US 3448540 A
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June 10, 1969 J. W. RYAN ET AL HEAD CONSTRUCTION FOR A FIGURE TOY 4 Filed Feb. 9, 1967 United States Patent Olfice 3,448,540 Patented June 10, 1969 HEAD CONSTRUCTION FOR A FIGURE TOY John W. Ryan, Los Angeles, Joseph Kossotr, Hawthorne,
Louis L. Mucciante, Palos Verdes Peninsula, and Jack L. Lemkin, Torrance, Calif., assignors to Mattel, Inc.,
Hawthorne, Ca]if., a corporation of California Filed Feb. 9, 1967, Ser. No. 614,975 Int. Cl. A63h 3/36 US. Cl. 46-164 5 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A soft, pliable head for a figure toy is made from polyvinyl chloride using injection molding techniques. A lower head portion is made in one mold and includes an open top lying in a plane forming a predetermined angle with a vertical centre line. An upper head portion is made in another mold and includes an open bottom positionable in the plane of the open top. A rigid platform is positioned in the open top and extends into the open bottom for conforming the head to a predetermined, fixed shape. The open top and the open bottom form a parting line lying within a range of 3060 from the vertical centre line at the major diameter of the head so that artificial hair provided on the upper portion of the head will hide the parting line. The 30-60 range for the open top facilitates injection molding a plurality of internal surfaces at angles between 60 and 90 to the face of the head. The platform means may serve as mechanical attachment means for animating means, as a seal sealing the perforations caused by the artificial hair from a pressurizable body portion of the figure toy and as a reservoir for supplying tears to the figure toys eyes.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO A RELATED APPLICATION The head construction for a figure toy herein described in detail may be conveniently used in the changeable feature figure toy disclosed in copending application serial No. 614,922, filed February 9, 1967.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The background of the invention is set forth in two parts.
Field of the invention The present invention pertains generally to the field of figures toys and more particularly to a soft, pliable head construction for a figure toy including platform means positionable in an upper portion of the head for maintaining it in a predetermined shape, facilitating attachment of mechanical devices, sealing the upper portion of the head from a lower portion thereof and constituting a reservoir means.
Description of the prior art In the figure toy field, doll heads are often made from a soft, pliable material, such as polyvinyl chloride, using rotational molding and slush molding techniques.
While generally satisfactory, doll heads made in accordance with these techniques do have certain disadvantages.
One disadvantage resides in the fact that the inner configuration of the doll head cannot be accurately controlled.
Another disadvantage resides in the fact that these techniques result in a one-piece head construction making it difficult to install animating means within the doll head and to apply artificial hair thereto.
Soft, pliable doll heads have been customarily made in one-piece even though such patents as United States Patents Nos. 1,329,509; 1,413,264 and 2,633,667 show that it is old to make rigid doll heads in two pieces.
While generally satisfactory, such two-piece heads do have certain disadvantages.
One disadvantage resides in the fact that the rigid nature of these heads makes them less desirable than the more life-like soft, pliable doll heads.
Another disadvantage resides in the fact that a rigid doll head does not lend itself to the type of facial changes which may be imparted to a soft, pliable head.
In view of the foregoing factors and conditions characteristic of head constructions for figure toys, it is a primary object of the present invention to provide a new and useful head construction not subject to the disadvantages enumerated above and having platform means especially designed for facilitating the making of a soft, pliable doll head in two pieces.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a soft, pliable head construction which may be conveniently made in two pieces employing injection molding techniques.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide a new and useful platform means for a pliable doll head serving the multiple roles of constituting a mechanical attachment means for animating devices, a sealing means, a means for maintaining the shape of the doll head and a reservoir means.
A further object of the present invention is to employ, in a pliable face for a figure toy, injection molding techniques to control wall thickness for developing various facial expressions in areas not directly attached to an animating mechanism by transmitting resultant forces through heavy sections of the facial skin while adjacent, thin sections stretch or wrinkle.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION According to the present invention, a soft, pliable head for a figure toy is made in two pieces employing injection molding techniques.
