Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3898761 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateAug 12, 1975
Filing dateNov 15, 1973
Priority dateNov 15, 1973
Publication numberUS 3898761 A, US 3898761A, US-A-3898761, US3898761 A, US3898761A
InventorsZohar Rami
Original AssigneeRami Art Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Interlocking construction elements
US 3898761 A
Abstract
An interlocking construction apparatus includes a number of building elements. Each of the building elements includes two opposed serpentine sides, each of the sides having a plurality of undulations. Each of the undulations includes a substantially planar portion forming one of a plurality of support surfaces. These support surfaces are arranged so that they can support and be supported by other such surfaces on other similar building elements.
Images(3)
Previous page
Next page
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 11 1 Zohar 1 Aug. 12, 1975 [5 1 INTERLOCKING CONSTRUCTION 3,514,893 6/1970 Paksy 46/1 R ELEMENTS 3,550,310 12/1970 BOCk-Gl'CiSSHU 46/25 3,614,866 10/1971 Kaneko et 46/25 UX Inventor: Rami Zohar, lsrael 3,626,632 12/1971 Bullock 46/25 [73] Assignee: Rami Art, Corporation, Great Neck, FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 483,085 7/1953 Italy 46/19 [22] Filed: Nov. 15, 1973 I Primary ExaminerF. Barry Shay [2]] Appl' 416071 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Hopgood, Calimafde, Kalil,

Blaustein & Lieberman [52] US. Cl. 46/25; 273/1 R [51] Int. Cl. A46H 33/08 [57] ABSTRACT [58] Field of 46/27 An interlocking construction apparatus includes a 46/191 273/157 1 248/ number of building elements. Each of the building elements includes two opposed serpentine sides, each of [56] References C'ted the sides having a plurality of undulations. Each of the UNITED TATE ATEN undulations includes a substantially planar portion 1,472,536 10/1923 Thomson 46/26 UX forming one of a plurality of support surfaces. These 1,958,508 5/1934 Audet 46/25 support surfaces are arranged so that they can support 2,226,763 12/1940 Gei t a l. 46/28 and be supported by other such surfaces on other sim- 2,446,179 8/1948 Harnquist 46/25 ilar b fldi elements 3,310,906 3/1967 Glukes 46/25 0 3,496,670 2/1970 Sloop et al 46/26 x 4 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures PATENTEUAUBIZIHYS I SHEET FIGZ PMENTEB M18 1 2 i975 SHEET PATENTED AUG 1 21975 SHEET FIG. IO

INTERLOCKING CONSTRUCTION ELEMENTS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Children, as well as adults, have traditionally been fascinated by toys and games of skill involving the interconnection of a number of individual elements to form complex structures. In many of these games the individual elements must be interconnected by the use of fasteners such as screws which often require additional tools and always introduce undesirable complexity. The interconnecting devices are usually small and easily lost so that additional fasteners must frequently be obtained.

One way to avoid the need for fasteners is to configure the individual elements so that they can be arranged in self-supporting constructions. This however,

- often results in the use of building elements of very simple shape such as a babys building blocks. Such simple elements are incapable of being built up into sufficiently complex structures and the toy or game presents no real challenge to the child so that boredom results.

The novel interlocking building elements and the game apparatus including these elements of the present invention avoids these prior art problems since the unique configuration of the building elements permits the construction of self-supporting arrays of elements without requiring fasteners or tools. The problem pres ented by the interconnection of these novel building elements are challenging and therefore maintain the interest of children and even adults. A virtually limitless number of structurally and visually interesting constructions can be made through the interconnection of the self supporting novel building elements of this invention.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The interlocking construction apparatus of the present invention includes a plurality of building elements having a first and a second opposed serpentine sides. The first serpentine side includes a first plurality of substantially planar, substantially parallel support surfaces spaced apart by a first plurality of curved surfaces. The second serpentine side includes a second plurality of substantially planar substantially parallel support surfaces spaced apart by a second plurality of support surfaces. The first plurality of support surfaces are substantially parallel to the second plurality of support surfaces.

