Title:
Method for Employing a Tracking Device with an Arrow
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A two part arrow employing a tracking device used to track wounded game animals. When the hunting broadhead engages a game animal, a separating slide mechanism that encircles the anterior arrow segment slides toward the rear of the arrow catching the lever component of the release mechanism secured inside the posterior arrow segment releasing the broadhead and anterior arrow segment from the posterior arrow segment. A retainer housed in the anterior arrow segment springs open and engages the animal. An attachment device connects the retainer to the release mechanism ensuring that the posterior arrow segment and the signaling component located in the posterior arrow segment remain tethered to the animal.



Inventors:
Russell, Brian (Combined Locks, WI, US)
Sullivan, Patrick (Combined Locks, WI, US)
Application Number:
12/536306
Publication Date:
02/11/2010
Filing Date:
08/05/2009
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
473/578, 473/583, 29/428
International Classes:
F42B6/04; F42B6/08
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20040097294Putter training deviceMay, 2004Caramico
20060040761Scale mark mat for putting practiceFebruary, 2006Shin
20070225087Low-resilience limited flight golf ballSeptember, 2007Simonutti
20030050131Variable length putterMarch, 2003Grace
20070281811Ball with lighting deviceDecember, 2007Wang
20040229709Golf putter constructionNovember, 2004Solari
20080051229LACROSSE CONNECTOR SYSTEMFebruary, 2008Devoe et al.
20060014593Golf club head structure for improving casting fluidity in a slurry shellJanuary, 2006Hou
20090203471PITCHING AND THROWING TRAINING MECHANISMAugust, 2009Roudybush
20040229717BALL CATCHING DEVICENovember, 2004Lin
20030220153Grip sheath used for a golf club classNovember, 2003Hung



Primary Examiner:
RICCI, JOHN A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Brian Russell (551 Coonen Drive, Combined Locks, WI, 54113, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An arrow having a tracking device comprised of: an anterior arrow segment; a posterior arrow segment; a separating slide mechanism; a retainer; a release mechanism; an attaching device; and a signaling component.

2. The apparatus of claim 1 which further includes a hunting broadhead having at least one blade.

3. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said anterior arrow segment is releasably attached to said posterior arrow segment.

4. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said release mechanism is comprised of a lever.

5. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said lever is adapted to fit within the posterior arrow segment of said apparatus.

6. The apparatus of claim 4 wherein said posterior arrow segment has at least one aperture from which an end of said lever can protrude.

7. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said separating slide mechanism creates a force opposite in direction to the flight of the arrow.

8. The apparatus of claim 6 wherein said release mechanism is released by said separating slide mechanism which depresses said end of said lever.

9. The apparatus of claim 1 which further includes a separating slide stopping device.

10. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said signaling component includes a pressure switch.

11. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said signaling component includes a transducer.

12. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said signaling component contains a device selected from the group consisting of audio devices, radio frequency devices, signal emitting devices, chirping devices, frequency emitting devices, or others devices known in the art suitable for emitting a signal which can be used for tracking a game animal or making the location of a game animal more readily detectible.

13. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said signaling component includes an oscillator.

14. The apparatus of claim 1 wherein said signaling component includes an accelerometer.

15. The apparatus of claim 1 which further includes a power source.

16. A method for employing a tracking device with an arrow comprised of: securing a release mechanism having a lever inside a posterior arrow segment so that the ends of said lever protrude through apertures in said posterior arrow segment; inserting a retainer inside an anterior arrow segment; sliding a separating slide mechanism over said anterior arrow segment; sliding said anterior arrow segment over said posterior arrow segment and engaging apertures in anterior arrow segment with ends of said lever protruding through said anterior arrow segment; inserting a hunting broadhead into front of said anterior arrow segment; and inserting a nock and signaling component into rear of said posterior arrow segment.

17. The method for employing a tracking device with an arrow of claim 16 wherein said anterior arrow segment is releasably attached to said posterior arrow segment.

18. The method for employing a tracking device with an arrow of claim 16 wherein said release mechanism is released by said separating slide mechanism which creates a force opposite in direction to the flight of said arrow and depresses said lever.

19. The method for employing a tracking device with an arrow of claim 16 which further includes inserting a separating slide stopping device into said posterior arrow segment.

