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Publication numberUS2711726 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 28, 1955
Filing dateMay 10, 1952
Priority dateMay 10, 1952
Publication numberUS 2711726 A, US 2711726A, US-A-2711726, US2711726 A, US2711726A
InventorsDarrell George H
Original AssigneeDarrell George H
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Target throwing machine
US 2711726 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 28,1955

G. H. DARRELL TARGET THROWING MACHINE 5 Shets-Sheet 1 Filed May 10, 1952 Fig.

IN VEN TOR; BY 1'- M KWM' wwwm 44 June 28, 1955 e. H. DARRELL 2,711,726

TARGET THROWING MACHINE Filed May 10, 1952 '5 Sheets-Sheet 2 Fig. 2


BY Q MMsa-VM June 28,1955 G. H. DARRELL V 2,711,726

TARGET THROWING MACHINE Filed May 10, 1952 5 Sheets-Sheet 4 Fig. 7


June 28,1955 (3. H. DARRELL TARGET THROWING MACHINE Filed May 10, 1952 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 Fig. 8

Fig. 9


United States Patent i TARGET THROWING MACHINE George Darrell, Dedham, Mass. 7 Application Ma 10, 1952, Serial No. 287,189

15 Claims. c1. 124-6) This invention comprises a new and improved target throwing machine or trap for throwing clay pigeons in trap or skeet shooting.

In general the objects of the invention are to provide a machine that may be constructed economically and sold at a moderate price, that is compact and mechanically correct in its construction, as well as accurate and reliable in operation. Further, the machine of my invention is designed to throw the targets either in a predetermined path or at random within a suitable angle of range so that the machine may be employed for both trap and skeet shooting. The machine is also equipped with a turret magazine having capacity for an ample supply of targets, together with novel mechanism for transferring the targets successively to throwing position.

In the machine of my invention the target throwing element is a rotary disk from which the target may be launched by centrifugal force. The disk and its accessory parts may be balanced and motor driven at high speed and thus a high velocity imparted to the target while at the same time permitting the target, which is very t fragile, to be handled so as to reduce breakage to a minimum.

Preferably and as herein shown the turret is constructed and arranged to bring a stack of targets into alignment with and above the axis of rotation of the throwing disk and the targets are transferred one after another from the bottom of this stack to the center of the rotary disk where the target may rest momentarily without any motion of translation, merely spinning concentrically with the disk. Automatically acting means are provided for then displacing the target to an intermediate off-center position where it will be subjected to centrifugal force. Subsequently the target is released and allowed to move outwardly upon the surface of the disk, rotating about its own axis and acquiring greater and greater centrifugal force until it is launched in a controlled manner from the circumference of the disk.

It has been found that by depositing the successive targets upon the disk exactly in line with its axis, where the target is not initially subjected to any centrifugal displacing tendency, breakage of the fragile targets is reduced to a minimum.

The machine herein shown is operated from a single motor which drives the rotary throwing disk and also controls the operation of cooperating mechanisms for delivering successive targets and automatically controlling the manner and timing of their delivery. One satisfactory manner of accomplishing this is to provide a cam shaft under the control of a one-revolution or one-cycle clutch and operating the target delivering mechanism, the target releasing mechanism, and optionally controlling mechanism for varying at random the angular path of target discharge.

These and other features of the invention will be best understood and appreciated from the following description of a preferred embodiment thereof selected for pur- 2,711,726 Patented June 28, 1955 poses of illustration and shown in the accompanying drawings in which:

Fig. 1 is a view in elevation,

Fig. 2 is a plan view,

' Fig. 3 is a sectional view on the line 3--3 of Fig. 1,

Fig. 4 is a fragmentary sectional view on the line 88 of Fig. 1,

Fig. 5 is a fragmentary plan'view of the rotary disk and associated parts,

Fig. 6 is a corresponding sectional view on the lin 6-6 of Fig. 5,

Fig. 7 is a sectional'view on the line 7--7 of Fig. 1,'

Fig. 8 is a plan view, partly in section, on the line 8--8 of Fig. 1, and

Fig. 9 is a view in elevation, partly in vertical section, on the line 9-9 of Fig. 8.

