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Publication numberUS20060148595 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/270,913
Publication dateJul 6, 2006
Filing dateNov 10, 2005
Priority dateDec 30, 2004
Publication number11270913, 270913, US 2006/0148595 A1, US 2006/148595 A1, US 20060148595 A1, US 20060148595A1, US 2006148595 A1, US 2006148595A1, US-A1-20060148595, US-A1-2006148595, US2006/0148595A1, US2006/148595A1, US20060148595 A1, US20060148595A1, US2006148595 A1, US2006148595A1
InventorsRonald Bostock
Original AssigneeRonald Bostock
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Portable telescopic flag distance marker with card holder
US 20060148595 A1
Abstract
A telescopic distance marker includes attachment means for a cardholder and writing implement. The preferred embodiment has a magnetic attachment and a separate small wallet with metal studs or strip fixed to the bottom for attaching to the magnet. This wallet is high visibility and also doubles as a flag. Inside the wallet is a pencil, eraser and pre-printed cards to enable competitors in a golf competition to record their names. The pre-printed cards are heavy duty so that names written in pencil can be erased and the cards can be used again.
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Claims(12)
1. A portable distance marker device for use in playing golf, the device comprising:
a marker support comprising an elongated element reversely transformable from a collapsed configuration to an expanded configuration, the marker support forming a rigid upright support in the expanded configuration, the marker support further comprising a bottom end means for insertion in a ground surface and a top end means for supporting a distance marker; and
a carrying case comprising a highly visible exterior surface which serves as a distance marker, a means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support in the expanded configuration, and an interior compartment for storing a means for recording information.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein the marker support comprises a telescoping pole.
3. The device of claim 2 wherein the marker support top end means for supporting a marker and the carrying case means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support comprise two elements which are interconnectable by magnetic attraction.
4. The device of claim 3 wherein the marker support top end means for supporting a marker comprises a magnet element and the carrying case means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support comprises a metal element attractive to the magnet element.
5. The device of claim 1 wherein the means for recording information comprises at least one card and at least one writing implement for writing on the at least one card.
6. The device of claim 1 wherein the interior compartment further comprises a means for storing the marker support in the collapsed configuration.
7. The device of claim 1 wherein the interior compartment further comprises a means for storing a plurality of marker supports in the collapsed configuration and a plurality of distance markers.
8. The device of claim 1 wherein the marker support top end means for supporting a distance marker comprises an elongated flexible member and the carrying case means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support comprises a slot formed in the carrying case to receive the elongated flexible member therethrough.
9. The device of claim 1 wherein the marker support further comprises a means for holding a writing implement and the means for recording information comprises at least one card for receiving information recorded by the writing implement.
10. The device of claim 9 wherein the means for holding a writing implement comprises a spring-loaded clip attached to the marker support.
11. The device of claim 1 wherein the marker support comprises an elongated body having a slot therein and a telescoping rod attached to an end of the elongated body by a means of pivoting the telescoping rod into the slot for storage with the telescoping rod in a collapsed configuration and alternately pivoting the telescoping rod out of the slot into alignment with the elongated body to enable an expanded configuration of the telescoping rod to support the distance marker.
12. The device of claim 1 wherein the marker support bottom end means for insertion in a ground surface comprises a pointed ground spike.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to the game of golf and particularly to a portable distance marker having a flag-type distance marker supported by a telescoping stem attached to a ground-engaging spike, said flag-type distance marker comprises one or more cards for writing thereon, a means for holding the cards atop the telescoping stem and a clip for retaining a writing instrument.

2. Description of the Prior Art

Visual markers can be used by participants in golf competitions with the purpose of marking the position in which a golf ball has come to rest after being struck from the tee or fairway, this is achieved by pushing the distance marker into the ground at this point, the marker also provides a means whereby the player who played the shot can record their name by writing it onto a card which is normally housed in a cardholder and affixed to the marker. This is necessary for the parts of golf competitions known as “nearest the pin” and “longest drive”.

Nearest pin and longest drive markers have for years caused problems for pro-shops and golf societies due to their size and bulk: they are awkward for carrying around the course while a competition is still in progress, they frequently get left around the golf course and some are stolen. As a result many golf courses will no longer supply these items because the replacement costs are high.

