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Publication numberUS3917786 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 4, 1975
Filing dateJan 8, 1973
Priority dateFeb 19, 1970
Publication numberUS 3917786 A, US 3917786A, US-A-3917786, US3917786 A, US3917786A
InventorsFranz Weigert
Original AssigneeFranz Weigert
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method of and system for making synthetic fossils
US 3917786 A
Abstract
A method of producing relief reproductions of natural fossils, especially fossile birds of the Jurassic geological period, wherein a color-faithful image of the natural fossil is applied to a white paperboard surface which is screen printed with a white pattern corresponding to the bone and other hard-portioned patterns of the fossil. From the natural fossil, male and female die members are formed, faithful to the contours of the fossil and are used to emboss the paperboard in registry with the aforementioned image. The relief reproduction thus produced is cut out from the paperboard along the outline of the image and is attached to a natural stone slab, preferably by being recessed in a cavity of similar outline.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

i United States Patent 1191 Weigert *Nov. 4, 1975 METHOD OF AND SYSTEM FOR MAKING SYNTHETIC FOSSILS [76] Inventor: Franz Weigert,

Adalbert-Stifter-strasse 13, D-8858 Neuburg, Donau, Germany 21 Appl. No.: 321,734

Related US. Application Data [62] Division of Ser. No. 116,197, Feb. 17, 1971, Pat. No.

[30] Foreign Application Priority Data Feb. 19, 1970 Germany 2607643 [56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,660,211 5/1972 Brody 264/293 X "SS/L 64) M SELF- HARDENING PLASTIC H col. OE PRINTING 3,681,159 8/1972 Portnoy 264/293 X Primary ExaminerRobert F. White- Assistant Examiner-Thomas P. Pavelko Attorney, Agent, or FirmKarl F. Ross; Herbert Dubno ABSTRACT A method of producing relief reproductions of natural fossils, especially fossile birds of the Jurassic geological period, wherein a color-faithful image of the natural fossil is applied to a white paperboard surface which is screen printed with a white pattern corresponding to the bone and other hard-portioned patterns of the fossil. From the natural fossil, male and female die members are formed, faithful to the contours of the fossil and are used to emboss the paperboard in registry with the aforementioned image. The relief reproduction thus produced is cut out from the paperboard along the outline of the image and is attached to a natural stone slab, preferably by being recessed in a cavity of similar outline.

4 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures THERMOPLASTIC PHOTO INA G E SCREEN PRINTING keses w US. Patent Nov.4, 1975 Sheet10f2 35917 786 U.S. Patent Nov. 4, 1975 SILICONE RUBBER FOSS/L Sheet 2 of 2 SELF- HARDENING PLASTIC yaw/wax COLOR PRINTING HEAT THERMOPLASTIC PHOTO IMAGE sc BEEN PEINI'ING IMAGE Q35 4/8 36 immnsoaao POSITIVE H MQ 3I 38 0 FIG. 5

MTUML SRDIYK SLAB METHOD OF AND SYSTEM FOR MAKING SYNTHETIC FOSSILS This is a division of application Ser. No. 116,197, filed Feb. 17, 1971, now US. Pat. No. 3,769,l 14 issued Oct. 30, 1973.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION My present invention relates to a method of and a system for producing synthetic fossils or fossil reproductions and, more particularly, to a method of producing contour-faithful and color-faithful reproductions of fossil remains of animals, birds, reptiles and the like.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Numerous methods of producing reproductions of naturally occurring fossils have been proposed in the past. On one hand, there were attempts to provide images of a fossil on a flat sheet or substrate by photographic or printing methods and even by artistic renderings. With increasing perfection of photographic art, it has become possible to reproduce an image of the fossil which is almost perfect in the sense that all color nuances and variations are reproduced in the image. However, such flat portraits of the fossil are inherently unfaithful because of the inability of the photographic method to accurately convey the three-dimensional sense required by the contours of the original subject.

On the other hand it has been proposed to provide three-dimensional or relief reproductions of fossils, but the only methods which have gained prominence in this line, are those which involve using the fossil as an embossing member and therefore may result in damage to the rare naturally occurring subject, or those which build up a relief using the naturally occurring fossil as a guide. Even when the latter relief structures are carefully painted or tinted, they are unfaithful to the color nuances and variations of the original. Hence the preparation or production of a three-dimensional or relief reproductions of a naturally occurring fossil has been a problem heretofore.

