US20130181427A1 - Touring heel binding having a dynamic sliding region - Google Patents

Touring heel binding having a dynamic sliding region Download PDF

Info

Publication number
US20130181427A1
US20130181427A1 US13/819,164 US201113819164A US2013181427A1 US 20130181427 A1 US20130181427 A1 US 20130181427A1 US 201113819164 A US201113819164 A US 201113819164A US 2013181427 A1 US2013181427 A1 US 2013181427A1
Authority
US
United States
Prior art keywords
ski
position
heel
region
carriage
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US13/819,164
Inventor
Andreas Fritschi
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Fritschi AG Swiss Bindings
Original Assignee
Fritschi AG Swiss Bindings
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to CH1387/10 priority Critical
Priority to CH13872010 priority
Application filed by Fritschi AG Swiss Bindings filed Critical Fritschi AG Swiss Bindings
Priority to PCT/CH2011/000195 priority patent/WO2012024809A1/en
Assigned to FRITSCHI AG - SWISS BINDINGS reassignment FRITSCHI AG - SWISS BINDINGS ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: FRITSCHI, ANDREAS
Publication of US20130181427A1 publication Critical patent/US20130181427A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

Links

Images

Classifications

    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C7/00Devices preventing skis from slipping back; Ski-stoppers or ski-brakes
    • A63C7/10Hinged stoppage blades attachable to the skis in such manner that these blades can be moved out of the operative position
    • A63C7/1006Ski-stoppers
    • A63C7/1046Ski-stoppers actuated by the ski-binding
    • A63C7/1053Ski-stoppers actuated by the ski-binding laterally retractable above the ski surface
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/006Ski bindings with a climbing wedge
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/007Systems preventing accumulation of forces on the binding when the ski is bending
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/08Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings
    • A63C9/0807Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings for both towing and downhill skiing
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/08Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings
    • A63C9/084Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings with heel hold-downs, e.g. swingable
    • A63C9/0846Details of the release or step-in mechanism
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/08Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings
    • A63C9/085Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings with sole hold-downs, e.g. swingable
    • A63C9/08507Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings with sole hold-downs, e.g. swingable with a plurality of mobile jaws
    • A63C9/08528Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings with sole hold-downs, e.g. swingable with a plurality of mobile jaws pivoting about a longitudinal axis
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/08Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings
    • A63C9/086Ski bindings yieldable or self-releasing in the event of an accident, i.e. safety bindings using parts which are fixed on the shoe of the user and are releasable from the ski binding
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C2009/008Ski bindings with a binding element sliding along a rail during use or setting

Abstract

A heel piece for a ski binding, particularly a touring ski binding, comprises a base element for installing the heel piece on the ski upper face and a slide mounted on the base element, on which slide is arranged a heel holder having at least one retaining means for retaining the heel of a ski boot. Said heel piece has a downhill position, in which the retaining means locks the ski boot in a lowered position. Said heel piece also has at least one uphill position, in which the heel region of the ski boot retained in the ski binding is released. In the downhill position, the slide can be moved together with the heel holder relative to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski.

Description

    TECHNICAL FIELD
  • The invention relates to automatic heel units for a ski binding, in particular a ski-touring binding, with a base element for mounting the automatic heel units on the upper side of a ski and a carriage which is mounted on the base element and on which there is arranged a heel holder with at least one holding means for holding a ski boot in a heel region of the ski boot. These automatic heel units have a downhill position, in which the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position. Furthermore, these automatic heel units have at least one climbing position, in which the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released.
  • PRIOR ART
  • With regard to their function, ski bindings can be subdivided into downhill ski bindings, which are used only for skiing downhill and skiing on ski lifts, and touring bindings, which are also additionally used for walking on skis, in particular for climbing with the aid of climbing skins fastened on the skis. While the former just have to ensure reliable fixing of the ski boot on the ski in a so-called downhill position, the latter additionally have to be able for climbing purposes to be moved from the downhill position into a climbing position, in which the ski boot can be pivoted about an axis in the transverse direction of the ski and can be lifted up from the ski in the heel region, in order to make an articulated movement between the ski boot and the ski possible for walking.
  • Ski-touring bindings in turn can be subdivided into two types. The one type comprises a ski-boot carrier, which can be pivoted in relation to the ski on which the ski boot is held by binding jaws. A representative of this type of ski-touring bindings is described, for example, in EP 0 754 079 B1 (Fritschi AG). The second type, on the other hand, is based on ski boots with rigid soles. In the case of these ski-touring bindings, the ski boot is pivotably mounted in its toe region in an automatic front unit fixedly mounted on the ski. The automatic heel unit is in this case likewise fixedly attached to the ski, at a distance from the automatic front unit that is adapted to a sole length of the ski boot, and in the downhill position arrests the ski boot in the heel region. In the climbing position, the heel of the ski boot is released from the automatic heel unit, so that the ski boot can be lifted up from the ski and pivoted about the mounting on the automatic front unit. Ski boots that are suitable for this type of binding typically have for this purpose two lateral clearances in the toe region for being pivotably secured in the automatic front unit. Furthermore, they have in the heel region rearwardly open clearances, in which holding means of the automatic heel unit can engage.
  • It goes without saying that, in the case of this second type of ski-touring bindings, the distance from the automatic front unit at which the automatic heel unit has to be mounted on the ski is dictated by the length of the sole of the ski boot to be held, within the limits of adjustability of the automatic heel unit. The mentioned climbing position, in which the heel of the ski boot is released, consequently always relates to the downhill position in which the heel of the ski boot can be arrested in the same mounting position of the automatic heel unit.
  • For describing such binding systems, a (fictitious) ski is often used as a reference system, it being assumed that the binding is mounted on this ski. This custom is adopted in the present text. Thus, the expression “longitudinal direction of the ski” means along the alignment of the longitudinal axis of the ski. Similarly, “parallel to the ski” means, for an elongated object, aligned along the longitudinal axis of the ski. For a planar object, by contrast, the expression “parallel to the ski” means aligned parallel to the sliding surface of the ski. Furthermore, the expression “transverse direction of the ski” is intended to mean a direction transverse to the longitudinal direction of the ski, although it need not necessarily be oriented precisely at right angles to the longitudinal axis of the ski. Its alignment may also deviate slightly from a right angle. The expression “center of the ski” in turn means a center of the ski when seen in the transverse direction of the ski, while the expression “fixed to the ski” means non-movable in relation to the ski. Moreover, it should be noted that expressions that do not contain the word “ski” also refer to the reference system of the (fictitious) ski. Thus, the expressions “front/forward/forwardly”, “rear/rearward/rearwardly”, “top/above/upper/upward/upwardly”, “bottom/below/lower/downward/downwardly” and “lateral/laterally” relate to “front/forward/forwardly”, “rear/rearward/rearwardly”, “top/above/upper/upward/upwardly”, “bottom/below/lower/downward/downwardly” and “lateral/laterally” of the ski. Equally, expressions such as “horizontal/horizontally” and “vertical/vertically” also relate to the ski, “horizontal/horizontally” meaning lying in a plane parallel to the ski and “vertical/vertically” meaning aligned perpendicularly to this plane.
  • A ski-touring binding of the second type, introduced above, is described in EP 0 199 098 82 (Barthel) and is sold under the name Dynafit. An automatic front unit of this system has two clamping parts each with a stud aligned in the transverse direction of the ski, which studs engage in clearances in the toe region of the ski boot from the sides when the ski-touring binding is stepped into. As a result, the studs form a pivot bearing of the ski boot on which the ski boot can be pivoted with respect to the ski.
  • An automatic heel unit of this system that is independent of the automatic front unit has two pins arranged on a heel holder. In the downhill position, these two pins are aligned forwardly toward the automatic front unit, whereby they engage in clearances in the heel of the ski boot and can thereby arrest the ski boot in a position lowered toward the ski. When the ski-touring binding is stepped into, the ski boot is first mounted in the automatic front unit. After that, the heel of the ski boot is lowered from above onto the pins of the heel holder. Since the clearances in the heel of the ski boot are largely open in the downward direction, as a result the clearances are guided over the pins, whereupon the pins engage in detent recesses in the clearances for locking.
  • In order to ensure a safety release in the forward direction, the two pins can be pressed apart against a spring force, whereby they can slide out of the detent recesses and the clearances and can release the heel of the ski boot in the upward direction. For this purpose, both pins are each arranged on a lever, which is mounted on the heel holder pivotably in a horizontal plane. Both levers are prestressed with a spring force, so that the two pins are pressed toward one another. By adjusting the spring force, the force that is required to make release in the forward direction possible can be predetermined. As a result, a safety release in the forward direction is made possible.
  • By contrast with the safety release in the forward direction, for the intended stepping out from the binding, first the toe region of the ski boot is released from the automatic front unit. After that, the heel of the ski boot is pulled off from the pins of the automatic heel unit in the forward direction.
