Title:
COLLAPSIBLE SLINGSHOT BOW
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A collapsible slingshot bow for firing an arrow has a head comprising a first U-shaped member including a central post and a pair of arms extending laterally of, and from, the post, the arms terminating in free end portions that extend rearwardly of the post. One end of the post opposite the arms includes a connector, and the head includes a bow string for engaging and launching the arrow. A handle is formed as an elongated handgrip portion having another connector at one end for engagement with connector on the post. An arm support includes a second U-shaped member attached to the handgrip portion via a releasable connector carried by the arm support. A flexible strap having a nock-engaging portion spans the length between the ends of the pair of arms. In using the bow, an archer inserts one of his hands between the ends of the U-shaped member so that his forearm is positioned below the strap; he then grasps the handgrip portion of the handle with the inserted hand thereby securely holding the bow in a fixed position while supporting the bow against his arm so that he can load and launch an arrow with his other hand.



Inventors:
Edwards, Randy (Hooks, TX, US)
Application Number:
11/756975
Publication Date:
12/04/2008
Filing Date:
06/01/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
29/433
International Classes:
F41F7/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
RICCI, JOHN A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FOX ROTHSCHILD LLP (LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ, US)
Claims:
What I claim is:

1. A collapsible sling bow for firing arrows, comprising: a head comprising a first U-shaped member including a central post and a pair of arms extending laterally of, and from, the post, said arms terminating in free end portions that extend rearwardly of the post, one end of said post opposite the arms including connection means, said head further including bow string means for engaging and launching the arrow, a handle comprising an elongated handgrip portion having connection means at a first end for detachable engagement with the post connection means, and an arm support comprising a second U-shaped member detachably attached to the handgrip portion via releasable connection means carried by the arm support and cooperating with the connection means of said handle, and a flexible strap spanning the ends of the U-shaped member, whereby in using the bow, an archer inserts one of his hands between the ends of the U-shaped member toward the handgrip so that his forearm is positioned below the strap, and then he grasps the handgrip portion of the handle with that one hand to securely hold the bow in a fixed position while supporting the bow against his arm so that he can load and launch an arrow with his other hand.

2. The sling bow of claim 1, wherein said bow string means comprises a power band made of a length of elastic material attached to, and spanning, the free end portions of said arms, said length of elastic material having attached thereto a nock-engaging loop located substantially centrally of the distance between said free end portions.

3. The collapsible sling bow of claim 2, wherein said arms emanate from said post to define a V-shaped notch against which the shaft of an arrow rests while the arrow is being loaded and launched.

4. The collapsible sling bow of claim 3, and further including a guide element overlying said notch, said guide element having opposing ends, each of said ends being secured to a respective arm adjacent to said notch.

5. The collapsible sling bow of claim 1, wherein said handle further includes a cushion element surrounding a major portion of the length of the handgrip portion.

6. The collapsible sling bow of claim 1, and further including tubing segments secured to the free end portions of the arms, and bundled bow strings attached to said tubing segments in such a manner as to form a power band coupled to and spanning the distance between said tubing segments, said power band having a nock-engaging loop connected thereto.

7. The collapsible sling bow of claim 1, wherein the head can be pivotably positioned relative to the handgrip to permit use of the bow by either a right-hander or a left-hander merely by loosening the connection means between the handle and the bow head, repositioning the handle and bow head to a new relative position, and tightening the connection means to secure the handle in the new position relative to the bow head.

8. The collapsible sling bow of claim 7, wherein in either position used by a right-hander or a left-hander the bow head is preferably maintained in a horizontal orientation.

9. In a slingshot bow having opposed arms, a bowstring comprising: a multistrand section of bowstring material having a central substantially rigid twisted portion and end portions comprising loops, and a pair of tubing segments having opposing ends, one end of each segment being secured to a respective one of the arms of said bow and the other end of each segment being secured to a respective one of the loops of said multi-strand bowstring, said bowstring extending between said bow arms and defining a power band for launching projectiles from said bow.

10. The slingshot bow of claim 9, and further including a loop of material secured substantially centrally of said central portion, and defining a nock-engaging element.

11. The bow of claim 10, wherein the end of each tubing segment comprises a double-walled portion having a short length of tubing folded into the bore of the tubing, and further wherein each said loop of said bowstring extends radially through both walls of said double walled portion of tubing and is secured on the outside of said tubing.

