Title:
Customized golf putter head and method of making same
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A customized golf putter head includes a face member and hosel combination that is selected from a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations and a back body that is selected from a plurality of differently configured back bodies. The selected back body has a mating section that is disposed in a cavity formed in a rear surface of the selected face member and hosel combination. The putter head may also include a membrane that is positioned between the selected face member and hosel combination and the selected back body for absorbing vibration when a front surface of the selected face member and hosel combination strikes a golf ball.



Inventors:
Nelson, Michael J. (Campbell, CA, US)
Anderson, Douglas W. (Glendale, AZ, US)
Tuerschmann, Gary L. (Phoenix, AZ, US)
Application Number:
10/317592
Publication Date:
06/26/2003
Filing Date:
12/12/2002
Assignee:
Karsten Manufacturing Corporation (Phoenix, AZ)
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
473/341, 473/349
International Classes:
A63B53/04; A63B53/02; A63B53/06; A63B59/00; (IPC1-7): A63B53/04
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
DUONG, THANH P
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Darrell F. Marquette (Phoenix, AZ, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A golf putter head comprising: a face member and hosel combination selected from a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations, said selected face member and hosel combination having a heel end, a toe end, a front surface arranged for striking a golf ball, and a rear surface with a cavity formed therein; and a back body selected from a plurality of differently configured back bodies, said selected back body having a heel end, a toe end and a mating section disposed in the cavity in said selected face member and hosel combination.

2. The golf putter head of claim 1, further comprising a membrane positioned between said selected face member and hosel combination and said selected back body for absorbing vibration when the front surface of said selected face member and hosel combination strikes a golf ball.

3. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said membrane comprises a layer of elastomeric material with adhesive on opposite sides thereof for bonding said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

4. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said selected face member and hosel combination comprises a hosel extending upwardly from a face member, and wherein said face member and said hosel are integrally connected to form said selected face member and hosel combination.

5. The golf putter head of claim 2, wherein said membrane is interposed between a bottom surface of said cavity and the mating section of said selected back body.

6. The golf putter head of claim 5, wherein said membrane has a shape that matches both the bottom surface of said cavity and the mating section of said selected back body.

7. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said selected back body includes a threaded bore adjacent the heel end thereof and another threaded bore adjacent the toe end thereof, and further comprising a pair of screws extending through the heel and toe ends of said selected face member and hosel combination into said threaded bores for securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

8. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said selected face member and hosel combination includes a threaded bore adjacent the heel end thereof and another threaded bore adjacent the toe end thereof, and further comprising a pair of screws extending through the heel and toe ends of said selected back body into said threaded bores for securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

9. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said selected face member and hosel combination also has a sole and a top ledge.

10. The golf putter head of claim 9, wherein the mating section of said selected back body has an upper edge that lies beneath the top ledge of said selected face member and hosel combination when the mating section of said selected back body is disposed in the cavity in said selected face member and hosel combination.

11. The golf putter head of claim 1, wherein said selected face member and hosel combination is formed of metal, and wherein said selected back body is formed of polymer containing tungsten powder.

12. A golf putter head comprising: a face member and hosel combination selected from a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations, said selected face member and hosel combination being formed of metal and having a heel end, a toe end, a top ledge extending between said heel and toe ends, a front surface arranged for striking a golf ball, and a rear surface with a cavity formed therein; and a back body selected from a plurality of differently configured back bodies, said selected back body being formed of polymer containing tungsten powder and having a heel end, a toe end and a mating section disposed in the cavity in said selected face member and hosel combination, the mating section of said selected back body having an upper edge that lies beneath the top ledge of said selected face member and hosel combination when the mating section of said selected back body is disposed in the cavity in said selected face member and hosel combination.

13. The golf putter head of claim 12, further comprising a membrane formed of a layer of elastomeric material with adhesive on opposite sides thereof for bonding said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body, said membrane being disposed in said cavity and positioned between a bottom surface of said cavity and the mating section of said selected back body for absorbing vibration when the front surface of said selected face member and hosel combination strikes a golf ball.

14. The golf putter head of claim 12, wherein said selected back body includes a threaded bore adjacent the heel end thereof and another threaded bore adjacent the toe end thereof, and further comprising a pair of screws extending through the heel and toe ends of said selected face member and hosel combination into said threaded bores for securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

15. The golf putter head of claim 12, wherein said selected face member and hosel combination includes a threaded bore adjacent the heel end thereof and another threaded bore adjacent the toe end thereof, and further comprising a pair of screws extending through the heel and toe ends of said selected back body into said threaded bores for securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

16. A method of making a golf putter head comprising: providing a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations; selecting a face member and hosel combination from said plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations; providing a plurality of differently configured back bodies; selecting a back body from said plurality of differently configured back bodies; and securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body in order to form said golf putter head.