As herein shown, the machine frame comprises a base 10 having an adjustable foot 11 at one end by which the machine as a whole may be leveled or set at any angle to the horizontal. A table or platform 12 is supported above the base by upright legs 13. A vertical shaft 14 is mounted in the frame to rotate in a lower bearing 15 fast to the base 10 and-an upper bearing 16 fast to the table 12. The shaft 14 is driven by a large pulley 17 through a belt 18 from a pulley 19 on the shaft of a vertical motor 20. The motor is bolted to a panel 21 hinged to the machine frame to swing about a vertical axis. A tension spring 22 is secured to the panel and this is opposed by a threaded adjusting rod 23 having an operating handle by which the rod may be rotated to swing the panel 21 with the motor outwardly in opposition to the spring 22 for the purpose of adjusting and maintaining proper driving tension in the belt 18.

The targets to be handled by the machine are designated by reference character 25 and are shown in Figs; 1 and 9 in the turret magazine from which they are supplied, andin Figs. 5, 6 and 8 in various positions upon the rotary disk from which they are discharged. The targets are conventionally shown as saucer-shaped clay pigeons.

To the upper end of the vertical shaft 14 is secured a flanged head 26 having a downwardly extending hub 27 which, as shown in Fig. 6, is pinned to the shaft 14. To the flanged head 26 is secured a flat disk 28 and upon the upper surface of this is fastened a guiding rail or arm 29 which is equipped with a cushion blade 30 of rubber or other flexible material and which is disposed substantially tangent to the circumference of a circular target concentrically located with respect to the shaft 14 upon the disk 28. A circular rubber pad 31 is fast to the center of the disk 28 and serves to support and cushion the target 25 as the latter is delivered thereto.

As best shown in Fig. 6, the upper bearing 16 for the shaft 14 has an upwardly extending shouldered hub in which is fitted a ring 32 and upon this ring is pivotally mounted a yoke 33 having a short rear arm 34 and a long front arm 35. This yoke is arranged to oscillate with the ring 32 in a horizontal plane through an angle of approximately 90 and also to rock about the horizontal axis of its connection with the ring 32. At its outer end the long arm 35 of the yoke is forked for engagement with a round wire bale 36 pivotallyccnnected at its rearend to the table 12 as shown in Fig. 7. The forward end of the bale 36 is semi-circular in shape so that the arm 35 of the yoke maintains in engagement with it throughoutthe movement of the yoke. The arm 35 is connected at one side to a tension spring 37 and at the other to a cable 38 which extends over guide pulleys to a crank arm 39 whose action will be presently described. For the present it will be suflicient to say that as the crank arm rotates, the arm 35 of the yoke is oscillated back and forth in the path indicated in Fig. 7.

Targets are delivered to the rotary disk 28 in a posi tion concentric with its axis of rotation. Each target as delivered rotates instantaneously with the disk and is then displaced slightly so as to become subjected to centrifugal force imparted to it by its off-center rotation on the disk.- For the purpose of imparting this initial displacement: to the target, a lever 41 having an arm curved to embrace a portion of the target is mounted on a pivot pin upon the rotary disk 28. The curved arm of the lever carries an inclined guide 42 and this is maintained normally in the path of the device for delivering the target by a spring 43 which holds the tail of the lever 41 against a fixed stop 44. The target delivering device engages the inclined guide 42, as shown in Fig. 9, and swings the lever outwardly to some such position as that indicated in Fig. 5, thus permitting the target 25 to be delivered in a position concentric with the axis of the disk 28. When the delivering device is lifted after depositing the target, the spring 43 rocks the lever 41 in a clockwise direction and displaces the target into the eccentric position indicated by reference character 25'.

