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Publication numberUS3868671 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 25, 1975
Filing dateJun 7, 1973
Priority dateJun 7, 1973
Publication numberUS 3868671 A, US 3868671A, US-A-3868671, US3868671 A, US3868671A
InventorsHugh F Maguire, William J Miller
Original AssigneeHugh F Maguire, William J Miller
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Basketball foul indicia display apparatus
US 3868671 A
Abstract
An improved indicia display apparatus particularly useful for displaying indicia indicating the number of fouls and a team bonus free-throw situation during a basketball game, for example, the apparatus comprising: a housing constructed of a transculent material having a plurality of color-coded sections, illumination devices supported within the housing selectively illuminating the color-coded sections, and an opaque indicia formed on each color-coded section. The indicia display apparatus is mounted on a post such that the housing must be removed prior to the removal of the base connecting the housing to the post, thereby reducing the possibility of unauthorized removal of the indicia display apparatus while providing an indicia display apparatus which is easily mounted in an assembled position and disassembled for storage or repair.
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Maguire et al.

BASKETBALL FOUL INDICIA DISPLAY APPARATUS Inventors: Hugh F. Maguire, 221 1 NW. 41,

Oklahoma City, Okla. 73112; William J. Miller, 1824 NW. 56 Ter., Oklahoma City, Okla. 73118 Filed: June 7, 1973 Appl. No.: 367,798

US. Cl. 340/323, 235/92 GA, 273/1 E, 240/10 R, 40/132 D Int. Cl. G08b 23/00 Field of Search 340/323, 107, 118, 119; 235/92 GA; 273/1 E; 240/10 R, 34, 49, 84, 98; 40/131 R, 132 D, 145 R References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS l/1967 Laughin 340/323 8/1968 Luoka... 340/323 5/1969 Davis.... 340/323 l/l972 Payne ..340/323 1 Feb. 25, 1975 Primary Examiner.lohn W. Caldwell Assistant ExaminerRichard P. Lange Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Dunlap & Codding [57] ABSTRACT An improved indicia display apparatus particularly useful for displaying indicia indicating the number of fouls and a team bonus free-throw situation during a basketball game, for example, the apparatus comprising: a housing constructed of a transculent material having a plurality of coloncoded sections, illumination devices supported within the housing selectively illuminating the color-coded sections, and an opaque indicia formed on each color-coded section. The indicia display apparatus is mounted on a post such that the housing must be removed prior to the removal of the base connecting the housing to the post, thereby reducing the possibility of unauthorized removal of the indicia display apparatus while providing an indicia display apparatus which is easily mounted in an assembled position and disassembled for storage or repair.

11 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures BASKETBALL FOUL INDICIA DISPLAY APPARATUS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention This invention relates generally to indicia display apparatus and, more particularly, but not by way of limitation, to a basketball foul indicia indicating apparatus.

2. Brief Description of the Prior Art In the past various devices have been proposed to display score indicia or the like related to particular athletic events such as basketball, football, baseball and the like, for example. Referring more particularly to the game of basketball, various indicator devices have been proposed and utilized in the past to display the number of fouls attributed to a particular basketball team and some of the prior devices have also included provisions for indicating the particular team charged with a time-out, for example.

The Pat. No. 3,444,548, issued to Davis, disclosed a basketball foul indicator having an elongated enclosure supporting and housing vertically spaced lamps located in compartments, and including a plurality of image-forming apertures formed through portions of the enclosure, the number of fouls being indi cated via the light shining through the image-forming apertures. This particular display device included a remote control assembly connected to the lamps and to a pair of directional indicators controlling the illuminated position of each of the lamps utilized in this particular display assembly.

The US. Pat. No. 3,302,192, issued to Laughlin, disclosed a basketball foul indicator comprising an elongated housing divided into spaced compartments, each compartment supporting a lamp for illuminating cutout indicia portions formed in the housing, a pair of indicators illuminatingthe cut-out indicia indicating a bonus or one-plus-one free'throw situation. The cut-out portions in the housing were constructed of a translucent material of a particular color and the lamps were controlled via switches mounted on a remote control panel. The U.S Pat. No. 3,399,400, issued to Lucka, also disclosed a basketball foul indicator having a remote control panel connected to lamps located in vertically spaced housing compartments, the score indicating indicia being formed via cut-out portions in the housing covered via a translucent material.

The U.S. Pat. No. 2,549,627, issued to Musch, disclosed a football down marker having lamps located in vertically spaced compartments formed in a housing. The U.S. Pat. No. 3,550,076, issued to Kent, disclosed a color zone system of traffic speed verification utilizing lamps located in spaced compartments of a housing structure.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the invention is to provide an indicia display apparatus wherein the displayed or indicated indicia are more readily perceivable from a greater number of positions remote from the indicia display apparatus.

Another object of the invention is to provide an improved indicia display apparatus wherein the displayed indicia are perceivable from remote positions located within a 360 radius about the indicia display apparatus.

A still further object of the invention is to provide an improved indicia display apparatus wherein the spectator perceivability of the displayed indicia is substantially enhanced.

Another object of the invention is to provide an improved indicia display apparatus reducing the possibilities of unauthorized removal thereof while maintaining a construction providing access to major components and assemblies in a fast, convenient and efficient manner for replacement and repair.

A still further object of the invention is to provide an indicia display apparatus which can be assembled and disassembled in a faster, more convenient and more efficient manner.

One other object of the invention is to provide an improved mounting assembly for an indicia display apparatus.

Another object of the invention is to provide an improved indicia display apparatus displaying predetermined indicia via lighted, spaced, color-coded sections and opaque indicia markings.

Another object of the invention is to provide an improved indicia display apparatus which is economical in the construction and the operation thereof.

