US2990964A - Toy electric train assembly - Google Patents

Toy electric train assembly Download PDF

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US2990964A
US2990964A US694275A US69427557A US2990964A US 2990964 A US2990964 A US 2990964A US 694275 A US694275 A US 694275A US 69427557 A US69427557 A US 69427557A US 2990964 A US2990964 A US 2990964A
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current
car
engine
running
voltage
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Jan C Timmer
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Jan C Timmer
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63HTOYS, e.g. TOPS, DOLLS, HOOPS OR BUILDING BLOCKS
    • A63H19/00Model railways
    • A63H19/16Parts for model railway vehicles
    • A63H19/18Car coupling or uncoupling mechanisms

Description

July 4, 1961 J. c. TIMMER TOY ELECTRIC TRAIN ASSEMBLY Fi led Nov. 4, 1957 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENmR JAN vC. TIMMER 5y 7 &l6'
fiTT kAlt fi 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 as f 94 99 J. C. TIMMER TOY ELECTRIC TRAIN ASSEMBLY July 4, 1961 Filed Nov. 4, 1957 I ENT R TIMMER JAN C.
HTToRgVEl I J. C. TIMMER TOY ELECTRIC TRAIN ASSEMBLY July 4, 1961 4 sheets-sheet s TIMMER BY A IN VENT 0/? JAN C.
HTTORMEYS Filed Nov. 4, 1957 mum I... l lllllllpullll J. C. TIMMER TOY ELECTRIC TRAIN ASSEMBLY July 4, 1961 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Nov. 4, 1957 2sa 276 L278 I/VVENTaR JAN C, TIMM ER United States Patent r 2,990,964 TOY ELECTRIC TRAIN ASSEMBLY Jan C. Timmer, 2366 Cornwall St., Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada Filed Nov. 4, 1957, Ser. No. 694,275 17 Claims. (Cl. 213-212) a set of tracks anywhere along said tracks.
Another object is the provision of a toy train assembly in which each car includes coupler operating means which is identical with that of the other cars.
Another object is the provision of an electric toy train "assembly incorporating means for electrically uncoupling any desired car of a train on its tracks, whether said train is stationary or in motion, and anywhere along the tracks.
A further object is the provision of a train assembly including means for remotely controlling the uncoupling and coupling of the cars of a train while moving or stationary on tracks anywhere throughout the length thereof.
Toy train assemblies include tracks which are usually laid out in a closed circuit, an engine, and one or more cars. The tracks may include three rails, one of which is an electric conductor or power rail, while the other two are return rails, or they may include only two rails, one of which is used as a power rail and the other a return rail. For the sake of convenience, the present invention will be described in connection with a two-rail system, and with a train consisting of an engine and two cars.
The train assembly constituting this invention is so designed that a person operating the train can uncouple any desired car in the train while it is on its tracks and at any point throughout the length of the latter. The couplers of the selected car are opened from a point remote therefrom by the operator, and they may also be closed by him without touching the car or train.
A toy electric train assembly according to the present invention includes the following basic features:
(1) Running and signal current creating means connected to the track, and means for interrupting this current-the operating and signal currents may be from a single source or from separate sources.
(2) High voltage operating current producing means in the engine and interrupting means therefor.
(3) Means in each car operated by means of the high voltage current for opening the car couplers.
(4) Means in each car for closing the couplers.
Running and signal current creating means The running current is a low voltage current. It is preferably direct current, but it may be alternating current.
The signal current is different from the running current, that is, if one is A.C. therother is D.C. or high frequency A.C. As stated above, the running current is preferably D.C. and, therefore, the signal current is preferably A.C.
The signal current may be provided in the following ways:
(a) Low voltage A.C. is superimposed on D.C. operating current. This may be done in several ways. For example, when the original source of power is A.C. (usually 60 cycle house current), a unit consisting of a variable transformer and reversible rectifier is used. This produces the required D.C. at a desired voltage, e.g. 12 volts, plus a ripple A.C. of approximately $4 or /2 volt. The D.C. is the running current, and the ripple A.C. is
7 2,990,964 Patented July 4, 1961 the signal current. A battery may be used as the original source. It supplies the running D.C., while a vibrating unit and a transformer may be used to create a signal A.C.
(b) When A.C. is transformed to running D.C. at desired voltage, e.g. 12 volts, a high frequency generator is used to change alternating current from a suitable source, such as ordinary 60 cycle house current, to high frequency signal alternating current which is superimposed on the running D.C. However a battery may be used to provide direct current, and the same or another battery may provide current for a vibrator which supplies A.C. to a high frequency generator. In this case, the generator produces a high frequency signal A.C. superimposed upon a running D.C. Moreover, instead of a. direct running current, an alternating running current of a desired voltage, say 20 volts, may be used.
(c) When A.C. is transformed to running A.C. of a desired volt-age, say for example 20 volts, a signal D.C. is superimposed upon this running current.
High voltage producing means in engine (a) When the signal current is a ripple current, the high voltage operating current may be produced in the engine in two ways:
(1) The rlpplecurrent travels through a vibrator which is in series with a high voltage battery. The vibrator is so constructed that when the ripple current is stopped, the high voltage current is cut oil. Alternatively, this may be reversed, that is, the high voltage current may normally be oh, and operation or the signal current may close and open the lllgll voltage circuit.
a A mgn voltage A.C. transformer is used instead of the high voltage battery in (1) immediately above. in U118 case, the running D.C. runs through the vibrator to the primary of the transformer. The vlhrator reverses the current in the primary to produce a high voltage A.C. 1n the secondary.
lb) it a high frequency signal A.C. is used, a high frequency transrormer is provided in the engine. The signal current runs through a capacitor or condenser and the primary of the transformer. This steps up the high frequency voltage. interruptions in the signal current interrupts the high voltage current. A rectifier is connected to me secondary of the transformer in order to convert the high voltage A.C. to high voltage D.C.
