US 2617653 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
w. P. KELLER .BASKETBALL GAME APPARATUS Nov. 11, 1952 3 Sheets-Sheet l Filed Aug. a, 1949 INVENTOR.' IW//l/'crm P. Kel/er BY *Qkzmdg ATTORNEY Nov. 1l, 1952 w. P. KELLER 2,617,653
BASKETBALL GAME APPARATUS Filed Aug. 8, 1949 5 SheVets-Sheet 2 l l 5 fl i @A .ZW l l `/NvNTo/iw Wil/iam R Kel/er Y Q'W ATTORNEY Nov-.1151952 WBKELLER 2,617,653
BASKETBALLI GAME APPARATUS Filed Aug. e, 1949 s` sheets-sheet s INVENTOR:
l Will/'0m F? Kel/er YN axiom( Affari/ver Patented Nov. 11, IQSZ BASKETBALL GAME APPARATUS William P. Keller, Havertown, Pa. Y Application August 8, 1949,",SerialNo. 109,190` I `This invention relates to an amusement device, andymore particularly, to an amusement device based on the game of basketball.
`The vprincipal object of this invention is to provide a novel amusement device adapted to provide aplayer with a means for exercising his sk'illjin` tossing basketballs into a basket. An-
other Objectis to provide such a device which isyadaptedfor automatic operation. An additional object is to provide such a device which is released for play by a coin-in-slot device. A furtherobject is to provide such an amusement device which will automatically award a free game. A still further object is to provide such a device with visual scoring means.
With the above and other objects in view, which Will be apparent as the description proceeds-the invention is set forth below in the following specication and is illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is a side elevation of the amusement devlce; n
Fig. 2 is a front elevation of the backboard and basket;v
Fig. 3 is a vertical section on the line 3--3 of Fig.2; j Y
Fig. 4 is a'front elevation of the ball delivering means; n
Fig. 5` is a vertical section on the line 5 5 of Fig. 4, showing the ball delivering means in closed position;
Fig. 6 is a plan View with a portion broken away, showingr the ball delivering means in open and Vclosed positions;
Fig. '7 is a diagrammatic view of an electrical circuit that may be employed in conjunction with the device;
Fig.,.8 is a modication of the invention adapted to award a free game;
Fig. 9 is asectional view of the ball delivering means ,used in the modification shown in Fig. 8;.
,Figglo i'sa diagrammatic View of an electrical circuitv that may be employed in conjunction with the'modification shown iny Fig. 8; and
Fig. 11 is a perspective view of another modiflcation, showing a basket rim` with an electric eye device and a different scoring arrangement. l
Referring to.Fig. 1the device comprises a cage I2,' a backboard I3 mounted'therein, a basket I4 mounted on the backboard I3, a means I5 for registering the number of balls passing through basket I4.. meansvk ,I6 forn delivering Va ball to a player, ,andvisual scoring .means I'I.`
"s'shown in Fig. 1, cage l2 is formed of porting members I`8,` which may be metal pipes.
supi s claims. 01. 27s-402.2)
Wooden poles,y or `the and a forwardly-projecting, downwardly-sloping` floor 2| Back wall'l I9 andside walls 20 may be made o f any suitable material 'attachedto supporting members" I8 'in any suitableway, but!4 are "preferably made of stretched` Wire `'mesh n whose openings are suiiiciently smaller -thanv the: J diameter Vof a' basketballlto prevent'itspassage?A VV therethrough. Floor 2I `may also be formed'ofy any suitable material, but is preferably made of 3 plywood covered with a soft pad22 (such lasa- 4-inch cotton mattress) to deadenthenorm'al liveliness of a basketball and thus restrict bounc-` ing'. v
Backboard I3 is vertically mounted approxi-fv mately half-way up back wall`I9, in anycon-.
