US 2182369 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
C. T. BARRON BASEBALL PROJ ECTING APPARATUS Dec. 5, 1939.
Filed Jan. 23, 1939 Pemdbecaia,
` UNiTs-o STATE-s PATENT ori-lcs v` sommi.'
jectingbaseballsinsuchamannerastobeuseful for. batting practice. and more particularly to that portion of the apparatus by which the s ball is given a spin in one direction or another to impart a curve to its ilight. It is an object of the invention to provide apparatus which is simple.' effective andV easy to operate and control.
According to the invention, a tube of Vsuitable 10 size is provided, from which a baseball canbe projected byablastofcompressedair. Nearthe oriiiceofthetubetheballengagesinpassing a friction member which yieldingiy projects into the bore of the tube from the wall thereof. This is momentary retardation of one side of the ball just before it emerg from the tube imparts a spin to the ball, the rate vand direction of the spin being controlled by adjustments of the friction member.
For a more complete understanding of the invention. reference may be had to the description thereof which follows, and to the drawing of which Figure 1 is a side elevation of apparatus em s bodyins the invention.
Figure 2 is' a sectional view on a larger scale, taken on the line 2-2 of Figure l.
Figure 3 is a sectional view of a modied form of the apparatus shown in Figure 2. .o Fi3gure4isasectionontheline4-4ofliigure As shown in Figure 1, apparatus for projecting baseballs for batting practice or other purposes may consist primarily of a tube IO-which is mounted above an elongated tank I2 of suitable capacity, and communicates therewith through a pipe connection I4 in which is a control valve II operated by a handle Il. Near the valve Il is a suitable aperture 2li in the tube. A sleeve 22 is slidably fitted on the tube and is movable to cover the aperture 2l so as to prevent excessive escape of air admitted to the tube through the valve Ii. The tank is provided with an inlet 24, preferably having a check valve (not shown), this inlet being connected, when the tank is in use, to a suitable compressor pump by a flexible tube, the pump and tube not being shown. The tank I2 and tube Il are assembled as a single unit. the forward end'portions of the tank and tube being rigidly connected by a suitu able element 2l, the rear end portions being rigidly connected by the pipe I4.
For pointing and training the tube Il, the tank and tube are pivotally mounted for angular ladjustmenta.unitabouishoriai'intalandver- This invention relates to apparatus for proticalaxes. Tothisendthetankl2maybe mounted on suitable trunnions as at Il, these trunnions being carried by a yoke 32 pivotitlly mounted as at 24 on a pedestal Il. Projecting rearwardly from the pedestal 36 is a sector plate g 40 having an arcuate slot through which projects an elevating screw 42. n the elevating screw are a pair of nuts 44 and 44 by which the tube Il may b9 secured in any position of adjustment. A A l 10 In using the projecting apparatus, a baseball may be dropped into the tube through the aperture 20, the aperture then being closed by sliding the sleeve 22 over it. Air may be pumped into the tank through the inlet 24 until the de- 1|"4 sired pressure as indicated on a suitable gage 5I is obtained. Thereupon the handle Il is manipulated to open the valvev II, allowing the compressed air in the tank i2 to discharge through the tube I0, impelling the baseball there- 20.
from. lThe initial velocity of the baseball as it leaves the tube can be regulated by the amount of air pressure accumulated in the tank prior to the opening of the valve II.
