US20120034990A1 - Golf club - Google Patents

Golf club Download PDF

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Publication number
US20120034990A1
US20120034990A1 US13/182,834 US201113182834A US2012034990A1 US 20120034990 A1 US20120034990 A1 US 20120034990A1 US 201113182834 A US201113182834 A US 201113182834A US 2012034990 A1 US2012034990 A1 US 2012034990A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
head
putter
central section
front face
side sections
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US13/182,834
Inventor
Mark Cohen
Robert FARNAN
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ASSEGAI LLC
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ASSEGAI LLC
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to US37021610P priority Critical
Application filed by ASSEGAI LLC filed Critical ASSEGAI LLC
Priority to US13/182,834 priority patent/US20120034990A1/en
Assigned to ASSEGAI LLC reassignment ASSEGAI LLC ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: COHEN, MARK, FARNAN, ROBERT
Publication of US20120034990A1 publication Critical patent/US20120034990A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B53/0487Heads for putters
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/007Putters
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B60/00Details or accessories of golf clubs, bats, rackets or the like
    • A63B60/02Ballast means for adjusting the centre of mass
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B2053/0416Heads with an impact surface provided by a face insert
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B2053/0416Heads with an impact surface provided by a face insert
    • A63B2053/042Heads with an impact surface provided by a face insert the face insert consisting of a material different from that of the head
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B2053/0433Heads with special sole configurations
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B2053/0441Heads with visual indicators for aligning the golf club
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B53/00Golf clubs
    • A63B53/04Heads
    • A63B2053/0491Heads with added weights, e.g. changeable, replaceable
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63BAPPARATUS FOR PHYSICAL TRAINING, GYMNASTICS, SWIMMING, CLIMBING, OR FENCING; BALL GAMES; TRAINING EQUIPMENT
    • A63B2209/00Characteristics of used materials

Abstract

A golf putter has a head and a shaft affixed to the head, the head having a front face for striking a ball and a rear face and is constructed and designed to assist the golfer in aligning the putter for propelling the ball to be putted in the desired direction. The head comprises a central section with a front face, the central section extending from proximate the head's front face towards the head's rear face and tapering rearward outwardly in width in plan, and a pair of side sections flanking sides of the central section, the side sections each having a front face adjacent the front face of the central section and being of a tapering configuration along the sides of the central section. The central sections and the side sections are oppositely transparent or opaque, allowing them to be visually distinguished from each other and providing visual cues for aligning the putter.

