US 3655197 A
An amusement ball having a hollow outer shell totally or partially formed of transparent material. The shell is provided with a plurality of indicia which may be randomly disposed. The ball also includes an inner sphere substantially concentrically disposed, being rotatably maintainable within the outer shell. The inner sphere is provided with a marker index at one point and a diametrically opposed counterweight, so that the inner sphere when disturbed will come to rest with its index mark uppermost, being disposed adjacent to one of the indicia of the outer shell.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent  3,655,197 [451 Apr. 11, 1972 Milbaum  RANDOM SELECTION BALL FORMED OF CONCENTRIC SPHERES  lnventor: Michael Milbaum, 1581 Utica Avenue,
Brooklyn, NY. 11234  Filed: Aug. 21, 1970  App1.No.: 65,896
 US. Cl ..273/138 R, 273/58 F, 273/58 H, 273/146  Int. Cl. ..A63f 5/04  Field ofSearch ..273/146, 58 R, 58 13,58 BA, 273/58 D, 58 E, 58 F, 58 G, 58 H, 138 R, 138 A, 143 R, 143 A, 143 B, 143 C, 143 D, 143 E, 86 B  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 846,327 6/ 1939 France ..273/58F 870,967 3/1953 Germany ..273/146 1,806,553 5/1970 Germany ..273/146 16,142 1910 Great Britain.... ..273/146 160,249 3/ 1921 Great Britain ..273/ 146 Primary Examiner-Anton O. Oechsle Assistant Examiner-Arnold W. Kramer Attomey-Friedman & Goodman  ABSTRACT 6 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures Patented April 11, 1972 PIC-3.3.
ATTORNEYS RANDOM SELECTION BALL FOD OF CONCENTRIC SPHERES BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Many games and amusement devices require the selection of an element from among a plurality of elements. The ball of the present invention provides for the selection of one out of a large number of elements. The ball provides for this selection in a simple and relatively effortless and automatic manner. It provides for a random selection and is adaptable to a variety of different elements such as numbers, letters, words or the like and is adaptable to a large variety of games.
The element selected by means of the ball may be used directly for indicating scoring points, the formation of sequences of numbers, words or the like. Although the elements on the ball may themselves be words or the like, simple elements may be used to furnish indicators for the determination of answers, fortunes or the like. The ball, therefore, is useable to furnish enjoyment in a large variety of ways and the user may add to his enjoyment by devising various methods of employment.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The amusement ball of the present invention includes a hollow outer shell having a plurality of marks which may be randomly disposed, and is at least partially transparent. The marks may be numbers, letters, words, figures, objects, or the like. Substantially freely rotatable within the hollow shell is a sphere, the sphere being provided with an index mark and a counterweight located diametrically opposite to the index mark so that when disturbed the sphere will come to rest with the index mark substantially uppermost. In the rest position, the index mark is disposed adjacent to one of the marks of the outer shell.
Accordingly, an object of the present invention is to provide an amusement ball which overcomes the disadvantages of the prior art.
Another object of this invention is to provide a ball which may be used for education, entertainment, or amusement purposes.
A further object of this invention is to provide a ball which in addition to being suitable for the usual types of play such as throwing, catching, bouncing and the like, includes within its hollow interior an indicator which is movable relative to the shell, being visable from outside of the ball.
A still further object of this invention is to provide a ball of the above type in which the indicator when observed by the player or players forms the basis of a game, the indicator being associated with markings on the shell.
Other objects and advantages of this invention will appear hereinafter.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS For a fuller understanding of the nature and the objects of the present invention reference should be made to the following detailed description in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a ball of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the ball of the present invention taken along line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view of the ball of the present invention taken along line 33 of FIG. 2; and
FIG. 4 is a sectional view similar to the view of FIG. 2, showing another embodiment of the present invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION The ball 10 of the present invention has an outer shell 12 made of rubber, plastic or similar polymeric material. The shell 12 is in part or totally transparent, and is provided with a plurality of marks 16, shown in FIG. 1, as a random arrange ment of letters and numbers. It is readily seen that these marks may be of various types and variously placed and may also include various combinations of types.
Rotatably mounted within shell 12, pivoted at diametrically opposite points or members 24 and 26, a suspension ring 22 is provided. The pivot members 24, 26 preferably are conventionally secured to the shell 12 and have projecting portions 25, 27 extending through apertures formed in the ring 22. These apertures are spaced 180 apart.
