US 3896248 A
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United States Patent 1 1 Scarpa 1 TENNIS MARKING TAPE AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME  Inventor: Paul E. Scarpa, l 18 Highland Dr.,
Greensville. S.C. 29405  Filed: Oct. 10, 1972  Appl. No.: 296,037
 US. Cl. 428/172; 118/37; 118/118, 273/31; 427/278; 427/289; 427/358, 428/246; 428/252 1 51 July 22, 1975 Primary Examinerwilliam D. Martin Assistant Examiner-Stuart D. Frenkel Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Bailey & Dority  ABSTRACT A marking tape for a tennis court constructed from a length of webbing having a layer of vinyl water repellant film carried thereby has a textured surface including a plurality of randomly spaced puckered areas covering said film with a plurality of spaced punctures in said webbing facilitating the placement of fastening means, is made by moving said webbing relative to a smooth rotatable roller with the layer of coating having been applied thereto in the form of a viscous tacky coating so that the puckered areas are formed by the action of the roller and then curing the coating.
4 Claims, 2 Drawing Figures PATENTEIJ JUL 2 2 ms TENNIS MARKING TAPE AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Tennis courts, such as those of clay, grass or composition. are marked with tape which is often constructed of plastic, such as nylon. Such tape has a smooth surface which discolors and tends to deteriorate with age. Such tape has a smooth surface which results with skipping or uneven bouncing of the tennis ball and often results in slipping of the players. Other tapes on the market include cotton webbing coated with paint, or leaded or aluminum tape, but such possess many similar disadvantages.
Further difficulties include the application of fastening means usually in the form of nails driven at spaced points through the tape into the playing surface of the court. Inserts, such as grommets for accommodating the nails have been provided, as illustrated in US. Letters Pat. Nos. 1,605,662 and 1,897,801, but such have the disadvantage of being expensive and produce undesirable irregularities in the marked surface.
Accordingly, it is an important object of this invention to provide a long wearing tennis court marking tape which resists discoloration and deterioration due to weathering, and which supplies a rough texture to give a uniform bounce to the ball, avoiding skipping of the ball and slipping of the player.
A very important object of this invention is to provide a pliable, somewhat resilient tennis court marking tape which lays down smoothly, avoiding curling edges as occurs especially in the case of the relatively stiff painted tape.
Another important object of the invention is to provide marked spaced relieved portions in the tape through which fastening means may be readily applied.
Another important object of the invention is to provide a method for making tennis court marking tape having these advantages.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It has been found that a tennis court marking tape having a tough vinyl protective film textured with dappled or puckered areas may be produced by passing webbing carrying a coating in the form of a tacky viscous film forming composition over a roller so as to draw out the dappled or puckered areas in the coating preparatory to curing. The tape may be mechanically punctured and marked in spaced portions to facilitate the reception of fastening means.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The construction designed to carry out the invention will be hereinafter described, together with other features thereof.
The invention will be more readily understood from a reading of the following specification and by reference to the accompanying drawing forming a part thereof, wherein an example of the invention is shown and wherein:
FIG. 1 is a schematic perspective view illustrating the method of the present invention and the textured tape formed thereby, and
FIG. 2 is an enlarged perspective view illustrating tennis court marking tape constructed in accordance with the present invention.
The drawing illustrates the method of manufacturing a textured tape for use in marking tennis courts. The method is illustrated including impregnating a length of textile webbing 10 with a liquid film forming composition 11. The tape 10 is tensioned by a pair of rolls [2 and 13 while passing through an oven compartment 14 where moisture remaining in the webbing is driven off. The tape is then drawn over the driven roller 15 and through a second oven compartment 16 to the liquid composition 11 where the webbing is impregnated with the liquid which penetrates into the intersticies of the webbing. The webbing is immersed by being passed about the driven roller 17 within the bath of liquid composition carried within the pan I8. The webbing is then passed upwardly and subjected to the action of squeegees 19 before curing during another pass through the oven compartment 16.
The impregnated cured webbing is passed over the roller 15 and downwardly through the oven compartment 16 preparatory to again applying a viscous tacky coating to the surface of the webbing curable to form a tough film to the webbing so as to form a surface layer of coating thereon by again immersing the webbing beneath the roll 17. Since the webbing is already impregnated and cured, the second application of liquid will not penetrate, but rather form a layer on the surface of the webbing. Then by moving the webbing relative to a smooth rotatable roller 20 with the layer of coating in contact with the roller a textured surface is formed therein by the puckering of the coating occurring as a result of the action of the roller thereon. The roller 20 may be mounted for rotating as upon a stub shaft 21 carried by a support 22 mounted upon the pan 18. The support 22 is suitably carried in fixed relation to the pan 18.
