US 3273891 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
pt 1966 E. D GRIM, JR
GOLF CLUB ATTACHABLE MIRROR DEVICE FOR DETERMINING PUTTING DISTANCES Filed Aug. 13, 1965 INVENTOR 421 a flew/e ATTORNEY United States Patent f 3,273,891 GOLF CLUB ATTACHABLE MHRRQR DEVECE FUR DETERMHNING PUTTING DISTANCES Earl D. Grim, In, 6 Chestnut Terrace, Cherry Hill Township, Camden Qounty, NJ. Filed Aug. 13, 1963, Ser. No. 301,707 1 Claim. (Cl. 273163) This invention relates generally to practice means for aiding a golfer to improve his game, and more particularly to a golf practice device adapted to be demountably attached to a golfers favorite putter for aiding the golfer to align his putter accurately with a golf ball and a target area. The golf practice device of the present invention is particularly useful for providing practice in putting, at home or on the golf course green, for golfers who wish to improve this phase of their game.
In the process of carrying out a putting stroke, there are two major factors which lead a golfer to a successful and desired result. The first of these factors is the proper alignment by the golfer of his putter, golf ball, and target area; and the second of these factors is the proper execution of the stroke. A deficiency in either of these two factors leads, in most cases, to an unsuccessful shot. While much has been written about the execution of a golf stroke, relatively little attention has been given in the mass of golf literature to the proper alignment of the putter, the golf ball, and the target area.
It has been proposed to provide the golfer with alignment aids by providing putter clubs with prisms or mirrors in collapsible structures built into the heads of the putter clubs. While such prior art clubs may afford the golfer with some practice means, these clubs are relatively expensive and are, no doubt, illegal for use in professional golf tournaments or competitive play. Furthermore, a mirror or a prism that is permanently attached to the head of a putter club is subject to being broken easily, or at least, to being scratched and dirtied, rendering it unsuitable for the use for which it was originally intended. Some prisms and mirrors have been attached to the golf club in a manner whereby the golf ball hides the target area, that is, the cup. It has also been proposed to provide practice means for golf clubs by providing sighting device-s that are adapted to be attached to the shafts of putter clubs. While some of these sighting devices may be detachable from the shaft, they usually cause parallax and interfere with the putting stroke because, not being at the head of the club, they unbalance the club. Furthermore, the later sighting devices are usually not easily or quickly removed from the putters to which they are attached.
It is an object of the present invention to provide an improved golf practice device that is relatively free from the aforementioned disadvantages of the prior art practice devices.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved golf practice device that can be easily and quickly attached to, or removed from, a golfers favorite putter, without rendering the club illegal for use in tournament play when the practice device is removed, He may, in this fashion, use his same favorite p'utter both in practice, to improve his putting, and in competitive golf, where he may reap the benefits of his scientific practice.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide an improved golf practice device that does not cause parallax, does not interfere with the balance of the club, and is readily adjustable with respect to the head of the club.
3,273,891 Patented Sept. 20, 1966 A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved golf practice deviw that helps a golfer to form a mental image of the sight picture when the golf club, golf ball, and target area are in accurate alignment for making a successful shot. Thus, after practice, the golfer can attain the proper initial alignment for his putts, relying upon his memory of the proper club, ball, and target spatial relationships.
Still a further object of the present invention is to provide an improved golf practice device that not only aids the golfer to align his club with the ball and target but also provides the golfer with an estimate of the distance the ball is from the target.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved golf practice device of the type described that is simple in construction, easy to manufacture, and yet highly efficient in use.
Briefly, these and other objects of the present invention are achieved in a golf practice device of the type that is adapted to be demountably attached to the head of a golf club in a manner whereby the golf club is substantially unaltered and may be used in tournament play when the practice device has been removed. The practice device comprises a lighweight bracket in the form of two planar parts that form a dihedral angle between them. A mirror is on one of the parts of the bracket, and an adhesive material is fixed to the other of the parts of the bracket. The bracket is adhered to the head of the club so that the mirror makes :an angle of substantially 225 degrees with the ball-striking surface of the club. Theadhesive material on the bracket may be a pile material formed with a plurality of hooks. A napped, looped pile material may be adhered to the head of the club for engaging the hooked pile material on the bracket, causing the bracket to adhere to the club. Adhesive material sold commercially under the trade name Velcro is a suitable adhesive for causing the bracket to adhere to the club. Calibrated indicia are inscribed on the mirror to indicate the distance the golf ball is from the target. When the golf ball is viewed from the target, the size of the ball, as viewed in the mirror and measured by the indicia, indicates the distance.
