US 3729197 A
A portable archery target adapted for use with automatic scoring apparatus. The score sensing operation of the target comprises a plurality of inflatable pressure bags conforming in shape to conventional scoring areas on a target; e.g., a plurality of annular areas concentrically disposed with respect to a bulls-eye. The pressure bags are carried by a target frame and each includes a protective facing to preclude bag rupture by an arrow which strikes the facing and generates a scoring pressure pulse. An arrow deflector carried by the frame and projecting forwardly from the pressure bags defines the scoring areas and obviates the difficulty of scoring arrows which strike between the scoring areas. Disposed within the deflector is a thickness of energy absorbing material which the arrows pierce before striking the bag facing. The target is fully portable and includes collapsible legs which are adjustable to angularly position the target for shooting from various distances.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
 3,729,1'7 14 1 Apr. 24, 1973 United States Patent Swanson et al.
1 ARCHERY TARGET HAVING Primary Examiner-Anton O. Oechsle PRESSURE SENSITIVE SCORE Assistant ExaminerMarvin Siskind INDICATING BAGS Attorney-Merchant & Gould  ABSTRACT A portable archery target adapted for use with automatic scoring apparatus. The score sensing operation mafia dvm wjw I15 8 G m ca 6 .1 MM 6 n m 7 X ma a wa .0 MBm r. 1 a m a DRWm r O t n e V n 1 1 6 7 1 of the target comprises a plurality of inflatable pres-  Filed 1971 sure bags conforming in shape to conventional scoring areas on a target; e.g., a plurality of annular areas concentrically disposed with respect to a bulls-eye. The
21 App]. No.: 122,573
52 us. ........273/102.2 R, 273/102 B int. c1. 3/02 273/102 B, 102.2 R,
 Field ofSearch....1.............1
273/1022 A, 102.2 S, 54 R bags defines the scoring areas and obviates the dif-  References Cited ficulty of scoring arrows which strike between the scoring areas. Disposed within the deflector is a thickness of energy absorbing material which the ar- UNITED STATES PATENTS 2 3/ R rows pierce before striking the bag facing. The target 273M022 R is fully portable and includes collapsible legs which are adjustable to angularly position the target for shooting from various distances.
3,091,457 Mentzer.............................. 3,454,276 Brenkert... 3,409,301
16 Claims, 15 Drawing Figures Patented April 24, 1973 5 Shets-Sheet 1 mm I USA M, s O Y. $2M M A w Mm A U D Patented April 24, 1973 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 IINVENTORS DA LE .A. SWANSON W/L/v/gf? B. BLAOKABY ATTORNEYS Patented April 24, 1973 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTORS.
AT TOENEYS ARCHERY TARGET HAVING PRESSURE SENSITIVE SCORE INDICATING BAGS The invention is directed to a portable target including score sensing means and adapted for use with automatic scoring apparatus.
Conventional archery targets for individual usage ordinarily consist of a thick layer of penetrable but energy-absorbing backing material (such as a hay bale), self-supporting or carried by a stand, to which is attached a paper or fabric sheet with a target imprinted thereon. Although targets of this type serve adequately, it is obvious that repeated piercing of the target sheet necessitates its frequent replacement. Further, conventional targets are usually quite cumbersome and lacking in portability, which is a desirable feature for the average archery enthusiast.
Our invention is embodied in a target specifically intended for archery usage, which is completely portable and can be used indefinitely without component replacement. The inventive target includes collapsible legs which can be adjusted to angularly position the target face for shooting from a particular range. An arrow deflector defines the boundary between the scoring areas, causing an arrow to enter the scoring area which it first pierces thus precluding the scoring difficulty arising from a liner." Disposed within the frame of the arrow deflector is arrow penetrating material, which preferably exhibits a self-restoring characteristic after removal of an arrow.