17. The method of claim 16, further comprising: providing said selected face member and hosel combination with a rear surface having with a cavity formed therein; and providing said selected back body with a mating section which is disposed in said cavity when said selected face member and hosel combination is secured to said selected back body.

18. The method of claim 17, further comprising: providing a membrane which is positioned between said selected face member and hosel combination and said selected back body when said selected face member and hosel combination is secured to said selected back body.

19. The method of claim 18, further comprising: providing said membrane with adhesive on opposite sides thereof for bonding said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body.

20. The method of claim 16, further comprising: providing a pair of screws for securing said selected face member and hosel combination to said selected back body

Description:

[0001] This is a continuation-in-part of application Ser. No. 09/766,216 filed Jan. 19, 2001, incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] This invention relates generally to golf putters and, in particular, to a golf putter head which may be customized to meet an individual golfer's preferences.

[0003] Since putting is a highly individualistic aspect of golf, many configurations of putter heads are available to satisfy the preferences of the individual golfer. Putter head configurations vary significantly. Prior U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,220,733 to Saleeby; 4,121,832 to Ebbing; 5,407,196 to Busnardo; 5,437,447 to Rigutto; 5,230,509 to Chavez; and 5,275,413 to Sprague disclose putter heads with multiple components. For example, the Ebbing, Busnardo and Rigutto patents disclose putter heads with removable face plates while the Saleeby, Chavez and Sprague patents disclose putter heads with detachable rear weights.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0004] The present invention provides a golf putter head including a face member and hosel combination that is selected from a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations, and a back body that is selected from a plurality of differently configured back bodies. The selected face member and hosel combination has a heel end, a toe end, a front surface arranged for striking a golf ball, and a rear surface with a cavity formed therein. The selected back body has a heel end, a toe end, and a mating section which is disposed in the cavity in the selected face member and hosel combination. The golf putter head may also include a membrane that is positioned between the selected face member and hosel combination and the selected back body for absorbing vibration when the front surface of the selected face member and hosel combination strikes a golf ball. The membrane preferably comprises a layer of elastomeric material with adhesive on opposite sides thereof for bonding the selected face member and hosel combination to the selected back body.

[0005] The present invention also provides a method of making a golf putter head. The method includes providing the plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations from which to select and the plurality of differently configured back bodies from which to select. The selected face member and hosel combination is secured to the selected back body by a pair of screws in order to form the golf putter head.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0006] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an assembled putter head according to one embodiment of the present invention;

[0007] FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the putter head shown in FIG. 1;

[0008] FIG. 3 is an enlarged sectional view taken along the line 3-3 in FIG. 1;

[0009] FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view taken along the line 4-4 in FIG. 1;

[0010] FIG. 5 is an elevational view of one component of the putter head shown in FIGS. 1 and 2;

[0011] FIG. 6 is a partially exploded perspective view of a putter head according to another embodiment of the present invention;

[0012] FIG. 7 is an enlarged sectional view taken along the line 7-7 in FIG. 6;

[0013] FIGS. 8-11 are perspective views of differently configured face member and hosel combinations; and

[0014] FIGS. 12-14 are perspective views of differently configured back bodies.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0015] Referring to FIG. 1, a golf putter head is indicated generally by the reference numeral 10. The putter head 10, as shown in the exploded view of FIG. 2, is formed of multiple components including a face member 12, a hosel 14, a back body 16 and a membrane 18. These components are held together by a pair of screws 20. The hosel 14 has a boss 15 for receiving one end of a golf shaft (not shown).

[0016] The face member 12 has a sole 22, a toe end 24, a heel end 26, a front surface 28 arranged for striking a golf ball (not shown), a top ledge 30 and a rear surface 32. The top ledge 30 is disposed between the front and rear surfaces 28, 32. A cavity 34 is formed in the rear surface 32 with the cavity 34 having a recessed bottom surface 36 circumscribed by a rim surface 38. An upwardly opening socket 40 is formed in the top ledge 30 of the face member 12 for receiving a depending extension 42 of the hosel 14 as shown in FIG. 4. The face member 12 and the hosel 14 are preferably formed of suitable metal such as stainless steel. When both the face member 12 and the hosel 14 are formed of metal, a sintering process may be used to secure the hosel 14 to the face member 12. Alternatively, the hosel 14 may be formed of a suitable synthetic resin and secured to the face member 12 by using an adhesive such as epoxy. It will be apparent that by fabricating the face member 12 and the hosel 14 as separate components and securing them together in the manner indicated, face members having different configurations may be provided. The face member 12 may be selected from a plurality of differently configured face members, and the hosel 14 may be selected from a plurality of differently configured hosels.

[0017] Alternatively, the face member 12 and the hosel 14 are integrally connected to each other to form a face member and hosel combination. FIGS. 8-11 show a plurality of differently configured face member and hosel combinations 13a, 13b, 13c and 13d from which to select. These face member and hosel combinations 13a-13d include respective face members 12a-12d and hosels 14a-14d.