  • An automatic heel unit according to EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel) can be brought into a climbing position by the heel holder being turned by the skier about a vertical axis, until the two pins have been pivoted to the side out of the path of movement of the heel of the ski boot. In this case, the heel holder has a number of rotational positions in which the pins are pivoted out of the path of movement of the heel. These individual rotational positions are respectively predetermined by a spring catch for arresting the heel holder. When the heel holder is in specifically one of these rotational positions, the path of movement of the heel of the ski boot is free and the ski boot can be lowered toward the ski. When, on the other hand, the heel holder is in another of the rotational positions, a support arranged on the heel holder has been respectively pivoted into the path of movement of the heel of the ski boot at a certain distance from the ski. Each such support hinders the ski boot from being lowered toward the ski at a different distance from the ski. Correspondingly, various climbing aids can be set by positioning the heel holder in the various rotational positions.
  • Since, in the downhill position, the pins engage in the heel of the ski boot, the automatic heel unit cannot be brought directly from the downhill position into one of the climbing positions. The turning of the heel holder about the vertical axis required for this can only be actuated when the ski boot has first been released completely from the binding. Particularly in uncompacted deep snow and on steep terrain, this can lead to tricky situations, since, by contrast with the large surface area of a ski, a ski boot offers the skier only little hold.
  • A further development of the automatic heel unit according to EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel) is described in WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.). This further development likewise comprises a heel holder with two forwardly directed pins, which, as described in EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel), make a safety release in the forward direction possible. By contrast with the automatic heel unit according to EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel), however, the automatic heel unit according to WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.) allows a change from the downhill position into the climbing position without it first being necessary to step completely out of the binding. In order to make this possible, the automatic heel unit comprises a baseplate fixed to the ski and a carriage with a heel holder, the carriage being displaceable with respect to the baseplate in the longitudinal direction of the ski by an adjusting lever. The carriage is comprised by a multipart housing, from which the heel holder protrudes in the upward direction through a slot adapted to the displaceability. In the downhill position, the carriage has been displaced into a forward position, whereby the pins can engage in the clearances in the heel of the ski boot. In the climbing position, on the other hand, the carriage has been displaced into a rearward position, whereby the pins cannot engage in the clearances in the heel of the ski boot and the heel of the ski boot is correspondingly released. In order to provide climbing aids as in the case of the automatic heel unit according to EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel), the automatic heel unit according to WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.) comprises a number of supporting levers, which can be pivoted into the path of movement of the ski boot sequentially from the rear to the front.
  • Furthermore, the automatic heel unit according to WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.) comprises a ski brake. This ski brake has two arms, which for activation can be pivoted out beyond the ski in the downward direction. Furthermore, the ski brake has a tread spur. By pressing this tread spur down, the arms of the ski brake can be pivoted against a spring force into an alignment substantially parallel to the ski, whereby the ski brake is in a rest position. If in the downhill position a ski boot is arrested in its heel region in the automatic heel unit, the tread spur has been pressed in the downward direction by the sole of the ski boot and the ski brake is in the rest position. In the event of a fall of the skier, in which a safety release is triggered, the ski brake is automatically activated by the spring force, since the tread spur is no longer pressed in a downward direction by the sole of the ski boot. When the automatic heel unit is transferred into the climbing position, in the case of the automatic heel unit according to WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.) the carriage is moved in the rearward direction. As a result, a hook in a front region of the housing that can hook into the tread spur and hold it securely in a lower position is released. Correspondingly, in the climbing position, the ski brake can be kept in the rest position by this hook, without the sole of the ski boot pressing the tread spur in the downward direction.
  • Consequently, the automatic heel unit according to WO 2009/121187 A1 (G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc.) has improved handling in comparison with the automatic heel unit according to EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel). However, on account of having a large number of individual parts, the automatic heel unit is quite heavy and of a complex structural design.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • The object of the invention is to provide an automatic heel unit belonging to the technical field mentioned at the beginning that increases the safety for a skier.
  • The solution by which the object is achieved is defined by the features of claim 1. According to the invention, in the downhill position, the carriage with the heel holder is movable with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along a dynamic region.
  • The term “longitudinal direction of the ski” should be understood here as meaning a direction which, though it runs substantially parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski, may also have a deviation of a few degrees from an alignment parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski. From the rear to the front as seen from the longitudinal axis of the ski, this deviation may run both laterally and in the upward or downward direction. Furthermore, the term “base element” should be understood as meaning an element which can be mounted on a ski such that it is fixed to the ski. It may be, for example, a baseplate, on which the remaining automatic heel unit can be mounted. It may, however, also be an element shaped in some way other than in the form of a plate. For example, it may be formed as a rail or in the manner of a block. It may, however, also have a plate-shaped region and comprise one or more supports.
  • The dynamic region along which the carriage is movable with respect to the base element may be both straight and of a curved form. Furthermore, the dynamic region may be limited in the forward and rearward directions by a stop, by which the carriage is stopped and hindered in its further freedom of movement. In this case, the stop may be arranged on the carriage, on the base element or on another part of the automatic heel unit. Moreover, the stop may have two or more interacting elements, which are arranged on the carriage, on the base element and/or on another part of the automatic heel unit. The limitation of the dynamic region by such a stop may be advantageous if the carriage is for example mounted in a linear guide. In this case, it can be prevented that the carriage can come away unintentionally from the guide. As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the dynamic region is not limited by a stop or is only limited in the forward or rearward direction by a stop.
  • The solution has the advantage that, in the downhill position, the position of the heel holder in relation to the heel of the ski boot can be dynamically adapted by the carriage being moved together with the heel holder along the dynamic path. This makes it possible during skiing for changes in distance between the automatic front unit and the automatic heel unit that are caused by flexing of the ski during skiing to be constantly compensated. Correspondingly, the automatic heel unit makes it possible that the heel holder constantly maintains the same distance from the heel of the ski boot during skiing. This allows the holding means to interact in constantly the same way with the heel of the ski boot and to keep the ski boot arrested in the lowered position. This produces a starting position for a safety release in the forward direction that is as identical as possible in the various situations that occur during skiing. Correspondingly, deviations from the preset force that has be overcome for a safety release in the forward direction are minimized and the safety of the skier is increased. It is of no matter in this respect whether the at least one holding means consists of two substantially forwardly directed pins, as described in the prior art, or whether the at least one holding means is formed in some other way.
  • As is customary with the relevant type of ski-touring bindings, the automatic heel unit according to the invention can be mounted on a ski independently of an automatic front unit. In particular, the arresting and the release of the heel of the ski boot that are provided in an advantageous way by the automatic heel unit are largely independent of the actual configuration of the automatic front unit. The automatic heel unit can consequently also be used in conjunction with known automatic front units of the binding systems described at the beginning. However, it is also conceivable to use the automatic heel unit in conjunction with other binding systems in which the heel of the ski boot can be lifted off from the ski. Thus, the ski boot can for example be fixed in the toe/ball region to an automatic front unit, the ski boot being formed elastically in the ball region. This is the case for example with Telemark bindings. In general, however, it is recommendable to use the automatic heel unit in conjunction with an automatic front unit made to match it, in order to ensure optimum functionality of the binding system as a whole.
  • In a preferred embodiment, the automatic heel unit for a ski binding, in particular a ski-touring binding, comprises a base element for mounting the automatic heel unit on the upper side of a ski and a carriage which is mounted on the base element and on which there is arranged a heel holder with at least one holding means for holding a ski boot in a heel region of the ski boot. In this case, the automatic heel unit preferably has a downhill position, in which the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding and thereby arrest the ski boot in a lowered position. Furthermore, the automatic heel unit advantageously has at least one climbing position, in which the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released. It is preferred in this case that, in the downhill position, the carriage with the heel holder is movable with respect to the base element in a guided manner in the longitudinal direction of the ski by a linear guide along a dynamic region. How the at least one holding means for holding the ski boot is formed is not prescribed. For example, two pins may be concerned, as known from the prior art described above. However, one or more holding means of any other kind may also be concerned. Furthermore, it is not prescribed how exactly the linear guide is formed. For example, it may be a rail-like guide. In this case, the guide may comprise one or more rails in which one or more guiding elements are movable. The rails may in this case be arranged both on the carriage and on the base element, while the guiding elements are respectively arranged on the other part. In this case, the guiding elements may be formed as sliding elements or be provided with a roller bearing or ball bearing. As a further possibility, the linear guide may, however, also be formed by a ram guided in a corresponding cylinder. A configuration in which the linear guide is formed by one or more levers mounted pivotably at their ends on the carriage and the base element is also conceivable. It goes without saying that in the case of all these variants there is the possibility that an intermediate piece is arranged between the carriage and the base element, the base element and/or the carriage being mounted movably on the intermediate piece or arranged fixedly on the intermediate piece.
  • However, preferred embodiments of the automatic heel unit may also be formed in some other way. It is shown hereafter on the basis of advantageous features how such other preferred embodiments may be formed. However, it goes without saying that the aforementioned, preferred embodiment may also comprise one or more of these advantageous features.
