Friday, March 13, 2009

Pool cue with light conducting core

United States Patent
WWW.USPTO.GOV
7,335,111
Deakes
February 26, 2008

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Pool cue with light conducting core


Abstract
A pool cue that includes a first hollow rod with a light source
connected to a second hollow rod via a light conducting coupler is
disclosed herein. Thus, the light source can project light the length
of the cue. The coupler can be hollow or a made from a translucent
material. The light source can be a light emitting diode (LED) powered
by disk shaped watch batteries. Different inserts can be placed in the
hollow rods to change the color and the illumination pattern of the
cue. Inserts can also be added to change the weight of the pool cue.
The pool cue can also have a tubular mirror insertable into the first
hollow rod where the grip is to minimize the absorption of light in
these areas.


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Inventors: Deakes; Brandon Forrest (Kinsale, VA)
Appl. No.: 11/375,389
Filed: March 14, 2006

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Current U.S. Class: 473/44
Current International Class: A63D 15/08 (20060101)
Field of Search: 473/44-49



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References Cited [Referenced By]

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U.S. Patent Documents

835489 November 1906 Adorjan
3804411 April 1974 Hendry
4688796 August 1987 Wright
5181718 January 1993 Valentine
5653640 August 1997 Shirley, Jr.
6017277 January 2000 Chuang
6117019 September 2000 Taylor
6155929 December 2000 Chipman
6165078 December 2000 Holt
6746336 June 2004 Brant et al.
6827652 December 2004 Castro, Jr.
2006/0247068 November 2006 Lagaipa

Primary Examiner: Graham; Mark S
Attorney, Agent or Firm: Galasso; Raymond M. Galasso & Associates, LP
WWW.GAPATENTS.COM
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Claims

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What is claimed is:

1. A pool cue comprising: a first rod having a first end and a second
end; a light source coupled to the first end of the first rod; a light
conducting coupler threadable with the first rod; a second rod
threadable with the light conducting coupler such that light from the
light source at the first end of the first rod traverses the light
conducting coupler and emits light from at least a portion of the
second rod; and a tubular mirror insertable into the first rod.

2. The pool cue of claim 1 wherein the light source comprises a light
emitting diode.

3. The pool cue of claim 1 further comprising a threaded cap adapted
to secure the light source, at least one battery, and a switch to the
first end of the first rod.

4. The pool cue of claim 3 wherein the threaded cap further comprises
a conductive spring adapted to make contact with the at least one
battery.

5. The pool cue of claim 3 wherein the at least one battery comprise a
disk shaped battery.

6. The pool cue of claim 1 wherein the first rod and the second rod
are hollow.

7. The pool cue of claim 6 further comprising a translucent member
insertable into the first rod.

8. The pool cue of claim 7 wherein the translucent member has a shape
of on of a triangle, a hexagon, a square, and a polygon.

9. The pool cue of claim 1 further comprising a tubular piece of metal
insertable into the first rod to change a weight distribution of the
pool cue.

10. A pool cue comprising: a first rod having a light conducting core
and an insertable member that alters the properties of the light, the
first rod having a first end and a second end; a light source
coupleable to the first end of the first rod, substantially concentric
with the light conducting core; a light conducting coupler threadably
coupleable with the second end of the first rod; a tapered rod having
a light conducting core, the tapered rod threadably coupleable with
the light conducting coupler such that light originating from the
light source traverses the hollow coupler and illuminates the tapered
rod; and a tubular mirror positionable under a grip in the first rod.

11. The pool cue of claim 10 wherein the light conducting coupler is
translucent.

12. The pool cue of claim 10 wherein the light conducting coupler is hollow.

13. The pool cue of claim 10 wherein the coupler comprises one of an
acrylic or a polycarbonate material.

14. The pool cue of claim 10 wherein the light source further
comprises a light emitting diode.

15. The pool cue of claim 10 further comprising a threaded cap adapted
to secure the light source to the first rod.

16. The pool cue of claim 15 further comprising a switch coupled to
the threaded cap.

17. The pool cue of claim 10 further comprising inserts insertable
into the first rod.
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Description

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FIELD OF THE DISCLOSURE

The present disclosure is generally related to a pool cue and more
particularly to a pool cue that has a light conducting core.

