US 2651851 A
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A. L. VALPEY Sept. 15, 1953 TOY 5 Sheets-Sheet l Filed Sept. 4. 1948 INVENTOR. Hrzzur L yt] priv/17515K A. L. VALPEY Sept. 15, 1953 TOY 3 Sheets-Shea?l 2 Fi'led sept. 4, 194e INVENTOR.
Sept. l5, 1953 A. VALPEY 2,651,851
Filed Sept. 4, 1948 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 A INVENTOR.
FTTQFA/Ey Patented Sept. 15, 1953 UNITED STATES iATENT GFFICE TOY The present invention relates to an educational toy adapted to maintain the interest of young children while teaching them the elements of additionv and subtraction and numerical values or quantities associated with preselected integers.
A primary object of the present invention is to provide a novel, mechanical;k educational toy which may be readily operated by young children, the toy being adapted to permit manual selection of one of a series of integers and thereafter to permit manual actuation of an operating lever for a number of times corresponding to the value of the selected integer, whereupon movement limiting means prevents further actuation of the operating lever. Upon each actuation of the oper ating 1everone of a plurality of counters, which may be colored marbles for example, falls into a display chute wherein the counters are visible. Thus the operator may associate the value of the preselected integer with the quantity of counters designates that quantity; and to provide such a 5.
toy wherein the manual selection of said integers is permitted by an indicating means comprising a graduated member, as for example a dial having numerical indicia, and an indicator or pointer, the
dial and pointer being mounted for relative indexing movement and being successively indexe from one numerical indicia to the next toward an initial indexing or starting position upon each successive actuation of the operating lever.
Another object is to provide a relatively simple and inexpensive toy of the character described which may be readily reset for operation merely by inverting the toy and permitting the counters within the display chute to fall by gravity into a primary container therefor, wherein the counters are retained by detent means and may be selectively released in predetermined numbers by actuation of the aforesaid operating lever after the toy is set upright.
Other objects of this invention will appear in the following description and appended claims, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part of this specification wherein like reference characters designate corresponding parts in the several views.
The above and other objects are accomplished in a preferred embodiment of the present invention comprising a primary container for a plurality of counters and in communication with a display Chute, the counters being discharged or fed in predetermined quantities, as for example one at a time, by gravity into the display chute upon the selective actuation of an operating lever. The display chute is constructed so that the counters are readily visible therein and is preferably graduated to permit a child to associate the quantity of counters therein with the proper numeral or integer representing that quantity.
An indicating member operatively coupled with the operating lever is also employed with the toy and may be selectively preset to indicate the number of operations which may be performed by the operating lever. The indicating member preferably comprises a movable pointer or indicator mounted for indexing movement relative to a dial carrying visual numerical indicia, the indicator being movable upon each successive actuation of the operating lever. Suitable operating and detent means actuated by the operating lever are provided to release the counters in the said predetermined quantities from the primary container into the display chute and simultaneously to effect the relative indexing movement of the indicating means from one graduation to the next successive smaller graduation, so that the remaining num- Ibei' of operations permitted to the operating lever will be indicated at all times. Thus the child may observe both a positive correlation between the graduations of the display chute and the quantity of counters therein and an abstract correlation between the graduations of the indicating means and the quantity of counters within the display chute. As the child continues to manipulate the toy, he will gradually learn the values associated with the various integers and the elements of addition and subtraction.
Details of a preferred embodiment of the present invention are shown by way of example in the drawings wherein:
Fig. l is a fragmentary front elevation with a portion of the housing front wall broken away to show 'details of the detent mechanism.
Fig. 2 is a perspective rear View with a portion of the primary container broken away and with the rear housing panel removed to show details of construction.
Fig. 3 is a perspective front view of the operating and detent mechanism detached from the housing, showing two counters retained within the primary container'.
Before explaining in detail the present invention it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of construction and arrangement of parts illustrated in the accompanying drawings, since the invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced or carried out in various ways. Also it is to be understood that the phraseology or terminology employed herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation.
