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 numberUS3694957 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication date3 Oct 1972
Filing date2 Sep 1971
Priority date2 Sep 1971
Publication numberUS 3694957 A, US 3694957A, US-A-3694957, US3694957 A, US3694957A
InventorsHoughton Lionel
Original AssigneeMego Intern Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Growing hair doll
US 3694957 A
Abstract
In a doll or the like, improved structure is provided for simulating growth of the normal complement of the doll's hair. An extra bundle of hair is passed through a hole in the top of the doll's head and the inner end of the bundle is secured, by means of a resilient anchor, internally of the doll. Pushbutton means are provided for normally preventing the bundle of hair from being pulled outwardly. Thus, only when the pushbutton is depressed can the hair be withdrawn. The pushbutton means, when released, will stop both the inward and outward movement of the bundle of hair and will retain the bundle of hair in the selected position in order to simulate various different stages of "growth" of the remainder of the hair. The resilient anchor for the bundle of hair may be encased in a flexible plastic due on which the pushbutton means acts directly or, alternatively, the pushbutton may act on the bundle of hair itself.
Images(3)
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Houghton [541 GROWING HAIR DOLL [72] lnventor: Lionel Houghton, Kowloon, Hong Kong [73] Assignee: Mego International, Inc., New York,

[22] Filed: Sept. 2, 1971 [21] Appl. No.: 177,344

Primary Examiner-bouis G. Mancene Assistant Examiner-D. L. Weinhold Attorney-Kirschstein, Kirschstein, Ottinger & Frank [451 Oct. 3, 1972 ABSTRACT In a doll or the like, improved structure is provided for simulating growth of the normal complement of the dolls hair. An extra bundle of hair is passed through a hole in the top of the dolls head and the inner end of the bundle is secured, by means of a resilient anchor, internally of the doll. Pushbutton means are provided for normally preventing the bundle of hair from being pulled outwardly. Thus, only when the pushbutton is depressed can the hair be withdrawn. The pushbutton means, when released, will stop both the inward and outward movement of the bundle of hair and will retain the bundle of hair in the selected position in order to simulate various different stages of growth" of the remainder of the hair. The resilient anchor for the bundle of hair may be encased in a flexible plastic due on which the pushbutton means acts directly or, alternatively, the pushbutton may act on the bundle of hair itself.

7 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures PATENTEU URI 3 I972 SHEET 1 0F 3 R 0 T N E V W LIONEL HOUGHTON FATENTEDUCI 3 I972 SHEU 2 BF 3 I\\ E\ TOR L/ONEL HOUGHTON PATENTEnnma I972 3.694.957

sum 3 or 3 I NVENTOR. L/ONEL HOUGHTON GROWING HAIR DOLL BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION l Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to the toy art and more particularly to improved structure in a doll for simulating the growth of hair thereon.

2. Description of the Prior Art It is well known that competition is extremely intense in the top manufacturing field. This is particularly true in the specialized field of doll manufacture and it is necessary for the doll manufacturer to constantly provide new features and innovations in order to stimulate sales. In the doll manufacturing field relatively recent innovations include wetting dolls, crying dolls, talking dolls, walking dolls, etc. Attempts have also been made to produce a doll that effectively simulates the growth of hair.

