US 2952094 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
p 1960 A. a. EBEL 2,952,094
HOLLOW RUBBER FIGURES Filed Aug. 8, 1957 Milli? n'm' m l INVENTOR.
United States Patent HOLLOW RUBBER FIGURES 'Adolf G. Ebel, Ravenna, Ohio, assignor to The Oak Rubber Company, Ravenna, Ohio, a corporation of This invention relates to improvements in hollow rubber, figures, that is to say, hollow rubber figures that may be inflated to resemble crudely men, animals, insects, etc. In accordance with the invention, the body part is made up of one balloon that is provided with eyelets which receive the necks 0f slender elongated balloons constituting the legs of the figure in the case of an animal, or thelegs and arms in the caseof a man. The eyelets are produced in the body part of the figure by dipping a metal form of special design into liquid latex, after which the latex where it extends over closely adjacent parts of the form on the sides of downwardly opening slots, merges or becomes welded together. Then, after the latex coagulates and sets the form may then be withdrawn, leaving the completed eyelets.
When the body balloon is completed and inflated, separate slender balloons which constitute the legs or the legs and arms of the figure may be inflated and tied at their necks, after which the neck portions may be inserted through the eyelets of the body portion, this usually requiring the stretching of the eyelets so that after the leg and arm balloons are in place they are held securely in position by the contracted eyelets.
Accordingly, one of the objects of the invention is the provision of a toy figure composed of a plurality of inflated balloons held together by eyelets formed in the body portion of the figure. Decorations on the individual balloons may obviously be used to make the assembled figure more realistic.
Other objects and features of novelty will appear as I proceed with the description of that embodiment of the invention which, for the purposes of the present application, I have illustrated in the accompanying drawing, in which Fig. 1 is a plan view of a metal mold or form which may be employed in carrying out the invention;
Fig. 2 is a large scale fragmental view of the lower portion of the body balloon, the view being partly in section;
Fig. 3 is a view of the separate balloons before inflation and assembly; and
Fig. 4 is a view of the different balloon parts in an inflated and assembled condition.
The metal form 9 which is to be dipped into a latex solution for production of the body balloon is illustrated in Fig. 1. When the invention is used for the production of a figure of human form the mold will include a portion 10 for the head of the figure and upper and lower portions 11 and 12 to produce the body of the figure. Portion 11 of the mold or form, which produces the portion of the figure comprising the shoulders, is provided with two slots 14, and the portion 12 of the form is provided with two bottom slots 15. Each of the slots 14 and 15 is narrowed at the bottom so that the slot is nearly, but not quite closed at its lower end.
In the production of the body part of the figure, form 9 is dipped into a pool of liquid latex. A layer of latex 2,952,094 Patented Sept. 13, 1960 is thus caused to adhere to the form, and when the form has been lifted out of the latex bath the latex is permitted to coagulate and set for the necessary length of time. The portions of the form at the lower ends of the slots 14 and 15 are sufliciently close together so that the latex bridges across the narrow opening, and as it hardens the slots are closed by thehardened and welded together latex.
After setting for a suflicient length of time, the body balloon 19 may then be stripped from the form 9, leaving openings 15, closed at the bottom, as shown at 20 in Fig. 2, by the merging and welding of the latex at those points. Similarly, the lower ends of the holes 14' in the body balloon are closed by the merging and welding of the latex covering the slots 14 of the mold.
Since the elements of the mold on either side of the slots 14 and 15 are separated somewhat, it is not difiicult to strip the balloon from the form, the rubber of the balloon being readily stretched to slip over or between the closely adjacent portions of the form at the bases of the slots.
The form 9 may have comparatively little thickness, as the finished balloon when inflated will assume a rounded shape, while the areas 20 of merged latex will be relatively small. However, the form may have substantial thickness, if desired, thereby giving the merged portions 20 and the corresponding merged portions at the lower ends of openings 14' increased length from front to rear and adding to their strength.
When the body balloon 19 is removed from the mold and is ready for use, it may be inflated and tied. The small elongated or slender balloons 25 constituting the arms of the figure, and the small but somewhat longer balloons 26 constituting the legs of the figure, may then be inflated and tied at their neck portions. These arm and leg balloons may then be assembled on the main or body balloon 19 as appendage balloons by pulling their necks through the eyelets 14 and 15 in the body balloon. The eyelets 14' and 15' are so dimensioned that the rub ber surrounding the eyelet openings must be stretched to admit the neck portions of the arm and leg members. The parts of the figure are thereby held securely together against accidental separation, but in case one of the balloon elements breaks in use, it may be readily replaced with a new one.
The mold portions lying on opposite sides of the slots 14 and 15 of the dipping form 9 comprise pairs of fingerlike portions each of which has one free end. The portions of the main balloon 19 formed by latex coagulated on these finger like portions are the hollow rubber side portions of the eyelets 14' and 15 which extend in a side by-side relation as appendage portions on the main balloon and are in communication with the interior of the main balloon so as to be inflatable therefrom. Since the welded-together free ends of these side portions are solid, rather than hollow, they are noninflatable. The inflation of the hollow side or appendage portions causes them to reduce the size of, or contract, the openings of the eyelets 14 and 15', whereby the necks of the arm and leg balloons 25 and 26 which have been inserted into the eyelet openings as arm and leg sockets will be gripped and retained therein.
An inflated and assembled figure is illustrated in Fig. 4, where the head and body of the figure are shown at 29 and 30 and the arms and legs at 25' and 26' respectively. The body balloon is sealed by a tie 31. The necks of the arm balloons are shown at 25" and the necks of the leg balloons at 26". The necks of all of these balloons are sealed by ties 32 before the necks of the arms and legs are drawn through the eyelets 14' and 15'.
The figure shown in the drawing is intended to represent a man, but it will be readily apparent that other fig- V ures such as animals or insects having four or more legs consisting of separate ballons may be devised, and suitably decorated if desired.
Having thus described my invention, I claim as follows:
1. In a rubber toy figure, a body and head balloon having integral arm eyelets and leg eyelets constituting arm and leg sockets, the arm and leg eyelets having hollow side portions communicating with, and inflatable from, the body balloon for contracting the eyelets upon inflation of said body balloon, slender elongated arm balloons having necks through which air is introduced for inflating the balloons, said necks being received in said arm eyelets, slender elongated leg balloons having necks through which air is introduced for inflating the balloons, the necks of said leg balloons being received in said leg eyelets, the necks of the arm and leg balloons received in said eyelets comprising means for sealing the arm and leg balloons against the loss of air and the contracting of the eyelets preventing the unintentional separation of the arm and leg balloons from the body balloon.
' 2. An inflatable rubber balloon including an inflatable rubber body, said body having a rubberlike wall defining a pair of inflatable portions formed integrally with the body and extending in side-by-side relationship, said por- 4 tions being joined together at their one ends by a noninflatable weld section and the interiors of said portions communicating with the interior of the main body at the other ends of said portions.
3. An inflatable rubber balloon having an inflatable rubber body open at one end and including adjacent inflatable portions formed integrally with and constituting appendage portions on the main body, said appendage portions each communicating with the main body at one end only and being closed at the other end, and a noninflatable weld section joining the said other ends of said appendage portions whereby the adjacent appendage portions define an eyelet which tends to close upon inflation of the balloon.
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