Other objects and advantages will be evident from the following detailed description when read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings which illustrate one preferred embodiment of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a partial perspective, partial diagrammatic view of the indicia display apparatus of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a partial perspective, partial diagrammatic view of the indicia indicating assembly of the indicia display apparatus of FIG. 1; but, showing the indicia indicating assembly having the housing removed therefrom and showing the indicia indicating assembly disconnected from the post and the control assembly.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged, sectional view showing the connection of the support assembly and the housing to the base of the indicia indicating assembly and showing the connection of the indicia indicating assembly tothe post, the post being shown in FIG. 1 connected to a support structure (fragmentarily shown in FIG. 3).

FIG. 4 is a sectional view of the indicia display apparatus of FIG. 3, taken substantially along the lines 4-4 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a sectional view of the indicia display apparatus of FIG. 3, taken substantially along the lines 55 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 6 is a schematic view of the control assembly and the connection of the control assembly to the il lumination devices of the indicia display apparatus of the present invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawings in general and to FIGS. 1 and 2 in particular, shown therein and designated via the general reference numeral 10 is an indicia display apparatus constructed in accordance with the present invention and basically comprising: an indicia indicating assembly 12; a base 14 connected to and supporting the indicia indicating assembly 12; a post 16 supporting the base 14 and the indicia indicating assembly 12 in an elevated position; a control assembly 18 connected to a portion of the indicia indicating assembly 12 via a cable 20 and controlling the illuminated position of the 3 indicia indicating assembly 12 for selectively displaying predetermined indicia during the operation of the indicia display apparatus 10, in a manner to be described in greater detail below.

In general, the indicia display apparatus is constructed to selectively display predetermined indicia via the indicia indicating assembly 12, the indicia display apparatus 10 being shown in the drawings and particularly constructed, in one preferred embodiment, for displaying predetermined indicia indicating the number of fouls committed during a predetermined period of playing time in a basketball game and for displaying indicia indicating a bonus or one-plus-one" free-throw situation existing with respect to a particular basketball team due to the total number of fouls committed by that particular team during the predetermined period of playing time. During the basketball game or the like when a' player commits a foul, the scorekeeper activates a portion of the control assembly 18 illuminating a predetermined portion of the indicia indicating assembly 12 to' provide a spectator or audienceperceivable indication of the illuminated indicia the total'riumb'er of fouls'attributable to that particular basketball player during a predetermined period of playing time, thescorekeeper also activating a portion of the control assembly 18 to illuminate a predetermined portion of the indicia indicating assembly 12 to indicate thata particular team has accumulated in excess of a predetermined number of fouls within a specified period of time entitling the other team to a bonus or oneplus-one free-throw with each subsequent foul during one aspect of the operation. It should be noted that the indicia display apparatus 10 of the present invention can also be utilized to providean output indication indicating the number of team fouls, in one preferred operational embodiment of the invention.

It should be particularly notedv that, although the indicia display apparatus 10 has been shown in the drawingsand described herein with respect to a basketball foul indicating type of indicia display apparatus, the indicia displayapparatus 10 of the present invention can be utilized in'other applications for displaying predetermined indicia and the indicia display apparatus of the present invention is not limited to the display of the particular indicia shown. in the drawings and described herein for the purpose of clarity of description.

The indicia indicating assembly 12 includes a housing 22 (shown in FIGS. 1, 3, 4 and 5), a support assembly 24 (shown more clearly in FIG. 2) and a plurality of illumination devices or lamps 26, one of the illumination devices 26 being supported via the base 14 and the remaining illumination devices 26 being supported via portions of the support assembly 24. The housing 22 is constructed to be removably connected to the base 14 and to encompass the support assembly 24 in an assembled position of the indicia indicating assembly 12, as shown more clearly in FIGS. 1 and 3.

As shown more clearly in FIGS. 1, 3, 4 and 5, the housing 22 is cylindrically shaped and, in-a preferred form, is constructed of a translucent material, the term translucent being utilized to indicate that light can shine through the material even though the light may be diffused or partially diffused when utilizing particular materials. The housing 22 has an upper end 28, a lower end 30 and a housing opening 32 extending axially therethrough intersecting the upper end 28 and the lower end 30 thereof forming a receiving opening 34 at the lower end 30 of the housing 22, the receiving opening 34 having an inside diameter 36 and the-housing 22 having a length sized to slidingly encompass a substantial portion of'the support assembly 24 in an assembled position of the housing22 connected to the base 14.

The housing 22 is divided into a plurality of colorcoded sections 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48 and 50, as shown in FIG. 1. A plurality of opaque strips 52, preferably constructed of chrome foil type of adhesive tape, are secured to the housing 22, the opaque strips 52 being spaced apart a predetermined distance generally between the upper end 28 and the lower end 30 of the housing 22, the areas of the housing 22 between the opaque strips 52 defining the color-coded sections 40, 42, 44, 46 and 48, the area of the housing between one of the opaque strips 52 and the lower end 30 of the housing 22 defining the color-coded section 38 and the area of the housing 22 between one-of the opaque strips 52 and the upper end 28 of the housing 22 defining the color-coded section 50. In a preferred form, each of the opaque strips 52 is located on the housing 22 such that each of the opaque strips 52 is aligned with one of the portions of the support assembly 24 separating the support assembly 24 into spaced compartments and each opaque strip 52 has a width 54 sufficient to substantially prevent light from any one of the illumination devices 26 from illuminating any of the adjacent colorcoded section 38 through 50 other than the one predetermined color-coded section aligned with the particular illuminated device 26 which has been positioned in the illuminated on position thereof during the operation of the'indicia display apparatus 10.

In one preferred form, each of the color-coded sections 38, 40, 42,44, 46, 48 and 50 are coated or covered with a translucent material having a color identifiably distinguishing each of the color-coded sections 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48 and 50 such that each color-coded section 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48 and 50 is easily identifiaindicia 56 is located on the housing 22 and disposed.

within each of the color-coded sections 38 through 50.

