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Publication numberUS3716939 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 20, 1973
Filing dateJun 30, 1971
Priority dateSep 16, 1970
Also published asDE2138230A1, DE2138230B2, DE2138230C3
Publication numberUS 3716939 A, US 3716939A, US-A-3716939, US3716939 A, US3716939A
InventorsPibet J
Original AssigneePibet J
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Toy construction systems
US 3716939 A
Abstract
A toy building element which is adapted to be interengaged with a similar or identical building element comprising a hollow rectangular box which has an exterior top face with a plurality of rows of a plurality of equally spaced cylindrical projections which extend above the top face and which are provided with boxes having diameters which are the same as cylindrical pin elements which project in an opposite direction from an interior face within the box. The diameter of the pin elements is substantially equal to the spacing between adjacent cylindrical projections of adjacent rows. This makes it possible to interengage the cylindrical pin of one building element between the cylindrical projections of another building element or to engage the pins into the bores of the cylindrical projections.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1 Pibet Feb. 20, 1973 [54] TOY CONSTRUCTION SYSTEMS [76] Inventor: Jose Maria Arnau Plbet, via Augusta I95, Barcelona, Spain [22] Filed: June 30, 1971 [Zl] Appl. No.: 158,229

[30] Foreign Application Priority Data Sept. 16, 1970 Spain .Q ..383688 [52] US. Cl. ..46/25 [51] Int. Cl. ..A63h 33/08 [58] Field of Search ..46/16, 17, 23, 24, 25, 26, 46/28 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,234,683 2/ 1966 Christiansen ..46l23 FOREIGN PATENTS 0R APPLICATIONS 44,786 1961 Poland ..46/25 303,483 1955 Switzerland ..46l23 Primary Examiner-Louis G. Mancene Assistant Examiner-J. Q. Lever Attorney-John J. McGlew et al.

[57] ABSTRACT A toy building element which is adapted to be interengaged with a similar or identical building element comprising a hollow rectangular box which has an exterior top face with a plurality of rows of a plurality of equally spaced cylindrical projections which extend above the top face and which are provided with boxes having diameters which are the same as cylindrical pin elements which project in an opposite direction from an interior face within the box. The diameter of the pin elements is substantially equal to the spacing between adjacent cylindrical projections of adjacent rows. This makes it possible to interengage the cylindrical pin of one building element between the cylindrical projections of another building element or to engage the pins into the bores of the cylindrical projections.

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TOY CONSTRUCTION SYSTEMS This invention concerns improvements in toy construction systems, through which important structural and practical advantages are gained.

Among the many toy construction systems known in the prior art, particular attention should be paid to those comprising hollow pieces open on one of their bases and provided, internally and externally, with protuberances intended to fit mutually to form toy constructions by coupling different types of pieces.

On the basis of this known principle, several variations and improvements have been made to achieve more satisfactory results, by providing new dimensional relations, different arrangements and positioning of protuberances, and changes in their number and shape.

The main purpose of this invention is to improve upon these features of construction systems by providing new types of pieces allowing for a wider range of .positional variations, thus increasing the number of toy constructions possible, which is not easy to accomplish with the systems known so far.

For a better understanding of the invention, drawings are attached showing practical applications, which are provided only by way of example. In the drawings:

FIG. 1 is a top view of one of the pieces made according to the invention.

FIG. 2 is a bottom view of the piece shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a lengthwise section of the same piece, along line III-III of FIG. 1.

FIGS. 4 to 7 illustrate four cases of relative positions obtainable with two adjacent pieces (one of six and another of two external protuberances), as seen transversely.

FIGS. 8 to 11 illustrate a further four positional combination (using the same pieces), as seen in a lengthwise or end-to-end coupling.

FIGS. 12 and 13 are respectively a top view and a side view of a modification of the pieces of the toy construction system, that allows for a much greater variety in coupling.

FIGS. 14 and 15 illustrate partially new types of coupling, as seen transversely and lengthwise respectively.

As shown in the drawings, the improvements in toy construction systems provided by the invention are based upon the provision of basic pieces in the form of hollow boxes 1, open at their base, and having a top exterior face with a plurality of cylindrical projections or external protuberances 2, of a diameter D as well as internal protuberances 3, of a diameter D,, the ratio between these diameters being preferably 1:3, although there may be any other suitable ratio between said diameters.

