US 3090151 A
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2 Sheets-Sheet 1 T. STEWART ETAL UNDERWATER SPEAR GUN May 2l, 1963 Filed Feb. 14, 195e ATTORNEYS INVENTORS Scw arf 411// /fm'n r n Il. III IIIIIIIIHIIIIII """"""x """""""""""k May 21, 1963 T. STEWART ETAL 3,090,151
UNDERWATER sPEAR GUN INVENTORS 7/0'77 ewdr 411/ ATTORNE YS United States Patent O m 3,090,151 UNDERWATER SPEAR GUN Trigg Stewart, Rte. 1, Box 40A, Lakeside, Calif., and
Jerry L. Helminen, deceased, late of Lakeside, Calif., by
Vaima Irene Helminen, executrix, Rte. 2, BOX 409C,
Filed Feb. 14, 1958, Ser. No. 715,375 4 Claims. (Cl. 43-6) The present invention relates to .a projectile projector for a gun, yand more particularly to a projectile projector which is adapted to expel the projectile at high velocity from the gun.
.A speciic example of one u-se for such la projector is in connection with spear guns, which are very popular with fishing enthusiasts who enjoy catching their sh underwater by spear rather than by the more conventional rod `and reel. The successful practice of this underwater sport is dependent to a great extent upon the use of suitable equipment. Large, bulky and unwieldly spear guns will, of course, spoil a `great deal of the enjoyment and success of such fishing, and the dangerous natu-re of usual :spear yguns is also a problem. Obviously it is highly essential to successful spear fishing to have an accurate, compact, and lightweight projectile projector and spear gun apparatus which is relatively uncomplicated, inexpensive, safe, and reliable in operation.
Accordingly, the present invention comprises la cylinder which carries a piston whose rapid movement is adapted to force iiuid at high velocity out of the cylinder .and through a barrel. The barrel normally houses a projectile which is driven out of the barrel along with the fluid.
The cooking and biasing mechanisms of the present projector which serve to drive the piston are light in weight, compact, and Irelatively uncomplicated to operate yand maintain, and the means for triggering the tiring movement of the piston are also simple in operation. In addition, the projector apparatus includes a projectile which preferably has tin means for guiding the ight of the projectile. These tin means are positioned .at the forward end of the projectile prior to tiring, and, upon firing, slide to the rear end of the projectile and are then carried with the projectile to guide it. A desirable gun accuracy is thus provided without having to resort to the less desirable expedient of having to house the iin means within the barrel. Further, the projector of this invention is economical to manufacture and generally superior for a variety of applications.
In addition to the above, various other objects and features of the present invention will be readily apparent to one skilled in the art from the following speciiication and appended drawings wherein is illustrated a preferred form of the invention.
In the drawings:
FlG. l -is an elevational sectional view of the projector apparatus of the present invention illustrated in connection with a spear gun;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged partial plan View in section of the right end of the present projector apparatus;
FIG. 3 is a view taken along `line 3 3 of FIG. 2; and
FIGS. 4 through 6 are schematic elevational views of the present projector apparatus, illustrating the various stages of operation thereof.
Referring to the drawings and more particularly to FIGS. l through 3, there is illustrated an embodiment of the projector `apparatus of the present invention which is generally designated 2i, and which is illustrated as forming a part of a spear gun. It is to be understood, of course, that the illustration, and subsequent description herein, of the apparatus 21 in connection with a spear 3,0%,l5l Patented May 2l, 1963 `gun is not by way of limitation, but merely by way of example.
The present projector apparatus 21 is particularly adapted for use in underwater spear fishing and is .adapted for operation upon a spear 22 which is carried by a gun 23. Apparatus 21 includes a cylinder 24, trigger means 26 for engaging and disengaging piston means 25, a bias means or compression spring 27 positioned to exert -its bias against piston means 25, cocking means 28` for cockin-g apparatus 21, and barrel means 29 in fluid communi-cation with cylinder 24.
Cylinder 24 of gun 23 serves as the iiuid or water chamber from which iiuid is expelled under the action of piston means 25. The -inner diameter of cylinder 24 is large compared to the inner diameter of the uid passage of barrel means 29, and it will accordingly be evident that a comparatively short travel or stroke of piston means 25 will effect a uid displacement productive of high fluid velocities through barrel means 29.
