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Publication numberUS3710506 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 16, 1973
Filing dateMar 1, 1972
Priority dateMar 1, 1972
Publication numberUS 3710506 A, US 3710506A, US-A-3710506, US3710506 A, US3710506A
InventorsThornell E
Original AssigneeMarlin Toy Prod Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Animated toy
US 3710506 A
Abstract
An animated plastic toy comprises a hollow base representing an animal's body which contains an animation mechanism or actuating means. A manually movable vertical rod or operating handle connected to the mechanism extends upwardly from the body. A lightweight movable member representing the animal's head is slidably mounted on the rod and normally rests on a spring-load movable actuation member of the animation mechanism extending from the base. When the rod is pressed axially downwardly for a short predetermined distance, the said actuation member of the animation mechanism and the animal's head move downwardly therewith. Further downward movement of the rod then triggers a releasable latch means in the animation mechanism so that the said actuation member thereof springs upwardly abruptly causing the animal's head to slide or jump rapidly upwardly along the rod and then fall back in place. Upon release of downward pressure, the rod returns to normal position and the latch means of the animation mechanism automatically resets for the next operation. The animal's head is provided with large pivotably mounted ears which flop or rotate as the head springs upwardly. A sounding device in the base emits a sound each time the said portion of the animation mechanism is depressed and released.
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United States Patent 1 Thornell Jan. 16, 1973 [54] ANIMATED TOY [75] inventor: Ernest L. Thornell, l-loricon, Wis.

[73] Assignee: Marlin Toy Products, Inc., Horicon,

Wis.

[22] Filed: March 1, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 230,648

[52] U.S.Cl ..46/l18 [5 1] Int. Cl. ..A63h 5/00 [58] Field of Search ..46/118, 119, 145; 272/8 P [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,369,811 2/1968 Glass et al. ..46/1 18 X 3,162,440 12/1964 Argiro ..46/1l8 X Primary Examiner-Louis G. Mancene Assistant ExaminerD. L. Weinhold Attorney-James E. Niles [5 7 ABSTRACT An animated plastic toy comprises a hollow base representing an animals body which contains an animation mechanism or actuating means. A manually movable vertical rod or operating handle connected to the mechanism extends upwardly from the body. A lightweight movable member representing the animals head is slidably mounted on the rod and normally rests on a spring-load movable actuation member of the animation mechanism extending from the base. When the rod is pressed axially downwardly for a short predetermined distance, the said actuation member of the animation mechanism and the animals head move downwardly therewith. Further downward movement of the rod then triggers a releasable latch means in the animation mechanism so that the said actuation member thereof springs upwardly abruptly causing the animals head to slide or jump rapidly upwardly along the rod and then fall back in place. Upon release of downward pressure, the rod returns to normal position and the latch means of the animation mechanism automatically resets for the next operation. The animals head is provided with large pivotably mounted ears which flop or rotate as the head springs upwardly. A sounding device in the base emits a sound each time the said portion of the animation mechanism is depressed and released.

9 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures PATENTEU JAN 1 6 I975 SHEET 2 OF 5 ANIMATED TOY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of Use This invention relates generally to animated toys with sounding means therein.

2. Description of the Prior Art A wide variety of animated sounding toys are commercially available or known. In many, the animation and sounding effects depend on imparting a rolling motion to the toy, winding it up by means of a spring, or using electric batteries as a source of power. Such toys often require a relatively large space in order for the desired effects to be produced and require substantial movement and effort by the user.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION In accordance with the present invention, there is provided an animated sounding plastic toy which comprises a hollow plastic base representing an animal's body which contains an actuating means or animation mechanism. A manually movable vertical rod or operating handle connected to the mechanism extends upwardly from the body. A lightweight movable member representing the animals head is slidably mounted on the rod and normally rests on a spring-load movable actuation member of the animation mechanism extending from the base. When the rod is pressed axially downwardly for a short predetermined distance, the said actuation member of the animation mechanism and the animals head move downwardly therewith. Further downward movement of the rod then triggers a releasable latch means in the animation mechanism so that the said actuation member thereof springs upward abruptly causing the animals head to slide or jump rapidly upwardly along the rod and then fall back in place. Upon release of downward pressure, the rod returns to normal position and the latch means of the animation mechanism automatically resets for the next operation. The animals head is provided with large pivotably mounted cars which flop or rotate as the head springs upwardly. A sounding device in the base emits a sound each time the said portion of the animation mechanism is depressed and released.

