Title:
Modular construction system consisting of hollow cube modules and insertable connector elements for assembly with said modules
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The invention relates to a modular construction system consisting of insertable modules which are embodied as hollow cubes and have open quadratic side surfaces. Adjacent modules in said modular construction are connected to an upper and lower section by means of insertable connector elements. Both sections have two parallel beams which are distanced from each other. The beams of different sections are arranged at right angles to each other and respectively define the perimeter of the insertable element. Both sections have a common peripheral raised edge which is used as a stop when the insertable element is inserted into the hollow cube. The invention also relates to special modules and special insertable elements.



Inventors:
Zwerenz, Reinhold (Barnau, DE)
Application Number:
10/181947
Publication Date:
01/02/2003
Filing Date:
08/01/2002
Assignee:
ZWERENZ REINHOLD
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
446/124, 52/285.1
International Classes:
A63H33/10; (IPC1-7): E04H1/00; A63H33/08; E04B1/38; E04H3/00; E04H5/00; E04H6/00; E04H9/00; E04H14/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
ABDELWAHED, ALI F
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Welsh Flaxman & Gitler (2000 Duke Street , Suite 100, Alexandria, VA, 22314, US)
Claims:
1. Modular construction system with modules formed of hollow cubes with open, square lateral surfaces, into which connector elements can be inserted for connecting two adjacent cubes with each other, characterised in that the connector elements (9) concerning of an upper section (9a) and a lower section (9b) and are provided with two parallel beams (10, 11; 12, 13) each, the beams of different sections are arranged rectangular to each other and the beams delineate the periphery of the connector elements.

2. System according to claim 1, in which the two sections (9a, 9b) have a common, peripherally extending raised rim which forms a stop means for inserting the connector element (9) into the hollow cube (1).

3. System according to claim 1 or 2, wherein the beams (10, 11; 12, 13) of the connector elements (9) have a square cross-section with a width a and a length 4a, whereby the entire width of the hollow cube is 6a and the width of the aperture is 4a.

4. System according to one of claims 1-3, wherein a connector element (9) can be inserted into an aperture (0; 14) of a surface of the cube for positioning the cubes on top of each other or next to each other, and for connecting two cubes with each other the opposite free end of the connector element of a further cube can be inserted into the aperture thereof.

5. System according to one of claims 1-3, characterised in that a connector element (9) is insertable into an aperture of a cube surface and the connector element for connecting two adjacent cubes (2, 3) together with a further, staggered cube (1) above or below embraces two adjacent cube frame portions in a clamping manner so that the cube of one row is staggered in view of cubes of an adjacent row by half the width of the cube.

6. System according to one of claims 1-5, wherein the connector element (23) comprises a central rotational axis which is coincident with the center axis of the connector element.

7. System according to any of claims 1-6, wherein a base plate (26) as a support plate is provided for accommodating a plurality of elements with the raster of an individual module.

8. System according to any of claims 1-7, wherein an adaptor plate on its one side has a raster for accommodating hollow cube modules, and on the other side a raster for accommodating differently dimensioned modules or modules with a different format.

9. System according to any of claims 1-8, wherein a cover plate is provided the dimensions of which correspond with the dimensions of an aperture of the cube, and the cubes can be connected at embossed positions of the cover plate by a snap-on or latching effect.

10. System according to claim 9, wherein the cover plate has a central aperture for removing modules from the cover plate or alternatively for accommodating and inserting further modules or additional elements.

11. System according to any of claims 1-10, characterised by a snap-on or latching member in the form of a cap or a disc with an axis on one or both sides, e.g. for connecting a wheel system.

12. System according to claim 11, wherein the snap-on or latching member is formed as a wheel with a plug-on axis.

13. System according to claim 1 comprising a module in the form of half a cube, which is divided into two diagonally opposite outer edges of the wall along a diagonal plane.

14. System according to claim 1, comprising a module in the form of a pyramide or a truncated pyramide with an aperture in the base surface to be plugged-on to a connector element.