There is at least one growing hair doll presently being marketed. In the device now being sold, the doll is provided with a full complement of hair on her head and, in addition, is provided with an extra bundle of hair that may be withdrawn outwardly from the dolls head through a hole at the top thereof. The inner end of the extra bundle of hair terminates in an elongated, elastic member which, in turn, is anchored internally of the doll. The hole in the top of the dolls head, through which the hair passes, is provided with a keyholeshaped configuration and the extra bundle of hair is provided with a mating member that can be withdrawn through only one portion of the keyhole and locked with respect to another portion of the keyhole. The disadvantage with the prior art doll is that no means are provided for locking the extra bundle of hair at any intermediate stage between full withdrawal and full or complete retraction. That is, the extra bundle of hair that is intended to simulate growth is either fully retracted within the doll's body or fully withdrawn outwardly from the doll's body. While the prior art structure does permit a perceptible change in the quantity of the dolls hair as a result of the two diverse positions of the extra bundle of hair, it is not fully effective in that no provisions are made for simultating various different stages in the growth of the hair, as in a human being.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention provides the usual doll body construction which includes a torso, legs pivotally mounted on the torso, arms pivotally mounted on the torso and a rotatably mounted head portion. The doll has a full head of hair and, in addition, is provided with an auxiliary bundle of hair that passes through a hole on the top of the dolls head. The inner end of the extra bundle of hair terminates in an elongated, elastic member which, in turn, is secured internally of the dolls torso. A spring biased pushbutton assembly is mounted in the doll, and is movable transversely to the longitudinal axis of the extra bundle of hair and the elongated, elastic member. Aligned openings are formed in opposed wall sections of the pushbutton transversely to the longitudinal axis thereof. The pushbutton, which is accessible from the back of the doll, is received in a sleeve that is rigidly mounted in the dolls torso portion, the sleeve similarly having aligned openings in opposite walls thereof. When the doll is clothed, the pushbutton is concealed.

The elastic member passes through the aligned holes in both the pushbutton and the sleeve. Biasing means captured within the pushbutton assembly normally urge the pushbutton in an outwardly direction so that the holes in the pushbutton are slightly misaligned with the holes in the sleeve. This construction thus provides effective means for selectively clamping the elongated, elastic member. When it is desired to have the hair grow, the pushbutton is depressed slightly in order to align the openings therein with the openings in the sleeve. The hair is then withdrawn outwardly of the doll's head to the desired length and then the pushbutton is released permitting the spring biasing means to displace the pushbutton holes relative to the holes in the sleeve and thereby clamp the elastic member in the selected position. The elastic member is thus prevented from contracting and pulling the hair inwardly of the doll.

In the preferred embodiment of this invention, the elastic member is encased in a soft material which is easily deformable when the holes in the pushbutton and the sleeve are misaligned. In this manner, inward or outward movement of the hair is prevented. When the pushbutton is depressed, as described above, the soft casing that is positioned at least partially about the elongated, elastic member returns to its original shape and moves freely through the now aligned openings in both the pushbutton and the sleeve to thereby permit the hair to be either withdrawn against the force of the elongated, elastic member or retracted by using the force of the elastic member.

Accordingly it is an object of the present invention to provide improved construction for a doll.

It is another object of this invention to provide an improved doll construction whereby the growth of hair is simulated.

Still another object of this invention is to provide a growing hair doll wherein the length of an auxiliary bundle of hair may be selectively determined.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a growing hair doll, as described above, wherein the inward and outward movement of an extra bundle of hair is controlled by the depression of a pushbutton.

A specific object of this invention is to provide means for controlling the length of hair in a growing hair doll by means of a pushbutton that is resiliently biased within a sleeve mounted transversely in the doll's torso, the pushbutton and the sleeve having pairs of holes that are normally misaligned by means of a spring so that elastic hair retaining means passing therethrough are selectively clamped and released by the depression of the pushbutton.

Other objects of the invention will in part be obvious and in part will be pointed out hereinafter. The inven tion accordingly resides in the features of construction, combinations of elements, and arrangement of parts which will be exemplified in the construction hereinafter described, and of which the scope of application will be indicated in the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS In the accompanying drawings, in which are shown two of the various possible embodiments of the invention:

FIG. 1 is a side elevational view, partially in section, illustrating one embodiment of the present invention, with an auxiliary bundle of hair in the fully retracted position;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view, partially in section and similar to FIG. 1, but illustrating the auxiliary bundle of hair fully withdrawn;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view, partially in section, illustrating the embodiment shown in FIG. 2 but with the auxiliary bundle of hair fully extended;

FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of an alternative embodiment of the present invention with the auxiliary bundle of hair fully retracted;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged, longitudinal cross sectional view of the pushbutton assembly;

FIG. 6 is an enlarged, longitudinal cross sectional view of the pushbutton assembly where the button is depressed; and

