US 3181270 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
y 1965 c. D. TREVENA 3,181,270
MOVABLE WHEELED INCH WORM TOY Filed April 23, 1963 5 Sheets-Sheet 1 CHARLE S' BYWEQ/ ENA BY 7/ KM J ATTORNEY y 1965 c. D. TREVENA 3,181,270
MOVABLE WHEELED INCH WORM TOY Filed April 23, 1963 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVENTOR CHARLES DTREVENA BY M 7% W ATTORNEY y 1955 c. D. TREVENA 3,181,270
MOVABLE WHEELED INCH WORM TOY Filed April 25, 1963 3 Sheets-Sheet S INVENTOR.
CHARLES D TREVENA BY AK A222 JM ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,181,270 MOVABLE WHEELED INCH WORM TOY Charles Dale Trevena, 317th FIS, APO 942, Seattle, Wash. Filed Apr. 23, 1963, Ser. No. 275,114 Claims. (Cl. 46-104) This invention relates to a mechanical toy which can be propelled across a surface, and more particularly relates to a toy comprising a middle section suspended by jointed arm means between two wheel mounted endmost sections. The arm means are spring loaded to bias the middle section to an elevated position from which it can be operably pushed downwardly to propel the toy. The wheels are ratcheted to be forward turning only so that when manual pressure is applied downwardly on the middle section, the front section of the toy is pushed forwardly while the wheels on the rear section are locked against rearward movement by ratchet means. Upon release of the manual biasing force, which may be directly applied or applied by means of a control cable, the middle section is returned to elevated position by spring loading thereby causing the rear portion to be pulled forwardly while the wheels on the front section are locked against rearward movement. The motion of the toy over a surface is one of alternate forward motion first of the foremost section of the toy, and then of the rearrnost section of the toy. The differential motion between the front and rear sections of the toy accompanies the alternate raising and lowering of the middle portion of the toy. The toy may preferably be configured to resemble an inch worm because the motion of the toy suggests the movement of an inch worm wherein the head and the tail of the worm move at alternate times with the back of the worm being alternately hunched and flattened by the movements of head and tail.
It is an object of this invention to provide a toy which can be propelled by novel means.
It is another object of this invention to provide a toy which can be propelled over a surface by downwardly pushing on a suspended spring biased portion of the toy, the suspended portion being returned to elevated position by the spring biasing means to complete the locomotion cycle.
It is another object of this invention to provide a remotely controlled toy which can be propelled across a floor surface continuously by alternate application and release of manual force.
Other objects will become apparent from the drawings and from the following detailed description in which it is intended to illustrate the applicability of the invention without thereby limiting its scope to less than that of all equivalents which will be apparent to one skilled in the art. In the drawings like reference numerals refer to like parts and:
FIGURE 1 is a perspective view of a toy of this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a side elevation in section of the toy of FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 3 is a plan view in partial section of the toy of FIGURE 1;
FIGURES 4 through 7 are side elevations in section of portions of other spring loaded embodiments of the toy of FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 8 is a side elevation of a portion of the toy of FIGURE 1 with a remote control operating cable added.
In FIGURE 1 is shown a toy designated generally as 10 comprising forward portion 11 wheel mounted by means of wheels 12, rear portion 13 wheel mounted by means of wheels 14, middle portion 15 shown in raised ice position, and connecting sleeves 16 and 16' between the two end portions and the middle portion. Front portion 11 of the toy is caused to move forward by rotation of wheels 12 when pressure is exerted downwardly on middle portion 15. The toy is flattened and elongated by such pressure until middle portion 15 is substantially at the same level as the two end portions, whereupon the downward force is released and the toy is returned to the position shown in FIGURE 1 by spring return means concealed within the toy. Upon return movement of middle section 15 upwardly, rear portion 13 is drawn forward over the floor surface on wheels 14.
In FIGURE 2 the toy of FIGURE 1 is shown in crosssectional side elevation. Two sets of radial arms 18 are shown, one set of which connects middle portion 15 with forward portion 11 of the toy and the other set of which connects middle portion 15 to rear portion 13 of the toy. Both ends of the radial arms are pivotally mounted and a tensilely stressed spring 17 is provided to bias each set of radial arms, one end of each spring being aflixed to the upper arm in each case at the end of the arm nearest the end extremity of the toy and with the other end of the spring in each case connected to the lower radial arm at the extremity of the arm nearest the middle of the toy. Thus, it will be seen that when section 15 is forcibly pressed downward, springs 17 are elongated and radial arms 18 are moved into substantially horizontal position. The forward portion 11 of toy 10 is caused to move forward by this movement with ratchet wheel 19 being turned in a counter-clockwise manner as shown in FIGURE 2 and pawl 20 riding freely thereover. Ratchet wheel 19' is locked by engagement with pawl 20' in the rear portion 13 of toy 10 and cause wheels 14 to be locked in position. Ratchet wheels and pawls 19, 19' and 20, 20', respectively, are mounted to ratchet freely in a forward direction only so that only the front portion of the toy is propelled by section 15 being biased downwardly. When force is withdrawn from the back of middle portion 15 of the toy, springs 17 contract thereby again raising middle portion 15 to the position shown in FIGURES 1 and 2 and cause pawl 20 to lock ratchet wheel 19 while pawl 20' in the rear of the toy ratchets freely over ratchet wheel 19'.
