US 3066439 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 4, 1962 J. H. LEMELSON 3,066,439
INFLATABLE TOYS Original Filed Nov. 15. 1952 INVENTOR. Jerome H.Lernelson 1 (Ilaim. or. 4688) This invention relates to an illuminated display and is a division of application Serial Number 320,184 entitled Inflatable Toys which was filed on November 13, 1952 now abandoned.
It is known in the art to construct a toy or display device of flexible plastic sheeting shaped and seam sealed to define an inflatable bag or enclosure capable of being inflated to an erect body. Such shapes as mock figures of animals and other characters are generally retained in a standing or upright condition by means of sand or other ballast material provided at the bottom of the figure. It is frequently desirable to provide lighting in a display to improve its appearance and more readily attract attention. The conventional inflated plastic body described above provides a medium for a most effective and eye-catching display it made of light transmitting material and if internally illuminated, that is to say, if illuminated by light directed against the inside surface of the light transmitting walls of the display which highlights the exterior surface thereof. However, the conventional inflatable plastic structure does not lend itself to effective internal illumination.
Accordingly, it is a primary object of this invention to provide a new and improved inflatable display in the shape of a figure or other form which may be interiorly illuminated by light from an electric lamp.
Another object is to provide an inflatable display which is self-supporting and attention getting.
Another object is to provide an electrically illuminated display device which is easily constructed, and light in Weight.
Another object is to provide an electrically illuminated inflatable display device which may be deflated for packaging or storage and presented in a condition whereby it will occupy only a small portion of the volume which would be required of the conventional illuminated display device of the same size but made of conventional rigid or self-supporting materials.
Another object is to provide an improved structure in an electric lamp illuminated inflatable device applicable for display purposes and the like which includes means for supporting an electric lamp relative thereto.
Another object is to provide an inflatable assembly including a support for said assembly and an electric lamp arranged so as to internally illuminate the interior of an inflated portion of said assembly without blocking the light from said lamp directed into said inflated portion. With the above and other such objects in view as may hereinafter more fully appear, the invention consists of the novel construction, combination and arrangement of parts as will be more fully described and illustrated in the accompanying drawings, but it is also to be understood that changes, variations and modifications may be resorted to which fall within the scope of the invention as claimed.
The drawing illustrates structural details of an inflated display device having certain components cross sectioned or broken away for clarity which device comprises a first assembly 12 which includes an inflatable body portion 14 made of flexible plastic sheeting 16 defining the upper wall of the display. A second assembly 19 shown at the lower end of the display comprises a base or support 20 for assembly 12. Base 20 may be any suitatent able shape or structure and serves, in addition to supporting the inflatable assembly 12, also as a means for supporting an assembly 22 including an electric light 24.
The inflatable assembly 12 comprises inflatable portion 14 having walls 16 made of flexible plastic such as so called vinyl. Secured to the lower extremity of the flexible material or sheeting 16 is a cup-shaped member 17 of transparent or translucent material which both coacts to effect the assembly of the two sub-assemblies 12 and 19, and serves as a window through which light from the electric lamp 24 may pass to the interior of the upper assembly 12. A portion of the wall 16 of the upper assembly 12 may therefore be internally illuminated by light transmitted through the cup-shaped window 17 and will readily attract attention particularly at night or in environments of subdued light.
The wall 18 of cup-shaped member 17 is preferably circumscribingly sealed to the flexible material 16 of the inflatable body portion in the area surrounding the lower opening therein. Well known heat sealing or welding techniques may be applied to etfect such a seal.
In the drawing, electric lamp 24 is retained by base 211 closely adjacent the Wall of the cup-shaped member 17 so that a major portion of the light generated by said lamp will pass through the light transmitting wall of 17 for illuminating the flexible, upwardly extending inflated wall 16 of the display. A reflector 26 may be provided which is retained by the base 25 of the lamp for directing substantially all of the light through the wall of the cup shaped member.
It is noted that the assembly illustrated in the drawing does not require a complex assembly and sealing operation which would be necessitated if the electric lamp were secured within the interior, pressurized volume 13 of the body. Furthermore, it is noted that the assembly is a substantial improvement over assemblies such as that of expired Patent 1,630,717 in which a major portion of light projected into a balloon from an electric lamp is blocked by means of the retainer for the balloon which mount casts shadows against the wall of the display thereby reducing its effectiveness and possibly rendering portions of the display diflicult to see.
A latitude of modification and substitution is intended in the foregoing disclosure, and in certain instances, some features of the invention will be used without a corresponding use of other features. Accordingly, it is appropriate that the appended claim be construed broadly and in a manner consistent with the spirit and scope of the invention.
An inflatable display comprising in combination:
(a) an inflatable enclosure capable of being inflated to define a self-supporting body of predetermined shape, comprising an upper part of a flexible, heat scalable thermoplastic sheeting,
(b) at least part of said flexible sheeting being light transmitting,
(c) an opening in said flexible plastic sheeting at the bottom of said enclosure,
(d) a cup-shaped member having side and bottom wall portions made of self-supporting heat scalable, light transmitting thermoplastic material,
(e) said cup-shaped, light transmitting member being heat sealed in assembly with said sheeting by means of a weld defining a circumscribing seal around the side wall of the cup-shaped member and the flexible sheeting surrounding said opening, said cup shaped member defining a closure for said opening in the sheeting,
(f) a support for said cup-shaped member defining a seat for retaining said enclosure,
(g) an electric lamp retained by said support for said cup-shaped member in a position adjacent the wall of said cup-shaped member and exterior of said enclosure,
(/1) said cup-shaped member being retained on said seat -by means so constructed and arranged to retain the member on the seat without obstruction to said light source,
(1') said lamp adapted when electrically energized to transmit light through the light transmitting wall of the cup-shaped member to the interior of the inflatable enclosure for illuminating the light-trane mitting portion of the wall thereof.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,229,794 Salzer June 12, 1917 1,349,374 Gruenfeld Aug. 10, 1920 4 Pisano May 31, 1927 Cook Sept. 16, 1930 Bonanno Nov. 29, 1938 Lehigh July 8, 1941 Rikelman Apr. 15, 1952 Guischard Apr. 21, 1953 Baggott Feb. 16, 1954 Moran May 29, 1956 Whitney Jan. 27, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS France Oct. 23, 1928 Australia May 27, 1929