Patent application title: DISPLAY STAND
Jonathan Wolk (Broadland, VA, US)
IPC8 Class: AA47F510FI
Class name: Supports stand adjustable vertically
Publication date: 2016-05-26
Patent application number: 20160143455
An adjustable display stand having an upwardly extending first extension
arm attached to a base support. The first extension arm is formed to
extend over at least a portion of the base support and is connected to a
second extension arm. The second extension arm is formed to extend in a
vertical direction above the base support and terminates in a support for
an article to be displayed by the display stand.
1. A display stand, said display stand comprising: a base support; an
upwardly extending first extension arm attached to said base support and
formed to extend over at least a portion of said base support; an
upwardly extending second extension arm having a first end attached to
said first extension arm and formed to extend in a vertical direction
above said base support, and a second end terminating in a support for an
article to be displayed by said display stand.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
 The present application claims priority to provisional patent application Ser. No. 62/082,790 which was filed on Nov. 21, 2014 and entitled "Display Stand", which is incorporated herein by reference.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention generally relates to the field of display cases and stands and more particularly, is directed to an adjustable display stand.
 Societies of all kinds have a history of developing an affection or affinity for symbols and artifacts around which societal members develop an emotional attachment. Many of these symbols and artifacts arise out of religious beliefs, social or cultural relationships or from an enjoyable experience that a societal member wishes to preserve and savor. Other symbols and artifacts are based on an enjoyable or entertaining theme such Sesame Street, Disney and Star Wars characters that became popular as the result of exposure through television and motion pictures.
 There is a long history and great tradition of children, and many adults, dressing up at Halloween as their favorite character from popular television shows and great films. Other popular theme related events engender the same type of response. As children grow up and become adults with disposable income, they also are likely to become adult collectors who wish to keep and preserve their childhood memories.
 Television and movie memorabilia, particularly movie props and prop reproductions, have grown as collectibles over the last half-century. For over 35 years, the Star Wars universe has inspired fans at a level rarely seen in the history of entertainment. There are Star Wars collectibles of every type that one can be imagine, from collectible plates, drinking glasses, and toasters, fine art statues, jewelry, props and prop reproductions, trading cards, and of course, costumes.
 Since the first Star Wars movie premiered, fans have wanted to dress up as their favorite characters, from heroes like Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, to the great villains like Darth Vader and the Imperial Stormtroopers. Others do not wish to dress the part but still collect memorabilia from their favorite television and movie presentations as keeps sakes and souvenirs.
 In particular, many people collect helmets, "blasters", and lightsabers from Star Wars movies. There are over 100 different characters with helmets in the Star Wars universe, all of which have been reproduced by and for the fans. Someone, somewhere, has collected at least one of them. The collections of many fans number in the dozens. Most people who have a collection want to show that collection off. For many, their collections are a source of pride that they enjoy sharing with other collectors.
 In addition to Star Wars memorabilia, there has been a massive growth in the fan community of collectors and costumers, sometimes called "cosplay." Cosplay is an abbreviation of "costume play". In Cosplay, participants wear costumes and fashion accessories to represent a specific character or idea that is usually identified with a unique theme, such as Star Wars. Cosplay has become popular among enthusiasts of wearable collectables, everything from superheroes and Japanese manga, to videogame characters and other non-Star Wars movie franchises.
 A simple search of the Internet will uncover a large number of people making and/or collecting helmets for Iron Man, the Halo, Skyrim, and many other video game series, The Transformers, Power Rangers, many, many more, and that's just the helmets. There are endless props being collected, from weapons like swords, blasters, axes, you name it, to Doctor Who's sonic screwdriver, Thor's hammer, and anything else that you can imagine.
 Collectors typically like to share their collections with others, but are limited by the state of the prior art from effectively doing so. Currently, collectors have a limited number of choices for displaying their collectables. While the prior art is aware of various display cases, shelving, and simple display stands, there approaches usually are quite generic and do not complement the collector's personality or portray the collectable in its best light. In general, prior art display stands for helmets and other props are not awe inspiring, are inelegant, and often are not attractive.
