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Publication numberUS3530614 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 29, 1970
Filing dateAug 3, 1967
Priority dateAug 3, 1967
Publication numberUS 3530614 A, US 3530614A, US-A-3530614, US3530614 A, US3530614A
InventorsStrongin Ned
Original AssigneeToplay Products Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Toy
US 3530614 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

N. STRONGIN Sept. 29, 1970 TOY Filed Aug. 5, 1967 FIG. 3

WVE/WOR N STRONG/N United States Patent Office 3,530,614 Patented Sept. 29, 1970 ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A J acobs ladder type toy in which a plurality of blocks each formed from two identical symmetrical complementary disposed plastic block forming elements are joined together by a plurality of block attaching tapes each secured between a pair of spaced raised members on an inner surface of one of the block forming elements. A tape clearance slot is provided in the other block forming member opposite each pair of raised members to allow each tape to extend perpendicularly to the inner surface out of the block. An adhesive is employed to attach the tapes to the plastic block forming elements and a Y shaped element is provided to cooperate with each block forming element to help secure the tapes in the respective block forming elements.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a toy in which a plurality of blocks are interconnected by a plurality of tapes and par ticularly to a toy in which a plurality of blocks include structural features for functionally securing interconnecting tapes to the blocks.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Children have long been fascinated by a toy, referred to by E. S. Savage in his US. Pat. No. 2,310,711, issued on Feb. 9, 1943 and entitled Mystery Toy, as a Jacobs ladder toy. By an interconnection of blocks with flexible tapes, as disclosed in the Savage patent, a toy is created which appears to allow a top block to roll down alternate sides of a plurality of blocks attached together and attached thereto. Some of the early toys of this type employed wooden blocks to which the flexible tapes were attached. Tacking flexible tapes to wooden blocks resulted in satisfactory toys. These wooden block toys however have not survived the advent of plastic toys.

On Oct. 15, 1957, US. Pat. No. 2,809,467 entitled Articulated Toy issued to G. L. St. Pierre and V. D. Patterson. The St. Pierre et al. patent discloses a toy in which a plurality of plastic blocks each formed by two block forming elements are interconnected by a plurality of flexible tapes. The plastic toy was economically more attractive than the wooden block toy. In the plastic block toy of the St. Pierre et a1. patent plastic wedge members are employed to secure the flexible tapes to the outside of the plastic blocks. Three wedge members are necessary to secure the appropriate tapes to an end block while six are required for an inner block. Therefore an end block requires the assembly of five plastic elements while an inner block employs eight.

It is generally known that the cost of manufacture of toys of this nature can usually be reduced by reducing the number of elements assembled. It has been found that flexible tapes can be secured to plastic blocks with commercially acceptable adhesives when a tape supporting structure is included to attenuate the forces experienced by the adhesive joints.

Therefore it is an object of this invention to provide an improved toy in which a plurality of blocks are interconnected by a plurality of tapes.

It is another object of this invention to provide such a toy in which a total of three plastic elements are employed to form the block and secure an appropriate number of tapes to the end blocks and a total of five plastic elements are employed to form an inner block and secure an appropriate number of tapes thereto.

It is still another object of this invention to provide a Jacobs ladder" toy in which a securing member assists an adhesive to aflix a plurality of tapes to a plastic block.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a block forming element structurally arranged to enable tapes secured to an inner surface to be held more firmly by a securing element.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION With these and other objects in view the present invention contemplates a block forming element having a first pair of raised members a first predetermined distance from a first end spaced to form a first passageway opening towards a second end. A slot is provided from the second end extending towards the first passageway a distance greater than the first predetermined distance. A depending lip is arranged on the block forming element for securing the block forming element to a similar block forming element in a complementary fashion so that the first slot on the original block forming element overlays the first pair of raised members on the similar block forming element.

Second and third pairs of raised members may be arranged equally disposed on opposite sides of an axis running from the first passageway to the first slot a second predetermined distance from the second end. Second and third slots are provided in the block forming element running from the first end towards the second and third pairs of raised members along lines passing between the second and third pairs of raised members respectively both being parallel to the axis.