Cylinder 24 is formed of .a ycylindrical sleeve 31 which carries at its left end a centrally bored fitting 32, and at its right end a centrally bored fitting 33. Fittings 32 and 33 are secured at the ends of sleeve 31 in any suitable manner, as by a plurality of fasteners or screws 34. Further, itting 33 rigidly carries a sleeve 35 of bearing lCe .materiaL such las Micarta or the like, for a purpose to be described. Fitting 32 is tapered .at its inner face to carry the flared inner end of an inner barrel 36 of barrel means 29, thereby affording a connection for the barrel 36 and .also providing a substantially streamlined entnance for the flow of fluid from cylinder 24 to barrel 36, as will be seen.
vintegral With piston 37 if desired, but for lease of yassembly is preferably removably secured thereto, as by threaded connection for example.
Piston 37 is bored out at its rod end to form a skirt portion within which is press iitted a skirt extension or spring retainer 41 for bias means or spring 27. Retainer 41 is provided with `an annular band 42 made of a suita-ble bearing material to facilitate and guide sliding movement of piston 37 within cylinder 24. In addition, band 42 serves, with the end of the skirt portion of piston 37, to form a detent portion 43 for engagement with trigger means 26, as will be more particularly described hereinafter.
Fluid tight relationship between piston 37 and cylinder 24 is maintained Iby provision of a seal member 44 which may conveniently take the form of an O-ring mounted in a peripheral groove of piston 37. In addition, a bumper element 45 is mounted in a suitable groove cut in the face of piston 37 to thereby resiliently limit the leftmost travel or stroke of piston 37. This lessens shock and reduces the possibility of damage from forcible contact between piston 37 and fitting 32 of cylinder 24 upon tiring of apparatus 21.
The end of piston rod 38, including the enlarged end 39 thereof, is slidably carried within the interior of a cylinder, barrel, cooking element, or tubular member 46 of cooking means 28. The right end of member 46 is open, but the left end thereof is closed by an end iitting or spring retainer 47, which is positioned to abut against the right end `of spring 27. This retainer 47 is provided with a central bore large enough to slidably accommodate rod 38, but -too small to permit the enlarged end 39 of rod 3S to pass therethrough. Therefore, since retainer 47 is rigidly secured at the end -of member 46, it will be apparent that contact or engagement between end 39 and retainer 47 will be effective to move piston 37 outwardly or vto the right upon movement to the o right of member 46. Conversely, because of the slidable relation between rod 38 and retainer 47, it will also be apparent that if piston 37 is releasably Kfixed in the cocked position illustrated in HG. l, member `46 may be moved to the left without moving piston 37. Such leftward or inward movement will compress spring 27 between piston 37 and member 46, readying piston 37 for rapid movement to the left, as will be seen.
inward and outward movement of cooking element 46 is effected by other portions of cooking means 28, including a lever arm 48 which is pivotally mounted to fitting 33 of cylinder 24, as best illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3. Arm 48 extends from fitting 33` almost to the left end of gun 23, and is generally semicirc'nlar in cross section so as to conform closely to the cylindrical shape of lthe outside of barrel means 29 and cylinder 24. The great leverage which is obtainable with the length of arm 48 will be apparent.
Arm 48 is pivotally mounted at its right end to itting 33 by a pair of pins 49 which project through the walls of fitting 33 and into sleeve 3S, pins 49 serving also to maintain sleeve 35 in position within fitting 33 during the sliding movement of member 46 through sleeve 35. Arm 48 in turn is pivotrally connected to the end of member 46 by a pair of link arms 5l carried at either side of fitting 33 and outwardly of pins 49.
Link -arms 51 are pivotally mounted at their right ends to a transverse shaft 52 by a pair ofpins 53. Shaft S2, in turn, is disposed through the right end of member 46. The left ends of link arms 51 are pivotally connected to .the opposed sides of arm 48 by a pair of pins S4, the point of connection being -to the left of pins 49 whereby clockwise or latching movement of arm 48 moves member 46 outwardly orto the right, and counterclockwise or cocking movement of arm 48 moves member 46 inwardly or to the left.
Pins 454 project through the walls of cylinder 24 through suitable openings 55 cut ltherethrough for them. Openings 55 permit a more ilush arrangement of cocking means 28 against gun 23 and also provide an entrance port and an exit port for fluid taken in or driven out, respectively, of cylinder 24 by reason of movement of piston 37.
Assuming cocking means 28 has been operated to move arm 48 in a clockwise direction, piston 37 will be moved in a first direction, that is to the right, a predetermined distance, dependent upon the effective lengths of the arm linkages of means 28. A-t this position, sometimes referred to herein as the latched or cocked position, trigger means 26 is effective to engage detent portion 43 and maintain such position until tiring of gun 23 occurs.
