US 2846226 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
S. REYNOLDS Aug- 5, 1958 2,846,226 TILTABLE CHUTE COMPETITIVE GAME APPARATUS Filed July 25. 1955 f 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 5 E w 2m 0 o M. @NEN W WJ n I e A A E ze WY .\-f. .m Hm W STN w @NJ m w \-W Aug. 5,. 1958 s. REYNoLDs TILTABLE CHUTE COMPETITIVE GAME APPARATUS Filed July 25, 1955 2 Sheets-Sheet 2' v 2v H W a, 6., 0V.
1NVENTOR ZZUy/ef' Reynolds BY M ATTORNEY United States Patent TILTABLE CHUTE COMPETITIVE GAME APPARATUS Schuyler Reynolds, "Columbus, Ohio Application July 25, 1955, Serial No. 524,161 3 Claims. (Cl. 273 110) This invention relates to game apparatus, and has particular reference to mechanical game Iapparatus capable of being operated or played simultaneously in a skillrequiring, competition-affording manner by opposing players.
It is an object of the invention to provide an intereststimulating, mechanical, game appliance for use by opposing competitive players, and so constructed that through the operation of an improved differential mechanism, eiected through the rotation member may be tilted about a central horizontal axis to produce such positioning of the member as to bring Aabout the winning or termination of a play cycle.
A further object is to provide game 'apparatus of this nature wherein novel means are provided enabling each player, by exercise of playing skill, to'control to his advantage the governable tilting of a vertically swinging play-controlling member in imparting desired movement of a spherical rolling element movable along the playcontrolling member.
It is another object of the invention to provide game apparatus of this character wherein a base is provided on which a play-controlling member is tiltably mounted, and wherein novel means are provided, responsive to variations inthe relative positions of rotation of a pair of manually, independently and simultaneously operated controls to -produce tilting movement of said member,
such movement taking place in a direction causing a roll` ing element, for example, deposited on the member, to gravitate toward the end of the latter containing the control which is positioned in a `definite relation to that occupied by the opposing contro An addition-al object is to provide game apparatus having a Ibase on which is pivotally mounted a movable figure or member and wherein a differential mechanism, having a pair of independently rotatable player-rotated shafts, is provided for imparting rocking movement to said ligure or member in directions desired by the players, said mechanism including a sleeve in which adjoining, longitudinally aligned, end portions of said shafts are received, the sleeve rotating in unison with one of said shafts and having formed therein, around the other independent shaft a continuous cam groove in which is positioned a follower carried by and projecting radially from the independent shaft, the arrangement of these parts being such that when the shafts are independently rotated in directions and at relative rates of speed desired or produced by the players, the changes in the operating positions of the follower from a normal or starting position, will result vin imparting longitudinal shifting movement to the sleeve, such latter movement being utilized to impart oscillatory play-producing movement to said gure or member.
A further object is to provide mechanical game apparatus of this character which is simpl, inexpensive and of a pair of manually l operated controls, a pivotally mounted play-controlling 2,846,226 Patented Aug. 5, 1958 vlCe of interest, amusement and excitement in the operation thereof and, also, in many instances, mystification as to its mechanical mode of functioning.
With these and other objects in view, as will become apparent as the description proceeds, the invention consists of the novel features of construction, combinations of elements and arrangement of parts hereinafter to be fully described and pointed out in the claims.
For a better understanding of the invention, reference may now be had to the accompanying drawings, forming a part of the present disclosure, wherein:
Fig. 1 is a view partly in side elevation and partly in vertical longitudinal cross section of game apparatus formed in accordance with the present invention;
Fig. 2 is a top plan view thereof;
Figs. 3 and 4 are vertical transverse cross sectional views taken through the apparatus on the planes indicated by the lines 3 3 and 4 4, respectively, of Fig. l;
Fig. 5 is a fragmentary vertical longitudinal sectional View on an enlarged scale and taken on the line 5 5 of Fig. 2;
Fig. 6 is a transverse .sectional view on the line 6 6 of Fig. 5;
Fig. 7 is a detail longitudinal sectional view of the differential drive mechanism employed for tilting the pivoted chute member of the apparatus;
Fig. 8 is a transverse cross sectional view on the line 8 8 of Fig. 5;
Fig. 9 is a similar View on the line 9 9 of Fig. l.