Referring to the drawings, the housing I4, which may be of any suitable material, such as sheet metal for example, is shown in Fig. 1 with the clock face or graduated dial I6 on its forward upper portion bearing the integers or indicia one through twelve. An indicator or pointer is keyed to a shaft I9, 1iig. 3, which extends forwardly through and is journaled in the front wall of the housing I4 for pivotal movement concentrically with the dial I6. As will be apparent hereinafter, the indicator I8 may be turned clockwise for selectively indexing with the integers of the dial I6 by means of the knurled knob secured to the forward end of the shaft I9. The forward wall of the housing I4 also provides the elongate graduated windows 22a, 22h, 22o, which conform generally to the arcuate display chute 24 and are provided to permit ready visual determination of the quantity of counters 26 therein. The latter preferably comprise twelve colored marbles of uniform size and corresponding to the twelve integers of the graduated dial I6, although cylindrical rollers or comparatively frictionless gliders adapted to move by gravity within the chute 24 toward the lower end thereof may be utilized if desired.
The chute 24 comprises a channel of U-shaped cross section having its open side in communication with the windows 22a, 22h, 22e and being secured by means of the tabs 25 to the inside of the forward housing wall to complete an elongate conduit adapted to receive and holdthe twelve counters 26 therein in linear alignment. The graduations for the windows 22a, 22h, 22o are numbered one through twelve, starting from the lower end of the chute 24, and are spaced in accordance with the diameter of the individual counters 26 to permit an instant visual determination of the quantity of counters within the display chute 24 at any time. that the size of the counters 26 prevents their passage through the windows 22a, 221), 22o.
The upper inlet opening 28 of the display chute 24 is disposed directly below the discharge opening 36 of a primary container 32 for the 'twelve counters 26 and comprises a curved channel of U-shaped cross section secured by the tabs 34 to the inside of the forward face of the housing I4. Counters 26 within the container 32 may readily fall by gravity into the chute 24 in accordance with the operation of a detent mechanism described in detail below.
As indicated in Fig. 3, the counters 26 are releasably retained within the container 32 by the escapement finger 36 of a sheet metal stamping 38 which is pivotally secured by a pivot pin 49 to a boss 42. I1`he latter is secured to the outer side of the container 32. A torsion spring 44 having its opposed ends engaged under tension with the outside of the container 32 and an edge of the stamping 38 is provided around the pin for resiliently urging the stamping 38 pivotally clockwise, Fig. 2. Thus the escapement finger 36 is normally held against the base of the arcuate slot 45 therefor within the container 32 so It is to be observed 4 as to prevent passage of the counters 26 into the chute 24.
The stamping 38 is pivotally moved counterclockwise, Fig. 2, by the projecting nib 46 of the lower leg 48 of the dog-leg operating lever 50. The latter is pivotally mounted on the shaft I9 and extends upward through the movement limiting slot 52 provided therefor within the side wall of the housing I4. A torsion spring 53 around the shaft I9 has its ends operatively engaged under tension with the side of the container 32 and the lever 50 for resiliently urging the latter upward in the slot 52.
Upon downward pivotal movement of the lever 59, the lower nib 46 is pivoted upward to engage the projection 54 of the stamping 38, thereby pivotally raising the finger 36 into the upper portion of the container 32 above the adjacent counter 26 to permit passage of the latter into the chute 24. Simultaneously the detent finger 55 of the stamping 38 is raised within the arcuate slot 53 of the container 32 directly forward of the second counter 26 to retain the latter within the container 32. Upon the return upward movement of the operating lever 50, the stamping 38 is permitted to return to its lowered position. Positive return of the escapement finger 36 and detent finger 55 is assured by the projecting nib 51 of the leg 48, acting in opposition to the nib 46 so as to engage the projection 54 and pivotally move the latter to its lowered position.
In Fig. 2, the detent mechanism is shown in its initial or zero position whereat a locking pawl 58 is engaged with the rearward projecting pin Sii of the lever 5U so as to prevent downward pivotal actuation thereof. The pawl 58 is resiliently held in its locking position by a coil spring 62, secured between the pawl y5B and the rearward offset portion of a locking lever 64. The shoulder joining the two offset portions of the lever 64 serves as a stop to limit the pivotal movement of the pawl 58 toward the lever 64. Both the pawl 58 and the lever 64 are pivotally connected by the pin 66 to the upper portion of a vertical brace ST which is secured by the two rivets 68 to the back side of the container 32, Fig. 3.