[0018] The back body 16 has a sole 44, a toe end 46, a heel end 48 and a mating section or projection 50 which is shown best in FIGS. 2 and 5. The mating section 50 of the back body 16 is separated along its lower edge 51 from the sole 44 by a lip 52 which extends between front end portions 54 and 56 of the back body 16. The mating section 50 has an elongated upper edge 58 opposite the lower edge 51. It is contemplated that a plurality of differently configured back bodies will be fabricated to provide a selection of back bodies having various weights and shapes. The back body 16 may be formed of any suitable material such as metal or synthetic resin. The mating section 50 of the back body 16 has a shape that matches the shape of the recessed bottom surface 36 of the face member cavity 34 to provide a proper fit when the face member 12 and the back body 16 are secured together as described below.

[0019] A plurality of differently configured back bodies 16a, 16b and 16c from which to select are shown in FIGS. 12-14. It will be understood that any of the face member and hosel combinations 13a, 13b, 13c, 13d may be secured to any of the back bodies 16a, 16b, 16c thereby providing twelve different putter head configurations. The back bodies 16a, 16b, 16c may be formed of any suitable material such as metal or synthetic resin. Preferably, the back bodies 16a, 16b, 16c are formed of polymer containing tungsten powder. The polymer may contain varying amounts of tungsten powder which will provide back bodies 16a, 16b, 16c of different weights. Each of the back bodies 16a, 16b, 16c may be provided in three different weights, i.e. light weight, medium weight and heavy weight. When the twelve different putter head configurations, mentioned above, are combined with the three different weights of back bodies, thirty-six different putter heads may be assembled.

[0020] As seen in FIG. 2, the face member 12 is provided with a spaced apart pair of counterbores 60 and 62 formed proximate the toe and heel ends 24 and 26, respectively, with the counterbores 60, 62 extending from the front surface 28 through to the back surface 32. The back body 16 is formed with a spaced apart pair of threaded bores 64 and 66 (FIG. 5) adjacent the toe and heel ends 46 and 48, respectively, which are disposed to axially align with the counterbores 60, 62 in the face member 12 when the back body 16 is secured to the face member 12 by the screws 20. The mating section 50 of the back body 16 is disposed within the cavity 34 of the face member 12 with the upper edge 58 of the mating section 50 lying beneath the top ledge 30 of the face member 12 as shown in FIGS. 3 and 4. Therefore, a parting line 11 (FIG. 1) between the face member 12 and the back body 16 is concealed by the top ledge 30 and is not visible from directly above the putter head 10 such as when a golfer is making a putting stroke with a putter incorporating the putter head 10.

[0021] Referring to FIG. 2, it will be understood that the membrane 18 may be formed with a shape that matches the shape of the cavity 34 in the face member 12 and the shape of the mating section 50 of the back body 16. As seen in FIGS. 3 and 4, when the putter head 10 is assembled, the membrane 18 is positioned between the recessed bottom surface 36 of the cavity 34 in the face member 12 and the mating section 50 of the back body 16. The membrane 18 is preferably made of a thin layer of elastomeric material such as foam tape which has adhesive on both sides for bonding the face member 12 to the back body 16. It will be understood that the membrane 18 may be die cut into a desired shape. Although the putter head 10 may be assembled without utilizing the membrane 18, it is preferred that the membrane 18 be used because it will absorb vibration and enhance the sound made when a golf ball is struck on the front surface 28 of the face member 12.

[0022] Another golf putter head is identified in FIGS. 6 and 7 by the reference numeral 68. The putter head 68 includes a face member 70 and a hosel 72 joined together in the manner described with respect to the face member 12 and the hosel 14 of the putter head 10. The face member 70 has a top ledge 71 that is similar to the top ledge 30 of the face member 12, and the hosel 72 includes a depending extension 73 that is similar to the depending extension 42 of the hosel 14. The putter head 68 also includes a back body 74 with a mating section 75 that is similar to the mating section 50 of the back body 16. A pair of screws 76 (only one of which is shown) are used to secure the face member 70 and the back body 74 together. The screws 76 pass through holes 78 (only one of which is shown) formed in the back body 74 into threaded bores 80 (only one of which is shown) provided in the face member 70. The holes 78 are disposed generally normally with respect to the mating section 75. Plates 82 may be inserted into recesses 84 formed in the back body 74 to conceal the screws 76. The plates 82 may be made of metal or plastic and secured in place with a suitable adhesive. When the putter head 68 is assembled, the mating section 75 of the back body 74 has an upper edge 77 that lies beneath the top ledge 71 of the face member 68 so that a parting line 69 between the face member 70 and the back body 74 is concealed by the top ledge 71.