US 3709553 A
A roofed golf car has its passenger compartment weather-proofed by a pair of flexible transparent plastic curtains. Each curtain is supported by a channel-shaped guide member, one at each side of the car, and each curtain is slidable on its guide member. Each guide member has a plurality of supports connected to the car roof. Each curtain may be compressed into a bundle at one side of the car when not in use. A special curtain is provided to cover the conventional club compartment of the car during rain storms.
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1 1 Churchill et al.
 GOLF CAR RAIN COAT  Inventors: Charles W. Churchill; Herbert E. Bixby, both of PO. Box 12653, Lake Park, Fla. 33403 221 Filed: Feb. 17, 1971 21 Appl.No.: 115,970
 US. Cl. ..296/28 C, 16/87.4, 280/DlG. 5, 296/78 R  Int. CL; ..B60j 9/00  Field of Search ..296/28 C, 78 R, 78 A, 138, 296/141; 280/DIG. 5; 160/330, 345; l6/87.2,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,341,247 9/1967 Martinmaas ..296/28 C 1,601,443 9/1926 l-laver 3,199,142 8/1965 Salzmann et al ..160/345 X 1 Jan. 9, 1973 569,779 10/1896 Appleton ..296/138 x 1,024,305 4/1912 Applas ..296/141 x 1,602,017 10/1926 Hamilton ..296/138 x 900,350 10/1908 Brooks ..296/136 x Primary Examiner-Kenneth l-l. Betts Assistant Examiner-Leslie J. Paperner AttorneyBerman, Davidson & Berman  ABSTRACT A roofed golf car has its passenger compartment weather-proofed by a pair of flexible transparent plastic curtains. Each curtain is supported by a channel-shaped guide member, one at each side of the car, and each curtain is slidable on its guide member. Each guide member has a plurality of supports connected to the car roof. Each curtain may be compressed into a bundle at one side of the car when not in use. A special curtain is provided to cover the conventional club compartment of the car during rain storms.
2 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures PATENTEUJAN 9 197a SHEEI 1 [IF 2 PATENTEUJAH ems 8.709.553
SHEET 2 [IF 2 g #"W wu,
GOLF CAR RAIN COAT This invention relates to self-impelled golf cars of the three or four wheel type and carrying either one or two passengers and having a well or compartment provided adjacent the rear of the vehicle for containing one or two bags of golf clubs.
The primary object of this invention is to provide means whereby the passenger compartment as well as the golf club compartment may be quickly, easily and temporarily weather-proofed while still remaining in operable conditions.
During the past twenty some years the use of such cars has increased enormously. In certain geographical portions of the United States, particularly the southern portions, golf is a year around past-time and the same geographical portions are peculiarly subject to rain storms which arise substantially without warning and which frequently subside as quickly as they arose.
Despite the increasing use of golf cars as a means of point-to-point transportation of player and clubs between shots, no one has yet provided the golfer with a quick simple means for weather-proofing the passenger and golf club compartments of a Conventional golf car.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a rain-proofing means as aforesaid which is permanently but replaceably mounted on a golf car and which, when not in use, is compactly folded and secured so as not to interfere with the drivers full vision.
It is a further object of this invention to provide weather-proofing means as aforesaid formed primarily of flexible, transparent, plastic material of sufficient strength and caliper to be durable but which nevertheless may be replaced with minimum trouble and expense.
The above and other objects will be made clear from the following detailed description taken in connection with the annexed drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a conventional golf car with the weather-proofing means in active position;
FIG. 2 is a plan view of one of two curtains;
FIG. 3 is a section taken on the line 33 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a section on the line 44 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a section taken on the line 5-5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a section on the line 6-6 of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the means for weather-proofing the golf club compartment in a conventional golf car.
Referring now to FIG. 1, the conventional golf car is generally designated 10. The car 10 is supported at the rear on propulsion wheels and at the front by a single steering wheel 14. The car has a floor board 16, a foot rest 18 and a seat 20 with individual backs 22. The car is steered by a conventional steering wheel and has at its rear end a shelf 26 supporting a compartment 28 with storage space for golf clubs.
A top 30 overlies the seat backs, the floor board and the foot rest and is supported at the rear by columns 32, there being a column 32 at each rear comer of the top 30. Centrally of the front edge of the top 30 is a third supporting column 34.
The top 30 is provided around its entire periphery with a downwardly directed flange 36.
As best seen in FIG. 3, there are provided on the inner side of flange 36 at spaced points, securing means 38. The several securing means 38 are mutually identical and only one will be described in connection with FIGS. 4 and 5.
Each of the support members 38 is made up of essentially two parts, an angle bracket 40 and a clamping bracket 42. The angle bracket 40 has a downwardly turned elongated leg 44 secured to the flange 36 by a pair of rivets 46. Its inwardly extending body portion has upturned side flanges 48 which act as guides for the horizontally extending body portion 50 of the clamping bracket 42. The body portion 50 has a medial slot 52 which receives a bolt 54, which penetrates the member 40. The bolt 54 is secured in the slot 52 by a nut 56. The free end of the member 42 is bent into a C-shaped downwardly extending portion 58 which partially surrounds and secures a curtain support rod 60.
As best seen in FIG. 3, the member 60 is U-shaped with an elongated central portion 62, a curved portion 64 at each end of the straight portion 62 and straight free ends 66 extending across the front and rear ends of the vehicle. A similar member 68 is secured on the opposite side. The members 66 and 68 are mutually identical except in matters of hand and are of C-shaped cross-section. Slidably and rotatably mounted within the C-shaped channels of members 60 and 68 are a'plurality of supporting studs 70, each having a shank 72 rotatably secured to a carrier strip 74. The free endof each strip 74 has riveted thereto a snap button 76.
