US 3162973 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
1964 e. K. CHRISTIANSEN 3,
TOY BUILDING ELEMENT Filed June 27, 1961 -llllllil INVENTOR Godrfred -Kirk Christiunsen TTORNEYS United States Patent 3,162,973 TOY BUILDEN G ELEMENT Godtfred Kirk Christiansen, Billund, Denmark, assignor to Interlego A.G., Zug, Switzerland, a corporation of Switzerland Filed June 27, 1961, Ser. No. 119,885 Claims priority, application Denmark, July 6, 1960, 2,645/60 1 Claim. (Cl. 46-25) This invention relates to a toy building element of the kind consisting of a hollow block open at one face and having at the bottom face opposite the open face externally projecting assembly studs of circular or polygonal cross section.
In my prior application Serial No. 751,387, filed July 28, 1958, now Patent No. 3,005,282, and Serial No. 796,- 374, filed March 2, 1959, now Patent No. 3,034,254, there are disclosed such building elements with internal tubular studs so dimensioned and positioned that the cross section of each of the internal studs touches the cross section of four external assembly studs. With this construction a secure attachment of two or more assembled elements is achieved for many dilferent relative positions due to the clamping efiect between the external studs of one element and the internal surfaces (studs and Walls) of the other element.
The object of the present invention is to provide a building element with corresponding properties, but which in addition offers particular advantages partly in respect of an efiicient locking of two assembled elements in certain predetermined relative positions, and partly in respect of stability of shape.
With a view to the latter aspect it has previously been proposed that the hollow blocks should be given rigidity by the provision of internal transverse walls or ribs, which would simultaneously serve as engagement surfaces for the assembly studs of a neighbor element when such two elements were assembled, but these known elements do not offer the same possibilities for variation as the elements having internal tubular studs.
According to the present invention the advantages of both the above mentioned types of elements are combined by providing a toy building element of the kind described having both external assembly studs and internal ribs, and which is unique in that the ribs are disposed at an angle of 45 degrees to the end and side walls of the element, and that the distance between two parallel ribs equals the diameter of the cylindrical assembly studs or the diameter of the inscribed circle of the assembly studs having a polygonal cross section.
In a preferred embodiment of the invention there are two sets of ribs which intersect one another at right angles. In this way the cavity of the element is partitioned into a number of cells having a cross sectional shape corresponding to the assembly studs of a neighboring element, and, consequently, the assembly studs, when inserted into the cells, are clamped between the cell walls or between these walls and the side or end walls of the element. Some of these cells, that is the cells that are disposed in the middle of the cavity of the element, will have a square cross section whilst others are pentagonal or triangular in cross section. The pentagonal cells will also serve as stud receiving portions whilst the triangular cells provide rigidity only. The number of cells in an element will depend on the shape and dimensions of the element. Thus, a rectangular element of the kind-normally used as the main elements in a building set and having a unit width w and a length 2w and eight external assembly studs will have three cells of square cross section, eight cells with pentagonal cross section and eight cells with triangular cross section while another main type in the form of a square with length and width w, will have a central cell of square cross section, four cells of pentagonal cross section and four cells of triangular cross section.
The characteristic features of the invention and the particular effect achieved thereby will now be described in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which FIGURE 1 is a horizontal plan view of a building element according to the invention having cylindrical assembly studs,
FIGURE 2 is a horizontal plan view of a modified version of such building element provided with polygonal assembly studs,
FIGURE 3 is a horizonal plan view of the block shown in FIGURES l and 2 seen from the open face, so as to show the internal ribs,
FIGURE 4 is a view, partly in section of two assembled building elements according to the invention, and
FIGURE 5 shows a further modification of such building element.
In FIGURES l-3 is shown a building element according to the invention comprising :a hollow block open at one face and having a closed face 10 and side and end walls 11 and 12 respectively.
On the outside of the closed face 10 assembly studs are provided which may be cylindrical as shown at 21 in FIGURE 1 or polygonal as shown at 26 in FIGURE 2. Studs 21 and 26 are arranged in transverse pairs as illustrated. The blocks of FIGURES l and 2 are each provided with four of these transverse pairs arranged in a row lengthwise of the block, ri.e., from left to right as shown on the drawing.
The cavity of the building element as shown in FIG- URE 3 is partitioned into a number of cells by means of ribs 5, which form an angle of 45 degrees with the sides 11 and 12, and some of these cells 6 have have a square cross section, others 7 have a pentagonal cross section, and the rest 8 have a triangular cross section.
FIGURE 4 illustrates the assembly of two such elements at a right angle, the external studs of one element 2a being inserted in the cells 7 of the other element 2.
In the preferred embodiment of the invention the block is provided with two sets of transverse ribs intersecting at right angles providing a number of cells as shown in FIGURE 3. The ribs of each set are mutually parallel. However it is possible to realize many of the advantages of the invention in a simpler embodiment having a single set of diagonally transverse, mutually parallel, ribs as shown in FIGURE 5.
When polygonal assembly studs 26 are used as shown in FIGURES 2 and 4, such studs when inserted in the cells between the ribs 5 engage these ribs as well as the side and end walls of the elements with their plane surfaces, and this results in a firm and rigid assembly which for example makes it possible to assemble two elements by means of a single assembly stud when this is inserted in one of the pentagonal cells 7 in the corners of a neighbouring element to provide a firm and unshakeable assembly.
In a similar assembly, using the embodiment shown in FIGURE 1, the cylindrical studs of one element engage the inner surfaces of the other element more or less tangentially thereto at a like number of locations;
What is claimed is:
A toy building element having an interior space defined by side and end walls, diagonal integral partitions disposed at 45 to said walls and subdividing said space, each partition being connected at each end to a difierent one of said walls, at least two of said partitions being connected at one end to opposite end walls and at the other to opposite side walls, an integral top overlying extending from the surface of said top opposite to the surface facing the interior space, the space between the studs of each transverse pair being free of projections, the number of mutually parallel partitions being'equal to the number of said transverse pairs of studs, the studs of a transverse pair being spaced apart in a plane parallel to an end wall and so disposed that a projection thereof into said internalspace'would engage in clamping rela-' tion opposite sidesof. the same partition at points spaced apartalong the length of that partition, each transverse pairwhen projected so engaging at least onerpartition which is not so engaged by another transverse pair of said studs whereby when the studs of a transverse pairof a likeelement engage at least one of said partitions, a clamping effect results which tends to distort the partition in a manner tending to reduce its overall length 4 thereby to pull inwardly the Walls is connected.
to which the partition References Cited by the Examiner 5 UNITED STATES PATENTS 5 879,455 2/08 Frost 46- 25 1,725,911 8/29 Graham -s. 46 24 1,361,388 11/58 Favaretto 46- 25 x 7 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,150,976 8/57 France. 1,180,316 12/ 58 France.
15 DELBERT B. LOWE, Primary Examiner.
JAMES W. LOVE, Examiner.