US 3782029 A
A construction set comprises a plurality of skeletal tetrahedrons and interconnecting means therefor so that they can be assembled in a plurality of groups of different configuration and rotated relative to each other. The legs of the tetrahedrons have flange configurations for receiving correspondingly flanged resilient connectors.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 Bardot [4 1 Jan. 1,1974
[ 1 CONSTRUCTION SET AND ELEMENT THEREOF  lnventor: Ernest Roger Bard0t,.1uziers,
France  Filed: Mar. 31, 1972  Appl. No.: 240,055
 Foreign Application Priority Data Apr. 2, 1971 France 7111658  US. Cl. 46/26, 35/72  Int. Cl A63h 33/10  Field of Search 46/16, 17, 30,31,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,367,063 2/1968 Bondesen et a1. 46/26 3,509,642 5/1970 Brumlik 46/26 X 2,252,678 8/1941 Beary 46/24 UX 3.412,519 11/1968 Brettingen 46/26 X 3,510,962 5/1970 Sato .1 46/26 X Primary Examiner-Louis G. Mancene Assistant ExaminerD. L. Weinhold Att0rney1rvin S. Thompson et al.
 ABSTRACT A construction set comprises a plurality of skeletal tetrahedrons and interconnecting means therefor '50 that they can be assembled in a plurality of groups of different configuration and rotated relative to each other. The legs of the tetrahedrons have flange configurations for receiving correspondingly flanged resilient connectors.
5 Claims, 8 Drawing Figures CONSTRUCTION SET AND ELEMENT THEREOF The present invention relates to a construction set comprising a plurality of identical pieces and means for interconnecting them in any of a plurality of combinations, as well as to individual pieces of the set. The construction set of the present invention is useful not only for amusement purposes, but also for educational purposes.
It is an object of the present invention to provide a construction set comprising a plurality of pieces which may be assembled in any of a plurality of ways, relatively rotatably or not, or in nested relation to each other.
It is another object of the present invention to provide an individual piece for use in a construction set as aforesaid.
Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from a consideration of the following description, taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a skeletal tetrahedron according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a nested stack of tetrahedrons adapted to rest on a flat surface;
FIG. 3 shows a tripod receiving a skeletal tetrahedron point down;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary cross-sectional view on line A-B of FIG. 1 showing the cooperation between the tetrahedrons and the connector means;
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a modified form of coupling element;
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of still another form of coupling element;
FIG. 7 is a view in perspective showing five tetrahedrons according to the present invention in assembled relationship; and
FIG. 8 is a view similar to FIG. 7 but showing five more tetrahedrons added to the assembly.
Referring now to the drawings in greater detail, and first to FIG. 1, there is shown a skeletal tetrahedron according to the present invention, comprising six legs 9, three of which define each of the four flat triangular faces of the tetrahedron.
FIG. 2 shows a plurality of tetrahedrons in nested relationship; while FIG. 3 shows one of the tetrahedrons supported point down on a hollow triangular tripod.
Each leg 9 has on its inner edge a part-cylindrical recess 10 for the reception of at least half of a cylindrical flange ll ofa connector 12 (FIG. 4), and a concavely circular chamfer 13 along its opposite inner edge for the reception of a flange 14 on connector l2.- The rib 11 and flange 14 thus bridge the flat inner edge 9' of the adjacent legs 9, as seen in FIG. 4. Connector 12 is of resilient material and is bisymmetric on opposite sides of the plane on which two interconnected tetrahedrons meet, the tetrahedrons thus being rotatable relative to each other about the axis of connector 12.
FIG. 5 shows an alternative form of resilient connector 15 in the form of a triangular sleeve insertable in the triangular openings delimited by the edges 9' of the legs 9, each outer face of the triangular sleeve having ribs 11' corresponding to the ribs 11 of connector 12 and flanges 14 corresponding to the flanges 14 of the connector 12 and performing the same functions as in the case of connector 12. However, the connector 15 is useful when the tetrahedrons are to be maintained in registry with each other and does not permit rotation of the tetrahedrons relative to each other.
FIG. 6 shows still another form of connector, which bridges an intermediate tetrahedron.
Several of the configurations which the tetrahedrons may have in assembly, for amusement or educational purposes, are shown in full and phantom lines in FIGS. 2, 7 and 8.
From a consideration of the foregoing disclosure, therefore, it will be evident that the initially recited objects of this invention have been achieved.
Although the present invention has been described and illustrated in connection with preferred embodi merits, it is to be understood that modifications and variations may be resorted to without departing from the spirit of the invention, as those skilled in this art will readily understand. Such modifications and variations are considered to be within the purview and scope of the present invention as defined by the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. In a construction set, a tetrahedron comprising six legs, each leg being interconnected at each end to two other legs, said legs being spaced apart intermediate their length, each side of the tetrahedron having a triangular opening therethrough bounded by three said legs, each leg having a part-circular recess midway of its length on an inner edge of each leg, and a connector member having one end engaged in one of said triangular openings and having a circular flange adjacent said one end and disposed in said part-circular recesses adjacent said one triangular opening.
2. A construction set as claimed in claim 1, and a pair of said tetrahedrons in assembled relationship disposed one at each end of said connector member.
3. A construction set as claimed in claim 2, said pair of tetrahedrons each having a triangular face against a triangular face of the other said tetrahedron.
4. A construction set as claimed in claim 2, said pair of tetrahedrons being spaced apart, said connector member bridging across the space between said pair of tetrahedrons.
5. A construction set as claimed in claim 1, there being three said part-circular recesses coaxial with each other on each side of said tetrahedron.