The novel features of the present invention, as well as the invention itself, both as to its organization and method of operation, will be understood in detail from the following description, when considered in connection with the accompanying drawing, in which similar reference characters designate similar parts, and in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a golf practice device and means for adhering it to a golf club in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a front elevational view of the golf practice device adhered to the head of a golf club, the latter being in position for striking a golf ball, in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view of a portion of adhesive material taken along the line 33 in FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the golf practice device taken along the line 44 in FIG. 1;
FIG. 5 is a pictorial view illustrating the method of using the golf practice device on a golf course; and
FIG. 6 is a pictorial view of the proper sight picture, as seen by the golfer in the mirror of the device when he has attained the proper alignment for a straight putt.
Referring now particularly to FIGS. 1, 2, 3 and 4, there is shown a golf practice device 10, adapted to be adhered to the head 12 of a golf club 14, preferably a putter, in
accordance with the present invention. The device 10 comprises a bracket 16, preferably of lightweight material, such as a plastic material or a light metal, such as aluminum. The bracket 16 comprises upper and lower integral planar parts 18 and 20, respectively, that form a dihedral angle A between them. The dihedral angle A is preferably 135 degrees, but it may vary in accordance with the type of head of the golf club to which the device 10 is to be attached.
An object having a reflecting surface, such as a mirror 21, is fixed to the upper surface of the upper part 18 of the bracket. If the bracket is made of a material such as aluminum, the upper surface 18 may be polished to form the mirror 21. Also, if the bracket material is a plastic material, a thin vacuum deposited film of metal on the plastic surface could form the reflecting surface, mirror 21.
A relatively stiff pile material formed with hooks, such as a hooked Velcro material 22 is adhered to the outer surface of the lower part 20 of the bracket 16 and is adapted to adhesively engage a napped pile Velcro material 24 that has been previously fixed to the head 12 of the club 14. The napped pile Velcro material 24 comprises a plurality of loops 26 of threaded material on a backing of fabric 28, such as nylon. An adhesive 30 such as rubber or plastic cement, for example, is placed on the back of the f; bric backing 28 to secure the mapped pile Velcro material 24- to the head 12 of the golf club 14. The hooked Velcro material 22 also extends from a fabric backing 32 which, in turn, is secured to the bracket 16 by any suitable adhesive 30, such as rubber or plastic cement, for example. The hooked Velcro material 22 and the mapped pile Velcro material 24 are used and described herein as an example of detachably interlocking adhesive materials. Other detachably interlocking adhesive materials, such as adhesive tapes, may also be employed to secure the bracket 16 to the head 12 of the club 14.
Referring, now, particularly to FIG. 2, the golf practice device 10 is shown demountably adhered to the rear, flat surface 34 of the head 12 of the golf club 14. Since the device 10 is adapted for use preferably with a putter club, and since the heads of most conventional putters have their rear surfaces 34 parallel to their striking surfaces 36, the practice device 10 is preferably adhered to the rear surface 34 f the club. The napped pile Velcro material 24 may then be secured to the rear face 34 of the club by the adhesive material 30. It will now be understood that the bracket 16 may now be secured to the head 12 of the club 14 by merely pressing the hooked Velcro material 22 to engage the napped pile 26. When the bracket -16 is properly attached to the head of the putter 14, the mirror 21 forms an angle of substantially 225 degrees with the striking surface 36 of the head 12.
