US 3853318 A
A combination dart and pinball game. A vertical game board has a transversely movable target mounted on its upper portion by a parallelogram linkage. When the target is struck by a dart, it is temporarily moved rearwardly toward the game board, releasing a ball which is held behind the target. The ball moves downwardly by force of gravity along a pinball game area beneath the target which comprises the lower portion of the game board. The game board includes pinball baffles, ball receiving pockets with scoring indicia and a ball return path.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent 1191 Cagan COMBINATION DART AND PINBALL APPARATUS  Inventor: Bernard J. Cagan, Torrance, Calif.
 Assignee: Placo Products Company, Torrance,
22 Filed: Apr. 24, 1973  Appl. No.: 354,017
52 ELTLTQJL..i'.T..273/102.1 G, 2731162313, 273/102 B, 273/122, 273/125 R 511 int. Cl F41j 7/16  Field of Search... 273/102.3, 102.1 R, 102.1 C, -273/102.1G,105.2,102 B, 120 R, 122 R, 125 R, 105 R; 124/50  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,008,429 11/1911 Osmer 124/50 1,944,317 1/1934- Gustavson.. 273/1021 C 2,230,814 2/1941 7 Ruth 273/1021 G 2,603,489 7/1952 Baumberger 273/120 R 1451 Dec. 10, 1974 3,480,273 11/1969 Wise ..273l105R 3,711,094 1/1973 Cofiman 273/120 R FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS S 758,739 1/1924 France 273/1021 G Primary ExaminerGeorge J. Marlo Assistant Examiner-Marvin Siskind  ABSTRACT 5 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures COMBINATION DART AND PINBALL APPARATUS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention:
The invention relates to a combination dart and pinball game.
2. Description of the Prior Art:
Dart games per se are old and well known. Darts having pointed or suction cup tips are thrown or fired at a target, with the score being determined by the positioning of the darts with respect to the center of the target.
Pinball games per seare also old and well known. A plurality of balls roll around various obstacles, with the score being determined by their striking bumpers or by their final positioning in various pockets.
While each of these games is well known in and of itself, there has not been any combination of the two, nor in particular a combination in which there is a cooperative relationship between the dart and the pinball.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention provides a combination dart and pinball game. In essence, the invention contemplates a vertically directed preferably free standing board which has adjacent its upper portion a concentric circular target of the type commonly used in dart games.
Rubber tipped darts may be propelled either manually or mechanically toward the target. The mechanical propelling means may comprise a spring action gun.
The target or a portion thereof is constructed and arranged so that when it is struck by a dart, it causes a ball to be released. The ball then travels by force of gravity along a pinball game board which is disposed beneath the target. Scoring indicia are provided on ball receiving pockets forming part of the pinball game board. g
It is accordingly among the objects of the invention to provide a combination dart and pinball game and particularly a combination game having the advantages and benefits of the structures set forth above and described in further detail hereinafter in this specification.
Another object of the invention is to provide such a game which is simple to play and which is intriguing to children and adults because of its unique combination of two attractive games which have never been combined before.
A further object of the invention is to provide such a game which is simple and economical to manufacture, so that it can be sold at a reasonably low price for widespread sale and use.
The invention also comprises such other objects, advantages and capabilities as will later more fully appear and which are inherently possessed by my invention.
While I have shownin the accompanying drawings a preferred embodiment of my invention, it should be understood that the same is susceptible of modification and change without departing from the spirit of my invention.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of the combination dart and pinball game of the present inventionj FIG. 2 is a longitudinal sectional view of the upper portion of the same, taken along line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a sectional view of one of the comers, taken along line 3-3 of FIG. 1
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT A preferred embodiment which has been selected to illustrate my invention comprises a vertically directed game board 10. The game board 10 comprises a back 11, which may be formed of flat cardboard or other suitable material and a front 12, which may be formed of molded transparent plastic material. The front 12 includes integral side edges 13 which fit around the sides of the back 11, side walls 14 which extend forwardly from the back 11 and a front face 15, which is spaced forwardly from the back 11.
Extending outwardly from the lower corners of the front 12 are a pair of integral projections 16 which are T-shaped in cross section. These projections 16 are adapted to be removably slidably mounted in complementary keyhole slots 17 formed in a pair of substantially triangular supports 18. The supports 18 hold the game board 10 in a self-standing vertical position when the board is in use. When the board is not in use, the supports 18 are easily separated from the game board 10 and both can be stored in substantially flat condition. The supports 18 may conveniently be formed of molded plastic material.
The front 12 is provided with a plurality of spaced holding members 57 which extend rearwardly from the inside of the face 15. The holding members 57 have central circular portions which extend through openings in the back 11. A self-holding lock washer 19 is mounted on the rearwardly projecting portion of each of the holding members 17. The lock washer 19 abuts against the rear surface of the back 11 and acts to secure the back 11 to the front 12. The holding members 57 also have a plurality of radially directed flanges 20, the rear edges of which abut against the inside of the back 11, so that the back 11 is held between the lock washers l9 and the flanges 20.
The front 12 is provided on its interior with a plurality of integral flanges 21 which extend rearwardly from the inner surface of the face 15. These flanges 21 combine with the side walls 14 to form a long ball return path 22 which extends upwardly along the right side of the game board 10 (as viewed from the front) then across the top, down the left side and back toward the 7 center.
Disposed downwardly from the center end of the ball return path 22 are additional flanges forming a diamond-shaped baffle 23 with a ball path along its upper left side. Beneath the baffle 23 are additional flanges forming a pair of substantially triangular baffles 24, which extend inwardly from the opposite side walls 15. The upper edges of the triangular baffles 24 are concavely curved.
