US 3880392 A
A basketball bankboard-and-goal assembly including a main unit suspended to swing in a vertical plane about an overhead axis and a brace unit suspended to swing about a parallel axis, the distal end of the brace unit having a sliding connection with a guideway at the lower part of the main unit and the two units having parts which wedge together when the main unit is strictly vertical. The wedging part on the brace unit is infinitely adjustable longitudinally of the brace unit.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent [191 Duganich 1 1 Apr. 29, 1975 WIDE BEARING WEDGE LOCK  Inventor: Joseph W. Duganich, P.O. Box
19024, Indianapolis, Ind. 46219  Filed: Feb. 15, 1973  Appl. No.: 332,583
 U.S. Cl 248/324; 273/15  Int. Cl... A63b 67/00; A63b 71/04; B66f 11/00  Field of Search 248/324, 325, 326, 439; 273/1.5;108/120,127,160, 117
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 628,712 7/1899 Hoshour 108/120 3,329,427 7/1967 Beurson 248/326 X 3,452,984 7/1969 Miller et a1. 273/15 R 3,467,377 9/1969 Miller et a1. 273/15 R 3,614,099 10/1971 Sarno 248/326 X D176,335 12/1955 Hornung et al. 273/15 R FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 595,598 9/1959 Italy 108/125 Primary Examiner-.1. Franklin Foss Attorney, Agent, or FirmHood & Coffey  ABSTRACT A basketball bankboard-and-goal assembly including a main unit suspended to swing in a vertical plane about an overhead axis and a brace unit suspended to swing about a parallel axis, the distal end of the brace unit having a sliding connection with a guideway at the lower part of the main unit and the two units having parts which wedge together when the main unit is strictly vertical. The wedging part on the brace unit is infinitely adjustable longitudinally of the brace unit.
6 Claims, 4 Drawing Figures WIDE BEARING WEDGE LOCK The present invention relates to a wide bearing wedge lock which finds its primary utility in the suspension for, for instance, a basketball goal and bankboard assembly. The primary object of the invention is to provide a system wherein a suspended assembly will be held firmly against minor dislodgement when it is in its dependent, or use, position. A further object of the invention is to provide a system of the character de scribed in which the bankboard will lie strictly in a vertical plane when the system is in use position.
Still further objects of the invention will appear as the description proceeds.
To the accomplishment of the above and related objects, this invention may be embodied in the form illustrated in the accompanying drawings, attention being called to the fact, however, that the drawings are illustrative only, and that change may be made in the specific construction illustrated and described, so long as the scope of the appended claims is not violated.
In the drawings:
FIG. I is an isometric view of an embodiment of my invention with the parts in use position;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged fragmentary side elevation of the wedging parts;
FIG. 3 is a side elevation showing the assembly, in solid lines, in its storage position and, in dotted lines, in its use position; and
FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken substantially on the line 44 of FIG. 2.
In many arenas which are sometimes used as basketball courts, it has become common to suspend bankboard-and-basket assemblies from overhead structural units so that such an assembly may be swung in a vertical plane between an elevated, storage position and a dependent, use position. Numerous expedients for suspending, moving and holding such assemblies have been used but, so far as I am advised, all of such expedients have heretofore been subject to one or more deficiencies.
For instance, in most of such devices known to me, gravity alone is relied upon to hold the bankboard in a strictly vertical plane and shocks to which the assembly is subjected during play may move the assembly, in one direction or the other, enough to shift the bankboard surface two or three degrees out of strict verticality. Since the bankboard is used, on many shots, to cause the ball to carom into the basket, such dislodgement may, and frequently does, cause an otherwise perfect shot to miss the goal.
According to the present invention, a brace unit is so associated with the main unit of the suspension system that, when the main unit reaches precise verticality, a wedging situation is created so that rearward movement of the main unit is affirmatively prevented and forward movement thereof is strongly resisted.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, it will be seen that l have illustrated a main unit pivotally suspended from overhead structural members 11 and 12 to swing in a vertical plane. The stem 13 of the unit 10 carries a bankboard 14 and a goal or basket 15.