venient but rigid way (as by bolts 23 through rear supporting members I8, shown in Fig. `2)". and is made of wood, metal, or other material' which will withstand the shockof a basketball*A thrown against it., It is of suicientheight vto permit a basketball to be bounced off its faceinto basket I 4 mounted thereon. l
It willbe apparent that backboard I3 'maybe' w omitted,` back wall I9 may be made of suitable' material, and basket I4 may be `mounted directly; y'
Basket I4 is preferably positioned on backboard lI3 at ajregulation cenit height from the playeri's lloor` level 2.4." is shown in Fig. s, it is vertically mounted on backboard I3 andlspaced outwardly' therefrom by suitable brackets 25and comprises a regulation basketball court rim ZB'and a'plurality ofwrigid ribs 21 depending from'the rim. Ribs 2*'Idtaper inwardly from rim 26 at va predetermined angle, the function of'vvhich is ex` plained below, until the'circle formed therebyis y just suiiiciently larger than the outside diameter of a basketball topermit the latter to pass freely therethrough. Ribs 21 extend downwardly from rim 26 a distance equalto three times the diame` ter of a basketball to permit stacking of three basketballs therein, one on top of the other. At
their l'onwerefrds,l ribs Z'Iare providedwith a bracing rilmzs ment."` H
Asbest shown in Fig. 3, projecting into basket I4 ,at me bottom thereof is'a. retaining pin `29 designed to hold one or more balls Within ytl1 efl confines of the ribs and to be withdravvri against thetension of Va,spring3l),,llflecllanicallyfib a" solenoid 3| mounted on the ioutsideof .brac ng... permit .any .balls ,l
rim 28. or on backboard` fl 3, to in the basket to fall to floor 2 I'.
like, and is composedofa l back Wall I9. forwardly projecting side Walls120,z
adapted to holl` the ribs `in rigid angriff Registering means I comprises three rocker arms 32, 33, 34, projecting into the basket and vertically spaced from the retaining pin 29 and from each other, preferably a distance equal to the diameter of a basketball. Rocker arms 32, 33, 34 are pivotally supported at 35, 36, 31, respectively, on backboard I3 and are of sucient length that, when the basketballs enter the basket, the Weight of the balls depresses the rocker arms withinthe'basket.
At their opposite ends, rocker arms 32, 33, 34 are provided with balance weights 38, 39, 49, or springs (not shown), which maintain the arms in horizontal position and at rest on -arm supports 4I, 42, 43 when no ball is depressing theopposite end thereof. Rocker arms 32, .33, "34 also carry electrical contact points 44, 45, 46, respectively, on their Weighted ends, which points are adapted to make contact with corresponding points 41, 4B, 49, respectively, vertically spaced therefrom, and thus I close electrical circuits when *thezends projecting Yinto -thebasket are depressedbytheballs. If desired, the rocker'arms may `be 'extensions vof :suitable switch arms.
fFlo'or 12-I slopes gently :forward to va 'point just short of the'distance from the'basket to a court foul :line at which rpoint it is provided Iwith .a verticalface-board 5I extending the entire width of floor l2| and aixed at each end to front supporting members I8 -so as to extend above and below 'the line-of -iloor 2l, as best shown-in Fig. 4. Bumper Vwires 52 are stretched between front supporting members vI8 justabove face board 5I to :prevent the -balls from 'rolling over the face board, but, of course, bumper wires 52 must not extend :to such Vheight 'as would restrict tossing the-ballfat-basket I4.
Referring to Figs-5 and 6,'it will bc'seen that balldeliveringfmeans I6 comprises -an opening -53 in oor 2| immediatelyto therear of face board 5I,"whichopeningis provided withaclosure tray 54 "adapted ,to slide 4on runners Y55 -mounted `on side -walls `just `below opening 53, a sloping oor 51 extending outwardly :from below .opening53, andaplayerpositioningboard 58 mounted Yon theouter .end thereof 'and extending the entire Width `of iloor 51, Vsaidboard l58 Abeing at the corresponding distance from basket I4 as a courtfoulline is from a basket.
Tra-y Y'54 is of lsufficient horizontal v.depth that, when -in its forward position, fitcloses opening l 53 to zprevent balls from returning Vto the player. Runners l extendvsufliciently vrearwardly so that tray154-mayzbe'pushed to the rearand completely clear of openingv 53.
At their 'rear extremities, runners 55 -are provided fwith'la suitable spring seat 59 adapted to hold'one-endvof a spring --60 inside runners 55, the opposite end of said springbeingheld-against the -backedge of tray 154.
yAn electricalcontact point-6I is located on the rear edge of .tray 54 andacorresponding point 62 .is mounted -under floor 2I, in horizontal alignment with `point 5I, these contact points beingadapted-to close an electrical circuit when tray 5'4 isin its open position. Point v5I is connected to solenoid 3| and point B2 is connected to .a-source of electrical current-(not shown).
These contactpoints 6I and V62 may be incorporated .in a trip arm switch (not shown) mounted so that Amovement of the tray to the rear will operate the switch.
Extending "horizontally forward and attached to'th'e front edge 4of vtray 54 lis a plunger 63'which passes through an opening l64 in the center of 1 2l face board 5I, said plunger being of suicient length that, when operated, it will push tray 54 backward and completely out of opening 53.