More particularly, as shown in FIG. 1, the opaque indicia 56 include numeral indicia as follows: the opaque numeral indicia 1 being formed on the housing and located within the color-coded section 38; the opaque numeral indicia 2 being formed on the housing 22 andlocated within the color-coded section 40; the opaque numeral indicia 3" being located on the housing 22 and disposed within the color-coded section 42; the opaque numeral indicia .4 being located on the housing 22 and disposed within thecolor-coded section 44', and the opaque numeral indicia 5 being disposed on the housing 22 and located within the color-coded section 46. In one preferred form, as shown in FIG. I, the opaque indicia 56 also include the opaque indicia V" in combination with the numeral indicia l 1 formed on the housing 22 and disposed within the color-coded section 48, and the opaque indicia H in combination with the numeral indicia l 1 formed on the housing 22 and located within the-color-coded section 50 of the housing 22. The indicia V with the indicia I 1 located beneath the indicia in the color-coded section 48 indicates that the home team has accumulated the required number of fouls entitling the visitor or visiting team to a bonus free-throw for fouls committed by the home team, and the indicia H with the indicia l I located within the color-coded section 50 indicates that the visiting team has committed a predetermined, sufficient number of fouls entitling the home team to a bonus free-throw for fouls committed via the visiting team. It should also be noted that, in one preferred form, the housing 22 is constructed such that the color-coded sections 48 and 50 are covered via a translucent material having a color representing the home team such as one of the school colors or the like, for example, thereby providing an easilyperceivable output indication indicating the bonus free-throw situation attributable to a particular team.

The lighting of the entire color-coded section (38 through 50) provides a readily perceivable output indication indicative of the opaque indicia formed within the particular lighted color-coded section even from remote spectator positions where the particular opaque indicia per se is not perceivable by the eye of the ordinary spectatorobserver. In one preferred form, it has been found desirable to construct the housing 22 of a milk" colored or off-white colored plastic material and to subsequently cover or coat the color-coded sections 38 through 50, inclusive, with a translucent material of a predetermined color, the milk colored or off-white colored plastic material having a tendency to reduce the detrimental effect of scratches being marked on the color-coded sections 38 through 50, inclusive, during the operation or storage of the indicia display apparatus as compared with a housing 22 constructed of a clear plastic material, for example.

It should also be noted that, in an assembled position, the upper end 28 of the housing 22 is encompassed and covered via a translucent upper end section 58 coated or covered with a translucent material of a color corresponding to the color of the color-coded section 50 of the housing 22, the color-coded section 50 and the upper end section 58 each being illuminated in one illuminated position of the indicia display apparatus 10 during the operation thereof, as will be described in greater detail below.

The base 14 has an upper surface 60, a lower surface 62, and an outer periphery 64. A circularly shaped housing slot 66 is formed in the upper surface 60 of the base 14, as shown more clearly in FIG. 3. The housing slot 66 is sized to slidingly receive the lower end 30 of the housing 22, a portion of the housing 22 generally near the lower end 30 thereof being more particularly disposed within the housing slot 66 in an assembled position of the housing 22 connected to the base 14.

As shown more clearly in FIG. 3, an opening 70 is formed through the housing 22, generally near the lower end 30 thereof, the opening 70 being positioned beneath the upper surface 60 of the base 14 in an assembled position of the housing 22 disposed within the housing slot 66 of the base 14. A transverse opening 72 is formed through a portion of the housing 14 intersecting the outer periphery 64 and extending a distance radially inwardly through the housing 22, an enlarged recess 74 being formed in a portion of the transverse opening 72 generally adjacent the intersection thereof with the outer periphery 64 of the housing 14.

A fastener 76 extends through the transverse opening 72 and through the opening 70 of the housing 22 connecting the base 14 and the housing 22 and securing the housing 22 in an assembled position connected to the base 14. Thus, in an assembled position of the indicia indicating assembly 12, the housing 22 is positioned on the base 14 and a portion of the housing 22, generally near the lower end 30 thereof, is disposed within the housing slot 66, the housing 22 being oriented such that the opening in the housing 22 is aligned with the transverse opening 72 in the base 14. In this position of the housing 22 and the base 14, the fastener 76 is inserted through the transverse opening 72 and through the opening 70, the fastener 76 threadedly engaging the base 14 and being disposed through the opening 70 of the housing 22 to secure the housing 22 in an assembled position connected to the base 14.

As shown more clearly in FIGS. 3 and 5, a plurality of rod recesses 78 are formed in the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and, referring more particularly to the embodiment of the invention shown in the drawings, three rod recesses 78 are formed in the upper surface 60 of the base 14, the rod recesses 78 being spaced apart a predetermined distance and equally spaced about the inner periphery of the housing 22 in an assembled position, as shown more clearly in FIG. 4. Each of the rod recesses 78 is disposed within the area of the upper surface 60 of the base 14 encompassed via the housing slot 66. The rod recesses 78 are positioned on the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and oriented with respect to the housing slot 66 to positively locate the support assembly 24 in a predetermined position on the base 14 such that the housing 22 can be inserted over the support assembly 24 and moved to an assembled position wherein the lower end 30 of the housing 22 is disposed and located within the housing slot 66, in a manner to be made more apparent below.

The support assembly 24, as shown more clearly in FIGS. 2, 4 and 5, comprises a rod assembly 80 supporting a plurality of opaque plates 82. In one preferred form, the rod assembly 80 includes three rods 84, each rod 84 having an upper end 86 and a lower end 88. Each plate 82 has three rod openings 90 formed therethrough, as indicated in FIG. 2 and as shown in FIG. 4 with respect to one of the plates 82, and each of the rods 84 extends through one of the rod openings 90 in each of the plates 82, each of the plates 82 being secured to each of the rods 84 generally. at the point where the rods 84 extend through the rod openings 90.

One of the plates 82 is spaced a distance 92 from the lowermost end 88 of the rods 84, one other of the plates 82 is spaced a distance 94 from the translucent upper end section 58 which is secured to the upper ends 86 of the rods 84, and the remaining plates 82 are each secured to the rods 84 and spaced apart a predetermined distance 96, as shown more clearly in FIGS. 2 and 3. The distance or spacing 94 between the translucent upper end section 58 and one of the plates 82, in a preferred form, is substantially equal to the spacing 96 between the plates 82, and the distance or spacing between the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and one of the plates 82, in an assembled position of the rod assembly 90, substantially corresponds to the spacing 96 between the plates 82 securedly supported via the rod assembly 90.