20. The method for employing a tracking device with an arrow of claim 16 wherein said signaling component contains a device selected from the group consisting of audio devices, radio frequency devices, signal emitting devices, chirping devices, frequency emitting devices, or others devices known in the art suitable for emitting a signal which can be used for tracking a game animal or making the location of a game animal more readily detectible.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application No. 61/086,693 filed on Aug. 6, 2008.

FIELD OF INVENTION

This invention relates generally to the field of bow hunting arrows, and in particular to the field of bow hunting arrows employing a tracking device.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 shows a top perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a dissembled arrow employing a tracking device.

FIG. 2 shows a top perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of an assembled arrow employing a track device.

FIG. 3 shows a side view of an exemplary embodiment of a signaling component and power source for an arrow employing a tracking device.

FIG. 4a shows an exploded sectional view of an exemplary embodiment of a separating slide mechanism.

FIG. 4b shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a separating slide mechanism.

FIG. 5a shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a retainer in the open position.

FIG. 5b shows an exploded sectional view of an exemplary embodiment of a retainer in the open position.

FIG. 5c shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a retainer in the closed position.

FIG. 6a shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a release mechanism in the released position.

FIG. 6b shows a second exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a release mechanism in the released position.

FIG. 6c shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of a release mechanism in the secured position.

GLOSSARY

As used herein, the term “hunting broadhead” refers to a component mounted to the anterior portion of the arrow shaft that is capable of piercing the flesh of an animal. A hunting broadhead may have one or more blades emanating from the shaft portion.

As used herein, the term “game animal” refers to any animal which is hunted for sport or population control, including but not limited to deer, turkey, elk, moose, bear, boar and any other non-domesticated animal regardless of species.

As used herein, the term “separating slide mechanism” refers to a component which encircles the anterior shaft of an arrow behind the hunting broadhead and creates a force opposite in direction to the flight of the arrow. For example, when the hunting broadhead engages the target, the separating slide mechanism is pushed back toward the rear of the arrow releasing the hunting broadhead and anterior arrow segment and stopping the posterior arrow segment and signaling component at the point of impact with the game animal allowing a pass through shot while retaining the tracking device with the animal.

As used herein, the term “posterior arrow segment” refers to the rear portion of an arrow shaft. The posterior arrow segment may include fletching, vanes, and/or a nock, and may house a release mechanism, one or more signaling components and/or a battery or other power source.

As used herein, the term “anterior arrow segment” refers to the front portion of an arrow shaft. The anterior arrow segment may include a retainer housed within the anterior arrow segment of the shaft.

As used herein, the term “release mechanism” refers to a component housed within a segment of an arrow shaft which holds the anterior and posterior arrow segments together during flight.

As used herein, the term “separating slide stopping device” refers to a component which secures the release mechanism within an arrow shaft.

As used herein, the term “retainer” refers to a component housed within a segment of an arrow shaft which attaches a signaling component to a game animal (e.g., while in flight).

As used herein, the term “attaching device” refers to a filamentous component that is attached at one end to a retainer, and at the opposite end to a release mechanism.

As used herein, the term “power source” refers to a battery or other power source which provides power to the signaling component. A power source may be housed in the posterior arrow segment and connected directly to the signaling component, or may be attached to the signaling component with leads.

As used herein, the term “nock” refers to the component located at the end of the arrow shaft opposite the hunting broadhead which engages the string of the bow. The nock may further house or be attached to a signaling component.

As used herein, the term “fletchings” or “vanes” refers to one or more components found in front of the nock on the posterior arrow segment. Fletchings/vanes provide a small amount of drag used to stabilize the flight of the arrow and are designed to keep the arrow pointed in the direction of travel. Fletchings/vanes may be comprised of feathers, plastic, or another suitable material which achieves a similar effect.

As used herein, the term “signaling component” refers to a component which contains an audio device, radio frequency device (e.g., RFD chip, RFID tag), Global Tracking System (GPS) component, signal emitting device, chirping device, frequency emitting component, or any other device known in the art suitable for emitting a signal which can be used for tracking a game animal or making the location of a game animal more readily detectible.

As used herein, the term “accelerometer” refers to a device which measures acceleration relative to freefall.

As used herein, the term “transducer” refers to a device that converts one type of energy or physical attribute into another (e.g., electricity into mechanical energy).

As used herein, the term “oscillator” refers to an electronic circuit that produces a repetitive electronic signal.