15. System according to one of claims 1-14, wherein the connector element is provided with two different plug-on patterns at both surfaces, and that the plug-on pattern on the one side is designed for receiving the corners of four joint modules and the pattern at the opposite side is designed for receiving one individual module.

16. System according to one of claims 1-15, wherein the module in the form of a wheel is provided with a central connector element formed as a hub, and the connector element can be plugged onto a cube-type module.

17. System according to one of claims 1-16, wherein a number of cubes are combined to a column and are firmly connected with each other, e.g. manufactured in one unit or bonded together side by side on facing surfaces.

18. System according to one of claims 1-17, wherein a number of cubes are connected to a common, flat base plate in rows and columns and are firmly connected with each other, either manufactured in one piece or bonded together at facing sides.

19. System according to one of claims 1-18, wherein for the transfer from four cube modules fastened together to a square, to an individual cube module a special connector module is formed as a square plate with the dimensions of the base area of a cube, and are formed with feet or extensions of square cross-section at the corners of the plate.

20. System according to claim 19, wherein the inner distance of the feet is manufactured with twice the width (2a) of the beam thickness, and a peripheral stop rim is provided between the plate and the feet which rim is projecting conically tapering outwardly beyond the periphy of the plate.

21. System according to one of claims 1-20, wherein for designing faces or similar figures for different themes a base plate in the shape of a face or the like or alternatively with the picture of a face or the like is formed at the upper side with square recesses (2a×2a) with a plate dimension of 8a×8a, and on the rear side four feet, pins or similar extensions with the dimension (a) and with a distance of (6a) are provided which can be inserted into the recesses of the plate in a form-locking manner.

22. System according to one of claims 1-21, wherein for representing a headgear (hat, cap, helmet, etc.) a plate is provided which is adapted to the shape of the headgear at one side, the underside of the plate being provided with plugs, projections or the like, which can be plugged into corresponding apertures of a cube in a lockable manner, and wherein the distances of the plugs with the width (a) have a dimension of (4a).

23. System according to one of claims 1-22, wherein a module is designed as a trailer coupling comprising a base plate with the dimensions of the aperture or opening of the cube, with a support starting from the front side of the base plate, with an upright pin exending from the support and receiving latching means, and with a stopping rim between plate and carrier which tapers outwardly across the periphery of the plate.

24. System according to one of claims 1-22, wherein a module is formed as a trailer coupling comprising of a base plate with the dimensions of the aperture or opening of the cube, with an eyelet extending from the base plate and with a stopping rim tapering outwardly between the base plate and the eyelet.

25. System according to one of claims 1-24, wherein a symmetrically formed wheel is provided alternatively with a wheel hub having a bearing support for the axle at one or both sides, wherein the axle has a coupling plate at the outer periphery corresponding with the aperture of the cube and insertable into the cube aperture, and wherein the coupling plate is provided with an enlarged stopping rim forming a restriction when being inserted into the cube aperture.

26. System according to one of claims 1-24, wherein a symmetrical wheel formed as a wheel rim is provided with hub-type or circular extensions on one or both sides with axles on both sides having throughgoing bores for accommodating an axis.

27. System according to one of claims 1-26, wherein for connecting several wheels plug-on means are provided which are formed as cup-shaped basic bodies with a connector element starting from the bottom, which can be inserted into the cube.

28. System according to one of claims 1-27, wherein the module is a square battery module consisting of a row of cube elements, the interior of which is provided with an electrical battery, an accumulator, or a similar electrical source which is provided with terminals at the outside of the cube formed as plug-on connectors with other modules, or by means of a cable is connected with an electrical driving motor of a separate module, or as a lighting device.

29. Container for accommodating modules for a modular construction system according to one of claims 1-28, wherein the container is a bucket in the form of a square block similar to an individual module with enlarged dimensions, however, with closed lateral walls and a closed bottom surface, wherein the lateral walls and the bottom surface of the bucket have frame-type peripheral restrictions and cassette-type fillings, wherein the top side of the cubelike bucket is closed by a lid according to one of the lateral walls, and wherein the lid is fastened to the periphery of the bucket by latching means.