  • Preferably, in the downhill position, the carriage is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force and is pressed in the direction of a front end of the dynamic region. This elastic element may be, for example, a spring or an element formed in some other way with elastic properties. The elastic element can in this case exert a compressive force or tensile force on the carriage. Moreover, the elastic element may also comprise a number of elastic elements that are arranged one next to the other or one after the other. Independently of the actual configuration of the elastic element, the fact that the carriage is subjected to the forwardly directed force has the advantage that changes in distance between the automatic front unit and the automatic heel unit that are caused by the flexing of the ski during skiing can be optimally compensated. Since the carriage with the heel holder is pressed by the force against the heel of the ski boot, a position of the carriage and of the heel holder thereby always adapts itself to the heel of the ski boot. Correspondingly, it is sufficient if the at least one holding means can interact with the heel of the ski boot in such a way that the ski boot is hindered from a lateral pivoting movement and a pivoting movement in the upward direction. The at least one holding means need not in this case keep the heel holder at an identical distance from the heel of the ski boot and move the heel holder together with the carriage along the dynamic path when there are changes in distance between the automatic front unit and the automatic heel unit. Therefore, the elastic element and the resultant forwardly directed force on the carriage reduce the requirements that have to be met by the at least one holding means. Correspondingly, the at least one holding means can be optimized more easily to make an optimally controlled safety release possible.
  • As an alternative to this, however, there is also the possibility that the carriage is not acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force.
  • If, in the downhill position, the carriage is acted upon by an elastic element with a downwardly directed force and is pressed in the direction of the front end of the dynamic region, the automatic heel unit preferably comprises a stop that forms the front end of the dynamic region by hindering the carriage from further movement in the forward direction with respect to the base element. In this case, the stop may be positioned in such a way that the carriage is pressed against the stop by the elastic element. However, the stop may also be positioned in such a way that the carriage is acted upon by the elastic element with a forwardly directed force within the dynamic region and is specifically no longer subjected to this force when it is positioned at the stop.
  • As a variant of this, there is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit does not have a stop that forms the front end of the dynamic region. For example, the carriage may also be acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force within the dynamic region, the carriage being pushed or pulled rearward into the dynamic region if it is moved out forward beyond the dynamic region. In this case, the elastic element may be, for example, a spring that pulls the carriage forward within the dynamic region. If in this example the carriage is moved forward beyond the dynamic region, it is pushed back into the dynamic region by the spring. Correspondingly, in this example the position of the carriage in which the spring is not under stress forms the front end of the dynamic region.
  • Preferably, in the downhill position, the automatic heel unit makes a safety release in the forward direction possible. This has the advantage that the safety for the skier is increased. However, there is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit does not make a safety release in the forward direction possible.
  • In a preferred variant, in the downhill position, the automatic heel unit does not make a safety release horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski possible. If, for example, the automatic heel unit is a component part of a ski-touring binding with an automatic front unit, in which the automatic front unit makes a safety release horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski possible, this firstly has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can be produced in a lighter, simpler and consequently lower-cost form. This secondly has the advantage that the safety for the skier is increased, since there is a lower risk of erroneous lateral release if the safety release horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski is made possible by the automatic front unit. This is because lateral impacts and force effects, when seen in the longitudinal direction of the ski, during skiing primarily occur in a region of the skier's shinbone, which is closer to the automatic heel unit than to the automatic front unit.
  • In a further, preferred variant, in the downhill position, the automatic heel unit makes a safety release horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski possible. This has the advantage that the safety for the skier is increased if, for example, the automatic heel unit is a component part of a ski-touring binding with an automatic front unit in which the automatic front unit does not make a safety release horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski possible.
  • With preference, the automatic heel unit comprises at least one holding element that is mounted on the heel holder rotatably about an axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, the at least one holding means being arranged on the at least one holding element at a distance from a straight line defined by the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, and as a result is pivotable substantially in the transverse direction of the ski about the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In this case, the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski may be both aligned exactly parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski or else deviate a few degrees from an alignment parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski. Both have the advantage that, when there is a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element, an extension of the at least one holding means in the longitudinal direction of the ski is substantially maintained. As a result, the interaction of the at least one holding means with the heel of the ski boot during a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element can also be controlled better. If such a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element is required for the carrying out of a safety release in the forward direction, better control of a safety release in the forward direction is also correspondingly made possible as a result.
  • Such a holding element represents a second aspect of the solution by which the object is achieved that is possible independently of the first solution by which the object is achieved. A corresponding second solution by which the object is achieved preferably concerns an automatic heel unit for a ski binding with a heel holder with at least one holding means for holding a ski boot in a heel region of the ski boot, the automatic heel unit comprising at least one holding element that is mounted on the heel holder rotatably about an axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, the at least one holding means being arranged on the at least one holding element such that it is at a distance from a straight line defined by the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, and as a result is pivotable substantially in the transverse direction of the ski about the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In this case, the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski may be both aligned exactly parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski or else deviate a few degrees from an alignment parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski. Both have the advantage that, when there is a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element, an extension of the at least one holding means in the longitudinal direction of the ski is substantially maintained. As a result, the interaction of the at least one holding means with the heel of the ski boot during a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element can also be controlled better. If such a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element is required for the carrying out of a safety release in the forward direction, better control of a safety release in the forward direction is also correspondingly made possible as a result.
  • The preferred, special embodiments described hereafter, which describe the at least one holding element and/or the at least one holding means in more detail, are possible preferred, special embodiments both of an automatic heel unit belonging to the first solution by which the object is achieved and belonging to the second solution by which the object is achieved. It should be noted here that these preferred, special embodiments that are described hereafter are also possible for a further variant of an automatic heel unit according to the first solution. According to this variant, instead of the at least one holding element with the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, the automatic heel unit may comprise at least one holding element on which the at least one holding means is arranged, the at least one holding element being pivotable about an axis aligned substantially in the transverse direction of the ski.
  • In this case, the axis aligned substantially in the transverse direction of the ski may be aligned not only vertically or horizontally, but also at any angle in between.
  • As a further variant, an automatic heel unit according to the first solution by which the object is achieved may, however, also not have any of the holding elements described above, but only at least one holding means.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises at least one holding element, the at least one holding element and the at least one holding means are preferably produced from metal. This has the advantage that a high strength of the at least one holding element and of the at least one holding means can be achieved. However, there is also the possibility that, for example, only the at least one holding means or only the at least one holding element is produced from metal.
  • If, on the other hand, the automatic heel unit does not comprise a holding element, but only at least one holding means, this at least one holding means is preferably produced from metal.
  • As an alternative to these variants, there is also the possibility that the at least one holding means and/or, if present, the at least one holding element is produced from another material, such as for example plastic or carbon.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises one holding element, the holding element is advantageously produced in one piece with the at least one holding means. If, on the other hand, the automatic heel unit comprises a number of holding elements, these holding elements are preferably each produced in one piece with at least one holding means. This has the advantage that an optimum stability of the at least one holding element and the at least one holding means is achieved.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the at least one holding element and the at least one holding means are produced as separate parts. In this case, the at least one holding means may for example be able to be screwed to the at least one holding element. For this purpose, the at least one holding means may for example have a thread and the at least one holding element may have a corresponding counter-thread. However, there is also the possibility that the at least one holding means can be screwed to the corresponding at least one holding element by at least one separate screw. As a further possibility, however, the at least one holding means may also be connected to the corresponding at least one holding element by a plugged-in, riveted, glued or welded connection.
  • With preference, the automatic heel unit comprises at least two holding elements, on each of which at least one holding means is arranged. This has the advantage that the load that the holding elements and the holding means have to withstand is distributed among a number of structural parts. This also has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can, for example, make a safety release possible by a movement of the holding means in relation to one another. Thus, for example, arrestment of the heel of the ski boot brought about by the holding means may be releasable by the holding means of the various holding elements being moved toward one another or away from one another by the movement of the holding elements.
  • However, there is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit has at least one holding means and does not comprise any holding element or comprises only one holding element.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises at least two holding elements, the holding elements are preferably arranged on the heel holder one next to the other in the transverse direction of the ski. Since, in the event of the safety release in the forward direction, the heel region of the ski boot is lifted up out of the automatic heel unit, such an arrangement of the holding elements has the advantage that a movement of the holding means of the various holding elements in relation to one another substantially in the horizontal direction, and consequently perpendicularly to the direction of movement of the heel region of the ski boot, can take place. In this case, the freedom of movement of the holding means in the vertical direction may be greatly or entirely restricted. This has the advantage that the heel region of the ski boot can be arrested against a movement in the vertical direction in a simple way, which is advantageous for the sensation that is experienced when skiing. Moreover, at the same time a safety release in the forward direction, in which the arrestment of the heel region of the ski boot is released by a movement of the holding means in relation to one another, can be made possible.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the holding elements are arranged on the heel holder one above the other, or obliquely one above the other, in the vertical direction. The latter variant may be advantageous in particular whenever the automatic heel unit comprises more than two holding elements, since the holding elements can be arranged on the heel holder in a space-saving manner.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises at least two holding elements with substantially horizontally aligned axes, the holding elements preferably have an elongated, lever-like form and are mounted on the heel holder such that they are aligned substantially vertically. In this case, the axes of the holding elements may be aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski. However, there is also the possibility that the axes of the holding elements are aligned horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski or horizontally at an angle to the longitudinal direction of the ski. In all three cases, the lever-like form of the holding elements firstly has the advantage that the at least one holding means can be arranged on the holding elements in a space-saving manner, at the greatest possible distance from the axes of the holding elements. Correspondingly, the holding means can cover a comparatively great distance when there is a small angular movement of the holding elements, this distance being maximized as much as possible by the holding elements being aligned substantially perpendicularly to the axis of the holding elements. Secondly, the lever-like form of the holding elements has the advantage that the holding elements can be arranged on the heel holder in a space-saving manner. This produces the further advantage that an entire triggering mechanism that makes a safety release possible can be arranged in or on the heel holder in a space-saving manner.
