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Publication numberUS2468202 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 26, 1949
Filing dateDec 18, 1947
Priority dateDec 18, 1947
Publication numberUS 2468202 A, US 2468202A, US-A-2468202, US2468202 A, US2468202A
InventorsKarns James A
Original AssigneeKarns James A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Grip for golf clubs and the like
US 2468202 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 26, 1949. J. A. KARNS GRIP AFoa GOLF cLUBs 'AND THELIKE,

Filed Dec. 18, 1.947


Patented Apr. 26, 1949 UNITED STATES OFFICE GRIP FR GCPLF CLUBS AND THE LIKE James A. Karns, Akron, Ohio Application December 18, 1947, Serial No. 792,418

2 Claims. 1

This invention relates to grips for golf clubs and the like, and, more particularly, is concerned with fully molded rubber-like or rubber grips vulcanized to a golf shaft.

Heretofore, it has been the practice for many years to build up a grip on a golf club by wrapping cloth or paper spirally around the handle end of the golf club shaft to increase its diameter, followed by wrapping the lashing or base thus provided with a cover of leather, also usually wrapped in a spiral manner, the ends of the leather being secured to the shaft by tacks or a cord wrap. A grip of this type is laborious to construct, often comes unwrapped or is displaced in use, and, in general, is not very satisfactory although over the years it seems to have been the most practical grip.

There have been some efforts in recent years to simplify and better grips for golf clubs. For

example, a fully molded, rubber grip has been provided which is slipped over the lashing, this action being facilitated by rubber cement which lubricates the movement of the rubber grip over the lashing and which serves to cement the grip in place. It has also been proposed to cover the lashing with a long, narrow piece of leather which is folded around the lashing and the edges are trimmed to provide a single longitudinal seam. Moreover, it has been proposed to provide an allrubber grip which mounts directly on the shaft and which will take the place of the lashing, but Such rubber grips completely unbalance the club and are quite impractical.

Itis the general object of my invention to avoid and overcome the yforegoing and other difficulties of and objections to known golf grips by the provision of a less expensive and better grip of fully molded character vulcanized directly to the golf shaft. More specically, my chief object is to provide a handle-and-grip combination having accuracy of dimensions throughout all of its parts in conjunction with strong adhesion of the grip to the handle and having the advantages of facility and economy of manufacture.

Another object of my invention is to provide a fully molded grip for a golf club made from a substance such as a thermo-setting rubber-like or rubber material with recesses being formed in the grip to displace between about` one-third and about two-thirds of the normal volume of the grip whereby proper weight and balance is insured in the club.

Another object of the invention is to provide a golf grip of the character described including particles of low density material distributed through the grip and comprising between about twenty and about forty per cent of the molded volume of the grip.

Another object of my invention is the provision of a golf grip of the type described wherein the grip is molded completely around the handle end of the shaft, and with the grip having certain recesses which extend substantially into contact with the shaft adjacent the handle end, except that in the manufacture of the grip as herein described at least a mold iin is present as a floor of the recess, and the remainder of the recesses terminating farther from the shaft, to have a continuous layer of rubber around the shaft on the inside of the molded grip.

Another object of my invention is to reduce the weight of the handle end of a golf club by eliminating the wooden plug usually associated therewith.

The foregoing objects of the invention, and other objects which will become apparent as the description proceeds, are achieved by the provision of a golf club having a fully molded rubberlike grip vulcanized to its handle end, the grip including a plurality of recesses which comprise between about one-third and about two-thirds of the volume of the grip, the recesses usually being defined by relatively narrow ribs which extend from one end to the other of the grip, together with a plurality of ribs extending at angles to and joining the first named ribs. Usually, particles of relatively low specic gravity material are distributed throughout the body of the grip in an amount to provide between about twenty and about forty per cent of the volume of the molded grip.

