US 3692312 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Meyer 51 Sept. 19, 1972  Inventor: Alvin Meyer, 1690 Woodside Rd.,
Redwood City, Calif. 94061  Filed: Jan. 15, 1971  Appl. No.: 106,847
 US. Cl. ..273/l57 R, 350/131, 350/167  Int. Cl. ..A63f 9/10  Field of Search ..273/l57 R, 157 A; 350/131, 350/144, 167
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,815,310 12/1957 Anderson ..350/l67 X 2,882,631 4/1959 Boone ..350/l67 X 3,538,632 11/1970 Anderson ..350l167 UX Primary Examiner-Anton O. Oechsle Attorney-Julian Caplan [5 7] ABSTRACT A jigsaw type picture puzzle is produced by first forming a surface illusion on at least a portion of a picture by exposing a photographic emulsion through a specific type lens from at least two angles. The lens has a flat bottom and a top contoured with parallel protuberances which in cross-section are segments of a circle. The developed emulsion, or a reproduction thereof, is mounted on a backing and covered with a second lens identical in optical properties to the first, preferably by lamination. Portions, or all, of the backing, reproduction and lens are cut in jigsaw fashion. The fact that the individual pieces when viewed from different angles given different visual impressions makes reassembly of the puzzle more challenging. Alternatively, the surface illusion portions of the puzzle may be inserted as plugs in pockets formed in the conventional puzzle.
12 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures PATENTEDSEPIQ m2 3.692.312
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: I INVENTOR. E E-I4a ALVIN MEYER I 28 BY FIG: 5
ATTORNEY METHOD OF FABRICATING PICTURE PUZZLE AND PUZZLE PRODUCED THEREBY This invention relates to a new and improved method of making a picture puzzle of the jigsaw type and also to the puzzle produced thereby.
A principal purpose of the present invention is to provide a puzzle which gives added interest to the assembling of jigsaw type puzzles. A feature of the invention is the fact that two or more exposures from somewhat different angles are made on a photographic emulsion through a lens of particular type and that the completed puzzle reproduces this distinctive feature. Hence when a puzzle piece is viewed in one direction the appearance is different than when it is viewed from a different direction. This adds to the difficulty of completing the puzzle and hence increases the interest of the player.
It is, accordingly, a principal advantage of the present invention to produce a puzzle having a unique challenge because the pieces demonstrate more than one useable image.
Another feature of the invention is the fact that by special techniques, hereinafter described, stereoscopic effects simulating three-dimensional images may be imposed upon the puzzle pieces.
Still another feature of the invention is the fact that when the puzzle is reassembled the effect of animation or the illusion of movement may be achieved.
Another feature of the invention is the production of the puzzle which when assembled produces a combination of animation, three-dimensional and two-dimensional effects.
Although the entire puzzle may be formed with a lens surface which produces different images when viewed from different directions, nevertheless it is within the contemplation of the present invention that only a portion of the puzzle be thus constructed, while the balance is plain and thus special effects in part of the puzzle surface are achieved.
A principal object of the present invention, therefore, is to provide a method of manufacture wherein different pictures and messages are visible on the same surface when viewed from slightly different angles and to the puzzle achieved thereby.
Other objects of the present invention will become apparent upon reading the following specification and referring to the accompanying drawings in which similar characters of reference represent correspond ing parts in each of the several views.
In the drawings:
FIG. 1 is a schematic plan view of one form of puzzle constructed in accordance with the present invention.
FIG. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary sectional view of a portion of the puzzle of FIG. 1, taken substantially along line 2-2 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is one of the puzzle pieces when viewed in the direction of the arrow 3 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 4 is a view of the same puzzle piece as in FIG. 3 when viewed in the direction of arrow 4 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 5 is a schematic view showing a method of exposing a negative for a puzzle having a stereoscopic effect.
FIG. 6 is a view similar to FIG. 1 showing a modified puzzle.
In the form of the invention shown in FIGS. 1-4, the puzzle 11 in completed form is provided with a backing 12 which may be of cardboard, a semi-rigid plastic, particle board, wood or other suitable material of the type heretofore used in the production of jigsaw puzzles. Applied to the surface of backing 12 is a picture 13 which may be of paper, such as photographic paper, or which may be lithographed or electro-statically printed, a photosensitive emulsion, or otherwise reproduced. Above the paper 13 is a lens material 14 preferably of a transparent plastic about three sixtyfourths inch in thickness and formed of a clear vinyl or another suitable material. The lens material 14 is formed with longitudinally extending grooves 16 which are approximately one sixty-fourth inch apart and between each pair of grooves 16 is a cylinder-like surface 17. In cross-section the surface 17 is an arc of a circle and the protuberances formed by the grooves 16 are segments of cylinders. The radius of the arc of surface 17 is such as to provide a focal length of the lens equal to the thickness of the plastic lens sheet. For most plastics, this is one-third the thickness of the sheet. The lens 14, paper 13 and backing 12 are preferably laminated together.
