Title:
Golf club head
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention comprises a golf club head that is adapted to be swung through an incoherent material to strike a golf ball. The golf club head has a body having an aperture. The aperture reduces the resistance of the golf club head to motion through the incoherent material. In an embodiment, the present invention comprises a plurality of apertures that reduce such resistance.



Inventors:
Wang, Jessie Li-kuo (Fremont, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/985538
Publication Date:
05/11/2006
Filing Date:
11/09/2004
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B53/04
View Patent Images:
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20120264546GOLF GAME AND SCORING METHODOctober, 2012Daniel et al.



Primary Examiner:
HUNTER, ALVIN A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
JESSIE LI-KUO WANG (FREMONT, CA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A golf club head that is adapted to be swung through an incoherent material to strike a golf ball, the golf club head comprising: a body having an aperture, whereby the aperture reduces the resistance of the golf club head to motion through the incoherent material.

2. The golf club head of claim 1 having a striking surface and a rear surface, and wherein the aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area and a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area is greater than the first area.

3. The golf club head of claim 2 wherein the aperture has a substantially rectangular shape.

4. The golf club head of claim 3 having a striking surface, a rear surface, and a plurality of apertures and wherein for a plurality of apertures the apertures have a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area and a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area for a particular aperture is greater than the first area for the particular aperture.

5. The golf club head of claim 1 wherein the aperture has a circular shape.

6. The golf club head of claim 5 having a striking surface, a rear surface, and a plurality of apertures and wherein for a plurality of apertures the apertures have a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area and a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area for a particular aperture is greater than the first area for the particular aperture.

7. The golf club head of claim 1 wherein: the body has a striking surface and a rear surface; the aperture passes through the striking surface, the body, and the rear surface; and the aperture has a substantially rectangular shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface, the aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area, the aperture has a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area is greater than the first area.

8. The golf club head of claim 7 wherein: the body has a sole portion; and the aperture is disposed substantially parallel with the sole portion.

9. The golf club head of claim 1 wherein: the body has a striking surface and a rear surface; the aperture passes through the striking surface, the body, and the rear surface; and the aperture has a substantially rectangular shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface, the aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area, the aperture has a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area is greater than the first area.

10. The golf club head of claim 9 wherein: the body has a sole portion; and the aperture is disposed substantially perpendicular with the sole portion.

11. The golf club head of claim 1 further comprising a plurality of apertures and wherein: the body has a striking surface, a rear surface, and a sole portion; the apertures pass through the striking surface, the body, and the rear surface; the apertures have substantially rectangular shaped cross sections in the plane of the striking surface, the apertures have a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area, the apertures have a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area for a particular aperture is greater than the first area for the particular aperture; and wherein the apertures are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially parallel alignment to the sole portion.

12. The golf club head of claim 1 further comprising a plurality of apertures and wherein: the body has a striking surface, a rear surface, and a sole portion; the apertures pass through the striking surface, the body, and the rear surface; the apertures have substantially rectangular shaped cross sections in the plane of the striking surface, the apertures have a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area, the apertures have a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area for a particular aperture is greater than the first area for the particular aperture; and wherein the apertures are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially perpendicular alignment to the sole portion.

13. The golf club head of claim 1 further comprising a plurality of apertures and wherein: the body has a sole portion; the apertures have substantially rectangular shaped cross sections; wherein the apertures are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially parallel alignment to the sole portion; and wherein a first aperture is closer to the sole portion than a second aperture and the first aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area, the second aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a second area, and wherein the first area is greater than the second area.

14. The golf club head of claim 1 further comprising a plurality of apertures and wherein: the body has a sole portion and a sweet spot; the apertures have substantially rectangular shaped cross sections; wherein the apertures are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially perpendicular alignment to the sole portion; and wherein the apertures have cross sectional areas through the striking surface; and the cross sectional areas of an aperture generally are a smaller area at the sweet spot and are increasingly large as distance from the sweet spot to an aperture increases.

15. The golf club head of claim 1 further comprising a sweet spot, and further comprising a plurality of apertures, wherein the apertures are disposed symmetrically about the sweet spot.