BACKGROUND

Pool cues come in many shapes and sizes. Some pool cues are decorated
with ivory or gold inlays, while others are made from exotic types of
wood. Serious pool players often bring a custom pool cue to a pool
match, sometimes in an effort to gain a psychological advantage over
other players. One such custom pool cue includes an illuminated pool
cue such as the one described in U.S. Pat. No. 6,165,078. This patent
discloses a dual bulb system, having a light bulb in the but end of
the cue and a bulb in the tip end of the cue, wherein this two bulb
system is required for lighting both sections of the two piece pool
cue. Since during use, a pool cue must be gripped at one end and slide
across the user's skin at another end, placement of the switches for
such a dual bulb system is awkward and difficult. This dual bulb
arrangement also causes many other difficulties such as proper weight
distribution within the pool cue because batteries and a light fixture
are required at each end of the cue. Additionally, the incandescent
light bulbs disclosed in this patent are subject to burning out as a
result of the impact required to hit pool balls. Another shortcoming
is that the two piece pool cue does not uniformly spread light
throughout the pool cue.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a side view of a pool cue with a lighted core; and

FIG. 2 is a cross sectional view of the pool cue.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The following is a detailed description of novel embodiments depicted
in the accompanying drawings. The embodiments are in such detail as to
clearly communicate the subject matter. However, the amount of detail
offered is not intended to limit anticipated variations of the
described embodiments, but on the contrary, the claims and detailed
description are to cover all modifications, equivalents, and
alternatives falling within the spirit and scope of the present
teachings as defined by the appended claims. The detailed descriptions
below are designed to make such embodiments understandable to a person
having ordinary skill in the art.

Generally, methods and arrangements for a lighted pool cue are
provided herein. While specific embodiments will be described below
with reference to particular configurations, those of skill in the art
will realize that embodiments may advantageously be implemented with
other configurations.

A pool cue comprising a first translucent rod connected to a second
translucent rod with a light conducting coupler is disclosed. The
first rod can have a light source that projects light the length of
the cue. The first and second translucent rods can have a hollow core
and can be joined by a hollow coupler such that a light beam from the
light source can travel along the core and illuminate the first rod
and the second rod. The hollow coupler can have threads that engage
the first and second rods.

The light source, batteries and a switch can be assembled into a cap
that can be attached to the first end of the first rod. Different
light conducting inserts can be placed in the hollow core of the rods
to change the color and pattern of the light emitted from the cue.
Further, metallic inserts can be inserted into the hollow rod to
change the weight and balance of the pool cue. The pool cue can also
have a tubular mirror insertable into the first hollow rod to mask the
light output in specific sections of the pool cue and to minimize the
absorption of light in these sections.

Referring to FIG. 1, a pool cue 2 with a hollow core that allows for
light from a single light source to travel along at least the majority
of the pool cue 2 is provided. The pool cue 2 can be comprised of a
first translucent rod 22 and a second translucent rod 24. The first
rod 22 and the second rod 24 can have a hollow core 4 and 5
respectively (i.e. have an internal air space concentric with the
rod). In one embodiment, the rods 22 and 24 can be made from a
transparent or translucent plastic or glass material such as a
polycarbonate or an acrylic. In one embodiment, the coupler between
the first and second rods can be made from a transparent or
translucent material such that light from a light source 6 at the
first end 25 of the first rod 22 can travel through the coupler 20 to
the far end of the second rod 24. Additionally, a translucent material
of various shapes can also be placed in the hollow cores 4 and 5.

The first rod 22 can be coupled to the second rod 24 with a coupler 20
that provides a conduit for the light or for the conduction of light.
Hence, the coupler 20 may provide only a small obstruction to the
light beam and can assist in conducting the light throughout the cue
2. In one embodiment the coupler 20 has a hollow center or a
translucent center such that at least a portion of a light beam
generated in the first end 25 of the first rod 22 passes through the
coupler 20 to illuminate substantially the entire second rod 24. Thus,
the light from the light source 6 can traverse the first rod 22, the
coupler 20 and nearly the entire second rod 24.