 FIG. 1 illustrates a Star Wars helmet 1, which is one of the many types that Star Wars fans like to collect. The helmet is designed to fit over a human head and be worn. Thus, it has an empty head cavity for that purpose.
 The helmet is stored or displayed on a display stand of the type generally shown in FIG. 2 as is known in the prior art. The stand is comprised of a base 20 from which an attached rod 21 extends to a support pedestal 22. As further shown in FIG. 3, helmet 1 is mounted onto the stand and the interior top of the helmet rests on pedestal 22 shown in FIG. 2.
 Stands of the type shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 are designed to be low in cost and are made from wooden or plastic materials. They are further designed to be generic in their use and provide no means of customization to compliment the particular helmet being displayed or reflect in any way the personality of the collector.
 As illustrated in FIG. 4, some stand designs also include a Star Wars Imperial logo 40 carved or embossed on base 41 with rod 42 extending from the center of the logo to a support pedestal. Such stands remain a generic approach to displaying helmets and continue to lack customization or the ability to reflect a collector's personality.
 Thus, there is a need in the art for a stand for displaying memorabilia, such as collectables and the like, that can be customized to the particular memorabilia on display in a manner that reflects the personality of the collector.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 The novel features of the present invention are set out with particularity in the appended claims, but the invention will be understood more fully and clearly from the following detailed description of the invention as set forth in the accompanying drawings in which:
 FIG. 1 is an illustration of a Star Wars helmet as known in the prior art;
 FIG. 2 is an illustration of a display stand as known in the prior art;
 FIG. 3 is an illustration of the Star Wars helmet of FIG. 1 mounted on the display stand of FIG. 2;
 FIG. 4 is an illustration of a partial display stand with a decorated base;
 FIG. 5 is an illustration of a display stand in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention;
 FIG. 6 is an illustration of the helmet shown in FIG. 1 mounted on a display stand in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention;
 FIG. 7 is a cross-section of the base of one embodiment of the present invention taken alone lines 7-7 in FIG. 5;
 FIG. 8 is an illustration of the base of the display stand shown in FIG. 7 with a declarative piece; and
 FIG. 9 is a further illustration of one embodiment of a display stand in accordance with the present invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
 A preferred embodiment of the present invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings.
 FIG. 5, illustrates one embodiment of a display stand in accordance with the present invention which generally includes a support base 50, height extender 51 and mounting pedestal 52. Base 50 provides a stable platform for the display stand when, for example, a helmet, is mounted onto pedestal 52 as illustrated in FIG. 6. As shall be described below, height extender 51 is adjustable so that the height of the stand can be customized as needed by the user in order achieve the best presentation of the helmet.
 While not intending to limit the present invention, base 50 may be made of a number of materials known in the art, including plastic, wood, and various composites. In this preferred embodiment of the invention, base 50 is fabricated from medium-density fibreboard (MFD). As illustrated in FIG. 5, base 50 is shown to have a generally circular form but can also be in the shape of a square, rectangle, octagon or such other form as one of ordinary skill in the art would find suitable. Base 50 can be fabrication using a number of tools, such as a hand saw, CNC router, lathe and the like.
 Because the display stand of the present invention also is a decorative item so that it complements the presentation of, for example, a helmet, base 50 may be also includes various ornamental features. As shown in FIG. 5, for example, base 50 includes a decorative piece 53 made of an attractive metal strip attached around the edge of base 50.
 In order to accommodate decorative piece 53, a recessed slot 70 may be formed along the edge of base 50. FIG. 7 is a cross sectional view of base 50 taken along line 7-7 in FIG. 5. Decorative piece 53 is fitted into recess slot 70 and held in place by a number of fasteners as one of ordinary skill in the art would understand. Fasteners include, but are not limited to, glue, rivets and screws. FIG. 8 shows decorative piece 53 attached to the edge of base 50.
 With reference again to FIG. 5, height extender 51 is formed of slanted arm 54 and extension arm 55. Arms 54 and 55 may be made of a number of materials known in the art, including metal, plastic and wood.