Since itis usually-desirable to impart more or 25 less of a spin to the ball as it leaves the tube in order to curve its trajectory in one way or another imitating the various curves employed by baseball pitchers. a suitable attachment is provided which may be removably secured to the fao discharge end of the tube or may be a permanent part of the tube itself. As shown. this attachment consists of a tubular member Il having'a sleeve portion 42 adapted to fit snugly'on the end portion of the tube i0. The member Il also has a portion 84 with a bore equal to that of the tube Il so that the portion 44 Voi. the tubular member is virtually an extension of the tube itself, its bore being alined with and forming a v continuation of the bore of the tube III. At one o side of the portion 64 is a yieldable friction element Il which, as illustrated in Figure 2, may be the rounded end portion of the plunger ll which projects through the wall of the tubulary member 60, the rounded end portion 6I being 5 arranged to project into the bore of the exten- -sion 44. I'he plunger I. is provided with an intermediate iiange III which normally bears against the outer surface of the member 6l so as to limit the extent of projection of the friction element 68 into the bore.4 The outer portion of the plunger 6l extends slidably through a thimble l2 which is threaded into a supporting bracket 14, the latter being secured to the member Il by suitable screws Il. Between the u the thimble 'Il is a compression spring l0 which serves to press the friction element Il inward toward the axis of the tube Il. The spring lli, however, permits the element to yield radially outward so that its end may be ush with the inner surface of the member 8l. When a baseball l2 is projected from thejtube Il, one side thereof will engage and be retarded by the friction element 66. This will cause the ball to rotate as indicated by the arrow in] Figure 2 as it leaves the tube. The spin thus produced will resultin a curving of the path ofthe ball in -a manner well known. In order toi produce the various kinds of curves employed by baseball pitchers, the attachment 60 is preferably adjustable angularly about the.= axis of the tube. Since the sleeve portion 62 is cylindrical,
it is readily slidable on the end portion of the tube Il to alter the angular position of the member I0 on the' tube. In order to secure the member i0 in any desired position of angular ad.- justment, a setscrew 4B4 is provided. This setscrew is threaded through the sleeve portion 63 of the member 60, the inner end of the screw projecting into a groove 86 which extends around the endportion of the tube I0 and is located so as to prevent the attachment 60 from coming oi! the end of the tube I0 unless the setscrew 84 is backed oi sumciently to clear the groove 86. Ordinarily, the screw 84 is loosed sufficiently to permit rotational adjustment of the member 60. After such adjustment has been made, the screw is set up again so asvto bind against the bottom of the groove 88 and thus to hold the member 60 -in adjusted position. 'I'he screw `may have a thunb piece il at its end for convenient-manipulation, and, if desired, a lock n ut 90 may also be provided thereon.
The friction device for imparting spin to the baseball maybe made in other ways such as that illustrated in Figures 3 and 4. As therein shown,
the frictional element may comprise a strip 92 of suitable friction material, such as brakeband lining for example, this strip being secured to a strip 94 of metal. This composite strip is disposed in a longitudinal groove 9B in the wall of the'extenslon B4, thegroove 96 being ofisui'- cient depth to receive the composite strip so that the latter is flush with the interior surface of the i aieasee tube i0. The inner end of the; strip'ishse'cured in the groove II by a screw I8 or by other suitable means. The outer end of the strip is attached to a plunger |00 which may be somewhat similar to the plunger 68 illustrated in 5 Figure 2. Similar means, such as a thimble 12 threaded into a bracket 1I, and a spring liLmay be Iemployed to press the plunger |00 inward so as to hold vthe outer end of the friction strip within the bore of the projecting portion 64 of the attachment i0. Thus a baseball!! travel- 1- ing@` alongtlie .tube i0 engages the 'friction strip in.l The -engaging side lro1: the han sz is thus retarded .asthe ball reaches the orifice of the tube vextension C4, imparting a spin to the ball. The `amount ofv spin of the ball and the resulting break ofl thecurve can be controlled by adjust ing the compression of the spring 80 by means 0f the thimble 12.
vIt is evident that variouskmodiflcations and 0 changes may be made in the specific embodiments of the invention herein illustrated and described wlthout departing from` the spirit or scopey thereof as deflned'in the following claims.
I claim: Y I 1,'
l. IIn an apparatus including a tube for pro-,-` jecting a baseball, a device for imparting a spin, to the ball, said device comprising a plunger", having a rounded inner vend projecting into the bore of the tube near the discharge end thereof 30 and yieldable radlallyaway from the axis of the tube, a spring pressingsaid` plunger inward, and means for adjusting the pressuresof said spring.
2. In an apparatus including a tube for projecting a baseball, a tubular extension on the $5 discharge end of said tube, said extension having a bore forming a continuation of the bore of the tube, means for securing said extension to said tube in any position of angular adjustment about the axis of the tube, a plunger projecting radi- .40 ally through the wall of said extension Aand into said bore, the inner end of said plungerbeing rounded, means limiting the inward movement of said plunger, spring means yieldably pressing said plunger inward against said limiting means, and means for'adjusting the force of said spring means.
CHRISTOPHER- T. BARRON.