Title:
Bobblehead wobbler
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A bobble head doll wobbler includes a base, a housing, and a support platform that is slidably supported within the housing. A solenoid drives a shaft that pushes and pulls the support platform, thereby imparting an oscillating motion to a bobble head doll supported on the platform. The wobbler has variable speed and may be electrically connected with other such devices to support a plurality of bobble head dolls.



Inventors:
Leslie, Cohen (Cranford, NJ, US)
Application Number:
11/202962
Publication Date:
02/15/2007
Filing Date:
08/12/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63H3/46
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
CEGIELNIK, URSZULA M
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Hildebrand, Christa (New York, NY, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A bobble head doll wobbler apparatus, comprising: a housing, power supply, the housing comprises a moveable platform having an upper and lower surface, an electric circuit connected to a solenoid having a shaft moveably connected to the lower surface of the platform for imparting movement to the platform when power is supplied.

2. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein the housing includes at least one platform rail and wherein the moveable platform moves along said platform rail.

3. The wobbler according to claim 2, wherein the at least one platform rail is two rails.

4. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein the movement to the platform is variable.

5. The wobbler according to claim 3, wherein the platform includes guiding grooves to engage with the two rails.

6. The wobbler according to claim 5, wherein the two rails are mounted to the base of the housing.

8. A wobbler according to claim 6, wherein bearings are interspaced between the platform and the rails.

9. A wobbler according to claim 6, wherein wheels are interspaced between the platform and the rails.

10. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein the power supply is a battery accommodated in the housing.

11. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein the electric circuitry includes an actuator for turning on the solenoid at selected times.

12. The wobbler according to claim 11, wherein the actuator is a sound activator.

13. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein the electric circuitry includes a speed control.

14. The wobbler according to claim 13, wherein the speed control comprises a rheostat.

15. The wobbler according to claim 1, wherein at least a portion of upper surface of the platform comprises a nonskid surface.

16. The wobbler according to claim 1, further comprising an input for an external power supply.

17. The wobbler according to claim 16, further comprising an outlet for supplying power to a second wobbler.

18. The wobbler according to claim 1, further comprising a power switch.

19. The wobbler according to claim 1, further comprising a timer.

20. The wobbler according to claim 1, further comprising a resetable fuse.

21. A bobble head figurine and wobbler assembly, comprising: the bobble head figurine with a body and a head portion balanced on the body by mechanical means and a figurine base, the bobble head figurine being positioned on the wobble assembly, the wobbler assembly including a housing and power supply, the housing comprises a moveable platform having an upper and lower surface, an electric circuit connected to a solenoid having a shaft moveably connected to the lower surface of the platform for imparting movement to the platform when power is supplied. causing the bobble head figurine to shake and the head to wobble.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to a bobble head wobbling device for inducing a reciprocating motion to a platform, and in particular to a device used for wobbling bobble head dolls placed on a platform in order to cause the head of the doll to continuously bobble.

2. Description of Related Art

Since their introduction many years ago, bobble head dolls have become extremely popular, collectible and they are exhibited on many fairs, shows and conventions. Many sports heroes, public/political personalities, entertainers, movie/tv-characters, mascots or animals are depicted as bobble head dolls or figurines. The dolls are designed to provide entertainment from the amusing shaking motion of the doll's head. Bobble head dolls are displayed as entertaining objects by watching their continuous motion over an extended period of time. In order to impart a bobbing motion to the doll's head it has been necessary to manually deflect the base of the doll or the doll's head. However, such motion discontinues after a short period of time and repeated manual agitations of the base or taps to the head of the doll are not practical in order to achieve a pleasing and entertaining continuous motion. Therefore, a device is provided which imparts a motion to a bobble head doll, so that the head of the doll, or a part of a figurine starts to bobble and continuous to bobble until the device is turned off. The device should also be of a particular size that accommodates the particular bobble head doll securely while providing an overall pleasing display of the doll sitting upon the wobbling device. Often, several bobble head dolls are displayed together and, thus the device for imparting motion onto the bobble head should also work in conjunction with other devices such as to display several wobbling bobble head dolls.