In one embodiment a tape is adhesively attached between each pair of raised members and held more firmly by a securing element. A second similar block forming element is then secured in a complementary fashion to the original block forming element to provide a block which is then interconnected by the tapes to two other blocks to form a Jacobs ladder toy.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows in an exploded isometric view four elements constructed according to the teachings of this invention from which a block may be assembled;

FIG. 2 is an isometric view of a string of novel blocks partly cut away to show how a securing element holds a tape in place; and

FIG. 3 is a phantom schematic isometric view showing a way in which blocks may be interconnected to form a Jacobs ladder toy.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Referring now to FIG. 1 there is seen a lower block forming element 10 showing an inner surface 11. The block forming element 10 is molded as an integral part from plastic with raised formations on the inner surface 11 so that flexible tapes may be secured thereto. A peripheral lip 12 extends in a direction transverse to the inner surface .11 continuously along two sides 13 and 14 and along the ends 16 and 17 of the block forming element 10. The peripheral lip 12 has three interruptions along each of the ends 16 and 17.

An upper block forming element 18, also seen in FIG. 1, identical to the lower block forming element 10, is shown in an inverted complementary relationship thereto to bring out the manner in which two identical block forming elements constructed according to the teachings of this invention may be joined into a block suitable for a Jacobs ladder toy and to display an outer surface -19. A central and two oppositely disposed shallow tape carrying parallel longitudinal grooves 21, 22 and 23, respectively, are depressed into the outer surface 19. The central groove 21 terminates a predetermined distance from a first end 24 at a tape passing slot 26 formed in the block forming member .18. The two oppositely disposed grooves 22 and 23 extend to the first end 24 terminating in semi-cylindrical tape supporting members 27 and 28. The other end of the central groove 21 terminates in a semi-cylindrical tape supporting member not shown while the oppositely disposed grooves 22 and 23 each terminate in a tape passing slot, not shown, the predetermined distance from another end 25 of the block forming element 18.

It should be apparent that the end 17 of the block forming element 10 is identical to the end 24 of the block forming element 18. The slot 26 in the block forming element 18 corresponds to a slot 29 in the block forming element 10 while the semi-cylindrical tape supporting members 27 and 28 of the block forming element 18 corresponds to semi-cylindrical tape supporting members 31 and 32, respectively, of the block forming element 10. A pair of slots 33 and 34 are present in the end 16 of the block forming member 10 as is a single semi-cylindrical tape supporting member 36. It should be noted that the lip .12 extends around the slots 29, 33 and 34 in the block forming element 10 so that the only discontinuity in the lip 12 is at grooves formed by the semi-cylindrical tape supporting members 31, 32 and 36.

A pair of raised members 37 and 38 are spaced on opposite sides of an axis which runs from the center of the slot 29 and the tape supporting member 36 to form a first tape receiving passageway. Each raised member 37 and 38 is spaced from the end 16 by a distance less than the predetermined distance that the groove 21 ends before the end 24 of the block forming element 19 and therefore less than the distance from the end of the slot 29 to the end 17 of the block forming element 10. A second pair of raised members 39 and 41 are spaced on opposite sides of an axis which extends from the center of the slot 33 to the center of the tape carrying member 31 to form a second tape receiving passageway. In a like manner a third pair of raised members 42 and 43 are spaced on opposite sides of an axis which extends from the center of the slot 34 to the center of the tape supporting member 32 to form a third tape receiving passageway. Each of the four raised members 39, 41, 42 and r 43 are spaced from the end 17 of the block forming element 10 by a distance less than the predetermined distance.

A pair of pilot pins 44 and 46 extend from the inner surface 11 of the block forming element 10. A general- I 1y Y shaped securing element 47 having pilot holes 48 and 49 to mate with pilot pins 44 and 46 is provided to aid secure tapes in the respective tape receiving passageways. First, second and third protrusions 51, 52 and 53, respectively, are shaped to simultaneously fit between the pairs of raised members 37 and 38, 39 and 41, and 42 and 43, respectively, to hold tapes against the inner surface 11 in the first, second and third passageways. A second securing element 54 identical to the securing element 47, also shown in FIG. 1 is provided to hold tapes similarly between raised members in passageways or an inner surface, not shown, of the block forming element 18.

