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Publication numberUS3606325 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 20, 1971
Filing dateApr 27, 1970
Priority dateApr 27, 1970
Publication numberUS 3606325 A, US 3606325A, US-A-3606325, US3606325 A, US3606325A
InventorsLamkin Joseph P, Lamkin Robert E
Original AssigneeLamkin Leather Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Golf club grip
US 3606325 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 20, 1971 R E, LAMKIN ETAL 3,606,325

GOLF. CLUB GRIP Filed April 27, 1970 FIG. 9

INVENTORS Robert E. Lamk/n BY Joseph P. Lamkin 28 ATTYS.

United States Patent Office 3,606,325 Patented Sept. 20, 1971 3,606,325 GOLF CLUB GRIP Robert E. Lamkin, Downers Grove, and Joseph P. Lamkin, Chicago, Ill., assignors to Lamkin Leather Company, Chicago, Ill.

Filed Apr. 27, 1970, Ser. No. 32,103 Int. Cl. A63b 53/14 US. Cl. 27381.5 6 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A grip for golf club shafts comprising an elongated open-ended tube of an elastically expandable material and having a reduced diameter portion at its upper end which tapers upwardly and outwardly. About this upper portion is a metal clamp ring, correspondingly tapered, and having at its upper edge an outwardly extending flange. A gripping surface material is afiixed about the elastic tube and clamp ring. An end cap is disposed atop the tube and is crimped to frictionally lock the upper end of the gripping surface material between its inside walls and the outer wall of the clamp ring.

This invention relates to new and improved golf club grips.

The present invention is particularly concerned with golf club grips of the type constructed of a molded rubber underlisting which is covered by a gripping surface material which may be, for example, in the form of a leather strip which is wrapped spirally about the underlisting, as disclosed in Us. Pat. 3,087,729, or in the form of a sleeve, as disclosed in US. Pat. 3,366,384. In the past, it has generally been the practice to use an underlisting having an open end which is closed by means of an end cap. These caps have assumed various configurations, and numerous methods have been employed to secure the cap to the end of the shaft. Each has, however, been generally unsatisfactory, for one reason or another, and considerable efforts have been made to provide a satisfactory cap, as well as the method for securing the cap to the end of the shaft.

For example, in the past, the caps have been formed in the shape of a mushroom, having an enlarged head and a smaller tail portion. The tail portion corresponds in size with the shaft and, in some cases, it is force-fitted into the end of the shaft and, in other cases, it is merely adhesively sealed therein. In still other cases, the tail portion is threadably received in the shaft by means of threads on the interior of the shaft and on the exterior of the tail portion. In the former cases, the-cap usually becomes dislodged after a short period of use, and is therefore unsatisfactory. In the latter case, the cost of threading the interior of the shaft so as to receive the threaded tail portion is prohibitive.

In still another case, a wooden plug is forced into the end of the shaft and a cap is then secured to the wooden plug by means of a wood screw which was threaded into the wooden plug. This arrangement likewise is unsatisfactory, since the wooden plug also becomes dislodged eventually, and hence the overlying cap falls off the end of the shaft.

In still another construction, the underlisting is provided with a reduced diameter section at the top end thereof which has external threads formed thereon. A suitable gripping surface material covers the underlisting. A cap having internal threads which are adapted to threadably receive the threaded reduced diameter section is then threadably affixed to the end of the underlisting. The underside of the cap is undercut so as to provide a conical periphery which gathers and holds the upper edge of the gripping surface material. This conical periphery also functions to center the cap on the underlisting. A cap of this latter construction is disclosed in US. Pat. 3,360,264.

It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide an improved golf club grip.

A more particular object is to provide a golf club grip having improved means for terminating the grip end of the golf club shaft.

A still further object is to provide an improved method for securing a cap to the end of a golf club grip.

Still another object is to provide an improved golf club grip having a cap which is adapted to both close the opened end of the grip and to secure the upper edge of the gripping surface material to the underlisting.

A still further object is to provide an improved end capconstruction for a golf club grip which can be easily and quickly affixed thereto.

The invention accordingly comprises the several steps and the relation of one or more such steps with respect to each of the others and the apparatus embodying features of construction, combination of elements and arrangement of parts which are adapted to aflix such steps, all as exemplified in the following detailed disclosure, and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the claims.