The lower part of the front 12 is provided with a plurality of spaced integrally formed baffle pins 25 and chevron-shaped ball receiving pockets 26, above which scoring indicia 27 are printed on the front surface of the back 11. The front surface of the back 11 may also be provided with markings simulating ball paths.
Extending forwardly from the upper midportion of the outer face of the front 12 are a pair of vertically extending spaced integral flanges 29 having transverse openings 30 extending through their upper and lower ends. A pair of rigid U-shaped wires 31 have right angular ends 32 which extend through and are pivotally mounted in the openings 30. The midportions of the wires 31 extend through and are pivotally mounted in openings 50 formed adjacent to the corners of a square support member 34 which is integrally formed on the rear of a circular movable target 35. The target 35 may conveniently be formed of molded plastic material.
A coil spring 36 is mounted within a cylindrical spring holder 37 which is formed integrally with the front 12. The back of the spring holder 37 is closed and has an integral portion 38 which extends through the back 11 around which is mounted a self-holding lock washer 39. The front of the spring holder 37 is open and the spring 36 extends between the rear face of the center of the movable target 35 and the inside of the closed end of the spring holder 37.
The lower edge of the movable target 35 is provided with a rearwardly directed integral ball release member 40 having an opening 41 formed therein. The previously described ball return path 22 connects with a vertically directed ball release path 42 having an open lower end which is normally closed by the rear edge of the ball release member 40.
When the movable target 35 is moved inwardly, the ball release member 40 moves with it, moving its opening 41 into alignment with the open lower end of the ball release path 42. A ball 43 held within the ball release path 42 is thereby released to move downwardly by the force of gravity.
The movable target 35 also carries a rearwardly directed integral ball stop 44 which is disposed directly above the ball release member 40, being spaced therefrom by approximately the diameter of the ball 43. When the movable target 35 is moved rearwardly, the ball stop 44 closes off the top of the ball release path 42 so that a second ball 43 is held against downward movement. Only a single ball 43 is accordingly released upon each rearward movement of the movable target 35.
The front 12 is provided directly beneath the movable target 35 with a rectangular forwardly directed enlargement 45 which provides added clearance to prevent a ball 43 from becoming trapped between the back 11 and front 12.
The back 11 is provided with an opening 46 through which the ball release member 40 moves when the movable target 35 is moved rearwardly. The inside surface of the back 11 may be provided with a stationary concentric circular target 47 which surrounds the movable target 35.
The back 11 may also be provided with a second opening 48, which is preferably disposed behind the movable target 35. The purpose of the second opening 48 is to permit the board to be mounted on a nail or other projection from a wall instead of being freestanding.
The game board 10 is preferably supplied with a plurality of balls 43, such as five or more, which are completely enclosed and held within the game board 10 at all times. After a game has been played, the balls 43 are all disposed in the lower part of the game board 10,
being either within the pockets 26 or along the bottom wall of'the front 12. To start a new game, the board 10 is inverted and the balls 43 are directed upwardly into the ball return path 22 on the right side and moved around to the substantially horizontal passage which forms the opposite end of the ball return path 22.
Scoring of the gamemay be determined by the total score of balls held in the pockets 26 as indicated by the indicia 27.
It will be noted thatthe wires 31 form a parallelogram linkage between the movable target 35 and the front 12, so that the movable target 35 upon being struck by a dart will always move in a straight line toward the front 12. The spring 36 will thereafter move the movable target 35 in a straight line forwardly to its original position.
While the movable target 35 is illustrated in the drawings as having the form of a conventional concentric circular target, it will be obvious that it may assume any desired shape or representation. For example, it may comprise the representation and/or configuration of any animal, person or. object. It is important only that it be movable when struck, with the movement causing release of the pinball.
It will also be obvious that the movable target 35 may be struck by objects other than darts, which objects may be manually thrown or otherwise propelled against it.
1. A game board for a combination dart and pinball game comprising a substantially vertical game board, a movable target mounted on said board for horizontal movement rearwardly toward and forwardly from said game board, a pinball game area on said board beneath said target, a ball movable along said pinball area, ball release means operable upon rearward movement of said movable target to release said ball for downward movement by gravity along the pinball area of said board, ball holding means disposed behind said movable target, a parallelogram linkage extending between, said movable target and said game board, said parallelogram linkage being connected adjacent to the upper and lower portions of said target and a coil spring extending rearwardly from the center of said target, said spring normally holding said target in forward ball holding position, said target upon being struck being movable rearwardly against the pressure of said coil spring to operate said ball release means.
2. The structure described in claim 1, said parallelogram linkage comprising a pair of vertically directed U-shaped wires having their upper free ends pivotally secured to said board and their lower midportions extending transversely behind and across the upper and lower portions of said target.
3. The structure described in claim 2, and a plurality of balls of substantially equal diameter, an enclosed ball return path extending upwardly along one side of said game board, across the'top of said game board above said target, down the opposite side of said game board and transversely across said game board behind said target, said path being only slightly wider than the diameter of said balls so that said balls are held in single file within said ball return path behind said target, said game board adapted to be inverted to move said balls from said pinball game area along said ball return path to said ball release means.
4. The structure described in claim 3, and a ball stop carried by said movable target and movable therewith, said ball stop comprising a member movable rearwardly across said ball return path above thelowermost ball held therein to hold the remainder of said single file of balls within said ball return path while the lowerfrom said ball return path, a pair of inwardly directed triangular baffles disposed beneath the lower sides of said diamond shaped baffle, the upper portions of said triangular baffles being concave and defining paths directed inwardly from the opposite sides of said game board for travel by a ball, and a plurality of inverted triangular bal] receiving pockets having scoring indicia disposed on the portion of said game board beneath said triangular baffles.