Title:
Device for the reduction in the diameter of a basketball rim
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A basketball rim attachment device for decreasing the diameter of the circular rim to increase shooting accuracy, having an annular rim insertion device for insertion onto the circular rim; and a plurality of hooking apertures upon the annular rim insertion device for attachment to the rim in a manner that provides substantially rigid conformity with the rim when applied and removability when not applied. The device is made from materials selected from the group consisting of plastics, polvinyls, polyurethanes, rubber, and metallic materials. The hooking apertures are generally between 110 degrees and 270 degrees in cross-section. Also shown are other embodiments in which the hooking assemblies are perpendicularly mounted below the rim device, as well as a flexible version with an inner and outer tube for changing the size of the aperture to meet the demands of differently sized basketball rims.



Inventors:
Burkhardt, Matthew (Oyster Bay, NY, US)
Application Number:
11/245236
Publication Date:
04/12/2007
Filing Date:
10/06/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B69/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
ARYANPOUR, MITRA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Mitchell, Esq. Stein Stein Law A. P. C. (Suite 4, 24 Woodbine Avenue, Northport, NY, 11768, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A basketball rim attachment device for decreasing the diameter of the circular rim to increase shooting accuracy, comprising: (a) an annular rim insertion device for insertion onto the circular rim; and (b) a plurality of hooking apertures upon the annular rim insertion device for attachment to the rim in a manner that provides substantially rigid conformity with the rim when applied and removability when not applied.

2. The device of claim 1 comprised substantially of a plastic material.

3. The device of claim 1 comprised substantially of a polyvinyl material.

4. The device of claim 1 comprised substantially of a polyvinyl chloride material.

5. The device of claim 1 comprised substantially of a hard rubber.

6. The device of claim 1 comprised substantially of a metal material.

7. The device of claim 6, wherein the metal is coated about a core of other material selected from the group consisting of plastics, polvinyls, polyurethanes, rubber, and metallic materials.

8. The device of claim 1, wherein the hooking apertures are between 110 degrees and 270 degrees in cross-section.

9. A basketball rim attachment device for decreasing the diameter of the circular rim to increase shooting accuracy, comprising: (a) an annular rim insertion device for insertion onto the circular rim having a top and bottom surface wherein the bottom surface is relatively planar; and (b) a plurality of hooking apertures having a planar top surface and a hooking assembly bottom surface, such that the top surface is disposed to the bottom surface of said rim insertion device upon the planar top surface of the apertures relatively perpendicular attachment thereto, wherein such hooking apertures are disposed at distances along the bottom surface of the rim to provide for rigid engagement with the rim via said hooking apertures.

10. The device of claim 9 comprising a material selected from the group consisting of plastic, polyvinyl, polyvinyl chloride, polyurethane, rubber, metallically coated materials, metals, and combinations thereof.

11. A basketball rim attachment device for decreasing the diameter of a plurality of differing diameter circular rims to increase shooting accuracy, comprising: (a) an annular rim insertion device for insertion onto the circular rim having a tubular structure comprising an outer tube and an inner tube such that the inner tube passes into said outer tube for frictional engagement; (b) an engagement device for attaching said inner to said outer tube to fix the diameter of the device; and (c) a plurality of hooking apertures disposed outwardly from said annular outer tube to engage the rim for flexible attachment and detachment thereto.

12. The device of claim 11 wherein said engagement device is a cotter pin, and said inner and outer tubes possess apertures for engagement therewith.

13. The device of claim 11 comprising a material selected from the group consisting of plastic, polyvinyl, polyvinyl chloride, polyurethane, rubber, metallically coated materials, metals, and combinations thereof.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to the field of basketball, and more particularly to an insertion device for the reduction in the diameter of the basketball ring for, among other things, improved basketball shooting.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The instant invention relates to improving the game of basketball. Generally the game entails a rim of generally fixed diameter of 18 inches through which a ball, generally of fixed diameter 9.39 inches is passed. The rim is cantilevered from a backboard, enabling bank shots (wherein the ball first hits the backboard to which the rim is attached) and either passes through the rim or bounces away, and “swoosh” shots wherein the ball passes through the rim directly. In the game, hung from hooks on the rim is a net through which a successful shot passes.

The improvement sought by the instant invention is a removably mounted ring assembly that is inserted into the rim, clippably attached thereto for ease of attachment and detachment, and decreases the diameter of the ring. In this manner, the shooter is required to improve both the bank shot and the “swoosh” inasmuch as the ring is smaller in aperture when the device of the instant invention is attached.