12. A method of forming a power band for attachment to a slingshot bow having opposing arms, said method comprising: providing a finite length of a multi-strand bowstring having a central portion located between and interconnecting opposing loop portions; attaching one loop portion of the bowstring to a first segment of tubing; attaching the other loop portion to a second segment of tubing; and securing each of the first and second segments of tubing to a respective one of each arm of the bow.

13. The method of claim 12, wherein said step of attaching one loop portion to the first segment of tubing comprises (a) separating each loop portion into two sub-loops, (b) attaching each sub-loop to a needle-like instrument, (c) inserting the needle-like instrument longitudinally into the end of the tubing, (d) radially piercing the wall of the tubing with the needle-like instrument, (e) drawing each sub-loop with the needle-like instrument radially through and out of the tubing, (f) detaching each sub-loop from the needle-like instrument; (g) wrapping the sub-loop over the central portion of the bowstring extending out of the tubing and over the tubing end, and (h) exerting a longitudinal pulling force on the central portion to tightly secure the sub-loop circumferentially about and in encircling engagement with the tubing end.

14. The method of claim 13, wherein said step of attaching the other loop portion to the second segment of tubing comprises (a) separating each loop portion into two sub-loops, (b) attaching each sub-loop to a needle-like instrument, (c) inserting the needle-like instrument longitudinally into the end of the tubing, (d) radially piercing the wall of the tubing with the needle-like instrument, (e) drawing each sub-loop with the needle-like instrument radially through the tubing wall and out of the tubing, (f) detaching the sub-loop from the needle-like instrument; (g) wrapping the sub-loop over the central portion of the bowstring extending out of the tubing and over the tubing end, and (h) exerting a longitudinal pulling force on the central portion to tightly secure the sub-loop circumferentially about and in encircling engagement with the tubing end.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a hand-held bow configured as a sling shot for launching arrows and the like. In comparison to a conventional bow for propelling arrows, a significant advantage of the present slingshot bow is its smallness in size and its being easily and conveniently carried.

BACKGROUD OF THE INVENTION

Prior inventions support the notion that smaller bows are inherently advantageous. Various features contribute to the versatility of smaller bows including simplicity of construction, substantial reduction in weight, ease and economy of transport, and ease of use, especially by either a “lefty” (one who uses his/her left arm, hand, leg or foot) or a “righty” (one who uses or favors his right arm, hand, leg or foot) without significant modification.

One example of a known device exhibiting some of these features is the invention disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,018,770 to Saunders for a “SLING SHOT”. The Saunders patent discloses a sling bow having an arm rest for steadying the bow when the sling is stretched, and an arm brace 2 for supporting the bow on the shooter's arm. In Saunders, the elastic “power links” D are formed from tubes of rubber.

Another noteworthy invention is that disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,728,996 to Miller. In the Miller patent there is disclosed a sling shot for discharging an arrow that includes a Y-shaped hand-held support having a displaceable sight rod for accurately aiming an arrow that is propelled by elastic band members.

Still another invention of note is that disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 7,059,314 to Teague. In the Teague patent, there is shown a sling bow having a flat elongated handle and a Y-shaped end with an off-center quarter circle shaped notch against the side of which the shaft of a conventional arrow rests before it is launched by elastic straps secured in slots cut into the Y-shaped end on opposite sides of the notch.

Each of the above-mentioned patents has drawbacks, especially with respect to adjustability, reliability and accuracy of shooting. For example, the bow in the Saunders patent must be disassembled from one configuration suitable for shooting by a left-hander and then reassembled into a different configuration that is suitable for shooting by a right-hander. All of the foregoing patents suffer from the difficulty associated with maintaining accuracy of the projectile trajectory, inasmuch as the arrow rests of the patented devices will not move out of the flight path of the projectile until it is struck by the projectile. This potentially then diverts the projectile from its intended flight path. Further, neither Teague nor Miller provide an arm rest to maintain the bow in a steady position while stretching and then releasing the power bands.

There is therefore a great and long-felt need for a sling bow which is light weight, not cumbersome in construction, easy to store and transport, inexpensive and simple in design.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a sling bow that is simple in construction, light in weight, easy to store and transport, and can be used without modification by a “lefty” or a “righty”.

In one aspect of the invention, a compact, hand-held sling bow includes a horizontal head portion, a handle portion, and a support portion in which the relative angle between the handle portion and the head portion can be adjusted relative to one another such that the power band supported by the head portion can retain its horizontal orientation regardless of whether the bow is used by a “lefty” or a “righty”.

In another aspect of the invention, the support portion includes a U-shaped length of flexible strap for snuggly engaging the forearm of a user of the bow to steady the bow during its use.