Car coupling operating means Each car includes electrically-operated means for op eratlng mechanical or electrical means to open the coupiers of the car. This electrical means is connected in circuit with the high voltage producing means of the engine when the car is coupled to the latter. interruption of the high voltage current causes the couplers to be opened. The electrical operating means is so constructed and is connected to the rails that it is responsive to interruption of the running current to close the car couphngs again.
Examples of this invention are illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which,
FIGURE 1 is a wiring diagram of a toy electric train assembly, illustrating one form of running and signal current creating means, one form of high voltage producing means in an engine, and two cars with one form of conpier operating means,
FIGURE 2. is a plan View, partly in section, of the coupler operating means of FIGURE 1,
FIGURE 3 is a side elevation of the mechanism of FIGURE 2,
FIGURE 4 is a section taken on line 44 of FIG- wires 36.
FIGURE 5 is a cross section taken on the line 5-5 of FIGURE 2,
FIGURE 6 is a wiring diagram of a train assembly, illustrating an alternative form of running and signal current creating means, an alternative form of high voltage producing means in the engine, and two cars each having an alternative form of coupler operating means,
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged bottom plan view of a form of coupler that may be used on the engine and cars of FIGURE 6, showing the coupler open,
FIGURE 8 is a side elevation of the coupler of FIG- URE 7,
FIGURE 9 is a view similar to FIGURE 7 with the coupler in the closed position,
FIGURE 10 is another form of high voltage producing means in an engine alternative to that of FIGURE 6, and
FIGURE 11 is a wiring diagram of another alternative form of running and signal creating means, and another alternative form of high voltage, creating means in an engine. 7
Referring to FIGURES 1 to 5 of the drawings, in one form of toy electric train assembly, 10 generally designates running and signal current creating means, 12 an engine including high voltage producing means, and 14 and 16 two cars including identical coupler operating means. Tracks 18 and 19 are provided upon which the train runs, said tracks being insulated from each other.
Running and signal current creating means 10 In this example, ordinary house current is used for creating both the running and signal currents. This is usually 110 volts 60 cycle AC. The running direct current is obtained by means of a variable transformer and reversible rectifier. A power unit 25 is shown for this purpose. These units are well known and are commonly used with toy trains. The unit includes a standard switch 26 for cutting off the running current, and for controlling the voltage thereof up to the maximum value. For example, this may be about 12 volts. The unit also. includes a reversing switch indicated at 27 for reversing the D.C. in the usual manner for reversing the. engine controlled by the running current. Unit 25 is connected to the original source of power in any suitable manner, such as by means of wires 30.
The signal current is produced by a high frequency generator 35 connected to the house current sourceby Any desired frequency may be generated, such as from 100 to 20 0 kc. A generator of this type is well known in the electronic field, and does not need description herein. However, a high frequency current is produced and directed through the primary 39. of the generator output transformer, the latter also having a secondary 40. A high frequency low voltage current is produced by this equipment. For example, this may be about 12 volts. The secondary coil is connected in series with the unit 25 and track 19 by wires 42 and 43, respectively.
A control section 46 is provided. This section includes a push button switch 48 and/or a repeater switch 50. If both switches are used, they are connected in series by a wire 51. The latter switch is operated by a cam 52 which is connected by suitable means, not shown, to a rotatably-mounted knob 53 having an indicator 54 projecting therefrom. This indicator co-operates with evenly spaced and numbered marks 55 arranged around the knob. The knob may be turned in the, direction of arrow 57 to move the indicator toany desired mark 55. When the knob is released, suitable spring means, not shown, returns it to the zero. mark 58., The connection of cam 52 with the knob. is such that the cam makes one complete revolution during the time the indicator travels from one mark to the next. As controls of this 7 4 mechanism of this one in detail. A capacitor or condenser 62 is connected in series with switches 48 and 50, and these three elements are connected by a wire 64 to wire '42, and by wire 65 to track 18. Another wire 67 connects unit 25 to wire 65 and, consequently, to track 18. The power unit 25 provides a running D.C. for the tracks. The circuit connecting the power unit to the tracks consists of wires 65, '67, and 42, secondary coil 40 and wire 43. Switches 48 and 50 are normally closed so that the high frequency low voltage current is applied to the tracks by a circuit consisting of wires 42 and 64, capacitor 62, switches 48 and 50, and wires 65 and 43. Thus, a high frequency signal current is superimposed on the running direct current. The signal current may be interrupted by opening switch 48 or switch 50. Knob 52 makes it possible to open and close switch 50 any desired number of times continuously by turning said knob to the desired mark 55.
High voltage producing means in engine 12 Engine 12 is provided with pick-ups 70 and 71. These may be special rollers for the purpose, or they may be regular wheels of the engine. The engine has a suitable The direction of this current determines the direction of rotation of the motor and, consequently, the direction of movement of the engine. A high frequency transformer 79 has a primary coil 80 in parallel'with the motor 73 and in series with a capacitor 81. The secondary 83 of the transformer is connected to a single or double phase rectifier 84 which, in turn, is connected to a wire 85 which extends between and is connected to the couplers 86 and 87 of the engine.
Transformer 79 transforms the high frequency low voltage signal current into a high voltage current which is used to operate the coupler operating means of the cars attached to the engine. An interruption in the signal current results in an interruption in this high voltage operating current.