Mounted on the front of face board 5I and adjacent to opening 64 therein and plunger 63 is a coin-operated locking device adapted to lock plunger 63 in its forward position until a coin has been inserted into the locking device.
Visual scoring means I1 comprises a goal scoreboard 1G vertically r`mounted onbackboard I3 and adjacent to basket I4. Scoreboard 19 is horizontally divided into three sections 1I, 12, 13 containing electric bulbs 14, 15, 16, respectively. The -frontrof scoreboard 19 is closed by a suitable translucent cover 11, such as glass or plastic,
bearing the .legends 1 Goal opposite bottom section 1I and rocker arm 32, 2 Goals opposite middle 'section 12 and rocker arm 33, and 3 Goals opposite top section 13 and rocker arm 34.
Contact points 44, 45, 46 are connected in series, asshownin Fig. '7,.so.that the first contact must `be -closed before the second will operate, and the second must be .closed before the third Willoperate. Contact point A41 is connected to a source of electrical current .(not shown). Contact point 44 on rocker .arm 32 is connected to bulb 14 insection v1I of box 19 and also to contact .point 49 adjacent to rocker arm33. Contact point 45 is connected to `bulb 15 in .section 12 vand also to contact point 49. Contact point 45 on rocker arm 34 -is connected to bulb V1.6 in section 13.
`In operation, three basketballs are normally at rest on tray 54 andagainst the back of .face board A player inserts a coin in locking device 55 and pushes the release plunger 63 to its fullest extent, thus permitting the three basketballs to ball through opening 53 and roll .forward on floor 51 to player position board 58. He then releases the plunger, and spring 69 pushes tray 54 back into opening 53 and-thus closes it.
The player, having access to the balls, tosses one `toward the basket I4. If the ball misses going into the basket, it falls to floor 2I and rolls to its-original position on-tray54 and against the back of face board 5I. If the ball enters the basket, -it falls therein until it comes to rest onpin 28 and depresses the lowest rocker arm 32. This causes the opposite end of rocker arm 32 to rise, bringing contacts 44 and 41 together, thus closing the electrical circuit and lighting bulb 14 in section -1I of scoreboard 10 behind the rlegend l Goal.
lThe player then tosses the second ball, and, if
it misses the basket, it rolls to rest on tray 54. If it enters the basket, it falls to rest on top of the rst ball and depresses middle rocker arm 33, thus causing electrical contact to be made as described above and light bulb 15 behind the legend 2 Goals.
The player then tosses the third ball which, if itmisses the basket, rolls to rest on tray 54. If it enters the basket, it falls to rest on top of the previous vball to enter the basket and similarly dep-resses its adjacent rocker arm 34, closes the electrical circuit, and lights bulb 16 behind the legend 3 Goals.
Thus, if the .player has missed the basket with one or more balls, those balls will be at rest on tray v54 and those which entered 4the basket will be held therein bypin 29.
thereon Vto drop to floor 51, as previously deandere:
playerlortfos'singat the basket; f i
Aniodication ofthe device described above lis justjsuncient space' betweenl the openingofr the *narrow passage and player psition'boardES'to smania-fries. 3,19; and' frog-'laine' es" auapteaiigoals` are scored. s
Iwthis modification, 'ribSfZ-'If voffra.A basket 145 and-nobr siz'wnere'they'wiu au 1011,1fqrj1e2by1-fone. f through the narrow passagel created by side boards 8|' andover tripswitcharm' 82. i There'is accommodate one ball at a time. vAs the player picks up the rst ball, the second ball will rollthrough 'the passage and over trips'witch arm 82 to player position board 58. As the' player picks 'up the second ball, the third will presentitself in a similar manner. fAs each ball rolls over the trip switch arm 82, it registers that fact by light-` ing the correspondingly numbered bulb v86 in e ."ball scoreboard84.
forwardk if 'extended Iy 4end of I' which forms slopingf.
