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Publication numberUS3358400 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 19, 1967
Filing dateDec 22, 1964
Priority dateDec 22, 1964
Publication numberUS 3358400 A, US 3358400A, US-A-3358400, US3358400 A, US3358400A
InventorsKatz Abraham M, Lindsay Kenneth W
Original AssigneeIdeal Toy Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Moving eye mechanism
US 3358400 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Dec. 19, 1967 A. M. KATZ ET AL 3,358,400

MOVING EYE MECHANISM Filed Dec. 22, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG. 3 F 4 INVENTORS 4524/7 44; M 4442? M+M v Dec. 19, 1967 M. KATZ ETAL MOVING EYE MECHANISM 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Dec. 22, 1964 FIG /0 47 Y 9 W 6 "1M 4 F m w P 4 6. .1 w M M a a e. .lwe M u w United States Patent 3,358,400 MOVING EYE MECHANISM Abraham M. Katz and Kenneth W. Lindsay, Great Neck, N .Y., assignors to Ideal Toy Corporation, Hollis, N .Y. Filed Dec. 22, 1964, Ser. No. 420,262 5 Claims. (Cl. 46-135) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE An eye mechanism for animated dolls having a three dimensional cam mounted on a drive shaft with the cam having spaced cam surfaces engageable with cam follower means which are connected to pendulum eye units such that the dolls eyes open and close upon rotation of the three dimensional cam but nevertheless operate as normal pendulum-controlled eyes.

The present invention relates generally to dolls and specifically to a mechanism for automatically moving the eyes of the doll through a periodic and repetitive opening and closing motion while at the same time allowing the dolls eyes to exhibit the normal pendulum functions,

i.e., the closing of the dolls eyes in response to rearward tilting of the doll and the opening of the eyes in response to moving the doll into an upright position.

In recent years, toy manufacturers made substantial advancements in the provision of animated features for dolls. For example, contemporary dolls are provided with voice mechanisms, movement mechanisms whereby the head moves with respect to the body to produce an infant'like motion, tearing mechanisms, and the like. There has been in use for many years, a pendulum mechanism for dolls eyes whereby the eyes assume an opened position when the doll is held in an upright or vertical orientation and assume a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly. This characteristic results from mounting the eyeballs of the doll on a transverse pivot and providing suflicient mass to produce a pendulum efiect wherein the axis of the dolls pupils remains substantially horizontal. Accordingly, when the doll is held vertically, the eyes will appear opened and conversely, when the doll is held horizontally, the eyes will move into their closed position. Eyelids are normally formed on the portion of the eyeballs immediately above the pupils such that the eyelid portions move across the eye socket openings when the doll is tilted rearwardly.

In addition to the incorporation of such pendulumoperated moving eye mechanisms, further animated features have been added to dolls. For example, in the US. Patent No. 3,029,552, entitled Animated Doll and issued on April 17, 1962, a doll is shown wherein the head moves with respect to the body simulating the motions of an infant in a crib.

The present invention is concerned with the provision of a mechanism whereby the eyes of the doll will be periodicaly opened and closed when the doll is either in an upright or reclining position and wherein this mechanism does not substantially interfere with the normal pendulum effect of the eyes. Although the present invention is useful generally in dolls, it finds particular advantage in dolls of the general type shown in the aforementioned U.S. patent since it is there combined with other animated dolls features. It is further advantageous to provide the above described animated feature by means of a structure which fulfills the overall requirements for cotrnrnercial success in the mass production toy industry: dependability of products, low unit cost, ease of manufacture, and reliability and simplicity of operation.

Acordingly, it is a general object of the present invention to provide an improved eye mechanism for a Patented Dec. 19, 1967 doll. Specifically, it is an object of the present invention to provide an eye mechanism whereby the dolls eyes will be periodically opened and closed.