The above-outlined objectives are accomplished with the golf club grip of the present invention which may be generally described as comprising an underlisting having a reduced diameter section at the top end thereof which is adapted to receive an annular clamp ring thereon. The underlisting and the annular clamp ring are covered with a suitable gripping surface material. An end cap is affixed to the end of the golf club grip by crimping the annular side wall thereof about the clamp ring so as to fixedly secure the upper edge of the gripping surface material between the end cap and the clamp ring to thereby aflix the end cap to the end of the golf club grip. The clamp ring also functions to more securely fix the end cap to the grip when the latter is affixed to a golf club shaft.

For a fuller understanding of the nature and objects of the invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is a side plan view of the rubber underlisting, partly sectionalized to illustrate the reduced diameter portion formed on the upper end thereof;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the rubber underlisting of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the clamp ring which is affixed about the upper reduced diameter portion of the rubber underlisting of FIG. 1;

FIG. 4 is a side plan view of the clamp ring of FIG. 3, partially sectionalized to show its construction;

FIG. 5 is a side plan view of the end cap of the golf club grip, the same being partially sectionalized to illustrate its construction;

FIG. 6 is a bottom plan view of the end cap of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a partial side plan view of the rubber underlisting with the clamp ring and the gripping surface material thereon, the same being partially sectionalized to illustrate the manner in which the gripping surface material is overlapped about the clamp ring;

FIG. 8 is a partial view of the golf club grip, partially 3 sectionalized to illustrate the manner in which the cap is crimped to affix the cap to the clamp ring and hence to the end of the grip; and

FIG. 9 is a partial side plan view of a golf club grip of the spirally wound type, having an end cap afiixed thereto in the manner of the present invention.

Similar reference characters refer to similar parts throughout the several views of the drawings.

Referring now to the drawings, in FIG. 8 there is shown a golf club grip 10* exemplary of the invention aflixed to the end of a golf club shaft 15. The grip 10 includes an underlisting 12 which, as can be best seen in FIGS. 1 and 2, is in the form of a tapered, open-ended tube or sleeve having an interior cavity 18 extending therethrough and a reduced diameter portion 19' at the upper end thereof. The underlisting 12 is of an elasticallyexpandable material, preferably a soft rubber material. The underlisting 12 normally is force-fitted onto the grip end of a golf club shaft, in any one of a number of different well-known fashions, none of which form a part of this invention, and is usually affixed thereon by means of an adhesive applied either to the golf club shaft or the wall of the interior cavity 18. The reduced diameter portion 19 tapers slightly upwardly and outwardly towards the top of the underlisting, and forms an annular shoulder 20 about the periphery thereof. This reduced diameter portion 19 is proportioned to receive a clamp ring 14, with the lower peripheral edge of the latter abutted against the shoulder 20 and with the upper top edge thereof aligned substantially flush with the upper top edge of the underlisting 12, as can be best seen in FIGS. 7 and 8.

The clamp ring 14 is of a hard, non-compressible material, preferably metal, and as can be best seen in FIGS. 3 and 4, has a side wall 26 which tapers upwardly and outwardly from the lower edge thereof and merges into an annular outwardly extending flange or rim 27. The width of this rim 27 substantially corresponds to the thickness of the gripping surface material 11 applied to the grip 10. The opening 28 of the clamp ring is proportioned so that the clamp ring fits snugly or tightly about the reduced diameter portion 19 of the underlisting 12 and is frictionally retained thereon. It may be noted that the diameter of the lower edge of the clamp ring 14- is smaller than the diameter of the upper edge of the underlisting so that the clamp ring must be forcibly urged over this upper end to affix it to the underlisting. Once afiixed thereon, the side wall 26 of the clamp ring is frictionally engaged with the reduced diameter portion 19 over an area substantially if not completely coextensive therewith.

The gripping surface material 11 is applied about the underlisting 12. and clamp ring 14 and the upper edge of the gripping surface material preferably is disposed in abutting engagement with the underside of the annular rim 27 of the clamp ring. However, it can be slightly spaced from the annular rim 27 so long as a substantial portion is overlapped by the side wall 22 of the end cap 13, for reasons which will be apparent from the descrip tion below.

This gripping surface material 11 may be of any suitable material and may be, in particular, a leather sleeve grip of the type disclosed in US. Pat. 3,366,384, or a spirally wrapped leather grip of the type disclosed in US. Pat. 3,087,729. The golf club grip 10 of FIG. 8 is of a former type, while the golf club grip 30 of FIG. 9 is of this latter type having a spirally wrapped leather grip 31.

