Title:
Propeller caddy for hobby planes
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A storage and dispenser for propellers used with hobby planes is disclosed. The storage and dispensing device is securable to a tool box that contains parts and equipment for hobby planes. The storage and dispenser is an open slot that allows visual identification of the propellers that are stored within the dispenser and allows the user to remove the desired propeller from the caddy. The propeller caddy also provides protection to the propellers as well as reduced user harm from the sharp edges of the propellers. The propeller storage device can be integrated with the tool box, attachable onto a tool box or secured with magnets, Velcro or similar securing methods. Multiples propeller storage devices are securable together to provide for expanded storage or storage of propellers specific for each hobby plane.



Inventors:
Grundler, Frank D. (Sun City, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/595008
Publication Date:
05/08/2008
Filing Date:
11/08/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D85/20
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
DESAI, KAUSHIKKUMAR A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BUHLER ASSOCIATES (CORONA, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A propeller storage caddy comprising: an essentially flat back with a bottom that is perpendicular to the back; a left and right side existing essentially perpendicular from the back and bottom sides; a left front portion having attachment to the left side and the bottom and a separate right front portion having attachment to the right side and the bottom; at least one vertically elongated opening between the left front portion and the right front portion, whereby propellers are placed through the top of the propeller storage caddy where they are retained, visible and removable.

2. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 wherein the essentially flat back of the caddy includes fastening means for fastening the caddy to a hobby field box.

3. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that is made from a transparent material to allow for viewing of the surfaces of a propeller placed within the caddy.

4. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that further includes a dispensing means located on at least one side of the caddy to allow for a propeller to be slid out the bottom side of the caddy.

5. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that further includes padding to prevent damage to the propellers stored within the caddy.

6. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that further includes a plurality of angular recesses within the caddy to retain propellers a prevent contact between adjacent propeller placed within the caddy.

7. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that further includes recesses in the bottom of the caddy to provide for vertical storage of multiple propellers.

8. The propeller storage caddy from claim 1 that further includes a spring loaded lower door to allow for removal of at least one propeller from the bottom of the caddy.

9. A hobby field box with a propeller storage caddy comprising: A portable storage container including an interior storage volume for storage of model airplane related material and further includes; at least one side pouch formed with an outside facing vertical slot where the side pouch allows for the storage of a plurality of propellers in an essentially horizontal orientation to allow visual identification and retrieval of at least one propeller stored in the side pouch.

10. The hobby field box with propeller storage caddy from claim 9 that further includes an integrated starting unit.

11. The hobby field box with propeller storage caddy from claim 9 that is fabricated from plastic, wood, metal or a combination thereof.

12. The hobby field box with propeller storage caddy from claim 9 that further includes a plurality of angular recesses within the caddy to retain propellers a prevent contract between adjacent propeller placed within the caddy.

13. The hobby field box with propeller storage caddy from claim 9 that further includes provisions for securing additional side pouches to the outside of the hobby field box.

14. The hobby field box with propeller storage caddy from claim 9 that further includes a spring loaded lower door to allow for removal of at least one propeller from the bottom of the caddy.

15. A propeller storage caddy comprising: an essentially elongated rectangular cavity having an open top and a vertically elongated opening on one of the faces is configured for the horizontal storage and transportation of propellers, and further includes securing means for securing the essentially elongated rectangular cavity to a portable hobby field box.

16. The propeller storage caddy from claim 15 that further includes additional securing means to allow multiple essentially elongated rectangular cavities to secure to one another to increase the number of propeller storage caddies.

17. The propeller storage caddy from claim 15 where in the securing means for securing the essentially elongated cavity to the portable hobby field box is with Velcro or similar temporary securing means.

18. The propeller storage caddy from claim 15 where in the securing means for securing the essentially elongated cavity to the portable hobby field box is with a keyway slot using a threaded fastener with a head.

19. The propeller storage caddy from claim 15 where in the essentially elongated rectangular cavity is formed from plastic, wood, metal or a combination thereof.

20. The propeller storage caddy from claim 15 where in the essentially elongated rectangular cavity provides protection to the edges and ends of propeller placed within the essentially elongated cavity.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to improvements in a storage and transportation device for propellers used with hobby planes. More particularly, the present propeller caddy is a pocket that attaches to a tool box. The propeller caddy is an open container where propellers are placed, and allows the user to view the size and pitch of the propellers within the caddy. The user can quickly identify the desired propeller and remove it from the caddy. The propeller caddy further provides protection to the propellers as well as reducing user harm from the sharp edges of the propellers.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The hobby of building and flying remote control airplanes is a common outdoor hobby that is enjoyed by many people. For advanced hobbyist determining the proper propeller as well as the need to replace a damaged propeller is a common practice. Occasionally the flying conditions and the type of flying require different propellers. In most cases a hobbyist brings multiple propellers and places them in the bottom of their hobby field box where identification of the desired propeller is difficult. In addition the potential for damage to a propeller exists where it often is impacted with a fuel container, batteries or tools that are also found within the field box or flight box as they are commonly called. Several field boxes have been patented to provide an integrated engine starting mechanism. Exemplary examples of the patents are disclosed herein.