In its displaced position the target 25 is held between the throwing arm 29 and a rocker member 46 pivotally mounted upon a short shaft 47 rotatably mounted in the disk 28 and the underlying flanged head 26. The rocker 46 is maintained normally intarget engaging position by a tension spring 48 which holds the rocker against a fixed stop 49 projecting upwardly from the rotary disk 28. The shaft 47 carries a collar 50 upon its lower end and this collar is provided with a tooth which is initially engaged by a dog 51 pivotally mounted beneath the flanged head 26. An elongated rod 52 passes through the dog 51 and is adjustably retained therein by a set screw. A tension spring 53 connected to the rod 52 tends at all times to swing the rod in a clockwise direction and to seat the dog against the tooth of the collar 50 thereby holding the rocker in its target engaging position as shown in full lines in Fig. 5. The inner end of the rod 52 is curved inwardly so that in its rotary movement with the disk 28 it will be brought into contact with an upstanding pin 55 which projects upwardly from the rear arm 34 of the yoke 33 when the yoke is rocked downwardly at its forward end by action of a solenoid 59. To this end the bale 36 is provided with an outstanding lug 56 as shown in Fig. 7 in which is set a downwardly extending rod 57 encircled by a compression spring which rests upon the table 12 and tends at all times to hold the bale in a substantially horizontal position. lower end to the plunger 58 of the solenoid 59 which, as shown in Fig. 1, is mounted in an angular bracket secured to the lower fact of the table 12. The driven vertical shaft 14 is provided near its lower end with a worm 60 which meshes with a worm wheel 61 keyed on a horizontal cam shaft 62 journaledin brackets 63 fast to the base 10. The worm wheel 61 carries a ratchet disk 64 with which cooperates a dog 65 pivotally mounted upon a rotary cam 68 which is loose on the shaft 62. The dog 65 has a tooth which is adapted to engage the ratchet disk and is biased by a tension spring toward its engaging position. The outer end of the dog is hooked and arranged to be engaged by a latch lever 66. The latch lever is maintained by a tension spring in the position shown in Fig. 1 in which the dog 65 is maintained in inoperative position. A solenoid 67 is connected to the latch lever 66 and when the solenoid is energized the latch lever is rocked in a clockwise direction, the dog 65 tripped so that it is engaged by a tooth of the ratchet disk, and rotation imparted to the cams on the shaft 62. The cam 68 is designed to oscillate a lever 69. A second cam 97 also loose on the shaft 62 but fastened to the cam 68 is arranged to oscillate a cam lever 96. Both of the cam levers are mounted to rock about a horizontal axis carried by an upstanding bracket 54 secured to the base 10.

The cam lever 69 is connected at its outer end to a The rod 57 is fast at its vertical rod 70 and to a tension spring 71 which cooperates with an adjustable stop 72 to determine the initial position of the lever. The rod 70 is connected at its upper end to a bell crank lever 73 pivotally mounted in an overhanging head frame 74 which is bolted to the table 12. The bell crank lever 73 is arranged to operate a slide 101 mounted for horizontal movement in the head frame 74 and this will be described hereinafter.

The target magazine will now be described. This includes in its structure a vertical stationary shaft 76 projecting upwardly from the head frame 74 and carrying a turret which comprises a top plate 77, a bottom plate 78, and vertical spacing rods 79 that complete the framework of the turret and form six vertical magazines each containing stacks of twenty-eight targets.

To the under side of the lower plate 78 is secured a ratchet disk 80 as shown in Figs. 3 and 4. With this disk cooperates a dog 81 pivotally mounted upon a pin 82 projecting upwardly from the upper surface of the head frame 74 and normally biased toward its engaging position by a tension spring 83. The dog 81 is extended outwardly in the form of a handle and connected to the plunger of a solenoid 84 mounted upon the head frame 74. The upper end of the stationary shaft 76 is slotted to rcccive one end of a torsional spring 85 as shown in Fig. 2. and the other end of the spring is fast to a pin 86 set in the upper plate 77 of the turret. The spring 85 tends always to rotate the turret in a counter-clockwise direction, and when the ratchet disk 80 is released either manually or through the action of the solenoid 84, the turret is indexed to bring one after another of the target magazines into delivering position in alignment with the axis of the rotary disk 28 as suggested in Fig. 2.