It is still further within the contemplation of the invention to provide an eye mechanism for use in dolls which allows the dolls eyes to be moved between an opened and closed position but which nevertheless does not substantially interfere with the traditional pendulum movement of the dolls eyes. It is further an object of the present invention to provide such a mechanism which is inexpensive, dependable, and capable of commercial production.

In accordance with one illustrative embodiment of the present invention, there is provided an eye mechanism for inclusion within an animated doll which has a drive shaft mounted for rotational movement within the head of the doll. The eye mechanism comprises a pair of pendulum eyes mounted in the normal manner within the eye sockets of the doll for movement between an open position when the doll is vertically oriented, and a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly. A three-dimensional cam member is mounted on the drive shaft for rotational movement about its own central axis. The cam member has a lower cam portion at a first location on the shaft and an upper cam portion at a second location on the shaft with each of the cam portions, each having cam surfaces spaced from the other along the vertical extent of the shaft. Cam follower means are provided connected to the eyes and extend into the space between the two cam surfaces of the cam portions. The follower means are movable under the influence of the pendulum motion of the eyes within the space between the respective cam surfaces. The cam surface of the lower cam portion has a rising cam section followed by a falling cam section for respectively closing the dolls eyes and then allowing them to open upon continued rotation of the cam member when the doll is vertically oriented. The cam surface of the upper cam portion has a first falling cam section followed by a rising cam section for opening the dolls eyes and thereafter allowing them to close respectively upon further rotation of the cam member when the doll is in its rearward tilted position. The spacing between the lower and upper cam portions is sufiicient to allow the eyes to move under the influence of gravity between their opened and closed positions by means of the normal pendulum effect.

The above brief description, as well as further objects, features and advantages of the present invention, will be best understood by reference to the following detailed description of an illustrative embodiment of the invention, when taken into conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of a portion of a doll with portions broken away, illustrating one presently preferred environment for the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the mechanisms inside a dolls head in accordance with the present invention, with the dolls head shown in phantom outline and a portion of the dolls head around one of the eye sockets shown in section. The eye and its associated mechanism is shown in its opened position;

FIG. 3 is a view similar to that of FIG. 2 illustrating the mechanism rotated through degrees and the eye moved under the influence of the same member into its closed position;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken along the line 4-4 of FIG. 3 looking in the direction of the arrows;

FIG. 5 is a side elevational view generally similar to that of FIG. 2, illustrating the doll tilted into its rearwardly reclined position;

FIG. 6 is a partial elevational view similar to that of FIG. showing the eye mechanism rotated to drive the eye into its closed position;

FIG. 7 is a partial side elevational view basically similar to FIGS. 2 and 3 but showing the cam member in an intermediate position between those shown in FIGS. 2 and 3;

FIG. 8 is a sectional view taken along the line 8--8 of FIG. 7 and looking in the direction of the arrows;

' FIG. 9 is a perspective view of the cam member incorporated in the mechanism in accordance with the present invention illustrating the detent stop mechanism; and

, FIG. 10 is a graphical layout of the two cam portions of the cam member showing their relative positions plotted against circumferential locations about the periphery of the cam member.

Now referring to the drawings, there is shown in FIG. 1, a doll generally designated by the number 10 which includes a body 12 and a head .14. As may be seen by inspecting the portion of FIG. 1 which is shown in section, a spring motor 16 is mounted within the body 12 and is wound through a knob 18 projecting through the rear oft'he body. Extending upwardly from the spring motor 16 is a drive shaft 20 which is bent at 22 and which extends upwardly through a collar block 24. The drive shaft '20 is in brearing engagement with the block 24, such that the block 24 and the rigidly attached head moves through a generally conical motion with respect .to the body 12. The details of this construction and the operation of these mechanisms are more completely described in the aforementioned issued US. patent. For the purposes of the present description, it is suflicient to note that drive shaft 20 extends upwardly through the neck block 24 and rotates within the head 14 and about its own central axis.