16. The golf club head of claim 15 having a striking surface, a rear surface, and wherein an aperture has a cross sectional area through the striking surface that is a first area and a cross sectional area through the rear surface that is a second area, and wherein the second area is greater than the first area.

17. The golf club head of claim 15 wherein the apertures have substantially rectangular cross sections.

18. A golf club head that is adapted to be swung through an incoherent material to strike a golf ball, the golf club head comprising: a body having a striking surface and a rear surface; and the body having a plurality of apertures, wherein the apertures pass through the striking surface, the body, and the rear surface; whereby the apertures reduce the resistance of the golf club head to motion through the incoherent material.

19. The golf club head of claim 18 wherein the apertures have a substantially rectangular shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface; and wherein the striking surface has a striking surface area and wherein a majority portion of the striking surface area is provided with the apertures.

20. The golf club head of claim 18 wherein the apertures have a substantially curved shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface; and wherein an aperture is disposed substantially parallel to another aperture.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to golf clubs. This invention relates to golf clubs for striking golf balls that are resting in sand or resting in other incoherent materials.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a golf club head and more particularly to a golf club head such as a sand wedge, a chipping wedge, or other type of golf club that is adapted to be capable of improving a golfer's ability to effectively strike balls that are located on sand, soft dirt, or other non-coherent material.

The game of golf uses golf courses that are constructed with a variety of features that are designed to test the ability of a golfer to cope with difficult circumstances. One such feature is the sand trap. With respect to sand traps, the most desired outcome for a golfer is to display such skills as are sufficient to avoid having the golf ball come to rest within the sand trap. However, in spite of a golfer's best efforts the golf ball may indeed fall within a sand trap. In such circumstances, the most desired outcome is for the golfer to be able to strike the ball in such a way as to cause the ball to leave the sand trap with a single strike. This desired outcome is not easy to achieve because sand is not a coherent surface and the ball is likely deform the surface of the sand with the ball coming to rest with a portion of the ball somewhat buried below the surface of the sand.

FIG. 1A is typical of a prior art golf club head that is used for striking balls that are in sand traps, that is, sand wedge golf clubs. Chipping wedge golf clubs and other types of golf clubs are similar. Golf club head 10 has striking surface 12, which is also referred to as a “face” and which can be considered to be the front surface of the golf club head since this is the surface that leads in a forward direction as a golf club is swung to strike a ball. Striking surface 12 is a substantially planar surface that typically has score lines 14. Score lines 14 are shallow indentations that are provided to produce improved control of golf balls that are struck with golf club head 10. Striking surface 12 has a so-called “sweet spot” portion 16 that is the desired location for the golf club head 10 to strike ball 28 and that is typically a region that is more or less within the area of the center of striking surface 12. Other parts of golf club head 10 will be mentioned for convenience in discussion of other figures. Hosel 18 is the portion of golf club head 10 that connects golf club head 10 to the shaft (not shown) of the golf club. Heel 20 is the lower rear corner of golf club head 10 near hosel 18. Sole portion 22 is that portion of golf club head 10 which is along the lower edge of golf club head 10. Crown portion 24 is that portion of golf club head which is along the upper edge of golf club head 10. Toe 26 is the portion of golf club head 10 that is opposite heel 20, that is, toe 26 is at the lower corner of golf club head 10 that is away from hosel 18.

FIG. 1B is a side view of golf club head 10 along with a golf ball 28 located near sweet spot portion 16. Golf club head 10 has golf club body 30 which provides structure and mass to golf club head 10. Golf club body 30 may be made of a stainless steel casting, or may be made through other construction methods such as through an assembly of different castings, with or without stamped pieces of material attached to the assembly. Mass may be important for golf club 10 since the mass of golf club body 30, along with its velocity when swung, imparts force to golf ball 28. Golf club head 10 has rear surface 32 which is on golf club body 30 as the opposite side of striking surface 12. Rear surface 32 is considered to be “rear” since it is the surface that is trailing as golf club 10 is swung in a forward direction to strike golf ball 28. For the golf club head 10 that is illustrated, golf club body 30 may be different widths, measured through the thickness of golf club body 30 between striking surface 12 and rear surface 32. So measured, golf club body 30 may be wider across the portion near its sole portion 22 than the portion near its crown portion 24 in order to provide a desired mass, center of gravity, and balance for club head 10. Different configurations of golf club heads may be somewhat different from golf club head 10 that is illustrated but these are differences of degree and of design choice while the general principles of golf club head construction are present in different golf club heads.

