Changeable score control and display mechanism
US 2932517 A


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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 12, 1960 D. E. HOOKER ETAL 2,932,517


April 1960 D. E. HOOKER ET AL 2,932,517


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Sitts CHANGEABLE SCORE CONTROL AND DISPLAY MECHANISM Application December 31, 1954, Serial No. 478,992

7 Claims. (Cl. 273-119) The present disclosures relate to improvements in amusement apparatus providing a shiftable score display or annunciator panel, and shifting mechanism therefor, of general application but especially useful in conjunction with ball rolling games and the like.

One of the more detailed features of the disclosed invention is the provision of a changeable score panel, for instance, a so-called bingo card having one or more columns of numbers carried on a shiftable panel member capable of being moved back and forth to change the display of numbers thereon in relation to the remaining set of numbers found on such cards.

Another feature is the provision of a shifting mechanism for such a changeable display card and employing a rockable drive arm, a center-position spring means therefor, electromagnetic means for rocking the arm off center to positions on opposite sides of its center position, electromagnetic means for releasably latching the arm in either of the off-center positions, and certain supervisory switch means cooperable therewith for controlling various circuits employed in the actuation thereof and the appertaining game apparatus, together with a linkage for transmitting the movements of the rocking arm to one of the shiftable display panels.

Still further objects relate to a selective control circuit for shifting the number carriers and changing the connections of appertaining display lamps to certain ball switches; and to feature switch means controlled by the number of balls played for rendering the selective circuit operable; and to the provision of releasable latch means for the number carriers.

Additional aspects of novelty and utility relate to details of the construction and combination of parts hereinafter described in view of the annexed drawings, in

I which:

Fig. 1 is a front elevation of a shifting unit;

Fig. 1A is a fragmentary vertical elevation of a modified form of the device of Fig. 1;

Fig. 2 is a rear elevation of the shifting unit;

Fig. 3 is a side elevation of the shifting unit;

Fig. 4 is a perspective view of a shifting unit and a shiftable number or display panel actuated thereby;

Fig. 5 is a fragmentary front elevational view of a back mounting panel and a number display panel with one shiftable number carrier in normal operative position relative thereto;

Fig. 6 is a cross section through the structure of Fig. 5;

Fig. 7 is a schematic circuit diagram.

The shifting mechanism shown in Fig. 1 consists of a base plate 10 upon which is pivotally mounted at 11 a T-shaped shifting or rocker arm 12 having oppositely divergent lever arms 13 and 14 each yieldingly connected to a corresponding solenoid plunger 13A or 14A, respectively, by spring means 133 or 14B.

The rocker arm 12 has three positions: full left, full right, and center; and is shown in Fig. 1 in the full left position, which is determined by a stop lug 15 struck up from a plate member 17 attached to the base plate, and

rent shift toward the right.

Solenoid coils 13C and 14C respectively attract the lever-arm plungers 13A and 14A when appropriately energized.

The normal, centered position of the rocker arm 12 is midway between the two stops 15 and 16, the rocker arm being yieldingly urged into this centered position by action of a set of centering springs 19 and 20 coacting with a directional lever 21 behind the rocker arm and having a U-shaped offset 22 which extends around to the front face of the rocker arm and is co-axially mounted with the rocker arm on its main pivot 11, in such manner that the bight or attaching web 23 of the U-shaped offset is engaged by the upward rocker extension 12B therein when the rocker shifts clockwise, as in Fig. 1, thereby carrying the directional or spring lever 21 with it to turn also in a clockwise sense, thus tensioning the first spring 19, as in the full left shift shown in Fig. 1, but leaving the second spring 20 substantially relaxed in this action.

In the aforesaid clockwise shifted condition of the rocker lever shown in Fig. 1 with the centering spring 19 under tension, presumably as a result of energization of solenoid 13C, the rocker lever would at once return to center position upon de-energization of said solenoid; and to prevent this, a releasable latch means is provided in the form of an electromagnet 28 carried on an offset foot ledge 10A of the main base plate, and having an armature 29 normally elevated by its spring 24 to engage in a notch 26A or 26B on a latch plate 26 attached as at 27 to the rocker arm 12.