The eye mechanism, generally designated by the numeral 34 may be understood by referring to FIG. 2 and the following description: There is included within the dolls head, a pair of eyeball sockets or openings 32 in each of which is mounted a traditional pendulum eye unit 34. The eye unit 34 includes a casing 36 in engagement with the skin of the dolls head and an internal pivotally mounted eyeball 38. In accordance with well known principles, the eyeball 38 is mounted on an axis transverse to the dolls head (i.e., on an axis parallel to a line drawn between the dolls ears) for pivotal motion from an open position as shown in FIG. 2 to a closed position as shown in FIG. 4. It will be noted that eyelashes 40 are formed on the portion of the eyeball above the pupil to present a realistic closing of the eyes. Extending rearwardly from each of the pivotally mounted eyeballs 38 are actuating arms 42 which are connected to a transverse follower beam 44, thereby interconnecting the pendulum eye units 34. Extending rearwardly from the follower beam 44 is a follower member 46, the function ofwhich will become readily apparent as the present description proceeds. It will be appreciated by those skilled in theart that the foregoing description presents presently known technology in the doll art. The pendulum eye units 34 function to open and close the dolls eyes in response to the attitude of the doll in space. Specifically, when the doll is generally upright as shown in FIG. 2, the pendulum effect causes the eyes to assume their open position. Conversely, when the doll is tilted rearwardly as shown in FIG. 5, the pendulum effect causes 'the dolls eyes to assume a closed position except, of course, if the follower 46 is deflected by some further element.

Extending upwardly from the neck block 24 is a supporting structure 48 which provides a central generally cylindrical'b'earing member 50. An upright bracket member 52 extends upwardly from the supporting structure 48 and is secured to the skin of the doll head 14 at a point between the eye sockets (seeFIG. 2).

The cam member 30 is rigidly secured to the shaft 20 immediately above the bearing portion 50 of the support 48 and rotates about its own axis within the dolls head 14 as the shaft 20 is rotated under the impetus of the spring motor 16. Reference to the perspective view of the cam member 30 in FIG. 9, in association with the various elevational views of FIGS. 2, 3 and '5 through 8, will lead to the easiest understanding of the structure and configuration of that member. The cam member 30 has a first or lower cam portion 54 and a second or upper cam portion 56 at spaced location along the length of its central axis. The lowercam portion 54 has a cam surface 58 and the upper cam portion 56 'has an opposing and generally complementary cam surface 60. Cam surface 58 faces upwardly and cam surface 60 faces downwardly. Each of the cam surfaces 58, 60, has a relatively sharp point at its center with steeply sloping inclines on either side of the center point. The shape of the lower cam 54 may be best appreciated by viewing FIG. 7. It is shown in full elevational view. The shape of the cam may also be appreciated, from the functional point of view, from a consideration of the graph FIG. 10.. ,The lower cam portion 54 and the upper cam portion 56 are formed of slightly curved members which, for purposes of the present description, can be considered to generally approach a flat member. Each of these cam portions is positioned at an angle with respect to the central axis of the cam member (the axis of the shaft 20) and are on opposite sides of that axis. .As seen in FIG. 8, a lower-centralweb 62 supports the lower cam portion 54 and an upper central web 64 supports the upper cam portion 56.