FIG. I is a perspective view of a single building element.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a first structure comprising building elements as shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of a second structure comprising building elements as shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of a third structure comprising building elements as shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of a number of the elements as shown in FIG. 1 stacked on each other.

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of a fourth structure comprising building elements as shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 7 is an elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 2.

FIG. 8 is an elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 3.

FIG. 9 is an elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 4.

FIG. 10 is an elevational view showing the structure of FIG. 5.

The novel interlocking construction apparatus according to this invention includes a number of building elements 2 having a first and a second parallel sides 4 and 6. A first serpentine side 8-includes a plurality of undulations 10. The undulations 10 include a plurality of substantially planar support surfaces 12, 12a, 12b, 12c and 12d and a number of S shaped curved portions such as 14 and 14a. The curved portions such as 14 are arranged between adjacent support surfaces such as 12 and 12a. A second serpentine side 16 includes a second plurality of undulations 18. The undulations 18 form a I second plurality of substantially planar support surfaces 20,2011, 20b, 20c and 20d which are separated by a second plurality of S shaped curved portions such as 22, 22a, 22b.

As can best be seen in FIG. 2 the building element results in a stair step like configuration in which the first plurality of support surfaces 12, 12a, 12b and 120 are substantially parallel to each other and to the second plurality of support surfaces 20, 20a, 20b, 20c and 20d. The S curved portions 14, 14a, 14b, 14c, and 22, 22a, 22b, and 22c space the adjacent support surfaces such as 12a and 12b a perpendicular distance apart which is approximately equal to the perpendicular distance across the building element 2 between opposed support surfaces such as 12a and 20a. The support surfaces are so arranged that each support surface on side 8 except for the last surface 12d is aligned with the next succeeding surface on side 16 so that, for example, surface 12 on side 8 is aligned with surface 20a on side 16.

The configuration of the building elementl2 makes it possible to build self-supporting interlocking structures comprising a number of these elements. The basic selfsupporting structure made of four of the interlocking building elements 2 is shown in FIGS. 2 and 7, and consists of elements 24, 26, 28 and 30. In this structure the support surface 20d of element 24-rests on the support surface 120 of element 26. Surface 20d of element 26 rests on surface 120 of element 28. Surface 20d of element 28 rests on surface 12c of element 30. Surface 20d of element 30 rests on surface 12c of element 24. In the resulting construction, the adjacent elements are spaced apart by an angle of approximately Each of the elements of the structure supports one of the other elements and is in turn supported by another of the elements to form the self-supporting interlocking four element structure.

Using the basic structure shown in FIGS. 2 and 7, other more complex structures can be made by adding additional elements one of whose support surfaces 20, 20a, 20b, 20c and 20d will be supported by one of the exposed support surfaces 12a, I2b, or 12d of the four elements 24, 26, 28 and 30 making up the basic structure. One example of a more complex structure made of building elements 2 is shown in FIGS. 4 and 9. In this construction the 12d support surfaces of elements 24, 26, 28 and 30 are used to support the 20 support surfaces of four additional elements 31, 33, 35 and 37. The additional elements 31, 33, 35 and 37 in turn provide additional support surfaces permitting more elements to be added to the structure.

As can be readily seen, an almost limitless number of constructions are possible using the structure of FIGS. 2 and 7, as a foundation. FIGS. 3 and 8 show an interlocking self-supporting construction which is built on a four element base similar to that shown in FIGS. 2 and 7. This base structure utilizes the support surfaces 12b and 20c of four basic interlocking elements such as those shown as 32, 34, 36 and 38 in FIGS. 3 and 8. The resulting structure again depends on the interlocking of the elements to provide mutual support as described with reference to the structure shown in FIG. 2 and again adjacent elements form an angle of approximately 90. Depending on the length of the building elements, the basic self-supporting configuration of four interlocking elements can be built utilizing other combinations of support surfaces. One further example is shown in the interlocking configuration of FIG. 6. This structure can be viewed as an inverted version of the basic structure of FIGS. 2 and 7. Once again, four elements 40, 42, 44 and 46 are mutually interlocked. In the structure of FIG. 6, the 20a support surface of one element is supported by the 12 support surfaces of the adjacent element. Exposed support surfaces 12a, 12b, 12c and 12d of the four elements 40, 42, 44 and 56 of FIG. 6 can then be used to support additional elements to provide the basis for a complex structure. In FIG. 9, one half of the structure uses a foundation structure 50 which is identical to that shown in FIGS. 2 and 7 while the other half uses a foundation structure which is identical to that shown in FIG. 6.