30. Container according to claim 29, wherein the peripheral surface of the bucket from top to bottom is slightly tapered or of pyramidic shape so that a number of buckets can be stacked one with another.

31. Container according to claim 29 or 30, wherein the lid has a flanged rim which at the upper frame portion of the lateral walls is engaged by snap-action.

Description:
[0001] This invention refers to a modular construction system according to the introductory part of claim 1.

[0002] A modular construction system with modules in the form of hollow cubes, to which further identical hollow cubes can be connected on all sides, is known. Therefore, in connecting the modules, insertable connector elements are provided which with their full surface, are inserted into the openings of a lateral wall of a cube, and which are connected with the opening of a lateral wall of an added, identical cube so that cubes can only be connected coaxially along the free axis of a coordinate system (however, not staggered relative to each other).

[0003] It is an object of the invention to increase the variability of such a modular construction system, and especially to position the individual cubes of a row in a staggered manner relative to the cubes of an adjacent row, e.g. similar to a multilayer brick compound.

[0004] According to this invention, this object is solved by the characterising part of claim 1. Further embodiments are the subject of the subclaims.

[0005] With the proposed modular construction system the individual modules are connected with each other by means of connector elements which are inserted into the openings of the lateral walls of the cubes in such a manner that modules with 0.5 or 1.5 times the width can also be connected with identical cubes of full width (1.0 times the width). The modules have a measure or unit of a relative to each other and to the insertable connector elements, thus, that a basic module has a width, length and height with the measure 6a if a is the width of the frame elements of a cube, which delineate the openings of each lateral wall, whereby the opening has a width of 4a. Accordingly, the insertable connector elements, which connect adjacent cubes with each other, are made exclusively to a width of 4a, their sides being square and symmetrical with an opening with the width of 2a. The insertable connector elements are constructed so that with a width of 4a units two beams arranged parallel to each other with a width a are staggered at a distance of 2a from each other, and that in the lower plane two lower beams are arranged at 90° to upper beams and also with a width of a each and at a distance of 2a from each other so that the entire structure of the insertable connector elements comprises two beams at right angles to each other, which are arranged in different planes. These insertable connector elements consist of beams with square cross section having a width a and a distance 2a from each other (within the upper or the lower plane) so that within the distance between two beams the frame elements of two hollow cubes can be inserted which support each other, and so that the two cubes on the one side of the insertable connector elements are positioned staggered in view of the cubes arranged underneath or sidewards, and thus the cubes arranged one above the other are staggered by half the width of the cube (brick wall compound). Because the edge of the cube inserted parallel to the two beams of the insertable connector element, which cube has the width a of the edge compared to the distance 2a of the two beams, can be inserted resting on the left or on the right beam, an out-of-centre connection of the cube on the connector element can be obtained so that the inserted cube can be shifted by a distance a into the free space between the opposite beams, and thus different distances to the various beams can be adjusted.

[0006] The edges of the openings of the walls of the cubes are provided with stops which allow the connector elements to be inserted into the openings only up to the centre of the height of these elements so that the one half resp. the one section of the connector elements is inserted into the opening of the wall of the cube, whereas the second half of the connector element is connected with the opening of the next cube to be added resp. the next two cubes. Each of the connector elements is provided with a projecting peripheral rim in the centre, which engages the stop of the opening of the wall of the cube.

[0007] In order to obtain closed surfaces (e.g. for doors or windows) within the modular construction system, plate-type elements of the size of the openings of the lateral walls of the cubes are provided, the outer perimeter of which corresponds with the perimeter of the rim of the openings, and which are provided with edge elements which fit the stop elements of the edges of the openings of the cube in such a manner that the plates can be plugged or snapped into the peripheral edges of the openings so that plane surfaces of the outer sides of the cubes will be obtained. Said plates e.g. are provided with central recesses for removing the plates by means of pins or the like and for allowing pins to be inserted with other types of structural elements into said recesses, e.g. wheel axes. The plates inserted into said recesses e.g. can be facade-type blocks.

