a gear 26 forming a part of the spring motor works, a directionreversing idler or pinion 28 constantly meshing with gear 26, and a pinion 30 mounted on the rear axle 2B of the vehicle. Axle 20 is itself received in slots 32 preferably extending hori-" zontally in the side walls 34 of the motor works. The parts are so disposed that when axle 20 is moved forwardly, it comes into. mesh-directly with gear 28, as is shown in Fig. 5. When, however, axleZll is moved rearwardly, the axle pinion 3B is disengaged from gear 26 and instead comes into mesh with idler 28. versing operation may take place without'chang ing the elevation of the vehicle body, the slots 32 receiving axle 20 are arranged horizontally, and gear 28 is so centered that it comes somewhat below the elevation of pinion 30, so that the pinion is brought into mesh with the gear by a small horizontal movement. I
It should also be noted in Fig. 5 that all three gears entering into the reversing mechanism, that is, gear 26 and pinions 28 and 30, are disposed closely together, so much so that pinion 30 reaches and enters into mesh with pinion 28 before it is completely disengaged from gear 26. In other words, pinion 30, in moving from gear 25 to pinion 28, is at no time entirely disengaged from both gear 26 and pinion 28. This prevents free unwinding of the spring motor during the reversing operation.
The relative directions of rotation of the gears are also significant. Thus, referring to Fig. 5, gear 26 rotates in a counter-clockwise. direction. Consequently it tends to draw pinion 30 further into mesh, assuming, as is ordinarily the case,
that there is at least some slight resistance to turning of wheel l8. This prevents accidental dislodgement or shifting of the reversing mechanism. On the other hand, when the vehicle is running rearwardly, pinion 30 comes into mesh.
with pinion 28 which rotates clockwise. Pinion 28 therefore tends to move pinion 30 more se-' curely into mesh with itself.
The only movable element in the reversing mechanism is rear axle 20. 'This is shifted forwardly or rearwardly bythebumpers B. More specifically, bumpers B are connected at the forward and rear ends of a bumper bar 38 which extends along the chassis or bottom plate 38 of the vehicle, and which is reciprocably mounted thereon. The bumper bar 36 has secured thereto a transversely extending yoke 40, best shown in Fig. 4. The upwardly turned ends 42 of yoke 68 are recessed to receive the axle20, as is clearly shown in Figs. 3 and 5. It will be understood that as bumper bar 36 is shifted forwardly or rearwardly, it moves yoke 40 and with it the axle 20, thus reversing the direction of operation of the vehicle.
Bumper bar 36 is held in place by a bearing Mi struck upwardly from bottom wall 38 near the forward end of the vehicle. It is further supported by a bearing 46' (best shown in Fig. 3) struck downwardly from bottom wall 38 near the rear end of the vehicle; The bumper bar passes through the bottom wall, and the latter is cut away at 48 to receive the same; This construction is adopted merely because the body of the In order thatthis reparticular toy here under consideration is of the streamline type and is curved upwardly somewhat near its rear end, thus making it preferable to have the bumper bar come beneath the body at the rear end even thought it projects above the bottom of the body at the forward end.
The bumpers are each made of a strip of thin sheet metal 50, the metal being bent into a loop the ends of which overlap at 52 and are there secured to the end of bumper bar 38 by suitable tongue and slot connections 54. The metal used for the bumpers is highly resilient sping metal and is of very light gauge, the thickness being greatly exaggerated in the drawings. Because I of this construction, the bumper yields when the vehicle strikes an object, and then recoils, thus helping to absorb the blow or impact without damage and at thesame time assisting the de- 1 sired reversing operation.
The rear bumper is constructed like the front bumper, but it will be noted that the bumper bar is turned upwardly at 56 in order to bring the bumper to a desired elevation approximately equal to that of the front bumper.
, The bumpers may, if desired, be additionally provided with rubber pads '58.