In an assembled position of the support assembly 24 connected to the base 14 via the rods 84, a portion of the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and a translucent upper end section 58 each cooperate with the plates 82 supported via the rod assembly 80 to form a plurality of vertically spaced compartments 98, 100, 102, 104, 106, 108 and 110. One of the illumination devices 26, more particularly, is secured in a support connected to the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and the remaining illumination devices 26 are each secured in a support connected to one of the plates 82, one of the illumination devices 26 being supported and disposed within each of the compartments 98 through 110, inclusive.

The vertically spaced compartments 98, 100, 102, 104, 106, 108 and 110 are disposed and spaced such that, in an assembled position of the housing 22 connected to the base 14, each of the compartments 98, 100, 102, 104, 106, 108 and 110 is aligned and disposed generally adjacent one of the color-coded sections 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48 and 50. In this position, each opaque strip 52 is disposed adjacent and aligned with the outerperipheral surface of one of the plates 82, the opaque strips 52 each encompassing and encircling the outer periphery of one of the plates 82 and cooperating therewith to substantially reduce light emitted via one of the illumination devices 26 from filtering into one of the adjacent compartments 98 through 1.10 or, in other words, substantially confining the light emitted via each of theillumination devices 26 to the one particular compartment 96 through 110 illuminating the one predetermined color-coded section 38 through 50 aligned therewith and disposed generally adjacent thereto.

in an assembled position of the support assembly 24 connected to the base 14, the lower end 88 of each of the rods 84 is disposed within one of the rod recesses 78 in the base 14 securedly positioning the support assembly 24 within the area of the base 14 encompassed via the housing slot 66. The plates 82 and the translucent upper end section 58 are each secured to the rod assembly 80-and supported in an assembled position wherein the plates 82 and the translucent upper end section 58 are each vertically aligned, the outer peripheral surfaces of the plates 82 and the outer peripheral surface of the-translucent upper end section 58 forming theoutermost peripheral surfaces of the support assembly 24. The diameter of the plates 82 substantially correspondsto the'diameter of the translucent upper end section 58, each of the diameters being slightly less than the inside diameter 36 of the housing opening 32.

Thus, the housing 22 can be positioned generally above the translucent upper end section 58 or, in other words, generally above the support assembly 24 in a position wherein the receiving opening 34 in the lower end 30 of the housing 22 is generally aligned with the outer peripheral surface of the support assembly 24 formed via the peripheral surfaces of the plates 82 and the translucent upper end section 58 and, in this position, the housing 22 is moved in a downwardly direction 114, as shown in FIG. 1, to a position wherein a portion of the housing 22 generally adjacent the lower end 30 thereof is supportingly disposed within the housing slot 66 formed in the base 14. In this assembled position of the housing 22 and the support assembly 24, the translucent upper end section 58 secured to the upper ends 86 of the rods 84 is disposed generally adjacent and aligned with the upper end 28 of the housing 22, the translucent upper end section 58 forming the uppermost end section of the housing 22.

It should be noted that, although the translucent end section 58 has been shown in the drawings and de scribed above as being connected to the uppermost ends 86 of the rods 84, that, in one form, the tran'slucent upper. end section 58 is secured to the housing 22 adjacent the upper end 28 thereof. Also, in one other preferred embodiment, the translucent upper end section 58 is a separate component and includes a lip formed about the outer periphery thereof such that the upper end section 58 is insertable within the housing opening 32 adjacent the upper end 28 to a position wherein the lip engages the upper end 28 positioning theupper end section 58 in an assembled position.

After the housing 22 has been moved in a downwardly direction 114 to an assembled position on the base 14, the housing 22 is then positioned rotationally about the axial axis of the housing opening 32 to a position aligning the opening in the lower end 30 portion of the housing 22 with the transverse opening 72 formed through the base 14. The fastener 76 is then threadedly inserted through the transverse opening 72 to an assembled position wherein a portion of the fasterner 76 extends through the opening 70 of the housing 22 thereby securing the housing 22 in an assembled position to the base 14. I

In the assembled position of the housing 22 connected to the base 14 and encompassing the support assembly 24, each of the opaque strips 52 is aligned with and encircles the outer peripheral surface of one of the plates 82. The width 54 of each of the opaque strips 52 more particularly, is sized such that portions of the opaque strips 52 extend a distance generally above and a distance generally below the plate 82 aligned therewith, thereby substantially preventing light from one compartment 98 through 110, inclusive, from filtering through to one of the adjacent compartments 98 through 110, inclusive, to substantially assure that only one color-coded section 38 through 50, inclusive', is illuminated in the illuminated on position of one of the illumination devices 26 disposed in the compartment aligned with the color-coded section tobe illuminated. I

To disassemble the housing 22 from the base 14 to gain access to the illumination devices 26, portions of the cable 20 orportions of the support assembly 24 .for repair or replacement or for removal of the housing 22 and the support assembly 24 for storage of the indicia display apparatus 10 or the indicia indicating assembly 12, the fastener 76 must first be removed thereby disconnecting the housing 22 from the base 14. After the fastener 76 has been removed, the housing 22 is then slid in a generally upwardly direction 116, as shown in FIG. 1, to an elevated position wherein the support assembly 24 is removed from its assembled disposition within the housing opening 32. Further, the base 14 is connected to the post 16 such that the housing 22 must be removed before the base 14 can be disassembled from the post 16, thereby substantially reducing the possibilityv of unauthorized removal of the indicia indicating assembly 12 as will be described in greater detail below.

As shown in FIGS. 3 and S, a plurality of bolt holes (two bolt holes 120 being shown in FIG. 3 and the remaining two bolt holes l20and the orientation of the four bolt holes 120 being indicated in FIG. 5), the bolt holes 120 each extending through the base 14 intersecting the upper surface 60 and the lower surface 62 thereof. A plurality of recesses 122 are formed in the base 14, each of the recesses 122 being formed through the lower surface 62 of the base 14 generally adjacent and intersecting one of the bolt holes 120, as shown more clearly in FIG. 3 with respect to two of the bolt holes 120 and two of the recesses 122, The four bolt holes 120 are each disposed and located within a portion of the base 14 encompassed via the housing slot 66, each of the bolt holes 120 being spaced a predetermined radial distance inwardly from the housing slot 66, for reasons to be made more apparent below.

