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Publication numberUS3534964 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateOct 20, 1970
Filing dateDec 9, 1968
Priority dateDec 9, 1968
Publication numberUS 3534964 A, US 3534964A, US-A-3534964, US3534964 A, US3534964A
InventorsGuill Charles W
Original AssigneeGuill Charles W
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Mixing and dispensing marble game
US 3534964 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Oct. 20, 1970 c. w. GUlLL 3,534,964


INVENTOR Charles W. Guill ATTORNEY United States Patent 3,534,964 MIXING AND DISPENSING MARBLE GAME Charles W. Guill, 4600 S. Four Mile Run, Arlington, Va. 22204 Filed Dec. 9, 1968, Ser. No. 782,371 Int. Cl. A63f 7/02 US. Cl. 273-144 7 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A set of marble receiving tubes mounted on a base which also supports a movable marble reservoir above the tubes. The reservoir has a set of marble outlet ports aligned with the tubes and the ports are normally closed by expandable valve means. When the reservoir is moved to a lowered position relative to the base, the tubes expand the valve means and marbles are discharged through the ports into the tubes.

This invention relates to new and useful improvements in games, and the principal object of the invention is to provide a highly entertaining and amusing marble game which may be played by a number of players.

As such, the marble game of the invention comprises a set of marble receiving tubes mounted on a base, and a relatively movable marble reservoir from which marbles are discharged into the tubes when the reservoir is moved relative to the base. The marbles in the reservoir are of different colors and each tube receives a column of marbles which may happen to be of the same color or of different colors in succession. Each player has one of the tubes assigned to him and the game may be won by a player Whose tube receives a column of marbles of the same color, or of different colors in succession according to some definite pattern, as the several players may agree upon. Also, means are provided whereby each player may eject marbles of undesired colors from his tube, so that as the sequence of play is repeated, each player may attempt to collect a column of marbles of a selected color or combination of colors in his tube, in order to win the game.

Another important feature of the invention resides in providing the marble reservoir with outlet'ports which are normally closed by expandable valve means, the arrangement being such that when the reservoir is moved relative to the tube-equipped base, the tubes are operative to open the valve means to facilitate discharge of marbles through the outlet ports into the tubes.

The game of the invention is simple in construction, highly entertaining in operation, and lends itself to economical manufacture.

With the foregoing more important object and features in view and such other objects and features as may become apparent as this specification proceeds, the invention will be understood from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein like characters of reference are used to designate like parts, and wherein:

FIG. 1 is a view, partly in side elevation and partly in vertical section, showing the marble game of the invention;

FIG. 2 is an end elevational view thereof;

FIG. 3 is an enlarged, fragmentary plan view of the valve means;

FIG. 4 is an enlarged, fragmentary sectional detail, taken substantially in the plane of the line 4--4 in FIG. 1; and

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view, similar to the upper left-hand portion of FIG. 1, but showing the reservoir in the lowered position while marbles are being discharged into the tubes.

Patented Oct. 20, 1970 Referring now to the accompanying drawings in detail, the marble game of the invention is designated generally by the reference numeral 10. The same comprises a suitable base 11 which supports a set of vertical marble receiving tubes 12, the lower end portions of these tubes being suitably anchored in the base while their upper ends are open for reception of marbles therein. The entire device may be made of plastic material and at least the tubes 12 are transparent so that the marbles therein may be observed. Also, each tube is provided with a longitudinal slot 12a open at its upper end, for a purpose hereinafter to be described.

The base 11 also supports a vertically movable marble reservoir 13 which is disposed above the tubes 12. Conveniently, the reservoir may be movably supported by vertical posts 14 which are rigidly secured at their lower ends to the base 11, while their upper end portions are slidably received in tubular sockets 15 provided at the underside of the reservoir. Compression springs 16 are positioned in the sockets 15 to react against the upper ends of the posts 14, whereby the reservoir 13 is normally maintained in its raised position, but it will be understood that the reservoir may be moved downwardly toward the upper ends of the tubes 12, against the resiliency of the springs 16.