Trigger means 26 includes a support structure or handle portion 56 which is secured to cylinder 24 in any suitable manner, as by a plurality of screws 57 or the like, one yof which is shown in FIG. l. Portion 56 serves to mount a pivotable element 58, a pivotable trigger 59, and ra resilient stop element 61. As illustrated, element 58 is pivoted to handle portion S6 at 62, and is provided with a latch or projecting portion 63 adapted to fit within detent portion 43, a position into which portion 63 is biased by a bias means or compression spring 64.
Spring 64 is mounted between element 58 and trigger 59, in suitable bores provided in each, and accordingly, spring 64 provides a bias not only for element 58 but also for trigger S9. The bias against trigger 59 acts to pivot it about a pin 65 and under the left end of element 58 to therebyvlock element 58 inits position of engagement with detent portion 43l of piston 37. This locked or latched position is releasable only by pulling or actuating trigger 59 in a counterclockwise direction. This will move trigger 59 out of interfering relation with elementSS, and piston 37 will thereupon be free to move. Stop element 61is resilient and yields to permit such movement of trigger 59.
'Barrel means 29, which includes inner barrel 36 for housing `the projectile or spem 22, also includes a left end fitting 66 which is secured to the outer end of barrel 36 land is lianged at 67 and 68 so as -to accommodate turns of fishing line 69 therebetween. As will be apparent, fitting 66 thus serves as a convenient storage reel for line 69, and also serves to permit such line to be quickly paid out upon firing of gun 23. The end of line 69 is normally secu-red to a iin means or fins 71 of spear 22, as illustrated. `Clther features of fitting 66 will be described in connection with spear 22. If desired, a sleeve 7i) may be disposed about barrel 36 and in abutment at its ends with fittings 66 and 32, to thereby form a closed annular space or chamber 72 to provide buoyancy for projector or spear gun apparatus 21.
Projectile 22 includes a shaft 73, and a bored spear head or barb 74 detachably mounted to the left or outer end of shaft 73 by a resilient retainer such as an O-ring 75 carried within a peripheral groove of shaft 73 and frictionally engaged with the inner walls of the bore of spear head 74. Safety wire 76 connects head 74'to shaft 73, as illustrated, to prevent inadvertent or accidental loss of head 74.
Spear 22 also includes an end means or collar 77 which is carried within a suitable peripheral groove in the right end of shaft 73 and which serves to guide shaft 73 and maintain fluid tight relationship with the inner walls of barrel 36. It is noted that by reason of this relationship a certain amount of fluid will be carried within the annular space between shaft 73 and barrel 36 upon the outward movement of spear 22. Because the effect of this uid is to slow down the outward movement of spear 22 by reason of the comparatively small exit area at the end of tting 66, a plurality of large openings 78 are provided in fitting 66 to rapidly bleed oit such fluid.
Fins 7l are secured to a sleeve 79 which is slidable over shaft 73, and this sleeve 79 is adapted to be releasably maintained upon shaft 79, in the position shown in FIG. l, by provision of a restraining member 8l which may take the form of an O-ring `or the like mounted to one or the other of sleeve 79 and shaft 73 and in frictional engagement with the other thereof. This arrangement serves to x the proper position for insertion of shaft '73 within barrel 36. Similarly, sleeve 79 is releasably maintained in fixed relationship with respect to fitting 66 by the provision of a restraining element 82 mounted to one and in frictional engagement with the other. However, it is noted that the frictional or restraining force between sleeve 79 and fitting 66 is greater than that between sleeve 79 and shaft 73, as by making element 82 larger than member 81. With this arrangement, as spear 22 is fired from barrel 36, sleeve 79 will become disengaged from shaft 73, and shaft 73 will slide therethrough. Next, collar 77 will strike the end of sleeve 79, break the engagement afforded by element 82, and fins 71 will thus be placed at the rear end of spear 22 for proper guidance thereof in its path.
The operation of apparatus 11 may be briefly summarized as follows: Cooking means 28 is operated to move arm 48 clockwise, thus drawing tubular member 46 outwardly and effecting movement of piston 37 to the right. This allows element 58 to latch with detent portion 43, and trigger spring 64 next biases trigger 59 in interfering relation with element 58, thereby locking element 58 in latched position.
Cooking means 28 is next operated to move arm 48 counterclockwise, thus driving member 46 inwardly and compressing spring 27. Spear 22 may be inserted within barrel means 29, and trigger 59 pulled or actuated.
