Title:
Toy motocross track
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A toy track. A contoured track having simulated jumps, mounds and banks is mounted in a frame. Course marking devices are preferably used to mark the route of the track. Preferably, the track is made by the following method: first, a rough approximation of a track is fabricated. A hardening putty is then applied over the rough approximation and track features such as tire tracks and tire ruts are molded into the putty. A release agent to prevent sticking is then applied over the putty. A fiberglass mold is formed over the release agent and around the putty and then separated from the putty. A thin plastic sheet is placed over the fiberglass mold and heated. Also, vacuum suction is applied to the plastic sheet so that it forms around the fiberglass mold. The plastic is allowed to cool and it is then attached to the frame. Preferably, the frame is a table. In a preferred embodiment, the track is a motocross track. Also, preferably foldable legs are attached to the table. Also, preferable toy hay bales are used to mark to route of the track.



Inventors:
Schwartz, Rhon (Alpine, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/786962
Publication Date:
10/16/2008
Filing Date:
04/14/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63H33/42
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
NGUYEN, KIEN T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ROSS PATENT LAW OFFICE (DEL MAR, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A toy track, comprising: A. a frame, B. a contoured track having simulated jumps, mounds and banks, said contoured track mounted to said frame, and C. course marking devices to mark the route of the track.

2. The toy track as in claim 1, and further comprising at least one toy vehicle adapted to be pushed by hand over said track.

3. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said track is adapted to simulate a motocross track.

4. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said frame is a table.

5. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said toy vehicle is a toy motorcycle.

6. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein a toy vehicle is remotely controlled to drive over said track.

7. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said toy vehicle is a motorcycle.

8. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said table comprises foldable legs.

9. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said course marking devices are simulated hay bales.

10. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said solid contoured track is a plastic solid contoured track.

11. The toy track as in claim 1, wherein said course marking devices comprise toy hay bales applied to said track with adhesive.

12. A method for making a toy track, comprising: A. a frame, B. a contoured track mounted to said frame, C. course marking devices to mark the route of the track, said method comprising the steps of: A. constructing a model for said track, B. covering said model with putty, C. allowing said putty to harden, D. covering said putty with a release agent, E. covering said putty with a fiberglass to form a fiberglass mold, F. placing a plastic sheet over said fiberglass mold, G. heating said plastic sheet, H. applying vacuum suction to said plastic sheet so that said plastic sheet forms around said fiberglass mold to form said solid contoured track, I. attaching said solid contoured track to said frame, and J. applying said course marking devices to mark the route of the track.

13. The method as in claim 12, wherein a child pushes by hand a toy vehicle over said track.

14. The method as in claim 13, wherein said toy vehicle is a toy motorcycle.

15. The method as in claim 12, wherein a toy vehicle is remotely controlled to drive over said track.

16. The method as in claim 15, wherein said toy vehicle is a motorcycle.

17. The method as in claim 12, wherein said frame is a table comprising foldable legs.

18. The method as in claim 12, wherein said contoured track is a plastic contoured track.

19. The method as in claim 12, wherein said course marking devices comprise toy hay bales applied to said track with adhesive.

Description:

The present invention relates to toy tracks, and in particular to toy motocross tracks.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Throughout the generations, kids have played with toys. It is a natural tendency of children, despite their culture, race or religion to want to play with toys. As technology has developed, so has the sophistication of toys. Where once a young boy would be presented with a toy sword or gun, now he has computer generated virtual reality games within his grasp.

However, even though technology improves yearly and toys become more complicated and flamboyant, it is often the toys that allow a kid to use his imagination the most that is the most enjoyed toy. This is seen by the rise and fall of faddish toys, while many of the old style toys tend to remain strong in popularity.

Kids have always been fascinated with racing. Car racing and motorcycle racing are extremely interesting for children. Specifically, kids are fascinated with motocross racing. Motocross refers to a timed motorcycle race over a closed course consisting of a winding dirt trail with hills, jumps, sharp turns, and often muddy terrain. However, in the prior art, there is surprisingly little offered to allow a kid to enjoy the feeling of playing or pretending that he is in a motocross race.

What is needed is a toy motocross track.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a toy track. A contoured track having simulated jumps, mounds and banks is mounted in a frame. Course marking devices are preferably used to mark the route of the track. Preferably, the track is made by the following method: first, a rough approximation of a track is fabricated. A hardening putty is then applied over the rough approximation and track features such as tire tracks and tire ruts are molded into the putty. A release agent to prevent sticking is then applied over the putty. A fiberglass mold is formed over the release agent and around the putty and then separated from the putty. A thin plastic sheet is placed over the fiberglass mold and heated. Also, vacuum suction is applied to the plastic sheet so that it forms around the fiberglass mold. The plastic is allowed to cool and it is then attached to the frame. Preferably, the frame is a table. In a preferred embodiment, the track is a motocross track. Also, preferably foldable legs are attached to the table. Also, preferable toy hay bales are used to mark to route of the track.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 shows a top perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention.

FIGS. 2-10 show a preferred method for making a preferred embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 11 shows a preferred method for utilizing the present invention.

FIG. 12 shows a route marked with arrows through a preferred track.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

FIG. 1 shows a top perspective view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 9 shows a simplified side view of a preferred embodiment of the present invention. In a preferred embodiment, plastic contoured motocross track 1 is rigidly mounted to table 2 by utilization of screws 3 (FIG. 8). Stickers, such as starting gate sticker 4 and finish line sticker 5 are then applied to track 1. Toy hay bales 6 are then applied via an adhesive to track 1 as shown in FIG. 1. Hay bales 6 serve to more clearly mark the course for the motocross race. FIG. 12 shows arrows that mark the preferred route of the course as marked out by hay bales 6. In a preferred embodiment, as shown in FIG. 1, track 1 includes such contoured features as jumps (for example jump 22), banks (for example banks 24 and 25), and mounds (for example mounds 28).

