Title:
Hockey net
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention is a street hockey net consisting of a net frame formed from a plurality of tubular members. The frame includes an upper rectangular frame supported above a lower U shaped frame by three upright members. The upper rectangular frame has a forward horizontal member and a rear horizontal member. The lower U shaped frame has a transverse member mounted between a pair of forward extending members, the forward extending members being connected to the forward horizontal member by two of the upright members. The third upright member forms a central upright member which supports the upper frame by connecting the transverse member to the rear horizontal member. A plurality of light emitting diodes are positioned on the rear horizontal member and central upright member, said light emitting diodes being oriented towards the back side such that the diodes point behind the frame. The net further includes a diode flasher for flashing the diodes on and off.



Inventors:
Bradnam, Chris (Fort Erie, CA)
Buttigieg, Chris (Fort Erie, CA)
Application Number:
11/484746
Publication Date:
01/17/2008
Filing Date:
07/12/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
473/478
International Classes:
A63B69/00; A63B63/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
CHAMBERS, MICHAEL S
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Elias C. Borges (3280 Bloor St. West Centre Tower, 10th Floor, Suite 1040, Toronto, ON, M8X 2X3, CA)
Claims:
Therefore, what is claimed is:

1. A street hockey net comprising a net frame formed from a plurality of tubular members, the frame including a front side and a back side, a plurality of light emitting diodes positioned on the frame and oriented towards the back side such that the diodes point behind the frame and a diode flasher for flashing the diodes on and off.

2. The street hockey net defined in claim 1 wherein the frame comprises a top horizontal member, a bottom horizontal member and three upright bars supporting the top horizontal bar above the bottom horizontal bar.

3. The street hockey net defined in claim 2 wherein the light emitting diodes are positioned along the top bar.

4. The street hockey net defined in claim 3 wherein the light emitting diodes are also positioned along at least one of the upright bars.

5. The street hockey net defined in claim 4 wherein one of the upright bars is located between and behind the other two upright bars, and wherein some of the light emitting diodes are positioned along said one upright bar.

6. The street hockey net defined in claim 1 further comprising a lighted warning panel, the warning panel being contained in a housing, the housing further containing the diode flasher, the lighted warning panel being positioned on the housing such that the lighted warning panel is oriented towards the back of the net frame.

7. The street hockey net defined in claim 6 wherein the lighted warning panel is mounted to the top horizontal bar.

8. The street hockey net defined in claim 1 wherein the frame comprises a rectangular frame supported about a lower portion by three upright members, the rectangular frame having a pair of horizontal members namely a forward horizontal member and a rear horizontal member, the light emitting diodes being mounted along the rear horizontal member.

9. The street hockey net defined in claim 8 wherein the lower portion comprises a U shaped frame having a transverse member mounted between a pair of forward extending members, two of the upright members supporting the upper frame by connecting the forward horizontal member with the forward extending members, the other upright member forming a central upright member supporting the upper frame by connecting the transverse member with the rear horizontal member.

10. The street hockey net defined in claim 9 further comprising a housing for housing the diode flasher, the housing being mounted to the frame at a junction between the rear horizontal member and the central upright member.

11. The street hockey net defined in claim 10 further comprising a warning light mounted on the housing and oriented towards the rear of the net frame, the warning light being operatively coupled to diode flasher such that the warning light is configured to flash on and off.

12. The street hockey net defined in claim 11 wherein the warning light comprises a light emitting diode warning sign.

13. The street hockey net defined in claim 9 wherein the light emitting diodes are also positioned along the central upright member.

14. The street hockey net defined in claim 13 further comprising a warning light mounted on the housing and oriented towards the rear of the net frame, the warning light being operatively coupled to diode flasher such that the warning light is configured to flash on an off.

15. The street hockey net defined in claim 14 wherein the warning light comprises a light emitting diode warning sign.

16. A street hockey net comprising a net frame formed from a plurality of tubular members, the frame including a front side and a back side, the frame comprising a upper rectangular frame supported above a lower U shaped frame by three upright members, the upper rectangular frame having a forward horizontal member and a rear horizontal member, the U shaped frame comprising a transverse member mounted between a pair of forward extending members, the forward extending members being connected to the forward horizontal member by two of the upright members, the remaining upright member forming a central upright member which supports the upper frame by connecting the transverse member to the rear horizontal member, a plurality of light emitting diodes positioned on the rear horizontal member and central upright member, said light emitting diodes being oriented towards the back side such that the diodes point behind the frame and further comprising a diode flasher for flashing the diodes on and off.