[0008] According to the invention the connector elements can instead of being provided as central, square recesses, also be entirely closed and be provided with a central bore hole, which can accommodate an axle or through which an axle can be passed which is used for fitting a special module, e.g. an individual wheel or a wheel at each end of the axle. The central, circular recess can e.g. be formed as a bearing element for such an axle, and two connector elements on opposite sides of an axle can be provided and can be combined with each other by means of clips, snapping or locking elements. For example, modules formed as hollow modules are designed in such a manner that the cubes along a diagonal plane are divided into two halves so that roofs can be built therewith. The roofing can be formed in the shape of a pyramid, calotte or cap.

[0009] Furthermore, the set of such a modular construction system can be provided with one or several flat base plates having connecting elements by means of which the modules can be inserted into the open sides. Furthermore, the invention proposes to use adaptor plates which allow the provision of an adaption from the raster measure of a hollow cube to a different raster measure of other modules of a different shape and size; in this manner the modular construction system can be extended so as to be used in connection with entirely different modular construction systems.

[0010] According to a different aspect of this invention, it is proposed, for universal use of the modular construction system to combine individual cubes into columns, corner connections or the like, e.g. to fasten them together by adhesive or to mold them in one piece in a molding process. Furthermore, it is proposed to combine a number of cubes into a base plate, within which the cubes are combined in rows and columns and are firmly connected with each other, e.g. by adhesive or by being molded. A special modular element according to the invention is formed in such a manner that it is combined from several rows and possibly several columns of individual cubes, which are combined to form a square or a larger cube, the interior of which is hollow and open at one side, and within which an electrical source in the form of batteries, accumulators and the like is accommodated. From this electrical source conductors are provided leading from the square, which are supply lines, e.g. for little bulbs for lighting purposes for elements of the modular construction system, for electrical motors for driving vehicles, cranes and other electrically driven machines or toyss, or for transmissions for driving such vehicles and the like which are made from modular cubes.

[0011] According to a further embodiment of the invention, special play cubes are formed in such a manner that they are designed as a supporting plate, on the front side of which a face or a similar design element is plastically formed, or is designed as the picture of a face or the like, and that the rear side is provided with pins or similar extensions which can be inserted into the openings of cubes. Instead of such faces (or similar parts of the body or similar structures) support plates as play elements can be formed in such a manner that they form headgears, e.g. hats, helmets or the like, also with pins, extensions or the like on the rear side to be inserted into the recesses of cubes. Further special modules can be designed as adaptors for a transfer from four cubes forming a square onto an individual cube, or designed in the form of couplings for trailers, in the form of wheels or wheel rims, which by means of couplings can be inserted into the recesses of the tubes.

[0012] According to a another embodiment of this invention the modules according to the invention can be arranged within a container, e.g. a bucket with the shape of a cube with enlarged dimensions designed as an individual module, the length of the edge of which is several times the length of a module according to the invention, and which on its lateral walls and at the bottom is entirely closed so that the frame-type limitations of the lateral walls and the bottom surface is closed by lateral walls resp. a bottom wall, e.g. in the shape of internally staggered cassettes. Furthermore, a container formed in the shape of an enlarged module is provided with a lid which can be fitted or snapped onto the upper peripheral edge of the lateral walls of the cube, which can be provided with a handle for carrying the container, and which is positioned within corresponding recesses of the lateral frame portions in such a manner that it can be folded back in these support positions.

[0013] Instead of being an exact cube, the shape of the container resp. bucket can also be designed in such a manner that the lateral walls are slightly tapered from the top to the bottom so that a number of buckets can be arranged one within the other and can be stacked. Further embodiments of modules or modular elements are the subject matter of subclaims and are described in more detail together with the drawings.