The head includes a lower head portion having a vertical centre line and an open top lying in a plane forming a predetermined angle within the range of 3060 from the vertical centre line. This plane passes through the major diameter of the lower head portion in such a position that it may be hidden by artificial hair applied to an upper head portion constituting the second part of the two-piece construction.
The upper head portion has an open bottom positionable in the plane of the open top. The open bottom also lies in a plane passing through the major diameter of the doll head.
The doll head also includes a rigid platform means which is positionable in the open top and the open bottom. The platform means includes means comprising its shape and size for conforming the open top and the open bottom to the same predetermined, fixed shape. The platform means not only facilitates joining the upper and lower portions together, but constitutes means facilitating the attachment of mechanical animating means to the doll head, sealing means sealing the lower portion from the upper portion and reservoir means, if desired.
When artificial hair is applied to the upper portion, perforations are left therein making the doll head unsuitable for use in that type of figure toy which is pressurized by squeezing the body portion thereof. The platform means overcomes this difliculty making the head usable on such pressurizable figure toys.
Maintaining the open top of the lower head portion in a plane forming an angle within the range of 30-60 from a vertical centre line permits molding suitable undercuts and attachment means on the inside surface of the lower portion at angles within a range of 60-90 from the plane of the open top facilitating the attachment of animating means to the inside surface for changing the facial expression of the doll.
The features of the present invention which are believed to be novel are set forth with particularity in the appended claims. The present invention, both as to its organization and manner of use, together with further objects and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which like reference characters refer to like elements in the several views.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIGURE 1 is a vertical, cross-sectional view showing a head construction of the present invention in combination with a figure top;
FIGURE 2 is an exploded, cross-sectional view of the head construction shown in FIGURE 1; and
FIGURE 3 is an exploded, reduced perspective view, with parts broken away to show internal construction, of the head construction of FIGURE 1.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring again to the drawing, a head construction constituting a presently preferred embodiment of the invention, generally designated is shown in combination with a figure toy 12 having a plyable body portion 14 of the type which may be squeezed to pressurize the figure toy 12. The body portion 14 includes an encompassing side wall 16, a bottom wall 18 and an open top 20. The bottom wall 18 is provided with a pair of apertures, like the one shown at 22 in FIGURE 1, for receiving suitable legs (not shown) and valve means (not shown) for controlling the flow of air into body portion 14.
The head 10 is preferably made from a soft, pliable material, such as polyvinyl chloride, and may be made in two pieces employing injection molding techniques forming an upper head portion 24 in a first mold and a lower head portion 26 in a second mold.
The upper head portion 24 is somewhat hemispherically shaped having a continuous wall 28 forming an open bottom 30, an encompassing side wall 32 and a closed top wall 34. The wall 28 may be given a well-controlled thickness by the injection molding technique and is provided with a plurality of perforations 36 formed therein by a hair-rooting machine (not shown) used for applying artificial hair 38 to the upper portion 24. The open bottom 30 lies in a predetermined plane A-A forming a predetermined angle C with a vertical centre line B-B for the figure toy 12.
The lower head portion 26 may also be made from a soft, pliable material, such as polyvinyl chloride, by injection molding techniques and includes an open top 40 which may be joined to the open bottom 30' along a parting line 42 lying in the plane A-A. The lower portion 26 includes a hollow, cylindrical neck 43 engageable in the open top 20 of body portion 14 for connecting head 10 thereto. The neck 43 is for-med integrally with an encompassing side wall 44 shaped to define a forehead 46, a pair of eyes, like the ones shown at 48 in FIGURE 1, a nose 50, a mouth 52, a chin 54 and a lower jaw 56. The wall 44 includes an inner surface 58 provided with an annular groove 60, an upwardly-open pocket 62, a pair of eye-conduit nipples, like the ones shown at 64 in FIGURE 1, a mouth-conduit nipple 66 and a rearwardlyopen pocket 68. The pockets 62, 68 and the nipples 64, 66 may form angles between 60 and 90 with the centre line B-B by selecting the angle C within a range of 3060. This range places the parting line 42 at the major diameter of the head 10 in such a position that the parting line 42 may be hidden by the simulated hair 38 when it is combed into a suitable coiifure.