Description

  • The present application claims the benefit of provisional application Ser. No. 61/370,216 filed Aug. 3, 2010, and relates to a golf club construction and in particular to a new and improved construction for a putter and putter head.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • Putting is the ultimate step in achieving the goals of a round of golf—directing the golf ball to fall into the cup hole. Putting requires extreme accuracy, as the target cup is 4.25 inches in diameter, and a typical golf ball is on the order of 1.68 inches in diameter. The average golfer often finds it difficult to position the putter properly to send the ball on a desired path to the cup. Many aids have been developed to assist the golfer in aligning the putter and assisting the golfer in directing the ball in the intended direction.
  • U.S. Pat. No. 4,877,251 discloses a novelty putter having a funnel-like attachment through which the ball is stroked, the funnel tending to redirect a mis-stroked ball back along a desired path.
  • U.S. Pat. No. 5,964,669 discloses a putter head has counterweights embedded in a transparent body. The counterweights are spaced to define a space between them that is intended to serve as an alignment guide, allowing the golfer to observe a target below the club and control the swing with respect to the target.
  • U.S. Published Pat. Appln. 2009/0118035 discloses a putter with alignment means mounted to the rear of the putter head. An alignment element can be adjusted to provide a target line to the cup, allowing the golfer to more easily swing the putter along that line to direct the ball.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention is a putter head construction for assisting the golfer in aligning a putt without resort to attachments or devices that substantially alter the performance or operation of the putter, while providing the putter head with a heft and contact feel that is substantially the same as that of a conventional putter. The head has central and flanking sections of visually contrasting portions, preferably of opaque and transparent constructions, which together form an arrow wedge configuration as seen from the perspective of the golfer using the putter. The central section tapers forward to the front face of the head and the intended central striking portion of the striking face of the putter, the tapered configuration providing alignment assistance for a putt. The central section is flanked by a the pair of visually contrasting portions, each of which has a front face portion that forms an lateral outer portion of the striking face of the club. The flanking portions further delineate the alignment function of the central section, while providing additional striking portions for the ball in the event the golfer fails to properly align the putt and strike the ball squarely with the central section as intended.
  • The construction provides a putter with the feel and heft of a more traditional putter, while providing substantial assistance to the golfer in aligning a putt. The construction assists the golfer in initially aligning the putter (static alignment) as well as assisting the golfer in maintaining the desired orientation through the swing (dynamic alignment).
  • Further, the construction removes distractions associated with conventional putter designs by providing a single, central element or zone in the golfer's focus for the ball striking location. The back to front taper of the central portion provides an arrow-like aiming device, assisting the golfer to align the putter to have the ball travel along the desired path. The clear outer portions allow the green to be seen through them, minimizing the visual effect of the outer head portions and forcing the golfer to more completely focus on the central portion of the head, its tapering construction further channeling the golfer's focus to improve the accuracy of the putter's alignment along the desired path of the ball.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • A fuller understanding of the present invention will be obtained upon consideration of the following detailed description of a preferred but nonetheless illustrative embodiment thereof, reviewed in association with the annexed drawings, wherein:
  • FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a putter head of the present invention shown in conjunction with a golf ball aligned for putting thereby;
  • FIG. 2 is a bottom plan view of the putter head;
  • FIG. 3A is a top plan view of the putter head with the ball aligned for striking;
  • FIG. 3B is a side elevation view of the putter as positioned in FIG. 3A;
  • FIG. 3C is a front elevation view thereof;
  • FIG. 4 is a top plan view of an alternative embodiment of the invention; and
  • FIG. 5 is a diagrammatic front elevation view of the embodiment of FIG. 4.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • As depicted in the figures, and initially with reference to FIG. 1, putter head 10 has central section 12, which in a preferred embodiment is opaque, to which upwardly-extending putter shaft 14 is affixed in a conventional manner. Alternatively, however, a hosel or socket may be incorporated into the head to provide a means for connecting the shaft to the head. A hosel can facilitate the positioning of the shaft at a chosen orientation with respect to the head. The upper end of the shaft (not shown) includes a conventional grip portion for the golfer's hands. The central section 12 may be formed entirely of metal, or may be a composite material chosen with density and rigidity considerations appropriate for use in a golf club head. When a composite material is used for the central section 12 the front face 16 of the central section is preferably the front of a metallic spacer or insert 28, as shown in phantom in FIG. 1. The spacer or insert may be of any desired front-to-back thickness, but preferably is greater than 1/16 inch, and preferably forms no more than 25 percent of the volume of the central section. The forward face 16 of the central section defines the central portion of the putter's front face 24, lies directly forward of the shaft 14, and defines the intended contact portion between the putter and golf ball 18.
  • Flanking central section 12 are transparent side portions 20, which are advantageously fabricated of an appropriate tough material, such as glass or a polymer such as an acrylic or polycarbonate. The forward faces 22 of the side portions define corresponding lateral portions of the putter front face, flanking the central section's forward face 16, and provide additional ball contact areas for the putter front face. The bottom faces 38 of the side portions may be at an acute angle A to the horizontal, on the order of about 15 degrees, as may be seen in FIG. 3C, to provide a measure of additional clearance between the faces and the ground. As an alternative to the spacer 28 lying only at the front of the central section, it may extend completely across the putter's front face, as further indicated in FIG. 1, whereby the spacer's front face forms the entirety of the putter's front face. In such a configuration the spacer may advantageously be mounted to the head after the central section and side portions are joined together.
  • While is a preferred embodiment the central section 12 is opaque and the side portions 20 are transparent, the putter head may have a reversed construction, wherein the central section 12 is transparent and the side portions opaque. In such an embodiment use of the metallic front face insert or spacer 28 for at least the central section is preferred to provide an appropriate contact surface for the ball.