Coupler operating means of car 14 Car 14 has couplers 90 and 91 at its opposite ends. A solenoid or electro-magnet 94 is mounted in the car and includes three windings 95, 96 and 97. This solenoid or electr'o-magnet when energized, acts to move a suitable operating member. In this example the member is in the form of a common core 98 movably mounted in the windings. The core is moved out of the windings by tension spring 99, but when current travels through any one of the windings, the core is drawn back into the solenoid. The core is adapted to operate a toggle mechanism 101 hereinafter described. Obviously any suitable operating arm may be used in place of the core as long as it is moved when current flows through any one of the windings. This mechanism is designed to operate a single switch 104, and a two-way switch 105. Switch 104 is normally open, while switch 105 is normally closed at contact 106, and normally open at contact 107.
Car 14 has pick-ups 109 and 110 riding on rails 19and 18, respectively. These may be special rollers, or they may be wheels of the car. Pick-up 109 is connected by 'wire 112 to switch contact 107, while pick-up 110 is connected by wire 113 to winding 97, said winding being connected by a wire 114 to switch 105. One end of Winding 95 is connected to switch contact 106 by wire 117, while the opposite end of said winding is connected by wire 118 to switch 104 and to coupler 90. One end of winding 96 is connected by wire 120 to wire 117 and switch contact 106, while the opposite end of said coil is connected by wires 121 and 122 to switch 104 and coupler 91, respectively.
. Wheneoupler 9.0. is connected to a couplerof engine 12, such as coupler 87, the high voltage operating c'urrent flows through coil 95 and contact 106 of switch 105 to energize solenoid 94 and draw core 98 thereinto where it normally remains. If coupler 91 is connected to an engine coupler, the high voltage operating current travels through winding 96 and contact 106 of switch 105 to energize the solenoid and retract its core. In both of these cases nothing happens to the couplers. However, an interruption of the operating current, allows the core to be moved out to close switch 104, as hereinafter described, and to change switch 105 to close contact 107 and open contact 106. The closing of switch 104 connects coupler 90 to coupler 91, while the closing 'of contact 107allows the running current to flow through winding 97 of the solenoid thereby again energizing the latter. This keeps core 98 in the solenoid until the circuit including winding 97 is broken. An interruption in the running current permits core 98 to moveo'ut of the solenoid to open switch 104 and close contact 106 of switch 105 and open contact 107 thereof.
FIGURES 2 to illustrate solenoid 94 and the toggle mechanism 101 in detail. The toggle arrangement includes a toggle 126 mounted ona shaft 127 journalled in a bearing 128 carried by a bracket 129 extending outwardly from the solenoid. The toggle has a V-sh-aped tongue 132 projecting outwardly therefrom generally towards the solenoid. A post 133 projects upwardly from the tongue and is connected by a spring 134 to a fixed support 135 projecting upwardly from bracket 129. The spring is so arranged relative to shaft 127 that it tips the outer end of tongue 132 to one side or the other of centre or toggle line 137. When the spring is on one side of the centre or toggle line, the toggle bears against a stop 139, and when the spring is on the other side of said centre line, the toggle bears against stop 140. A flexible finger 142 is secured to the outer end of solenoid core 98 and extends towards the toggle tongue. When the core is moved out of the solenoid, this finger strikes one side of the tongue which extends across the path of movement of the finger, and this side directs the finger into a pocket 144 so that the toggle is swung round the axis of shaft 127 sufliciently to move spring 134 across the toggle line. The next time the core is moved out of the solenoid, it strikes the opposite side of the toggle tongue and is directed into pocket 146 to swing the toggle through the spring back 'across the toggle line.
An operating bar 148 formed of insulating material is connected to shaft 127 below toggle 126 and is substantially normal to tongue 132. This baris provided with bevelled ends 149 and 150. End 149 is positioned normally to allow switch 104 to remain open, but when the bar is pivoted around the axis of shaft 127 said switch is closed. End 150 is positioned to allow contact 106 of switch 105 to be normally closed, and contact 107 normally open. When the bar is swung round the shaft, contact 106 is opened and contact 107 is closed, while switch 104 is closed.
A coupler bar 154 is fixedly secured to the lower end of shaft 127 and extends substantially parallel with bar 148 and normal to tongue 126. One end of coupler bar 154 is connected by a string 156 to coupler 90, while the opposite end of said bar is connected by string 157 to coupler 91. When bar 154 is in its normal position, both couplers are closed, but when it is swung out of said position by movement of toggle 126, both couplers are opened.
This type of coupling is well known in the toy train field. While mechanical means have been shown for opening the couplers, it will be understood that they may be opened electrically since such electrically-operated couplers are in existence. In this case, bar 154 or some other part of the toggle mechanism 101 would close switches to open the couplers when desired.
' The operation of the toy train assembly described above will now be described. When car 16 is coupled to car '14, and the'latteris coupled to engine 12,'the high voltage current produced by trans-former 79 in the engine travels through engine coupler 87 and coupler 90 of car 14 to winding 95 of said car, thereby keeping core 98 in solenoid 94. At this time, the toggle mechanism 101 is in its normal position, so that switch 104 is open, and contact 106 of switch 105 is closed while contact 107 is open. As switch 104 is open, the high voltage current does not reach coupler 90 and the circuits of car 16.
Power unit provides the running DC for operating motor 73 to move the engine along the tracks. The direction of the movement of the engine may be reversed by means of switch 27. As previously stated, the generator produces ahigh frequency current which runs through the primary 80 of transformer 79 in the engine to produce the high voltage current which is utilized to operate the car couplers.