As seen in FIG. 2, a pair of flexible transparent plastic curtains 78 are provided which are mutually identical except in matters of hand. Each of the curtains 78 is cut away at the rear end 80 to provide clearance for the shelf 26 (FIG. 1). Along its upper margin each curtain 78 is provided with a series of female snap fasteners 82 and similar fasteners are provided along the front edge 84 and the rear edge 86 of each of the curtains. The other curtain 78 has the same arrangement of fasteners 82 along its upper edge but has male snap fasteners along its vertical edges 84 and 86, the male fasteners being similar to fasteners 76, shown in FIG. 4, and the female fastener 82 being shown in cross-section in that figure.
The material for the curtain 78, preferably is vinyl chloride for which may be substituted vinyl acetate or a copolymer of vinyl acetate and chloride. Obviously, however, such films as polyethylene also could be used. The caliper of the film may run from one to three mills or a little under or a little over either of the extremes would be satisfactory. The curtains are quite durable but it is clear from their construction, as shown in FIG. 2, or in the event of increasing opacity or other defects, new curtains may readily and inexpensively be substituted. Optically, of course, such curtains leave much to be desired and probably would not be acceptable for highway traffic. Golf course traffic, however, is minimal and the operating speeds of golf cars are quite slow compared to that of highway vehicles. Accordingly, these curtains provide perfectly adequate visibility so far as golf course use is concerned. The chief requirements of the curtains is that they be waterproof and transparent with considerable tensile strength.
From FIGS. 1 and 3, it will be clear that the supports 74, riding on their rollers in the C-shaped channels of the members 60 and 68, are in overlapping condition at the front or rear and in this condition their free edges 84 and 86 are secured by snap fasteners.
Winter rains come up frequently accompanied by brief squalls of severe winds and it is therefore desirable to anchor a part at least of the side portions of each curtain. This is done by providing adjacent the lower forward edge of each curtain a pair of reinforced eyelets 88 and a similar pair 90 are formed along the lower edge of each curtain. These engage male fasteners having turnable ends, the ends passing through the eyelets and being turned at right angle to the length of the eyelets to provide a locking effect. The particular fastening means is old and well known, especially to those old enough to remember side curtains in conventional cars of many years ago.
In FIG. 1, it will be seen that the compartment 28 is defined by a pair of arms 29 which are fixed to the seat backs 22. To provide the curtain 78 with clearance, a slit 92 is formed in the margin of the cut-out portion 80 and has an anti-tear perforation 94 at its inner end. Optionally, each side of the slit 92 may be provided with a snap fastener 96.
When the curtains 78 are not in use, it is highly desirable that they be stowed in a manner unobtrusive and yet quickly accessible. This is done by providing along the rails 60 and 68 stop means generally designated 98 and 100 in FIG. 3. The units 98 and 100 are identical and only one will be described with reference to FIG. 6. This figure shows rail 60 containing a roller 70 and the shank 7 2' of which is threaded to receive a nut 102, which serves to clamp the usual curtain support arm 74 with its male snap fastener 76 firmly against the margins of the open C portion of the bar 60. When not in use, the portions of the curtain 78 on each side of the element 96 slide along the bars 60 and 68 until they are bunched against the stop members 98 and 100. It is then only necessary to pass any suitable securing band around the lower portion of the curtain thereby holding it firmly out of the way but providing instant accessibility.
FIG. 7 shows a special device which may be used to provide a rain-proof cover for the golf bag compartment of a golf car. Near the cover is a separate sheet of plastic 106 similar to the curtain 78 and provided with marginal snap fasteners 108. A pair of straps 110 are secured to one longitudinal margin of the sheet, their free ends bearing snap fasteners 112 which mate with fasteners on the seat backs 22. Normally, the cover 106 is tucked between the golf bag compartment and the backs of the seats 22 where it is instantly accessible and may be drawn over the open end of the golf bag compartment and secured by fasteners 108 thereby completely protecting the interior of the golf bag compartment against ingress of rain.
While certain mechanical details have been disclosed herein, clearly changes in these details will suggest themselves to anyone skilled in the art who may peruse the present disclosure. Accordingly, the invention is not to be considered limited to the precise details disclosed herein.
What is claimed is:
l. A' self-propelled golf car having a passenger compartment, a top overlying said passenger compartment, a seat in the passenger compartment having upstanding seat back support rtions, a golf club storage compartment spaced be ind the upstanding seat back support portions, a pair of rearwardly extending arms fixed to the seat back support portions and connected to the golf club storage compartment, elongated C-shaped supporting rails secured to the margins of said top and extending substantially symmetrically on opposite sides thereof to substantially surround said passenger compartment, respective flexible transparent rain-proof curtains shaped to cover said opposite sides of the passenger compartment, spaced supporting elements secured to the top margins of said curtains and being slidably and supportingly engaged in said C-shaped supporting rails, said curtains having end margins adapted to be overlapped, interengagable snap-fastener means on said end portions for at times securing the curtains in enclosing relationship relative to said passenger compartment, the rear portions of the curtains being formed with downwardly extending slits to receive said rearwardly extending arms, so as to allow the rear portions of the curtains to overlie and cover the upstanding seat back portions, and means to detachably secure the lower marginal portions of the curtains to the sides of the golf car.
2. The self-propelled golf car of claim 1, and a transparent water-proof sheet-like cover adapted to overlie the golf club storage compartment, interengagable snap fastener means on the margins of the cover and the golf club storage compartment, a pair of longitudinally extending straps secured on the forward trans verse margin of the cover, and means connecting the forward ends of the straps to the upstanding seat back portions, the straps being of sufficient length and flexibility so that the cover may at times be disposed between the seat back portions and the golf club storage compartment.
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