The inventive target also includes means for sensing which of the scoring areas has been struck by an arrow, and is adapted for connection to automatic scoring apparatus which, preferably, is also portable. The sensing means comprises a plurality of inflatable pressure bags, one for each scoring area, each of which has a protective facing to prevent rupturing of the bag by an arrow. A pressure-electric switch is operatively connected to each of the bags so that upon impact by an arrow the resulting pressure pulse can be transduced into an electrical pulse. The electric pulse is then fed to a computer apparatus which processes the information and produces a readout score.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a front elevation of a target embodying the inventive concept;
FIG. 2 is side elevation of the target;
FIG. 3 is a rear elevation of the target with supporting legs collapsed and retracted;
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of the target taken along the line 4-4 of FIG. 1, showing with particularity a plurality of inflatable pressure bags used for sensing impact of an arrow;
FIG. 5 is a sectional view of a pneumatic-electric switch used in conjunction with one of the inflatable pressure bags, taken along the line 55 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a front elevation of an arrow deflector and its supporting struts;
FIG. 7 is a front elevation of a rear frame plate for the target;
FIGS. 8 and 9 are perspective views of two of the inflatable pressure bags, showing with particularity the bag portion and a protective facing therefor;
FIG. 10 is a top sectional view of the target taken along the line 10--10 ofFIG. 3;
regularly shaped inflatable pressure bags of the alternative embodiment.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring initially to FIGS. I-3 and 10, a target embodying the inventive principal and represented generally by the numeral 21 is shown to comprise a back plate 22 upon which the target structure is mounted. Connected to the rear side of back plate 22 are a pair of lower legs 23, the length of which is adjustable, and a pair of telescoping upper legs 24. Legs 24 are pivotally connected to back plate 22 by hinges 25, and their angular position with respect to plate 22 is adjustable by means of the gear-plate arrangement shown at 26. The lower ends of legs 24 are spikeshaped and can be driven into the ground as shown in FIG. 2 for purposes of stabilization. As best shown in FIGS. 3 and 10, legs 23 and 24 are fully retractable when target 21 is not in use. A handle 27 rigidly corinected to the back plate 22 permits target 21 to be hand-carried.
Referring additionally to FIG. 7, three sets of openings 28, 29 and 31, respectively, are shown to be formed in back plate 22. Holes 29 and 31 are linearly disposed in back plate 22 for purposes to be explained more fully below. Holes 28 are equiangularly disposed to receive an arrow deflector 32 which is shown in detail in FIGS. 4 and 6. Preferably, arrow deflector 32 is integrally molded from plastic and comprises a back plate 33 which, by means of transverse struts 34, carries a plurality of concentric rings 35. Rings 35 define the respective boundaries between adjacent scoring areas on the face of target 21, and are arranged to parallel the intended line of arrow movement.
Projecting rearwardly from arrow deflector 32 are three lugs 36 each of which has an opening therein.
Deflector 32 is fastened to back plate 22 by inserting lugs 36 into openings 28 and inserting a tapered pin 37 through each of the lug openings. As arranged, deflector 32 permits entry of an arrow only into the scoring area into which the arrow point initially passes. Because the circular edges of deflector 32 present a minimum area to an oncoming arrow, it is virtually impossible for the arrow to embed itself between scoring areas. Struts 34 are similarly constructed. The result is a more accurate scoring system and a lack of confusion in case ofa liner."
Disposed between the respective concentric rings of arrow deflector 32 and outside the largest ring is a predetermined thickness of arrow penetrating material 38. Material 38 is of a type and thickness to absorb just enough of the arrows energy to permit full penetration of the layer and impact of the apparatus disposed therebehind. Preferably, material 38 should exhibit self-restoring characteristics to permit usage over a long period of time without having to replace it. An example of such material is rubberized compressed hair.
Disposed behind the layer of material 38, and at the base of the annular spaces defined by the respective concentric rings of arrow deflector 32, are inflatable bags 41-44. As best shown in FIG. 4, there is an inflatable pressure bag for each scoring area, and each bag conforms in shape to its scoring area. Each of the pressure bags 41-44has secured thereto a protective facing layer (numerals 45-48 respectively) which is constructed and arranged to receive impact of an arrow after being slowed down by the layer of penetrating material 38.
