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Патент USA US3077886

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Feb» 19, 1963
Filed Aug. l2, 1960
F/û. l.
United States Patent hice
Patented Feb. i9, 1h53
Gunther M. Richter, RFD. ll, Brookfield, Conn.
Filed Aug. 12, 196i), Ser. No. 49,342
2 èClairns. (Cl. 124-13)
This invention relates to amusement apparatus and,
more particularly, to a device for launching a projectile
such as a toy rocket.
the leakage path between the compressed air and the at
mosphere is quite long.
The above objects are achieved by providing an elon
gated tube lopen at both ends, an elongated piston longi
tudinally slideable within the tube, the nonengaged end
of the piston being adapted to rest upon the ground during
the launching operation, anda projectile detachably sup
ported by the nonengaged end of the tube.
The manner in which this invention is constructed will
Many dev-ices have heretofore been proposed for pro 10 be more apparent from the following detailed description
taken with the figures yof the attached drawing wherein:
pelling miniature projectiles. However, each of these
HG. l .is a cross-sectional elevational View of the de
devices has been characterized by certain shortcomings.
Vice in the telescoped position;
For example, one class of launching devices employs
FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional elevational view of the de
mechanical actuators such :as springs for imparting the
required force to a projectile. Devices such as this are 15 vice extended for lthe beginning ofthe compression stroke;
FiG. 3 is an elevational View showing the device par
unnecessarily complex and are `subject to mechanical dif
tially telescoped land the projectile leaving the end; and
FIG. 4 is Va cross-sectional plan taken along the line
A second class :of devices utilizes small explosive
4F@ of FIG. 3.
charges. The height to which projectiles will ascend
In the drawings, en inner tube llil is closed at its upper
when actuated by small charges is limited. More etlec 20
end by 'a suitable stopper l2 to form a long compression
tive charges are dangerous to children and, in any event,
piston. The lower end of tube 10 is closed by a cap
are difñcult to obtain.
14 which circumferentially surrounds the lower portion
A third class yof devices, to which this invention belongs,
of tube lil. An outer tube 16, »open at both ends, tits
includes those actuated by compressed air. A familiar
type of launcher employs a compressed yair chamber hav 25 snugly but slideably over tube lil. Tube le is surmounted
by a detach-able toy rocket having a hollow body por
ing a detachable head serving as a projectile, a hand op
tion 1S Iand guide tins 20.
erated piston, and a mechanical check valve. The piston
in operation, the tubes are extended and the rocket 18
is pumped until sufficient pressure is built up to launch
is placed over the upper end of tube 16. The lower
the projectile. The primary drawback to such devices is
the fact that the check valve is easily disabled-«for ex 30 end of tube l@ is placed against the ground to provide
ample, by dirt entering the mechanism.
Another disadvantage of piston-operated devices gen
erally is that the pistons are relatively short in comparison
a íirm base for aiming purposes. The extended launcher
is aimed toward a point in space and the outer tube is
moved rapidly downward over inner tube lil.
It has been found preferable >to grasp 'the outer tube
with their length of movement. This results in a poor
air se-al due to the short leakage distance between the 35 i6 together with rocket body 18 so as to prevent relative
compression chamber and the atmosphere. The short
length also contributes to mechanical misalignment and
distortion, especially when operated by small children
motion between the outer tube and rocket body during
the compression stroke. In this way, extremely high
pressures may be built up between stopper l2 and rocket
lacking in a high degree of manual dexterity and coordi
When a suitable pressure has been attained, rocket body
One device which attempts to remove the disadvantages
iii may be released. An intriguing popping sound is made
of piston-type compressors employs a pair of telescopically
and the rocket soars rapidly to extreme heights.
associated tubes, the innermost tube having a detachable
As an example of this invention, a device of this type
projectile on its outer end. This type of device is severely
was constructed using heavy cardboard tubes. The in
limited in the amount tot compression obtainable as the
side diameter of the outer tube was 1%@ inches. The
smallest volume to which the air can be compressed is
the volume of the inner tube. Such a device can seldom
inner tube was 4() inches in length and the outer tube
was 4l inches in length. Upon compression in the man
ner described, a light plastic rocket was propelled ver
propel a projectile higher than approximately 25 feet.
A further disadvantage of all the foregoing devices
tically upward approximately 100 feet. In order to rest
is that they vare constructed to be operable by both hands 50 upon the ground, it has been found desirable to make
`of the user. lt is thus quite diillult for a child to control
the direction 4in which the projectile is propelled as
he normally lacks suliicient strength to keep the device
pointed in the desired direction while simultaneously com
pressing the contained air.
it is, therefore, the primary lobject of the present in
vention to provide ‘an improved launching device.
A further object is to provide such a device having
the inner tube at least 30 inches in length.
The provision of a hollow body in the rocket projectile
is `also useful in attaining greater heights. At the instant
the rocket leaves the end of tube 16, body 18 is ñlled
with compressed air. Expansion 4of this air from the
tail of the rocket provides a jet propulsive thrust in ad
dition to the initial launching force.
As a further help in attaining altitude, the ends of
no mechanical or explosive actuating members.
A further object is to provide such a device capable of 60 rocket iins Zi? are bent in .the manner shown in FIGS.
l-3. This causes the rocket to spiral in the manner of
propelling an object t-o greater heights than devices here
a projectile leaving a rilled barrel. A considerable in
rotore known.
A further object is to provide such ya device capable of
compressing the contained air to very small volumes.
A further object is to provide such a device having very
few moving parts.
A further object is to provide such a device which is
for supporting the launcher against the earth. Cap 14
crease in height has been found possible using this fin
The primary purpose of cap 11t- is to provide a surface
yalso serves to protect the end ot tube lil from damage
and, when in the form illustrated, the circumferential
be easily kept aimed at a desired point in space during 70 shoulder prevents tube 1t? from being completely inserted
in tube 16.
the compression stroke.
It will be understood that `the device of this invention
A further `object is to provide such a device wherein
not subject to misalignment or distortion.
A further object is to provide `such a device which can
may be made from any suitable material. More durable
but more expensive devices could be constructed of metal
being adapted to ñt the non-engaged end of said outer
2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said piston has
at its unengaged second end a circumferential shoulder
1. An amusement apparatus for launching a projectile 5 on its outer surface.
which comprises: an elongated cylindrical outer tube open
or plastic tubes, for example.
I claim:
at both ends: elongated cylindrical tubular piston means
having a iirst closed end, said first end being longitudinally
slidable within said outer tube, substantially the entire
References Cited in the file 0f this patent
cylindrical outer surface of Said piston means being simul» 10
taneously engageable with substantially the entire inner
surface of said outer tube, the non-engaged second end
of said piston means being adapted to rest upon the
ground during the launching operation; and a hollow sub
stantially cylindrical projectile closed at its ñrst end and
open at its second end, said open end of said projectile 15
Cohrs ______________ _... Apr. 25,
Harmon _____________ __. Feb. 8,
Kleinfeldt ___________ __ Feb. 6,
Briggs et al. _________ __. Mar. 30,
Lutins ______________ __ June 15, 1948
Walters ____________ _.. Sept. 14, 1948
stark et ai. __________ -_ sept. 5, 195o
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