As used herein, the term “vent hole” refers to a small hole or opening for sound transmission or for transmission of any other signal which requires an opening for signal transmission.

BACKGROUND

Archery and bow hunting are popular sports attracting millions of participants each year, and generating a robust market for bow and arrow hunting accessories.

A game animal that has been wounded, but not killed, may travel a long distance after it has been shot with an arrow, and it is often difficult to track the wounded game animal. A wounded game animal is commonly tracked by following the blood trail; however, this method is not always successful (e.g., when the terrain is rugged, the blood is washed away by rain or the animal has traveled through water, the blood has clotted, or in the absence of a blood trail due to only internal bleeding). As the result of the difficult tracking, the wounded game animal is often lost and never retrieved. The problems associated with tracking wounded game animals are well known in the art.

It is thus desirable to have a bow and arrow hunting accessory that improves the ability of a bow hunter to track a wounded game animal in flight and/or recover the carcass of a game animal that has fallen.

Many attempts have been made to provide improved means for tracking game animals wounded by arrows, including the devices disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 7,300,367 (Andol '367), U.S. Pat. No. 4,836,557 (Polando '557), and U.S. Pat. No. 6,814,678 (Cyr '678).

Andol '367 teaches an assembly for tracking an animal which has been shot by an arrow. A transmitter is housed and attached to a bushing located on the shank portion of the arrow. Upon impact of the arrow with the animal, the elastomeric ring which attaches the transmitter housing to the bushing is dislodged, releasing the housing from the bushing. The transmitter housing contains members which penetrate the animal, attaching the housing and transmitter to the animal. A hand-held direction finding receiver is used to locate the transmitter. The use of a hand-held receiver to track the animal is cumbersome and costly.

Polando '557 teaches a game tracking arrow with a two-part, separable tracking device mountable between the hunting broadhead and the shaft of an arrow. The first part is a hollow tubular housing threadingly attached at one end to the hunting broadhead. The second part is a stud which is threadingly mounted to and extends outward from one end of the arrow shaft. Located in between the stud and the housing is a collar, which has a greater diameter than the housing to prevent the shaft from entering the animal. A spool of line is located inside the housing and connected at one end to the stud. The line forms an identifiable trail between the hunting broadhead arrow point and the housing which remains embedded within the animal and the shaft; the shaft and stud separate from the housing when the collar contacts the hide of the animal causing the line to unwind from the spools as the animal moves. The use of a spool and line disrupts the normal flight pattern of the arrow making it more difficult to hit the desired target. Additionally, the line is subject to tangling making it difficult to rewind and reuse. The line is also subject to breakage, which makes it difficult to follow.

Cyr '678 teaches a detachable nock with a locating device for use with a bow hunting arrow. The detachable nock, the end part of an arrow which secures the arrow to the bow, engages with the target animal and separates the locating device from the arrow as the arrow passes through the target animal; the locating device remains with the animal to permit tracking. The nock used in Cyr '679 includes hooks and barbed ends which are designed to embed and secure the transmitting device in the flesh of target animal. The hooks and barbed ends, however, present a hazard to the user since they are so close to the user's face when shooting the arrow.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

For the purpose of promoting an understanding of the present invention, references are made in the text hereof to embodiments of an arrow employing a tracking device, only some of which are depicted in the figures. It should nevertheless be understood that no limitations on the scope of the invention are thereby intended. One of ordinary skill in the art will readily appreciate that modifications such as the dimensions and shape of the components, alternate but functionally similar locations, and the inclusion of additional elements are deemed readily apparent and obvious to one of ordinary skill in the art, and all equivalent relationships to those illustrated in the drawings and described in the written description do not depart from the spirit and scope of the present invention. Some of these possible modifications are mentioned in the following description. Therefore, specific details disclosed herein are not to be interpreted as limiting, but rather as a representative basis for teaching one of ordinary skill in the art to employ the present invention in virtually any appropriately detailed apparatus or manner.

It should be understood that the drawings are not necessarily to scale; instead emphasis is being placed upon illustrating the principles of the invention. In addition, in the embodiments depicted herein, like reference numerals in the various drawings refer to identical or near identical structural elements.

Moreover, the term “substantially” or “approximately” as used herein may be applied to modify any quantitative representation that could permissibly vary without resulting in a change in the basic function to which it is related.