[0014] In the following the invention is explained in connection with the drawings by means of embodiments. The drawings show:

[0015] FIG. 1—perspective representation of three modules formed as cubes, together with connector elements indicated,

[0016] FIG. 2—perspective representation of a connector element,

[0017] FIG. 3—plan view of the connector element according to FIG. 2,

[0018] FIG. 4—a view of the connector elements according to FIG. 2 from the bottom,

[0019] FIG. 5—a cross-section through the representation according to FIG. 3 along line A-A,

[0020] FIG. 6—a cross-section through the representation according to FIG. 3 along line B-B,

[0021] FIG. 7—schematically two modules arranged one above the other, with a connector element shown in shaded lines,

[0022] FIG. 8—similar to FIG. 7, a connector element for combining three cubes,

[0023] FIG. 9—a schematic view of a closure plate for a lateral opening of a cube,

[0024] FIG. 10—an insertable element for a connector element,

[0025] FIG. 11—a connector element with a through-going rotational axis positioned within the connecting element,

[0026] FIG. 12—a schematic view of a basic plate in perspective view,

[0027] FIG. 13—a schematic view of an adaptor plate in lateral view,

[0028] FIG. 14—a variation of a cube module,

[0029] FIG. 15—a pyramid-type module in perspective representation,

[0030] FIGS. 16a and 16b a connector element with different patterns of insert on the upper side and the lower side, whereby the upper side is formed to be plugged onto a corner element which consists of four corners of modules which meet each other, and the underside of which is formed to be connected to an individual, cube-like module or the lateral opening thereof,

[0031] FIG. 17—a wheel arrangement without an axle, to the wheel disc of which a central connector element can be fitted, which can be connected with a cube-type module by plugging it on, and which can be provided with a central opening or a central pin,

[0032] FIG. 18—a rotational connection between two cubes,

[0033] FIG. 19—a column made from cubes consisting of five cube modules which are placed one above the other or one side by side to the other, and which are connected firmly with each other or are made as a unit,

[0034] FIG. 20—a base plate consisting of rows and columns (according to FIG. 19) of cubes firmly connected with each other, on the free lateral surfaces of which further modules can be added by means of connectors,

[0035] FIG. 21—a special module element in the form of a plate designed with a profiled or adhered face and provided with pins on the opposite side by means of which the connection with the related cubes can be made by plugging them on, whereby

[0036] a) is a view from above,

[0037] b) is a lateral view, and

[0038] c) is a front view,

[0039] FIG. 22—a corresponding special module which is made as headgear in the shape of a hat, helmet, cap or the like, and which in a similar manner so that in FIG. 20 can be plugged-on to other modules, whereby

[0040] a) is a view from above of the special module, and

[0041] b) is a lateral view of the special module,

[0042] FIG. 23—a special connector by means of which from a group of four cubes an adaptor to one cube is provided, whereby

[0043] a) is a view from above,

[0044] b) is a lateral view, and

[0045] c) is a front view,

[0046] FIG. 24—a special module designed as a trailer coupling with a mandrel, whereby

[0047] a) is a view from above,

[0048] b) is a lateral view, and

[0049] c) is a front view,

[0050] FIG. 25—a special module designed as a trailer coupling with a lug, whereby

[0051] a) is a view from above,

[0052] b) is a lateral view, and

[0053] c) is a front view,

[0054] FIG. 26—a central wheel with cornered connector plates arranged at both ends of the axis which plates can be connected with openings of cubes, whereby

[0055] a) is the central wheel, and

[0056] b) the central wheel with cube modules fastened on the left-hand and the right-hand side,

[0057] FIG. 27—a central wheel resp. a rim with axle journals on both sides, whereby the diameters of the wheel hubs correspond to the diameter of the opening of a wall of the cube,

[0058] FIG. 28—another special module designed as a rim with a one-sided hub which can be connected with the opening of a cube module, whereby

[0059] a) is a front view, and

[0060] b) is a lateral view,

[0061] FIG. 29—rim connector which is used to plug-on several wheels, whereby

[0062] a) is a lateral view of the rim connector,

[0063] b) is a front view and

[0064] c) is a group of three wheels, plugged-on,

[0065] FIG. 30—cube combined of individual cube modules for accommodating an electric energy source,

[0066] FIG. 31—a perspective view of a container which accommodates modules, and is designed in the shape of a bucket,

[0067] FIG. 32—another embodiment of a container for modules designed in the shape of a cube, however, with lateral walls extending conically downwards,

[0068] FIG. 33—a lid for the bucket-type container according to FIG. 31 in a schematic view, and

[0069] FIG. 34—a cross-sectional view of a fitting device, showing the lid and the upper edge of the bucket.