The end cap 13 is fabricated of metal and, as can be best seen in FIGS. and 6, has a top wall 21 which is of a slightly convex shape, and an annular downwardly depending side wall 22 which is just slightly shorter in length than the side wall 26 of the clamp ring 14. The lower peripheral edge of the side wall 22 of the end cap 13 is tightly crimped against the hard, non-compressible clamp ring 14, with the upper edge of the gripping surface material 11 crimped or frictionally locked between the side wall 22 of the end cap 13 and the side wall 26 of the clamp ring 14. This manner of crimping the side wall of the end cap '13 not only effectively locks or secures the upper edge of the gripping surface material between the end cap and the clamp ring, but also fixedly secures the end cap to the grip 10 When secured in this manner, tests have shown that forces greater than 50 to 60 pounds are required to remove the end cap.

When the grip 10 is affixed to a golf club shaft, as illustrated in FIG. 8, further tests have shown that the end cap 13 will withstand far greater forces of, for example, approximately to pounds exerted upon it to remove it. This far greater resistance to removal results from the fact that the underlisting 12 is expanded to some degree when it is force-fitted onto the golf club shaft. In doing so, the frictional engagement between the clamp ring 14 and the underlisting 12, at the reduced diameter portion thereof, is substantially increased. Furthermore, the extent to which the underlisting 12 can be further compressed is substantially reduced. The clamp ring 14 therefore is effectively fixedly secured to the underlisting 12, so that it cannot be removed without exerting a substantial force on it. It may be also noted that the diameter of the lower edge of the side wall 22 of the end cap 13 is substantially smaller than the diameter of the peripheral edge of the annular rim 27 of the clamp ring 14. The end cap 13 therefore is effectively locked to the clamp ring in this fashion, as well as being effectively locked to it by the edge of the gripping surface material 11 crimped between the end cap and the clamp ring, as described above.

From the above description, it can be seen that a golf club grip having an end cap fixedly secured thereto in a fashion such as to close the open end of the underlisting thereof and to secure the upper edge of the gripping surface material applied about the underlisting is provided which is ready for aflixing to the end of a golf club shaft. It will be appreciated that the method of forming the golf club grip readily lends itself to being pre-assembled as a grip which can be thereafter applied or afiixed to the end of a golf club shaft by the manufacturers of golf clubs, by golf pros, or even by individuals owning golf clubs having grips which need replacing. Alternatively, the golf club grips can be simultaneously assembled and affixed to a golf club shaft by, for example, aflixing the clamp ring and the gripping surface material to the underlisting, afiixing the same to the end of a golf club shaft, and then securing the end cap to the grip.

A still further advantage of the golf club grip is that the grip can be pre-assembled except for the end cap, and an end cap having a design thereon requested by a particular manufacturer of golf clubs can be affixed thereto as the grips are ordered by the manufacturer. The end cap having a convex top wall readily lends itself to having a whole host of different designs applied thereon so that the grips can be easily private branded for a number of different manufacturers.

It will thus be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent from the preceding description, are efficiently attained and certain changes may be made in carrying out the above method and in the construction set forth. Accordingly, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

Now that the invention has been described, what is claimed as new and desired to be secured by Letters Patent is:

1. A grip for golf club shafts comprising, in combination: an elongated open-ended tube of an elastically expandable material adapted to be force-fitted on said shafts end and having a reduced diameter portion at its upper end which tapers upwardly and outwardly; a clamp ring having an inner side wall which is correspondingly tapered and proportioned to afiix said clamp ring to said tube about said reduced diameter portion thereof; said ring having an outwardly extending flange at the upper edge thereof, a gripping surface material afiixed aboutv said tube and said clamp ring; and an end cap having a top wall which is disposed atop said tube to close the open end thereof and a side wall which is crimped to frictionally lock the upper end of said gripping surface material between said end caps side wall and the outer side wall of said clamp ring, to thereby fixedly secure said end cap to said grip.

2. The grip of claim 1, wherein the lower edge of said end caps side wall being of a smaller diameter than that of said annular flange on said clamp ring.

3. The grip of claim 2, wherein said annular flange is of a width substantially corresponding to the thickness of said gripping surface material.

4. The grip of claim 3, wherein said gripping surface material is disposed about said clamp ring in substantially abutting engagement with said annular flange.

5. The grip of claim 1, wherein said clamp ring is of metal.

6. The grip of claim 1, wherein said end cap is of metal.

References Cited ANTON O. O ECHSLE, Primary Examiner R. J. APLEY, Assistant Examiner US. Cl. X.R.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
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US7404770May 3, 2006Jul 29, 2008Ben HuangSingle panel golf club grip
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Classifications
U.S. Classification473/298, 74/551.9, 473/549
International ClassificationA63B53/14
Cooperative ClassificationA63B53/14
European ClassificationA63B53/14