Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008
Game #5: What was the inventor thinking?
Your challenge: identify the function of this object.
The numbers refer to aspects of the device that its inventor described in his patent application. The object can be adjusted for two modes of use.
Two winners will be named, one for the correct guess and one for the
funniest guess. And yes, this invention pertains to young children
and/or parenting/raising young children.
Post your ideas via the comment form.
No links! If you discover a website describing this invention, keep
it to yourself. All will be revealed in time. You are competing for the glory.
Update: No one correctly guessed the purpose of this invention, but plaudits go to Kara for guessing the basic premise without knowing where it was to be used. "Co-sleeper" is an interesting and far more safer guess than the dark reality.
Plaudits also go to Kathleen for the funniest explanation… a balance for determining your baby’s weight in gold.
Answer: It’s an Automobile Baby Crib!
This canvas crib patented in 1931 is suspended above the front passenger seat.
The first image above demonstrates the crib in sleep mode.
The second image shows how a baby sits upright in the crib. The unused
length of the crib gets separated by a swinging sidebar to create a
storage area for baby gear.
The inventor explains: "The principal object of the invention is to provide a bed which can be quickly and easily attached from the automobile and in which the baby can be safely carried in a sitting position without discomfort to the passengers…"
The crib is secured to your car by attaching two clamps (#18 in the images) "to the lower edge of the instrument board of the automobile" and the rope-like "suspension strap" (#23) "is connected in any desired manner with the automobile top [roof]." Yeah, attach that rope just any old way you please. It’s easy, right?
When the crib is not in use, it "can be collapsed and placed under the automobile seats where it will occupy but a minimum of space."
You can even remove a sleeping baby from the car, crib and all, "by simply loosening the hanger (#21) and the clamps (#18) and then lifting the entire device from the car."
So, you’re probably wondering why this ingenious invention isn’t still with us today. Simple. While babies hate rear-facing seats, they hate sideways facing seats even more. Imagine car sick upchuck flying at you from the far reaches of your peripheral vision.