V 7 These pads are open at their inner sides and are so slit that they may be sprung over the sheet metal strip 54] of the bumper, as is clearly evident from inspection furniture during operation of the Considering the driving motor in greater detail,
the motor is conventional in comprising a ribbon type spring 22 the outer end 68 of which is see curedto the motor frame, and the inner end of which is secured to the winding stem 24. end 62 of the winding stem is adapted to receive a suitable winding key. Winding stem 24 carries a main driving gear 64 which is connected tothe winding stem by appropriate ratchet mechanism including a dog 66 and a ratchet wheel 68, best shown in Fig. 3. Gear 64 mesheswith a pinion 10 mounted on a shaft 12 carrying the gear 26 heretofore referred to.
In addition to the pinions of the reversing mechanism, gear 25 also meshes with a pinion I4 which forms a part of the governor mechanism of the toy. Pinion 14 is secured to and rotates a star-wheel or escapementwheel 16. An escapement member 18 is freely o'scillatable on a shaft 80 disposed near wheel 16. It will be'understood that wheel 16 cannot turn freely within the escapement member 18, but that instead the latter must oscillate or vibrate about its support shaft 80 as wheel 16 rotates. This'slows the speed of unwinding of the spring motor, thereby limiting the speed of the toy and so preventing damage to the toy or objects struck thereby.
There are several reasons why we prefer the present form of governor. One is that it may be conveniently employed as a positive stop memfor locking the spring motor against rotation. I
position, the escapementmember lfl isbrought" into simultaneous engagement with the star'- wheel at both the toprandibottom; thereby looking the motor against unwinding: In:.the normal or retracted position, however, that-is, the position shown 1 in broken lines. in. Fig. 2, the escapement memberxlfl: assumes. an operating position which affordsrapidbut: not excessive high-speed rotation of the star-wheel w.
Referring now toFig. 3, thesl0t284=is provided with locating recesses afilat its ends. The. end BZIof the support'spindle'ris normally.- urgeddownwardly by 'a hair-spring 88, thusholding the shaft and consequently the' escapement. mechanism. in"
either the locked or unlockedposition'; The shaft ismoved by means of a pullstrip 9.0 whichprojects through a slot.92 in the body of thevehicle, as is best shown inFigs. 1 and3.
Another important advantage of the use of the present escapement' mechanism as aspeed'e limiting governor, resides" in the fact that the gear 26 of the reversing mechanism may, if necessary, move backwardly a slight amount, say a few degrees. during the reversing operation. This slight movement is necessary to accommodate the change of mesh .of the gearingduring the reversing operation,- particularly when. it is kept, in-
mind that the wheels I8 are onthe ground and therefore relatively immovable at'the instant the vehicle is stopped. We have found that an or-- dinary high-speed inertiagovernor interferes with this readjustment of the gearingduring the reversing operation, whereas the present. escape-- ment mechanism readilyaffords' a range of movement of the gearing no matter how abruptlythe vehicle is stopped fromits normal rapid movement.
The vehicle may be run in either a straight line or on a curved path, and the steering mechanism for'accomplishing this is of a comparatively simplified'type. Specifically, one end of the front axle I6 is journaled in a flangeEM turned upwardly at one side of the vehicle. Ample material is availablefor this, because the bottom wall is cut away at this point to receive the front wheels, this being most clearly: shown in Fig. 2 of the drawings. The opposite end of front axle I6 is journaled in a flange 96 at the opposite side of the vehicle, but flange 96' is provided with a slot 98 rather than asimple bearing hole. The ends of slot 98 are recessed upwardly somewhat, as is indicated at I00. The axleisnormally borne up.-
wardly by a hair-spring I02, thus moving the.
front axle into either of the recesses 10. Inthe present case, one recess is so located thattheaxle' is disposed at rightiangles to. the axiszof'the vehicle', this being the'position shown in Figs. 2 and 3 of the drawings. The other recess is disposed rearwardly, and causes the axle andfrontwheels to assume the position shown in broken lines in Fig. 2. To change'from one position to the other, it is simply necessary to hold the movable front wheel and-to shift the sameto the desired position. i
The middle portion of front axle IB-isshown bent or displaced upwardly somewhat, within'the side flanges 94 and 96 and outside the side walls of the channel-shaped shift bar 36, but this is not essential and is provided'in the present case merely to establish ample clearance between the axle and the shift bar or bumper bar, which is located immediately the'rebeneath.