  • As a variant of this, the holding elements of an elongated, lever-like form may also be arranged on the heel holder in a differently aligned manner. Moreover, there is also the possibility that the holding elements are of a different form.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises at least two elongated holding elements of a lever-like form, with axes aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, the holding means are preferably respectively arranged in a first region at a first end of the holding elements and the axes of the holding elements that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski are respectively arranged in a middle region of the holding elements. Moreover, the holding elements preferably respectively have a second region at a second end of the holding elements, the second region being respectively arranged on a side of the middle region that is opposite from the first region. This has the advantage that a force can be respectively applied to the second region of a holding element, this force being reversed about the axis to act in the opposite direction on the first region of the corresponding holding element. Since the holding means are arranged in the first region of the holding elements, a force can consequently be applied to the holding elements at some distance from the holding means and be transferred to the holding means. In this case, the effect of the force is transferred to the holding means in an efficient way in spite of the distance.
  • As an alternative to this, the holding elements may, however, also be formed in some other way.
  • Advantageously, the automatic heel unit comprises precisely two holding elements, on each of which a holding means is arranged. This has the advantage that the load that the holding elements and the holding means have to withstand is distributed among a number of structural parts. This also has the advantage that an arrestment of the heel of the ski boot can be achieved in a simple way by the holding means. For this purpose, the two holding means may for example be pressed toward one another or away from one another by a prestressing of the holding elements. This makes it possible, for example, for arresting to take place by clamping. However, this also makes it possible, for example, for arresting to take place by the two holding means each holding one another in place in or on a corresponding clearance or else in a corresponding detent recess. Such types of arrestment have the advantage that a safety release in which the heel region of the ski boot is released by a relative movement of the holding means can be made possible in a simple way.
  • However, there is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit comprises more than one holding means per holding element. There is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit comprises no holding elements, one holding element or more than two holding elements.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises two holding elements, each with a first, second and a middle region, axes that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski being respectively arranged in the middle region, the automatic heel unit thus preferably comprises a ram, which can interact with the second regions of the holding elements and which can be subjected to a force applied by an elastic element, so that a torque acting on the holding elements can be produced. Since the two holding elements are mounted pivotably about the axes aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski in its middle region, this has the advantage that the force with which the ram acts on the holding elements is approximately equal to the force to which the holding means arranged in the first region are subjected.
  • Consequently, a force transfer from the ram to the holding means is made possible by the holding elements, the ram being able however to interact with the holding elements at a distance from the holding means.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the ram does not interact with the holding elements in the second region of the holding elements but in the first region of the holding elements.
  • As a further variant, the automatic heel unit may also comprise more than one ram or else one or more other element(s) as a ram, by which the holding elements can be subjected to a corresponding force. Moreover, the automatic heel unit may also comprise more than one elastic element, by which the ram or rams or the other element or elements can be subjected to the corresponding force. In this case, it is also possible for more than one elastic elements to be provided per ram or per other element.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises a ram and two holding elements, each with a first, a second and a middle region, axes that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski being respectively arranged in the middle region, the ram preferably presses the second regions of the holding elements apart, whereby the holding means are pressed toward one another. This has the advantage that both holding elements can each be subjected to a force by a single ram, the two forces acting substantially in opposite directions.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the ram presses the two second regions of the holding elements together, whereby the holding means are pressed apart. This likewise has the advantage that both holding elements can each be subjected to a force by a single ram, the two forces acting substantially in opposite directions.
  • Both variants make possible, for example, an arrestment of the heel region of the ski boot by clamping. However, both also make possible an arrestment of the heel region of the ski boot in which the two holding means each hold one another in place in or on a corresponding clearance or else in a corresponding detent recess in the heel region of the ski boot.
  • Both variants can be modified by, for example, instead of the ram, the second regions of the two holding means being connected to one another directly by an elastic element. In the first variant, this elastic element may be formed in such a way that the two second regions are pressed apart by a prestressing. In the second variant, on the other hand, the elastic element may be formed in such a way that the two second regions are drawn together by a prestressing. Both have the advantage that a triggering mechanism for a safety release can be provided in a simple way.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises a ram and two holding elements each with a first, a second and a middle region, axes that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski being respectively arranged in the middle region, the holding elements thus preferably each have in their second region an offset for interacting with the ram. This has the advantage that an optimum force transfer from the ram to the holding elements can take place.
  • As a variant of this, the holding elements may each have in their second regions a clearance for interacting with the ram. This likewise allows an optimum force transfer from the ram to the holding elements to take place.
  • As an alternative to this, however, there is also the possibility that the second regions of the holding elements have neither such offsets nor such clearances.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises two holding elements, each with a first, a second and a middle region, axes that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski being respectively arranged in the middle region, it is thus preferably the case with the holding elements respectively that the first region is arranged above the middle region and the second region is arranged below the middle region. This has the advantage that the two holding elements can be mounted on the heel holder in such a way that the holding means are arranged in an upper region of the heel holder, while the second regions are arranged in a lower region of the heel holder. Since the holding means are arranged in the upper region of the heel holder, the height of the heel holder can be minimized.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises a ram and two holding elements, each with a first, a second and a middle region, axes that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski being respectively arranged in the middle region and the first region being respectively arranged above the middle region and the second region being respectively arranged below the middle region, the ram can thus preferably be acted upon by the elastic element with a downwardly acting force, in order to interact with the second regions of the holding elements. This has the advantage that the ram can be arranged with the elastic element substantially parallel to the two holding elements. In this case, both the holding elements and the ram with the elastic element can assume substantially the height of the heel holder. Correspondingly, as a result a very compact triggering mechanism for a safety release can be provided and the size of the heel holder can be minimized.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the ram is not acted upon by the elastic element with a downwardly directed force, but with a force acting in another direction. Depending on the embodiment, this may likewise be advantageous.
  • Preferably, the at least one holding means is at least one pin, which is aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski and as a result can engage in at least one corresponding opening in the heel region of the ski boot. In this case, the at least one pin may be aligned exactly parallel to the longitudinal direction of the ski. However, there is also the possibility that the at least one pin is aligned at an angle of a few degrees to the longitudinal direction of the ski. Moreover, if the automatic heel unit makes a safety release in the forward direction possible, the at least one pin may be mounted on the heel holder in such a way that, in the event of such a safety release, it can be pivoted away laterally from its actual alignment by up to 90 degrees.
  • Pins as holding means generally have the advantage that an arrestment of the heel region of the ski boot can be achieved in a simple way and that a safety release can be provided in a simple way. In particular, two pins as holding means have the advantage that ski boots with two corresponding clearances in the heels for interacting with two pins are already obtainable on the market. In this case, the clearances in the heels of these ski boots are open in the downward direction, in order that, in the event of a safety release in the forward direction, the ski boot can be moved away from the pins in the upward direction. Moreover, the clearances in the heels of these ski boots each have a detent recess, in which the pins can engage for an arrestment of the heel of the ski boot. In this case, the arrestment of the ski boot is achieved by the two pins being pressed toward one another by a force, whereby they hold one another in the corresponding detent recess.
  • As a variant of at least one pin as at least one holding means, there is also the possibility that the at least one holding means is differently formed. For example, the at least one holding means may also have a shell form, which encloses the sole of the ski boot in the heel region laterally as well as above and below. Such heel jaws are known for example from downhill ski bindings and also from some ski-touring bindings. As a further variant of this, such a shell form may however also for example be configured in a two-part manner, two holding means together forming a corresponding shell form.
  • As an alternative to this, the at least one holding means may however also be differently formed.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises at least one holding unit with an axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski and the at least one holding means is at least one pin, the at least one pin and the axis of the at least one holding element that is aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski are thus preferably aligned substantially parallel to one another. This has the advantage that, when there is a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element, an extension of the at least one pin in the longitudinal direction of the ski remains of the same magnitude. As a result, the interaction of the at least one pin with the heel of the ski boot can also be better controlled during a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element. If such a pivoting movement of the at least one holding element is required for the carrying out of a safety release in the forward direction, better control of a safety release in the forward direction is also made possible as a result. This advantage also comes to bear in the case of a variant in which the automatic heel unit comprises two such holding elements each with a pin. Moreover, such a variant of the automatic heel unit may be used together with ski boots obtainable on the market that comprise two corresponding clearances in the heels for interacting with the pins.