Thus, the rocker arm is automatically latched in either the left or right shift position by the engagement of latch armature 29 in one or the other of the notches 26A or 26B presented thereto by the corresponding angular displacement of the rocker and the latch plate 26.

When solenoid 14C is energized, the shift will be counterclockwise, and this will tension the second centering spring 20 for return of the rocker to centered position upon release of the latch means, as by energization of the latch coil 28 to withdraw the latching armature 29 from notch 263.

It will be observed in Fig. 1 that the upper ends of the two centering springs 19 and 20 are respectively attached to an offset flange 21A (Fig. 3 also) of the directional lever 21, whereas the lower ends of these two centering springs are respectively anchored as at 19A to the base plate and at 20A to the rocker arm. Thus, one of the springs 20 tends to pull the directional lever counterclockwise when the rocker lever turns counterclockwise, but in this direction of movement of the directional lever the latter is almost at once stopped by an offset stop lug 21B (Figs. 1 and 3) struck out from lever 21, and which bears down against the upper edge of the base plate 10 to prevent spring 20 from pulling the directional lever any substantial distance when the rocker shifts counterclockwise.

But when the rocker arm shifts clockwise, its upper extension 128 carries the directional lever with it and this tensions the first centering spring 19 because the latter is anchored at 19A on the base plate.

Supervisory switch means actuated by the rocker means includes a stack switch 30 (Fig. I) mounted at the top of the base plate and operable by the upper end of the rocker and more particularly the cammed and 123 thereof, which cams the switch contacts thereof open only when the rocker lever is in its centered position. 1

Another supervisory stack-type switch 34 is mounted at the lower part of the base plate for operation by the r 3 armature 29; the contacts of this switch being closed only when the armature is downwardly positioned in unlatching condition.

Carried on the rear side of the shifting unit (Fig. 2) isa commutating switch including an insulating plate 35 attached to the two'lever arms '13 and met the rocker "by long pins 36 extending through oversize slots 37 ina stationary insulating contact panel 39 attached as at 39A (Fig. 3, also) to the back of the base plate, said long pins 36 also continuing through other aligned slots 38 ('Fig. l) in said base plate for attachment to said lever arms 13 and 14.

Carried by the rocking contact plate 35 are a plurality of wiper fingers 40A 46E adapted to engage stationary contacts 41 variously in the three angular positions thereof which correspond to the threeoperating positions of the rocker leverlZ.

1 Connection is made with the several commutator switch wiper fingers WA 49E by means of flexible conductors (not seen) carried within a spring shield "43 and brought out (not seen) to terminal lugs 44 as re- 7 piece, solenoid plunger 25X moveableback and forth in the horizontally aligned bores of two-solenoid coils 13CX and MCX, there being a notch 25A' in the common plunger into which fits a coupling pin lfiX on the rocker The alternate energization of solenoids 13CX and 14CX will shift the common plunger back and forth and oscillate the rockerlZX between the centered, rightor left-shifted positions, required of the rocker shown in Fig. l; and in this and other respects the action of the centering springs 19X, 20X and the latch plate 26X in the modification of Fig. 1A is substantially the same as for the form of Fig. l. Referring to Fig. 4, the shiftable score display means consists of a simple stamping 48 having opposite parallel grooves in which an elongated number strip 50 is slidably"seated, said strip being preferably of light-Weight translucent plastic and having score numbers delineated thereon for rear illumination, as will appear.

A slide-actuating linkage comprising an ofiset lever 52 is connected as at 53 to the top of the display slide and as at 54 to the lower end 12A of the rockable shift lever '12,*the appertaining shift unit for which is mounted on a carrier plate 55 adapted to be secured to the back of a light board 56, such as shown fragmentally in Figs. 5 .and6.

For reasons which will appear in conjunction with the description of Fig. 5, three complete shifting units for "three nurnbcr display slides are mounted on each carrier plate, although for simplicity only one such unit, including the two solenoids 13C, NC, is shown on the carrier 'in'Fig. 4. Accordingly, each carrier plate in commercial embodiments of the device is provided with three elongated slots through each of which one of the rocking lever ends, such as 121%., can project for connection to the appertaining display slide 5t]; however, in Fig. 4 only two of these slots 55A, 55B are visible, and as stated, only one shifting unit and its display slide 50 are shown.