The head 10 may be maintained in a predetermined shape by a platform means 70 including an upper platform 72 and a lower platform 74. The upper platform 72 includes a peripheral flange 76 which may be seated in an annular groove 78 formed in the inner surface 80 of wall 28 during the molding operation. This positions the upper platform 72 in the open bottom 30 of the upper portion 2 4. In like manner, the lower platform 74 may be positioned in the open top 40 of the lower portion 26 by engaging a peripheral flange 82 provided on the lower platform 74 in the annular groove 60. The platform 74 also includes an upstanding, annular flange '84 engageable in the open bottom 30 for facilitating the assembly of the upper portion 24 with the lower portion 26 and for maintaining the head 10 in a predetermined shape. The lower platform 74 also includes an inner, upstanding annular flange '86 forming an annular channel 87 with upstanding flange 84. Channel 87 may be engaged by an annular flange 88 depending from the upper platform 72 for forming a chamber 90 in the platform means 70'. The chamber 90 facilitates employing the plafiorm means 70- as a reservoir, should it be desired to employ a tearing means in the toy 12. The platform means 70 may also serve as a sealing means preventing the flow of air from the body portion 14 through the perforations 36, should it be desired to employ the toy 12 as a pressurizable toy. Additionally, the lower platform 74 may serve as attachment means for an animating mechanism, indicated generally in broken lines at 92, and the centerlines of rfiange 82 and groove 60 serve as a means for dimensionally locating points within head 10.
The platform means 70 constitutes a satisfactory connection means for connecting the upper portion 24 to the lower portion 26. However, additional connection means may also be employed, if desired. Such connection means is shown for purposes of illustration, but not of limitation, as comprising an annular groove 94 provided in the lower edge 96 of wall 28 and an annular ridge 98 provided on the upper edge .100 of the wall 44.
When the chamber 90 is employed as a reservoir, it may be conveniently connected to the nipple 64 and 66 by the conduit means indicated in broken lines at 102.
While the particular head construction for a figure toy herein shown and described in detail is fully capable of attaining the objects and providing the advantages hereinbefore stated, it is to be understood that it is merely illustrative of the presently preferred embodiment of the invention and that no limitations are intended to the details of construction or design herein shown other than as defined in the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A soft, pliable head for a figure toy, comprising:
a hollow lower head portion having a Wall portion defining a flexible face and a vertical centre line and an open top lying in a plane forming an oblique angle with said vertical centre line;
a hollow upper head portion having an open bottom in said plane;
separate generally planar rigid platform means having a portion in said open top and secured thereto, said platform means conforming said open top to a predetermined, fixed shape, said platform means extending across said plane into said open bottom and secured thereto and conforming said open bottom to said fixed shape, said upper and lower portions of said head being joined together along a parting line lying in said plane whereby said platform means serves to hold said upper portion to a fixed shape while permitting flexing of said face.
2. A head as stated in claim 1 including simulated hair fixed to said upper portion, said hair extending through perforations dispersed over said upper portion substantial- 1y to said parting line, said parting line comprising a major 5 diameter of said head and being located in such a position that said parting line is hidden by said simulated hair when it is combed into a suitable coiffure.
3. A head as stated in claim 1 wherein said platform means includes means for supporting facial animating means therebelow.
4. A head as stated in claim 1 wherein said upper portion and said lower poltion each have an inner surface provided with an annular groove and wherein said platform means comprises an upper platform having a peripheral flange engaged in the groove provided in said upper portion and a lower platform having an annular flange engaged in the groove provided in said lower portion, said platform means including means forming a chamber there In.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,413,264 4/1922 Dallwig 46-164 2,934,857 5/1960 Birnbaum 46135 3,162,976 12/1964 Beebe 46172 LOUIS G. MANCENE, Primary Examiner.
H. DINITZ, Assistant Examiner.