If the signal current is interrupted once by switch' 48 or,50, solenoid 94 of car 14 is de-energized so that core 98 is moved outwardly therefrom by spring 99 to move toggle 126 from its normal position, closing switch 104 and opening contact 106 of switch'105 and closing contact 107 thereof. This last action causes the running current to flow through winding 97 to draw core 98 back into the solenoid. When the toggle was moved, coupler bar 154 also moved to open couplers and 91. The last energizing of the solenoid'does not affect this since spring 134 retains the toggle in the new position. If the engine is moving forwardly at this time, it is separated from car 14. On the other hand, if the engine is moving backwards, the separation does not take place until the engine is reversed. An interruption of the running current by means of switch 26 or 27 breaks the circuit of winding 97 to de-energize the solenoid. The core again is forced out of the solenoid to return toggle 126 to its normal position, thus opening switch 104, and opening contact'107 and closing contact 106 of switch 105. At the same time, coupler bar 154 is turned to its normal position to allow the car couplers to close. If the car is alone and separated from the engine, the opening of switch 104 has no effect, but the closing of contact 106 sets up the circuits to permit the solenoid to be energized when again connected to the high'voltage current circuit. This takes place when the car again is coupled to the engine. When this takes place, the high voltage current goes through coil to energize the solenoid, thereby drawing the core back into it. Y
The couplers illustrated in the drawings are the type which are normally closed, but open momentarily to permit coupling when other couplers are moved against them.
If car 16 is coupled to car 14, and the latter :coupled to engine, car 16 may be uncoupled in the following manner:
With the train running in the direction of car 16, the signal current is interrupted once, thereby interrupting the high voltage current to open the couplers of car 14. This closes switch 104 to permit the high voltage current to energize solenoid 94 of car 16. This retracts the solenoid core. An interruption of the running current deenergizes the solenoid of car 14 to close the couplings of said car and to open switch 104 thereof. The opening of this switch causes the solenoid of car 16 to de-energize and open the couplers of said car. This last interruption of the running current is accomplished by reversing switch 27 so that car 14 is separated from car 16. The next interruption of the running current permits the couplers of car 16 to close.
It will be noted that when the train is running forwardly, one interruption of the signal current separates the first car (the car immediately behind the engine) from the running train. One interruption of the signal current when the train is moving backwards followed by the reversal of the engine, separates the second car from the train. Thus, any car may be separated from the engine end of the train by creating the required number of interruptions in the signal current. for this purpose.
It will be noted that a high voltage current is produced in the engine to operate the coupler operating means of the cars. This is necessary since a car may be coupled to the engine or another car in such a way that the running current travels through the high voltage coils of the car solenoid. This cannot operate the solenoid since it is designed for high voltage currents only. The difference between the running and operating currents must be sufficient to preclude any possibility of the car solenoids being operated by the running current alone. Furthermore, the pick-up 110 engages one of the rails, and when it is against one nail the running current is with the high voltage current and when it is against the other rail the currents are opposed. Therefore, the difference between the currents has to be suflicient to ensure the high voltage solenoids being properly operated under all conditions.
As will be understood, the high voltage coils 95 and 96 are employed to utilize the voltage of the operating current to keep said current down to a minimum. The coils could be replaced by resistances, in which case coil '97 alone would have to move the solenoid core by the operating current.
The train assembly of FIGURE 1 has been illustrated and described as having a D.C. running current. However, as a high frequency signal current is used, an AC. running current may be utilized instead of the running DC. This would necessitate an AC. motor and a suitable reversing mechanism in the engine.
FIGURE 6 illustrates another form of train assembly having alternate forms of running and signal current creating means, high voltage producing means, and coupler operating means. In this example, 166 generally designates the running and signal current creating means, 168 an engine including the alternative high voltage producing means, and cars 170 and 172 including alternative identical coupler operating means. The train runs on tracks 174 and 175 that are insulated from each other.
Switch 53 is provided Running and signal current creating means 166 A power unit 180 is provided. This is a standard unit and includes a variable transformer and current rectifier, not shown, and a reversing switch which has been indicated at 182. A switch knob 184 is provided for cutting off the output current of the unit, and regulating said current anywhere up to its maximum voltage which,
for example, may be 12 volts. The unit is connected to the ordinary house current of 110 volts AG. by wires 186 in the usual manner. The power unit produces direct current which serves as the running current for the train. The power unit is connected to rails 174 and 175 by wires 189 and 190. As it is well known, the power unit also produces a ripple A.C. of very low voltage, and in this unit, it is approximately or /2 volt. A condenser 192 or other types of direct current filter is connected to wires 189 and 190 parallel to the transformer, and a normally-closed switch 193 is connected inseries with the capacitor.
The DC. produced by the power unit forms the running current, while the ripple current is the signal current, but when switch 193 is closed, the ripple current is shorted out. The ripple or signal current preferably is provided only when required.
High voltage producing means in engine 168 The engine is provided with pick-ups 198 and 199, and with a suitable motor 201 connected in series with the pick-ups by wires 20-3 and 204. A sensitive vibrating relay 206 has a magnet coil 207 connected in parallel by wires 208 and 209 with the motor. The relay has a reed 212 normally spaced from opposed contacts 213 and 214.
The reed is retained in this position by a spring 215. This spring is strong enough that when the D-.C. running current alone'flows through winding 207, the reed is retained in its central position. However, when the ripple current flows with the running current, the fluctuations in the magnetic pull cause the reed to vibrate between contacts 213 and 214. The contacts are connected together by a wire 217, and the latter is connected by another wire 218 to a high voltage battery 220, said battery also being connected by a wire 221. to couplers 222 and 223- at opposite ends of the engine. The reed is also connected by wire 224 to wire 209, and a capacitor 225 is connected to wires 224 and 218 to reduce sparking at contacts 213 and 214.
When reed 212 is in engagement alternately with contacts 213 and 214, a high voltage current flows from the battery to the engine couplers. The running D.C. operates motor 201 to move the train, while flow of the signal ripple current closes the circuit of the battery 220 so that a high voltage current is directed to the engine couplers 222 and 223. Interruption of the signal ripple current interrupts the high voltage current.