The physical relationship between the follower member-46 attached to the eye units 34 and the cam'portions 54, 56 of the cam member 39 is such that the lower-cam portion 54 acts on the follower 46 when the doll is in its upright position and the upper cam portion 56 acts on the follower 46 when the doll is in its rearward reclined position. The action of the cam member 30,0n the eye units 34 is to close the eyes when thedoll is upright or open the eyes when the doll is reclined, once for :each revolution of the cam member v30. This movement will be best appreciated by progressively studying FIGS. ,2, 3, 5, 6 and 7. In FIG. 2, the cam member 3tlisshown with the beginning of the lower cam .54, degrees away from the follower 46. 'In FIG. 7, the shaft 20 and the cam member 30 are:shown having been rotated through 90 degrees from the position of FIG. 2 with the beginning of cam surface 58 of cam member54 engagingth e follower 46. It will be appreciated that upon further rotation of the .camrnember 30, the upwardly rising portion of the cam surfaceSS willlift the .cam follower 46 thus tiltingthe eyeballs 38 of the eye units 34 downwardly. Upon a further rotation of 90 degrees, .the follower 46 will becammed to its uppermost position as shown in FIG. 3. Further rotation from that point willallow the follower 46 to slide downwardly on the downward sloping section of the cam surface 58 until thecompletely opened position is once again reached. Further rotation of the canrmember 36 through an additional 90 degrees will bring the mechanisms back into the orientation as shown in FIG. 2. Accordingly, it will be appreciated that-there is a degree period of the rotation of the cam member'30in which a follower 46 is not at all affected; there is a 90 degree portion of the cycle in which the cam follower 46 is forced upwardly thereby closing the eyes; and

there is a further 90 degree portion ofthe cycle in which the follower '46 is allowedto drop downwardly once again to return the eyes to their opened positions.

When the doll 10 is tilted rearwardly as shown in FIG. 5, the cam member 30 works in a generally similar .manner but in this position 'it functions to open the dolls eyes once during each cycle of rotation. Specifically, when the doll is tilted rearwardly the normal pendulum moveinent of the eye units 34 causes the dolls eyes to assume a closed position (see FIG. '6). Upon rotation of the cam member 30, the cam surface 60 of the upper cam 56 will contact the cam follower 46 and through a 90 degree rotational of the cam member 30 will push the count follower downwardly thereby to rotate the eyeballs 38 of the eye units 34, move them into their open position as shown in .FIG. 5. Continued rotation of the cam member 30, by continued rotation of the drive shaft 20, will allow the cam follower 46 and the eye units 34 to return to their normal position as determined by the pendulum action and thereby to close the dolls eyes. It will be appreciated that the upper cam portion 56 functions in a manner similar but opposite to that of the lower cam portion 54.

Since it is desirable that the cam portion 30 come to rest in a position wherein the lower and upper cam members 54, 56 do not interfere with the normal pendulum action of the eye units 34, a detent mechanism 66 is provided comprising a leaf spring 6-8 having a point contact 70 which leaf spring is secured at 72 to the upright 52 of support member 48. The point 70' of the leaf spring 68 engages a transverse disk 74 integrally on the cam member 30, which disk is provided with a pair of detent notches 76, 78 on opposite sides thereof and arranged at the respective beginning and end of the cam portions 54, 56. Since the spring motor 16 is of fairly conventional design and has a run-down area, as it approaches the end of its power, it will stop at any point where an unusual load is placed upon it. The detent mechanism 66 provides such a load. Although the friction forces due to the detent mechanism 66 are insufficient to effect operation during the normal operable range of the spring motor 16, when the motor reaches the end of its power, the detent 66 is effective to stop the cam member 30 at one of its two desirable 180 degree positions. As illustrated in FIG. 8, in either one of these positions, the follower member of 46 may tranverse its full vertical extent under the influence of the pendulum mechanisms in the eye units 34 free from interference from either one of the two cam portions 54, 56.

Mounted above the cam member 30 and supported thereby is a noise mechanism 80, commonly referred to as a ma-ma mechanism, which produces a ma-ma sound each time its central axis is turned end through end in a vertical plane. Accordingly, the ma-ma mechanism 80 will produce noise once during each cycle of the operation of the eye mechanism, but only when the doll is in its rearwardly reclined position. When the doll is in its vertical or upright position, the Ina-ma mechanism will be inactive.