The tape 10 passes upwardly after having received the puckered or dappled surface as a result of the action of the roller upon the tacky coating, again through the oven compartment 16 for curing at the elevated temperature obtaining in the oven. From the oven compartment 16 the tape passes over the roller 15 and downwardly into the oven compartment 23 under the roll 24 and again upwardly through the oven compartment 23 over the roller 15 and downwardly through the oven compartment 25.
The tape is then punctured as a result of being passed beneath the roller 26, as will be described in greater detail below. It will be noted that the rolls [3, 17, 24 and 26 are carried by the shaft 27 which is journalled within the pan 18 as at 28. A roller 29 which carries spikes 30 spaced about the periphery urges the spikes through the tape to penetrate and dislocate the yarn or other material constituting the webbing and to apply ink 31 carried by the pan 32 to the tape. The tape then passes upwardly through the oven compartment 25 over the roller 15 and downwardly through the oven compartment 33 for final curing and thence into a container 10b. The tape may then be removed from the container 10b and wound in suitable rolls (not shown).
It will be observed that a coating on the tape is cured into a tough textured surface after puckering through the action of the roller 20 by passing the tape successively through the various oven compartments referred to above.
FIG. 2 illustrates a tennis court marking tape constructed in accordance with the present invention wherein the webbing 10 is preferably in the form of a woven cotton webbing to which a layer of vinyl water repellant film 34 is applied and carried by the webbing. A textured surface in said film includes a plurality of randomly puckered areas 342: covering the film. The tape is marked in spaced areas as at 35 through the application of ink by the spikes 30 which form a plurality of spaced punctures 36 for facilitating placement of fastening means for fixing the webbing to the tennis court with the textured surface up.
Cotton webbing having a width of 1 V2 to 2 inches has been used successfully in the practice of the invention. The webbing is manufactured by Southern Weaving Company of Greenville, S.C., designated T-345R and T-345W. The tape is about 0.057 inch before coating and about 0.078 inch after treatment. Other types of webbing is also believed to be practical, such as nylon filament or even nylon film. Temperature in the oven compartments in the range of from 400 to 500 F. has been found to produce satisfactory results. The liquid coating material found to be satisfactory is supplied by Rutland Products Company of Charlotte. NC, vinyl coating 4382A white. It is important that the tape be merely punctured by pressing the spikes through the webbing against the rubberized roll 26, displacing the strands forming the webbing material rather than cutting a hole therein. A hole has been found to cause the tape to tear easier and not to be fastened securely enough. The punctures are staggered about every 2% inches and result in the tape being placed in immovable fashion lying smoothly on the court surface.
If desired, a second roll may be placed opposite the driven roll so that the webbing is passed through a nip formed thereby for better control. The drying ovens illustrated constitute part of a conventional impregnating device, the roll 20, the puncturing and marking means and associated parts constitute novel means for carrying out the method for producing the novel tape. Also, the spiked roller and ink supply may be moved upwardly and the tape passed thereover by puncturing, eliminating the rubberized surface on the roll 26, provided sufficient tension is maintained in the tape.
The rough or textured tape of the invention causes the tennis ball to grip and produces a truer bounce. Better footing is also provided for the players. As previously indicated, longer life is provided in tape which resists weathering, providing an improved appearance.
While a preferred embodiment of the invention has been described using specific terms, such description is for illustrative purposes only, and it is to be understood that changes and variations may be made without departing from the spirit or scope of the following claims.
What is claimed is:
l. The method of manufacturing a textured tape for use in marking tennis courts comprising: impregnating the intersticies of a length of textile webbing with a liquid film forming composition; curing said liquid film forming composition; then applying a viscous tacky coating curable to form a tough film to said webbing so as to form a surface layer of coating on the impregnated webbing; moving the coated webbing relative to a smooth rotatable roller with said layer of coating in contact with said roller forming a textured surface therein by puckering said coating by the action of the roller thereon; and curing said viscous coating forming a tough textured surface thereon.
2. The method set forth in claim 1 including puncturing and marking the coated and textured tape at regular intervals facilitating the reception of fastening means.
3. A marking tape for a tennis court comprising: a length of woven textile webbing impregnated with a film forming composition; a layer of water repellant film carried on the surface of the impregnated webbing, said layer having been applied thereto as a tacky coating and puckered while tacky to produce a textured surface in said film including a plurality of randomly spaced puckered areas covering said film; and a plurality of spaced punctures in said webbing facilitating placement of fastening means for fixing the webbing to the court with the textured surface up; whereby said textured surface avoids skipping of a tennis ball and slipping of players.
4. The marking tape set forth in claim 3 wherein said water repellant film is a vinyl composition.