For a better understanding of the invention, reference should be had to the accompanying drawing wherein Fig. 1 is a side elevation, partly broken away, of a golf grip incorporating the principles of my invention;

Fig. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary cross-sectional view taken substantially on line II-II of Fig. 1;

Figs. 3 and 4 are views similar to Fig. 1 but illustrating modied forms of grip, likewise incorporating the inventive principle;

Fig. 5 is a View Similar to Fig. 2, but on a smaller scale, and illustrating an improved closure for the handle end of a club shaft; and

Fig. 6 is a View similar to Fig. 5 but shows a modication of the handle end of the grip.

In the drawings, the numeral I0 indicates generally a hollow metal golf shaft, usually of high grade steel, the shaft ordinarily being made tapered in the manner illustrated and closed at its handle or larger end by a wooden plug I2 having a round boss which has a snug press-fit down into the end of the shaft, and with the remainder of the plug flaring outwardly to provide an enlarged portion in known manner. The round boss of the plug I2 may be additionally secured in the end of the shaft I by dimplingin portions of the end of theshaft at several points with a pointed punch struck by a hammer in a manner which will be understood.

Fig. of the drawing illustrates a modication of the invention wherein the weight of the wooden plug I2 is eliminated from the grip .by aring out, as at I b, the handle end of the golf shaft Illa and capping the open end -ofthediaredshaft with a metal 4cap I6 which has a circumferential ange I8 spun or crimped around the shaft. The -modification of the invention illustrated in Fig. g5'includes a rubber grip portion 20of full molded character vulcanized to the shaft and cap all in the .form and manner hereinafter tobe particularly .described in conjunction with the larger .cross-sectional view shown in Fig. 2 of the drawings.

Fig. 6 shows a modification of the invention .wherein the woodenplug l2 is eliminated from the grip. This is done by plugging or capping the end of the shaftll)b with a Vshort wooden, cork, rubber or composition plug IGH. A good toughbut light cork has been found satisfactory. The end of the grip Zlib is molded in a flared shape as shown. Weight in the grip ,is thus saved asthe weight of the increased Aairiount of Vrubber inthe iiare and the plug II2t is less than Vvthe weight ofthe solid woodenplug.

'Returning to Fig. 2 of the drawings, the shaft YIII kis Ausually ,sand blasted, pickled or votherwise roughened and one or .more coats of Ycement 22 areappliedover the portion of the shaftcovered by thegrip, andthe cement is `also applied tothe lplug I2 (or cap I6 or plug VYIta) inthe manner illustrated. By a moldingprocess, a fully molded ,grip indicated generally by the numeral ,2te is Athen vulcanized to the shaft completely closing lan,d surrounding theplug I2 (or ca p I 6 or plug I Ga) as shown,

`Molded 1in the grip ,20a are a ,plurality of Arecesses 24, ,and anv important feature ofthe in- .ven'tion is that the recesses 24 displace or Icoin- ,prise between about one-third and about twolthirds of the volume of rubber Aor rubberglike .material from which thegrip is molded. Thisis important for the reason that the grip `is thereby lightened to the point thatit does not unbalance the shaft `and golf club.

"The recesses 24 can be formed in any desired geometric or `other pattern, as .long as v,they do displace thestated volumeof the-grip. In Fig. 1, I'have shown a grip as including approximately six longitudinal `ribs Vextending from end to lend ,of .the grip and spaced circumferentially .of .each other, the ribs ZBbeing joined by ribs 28 which ,extend at an angle thereto, for example, -in a circumferential 'direction. Inorder toavoid confusion in illustration, thefribs 26 Figi `have vbeenmadeslightly thicker, that is, wider, vthan they, are on the actual grip.

In the form of the invention illustrated in Fig. 3, similar longitudinally extending lribs l26a are employed, but theangularly directed ribs ,28a take a helical form.

In 1Fig.4,the recessestake the vform of a plu- *rality 4of-holes 26D of square, diamond or other cross-sectional shape, such as the circular shape shown.

