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Tennis Balls Catcher

Device to catch all the tennis balls on the court in just one move.
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This device consists in two separate mechanisms alike - one in each side of the tennis court - that brings all the balls from the net to the end of the court by using a bar longer than the with of the court. This bar runs on two gutters placed at floor level alongside the court, outside the lines, from the net to the rear end of the court. The bar has bolted a plastic band with the height of one and a half tennis balls. Each player can operate the device by simply pressing one button that will make the mechanism on that player's side to work, making the bar (and the attached plastic band) move from the net to the rear end of the court and then back to the net again, pushing all the balls of this side to the rear end of the court.
ideafix, Nov 05 2006

A Picture of the idea http://www.bimmerbo...0Ball%20Catcher.jpg
[jhomrighaus, Nov 07 2006]

[link]






       Could one nefariously operate his opponent's bar so that it would trip him up as he comes in to smash my mis-placed lob?   

       If so, it gets my vote!
Jinbish, Nov 06 2006
  

       So instead of walking over to get the ball you have to either carry a remote or walk over to the location of the button. How much would it cost to equip tennis courts with this idea? Who would maintain them? Or do I bring my own? I don't think this would work out so well.
Chefboyrbored, Nov 06 2006
  

       Why not just do what they do in the bowling alley and have gutters at the net which capture the balls and move them to a staging area convenient to the player?   

       Wait! Isn't tennis supposed to be a workout anyway?
wylie_coyote, Nov 06 2006
  

       Jinbish: That's a good idea. Now, imagine if this device can also be operated by who is assisting the game :)   

       Ra: The players can still do that clever "flick-the-ball-up" with the racket thing, for example, when all the balls are at the rear end of the court.   

       Chefboyrbored: Probably you never played tennis. If you have, you would see how useful this device can be. The problem is that you don't use only one ball but several (typically 6 or 8), but even if you use only one ball, in most cases it will be quicker and easier to use this device to catch the ball than go to pick the ball by yourself. I think that this would be relatively cheap to manufacture and maintain because it is really simple. The remote control its a good idea to improve this. Probably I'll work on an idea of a portable device to catch tennis balls.   

       wylie_coyote: That idea has already been posted (search "Tennis gutters") and it can only work for the balls that fall close to the net, but the balls are usually spread all over the court. Tennis is mainly a game and also a workout, but the idea is to workout playing the game and not picking up balls. As you can see in any tennis tournament, the players don't pick the balls for themselves, there are, at least, two boys or girls specifically dedicated to catch the balls and giving them back to the players.
ideafix, Nov 07 2006
  

       //Chefboyrbored: Probably you never played tennis// Quite wrong, I play alot of tennis and I still don't think this would work out so well. I would gladly race this invention for quickness and the gutter along the court would become quite a pain in the ass. The game is not just played inside the court, alot of foot work happens outside the court as well.
Chefboyrbored, Nov 07 2006
  

       Chefboyrbored: The gutter can be placed as far from the lateral lines as you want so that it has no impact (or minimal) with the game. Now that I am thinking again about this, I find that this gutter is also useful in the cases where tennis courts are placed side to side without a net or barrier separating them, so that the balls don't go to the wrong court...
ideafix, Nov 07 2006
  

       If we can combine this with a tennis ball launcher, then I'll give it a bun. Then we'll have entirely automated the game of tennis, thus freeing people of the necessity to actually play it, and my life will not have been in vain.
moomintroll, Nov 07 2006
  

       Ok let us be realistic. Either way you have go and pick up the balls. Where do they end up after the court has been "cleaned", in the service area?
Chefboyrbored, Nov 07 2006
  

       [ideafix] I attached a picture of your idea, if you dont like or want feel free to remove it. The program used to generate it is free and can be found in my profile page.
jhomrighaus, Nov 07 2006
  

       jhomrighaus, ideafix claims the gutters are not near the playing area, so possibly your "picture" is wrong.
Chefboyrbored, Nov 07 2006
  

       He says they were located alongside the court outside the lines, My picture does not have any lines but it was intended to show the gutters outside the edge of the court.
jhomrighaus, Nov 07 2006
  

       RE: diagram...   

       I like how that skeptical businessman is walking away and looking over his shoulder. Can we put a thought balloon for him (e.g. "WTF?")?
wylie_coyote, Nov 07 2006
  

       //He says they were located alongside the court outside the lines, My picture does not have any lines but it was intended to show the gutters outside the edge of the court.//   

       He later changed his mind //The gutter can be placed as far from the lateral lines as you want so that it has no impact (or minimal) with the game.//
Chefboyrbored, Nov 07 2006
  

       Why don't we put the tennis balls on a very long string connected to the fence behind you then you could play tennis with minimal impact and you could still reel the string in to get the ball..
phundug, Nov 07 2006
  

       Im not sure why a gutter is needed. A groove as small as 1/8 of an inch would be sufficient for an upright to pass through and would have no discenable impact on playablity of the court.
jhomrighaus, Nov 07 2006
  

       Ra, Check out the Royal Slant Tennis court.
Chefboyrbored, Nov 07 2006
  

       [jhomrighaus] Thanks a lot for your picture. Maybe you can improve it by including the court lines...
ideafix, Nov 08 2006
  

       So after the balls have been pushed to the back of the court, what keeps them from rolling about and me having to chase them around in the back side of the court.
Chefboyrbored, Nov 09 2006
  

       The idea is interesting. But I would add another groove, this one parallel to the net and outside the playable area. Preferably well outside. The groove would be slanted as suggested by other halfbakers. At the lowest point there would be a catapult mechanism that would neatly throw the balls to a basket. This way all the balls would be at the same location. This mechanism would take the wind speed and direction into account in order to reduce the number of balls falling outside the basket.
PauloSargaco, Nov 15 2006
  
      
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