There is nothing in the prior art known-to the inventor that actually changes the size of the rim diameter. Rather the prior art shows various hoop assemblies for a plethora of other purposes. For example, U.S. Pat. No. 4,858,920 shows a sensor arrangement for indicating a successful shot wherein the ball passes through the rim and hence constitutes a “score.” U.S. Pat. No. 6,458,050 shos a detachably mounted pin for striking by the shooter to improve accuracy, but fails to indicate any change in the size of the rim. U.S. Pat. No. 4,993,707 shows a strapping assembly to enable the shooter to strap a hand to the ball thereby improving dunking of the ball. U.S. Pat. No. 5,480,139 shows a device designed to improve with interchangeable basketball hoops, but does suggest nor reveal a mechanism for utilizing a standard rim and decreasing its diameter, as is the case herein. U.S. Pat. No. 5,628,507 shows a basketball goal protector to prevent use of the field by blocking access to the rim and net. U.S. Pat. No. 4,082,269 shows a net installation device wherein the net attaches to an annular rim for insertion into the rim to provide the net, thereby eliminating the hooks typically present on the rim in known devices. It does not, however, show a reduction in the diameter of the rim to improve shooting ability; rather the device is intended to maintain the universal rim regulation rim size.

Likewise, U.S. Pat. No. 4,244,560 shows an extension device for extension into the center of the rim, for increasing shooting accuracy, but does not reveal a change in the rim diameter, as is the case herein.

It is thus an object of the instant invention to change the diameter of the rim in a basketball gaming backboard-mounted, cantilevered rim assembly, while maintaining the rim's overall resiliency and other typical facets, to increase the accuracy of the shot taken by the shooter for either practice or regulation play.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The various features of novelty which characterize the invention are pointed out with particularity in the claims annexed to and forming a part of the disclosure. For a better understanding of the invention, its operating advantages, and specific objects attained by its use, reference should be had to the drawings and descriptive matter in which there are illustrated and described preferred embodiments of the invention.

The foregoing objects and other objects of the invention are achieved through A basketball rim attachment device for decreasing the diameter of the circular rim to increase shooting accuracy, having an annular rim insertion device for insertion onto the circular rim and a plurality of hooking apertures upon the annular rim insertion device for attachment to the rim in a manner that provides substantially rigid conformity with the rim when applied and removability when not applied.

The device is made from materials selected from the group consisting of plastics, polvinyls, polyurethanes, rubber, and metallic materials.

The hooking apertures are generally between 110 degrees and 270 degrees in cross-section.

Also shown are other embodiments in which the hooking assemblies are perpendicularly mounted below the rim device, as well as a flexible version with an inner and outer tube for changing the size of the aperture to meet the demands of differently sized basketball rims.

Other features of the present invention will become apparent from the following detailed description considered in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. It is to be understood, however, that the drawings are designed solely for purposes of illustration and not as a definition of the limits of the invention, for which reference should be made to the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

In the drawings, wherein similar reference characters denote similar elements through the several views:

FIG. 1 is an overall perspective showing the direction for insertion of the device into a pre-existing basketball rim, in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 2 is an overall perspective showing the device of FIG. 1 fully inserted into a basketball rim with a basketball shot to pass therethrough, in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 3 is a downwardly projected view of the device shown in FIG. 1 containing a plurality of hooking apertures shown in FIGS. 4 through 9, employed in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view of one of the hooking apertures shown in the lines indicated in FIG. 3, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 10 is a perspective view, including a cross-sectional view, of the device of the subject invention hooked to a rim and contacting a basketball when used for its intended purpose, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 11 is an additional perspective view, including a cross-sectional view, of the device of the subject invention hooked to a rim and contacting a basketball when used for its intended purpose, in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 12 is an alternative embodiment wherein the hooking apertures are hooking assemblies distended downwardly from the device, in accordance with another embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 13 is one of a number of hooking assemblies shown in order to be attached to the planar underlying surface of the device shown in FIG. 12 along line 13-13, for hookable attachment to an ordinary basketball rim, in accordance with the another embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 14 is another type of hooking assembly shown in order to be attached to the planar underlying surface of the device shown in FIG. 12 along line 14-14 for hookable attachment to an ordinary basketball rim, in accordance with the another embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 15 is an alternative embodiment of the subject invention showing a flexibly extendable rim-insertion device and attachment of the ends therefor, in accordance with another embodiment of the subject invention;

FIG. 16 is a perspective view of the attachment of the flexibly extendable device of FIG. 15, in accordance with the embodiment of the subject invention as shown in FIG. 15; and

FIG. 17 is a perspective view of the attachment of the flexibly extendable device of FIG. 15 showing diameter expansion and/or contraction in order to meet the dimensional needs of a basketball rim, in accordance with the embodiment of the subject invention as shown in FIG. 15.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

In accordance with the subject invention, FIG. 1 shows rim insertion device 4 for insertion into typical basketball rim 8 such that the assemblage of device 4 and rim 8 form a unified structure as provided by a plurality of hooking apertures and/or hooking assemblies, as shown in further detail hereinbelow, one of which is shown as hooking aperture 14A in FIG. 1. As is shown by the dotted line in FIG. 1, rim insertion device 4 is inserted and hookably attached to rim 8. In a typical basketball rim conglomerate, as shown in FIG. 1, for which the subject invention is an addition, rim 8 possesses hooks 10 for engaging a net (not shown but known to one of ordinary skill in the art), and is cantilevered from backboard 2 via right-angled mounting 6 which annexes from background 2 to rim 8.