Referring now to the drawing, FIG. 1 shows a top perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of arrow employing a tracking device 100 in the dissembled position. In the embodiment shown, arrow employing a tracking device 100 is comprised of hunting broadhead 10, anterior arrow segment 20, posterior arrow segment 30, and nock 25. Arrow employing a tracking device 100 further includes separating slide mechanism 15 located near hunting broadhead 10 and fletching 35 located near nock 25. Attached to nock 25 are signaling component 75 (not visible) and power source 70. Arrow employing a tracking device 100 may further include optional gasket 18 (not visible) which extends around anterior arrow segment 20 and engages separating sliding mechanism 15 holding it into place.

In the embodiment shown, anterior arrow segment 20 is larger than posterior arrow segment 30 which allows anterior arrow segment 20 to be slid around posterior arrow segment 30. In other embodiments, anterior arrow segment 20 has a smaller diameter than posterior arrow segment 30 or anterior arrow segment 20 and posterior arrow segment 30 are of equal diameter.

Housed inside anterior arrow segment 20 is retainer 40. In the embodiment shown, retainer 40 has blades 42a, 42b, 42c (42c not visible), spring 44 and anchor point 45. When retainer 40 is positioned inside anterior arrow segment 20, blades 42a, 42b, 42c are folded inward and spring 44 is compressed. Secured to anchor point 45 is attaching device 50. The other end of attaching device 50 is secured to anchor point 55 on release mechanism 60 which is positioned inside posterior arrow segment 30. In the embodiment shown, attaching device 50 is a high strength, lightweight, low diameter wire.

Release mechanism 60 further includes lever 65. The ends of lever 60 protrude through apertures 62a, 62b in posterior arrow segment 30. Anterior arrow segment 20 has apertures 64a, 64b (not visible), which correspond to the location of apertures 62a, 62b. To assemble arrow employing tracking device 100, anterior arrow segment 20 is slid over the front end of posterior arrow segment 30 so that apertures 64a, 64b line up with the ends of lever 65 protruding through apertures 62a, 62b. The ends of lever 65 catch apertures 64a, 64b securing anterior arrow segment 20 and posterior arrow segment 30 together. Nock 25, signaling component 75 and power supply 70 are slid into the rear of posterior arrow segment 30.

FIG. 2 shows a top perspective of an exemplary embodiment of arrow employing a tracking device 100 in the assembled position. When hunting broadhead 10 engages the target, separating slide mechanism 15 is pushed back toward the rear of anterior arrow segment 20. Separating sliding mechanism 15 strikes the ends of lever 65 protruding through apertures 62a, 62b of posterior arrow segment 30 and apertures 64a, 64b of anterior arrow segment 20 which causes lever 65 to move from a secured position to a released position and the ends of lever 65 to move inside posterior arrow segment. Because the ends of lever 65 are no longer securing the anterior arrow segment 20 to posterior arrow segment 30, anterior arrow segment 20 dislodges from the posterior arrow segment 30.

Arrow employing a tracking device 100 may further include a separating slide stopping device (not shown) located to the rear of release mechanism 60 and apertures 62a, 62b in posterior arrow segment 30. Separating slide stopping device stops separating slide mechanism 15 from reaching fletching 35 after it depresses the ends of lever 65 causing lever 65 to move from the secured position to the released position.

When anterior arrow segment 20 is dislodged from posterior arrow segment 30, retainer 40 is released from anterior arrow segment 20 causing blades 42a, 42b, 42c to spring open perpendicular to the travel path of arrow employing tracking device 100. Blades 42a, 42b, 42c become lodged inside of the game animal or on the opposite side of the game animal's body from which arrow employing tracking device 100 entered the animal if arrow employing tracking device 100 passes through the game animal. Attaching device 50 and release mechanism 60 ensure that posterior arrow segment 30 and signaling component 75 remain tethered to retainer 40.

In the embodiment shown, retainer 40 has three blades. In other embodiments, retainer 40 may have more or fewer blades or be of various shapes and designs which will allow retainer 40 to be lodged inside of a game animal and which allows posterior arrow segment 30 and signaling component 75 to remain tethered to the game animal as it is in flight. For example, retainer 40 may have one or more prongs or barbed wire instead of, or in addition to, one or more blades.