Successive targets are transferred from the lower end of the stack which is in operative posit-ion to the rotary disk by mechanism which will now be described. A yoke 88 is pivotally mounted on a horizontal pivot pin 89 in the head frame 74 and forked at its forward end to embrace a ring 90 which forms part of a target transferring basket or container as best shown in Fig. 9. The ring is connected to cylindrical walls 91 of suchinternal diameter as to receive the stacked targets with clearance. Pivotally mounted between the ring 90 and the cylindrical walls 91 is a pair of fingers 92 normally held by tension springs 93 in target engaging position as determined by adjusting screws 94 which are threaded into opposite sides of the head frame 74.

At its rear end the yoke 88 is connected to a vertical rod 95 and that in turn is pivotally connected to the rear end of the cam lever 96 which is operated by the cam 97 already mentioned.

The cylindrical wall 91 forming the basket has a pro- 1 jecting circular flange 98 which makes contact with the guide 42 when the basket is lowered as suggested in Fig. 9. The fingers 92 are pivotally mounted below the screws 94 and are outwardly inclined at their upper ends so that as the basket is lowered the grippers are swung outwardly at their lower ends and release the lowermost target 25 from a position closely adjacent to the surface of the rotary disk 28. The delivered target, therefore, merely spins about its own axis until the basket is lifted and the pusher arm 41 is permitted to swing inwardly and displace the target as already explained.

A pair of vertical target retaining rolls 100, preferably rubber covered, project downwardly from the forward portion of the head frame 74, as shown in dotted lines in Fig. 8, in position to engage all the targets in the basket except the lowermost target. These retaining rolls cooperate with a similar pair of rolls 102 carried by the slide 101 and projecting downwardly in opposed relation to the rolls 100. The slide 101 is slotted near its lower end to receive a guide screw 103 threaded into the frame 74. The slide is retracted by the cam operated bell crank lever 73 and is advanced by a compression spring 104 mounted in a plug 105 threaded :intosthe rear Wall of the frame 74 and telescopically receiving a guide rod which is threaded into a lug projecting downwardly from the slide 101.

Each of the target magazines formed by the vertical rod 79 is normally closed at its lower end by a pair of retaining arms 107, best shown in Fig. 3. These arms are pivotally mounted at their inner ends upon the ratchet disk 80 and biased toward open position by tension springs 108. They are held normally in closed position by a latch 109 extending between their inner ends and having a downwardlyextending' releasing pin 110 which is so located as to be engaged by the dog 81 when the latter is moved into turret locking position. The flange 98 of the basket carries an upstanding pin 112 which is arranged to slide freely through the frame 74 and beveled'at its upperend. A rocker arm 113 is pivotally mounted upon the upper surface of the frame 74 in position to be engaged and rocked outwardly by the inclined upper end of the pin 112 when the latter occupies its top position. At its outer end the rocker arm carries a pair of adjustablefeeler studs 114 and these are set to contact the rim of the eighth target from the bottom in the stack each time the basket is lowered as shown in Fig. 8. Acompression spring 115 biases the rocker arm in a counter-clockwise direction and insures contact with the target so long as there are at least eight targets in the stack. When the supply of targets has been drawn down so that no target occupies that position, the rocker arm 13 will swing inwardly beyond its normal position and trip a switch 116 mounted on the outer end of the frame 74. This switch is efiective to close the circuit through the solenoid 84, thus releasing the dog 81 from the ratchet disk 80 and permitting the turret to make an indexing step under the actuation of the torsion spring 85. It will be understood that this spring is wound up each time the target magazines are replenished by turning the turret to an initial position. The spring is thereupuon effective to impart to the turret the five indexing steps re quired to advance the successive magazines to concentric delivering position with respect to the rotary disk 28. It is believed that the operation of the machine will be apparent from the foregoing description but it may e summarized as follows. Assuming that the turret has been loaded with targets and latched with a full magazine in delivering position over the target transferring basket which will have been left containing at least seven targets; when this position is reached the dog 81 is tripped by hand and the retaining arms 107 are moved to release the stack of targets in the magazine so that they settle down upon the targets immediately beneath them in the transferring basket. The motor 20 is set in operation and the disk 28 with its associated parts will be revolving at the desired rate, for example, at 500 R. P. M. The machine is now ready to throw the first pigeon and this is effected by closing the circuit to the solenoid 67 through a switch located conveniently for the gunner. The action of this solenoid trips the dog 65 and causes the cams 68 and 97 to make a single revolution. The arm 39 revolves with the shaft 62 causing the arm 35 to oscillate with its tripping pin 55'. The cam 97 acting through the connection as above described lowers the target transferring basket, and as it reaches the bottom of its stroke, the fingers 92 release the lowermost target. The transferring basket is now lifted and returned to its initial position and thereupon the cam 68 becomes effective to retract the slide 101 which has hitherto held in position the targets in the transferring basket above the lowermost target. This releasing movement permits the stack to move down so that the discharged target is replaced. 7 At the start of the cycle the cam lever 69 trips the switch 75 located near its outer end which closes the circuit to the solenoid 59. This immediately lifts the tripping pin 55 into the path of the rod 52, thereby swinging the dog 51 into its releasing position so that the rocker 46 engages the target 25 only lightly under tension of the spring 48. The centrifugal force of the target, however, is such that the target immediately forces its way past the rocker 46 and is thrown with great centrifugal force from the outer end of the guiding arm 29.