It is desirable to provide a bobble head wobbler that is esthetically pleasing and does not distract from the exhibited doll while it provides continuous bobbing motion to the head of a bobble head doll. The present invention provides for imparting a safe bobbing motion to a bobble head doll's head or part of a figurine and for accommodating various different kinds of bobble head dolls or figurines. It is desirable to provide a device which does not generate any heat. In addition, such a wobbler device should provide for the ability to connect cooperatively to other wobblers in order to display multiple bobble head dolls in a coordinated manner while also providing a pleasing overall appearance as a display platform for the doll. The present invention addresses these needs as well as other problems associated with bobble head doll wobbling.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a bobble head wobbler device and serves to impart an wobbling motion to the head of a bobble head doll or figurine. The wobbling device generally includes a base and housing with a reciprocating platform having an upper bobble head doll supporting surface that imparts a motion to the doll causing the head to bobble. The housing includes a circuit board that controls a solenoid that engages through its hinged shaft the underside of the platform. The solenoid activates periodically and the activation speed is preferably adjustable by a timer in the electrical circuitry of the device so that oscillation speed may be adjusted to optimize the speed needed for achieving the desired motion of the bobble head doll head.

The supporting platform has an upper surface to accommodate the base of the bobble head doll. The platform is mounted within the housing on a set of rails that allow for a planar back and forth motion of the platform. In addition, the surface of the platform is preferably a high friction or semi-adhesive surface so that the bobble head doll does not slide from the platform due to its motion.

The oscillation speed of the supporting platform may be varied so as to accommodate different dolls or different weight and extent and still provide for a motion of the bobbling head that is desirable. By changing the various parameters, a pleasing and entertaining oscillating motion of the bobble head doll's head may be achieved for a wide range of dolls having different characteristics.

Other objects and features of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. It is to be understood, however, that the drawings are intended solely for purposes of illustration and not as a definition of the limits of the invention, for which reference should be made to the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings, wherein like reference numerals delineate similar elements throughout the several views:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a bobble head wobbler apparatus and an exemplary bobble head doll according to the principles of the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a top down view of the wobbler apparatus shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a side view of the wobbler apparatus shown in FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a top down plan view of the wobbler mechanism;

FIG. 5 is a side plan view of the wobbler mechanism;

FIGS. 5a and 5b show friction reducing means;

FIG. 6 is a flow chart of the operation of one embodiment of the circuitry of the wobbler device.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring now to the drawings, and in particular to FIG. 1, there is shown a bobble head wobbler apparatus, generally designated 20 and supporting a bobble head doll, generally designated 100. The bobble head doll 100 includes a body 102 with a doll's base 104. It is known that a conventional bobble head doll includes a head 106 supported on a body 102 by a spring such that when the head 106 is touched, motion is imparted and the head bobbles in an amusing/entertaining motion

Referring to FIGS. 1, 2 and 3, the wobbler device 20 provides for imparting a continuous motion to the bobble head 106, and for safely displaying a bobble head doll 100 at rest as well as in motion. The wobbler device 20 generally includes a compact housing 22 having a rim 28 and mounted on a base 24. The base may be provided with cushioned feet 23 on its underside in order to allow for the absorption of vibration from the device. A platform 26 supports the bobble head doll 100 and is moveable as explained hereinafter to impart motion to the bobble head doll 100 and bobble the doll's head 106. The platform may contain a non-slip area 25 covered by a high friction or sticky substance upon which a bobble head doll may be mounted. The platform may be substantially rectangular or square in shape as shown in FIG. 1 or of any other desirable geometric shape. The wobbler device 20 includes a solenoid 30 to drive the platform 26 as shown in FIGS. 4 and 5. The apparatus 20 may include a power source such as a battery compartment receiving batteries or a battery pack, or may include a power receptacle 29 for a cord for plugging into an AC outlet, such as is well known in the art. As shown in an embodiment shown in FIG. 6, there is a resetable fuse preferably built into the control circuitry that will cut power in the case of an electrical short of malfunction and may be reset by turning power to the device on and off again. The power receptacle 29 contains two plugs 29a and 29b as shown in FIG. 5. A power supply may be plugged into the first of these plugs 29a and a second wobbler device may be plugged into the second plug 29b. The second plug will provide power to the second wobbler device when power is supplied to the first, and the activation of the second wobbler device may be modulated by the circuit board 31. In this way numerous wobbler devices may be connected together using one power supply and may communicate with another to coordinate the motion of their respective bobble head dolls.

