US 401082 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
(No Model.) 2 Sheets-Sheet 1.
' P. W. TAYLOR.
LAWN TENNIS NET. N0. 401,082. Patented Apr. 9. 1889.
i e e;
(No Model.) 2 Sheets-Sheet 2.
F. W. TAYLOB.
. LAWN TENNIS NET. I N9 401,082. Patented Apr. 9. 1889,
WITNESSES: 7 Ill/VE/VTOR N, PETERS. PhowLilhcgmphur, Walhinginn, u, c
- UNITED STATES PATENT UEEICE.
FREDERICK W. TAYLOR, OF PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA.
LAWN-TENNIS N ET.
SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 401,082, dated April 9, 1889.
Application filed December 20, 1887. Serial No. 258,486. (No model.)
To all whom it may concern:
Be it known that I, FREDERICK W. TAYLOR, of Philadelphia, in the county of Philadelphia and State of Pennsylvania, have invented a certain new and useful Improvement in Lawn-Tennis Nets, of which improvement the following is a specification.
My invention relates to the nets which are stretched across the middle of a lawn-tennis court in'playing the game of lawn-tennis; and in order to more clearly explain the nature of my invention I shall preliminarily and briefly indicate the objections obtaining in lawntennis nets of the character of those known and used prior to my invention.
, As heretofore constructed, lawn-tennis nets have consisted of a top cord, (made of much heavier and stronger cord than that of which the body of the net is composed) which is attached at its ends to two posts located one on each side of the court for the purpose of supporting the net. .The body of the net is attached to and hangs down from the top cord, and along the bottom of the body of the net and attached thereto is the bottom cord, which is generally of about the same strength or somewhat lighter than the top cord. The
bottom cord is also attached to the posts at the sides of the court and serves to steady the net, preventing it from swinging backward and forward in the wind and keeping it tightly stretched.
Along the extreme upper portion of the net, and generally covering the top cord, a strip of canvas or tape, varying in width from about one to three and one-half inches, is sewed, the object of the canvas being to attract the eye of the player and indicate the position of the top of the net, so that he may drive his balls just over it. In the middle of the court, and generally half-way between the posts which support the net, a center post is ordinarily stuck or planted in the ground, this post supporting the net and regulating the height of the top cord of the not from the ground. The meshes of the net should be as large as practicable, so that the player on one side of it can see distinctly through it the player and the ball on the opposite side; but the mesh must not be large enough to allow the ball to pass through it when it is driven hard against it.
In playing the game of lawn-tennis it is the object of each player to drive the ball over the top of the net and to cause it to light on the ground within certain lines which are laid out on the ground. It is therefore frequently the object of the player to drive the ball as close as possible to the top cord of the net without'st-riking the net. As a consequence, by far the greater number of balls that strike the net do so in the upper half, and, since the players attempt to drive more balls over the middle of the net than the sides, a greater number of balls strike the net near the middle and in the upper part than on any other portion. Inasmuch as the top cord of the net and the center post have each a tendency to prevent the net from yielding when struck with a ball, the net when struck by a ball near the top or near the center post receives a greater strain than when struck at any other part.
For the reasons above stated the nets Wear out and tear in the middle and upper portions much more rapidly than anywhere else, which is obviously a serious objection. It is further desirable that the tennis-net should be as light as possible, since it must be kept stretched tight across the court, and if the net is heavy the posts are so severely strained that they frequently yield under the pressure.
The objects of my invention are to obviate the objections above stated to lawn-tennis nets as heretofore constructed, and to increase the durability of the net without unnecessarily increasing its weight; to which ends my invention, generally stated, consists, first, in providing a lawn-tennis not having the upper and middle portions ofits body of greater strength than the remainder thereof; second, in providinga lawn-tennis net having the upper, lower, and middle portions of its body of greater strength than the remainder thereof.
In the accompanying drawings, Figures 1 and 2 are elevations or side views of lawntennis nets as heretofore constructed, and Figs. 3, 4, and '5 elevations or side views of lawn-tennis nets which embody and illustrate my invention.
In each of the views the line A B indicates the surface of the ground, in which the posts 1 may be erected in any suitable and convenient manner. The body 2 of the net is woven or tied in the manner of nets used for catching fish or other similar purposes, leaving openings between the cords or wire of which the net is composed large enough to allow the player to see distinctly his antagonist or the ball on the opposite side of the net, but which are not sufficiently large to allow the ball to pass through them. These openings are ordinarily called the meshes of the net, and by a large mesh is meant a large aperture between the cords which form the net, and correspondingly byasmall mesh is meanta small aperture between the cords which form the net.