In the initial or zero position of the detent mechanism, the locking lever 64 is held in its locking position by the rearward projecting pin 69 of the radially toothed ratchet wheel 1U. The latter is provided with twelve teeth, corresponding to the twelve counters 26 and the graduations of the indicating dial I6 and display chute 24, and is keyed to the shaft I9 which is resiliently urged clockwise in Fig. 2 by a torsion spring 12. The spring 12 is coiled around the shaft I 9 with its ends engaged under tension between the brace 61 and a pin 'I3 extending transversely through the shaft I9. Thus the projecting pin 69 is resiliently urged against the lower extremity of the lever 64, holding the latter in its locking position to the right in Fig. 2,
Likewise, the locking lever 64 is resiliently urged against the pin 63 by the torsion spring 14 around the pin 66 and having its ends engaged under tension with the brace 61 and lever 64. Pivotal movement of the latter in either direction is limited by the movement limiting nibs 'I5 and 76 at its upper extremity and adapted to engage the fixed pin 'I3 projecting inward from the front wall of the housing I4. Accordingly, the lever 64 comprises a movement limiting stop for the pin 69, which is positioned on the ratchet -wheel 'm so that the indicator I8 willindex with the numeral twelve at the top of the clock dial It (the initial or zero position in this instance) when the pin 69 moves the lever G4 to the lirnit of its counter-clockwise movement in Fig. 2. Upon an essentially complete clockwise revolution of the indicator i8, Fig. 1, as described. hereinafter, the pin il@ will engage the other side of the lever 64 and force the nib l5 against the pin l, whereupon the indicator I8 will again be indexed with the numeral twelve at the limit of movement in the other direction.
It is apparent that upon turning the indicator l and shaft IQ clockwise against the tension of the. torsion spring 12, Figs. l and 3, the pin 89 will be released to the left in Fig. 2 from the locking lever Gi. The latter will then be pivoted clockwise, Fig. 2, by its torsion spring i4 so as to clear the locking pawl 58 from the pin 60 and free the operating lever 5t for downward d pivotal movement within the slot 52.
The counter-clockwise (Fig. 2) rotation of the shaft i9 and the ratchet wheel 'Iii keyed thereto is readily permitted by the arrangement of the indexing pawl 8! and the teeth of the wheel 1i). The pawi is pivotally secured by the pin 32 to the boss 8d of the brace 5l and is resiliently urged toward the wheel 'I0 by the torsion spring 8b around the pin 82 and having its ends engaged under tension with the pawl 3G and boss 84. As each tooth of the ratchet wheel 'i8 passes the retaining catch of the pawl Si), the latter is moved to the left in Fig. v2 against the resiliency of the spring 36. The return or clockwise movement (Fig. 2) of the ratchet wheel l!) is prevented as soon as the radial edge of one of its teeth 'engages the mating radial edge of the said retaining catch of the pawl 80.
The twelve teeth of the wheel l0 are arranged with respect to the retaining catch of the pawl 3i) and the position of the indicator I8 so that the latter will be indexed at one of the numerals of the dial i3 whenever the indexing pawl 80 and ratchet wheel l!! are in interlocking engagement. Thus the indicator I8 may be selectively indexed by clockwise movement, Figs. 1 and 3, with any one of the integers of the dial I6 and may be retained in the selected indexed position by engagement between the pawl 8l! and ratchet wheel 10. Fig. 3 shows the indicator I8 indexed at the two oclock position by way of example` Upon the aforementioned indexing of the indicator i3 w'ti'i one of the integers of the dial Iii, so as to release the locking lever 58 from the .Y
pin (iii, the lever 5i) may be moved downward in the slot until the pin 60 engages the inclined edge de of the indexing pawl and pivotally moves the latter to the left in Fig. 2, releasing ratchet wheel 'lil for clockwise rotation, Fig. 2, f
as urged by the spring l2. Also upon downward movement of the lever 50, the pin SS is withdrawn from beneath the detent pawl 9S, permitting the lower extremity of the radial shoulder 92 thereof to rest upon the radial extremity the tooth therebelow of the ratchet wheel lll.