In one preferred embodiment, as shown in the drawings, the indicia display apparatus 10 also includes the post 16 constructed to support the indicia indicating assembly 12 in an elevated position so that the displayed indicia are more readily perceivable by the audience or spectators, this particular construction being preferred in some applications particularly where the indicia display apparatus 10 is to be utilized in an environment wherein the displayed indicia are to be viewed by a relatively large number of spectators or in those applications wherein the indicia indicating assembly 12 is to be remotely located with respect to the viewing spectators. The post 16 is cylindrically shaped and has a post opening 124 formed axially therethrough intersecting an upper end 126 and a lower end 128 of the post 16. An upper flange 130 is formed on the upper end 126 of the post 16, the upper flange 130 having a portion 132 extending a distance radially outwardly from the post 16 and providing an upwardly facing supporting surface 134 generally aligned with the upper end 126 of the post 16. A lower flange 136 is also formed on the post 16 generally adjacent the lower end 128 thereof, a portion 138 of the lower flange 136 extends a distance radially outwardly from the post 16 forming the downwardly facing supporting surface 140 generally aligned with the lower end 128 of the post 16.

The supporting surfaces 134 and 140 of the upper and the lower flanges 130 and 136, respectively, each extend circumferentially about the post 16 and a plurality of bolt holes 142 are formed through the radially extending portion 132 of the upper flange 130, a plurality of bolt holes 144 being formed through the radially extending portion 138 of the lower flange 136. More particularly, four bolt holes 142 are form ed through the upper flange 130, each of the bolt holes 142 being spaced and oriented on the upper flange 130 such that the bolt holes 142 are aligned with the bolt holes 120 formed through the base 14 in an assembled position of the base 14 on the post 16. A plurality of recesses 146 are formed through a portion of the lower surface 148 of the upper flange 130, the recesses 146 each being oriented and disposed such that one of the recesses 146 is disposed generally adjacent and intersecting each of the bolt holes 142 formed through the upper flange 130. In a similar manner, a plurality of recesses 150 are formed through a portion of the upper surface 152 of the radially extending portion 138, the recesses 150 being disposed and oriented such that one of the recesses 150 is disposed adjacent and intersects each of the bolt holes 144 in the lower flange 136, as shown more clearly in FIG. 3.

One bolt type of fastener 154 is disposed through each of the bolt holes 142 formed in the radially extending portion 138 of the upper flange 130 to a position wherein each of the bolt heads 156 formed on one end of the fasteners 154 is disposed within one of the recesses 146 formed in the lower surface 148 of the upper flange 130, each of the fasteners 154 being, in a preferred form, sized such that an extended portion 158 thereof extends a distance from the supporting surface 134 of the upper flange 130. In this position, a nut 160 is threadedly secured to each of the extended bolt portions 158, a portion of each of the nuts 160 engaging a portion of the upper supporting surface 140 of the upper flange securing each of the bolts 154 in an assembled position through the bolt holes 142 of the upper flange 130.

After the bolts 154 have each been secured to the upper flange 130, the base 14 is then positioned generally over or above the supporting surface of the flange 130 and oriented such that each of the bolt holes 120 through the base 14 is aligned with one of the extended bolt portions 158 extending vertically upwardly from the supporting surface 140 of the upper flange 130. The base 14 is then moved downwardly extending the extended bolt portions 158 through the bolt holes 120 of the base 14 to a position wherein the lower surface 62 of the base 14 supportingly engages the supporting surface 134 of the upper flange 130 and a portion of the upper end 126 of the post 16, each of the nuts being disposed within one of the recesses 122 formed in the lower surface 62 of the base 14 allowing the lower surface 62 of the base 14 to supportingly engage the supporting surface 134 of the upper flange 130.

In this position of the base 14 and the post 16, a portion of the extended bolt portions 158 extends above the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and a nut 162 is threadedly secured to each of the portions of the bolts 154 extending above the upper surface 62 of the base 14, the nuts 162 each engaging a portion of the upper surface 60 of the base 14 and threadedly engaging one of the bolts 154 to secure the base 14 in an assembled position connected to the post 16 via the upper flange 130. Since the bolt holes 120 formed through the base 14 are disposed within and encompassed via the housing slot 66, in an assembled position of the housing 22, the base 14 and the post 16, the nuts 162 secured to the bolts 154 are each disposed within the housing opening 32, and thus the housing 22 must first be removed from the base 14 before the nuts 162 can be disengaged from the bolts 154 permitting the removal of the base 14 from the post 16. In this manner, any unauthorized disassembly of the indicia display apparatus 10 is substantially deterred since the housing 22 and the base 14 are constructed in a manner requiring the sequential disassembly of these items and in a manner eliminating the removal of the indicia indicating assembly 12 from the post 16 unless the housing 22 is first removed to provide access to the nuts 162 for disengaging the base 14 from thepost 16.

In one preferred form, the post 16 is constructed to support the indicia indicating assembly 12 in an elevated position with respect to a supporting surface such as a table or the like, the table being, in one operational embodiment contemplated via the invention, the scorekeepers table generally utilized during a particular athletic event such as a basketball game, for example. To illustrate this aspect of the invention, a fragmentary portion of a supporting structure such as the scorekeepers table has been shown in FIG. 3 and designated therein via the general reference numeral 170. In this embodiment, the supporting structure has an upper surface 172 formed via the top of the scorekeepers table, for example, a lower surface 174, and an opening 176 formed through the support structure 170 intersecting the upper surface 172 and the lower surface 174. A plurality of bolt holes 178 are also formed through the support structure 170, the bolt holes 178 being spaced a distance radially outwardly from the opening 176 and spaced circumferentially about the opening 176. More particularly, the bolt holes 178 are oriented and positioned with respect to the opening 176 such that, in an assembled position of the indicia display apparatus connected to the support structure 170, the bolt holes 178 are aligned with the bolt holes 144 through the lower flange 136 of the post 16 and the opening 176 of the support structure 170 is generally aligned with the post opening 124 through the post 16, the supporting surface 140 formed via the lower flange 136 being disposed generally adjacent the upper surface 172 of the support structure 170 and spaced a distance therefrom via washer-like elements 1 180, as shown in FIG. 3.