The direction of forward motion of golf club 10 is indicated in FIG. 1 by forward motion direction arrow 34.

FIG. 2 illustrates golf ball 28 resting on sand 36 as well as illustrates a side view of golf club head 10 in similar orientation to that of the side view of FIG. 1B. In this figure, the surface of sand 36 is indicated by a dashed line. Sand is an example of an incoherent material, that is, a loose material which may be granular or may be wet or moist. Other examples of incoherent materials include loose dirt, dust from ground dirt, loose organic matter such as small pieces of grass, thick mud, and so forth. As illustrated, golf ball 28 is resting partially buried below the surface of sand 36 since golf ball 28 is assumed to have dropped onto sand 36 causing the surface of sand 36, an incoherent material, to be somewhat displaced and deformed by the weight of golf ball 28.

As used in this discussion, incoherent materials are compositions of matter and are not considered to include air or other gases. A liquid could be considered to be an incoherent material for the purposes of this discussion, as would be the case of a golf ball that is resting in shallow water.

It is somewhat problematic for a golfer who uses a prior art golf club to strike golf ball 28 when golf ball 28 is resting partially buried below the surface of sand 36. For the purposes of this discussion, a golf ball 28 shall be considered to be partially buried below the surface of an incoherent material if the incoherent material happens to be water that is sufficiently shallow as to allow a golf ball that is submerged or partially submerged in the water to be struck by a golfer.

The problem arises due to the non-coherent nature of sand 36 or of the other type of incoherent material. A golfer desires that golf club head 10 should strike squarely at golf ball 28, striking at sweet spot portion 16, striking neither too high nor too low on golf club head 10. Such striking is desired in order that golf club 10 impart a desired lift and momentum to cause golf ball 28 to assume an upward and forward trajectory to exit the sand trap. Therefore, a golfer who strikes golf ball in a sand trap may desire to strike golf ball 28 with sole portion 22 entering the sand as striking surface 12 strikes golf ball 28. In other words, it may be desired that sole portion 22 will strike through sand 36. However, sand 36 imposes a greater degree of resistance to forward motion of golf club head 10 as golf club head 10 strikes through sand 36, compared to the resistance to forward motion of golf club head 10 as golf club head 10 strikes through air 38.

The surface of sand 36 is indicated by reference numeral 40. This greater resistance to forward motion of golf club 10 caused by sand 36 causes the golfer's strike at ball 28 to be reduced in control, of reduced strength and momentum, and reduced in follow-through motion of golf club head 10. These reductions result in greater difficulty for the golfer to hit golf ball 10 to the location that the golfer desires to hit golf ball 10.

It is therefore desirable to provide golfers with a golf club head which is an improved golf club head where the improvement results in decreased resistance to golf club head motion caused by sand, dirt, or other incoherent materials as the golf club head strikes through the incoherent materials.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention comprises a golf club head that is adapted to be swung through an incoherent material to strike a golf ball. The golf club head has a body having an aperture. The aperture reduces the resistance of the golf club head to motion through the incoherent material. In an embodiment, the present invention comprises a plurality of apertures that reduce such resistance.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1A illustrates a prior art golf club head viewed from its striking surface side.

FIG. 1B illustrates an end view of a prior art golf club viewed from its toe side.

FIG. 2 illustrates an end view of a prior art golf club striking a golf ball that is resting in an incoherent material such as sand.