Coupler operating means of car Car 170 is provided with identical couplers 230 and 231 at opposite ends thereof, said couplers being normally urged towards and through closed positions by springs 232 and 233, respectively. These couplers are electrically connected together by a wire 235; Contacts 237 and 238 are carried by couplers 230 and 231, and are connected by a wire 239.
A magnet coil 243 is connected by wire 244 to wire 239, and by another wire 245 to a pick-up 246 of the car. A reed 249 is normally spaced between the end of magnet 243 and the adjacent end of another magnet 250, one end of the winding of the latter magnet being connected to a contact 251 spaced from the reed, while the opposite end of said winding is connected by a wire 252 to another pick-up 253 of the car. The reed is connected by a wire 254 to wire 245.
When the high voltage current from battery 220 in the engine runs through and energizes magnet 243, reed 249 which normally is clear of contact 251, is moved farther away from the latter. An interruption of this high voltage current causes the reed to spring into engagement with contact 251. to allow the running DC. to flow through and energize magnet 250. When the latter magnet is energized, an operating arm 256 is attracted to it against the tension of a spring 257 connected to said arm. These magnets are such that magnet 243 is unable to attract the reed while magnet 250 is energized. The latter magnet keeps the reed in engagement with contact 251 until the circuit of said magnet is broken.
Couplers 230 and 231 are identical, and only one will be described in detail. Any type of coupler may be used as long as it is capable of closing contact 237 or 238 when in uncoupled position.
FIGURES 7 to 9 illustrate a coupler set-up that may be used. Coupler 230 has a stationary jaw 260 and a movable jaw 261 swingably mounted thereon by means of a pivot pin 262. The movable jaw is normally swung into a closed position by spring 232.
Contact 237 is in the form of a wire 265 secured to the side of the movable jaw and projecting downwardly therefrom, said wire being insulated from the jaw by insulation 266. A pin 268 relatively long in comparison to contact 237 is secured to jaw 261 and projects downwardly therefrom at a point spaced outwardly from contact wire 265. A hair spring wire 270 is connected to the movable jaw at 271 and is wound around pin 268 at 272. The wire extends substantially transversely of the coupler at 273 and back again at 274, see FIGURES 7 to 9. These portions of the wire form a light finger 275. The free end 276 of the wire is bent inwardly and bears against contact wire 265 when the coupler is closed and noother coupler is positioned within its jaws, as shown in FIGURE 9. A string 278 is connected 9 to the lower end of pin 268 and extends inwardly of car, 17 0. p
Coupler 230 is normally closed, and when no other coupler is within its jaws, finger 275 extends transversely thereof, and the wire end 276 is in engagement with contact wire 265. The jaw 261 of the coupler is so designed that when another similar coupler is moved'towards this coupler, the movable jaws thereof engage, swing open, and then close into coupling position. This action moves finger 275 towards the car, moving wire end 276 out of engagement with the wire contact, see broken lines in FIGURE 9. In effect, contact 237 is opened by this action.
"The opening of couplers 230 and 231 will be understood by referring back to FIGURE 6. String 278 is connectedto one end of a lever 280 that is pivotally mounted midway between the ends thereof at 281. The opposite end of this lever is connected by a string 282 to the downwardly-extending pin 268 of coupler 231. The outer end of operating arm 256 is connected by a link 284 to the end of lever 280 near string 282.
With this arrangement, when arm 256 is attracted to magnet 250, lever 280 is swung to open both of the couplers 230 and 231. If car 170 only is connected to the engine, or if it is the last car in a train, the coupler at the end of the car remote from the engine is free, in this case coupler 231, and is held closed by spring 232. The wire end 276 of this coupler is in engagement with contactwire 265 at this time. When operating arm 256 is moved .by the magnet, jaws 261 of couplers 230 and 231 are opened, but the spring finger 275 of coupler 230 'pivots around pin 268 at'this time since it cannot vswing with the jaw because of the pin of the couple in engagement therewith, see FIGURE 9. a The operation of the toy train assembly of FIGURES 6 to.9 is as follows:
[The high: voltage operating current produced in engine .168 travelsQto its couplers and through the couplers of the cars connected thereto, which in this case are cars 170 and"'172. This current travels to the coupler 231 of car 172 and through contact 238 to and through magnet-coil 2430f that car. This keeps reed 249 clear .of contact 251. An. interruption in the signal current causes an interruption in the high voltage current, allowing the reed to engage'contact 251 to energize magnet 250 in car 172. This opens the couplers of the car, disconnecting the latter from the train if it is moving forwardly. This action releases coupler 231 of car 170 lsothat its spring finger 275 springs outwardlyto cause the wire end 276 to engage contact 238 to energize magnet 243 of this car. The couplers of car 172' are held ,open by the running current passing through magnet 250. However, an interruption of the running current de-energizes this magnet allowing reed 249 to separate from.
.contact 251 and spring 257 to move operating lever 256 we position which permits the coupler jaws to close underthe action of their respective springs.
The signal currentis created momentarily when switch 193is closed and opened, thus causing the high voltage current to .flow momentarily from battery 220 in the engine This: momentarily energizes magnet 243 and consequently magnet 250 of the last car in the train, opening th'eflcouplers ofsaid car. The couplers remain ,open until therunning current is interrupted to de-energize magnet 250. Switch 193 may be successively opened any number of times to uncouple any desired number of cars from. the train.