After the post 16 has been positioned in an assembled position on the support structure 170, bolts 182 are disposedthrough each of the bolt holes 144 formed through the lower flange 136 and through the bolt holes 178 through the support structure 170, a portion ofeach of the bolts 182 extending a distance beyond the lower surface 174 of the support structure 170. A wing nut 184 is threadedly secured to the end of each of the bolts 182 extending below the lower surface 174 of the support structure 170, a portion of the wing nuts 184 engaging the lower surface 174 and cooperating with the bolts 182 to secure the post 16 to the upper surface 172 of the support structure 170 via the lower flange 136 on the post 16. The post 16 is thus constructed to be removably secured to the support structure 170 via the bolts 182 and the wing nuts 184 in a manner such that the indicia display apparatus 10 can be quickly and easily positioned in one assembled position connected to the support structure 170. and disas-' sembled therefrom for storage or repair in the operational embodiment of the indicia display apparatus 10 shown in FIG. 3.

As briefly mentioned before, the control assembly 18 is connected to each of the illumination devices 26 supported within the indicia indicating assembly 12 via a cable 20., and is particularly constructed to selectively position each of the illumination devices 26 in the illu 'minatedon position in one position of the control assembly v18 during the operation of the indicia display apparatus 10. The cable 20, more particularly, encompasses and houses a plurality of electrical conductors and includes provisions for connecting each of the illumination devices 26 to the control assembly 18 via a pair of electrical conductors generally shown in FIGS. 2 and 3 and designated therein via the general reference numeral 186, the electrical interconnection between the illumination devices 26 and the control assembly 18 being shown schematically in greater detail in FIG. 6.

As shown in FIG. 6, the control assembly 18, more particularly, is interposed between an electrical power source 190 and the illumination devices 26, the illumination devices 26 being also desginated in FIG. 6 via the particular opaque indicia 1, 2," 3," 4, 5, V" and H, corresponding to the particular opaque indicia 56 formed on the housing 22, as shown in FIG. 1 and as described in detail before. The illumination devices 26 are each connected in electrical parallel and the illumination devices 26 are connected to the power source via conductors 192 and 194. As schematically shown in FIG-'6, the conductor 194 is, more particularly, connected to the illumination devices 26 via individual, separate conductors 196, 198, 200, 202, 204, 206 and 208'and each of the illumination devices 26 is connected to the conductor 192 via separate, individual conductors 210, 212, 214, 216, 218, 220 and 222, the conductors 196 through 208 each being connected to one of the illumination devices 26 and the conductors 210 through 222 each being connected to one of the illumination devices 26.

The control assembly 18 includes a plurality of switches 224, 226, 228, 230, 232, 234 and 236, each of the switches 224 through 236 being interposed in one of the conductors 210 through 222. Each of the switches 224 through 236 has an off position, as schematically shown in FIG. 6, interrupting electrical continuity in the conductors 210 through 222 and disconnecting the illumination devices 26 from the power source 190, and each of the switches 224 through 236 has an on position establishing electrical continuity between the illumination devices 26 and the power source 190 positioning the illumination device 26 connected thereto in the illuminated on position. Since the illumination devices 26 and the switches 224 through 236 are connected in parallel, the illuminated on position of each of the illumination devices 26 is individually and selectively controlled via one of the switches 224 through 236.

A flasher type of switch 238 is interposed in the conductor 214 generally between the switch 228 and the illumination device 26 disposed in the compartment 106 of the support assembly 24 and associated with the opaque indicia 5. The flasher type of switch 238 is constructed to interrupt and establish electrical continuity at regular, predetermined intervals to provide a blinking light type of effect accenting the illuminated on position of the illumination device.26 disposed in the compartment 106 of the support assembly 24.

As shown in FIG. 1, the control. assembly 18, in one preferred embodiment, is enclosed in a generally rectangularly shaped control box 242 providing the basic support for the various control devices, schematically shown in FIG. 6. The control box 252 has a top 244 with an outer periphery 246 secured thereon enclosing the control devicesand providing a basic supporting structure for portions of the switches 224 through 236, inclusive. The outer periphery 246 of the top 244 extends beyond and overhangs the walls of the control box 242 providing a downwardly facing ledge 248 extending peripherally about the top of the control box 242. In one preferred embodiment, the control box 242 is constructed to be mounted on top of the scorekeepers table and, in this form, the control box 242 includes a plurality of feet secured to the bottom and constructed of a resilient material to reduce slipping of the control box 242 during the operation thereof.

in one preferred operational embodiment of the indicia display apparatus 10, the indicia display apparatus 10 is constructed to be mounted upon and secured in an assembled position to a support structure such as a scorekeepers tableor the like, as generally mentioned before. In this operational embodiment of the invention, the control box 242 is shaped to be disposed through an opening in the top or the table supporting structure (not shown in the drawings) to a position wherein the downwardly facing ledge 248 engages the upper surface of the table supporting structure thereby removably disposing the control box 242 in an assembled position connected to the table-like support structure.

As shown in FIG. 1, a plurality of push button actuators are slidably disposed through spaced openings formed through the top 244 of the control box 242, each of the push button actuators being connected to one of the switches 224 through 236, inclusive, positioning the switch connected thereto in a closed position establishing electrical communication between one of the illumination devices 26 and the power source 190 in a depressed position of a particular push button actuator. Since the push button actuators are connected to and form an integral part of the switches 224 through 236, inclusive, the push button actuators have been designated in FIG. 1 via the general reference numerals 224a, 226a, 228a, 230a, 232a, 234a and 236a corresponding to the numeral reference designation of the switch element connected thereto, shown schematically in FIG. 6. It should also be noted that, in one other preferred embodiment, the push button actuators are more particularly toggle switches, each having an on and an of position.

