Title:
Golf green divot repair tool with distance conversion aid
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A golf green divot repair tool having one or more tines, legs or prongs, and handle or a body portion. The body portion is provided with means to facilitate conversion between a plurality of measurement systems—preferably the more commonly used golf measurement systems of yards or meters, although other distance units (feet, millimeters, etc.) and other measurement systems (temperature, etc) could be included or substituted within the teachings of the invention.



Inventors:
Mincher, Stanley J. (Montauban, FR)
Application Number:
09/955387
Publication Date:
03/21/2002
Filing Date:
09/18/2001
Assignee:
Haldor Tosoe
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A01B1/24; A63B57/00; A63B71/06; (IPC1-7): A63B57/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
WONG, STEVEN B
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BROWN & MICHAELS, PC (400 M & T BANK BUILDING 118 NORTH TIOGA ST, ITHACA, NY, 14850, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A golf green divot tool comprising a handle and at least one prong extending from the handle, the handle comprising a conversion chart for facilitating conversion between a plurality of measurement systems.

2. The divot tool of claim 1, in which the handle is elongated, and the conversion chart comprises a plurality of parallel columns of values, the columns having rows of values in a plurality of measurement systems, each row of values representing equivalent measurements in each of the measurement systems.

3. The divot tool of claim 2, in which the handle has a slot running along the handle between parallel columns, and further comprising a marker slideably mounted in the slot.

4. The divot tool of claim 2, further comprising a magnifier mounted over the conversion chart.

5. The divot tool of claim 1, in which the conversion chart comprises a plurality of concentric arcs of values, each arc comprising values in a measurement system, arranged such that a value in a measurement system has an equivalent value in another measurement system located in a same radial position in another concentric arc.

6. The divot tool of claim 5, in which the handle has an arcuate slot located between concentric arcs of values, and further comprising a marker slideably mounted in the slot.

7. The divot tool of claim 5, further comprising a disc rotatably mounted over the conversion chart, the disc having a pointer for indicating radially positioned values in the plurality of concentric arcs of values.

8. The divot tool of claim 7, in which the pointer comprises a radial slot in the disc.

9. The divot tool of claim 1, further comprising a disc rotatably mounted on the handle and a plurality of markers marked on the handle, in which the conversion chart is applied to on the disc in the form of a plurality of circumferential series of values in a plurality of measurement systems, and the markers are locates such that when a value in one measurement system is located adjacent a marker, the equivalent value in another measurement system appears adjacent another marker.

10. The divot tool of claim 1, in which the plurality of measurement systems comprise at least yards and meters.

Description:

REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This application claims an invention which was disclosed in Provisional Application Number 60/233,236, filed Sep. 18, 2000, entitled “Combination Golf Green Divot Repair Tool with Yard and Meter Conversion”. The benefit under 35 USC § 119(e) of the United States provisional application is hereby claimed, and the aforementioned application is hereby incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] 1. Field of the Invention

[0003] The invention pertains to tools and accessories for the game of golf. More particularly, the invention pertains to a player manipulated turf repair tool having a distance conversion aid.

[0004] 2. Description of Related Art

[0005] Not all golf courses in the world use identical measurement systems. Golf courses in some countries use the metric system while others measure distances on courses using the yardage system. Unless a golfer has a caddie or “yardage book” (it too not always calibrated in both measurement systems), golf club selection in view of a distance to be played can become very confusing to a player on a golf course with distances given in a measurement system that he is not accustomed to.

[0006] Misjudging a distance and thus hitting the wrong club can get a player in trouble with more chances of adding strokes to his score. Correct assessment of distance is one of the fundamentals in the game of golf. So as not to give a golfer another accessory, it was important that the conversion features of the tool be associated with a device regularly used and known to golfers. The green repair tool, (probably being most commonly held golf accessory) is the ideal match for this user-friendly, manually operated combination tool.

[0007] The overall aspect of a green divot repair tool is characteristic of a device with a pair of elongated legs extending from the bottom end of the body portion. There are many previously patented divot repair tools, often combined with other golfing accessories. For example, divot tools have been combined with a ball marker (U.S. Pat. No. 6,050,905), brush (U.S. Pat. No. 6,030,298), magnifier (Design patent D409,706), cigar holder (5,816,262), distance measuring line (U.S. Pat. No. 4,273,329) and shoe horn (U.S. Pat. No. 4,007,928).

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0008] The invention provides a novel hand-held combination instrument to repair divot marks on golf greens, but moreover, to assist a golfer in converting yard and meter measurements while playing the game of golf. The invention is more specifically destined for golfers playing golf in foreign countries using a measurement system other than their own. The present invention overcomes this difficulty faced by golf players. The device in fact becomes an ultimate stroke saver.