The four elements 10, 18, 47 and 54 shown in detail in FIG. 1 are shown assembled in FIG. 2 as part of a Jacobs ladder toy 56. The block forming element 18 is cut away to show how a flexible tape 57 is secured between the raised members 37 and 38 with the aid of the securing element 47. The tape 57 is first adhesively secured on the inner surface 11. Other tapes, not shown,

are also adhesively secured in a similar fashion to the inner surface .11 between the raised members 39 and 41 and 42 and 43. The securing member 47 is placed so that the protrusion 51 presses the tape 57 against the inner surface 11 to attenuate forces experienced by the adhesive joint. The protrusions 52 and 53 similarly press the other tapes, not shown, against the inner surface 11. The securing element 47 may be adhesively attached to the inner surface 11 of the block forming element or the dimensions of the pilot pins 44 and 46 and the pilot holes 48 and 49 could be arranged to insure a forced fit. The portion of the tape 57 lying between the raised members 37 and 38 may be made wider than the remainder of the tape 57 so as to curl around the ends of the protrusions 51 against the raised members 37 and 38. The securing element 54 similarly holds tapes to an inner surface, not shown, of the block forming element 18. After the appropriate tapes are secured to the inner surfaces of a pair of block forming elements 10 and 18, adhesive is applied to peripheral lip 12 and the block forming elements 10 and .18 are pressed together to form a block.

Referring now to FIG. 3 there is seen a schematic isometric representation of how six tapes 58, 59, 61, 62, 63 and 64 may interconnect three blocks 66, 67 and 68 each formed by two block forming elements such as the block forming elements 10 to form a Jacobs ladder" toy. Each of the blocks 66, 67 and 68 are shown in phantom and the joints between the block forming elements and the tapes are shown in schematic. For instance, the tape 58 is shown terminating in the block 66 after entering through the outer surface of the lower block forming element. This schematically represents the tape 58 entering the block 66 through a slot such as slot 29 of the block forming element 10 and being secured between a pair of raised members on an inner surface of the upper block forming element with the aid of a securing element.

The tape 58 is run over a tape supporting member, not shown, through a groove such as groove 21 and is then attached in block 67 after entering through the lower block forming element. Tapes 59 and 62 emerge from the lower block forming element of the block 66 and extends to the lower block forming element of the block 67. The tapes 61 and 63 run between the upper block forming element of the blocks 67 and 68 as does the tape 64. For a further discussion of the operation and interconnection of Jacobs ladder toys, one may simply refer to the above-mentioned E. S. Savage patent or the St. Pierre et al. patent.

As is pointed out in the Savage patent any number of tapes may be employed. It should be apparent that various modifications may be made in the embodiment de scribed without deviating from the spirit or scope of this invention.

What is claimed is:

1. A Iacobs ladder toy comprised of a plurality of block elements connected together through flexible bands, each block element having a first block forming element with first and second ends and with internal and external surfaces;

a first post member within said first block forming element and extending from and transverse to said internal surface, said first post member being spaced a first predetermined distance from said first end;

a second post member extending from and transverse to said internal surface adjacent said first post memher to form a first passageway holding said flexible band between said first and second post members, said first passage way defining a first axis intersecting said first and second ends;

a first slot portion formed at said second end and extending from said second end along said first axis towards said first passageway, said slot being spaced from said passageway a distance greater than said first predetermined distance;

a lip extending transversely from said internal surface and bordering substantially said first block forming element; and

a second block forming element similar to said first block forming element, said first and second block forming elements being secured together along their lips and thereby securing said flexible bands interconnecting said block elements.