FIG. 7 is an end view of the pushbutton.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawing, and in particular to FIG. 1 and to FIG. 2, there is shown a doll l0 comprising one embodiment of the present invention. The doll 10 includes a torso portion 12 to which is pivotally secured a pair of arms 14 and a pair of legs 16. This construction is well known in the art and need not be described in greater detail. The torso portion 12 further includes a short, truncated section 17 and an outwardly bulged, annular rib 18 that is contiguous with the truncated section 17. A tube 20 extends upwardly from the rib 18. A head section 22 is provided at its lower end with a conical opening 24 that is arranged to rotatably mate with the truncated section 17 of the torso 12. At the top of the head portion 22 there is provided a central opening 26 defined by a tapered wall section 28 that is adapted to receive the upper end of the tube section 20. Hair 30 is suitably secured to the head section 22 in a conventional manner. It will be understood from the foregoing that the construction illustrated and described permits rotation of the head section 22 through an angle of 360. An auxiliary bundle of hair 32 passes through the opening 26 and is provided, at its inner end, with a loop 34. It should be noted that the diameter of the extra bundle of hair 32 is sufficiently large so as to substantially fill the hole 26 and thereby make the hole 26 unobtrusive. The outer portion of the extra bundle of hair 32 blends with the main body of hair 30. It is contemplated, however, that the extra bundle of hair 32 may be of a different color than the hair 30, depending on the fashion styles of the day.

The torso section 12 of the doll 10 is provided with aligned holes in the front and rear walls 120 and l2b, respectively, the holes being defined by inwardly directed walls 36 and 38. A sleeve is positioned within the aligned holes 36 and 38 with the outer ends of the sleeve 40 blending with the surfaces 12a and 12b of the torso section 12. Specifically, the sleeve 40 is provided with a reduced diameter section 42 arranged to mate with the hole 36. The main body portion 44 is received in the hole 38. A transverse wall 46, formed at the interface between the sleeve sections 42 and 44, abuts the inner end of the wall portion 36 and a circumferential rib 48 abuts the wall portion 38. For purposes to be described hereinafter, a pair of diametrically opposed holes 50 are formed in the walls of the main body section 44. The sleeve 40 may be assembled within the torso 12 of the doll 10in any conventional manner and, if desired, adhesives may be used to further secure it in place.

A pushbutton 52 is slidably mounted, coaxially, within the sleeve 40. In the embodiment illustrated, the pushbutton 52 is hollow and there is provided a pair of diametrically opposed holes 54 in the walls thereof. It should be noted that the holes 54 in the pushbutton 52 are somewhat larger than the holes 50 in the sleeve 40. The purpose of this form of construction will be explained hereinafter. A compression spring 56 is positioned between the inner, transverse end face 51 of the pushbutton 52 and the transverse wall 46 of the sleeve 40.

One end of an elongated, elastic member 58 is secured in any suitable manner to the loop 34 of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32. The other end of the elastic member 58 is secured to a button 60 which is positioned within a hole 62 formed at the bottom end of the torso 12. A soft and pliable, sleeve-like member 64, having an elongated, longitudinal slot 66 extending substantially the entire length thereof is positioned about the elastic member 58. The upper end of the sleeve or tube 64 is provided with a hook 68 that is also engaged within the loop 34 of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32. It should be noted that both the elongated elastic member 58 and the tube 64 pass through the holes 50 and 54 of the sleeve 40 and the pushbutton 52, respectively. The elongated slot 66, as well as a cutout 70 formed at the lower end of the tube 64, facilitate insertion of the elongated, elastic member 58 therein.

Normally the spring 56 biases the pushbutton 52 to the right as shown in FIG. I. With this relationship, the holes 50 and 54 in the sleeve 40 and the pushbutton 52, respectively, are intentionally misaligned and the pliable sleeve 64 is squeezed or deformed. Absent an opposing force on the pushbutton 52, the tube 64 will be crimped about the elastic member 58 and will be clamped in place. Thus, the tube 64 cannot move axially. Consequently, the elongated member 58 will not be able to stretch so that the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 will remain at the external length shown in FIG. 1.