Thus, during the operation of the indicia display apparatus 10, the vertically spaced compartment 102 associated with the colorcoded section 42 in the opaque indicia 3," for example, is positioned in the illuminated on position by depressing the push button actuator 232a closing the switch 232 and establishing electrical communication between the illumination device 26 disposed in the compartment 102 and the power source 190 via the conductors 204, 218, 192 and 194. The illumination devices 26 disposed in the compartments 98, 100, 104, 106, 108 and 110 are positioned in the illuminated on position via depressing the push button actuators 236a, 234a, 230a, 228a, 226a and 2240, respectively, in a manner similar to that described before with respect to the compartment 102, the push button actuator 232a and the switch 232.

When the indicia display apparatus is utilized to display predetermined indicia during an athletic event such as a basketball game, for example, the displayed indicia, more particularly, provides the output indications indicating the total number of personal fouls, in one operational aspect, the output indications indicating team fouls in one other preferred embodiment, as mentioned before. When utilized to indicate personal fouls, the scorekeeper displays an output indication indicating the total number of fouls committed by that player by depressing one of the push button actuators 228a through 236a, inclusive, when a particular team member commits a foul, thereby positioning the illumination device 26 supported in that particular compartment 98 through 106, inclusive, in an illuminated on position illuminating the color-coded section 38 through 46, inclusive, associated therewith, the illumi nated color-coded section 38 through 46, inclusive, providing the spectator-perceivable output indication indicating the total number of fouls committed by that particular player during a predetermined specified playing periodof time, for example.

Since the entire color-coded section associated with the illumination device 26 positioned in the illuminated on position via the depressing of one of the push button actuators 228a through 236a, inclusive, is illuminated, the entire illuminated color-coded section provides the spectator-perceivable output indication indicating theparticular opaque indicia 56 formed on that particular illuminated color-coded section which is perceivable from a position 360 about the indicia indicating assembly 12 and from positions remote from the indicia indicating assembly 12 where the opaque indicia 56 is not per se perceivable. It has been found that the illumination of the entire color-coded section accents and augments the particular indicia formed via the opaque indicia 56 emphasizing the opaque indicia 56 and rendering the opaque indicia 56 more readily perceivable via the spectator-audience.

After a particular foul has been committed by one of the team members bringing the total number of fouls committed by that particular player during a predetermined period of playing time to a total of five, the scorekeeper will depress push button actuator 228a closing the switch 228 and establishing electrical continuity between the illumination device 26 supported within the compartment 106 and the power source 190 via the conductors 2 20, 214, 192 and 194 placing the illumination device 26 in the illuminated on position. In the illuminated on position of the illumination device 26 disposed in the compartment 106, the color-coded section 46 is illuminated providing an output indicating indicating that the total number of fouls committed via that player is equal to five. However, since the flasher type of switch 238 is interposed in the conductor 214 between the illumination device 26 and the switch 228, the illumination device 26 supported in the compartment 106 will be automatically, periodically switched to the illuminated on position and to the off position via the flasher type of switch 238 providing a flashing or blinking type of output indication illuminating the color-coded section 46 to emphasize and to bring to the attention of the spectator-audience that the total number of fouls committed by the player is equal to a value of five.

After a team has committed a total number of five team fouls during a predetermined period of'playing time, subsequent fouls committed by members or players of that team are penalized by giving the opposing, fouled team a bonus freethrow. The bonus or oneplus-one situation is indicated via the scorekeeper depressing either the push button 234a closing the switch 234 or the push button 236a closing the switch 236 illuminating one of the illumination devices 26 disposed in one of the compartments 108 or illuminating one of the color-coded sections 48 or 50 depending upon whether the team committing the foul is designated as the visitor team" or the home team.

As mentioned before, the indicia display apparatus 10 is also utilized, in one operational embodiment, to indicate team fouls. In this operational embodiment, the scorekeeper illuminates one of the color-coded sections 38 through 46, inclusive, after each foul providing an output indication of the total number of team fouls committed by the particular fouling team. When the total number of team fouls committed during a predetermined period of playing time is equal to five, the scorekeeper illuminates the color-coded section 46 providing a flashing or blinking type of output indication, in a manner described before, thereby indicating that any additional fouls committed by that team within the specified period of playing time will allow the opposing, fouled team a bonus free-throw, the appropriate color-coded section 48 or 50 being also illuminated in this operational embodiment.

As shown in FIG. 1, the cable 20, more particularly, comprises a first cable component 252 and a second cable component 254. The first cable component 252 encompassingly houses the electrical conductors connected to the switches 224 through 236, inclusive, disposed in the control box 242, the conductors terminating on one end of the first cable component 252 with a female connector plug 256. The second cable component 254 houses the electrical conductors connected on one end thereof to the illumination devices 26 supported within the indicia indicating assembly 12, the electrical conductors within the second cable component'254 terminating with a male connector plug 258 on one end thereof. The female connector plug 256 and the male connecto? plug 258 are each constructed to be interconnected connecting the various electrical conductors disposed in th'e'first cable component 252 and the electrical conductors disposed within the second cable component 254 in a predetermined electrical connection, schematically shown in FIG. 6 andin a manner well-known in the art. The connector plugs 256 and 258 provide a connection which is easily placed in a connected, assembled position forming the calbe connecting the control assembly 18 and the indicia indicating assembly 12 and in a disconnected position, as shown in FIG. 1, separating the control assembly 18 disposed within the control box 242 from the indicia indicating assembly 12 for repair, replacement or storage of the indicia display apparatus 10 of the present invention.