Element 58 will be forced downwardly by the action of piston 37 moving to the left under the bias of spring 2.7. This displaces iiuid through barrel 36 and drives spear 22 from barrel 36 at comparatively high velocity.
While the form of embodiment herein shown and described constitutes a preferred form, it is to be understood that other forms may he adopted falling within the scope 'of the claims that follow.
1. An underwater spear gun comprising a cylinder, a piston movable within said cylinder, trigger means to effect engagement with said piston after a predetermined travel thereof in a first direction and actuable to release said engagement, bias means operable to bias said piston toward a second direction, cooking means for operating said bias means after said predetermined travel, barrel means in fluid communication with said cylinder and adapted to house a spear, said bias means when operated being operative upon actuation of said trigger means to move said piston in said second direction to force iiuid from said cylinder and through said barrel means Whereby any spear which may be housed within said barrel means is driven outwardly, and a sleeve disposed about said barrel means and closed at each end to form a hermetically sealed annular space to provide buoyancy for said underwater spear gun, said cooking means comprising a cooking element and a lost motion connection between said cooking element and said piston, said cooking element being relatively movable with respect to said piston in the direction of movement of said piston and said bias means acting between said cooking ele-ment and said piston.
2. An underwater spear gun comprising a cylinder, a piston movable Within said cylinder, said piston having a piston rod with an enlarged end, cooking means including a tubular cooking element movable through an end of said cylinder and adapted to accommodate slidably said piston rod, said piston rod being retained therein by engagement of its enlarged end with the inner end of said cooking element, said cocking means being aotuable to move said cooking element to engage said enlarged end of said piston rod and move said piston in a rst direction to a cocked position, trigger means adapted to eiiect locking engagement with said piston in said cocked position to releasably maintain said piston in said cocked position, bias means interposed between said piston and said cooking element, said cooking means further being actuable to move said cooking element in a second direction opposite to said iirst direction to thereby compress said bias means, and barrel means in fluid communication with said cylinder and adapted to house a spear whereby upon actuation of said trigger means to release said piston in said cocked position said piston will be moved to force tluid through said barrel means and expel said spear.
3. An underwater spear gun comprising a cylinder; a piston movable Within said cylinder and provided with a detent portion; trigger means mounted on said cylinder, said trigger means including a support structure, an element pivotally mounted on said support structure and engageable in said detent portion, a trigger pivotally mounted on said support structure, and a spring mounted between said element and said trigger to bias said element into engagement with said detent portion after a predetermined travel of said piston has occurred in a iirst direction, said spring also serving to fbias said trigger into a position releasably maintaining said element in engagement with said detent portion; bias means operable to bias said piston toward a second direction; cooking means for operating said bias means after said predetermined travel; said cooking means including a cooking element adapted to be moved linearly in the direction of movement of `said piston, a lost motion connection between said piston and said element, said bias means being disposed between said element and said piston; and `barrel means in iuid communication with said cylinder and adapted to house a spear, said bias means when operated being operative, upon actuation of said trigger to release said element, to move said piston in said second direction to force uid from said cylinder and lforce said spear from said barrel means.
4. An underwater spear gun comprising an outer cylinder, an inner tube slidably disposed through one end of said outer cylinder, a piston slidably carried Within said outer cylinder, said piston having a rod slidably held Within said inner tube through the inner end thereof, a compression spring interposed between said piston and said inner tube, barrel means in `iiuid communication with said outer cylinder and adapted to house a spear, cooking means actuable to move said inner tube out- Iwardly to move thereby outwardly said piston rod and said piston whereby i'luid may be admitted to said outer cylinder, and trigger means adapted to engage said piston in its outwardly moved position and releasably maintain said piston in such position, said cooking means also being actuable to move said inner tube inwardly to compress said compression spring whereby release of said piston Iby said trigger means will permit the bias of said spring to move said piston and force iiuid through said barrel means at high velocity along with any spear which may be .housed therein.
References Cited in the tile of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 295,271 Mole Mar. 18, 1884 1,114,615 Hough Oct. 20, 1914 2,172,036 Schmeisser Sept. 5, 1939 2,245,187 Donash June 10, 1941 2,630,795 Peters Mar. 1G; 1953 2,760,480 Carroll Aug. 28, 1956 2,796,262 Folberth et al. June 18, 1957 2,842,114 `Duncan July 8, 1958 2,869,273 Thorburn Jan. 20, 1959 FOREIGN PATENTS 136,427 Australia Feb. 20, 1950