[0070] A cube 1 of a modular construction set is shown in FIG. 1 in a perspective view. Further cubes 2, 2a, 2b, . . . with identical measurements to cube 1 and which are combined with cube 1, are schematically shown. The cubes according to the modular construction system have lateral surfaces 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 which are designed as frames and form square openings 0 so that the cubes are hollow cubes with open sides. Such cubes are combined by means of insertable connector elements 9, as shown in FIGS. 2-6. Each insertable connector element 9 has an upper and a lower section 9a, 9b. The upper section 9a comprises two beams 10, 11 with square cross-section which beams are arranged so that they are separate from each other, the lower section 9b comprises two beams 12, 13, also of square cross-section; the beams 10, 11 as well 12, 13 are arranged at right angles to each other and one above the other so that they form the outer restriction edges of a connector element and in plan view form a central opening 14 with square dimensions.

[0071] The dimensions of the cubes are chosen so that the entire cube length resp. width resp. height is 6a (a=one unit), so that the frame portions have a width of a each and are at a distance of 4a each from each other. Accordingly, the connector elements 9 have a width resp. length of 4a units each, the beams 10, 11, 12, 13 also have a length of 4a and a cross-section of a×a so that the distance between two parallel beams is 2a each.

[0072] As shown in FIGS. 7 and 8 the cubes are connected with each other by means of said connector elements 9 in a different manner so that a connector element can be inserted into an opening 0 of a lateral wall of a cube 1 with one section 9a of the connector element 9, whereas the other section 9b of cube 1 extends from the cube wall, and a further cube 2 with its opening wall is connected with the second section so that both cubes are connected with each other. The connector element is designed so that it can be connected to two cubes arranged next to each other, whereby the two adjacent edges of the two neighbouring cubes can be placed in the free space between two opposite beams, and so that one half of the connector element each is connected with each of the two cubes. The opposite section of the connector element can then be used to fit a further cube, the wall opening of which is connected by means of this section of the connector element so that the cubes arranged in different planes are staggered by half the width of a cube.

[0073] FIG. 9 shows a connection point between an insertable connector element 9 and two cubes 1, 2 connected thereto. In the centre axis of the connector element 9 is shown a symmetrical, triangular, peripheral projection 15 the inclined surfaces 16, 17 of which are in contact with corresponding bevels 18, 19 of the edges of the cube, which allows the cubes to be arranged close to each other without gaps.

[0074] FIG. 10 shows a wheel-type structural element 20 with an axle journal 21 added thereto or inserted, which axle journal has a bearing-type extension 22 which can be inserted into a connector element 23 according to FIG. 11 or a borehole 24 within element 23 so that the connector element can be used as a bearing for a wheel element. In this case the connector element 23 is not, as in FIG. 4, provided with an inner opening 14, but with a closed plate receiving the bore hole 24 instead of said opening.

[0075] The base plate 26 according to FIG. 12 is a support plate on which square projections 27 are formed which can have the same dimensions as the lateral openings 0 of a cube so that cubes 1 can be plugged onto said projections 27 which can then be combined with further cubes.

[0076] FIG. 13 shows a support plate 28 with projections 29 on the one side and projections 30 on the opposite side which can be of different dimensions, shapes and the like in order to accommodate cubes 31, 32 of different size and shape. In this manner it will be possible to adapt different modular elements of different modular construction systems and to make them compatible, whereby the projections 29, 30 serve as firm connecting elements.

[0077] Module 33 according to FIG. 14 is a semi-cube which is obtained when a complete cube is cut diagonally so that a triangular module is obtained, which has wall surfaces 34, 35 arranged at right angles to each other, and which has a surface 36 inclined at an angle of 45° as a diagonal surface.