  • As seen in FIG. 2, the head may also be provided with one or more areas 30 to accommodate weights to vary both the overall mass of the head as well as its balance. The areas may be located as may be appropriate with consideration of the materials used for the head and overall head geometry, and may be of any form known in the art to allow varying mass to be added. The areas may be, for example, in the form cavities into which weights are snap-fit, or threaded bores into which complementary-threaded inserts of varying mass may be inserted. Particularly when the head has a construction in which the central section is transparent, the inclusion of mass-adjustments means can be beneficial to place a greater proportion of the head's overall weight in the central section.
  • With reference to FIGS. 1 and 3A, the putter head 10 is preferably rectangular in plan, with a width of the front face 24 of the head preferably on the order of the width of a regulation green cup—about 4.25 inches. The ratio of the width of the entire front face 24 to the width of the front face 16 of the central section 12 should be at least 2:1, with the face 16 centrally located. When an insert 28 is employed for the central section, however, the insert's width can exceed that preferred limitation, extending partially into the adjacent side portions 20. The minimum width of the front face of the central section is preferably 1/16 inch to provide a sufficient ball-striking area, with a maximum width preferably corresponding to the minimum diameter of a regulation golf ball—between 1.62 and 1.68 inches.
  • The central section tapers evenly outwardly from the head's front face 24 to its rear face 26. The minimum taper is such that the width of the central section at the rear face 26 is at least twice the width of the central section's front face 16. The maximum width of the central section at the head's rear face is the full width of the head.
  • With further reference to FIGS. 2 and 3A-C, central section 12 may be formed in plan view as a trapezoid, with its front face 16 constituting the smaller base of the trapezoid and its rear, larger base forming at least the central portion of the rear face 26 of the head. The plan view shape focuses the golfer's view towards the ball, and assists the golfer in aligning the putter head to putt the ball along the desired line of travel. The side portions 20 may likewise be formed in plan essentially as right angle triangles or trapezoids, depending on the percentage of the head's rear face 26 occupied by the central section 12, with the side portions' smaller bases 32 (if present) flanking the rear base of the central section and forming the rear corner portions of the putter and their larger bases comprising forward faces 22. The transparency of the side portions further emphasizes the guide nature of the central section. While the side portions are preferably trapezoidal or triangular, they may have other shapes in plan, so long as they serve to maintain emphasis of the tapered central portion and provide the lateral coplanar forward faces 22. Overall, the putter head is preferably rectangular in plan, greater in front-to-back depth than in width, with a flat upper surface, although a blade-like construction, in which the width is greater than the depth, is also within the invention's contemplation. With the central section transparent and the side portions opaque the guide nature of the construction is preserved, but tinting of the central section may be desired to assist the golfer in properly directing his focus to the center section and the desired travel path for the ball.
  • The bottom surface of the putter head may be contoured, as best seen in FIGS. 2, 3B and 3C. Central section 12 has a horizontally extending bottom face portion 34 extending approximately one-half the front-to-back depth of the head, and is flanked by generally quadrilateral faces 36 extending the depth of the head. As may be seen with reference to FIG. 3C, the faces 36, along with the bottom faces 38 of the side portions 20, are upward sloping towards the sides of the head at the angle A. The central section 12 has an additional trapezoidal face portion 44 abutting the rear of the bottom face portion 34 and lies between the rear portions of the angled faces 36. It may have a slight rearward-directed upward angle on the order of 2-3 degrees with respect to the horizontal (see FIG. 3B).
  • As stated above, the transparent side portions 20 have bottom faces 38 that are at the angle A to the horizontal and are coplanar with the adjacent central portion faces 36. The lower front edge of the central section 12 and the adjacent portions of the side portions 20 may be beveled at 42.
  • FIG. 4 depicts an embodiment in which central section 12A is transparent and the side portions are opaque and are merged together into a unitary component 20A. The forward edge of component 20A extends entirely across the width of the head, and thus central section 12A in top plan is in the shape of a triangle, with its tip or vertex 46 located rearwardly of the merged side portions. At the tip or vertex 46 the thickness of opaque component 20A may be from 0.015 to 0.500 inches. The tip or vertex 46 itself may have a radius of curvature of 0.015 to 0.500 inches to accommodate the milling or tooling used to form the mating opaque component. Spacer 28 is affixed to the forward face of component 20A and forms the entirety of the putter's front face.
  • The rearward extent of the opaque component 20A is such that it defines the rear corners of the head, with the back face portion widths 44 of the opaque component preferably being in the range of 0.015 to 0.500 inches.
  • With such a construction the shaft, mounted to portion 14A, is preferably mounted by means of a hosel 48, such that the main axis of the shaft, as seen in FIG. 5, extends to intersect the front-to-back centerline of the head at the bottom of the head. Other hosel orientations can allow, for example, for the main shaft axis to intersect the centerline at the vertical midpoint of the head.
  • When an insert or spacer 28 or 28A is employed, it can provide means for adjusting the weight or balance of the putter. As depicted in FIG. 4, the rear face of the insert may be milled or otherwise formed to provide a recess 50 that can either be left hollow or filled with a material of a density different from that of the insert body to change the overall mass distribution of the head and thus its feel and balance. Suitable fills may include polymers and polymer blends, as well as metallic compositions. The recess is preferably no more than half the head's width and no more than three-quarters of its height. It typically will be centered laterally, but need not be centered vertically in the insert.
  • The spacer's recess may further include portions that extend entirely through the spacer, forming a pattern of openings through the spacer's front face, such as a series of horizontal slots or circular bores. The fill of the recess in such openings thus forms portions of the front face and may allow for varying the nature of the contact between the front face and the ball when struck. The front surface of the fill may lie in the same plane as the remainder of the front face, or its surface may be textured or contoured to form projections, recesses or dimples as may be desired.
  • The head may be dimensioned as required to comply with organization or local rules respecting the size of club heads. A typical set of dimensions for the head may be, for example, a depth of 3⅞ inch in depth, a width of 3½ inch in width, and a height of ¾ inch, with the front face 16 of the central section being 1 inch wide. The central section and side portions may be bonded together by means as known in the art, such as by epoxy adhesive or mechanical fasteners. While the side portions are preferably transparent, they may be tinted. Further, while the head in plan is preferably rectangular, it may take other shapes, such as trapezoidal, with either a larger or smaller base forming the front striking surface of the putter, once again so long as emphasis of the tapered central portion is maintained and lateral coplanar forward faces are provided.

