US 2091455 A
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Aug- 31', 1937. J. T.R1DDE| L INFLATED BALL AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME Filed Aug. 2e, 1955 Patented Aug. 3l, V1937 UNI'I'ED STATESA vPATENT ori-*ICE rNFnATEn BALL A1`ivIIEii'rHon i Y John T. maden, Evanston, nl.
Application August 26, 1935, Serial No. 37,905
This' invention relates to improvements in methods andmeans forv constructing inflated leather bal1s'par1',icular1y basket balls, volley balls, soccer balls and the like. I
Inflatable leather balls of this character very easily become distorted due to the strains caused by improper construction and rough usage. This distortion is due to the stretching of the stitches which jointhe casing sectors and also due to the uneven stretching of the materials making up the casing. In the game of basket ball, for example, unless the ball is perfectly spherical, the ball will not bounce true and will not preserve its straight line of ight during forward passing and in making long shots at the baskets. Perfection of contour of leather balls is therefore an important and highly desirable quality.
Balls of this character were originally made o f heavy leather and although various attempts have been made to substitute other materials such as rubberized fabrics and rubber, leather is nevertheless the 'predominantly preferred outer casing material, because of its' strength, duray Leather is, however, not unibility and vfeeL form in strength and Asi'lretchability throughout the area of any piece and various expedients have been used to reinforce it as by lining it with can# vas or other fabric. Y In the manufacture of such.
reinforced ballsit is customary to cut similarly shaped sections of leather and reinforcing sheets, to lay them together in superimposed registry, then to sew the composite sections together in inside out relation and with-projecting seams,
and then t invert thecasingso that vthe'leather presents a smooth exterior and the seams project inward. Since the stitches pass through the multiple thicknesses of material stiifened by its'composite structure the seams of such balls arebulky, there is a tendency to produce grinning seams,v
.and the seams -are characterized bydistinct grooves in the outer surface of the finished' ball.
--The present invention differs from such prior constructions in producing a reinforced ,leather vball with smooth exterior of more uniformly4 per- A in place with only sufficient stretch to assurea smooth surface and with flush joints that do not spread or grin and that preferably do not register with the joints of the inner casing.A By this procedure I not only reduce the number of defec.
tive balls, but am able to discoverand cure the defects'or cull 'out the defective linings before the leather is applied and thereby greatly reduce the/manufacturing expense by avoiding the culll ing of finished balls.
The main objects of this invention are to provide improved methods and means for constructv ing accurately shaped and more lively structure tion and inexpensive to manufacture, as com- -.pared with balls of similar types constructed according to usual methods. Y Y
An illustrative embodiment of this invention is shown in the accompanying drawing, in which: Figure l is an end View of an inner casing made according to my improved construction, and partly shown in section.
Figs. 2 and 3 are views of my improved ball,
character which is durable, simple in construcwith the outer casing shown partly broken away to expose the inner casing and illustrating modifled forms of assembly.
Fig. 4 is a sectional detail of the complete ball. Fig. 5is an enlarged sectional detail. Referring in detail to the specific embodiment shown. in the drawing the ball comprises an 1nilatable bladder I, an inner casing, 2 and an outer casing 3.
The inner casing `i.' is formed of a plurality of strips 4 of suitable material, such as canvas or rubberized fabric or canvas'impregnated with latex, and cut to the form of spherical surface segments. The edges of the segments 4 are laid together and stitched with projecting seams. The casing 2 Aisthen turned inside-out so that the stitched seams 5 appear substantially as shown in the sectional part of Fig. 1. An opening 6 may be provided for this operation and also for the insertion of the bladder l. The opening is then sewed up and the bladder inflated to the normal playing'pressure. The surface of the casing is then manipulated so as to thoroughly stretch the seams and reduce to a minimum the grooves formed by the bending of the material at the seams; The grooves alongthe seams are then filled with latex 8 and covered with -tapes 1 to further fix the seams against stretching.
cement,and spun about its axis so as to ll and uniformly coat the entire surface.
Spherical segment strips 9 of leather are then cemented to the surface of the casing 2 to form the outer protective casing 3. These leather segments are but slightly stretched and are rolled smooth with their edges abutting one another and lying fiush with the surface. The leather segments 9 are preferably arranged so .that their joints do not coincide with those of the inner casing 2. This is accomplished either by staggering these joints with respectto a common'axis of both casings as in Fig.-2, or by arranging them With respect to an axis that intersects the axis of the inner casing as in Fig. 3.
The leather thus applied securely protects the ball from injury but does not inuence its shape and avoids the potential source of change of form that exists in balls wherein the seams are more bulky and more subject to stretching at the seams 25 due to stitching through multiple layers of material when the pieces of the lining and leather casing are combined before being stitched together. I
It will be apparent that a ball that is built up 30 as herein described may be tested as to roundness and balance at each stage of its construction and if the inner casing is defective or out of balance this can be cured by reshaping or by application of material to its surface or it can be culled 35 before it becomes a part of a finished ball where .such defect might necessitate culling of the entire ball. The outer casing protects the stitches of the inner casing. and thus eliminates another source of weakness that causes ultimate distortiongr breakdown from usage. Because the seams are less bulky in this construction, theball is more resilient and lively and therefore superior for use in games like basket ball Where much of the play is dependent upon the bouncing of the ball.
Although but one specific embodiment of this invention is herein shown and described, it will be understood that details of the construction;
1. 'Ihe method of making a ball which consists in forming an inner casing of fabric, inserting and iniiating a bladder therein, filling the seams with cement,'coating and filling the o uter surface of said inner casing with cement, and then adhesively covering said outer surface With sheets of leather meeting edge to edge in joints flush with the peripheral surface of the ball.
2. The method of making a ball which consists in forming an inner casing of fabric having inwardly extending stitched seams, inserting and inflating a bladder therein, filling the seams on the outer surface of said casing with cement, applying strips of adhesive material on said outer surface to cover said seams, coating and filling the outer surface of said inner casing with cement, and then adhesively covering said outer surface with sheets of leather meeting edge to edge in joints flush with the peripheral surface of theball.
3. The method of making a ball which consists in forming an inner casing of fabric having inwardly extending stitched seams, inserting and inflating a. bladder therein, lling the seams and coating the outer surface of said inner casing with cement, spinning the ball on its axis and truing the surface of said coating of cement, and then adhesively covering said cement surface with sheets of leather meeting edge to edge in joints ush with the peripheral surface of the ball.
4. An iniiatable ball of the class described comprising an inflated inner casingmade of fabric sections stitched together with inturned seams, 'aplurality of reinforcing strips cemented over and covering said seams on the outer surface of said inner casing, and an outer casing consisting of pieces of leather cemented over the outer surface of said inner casing and arranged side by side and abutting each other edge to edge.
5. An inflatable ball of the class'described comprising an inflated inner casing madeof fabric sections stitched together with inturned seams, a'plurality of strips of fabric cemented over and covering said seams, a layer of cement filling and coating said inner casing so as to compensate for surface out of roundness, andan outer casing consisting solely of leather casing sections) cemented over the outer surface of said inner casing and arranged side by side and abutting edge to edge with each other.
JOHN T. RIDDELL.