The actuating means or animation mechanism comprises the aforesaid spring-Ioaded actuation member which takes the form of a first member or cylinder which is vertically movable in a cylindrical housing rigidly secured within the hollow base. The upper end of the actuation member extends from an opening in the base. A cylindrically shaped biasing or compression type action spring is disposed in the housing between the lower end of the actuation member and the floor of the base. Means are provided to limit upward travel of the actuation member and comprise cooperating flanges on the actuation member and on the housing. The actuation member is also provided with an internal annular collar or latch engagement means which serves as a means whereby it is depressed downwardly. A second movable member or cylinder is disposed in sliding engagement within the first cylinder and is provided with rod attachments means at its upper end to which the rod is secured. The second cylinder is provided with two oppositely disposed holes in its side wall through which the ends of a releasable latch means in the form of a flexible plastic latch or leaf spring extend and engage the upper surface of the annular collar of the actuation member. A cylindrically shaped biasing or compression type return spring is disposed between the latch spring and the floor of the base. The latch spring is provided with a stem on its upper side which slidably engages a hole in the upper portion of the second cylinder and serves to support and properly locate the latch spring. A cylindrically shaped balancing spring is disposed on the stem between the upper portion of the second cylinder and the top of the latch spring to limit and control upward travel of the latch spring. A latch release means in the form of a stop member is provided in the housing directly below the latch spring to limit its downward travel.

In operation, downward movement of the operating handle or rod effects downward movement of the second cylinder and, by means of the latch spring, corresponding downward movement of the actuation member. During such downward movement, both the action spring and the return spring are charged or compressed. At a predetermined point in such downward movement, the latch release means or stop member engages the bottom side of the latch spring and prevents further downward movement thereof. However, downward movement of the actuation member and the second cylinder continues until the latch spring begins to assume a curved shape and the ends thereof are drawn inwardly into the second cylinder and out of engagement with the collar or latch engagement means on the actuation member. When this disengagement occurs, the actuation member is free to move upwardly and does so rapidly as the action spring discharges or decompresses. As the actuation member springs upwardly, it forces the animals head resting thereon to travel rapidly up the rod and then fall back in place. As the downward pressure on the rod is released, the second cylinder moves upwardly to resume its normal position under the action of the return spring and the latter also forces the latch spring ends outwardly through the holes in the second cylinder and back into engagement with the collar of the actuation member. The toy and animation mechanism thereof are again in readiness for operation.

The actuation member is provided with an outwardly extending rigidly attached arm and a compressible bellows type sounding device is located between the arm and the floor of the base. As the device is compressed and decompressed by movement of the actuation member, it emits a sound.

DRAWINGS.

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an animated toy in accordance with the invention showing the figure head in normal at-rest position;

FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 but showing the figure head in motion;

FIG. 3 is a cross-section taken on line 33 of FIG. 1 and showing the animation mechanism in at-rest positron;

FIG. 3A is a cross section view of the animation mechanism taken on line 3A-3A of FIG. 3;

FIG. 3B is an enlarged detail view of the latch means of FIG. 3, showing it in latched position;

FIG. 4 is an exploded view of the animation mechanism shown in FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 3 but showing the operating handle do'wnwardly depressed and just after release release of the latch means but prior to upward return of the actuation member of the animation mechanism;

FIG. 5A is an enlarged detail view of the latch means of FIG. 5 showing it in unlatched position; and

FIG. 6 is a view similar to FIG. 5 but showing the operating handle fully depressed and the actuation member of the animation mechanism released and returned to its normal at-rest position.

DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, an animated plastic toy 10 comprises a hollow base 12 representing an animals body which contains an animation mechanism 14, shown in FIGS. 3, 4, 5 and 6 but not in FIGS. 1 and 2, having an actuation member 20 which extends from an opening 15 in the base. A vertically disposed movable operating handle or rod 16 is connected to mechanism 14 and extends upwardly from base 12. A lightweight movable member representing the animals head 18 is provided with a hole 21 which adapts it to be slidably mounted on rod 16. Rod 16 has a knob 17 on its upper end which serves as a hand grip and also to limit travel of head 18. Head 18 normally rests on or against actuation member 20 of animation mechanism 14. When rod 16 is pressed axially downwardly for a short distance, the member 20 of animation mechanism 14 and head 18 move downwardly therewith. Further downward movement of rod 16 then triggers a releasable latch means 66 in animation mechanism 14 (not shown in FIGS. 1 and 2) so that member 20 thereof springs upwardly abruptly thereby causing head 18 to slide or jump rapidly upwardly along rod 16, as shown in FIG. 2, and then fall back in place as shown in FIG. 1. Upon release of downward pressure on rod 16, the rod returns to normal position and animation mechanism 14 automatically resets for the next operation. The head 18 is provided with large pivotably mounted ears 22 held in place by pins 24 and which flop or rotate as the head springs upwardly. The pins 24 are offset forwardly of the ear centerlines so that they tend to pivot when the head 18 moves forcefully upward. Base or body 12 is provided with a tail in the form ofa flexible spring 22 to which a ball 23 is attached. A sounding device in the base, not visible in FIGS. 1 and 2, emits a sound each time member 20 of mechanism 14 is depressed and released.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, base 12 comprises a lower portion 26 to which an upper shell 28 is attached. Lower portion 26 comprises integrally formed projections 30 and 31 which afford rigid support for animation mechanism 14 and sounding device 32, respectively. Upper shell 28 is provided with opening 33 in which a collar 35 having opening 15 therein is disposed. Collar 35 serves a decorative function and also serves as a guide or shim for actuation member 20 of animation mechanism 14.