Prior art devices are often somewhat large and cumbersome and not always easy to store and transport. Available distance markers have the disadvantage of being rigid construction devices, they are mostly one-piece metal or plastic spikes of varying lengths with a card holder at one end for the recording of players names, their main disadvantage lies in the difficulty of carrying and storing them by players while still on the golf course.

U.S. Patent Application #20020177493, published Nov. 28, 2002 by Harvot, is for a measuring device for golf playing which provides accurate measuring of the distance from a ball to the cup hole at the green to determine which ball is closest or farthest. The device is comprised of a pin, a balancing disk, a tape measure, a bumper, a board with slots to hold paper cards, and a clip for holding writing utensils. The board surface makes for easier writing and display of measurements. The balancing disk provides balance and accuracy during measurements.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,880,232, issued Nov. 14, 1989 to Lang, provides a flag pin golf ball distance measuring device for measuring the distance of a golf ball from a hole on a putting green includes an elongated cylindrical pin having a lower end provided with a radially extending flange and dimensioned for registry with a standard golf hole cup. A hollow cylindrical sleeve is received for longitudinal sliding and rotational movement around said pin. A right angle bracket has a first leg extending parallel with a longitudinal axis of the sleeve and secured thereto. A second leg of the bracket extends perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the sleeve and a pair of spaced parallel side walls extend perpendicularly upwardly from opposed side edges of the second leg. A spring roller type tape measure is removably received on the second leg, between the parallel side walls. A free end of a measuring tape of the tape measure is secured to the sleeve. A transversely extending cylindrical handle is attached to an upper handle of the pin. A card holder is attached to the pin adjacent the handle and includes a holder for a writing instrument.

U.S. Pat. #D312,291, issued Nov. 20, 1990 to Blasbalg, shows the ornamental design for a golf marker for recording longest drive or the like.

U.S. Pat. No. 4,161,723, issued Jul. 17, 1979 to De Vittori, describes a flagpole, particularly for indicating goals in skiing competitions, comprising an upper flag carrying portion and a lower pointed portion connected by a helical spring. When this flagpole is driven into the ground, it can move elastically laterally when hit by a skier, thus avoiding to be knocked down or causing injuries to the skier. Preferably the flagpole is provided with a semi-cylindrical abutment shell on one side so that it can move only to the other side, with a telescoping sleeve in its lower pointed portion for adjusting its length, and anvils adapted to be struck with a hammer for driving it down into the ground or hard snow.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,485,700, issued Jan. 23, 1996 to Van Vranken, discloses a telescopic flag and cone device with a cone portion having an open top and a closed bottom. A pole portion having a plurality of telescoping poles is received through the open top of the cone portion and secured to the closed bottom. An uppermost pole has a securement slot therein. A flag portion is received through the securement slot of the uppermost pole for securement therewith. The flag portion optionally wraps around the uppermost pole thereby permitting the plurality of poles to be telescopically received within the cone portion for storage purposes.

U.S. Pat. No. 5,052,687, issued Oct. 1, 1991 to Katerba, depicts a golf flagstick with an attached digital odometer wherein the odometer is placed at the top of the flagstick. When the distance between a golf ball and a hole is to be determined, the flagstick is removed from the hole, turned upside down, and wheeled between the golf ball and hole. As the wheel of the odometer is rolled along the green, the distance is recorded and displayed by a digital display. A writing pad can also be attached to the flagstick so that scores, distances and other appropriate data can be recorded.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,746,337, issued Jun. 8, 2004 to Tipaldo, claims a retractable target marker designed to provide golfers the ability to aim at a visible target when practicing in an open field. The device has been designed to withstand reasonable winds through the use of a retractable support element and a colored casing made from a compressible sheer, fishnet or nylon material. Contained within the retractable support element is a retractable arm that allows for the device to easily expand to height visible by golfers over several hundred yards away when in operation. The retractable support element also contains a lower extension that is placed within the ground during operation. The retractable target marker is designed to store compactly when not in use.