1 FIGURE 10 illustrates an alternative form of high yoltage producing means for engine 168. A transformer is substituted for the high voltage battery of FIGURE 6. Instead of winding 207, the coil 290 of a sensitive vibrating relay is provided, said relay having a vibrating 1reed291 .and the coil being connected in parallel with the ir otor .201 of the engine by wires 293 and 294. spring 295 tends to keep the reed centrally between spaced and aligned contacts 296 and 297. The reed is connected by a wire 298' to wire 294. Contact 296. is connected by wire 299 to one end of the primary 300 of a transformer 301, the opposite end of said coil being connected by a wire 302 to contact 297. A wire 303. connects the centre of coil 300 to wire 293. The secondary 305 of the transformer is connected to wire 221 of the engine extending between its couplers 222 and 223. A condenser 306 is connected to wires 294 and 303 in order to reduce sparking at the reed. j
Spring 295 is strong enough to keep reed 291 in its central position when the running D.C. alone flows through coil 290. When the ripple current flows with the running current, the fluctuations in the magnetic pull cause the reed to vibrate between contacts 296 and 297, This causes the current to how through primary 300 of transformer 301 to produce a high voltage operating current in the secondary. This high voltage current is used to control the coupler operating means of the cars. Therefore, the ripple signal current is caused to flow momentarily by opening and closing switch 193. This causes the high voltage operating current to flow momentarilyito the engine and car couplers, thereby operating the cou plers as described above. f
FIGURE 11, illustrates an alternative form of running and signal current creating means 310, and an alternative form of high voltage producing means in an engine 315. This illustrates a set up with an alternating current used as the running current, and a direct current used as the signal current.
Running and signal current creating means 310 This assembly includes the running and signal current creating and control means 310 which is connected to rails 312 an 313 upon which the engine 315 runs.
Alternating running current of suitable voltage, such as 20 volts, is supplied to wires 320 and 321 by any suitable means, not shown. The supply means includes the usual control means for the running current whereby it may be shut off or increased and decreased as desired. It also includes any desired known means for controlling the direction of movement of the engine. The actual en'- gine control means has been omitted for the sake of clarity, and since it does not form part of this invention. Wire 320 is connected to rail 3-13. Wire 321 is connected to a blade 324 of a signal current control switch 325. The blade is normally in engagement with a contact 327 which is connected by a wire 328 to rail 312. Switch 325 includes another blade 330 having a contact 331 thereon which is normally clear of another contact 332 mounted on blade 324. An operating plunger 333 is provided for closing contacts 331 and 332. Blade 330 is connected by a wire 335 to a suitable resistance 336, which, in turn, is connected by a wire 337 to a contact 338 aligned with and spaced from contact 327 but normally out of engagement with blade 324. A battery 342 or any other suitable means to produce low voltage direct current is connected by wires, 343 and 344 respectively to wires 337 and 328'.
When switch 325 is in its normal position, the alternating running current travels to the rails through blade 324, contact 327 and wire 328. At this time, the direct signal current does not flow from the battery. It may be stated here that with this alternative, the signal current is caused to flow only when it is desired to operate the car couplers. When it is desired to operate the couplers, plunger 333 is depressed, closing contacts 331 and 332. This permits the operating AC. to flow through the battery and the resistance when the blade is moved away from contact 327. Further movement of the blade brings it into engagement with contact 338. This shorts out the resistance. By this arrangement, D.C. can be superimposed on the running A.C. without interrupting the running current.
High voltage producing means in engine 315 connected by wires 355 and 356 to pick-ups 350 and 351. This motor is such that it operates on the alternating running current. Any suitable reversing mechanism is used for the motor, and this is designated by numeral 358.
' The armature coil 362 of a horseshoe magnet unit 363 is connected in parallel with the engine motor by wires 365 and 366. A bar 368 projects from armature 362 so that said bar is swung back and forth between the poles of the magnet and between contacts 369 and 370. Springs 371 and 372 tend to maintain the bar in a neutral position clear of both contacts. The bar is connected to wire 365. Contacts 369 and 370 are connected by a wire 375 to one end of the primary 376 of a transformer 377, the opposite end of said primary being connected by a wire 378 to wire 366. The transformer has a secondary 380 connected to a wire 381 extending between the engine couplers 383 and 384.
' When the running A.C. is on, it travels through armature coil 362 to keep bar 368 vibrating between but clear of contacts 369 and 370. When the signal DC is on, armature 362 is rotated, causing bar 368 to engage one of the contacts 369 or 370, depending upon the direction of flow of said current. This directs the A.C. through the primary of the transformer to produce a high voltage A.C. in secondary 380.
' When it is desired to produce the high voltage operating current, plunger 333 is depressed to superimpose the signal current on the running current. The signal current flows through coil 362 to hold bar 368 against contact 369 or 370. This causes running A.C. to flow through the primary of transformer 377, thereby producing the high voltage current. Release of plunger 333 interrupts the operating current.
The high voltage operating current produced in engine 315 may be utilized with any of the car coupler operating means described above.
While the engine and car couplers have been described above as part of the high voltage operating current circuits, it is to be understood that special contact means may be substituted for the couplers in these circuits. The contact means of each car would engage with the contact means of any other car or engine when said car is coupled thereto. Furthermore, the car coupler operating means of FIGURE 6 may be used in place of that illustrated in FIGURE 1 and vice versa. In addition to this, the repeater switch 53 of FIGURE 1 may be used in the other illustrated systems. While it is preferred to open the couplers at both ends of the cars, it will be understood that only one may be opened, in which case the cars cannot be reversed on the rails.
What I claim as my invention is:
1. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of an engine and at least one car each having current pick- .ups engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the engine pick-up, a source of low voltage running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of signal current, said signal current being dilferent from said running current, means connected to the rails for superimposing said signal current on the running current, means in the engine connected to the pick-ups thereof and controlled by said signal current for producing a high voltage operating current, electric coupler operating circuit means in the car connected to the engine operating current producing means and to the car pick-ups, couplers on the engine and car, means connecting said operating current to said coupler operating circuit means, means connected in circuit with the source of signal current for interrupting said signal current and for simultaneously interrupting the operating current, said coupler operating means being responsive to interruptions in the operating current for opening at least one of the car couplers.
2. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 1 includ ing means in the car connected to the car pick-ups and operated by the running current to retain the couplers open until said running is interrupted.
3. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 1 in which the engine and car couplers form part of means connecting the car coupler operating circuit means to the engine operating current producing means.
4. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of an engine and at least one. car each having current pickups engaging said train, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the enginge pick-ups, a source of low voltage running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of signal current, said signal current being different from said running current, means connected to the. rails for superimposing said signal current on the running current, means in the enginge connected to the pick-ups thereof and controlled by the signal current for producing a high voltage operating current, means in circuit with the source of signal current means for interrupting the signal current and simultaneously for interrupting the operating current, an electro-magnetic device in the car having two windings, an operating member that is moved inwardly towards the magnetic device when current flows through said windings, means normally urging the member outwardly away from the magnetic device, means connecting either winding to the engine operating current producing means depending upon which end of the car is connected to the engine, means connecting both windings to one of the car pick-ups, said member being drawn inwardly to the magnetic device when the operating current flows through one of the windings, coup lers on the engine and car, and means operated by the member when the operating current is interrupted to open the car couplers.
5. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 4 including a third winding in the electro-magnetic device connected to a car pick-up, and switch means operated by the operating member moving outwardly from the magnetic device to connect said third winding to the other car pick-up to energize said magnetic device by the running current and move the member inwardly when the car couplers are opened, an interruption of the running current permitting the member to move outwardly to cause the coupler to close.
6. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 5 including another car coupled to the first car and having the same eleetro-magnet and coupler arrangement as the latter car, switch means operated by the operating member of the first car moving outwardly to connect the engine operating current producing means to the coil of the electro-magnetic device of the second car.
7. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of an engine and at least one car each having current pickups engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the engine pick-up, a source of low voltage running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of signal current, said signal current being different to said running current, means connected to the rails for superimposing said signal cur-rent on the running current, means in the engine connected to the pick-ups thereof and controlled by the signal current for producing high voltage operating current, means in circuit with the source of signal current for interrupting said signal current and simultaneously interrupting the operating current, a coupler on atleast one end of the engine and connected to the operating current producing meansja coupler at each end of the car one of which is coupled to theengine coupler, an electro-magnetic device in the car havingtwo windings, an operating member that is moved inwardly towards the magnetic device when current flows through said windings, means normally urging the'mem bcroutwardlyaway the magnetic device, meansconnecting each winding to a car coupler, means connecting both windings to one of the car pick-ups, said member being. drawninwardly to the magnetic device when the operatingcurrent fiows through one ofthe windings, and means operated by the member when the operating current is interrupted'to open at least one of the car coulers. V V
8. In a toy tnain assembly as claimed in claim 7 including a third winding in the electro-magnetic device 'connected to a car pick-tip, and switch means operating the operating member moving outwardly from the magnetic device to ,connect said :third, windingto, the other car pick-up to energize said magnetic deviceby the running current and move the member inwardly -when the car couplers are-opened, an interruption of the running current permitting the member to movefoutwardly' to cause the 'couplerto close. .7
In a my train assembly claimed in claim 8 including another car coupled to the first car and having the same electromagnet coupler arrangement as the latter car, switch means operated by the operating member of the first car moving outwardly to connect one coupler thereof to its other coupler to direct the operating current through a winding of the magnetic device of the second car, said last-mentioned switch means being opened the next time the member of the first car moves outwardly, whereby an interruption of the running current permits the member of the first car to move outwardly to close the couplers of said first car and to de-energize the magnetic device of the second car to open the couplers of the latter car.
10. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of 7 an engine and at least one car each having current pickups engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the engine pick-up, a source of low voltage running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of signal current, said signal current being difierent from said running current, means connected to the rails for superimposing said signal current on the running current, means in the engine and connected to the pickups thereof for producing high voltage operating current, means in circuit with the source of signal current for interrupting said signal current and simultaneously interrupting the operating current, spaced and aligned first and second electro-magnets in the car, the first magnet being connected to the engine operating current producing means and to one of the car pick-ups, the second magnet being connected to a contact and to the other car pick-up, a reed between the magnets and connected to the first car pick-up and normally spaced from said contact, said reed being attracted to the first magnet when the operating current fiows through said magnet and on interruption of the operating current said reed engaging the contact to cause the second magnet to be energized by fiow of the running current therethrough to retain the reed against the contact, interruption of the running curk i 14 v 11. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 10 in which the enginecoupler is connected to the operating current producing means and there is a coupler at each enact the car, and including means connecting one car coupler to the other, and a contact at each coupler electrically separated therefrom, said coupler contacts being connected to the first magnet, and means for electrically disconnecting each contact to its coupler when the latter is coupled to another coupler.
12. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made upof an engine and at least one car each having current pickups'engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage.. running motor connected to the engine pick-up, a
source of low voltage running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of high frequency low voltage signal current, means connecting said high frequency source to the rails for superimposing said signal current on the running current, means in circuit with the signal current producing means for interrupting said signal current, means in the'engine, and connected to the pick-ups thereof. for transforming the signal current into a high voltage operfatiugicurrent, interruptions in the signal current interrupting the operating current, electric coupler operating circuit means in the car connected to the engine operating current producing means and to the car pick-ups, couplers on the engine and car, means in the car responsive to interruptions in the high voltage operating current for opening the car couplers.
13. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 12 in which the running current supplying means supplies direct current.