It will be apparent that during the cycle of the machine the arm 35 is oscillating from side to side, correspondingly varying the position of the tripping pin 55 so that the exact instant of target release is not predetermined but is governed by the position instantaneously occupied by the arm 35.

If it is desired to employ the machine for skeet shooting which does not call for the discharge of the targets at varying angles as in trap shooting, the cable 38 may be disengaged from the revolving arm 39 and instead fastened to the stationary bracket 54. The cable 38 in this position will therefore merely hold the arm 35 at rest.

1. A target throwing machine comprising a rotary disk having a solid center and an outwardly directed guide rail on its surface, means for depositing a circular target upon the disk in a position concentric with the axis of rotation of the disk where the target is spun about its own axis upon the surface of the disk, a spring operated pusher for moving the target oif center, and means for temporarily holding the target in such otf-center position while the disk rotates.

2. A target throwing machine comprising a continuously rotating disk having an outwardly directed guiding arm on its surface, a turret having a series of target magazines mounted for rotation to bring successive magazines into alignment with axis of said disk, means for delivering one target at a time from an aligned magazine to the surface of the disk in line with its axis including a single basket movable between the aligned magazine and the disk, and automatic mechanism for indexing the turret.

3. A target throwing machine comprising a rotary disk, a target magazine located concentrically and above the disk, a basket movable between the bottom of the magazine and the disk, holders carried by the basket and movable to release the lower target in the basket, and automatic means for clamping and releasing the remaining targets in timed relation to the action of the holders.

4. A target throwing machine comprising a continuously rotating imperforate disk, a turret having a series of target magazines movable to bring successive magazines concentrically above the disk, a turret rotating spring, a latch for holding the turret in a plurality of predetermined positions, means for delivering targets by gravity from the magazine to the surface of the disk, and feeler mechanism movable to engage targets in a magazine and acting to release the turret latch when the supply of targets is reduced below a predetermined number.

5. A target throwing machine comprising a rotary disk, a magazine for a stack of targets located concentrically and above the disk, a basket movable between the magazine and disk and having movable fingers for retaining the lowermost target in the basket, cooperating vertically disposed rubber gripper members for holding targets in the basket above the lowermost target, a slide carrying certain of said gripper members, and means for retracting the slide together with certain of said gripper members after the fingers have been restored to target retaining position.

6. A target throwing machine comprising a driven vertical shaft having a rotary disk at its upper end, an electrically controlled device on the disk for temporarily restraining a target thereon against centrifugal displacement, a cam shaft, a clutch interposed between the vertical shaft and said cam shaft, a switch arranged to be operated by the cam shaft for retracting said restraining device to release the target, and electrical means for tripping the clutch to set the cam shaft in operation.