U.S. Pat. No. 2,475,750 issued Jul. 12, 1949 to G. H. McCormick et al. discloses a Model Airplane Starting Unit. This patent includes a battery connected to a motor where the user brings the propeller in contact with a cup that turns the propeller to start the engine. There is no storage area on this apparatus for storing additional equipment, tools or propellers.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,052,653 issued Oct. 1, 1991 to Guy J. Coraccio discloses an Automatic Switching Mechanism for a Model Plane Starter Motor. This patent is similar to '750 because it includes an integrated motor to start a model plane. This patent further provides that when the propeller is pushed into the motor a switch is activated to turn the propeller. This apparatus does not disclose storage means and there is further no disclosure for the storage of propellers.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,535,713 issued on Jul. 16, 1996 to Douglas J. Braddock discloses a Combination Field Box and Engine Starter for Model Airplane Engines. This field box provides an airplane starting motor and storage for related airplane equipment. The storage is an open cavity in the center of the field box, a drawer, and a pouch for storage of fuel. While this field box provides for some additional storage, propellers are either stored in the drawer or are placed in the open cavity. Regardless of where the propellers are stored in this box, they are susceptible to damage from the other materials placed in the field box.

There are a number of other field boxes that are available over the internet or from hobby stores. Other examples of available field boxes are found on the internet that provide for the storage and transportation of tools, equipment and spare parts for a hobby plane. These mobile tool boxes also do not provide for a separate storage compartment for propellers to allow for visual identification of the propeller(s) and reduce the potential damage to the propellers.

What is needed is a propeller caddy that allows for safe transportation of propellers for hobby planes. The propeller caddy would be securable to a field box and allow visual identification to the propellers within the field box and allow for easy removal of the desired propeller. The proposed application includes all the features in a propeller caddy that allows for safe transportation of propeller while making them visible to the user.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the propeller caddy to provide an open propeller storage caddy where propellers are loaded into the top of the caddy where they are prevented from harm from other items. The propeller caddy further includes an open front slot that allows for viewing of the length and pitch of the propeller without requiring removal of the propeller from the caddy.

It is another object of the propeller caddy to provide a propeller caddy that is securable to the side of a field or flight box. The attachment is with screws, glue, clamps, or Velcro. These attachment means allow the propeller caddie to be secured to nearly any side of the field or flight box. Multiple propeller caddies can be used to store different propellers for different airplanes.

It is another object of the propeller caddy to allow multiple propeller caddies to be ganged together. When multiple caddies are ganged using Velcro or similar temporary securing means the user can re-order the propeller caddies to place the caddie with the desired propellers on the outside. This further allows the user to safely store a larger variety of propellers and keep them grouped for future use.

It is another object of the propeller caddie to utilize a spring loaded lower door to allow for the removal of a propeller from the bottom of the propeller caddy. In another similar configuration, a slot is places on the lower edge of the propeller caddy to allow for a propeller to be slid out the end of the caddy.

It is another object of the propeller caddy that it is designed and fabricated as in integrated part of a field or flight box. In this configuration the propeller caddie can't be dislodged from the side of field box.

It is still another object of the propeller caddy to provide horizontal slots integrated within the caddy where propellers are individually stored in a horizontal orientation. In another individual storage configuration, pockets are placed in the bottom of the propeller caddy and propellers are placed vertically in each pocket.

Various objects, features, aspects, and advantages of the present invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description of preferred embodiments of the invention, along with the accompanying drawings in which like numerals represent like components.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 shows the propeller caddy in a first preferred embodiment.

FIG. 2 shows the propeller caddy in a second preferred embodiment.

FIG. 3 shows the propeller caddy in the third preferred embodiment

FIG. 4 shows the propeller caddy in a fourth preferred embodiment.