14. A toy train assembly as claimed in claim 12 in which the running current supplying means supplies alternating current.
15. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of an engine and at least one car each having current pickups engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the engine pick-ups, means connected to the rails for supplying low voltage direct current with a low voltage ripple current superimposed thereon, said direct current being a running current for the engine motor and the ripple current being a signal current, means for selectively shorting out the ripple signal current, means in the engine connected in circuit with the running and signal current producing means for causing a high voltage operating current to flow when the signal current is on, said means comprising a high voltage battery connected to spaced contacts, a reed between the contacts normally free thereof and connected to an engine pick-up, and a magnet near the reed and having a winding connected to the engine pickups, whereby flow of the running and ripple currents through the magnet causes the reed to vibrate between the contacts to cause current to flow from the battery, said running current alone not being sufficient to cause the reed to engage either contact, electric coupler operating circuit means in the car connected to the engine operating current producing means and to the car pickups, couplers on the engine and car, and means in the car responsive to interruptions in the high voltage operating current for opening the car couplers.
16. In a toy electric train assembly, a track layout including spaced current conducting rails insulated from each other and upon which may run a train made up of an engine and at least one car each having current pickups engaging said rails, said engine including a low voltage running motor connected to the engine pick-ups, a source of low voltage alternating running current, means connecting said low voltage source to the rails for supplying low voltage alternating running current to the engine motor to run the train, a source of direct signal current, means connecting said direct signal current source to the rails for superimposing a direct signal current on the running current, means in the engine and connected to the pick-ups thereof for transforming the low voltage running current into high voltage operating current, means in circuit with the source of signal current for interrupting said signal current and thereby interrupting the operating current, couplers on the engine and each car, electric coupler operating circuit means in each car connected to the engine operating current producing means and to the car pick-ups, said coupler operating circuit means being responsive to interruptions in the high voltage operating current for opening the car couplers.
a signal current, means for selectively shorting out the ripple signal current, means in the engine connected in circuit with the running and signal current producing means and causing a high voltage operating current to flow when the signal current is on, said means comprising a transformer having a secondary connected to an engine pick-up and a primary with its opposite ends connected to spaced contacts, means connecting the centre of the primary to the other engine pick-up, a coil with its oppositeends connected to the engine pick-ups, and a reed normally spaced from both contacts and connected .to the same engine pick-ups as the transformer secondary, whereby flow of the running and ripple currents through the magnet causes the reed to vibrate between the contacts to cause current to flow from the battery, said running current alone not being suflicient to cause the reed to engage either contact, electric coupler operating circuit means in the car connected to the engine operating current producing means and to the car pickups, couplers on the engine and car, and means in the car responsive to interruptions in the high voltage operating current for opening the car couplers.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,182,850 Middleton Dec. 12, 1939 2,622,542 Bonanno Dec. 23, 1952 2,714,859 Klemme Aug. 9, 1955
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Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3532228A (en) * 1969-04-25 1970-10-06 Dresser Ind Electronic control and surveillance system for railway trains
US4747351A (en) * 1985-12-18 1988-05-31 Baret David B Solid-state whistle and horn activation system for model railroads
US5836253A (en) * 1997-06-09 1998-11-17 Kunka; William B. Noise-powered electrical accessory circuit for model railroad
EP1437163A1 (en) * 2003-01-13 2004-07-14 Lenz Elektronik GmbH Method and device for transmitting information between a railtrack and a vehicle of a model railway
US20040222331A1 (en) * 2003-01-13 2004-11-11 Bernd Lenz Method and apparatus for the transmission of information between track and vehicle of a model railroad
US20050103946A1 (en) * 2003-11-18 2005-05-19 Lenz Elektronik Gmbh Method and apparatus for automatic train control in a digitally controlled model railroad system

Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2182850A (en) * 1936-05-15 1939-12-12 Middleton Henry Bentley Electric control mechanism
US2622542A (en) * 1947-10-11 1952-12-23 Lionel Corp Electronic control for toy electric railroads
US2714859A (en) * 1949-10-17 1955-08-09 Claude C Klemme Electrical apparatus, as for model railroads, including resonant relay and switches therefor

Patent Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2182850A (en) * 1936-05-15 1939-12-12 Middleton Henry Bentley Electric control mechanism
US2622542A (en) * 1947-10-11 1952-12-23 Lionel Corp Electronic control for toy electric railroads
US2714859A (en) * 1949-10-17 1955-08-09 Claude C Klemme Electrical apparatus, as for model railroads, including resonant relay and switches therefor

Cited By (8)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3532228A (en) * 1969-04-25 1970-10-06 Dresser Ind Electronic control and surveillance system for railway trains
US4747351A (en) * 1985-12-18 1988-05-31 Baret David B Solid-state whistle and horn activation system for model railroads
US5836253A (en) * 1997-06-09 1998-11-17 Kunka; William B. Noise-powered electrical accessory circuit for model railroad
EP1437163A1 (en) * 2003-01-13 2004-07-14 Lenz Elektronik GmbH Method and device for transmitting information between a railtrack and a vehicle of a model railway
US20040222331A1 (en) * 2003-01-13 2004-11-11 Bernd Lenz Method and apparatus for the transmission of information between track and vehicle of a model railroad
US7198235B2 (en) 2003-01-13 2007-04-03 Lenz Elektronik Gmbh Method and apparatus for the transmission of information between track and vehicle of a model railroad
US20050103946A1 (en) * 2003-11-18 2005-05-19 Lenz Elektronik Gmbh Method and apparatus for automatic train control in a digitally controlled model railroad system
US7137600B2 (en) 2003-11-18 2006-11-21 Lenz Elektronik Gmbh Method and apparatus for automatic train control in a digitally controlled model railroad system

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