Manner of Play

In a preferred embodiment, track 1 is played with by a child holding a toy motorcycle and pushing it along track 1. For example, FIG. 11 shows a child playing with track 1 in the preferred manner. The child is holding toy motorcycle 10 in his hand. The child is pretending that motorcycle 10 has just jumped off jump 22. It is likely that the child will next pretend that the motorcycle has landed on the downward slope of jump 12.

Storing Track When Play is Finished

Track 1 can be played with by a child while table 2 is in the position shown in FIG. 9. Then, when the child is finished playing, table 2 can be decreased in height merely by folding legs 9 as show in FIG. 10. Once table 2 is in the position shown in FIG. 10, it can be easily stowed under a bed or in a closet.

Preferred Method of Making a Track

FIGS. 2-10 describe a preferred method a making track 1.

Construct a Model for the Track

FIG. 2 shows a simplified perspective view of model 13 for track 1. Preferably, model 13 is fabricated from Styrofoam®. Styrofoam® is a registered trademark of the Dow Chemical Company and generally refers to irregular solid masses of multicellular expanded synthetic resinous material.

Cover the Model with Putty and a Release Agent

The builder first preferably covers the model with putty. FIG. 3 shows model 13 covered with a ¼ inch layer of hardening putty 14. Hardening putties are available from many sources. A putty such as Bondo® can be used. Bondo® is a registered trademark of the Bondo Corporation and refers generally to a two-part polyester that when mixed turns into a putty which then sets and becomes rock-hard. After covering model 13 with putty 14, the builder preferably adds features to the putty so that it more closely resembles an actual motocross track. For example, in FIG. 3, the user has added tire ruts 16 and tire tracks 17. After the putty has been added and features such as tire ruts 16 and tire tracks 17 have been molded into the putty. The putty is allowed to harden. Once hardened, the builder then preferably covers the putty with release agent 15. In a preferred embodiment, release agent 18 is a thin layer of wax.

Cover the Putty and Release Agent with Fiberglass

In FIG. 4, putty 14 and release agent 15 have been covered with a layer of fiberglass. The fiberglass is allowed to harden to form fiberglass mold 18.

Remove the Fiberglass Mold and Drill Small Holes

After fiberglass mold 18 has hardened, it is pulled away from putty 14 and release agent 15. The wax release agent prevents sticking and allows for fiberglass mold 18 to be easily separated from putty 14. As shown in FIG. 5, very small diameter 19 holes are then drilled into fiberglass mold 18.

Place Thin Plastic Sheet over

Fiberglass Mold and Apply Vacuum Suction to Draw the Plastic Sheet against the Mold

In FIG. 6, thin plastic sheet 20 is placed over fiberglass mold 18. A thermal vacuum process is then utilized to form the track. Specifically, heat is applied to plastic sheet 20 so that it becomes soft. Vacuum suction is then applied as shown. Holes 19 allow the vacuum suction to pull plastic sheet 20 against fiberglass mold 18.

Allow the Plastic Sheet to Cool and Remove it from the Mold to Form the Track

In FIG. 7, plastic sheet 20 (FIG. 6) has cooled. It is then easily separated from mold 18 to form track 1, as shown in FIG. 1.

Mounted on Foldable Table

As stated above, in a preferred embodiment, track 1 is mounted on 32 in.×48 in. table 2 by utilization of screws 3 (FIG. 8). Table 2 preferably includes folding legs 9. In a preferred embodiment, table 2 is approximately 29 inches high.

Other Types of Vehicles

Although it was stated above that track 1 is preferably designed to be a motocross track, it should be understood that other toy vehicles can also be effectively utilized with track 1. For example, toy 4-wheeled All Terrain Vehicles (ATV's), or toy Dirt Bicycles can be used. Also, although Applicant believes that most kids will prefer to play with hand held motorcycles on track 1, it is also possible to play with toy remote control motorcycles or cars on track 1. Or, a user can play with a wind up motorcycle on track 1. For example a child might enjoy winding up a toy motorcycle and seeing how far it will jump off of jump 22 (FIG. 10).

Variety of Interchangeable Track Configurations

It should be recognized that FIG. 1 just shows one example of track 1. There are many, many varieties of tracks that can be substituted for track 1 in FIG. 1. For example, a motocross track can be set up many possible ways. Jumps, mounds and banks can be positioned wherever desired. Likewise, track 1 can be similarly designed with jumps, mounds and banks located at any position that the builder wishes.

In a preferred embodiment, a purchase will purchase a table with track 1 mounted to the table. If the purchase later decides to purchase another track 1 with a different design, the original track 1 can be unscrewed and removed from table 2. Then the newly purchased track 1 can be attached to table 2 in a fashion similar to that described above.

Although the above-preferred embodiments have been described with specificity, persons skilled in this art will recognize that many changes to the specific embodiments disclosed above could be made without departing from the spirit of the invention. For example, although it was stated above that table 2 is approximately 29 inches high, it should be understood that table 2 could be a variety of heights. In another preferred embodiment, table 2 is 20 inches high. 20 inches is a preferred height for smaller and younger children. Preferably, the purchaser of the toy track can request a specific height (for example, 20 inches or 22 inches). If the purchaser does not request a specific height, in a preferred embodiment table 2 will be approximately 29 inches. Also, although it was stated that toy hay bales are preferably utilized to mark the course of the track, it should be understood that there are other devices that can be used to mark the course. For example, arrows can be painted on the track or arrow stickers can be placed on the track Therefore, the attached claims and their legal equivalents should determine the scope of the invention.