Referring now to Fig. 5, the complete assembly shown in'Fig. 4 is assumed to be mounted on the wood back .panel 56, and the slide channel is secured to the front face of this board as by screws 49, thereby disposing the slidable display member 50 between said back or light ,panel 56-and the front coverglass 57 in alignment with a vertical column of clear number openings 58 so that the numbers on the'slide 5i) can'be viewed therethrough.

Upon the glass panel 57 there is delineated (as by silk screen transfer) a score card 59, which in the present case is analogous to the card? used inplaying bingo, and which is characterized by having five horizontal and five vertical rowsof numbers, of which. the i'aforesaid column of openings 58, together with the numbers on the appertaining slide 50, constitute one of the vertical columns. 7

In practice, there will preferably be at least two more of the shiftable vertical number slides .and channels 48X-5GX; positioned as indicated in dotted lines; and while in some games all five vertical number columns are made shiftable, in the present embodiment only the first three columns are intended to be shiftable and the two remaining columns have permanently delineated numbers 6t) screened thereon.

All score or display numbers, whether on the slide 50 or of the permanent variety 6d, are illuminated from behind by lamps 61 (Fig. 6) seated in the back panel 56 and illuminated'in response to the players scoring progress in playing the game, as will further appear.

The circuit means of Fig. 7 depicts one controlembodimcnt of the changeable score display apparatusin a ball-rollinggame having a plurality of ball-operated score switches "70A, 78B, 70C 70G arranged in known manner on a ball-rolling board 71 and connected byconductors 72 toactuate score control means such as the corresponding relays 73A,"73B 736, etc., the relay contacts 74A, 74B 7 86 of which are eachrespectively connected by conductors'75 to correspondingcommutator switch contacts 41A, 41B 41G variously engaged, as heretofore described, by the wiper fingers 40A, 40B 46E, depending upon which positionthe rocker lever lloccupies.

Each of the wiper contacts is in turn respectively connected by conductors 76 to oneof the lamps 61A, 61B ME in the columnar set associated with the shiftable number panel 50.

In the illustrative embodiment of the gamein Fig. 7 the player is allotted, say, five balls, indicated at-79, which at the beginning of each round of play'willbe lined up in a serving trough for automatic delivery one at a time, in known manner, to shooting position before a ball plunger '77, by which they are launchedtonto the board 71 to actuate such of the ball score switches which will illuminate corresponding score lamps via conductors 75, commutator switch means 35, 40A 40E,

conduotors 76 to the appropriate score lamps 61A. 61E, depending on which ball switches are actuated and the position of the commutator switch means.

After the player has shot a certain number of balls,

say three, a ball'trough switch 78 will be closed because of the absence of a ball at third position, thereby connecting power 80 via conductor 81 to selector switch contact 82, which the player may now turn to anyone of the three selecting positions to engage one of the contacts 83, 84, connecting to the control coils of the shifting unit. In the normal or central position of the selector switch contact 82 on contact 84 the aforesaid connection from power source 80 is extended via conductor 84A, through the (now-open) supervisory switch 30 and the conductor 30A to the latch coil 23. The supervisory switch 30 is held open by lever 12 when the rocker arm 12 is centered, and consequently the latch coil need notbe wastefully energized all the while the selector switch stands in normal or centered position.

Should the player turn the selector switch contact '82 to contact 83 the aforesaid extension of power from source 80 would be connected via conductor'83Ato the common return or ,ground, as at '34B,,wherebyrto ;en-

ergize the shift solenoid coil 13C, which will cause the shiftable number display member 50 to move to one of its ofi-center or elf-normal positions and change the score indicia or numbers aligned before the vertically linear set of five lamps 61A 61E, thus changing the numbers displayed in that particular column.

Should the player turn the selector switch contact 82 into engagement with the contact 85, the previously described power connection from source 80 through the ball-trough supervisory switch means 78 would be extended via conductor 85A to energize shift solenoid 14C, it being again assumed that beforehand the rocker arm 12 was still in central position to cause closure of the latch supervisory switch 34, as above described, to complete the energizing circuit for said solenoid to common return connection or ground 34B.