It will be appreciated that there is provided in accordance with the present invention an improved eye mechanism for a doll which adds a new degree of animation without interfering with the normal actions of the well known pendulum doll eye units. Specifically, a doll incorporating the mechanisms of the present invention may be used in exactly that manner well known for pendulum eye dolls. Specifically, when the doll is in an upright position, the dolls eyes are open and when the doll is tilted rearwardly, the eyes are closed under the influence of gravity. When the mechanisms according to the present invention are actuated by means of an internal motor, such as the spring motor illustrated above, the dolls eyes will be closed once during each cycle of operations when the doll is in a vertical orientation and they will be opened once during each cycle of operations when the doll is tilted rearwardly. As will be appreciated by those skilled in the art, the mechanisms disclosed and illustrated above are simple and dependable, easy and inexpensive to manufacture and have a high degree of reliability.

Although there has been only one specific structure illustrated herein, it will be appreciated that a number of design variations from the illustrated structure may be readily made by those skilled in the art without departing from the basic teachings in accordance with the present invention. Accordingly, the following claims should be construed broadly in a manner consistent with the spirit and scope of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. In an animated doll having rotating drive means including a shaft and a pair of pendulum eyes mounted within the eye sockets of the doll for movement between an opened position when the doll is tilted rearwardly and a closed position, a cam member mounted within the head of the doll for rotational movement about its central Hi8 and connected to said rotating drive means, said cam member having a first cam surface means at a first location on said shaft and a second cam surface means at a second location on said shaft, said cam surface means spaced from each other along the vertical extent of said shaft, and cam follower means connected to said eyes and operatively engaged with said cam member, said cam surface means periodically closing and periodically opening the dolls eyes upon rotation of said cam member when said doll is in an upright position and a reclined position, respectively.

2. An eye mechanism for an animated doll having powered drive means including a drive shaft mounted for rotational movement with the head of the doll, said eye mechanism comprising a pair of pendulum eyes mounted within the eye sockets of the doll for movement between an opened position when the doll is oriented vertically and a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly, a cam member mounted on said drive shaft for rotational movement, said cam member having a first cam surface means and a second cam surface means, said first and second cam surface means spaced from each other along the vertical extent of said shaft and being oriented at spaced locations about the circumferential extent of said cam member, and cam follower means connected to said eyes and operatively engaged with said cam member, said cam surface means periodically closing and periodically opening the dolls eyes upon rotation of said cam member when said doll is in an upright position and a reclined position, respectively, said first and second cam surface means being spaced apart a distance sufiicient to allow said eyes to move under the influence of gravity through the pendulum effect by allowing said cam follower means to freely move between said first and second cam surface means.

3. An eye mechanism for an animated doll having powered drive means including a drive shaft mounted for rotational movement with the head of the doll, said eye mechanism comprising a pair of pendulum eyes mounted within the eye sockets of the doll for move ment between an opened position when the doll is oriented vertically and a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly, a cam member mounted on said drive shaft for rotational movement, said cam member having a first cam surface and a second cam surface, said first and second cam surfaces spaced from each other along the vertical extent of said shaft and being oriented at spaced locations about the circumferential extent of said cam member, said first and second cam surfaces each having a rising cam section and a falling cam section, and cam follower means connected to said eyes and operatively engaged with said cam member, said first and second cam sections being spaced apart a distance sufficient to allow said eyes to move under the influence of gravity through the pendulum effect by allowing said cam follower means to freely move between said first and second cam portions.

4. An eye mechanism for an animated doll having powered drive means including a drive shaft mounted for rotational movement with the head of the doll, said eye mechanism comprising a pair of pendulum eyes mounted within the eye sockets of the doll for movement between an opened position when the doll is oriented vertically and a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly, cam member mounted on said drive shaft for rotational movement, said cam member hav- I ing a first cam surface and a second cam surface, said cam surfaces space-d from each other along the vertical extent of said shaft and being oriented at spaced locations about the circumferential extent of said cam member, said first cam surface having a rising cam section followed by a falling cam section for closing the dolls eyes and allowing them to open respectively upon rotation of said cam member, said second cam surface having a falling cam section followed by a rising cam section for opening the dolls eyes and allowing them to close respectively upon rotation of said cam member when the doll is in its rearward tilted position, and cam ffollower means connected to said eyes and operatively engaged with said cam member, said first and second cam surfaces being spaced apart a distance sufficient to allow said eyes to move under the influence of gravity under a mndulum effect by allowing said cam follower means to freely move between said first and second cam surfaces, said first and second cam surfaces each occupying substantially 180 of the circumferential extent of said cam member and positioned on opposite sides thereof.