The reservoir 13 contains a plurality of marbles 17 which are of substantially the same diameter or somewhat smaller than the inside diameter of the tubes 12, so that when the marbles are received in the tubes, each tube contains a column of marbles of a thickness of a single marble. The marbles 17 are discharged from the reservoir 13 through a set of outlet ports 18 which are provided in the bottom of the reservoir in vertical alignment with the respective tubes 12. However, passage of marbles through the ports 18 is normally prevented by expandable valve means 19, provided at the bottom of the reservoir 13.

The valve means 19 comprise a panel or strip of elas tomeric material such as natural or synthetic rubber, suitably secured to the underside of the reservoir, as by adhesive for example, so that it covers the outlet ports 18. However, the valve strip 19 is provided at points below the respective ports 18 with aperture means 20 which, as exemplified in FIG. 3, may be in the form of a circular hole with a set of radiating slots, although some other suitable form of aperture means may be employed. In any event, it will be understood that in the normal state of the aperture means 20, the valve strip 19 closes the outlet ports 18 of the reservoir so that the marbles 17 cannot pass through the ports, as will be apparent from FIG. 1.

However, when the reservoir 13 is moved downwardly on the supporting posts 14 against the resiliency of the springs 16, the open upper ends of the tubes 12 come into engagement with portions of the valve strip 19 at the edges of the aperture means 20 and these edge portions of the strip are deflected upwardly as shown in FIG. 5, so that the aperture means 20 are expanded sufliciently to permit discharge of marbles 17 from the reservoir 13 through the ports 18 into the several tubes 12. Thus, each tube becomes filled with a column of marbles, whereupon downward pressure on the reservoir 13 may be relaxed to permit the reservoir to return to its initial, raised position, wherein the ports 18 are automatically closed by the elastomeric valve strip 19.

The marbles 17 in the reservoir 13 are of different colors and when the device is actuated, each of the tubes 12 will become filled with a column of marbles which may happen to be all of the same color, or in which the colors may be mixed in succession, depending upon the flow of marbles of the various colors from the reservoir. Thus for example, all the marbles in the first tube 12 at the left of FIG. 1 are shown to be of the same color, blue for example, while those in the next tube are mixed,

9 a as for example, red and blue. Also in the second tube, the marbles happened to be mixed so that red and blue are present alternately in the column, or some other pattern of progression may be sought, as for example, one red followed by two blue, followed by one red, et cetera. In any event, while the color sequence of marbles in each of the tubes 12 is dictated by chance, it may determine the winner of the game in accordance with some advance understanding among the several players as to which color arrangement is to win. Thus, for example, the winner may be the one whose tube 12 contains a column of marbles of the same color; or of all different colors; or of different colors according to a predetermined pattern of succession, and game points may also be scored in relation to a predetermined color pattern, it being understood that in playing the game, each player is assigned one of the tubes 12 and that the several tubes are filled with marbles simultaneously, when the reservoir 13 is lowered as already explained. The game may end with that single actuation of the reservoir, and the Winner may be determined in accordance with the color make-up of the marble columns of the several players.

Alternatively, the game may be continued beyond the initial actuation of the reservoir 13, in which event the reservoir is held in its depressed position and any one or more of the players may insert a suitable implement 21 (see FIG. 2) through the slot 120! of his tube 12, so as to expel marbles of an undesired color back up into the reservoir, with the hope that marbles of a desired color will pass into the tube while the valve strip 19 is still open during the time when the reservoir is still depressed, or when the valve strip is opened again during a subsequent lowering of the reservoir. In this manner the game sequence maybe repeated indefinitely, until one of the players attains a winning combination of marbles in his column.

In the same manner, that is, by use of the implement 21, all the marbles in all the tubes 12 may be returned to the reservoir 13 when each phase of the game or when the entire game is completed, this being done while the reservoir is in its lowered position and the valve strip 19 is open. Thus, the marbles are at all times contained within the apparatus and the possibility of losing them by dispersion outside of the device is averted. On the other hand, if there is no objection to removal of marbles from the tubes 12 after each play, as by tilting the device and collecting the marbles by hand as they fall out of the tubes, a suitable access door (not shown) may be provided on top of the reservoir 13 so that the marbles may be replaced therein.