The top cord, 5, from which the body of the net hangs, is attached at each side to the posts, and the bottom cord, 6, is also attached to the posts near the base. The sight-tape 3 of the net is generally sewed or otherwise attached to its upper edge, covering the top cord and extending down from one to three inches below the top of the net, its object being to attract the eye of the player and call his attention to the position of the top of the net. The top cord is ordinarily made much heavier and stronger than the cords which compose the body of the net, and the latter are usually loosely tied around the top cord, so that the net hangs directly from this cord. In some cases, however, nets have been constructed in which the body of the net was attached to the lower part of the sight-tape while the top cord passed through the sighttape. Thus the weight of the net was suspended, not directly from the top cord, but was hung from the sight-tape, which in turn was supported by the top cord.
The center post, I, consists in this case of a piece of iron bent in the form of a U and dropped down over the top of the net, the lower end of one of the legs of the U being stuck in the ground. In practice the net is drawn tight at the posts until the top cord comes up against the inside of the U of this iron, which is three (3) feet from the ground the height required by the rules of the game for the middle of the tennis-net. The bottom cord of the net is also generally made heavier than the cord used in the body of the net. In Fig. 2 I have omitted the sight-tape, as nets are frequently constructed without a sighttape.
In my improved lawn-tennis net, as shown in Fig. 5, I have illustrated a sight-tape, 7, attached to the bottom of the net, and similar to the sight-tape 3 used on the top. Both of the sight-tapes need not necessarily be of precisely the same width or be constructed in exactly the same way; but the sight-tape used on the bottom of the net and the bottom cord should be so constructed that when the net becomes worn or torn, as it generally does for a short distance below the top tape and in the vicinity of the middle of the net, the net can be turned upside down, using what was previously the bottom of the net for the top, thus materially increasing the lifetime of the net.
Figs. 3, 4, and 5 illustrate my improved net. In these figures the cords forming that portion of the body of the net, 2, which is not strengthened are indicated by the narrow lines, and that part of the net, 8, which is strengthened so as to prevent it from tearing or wearing out rapidly, by forming it of cords stronger than the rest of the net, is indicated by heavier lines than those shown in the re mainder of the body of the net. In Fig. 5 the whole of the upper portion of the net eX- tending for a short distance below the bottom of the sight--tape is thus strengthened, as well as a portion of the lower part and the middle of the net. In Fig. 4 the whole of the middle of the net extending from the top to the bottom cord is made stronger than the remainder of the net, while in Fig. 3 a portion of the upper part and of the middle are strengthened, and the portion indicated in heavy lines in this view is that part of the net which generally tears first.
It is not essential in my improved net that the upper part of the net should be strengthened throughout the whole of its length, as shown in Fig. 5, or that the middle of the net should be strengthened from the top entirely to the bottom, as shown in Fig. at. It may, however, be desirable, for the sake of rendering the construction of my strengthened net more simple, that more of the net should be strengthened than is absolutely necessary to insure its durability.
Additional strength may be imparted to (le sired portions of the body of the net in various ways, among which the following may be mentioned: first, by using a heavier cord in the construction of that part of the net which it is desired to strengthen than that which is used in the remainder of the net; second, by using a stronger material for the cords which form that part of the not which it is desired to strengthen than those which are used in the remainder of the net; third, by doubling or trebling the cords used in the part of the not which it is desired to strengthen; and, fourth, by using narrower meshes in the part of the net which it is desired to strengthen than are used in the remainder of thenet.
In Figs. 3, 4, and 5 I have illustrated different forms of my strengthened net, each of which embodies the principle of my invention. I' do not, however, in the construction of these nets limit myself to the specific forms or modes of strengthening the net illustrated or described, as it is evidentthat many other modes of strengthening may be employed than those shown and described with out departing from the spirit of my invention.
By strengthening the upper and middle portions, in which the wear usually takes place, I provide a net which is not only more durable than the ordinary net, but also much lighter and less expensive than a net of corresponding strength throughout would be, so that the posts are relieved from the severe strain to Which they are subjected by using a net the body of which is heavy throughout.
I claim as my invention and desire to se-v cure by Letters Patent 1. In a lawn-tennis net, the combination, with a reticulated body having an upper sighttape, of a centrally re-enforced portion joined to said sight-tape, substantially as set forth.
2. In a lawn-tennis net, the combination, with a reticulated body having upper and