FIGS. 8 and 9 are perspective views of inflatable bags 44 and 43, representing the bulls-eye and next adjacent scoring area, respectively. Projecting rearwardly from bags 44 and 43 are a plurality of tabs 51 (which can be molded from the same resilient material as the bag), which are disposed in operative relationship with holes 31 in back plate 22. As best seen in FIG. 4, holes 31 taper from front to rear of back plate 22, permitting tab 51 to be drawn therethrough and to be retained thereby.
Projecting rearwardly at the bottom of each inflatable bag 41-44 is a pressure conduit or tube 52 which is positioned for insertion through the appropriate hole 29 in back plate 22.
As thus far described, assuming each of the inflatable pressure bags 41-44 to define a sealed, variable volume pressure chamber, it can be seen that impact of an arrow against one of the protective facing layers 45-48 will momentarily decrease the volume of the associated pressure bag and thereby generate a pressure pulse which is transmitted through the appropriate tube 52.
Referring to FIGS. 4 and 11, each tube 52 leading from a pressure bag is operatively connected to a pneumatic-electric transducing switch 53. All of the switches 53 are identical, and all are housed in and supported by an enclosure 54 forming part of the back plate 22. Referring additionally to the enlarged sectional view of FIG. 5, pressure-electric switch 53 comprises a body 55 defining a cylinder 56 in which a piston 57 is disposed. For purposes of force amplification the opposed ends of piston 57 are of a different size, and a bleed passage 58 is normally biased to a first operating position by a spring 59 which is adjustable by a screw 61 and plate 62. Thus, in response to a pressure pulse generated in its associated pressure bag by the impact of an arrow, piston 57 moves against the bias of spring 59 to a second operating position until the pressure at opposite ends can equalize through bleed passage 58. This pressure equalization coupled with the biasing force of spring 59 enables piston 57 to return to its first operating position.
Attached to piston 57 at a point intermediate its ends is a flag 63 which is disposed for movement between a light source 64 and a photo-sensitive device 65. Photosensitive device 65 forms part of an electronic circuit (not shown) which is triggered and provides an electrical output pulse when flag 63 interrupts the light beam from light source 64 in response to a pressure pulse. As best shown in FIG. 5, during a pressure pulse the light beam is continuously interrupted by flag 63 to insure the existence of but a single electrical output pulse.
The outputof each pressure-electric switch 53 is carried by leads 66 through a cable 67 to an automatic scoring device 68 the operation of which is not relevant to the subject invention. It suffices to say that in response to a hit in one of the scoring areas by an arrow, a pressure pulse representative of that area will be generated which is subsequently transduced into an electrical output pulse and thereafter sensed, computed and scored by the automatic scoring device 68.
FIGS. 12-45 disclose an alternative embodiment in which the scoring areas are irregularly shaped and conform to kill and non-vital zones of an animal target. As shown in FIG. 12, the target outline is in the shape of a deer 71 having a kill zone 72 and a non-vital zone 73.
As shown in FIG. 13, the animal target has a back plate 22 in which is formed sets of holes 28', 29' and 31', the purposes of which are the same as in the primary embodiment. Also included is a deflector 32' in which the deflecting rings 35' are irregular in shape and define the aforementioned kill and non-vital scoring areas. Inflatable pressure bags 41 and 42 (FIGS. 14 and 15) include protective facing portions 45' and 46', respectively (FIG. 13), and conform to the scoring areas. Pressure bags 41 and 42' are releasably fastened to back plate 22' as in the primary embodiment. Operation of the target apparatus, including generation of pressure pulses and electrical output pulses, is in all respects the same.
Each of the target faces is preferably made to be interchangeable. Thus, the circular bulls-eye of the primary embodiment could be changed by removing the deflection and pressure bag assembly from the target backplate and replacing with the animal shaped deflector and pressure bag assembly of the alternative embodiment. Backplate 22 includes receiving holes for both, as shown in FIG. 13.