  • As a variant of this, the at least one pin and the axis of the corresponding at least one holding element that is aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski may, however, also not be aligned parallel to one another.
  • In a first, preferred variant, the heel holder is rotatable about an axis substantially perpendicular to the ski. In this case, in the downhill position, the heel holder is preferably turned about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski into an alignment parallel to the ski, whereby the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position. Moreover, it is preferred that, in the at least one climbing position, the heel holder is turned away from an alignment parallel to the ski about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski, so that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released. In this case, the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski may be aligned exactly perpendicularly to the ski or else at an angle of a few degrees from a vertical alignment. The turning of the heel holder about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can be transferred from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position and back in a simple way.
  • There is in this respect the possibility that the heel holder is mounted on the carriage rotatably about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski. In this case, in the downhill position, the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski is movable together with the carriage and the heel holder with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along the dynamic region. It may thereby also be the case for example in the climbing position that the heel holder is movable together with the carriage with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along the dynamic region, the heel holder however being turned away from an alignment parallel to the ski about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski, so that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released. Within the scope of this possible embodiment there is also the possibility that, in the climbing position, the movement of the carriage along a dynamic region is blocked.
  • As an alternative to this, there is the possibility that a turning part is mounted on the base element rotatably about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski and the carriage is mounted in a linearly displaceable manner on this turning part by a guide. In this case, in the downhill position, the carriage with the heel holder is movable with respect to the base element on the guide in the longitudinal direction of the ski along the dynamic region, while the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski remains in the same position in relation to the base element, and consequently in relation to the ski. Correspondingly, in this case, in the climbing position, the guide of the carriage is turned away from an alignment parallel to the ski on the turning part.
  • In a second, preferred variant, the heel holder cannot be transferred from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position and back rotatably about the automatic heel unit, about an axis substantially perpendicular to the ski, as in the first, preferred variant. In this second, preferred variant, in the downhill position, the carriage has been displaced together with the heel holder in the forward direction with respect to the base element, whereby the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position. Moreover, in the at least one climbing position, the carriage has preferably been displaced together with the heel holder with respect to the base element into a rearward position in such a way that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released. This second variant has the advantage that the heel of the ski boot takes place by a displacement of the carriage together with the heel holder in the longitudinal direction of the ski. If, for the arrestment of the heel region of the ski boot, the at least one holding means, pointing from the rear to the front, engages in the heel region of the ski boot or engages around the heel region of the ski boot, the automatic heel unit can as a result be transferred from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position and back without the ski boot first having to be released completely from the ski binding. This is advantageous in particular also in a variant in which the automatic heel unit comprises two pins as holding means.
  • As alternatives to these two preferred variants, there is however also the possibility that the heel holder is for example configured such that it can be tilted laterally or to the rear, it being tilted laterally or to the rear in the at least one climbing position. Especially the alternative with the heel holder that can be tilted to the rear may be advantageous if the at least one holding means has a shell form that encloses the sole of the ski boot in the heel region laterally as well as above and below. In this case, this shell-shaped holding means may be a heel jaw, as is known from downhill ski bindings and also from some ski-touring bindings.
  • If the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, the automatic heel unit advantageously comprises an intermediate piece which is displaceable with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski, is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force with respect to the base element and on which the carriage is displaceably mounted. In this case, the carriage is preferably displaced into a rearward position with respect to the intermediate piece in the at least one climbing position and is displaced into a forward position with respect to the intermediate piece in the downhill position and is movable together with the intermediate piece with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along the dynamic region. For this purpose, there is the possibility for example that the carriage is guided on a linear guide on the base element and the intermediate piece is enclosed between the carriage and the base element such that it can be displaced in the longitudinal direction of the ski. The intermediate piece may in this case be acted upon by the elastic element with a forwardly directed force with respect to the base element, while the carriage may be mounted on the intermediate piece in such a way that the carriage is displaceable into a forward position and a rearward position with respect to the intermediate piece by mechanical action. The mechanical action for displacing the carriage with respect to the intermediate piece may take place for example by a deflecting lever or a slide with two detent positions. However, there is also the possibility that the intermediate piece is guided displaceably on the base element in one linear guide, while the carriage is guided on the intermediate piece in a further linear guide. All of these possibilities have the advantage that the functionality for adjusting the automatic heel unit from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position and back can be separated structurally in a simple way from the functionality whereby, in the downhill position, the heel holder is movable together with the carriage along the dynamic region.
  • It may however equally be advantageous if the automatic heel unit is formed without an intermediate piece. If, for example, in the downhill position, the carriage is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force and is pressed in the direction of the front end of the dynamic region, the carriage can also be easily formed such that it can be moved in the rearward direction against this forwardly directed force. In this case, in the at least one climbing position, the carriage may be pressed into the rearward position against the forwardly directed force. This variant has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can be formed more simply and at lower cost.
  • If the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, the automatic heel unit thus preferably comprises an adjusting lever that has a downhill position and at least one climbing position, wherein, by positioning the adjusting lever in the downhill position, the automatic heel unit can be brought into the downhill position and, by positioning the adjusting lever in one of the at least one climbing positions, can be brought into the corresponding one of the at least one climbing positions. This has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can be brought from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position in a simple way.
  • As an alternative to this, the automatic heel unit may also not comprise such an adjusting lever.
  • If the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, and if the automatic heel unit comprises an adjusting lever, the adjusting lever is thus preferably mounted on the base element pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. This has the advantage that the automatic heel unit can be transferred from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position and back in a simple way by the adjusting lever being pivoted upward in the forward direction or downward in the rearward direction. In this case, the mounting on the base element has the advantage that the axis of rotation is fixed to the ski, which facilitates actuation of the adjusting lever.
  • If the adjusting lever is mounted on the base element pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski and, in the downhill position, the carriage is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force and is pressed in the direction of a front end of the dynamic region, the adjusting lever preferably has at least one counterpart, against which the carriage is pressed. This counterpart can preferably be moved in the rearward direction by adjusting the adjusting lever from the downhill position into one of the at least one climbing positions, whereby the carriage is moved into the rearward position against the forwardly directed force and the automatic heel unit is brought into one of the at least one climbing positions. Furthermore, this counterpart can preferably be moved forward by adjusting the adjusting lever from one of the at least one climbing positions into the downhill position, whereby a space in front of the carriage is freed and the carriage is moved in the forward direction by the forwardly directed force and the automatic heel unit is brought into the downhill position.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises an adjusting lever and the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, in a variant it is thus also possible for the adjusting lever to be mounted on the carriage pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. In this case there is the possibility that the adjusting lever has at least one counterpart, which together with the carriage is pressed against a stop on the base element. This counterpart can preferably be moved in the forward direction by adjusting the adjusting lever from the downhill position into one of the at least one climbing positions, whereby the carriage is moved into the rearward position against the forwardly directed force and the automatic heel unit is brought into one of the at least one climbing positions. Furthermore, there is the possibility that this counterpart is moved in the rearward direction by adjusting the adjusting lever from one of the at least one climbing positions into the downhill position, whereby a space in front of the carriage is freed and the carriage is moved in the forward direction by the forwardly directed force and the automatic heel unit is brought into the downhill position.
  • As a variant of this, there is also the possibility that the adjusting lever is mounted both on the base element and on the carriage.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises an intermediate piece, there are further variants of how the adjusting lever can be mounted. Thus, the adjusting lever may for example be pivotably mounted both on the intermediate piece and on the carriage, in each case about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. However, there is also the possibility that the adjusting lever is pivotably mounted both on the base element and on the carriage, in each case about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski.
  • If the adjusting lever is mounted pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski on the base element, on the carriage or, if present, on the intermediate piece, the adjusting lever preferably has a support for the heel region of the ski boot that has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region when the adjusting lever is positioned in a corresponding one of the at least one climbing positions and, as a result, limits lowering of the heel region of the ski boot toward the ski. This has the advantage that a climbing aid can be provided by the adjusting lever. Since, as a result, a separate climbing aid is not required, the automatic heel unit can be produced in a correspondingly simple, light and low-cost form.
  • If the adjusting lever is mounted pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski on the base element, on the carriage or, if present, on the intermediate piece, the adjusting lever preferably has at least two climbing positions and at least two supports for the heel region of the ski boot, one of the at least two supports respectively being pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region when the adjusting lever is positioned in a corresponding one of the at least two climbing positions of the adjusting lever, so that the at least two supports respectively limit lowering of the heel region of the ski boot toward the ski at a different distance from the ski. This has the advantage that at least two different climbing aids are provided. This has the advantage firstly that greater walking comfort is achieved and secondly that no separate elements are required on the automatic heel unit for these two climbing aids. Correspondingly, the automatic heel unit can be produced in a simple, light and low-cost form.