FIG. 3 shows an exemplary embodiment of nock 25, signaling component 75 and power source 70. Signaling component 76 includes transducer 82, accelerometer 84, pressure switch 86, microcontroller 88 and circuit board 90. In the embodiment shown, transducer 82 is an electromechanical device which emits an audible signal. In other embodiments, signaling component 75 may include another type of signaling device known in the art, such as a radio frequency device (e.g., RFD chip, RFID tag), signal emitting device, Global Tracking System (GPS) component, chirping device, frequency emitting component or any other signaling device known in the art.

In the embodiment shown, microcontroller 88 is a Peripheral Interface Controller (PIC) which further includes an oscillator. In other embodiments, signaling component 75 may be comprised of more or fewer components and/or varying components. For example, signaling component 75 may further include an optional delay mechanism which is calibrated to start emitting a signal after a designated amount of time in order to conserve the power source.

In the embodiment shown, power source 70 is made up of batteries 72a, 72b, 72c which are stacked and shrink-wrapped together. In the embodiment shown, batteries 72a, 72b, 72c are lithium ion batteries with a total of 6V. In other embodiments, there are more or fewer batteries for a total voltage of 3V to 12V. Also visible are leads 74a, 74b which connect power source 70 to signaling component 75.

Signaling component 75 is slid into recess 28 in nock 25 and then nock 25 and protruding portion of signaling component 75 and power source 70 are slid into the rear of posterior arrow segment 30. In the embodiment shown, nock 25 further includes optional vent hole 26 which permits signaling component 75 to be heard. In the embodiment shown, vent hole 26 is located on the end of nock 25. In other embodiments, signaling component 75 and vent hole 26 are located in another location on nock 25 or an area other than nock 25. For example signaling component 75 and vent hole 26 may be located in posterior arrow segment 30. In other embodiments, more or fewer vent holes are located near signaling component 75.

FIG. 4a shows an exploded sectional view of an exemplary embodiment of separating slide mechanism 15. FIG. 4b shows an exploded side view of an exemplary embodiment of separating slide mechanism 15. In the embodiment shown, separating slide mechanism 15 is made of plastic. In other embodiments, separating slide mechanism 15 is made of lightweight aluminum, carbon fiber reinforced polymer or 20 any other material which is lightweight and strong enough to withstand the force exerted on separating slide mechanism 15 when hunting broadhead 10 engages a target and it dislodges anterior arrow segment 20 from posterior arrow segment 30. In other embodiments, separating slide mechanism 15 contains blade-like components or is of a design other than in the embodiment shown.

FIG. 5a shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of retainer 40 in the open position. Visible are anchor point 45 to which is attaching device 50 (not shown) is attached, spring 44, collar 46 and blades 42a, 42b, 42c. Blades 42a, 42b, 42c (42c not visible) are attached to collar using pins 48a, 48b, 48c (48c not visible) which allow blades to be pivoted inward when retainer 40 is inside anterior arrow segment 20 and then spring open when anterior arrow segment 20 is dislodged from posterior arrow segment 30.

FIG. 5b shows an exploded sectional view of an exemplary embodiment of retainer 40 in the open position. Visible are blades 42a, 42b, 42c.

FIG. 5c shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of retainer 40 in the closed position as if inside anterior arrow segment 20. In the embodiment shown, blades 42a, 42b, 42c (42c not visible) are pivoted inward which causes spring 44 to compress.

FIG. 6a shows an exploded side perspective of an exemplary embodiment of release mechanism 60. In the embodiment shown, lever 65 is in the released position. Also visible are anchor point 55 and aperture 80. Release mechanism 60 is placed inside posterior arrow segment 30 and secured by placing a pin through an aperture in posterior arrow segment 30 and through aperture 80 in release mechanism 60. In other embodiments, a screw or other attachment means is used to secure release mechanism 60 inside posterior arrow segment 30.

In the embodiment shown, release mechanism 60 is made of aluminum. In other embodiments, release mechanism 60 is made of plastic, another type of metal or alloy, carbon fiber or any other suitable material.

FIG. 6b shows a second exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of release mechanism 60. Visible are lever 65, aperture 80 and anchor point 55.

FIG. 6c shows an exploded side perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of release mechanism 60 with lever 65 in the secured position. The ends of lever 65 protrude through apertures 62a, 62b in posterior arrow segment and apertures 64a, 64b in anterior arrow segment 20 when posterior arrow segment 30 and anterior arrow segment 20 are secured.





 
Previous Patent: Hockey stick

Next Patent: Lighted Projectile