However, when an opposing force is applied to the pushbutton 52 (to the left as shown in FIG. 1) the holes 50 and 54 in the sleeve 40 and the pushbutton 52, respectively, will be in substantial alignment. The crimping and/or clamping force will thereby be removed from the tube 64 thus allowing the tube 64 to return to its original shape. At this time the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 can be pulled outwardly through the hole 26 in the head section 22 since the clamping pressure no longer holds the tube. The tube 64 passes freely through the aligned holes 50 and 54 and the elongated, elastic member 58 stretches accordingly. When the external portion of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 reaches the desired length, the inwardly directed, manually applied force on the pushbutton 52 is used to overcome the force of the spring 56 and thereby release the tube 64 so that the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 may be moved inwardly or outwardly. It should be particularly noted that there is an infinite range of adjustment for the length of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32. That is, the

length of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 is not limited to the maximum and minimum extremes as was the prior art.

An alternative embodiment of the present invention is shown in FIG. 3 and in FlG. 4. Although there are some minor constructional differences in the body portion of the doll l0 and in the construction of the sleeve 40' and in the pushbutton 52' it should be particularly noted that the basic concept is the same as that shown in FIG. 1 and in FlG. 2, and which has been described hereinabove. That is, an infinite range of adjustment for the auxiliary bundle of hair 32' is possible by means of the alignment and misalignment of the holes 50' and 54' in the walls of the pushbutton assembly. The second embodiment of the present invention differs from the first embodiment in that the tubular sleeve 64 is not used. Instead, the elongated elastic member 58' is coupled directly to the inner end of the auxiliary bundle of hair 32' and to a hook 62' that is secured to the body of the doll When a force is applied to the pushbutton 52' that is sufficiently great to overcome the force of the spring 56', the holes 50' and 54' are aligned and the auxiliary bundle of hair 32' can pass freely therethrough. When the opposing force is released from the pushbutton 52' the spring 56' exerts a force to the right as shown in FIG. 4 thus providing an intentional misalignment of the holes 50' and 54 which thereby crimps and clamps the auxiliary bundle of hair 32 at precisely the desired length.

FIG. 3 which is drawn to an enlarged scale may be used for a better understanding of the basic concept of the present invention. As shown particularly in FIG. 5 the holes 54 in the pushbutton 52 have been displaced to the right under the urging of the spring 56. More specifically, the dimension d, between the wall of the hole 54 and wall of the hole 50 is somewhat less than the dimension d, which is the diameter of the tube 64. Thus, the tube 64 will be crimped in two places and will be thereby clamped in order to prevent its movement either inwardly or outwardly. It should be noted that since the holes 54 are somewhat larger than the holes 50, only a very small movement is required of the pushbutton 52 in order to effect firm crimping and clamping. While the holes 50 and 54 are not exactly coaxial, as shown in FIG. 3, one side of each of the holes is contiguous so that when an inward force is manually applied to the pushbutton 52 at least a portion of the walls of the holes 50 and 54 will be aligned to permit the tube 64, in the first embodiment and the auxiliary bundle of hair 32' in the second embodiment, to pass freely therethrough. Since the holes 50 are substantially the same diameter as the tube 64 the holes will serve as guide means.

Still another feature of the present invention is shown in FIG. 7. In order to assure free movement of the tube 64 it is important that the holes 50 and 54 be aligned with the hole 26 formed at the top of the head section 22. To provide this feature, a key 72 is formed at the outer end of the sleeve 40. A keyway 74 is formed in the wall 38 in order to receive the key 72. Thus, the members 40 and 52 can be assembled only with the holes 50 and 54 in alignment with hole 26.

From the foregoing it will be evident that an improved structure has been provided for growing hair dolls. An auxiliary bundle of hair is permitted an infinite number of different lengths of growth by means of a pushbutton clamp that normally holds the auxiliary bundle of hair in a given position and which selectively releases the auxiliary bundle of hair so that it may be moved inwardly or outwardly merely by a slight inward pressure thereon. The pushbutton assembly may be used to apply a crimping and clamping force against a soft, pliable tube that encases an elongated, elastic member or the crimping and clamping force may be applied to the auxiliary bundle of hair itself inwardly of the body of the doll. In either case the elongated, elastic member serves to normally pull the auxiliary bundle of hair inwardly so that it is necessary to work against this force when it is desired to lengthen the dolls hair. The crimping and clamping force is of sufficient magnitude to hold the auxiliary bundle of hair in any desired position in addition to the fully withdrawn or the fully retracted positions.