[0078] FIG. 15 shows an additional structural element 37 which can be used in combination with a cube module 1, 2 and has the shape of a pyramid so that it can be arranged on top of a cube. The base area of this pyramid has a recess or aperture 38 into which a connector element 9 can be inserted in order to provide the connection between the pyramidal roof and a cube. Analog to the dimensions of the insertable connector element 9 the aperture 38 has dimensions of 4a×4a.

[0079] FIGS. 16a and 16b show an insertable connector element which on one side is provided with cube-type projections 40, 41, 42, 43 at the corners, which projections are spaced from each other at twice the side length of a cube so that four cubes can be plugged onto this section with their corners 47, 48, 49, 50, which cubes are held together by means of said connecting element. The opposite section of the insertable connector element is provided with two continuous beams 34, 35 similar to the connector elements 9 in FIGS. 2-6 so that a cube-like module 46 can be plugged onto the connector element according to FIG. 16b from underneath.

[0080] The module according to FIG. 17 is a wheel 51 to which an insertable connector element 52 similar to the connector element 9 according to FIG. 2 is centrally fastened, which receives a central pin 53 or a central aperture which is able to accommodate an axle. In this manner the insertable connector element 52 is used as a bearing support for the wheel 51, and can be connected with a cube 1, 2.

[0081] According to FIG. 18 two cubes 54, 55 are arranged side by side. The two edges 56, 57 adjacent to each other at their facing sides have continuous surfaces with bores 58, 59, through which a bolt 60 can be passed so that the two cubes 54, 55 are able to rotate relative to each other by means of said bolt 60.

[0082] In column 61 according to FIG. 19 individual cubes 62, 63, 64, 65, 66 are arranged on top of each other (or alternatively one next to the other) and are firmly connected at the facing surfaces, e.g. are bonded. However, individual columns can also be made in one piece. As shown in FIG. 20 a number of columns similar to FIG. 19 are arranged side by side so that a plate 70 made up from rows and columns of individual cubes is formed so that the resulting plate can be used as a base plate, a wall plate or a similar structural unit.

[0083] In addition to the cube-like modules as shown in the preceding figures special modules can be integrated into the construction system, e.g. special modules as described in the following FIGS. 21-30. The special module 71 shown in FIGS. 21a-21c consists of a plate-like part 72 with pins 73-76 which can be inserted into the recesses of cube surfaces, whereby the distance of the pins 73, 74 or 75, 76 is chosen so that the outer surface of the pins engages the corners of the recesses of the cube surfaces, and are fixed there. 77 is the viewing side of the special module, e.g. a face or some other design. This viewing side 77 can be designed three-dimensionally or it can be in the form of a picture that is plugged-on. Another module 79 according to FIGS. 22a and 22b can be designed as a hat or a partly hollow body on its viewing side. The connecting pins 80, 81 are inserted into the recesses of cube modules 78a-78d similar to FIG. 21 so that the special module 79 is positioned within the cube modules. A further embodiment of a special module is a connector element 82 (FIG. 23) which allows to connect a group of four cube modules 83, 84, 85, 86 to be connected forming a square, whereby the element 82 transforms the four cube modules arranged in a square into a single cube module. The connector module 82 is shown in different views in the FIGS. 23a-23c. On the connecting side the connector module 82 is provided with pins 87-90 which are inserted at the adjoining corners into the open lateral surfaces of the group of cubes that are combined with each other. The peripheral elevation 91 is equivalent to elevation 15 of FIG. 9.

[0084] A further special module (FIG. 24) with different views a), b) and c) has the function of a trailer coupling with a bolt and consists of a plate-type connector fixture 92 in a square shape which can be inserted into the aperture of a lateral wall of a cube, furthermore a trailer connecting fixture 93 extending at right angles to the plane 92 of the plate and joining an arm 94 bent at right angles and extending parallel to the plate. At the outer end of the arm 94 a trailer coupling 95 with a bolt is provided. This modular element also has a peripheral elevation 96 allowing it to be inserted into a cube module. A further embodiment of a different trailer coupling is shown in FIG. 25a), b), c). This coupling module 97 has an arm 98 with an eyelet 99 extending at right angles to the plane of plate 97 and also a peripheral elevation 100.