Returning now to Fig. 2, it will be noted that the recesses 24 terminate short of the cement or shaft to provide a thin layer 30 of the grip material between eachrecess and the shaft. This means that the entire grip surrounds and encloses the shaft as a continuous sheet which not only prevents moisture from getting into the shaft but which increases the strength and dura-- bility of the grip.

Only a selected few of the recesses, for example, at diametrically opposed points several inches from the handle end of the shaft, extend into closer proximity to the shaft, as at 32, and this is important for the reason that the sha-ft is thereby centered in the finally closed mold, and consequently in the grip, by the means which form the recesses, to insure a uniform thickness to the grip circumferentially of the shaft.

It is part of my invention to compound the rubber or rubber-like material from which the grip is molded with relatively small particles of low density material which comprise between about twenty and about forty per cent by volume of the compound from which the grip islrnolded. Such low density materials include cork, 'leathen sawdust, or iioc, the name given to a ,featheryg cclttonmaterial available on the market. I have found, for example, that particles of cork used in the manner described, and illustrated byjthe numeral 3i in Fig. 2, (at 3Min Fig.;5 and at 315b in Fis. 6) are very permanently incorporated in the `grip and not ,only give it Aan attlactive 2L.DlOearance but lighten the grip fto improve the balance of the club. The cork particles give Pa good feel to the -gripand are extremely `,durable in use.

If desired, the smaller end of the grip may be `completed by va plastic ferrule 3,6 Ao r a plastic wrapping in the nature-of atrm, althouehthis is more for ydecorative lpurpcsesthan forarlylhel reason.

From the foregoing, it will be recognized that the various objects of my Vinvention ,have been achieved by the provision of agless expensiveand a better Agolf grip. ,'As all handllabor `1of lashing is eliminated, the grip is considerably less expensive to manufacture than prionknown types, and is much more durable and satisfactory use. The grip can be madeinany desired color compounded into the grip materiaLand this adds considerable sales appeal to theclub. jBy reason of theexpedients of recessingbetween `oneetlriird and two-thirds of the volume. o f the Agrip away, supplemented where necessary or desirable compounding the moldingmaterial Awith between twenty and forty percent by volume of lowdensity materials, plus theeliminationofthe wooden plug when and i'f desired, an excellent .balflliis maintained in the club. .Prcportioning the recesses lto extend almost ,to the surface .Qf the shaft provides centering of the shaftin the, grip, as above mentioned, and also permits lthe `recesses to displace the relatively ,large volume of thegrip specified, all without giving a mushyoroversoft feeling to the grip. Infact, the continuous ribs, particularly in a longitudinal direction, Awhen 'the snp is compounded from Stock approaching .the resiliencyof tire tread stoclggives a ,very and slip-proof grip having a, good feel. This is consciously and unconsciously appreciated,by,the golfer. l

As .will ,be understood by ,those skilled in the art, the progressive thinning of the floors ofthe recesses in the closing of the mold is coincident with a correspondingly progressive increase in Ithe floors resistance to further thinning, with the result that if at any time in the closing of the mold the fioors of the deepening recesses have become thinner on one side of the shaft than on the opposite side the thinner floors, by their greater resistance to further thinning, will cause the closing of the mold to speed up the thinning of the recess floors at the said opposite side of the shaft, and thus provide the centering effect above mentioned. This equalizing factor becomes highly pronounced as the floor thicknesses on 'the first mentioned side of the shaft approach zero, and, with the mold engravings symmetrical with relation to the axis of the shaft and suitably proportioned in relation to the diameter of the shaft, substantially perfect centering of the shaft is vobtained even though the floors of all of the recesses have final thickness sufficient to give the metal shaft good protection against perspiration and other moisture.