It is an essential requirement that the external protuberances 2 have a central hole or cavity 4, of a diameter equal to that of the internal protuberances 3, so that concentric coupling may take place between both types of protuberances.

The external protuberances 2 are arranged in lengthwise rows f and transversal columns c, the figures attached being illustrative of a general case in which there are two rows f, and f and three columns 0,, c and The arrangement of the internal protuberances 3 is in the form of alternate rows, where distance L (FIG. 2) between any two protuberances, both considered lengthwise and transversely, equals'l 2 where l is the diagonal distance between said protuberances.

The number of internal protuberances is related to the number of external protuberances by the following formula:

where f and c are respectively rows and columns of external protuberances, their product f.c corresponding therefore to the total number of said protuberances.

It is also essential that the width of the internal cavity of the basic pieces 1, in order to facilitate coupling, is determined by the following formula:

where D and D, are respectively the diameters of external and internal protuberances.

In the specific case illustrated in the drawings, where the ratio between the diameters of protuberances is 1:3, general formula above becomes reduced to:

According to this formula, whenever f equals 1, as is the case with the simplest basic piece, m =D and thus in this particular case the width of the cavity in the piece coincides with the diameter of the external protuberances, this type of simple piece having no internal protuberance whatever.

In the same formula, whenever f 2, m 20,; D,, and therefore there is one single internal protuberance.

It should be mentioned that in order to reinforce the internal protuberances 3, these may be arranged between lengthwise partitions 5 and transversal partitions 5', running from wall to wall inside the basic element 1. However, it should also be mentioned that whenever such reinforcement is not required, the internal partitions may be done without.

Optionally, the toy construction system of the invention may also comprise pieces such as those illustrated in FIGS. 12 and 13, the characteristic feature of which is that radial cuttings or notches 6 are provided in the external protuberances 2, or alternatively there is a reduction in height of the lateral walls of piece 1, so that by combining these special pieces with standard or basic pieces 1, the arrangements illustrated in FIGS. 14 and 15 become obtainable, there being no obstacle against external protuberances coinciding with the lower edge of the side walls of the pieces coupled together.

Thus, coupling between pieces may take three basic forms, namely: external protuberances 2 between internal protuberances 3 (FIG. 11); external protuberances 2 between internal protuberances 3 and the side walls of the basic element 1 (FIGS. 4, 5 and 8); and direct concentric coupling of protuberances (FIGS. 6,7 9 and 10). Further, there is an optional additional type of coupling if external protuberances coincide with the the walls of the basic element (FIGS. 14 and 15).

It will be easily understood that the coupling possibilities illustrated in FIGS. 4 to 7, 8 to 11 and 14 to 15 may be greatly increased, as these basic positions repeat themselves indefinitely from left to right and from top to bottom.

Apart from the basic couplings described above, and owing to the particular structure of the pieces in the toy construction system of the invention, still a further type of coupling may be achieved by opposing pieces to each other by their hollow open bases, this being possible because the internal protuberances of every piece fit the inside walls of the opposing piece, permitting in this way that toy constructions grow in two opposite senses.

What is claimed is:

l. A toy building element adapted to be interengaged with a similar building toy element, comprising a hollow rectangular box having an exterior top face with at least one row of a plurality of equally spaced cylindrical projections extending above said top face, the interior of said box having at least one cylindrical pin projecting downwardly and located between two adjacent ones of said cylindrical projections but projecting in an opposite direction from the interior of said box, said cylindrical projections each having a central bore of a size to receive said cylindrical pin of a similar element to be engaged therewith, said cylindrical pin being of a diameter substantially equal to the spacing between said cylindrical projections and being snugly engageable between an adjacent pair of the cylindrical projections of the similar element to be engaged therewith, said box having side and end walls dimensioned and oriented to engage around at least one of said cylindrical projections upon engagement of said box over the projection of the similar element.

2. A toy building element according to claim 1, wherein at least one row of cylindrical projections comprises a plurality' of substantially parallel rows of laterally aligned cylindrical projections with said cylindrical'projections of adjacent rows being spaced apart by an amount substantially equal to the diameter of said cylindrical pin, said cylindrical pin of the similar element being engageable between aligned cylindrical projections of adjacent rows.

3. A toy building element according to claim 1, wherein said hollow box side and end walls are dimensioned so that said box encompasses two cylindrical projections with said end and side walls snugly engaging the side and ends of said cylindrical projections, said cylindrical pin engaging between said projections.