Like the tubes 12, the reservoir 13 is also preferably made of transparent material, so that the flow of marbles from the reservoir into the ports 18 and tubes 12 may be observed when the device is in use.

The marble ejecting implement 21 may be in the form of a toothpick-like blade, or the like, capable of being inserted through the slots 12a into the tubes 12 at a selected point along the length of the tubes, for ejecting marbles of an undesired color, as already explained.

What is claimed as new is:

1. A marble game comprising in combination, a base, a set of marble receiving tubes upstanding on said base and having open upper ends, a reservoir movably disposed above said tubes and containing a plurality of marbles, said reservoir having a bottom provided with a set of marble outlet ports in alignment with the respective tubes, and valve means normally preventing passage of marbles through said ports, said reservoir being movable downwardly with respect to said base and said tubes being operative to open said valve means when the reservoir is lowered, whereby marbles may be discharged through said ports into said tubes.

2. The device as defined in claim 1 together with means supporting said reservoir on said base for raising and lowering movement.

3. The device as defined in claim 2 together with means resiliently biasing said reservoir to its raised position.

4. The device as defined in claim 1 wherein said mar bles are of different colors, the inside diameter of said tubes corresponding substantially to the diameter of said marbles, whereby each tube may receive a column of marbles only one marble thick.

5. The device as defined in claim 1 wherein said tubes are provided with longitudinal slots for reception of an implement whereby marbles may be ejected upwardly from the tubes.

6. The device as defined in claim 1 wherein said valve means comprise a panel of elastomeric material secured to the bottom of said reservoir, said panel being provided at points below said ports with expandable aperture means, said aperture means being expandable by engagement of said tubes therewith when the reservoir is lowered.

7. The device as defined in claim 1 wherein at least said marble receiving tubes are formed from transparent material.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,061,135 11/1936 Bissiri et a1. 2,086,296 7/1937 Gilbert. 2,233,589 3/ 1941 Dean.

FOREIGN PATENTS 99,753 11/ 1898 Germany. 864,076 1/ 1953 Germany.

ANTON O. OECHSLE, Primary Examiner A. W. KRAMER, Assistant Examiner

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2061135 *May 20, 1935Nov 17, 1936Carling Larrabee CompanyGame apparatus
US2086296 *Mar 3, 1937Jul 6, 1937Emile Gilbert CharlesBox unloading device
US2233589 *Oct 16, 1939Mar 4, 1941Dean Frank HGame device
DE99753C *Mar 30, 1898Nov 11, 1898 Title not available
DE864076C *Jul 10, 1951Jan 22, 1953Albin KorndoerferSpielautomat mit bewegbarer, insbesondere drehbarer Trommel
Referenced by
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US3856312 *May 17, 1974Dec 24, 1974Dabrowski SManually actuated ball mixing and dispensing device
US4048731 *Aug 24, 1976Sep 20, 1977Anastasia BaguioroEducational game apparatus
US4368887 *Mar 17, 1981Jan 18, 1983John GambleRandom selector
US4979748 *Feb 2, 1989Dec 25, 1990Marvin Glass & AssociatesToken aligning three-dimensional strategy game and method of play
US5050880 *Aug 17, 1990Sep 24, 1991Randy SloanRandom distribution machine
US5845903 *Jul 18, 1996Dec 8, 1998Sloan; RandyGame of chance device
US6322071 *Jan 11, 2000Nov 27, 2001Elias S. ChaabanAmusement apparatus utilizing multiple balls
US7455209 *Aug 11, 2003Nov 25, 2008Novatec SaFilling device and method for filling balls in the apertures of a ball-receiving element
US20040035908 *Aug 11, 2003Feb 26, 2004Novatec SaFilling device and method for filling balls in the apertures of a ball-receiving element
US20060186595 *Feb 21, 2006Aug 24, 2006Aruze Corp.Gaming machine
US20100301559 *Jun 2, 2009Dec 2, 2010Mark RiveraTable top ball game
US20150294596 *Jan 11, 2012Oct 15, 2015Pygmalion Kabushiki KaishaMath teaching tool
U.S. Classification273/144.00A
International ClassificationA63F7/00, A63F7/04
Cooperative ClassificationA63F7/048
European ClassificationA63F7/04R