US3360267A - Dice agitation and casting apparatus - Google Patents

Dice agitation and casting apparatus Download PDF

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US3360267A
US3360267A US455385A US45538565A US3360267A US 3360267 A US3360267 A US 3360267A US 455385 A US455385 A US 455385A US 45538565 A US45538565 A US 45538565A US 3360267 A US3360267 A US 3360267A
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dice
agitation
rotation
casting
shelf
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US455385A
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Ernest M Johnson
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Ernest M Johnson
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63FCARD, BOARD, OR ROULETTE GAMES; INDOOR GAMES USING SMALL MOVING PLAYING BODIES; VIDEO GAMES; GAMES NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • A63F9/00Games not otherwise provided for
    • A63F9/04Dice; Dice-boxes; Mechanical dice-throwing devices
    • A63F9/0406Dice-throwing devices, e.g. dice cups

Description

, Dec. 26, 1967 E. M. JOHNSON DICE AGITATION AND CASTING APPARATUS 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed May 13, 1965 ERNEST M. JOHNSON INVENTOR.

ATTORNEYS Dec. 26, 1967 E. M. JOHNSON DICE AGITATION AND CASTING APPARATUS 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed May 13, 1965 ERNEST M. JOHNSON INVENTOR.

ATTORNEYS United States Patent 3,360,267 DICE AGITATION AND CASTING APPARATUS Ernest M. Johnson, 926 E. Culver St., Phoenix, Ariz. 85006 Filed May 13, 1965, Ser. No. 455,385 7 Claims. (Cl. 273-145) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A dice agitation and casting apparatus utilizing a hollow cylindrical body rotatable about its axis. The axis is placed horizontal and the hollow body includes a shelf extending from the axis to the inner surface of the body to support one or more dies.

My invention relates to a dice agitation and casting apparatus, and more particularly to a dice agitation and casting apparatus in which a die or dice are enclosed during agitation and casting.

The casting of dice is an ancient sport. Over the centuries, both the dice and the methods of using them have undergone constant change. Dice, for instance, have evolved from crudely marked bits of rock or bone to the precisely dimensioned cubes of today.

Originally, it is presumed that dice were agitated in the cupped hand as is most commonly done in the presentday game known as craps. With time, different and more sophisticated methods of dice agitation were developed. Ostensibly, random distribution of the numerical values read from the cast dice was a principal objective.

One of the early devices employed to agitate and cast dice was the dice cup which is still in use today. In using the dice cup, the player inserts the dice in the cup, shakes the cup, and casts the dice. In this manner, the dice are agitated and a random distribution of their values is obtained when they are cast. One advantage of the dice cup is that large numbers of dice may be conveniently cast. A further advantage of the dice cup is that it substantially prevents control of the dice by a skilled manipulator. As is generally the case with hand agitated dice, dice from a dice cup are cast onto a relatively smooth surface such as a table or floor. After casting, the dice must manually be reinserted into the dice cup for the next cast.

The dice cup does not, however, solve all the problems inherent in games which rely upon statistically random distribution. Because of the necessary manual handling of the dice, one or more dice may be surreptitiously replaced with unauthorized substitutes to alter the statistical distribution of the numerical values obtained in play.

Partly as a solution to the problems which arise when dice are manually handled, games such as chuck-a-luck or the like have been developed. In chuck-a-luck, three dice are enclosed in an hourglass-shaped cage having flat ends. The hourglass-shaped cage is mounted vertically and pivots about a horizontal axis through its middle portion. When the hourglass-shaped cage is rotated about its axis, the upper and lower hourglass portions are reversed. Dice fall from the new upper portion onto the floor of the new lower portion and are agitated thereby. Thus, the dice are not handled by the players and the possibility of replacement with loaded or shaved dice or the like is obviated.

Dice agitation and casting apparatus such as that employed in chuck-a-luck as presently known is not ordinarily suitable or adaptable for use where compact size is a requirement. Because the dice rely primarily on the fall for agitation, the size of the hourglass-shaped cage must be substantial in order to provide a sufficient height of fall to agitate the dice adequately. Further, an hour glass-shaped cage employed for dice agitation swings through a large arc and requires substantial free space in its immediate vicinity.