The control system may also include a speed control, such as a rheostat, to vary the speed of oscillation, a switch 32 for turning the wobbler 20 on and off, and an actuator so that the wobbler 20 will turn on at selected times. This allows for selectively having continuous motion, but saving power while people are not present. The actuator may be a remote control, a sound detector or other well known actuator.

Referring to FIGS. 4 and 5, the housing 22 and base 24 contain the solenoid 30 which is connected to the housing 22 and base 24 by retaining means 33 which may be a screwed down plastic mounting or any similar retaining means known in the art. The solenoid is controlled by a circuit board 31 to which it is connected by a pair of wires 35. A pair of platform tabs 34 connected to the bottom surface of the platform and descending downwardly from the platform 26 into the body of the housing 22 engage the solenoid shaft 36 by means of a connecting pin 38 that is fixedly mounted to the tabs 34 and passes through the tabs and a hole in the solenoid shaft 36. When the apparatus is operational, the solenoid shaft 36 moves in and out of the solenoid 30 and thus imparts movement to the platform 26 by means of the connection between the solenoid shaft 36 provided by the platform tabs 34 and connecting pin 38.

As shown in FIG. 5, the platform 26 is mounted inside the housing 22 on top of two slide rails 21 which the platform may slide over during operation in order to allow the platform to move back and forth. The slide rails 21 may be provided with a flat upper surface which the platform 26 frictionally slides over, or with bearings 37a or wheels 37b as depicted in detail drawings FIGS. 5a and 5b or other friction reducing means known in the art. The moving platform 26 may includes rubber bumpers 27 mounted to its bottom surface that prevent the platform from moving beyond a defined range of motion or crashing into the inside of the housing 22.

In use, the bobble head doll 100 is placed on the moving platform 26 inside the rim 28 of the housing 22 as shown in FIG. 1. The switch 32 is then actuated. The circuit board 31 sends signals to the solenoid 30 that cause the solenoid shaft 36 to push and pull on the platform tabs 34, causing the platform 26 to move back and forth over the support rails 21. This motion imparts a bobbling motion to the bobble head doll head 106.

If the motion is too fast, too slow, too great or too slight, adjustments may be made. For example, a rheostat may be utilized to speed up or slow down the speed of the solenoid or a timer may be utilized to vary the time between the periodic activation of the solenoid and therefore the frequency of the motion of the platform 26. The orientation of the doll 100 may also be changed by simply rotating the doll 100. Various adjustments may be made to these features until the desired bobbling motion of the doll's head 106 is achieved.

Thus, while there have been shown and described and pointed out fundamental novel features of the invention as applied to a preferred embodiment thereof, it will be understood that various omissions and substitutions and changes in the form and details of the devices illustrated, and in their operation, may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention. For example, it is expressly intended that all combinations of those elements and/or method steps which perform substantially the same function in substantially the same way to achieve the same results are within the scope of the invention. Substitutions of elements from one described embodiment to another are also fully intended and contemplated. It is also to be understood that the drawings are not necessarily drawn to scale but that they are merely conceptual in nature. It is the intention, therefore, to be limited only as indicated by the scope of the claims appended hereto.