US 3747927 A
A golfer's tee having a generally cylindrical shaft is provided at its ground-penetrating end with a broadened, spade-like pointed part having at least one concave major surface to facilitate turf repair. The point of the spade-like part is positioned on the center line of the tee shaft.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
D United States Patent 1191 1111 3,747,927 Hoffman July 24, 1973  GOLF TEE 243,073 11 1925 Great Britain 273 33  Inventor: J. Brooks Hoffman, 700 Lake Ave.,
' Greenwich, Co n, 06830 Primary Examiner-George J. Mario Filed Mar 17 1972 Attorney-Ronald J. St. Onge et al.
7 211 App] N0 2355 7  ABSTRACT 521 US. Cl. 273 33 273/32 B A 801% 3 generally cylindrical Shaft is 5] 1m. (:1 A 63b 57/00 vided at its mud-Penetrating end with bmadmd 581 Field of Search 273/32 33 201 212 Spade-kc Pinted Part having least major surface to facilitate turf repair. The point of the  References Cited spade-like part is positioned on the center line of the FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 6/1934 Great Britain 273/33 tee shaft.
2 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures GOLF TEE BACKGROUND AND BRIEF STATEMENT OF THE INVENTION It is an established convention of the game of golf that the golfer, on reaching the green, shall endeavor to repair any damage to the surface of the green which may have been caused by the impact of his ball. Special turf-engaging tools of more or less complexity have beendesigned for this purpose (see, for example, U.S. Pat. No. 3,618,673). The average, however, simply applies the digging power, such as it is, of the ordinary tapered tee an implement which he necessarily carries with him in abundant supply, but which is not inherently well adapted to the turf-repairing function.
It is a purpose of the present invention to provide an improved tee configuration which will, without impairing the primary, ball-supporting function of the tee, markedly increase its usefulness for turf repair.
It is a further object to accomplish the purpose just mentioned in a way which will on each use of the tee provide the golfer with a visual reminder of his obligation for greens repair.
It is a still further object to accomplish the results stated above in a way which need not significantly increase the costs of tee manufacture.
To these ends, the invention comprises a tee having a conventional ball-supporting surface and intermediate shaft portion, the latter terminating in a groundpenetrating part of broadened and preferably concave configuration which simulates or at least suggests the appearance of a spade.
For a full understanding of the invention, reference should be had: to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawing, in which:
FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of one embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged sectional view taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken on line 3-3 of FIG.
FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of a'second embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a partial sectional view taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 5;
FIG. 7 is an enlarged section view taken on line 7-7 of FIG. 4;
FIG. 8 is a side elevation view of a third embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 9 is a side elevation view taken from the right side of FIG. 8;
FIG. 10 is an enlarged sectional view taken on line 10-10 of FIG. 9.
DETAILED DESGRIPTION OF THE INVENTION A preferred embodiment of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. 1, 2 and 3 of the drawing. The golfer's aid shown in these Figures comprises a shaftportion 5 which is preferably of circular or near circular crosssection in order most effectively to resist deflection in any direction. At its upper end the shaft 5 terminates in or merges into an enlarged part 6 which has a conventional ball-supporting surface 7 (FIG. 3). A ball 1'0,
supported in the customary manner, is shown in dotted outliiie in FIG. 1.
In accordance with my invention the shaft 5 terminates at its lower end in a digging part 12 which is adapted to perform the dual function of facilitating insertion of the tee into the ground in its normal use and of performing a turf-repairing function when the golfer desires to use it for that purpose, for example, on one of the greens of the golf course being played. In order that ground repair may be accomplished significantly more effectively than by an ordinary pointed tee, the
ground repairing part 12 is, in accordance with my invention, given a spade-like configuration calculated to improve its turf manipulating capability. Specifically, the cross-section of the part 12 is of flattened character as best shown in FIG. 2 and is also slightly concave on one side (as shown in FIG. 2)'to give a spoon-like character.
Toassure ready penetration of the ground (ie in the manner of an ordinary tee) the ground-repairing part 12 is provided at its lower extremity with a sharpened point indicated at 14. As is shown by the combination of FIGS. 1 and 3,this point lies substantially on the center line of the shaft 5 in order that earth penetration may be readily accomplished by applying pressure downwardly on the upper tee surface 7. To avoid exces'sive resistance to ground penetration, the total width of the part 12 should preferably not exceed about twice that of the shaft portion 5 and its maximum crosssectional area (as illustrated for example in FIG. 2) should not be significantly greater than that of the shaft 5.
The spade-like appearance of the part 12 is dictated only in part by operational (i.e. digging) considerations. It also has special usefulness in the present application by serving as a constant reminder to the golfer in his use of the tee that he has an obligation to repair depressions of the green surface which may have been caused by his ball in landing on the green following a high trajectory approach shot. On the functional side, a golf tee having the tip configuration described will be found significantly more effective in performing the minor digging operations which are required to repair a ball-caused depression than are tees of strictly cylindrical or tapered configuration.
A golfers aid of the kind described may be formed of wood, metal, plastic or other material depending upon the manufacturers preference. While the shape shown in FIGS. 1 through 3 is presently preferred, other shapes would clearly lie within the spirit and scope of the invention, and an alternative embodiment is shown in FIGS. 4 through 7 of the drawing. In this case the spade-like part 22 which provides the lower terminus of the shaft 15 is formed by inclined wing-like extensions 23 of generally flat-surfaced character which project beyond the lateral dimensions of the part 15, as shown in FIGS. 4, 5 and 7.
As in the case of the first described embodiment, the ground-penetrating pointed tip of the device of FIGS. 4 through 7 lies at least approximately on the center line b-b of the shaft 15. The function of the device in use either as a tee or for ground repair is as previously explained in connection with the first described embodiment. Also, as in that case, extension of the wings 23 beyond the peripheral boundaries of the shaft 15 should be limited (in the total for both wings) to something between about 50 and 100 percent of the diameter of the shaft.
A still further embodiment of the invention is shown in FIGS. 8, 9 and 10 and differs from the embodiments previously described in that similar spade-like digging surfaces are provided on opposite sides of a tapered tee tip 25. This tip is associated with a conventional tee shaft 26 and ball supporting cap 27. The various aspects of the tip are fully shown in the several figures presented.
lt will be understood of course that reasonable departures from the specific configurations shown may be made within the scope of the invention. For example, it will be apparent that the tee shaft in each case need be only generally circular and that this may be approximated by a partially elliptical or polygonal configuration or indeed any configuration which provides substantially uniform transverse dimensions in all radial directions taken from its center line.
Having described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A golfers aid comprising:
A. a generally cylindrical shaft having a rectilinearcenter line;
B. a ball-supporting part concentrically joined to one end of said shaft and having its ball-supporting plane at right angles to the center line of the shaft; and
C. a pointed spade-like part joined to the other end of said shaft and including at least one major surface having a concave configuration,
a. the point of said spade-like part lying on the center line of the shaft and being directed along that center line away from the body of the shaft,
b. the lateral edges of the spade-like part 1. extending beyond the projected circumferential boundary of the shaft,
2. tapering convergently inward from their region of greatest divergence toward the end of the shaft to which the ball-supporting part is joined and to the region of their juncture with the shaft, and also 3. tapering inwardly toward and to said point.
2. A golfers aid according to claim 1 in which both major surfaces of said spade-like part are of concave configuration.