US 3910582 A
An individual rotatable reel or drum module for detachable plug-in connection to a slot machine having provision for a plurality of such modules in side-by-side relationship. The module includes a mounting frame, its own electric motor driving a rotatable drum, electrical sensing means having two stationary wipers on the frame and a contact-carrying disc rotated with the drum, electrical resistors carried by the disc for selection by the wipers to identify by resistance value rest positions of the drum, and one half of a plug-in connector on the frame wired to the motor and the wipers to provide for automatic electrical connection between the module and the gaming machine.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Richards Oct. 7, 1975  REPLACEABLE PLUG-IN REEL MODULE 2,344,254 3/ 1944 Leathers 340/150 O GAME MACHINES 2,689,082 9/1954 Kolisch 235/61 PS 3,492,649 1/1970 Polillo 340/150 X  Inventor: Basil James Richards, Double Bay,
Australia FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 41,594 2 1971 Australia 273 138 A  Assignee New Century Nwelty CmmPanY 1,233,081 si1971 United Kingdom 273/143 R Limited, Rushcutters Bay, Australia 22 Fil 2, 1973 Primary ExaminerRichard C. Pinkham Assistant Examiner-Arnold W. Kramer  Appl' 384375 Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Waters, Schwartz & Nissen  Foreign Application Priority Data ACT Nov. 1, 1972 Australia 1054/72 An individual rotatable reel or drum module for detachable plug-in connection to a slot machine having  US. Cl. 273/143 R; 340/323; 340/324 R; provision for a plurality of such modules in side-by- 340/373; 340/378 R; 340/378 MW Side relationship. The module includes a mounting  Int. Cl. A63F 5/04 frame, its own electric motor driving a rotatable drum,  Field of Search 340/150, 378, 162, 177 VA, electrical sensing means having two stationary wipers 340/188 R, 188 CH, 201 R, 201 P, 373; on the frame and a contact-carrying disc rotated with 273/143 R, 143 A, 143 B, 143 C, 143 D, 143 the drum, electrical resistors carried by the disc for E, 138 A, 138 R, 139, 141 A, l'E; 235/61 selection by the wipers to identify by resistance value PG, 61 PH, 61 PJ; 35/3, 4; 310/68 R, 68 D, 72 rest positions of the drum, and one half of a plug-in connector on the frame wired to the motor and the  References Cited wipers to provide for automatic electrical connection UNITED STATES PATENTS between the module and the gaming machine.
2,302,333 11/1942 Linke 273/138 A UX 4 Claims, 3 Drawing Figures US. Patent Oct. 7,1975 Sheet 1 of3 3,910,582
U.S. Patent 0ct.7,1975 sheetzof 3,910,582
US. Patent 0a. 7,1975 Sheet 3 of3 3,910,582
e REPLACEABLE PLUG-IN REEL MODULE FOR GAME MACHINES FIELD OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to poker, fruit and other slot or gaming machines and more particularly to the construction of a rotatable reel or'drum assembly therefor.
BACKGROUND Display drums,'whichin different machines may vary from three td five in number, have hitherto been rotated by mechanical, or electric, motor drive. In both cases drive derived from the inotor is applied through a common shaft to all of the rotatable drums which are capable thereafter of freely "spinning upon the shaft until halted for astationary display of a combination of characters or symbols appearing on their peripheries. In order to provide for automatic payout of winning bonuses, the stationary position of the drums is sensed by equipment provided. Such sensing has been achieved by mechanical or felectrical means, fore frequently by alignment of indicia rotatable with the display drums.