As is observable via FIG. 1, once rim insertion device 4, in accordance with the subject invention is rigidly mounted to rim 8 (via apertures and/or hooking assemblies as shown in further detail hereinbelow) the size of the aperture through the which the ball travels is reduced. In this manner, the shooter is caused to improve the accuracy of the shot for a typical “swoosh” wherein the ball neither touches rim 8 nor the net (not shown) or a bank shot wherein the ball banks from backboard 2 through rim insertion device 4 (and hence rim 8).

It should be observed that rim insertion device 4 is rendered of a comformable yet rigid material such that when assembled to rim 8 it essentially becomes “one” with rim 8 and does bounce between the two. Typically such materials include, but are not limited to a polyvinyl (e.g., “PVC” or polyvinylchloride) or metal, or metal-coated materials that have rigidity and flexibility that does not substantially change the characteristics of original rim 8. Observably, the preferred material is a plastic of sorts inasmuch as such material is lightweight and will not substantially change either the characteristics of original rim 8 nor its overall cantilevered weight such that the game, itself, does not substantially change by way of a difference in bounce, save for a difference in the diameter of the hole through which the ball will pass.

Typical regulation rims are generally 18 inches in diameter; rim device 4 provides any of a number of smaller apertures (18.1 through about 10 inches) through which the ball (generally having a regulation diameter of 9.39 inches) must pass, and therefore large enough to enable the ball of such fixed diameter to pass therethrough.

FIG. 2, showing a perspective view of rim device 4 with ball 12 passing therebetween, also shows rim device 4 fixedly, yet removably attached to rim 8 (covered in the view by device 4), via plurality of apertures and/or hooking assemblies, as further discussed hereinbelow. All other items of the view conform with those shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 reveals the downward view of rim device 4 having an extended portion 4A for overlapping the cantilever mount 6 (see FIG. 1) and a plurality of hooking apertures below the top surface, as shown in FIGS. 4 through 9.

In particular, FIG. 4 shows cross-sectional view of a hooking aperture 14A which engages rim 8 (not shown) via its aperture 18A of a diameter of sufficient angulature 22 such that rigid conformation may occur, together with removal and attachment via its aperture 18A. Relatively planar surface 16 is actually a view, in this embodiment, of the surface of rim device 4, as shown in FIG. 3, and is identical in each of FIGS. 3 through 9.

FIGS. 4 through 9 indicate cross-sectional views of hooking apertures 14 A through F respectively, and reveal apertures of three different sizes, to accommodate the goal of relatively rigid attachment of device 4 to rim 8. Thus, FIG. 5 has aperture 18B, as does FIG. 6. FIGS. 4, 7 and 8 have relatively the same aperture 18A, while FIG. 9, which is designed to accommodate the surface of cantilever mount 6, possesses a flat extended surface 24, and an aperture 18F. The apertures are created by terminals of the aperture 20A (as shown in FIGS. 4, 7, 9), and terminals 20B (as shown in FIGS. 5 and 6).

FIG. 10 reveals attachment of device 4 with surface 16, cross-sectional view of aperture 14F with extension 24 (as shown in FIG. 9) wherein rim 8 is displaced within aperture 14F. Ball 12 engages device 4, with potential compression as it intersects of distance 34, dependent upon the material used. As is known in the art, rim 8 also has net hooks 10, of which one is shown, for engagement of a net (not shown but known to one of ordinary skill in the art).

As can be seen, the exterior of device 4 may be comprised of a more compressible material (like a polyurethane), if two different materials are selected. In the preferred embodiment the structure is shown as a single material. If a more compressible external material is provided, then distance 34 will compress accordingly.

Likewise, FIG. 11 shows ball 12 intersecting the top surface 16 of device 4. All other elements are the same as those shown in FIG. 10.

FIG. 12 indicates an alternative embodiment wherein surface-mounted hooking assemblies 28 and/or 28 A (see FIGS. 13 and 14, respectively) are perpendicularly mounted to the rear surface as shown by and dotted lines 26. Each of hooking assemblies 28 and/or 28A, as shown in FIGS. 13 and 14, respectively, have apertures 18A, and possesses cutouts 30 and 32 of sufficient size to reduce the overall weight of device 4 when engaged to the rear surface via relatively planar surface 16.

FIGS. 15, 16 and 17 shows yet an additional, alternative embodiment wherein device 50 is tubular in design to accommodate rings 8 of differing diameters. Thus, device 50 includes outer tube assembly 38 to which are annexed hooking assemblies 40 for engagement of rim 8. Circle 16 in FIG. 15 conforms with FIG. 16, which is an expanded view, wherein a hooking assembly 40 is shown annexed to outer tube 38, and in which inner tube 44 is shown to engage another portion of outer tube 40 by passing therein, and through which cotter pin 46 passes through an aperture on tube 38 and aperture 42 in inner tube 42 for assembly. In order to accommodate rings of different sizes, stops 48 on inner tube 44, as shown in FIG. 17 are supplied to expand or contract the device by slidably moving outer tube 38 upon inner tube 44 to engage stops 48.

While there have been shown, described and pointed out fundamental novel features of the invention as applied to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood that various omissions and substitutions and changes in the form and details of the device illustrated and in its operation may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the spirit of the invention. It is the intention, therefore, to be limited only as indicated by the scope of the claims appended hereto.