[0009] The invention is a golf green divot repair tool having one or more tines, legs or prongs, and handle or a body portion. The body portion is provided with means to facilitate conversion between a plurality of measurement systems - preferably the more commonly used golf measurement systems of yards or meters, although other distance units (feet, millimeters, etc.) or other measurement systems (temperature, etc) could be included or substituted within the teachings of the invention.

[0010] Several embodiments of the invention are described, which vary in the details of the distance conversion means, including simple tables and tables with cursors, or linear or rotary dials.

[0011] The general aspect of the body portion of the green divot repair tool described herein is one of adequate size, shape and material composition in view of receiving measurement conversion features to indicate to the user adequate readings of corresponding measurements in each measurement system.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

[0012] FIG. 1 illustrates a front view of a first embodiment of the tool, with magnifying piece.

[0013] FIG. 2 illustrates the reverse face of the first embodiment of the tool.

[0014] FIG. 3 is a side view of the first embodiment of the tool.

[0015] FIG. 4 is an “exploded view” of the first embodiment of the tool.

[0016] FIG. 5 shows a front view of a second embodiment of the tool.

[0017] FIG. 6 shows a rear view of a second embodiment of the tool.

[0018] FIG. 7 shows a side view of a second embodiment of the tool with the cursor in place.

[0019] FIG. 8 shows a front perspective view of a second embodiment of the tool with the cursor exploded.

[0020] FIG. 9 shows a front view of a second embodiment of a third embodiment of the tool.

[0021] FIG. 10 shows a rear view of a second embodiment of a third embodiment of the tool.

[0022] FIG. 11 shows a front perspective view of a second embodiment of a third embodiment of the tool with the cursor exploded.

[0023] FIG. 12 shows a front view of a fourth embodiment of the tool.

[0024] FIG. 13 shows a rear view of a fourth embodiment of the tool.

[0025] FIG. 14 shows a front “exploded” view, illustrating assembly of a fourth embodiment of the tool.

[0026] FIG. 15 shows a front view of a fifth embodiment of the tool.

[0027] FIG. 16 shows a rear view of a fifth embodiment of the tool.

[0028] FIG. 17 shows a front “exploded” view of a fifth embodiment of the tool.

[0029] FIG. 18 shows a front “exploded” view of a fifth embodiment of the tool illustrating assembly.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0030] In all of its embodiments, the invention comprises a golf divot repair tool, which has one or more prongs, teeth, or legs (4) attached to a body portion or handle (5), which allows the golfer to grasp the tool and also provides a place for a distance-conversion aid, shown in FIGS. 1-8 as chart (2), and in the other embodiments as combinations of charts, sliders, disks, etc., as will be described in more detail below.

First Embodiment of the Invention

[0031] In a simple embodiment, shown in FIGS. 1-4, the body (5) of the tool, from near top to near bottom, has a chart (2) which is properly calibrated in yards (3) and meters (6) at convenient increments and disposed so that readings of equivalent measurements in each system can be read across one another. Both faces (sides) of the body of the tool are calibrated in this fashion. In order to better view and read the conversions, a set of conveniently designed magnifying pieces (1) are secured to and disposed over the charts (2) of the body (5) of the tool in order to magnify the conversion data. The body of the tool has been designed so that these magnifying pieces can be correctly fitted to it.

[0032] The calibration data as it is shown in the drawings herein is not limited to those figures and to those increments of figures used. Furthermore, the measurement data shown in the drawings herein is of relative accuracy and has been applied at this stage for illustrative purposes. The overall scope of the calibration data is such that it will reflect the widely used range of distances encountered by a player on a golf course. The tool as it is illustrated herein, has been calibrated on both sides so as not to have too much data on one unique side for better reading purposes. However, the body portion of the tool, size and shape permitting, could very well have all the desired calibration data on one side only; or a tool with calibration data in smaller format could also be applied on one side only, thus eliminating extra cost of reverse side calibration and second magnifying piece. The tool could also “stand alone”, that is without magnifying features. The tool, alone or in conjunction with yard and meter readings, could also be calibrated showing equivalent readings for temperature in degrees Fahrenheit and degrees centigrade. Also, but for a less utilitarian application, the tool alone or in conjunction with yard and meter readings, could show readings as to what club a well-known player would use with regard to a specific distance to be played.

[0033] FIG. 1 shows the tool calibrated in corresponding yard and meter measurements at convenient increments and with a magnifying piece (1) secured to the body (5) of the tool and covering the calibration data (2). FIG. 2 represents the reverse side of the device, identical to the face in FIG. 1, with magnifying piece (1) but different corresponding yard-meter calibration data (2).

[0034] FIG. 4 shows an exploded view of the tool with calibration data applied to the body and illustrates how a magnifying piece (1) is assembled to the body as shown with line segments ab, cd, ef and gh.

[0035] The tools as illustrated in FIGS. 1-4 show rectangular-shaped magnifying pieces. The magnifying pieces could also have rounded out edges, be of oval shape or any other shape to correctly fit the tool's body and encompass the calibration data.