The detent pawl iii) is pivotally secured by the pin Sd to the boss 95 of the brace t7 and is resiliently urged toward the ratchet wheel 'itl by the torsion spring 98 around the pin 9d and having its ends engaged under tension with the pawl @il and boss 9S. Accordingly, upon operation of the lever 50 to release the indexing pawl B from the wheel 10, the latter will rotate clockwise, Fig. 2, slightly less than one-twelfth of a revolution, i. e., less than a complete indexing movement determined by the spacing between two adjacent ratchet teeth, whereat the wheel il] will be stopped by engagement between the radial edge of one of its ratchet teeth and the shoulder $2. The position formerly occupied by the ratchet tooth which was released from the indexing pawl 8i! will be assumed essentially by the succeeding ratchet tooth.
Upon release of the lever 50, the latter will be moved upward by the resiliency of the spring 53, releasing the pin $9 from the indexing pawl 8i) and permitting the latter to spring toward the wheel 'iii in position to engage the said succeeding ratchet tooth, Fig. 2. As the pin 60 continues upward, it engages and raises the lower forward edge of the detent pawl Sil, releasing the ratchet wheel lo to complete the indexing movement of one-twelfth of a rotation, whereat the wheel 'i8 is engaged by the indexing pawl S as prior to actuation of the lever 5i).
It is apparent that during the above described indexing movement of the wheel lil, the indicator l rotating therewith will be indexed from its preselected indexed position to the next smaller integer of the dial It. Also on the downward stroke of the lever 5d, the nib 46 will engage the projection 54 of the lever 59 so as to raise iingers Sii and d5 to permit the foremost counter 25 the container 32 to fall by gravity into the receiving opening 28 oi the display chute 2li. Upon the upward stroke of the lever 5), the nib will engage the projection 54, withdrawing the detent finger 55 from the slot 5G and returning the escapement linger 35 to its initial position at the base of the slot 45. The second counter 26 within the chute 32 will then roll by gravity against the iinger St for release into the chute 2t upon a subsequent operation of the lever 50.
It is to be noted in Fig. 3 that the upper portion of the container 32 over the discharge opening 30 is enlarged at IM suiciently to permit passage of the counters 25 between the upper wall of the chute 32 and the upper edge of the ringer 36. Upon inverting the entire housing I4 by a clockwise rotation, Fig. 2, the counters 26 within the chute 24 will roll by gravity into the primary container 32 along the upper wall thereof and under the finger 36 which, in the inverted position, will be above the counters 26. Thus means are provided for readily resetting the toy to an initial condition.
By the foregoing, I have disclosed a novel educational toy susceptible of manual manipulation by young children, whereby the attention of a child is maintained while he learns without conscious erort the elements of addition and subtraction and the values represented by the integers displayed by the graduated display chute 2li and the dial i6.
Assuming that the toy is set at its initial condition, with the indicator i8 indexed at the limit of its counter-clockwise movement, Fig. l, at the top of the dial iii, and that all of the counters 26 are within the container 32, the child will learn upon investigation that the operating lever 5D will not move, but 'that the knurled knob 2i! -may be turned clockwise to index the indicator i8 selectively with any of the integers of the dial I6. After indexing the indicator iii, he wiil nd that the latter is locked against counterclockwise or return movement, but that the operating lever 5i! is now movable.
Upon moving the latter downward to the limit permitted by the slot 52, he will observe counterclockwise indexing of the indicator I8 from the preselected integer to the next smaller integer. Simultaneously a counter 26 will roll into the lower end of the display chute 24 and will align with the numeral one. The child may operate the lever 50 a number of times equal to the value associated with the preselected integer, whereupon the lever 50 will again be locked. Upon each operation of the lever 50, the indicator I8 will undergo a recessive indexing movement and an additional counter 26 will roll toward the lower end of the chute 24. The child will demonstrate to himself that the maximum number of operations of the lever 50 may be obtained by setting the indicator I8 at twelve, and that a setting of the indicator I8 at one of the other integers of the dial I6 will permit the release of a lesser quantity of counters 26 into the chute 24.
Gradually the child will associate the quantity of counters 26 visible within the chute 24 with the value of the graduation aligned with the uppermost counter 26. He will also notice the similarity between the numerals associated with the windows 22a, 22h, 22e and the mating numerals of the dial I6. In time he will observe that the quantity of counters 26 which he may cause to be discharged into the chute 24 without resetting of the indicator I8 will equal the value associated with the preselected dial integer at which the indicator I8 is set initially. Upon operating the lever 50 the number of times permitted by two or more successive settings of the indicator I8, he will note that the quantity of counters 26 which are finally visible within the chute 24 will be more than the value associated with the dial integer selected for any one of the previous settings of the indicator I8, and will equal the sum of the successive settings of the indicator I8. Also since the integer with which the indicator I8 is indexed indicates the number of operations remaining to the lever 50 before it becomes locked, and is equal to the difference between the counters 26 anticipated, the concept of subtraction will gradually become apparent.