Means are provided on the mirror 21 to enable the golfer to judge the distance of the golf ball B from a target such as a hole. To this end, the mirror 21 has inscribed thereon a plurality of parallel lines spaced symmetrically on both sides of a center line 40. Three pairs of lines, for example, disposed symmetrically on opposite sides of the line 49, are marked by indicia 1t), 8 and 4, as shown in FIG. 1. These pairs of lines are calibrated so that their indicia indicate the distance the ball B is from the target. For example, to estimate how far the ball B is from a hole, the club 14 with the golf practice device attached thereto is held directly over the hole, and the ball B is viewed in the mirror 21. The image of the ball B is centered on the line 40, and the size of the balls image is measured by the indicia. If, for example, the centered image of the ball B is between the lines marked 10, the ball B is ten feet away. Similarly, if the centered image of the ball B is between the lines marked 8, the ball B is eight feet from the mirror 21. If the ball B is not included exactly between a pair of symmetrically spaced lines, the distance can be estimated.
Thus, the golf practice device 10 provides the golfer with sight images which eventually enable him to judge accurately the distance of a golf ball from the hole.
In using the device 10, the golfer places the head 12 of the golf club 14 directly behind the golf ball B, as shown in FIG. 5. The golfer then looks into the mirror 21 and adjusts the club 14 until he sees a flag pin 37 in the hole 38 into which he wishes to putt the ball B. FIG. 6 shows a view of the proper sight picture for a straight putt. At this point, the golfer is ready to execute the stroke. After the execution of the stroke, the golfer examines any bias exhibited by the trajectory of the stroke. The ball B may have gone either to the left or to the right of the hole 38. Slight changes in the alignment of the device 10 with respect to the head 12 of the club 14 can easily be made, if necessary. For a right-handed golfer, for example, the part nearest to the shaft of the putter can be lowered slightly; or conversely, the front portion of the device 111 can be raised slightly if the ball goes to the left of the hole 38. This alignment moves the target, that is, the image of the pin 37, out in the mirror 21, necessitating a rotation of the putter striking face 36 until the pin 37 is seen once more in the proper position. Conversely, if the ball B goes to the right of the target, the rear of the device 10 may be raised slightly to correct for this. By making slight adjustments in the position of the device 10 while it is attached to the putter, a precise alignment for the putting stance of an individual golfer may be accomplished. The position of the device 1% on the putter head 12 may be marked when the optimum location and aligmnent of the device 20 for an individual has been determined.
Thus, there has been shown and described an improved golf practice device by means of which a golfer may obtain a memory of the sight pictures of the distances a ball is from the hole as well as of the relationship of the golf ball, the club face, and line from the golf ball to the target. While only one embodiment of the golf practice device has been described, various modifications of the present invention will, no doubt, suggest themselves to those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention. Hence, it is desired that the foregoing description shall be considered as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
What is claimed is:
A golf practice device adapted to be demountably attached to a substantially smooth continuous surface on the head of a golf club on any material without any alteration of said golf club, said continuous surface being other than the ball striking surface of said head, said device comprising, in combination:
an integral bracket comprising two planar parts disposed to form a dihedral angle therebetween,
a mirror on one of said planar parts,
first and second detachably interlockable bracket mounting materials,
said first material comprising an adhesive for mounting it on the other of said planar parts,
said second material comprising an adhesive for mounting it on said continuous surface,
said first and said second materials being adapted to stick to each other, whereby said bracket can be adhered to said head,
said dihedral angle being such that said mirror makes an angle of substantially 225 with said striking surface when said bracket is adhered to said head,
lines on said mirror, said lines being calibrated to indicate the distance said golf ball is from said mirror when said golf ball, at a distance from said mirror, is viewed in said mirror, said lines being disposed in pairs symmetrically about a center line, each pair of symmetrically disposed lines being spaced to indicate a different distance said golf ball is from said mirror when the image of said golf ball in 5 6 said mirror is included between a respective pair of References Cited by the Examiner lines, UNITED STATES PATENTS numbers associaled with said pairs of lines and corre- 2463798 3 /1949 Paisley 273 163 Spondmg to sald n s, and r 3,105,972 10/1963 Christopher. said second material being completely removeable from 8 3,170,698 2/ 1965 Schoeffier et a1 273-463 said eontinuous surface of said head so that said golf FOREIGN PATENTS club s preserved 111 its origmal condmon when said 16,834 1906 Great Britain material is removed therefrom, whereby sald golf club may be any conventional club suitable for use 10 DELBERT LOWE, Primary Examiner in games wherein alterations in a club are forbidden. G, J, MARLO, Assistant Examiner.