7. A target throwing machine comprising a vertical shaft carrying a rotarydisk at its upper end, a cam shaft, interposed connecting mechanism including a one-cycle clutch, a targettransferer movably mounted above the rotary disk, an electrically controlled device on the disk for temporarily restraining a target thereon against centrifugal displacement, means operated by the cam shaft for causing the transferer to deliver a target to the disk, and means also operated by the cam shaft for retracting said restraining device.

8. A target throwing machine comprising an imperiorate rotary disk having an outwardly directed guiding arm, a movable device carried by the disk for temporarily restraining a target on the surface of the disk against centrifugal displacement, a tripping member mounted for continuous oscillatory movement, electrically controlled means for moving the tripping member to operative posi tion at any point in its path whereby the restraining device is caused to move into target-releasing position, the said tripping member comprising a pin set in a yoke that is continuously oscillated about a vertical aXis and simultaneously rocked about a horizontal axis in moving the tripping pin to its operative position.

9. A target throwing machine as described in claim 8 in which the tripping member comprises a pin set in a yoke that oscillates in engagement with a pivotally mounted horizontally disposed arcuate bail, and a solenoid is provided for rocking the bail and thereby moving the tripping pin to its operative position.

10. A target throwing machine comprising a disk rotatable about a vertical axis and having upon its upper face an outwardly directed guiding arm, a spring operated target pusher and a rocker for retaining a target in an offcenter position, and on its lower face a latch for the rocker and mechanism for releasing the latch.

11. A target throwing machine of the character described in claim 10 having also a tripping pin mounted below the disk, and means for moving the pin upwardly into operative relation to the latch releasing mechanism in positions determined at random throughout a substantial degree of arcuate angle.

12. A target throwing machine comprising a frame having an overhanging head, a turret magazine for targets mounted therein, a vertical shaft journaled in the frame carrying a disk rotatable beneath the turret, a cam shaft having a geared connection with said vertical shaft, a clutch interposed between the two shafts, target transferring devices and target retaining devices mounted in the overhanging head beneath the turret and separate trains of connecting mechanisms between the cam shaft and said devices respectively.

13. A target throwing machine comprising a flat disk mounted for rotation about a substantially vertical axis, a guide arm fast to the upper face of the disk and disposed tangentially with respect to a concentric circle smaller than the disk thereby leaving the center area of the disk free and unobstructed, automatic mechanism located above the disk for depositing a circular target in concentric position on the face of the disk, a pivotally mounted spring operated pusher movable for displacing the target to an off center position, and a movable retaining device cooperating with the guide arm for temporarily arresting the target displaced by the pusher.

14. A target throwing trap comprising a rotary disk having an unobstructed, target-supporting center and an outwardly directed guide arm on its surface, a pusher movably mounted on the disk, a stop on the disk determining the initial position of the pusher, a vertically movable device for depositing a target concentrically upon the disk and simultaneously displacing the pusher from its initial position, the pusher being automatically returned to initial position when the target-delivering device is lifted and the target thereby pushed to an ottcenter position on the disk.

15. A target throwing trap comprising a vertical shaft carrying a rotary disk at its upper end, driving connections for said vertical shaft including a cam shaft and a one-cycle clutch, a target transferer mounted for up and down movement above the rotary disk, an electrically controlled device mounted on the disk for temporarily restraining a target thereon against centrifugal displacement from an oft-center position, means operated by the cam shaft for causing the transferer to deliver targets singly to the disk, and means for retracting said restraining device to release the delivered targets one by one.

References Cited in the file of this patent Darrell Nov. 28,

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Referenced by
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US20110186023 *Jul 8, 2009Aug 4, 2011Graham Charles CallanderTrench clay target trap machine
US20130125869 *May 3, 2011May 23, 2013Jean-Michel LaPorteTarget delivery device
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WO2010149993A2 *Jun 15, 2010Dec 29, 2010Ferris WhidborneLaunching device for clay targets
U.S. Classification124/6, 221/310, 124/32, 221/105, 124/43, 124/47
International ClassificationF41J9/18, F41J9/00, F41J9/30
Cooperative ClassificationF41J9/30, F41J9/18
European ClassificationF41J9/18, F41J9/30