 Slanted arm 54 is attached to the bottom of base 50 with a pair of screws 56 as shown in FIG. 9. Slanted arm 54 is angled toward the center of base 50 at an angle 57 such that the upward portion 56 of slanted arm 54 is in the approximate center of base 50.
 Slanted arm 54 includes an upper portion 57 which is attached to extension arm 55 by a plurality of releasable fasteners 58. Fasteners 58 allow the high of mounting pedestal 52 to be adjusted so that the stand can be customized to the particular size of the helmet for which the stand will be used. Releasable fasteners 58 can be nuts and bolts, a sliding track or a tongue and groove structure that allows the high of the stand to be easily adjusted. A ratcheting "quick adjustment" system using a toothed surface and gravity to the position of the head may also be used.
 As shown in FIG. 5, extension arm 55 is attached to the underside of mounting petal 52 by a plurality of fasteners 59.
 FIG. 9 illustrates the components parts of the stand dissembled. Mounting petal 52 also includes a decorative piece 91 which is mounted around the perimeter of base 92 in a manner similar to that of decorative piece 53 around base 50. The top of mounting petal 52 is formed of a soft material 90 which permits a helmet to be mounted on the stand without causing damage to the interior of the helmet. Soft material 90 also permits the mounting petal to be "molded" by and adapt to the interior of the helmet so that the helmet is supported by both the top and sides of the helmet's interior.
 The stand of the present invention may also include a foam manikin head for those who wish to display a mask or cowl or a custom-designed support structure, above an open, and uninterrupted, surface that I can then be decorate with anything that the user can imagine. This allows the collector to fully appreciate and display their object in a visually pleasing and impressive manner. When viewed from most angles the helmet or other object actually appears to "float" above the base, with whatever decorations the customer wishes now fully visible underneath the helmet.
 The design of the stand of the present invention allows engraving, inlays, lighting, sound, and, most importantly, full customization for user.
 In the embodiment of the present invention illustrated in FIGS. 5-9, a CNC router was used to cut out the base in the desired shape (it can be a circle, square, rectangle, or any one of a number of other shapes) and head sections from three-quarter inch MDF or other wood, including the base side inset for the metal banding, the inset on the bottom and side of the base for attaching the metal neck, all mounting holes for the feet and for the alignment posts used to line up the top and bottom sections of the base and the head, as well as to cut out and or carve any artwork for the surfaces.
 The top and bottom of the base and head are glued and clamped in perfect alignment.
 Metal strips were then cut and bent the arm from 1/16 inch up to 1/4 inch cold rolled steel bar stock, or steel strip, that is the correct thickness for the item to be displayed. The steel was bent to the correct angle and holes drilled so that the strip may be mounted securely to the base in a manner not visible to someone viewing the finished item and so the neck terminates as close to dead center of the base as possible.
 The display stand of the present invention can further be enhanced by the addition of lighting attached to the arm to light the base and to have lighting on and/or in the base itself to either backlight the art on the surface, the outer border, or to provide lighting to the object being displayed. The lights can be wired to a battery compartment that may be carved out of the base, or to an AC adapter so the base can be plugged in to household power.
 It is anticipated that LED lighting can be used which allows for adjustable color, tone, brightness, etc., by either a control system on the base or by remote control. The remote control can take the form of a computer. A sufficient plurality of lights can be used to play a video from a computer or a USB memory device.
 It is further anticipated that the display stand of the present invention will also include:
 a motion sensor or other sensing device to turn on and off the lighting;
 a voice greeting in the voice of the character that plays when a person is near the display;
 integrated speakers in the base along with the ability for a certain amount of onboard memory; and
 music or spoken lines related to the item being displayed, owner commentary on the item being displayed or a prerecorded messages.
 While the foregoing specification teaches the principles of the present invention, with examples provided for the purpose of illustration, it will be appreciated by one skilled in the art from reading this disclosure that various changes in form and detail can be made without departing from the true scope of the invention.