  • If the adjusting lever is mounted pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski on the base element, on the carriage or, if present, on the intermediate piece, the adjusting lever advantageously has a climbing position, in which the adjusting lever is at a distance from the path of movement of the heel region of the ski boot, whereby the ski boot can be lowered toward the ski as far as a supporting element of the automatic heel unit. This has the advantage that optimum walking comfort is achieved for the skier on flat terrain.
  • As a variant of this, the adjusting lever may also have a climbing position in which the adjusting lever is at a distance from the path of movement of the heel region of the ski boot, whereby the ski boot can be lowered toward the ski as far as a supporting element of the automatic heel unit, but the adjusting lever also having one or more further climbing positions and an equal number of supports for the heel region of the ski boot, one of these supports respectively being pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region when the adjusting lever is positioned in a corresponding climbing position of the adjusting lever, so that the corresponding support respectively limits lowering of the heel region of the ski boot toward the ski at a different distance from the ski. This has the advantage that optimum walking comfort can be achieved for the skier in a simple way on flat and variably inclined terrain.
  • If the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, the automatic heel unit preferably has at least two climbing positions, the carriage being in the same rearward position in all of the climbing positions. As already mentioned, in the various climbing positions, various climbing aids can respectively limit lowering of the heel region of the ski boot toward the ski at a different distance from the ski. In this case, these climbing aids may be arranged on a possibly present adjusting lever or else be provided as separate elements. Since the carriage is not displaced when adjusting from one climbing aid to another climbing aid, a distance over which the carriage is displaceable when adjusting between the downhill position and the at least two climbing positions can be minimized. This allows the automatic heel unit to be designed more compactly. Moreover, the automatic heel unit can be produced in a simpler, lower-cost and lighter form.
  • As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the carriage is formed such that it is displaceable in the longitudinal direction of the ski when adjusting between the at least two climbing positions. Moreover, however, there is also the variant that the automatic heel unit has only one climbing position.
  • If the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, the automatic heel unit preferably has a ski brake with a braking member. This braking member advantageously comprises a rest position and a braking position, the braking member being assigned an actuating member, which can be actuated in such a way that the braking member goes over from the braking position into the rest position when the heel region of the ski boot is lowered toward the ski when stepping into the binding. In this case, in the climbing position, the braking member of the ski brake can preferably be kept in the rest position by a holding mechanism, by a first element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the base element and a second element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the ski brake interacting. Furthermore, the ski brake is advantageously arranged on the carriage, whereby, in the downhill position, the ski brake together with the carriage is pushed in the forward direction and the first element and the second element are at a distance from one another and, in the at least one climbing position, the ski brake together with the carriage is pushed into the rearward position, whereby the first element and the second element can interact. This has the advantage that, in the downhill position, the braking member can be released in a simple way and that, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member can be kept in the rest position in a simple way. Correspondingly, an automatic heel unit with this functionality can be produced in a simple and low-cost form.
  • As a variant of this, however, the ski brake may also be arranged on the base element or, if present, on the intermediate piece. Moreover, there is the possibility that the holding mechanism is formed in some other way.
  • If the intermediate piece is present, the first element of the holding mechanism may for example also be arranged on the intermediate piece and not on the base element.
  • As an alternative, however, there is also the possibility that the automatic heel unit does not have a ski brake.
  • If the automatic heel unit comprises a ski brake arranged on the carriage and if the carriage is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski in such a way that it is in a forward position in the downhill position and in a rearward position in the at least one climbing position, the first and/or the second element of the holding mechanism is advantageously formed elastically or movably, so that, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member can be transferred from the braking position into the rest position, the first and the second element of the holding mechanism being able to snap into one another, whereby the braking member can be kept in the rest position by the interaction of the first and second elements of the holding mechanism. In this case, the first and second elements of the holding mechanism are preferably formed in such a way that a transfer of the automatic heel unit into the downhill position and corresponding displacement of the carriage into the forward position has the effect that the interaction of the first and second elements of the holding mechanism is suspended, whereby the braking member is released and can go over into the braking position. This has the advantage that optimum functionality of the ski brake can be ensured. As an alternative to this, however, there is also the possibility that the elements of the holding mechanism are differently formed.
  • A second invention relates to an automatic heel unit for a ski binding, in particular a ski-touring binding, with a base element for mounting the automatic heel unit on the upper side of a ski, a carriage which is mounted on the base element displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski and on which there is arranged a heel holder with at least one holding means for holding a ski boot in a heel region of the ski boot, and a ski brake with a braking member. This braking member comprises a rest position and a braking position, the braking member being assigned an actuating member, which can be actuated in such a way that the braking member goes over from the braking position into the rest position when the heel region of the ski boot is lowered toward the ski when stepping into the binding. Such an automatic heel unit has a downhill position, in which the carriage has been displaced together with the heel holder in the forward direction with respect to the base element in such a way that the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position. Furthermore, such an automatic heel unit has at least one climbing position, in which the carriage has been displaced together with the heel holder into a rearward position with respect to the base element in such a way that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released. In this case, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member of the ski brake can be kept in the rest position by a holding mechanism, by a first element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the base element and a second element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the ski brake interacting.
  • The object of the second invention is to provide an automatic heel unit having a ski brake and belonging to the technical field mentioned here with which, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member can be kept in the rest position in a simple way.
  • The solution by which the object is achieved is defined by the ski brake being arranged on the carriage, whereby, in the downhill position, the ski brake together with the carriage has been pushed into the forward position and the first element and the second element are at a distance from one another and, in the at least one climbing position, the ski brake together with the carriage has been pushed into the rearward position, whereby the first holding element and the second holding element can interact.
  • This has the advantage that, in the downhill position, the braking member can be released in a simple way and that, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member can be kept in the rest position in a simple way. Correspondingly, an automatic heel unit with this functionality can be produced in a simple and low-cost form.
  • In the case of an automatic heel unit according to the solution by which the object of the further invention is achieved, the first and/or the second element of the holding mechanism is advantageously formed elastically or movably, so that, in the at least one climbing position, the braking member can be transferred from the braking position into the rest position, the first and the second element of the holding mechanism being able to snap into one another, whereby the braking member can be kept in the rest position by the interaction of the first and second elements of the holding mechanism. In this case, the first and second elements of the holding mechanism are preferably formed in such a way that a transfer of the automatic heel unit into the downhill position and corresponding displacement of the carriage into the forward position has the effect that the interaction of the first and second elements of the holding mechanism is suspended, whereby the braking member is released and can go over into the braking position. This has the advantage that optimum functionality of the ski brake can be ensured. As an alternative to this, however, there is also the possibility that the elements of the holding mechanism are differently formed.
  • A third invention relates to an automatic heel unit for a ski binding, in particular a ski-touring binding, with a base part for mounting the automatic heel unit on the upper side of a ski and a carriage mounted on the base part displaceably in the longitudinal direction, on which carriage there is provided a sole holder with a holding means for holding a ski boot sole in the heel region, wherein an adjusting lever that is pivotably mounted on the automatic heel unit and can be actuated by a user for adjusting the automatic heel unit between a downhill position and at least one climbing position is present, and the adjusting lever is in a locking position in the downhill position and in a release position, pivoted with respect to the locking position, in the at least one climbing position, wherein, in the downhill position, the carriage has been displaced together with the sole holder into a forward position with respect to the base part in such a way that the holding means can interact with the heel region of a ski boot held in the binding in such a way that the heel region of the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position and, in the at least one climbing position, the carriage has been displaced together with the sole holder into a rearward position with respect to the base part in such a way that a heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released.
  • The object of this third invention is to provide a safety automatic heel unit belonging to the technical field mentioned at the beginning that is convenient to handle while being of a light and simple structural design.
  • The solution by which this object is achieved is defined by the adjusting lever of the automatic heel unit being mounted in a first bearing on the carriage and in a second bearing on the base part, the first bearing being arranged on the carriage in a region of the length in front of the sole holder.
  • Here and hereafter, reference is made for orientation to a ski on which the automatic heel unit is mounted in the way intended. In particular, in this case a mounting area of the base part or of a baseplate of the base part is fastened on the surface of the ski parallel to an upper side of the ski. A longitudinal direction of the base part is in this case aligned parallel to a longitudinal direction of the ski, a direction toward the tip of the ski, i.e. in the traveling direction of the ski, being referred to as “front” and a direction toward the end of the ski being referred to as “rear”. In the mounted state, the automatic heel unit is also aligned in such a way that the holding means of the sole holder is directed toward the front. On account of the coplanar arrangement in the mounted state, an alignment perpendicular to the mounting area of the base part is also referred to as a direction perpendicular to the ski. Unless otherwise mentioned, a direction parallel to the mounting area or the upper side of the ski and largely perpendicular to the longitudinal direction of the base part is referred to as the transverse direction or transversely to the longitudinal direction of the ski. It also goes without saying that, in the case of the relevant type of ski-touring bindings, the distance from the front jaw at which the automatic heel unit must be mounted on the ski is dictated by the length of a ski boot sole, within the limits of adjustability of the automatic heel unit. The climbing position, already mentioned at the beginning, in which a heel of the ski boot is released, consequently always relates to the downhill position, in which the heel of the ski boot can be locked in the same mounting position of the automatic heel unit.