[0085] The modules 26, 27 and 28 show different types of wheel elements resp. rims for wheel elements in order to supplement the construction set for rotating systems, e.g. for vehicles, drives and the like. FIG. 26 shows an individual wheel 106 with integrated wheel hubs 107, 108 on both sides, which drive discs 109, 110 with square cross-section are firmly connected and which are used as plug-on elements to be inserted into apertures of the square lateral surfaces of cube elements. In FIG. 26b the connection with a left-hand and a right-hand cube element 111, 112 is shown. FIG. 27 shows in two different views a central wheel resp. a rim 113 with hubs 114 and 115 on both sides as well as a rotational axis 116 (such rotational axes are schematically shown in the other figures). In the embodiment according to FIG. 27 the hubs 114, 115 have a square cross-section and can be plugged onto the recesses of lateral walls of cubes. Whereas the embodiment according to FIG. 27 can be plugged onto cube modules, the embodiment according to FIG. 28 is shown with a rim 117 with a hub 118 on one side. In FIGS. 27 and 28 tires are shown with dotted lines.

[0086] FIG. 29 shows three wheels 119, 120, 121 arranged in a triple system, hubs 122, 123 being integrated on the outer sides. A hub 122 according to FIG. 29a is provided with a connecting element 124.

[0087] FIG. 30 shows a further special module 125 consisting of individual outer elements of cube modules 126-129 and possibly joining cube modules in rows and columns, whereby the individual modules can be bonded with each other (at 130) or alternatively manufactured as one unit. This type of special module is open (at 131) on one side (in FIG. 30 the upper side) and is hollow internally so that an accumulator, a battery or the like 132 can be inserted into the module. The wires 133, 134 from the accumulator are the electrical conductors to a lighting system, an electric motor or the like.

[0088] FIG. 31 shows a cube-type container 135 for accommodating cube modules 1, 2, . . . the four lateral surfaces of the container 135 and the bottom are each formed by a square frame 136-139. The apertures of the lateral surfaces and the bottom surface are closed by a cassette-type, slightly staggered surface 140. The top side 141 of the container 135 which is designed similar to the lateral surfaces as a square frame, is open and can be closed by a lid 142 which has a raised inner limitation 143 which corresponds to the dimensions of the aperture on the top side and fits into the aperture so that the lid when closed snaps into place or is closed by a locking mechanism. The lid 142 can be connected with the container 135 by means of a hinge 144 or it can be inserted into the aperture 141 without a hinge and be fastened by snapping or latching into place.

[0089] Contrary to the square shape of container 135 according to FIG. 31 the container 145 according to FIG. 32 is designed so as to be slightly conical so that the top surface 146 has a slightly larger cross-section than the bottom 147, and the frame parts 148, 149 of the lateral walls extend downwards conically. On two upper horizontal opposite frame fixtures 150, 150′ supporting elements 151, 151′ are formed, with which pins 152, 152′ of a handle 153 engage so that the handle 153 can be folded over and the lid can be taken off. The handle when folded surrounds half the outer rim of the upper side of the frame.

[0090] FIG. 33 shows schematically an embodiment of a lid 142 for the container 135 which lid is pressed on the upper edge of the cube container 135, and partly into the aperture of the top side, whereby snap-in indentations 154 are formed on the upper frame fixtures of the lateral walls 139 which have corresponding extensions 155 on the inner sides of the outer frame fixture of the lid so that snap-on clasps on at least two diametrically opposite sides or over the entire or part of the periphery of the container are formed.

[0091] A further solution for latching the lid is shown in FIG. 34. The lid 156 is provided with a peripherally extending step 157 of the peripheral frame 158 and with a depressed inner surface 159. The peripheral frame 158 has a lower, hook-like element 160 which can extend over the entire or part of the periphery and which engages with a steplike section 161 which also engages with the entire or part of the periphery within the upper frame section of the container.