[0036] Securing means for the magnifying pieces would depend on the material make and general design of the body of the tool. The magnifying pieces could probably most simply be secured to the body using a strong and preferably transparent glue, but could also be designed to be clamped onto a body appropriately grooved or could also be designed to be secured into a body with holes into which it would be screwed or riveted to. They could also be soldered or heat-pressed.

Second Embodiment of the Invention

[0037] The second embodiment, shown in FIGS. 5-8, is like the first, in that the conversion chart for the front (2) and rear (52) is presented as two columns of data for metric (6) and (56) and yards (3) and (57). In this embodiment, there is added a slot (51), cut through the center of the body portion (5) of the tool and extending from the near top to the near bottom of the body. Opposite sides of this slot are properly calibrated on each and opposite sides in yards and meters and at convenient increments so that these opposite sides give readings of equivalent measurements in each system. A cursor (53) is assembled within the slot and is manually guided to and from each extremity of the slot in order to give equivalent yard and meter readings.

[0038] The cursor (53), is one designed so as to conveniently show equivalent readings at its opposite sides and is therefore not limited to the size and shape shown herein and made of such material so as to adequately perform it's task. Magnifying pieces, as shown in the embodiment of FIG. 1, could be applied over the calibration data disposed on the tool for better reading. Magnifying pieces would be so designed as to correctly fit to the tool covering the calibration data and allowing the cursor to be moved freely. A magnifying piece with a central vertical slot could also be conceived so that the magnifying piece's slot and the tool's body slot are superimposed when assembled, the cursors designed to be moved freely within the slots.

Third Embodiment of the Invention

[0039] In this embodiment, shown in FIGS. 9-11, the body (5) of the tool is of a circular or oval shape, with a circular or oval slot (91), cut near and substantially equidistant to outside circumference of, and through the body portion (5) of the tool. Preferably, the slot (91) covers close enough to 360 degrees so that a wide and sturdy enough solid space is created to maintain the central part of the body portion of the tool in place. A cursor (93) is assembled within the slot and is manually propelled within the slot by the user in order to give equivalent yard and meter readings.

[0040] Like the previous embodiments, front (92) and rear (96) conversion charts are provided on the body (5) of the tool, each having meter (94)(98) and yard (95)(97) scales. As before, the calibration data as it is shown in the drawings herein is not limited to those figures and to those increments of figures used. To better read the conversions, magnifying pieces could be so designed so as to correctly fit onto the body of the tool covering the calibration data and allowing the cursor to be moved freely.

Fourth Embodiment of the Invention

[0041] The fourth embodiment of the invention, shown in FIGS. 12-14, has the conversion data (124)(125) printed on a disc (121) secured to the tool by fastener (123) passing through holes (126) and (127) at the center (120) of the round handle portion (5), so that the disk (121) can be rotated manually around its axis. The tool need not have a securing component on both sides, as the disc could also be secured to the body only from the front side such as screwed directly into the body without piercing the body.

[0042] The yards (124) and meters (125) scales are applied around the edges of the disc's circumference in such as way that corresponding yard and meter distances are viewed at opposite points on the disc. If desired, as shown in FIGS. 12 and 14, more than one scale in each measurement system can be supplied concentrically, so that the range may be expanded or more than one range or type of unit converted, as desired.

[0043] Markers (122) are applied to opposite sides of the tool's body (5) in order to easily spot corresponding yard (124) and meter (125) measurements at opposite sides of the disc (121). For better viewing purposes, a magnifying piece could also be secured on top of the disc covering the calibration data.

[0044] FIG. 13 shows the back of the tool—as shown in the figure, the back side of the body (5) can be blank, or another disc could be mounted with further conversion information, or other information as detailed above.

Fifth Embodiment of the Invention

[0045] In this embodiment, shown in FIGS. 15-18, the conversion chart (173) uses concentric arcs or scales calibrated in yards (153) and meters (155) at convenient increments, which is printed on or applied to the body (5) of the tool in such as way that corresponding yard and meter distances are viewed radially under one another.

[0046] A covering disc (151) is secured to the body (5) of the tool in its middle by fasteners (176)(177) so that the disc (151) can be rotated manually around its axis. The tool need not have two securing component as the disc could also be secured to the body only from the front side such as screwed directly into the body without piercing the body.

[0047] A radial slot (152) is made in the disc (151) from near the center (154) to near its circumference. The slot (152) in the disc (121) is designed in size and shape so that when manually rotated by the user, calibration data readings can be directly and easily viewed through it. Alternatively, the disc could be made of transparent material, and a radial cursor marked on the disc. Magnifying pieces could also be secured on top of or on the inner sides of the reading slot in the disc for better viewing purposes.

[0048] Accordingly, it is to be understood that the embodiments of the invention herein described are merely illustrative of the application of the principles of the invention. Reference herein to details of the illustrated embodiments is not intended to limit the scope of the claims, which themselves recite those features regarded as essential to the invention.