1. In an educational toy, a display container `adapted to receive a plurality of movable couni ters and being graduated to indicate the number of counters therein, mechanism successively operative for feeding the counters into said display container, mechanism successively operative for indicating numerical indicia in a prearranged receding series, and means for operating said two mechanisms conjointly, the indicia in said series being systematically related mathematically to the number of counters fed into said container.
2. In an educational toy, a numbered dial having a plurality of consecutive integers visibly arranged thereon in series, an indicating hand movable relative to said integers for indexing therewith, a plurality of counters, a container for said counters, a display chute associated with said container to receive the counters therefrom for visual display, a numbered scale associated with the display chute and having numbers arranged thereon to register with the containers in the chute and to indicate the quantity of counters therein, escapement means for holding the counters in the container and being operative to discharge a counter from the container to the display chute, and manually actuated means operative for recessively indexing said indicating hand from one integer of said dial to the next smaller integer and conjointly operating the escapement means to discharge a counter from the container into the display chute.
3. In an educational toy, the combination of an indicating means successively operative for indicating numerical indicia in a prearranged series, a plurality of movable counters, a primary container for said counters, a display chute for said counters communicating with said primary chamber from below thereof to receive said counters by gravity feed, escapement means disposed in a passage between the display chute and primary container and successively opera.- tive to discharge upon each operation thereof a predetermined number of said counters into said display chute, means for operating said indicating means conjointly with operation of said escapement means, said escapement means having a movable finger insertable into the lower portion of said passage to retain said counters in the container and adapted to permit passage of said counters thereunder from said display chute into said primary container when the toy is inverted.
4. In an educational toy, the combination of a graduated member, an indicating member mounted for relative indexing movement to index the latter member with the graduations of the former member, a plurality of movable counters, a display container for said counters, mechanism successively operative for feeding upon each operation thereof a predetermined number of said counters into said display container and for effecting successive relative indexing movement of said members toward a nal indexed position, and stop means to prevent operation of said mechanism when said members are at said final indexed position.
5. In an educational toy, a display container adapted to receive a plurality of movable counters for visual display thereof, mechanism operative for feeding a counter into said container, a graduated member having visual numerical indicia thereon in a progressive series, an indicating member, said members being mounted for indexing movement relative to each other to index the latter member with the indicia of the former, means yieldingly urging relative recessive indexing movement of said members, mechanism for rcleasably holding said members in indexed positions against relative recessive indexing movement and being operative to release said members for said relative movement from one indicia. to a preceding indicia in said series, and manually controlled means for operating the two mechanisms conjointly.
6. In an educational toy, a display container adapted to receive a plurality of movable counters for visual display, means operative for successively feeding said counters into said display container, successively operative integer indication means adapted to be preset to indicate a preselected integer and being operative at any setting to indicate the next smaller integer, and means for operating the first two means conjointly.
7. In an educational toy, a display container adapted to receive a plurality of movable counters for visual display, means successively operative for successively feeding said counters into said display container, integer indicating means adapted yto be preset to indicate a preselected integer and to be successively operated to indicate integers in a receding series, and means for successively operating the rst two means conjointly.
8. In an educational toy, a number dial having a plurality of consecutive integers visably arranged thereon in a series, an indicating hand movable relative to said integers for indexing therewithl a plurality of counters, a container for said counters, a display chute associated with said container to receive the counters therefrom for visual display, escapement means for holding the counters in the container and being operative to discharge a counter from the container to the display chute, and manually actuated means operative for recessively indexing said indicating hand from one integer of said dial to the next smaller integer and conjointly operating the escapement means to discharge a counter from the container into the display chute.
ARTHUR L. VALPEY.
References Cited in the le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 219,258 Harrison Sept, 2, 1879 296,194 Lettelier et al. Apr. 1, 1884 1,517,371 Marshall et a1. Dec. 2, 1924 1,568,272 Diago Jan. 5, 1926 2,463,763 Graff Mar. 8, 1949 2,486,260 Church Oct. 25, 1949