As shown in FIG. 1, second cable component 254 of the cable 20, more particularly, extends upwardly through the support assembly 24, the second cable component 254 extending through a cable opening 260 formed through the base 14 and through a cable opening 262 formed through each of the plates 82, as shown more clearly in FIGS. 3, 4 and 5 with respect to the base 14 and one of the plates 82. As shown more clearly in FIGS. 1 and 3, the second cable component 254 extends from the cable opening 260 in the base 14, throughthe post opening 124 and, in the one operational embodiment shown in FIG. 3, through the opening 176 in the support structure 170. Thus, a substantial portion of the second cable component 260 is encompassed via the indicia indicating assembly 12 and the post 16. It has been found desirable to color code the electrical conductors disposed within the cable 20 using a color matching the colors of the color-coded sections 38 through 50, inclusive, thereby simplifying the identification of the electrical conductors connected to particular illumination devices 26 to facilitate trouble-shooting of the indicia indicating apparatus 10. Changes may be made in the construction and the operation of the indicia display apparatus described herein without departing from the spirit and the scope of the invention as defined in the following claims.

What is claimed is: 1. An indicia display apparatus, comprising: a base; support means connected to the base having portions forming a plurality of spaced compartments;

illumination means disposed in each of the spaced compartments, each illumination means providing light in an illuminated on position thereof;

control means connected to each of the illumination means havinga portion selectively positioning each of the illumination means in the illuminated on position in one positionthereof; and a housing constructed of a translucent material, having an upper end, a lower end and a plurality of spaced, opaque indicia formed thereon, the housing having an opening formed through a portion intersecting the lower end thereof forming a receiving opening, the lower end of the housing engaging the base, the housing being movable in a direction generally toward the base disposing the support means within a portion of the housing opening and in a direction generally away from the base removing the support from within the housing opening; and the predetermined indicia disposed adjacent predetermined compartments in an assembled position of the support means and the housing on the base, the illumination meansilluminating the translucentportions of the housing disposed adjacent thereto accenting the-opaque indicia in an illuminated on position of the illumination means. 2. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the support means is defined further to include:

rod means, having opposite ends, one end of the rod means connected to the base, the base supporting the rod means extending avpredetermined distance therefrom; and a plurality of plates connected to the rod means and supported thereby, the plates being spaced apart predetermined distances, the spacing between one plate and the base forming one compartment and the spacing between the plates forming some of the I remaining compartments; and wherein one of the illumination means is disposed within the compartment formed between the base and one of the plates, one illumination means being disposed within each of the remaining compartments.

3. The apparatus of claim 1 whereinthe base includes a housing slot; and wherein the housing opening ex- 2 tends through and intersects the lower end-of the housing forming a receiving opening, the lower end of the housing disposed within the housing slot in an assembled position of the housing and the support means on the base; and wherein the apparatus includes means connected to the base and to the housing securing the housing to the base in one position thereof.

4. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the housing is defined further as comprising a plurality of color-coded sections, each color-coded section disposed generally adjacent and aligned with one of the compartments formed via the support means, the illumination of the color-coded section providing a perceivable indication indicative of the opaque indicia associated with each compartment of the support means.

5. The apparatus of claim 4 defined further to include: a plurality of spaced opaque strips, each opaque strip being secured to the housing and cooperating to confine the illumination of any one color-coded section substantially to that illuminated color-coded section.

6. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein the housing is defined further as being cylindrically shaped, the illumination of the color-coded section providing an output indication equally perceivable from positions located 360 about the housing.

7. The apparatus of claim 1 defined further to include; a post connectable to'the base supporting the base and the housing in an elevated position, having an upper end, a lower end and an upper flange formed on the upper end thereof providing a supporting surface engaging the base; and connecting means extending through the upper flange and through the base removably connecting the base to the post.

8. The apparatus of claim 7 wherein the connecting means includes: bolt means extending through the upper flange and through the base, a portion of the bolt means extending a distance above the base and disposed within the housing opening in an assembled position of the housing connected to the base; and fastener means secured to the portion of the bolt means extending above the base and engaging a portion of the base, the fastener means and the bolt means securing the base to the post.

9. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein the control means is connectable to a power source and includes: switch means connectable to a power source and the illumination means, the switch means selectively connecting the illumination means to the power source in a closed position thereof positioning the illumination means in the illuminated on position in one position of the switch means connecting the illumination means to the power source.

10. The apparatus of claim 9 defined further to include: flasher means interposed between the power source and one of the illumination means periodically interrupting the electrical communication therebetween in a closed position of the switch means.

11. An indicia display apparatus, comprising:

a post, having an upper end, a lower end and an upper flange formed on the upper end thereof providing a supporting surface;

a base, having a housing slot formed in a portion thereof, disposed on the upper flange supporting surface of the post;

connecting means extending through the flange and through the, base, a portion of the connecting means extending a distance above the base;

fastner means removably connectable to the portion of the connecting means extending above the base and engaging a portion of the base, the fastener means and the connecting means cooperatingly securing the base to the post; and

indicia indicating means removably connected to the base, having a portion enclosing the fastener means and the portion of the connecting means extending above the base requiring the removal of the indicia indicating means prior to the disconnecting of the base and the post.

@2 3 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION Patent No. 3, 58,671 D d February 25, 1975 Inventor) Hugh F. Maguire and William J. Miller It is certified that error appears in the above ide ntified atentand that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below I" r I 1 Column 3, line 22, after "indicia", add -indicating-.

Column 8, line 19-20, "fasterner" should be --fastener---.

Column 11, line 61, "desginated" should be designated-.

Column 12, line 44, "252" should be 242-.

Column l5,- line 26, "calbe" should be --cable--.

Column 18, line 15, "fastener" should be fas tener-.

Signed and sealed this 13th day of May 1975.

(SEAL) Attest:

. C. MARSHALL DANN RUTH C MASON Commissioner of Patents Attestlng Officer and Trademarks

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Classifications
U.S. Classification340/323.00R, 40/573, 273/DIG.260, 362/249.12, 362/242, 362/23.18
International ClassificationF21S8/00, A63B71/06
Cooperative ClassificationY10S273/26, F21W2111/00, A63B71/06
European ClassificationA63B71/06