Rotatably mounted upon suspension ring 22 and pivoted at two diametrically opposite points or members 28 and 30, inner sphere 14 is provided. The sphere pivoting points or members 28, 30 are located as hereinbefore stated at diametrically opposite points on ring 22, said diameter being perpendicular to the diameter defined by the mounting ring pivoting points or members 24, 26. The pivot members 28, 30, are similar to members 24, 26. The members 28, 30 preferably are conventionally secured to the inner sphere l4 and have pro jecting portions 29, 31 extending through apertures formed in the ring 22. These apertures are also spaced 180 apart, so that the ring 22 has an aperture every these apertures being equally spaced as set forth above.
Thus, while suspension ring 22 is free to rotate in one plane only with respect to outer shell 12, the inner sphere 12 is free to rotate in any plane whatsoever with respect to outer shell 12 because of its gimbal arrangement.
A point of inner sphere 14 is provided with an index mark 18. Diametrically opposite to index mark 18, counterweight 20 is provided. If the ball 10 is disturbed, as for instance by rolling along a surface and then allowed to rest, the inner sphere 14 will because of the inertial forces involved rotate independently of the ball 10 and come to rest at a position relative to the outer shell 12 which will differ from its position relative to shell 12 at the start of the disturbance. Sphere 14 will, because of the action of the counterweight 20, come to rest with the index mark 18 uppermost.
As is readily understood, the index mark 18 will now locate a point on the outer shell 12 which is different from the point located prior to the disturbance. If the outer shell 12 is constructed of a transparent material or if a transparent portion of the shell 12 is now uppermost, the ball 10 has now operated to select one of the plurality of marks 16. As indicated above, the index mark 18 can locate or select any mark 16 of the outer shell 12 because of the free rotation provided by the gimbal arrangement. FIG. 4 discloses a ball 10A forming another embodiment of the present invention which illustrates another method for suspending a sphere 14A inside a shell 12A permitting the sphere 14A to rotate and come to rest in a position independent of the position of the shell 12A.
The diameter of the inner sphere 14A is less than the inner diameter of the shell 12A. This difference provides flotation space 32. A flotation liquid 34, chemically inert with reference to the material of which the ball 10A is constructed, is introduced into the flotation space 32 and partially fills the space 32. The liquid 34 selected has a density which will enable the sphere 14A to float at a predetermined height within the flotation space 32, preferably one where the inner sphere 14A and the outer shell 12A will be concentric. ,The methods and nature for determining this as well as the laws of flotation of bodies in liquids are of course widely understood and generally available.
If ball 10A is now rolled, because of the action of the counterweight 20A and the inertial, frictional and gravitational forces involved, the sphere 14A will oscillate for a short period of time and then will come to rest with its index mark 18A uppermost to indicate or select one of the marks on the shell as hereinbefore explained, wherein the index mark 18A is diametrically opposite to the counterweight 20A.
Numerous alterations of the structure herein disclosed will suggest themselves to those skilled in the art. However, it is to be understood that the present disclosure relates to preferred embodiments of the invention which is for purposes of illustration only, and not to be construed as a limitation of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A ball comprising a hollow spherical outer shell, an inner sphere in spaced relationship to said outer shell, said inner sphere being free to rotate with respect to said outer shell, means maintaining said inner sphere spaced from and in a freely rotatable relationship with said outer shell, said outer shell being provided with a plurality of visually observable marks; said inner sphere being provided with an index mark and a counterweight fixedly located diametrically opposite to said index mark, said index mark being visually observable through a transparent portion of said outer shell, whereby in a rest position said counterweight positions said index mark uppermost with said index mark being disposed adjacent to one of the marks of said outer shell for selection thereof.
2. A ball according to claim 1, wherein said maintaining means includes a ring located and spaced between said inner sphere and said outer shell, means pivotally supporting said ring on said outer shell at two diametrically opposed points, means pivotally mounting said ring on said inner sphere at two diametrically opposed points, wherein the axis of rotation of said ring with respect to said outer shell is normal to the axis of rotation of said ring with respect to said inner sphere.
3. A ball according to claim 1, wherein said maintaining means includes liquid means partially filling the space between said inner sphere and said outer shell, said liquid means being provided with a density sufficient to float and maintain said inner sphere in a spaced relationship with said outer shell.
4. A ball according to claim 3, wherein said liquid means maintains a concentric relationship between said inner sphere and said outer shell in said rest position.
5. A ball according to claim 1, wherein said outer shell is a transparent material.
6. A ball according to claim 1, wherein said plurality of marks on said outer shell are randomly distributed.