The problem is especially pronounced when attempts are made to form reproductions of winged, animal and reptile creatures of the upper Jurassic period of the Mesozoic geological age, this period being referred to frequently as the Malm. In this period, dating some 140 to 150 million years ago, the earliest winged creatures were embedded in strata which gave rise to the limestone beds of the upper Jurassic geological period. Consequently, when slabs of fossil-containing upper J urassic limestone are recovered, the fossil remains of such winged creatures are revealed with elevated regions or ridges corresponding to the bone pattern of the creature and to the hard tissue, fins, ribs and the like. In addition, the naturally occurring fossil includes nuances and variations of color which are essential to the entire picture, as well as variations of gloss or brightness which appear to arise from the fossilization process.

While color photographs of such fossils are highly faithful to the color nuances as noted above, they have been found to be unavailing when reproduction of the contours is desired. Furthermore, the ridges corresponding to the fins or skeletal system are highly sensi- OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION It is therefore the principal object of the present in vention to provide an improved method of making synthetic fossils or fossil reproductions whereby the aforementioned disadvantages are avoided. I

It is another object of my invention to provide an im: proved method of making a fossil reproduction of low cost and high accuracy which does not detrimentally affect the natural fossil,

Still another object of the invention is to provide a method of making a color-faithful and contour-faithful reproduction of a naturally occurring fossil, especially a winged creature of the Jurassic period, which has the weight and appearance of the naturally occurring fossil.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION These and other objects which will become apparent hereinafter are attained, in accordance with the present invention, in a method of making a reproduction of a naturally occurring fossil which makes use of my discovery that embossed paperboard, suitably processed, constitutes a remarkable base for color-faithful and contour-faithful reproductions.

More particularly, the paperboard having a white surface is color printed with an image of the naturally occurring fossil produced by conventional color photography, and is further screen printed with a white or whitish pattern corresponding to the skeleton or fin structure of the fossil. A male (positive) and a female (negative) die member are provided to impress the contours into the paperboard substrate in registry with the color-faithful image, thereby constituting on the image surface a relief faithful to the contours of the natural fossil.

I may provide a coating of a varnish oil in those areas in which gloss must be enhanced to correspond to the more glossy areas of the natural fossil. The screen printing of a white pattern corresponding to the skeletal system of the fossil, moreover, applies texture which is increased by the embossing operation to emphasize those portions of the fossil which remain in relief in the natural subject.

The process of the present invention makes use of the advantages of modern color photography and flat-process printing, e.g. offset printing, which impart the color image to the white paperboard surface. It will be appreciated that present techniques of color reproduction permit the highly faithful transfer of the image of the original fossil to the paperboard substrate which is to be embossed subsequently in the formation of the three-dimensional or contoured synthetic fossil. The paperboard or cardboard preferably has a thickness such that 400 to 1000 grams of the paper are provided per square meter, and a white surface.

I have already indicated that the embossing of the paperboard or cardboard is carried out with the aid of positive and negative (male and female) die members in a hydraulic or like press capable of delivering pressures of lOO to 1000 kg per cm I prefer to make these die members from hardboard and synthetic resin, preferably reinforced with wire screen or fabric inlays, by originally casting a silicone rubber on the natural fossil to produce a master negative. The latter serves as a form for a positive likewise produced by casting, preferably of a fabricor screenreinforced self-hardening resin capable of resisting compressive forces and having low compressibility. Suitable materials for this positive master are epoxy resins and polyacrylates cast in a solvent. In the next stepof the present process, the negative or female die member is prepared by immersing the self-hardening positive into a body of thermoplastic synthetic resin, preferably reinforced by a wire screen, grid or fabric, under heat and pressure to faithfully and complementarily reproduce the contours of the original fiber in reverse or negative form. The positive or male die member may be produced using the female die member as the template and preferably consists of hardboard which may be deformed by the female die member under heat and pressure and can also be reinforced by a fabric, grid, or screen of wire.

The male and female die members register with the paperboard image which has previously been overprinted by screen-printing techniques with the skeletal pattern, preferably in a white ink or paint, and after a varnish oil has been applied to those areas in which enhanced gloss is desired. The positive and negative die members, prepared as indicated above, have been found to be useful without damaging the image surface.

According to still another feature of the invention,

- the closeness of the reproduction may be enhanced by mounting the relief paperboard upon a slab of natural stone preferably derived from a stratum in which the original fossil was found or a similar stratum. In the case of a Jurassic fossils derived from limestone formations, therefore, the slab may be composed of limestone and the relief paperboard may be secured to it by conventional adhesive techniques. It has been found to be advantageous to cut out the image of the fossil along its outline so that only the image is applied to the natural stone. In practice, it has also been found to be advantageous to mill a recess in the natural stone along the contours of the cut-out paperboard relief and adhesively to mount the latter in this recess.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The above and other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the following description, reference being made to the accompanying drawing in which:

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a fossil to be reproduced;

FIG. 2 is a longitudinal section through the flat unit prior to embossment;

FIG. 3 is a similar section after embossment;

FIG. 4 is a longitudinal section through an artificial fossil structure of the invention; and

FIG. 5 is a diagram representing the successive steps of the process.