  • According to the invention, the adjusting lever is mounted on the automatic heel unit at at least two bearing points, on the one hand in a first bearing on the carriage that is displaceable with respect to the base part and on the other hand in a second bearing on the base part. On account of the mounting in two bearings on the two mutually displaceable parts of the automatic heel unit, the adjusting lever is suitable for making a displacement of the carriage with respect to the base part possible when the adjusting lever on the automatic heel unit is pivoted, for example by a user.
  • Here, the bearings may generally be for example both linear bearings for guiding a straight or curved movement of the adjusting lever and radial bearings for guided rotation or comprise a combination of the aforementioned types of bearing. In particular, the bearings may be configured as rolling bearings or sliding bearings, it being possible for actual configurations to comprise, for example, grooves with studs guided therein as well as axles or stub axles. A person skilled in the art can draw here from a multitude of known bearings and bearing systems.
  • The fact that, according to the invention, the first bearing is arranged in front of the sole holder means that the adjusting lever is mounted and supported on the automatic heel unit in a region of the length in which a heel region of the ski boot is arranged when it is lowered toward the ski or locked in the binding. A force acting on the adjusting lever in this region of the length can consequently be removed optimally, i.e. with smallest possible leverages and without additional support, directly via the first bearing to the automatic heel unit and via the latter to the ski. In particular, in the case where the first bearing comprises a rotary bearing, the adjusting lever may be pivoted about a first geometrical axis of rotation, defined by the rotary bearing, in such a way that it is arranged in a righted state in front of the sole holder below a heel region of a ski boot held in the binding. In the case of a displacing guide, the adjusting lever may be displaced into the front region of the carriage and in the case of a combination bearing displaced and righted.
  • The adjusting lever can consequently be brought into a position in front of the sole holder where it can interact with a ski boot held in the binding in a further function, for example as a climbing aid to support a heel region of the ski boot. In particular, according to the invention, the first bearing is in this case located in a region of the length in which the greatest loading of the adjusting lever by the ski boot can be expected.
  • The arrangement according to the invention of the adjusting lever with a first bearing on the carriage in front of the sole holder consequently makes multipurpose use of the adjusting lever possible, whereby the automatic heel unit can be formed in a structurally simple and light way. Moreover, removal of forces acting on the adjusting lever is optimized by the arrangement according to the invention, by the adjusting lever being supported in that region of the length in which the greatest forces directed toward the ski are to be expected when climbing with the heel of the ski boot released.
  • In a preferred embodiment, the holding means of the heel jaw are formed as two pins that protrude from a front end face of the sole holder, formed as an abutting area, forward in the direction of a front jaw of the binding. For locking the ski boot, the pins engage in corresponding clearances, which are typically formed on a heel-side end face of the ski boot sole. The pins thereby engage in corresponding detent notches of the clearances.
  • In order to ensure that even demanding requirements for the safety of relevant ski bindings are met, the sole holder of the automatic heel unit is preferably provided with mechanisms for safety release that make possible both a forward release (in the case of loading of the ski boot toward the ski tip) and a sideways release (in the case of loading of the ski boot transversely to the longitudinal direction of the ski).
  • In order to ensure a safety release in the forward direction, in a preferred embodiment the pins are respectively mounted on the sole holder rotatably about vertical axes that are largely perpendicular to the ski. For the engagement in the detent notches of the clearances on the ski boot, the pins are subjected to a correspondingly directed spring force, typically inward toward a center vertical plane of the ski. If forwardly directed forces acting on the ski boot exceed a certain threshold value, this spring force is overcome and the pins slide out of the detent notches, whereby the heel of the boot is released (forward release). In order to achieve improved force transfer and to simplify the structural design of the sole holder, in the case of the present automatic heel unit the pins are mounted in a front region at the abutting area of the sole holder. In this case, rocker arms that are rigidly connected to the pins and extend from the mountings into the sole holder in the rearward direction are acted upon by a wedge-shaped thrust piece with a spring force in the forward direction and are thus forced apart symmetrically. The pins mounted oppositely with respect to the mountings of the rocker arms and extending in the forward direction are consequently subjected to the spring force toward a central vertical plane of the ski. Consequently, a releasing force for the forward release can be provided in a simple way by means of the compression spring, a prestressing of the compression spring, that can be set for example by means of an adjusting device, determining the releasing force. This particularly simple mechanism for providing the releasing force is obtained, inter alia, by the mounting of the pins in the front region of the sole holder. With preference, the pins are also inclined slightly in the inward direction and in the downward direction toward the ski with respect to a central vertical plane of the ski, whereby improved securement of the ski boot in the heel region is achieved.
  • In order to ensure a sideways release of the automatic heel unit, the entire sole holder is advantageously mounted on the carriage rotatably with respect to a vertical axis that is largely perpendicular to the ski. For this purpose, the carriage has a largely circular-cylindrical base, on which the sole holder is rotatably mounted with a corresponding bearing sleeve. The base has circumferentially in a rear region a flattened portion, against which a thrust piece of the sole holder subjected to a spring force abuts. In order to deflect the sole holder sideways in the case of a sideways release to release the heel of the boot, the thrust piece must be displaced in the rearward direction against the spring force on account of the flattened portion on the base. If then a sufficiently great lateral force acts on the heel of the ski boot, the sole holder is taken along on account of the engagement of the holding means and is deflected laterally against the releasing force. With sufficiently further deflection, the holding means become disengaged from the ski boot sole and the heel region is released (sideways release). The compression spring may advantageously be provided with a prestressing by means of a setting device for setting the required releasing force.
  • As is customary in the case of the relevant type of ski-touring bindings, the automatic heel unit according to the invention can be mounted on a ski independently of a front jaw. In particular, the locking and the release of the heel of the ski boot, which is provided by the automatic heel unit in an advantageous way, is largely independent of the actual configuration of the front jaw. The automatic heel unit can consequently also be used in conjunction with known front jaws of the Dynafit-like binding systems described at the beginning. However, it is also conceivable to use the automatic heel unit in conjunction with other binding systems in which a heel of a ski boot that can be lifted off from the ski is achieved for example by a boot that is elastically formed in the ball region and is fixed to the front jaw in the toe/ball region (as is known for example also in the case of Telemark bindings). However, it is generally recommendable to use the automatic heel unit in conjunction with a front jaw made to match it, in order to ensure optimum functionality of the binding system as a whole. The applicant therefore also offers on the market a Safety-Pin-System (SPS) binding system, which comprises an automatic heel unit according to the invention in conjunction with a front jaw not described in any more detail here.
  • With preference, the base part of the automatic heel unit comprises a baseplate for mounting on the ski and an intermediate piece, the intermediate piece being supported on the base part displaceably with respect to the baseplate rearwardly in the longitudinal direction against a restoring force. For this purpose, the intermediate piece has for example a spindle drive arranged in the longitudinal direction with a screw thread portion that engages in a toothing formed correspondingly on the baseplate or in a (partial) thread. The spindle drive is in this case mounted longitudinally displaceably in a guided manner on the intermediate piece, a resilient element, preferably a helical spring, being arranged between the screw thread portion and the intermediate piece (advantageously in front of the screw thread) for producing the restoring force (if arranged in front of the screw thread, said spring can be compressively loaded).
  • The spindle drive achieves the effect on the one hand that an absolute longitudinal position of the intermediate piece with respect to the baseplate fixed to the ski can be set. If the carriage is coupled to the intermediate piece with respect to a longitudinal displacement, a longitudinal position of the sole holder can thus be adapted to a ski boot. On the other hand, the intermediate piece and any parts of the automatic heel unit that may be coupled thereto can yield with respect to the spindle drive (and consequently also with respect to the baseplate) under loading in the rearward direction against the restoring force on account of the resilient support of the intermediate piece.
  • With preference, in the downhill position, the carriage is therefore coupled largely rigidly to the intermediate piece, in order by means of the intermediate piece to support the carriage on the baseplate displaceably in the rearward direction, likewise against the restoring force. When there is a rearwardly directed force from the heel of the ski boot on the sole holder, for example in the case of flexing of the ski, the sole holder can thus yield resiliently in the rearward direction together with the carriage. This is advantageously achieved by the second bearing being formed on the intermediate piece, whereby the carriage can interact with the intermediate piece via the adjusting lever. If for example the bearings and the adjusting lever are suitably formed and arranged, it is possible by the alignment of the adjusting lever in the locking position to achieve the effect that the carriage is coupled to the intermediate piece largely rigidly with respect to a longitudinal displacement in the rearward direction (for example dead-center position). With preference, latching devices that engage the adjusting lever in the locking position, for example on the intermediate piece, and thereby ensure the largely rigid coupling, are additionally provided.