What is needed is a compactly stored telescoping rod distance marker packaged with writing implements and a card holder for displaying information.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates to a telescopic distance marker which can be used in any situation whereby it is deemed necessary to place a visual marker or target in order to record a particular distance, such as nearest pin and longest distance markers in golf.

The object of this invention is to provide an improved marker flag by reducing its overall size in order to make it more portable.

Accordingly, this invention provides portability by utilizing telescopic action whereby one or more captive rod sections of predetermined length may be extracted from and retracted to a cylindrical body which in turn contains a threaded insert or magnet at the opposite end in which to attach a cardholder. An alternative version may provide a crocodile clip with an attached strap incorporating a press-stud which can be affixed to the body and a clear plastic cardholder may be fed onto the strap through a cut-out and retained by the press-stud, an alternative version may be a cardholder which is attached to the body magnetically and for the telescopic movement to operate laterally from a pivot.

A card which is constructed from high visibility material acts both as a target for following competitors and can also be pre-printed on the back to provide spaces in which players may write their names.

A pencil or other marking device can be held in the crocodile clip.

In brief, a telescopic distance marker includes attachment means for a cardholder and writing implement. The preferred embodiment has a magnetic attachment and a separate small wallet with metal studs or strip fixed to the bottom for attaching to the magnet. This wallet is high visibility and also doubles as a flag. Inside the wallet is a pencil, eraser and pre-printed cards to enable competitors in a golf competition to record their names. The pre-printed cards are heavy duty so that names written in pencil can be erased and the cards can be used again.

An advantage of the present invention is that it utilizes telescopic rod holders which telescope down to a compact size for carrying and storing.

Another advantage of the present invention is that the telescoping rod and flag wallets are fabricated of durable weather proof materials, which can be used in the toughest ground conditions and provide longevity of use.

A further advantage of the present invention is that the write-on cards are of durable stock which is erasable for reuse.

One further example is that each wallet holder serves as a highly visible flag as well as a holder for the cards and pencil.

An additional advantage of the present invention is that a larger holder carries two flag wallets with cards and pencils and two telescoping rods with ground stakes so that both the nearest pin marker and longest drive marker are easily transportable in the same wallet.

Yet another advantage of the present invention is that the lightweight telescoping rod with a small ground stake do not cause damage to fairways and putting greens.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other details of my invention will be described in connection with the accompanying drawings, which are furnished only by way of illustration and not in limitation of the invention, and in which drawings:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the preferred embodiment of the invention showing a carrying case used as a distance marker aligned for magnetic attachment to a top of a telescoping marker support rod;

FIG. 2A is a perspective view of the carrying case of FIG. 1 showing the contents with two support rods secured to the inside of the cover flap and two distance marker cases inside;

FIG. 2B is a perspective view of one of the distance marker cases from the carrying case of FIG. 1 showing the contents with a pencil and eraser and a number of preprinted cards inside;

FIG. 3 is a view of a distance marker of the present invention with four rod sections and its component parts;

FIG. 4 is a view of a distance marker body of the present invention with two rod sections and lateral operation;

FIG. 5 is a view of a distance marker body of the present invention with a combined strap and clip attached;

FIG. 6 is a top plan view of the distance marker body of the present invention.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

In FIGS. 1-6, a portable distance marker device for use in playing golf comprises a telescoping marker support 23 and 23A and detachable carrying case or wallet 6A, 6B, and 6C which serves as a distance marker when attached to the marker support.

In the preferred embodiment of the invention of FIGS. 1, 2A and 2B, the marker support 23 comprises an elongated telescoping rod element with a body 1 and internal telescoping rod 2, which telescope up, reversely transformable from a collapsed configuration for transporting and storage to an expanded configuration for supporting a carrying case 6A and 6B used as a distance marker. The marker support forms a rigid upright support in the expanded configuration, as shown in FIG. 1.

The marker support 23 further comprises a bottom end ground spike 17 means for insertion in a ground surface which is permanently connected to the bottom of the body 1 of the marker support with the telescoping rod 2 expanding upwardly therefrom.