SPECIFIC DESCRIPTION AND EXAMPLE In FIG. 1, I show a naturally occurring fossil in a natural limestone block 11 of the upper Jurassic period. In this case the fossil is a primitive winged creature l2 (Archaeopterys Lithographica) which has a skeletal system represented at 13 and portions of enhanced gloss at 14. The latter portions correspond to the wings of the creature. This fossil has an age of about to million years and is considered a precursor of the modern bird.

The fossil is reproduced basically from a paperboard substrate 1 of 400 to 1000 g/m having a white upper surface la to which a color reproduction of the fossil is applied by conventional color-printing techniques. In this system, the fossil is photographed and color negatives are prepared for offset printing of the surface in a flat state. Once the image of the fossil has been printed as represented at 2, regions corresponding to the skeletal system 13 may be screen printed in white ink or painted upon the color reproduction and a film of varnish oil 3 may be applied in areas corresponding to the high-gloss regions of the naturally occurring fossil (FIG. 2). The substrate is then pressed (FIG. 3) as shown at 4 between a male die member and a female die member composed of material which does not damage the image. As illustrated in FIG. 4, a slab 6 of stone, preferably Jurassic limestone corresponding to the limestone in which the original fossil is found, is milled at 5 to provide a recess corresponding to the outline of the reproduction. The reproduction 4 is set into this recess and held in place by an adhesive 7 as illustrated in FIG. 4. Hence FIG. 1 shows the finished product. This product has, of course, the coloration and configuration of the original fossil, a background and texture corresponding to the natural fossil, and the feel or weight thereof.

In FIG. 5, I have shown diagramatically the sequence of steps in which the simulated fossil is formed. In step A, the naturally occurring fossil 11 in the limestone body 12 serves as a mold for the casting without pressure or heat which may damage the fossil, of silicone rubber 13 forming a negative whose contours 14 faithfully reproduce, complementarily, the configuration of the original fossil. This silicone rubber negative may contain a wire screen, grid or fabric reinforcement 15 which limits deformation of this negative during subsequent use.

In a second stage B, this silicone rubber negative 13 constitutes a mold for the casting of self-hardening synthetic-resin plastic 16 which also is provided with a wire grid, screen or'fabric reinforcement 17. This selfhardening plastic may be an epoxy resin as noted above which flows into all of the crevices of the negative mold member 13 and acquires positive contours l8 corresponding to the contours of the original fossil. Since the molding of the positive 16 takes place without heat or pressure, there is no distortion of the negative 13.

In the next state (C), a thermally softening or thermoplastic negative 19 is fonned from a material such as polyacrylic resin with a wire screen, grid or fabric reinforcement 20 by heating the surface 21 of the plastic block and applying the hard positive 16 under pressure from a hydraulic ram arrangement 22. The contours 21 of the thermoplastic member 19, after hardening, constitute a negative against which the printed paperboard can be deformed. In step D, the positive 23 is made by pressing using the negative 19 and a ram 24, the positive having a reinforcing grid 25 of the type previously described. The positive is composed of hardboard (stiff fiberboard) and corresponds faithfully in contour to the original fossil.

In step I, colateral with the sequence of steps previously described, the natural fossil 12 is photographed by a camera 30, the negatives of which are used to flat print the paperboard sheet 31 by offset or like printing methods, represented as using a printing roller 32 in stage ll. The color printed image 33 on the paperboard 31 is overprinted by screen ink or paint 34, generally of white color, to correspond to the skeletal structure of the original fossil. In addition, varnish oil may be applied as described in connection with FIG. 2. The paperboard 31, provided with the image, is pressed between die members 19 and 23 in a hydraulic press 35 capable of delivering a pressure of 100 to 1000 kg/crn to yield the relief 36 indicated in step F. In this step, the image is cut away from the paperboard along its outline and is applied in step b with the aid of cement 37 to a slab 38 of natural limestone previously recessed in step a by a routing tool 40 or the like.

I claim: 1. A method of making a synthetic fossil comprising the steps of:

photographing a natural fossil having a contoured surface to form a color-faithful image of said natural fossil; imprinting a surface of a flat sheet with said colorfaithful photographically reproduced image of said natural fossil; casting a master negative of said natural fossil;

6 casting a positive of said master negative; forming a male die member and a female die member with the contours of said master negative and said positive and with complementary contours corresponding to those of the surface of said natural fossil;

pressing said sheet between said die members with the contours in registry with the color-faithful image applied to said sheet to conform said sheet to the contoured surface of said natural fossil and produce a three-dimensional reproduction of said natural fossil from said sheet; and

cutting out said three-dimensional reproduction from said sheet along the outline of said contour and said image.

