US 1048047 A
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G. s. CURTIS. MECHANICAL BALL GAME. APPLICATION FILED JULY 24,1908.
Patented Deb. 24, 1912.
GBEELY S. CURTIS, OF NEW YORK, N. Y.
MECHANICAL BALL GAME.
Specification of Letters Patent.
, Application filed July 24, 190,6. Serial No. 827,502.
To all whom it may concern:-
Be it known that I, GREELY S. CURTIS, a citizen of the United States, and a resident of the borough of Manhattan, city, county, and State of New York, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in i Mechanical Ball Games, of which the folshown in its preferred form in the accom-.
lowing is a specification.
This invention relatesto a free Ob ect of revolution for use with a miniature mechanical base-ball game apparatus, such,
for instance, as the apparatus of United States Patent No. 487,825, granted to myself and J. M. Hallowell, December 13, 18,92, in which a game apparatus is shown having means for impelling a ball over the home plate, in combination with a mechanical swinging bat and fielding devices.
The primary object of the present invention is to enable the player delivering the ball to cause tlfe ball to describe a path deviating from a straight line, or 1n other words, tojpitch a curved ball, similarly to the actual game'of baseball, and thus make the game more scientific and a closer imitation of the national. game. According to this invention, either an in-curve or an outcurve may be pitched, and the speed of the ball may be regulated at will, thus making successful batting much more diflicult for the batter, and increasing the interest in the game.
The invention consists of the object of revolution substantially as hereinafter described and claimed in this specification and panying drawings, in which Figure 1 ma plan view of suitable game apparatus; Fig. 2 is a longitudinal sectional elevation taken through the box which when opened out forms the field; Fig. 3 is an enlarged detail view of the preferred form' of ball to be used; Fig. 4 is an enlarged d'etail view showing the ball rolling toward the observer and in such position that it will curve to the observers left; Fig. 5 is an enlarged detail elevation showing the impelling device for the ball indifferent positions to illustrate the manner in which the ball may be caused to describe a curved path on Suitable apparatus for playing the game may be inclosed in a box A, which is adapt- 'ed to form the playing field when opened out. The box may comprise the two portions B and C, hinged together at D, each portion being provided withthe ends E and sides F, which form the boundaries of the field and ordinarily confine the ball within the limits of playing. The box A is also provided with a flap G hinged at H to the portion B, and when the box is closed. the flap G forms one end, as illustrated in Fig. 2, and is suitably held in place, in this instance, by means of hooked pins I fastened to the sides F adapted'to cooperate with.
slots J in the hinged flap G. v V 7 The home plate is represented by K, and the diamond is suitably. laid out with the bases 1, 2, 3, and the pitchers box P. The bat L is pivoted at O and an elastic band Q is connected to the shorter-end of the bat projecting beyond the pivot 0 and fastened Patented Dec. 24., 191 2.-
at R to the trigger S, which is pivoted at T, v
and provided with a string U, passing through an aperture V in the end E of the box. The'bat L is shown in full lines in engagement with the trigger S, and in dotted lines in the position it assumes after release,
a suitable spring or other device WV being provided for holding the bat at the completion of its stroke.
The impelling means for pitching the ball is shown'as a trough a, which may be angular in section. One end of the trough is placed in the pitchers box P and the other end held in the hand of the player representing the pitcher, who then allows the ball to roll down the trough in an attempt to deliver the ball over or near the home. plate. The upper end of the trou h is adapted to be loosely connected to t e board by a cord 20.
The ball I) ma be madeof any suitable material, prefera ly wood, and-is of such a construction that its path in passing from the pitcher to the home late may be made to deviate from a straig t line, or describe a curve. The ball is preferably in the form of a solid unweighted sphere .modified' by having a portion of its smooth unbroken surface made substantiallycylindrical, as illustrated in Fig. 3 of the drawings, in which the-ball 6, otherwise spherical, is provided with a cylindrical zone a of suitable width for carrying out the objects of this invention. In a ball of substantially the dimensions shown-in Fig. 3, the zone 0 would be of approximately the width shown, although the roportions may be varied if desired.
T e ball I; should be allowed to roll down the impelling device or trough 'a in such a manner that its axis of rotation is approximately parallel to the axis of the cylindrical zone 0, as illustrated in enlarged detail view in Fig. 5. In pitching the ball, the trough a should be tilted in such a manner and rotated about its longitudinal axis so that the ball is caused to roll along the horizontal surface of the playing board with its axis of rotation slightly inclined to the horizontal, thereby throwing its center of gravity out of normal position. In other words, the center of gravity will be displaced from the vertical plane containing the point of support, thereby exerting a moment causing .the axis of rotation to change its horizontal direction, andthe ball itself to describe a curve.
In Fig. 5 the full lines illustrate the trough (1 held in symmetrical position, as indicated in full lines in Fig. 1, tipping neither to the right nor to the left, and extending substantially parallel to the sides of the game board in plan view.
Let it be assumed that the impelling device or trough a is being viewed end on, that is, from the position of the batter. With this assumption, if the trough is slightly tipped into the position shown in dotted lines d, an in-curve will be pitched, as indicated by the dotted arrow (1, due to the inter-action of moments caused by the displacement of the center of gravity to the left of the point of support. In Fig. 4 a detail view of the ball b is given in the position it assumes as it leaves the trough a, from which it will be seen that the center of gravity 6 lies to the left of the point of support f as the ball is Viewed by the batter, so that the ball will curve to the left, as indicated by the dotted line d. If the trough a is tipped into the position indicated by the dot-and-dash lines 9 in Fig. 5, the ball 6 having its center of gravity this time to the right of the point of support 7", will curve to the right, as indicated by the dot-anddash arrow d". In order to cause the ball to pass over' the home plate K the impelling device or trough a should be aimed to one side of the plate in order to cause the curve traced by the ball line in Fig. 1. By altering the angle of tip of the trough, as indicated in Fig. 5, and the angle of e evation, a wide range of curves ing witnesses. to carry it over the plate as shown by dotted may be obtained,- but in order that the ball shall pass over or in proximity to the plate,
the direction of the trough must be'suitably adjusted.
The remainder of the ball game may be of any suitable character to enable a game of baseball to be played in miniature. Suitable fielders Z of wood or metal, may be used, in the form of movable pockets adapted to catch and retain the ball when it rolls into them. upon the board in positions similar to those occupied by the fielders in a real game. Preferably, lines or ridges o are provided in the out-field to distinguish between one, two and three-base hits. Ridges p are also provided to define the foul lines, and a ridge 9 with end ridges r are provided to define the position of the catcher and retain the ball within their limits.
The game may be played in accordance with the established rules modified to suit the requirements of a miniature ball game.
Obviously, some features of this invention may be used without others, and the invention may be embodied in widely varying forms.
, Therefore, without limiting myself to the construction shown and described, I claim and desire to obtain by Lettersv Patent the following:
In a miniature mechanical baseball game apparatus, a solid ball or other free object of revolution consisting essentially of an unweighted sphere, having a narrow substantially cylindrical zone, said ball having a smooth unbroken surface and being adapted to be rolled along a substantially horizontal surface with the axis of the zone at an angleto the said surface so that the center of gravity of the ball is shifted to one side or the other of a vertical plane passing through the point of support, thereby causing the ball to describe a substantially predetermined curved path to the right or left in accordance with the skill of the player.
In testimony whereof I have signed this specification in the presence of two subscrib- GREELY S. CURTIS. Witnesses i H. G. OGDEN, Jr., A. L. OBRIEN.
The fielders are suitably disposed