It is thus important to observe that when the rocker lever 12 is centered the latch plate 26, by reason of its arcuately-extended edge 26A (Fig. 1), will depress the latch armature 23 sufiiciently to cause closure of the supervisory latch switch 34, which, as stated above, is in the common ground or return circuit to 34B of both shift solenoids 13C, 14C, and must therefore be closed before either of said coils can be energized in any event; in other words, said solenoids cannot be actuated unless the rocker arm 12 is in central position to close supervisory switch 34, as aforesaid.

Energization of either shift solenoid 13C or 14C by operation of the player-actuated selector switch means, as aforesaid, will cause an up or down shift of the display panel 50 and change the numbers available or displayed in the appertaining column.

Each indicia number on the score panel has a corresponding ball switch 79A 706, and therefore, whenever the displayed number changes the ball switches must also be changed and correlated to the new numbers, and this is the function of the commutator switch means 35, 40A 40B, and contacts 41A 41G, which (as shown in Fig. 7) connect via conductors 75 to corresponding score relay switches and hence via conductors 72 to appertaining ball switches.

When the game of bingo is intended, the scoring object is to light up any five numbers in a straight line-either vertical, horizontal, or diagonal-in the columnar array shown on the score panel 57.

Accordingly, a player, after shooting the initial three balls (or Whatever other number may be permitted depending upon the placement of the Feature trough switch 78) may decide that his chances of completing certain linear number sets would be improved if he could change the ball switches (and hence the corresponding score numbers) available for further scoring with the remaining two balls.

The game feature (controlled by switch 78) is the opportunity to improve or at least modify the existing scoring possibilities after shooting a predetermined number of the allotted balls and is effected in the manner and by the selectively shiftable number-display and commutating switch means above described.

We claim:

'1. In a ball-rolling game, in combination, ball-operated score switches; a score display panel having columnar score numbers arranged thereon to be illuminated by lamps; a set of lamps arranged linearly in a column and connected for illumination under control of certain corresponding ones of said score switches; said lamps being predetermined in number, and said score numbers being carried in a linear columnar sequence on a member shiftable before said lamps in parallelism with the linear columnar axis thereof, and said numbers being different and in excess count to the number of lamps in said column such that shifting of said shiftable member into any of several predetermined display positions will align a ditferent set of display numbers with said set of lamps; and electromagnetic shifting mechanism connected with said shiftable member and selectively operable to mate the same into any of said display positions.

2. In a ball game having ball-operated score switches, changeable score display and control means comprising: a score display panel having score indicia arranged in a sequence in columns thereon and lamps for illumination of each indicium; at least one of said columns having a predetermined number of sequential indicia; circuit means controlled by said score switches and connected to illuminate said lamps in a predetermined scoring pattern responsive to ball-operation of certain of said switches; the display indicia for said one column being carried on a linearly shiftable member mounted to move back and forth in opposite directions from a centered display position to at least two opposite off-center display positions, said shiftable member having diiferent indicia in excess of said predetermined number to present a different set of columnar indicia in each of the three shifted display positions thereof; selectively-operable electromagnetic drive means linked with said shiftable member and operable to shift the latter to any of said three display positions; and selector-switch means connecting with said electromagnetic means and operable to shift the shiftable member to a selected one of said display positions.

3. In a ball-rolling game, score switch means actuated by rolled balls; numbered score lamps and. circuit means connecting each of the same for actuation by predetermined ones of said score switch means, the numbering for certain ones of said lamps being carried on a shiftable member mounted to move relative to said certain lamps; and electromagnetic shifting mechanism operatively associated with said shiftable member and including selec*' tively energizable means for moving said shiftable member into any of a plurality of display positions, the aforesaid numbering oarried thereby for the appertaining lamps being different in each of said positions; means for selectively actuating said shifting mechanism; circuitchanging means connected for operation to change operating connections between said certain lamps and certain of said score switch means; and means operating concomitantly with each shifting operation of the shiftable member for actuating said circuit-changing means.