In yet another aspect of the invention, the horizontal head portion is fashioned into a U-shaped element between the ends of which is an elastic band designed to engage one end of an elongated projectile while the band is drawn away from the U-shaped element and then released in a direction back toward the U-shaped element so that the projectile can be propelled forwardly with greater speed than the speeds generated by sling bow constructions currently known in the art.

In still another aspect of the present invention, the material used for the elastic strap and its manner of attachment to the head portion enables a projectile to be propelled forwardly at speeds greater than the speeds achieved by conventional sling bow devices using similar elastic bands.

In still another aspect of the present invention, the elastic strap of the sling bow functions as the power producing mechanism for propelling the projectile, and there is no tuning or adjustment of the draw length required.

The present invention achieves these objectives and others not stated above through its simplicity of construction, configuration and use. The sling bow of the present invention comprises a three-part construction of a bow head, a bow handle, and a bow support. The bow head is configured as a U-shaped support having an elongated central post with a connection point formed at one end portion and, at the opposite end portion, a first set of arms extending laterally outwardly of, and upwardly from the central post. Each arm of the first set of arms has a second arm extending rearwardly from, and normal to, its respective first arm with a power band connected to each second arm. The bow handle comprises an elongated member supporting in surrounding manner a grip member, such as a rubber or padded sleeve.

These and other features, aspects and advantages of the invention will become readily apparent to those skilled in the art from the following description and appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the bow and power band of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a bundle of bowstring used in forming the power band of the present invention;

FIG. 3 is a side view of one end of the tubing used secured to one of the bow arms of the invention;

FIG. 4 is an end view of the tubing shown in FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 shows the bowstring bundle after performing a step in one method for forming the power band of the invention;

FIG. 6 shows the bowstring bundle in relation to the tubing end shown in FIG. 3 after performing another sequential step in the method of the invention;

FIG. 7 shows the bowstring bundle in relation to the tubing end shown in FIG. 3 after performing yet another sequential step in the method of the invention;

FIG. 8 shows a fourth step in the method of forming the power band of the invention;

FIG. 9 shows the power band of the invention after completing the formation method.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

Referring first to FIG. 1, the sling bow 100 of the present invention is seen to include a bow head 10, a bow handle 30, and a bow arm support 40. It is contemplated that a projectile (not shown), such as a conventional arrow, will be used with the bow of the invention. Such a projectile would include a nock at the end of a shaft that would engage the power band 70 at a nock-engagement portion 85, and would be propelled forwardly of the bow head when the power band is released.

The bow head 10 includes a frame having central support post 12, and a pair of arms 14a, 14b extending substantially laterally of the central post 12. The end of each arm includes a first short segment 16a, 16b extending substantially normal to a respective arm 14a, 14b. The arm first segments are arranged substantially parallel with one another. The arms, the arm first segments, and the central post together define a substantially planar head portion. At the free end of each first short segment 16a, 16b is a second short segment 17a, 17b extending away from the substantially planar portion in a rearward direction (i.e., toward the user) and generally toward one another. Attached to and encompassing end portions of each of the arms, and preferably including the first and second segments, are first and second sections of tubing 19a, 19b. Preferably, the first and second sections of tubing are made from a strong rubber material having a high degree of strength, elasticity, and resilience, such as surgical rubber or other like material exhibiting similar properties.

The bow handle 30 comprises an elongated handle member 32 having connection points 34a, 34b at opposite end regions for connecting the handle member between the central support post 12 of the bow head 10 and the bow arm support 40. The connection is maintained by a releasable connector assembly, such as a bolt and nut, and can be loosened to allow rotation or pivoting of the bow head relative to the bow handle, or the bow handle relative to the arm support, prior to tightening the connector to secure the two parts to one another thereby preventing further relative pivoting motion. The present invention also contemplates loosening and removing the connectors to permit all three of the parts to be disassembled for storage or to facilitate transport. Encircling a central region of the handle member 32 is a cushioning sleeve 36. The cushioning sleeve is resilient enough to allows a shooter's hand to snuggly and securely grasp the bow handle 30 while loading, aiming, and “firing” or launching a projectile.

The arm support 40 of the bow includes a U-shaped member 42 having a flexible strap 44 secured at, and spanning, the free ends 46a, 46b of the “U”. The length of the strap is slightly greater than the distance between the free ends so as to permit a snug fit between the user's arm and the underside of the strap when the user inserts his hand between the arms of the U-shaped member and grasps the sleeve 36 of the handle member. The strap 44 can be braided as shown in FIG. 1, or it can be flat and without surface texture, such as a belt or strap. Preferably the strap will be of sufficient thickness to prevent its breakage under nearly all circumstances associated with its use. Member 42 is releasably pivoted to handgrip 30 via a bracket 43.