It is therefore a principal object of my invention to provide a dice agitation and casting apparatus in which a random distribution of the dice is obtained.

It is another object of my invention to provide a dice agitation and casting apparatus in which each of the dice are completely enclosed, and consequently completely segregated.

It is a further object of my invention to provide a dice agitation and casting apparatus which is completely adaptable in size.

Other objects and advantages of my invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art in the course of the following specification and claims when taken in view of the accompanying drawings.

Briefly, my apparatus comprises a closed agitator body having at least one die disposed therein. The agitator body is rotatably supported by a pair of legs or any other suitable support means. A substantially horizontal shelf is disposed inside the body and serves to arrest the travel of the die or dice when the body is rotated about its substantially horizontal axis of rotation. A handle or other rotation means co-operates with the agitator body to facilitate rotational operation of the agitator and casting apparatus.

To use my device, a player simply rotates the body in a downward direction as he faces the axis of rotation. Rotation in this direction agitates the dice. The casting of the dice is accomplished by reversing the rotation of the body. Reversing the direction of rotation of the body causes the shelf to catch the dice and raise them. When the shelf reaches the horizontal, rotation is stopped and the numerical values indicated by the dice are read.

A better understanding of my invention is obtained from the accompanying drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is an isometric view illustrating an embodiment of my invention;

FIGURE 2 is a sectional side view taken along 2-2 of FIGURE 1; 7

FIGURE 3 is a sectional top view taken along 3-3 of of FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 4 is a partial sectional side view illustrating the agitation obtained by my apparatus; and

FIGURE 5 is a side view, partially in section, illustrating another embodiment of my invention.

With reference to the drawings, a body 10 is rotatably supported by a pair of legs 11. The body 10 is in the form of a closed cylinder and is fabricated of plastic. Axle member 12 engages with the legs 11 to provide rotatable support for the body 10. Rotation of cylindrical body 10 is about its longitudinal axis.

A core 14 is secured around the axle member 12 and has two contiguous longitudinally extending fiat portions 15 and 16. A shelf 18 is secured to the flat portions 16 of the core 14 as by screws 19, or the like. The shelf 18 extends to the cylindrical wall 20 of the body 10, and may be secured thereto, if desired. In combination, the shelf 18 and fiat side 15 of core 14 form a dice support having an upwardly extending back portion. If desired, the dice support may be of unitary construction. The dice support is substantially longitudinally co-extensive with the cylindrical body 10 and rotates therewith. Alternatively, the shelf and its upwardly extending back portion may be secured to the inner cylindrical wall of the body 10 and extend substantially freely into the central portion of the body 10.

The portion of the curved cylindrical wall of the body 10 immediately above the shelf 18 is of a clear material forming a window through which dice on the shelf are visible. The rest of the apparatus may be of any suitable material having the desired characteristic of substantial rigidity. A portion of the inner curved surface of the body is roughened to facilitate agitation. The roughening preferably comprises a plurality of finger members 22 which may be of any desired material. Preferably, finger members 22 are of a relatively soft, high-friction type material, such as rubber or the like, which will impart a maximum tumbling effect to the dice, but which will not unduly abrade them. If desired, the inner surface of the body 10, excluding the window portion, and the dice support may be covered with a fabric or the like 23 to alleviate undue abrasion of the dice.

At least one die 24, and preferably a plurality of dice, is disposed in the cylindrical body 10. A handle 25 secured to axle member 12 provides a simple and direct means of rotation. A lug 26 is secured near one end of the cylindrical body 10 and arrestingly engages one of the legs 11. Arresting engagement of lug 26 by leg 11 is facilitated by toe member 27 extending inwardly from leg 11. The lug 26 and toe 27 limits the rotation of the body 10 to less than 360 degrees about its longitudinal axis and thereby prevents unnecessary rotation of the apparatus.