The surface of lens 14 may be produced in various ways. Thus rolls may be provided, one roll being smooth and the other roll having a surface which is complementary to the lens 14 developed in a round cylinder and heated plastic sheets rolled between the rolls. Alternatively, the plastic surface may be softened by a solvent, such as acetone, and the softened plastic sheets rolled between two rolls. In still another alternative, the plastic may be rolled between rolls when it is in a thermo-plastic condition. The plastic and paper may be rolled through a set of rolls to simultaneously form the lens 14 and affix the paper 13. Instead of using rolls, flat dies may be employed.
The various parts of the puzzle may be assembled by heat fusion, by the use of various adhesives along with pressure (suitable adhesive being casein glue or the like), or by ultrasonic means.
After the puzzle board has been laminated, it is cut into various pieces along cut lines 19. As in conventional puzzles, such outlines are usually quite irregular. However, for purpose of illustration, a square piece 18 is shown at about the center of the puzzle. It will be understood that the shape of piece 18 is subject to very wide variation. It is a characteristic of the lens 14 that when viewed at one angle such as shown by arrow 3 of FIG. 2, the refractive properties of lens 14 create an image such as the X 21 shown in FIG. 3. Upon the other hand, when the direction of viewing is in accordance with arrow 4 of FIG. 2 the Y 22 of FIG. 4 is visible. All this depends upon the angles of the original exposure of the negative or transparency from which the paper 13 was printed.
In preparing the puzzle, a photographic negative is positioned under a lens which is optically identical to the lens 14 which is to be used for the final product. The photographic emulsion is exposed from at least two angles such as the angles 3 and 4 of FIG. 2, and this results in two latent images being exposed on the photographic emulsion. The emulsion is then developed in accordance with standard techniques. The print 13 may be made from the emulsion in various ways such as by photographic means, by lithographic means, by electro-static means or by various means whereby prints are made from exposed negatives or transparencies. This is the source of the pictorial matter on paper 13.
Two separate scenes may be exposed on the same photographic emulsion, and when the completed puzzle is assembled, each piece 18 has a difierent illustration depending upon the angle from which it is viewed. Thus the X and the Y of the piece 18 are apparent to the observer when viewed from the angles of the arrow 3 and 4. It will be understood that the emulsion may be exposed from more angles. Views 3 and 4 may be of the same object from slightly different positions, and an illusion of motion or animation is achieved. The number of views may be increased beyond two, as desired, up to an infinite number, as in stereo views.
The individual pieces of the puzzle may be cut along lines 19 by die-cutting. Alternatively, the pieces may be cut by a saw.
FIG. shows the use of the invention to achieve a stereoscopic effect. Thus a scene 26 is suitably illuminated, and a pair of prismatic lenses 27 are used spaced apart about the normal spacing of the human eye (i.e., 4 inches). The light from scene 26 passes through the prisms 27 and is focused upon the lenses 14a, which are located in a lightproof box 29. Lenses 14a are similar to the lens 14 heretofore described; below lens 140 is a negative 28. The negative 28 thus receives two exposures which provide a stereoscopic effect. The photographic emulsion is then printed on a paper similar to paper 13 as has heretofore been described.
No matter how the views are produced on the paper 13, it is clear that when a piece 18 is cut out of the picture a different impression is received from the viewer depending upon the angle from which it is being viewed. For example, in assembling jigsaw puzzles, one standard technique is to match all of the pieces which contain a predominant color (e.g., blue for water or green for grass) which simplifies solving the puzzle. When the present invention is used, if a piece is viewed as blue from one angle and green from another, then assembly of the puzzle is a greater task. It will be understood that all of the views need not be pictorial but may be wording, such as advertising. The different impressions when the pieces are viewed from different angles, not only makes solving the puzzle more difficult and more interesting, but also provides interesting effects such as animation, three-dimension, etc. Only parts of the total puzzle may be thus treated, and this again enhances the interest of the player in solving the puzzle.
FIG. 6 illustrates a common general type of puzzle which is particularly suitable for small children. In this form of puzzle, the entire board is not cut through but, on the contrary, pockets are formed which are filled with plugs, the plugs are optically active, providing animation and/or stereo. Colors are optional.