5. An eye mechanism for an animated doll having powered drive means including a drive shaft mounted for rotational movement with the head of the doll, said eye mechanism comprising a pair of pendulum eyes mounted within the eye sockets of the doll for movement between an opened position when the doll is oriented vertically and a closed position when the doll is tilted rearwardly, a double three-dimensional cam member mounted on said drive shaft for rotational movement about its central axis, said cam member having a lower cam portion at a first location on said shaft and an upper cam portion at a second location on said shaft,

said cam portions having cam surfaces spaced from each 5 other along the vertical extent of said shaft and being 8 oriented at spaced locations about the circumferential extent of said cam member, cam follower means connecting each of the eyes and extending into the space between the cam surfaces of said two cam portions, said follower means being movable under influence of pendulum movement of said eyes within the space between the cam surfaces of said two cam members, the cam surface of said lower cam portion having a rising cam section followed by a falling cam section for respectively closing the dolls eyes and allowing them to open respectively upon rotation of said cam-member, when said doll is oriented vertically, cam portion having a falling cam section followedby 'a rising cam section for opening the dolls eyes and allowing them to close respectively upon rotation of said cam member when the doll is in its rearward tilted position,

said lower and upper cam portions being spaced apart a distance sufficient to allow eyes to move under the influence of gravity through the pendulum effect, said lower and upper cam portions each occupying substantially 180 of the circumferential exent of said cam member and positioned on opposite sides thereof.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS ANTON O. OECHSLE, Primary Examiner.

RICHARD C. PINKHAM, Examiner.

T. ZACK, Assistant Examiner.

the cam surface of said upper.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1280055 *Apr 22, 1918Sep 24, 1918Aubrey D MccroskyDoll.
US3230666 *Jun 17, 1964Jan 25, 1966Egon GorskyDoll having head animating mechanism
US3242611 *Dec 26, 1963Mar 29, 1966Pierre HenryAnimated doll for moving head and eyes in synchronism
US3250037 *Feb 10, 1964May 10, 1966Ideal Toy CorpAutomatic eye mechanism
US3293794 *May 28, 1965Dec 27, 1966Mattel IncAnimated talking doll
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4575347 *Mar 19, 1984Mar 11, 1986Kabushiki Kaisha Sankyo Seiki SeisakushoToy music box
US4608025 *Feb 11, 1985Aug 26, 1986Coleco Industries, Inc.Glove puppet figure assembly with articulated head components
US4610640 *Feb 21, 1985Sep 9, 1986Coleco Industries, Inc.Glove puppet figure assembly with articulated head components
US4622020 *Feb 11, 1985Nov 11, 1986Coleco Industries, Inc.Glove puppet figure assembly and powered wing drive mechanism
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/338, 446/345
International ClassificationA63H3/40, A63H3/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63H3/40
European ClassificationA63H3/40
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Nov 16, 1983ASAssignment
Owner name: CBS INC., 51 WEST 52ND STREET, NEW YORK, NY 1001
Free format text: NUNC PRO TUNC ASSIGNMENT;ASSIGNOR:IDEAL TOY CORPORATION, A CORP OF DE;REEL/FRAME:004210/0055
Effective date: 19831108
Owner name: IDEAL TOY CORPORATION 184-10 JAMAICA AVENUE HOLLIS
Free format text: NUNC PRO TUNC ASSIGNMENT;ASSIGNOR:IDEAL TOY CORPORATION, A NY CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004210/0050
Effective date: 19720410