Claims (22)

1. A golf putter, comprising a head and a shaft affixed to the head, the head having a front face for striking a ball and a rear face, the head comprising a central section with a front face, the central section extending from proximate the head's front face towards the head's rear face and tapering rearward outwardly in width in plan, and a pair of side sections flanking sides of the central section, the side sections each having a front face adjacent the front face of the central section, the side sections being of a tapering configuration along the sides of the central section, the central section being opaque or transparent, and when opaque the side sections are transparent and when transparent the side sections are opaque.
2. The putter of claim 1 wherein the front faces of the central section and the side sections together form the front face of the head.
3. The putter of claim 1 wherein the central section is opaque.
4. The putter of claim 1, wherein the shaft is affixed to the central section.
5. The putter of claim 2, wherein the width of the front face of the central section is between 1/16 inch and approximately 1.6 inches.
6. The putter of claim 2 wherein the central section extends from the front face of the head to the rear face of the head, the central section rear face being at least twice the width of the central section front face.
7. The putter of claim 5, wherein the central section is chosen from metal, polymers, glass and composites.
8. The putter of claim 5, wherein the central section is a polymer, glass or composite, the central section further including a metallic insert at a forward end forming the front face of the central section, the insert having a thickness of at least 1/16 inch.
9. The putter of claim 8 wherein the metal insert comprises no more than 25 percent of a total mass of the central section.
10. The putter of claim 3 wherein the side sections are chosen from the group consisting of glass and polymers.
11. The putter of claim 1 wherein a bottom face of each side section tapers upward towards a corresponding side of the head.
12. The putter of claim 1 wherein the central section has a bottom surface with a forward portion extending horizontally and side portions tapering upward towards an adjacent side of the head.
13. The putter of claim 1 further comprising a metallic layer extending across the front faces of the central section and the side sections, a front face of the layer forming the front face of the head.
14. The putter of claim 13 wherein the metallic layer has a thickness of at least 1/16 inch.
15. A golf putter, comprising a head and a shaft affixed to the head, the head having means for facilitating aiming and directing a golf ball in a desired direction when struck by a front face of the head, said means comprising a tapering in plan central section bounded by a pair of side sections, front faces of the central and side sections together forming the putter front face, the central section being opaque or transparent, and when opaque the side sections are transparent and when transparent the side sections being opaque.
13-15. (canceled)
16. The putter of claim 15, wherein the front faces of the side sections extend completely across a width of the head, the central section being transparent with a forward end thereof being positioned rearwardly of the side section front faces.
17. The putter of claim 16, further comprising a metallic layer extending across the front faces of the side sections, a front face of the layer forming the front face of the head.
18. The putter of claim 17 wherein the shaft is mounted to one of the side sections.
19. The putter of claim 18 wherein a main axis of the shaft intersects with a lateral centerline of the head at a bottom surface of the head.
20. The putter of claim 17, wherein the metallic layer includes a portion of a density different from the density of a remainder of the insert.
21. The putter of claim 20 wherein the portion forms a part of the front face of the layer.
US13/182,834 2010-08-03 2011-07-14 Golf club Abandoned US20120034990A1 (en)

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US13/182,834 US20120034990A1 (en) 2010-08-03 2011-07-14 Golf club

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US13/182,834 US20120034990A1 (en) 2010-08-03 2011-07-14 Golf club
PCT/US2011/045491 WO2012018652A1 (en) 2010-08-03 2011-07-27 Golf club

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US14/495,978 Abandoned US20150011329A1 (en) 2010-08-03 2014-09-25 Golf club

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US20150011329A1 (en) * 2010-08-03 2015-01-08 Mark Cohen Golf club
US10384103B1 (en) * 2017-08-09 2019-08-20 Kichang Yoon Golf putter with three ball striking plates

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