Fernand Martin – Le Livreur – Description of the patent number 186948

I found in a 1887 issue of the French magazine “DES BREVETS D’INVENTION ONT ETE PRIS” a description of the Le Livreur patent, (Martin number in the current books is 22 The new number will probably be 108 or 109)

This is a magazine where new patents are announced and some are described.
This edition contains 4 “Martin” patents, one of which, the “Le Livreur”, is fully described and from Fernand Martin.
The other three are only mentioned and are still unknown to me.
I also do not know that these three patents are from Fernand Martin or from another toy maker named Martin, maby Elie Martin ?, so maybe we will find out in the future.

Front page of the 1887 issue of the French magazine

Below the translated description of a part of page 8-9 and the associated drawings on Annex Plate II .

Dated November 12, 1887 from Mr. Martin

For a system of mechanism which makes it possible to actuate the toys by giving them movements analogous to those of the members of people and walking animals.

The invention consists in a system of mechanism allowing to actuate the toys with articulated subjects by giving them movements analogous to the naturel movements of the members of people  and walking animals.

This invention consists mainly in the combination with any engine of a mechanism housed either in the body or in the limbs of the subject, and arranged so that its different parts are operated reciprocally and successively.

In the drawing, I have supposed that the mechanism (motor) is placed in the car and that the subject to be actuated is represented by a man that makes the simulacrum of drawing it, but it is identical that I reserve the right to adopt the other subject, and to apply to it any motor deemed suitable, a mechanical engine, either thrust or traction, or hand.

Drawing in the magazine
  • Fig. 1, front view of the set of a toy built according to my invention.
  • Fig. 2, longitudinal section.
  • Fig. 3, front view of the subject’s leg control device.
  • Fig. 4, cross section of this device.

(a), motor that gives the subject constant thrust or traction; this movement, in the example given to the drawing, is a thrust movement which is transmitted by the car (d) of the arms in which the man (b) is placed.

The extremities of the legs of the man are finished so as to produce on the ground a rather large adhesion, either to the way of a pointed heel (f) , as it is represented, or in any other manner.

In the upper part, these legs are articulated on a cranked shaft (g) and are provided with notches or guide grooves (h), shapes and arrangements varying with the nature of the subject to be actuated and the movement that the we are producing.

These grooves embrace a fixed pin (i) and it is they, in fact, who, by sliding on this stud, exactly determine the movement of members.

Courtesy RSL Auction Company

Here is how my mechanism works:

The motor being in motion, constantly advancing the subject (b) tending to drag it on the ground, but because of the disposition of the heels (f), the leg which is in front is stopped; the forward movement continues uncomfortably, it is nocked that the leg which poses on the ground by the heel will straighten up and act on the crank shaft (g) by turning it, which brings the other leg into a identical position to the first, after having made it run a path characterized by the very nature of the groove (h) and its position in relation to the bent shaft.

At this moment, the second leg acts to activate the first, as we have to see it for this one.

As I said above, the nature of the subjects can vary to but I specifically reserve to apply it to men or to animals.

In the case of quadruped animals, I reserve the right to connect the limbs in any manner deemed suitable, the motor mechanism of the legs or supports may, in this case, be applied to one of their parts.

The whole of this mechanism is mounted in a box (k), which will be concealed tonic manner deemed suitable, or it will be mounted between the walls of the subject to be active.

But why there is a patent number 15632 on top of the toy?

Patent 15632 on top of the toy

Martin applied on November 12, 1887 for a patent in France where it was given the number 186948 and about the same time Martin applied the patent in England where it was given the number 15632.
But all Martin copies and boxes found have the English patent number 15632.
I have not yet found any copies or a box with the French patent number.
On the top of the cart and on the box is written: “F.M. S.G.D.G. France & Etranger Paris Patent 15632
(France & Etranger meens French and foreign)
I think Martin used the English patent number because it had already been approved and the application for the French patent was still being processed in France. The toy was already in production before the French patent was

So the toy was already in production with the English patent number before the French patent was approved and that English number remained on it throughout its production life.

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