US 3572625 A
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United States Patent Eddie E. Williamsen 711 S. First St., Norfolk, Nebr. 68701 [21 Appl. No. 728,508
 Filed May 13, 1968  Patented Mar. 30, 1971  Inventor  BLOCK FORMING DEVICE 2 Claims, 4 Drawing Figs.
 'U.S.Cl 249/117, 25/120, 164/131, 164/404  Int.Cl B28b7/10  FieldofSearch 249/1,l3,
117,207;25/l 19, 120; 264/334; l64/l31,404; 18/2 (RM); 46/16, 19; 220/73, 85 (K); 217/5, 69
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS DE29,033 7/1898 Smith 249/117X 160,942 3/1875 Murray 217/5 236,647 H1 881 Sweeney 249/117 FOREIGN PATENTS 937,132 12/1955 Germany 217/5 618,824 3/1961 Italy 249/1 17 Primary Examiner.l. Spencer Overholser Assistant Examiner-John E. Roethel Attorneys-Clarence A. OBrien and Harvey B. Jacobson ABSTRACT: A mold for forming blocks of snow including four right angularly related walls, an open top and an open bottom. One of the walls is slightly inclined outward so as to facilitate the removal of the block. Two of the opposed walls are provided with bumpers to enable a bouncing of the mold in shaking the block loose therefrom.
Patentea I "March 30, 1971 Eddie E. Williamsen IN VENTOR.
BLOCK FORMING DEVICE The instant invention generally relates to molding equipment, and is more particularly concerned with a simple mold for forming compact snow blocks for use by children in the construction of forts, houses, and the like.
It is a primary object of the instant invention to provide a molding device which, although unique, is of a simple construction and capable of being easily manipulated by children for facilitating the formation of perfect, compact and relatively hard snow blocks for the construction of various structures.
in conjunction with the above object, it is also a significant object of the instant invention to provide a block forming mold for snow or the like-wherein the actual discharge of the molded block from the mold can be effected in a simple manner and a manner which results in a perfectly formed block.
In addition, it is a significant object of the instant invention to provide a mold or:block forming device which is of a highly rigid nature, having no easily damaged projections or the like, which is capable of sustaining the rough handling which might be normally expected.
Basically, the above objects are achieved through the provision of a mold which is rectangular in configuration, having four generally right angularly related walls, an open top and an open bottom. One of the walls inclines slightly so as to provide a wider discharge mouth to the mold through which the formed block can easily slide upon an agitation of the mold by a relatively sharp contacting of the mold with theground. This contact of the mold with the ground is cushioned by a pair of opposed resilient bumpers which not'only protect the mold itself but also tend to bounce or jiggle the mold so as to rapidly loosen the formed block therewithin.
These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals referto the like parts throughout, and in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the block forming device of the instant invention loaded with snow;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view illustrating the .removal of the mold or block forming device'from a'formed block'of snow;
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the device with a portion broken away for purposes of illustratiomand FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view taken substantially on a plane passing along line 4-4 in FIG. 3.
Referring now more specifically to the drawings, reference numeral is used to generally designate the mold or snow block forming device comprising the instant invention. The device 10 includes four generally right angularly related walls, elongated sidewalls 12 and I4, and relatively narrower end walls I6 and 18. These four walls are rigidly interconnected so as to define a rectangular mold having an open top and an open bottom. It will of course be appreciatedthat the walls can be of any suitable rigid material, for example rigid plastic, metal, or, as illustrated, wood with angle plates reinforcing the corners thereof. Noting FIG. 4 is*particular, the'upper and lower edges of the four walls are coplanar. In addition, the sidewall 14 is inclined outwardly commencing at the open bottom of the mold with the increased'width at the open upper end of the mold 10 being indicated at 22. This increased width at the open upper end of the mold or forming device 10 is of significance in both providing an enlarged open upper end for the introduction of the snow 24 to be formed into a block, and so as to facilitate the movement of the formed block 26from the mold was suggested in FIG. 2.
The coplanar nature of the lower edges of the walls enable a positioning of the mold or forming device 10 flat on the ground for the use of the ground as the base of the mold. The actual handling of the mold is facilitated by the provision of a pair of handgrips 28, one horizontally in each of the end walls 16 and 18 toward the upper edges thereof. Inasmuch as these handgrips 28 are actually formed within the end walls 16 and 18, it will be appreciated-that no unnecessary external projections are provided on the device 10 which might either catch on the clothes of the user or possibly become broken during the use of the device.
Another particularly significant feature of the instant invention is the provision of a pair of rubber or elastomeric bumpers 30 on the upper edges of the two end walls 16 and 18. These bumpers 30 are permanently affixed to the end walls 16 and 18 in any suitable manner, such as by driven fasteners as suggested in FIG. 4. These bumpers 30 enable the user of the device to bring the mold I0, subsequent to the packing of the snow 24 therein and an inverting of the mold 10, into sharp engagement with the ground so as to jar the block 26 loose. The bumpers 30 preventing damage to the mold itself by contact with the ground and at the same time providingfor a slight bouncing or jiggling action which is very effective in loosening the snow block 26 for movement through the enlarged downwardly directed open top of the mold 10.
From the foregoing, it will be appreciated that a unique snow molding device has been defined, this device being particularly adapted for use by children both because of the simple manner in which-the device can be utilized in the formation of compact snow blocks, and because of the rigid nature of the unit, incorporating recessed handles and cushioning bumpers. The open bottom of the mold enables the user of the device to checkthe lower portion of the formed block to ensure an avoidance of air spaces or the like before an ejection of the block from the mold, and additionally provides a means whereby the user of the device can, in extreme circumstances, physically push the formed block 26 from the mold should such be necessary. However, with regard to this last point, it should be appreciated that the form bouncing bumpers 30, especially in conjunction with the outwardly inclined sidewall 14, should be more than sufficient to ensure a proper and smooth discharge of a formed block. lncideutly, with regard to the formed block, it will be appreciated that three sides of the block will be completely straight or vertical with only that side of the block corresponding to the inclined sidewall l4 being orientated at an angle slightly deviating from the vertical. Thus, blocksformed through the utilization of the mold of the instant invention will be particularly adapted for stacking in vertical rows for assembly into various structures. lncidently, it will be noted that the elastomeric bumpers 30 are elongated so as to provide a substantial cushioning surface for engagement with the ground, these bumpers being orientated in lateral alignment with the two handgrips portions 28 so as to further enable a direct control over the manner in which the mold is brought into sharp block dislodging engagement with the ground.
The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, sincenumerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.
I. A device manipulatable by children in the formation of snow blocks, said device being generally rectangular in shape and defined by four substantially right angularly related walls, said device having an open top and an open bottom, the opposite edges of said walls constituting top and bottom edges defining said open top and said open bottom, at least one of said walls inclining slightly outward from the open bottom to the open top so as to define an open top enlarged relative to the open bottom, the top edges of said walls being coplanar, and the bottom edges of said walls being coplanar, a pair of rubber or elastomeric bumpers mounted on the top edges of a pair of opposed walls, said bumpers being of a length substantially less than that of the corresponding wall edges and being positioned at the central portion thereof, said bumpers projecting outwardly from the corresponding top edges so as to enable a sharp engagement of the bumpers with the ground without engagement of the walls so as to result in a vibration device.
2. The device of claim I wherein said handgrip means are fonned within the confines of the respective walls.