The first rod 22 can have threads at its first end 25 to engage
threaded cap 28. The threaded cap 28 can secure a bumper 14, batteries
8 and 10, a switch 12 and a light source 6 such as a light emitting
diode (LED). The user of the pool cue 2 can depress switch 12, to
engage contacts within the switch 12 between the batteries 8 and 10
and the light source 6. Batteries 8 and 10 could be disc shaped
batteries such as those utilized in watches and in hand held
calculators that are less one half of an inch in diameter, less than
one eight inch thick and weigh only a few ounces.

A spring loaded contact on cap 28 could be utilized to secure the
switch 12 to the batteries 8 and 10. The spring in the cap 28 can also
facilitate electrical contact between the switch 12, the batteries 8
and 10, and the LED 6. The LED 6 can be easily interchanged with LED's
of different colors such that different colors can be emitted from the
pool cue 2. The first rod 22 can also include a grip 18. Under the
grip 18 can be a tubular mirrored surface 16 facing the center of the
first rod 22 such that there is minimal absorption of light in the
area where the mirrored surface 16 is placed.

In one embodiment the rods 22 and 24 can be made, at least partially
from a translucent material such as a polycarbonate or acrylic
including Lexan.RTM. or Plexiglas.RTM.. Additionally, interchangeable
insert can be made in different shapes, with different patterns and
from different materials such that the properties of the light that is
emitted from the pool cue 2 can be selectable.

Thus, the insert can fit into the hollow cores 4 and 5 to modify the
properties of the light emitted. The insert can also act as a light
pipe to evenly distribute the light along the cue 4 and the inserts
can be configured such that they control the spectrum, refraction and
reflection of the light beam. Further, the insert can be manufactured
in different colors with different patterns and optical properties
such that the pool cue 2 can emit different colors of light and can
emit different patterns of light. Metallic flakes and patterns could
also be cast or impregnated into the translucent material.

A leather tip 42 can be glued on to one end of the second rod 22. The
hollow portion 5 of the second rod 24 can taper towards the tip 42
with a taper that is similar to, or parallel with, the external taper
of the second rod 24. The hollow portion of the taper could end short
of the tip 42 such as not to compromise the strength of the pool cue 2
near the tip 42.

The core 4 of the first rod 22 can take many shapes and such shapes
can dictate the pattern of the light that is emitted from pool cue 2.
For example, a cross section of the core 4 could be a circle, a
square, a triangle, an oval, an ellipse or a polygon such as a
hexagon. As stated above, the cores 4 and 5 could be hollow (i.e.
provide an air space) or the cores could be made from, or filled with,
an interchangeable translucent material. Likewise, core 5 and the
coupler 20 could be hollow or made with a non-removable translucent
material such that light can be conducted the entire length of the
pool cue 2.

Referring to FIG. 2 a cut away section of the pool cue 2 near the
first end 25 of the first rod 22 of FIG. 1 is illustrated. The cross
section of the core 33 of the pool cue 2 can have be manufactured in
many different shapes, however a hexagonal cross sectional shape 38 is
illustrated. As stated above, a mirror structure 36 can be placed into
the first rod in the area defined by the grip 18 such that the light
energy has minimal absorption in the segment of the first rod where
the grip 18 is located. In addition a metal sleeve 34 may be inserted
into the area covered by the grip 18 such that the weight and balance
of the pool cue 2 can be adjusted or changed. A translucent member 30
can define the area between the core 33 and the external surface 32 of
the pool cue 2.

The above disclosed subject matter is to be considered illustrative,
and not restrictive, and the appended claims are intended to cover all
such modifications, enhancements, and other embodiments which fall
within the true spirit and scope of the present invention. Thus, to
the maximum extent allowed by law, the scope of the present invention
is to be determined by the broadest permissible interpretation of the
following claims and their equivalents, and shall not be restricted or
limited by the foregoing detailed description.
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