FIG. 3A illustrates an end view of an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3B illustrates a view of the striking surface of an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 3C illustrates a view of the rear surface of an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4A illustrates an end view of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4B illustrates a view of the striking surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 4C illustrates a view of the rear surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 5 illustrates a view of the striking surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 6 illustrates a view of the striking surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 7A illustrates a view of the striking surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 7B illustrates a view of the sole portion of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 8A illustrates a view of the striking surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 8B illustrates a view of the rear surface of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 8C illustrates a view of the sole portion of another embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The invention is an improved golf club head which may be an improved sand wedge, an improved chipping wedge, or improved other type of golf club. Where the improvement results in decreased resistance to golf club motion caused by dirt, sand, or other incoherent materials as the golf club is swung through such materials. This improvement results in a golf club head that is especially suitable for striking golf balls that have fallen into stand traps or onto other incoherent material, such as soft dirt, shallow water, and so forth.

The embodiments described below are preferred embodiments of the present invention.

FIG. 3A illustrates an end view of an embodiment of the present invention. This end view is of toe 26 of golf club head 100. Dashed line 102 indicates the vertical with respect to golf club head 100 and angle θ indicates the degree of angle given to golf club head 100. Golf club head 100 has a body 30 with a striking surface 12 and a rear surface 32. Aperture 104 passes through striking surface 12, body 30, and rear surface 32. In commonly used English, the word for “aperture” is “hole” but the term “aperture” is often used in technical writing.

Aperture 104, as well as other apertures described for embodiments of the present invention may be drilled through body 30, may be milled through body 30, may be cast into body 30, and so forth. Edges of any of the apertures described for embodiments of the present invention may have beveled edges where the apertures pass through striking surface 12 or rear surface 32. Aperture 104 is located near the sole portion 22 of golf club head 100. As golf club head 100 strikes golf ball 28 that rests on the surface of sand 40, aperture 104 allows sand 36 to pass through aperture 104. The result of such passage of sand 36 is that aperture 104 reduces the resistance of golf club head 100 to motion through sand 36 as compared to the resistance to motion that would be present if aperture 104 were not provided by the present invention.

In an embodiment of the present invention, golf club head 100 has a striking surface 12, a rear surface 32, and aperture 104. In this embodiment, aperture 104 is substantially circular in shape and wherein aperture 104 has a substantially circular cross sectional area in the plane of striking surface 12 and through striking surface 12 that is a first area that is within the circle indicated by reference numeral 106 and a substantially circular cross sectional area through rear surface 32 that is a second area that is within the circle indicated by reference numeral 108, and in this embodiment the second area is greater than the first area.

In the description of the embodiments it should be understood that the term “substantially circular” may be considered through different planes. For example, an aperture that is viewed from a position perpendicular to striking face 12 may appear oblong while viewed from the vertical with respect to the swinging position of golf club head 100 may appear substantially circular, and vice versa, depending upon design choices.

FIG. 3A illustrates aperture 104 indicated in dashed line as a cross sectional view of aperture 104. FIG. 3B illustrates golf club head 100 with aperture 104 from the view of striking surface 12 with first area 106 indicated in solid line while second area 108 at rear surface 32 is indicated in dotted line by reference numeral 108. FIG. 3C illustrates golf club head 100 with aperture 104 from the view of rear surface 32 with first area 106 indicated in dotted line while second area 108 at rear surface 32 is indicated in solid line by reference numeral 108.

In this embodiment of the present invention, the increased area of aperture 104 at rear surface 32 allows sand 36 to avoid compaction (clogging of the aperture) as sand 36 is forced through aperture 104. It should be noted that air, which is not included in the scope of incoherent materials for the purposes of this discussion, does not present a compaction problem.

In any of the embodiments of the present invention, the area of an aperture 104 at rear surface 32 may be increased by a selected multiple of the corresponding area at striking surface 12. For example, the multiple may be 1.1 to 1, 1.25 to 1; 1.5 to 1, 1.75 to 1, 2 to 1, and so forth according to particular design choices. In the example of 2 to 1, the area of an aperture 104 at rear surface 32 would be twice as great as the corresponding are of an aperture 104 at striking surface 12. For materials that are likely to present a greater tendency to compaction, such as sand comprising relatively large granules, the multiple of increase may be larger. For materials that are likely to present a lesser tendency to compaction, such as finely ground granules the multiple of increase may be smaller. The multiple of increase will also depend upon the thickness of body 30 with increasingly large multiples chosen for increasingly thick implementations of body 30.

