US 2937872 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
May 24, 1960 M J GIL MAN SELF-ERECTING FOOTBALL DUMMY Filed June l0, 1958 lNvENToR /4/ /VM n .7: gm,
BY @m m?. 2h44 a ATTORNEY United States YPatent SELF-ERECTING FOOTBALL DUMMY Martin J. Gilman, Gilman, Conn. Filed June 1o, 195s, ser. No. 741,022 s claims. (ci. 27s-ss)l The present invention relates generally to athletic train ing devices, and it relates more particularly to a col-r lapsible self-erecting football dummy.
A dummy employed in football practice to develop blocking and scrimmage techniques should possess several certain required characteristics. The dummy should be self-erecting, to present a target best simulating an opposing player and his response,l and to respond to various types of body contact in a predetermined manner to afford an indication of the effectiveness of ther application of force thereto by the player. `It should present a minimum of hazard of injury and be capable of withstanding considerable wear, abuse and abrasion. Another desirable property is that it be readilycollapsible and its bulk reduced, and be capable of being compactly stored or transported. While football dummies of ymany* types'have been and are presently available they `gen erally possess numerous drawbacks and disadvantages and lack one or more of the above desired qualities.
It is thus a principal object of the present invention to provide an improved athletic training device.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved football dummy.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide an improved self-erecting football dummy.
A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved collapsible self-erecting football dummy.
Still a further object of the present invention is to provide an improved collapsible self-erecting football dummy of simple, rugged and inexpensive construction.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved self-erecting football dummy having a desirable response to bodily contact.
Other and further objects of the present invention will become apparent from a reading of the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein Figure 1 is a vertical sectional diagrammatic view of a football dummy embodying the present invention, illustrated during the loading of the weighted base;
Figure 2 is a view similar to Figure 1, illustrating the insertion of the deliated bladder into the outer envelope following the filling of the base;
Figure 3 is a detailed vertical sectional view of the improved football dummy in a fully inflated operative condition; and
Figure 4 is a diagrammatic front elevational view of the improved dummy in various attitudes between a prone and erect position.
In a sense, the present invention contemplates the provision of an improved self-erecting football dummy comprising an outer flexible envelope having a downwardly convex curved base portion and a top portion extending upwardly from said base portion, a transverse partition disposed within said envelope between said base portion and said top portion to define within said envelope base portion a base compartment, said partition having an opening formed therein, a flexible tubular member extending from said openingand movable tween an upwardly directed open position and a collapsedv closed condition, a free flowing weighted material sub-1` stantially filling said base compartment, and an inflatable bladder located within said envelope top portion.
Anotherimportant feature. of the present invention is the configuration and 'structure of the base portion in which the underface` is rof curved convex form having degrees of curvature and dimensions which result in a dummy affording optimum response to body contact and to its normal use.
Referring now to the drawings which illustrate a pre-` ferred embodiment of the present invention, reference numeral 10 generally designates the outer envelopevofV the dummy which is preferably formed of heavy4 duck or canvas and is constructed in the conventional manner from a plurality of panels Vwhich are sewn along continuous edges. The outer envelope 10 includes a base portion 12 and an upper portion 13. The base portion 12 is of downwardly directed convex configuration, preferably of circular horizontal cross section.
The central portion 14 of rbase 12 forms between ap-- proximately one-half and one-third the horizontal width' of the base and is either Vflat orhas a very largevertical radius of curvature. The remaining peripheral sectionv 16 of base portion 12 has avertical radius of curvature.
considerably less than that of the central po'rtiouand is preferably between 9 inches and 13 inches, forex# ample, 111/2 inches, and has a center of curvature approximately 101/2A `inchesr abovethe bottom'of the basef and close to the central vertical axis. The width ofbase" 12 is preferably approximately l23 inches and the cen-f tral portion thereof having the larger curvature is` prefer-. ably approximately 9 inches wide. The height of base 12 is preferably approximately v9 inches.
The overall height of the dummy is inches.
Extending upwardly from base 12 is the upper portion' like.