2. The method defined in claim 1 wherein said image is applied to said sheet by screen-printing and said surface of said sheet a pattern-bearing bone and rib configurations of the natural fossil.

3. The method defined in claim 1, further comprising the step of varnishing selected portions of said image to produce a gloss simulating the gloss of the natural fossil.

4. The method defined in claim 1 wherein said sheet is paperboard with the weight of 400 to 1000 g/m and said die members are pressed against said paperboard at a pressure of l to 1000 kg/cm

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3660211 *Jan 15, 1971May 2, 1972Norman IndustriesPlastic article and method of production
US3681159 *Mar 10, 1969Aug 1, 1972Permaneer CorpRegistered printing and embossing of laminated boards
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4036929 *Feb 13, 1976Jul 19, 1977Gould Eugene LMethod of forming decorative inserts in granite and the like
US4073853 *Dec 31, 1975Feb 14, 1978Jaclyn, Inc.Method of forming a design and an accessory article
US4153662 *Jul 9, 1976May 8, 1979Avon Products, Inc.Method and apparatus for forming a jewelry nest
US4285744 *Nov 26, 1980Aug 25, 1981Emil RudolfProcess for the reproduction of oil paintings or similarly textured images
US4551297 *Aug 31, 1984Nov 5, 1985J. H. Benecke GmbhMethod of making an embossing cylinder
US4668457 *Mar 24, 1986May 26, 1987National Institute Of Animal IndustryMethod of making standard marbling models used for judging and grading beef
US4978298 *Apr 20, 1989Dec 18, 1990Eliasz Michael RDental molding process
US5182063 *Jun 29, 1990Jan 26, 1993Artagraph Reproduction Technology IncorporatedMethod and means of publishing images having coloration and three-dimensional texture
US5201548 *Feb 6, 1992Apr 13, 1993Artagraph Reproduction Technology IncorporatedMethod and means for publishing images having coloration and three-dimensional texture
US5264175 *Aug 12, 1991Nov 23, 1993Bush Byron VMethod for making three dimensional impressions
US5443774 *Dec 2, 1992Aug 22, 1995Fa Felsdekor Kluh und PrechtMethod for making artificial rocks, in particular large-scale rock imitations
US5543100 *Mar 14, 1996Aug 6, 1996Fa. Felsdekor Kluh Und PrechtMethod for making artificial rocks, in particular large-scale rock imitations
US5667747 *Mar 19, 1996Sep 16, 1997Harding Product Supply Ltd.Vacuum formed three-dimensional surface article
US5853637 *Sep 28, 1995Dec 29, 1998Bryant; Terry KeithMethod of replicating images of biological specimens onto leather
US5904962 *Jul 12, 1996May 18, 1999Hallmark Cards, IncorporatedRaised mounting system for artistic work
US6216896 *Dec 16, 1998Apr 17, 2001Mann-Hwang ChernMethod of preparing a fossil molding
US6444148Mar 16, 2001Sep 3, 2002Glenn T. HardingProcess and making molds for thermoforming a three-dimensional relief reproduction
US7682476 *Mar 23, 2010Ralph SuttonMethod to create 3-dimensional images from a 2-dimensional image
US20030148251 *Feb 1, 2002Aug 7, 2003Jacqueline DreckselEducational systems and methods relating to fossils
US20070117496 *Sep 14, 2004May 24, 2007Pnina MaronMethod for preparing decorative elements
US20070221320 *Mar 23, 2007Sep 27, 2007Ralph Howard SuttonMethod to create 3-dimensional images from a 2-dimensional image
WO1998012039A1 *Sep 18, 1996Mar 26, 1998Bryant Terry KMethod of transferring images of biological specimens onto leather
Classifications
U.S. Classification264/129, 428/16, 264/132, 264/222, 428/15, 264/320, 264/DIG.300, 264/227, 264/138
International ClassificationB29C33/38, B41M1/12, B44F9/04, B28B7/34, B29C33/40, B28B7/00
Cooperative ClassificationB44F9/04, B29C2033/3871, B41M1/12, Y10S264/30, B28B7/0064, B28B7/346, B29C33/3885, B29C33/40
European ClassificationB44F9/04, B28B7/34D, B29C33/38M2C2, B28B7/00F, B41M1/12, B29C33/40