Compaction of sand 36 could result in clogging of aperture 104 which could prevent the passage of sand 36 through aperture 104. In other words, sand 36 passes more easily through aperture 104 than sand 36 would pass through an aperture that did not increase in area at rear surface 32 as compared to striking surface 12. The result of the increasing area of aperture 104 from striking surface 12 to rear surface 32 is a further reduction of the resistance of golf club head 100 to motion through sand 36 as compared to the resistance to motion that would be present if aperture 104 were not provided with such increasing area.

FIG. 4A illustrates an end view of another embodiment of the present invention. This end view is of toe 26 of golf club head 200. Golf club head 200 has a body 30 with a striking surface 12 and a rear surface 32. Aperture 204 passes through striking surface 12, body 30, and rear surface 32. Aperture 204 is located near the sole portion 22 of golf club head 200. As golf club head 200 strikes golf ball 28 that rests on the surface of sand 40, sand 36 passes through aperture 204. The result of such passage of sand 36 is that aperture 204 reduces the resistance of golf club head 200 to motion through sand 36 as compared to the resistance to motion that would be present if aperture 204 were not provided by the present invention.

In this embodiment of the present invention, golf club head 200 has a striking surface striking surface 12, a rear surface 32, and aperture 204. In this embodiment, aperture 204 is substantially rectangular in shape. In this context, “rectangular” means that two sides are substantially parallel and may mean that two substantially parallel sides are substantially closer together than two other substantially sides or that the two sets of parallel sides are more or less of equal length, as with a square. Also, in the case of long and narrow apertures, the short sides may be of a curved shape yet the aperture will still be of rectangular shape for the purposes of this description of the invention. In this embodiment aperture 204 has a substantially rectangular cross sectional area in the plane of striking surface 12 and through striking surface 12 that is a first area that is within the circle indicated by reference numeral 206 and has a substantially rectangular cross sectional area through rear surface 32 that is a second area that is within the circle indicated by reference numeral 208, and in this embodiment the second area is greater than the first area. FIG. 4A illustrates aperture 204 indicated in dashed line as a cross sectional view of aperture 204. FIG. 4B illustrates golf club head 200 with aperture 204 from the view of striking surface 12 with first area 206 indicated in solid line while second area 208 at rear surface 32 is indicated in dotted line by reference numeral 208. FIG. 3C illustrates golf club head 200 with aperture 204 from the view of rear surface 32 with first area 206 indicated in dotted line while second area 208 at rear surface 32 is indicated in solid line by reference numeral 208.

In this embodiment of the present invention, the increased area of aperture 204 at rear surface 32 allows sand 36 to avoid compaction as sand 36 is forced through aperture 204. Compaction of sand 36 could result in clogging of aperture 204 which could prevent the passage of sand 36 through aperture 204. In other words, sand 36 passes more easily through aperture 204 than sand 36 would pass through an aperture that did not increase in area at rear surface 32 as compared to striking surface 12. The result of the increasing area of aperture 204 from striking surface 12 to rear surface 32 is a further reduction of the resistance of golf club head 200 to motion through sand 36 as compared to the resistance to motion that would be present if aperture 204 were not provided with such increasing area.

The inventions described in FIGS. 3A-3C and in FIGS. 4A-4C illustrate single apertures through the respective golf club heads with the single apertures illustrated rather than multiple apertures for clarity of viewing aspects of the present invention. In an embodiment of the invention, the present invention is provided with a plurality of apertures 104 or 204, respectively. In other words, in an embodiment of the present invention there are provided a plurality of substantially circular apertures and in another embodiment of the present invention there are a plurality of substantially rectangular apertures. These apertures have the features described in the detailed discussion in the paragraphs above.

In an embodiment of the present invention, illustrated in FIGS. 4A to 4C, substantially rectangular aperture 204 is disposed substantially parallel with sole portion 22.

FIG. 5 illustrates another embodiment of the present invention. Golf club head 300 has a plurality of substantially rectangular apertures 204A, 204B, and 204C that are similar to the apertures described for other embodiments of the present invention. In this embodiment, apertures 204A, 204B, and 204C are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially parallel alignment to the sole portion 22. In an embodiment, a plurality greater than two of rectangular apertures are disposed to be substantially mutually parallel, that is, a plurality greater than two of rectangular apertures are parallel with each other.