A brace unit, indicated generally by the reference numeral 16, is similarly suspended from the members 11 and 12 to swing about an axis which is parallel with the pivotal axis of the main unit 10, and includes a stem 17.
Suitably secured to the stem 13 is a rail 18 paralleling, but spaced rearwardly from, the stem 13 and acting as a guideway for the distal end of the stem 17.
Adjacent its distal end, the stem 17 carries a bifurcated member 19 comprising spaced, parallel legs 20 and 21. Each of said legs may be tubular, though preferably of rectangular cross section, and is closed at its lower end by a base member 22. Each base member 22 is perforated to receive a screw 23 and each screw 23 carries, at its distal end, a head 24 centrally perforated to provide a bearing for a spindle 25. A roller 26 is supported upon the two spindles 25 and has a transverse extent which is approximately equal to the width of the stem 13.
Nuts 27 and 28 are threaded upon each screw respectively above and below the base 22, whereby each screw 23 may be substantially infinitely adjusted longitudinally of its leg 20 or 21. As is clearly shown, the roller 26 is confined in the guideway between the stem 13 and the rail 18.
A bracket 29 is adjustably secured to the stem 13 at its lower region by clamping means 30; and said bracket is formed to provide a surface 31 which is inclined upwardly and rearwardly from the rearward surface 32 of the stem 13. The surface 31 may be a single surface having a width substantially equal to the width of the face 32, or it may be formed, as shown in FIG. 4, by two laterally-spaced flanges. l presently believe that the optimum angle included between the surface 32 and the surface 31 is 45. At any rate, the angle included between those surfaces must be a wedging angle so that, when the roller 26 is pressed into place between the surfaces 31 and 32, a wedging action, significantly resisting extraction of the roller from between the inclined surfaces, will arise.
Conventional means for moving the unit 10 is illustrated. A pulley 33 is tethered to the forward face of the stem 13 near the upper end thereof and an elastic cable 34 is threaded through said pulley and secured to an anchorage 35 near the lower end of the stem. A pulley 36 is secured to the free end of the elastic cable 34 and a halyard 37 is secured to the anchorage 35, threaded through the pulley 36 and extended to a winch (not shown) at a suitably distant point. It will be seen that, when tension is applied to the halyard 37, the elastic cable 34 will stretch to permit the pulley 36 to move into a position in which a relatively straight pull can be applied to the lower portion of the stem 13; but as the assembly nears the storage position of FIG. 3, the cable 34 will contract and the parts will assume substantially the position of FIG. 3.
Preferably, the bracket 29 will include clamp means 38 for supporting the lower end of the rail 18.
It will now be perceived that, as the unit 10 is lowered from the solid line position to the broken line position of FIG. 3, the roller 26 will enter between the surfaces 31 and 32 to become wedged therein, whereby it will resist any tendency of the unit 10 to move in either direction from a position of strict verticality. If, under continued usage, that wedged condition should change, adjustment of the nuts 27 and 28 will return the front surface of the bankboard 14 into a strictly vertical plane.
I claim as my invention:
1. In a device of the class described, a main unit suspended to swing about a substantially horizontal axis near its upper end, between a substantially vertical dependent position and a substantially horizontal raised position, a brace unit suspended from an axis parallel with said substantially horizontal axis and spaced rearwardly therefrom, means on said main unit defining a longitudinal guideway, means at the distal end of said brace unit engaged with and guided by said guideway, a bracket carried by said main unit near the distal end of said guideway and having a generally upwardly presented surface rearwardly related to said main unit at a permanent acute angle for wedgedly receiving the external surface of said means at the distal end of said brace unit when said main unit is truly vertical, and a device carried at the forward part of said main unit.
2. The device of claim 1 including hoist means operatively connected to said main unit.
3. The device of claim 2 in which said hoist means includes a flexible strand leading forwardly from said main unit.
4. The device of claim 1 in which said means at the distal end of said brace unit is adjustable longitudinally of said brace unit.
5. The device of claim 1 in which said acute angle is aproximately 45.
6. The device of claim 1 in which said means at the distal end of said brace unit is a roller having an axial length at least equal to the transverse width of said inclined surface and a diameter less than the horizontal distance between said rearward surface of said main unit and the distal end of said inclined surface.