It thus will be seen that there is provided a device which achieves the several objects of the invention and is well adapted to meet the conditions of practical use.

Since various possible embodiments might be made of the above invention, and various changes might be made in the embodiments above set forth, it is to be understood that all matter herein described, or shown in the accompanying drawings, is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

Having thus described my invention, I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent:

1. A growing hair doll comprising:

a. a hollow body portion having a head section mounted thereon, said head section having an opening proximate the top and hair on a portion of the outside surface thereof;

b. an auxiliary bundle of hair extending through the opening in said head section and terminating in the interior of said body section;

c. an elongated, elastic member coupling the interior end of said auxiliary bundle of hair to the interior of said body portion and applying a restraining force to outward movement of said auxiliary bundle of hair;

. clamping means having a first position for selectively preventing movement of said auxiliary bundle of hair and a second position whereby said auxiliary bundle of hair may be pulled outwardly against the restraining force of said elastic member or may be pulled inwardly by said elastic member; and

e. biasing means for normally urging said clamping means into said first position, said biasing means being adapted to be overcome by an externally applied manual force on said clamping means for moving said clamping means from said first position to said second position, said biasing means urging said clamping means into said first position when the manual force is removed.

2. The doll is accordance with claim 1 wherein said clamping means comprises a sleeve rigidly secured to said body portion and a slidable, tubular pushbutton mounted coaxially within said sleeve, a portion of said pushbutton being external of said sleeve and adapted to have the manual force applied thereto, said sleeve and said pushbutton each having a pair of diametrically opposed holes therein that are misaligned with respect to each other in said first position of said clamping means, and aligned with respect to each other in said second position of said clamping means, the axes of said holes being perpendicular to the axes of said sleeve and said pushbutton, said elongated, elastic member being coaxial with said holes and being prevented from movement only when said holes are misaligned.

3. The doll is accordance with claim 2 wherein said holes in said pushbutton are larger than said holes in said sleeve.

4. The doll in accordance with claim 2 wherein said biasing means is a compression spring that is coaxial with and is captured between the transverse ends of said sleeve and said pushbutton.

5. The doll is accordance with claim 2 wherein said sleeve is keyed to said body portion whereby said holes in said sleeve and in said pushbutton are substantially aligned with the opening in said head section.

6. The doll in accordance with claim 2 wherein there is further included a pliable tube extending through the holes in said sleeve and said pushbutton and at least partially encasing said elongated, elastic member, one end of said tube being coupled to the internal end of said auxiliary bundle of hair for movement therewith, said tube being crimped when said clamping means is in said first position whereby movement of said auxiliary bundle of hair is prevented.

7. The doll in accordance with claim 6 wherein said tube has a longitudinal slot therein for facilitating the insertion of said elongated, elastic member.

l t i i

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3162976 *26 Jun 196329 Dec 1964American Character IncDoll, toy figure and the like with an adjustable lock of hair
US3477170 *27 Mar 196711 Nov 1969Lilienstern Vera DRetractable hair doll
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4101619 *10 Jun 197618 Jul 1978Marvin Glass & AssociatesMolding, heat curable plastics
US4626225 *8 Feb 19852 Dec 1986Marvin Glass & AssociatesToy figures with flexible hair inserts
US4801286 *5 Feb 198831 Jan 1989Henry OrensteinDoll with simulated hair growth
US5116277 *17 May 199126 May 1992Kelley William JDoll having variable length hair segment
US6139397 *27 Jan 200031 Oct 2000Mattel, Inc.Doll having simulated hair-cutting feature
US7063590 *20 Sep 200420 Jun 2006Mattel, Inc.Doll having adjustable length hair
US738432515 Aug 200310 Jun 2008Mattel, Inc.Feature-altering toy
EP0104124A1 *25 Aug 198328 Mar 1984BERCHET INDUSTRIE S.A. Société Anonyme dite:Doll having replaceable and variable length hair
Classifications
U.S. Classification446/319
International ClassificationA63H3/00, A63H3/44
Cooperative ClassificationA63H3/44
European ClassificationA63H3/44