FIG. 5 shows the propeller caddy secured or integrated to a field or flight box with an additional propeller caddy removably securable to the first propeller caddy.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 shows the propeller caddy in a first preferred embodiment. This first preferred embodiment shows the propeller caddy 10 with an open to and an open front slot. The caddy has an essentially flat back 20. Nail or screw hanger slots 21 are shown for hanging the caddy from a field or flight box. While a flight or field box is shown and described, it is contemplated that a user can hang the propeller caddy on a wall or cabinet at their home after they return from flying their plane, or they can hang multiple propeller caddies and select the caddy that has the desired propellers 11. A typical field or flight box is shown and described in more detail in FIG. 5. Other methods of securing the propeller caddy to a field box or other surface are contemplated including but not limited to glues, nailing, double sided tape, and temporary securing means such as Velcro. The right side 30 and left side 31 of the caddy extends perpendicular from the back 20. The bottom 50 joins the sides and the back 20. The front of the propeller caddy has two members 40 and 41 that are secured to the sides.

In another contemplated feature, the bottom is hinged 51 to allow the user to open the bottom of the propeller caddy and dispense a propeller from the bottom of the caddy. In this configuration, the bottom is held closed with a spring or other similar device that holds the bottom in a closed orientation until the user pulls or pushes the bottom hatch down. The front of the caddy is open 60 to allow the user to see the size of the various propellers in the caddy to determine the preferred propeller from the plurality of propellers 11.

FIG. 2 shows the propeller caddy in a second preferred embodiment. The propeller caddy 10 in this figure also has an essentially flat back 20. The configuration of the majority of the caddy is similar to the caddy described with FIG. 1 with right side 30, and left side 32. The notable difference is with the left side 32. The left side is constructed such that it does not connect to the bottom 50. This allows a user to slide a propeller 11 out the side of the caddy through opening 70. The front members 40 and 41 are attached to the bottom 50 and the sides 30 and 32. The front of the caddy is open 60 to allow for viewing of the plurality of propellers to identify the desired propeller. The inside of the caddy is preferably covered with a material such as felt or other cushioning material to further prevent damage to the propeller(s) 11 stored within the propeller caddy.

It is contemplated that the propeller caddy be constructed from a variety of materials including but no limited to wood, metal, plastic or a combination thereof. In one embodiment the caddy is fabricated from a transparent material to allow the user to see the entire propeller(s).

FIG. 3 shows the propeller caddy 10 in the third preferred embodiment. This third preferred embodiment has a similar construction for the back 20, sides 30, 31, bottom 50 and front components 42 and 43. The front components 42 and 43 are narrower than the front pieces shown in other figures allowing for a larger front opening 61. The back of the propeller caddy includes slotted members 80 and 81. These slotted members that exist in an angular configuration to hold each propeller 11 in a set of slots. A retainer 82 is shown holding the propellers in their respective slots. The retainer is a spring, rubber band or similar elastomeric material or a flexible wire. In operation the retainer 82 is pulled away from the back wall 20 and a propeller 11 is installed or removed.

FIG. 4 shows the propeller caddy 10 in a fourth preferred embodiment. This fourth preferred embodiment has a similar construction for the back 20, and sides 30 and 31. The back member 20 has slots 21 for hanging the caddy on nails or screws. The front members 40 and 41 are similarly attached to the back 20, bottom 51 and sides 30 and 31. The difference with this configuration is with the bottom 51 where it has a plurality of recessed that allow the propellers 11 to nest in a vertical orientation. A front bridge 82 joins the two front pieces 40 and 41 while still allowing an open slot 60 in the front of the caddy. This orientation of the propeller caddy allows visual inspection and determination of the propellers 11 as well as providing retaining the propellers in a vertical orientation where each propeller is protected from damage from other propellers as well as allowing the user to select a specific propeller while not disturbing the remaining propellers.

FIG. 5 shows the propeller caddy secured or integrated to a field or flight box with an additional propeller caddy removably securable to the first propeller caddy. A typical field box 100 usually includes one or more drawers 101 for storing tools, an open area 103 for storing fuel, rags or other large objects, and a handle for easier transportation 102. Some field boxes include a battery and a motor starter 104.

This figure shows two propeller caddies 10 where one caddy is attached to the field or flight box. The caddy shown on the side of the field box can be permanently secured or can be removable. In this figure the caddy shown attached to the field box 100, is permanently secured to the field box 100. The propellers 11 are shown in the caddy. Velcro 90 and 91 is secured to the front of one caddy and the back 20 of a second caddy to allow for attachment of multiple caddies to the field box.

Thus, specific embodiments of a propeller caddy have been disclosed. It should be apparent, however, to those skilled in the art that many more modifications besides those described are possible without departing from the inventive concepts herein. The inventive subject matter, therefore, is not to be restricted except in the spirit of the appended claims.