In FIGURE 3 is shown a plan view of toy 10 in partial section wherein arms 18 are rigidly braced by cross member 22 and are pivotally afiixed to cross members 23 and 23. Cross members 23 and 23' are secured in place respectively in the centermost and the endmost portions of toy 10. Springs 17 can be anchored by being hooked over the transverse frame members as shown.
In FIGURE 4 is shown another alternative method for spring rigging of the toy 10 of FIGURE 1. Springs 24 are affixed to the upper inner surface of end portions 11 and 13 as shown with the opposite end of the springs being connected to the lower radial arms 18 in an operable manner. The action of the toy equipped with spring 24 is identical to that of a toy equipped with spring 17.
In FIGURE 5 is shown another embodiment of this invention wherein arms 18', provided between middle section 15' and forward and rear portions 11 and 13', respectively, are singly strung rod means. Meshed gear sectors are fixedly attached to the end extremities of arms 18' and are rotatable about fixed axles 31. The opposite end extremities are pivotally mounted on vertical braces 32 and are slidably pinned to braces 32' as shown with slots in members 18' and 32 determining the extent of vertical travel of rods 18'. Rods 18' are spring loaded by tension springs 33 as shown. Wheels 12 and 14' are similarly attached to the ratchet means as shown in FIG- URE 1 with the ratchet means not being shown for convenience, however, in FIGURE 6. Wheels 14' are placed Q Q on tandem axles to provide a stable mounting for braces 32' in the rear portion 13' of the toy.
In FIGURE 6 is shown a modification of the toy of FIGURE 1 wherein radial arms 18 are biased by spring 34 disposed in middle portion 15" of the toy. The operation of the toy is similar to that described with relation to FIGURE 1 with tension spring 34 biasing portion 15" into elevated position when manual downward pressure on the toy is relieved.
In FIGURE 7 is shown another modification of the toy of this invention wherein flexible resilient arms 18" are fixedly secured in center portion 15" of the toy and the opposite end extremities thereof are pinned securely in forward and rear portions 11" and 13" by means of pins 35. The arms may be made of spring metal or like material which can undergo elastic deformation and return to undeformed configuration (as shown in FIGURE 7) when the force causing deformation is removed. The toy shown in FIGURE 7 is operated in a manner similar to that described for other embodiments of the invention.
In FIGURE 8 is shown a modification of the invention wherein a flexible cable is provided comprising a wire slidably encased in a flexible sheath to enable the toy to be remotely actuated. The actuation may either be by pushing or by pulling the wire through the sheath, but the latter arrangement is shown in FIGURE 8 with wire 36 being attached to finger grip 39 and sheath 37tbeing at tached to thumb depressor 38. The opposite end of wire 36 is affixed to radial arms 18 in the rear half of the toy and the opposite end of sheath 37 is afiixed to the rear extremity of rear portion 13". The toy is operably actuated by alternately pressing and releasing thumb depressor 38 while stationarily holding finger grip 39.
While certain modifications and embodiments of the invention have been described, it is of course to be understood that there are a great number of variations which will suggest themselves to anyone familiar with the subject matter thereof and it is to be distinctly understood that this invention should not be limited except by such limitations as are clearly imposed in the appended claims.
' 1. A toy comprising in combination at least five discrete sections disposed in longitudinal arrangement in an axial plane, wheel mounting means on the endmost of said sections, means provided on said endmost sections to restrain said wheel mounting means from rearward rotation, said sections comprising a foremost section, a rearmost section, and middle section, and a section connecting said foremost section to said middle section, and a section connecting said rearmost section to said middle section, said connecting sections each comprising means extending respectively from said foremost and rearmost sections to said middle section to maintain the axes of said foremost section, said middle section, and said rearmost section parallel, said device, comprising resilient means causing said middlemost section to be biased to an elevation above said endmost sections, said middlemost section being disposed to be biased downwardly by manual force.
2. The article of claim 1 wherein said means for restraining said Wheel mounting means against rearward rotation comprises ratchet and pawl means.
3. The article of claim 1 wherein said means for restraining said wheel mounting means against rearward rotation comprises overrunning clutch means.
4. The article of claim 1 wherein said connecting sections each comprise an adjacent pair of pivotally mounted arm members disposed between said foremost section and .said middle section and also said rearmost section and said middle section and further comprise spring biasing means connected to each said arm member.
5. The article of claim 1 wherein flexible cable means is provided for forcibly biasing said middle section by remote operation.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,649,072 11/27 McAllaster 46-152X 2,232,615 2/41 Kupka 46104 FOREIGN PATENTS 275,476 8/51 Switzerland.
RICHARD C. PINKHAM, Primary Examiner.