Also, as will be understood by those skilled in the art, this centering effect is not dependent upon a large number of the deep recesses 3.2, in a circumferentially spaced series, as it is essentially only that the pressures, the differential of which provides the centering effect, have a circumferential span of more than 180 degrees, for effective three point support of the shaft as it reaches its centered position.

While in accord with the patent statutes, certain best known embodiment of the invention have been illustrated and described in detail, it is to be particularly understood that the invention is not to be limited thereto or thereby,

6 but that its scope is defined by the appended claims.

I claim:

1. The combination of a handle shaft and a grip of molded-plastic on it and having moldvulcanized adhesion to it, the outer face of the 4grip being formed with a circumferentially spaced set of recesses extending substantially equal distances inward to such proximity to the shaft that 10 their floors of plastic material are of approximately zero thickness.

2. A combination as defined in claim 1 in which the grip is formed with an end Wall integral with the rest of the grip and enclosing an end of the shaft.


REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,587,082 Mattern June 1, 1926` 1,663,694 Fetter Mar. 27, 1928 1,768,933 Riley July 1, 1930 2,103,889 Brisick Dec. 28, 1937 2,171,382 Wettlaufer Aug. 29, 1939 2,318,682 Fawick May 11, 1943 3 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 173,914 Great Britain Jan. 19, 1922 380,088 Great Britain Sept. 9, 1932 399,072 Great Britain Sept. 28, 1933

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US1768933 *Jan 12, 1929Jul 1, 1930Miller Rubber Company IncMethod of making hand-grip sleeves
US2103889 *Jul 20, 1933Dec 28, 1937Kroydon CompanyGolf club handle
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2772090 *Aug 27, 1952Nov 27, 1956Spalding A G & Bros IncLightweight grip
US2979334 *Apr 23, 1958Apr 11, 1961Mitchell Charles FSmooth surfaced bowling ball with apertures therein
US3087729 *Aug 3, 1959Apr 30, 1963Lamkin Leather CompanySlip-on handle grip
US3433481 *Jun 25, 1965Mar 18, 1969Emerald Pacific Enterprises InBaseball bat wrappings
US5248141 *May 8, 1992Sep 28, 1993Kelly David FGrip equalizing golf club grip
US5637043 *Jan 29, 1996Jun 10, 1997Ram Golf CorporationGolf club grip
US5851161 *Jul 15, 1997Dec 22, 1998Sassak; Mark S.Grippable surface for throwable objects
US5984812 *Nov 9, 1998Nov 16, 1999Sassak; Mark S.Grippable surface for throwable object
US6024110 *May 29, 1998Feb 15, 2000Renfro; William L.Golf club cane
US6656054 *May 2, 2002Dec 2, 2003Eaton CorporationGolf grip with hand placement guide
US7980962 *Jan 30, 2009Jul 19, 2011Sri Sports LimitedGolf club and grip for golf club
US8348783 *Apr 15, 2010Jan 8, 2013Soracco Peter LButt-mounted shaft extension for a golf club
US8740720 *Dec 20, 2012Jun 3, 2014Acushnet CompanyButt-mounted shaft extension for a golf club
US9089750Sep 11, 2012Jul 28, 2015Acushnet CompanyButt-mounted shaft extension device
US9199146 *Mar 14, 2013Dec 1, 2015Lamkin CorporationGolf grip with raked gripping features
US9242154Nov 1, 2013Jan 26, 2016Acushnet CompanyClub length adjustment device
US20090298607 *Jan 30, 2009Dec 3, 2009Hiroaki FujimotoGolf club and grip for golf club
US20110256949 *Apr 15, 2010Oct 20, 2011Soracco Peter LButt-mounted shaft extension for a golf club
US20130109492 *Dec 20, 2012May 2, 2013Acushnet CompanyButt-mounted shaft extension for a golf club
U.S. Classification473/300, D21/756
International ClassificationA63B53/14
Cooperative ClassificationA63B53/14, A63B59/0029, A63B49/06
European ClassificationA63B53/14