The assembly required number of display drums upon a shaft is a complication in the construction of gaming machines, and maintenance of same in the event of malfunction in any drum has proved difficult and required dismantling of the entire assembly. Furthermore, display drum assemblies of this kind have had limited universal application and almost invariably are suitable only for application to a specific model of a machine.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION cal condition indicative of the angular position of the display drum when stationary, at least one electrical lead for relaying said electrical condition, and one part of a plug-in connector device on the mounting frame to connect with another part of said device on the machine when the mounting frame is attached thereto to complete electrical connections between the machine and the display drum assembly.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING The invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a display drum assembly module for a slot machine constructed according to the invention;
FIG. 2 shows in perspective an exploded representation of the display drum assembly; and,
FIG. 3 is a similar exploded representation from a different perspective.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION According to a preferred embodiment of the invention shown by the drawings the display drum assembly j 33 consists of al-mounting plate 22 intended for upright positioning, asp indle .36 mounted upon the plate 22 with'a cylindrical 'display'drum 5 thereon for rotation with respect" to the mounting plate 22. An electric motor 24 is also mounted upon the plate 22 adjacent the drum 5 and 'engaged'therewith by a driving spring belt 23, gearing, or other suitable means. The periphery 5Aof the drum 5 carries in known fashion a series of characters or syrri'bols 6 for use in deriving a displayed combination of characters from a plurality of such drums 5 by the machine-A sensing apparatus 9 including indexing disc 10 is secured to one side of the display drum 5 by screwsl l and preferably is provided on one side 10A (FIG? 3) with two concentric circular arrays of electrical contact faces l3 and 14A arranged in pairs with each indicative of a respective character 6 arrangedon the drums periphery 5A; and thus a're'spect ive angular position of rotation of the display drum 5. Electrical components such as resistors are connected to bridge: the terminals 12 and 14 connected with the pairs of contact faces 13 and 14A, and contacting wipers 16 connected with electrical relaying leads l7 and 18 are supported to engage by wiping the electrical contact faces 13 and 14A on the indexing disc 10.
Aconnector plug 21 is positioned on the mounting plate 22 to one, the inner, side thereof and the electrical leads l7 and 18 from the wipers 16 are connected to terminals 19 and 20 of the plug 21 while similar connections from the electric motor 24 are made thereto by lead 25., The connector plug 21 serves for automatic engagement in an electrical socket (not shown) provided in the interior of the gaming machine upon insertion of the drum assembly 33 per medium of rails or slides (not shown) also provided within the machine. A number of such sockets and rails will be provided in juxtaposition in the machine for speedy introduction and removal to and from the machine of the required number of drum assemblies 33. With the introduction of each assembly 33 all necessary electrical connections will be automatically made for the functioning of the display drums 5 of the machine.
It will be appreciated that a drum assembly 33 of the above kind will have universal application to a large number of different machines irrespective of whether three, four or five drums are employed for the machine's functioning. It will also be a simple matter to provide for independent operation of the drums 5 of any machine, if desired, and especial advantages will accrue in the so-called Hold and Draw machines where hitherto special requirements were necessary to provide the desired facility. Other forms of indexing and sensing means 9 may be employed with this invention but in the form above described it is possible to relay the electrical conditions indicative of the displayed characters 6 by as few as one or two electrical leads 17 and 18, thereby simplifying the construction of the mating plug 21 and socket.
Braking means may also be included on the mounting plate 22 which may be of simple form such as an electrical solenoid 26 connected in parallel with the electric motor 24 so that it is deenergized to effect braking of the drum 5 whenever the electric motor 24 is not in a driving condition. In one form the solenoid 26 has its plunger connected with an end 28 of a bellcrank lever 27 biased by a spring 30 so that an abutment 29 at its other end is normally urged into engagement with notches 31 in the periphery of theindexing disc 10. A microswitch 32 with its actuator operated by the abutment 29 in the energized-condition of the solenoid 26 is also usually provided for supervisory purposes.
It should be understood that other forms besides the above described embodiment are also possible within the scope of the present invention.
What I claim is:
l. A detachable symbol-display drum assembly module comprising a detachable mounting frame, a plug-in electrical connector including one part fixed on the frame, a display drum rotatably supported on said frame and displaying a plurality of different symbols, an individual electric driving motor for the display drum also supported on said frame, an electrically insulating disc fixed to said display drum, two concentric circles of contact faces carried by said disc, different valued electrical resistors connected between said two circles of contact faces, each value corresponding to its associated symbol, a pair of electrical contactors supported on said mounting frame for engagement with respective ones of said circles of contact faces when the rotatable display drum is indexed, and electrical leads connecting said electric motor and: said pair of contactors to respective connections on said one part of said connector.
2. A symbol-display drum assembly as claimed in claim I, wherein said mounting frame is an upright metal plate with forward and rear edges. said display drum being mounted on said plate in a plane parallel thereto to display said symbols on its periphery adjacent said forward edge of said plate, and said one part of the plug-in electrical connector being mounted on said plate adjacent said rear edge thereof.
3. A symbol-display drum assembly as claimed in claim 1 comprising a solenoid-controlled braking device for indexing said rotatable display drum fixed on said mounting plate and two electrical leads connecting the solenoid of said braking device to respective connections on said one part of said connector.
4. A symbol-display drum assembly as claimed in claim 3, wherein the periphery of said insulating disc is notched, and said braking device carries an abutment engageable with the notches in said disc to halt rotation and index said rotatable display drum.