One further structure is shown in FIGS. and 10. In this structure, a plurality of building elements 54 through 60 are stacked on each other so that the undulations of one side of each element fit into the undulations 18 of the opposite side of the next element. This is a simple structure which could be easily constructed by children who might be too young to solve the problems of balance involved in more complex constructions shown.

What is claimed is:

1. Interlocking construction apparatus including at least four elongated unitary building elements arranged on support means to form a self supporting structure in which each of said building elements includes first and second longitudinal opposed serpentine sides and two longitudinal opposed substantially planar sides extending between said first and second serpentine sides, each of said serpentine sides including a plurality of substantially planar mutually parallel support surfaces and a plurality of s shaped curved surfaces extending between adjacent ones of said support surfaces and in which the first of said support surfaces of said first serpentine side of each of four of said elements rests on said support means and one of said support surfaces on said second serpentine side of a first of said elements supports one of said support surfaces on said first serpentine side of a second of said elements, one of said support surfaces on the second serpentine side of said second element supports one of the support surfaces on the first serpentine side of a third of said elements, one of said support surfaces on the second serpentine side of said third element supports one of the support surfaces on the first serpentine side of a fourth of said elements and one of the support surfaces on the second serpentine side of said fourth element supports one of the support surfaces on the first serpentine side of said first element.

2. Interlocking construction apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said four elements are arranged so that adjacent ones of said elements are spaced apart by an angle of approximately 3. Interlocking construction apparatus as claimed in claim 1 including a first additional group of building elements added to said self-supporting structure to form a further structure, one of said support surfaces on said first serpentine side of each of said first additional group of building elements being supported by one of said support surfaces on said second serpentine side of one of said four building elements.

4. Interlocking construction apparatus as claimed in claim 3 including a second additional group of building elements added to said self-supporting structure in which at least one of said support surfaces on the first serpentine side of each of said second additional group of building elements is supported by one of said support surfaces on said second serpentine sides of at least one of said building elements comprising said further structure.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1472536 *Aug 31, 1921Oct 30, 1923Philip W T R ThomsonEducational building block
US1958508 *Nov 25, 1933May 15, 1934Alfred AudetBuilding set
US2226763 *Aug 22, 1938Dec 31, 1940Norwood CompanyStructural set
US2446179 *Nov 12, 1946Aug 3, 1948Harnquist Harry WToy building block
US3310906 *Jul 22, 1965Mar 28, 1967Fowler Knobbe & GambrellToy construction blocks and assembly
US3496670 *Jan 18, 1968Feb 24, 1970Mattel IncHollow construction toy with hinged connector
US3514893 *Apr 27, 1967Jun 2, 1970Frankenplastik Vertriebs GmbhResiliently coupled abutting members disposable in plural stable configurations
US3550310 *Dec 26, 1967Dec 29, 1970Wolfgang Bock GreissauBody of variable form composed of a plurality of hingedly connected orthogonal prisms no less than six
US3614866 *Apr 1, 1969Oct 26, 1971Kyowa Concrete Kogyo Sapporo SPolypod structure for civil engineering uses
US3626632 *May 4, 1970Dec 14, 1971Bullock Richard E JrToy building block
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4950165 *May 12, 1989Aug 21, 1990Joseph MachaalaniEducational toy blocks
US8632375Jul 15, 2010Jan 21, 2014Sean MertesToy fort apparatus and methods
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/85, 273/450
International ClassificationA63H33/04
Cooperative ClassificationA63H33/04
European ClassificationA63H33/04