4. In a ball-rolling game, score switches actuated by rolled balls; numbered score lamps and circuit means connecting each of the same for actuation by predetermined ones of said score switches, the numbering for certain ones of said lamps being carried on a shiftable member mounted to move relative to said certain lamps; and electromagnetic shifting mechanism operatively associated with said shiftable member and including selectively energizable means for moving said shiftable member into any of a plurality of display positions, the aforesaid numbering carried thereby for the appertaining lamps being different in each of said positions; together with commutator switch means, drivingly interconnected for coaction with said shift-ing mechanism, and circuits controlled thereby for each of said certain lamps whereby the latter are connected to certain corresponding score switches in each of the several shifted positions of the shiftable member; and player-controlled selector switch means connecting with said electromagnetic shifting mechanism and operable to actuate the latter to move the shiftable member into any of its shifted positions.

5. In a ball-rolling game, score switches actuated by rolled balls; a supply of balls, predetermined in number, to be rolled and means for aligning said number of balls in position for successive rolling; a feature switch positioned relative to said aligning means for feature operation under control of the balls therein responsive to withdrawal of at least a certain number of balls from said number; a selector switch connected for effective operation by said feature operation of said feature switch; an array of score numbers and lamps for separately illuminating the same, certain of said numbers being fixed in the array and certain changeable numbers being carried on a shiftable number carrier moveable into a plurality of shifted positions to change the numbers illuminated by the appertaining lamps; score-circuit means normally interconnecting certain lamps with certain score switches; shifting mechanism drivingly connected with said number carrier and operable to move the same into any of a plurality of shifted positions; selectively operable electromagnetic actuating means for said shifting mechanism and connected with said selector switch means for selective operation by the latter to move the number carrier to, any of said shifted positions when the selector switch means is operated under the condition where it has been rendered effective as aforesaid by said feature switch; and commutator switch means actuated by said shifting mechanism in step with movements thereby of the shiftable number carrier for changing the connection of the lamps appertaining to said carrier numbers to different corresponding score switches in each of the several shifted-positions of the carrier. 7

6. In a ball-rolling game having ball-operated switches and circuit means controlled thereby for illuminating score'lamps, a score card analogous to a bingo card and comprising numbers positioned in a square array along rectangular coordinate lines on a panel, and individual score lamps for illuminating each number position, the numbers in certain lines being fixed, and certain other lines having a shift able number carrier aligned therewith with numbers therein in excess of the number of positions for the appertaining line, said carriers, each being shiftable to a plurality of positions equal to said excess number plus one to change the display of numbers in the appertaining l-ine; mechanism operable to shift each said carrier to any of its shifted positions; circuit connections from certain ball-operated switches to certain individual score lamps, together with commutator switch means operatively associated with each said carrier and operative in each shifted position thereof to change the connection of the appertaining score lamps for operation by predetermined ones of said ball-operated switches differing in identity from the ball-operated switches connected by the other shifted positions of said carrier.

7. Game apparatus comprising: score switches actuated by playing pieces; numbered score lamps arranged in a predetermined pattern and circuit means connecting said lamps for actuation by predetermined ones of said score switches, the numbering for certain of said lamps being displayed in respectively fixed positions, and the numbering for certain others of said lamps being carried and dis played in a certain arrangement on a member which is movable relative to the fixed numbers in said pattern such that movement of the movable member into any of several selectable positions will change some of the numbers contained at certain positions in said pattern without altering said predetermined pattern; electrically driven means having driving connection with said movable member for moving the latter into any of said selectable posi tions; an actuating circuit for energizing and deenergizing said electrically driven means to effect movement of the movable member to any of said selectable positions; together with commutator switch means drivingly interconnected to move in coaction with said movable member and connected to control circuits for the said certain other lamps whereby the latter are automatically connected with particular corresponding score switches differing at least in part in each of the selectable positions of the movable member.

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American Nat Bank And Trust Co

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US3183003 *

Sep 12, 1961

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U.S. Classification

273/119.00A, 273/123.00A

International Classification

A63F7/00, A63F7/32, A63B71/06

Cooperative Classification


European Classification