2. The toy as defined in claim 1 wherein said lip is symmetrically disposed with respect to said first axis.

3. The toy as defined in claim 1 including a third post member extending from and transverse to said internal surface, said third post member being spaced said first predetermined distance from said first end;

a fourth post member extending from and transverse to said internal surface and adjacent said third post member to form a second passageway between said third and fourth post members, said second passageway defining a second axis parallel to said first axis;

a second slot portion formed therein along said second axis extending from said second end towards said second passageway a distance greater than said first predetermined distance; and

said lip being symmetrical with respect to a third axis midway between and parallel to said first and second axes.

4. The toy as defined in claim 3 including a fifth post member extending from and transverse to said internal surface, said fifth post member being spaced a second predetermined distance from said second end and disposed to a first side of said third axis;

a sixth post member extending from and transverse to said internal surface and adjacent said fifth post member disposed to a second side of said third axis; and

a third slot portion formed therein along said third axis extending from said first end towards said second end a distance greater than said second predetermined distance.

5. The toy as defined in claim 1 including a tape supporting member transversely intersecting said first axis between said first end and said first and second post members and having a semi-cylindrical outer surface extending towards said external surface; and

a groove depressed into said first block forming element from said external surface and extending from said outer surface to said first slot.

6. The toy as defined in claim 1 in combination with:

a flexible tape adhesively secured to said internal surface, between said first and second post members; and

a securing member secured to said first block forming member having a protrusion holding said tape against said internal surface for attenuating forces incident upon the adhesive joint.

7. The toy as defined in claim 6 further comprising a pilot pin extending from said internal surface of said first block forming element;

a pilot hole formed in said securing member and having an opening less than said diameter; and

said securing member being secured to said first block forming member by forcing said pilot pin through said pilot hole.

8. A Jacobs ladder toy comprised of a plurality of block members interconnected through flexible means, each block member comprising;

a first block forming element With shell-shaped structure having internal and external surfaces and oppositely-lying ends;

a first post member within said first block forming element and projecting from said internal surface, said first post member being spaced from one end of said first block forming element;

a second post member projecting from said internal surface and adjacently spaced from said first post member to form a passageway holding said flexible means between said first and second post members;

a slot portion formed at the rim of the other end of said first block forming element and lying opposite to said passageway;

a lip portion projecting from said internal surface substantially surrounding the rim of said first block forming element; and

a second block forming element similar to said first block forming element, said first and second block forming elements being secured together along their lips and thereby securing within the interior of said block forming elements said flexible means interconnecting said block members.

9. The toy as defined in claim 8 including fastening 40 means within said first and second block forming elements securing said elements together through a forced fit to form said block members.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,245,875 6/1941 Rutherford 461 2,310,711 2/1943 Savage 46-1 2,809,467 10/1957 St. Pierre et a1 46-1 FOREIGN PATENTS 396,394 1/ 1909 France.

LOUIS G. MANCENE, Primary Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2245875 *Dec 4, 1939Jun 17, 1941Rutherford Norman FToy
US2310711 *Oct 14, 1942Feb 9, 1943Savage Edward SMystery toy
US2809467 *Jun 24, 1955Oct 15, 1957Patterson Van DArticulated toy
FR396394A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4095366 *Oct 8, 1976Jun 20, 1978John Kenneth BuckBlock puzzle toy
US4183166 *Oct 12, 1977Jan 15, 1980Alfred BornerArticulated toy
US4657248 *Aug 7, 1985Apr 14, 1987Prosper BenaimQuestion-and-answer game
US5628670 *Sep 21, 1995May 13, 1997Hill; Allan F.Toy consisting of interconnected hinged blocks
US5701696 *Jun 7, 1995Dec 30, 1997Clontz; Richard C.Card holder
US7412995Nov 8, 2006Aug 19, 2008Danielle ArceseTwo in one handbag
US8413805May 12, 2011Apr 9, 2013British American Tobacco (Investments) Ltd.Packages
US20140238876 *Feb 26, 2013Aug 28, 2014Superior Communications, Inc.Folio case
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/487
International ClassificationA63H33/06, A63H33/04, A63H33/14
Cooperative ClassificationA63H33/14, A63H33/065
European ClassificationA63H33/14, A63H33/06E