What is claimed is:
1. Penetrable archery target apparatus comprising:
a. frame means defining a plurality of arrow scoring areas; an inflatable pressure bag for each scoring area the volume of which is variable in response to being struck, each inflatable pressure bag being carried by the frame means and conforming in shape to its associated scoring area, each inflatable pressure bag further including a protective facing to preclude its rupture by an arrow;
c. a predetermined thickness of penetrable material disposed in front of the inflatable pressure bags to receive and retain arrows, saidv thickness being chosen to permit an arrow to penetrate said material and to strike the protective facing of an inflatable pressure bag;
. means associated with each of the inflatable pressure bags for sensing a change of pressure therein and for providing an output signal representative of said change in pressure;
e. the sensing means being adapted for connection with means for providing a readout in accordance with said output signals.
2. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein the inflatable pressure bags are detachably connected to the frame.
3. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein the scoring areas are circular in shape and concentrically disposed.
4. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein the scoring areas are irregularly shaped.
5. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein each sensing means further comprises transducing means for providing an electrical output signal representative of 5 said change in pressure.
6. The apparatus as defined by claim 5, wherein the transducing means comprises:
a. a light source;
b. light sensing means for providing said electrical output signal when exposed to a light beam from the light source; and
c. means for interrupting the light beam in accordance with said change in pressure.
7. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein the sensing means comprises:
a. a housing defining a cylinder; 7
b. a piston disposed in the cylinder and movable between first and second positions, the piston having first and second opposed faces defining first and second pressure sub-chambers;
c. conduit means establishing fluid communication between the associated pressure chamber and the first sub-chamber, the conduit means being connected so that the piston is movable toward the second position in response to increasing pressure in the associated pressure chamber;
(1. means normally biasing the piston to the first position; and
e. a bleed passage establishing restrictive fluid communication between the first and second subchambers.
8. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, and further comprising adjustable leg means for maintaining the target apparatus in a desired upright shooting position.
9. The apparatus as defined by claim 1, wherein the frame further comprises a handle for carrying the target apparatus.
10. The apparatus defined by claim I, wherein the frame means comprises a plurality of separate, rigid projections extending in a direction essentially in line with the intended flight path of an arrow, the rigid projections being constructed and arranged to define the boundary between scoring areas and to retain an arrow in the scoring area which it initially enters.
11. The apparatus as defined by claim 10, wherein the separate projections are interconnected by a plurality of strut members constructed and arranged to present a minimum surface area to a projectile.
12. The apparatus defined by claim 11, wherein the frame means further comprises a backplate, and the interconnected rigid projections are releasably connected to the backplate.
13. The apparatus defined by claim 12, wherein each of the inflatable pressure bags further comprises a plurality of rearwardly projecting resilient tabs, and the backplate includes an opening for each tab, each opening being constructed to releasably retain the associated tab.
14. The apparatus defined by claim 10, wherein the rigid projections extend through said predetermined thickness of penetrable material.
15. Penetrable target apparatus having a plurality of projectile scoring areas, comprising:
a. frame means; b. means carried by the frame means for each of the I projectile scoring areas and defining a pressure chamber the volume of which is variable in response to the chamber defining means being struck, each of said chamber defining means conforming in shape to its associated scoring area;
c. a predetermined thickness of penetrable material disposed in front of the chamber defining means, said thickness being chosen to permit a projectile to penetrate the material and to strike the chamber defining means;
d. means associated with each of the pressure chambers for sensinga change in pressure therein and for providing an output signal representative of said change in pressure;
e. the sensing means being adapted for connection with means for providing a readout in accordance with said output signals.
16. The apparatus defined by claim 15, wherein the chamber defining means comprises an inflatable pressure bag, each inflatable pressure bag having a protective facing to preclude its rupture by a projectile.