17. The street hockey net of claim 16 further comprising a housing for housing the diode flasher, the housing being mounted to the rear horizontal member, the housing having a lighted warning sign oriented towards the back side of the net frame, the warning sign being operatively coupled to the diode flasher so as to flash on and off when in operation.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The invention relates generally to hockey nets for playing street hockey.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Hockey nets for use with playing street hockey have been available for quite some time. These devices generally consist of a frame upon which a net is hung. These hockey nets are generally made of a tubular metal or plastic frame which can be picked up and carried as required. While these hockey nets are a good product, there is a danger associated with playing street hockey with these nets. Street hockey nets tend to block traffic since they are generally erected in the middle of municipal streets. Since they are positioned in the middle of a street there is a real risk that a motorist will accidently hit the net if the visibility is poor. This is a particular concern at night. Furthermore, in some cases, the net may not be easily visible, causing the vehicle operator to drive through the net and into any people in the street whom may be playing street hockey. An improved hockey net which does not suffer from these drawbacks would find popularity among people wishing to play street hockey.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, there is provided a street hockey net consisting of a net frame formed from a plurality of tubular members. The frame includes a front side and a back side, and a plurality of light emitting diodes positioned on the frame and oriented towards the back side such that the diodes point behind the frame. The net further includes a diode flasher for flashing the diodes on and off.

With the foregoing in view, and other advantages as will become apparent to those skilled in the art to which this invention relates as this specification proceeds, the invention is herein described by reference to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, which includes a description of the preferred typical embodiment of the principles of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1. is a perspective view of a hockey net frame made in accordance with the invention.

FIG. 2. is a schematic view of the LED flasher component of the present invention.

In the drawings like characters of reference indicate corresponding parts in the different figures.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring firstly to FIG. 1, a street hockey net made in accordance with the present invention is shown generally as item 10 and comprises a frame 12 having a forward side 14 and a back side 16. Frame 12 has an upper frame 18 having forward horizontal member 20 and rear horizontal member 22. Frame 12 also has lower U shaped portion 24 consisting of lower horizontal transverse member 26 mounted between forward extending members 28 and 30. Upper frame 18 is supported by upright members 32, 34 and 36. Upright members 32 and 34 connect forward extending members 28 and 30 to the ends of forward horizontal member 20. Upright member 36 supports upper frame 18 by connecting transverse member 26 to rear horizontal member 22.

The construction of net 10 as an upper rectangular frame 18 and a lower U shaped frame 24 with three interconnecting uprights ensures the structural strength of the design as well as the lightness of the construction. The central upright member 36 ensures that rear horizontal member 22 of upper frame member 18 remains rigid. The various members are preferably elongated tubes made of a thermoplastic material such as PVC. PVC tubing suitable for use in constructing net 10 is readily available on the marketplace.

Hockey net 10 also includes an LED flashing unit 38 which includes a housing having a lighted warning sign 39. Lighted warning sign 39 is oriented towards the back of net. Preferably, sign 39 consists of an LED sign. LED flashing unit 38 is mounted to rear horizontal member 22 at the junction with central upright member 36. Light emitting diodes 40 are positioned along rear horizontal member 22 and central upright member 36 and are oriented such that they face towards the rear of the net. Light emitting diodes 40 and warning sign 39 are operatively coupled to LED flashing unit 38 such that in operation, the diodes and warning sign flash on and off in rapid succession. Numerous LED flashing circuits can be incorporated into LED flashing unit 38. A schematic for one such circuit is shown in FIG. 2; however, numerous LED flashing circuits are readily available in the marketplace. LED flashing unit 38 would also include a battery compartment (not shown) for providing electrical energy to operate the circuit.

The present invention has numerous advantages over the prior art. Firstly, the frame itself is light and rigid, permitting it to be easily picked up and carried from location to location. The warning lights and flashing light emitting diodes are also useful in warning drivers that they are approaching a group of people playing street hockey. This has the added effect of not only protecting the net from damage but also the players from injury.

A specific embodiment of the present invention has been disclosed; however, several variations of the disclosed embodiment could be envisioned as within the scope of this invention. It is to be understood that the present invention is not limited to the embodiments described above, but encompasses any and all embodiments within the scope of the following claims.