An opening 21 is formed in the center of partition 19 and a exible elongated tubular conduit or throat 22 is provided having its lower portion secured to the edge of opening 21 thereby to afford access into the compartment between partition 19 and the base of envelope 10 for the deposit and reception of a uidized heavy material such as sand, shot, or the like. It should be noted that conduit 22 is relatively limp so that it will collapse into a closed position when unsupported, as seen in Figures 2 and 3 of the drawings.
A centrally located elongated slit 23 is formed in the top of envelope 10, which slit may be spread to afford free access into the interior of the envelope and to conduit 22. Separable fasteners 24 of any well known type are provided along opposite edges of slit 23 to permit the closing of the opening afforded thereby. An opening 26 is also formed in the upper part of the envelope 10 and a grommet 27 is disposed in registry therewith.
In order to maintain envelope 10. in an expanded extended position there is provided an inflatable bladder 28 formed of rubber or the like which has located in' its upper portion an air valve 29 which may be brought into registry with grommet 27.
In assembling and erecting the football dummy of the present invention for use, slit 23 is opened by way of separable fasteners 24 and conduit 22 is manipulated to an erect position in alignment with the top opening through the slit 23. Sand or other free flowing heavy material is introduced into the base compartment below thev partition 19 by `way of va spout 30 which delivers the sand into the base compartment through the aligned erect conduit 22. After the base compartment has been lled with sand the conduit 22 is permitted to collapse and will` ordinarily assume a position similar to that il, lustrated in Figure 3.
Thereafter, bladder V28, in deflated condition, is in serted through open slit 23 into envelope 10 and bladder valve 29 brought into registry with grommet 27. Bladder 28 is then inflated in the usual manner and on ination will maintain conduit 22 in closed position and impact the sand in the base compartment. After slit 23 has been closed by fasteners 24 the pressure in the bladder may be adjusted to impart the desired feel or degree of solidity or firmness to the dummy. to facilitate transportation or movement of the dummy after erection a handle 32 is mounted on the envelope wall adjacent the upper portion thereof.
In its preferred form the amount of sand deposited in the base compartment is approximately 95 pounds. The outer envelope, including theA base compartment, weighs about 5 pounds, and the inflated bladder about 51/2 pounds.
As shown in Figure 4, as a dummy is upset or forced into prone position on substantial bodily contact, the weight of the sand in base compartment, fixed as it is against shifting by pressure of the expanded bladder against partition 19, will rock the dummy back to the vertical due to the shorter radius of curvature at peripheral portion 16. The greater radius of curvature at central portion 14 will cause resistance against upset except on direct or substantial contact.
In preparing the dummy for storage or transportation bladder 28 is deflated and removed from the envelope 10 by way of slit 23. The sand is then removed by inverting the dummy and pouring the sand through the depending conduit 22 and the aligned open slit 23.
While there has been described and illustrated a pre- In order v ferred embodiment of the present invention, it is apparent that numerous alterations and omissions may be made without departing from the spirit thereof.
1. An improved, collapsible, self-erecting football dummy comprising an outer flexible envelope including a base provided with a downwardly convex outer wall including a central section and a border section and a vertically elongated top portion extending upwardly from said base, the central section of said base having a relatively large radius of curvature and the border section of said base having a relatively small radius of curvature between approximately 9 and 13 inches, a transverse partition extending across the border wall of said base adjacent the upper periphery thereof and disposed within said envelope to define, with said base portion, a base compartment, said partition having an opening formed therein, a flexible tubular member extending from said opening and movable between an upwardly directed open position and a collapsed condition blocking the opening,
a free flowing weighted material substantially filling said base compartment, and an air-inflated bladder located within the top portion of said envelope maintaining the collapsed tubular member in closed condition and maintaining the sides of the dummy from top to bottom in smooth, unbroken condition.
2. An improved football dummy in accordance with claim 1, wherein the central section of said base is substantially flat and of a horizontal width between approximately onehalf and one-third the horizontal width of said base.
3. An improved football dummy in accordance with claim 1, wherein the height of said dummy is approximately seven times the height of said base and approximately two and a half times the width of said base at its widest part.
References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,037,508 Gilman Apr. 14, 1936 2,237,599 Gilman Apr. 18, 1941 2,449,935 Gilman Sept. 21, 1948