The body of the vehicle is, made of two main pieces of sheet metal, one piece being upwardly dished to form the body l2, and the other piece beingz relatively flat? andzconstituting the. bottom on chassis-membertills. These. twozparts are secured: together; by' appropriate tongue and slot connections;v im accordance with conventional practices: desired, the front end ofthe body or." radiator simulation: I04 may be made'of a separate'rpiece of sheet metal'securedto the body portion: lZ -by. suitable tongue and" slot connections or like'imodeiof attachment.
Referringznowtot Fig. 6, we showa modifiedv formr-of revetsingtoyvvehicle simulating a police emergency patrol auto; The mechanical features ofl'thise vehicle; needsv not be described in detail, for-the'vehiclecomprises rear wheels drivenfrom aspringimotor through'a suitable'reversing gear actuatedibyfront and rear bumpers, just' as has ailready been described. The present-toy differs, howevergincbeing; provided with exposed figures, specifically-a uniformedpolice driver I06 at the front or drivers seat, and a simulated captive criminal v I 08 apparently "held :inthe rear part of the patrol vehicle by another policeman H0. Figure l06vissfreelypivoted-at I I2 and may be moved: between the positions shown in solid and dottedirlines. Similarly,-. the figures I08 and H0 are pivotally mounted on the vehicle'at I I4 and may be moved to either of the positionsshown in solidfanddotted lines. The pivotingof figures HIS-and l H! at thepoint H4 is concealed by the bottom orrfioor-s I I6 ofthe: vehicle, the figures passing through slots in the bottom- H6. The partsare'so balanced that when the vehicle is suddenly stopped byv strik-ing an obstruction, the figures-:all-tumble forwardly, whereas when the vehicle is suddenly stopped from moving in a rearward direction the: figures all tumble rearwardly; The resulting action of the figures and the: complete change in appearance of the toy are very amusing and increase the play value of thetoy.
It1is believed that the constructionand operation, as-welliasthe many advantages of our improved reversing toy vehicle, will be apparent from. the foregoing detailed description thereof. Theescapement acts as aspeed governor which keeps the. toyv from runningv too! fastandthus smashingv too hard into furniture or walls, but is superior tothe highly geared inertia type of governor, because it permits'the gearing to turn backward a few degrees as the axle pinion shifts from one position to the other. The escapement is-also readily employedas a stop or lock for the spring motor. The reverse gear is shifted-by the bumpers, and-the parts remain in either extreme position with an'apparent snap action, because the direction of rotation of both the large gear and the direction-reversing idler is such that each tends to keep the axle pinion in mesh with itself and to drive the same still deeper into mesh. The reversing operation takes place as follows. The front bumper strikes an obstacle, and the bumper bar or shift rod begins to push the axle pinion out of mesh with the gearwhich somewhat resists the' action and is therefore forced to reverse its direction very slightly in order to allow'the axlepinion to unmesh. This slight reverse movement is freely permitted by the escapement type governor. Before the axle pinionunmeshes entirely from the large gear, it
. begins to mesh with the idler pinion, and this other.
Of course, in addition to the lineal motion, there is also exerted a circular'or rotative motion which is transmitted from the axle pinion through the axle to the wheels. When the toy is stopped against movement, the floor acts as a focal point for this attempted rotative motion. Because of the above factors, it will be found that the apparent snap action of the gear shift does not manifest itself well when the toy is off the ground so that the rear wheels are free, nor when the motor is fully unwound so that there is no driving torque at all. In such case, the bumper bar may be freely shifted back and forth and does not maintain itself in one extreme position or the The bumpers are highly yieldable and resilient, and may, if desired, be provided'with rubber pads, thereby improving the operation of the toy.