In use, the handle 25 is turned so that the shelf 18 moves downwardly as the body 10 rotates. Rotation is continued until the lug 26 engages the toe 27 and thereby arrests the rotation of the body. A smaller angle of rotation is, of course, permissible so long as the dice 24 are unsupported by the shelf 18 for a period of the rotation. Rotation of body 19 frees dice 24 from the shelf 18 and the dice contact fingers 22. Fingers 22 impart a further rotational movement to the dice and insure random agitation. The handle is then turned in an opposite direction until the shelf 18 is again horizontal and in substantial registry with the window. Lug 26 and toe 27 are preferably positioned to engage when said window portion and said shelf are in substantial registry. As the shelf moves to this horizontal position, it picks up the agitated dice and supports them so that they may be read through the window. The upwardly extending back portion of the dice support substantially prevents the dice from inadvertently falling off the back of the dice support in the event of overly vigorous rotation of the body member.

There is always a possibility that one or more dice could become stacked up on one another, thereby resulting in what is commonly referred to as cocked dice. To prevent this stacking, I provide a plurality of dividers 30 which are substantially circular and correspond to sections of the cylinder described by the body 10. In this manner, each die has its own compartment and miscasting of the dice is substantially obviated.

In another embodiment of my invention, illustrated in FIGURE 5, a gear 31 is keyed to and rotates with axle member 12. An upwardly spring-loaded rack 32 engages gear 31 and is actuated by a plunger 34. A downward force applied to the plunger 34 causes the body 10 to rotate and agitates the dice. Upon release of the plunger 34, r

the body 10 is returned to its starting position by action of the spring 35 whereupon the dice may be read through the window.

Numbers or other indicia on the dice may be read in a number of ways. The markings appearing as the top surface of each die may be read or the markings closest to and facing the window may be read. Either of these methods is satisfactory and the use of one or the other is largely a matter of choice.

While reference herein has been made specifically to the agitation of dice which are ordinarily thought of as regular cubic solids, it is to be understood that other polyhedral shapes may be employed with equally satisfactory results. Further, markings other than numbers ordinarily associated with dice may be employed as desired. For instance, letters or symbols could be marked on the polyhedron employed and random distribution thereof obtained in accordance with my invention.

Numerous games are played which utilize dice or tokens bearing a variety of indicia thereon. My dice agitation and casting apparatus is fully utilizable with any of these games. My apparatus may be adapted to agitate and cast one die or a plurality of dice and readings obtained thereby may be employed in conjunction with any of the well-known games. Typical of the games in which dice are agitated and cast are board games in which a numerical value read from the dice determines the number of spaces which a player will advance. As is readily seen, my dice agitation and casting apparatus is fully adaptable for use with substantially all known games which require a randow distribution of values or markings in play.

Various modifications may be made in the invention without departing from the spirit or scope thereof, and it is to be understood that 1 limit myself only as defined by the appended claims.

I claim:

1. A dice agitation and casting apparatus comprising:

(a) a closed, hollow body rotatable about a substantially horizontal axis,

(b) an inner surface of said body having a roughened portion,

(c) a dice-supporting shelf positioned in said body extending from the inner surface of said body to said axis,

(d) said shelf substantially co-extensive with said body in the direction of the axis of rotation,

(e) at least one die disposed in said body,

(f) leg members rotatably supporting said body,

(g) rotation means co-operating with said body to impart rotational movement thereto,

(h) means for arresting rotation of said body member to less than 360.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 including a window portion in the outer surface of said body through which indicia appearing on dice may be read.

3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said roughened portion includes a plurality of finger members secured to an inner surface of said body.

4. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said dice-supporting shelf has an upwardly extending back portion.

5. The apparatus of claim 1 including at least one substantially vertical divider forming at least two separate compartments in said body.

6. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said rotation means comprises:

(a) a handle secured to an axle,

(b) said axle rotatably engaging a leg member, and

(c) said axle secured to said body and providing an axis of rotation therefor.

7. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said rotation means comprises:

(a) an axle secured to said body,

(b) said axle rotatably engaging a leg,

(c) a gear secured to said axle,

(d) a rack engaging said gear,

(e) a plunger actuating said rack thereby to rotate said body in a first direction, and

(f) a spring for returning said rack and plunger and rotating said body in a second direction.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 500,478 6/1893 Edge et al 273- X 557,938 4/1896 Averell 2'73145 2,074,207 3/1937 Bracewell 273-145 2,396,475 3/ 1946 Rodekurt. 2,639,153 5/1953 Murray 273l45 FOREIGN PATENTS 360,356 1921 Germany.

ANTON O. OECHSLE, Primary Examiner.

M. R. PAGE, Assistant Examiner.

Claims (1)

1. A DEVICE AGITATION AND CASTING APPARATUS COMPRISING: (A) A CLOSED, HOLLOW BODY ROTATABLE ABOUT A SUBSTANTIALLY HORIZONTAL AXIS, (B) AN INNER SURFACE OF SAID BODY HAVING A ROUGHENED PORTION, (C) A DICE-SUPPORTING SHELF POSITIONED IN SAID BODY EXTENDING FROM THE INNER SURFACE OF SAID BODY TO SAID AXIS, (D) SAID SHELF SUBSTANTIALLY CO-EXTENSIVE WITH SAID BODY IN THE DIRECTION OF THE AXIS OF ROTATION, (E) AT LEAST ONE DIE DISPOSED IN SAID BODY, (F) LEG MEMBERS ROTATABLY SUPPORTING SAID BODY, (G) ROTATION MEANS CO-OPERATING WITH SAID BODY TO IMPART ROTATION MOVEMENT THERETO, (H) MEANS FOR ARRESTING ROTATION OF SAID BODY MEMBER TO LESS THAN 360*.
US455385A 1965-05-13 1965-05-13 Dice agitation and casting apparatus Expired - Lifetime US3360267A (en)

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Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5022654A (en) * 1988-06-11 1991-06-11 Idea+Invent Ag Liquid filled device for playing a game of chance
US20080048394A1 (en) * 2006-08-23 2008-02-28 C H Lin Automatic Dice- Throwing Method and its Device
US20140021681A1 (en) * 2012-07-18 2014-01-23 Andrew Martin Rothfusz Dice structure with elevating legs disposed atop a playing surface
RU175881U1 (en) * 2017-01-23 2017-12-21 Владимир Михайлович Генералов Random number generator

Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US500478A (en) * 1893-06-27 And william j
US557938A (en) * 1896-04-07 Ellicott d
DE360356C (en) * 1922-10-02 Heinrich Tams Wuerfelbecher
US2074207A (en) * 1935-12-19 1937-03-16 James A Bracewell Game apparatus for amusement purposes
US2396475A (en) * 1944-12-26 1946-03-12 Rodekurt Christian Game device
US2639153A (en) * 1950-12-11 1953-05-19 Richard P Murray Dice shaking device

Patent Citations (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US500478A (en) * 1893-06-27 And william j
US557938A (en) * 1896-04-07 Ellicott d
DE360356C (en) * 1922-10-02 Heinrich Tams Wuerfelbecher
US2074207A (en) * 1935-12-19 1937-03-16 James A Bracewell Game apparatus for amusement purposes
US2396475A (en) * 1944-12-26 1946-03-12 Rodekurt Christian Game device
US2639153A (en) * 1950-12-11 1953-05-19 Richard P Murray Dice shaking device

Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5022654A (en) * 1988-06-11 1991-06-11 Idea+Invent Ag Liquid filled device for playing a game of chance
US20080048394A1 (en) * 2006-08-23 2008-02-28 C H Lin Automatic Dice- Throwing Method and its Device
US20140021681A1 (en) * 2012-07-18 2014-01-23 Andrew Martin Rothfusz Dice structure with elevating legs disposed atop a playing surface
RU175881U1 (en) * 2017-01-23 2017-12-21 Владимир Михайлович Генералов Random number generator

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