In the specific, exemplary, embodiment of the invention illustrated in the drawings, game apparatus is shown comprising an elongated trough-shaped base 10. In the form thereof shown, the base includes a horizontal bottom wall 11, transversely spaced, upstanding, longitudinally extending, parallel side walls 12, upright, transversely disposed end walls 13 the base may be formed in any desired manner from any suitable materials, I have found it advantageous to mold the same to constitute an integral body of one or more of the so-called plastics.
Arranged to extend centrally and longitudinally of the base for tilting movement is a chute member 14, which may, also, comprise a onepiece molding of plastic materials, in order that the same, together with the base, may Ibe relatively light in weight, of ample strength for the purposes and uses of the apparatus and relatively economical to produce under quantity conditions. The chute member comprises a longitudinally elongated, trough-shaped body, having a bottom Wall 15, upstanding sides 16 and an opening dening a runway 17 for the reception of a spherical rolling element 18, such as a small, solid ball, marble or the like, The bottom wall 15 of the chute member may, as shown in Fig. l, diverge upwardly at a slight angle to the horizontal when the member is normally positioned, thus causing a rolling element deposited in its runway 17 to gravitate toward the lower intermediate portion of the member, which is disposed midway of its ends.
The opposite or outer ends of the chute member, as shown in Figs. 2 and 9, include upstanding end walls 19 dening stops for arresting outward movement of the rolling element 18. Adjacent the walls 19, the bottom wall 15 has its upper surface locally beveled in ya lateral direction, as at 20, toward an opening 21 formed in the side walls 16 adjacent each end of the chute member. The ball or rolling element is adapted for discharge laterally from the runway 17, at one side or the other thereof, through one or the other of the oppositely disand an open top. Whilethereon in avertical plane extensionsk are journaledina pair of transversely aligned,
horizontally disposed, bearingopenings 2f4-formed in. ears 24a provided on the center and upper edge portions of the side wallsV 1-2..ofl the base member 10. The'formation:
22 also includes a rigid, depending. crank arm 25, the
latter having its lower end positioned in an annular groove 26 formed in the sleeve 27 of a diierental'mechanism D.' By moving the sleeve 27 longitudinally along' its principal axis, it will be evident that, through the engagement of the lower end of the crank arm ywith the sides of the groove 26, rocking or tilting movement is imparted to the chute member about an axis defined by the trunnion extensions 23.
' Inl producing such longitudinally directed sliding movement on the part of the sleeve 27, the differential mechanism makes use of a pair of independently rotatable, longitudinally aligned operating shafts 28 and 28a. These shafts are supported at their outer ends for rotation in bearing openings 29 formed in the end walls 13 ofthe base member 10. Toward their contiguous inner ends, the shafts are formed with collars 29a and are supported in semicircular depressions 30 formedin the upper edges of upright bracket webs 3&1v integrally formed with the base member. The shafts are removably retained inthe depressions 30 by means of leaf spring retainers 32` which extend transversely of the hollow interior of the base member and have their ends detachably received in sockets 33 provided in the side walls 12, as shown in Fig. 4.
The sleeve 27 includes an axial bore 34- for the reception of the adjacent ends of instance, the shaft 28, within the contines of the sleeve, includes a key-forming web 35 which is received in aligned radialy slots 36 formed in the sleeve in open communica tion with the axial bore 34, so that rotation of the shaft 28 causes the sleeve to rotate in unison therewith. The inner end of the shaft 28a carries in4 this instance a hub 37, the latter being fastened at 38 to the last-named shaft. Projecting radially from the hub 37 is a roller-equipped pin 39 which is received in an angularly pitched internally disposed, annular groove 40 formed in the sleeve 27.
In the operation of the apparatus, the chute member is adjusted to assume the substantially horizontal'position of Fig; 1, and a playing piece or in the center or midway position of the runway 17. Each of the players, stationed at the opposite ends of the ap'- paratus, rotates a shaft 28 or 28a by manipulating one of the exteriorly disposed knobs 41 which are fixed on the outer ends of the shafts at positions beyond the end walls 13 of the base member. If the shaft 28 should be rotated by a player man'pulating the same and at a higher rate of rotation than that imparted in the same direction of turning movementby the opposing player to the shaft 28a, the difference in the rate of turning movement of the to gradually turn about the collar 29a of the shaft 28a. This action results in imparting longitudinal movement to the sleeve 27, which through the engagement of the crank arm 25 with the groove 26 of the sleeve, causes the chute member to rock about its pivot mounting axis on the base member and thereby assume a tilted position which may be suflicient to cause the ball element to roll toward one end of the runway 17 for discharge through one of the outlet openings 21. This operation, however, may be checkmated by the opposing player, who, upon the operating shafts. In thisv ball element 18 is placed two shafts will enable the sleeve 27' that the bowed retainer 'springs observing the tilting of the chute member in a direction which, if unchecked, will' cause the ball element to be discharged from the chute member in a direction and in a manner counting against saidl opposing player, may increase the speed of rotation of the shaft 28a to equal or exceed that of the shaft 28, or the opposing player may reverse the direction of turning movement of the shaft 28a.