It will be apparent that while we have shown and described our invention in preferred forms,
' many changes and modifications may be made in the structures disclosed, without departing from the spirit of the invention, defined in the following claims.
l. A toy vehicle comprising a vehicle body, a front axle and front wheels therefor, a rear axle and rear wheels therefor, the rear axle being journaled inslots toafford a slight forward or re rward movementof the rear axle, a pinion on said rear axle, spring motor-works including a driving spring and a train of step-up gearing terminating in a large gear disposed near the aforesaid pinion, a direction-reversing idler pinion constantly meshing with said large gear and disposed adjacent the rear axle pinion, the arranger'nent of the parts being such that movement of the rear axle causes its pinion to engage either the large gear or the'direction-reversing idler or both, there'being insufficient space between the gears for simultaneous disengagement frem both the large gear and the idler, highly resilient yieldable bumpers at the front and rear of the vehicle, said bumpers each being made of a strip or band of relatively light-gauge readily yieldable spring metal, and rigid means so interconnecting the bumpers and the reversing mechanism that the vehicle is reversed in direction on striking an obstruction, the bumpers. being.
including wheel guards coming outside of the Wheels, a bottom wall for closing the bottom of the vehicle body, said bottom wall being cut away at the front wheels, the metal of the bottom wall being turned upwardly inside the front wheels and being apertured at one side to receive one end of the front axle and being slotted at the other side to receive the other end of the front axle, the slot being recessed to receive and hold the axle in, any of several steering positions, and resili nt means bearing against the axle in order to hold the same in one of the recesses.
3. A toy vehicle comprising an upwardly dished piece of sheet metal forming top and side walls including wheel guards coming outside of the wheels, a bottom wall for closing the bottom of the vehicle body, said bottom wall being cut away at the front wheels, the metal of the bottom wall being turned upwardly inside the front wheels and being apertured at one side to receive one end of the front axle and being slotted at'the other side to receive the other end of the front axle, the slot being recessed near its ends to receive and hold-theaxle in either a straighter angular steering position, and a spring secured to the bottom wall of the vehicle body andbearing against the axle in order to hold the same in one of the recesses.
4; A toy vehicle comprising a wheeled vehicle body, front and rear bumpers, a channel-shaped rigid bar extending longitudinally through and reciprocable in the Vehicle body and carrying the aforesaid bumpers at its forward andrear ends, spring motor-worksin said body including a driving spring and a train of step-up gearing, a pair of rear wheels mounted on a rear axle journaled in horizontal slots in the sides of the motor frame, a pinion on said axle, a direction-reversingidler adjacent said pinion meshing with a preceding gear in the gear train, the parts being so disposed that the rear axle on being moved sli htly forwardly or rearwardly' comes into engagement with the gear or with the idler and at an intermediate. point is engaged with both and,
between the driving motor and the wheels, said v gear train including reversing gear mechanism, front and rear bumpers for automatically reversing the direction of the vehicle onstriking an obstruction, and a governor for limiting the speed of the vehicle, said governor including an 6. A toy vehicle comprising a wheeled vehicle body, a driving motor therein, a train of gearing between the driving motor and the wheels, said gear train including reversing gear mechanism, front and rear bumpers for automatically reversing the direction of the vehicle on'striking an obstruction, a governor'for limiting the speed of the vehicle, said governor including an escapement wheel and an oscillatable escapement member, the escapement mechanism being so arranged as to permit a slight readjustment of the position of the gears in the gear train during the reversing operation, and means to lock the escapement mechanism in order to hold the motor against unwinding. V
'7. A toy vehicle comprising a Wheeled vehicle body, a. driving motor therein, a gear train between said driving motor and the wheels, said gear train including reversing mechanism, means to automatically operate the reversing mechanism, a speed-limiting governor including an escapement wheel and an oscillatable escapement member adjacent the escapement wheel, and means to move the escapement member against the escapement wheel in order to lock the motor against unwinding. i
. RAYMOND LOHR.
RICHARD NELSON CARVER.