Sounding device 32 takes the form of a flexible bellows having an air hole 34 therein and a whistle or squeaker 36 is located within the bellows and connected to air hole 34.

Animation mechanism 14 is shown in detail in FIGS. 3, 4,5 and 6. In FIG. 3 it is shown in the inactive,

uncharged or at-rest condition. In FIG. 4 it is shown in an exploded view. In FIG. 5 it is shown partially depressed and just prior to release. In FIG. 6 it is shown after release but with portions thereof depressed.

Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, animation mechanism 14 comprises a cylindrical housing 40 which fits snugly within and is supported by the projection 30 on lower portion 26 of base 12. Housing 40, which comprises two section which are jointed is provided with a circular opening 42 and surrounding flange 44 at its upper end and with a vertical slot 46 in one side. Housing 40 is provided with an integrally formed interior cylindrical guide 48 and with an integrally formed upright latch release or stop member 50. Actuation member 20, hereinbefore referred to, takes the form of a hollow cylindrical which is vertically movable within housing 40. The upper end of actuation member 20 extends through the opening 15 in collar 35. A cylindrically shaped biasing or compression type action spring 52 is disposed in housing 40 between the lower end of actuation member 20 and the floor of the housing. Means are provided to limit upward travel of actuation member 20 and comprise a flange 54 on member 20 which cooperates with flange 44 on housing 40. Actuation member 20 is provided with an internal annular collar 56 which serves as a means whereby it is depressed downwardly. Actuation member 20 is provided with an outwardly extending rigidly attached arm 58 which extends through slot 46 in housing 40 and engages sounding device 32 which is located between the arm and the floor of base 12. As sounding device 32 is compressed and released by movement of actuation member 20, it emits a sound.

As second member of cylinder 60 is disposed in sliding engagement within actuation member 20 and is provided at its upper end with rod attachment means 61 to which rod or handle 16 is secured. Means are provided to limit upward travel of second cylinder 60 and comprise a flange 63 on cylinder 60 which cooperates with the underside of flange 54 on actuation member 20. Second cylinder 60 is provided with two oppositely disposed holes 62 in its side wall through which the ends 64 of a releasable latch means in the form of a flexible plastic latch or leaf spring 66 extend and engage the upper surface of annular collar 56 of actuation member 20. A cylindrically shaped biasing or compression type return spring 68 is disposed around stop member 50 between latch spring 66 and the floor of housing 40. Latch spring 66 is provided with a stem 70 on its upper side which slidably engages a hole 72 in the rod attachment means 61 of second cylinder 60. This arrangement serves to support, properly locate and guide latch spring 66. A cylindrically shaped balancing spring 74 is disposed on stem 70 between the rod attachment means 61 of second cylinder 60 and the top of latch spring 66 to limit and control upward travel of the latch spring.

OPERATION Assume first that toy l0 and its operating mechanism 14 are in the configuration shown in FIGS. 1 and 3.