Thus, quickness, skill, attention and dexterity are required on the part of the players in the turning of the operating shafts of the differential. mechanism to bring the chute member to a position of inclination providing for the discharge of the ball element or other playing piece from a desired end thereof, conditions which enable the apparatus to'offer its players elements of excitement, novelty and interestk in establishing its appeal and popularity. While the construction of differential mechanism is of course subject to variation or modification, I have found the particular mechanism here illustrated well suited for` the requirementsandpurposesv defined, particularly in view of its structural simplicity,.economy of manufacture and the factthat. it does not `cause bindingv or locking of the'shafts when rotated in. opposing,v directions.
The sides 12 of the base adjacent their upper edges are formed with recesses 21tr which are adapted for alignment with the openings-21 of the chute member side walls to providevfor the discharge of a ball element 18 atthe endsandto the si'desof the base. A1so,1it will beobserved l32;4 as ,shown in Fig. 4, 28and 28ay in a manner holding the shafts, or other equivalent rotary.` controls, against casual rotation, so that the-positions of the relatively rotatabledifferential parts-are maintained `unless therfsame are positively-rotated; v
It willf be appreciated that-the specific forms of the invention as here disclosed m'ay'be: modified. For ex'- ample, variousvother play-controllingimembers besides the particular chute'member 14 here indicated maybe utilized', and likewise other: changes. Therefore, I intend. to include within the scope of my invention allf such structural variations'ormodifications that mayzbetsaidf to fall fairly Withinthe scope of the'y following claims.
l. Gamev apparatus comprisinga basetan` elongated chute having a longitudinallyV extending runway for the guided reception of a.Y ballelement; means Vpivotally uniting said chute with.r said base for'tilting; movement in a vertical plane for' causing saidV ballV element to travel gravitationally along saidrunway from a position substantially midway ofaitslength'i to either of its ends; a pair of independently manually operated controlsv rotatably supported and held against,sliding movement by said base; a longitudinally shiftable. differential member bear frictionallyon the shafts slidablymountedf onand rotatable i'nf unisony with a firstV of said controls, said-member includingA an internal an nular cam` groove;A radially disposed pin meansA carried by and projecting'from the second of saidzcontrolsl and received in' said cam: groove; and means responsive to longitudinal' movement of? said. differential member, produced as a result of differences in tlieman'ual rotation imparted: to said controls, for producing' tilting movement ofsaid chute in causing'the same to: occupy'positions of inclination inwhich said ball element will: roll along the runwayof. Saidchute'toward ani endv thereof.
' 2. Garne apparatus comprising a base; a play-controllingrmernber` movably supportedf-on' said base; manually operated means for' imparting play-determining movement to said member; said-means embodying a pairof longitudinally aligned manually rotatable shafts supported in said base, for independent-rotation; a sleeve receiving axially thereof adjacentlends offsaid' shafts,Y said sleeve being rotatable in unisonwith` oneoi'said shaftsand independently rotatablelwith 'respect to` the other shaft, saidt sleeveincluding an internally disposed continuous cam groovedlsposed concentrieally' of the longitudinal axis of said shafts; a follower projecting radially from said independently rotatable shaft and receivable in said cam groove to impart longitudinal shifting movement to said sleeve, such movement being effected when the operating position of the follower in the groove, as normally occupiedv by the follower, is changed through shaft rotation; and means operated by longitudinal shifting movement of said sleeve to impart play-determining movement to said member.
3. Garne apparatus as dened in claim 2, and wherein said shafts are restrained against casual rotation by means frictionally disposed in contact therewith.
UNITED STATES PATENTS Wilcox June 16, 1896 Walton July 10, 1928 Conover May 10, 1938 Rishel July 24, 1951 FOREIGN PATENTS Great Britain Apr. 9, 1935 France Oct. 21, 1953 France Oct. 28, 1953