`Projecting"*into the basket .at any desired Lver-.`
tical" position; but here shown. at about ftlieih'al-1` waypoint Vbetween rim 126' and* openingr'fIS, 'isiai retaining pin 29 which functions as previously described. Rocker arms 32:', 33'.; 34'alsofproject s 'into basket I4'. 4Contact points 44', 45248. adapted A*to make contact lwith'.l corresponding 'f points 41', 48', 49',.respectively,- are carriednby` the outsideends (not shown) ofthe aforemens.y
tioned rockerfarmsin'a manner similar'to'that shownjin -li'igf` 3.- Contact` point; 41' is connected to a 'tsource-.of electricalA current (not shown); L Contact point 44 on rocker arm 32' is connected to aV bulb14vina box 10' and also :to contact` point 148 adjacent to rocker arm 33. Contact point45` is connected'to a bulb15'V andfalso to contact point49'. Contact point `46' on rocker arm 34' is connected to bulb 16` and also to-a solenoid 3I'fadapted to withdrawretainingipin 29 from the basket. 1 v A, 1 i n vBall delivering means I6! l (shown indetail r,inliig.I 9) is similar to that shown in Figs. 4, 5, and 6, but has side boards 8l vertically mounted on y oor 51 which taper inwardly fromsidewalls 20' until there, isjustsuiiicient passageway for one ball at a time to pass to the player position board 58. Projecting through floor 51', at about the` center of the aforesaid narrow passageway, is a trip switch arm 82 connected to a .step switch 83 mounted under floor 51'.
Tray 54is provided with a contact point 6I locatedhon its rear edge and adapted to rest againstgaV contact point 62' mounted under floor 2|'.` fPoint 6I'is connectedtosolenoid 3|', and point 6?', connected toia source of electrical current (not shown) Ayisual scoring means I1' is divided into two sections; fone a"goal section 10', as previously l described, and the other a ball' section 34; ,The
latter comprises a translucent panel 85 bearing numbers (here shown from 1 `to 9. but may bear any desired numbers), behind each number of which is mounted an electric bulb 86. Each of the bulbs 86 is connected with the corresponding step" in the step switch 83 so that as the switch is operated, the bulbs will be progressively lighted.
In the operation of this modification, a player inserts a coin in lock 65' and operates plunger 63', as previously described, which removes tray 54 from opening 53' and permits the balls on tray 54' to drop to oor 51'. 'I'he rearward movement of tray 54' causes contacts 6I and 62' at the rear thereof to close an electrical circuit and operate solenoid 3| which, in turn, withdraws pin 29 from basket I4 and permits any balls therein to drop through opening 19 -to floor 80 The rst'and second balls to enterbasket I4' depress rocker arms 32 and 33', respectivel"y,-F` and thus register on 4"goal" scoreboard 10' Y through bulbs 14' and 15'," respectively.` `When` the third ball enters the basket, it not only lights2V "lbu1b'1i, but falso operateslsolenoid 3l' vto reitract pin 29' and permitthe balls to fall through opening 19 and to roll down door 8G to door 51' and the passage between side boards 8i to give the player a free game. f H
If desired, side boards `8l and trip switchl arm 82 on door 51 may be eliminated and contact point 6I' may be connected to step switch 83` so that each time tray 54' is operated, that fact will be registered on the"ball scoreboard 84.
placed by an electric .eye device `(not shown) suitably. mounted so thatlthe light beamcast thereby is interrupted by a ball'traversing the" restricted passageway. i
Conventional` time relays may be inserted in the electrical circuit connected to thesolenoid` to hold the retaining pin in its withdrawn posi-` permit the tion for a'sufiicient period oi time to three balls to drop through the basket.
A suitable "clearing switch may also be iii-W serted in the device in any suitable way'so that the goal and ball" Scoreboards may be cleared This should preferably' be mounted on the face boardV 5I' adjacent to.v the coin-locking device.
to start another game.
Still another modiication of the invention is shown in Fig. 11, in which the baskets I4 `and I4. shown in Figs. 1 and .8, respectively, are replaced by` a basket I4 which comprises a riml 2e", mounted on backboard I3"V by brackets.
25", and alight beamvdevicel, mounted on the rim 2t in such manner as to throw a beam of light horizontally across the diameterV of rim 26" but slightly therebelow. On backboard I3",
andl preferably` behind an 'opening 88 therein, is mounted a beam receiver or electric eye 89 in direct line withlight beam device 81 so aste receive the beam of light thrown thereby.A
step switch (not shown), the-steps of which are, in turn, connected to bul-bsS in agoal scoreboard 5I. AThe latter is similar in construction to the ball scoreboard 84 shown in Figs. 8 and 10.
Adjacent to goal scoreboard SI is a ball scoreboard 84", similar to that shown in Fig. 8, connected to a suitable step switch mounted as shown in Fig. 9.