The number and the area of apertures 204A, 204B, 204C, and so forth that may be provided in embodiments of the present invention is a design choice. The fraction of area of striking surface 12 that may be occupied by apertures may vary in a wide range. For example, the fractional area that is occupied by apertures (expressed as a percentage of the area that would be present if there were no apertures through striking surface 12) may be any of 10%, 20%, or any decade of percentage to the range of 80% or so. Similarly, the fraction a particular region of striking surface 12, such as the region near sole portion 22 that may be occupied by apertures may vary in a wide range. For example, such a particular region that is occupied by apertures may be any of 10%, 20%, or any decade of percentage to the range of 80% or so. As the fraction of striking surface that is occupied by apertures increases, it may be desirable to increase the width of body 30 so as to maintain the desired mass and center of gravity of golf club head 300.

Now turning again to FIG. 5, an embodiment of the invention has a first aperture 204A that is closer to sole portion 22 than a second aperture 204B and the first aperture 204A has a cross sectional area through striking surface 12 that is a first area, the second aperture 204B has a cross sectional area through striking surface 12 that is a second area, and the first area is greater than the second area.

In an embodiment, of the invention illustrated in FIG. 5, a first aperture 204A is closer to sole portion 22 than a second aperture 204B and the first aperture 204A has a width that is a first width, the second aperture 204B has a width that is a second width, and the first width is greater than the second width. In this context, “width” means the distance between the parallel sides of the rectangle where the sides are the close rather than between the parallel sides that are distant.

In an embodiment of the invention illustrated in FIG. 5, third aperture 204C is provided and second aperture 204B is closer to sole portion 22 than third aperture 204C. In this embodiment, third aperture 204C has a third cross sectional area through striking surface 12 that is a third area, and the second area is greater than the third area. In this embodiment, substantially rectangular apertures 204A, 204B, and 204C become progressively smaller in area, and progressively narrow in width, as apertures are disposed progressively further from sole portion 22. The progressively narrowing nature of such apertures allows the provision of an aperture with a widest area near sole portion 22, which facilitates reduction of resistance for golf club head 300, while allowing improved striking surface in the sweet spot portion 16 which is somewhat away from the sole portion. Apertures of decreasing width are provided as apertures are disposed closer to sweet spot portion 16, or closer to the center area of sweet spot portion 16. In an embodiment, a plurality greater than two of rectangular apertures are disposed to be substantially mutually parallel, that is, a plurality greater than two of rectangular apertures are parallel with each other.

FIG. 6 illustrates another embodiment of the present invention. Golf club head 400 has a plurality of substantially rectangular apertures 204A, 204B, and 204C that are similar to the apertures described for other embodiments of the present invention. In this embodiment, apertures 204A, 204B, and 204C are disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially perpendicular alignment to the sole portion 22. In an embodiment, a plurality of rectangular apertures are disposed to be substantially mutually parallel, that is, a plurality of rectangular apertures are parallel with each other.

In an embodiment, of the invention illustrated in FIG. 6, a first aperture 204A is provided near an imaginary vertical line 408 passing near the center of sweet spot 16. Two second apertures 204B are provided on either side of first aperture 204A and both of second apertures 204B are substantially parallel to first aperture 204A. Both of second apertures 204B may be of approximately equal aperture area. Both of second aperture 204B may be of substantially equal width. In this embodiment, first aperture 204A has a narrower width than other apertures. In this embodiment, substantially rectangular apertures become progressively wider in width as apertures are disposed progressively further from the center area of sweet spot 16. The progressively widening nature of such apertures allows the provision of an aperture with a narrowest width near the center area of sweet spot portion 16 which facilitates improved striking surface in sweet spot portion 16 while providing an improved reduction of resistance for golf club head 400 due to the progressively widening nature of apertures as they are disposed further from the center area of sweet sport 16.

In another embodiment of the present invention, golf club head 400 has a plurality of apertures, and the apertures are disposed symmetrically about sweet spot 16. That is, there can be drawn an imaginary line, for example line 408, passing through the center area of sweet spot 16 and there is an approximately mirror image arrangement of apertures disposed about imaginary line 408.