4. A toy building element according to claim 1, wherein at least one cylindrical pin comprises a plurality of pin rows each having a plurality of cylindrical pins with the pins of adjacent rows being offset so that the pins of one row are centrally positioned between adjacent pins of the next rows.

5. A toy building element according to claim 4, wherein said cylindrical projections are dimensioned and located so that the pins may be engaged selectively and alternatively in the central bores of such projections and also between adjacent pins in a row and opposite pins of alternate rows and said cylindrical projections have diameter three times the diameter of said cylindrical pins.

6. A toy building element according to claim 2, wherein at least one set cylindrical pins comprises a plurality of cylindrical pin rows each having a plurality of pins with the pins of adjacent rows being offset so that the pins of one row are centrally positioned between adjacent pins of the adjacent rows.

7. A toy building element adapted to be interengaged with another similar toy building element comprising a block member having a first face with a plurality of substantially parallel rows of laterally aligned cylindrical projections extending above said first face and having an opposite face with a plurality of cylindrical pin rows being offset so that the pins of one row are centrally positioned between adjacent pins of the adjacent rows, said cylindrical pins projecting from said second face and located between two adjacent cylindrical projections in an opposite direction and on said opposite second face said cylindrical projection each having a central bore of a size to receive said cylindrical pin of the similar building element to be engaged therewith and being of a diameter substantially equal to the spac ing between said cylindrical projections and being snugly engageably between an adjacent pair of said cylindrical projections of the similar building element to be engaged therewith, said cylindrical projections of adjacent rows also being spaced apart by an amount substantially equal to the diameter of said cylindrical pins, so as to accommodate the cylindrical pins of a similar building element and therebetween in snug interengagement.

8. A toy building element according to claim 7, wherein said block member comprises a hollow box, said box having side and end walls extending in the same direction as said cylindrical pins, said second face being located on the interior of said box.

9. A toy building element according to claim 7,

wherein the diameter of said cylindrical projection is three times that of the diameter of the bore in said projections.

l0. Improvements in toy constructions systems of a type which include a plurality of pieces with interengageable projections and recesses, comprising a hollow piece open at its base and having an internal protuberance within its base and having an opposite face with an external protuberance, said external protuberance having a central hole which is substantially equal to the diameter of the internal protuberance so that said internal protuberance is interengageable therein, said external protuberance being approximately three times the diameter of said internal protuberance, the inside width of said base being sufficient to accommodate the dimensions of at least two of said internal protuberances which are spaced aparta distance equal to the dimension of one of said external protuberances.

11. An improvement in toy construction systems according to claim 10 wherein said base has a plurality of internal protuberances arranged in alternate rows and wherein an external protuberance may be accommodated between the internal protuberances of each row.

12. Improvements in toy construction systems, according to claim 10, wherein said hollow piece includes an external flat wall having said external protuberances and side walls defining said base with an opening at one end, said hollow piece being engageable with another hollow piece and three coupling possibilities, namely: said external protuberances of one piece being interengaged between internal protuberances of another piece, said external protuberances of one piece being interengaged between said internal protuberances of said internal protuberances and the next adjacent row being spaced from said walls by an amount at least equal to the diameter of said external protuberances.

14. Improvements in toy construction systems according to claim 10, including partitions within said hollow piece extending from wall to wall thereof and reinforcing said internal protuberances.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3234683 *Apr 6, 1962Feb 15, 1966Interlego AgToy building element including a rotatable bushing
CH303483A * Title not available
PL44786A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3982353 *Jan 31, 1975Sep 28, 1976Interlego A.G.Doll head mounting joint
US4629192 *May 20, 1985Dec 16, 1986Franklin NicholsInterlocking puzzle blocks
US4919635 *Dec 19, 1988Apr 24, 1990The Ritvik Group Inc.Toy construction assembly
US6398612 *Mar 16, 1999Jun 4, 2002Keith H. GudgerConstruction toy interconnector
US7140944Jan 24, 2005Nov 28, 2006Mattel, Inc.Connecting toy
US7340868 *Aug 28, 2004Mar 11, 2008Weber Ralf DUniversal structural element
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/128
International ClassificationA63H33/08, A63H33/04
Cooperative ClassificationA63H33/086
European ClassificationA63H33/08L