The device further comprises a carrying case 6A and 6B comprising a highly visible exterior surface 20 which serves as a distance marker, as shown in FIG. 1, a means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support in the expanded configuration, and an interior compartment 21 for storing a means for recording information, such as cards 7 and a writing implement, such as a pencil 12 and an eraser 22 and pre-printed cards 7, as seen in FIG. 2B, to enable competitors in a golf competition to record their names. The pre-printed cards are preferably heavy duty so that names written in pencil can be erased and the cards can be used again.

In the preferred embodiment of FIGS. 2A and 2B, a number of smaller carrying cases 6A and 6B may be stored in the larger carrying case 6, preferably two carrying cases 6A and 6B used as markers and two marker supports 23 to serve as a nearest pin marker and a longest distance markers in a game of golf. The interior compartment 21 further comprises pairs of loops 18 on a carrier card 24 as a means for storing the marker support 23, preferably two marker supports 23, in the collapsed configuration as well as at least two carrying cases 6A and 6B, as in FIG. 2A. A sleeve 11 attached to the carrier card 24 serves to cover the ground spike 17 or ground spikes for the marker support 23 or plural marker supports stored inside the carrying case 6, as shown in FIG. 2A to prevent a user being jabbed by the ground spike(s) and prevent the ground spike points from being damaged.

The marker support and distance marker are interconnectable by magnetic attraction. The marker support has a magnet element 15 on a top end as a means for supporting a distance marker and the carrying case 6A and 6B which serves as the distance marker has at least one metal element 5 on the bottom attractive to the magnet element as a means for attaching the carrying case to the marker support.

In FIG. 3, an alternate embodiment of the invention provides a marker support 23A formed of a cylindrical body 1A housing one or more captive telescopic rods 2A which are designed to be pulled out to a predetermined distance and also pushed back into the body 1A after use. A crocodile clip 8 has an attached strap 5A and is screwed into a threaded insert 10 at one end of the body via a hole in the clip 3. A carrying case cardholder 6C containing a card 7 can be fed onto the strap 5A via a slot 9 and retained by male and female press-studs 4. A writing implement 12, such as a pencil with an eraser, can be retained in the clip 8. The marker support telescoping rod 2A telescopes downward and a pointed ground spike 17A attached to the telescoping rod at a bottom end serves as a means for insertion in a ground surface.

FIG. 4 shows an alternative embodiment of the telescopic action in which the telescopic rods 2A are adjoined to a pivot 11A at one end of the cylindrical body 1A and which operate laterally into and out of a slot 13 which runs along the full length the body.

FIG. 5 shows another view of the crocodile clip 8 and attached strap 5A assembly affixed to the cylindrical body 1A by screwing it into the threaded insert 10 through a hole in the clip 3. A cardholder 6C containing a card 7 can be fed onto the strap 5 via a slot 9 and retained by male and female press-studs 4.

FIG. 6 shows the top view of the body depicting the slot 13 and the threaded insert 10.

The marker support with a telescoping rod and ground spike is preferably fabricated of stainless steel or other material to withstand outdoor conditions and insertion in the ground and the case of a durable weatherproof material.

In use, the marker support is telescoped closed for storage (in the carrying case for the preferred embodiment of FIGS. 2A and 2B) and extended for use with the ground spike inserted into the ground to support the marker support and the carrying case highly visible outer surface used as a distance marker flag attached to the marker support as in FIGS. 1 and 3. The pencil 12 and cards 7 are used to indicate the name of the golfer and any other desired information attached to the distance marking device.

It is understood that the preceding description is given merely by way of illustration and not in limitation of the invention and that various modifications may be made thereto without departing from the spirit of the invention as claimed.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7479067 *Sep 12, 2006Jan 20, 2009Lee G. GibsonGolf marker and method of use
US7815530 *Jun 20, 2008Oct 19, 2010Joseph M CannataGolf ball proximity to hole measurement
US7993212Feb 1, 2008Aug 9, 2011Tom DerkacyGolf training device
WO2008097825A1 *Feb 1, 2008Aug 14, 2008Chachon ChrisGolf training device
Classifications
U.S. Classification473/407
International ClassificationA63B57/00, A63B22/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63B2225/09, A63B57/0075
European ClassificationA63B57/00M