FIGS. 7A and 7B illustrate another embodiment of the present invention. Golf club head 500 has a plurality of apertures 502 passing through striking surface 12 similar to the embodiments of the inventions described above. In this embodiment, the apertures 502 are disposed substantially parallel to other apertures 502, mutually parallel, and apertures 502 have a substantially similar width. In another embodiment of the present invention, a majority portion of the striking surface 12 area is provided with apertures 502. In another embodiment of the present invention, a substantially the entirety of the striking surface 12 area is provided with apertures 502. FIG. 7B illustrates a view of golf club head 500 taken from the sole portion 22 side of golf club head 500.

FIGS. 8A, 8B, and 8C illustrate another embodiment of the present invention. Golf club head 600 is adapted to be swung through an incoherent material to strike a golf ball. Golf club head 600 has a striking surface 12. The striking surface 12 has a sweet spot portion 16, and a striking surface heel portion 602 on a first side of the sweet spot portion 16, a striking surface toe portion 604 on a second side of the sweet spot portion 16. Golf club head 600 has a plurality of apertures 606 through the striking surface heel portion 602 and a plurality of apertures 606 through the striking surface toe portion 604.

In this embodiment, the sweet spot portion 16 is free of apertures, an area between the sweet spot portion and the crown portion 24 having a width equal to a width of the sweet spot portion 16 is also free of apertures. An area between the sweet spot portion 16 and the sole portion 22 and having a width equal to a width of the sweet spot portion 16 is also free of apertures.

In this embodiment, the apertures in the striking surface heel portion comprise a first type aperture 606A and a plurality of a second type aperture 606B while the apertures in the striking surface toe portion 604 comprise the first type aperture 606A and a plurality of the second type aperture 606B. The first type aperture 606A has a substantially circular shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface 12 and the second type aperture 606B has a substantially rectangular shaped cross section in the plane of the striking surface 12. The second type aperture 606B has a cross sectional area on the striking surface 12 that is a first area, the second type aperture 606B has a cross sectional area on the rear surface that is a second area, where the second area is greater than the first area. In this embodiment, the first type aperture 606A is disposed closer to the sole portion 22 of the golf club head 600 at the striking surface heel portion 602 than any second type aperture 606B is disposed on the striking surface heel portion 602. The plurality of second type apertures 606B are disposed on the striking surface heel portion 602 between the first type aperture 606A and the crown portion 24. A first type aperture 606A is disposed closer to the sole portion 22 of the golf club head 600 at the striking surface toe portion 604 than any second type aperture 606B is disposed on the striking surface toe portion 604. A plurality of second type apertures 606B are disposed on the striking surface toe portion 604 between the first type aperture 606A and the crown portion 24. The result of this embodiment is that the apertures 606A and 606B reduce the resistance of the golf club head 600 to motion through an incoherent material.

FIG. 8B illustrates the rear surface of golf club head 600. It can be observed that apertures 606B at the rear surface have a greater width than apertures 606B at striking surface 12 and this greater width discourages compaction of sand in apertures 606B thereby reducing resistance of golf club head 600 to motion through sand.

In an embodiment of the present invention that is based upon the golf club heads 200, 300, 400, 500, and 600 as are illustrated in FIGS. 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8, respectively, apertures may be substantially curved. Curved apertures may be disposed in substantially parallel alignment with another aperture and disposed in substantially parallel alignment to a curve such as is present at toe portion 26 or heel portion 20. In an embodiment, a plurality greater than two of curved apertures are disposed to be substantially mutually parallel, that is, a plurality greater than two of curved apertures are parallel with each other.

In any of the foregoing configurations of the present embodiments it may be desirable to provide apertures that have constant cross sectional areas through body 30, rather than cross sectional areas that increase in size from striking surface 12 to rear portion 32. Such provision may be desirable as a design choice for adjustment of the weight of the golf club head or for economy of production purposes.

It can be understood that the illustrated embodiments are representative of the present invention as claimed, and that such illustrations are not intended to limit the present invention, but that the present invention is limited by the following claims.





 
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