The arms 14a and 14b of the bow head are seen to originate at the upwardmost area of the central post and extend upwardly and laterally therefrom in such a manner as to form, with the central post, a V-shaped crook 21, which functions to support the forward portion of an arrow's shaft prior to its being fired. Guide 23, comprising a length of substantially rigid or taut cord having its ends tightly secured to portions of the arms adjacent opposite sides of the crook 21, is provided to overly the forward portion of the arrow shaft to keep the arrow shaft securely positioned on the crook 21 while the power strap is being tensioned in readiment for launching the arrow. The guide 23 also facilitates accurate aiming of the arrow, during arming of the bow and launching of the arrow by maintaining the arrow shaft in the crook.

FIGS. 2-9 are a series of illustrations showing one process for forming the power band 70. This process contemplates following a sequence of steps that will yield the power band for the bow of the present invention. A first step is to form the bundle 72 of bowstrings as shown in FIG. 2 by repeatedly winding multiple strands of bow string into a loop and then twisting the loop about a central section 74 to yield end loops 73a and 73b. By performing the process described below, the bundle 72 will be transformed into the power band 70 seen in FIG. 1 with the central section 74 providing an engagement area for a nock engaging loop 110. The thus-formed power band will span the ends of the tubing attached to the arms of the bow head 10 (note FIG. 1).

The second step of the process contemplated by the present invention, and best understood with reference to FIGS. 3 and 4, entails selecting a region of tubing, having a length of about ¾ of an inch measured from the free end of the tubing, and folding the region back upon the remainder of the length of tubing while pushing it inside the tubing (thus forming a “folded under” section of tubing) to create a doubled-thickness wall section D of significantly increased strength due to the two thicknesses of material (one within the other) through and to which the bowstring 72 will be secured. FIG. 4 shows the “folded under” end of the tubing looking at the end of the tubing from outside the end.

In the third step of the process, as best illustrated in FIG. 5, one end loop 73b of the bowstring bundle 72 is separated into two substantially equal sub-loop portions 73b1 and 73b2, each originating from the same side of the central section. In the third step of the process, each end-loop portion is, with the aid of a needle-like instrument such as a needle or awl (not shown), threaded radially through both layers at opposing sides of the “folded under” wall section D of the tubing end.

The fourth step of the process of the invention entails radially pulling each of the respective bundle sub-loop portions through the tubing segment at D in the manner shown in FIG. 6.

In the fifth step of the process, best illustrated in FIG. 7 of the drawings, each protruding sub-loop portion 73b1 and 73b2 is then looped over the end of the tubing segment toward the oppositely disposed one of the other sub-loop portion while encircling the central section 74 of the bowstring bundle 72 now extending from within, and parallel to, the tubing bore. That is, in effecting this fifth step, the central section 74 of the bowstring bundle that extends longitudinally from within the tubing bore also extends through the two sub-loops 73b1 and 73b2.

In the sixth step of the process, the central portion 74 is grasped and pulled tightly in a longitudinal direction away from the tubing end to thereby cause the bundle sub-loop portions to contract around, and be tightly secured circumferentially against, the outer surface of the end of the wall section D of the tubing (see FIG. 8).

In the seventh sixth step of the process, each of the preceding steps (the first through sixth steps) of the process are again performed on the second end loop 73a of the bowstring bundle relative to the other, second, segment of tubing attached to the other arm of the bow head 10. When completed, the facing ends of the tubing will be connected together to form the power band 70, as shown in FIG. 9. In this step of the process, a loop of material, preferably in the form of a strap 110, is secured to the mid-section of the power band 70

The configuration of the bow frame, and the use of rubber tubing possessing superior structural and functional properties, such as surgical rubber tubing, as the elastic power band for the bow, results in enhanced stretching and strength properties, in substantially greater flight speeds for the projectiles than are achieved with conventional bows and bow strings, in a novel bow construction that will permit quick and repeated loading and launching of arrows, and in a bow that can be used over and over without fear of breakage or damage. In addition, because the bow head 10, grip portion 30 and arm support portion 40 are able to be separated, the bow of the invention can be carried with great ease to a location where it can be quickly assembled, used, and then as quickly disassembled. The economic and related environmental advantages of the instant invention are thus self evident.

It will be apparent that the invention is not limited to the embodiments described above and that variations and modifications may be made thereto within the scope of the invention.