Thus by laminating techniques forming no part of the present invention, a backing 31 is formed with pockets 32 of a variety of shapes. Each pocket then receives a plug 33 which fits the pocket 32. Small children find it much simpler to assemble puzzles when they are thus constructed. In the toy train shown in FIG. 6, the plugs 33a are of railroad wheels. By use of animation effects which have heretofore been explained, the wheel 32a may give the illusion of rotation of the spokes by merely shifting the position of the eyes when viewing any of the plugs 33a. This affords a great interest to the child in solving the puzzle. Similarly, the plug 33b may give the illusion of a moving puff of steam from the whistle. The other plugs 33 may be standard plugs such as the cab of the engine in one color, the boiler in another color, etc., all quite commonly used in childrens puzzles of this type. However, the illusion of movement of the wheels and the steam is novel and affords particular interest.
What is claimed is:
1. A method of fabricating a jigsaw type puzzle comprising providing a first transparent lens having a flat back and a top formed with a plurality of closely spaced, parallel grooves running longitudinally of said top, each area between a pair of grooves formed as a segment of a cylinder, providing a photographic emulsion underlying said flat back, exposing a first scene on said emulsion through said first lensfrom a first angle oblique to said grooves from a first location not normal to the plane of said grooves, exposing a second scene on said emulsion through said first lens from a second angle oblique to said grooves from a second location to the side of said grooves at a different angle than said first location, photographically developing said emulsion, preparing a print from said developed emulsion, providing a second lens substantially optically identical to said first lens, making a laminate by laminating said second lens over said print, and cutting said laminate to jigsaw-puzzle-piece shapes.
2. The method of claim 1 wherein said first scene is different from said second scene.
3. The method of claim 1 in which said first scene is of substantially the same object as said second scene but displaced slightly in position of exposure to provide the illusion of animation.
4. The method of claim 1 in which said first scene is of the same object as said second scene viewed about 4 inches away to provide a stereoptic illusion of three dimensions.
5. The method of claim 1 in which said laminatemaking step also includes laminating thereto an underlying backing of substantially rigid material.
6. A puzzle of the character described comprising a laminate having a backing, a print having at least two scenes mounted on said backing, and a lens over said print, said lens being transparent and having a flat bottom lying against said print and a top, said top formed with a plurality of closely spaced, parallel grooves running longitudinally of said top, each area between a pair of grooves formed as a segment of a cylinder, said print when viewed from different directions through said lens giving the illusion of different scenes to the viewer, said laminate cut up into irregular, jigsaw-puzzle shapes.
7. A puzzle according to claim 6 in which only a por tion of said laminate includes a lens, and the other portion of said laminate does not include a lens.
8. A puzzle according to claim 6 in which the different scenes on said print, when viewed through said lens from slightly different positions, give the illusion of animation.
9. A puzzle according to claim 6 in which the different scenes on said print gives a stereoptic illusion.
10. A method of fabricating a jigsaw type puzzle comprising providing a first transparent lens having a flat back and a top formed with a plurality of closelyspaced, parallel grooves running longitudinally of said top, each area between a pair of grooves formed as a segment of a cylinder, providing a photographic emulsion underlying said flat back, exposing a first scene on said emulsion through said first lens from a first angle oblique to said grooves from a first location not normal to the plane of said grooves, exposing a second scene on said emulsion through said first lens from a second angle oblique to said grooves from a second location to the side of said grooves at a different angle than said first location, photographically developing said emulsion, preparing a print from said developed emulsion, providing a second lens substantially optically identical to said first lens, making a laminate by laminating said print between said second lens and a backing of substantially rigid material, providing a pocketed sheet of material having a scene thereon complementary to said print scene and wherein the pocket conforms in its peripheral dimensions to said laminate, whereby said laminate is insertable in and removable from said pocket.
11. The method of claim 13 wherein the scene on said sheet of material is formed at least in part on jigsaw-type pieces which define at least in part the periphery of the pocket into which the laminate is insertable, said pieces being formed without laminating a lens thereto.
12. A puzzle of'the character described comprising a laminate having a first backing, a print having at least two scenes mounted on said first backing, and a lens over said print, said lens being transparent and having a flat bottom lying against said print and a top, said top formed with a plurality of closely spaced, parallel grooves running longitudinally of said top, each area between a pair of grooves formed as a segment of a cylinder, said print when viewed from different directions through said lens giving the illusion of different scenes to the viewer, said laminate cut up into irregular, jigsaw-puzzle shapes, a second backing of substantially rigid material formed with at least one pocket conforming in its peripheral dimensions to said laminate and having a scene surrounding said pocket complementary to said print scenes, whereby said laminate is insertable in and removable from said pocket.