In operation, a ball passing through rim 26" interrupts the beam of light from device 81 to eye 89 and thus actuates the step switch which, inturn, lights the rst bulb 90 in goal scoreboard SI. The second ball, and subsequent balls, passing through the rim progressively light the other bulbs 90. The step switch in the ball de- Alternatively, trip switch arm 82 may be re'-l livering means progressively lights bulbs in `the ball scoreboard 84".
By variation of the angle of inward taper of ribs 21 in basket I4, it is possible to vary the degree of skill required to toss the balls therein. For instance, extending the ribs straight down from the rim a distance of approximately six inches andthen starting the inward taper, makes it easier for a player to toss the ball into the basket, since the ball will have less chance of striking one of the ribs and bouncing out of the basket. On the other hand, starting the inward taper right at the rim with a comparatively sharp angle, makes it necessary for the player to toss the ball squarely therein so that it will not bounce out.
Rocker arms 32, 33, 34, and their respective pivot points 35, 36, 31 and contact points 44, 45, 46, 4l, `48, 49, may be replaced by suitable switches having sufficiently long trip arms to extend into the basket, as will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art.
It is apparent that many different Vembodiments of this invention may be made without departing from the spirit and scope thereof, and, therefore, it is not intended to be limited except as indicated in the appended claims.
1. A basketball amusement device including n combination with a cage having back and side walls, a basket rim horizontally mounted on the back Wall, a plurality of rigid ribs depending from said rim and tapering inwardly therefrom at a predetermined angle until the circle formed thereby is just slightly larger than the diameter of a basketball and extending vertically downward therefrom a distance equal to at least three times the diameter of a basketball, a retaining pin projecting into the circle formed by said ribs and adapted to be withdrawn therefrom against spring tension by means of a solenoid mounted outside the basket, a plurality of rocker arms pivoted outside the basket, the forward ends of -which extend into the basket and the rearward ends of which are adapted to close electrical switches connected in series when the forward ends are depressed by a ball, said rocker arms being vertically spaced fromV each other a distance equal to the diameter of a basketball, a series of electrical bulbs mounted behind a translucent screen, each bulb being connected to a source of electrical current through a switch on ya rocker arm, a sloping floor extending outwardly from the back wall, an opening in said iioor at its outer end, a tray slidably mounted below `said opening, and an electrical switch mounted on the rear of said tray and adapted to close an electrical circuit and actuate the retaining pin solenoid when the tray is pushed to its rearward extremity.
2. The basketball amusement device of claim 8 1 in which the rigid ribs stop their downward extension short of the sloping oor to permit any balls therein to drop to the aforesaid floor when the retaining pin is withdrawn.
3. A basketball amusement device including, in combination with a cage having back and side walls, a basket rim horizontally mounted on the back wall, a plurality of rigid ribs depending from said rim and tapering inwardly therefrom at a predetermined angle until the circle formed thereby is just slightly larger than the diameter of a basketball and extending vertically downwardly thereform a distance equal to at least three times the diameter of a basketball, a retaining pin projecting into the circle formed by said ribs and adapted to be withdrawn therefrom against spring tension by means of a solenoid mounted outside the basket, a plurality of rocker arms pivoted outside the basket, the forward ends of which extend into the basket and the rearward ends of which are adapted to close electrical switches connected in series when the forward ends are depressed by a ball, said rocker arms being vertically spaced from each other a distance equal to the diameter of a basketball, a series of electrical bulbs mounted behind a translucent screen, each bulb being connected to a source of electrical current through a switch on a rocker arm, a sloping door extending outwardly from the back Wall and having one opening therein directly below the basket and another opening therein at its outer end, a tray slidably mounted below the second-mentioned opening, an electrical switch mounted on the rear of said tray and adapted to close an electrical circuit and actuate the retaining pin solenoid when the tray is pushed to its rearward extremity, and an inclined lower iioor mounted below the first-mentioned floor and extending outwardly from the back wall to a point beyond the second-mentioned opening in the upper floor, the aforementioned rigid ribs extending vertically downward to the first-mentioned opening in the upper floor.
WILLIAM P. KELLER.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the le of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,381,466 Jackson June 14, 1921 1,574,201 Lynch Feb. 23, 1926 1,577,959 Dunne Mar. 23, 1926 1,628,364 Hiett May 1o, 1927 1,924,757 ShisoiT Aug. 29, 1933 1,995,872 Ukanavage Mar. 26, 1935 2,028,676 Light Jan 21, 1936 2,192,430 Branner Mar. 5, 1940 2,413,952 Chervenka Jan. 7, 1947