In operation, downward movement of rod 16 effects downward movement of second cylinder 60 and, by means of latch spring 66 acting on collar 56 of actuation member 20, effects corresponding downward movement of actuation member 20 and second cylinder 60. During such downward movement, both action spring 52 and return spring 68 are compressed, as shown in FIG. 5. At a predetermined point in such downward movement, stop member 50 engages the bottom side of latch spring 66 and prevents further downward movement thereof, as shown in FIG. 5. Further downward movement of rod 16, second cylinder 60 and actuation member 20 continues until latch spring 66 begins to assume an exaggerated curved shape and the ends 64 thereof are drawn inwardly into second cylinder 60 and out of engagement with collar 56 on actuation member 20. When this disengagement occurs, actuation member 20 is free to move upwardly and does so rapidly as action spring 52 decompresses, as shown in FIG. 6. As actuation member 20 springs upwardly, it forces head 18 resting thereon to travel rapidly up the rod 16, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 6, and then fall back in place, as shown in FIG. 1. Since rod 16 is still depressed, the actuation mechanism 14 assumes the configuration shown in FIG. 6. As the downward pressure on rod 16 is released, second cylinder 60 moves upwardly from the position shown in FIG. 6 to resume its normal position (shown in FIG. 3) under the action of return spring 68 and the latter also forces the ends 64 of latch spring 66 outwardly through the holes 62 in second cylinder 60 and back into engagement with collar 56 of actuation member 20 which has returned to the position shown in FIG. 6. The toy 10 and animation mechanism 14 thereof are again in readiness for another operation.

I claim: 1. In an animated toy: a base, actuating means on said base, said actuating means being movable between discharged and charged positions, a manually movable rod connected to said actuating means, and a figure slidably mounted on said rod and having an at-rest position wherein it is adapted to be engaged by said actuating means as the latter moves from charged to discharged position, said rod being movable in one direction to move said actuating means from discharged to charged position and being further movable in said one direction to effect movement of said actuating means from charged position to discharged position wherein said actuating means engages said figure and causes it to slide on said rod. 2. A toy according to claim 1 wherein said rod is vertically disposed and wherein said figure occupies and returns to said at-rest position under the force of gravity.

3. A toy according to claim 2 wherein said actuating means comprises a sounding device which emits a sound when said actuating means is moving to at least one of its said positions.

4. A toy according to claim 2 wherein said actuating means comprises a movable actuation member for en gagement with said figure and an actuation spring for cooperation with said actuation member.

5. A toy according to claim 4 wherein said actuating means further comprises a movable member attached to said rod and releasable latching means between said movable member and said movable actuation member.

6. A toy according to clalm 4 wherein said actuating means comprises a sounding device disposed between a portion of said actuation member and said base.

7. A toy according to claim 2 which is in the form of an animal with said base taking the form of the body of said animal and said figure taking; the form of the head of said animal.

8. A toy according to claim 7 wherein said head is provided with ears which are movably mounted thereon.

9. In an animated toy:

a base,

actuating means on said base and comprising a movable actuation member, an actuation spring therefor, a movable member, releasable latch means on said movable member for engagement with said actuation member, latch release means on said base for cooperation with said latch means and a return spring for said movable member and said latch means,

a rod connected to said movable member,

and a figure slidably mounted on said rod and having an at-rest position wherein it is adapted to be engaged by said actuation member,

said rod being movable a predetermined distance in one direction with respect to said base to effect corresponding movement of said movable member and said actuation means through said latch means and charging of said actuation spring and said return spring, said rod being further movable in said one direction to effect engagement of said latch release means and said latch whereby said latch disengages from said actuation member thereby allowing said actuation spring to effect independent movement of said actuation member with respect to said movable member.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3162440 *Aug 30, 1961Dec 22, 1964Argiro Nicholas THammer operated registration device for amusement centers
US3369811 *Jun 4, 1965Feb 20, 1968Marvin Glass & AssociatesSimulated beanstalk game
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4246722 *Feb 16, 1979Jan 27, 1981Mattel, Inc.Growing baby doll
US5409413 *Jun 13, 1994Apr 25, 1995Giftec, Ltd.Rocking display assembly
US5810641 *Dec 23, 1997Sep 22, 1998Lo; Szu WeiRocking mechanism with upward, downward, forward and backward actions
US6572432 *Jun 10, 2002Jun 3, 2003Chih-Cheng TsaiTelescopic mascot
US6626730 *Jul 23, 2002Sep 30, 2003Jui Hsia YuFoldable device suited for toys
US20050268860 *Apr 26, 2005Dec 8, 2005Ritchey Sharon APet toy including flexible teaser removably attached to wand
US20120111283 *May 10, 2012The Kyjen Company, Inc.Pet toy producing extended pressure released squeaking sound
US20130017756 *Jul 16, 2011Jan 17, 2013Chih-Cheng LaiCloth stuffed toy and method for producing the same
CN102114351A *Dec 31, 2010Jul 6, 2011梁培志Toy
CN102114351BDec 31, 2010Jun 27, 2012梁培志Toy
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/190, 446/314, 446/198
International ClassificationA63H3/00, A63H3/36
Cooperative ClassificationA63H3/36
European ClassificationA63H3/36