  • The resilient support of the sole holder on the base part fixed to the ski achieves the effect that, unlike known automatic heel units of relevant binding systems, a rear end face of the ski boot sole can abut against an abutting area of the sole holder arranged in front in the longitudinal direction when the ski boot is locked in the downhill position. This is not possible in the case of conventional bindings of the relevant type, since the sole holder is rigidly connected to the ski and, for example in the case of flexing of the ski, damage to the heel jaw or blocking of the safety release must be expected. The fact that the boot sole abuts against the abutting area means that both a sideways safety release and a forward safety release of the sole holder can be controlled better. In particular, for this purpose the abutting area may for example have a bi-convex curvature, so that in the case of both types of safety release the heel-side end face of the sole can roll or slide on the abutting area. The fact that the boot sole can reach as far as the abutting area means that the holding means can be formed in a more compact manner, i.e. for example shorter in the longitudinal direction, and consequently lighter, since no distance from the boot sole has to be bridged.
  • If the second bearing is formed fixedly on the base part and not on a resiliently supported intermediate piece, to ensure resilient yielding of the sole holder in the event of flexing of the ski it would be necessary for example for one of the two bearings to be formed in such a way that either the carriage can yield with respect to the adjusting lever or the carriage together with the adjusting lever can yield with respect to the base part resiliently in the rearward direction. While such a structural design may be advantageous, depending on the requirements, the resultant structural design of the resilient bearing is complex.
  • In a preferred embodiment, the first bearing is formed as a standard rotary bearing that defines a first geometrical axis of rotation of the adjusting lever arranged parallel to the upper side of the ski and transversely to the longitudinal direction of the ski. The adjusting lever can consequently be pivoted about the first axis of rotation forwardly in the longitudinal direction of the ski, and consequently raised up from a pivoted position largely parallel to the ski, or rearwardly in the longitudinal direction of the ski, and for example lowered onto the ski. The fact that the adjusting lever is mounted on the carriage in a standard rotary bearing means that, on account of the single rotational degree of freedom of the bearing, the operative connection of the adjusting lever to the carriage is defined with respect to a longitudinal displacement of the carriage, i.e. a translation in the longitudinal direction. A displacement of that region of the adjusting lever in which the first bearing point is arranged in the longitudinal direction consequently also results in a displacement of the carriage.
  • In particular, the second bearing may be formed in such a way that, in the downhill position, it is arranged in a region of the length at the holding means of the sole holder. The fact that, in the downhill position, the first bearing is provided in front of the sole holder and the second bearing is provided in the region of the length of the holding means, i.e. in a region of the length at a front end of the sole holder, means that the two bearings are arranged one behind the other in the longitudinal direction in the downhill position. A transfer of longitudinal forces on the carriage to the base part can consequently take place via the adjusting lever with lowest possible transverse forces. In particular, in the locking position the adjusting lever may for this purpose be arranged largely parallel to the ski, in order to transfer any longitudinal forces from the carriage largely in its longitudinal direction optimally to the base part or the intermediate piece of the base part.
  • The automatic heel unit is advantageously formed in such a way that, in every position of the automatic heel unit, the first geometrical axis of rotation, defined by the bearing, is arranged at the same height, i.e. the same height over a surface of the ski, with respect to a direction perpendicular to the ski. Consequently, a displacing guide that ensures the longitudinal displaceability of the carriage with respect to the base part can be formed in a simple way likewise parallel to the surface of the ski or parallel to the mounting area of the base part, for example as a simple rail.
  • In order to ensure a defined displacement of the carriage with respect to the base part when adjusting the automatic heel unit from the downhill position into the climbing position or vice versa, the second bearing preferably comprises a displacing guide on which the adjusting lever is mounted displaceably and in a guided manner with respect to the base part, the displacing guide providing in particular a guided displacement in the direction largely perpendicular to the ski. This ensures that, in the case of a first bearing formed as a standard rotary bearing, when there is a displacement of the carriage in the rearward direction the adjusting lever in the second bearing can yield in the upward direction in the displacing guide. Conversely, when there is an actuation of the adjusting lever, i.e. the pivoted position of the adjusting lever is changed by a user, the adjusting lever is supported on the second bearing by means of the second bearing point in such a way that a force in the longitudinal direction is exerted on the carriage by means of the first bearing, via the first bearing point at a distance from the second bearing point, resulting in a displacement of the carriage.
  • If the adjusting lever is pivoted with respect to the heel jaw, there is firstly a rotation about the first geometrical axis of rotation of the first rotary bearing. Superposed on the rotation is a translation in the displacing guide of the second bearing. The adjusting lever is thereby also rotated in the displacing guide at its second bearing point about a second geometrical axis of rotation. Consequently, when there is pivoting of the adjusting lever, this produces the overall effect of a rotation about a geometrical pivoting axis at the time of the adjusting lever that moves in a translatory manner on a geometrical path with respect to the automatic heel unit. Depending on how the bearings are formed, the geometrical path may in this case be straight or curved. Both the geometrical pivoting axis at the time and the geometrical path are virtual and have no structural elements.
  • In particular, the movement of the adjusting lever during the pivoting is completely defined overall with respect to the base part on account of the mounting in the two bearings and the longitudinal displaceability of the carriage, i.e. on account of the displacing guide of the base part, on which the carriage is guided in a longitudinally displaceable manner.
  • In principle, it is also conceivable to form a displacing guide in the first bearing and to form the second bearing as a standard rotary bearing. Such a structural design however requires a greater overall height of the carriage, since a displacement perpendicularly to the ski of the first geometrical axis of rotation requires that the displacing guide is correspondingly dimensioned in the direction perpendicular to the ski. Furthermore, under some circumstances it is also advantageous to form both bearings as combined displacing guides and rotary bearings, though such a structural design is more complex. Instead of displacing guides, articulated mechanisms that make a translation of one of the geometrical axes of rotation possible could also be provided. However, articulated mechanisms are generally of a more complex structural design and more susceptible to mechanical damage.
  • The second bearing advantageously comprises as a displacing guide a slotted link, in which the adjusting lever is guided displaceably by a slider and rotatably about a second geometrical axis of rotation. The slotted link has for example a slit, fillet or groove, in/on which a slider is positively guided on both sides. A movement of the slotted link that is not directed into the tangential direction at the time of the guideway consequently results in a movement of the slider, and vice versa. A transfer function of the slotted link is in this case determined by the shape of the slit, fillet or groove and can be adapted within wide limits to the actual requirements (for example the geometry of the adjusting lever, carriage, base part, etc.). In particular, the slotted link may guide the slider for example on a path that is straight or curved in a certain portion or portions. If the slider is correspondingly formed, such as for example as stub axles, it may be freely rotatable within the slotted link, the slider defining the second geometrical axis of rotation. The slider is preferably provided largely fixedly on the adjusting lever and thus forms the second bearing point of the adjusting lever. The slotted link consequently makes a displaceability of the adjusting lever in the second bearing possible and allows a rotation about the second geometrical axis of rotation.
  • With preference, the slotted link comprises a slot and the slider has a transverse pin, the transverse pin being mounted on the adjusting lever and guided displaceably in the slot. The slot in this case preferably forms a passage in the transverse direction through the base part or, if the second bearing is formed on the intermediate piece, through the intermediate piece, so that the transverse pin can pass through the slot and protrude to both sides of the intermediate piece with respect to a longitudinal direction of the ski. In this way, the intermediate piece can be arranged centrally on the baseplate and the adjusting lever can be formed on both sides of the intermediate piece, preferably largely symmetrically (see for example above: U-shaped adjusting lever). The transverse pin is in this case advantageously mounted on the adjusting lever on both sides of the intermediate piece, whereby the forces acting are likewise distributed symmetrically. If, on the other hand, the slotted link is formed as a groove, the adjusting lever advantageously has instead of a continuous transverse pin short stub axles, which engage in the groove and thus guide the adjusting lever. However, stub axles can slide out of the groove if the adjusting lever is deformed as a result of greater loads, for which reason a continuous transverse pin guided in a slot should generally be preferable.
  • In order to ensure the aforementioned largely rigid coupling of the carriage to the base part or to the intermediate piece in the downhill position of the automatic heel unit, the slotted link advantageously comprises a latching position, in which the slider is engaged in the downhill position. In the case of a slotted link formed as a slot, for this purpose the slot is preferably formed in an L-shaped manner, a shorter arm of the L shape serving as a latching position. For this purpose, the shorter arm is preferably formed such that it is inclined in the longitudinal direction, from the connection to the longer arm rearward toward the ski. This achieves the effect that, when there is a force on the adjusting lever rearwardly in the longitudinal direction, the slider is pressed into the latching position and toward the ski, whereby on the one hand the engagement is ensured and on the other hand the adjusting lever is forced toward the ski by means of the slider. However, depending on how the slider is formed, the latching position may also be formed as a simple notch or recess, in which the slider engages. Moreover, in a way analogous to the situation described above, an L shape may also be advantageous in the case of a slotted link formed as a groove.
  • In order, inter alia, to achieve the aforementioned largely rigid coupling of the carriage to the base part or the intermediate piece of the base part with the least possible structural complexity and good reliability, in the locking position the adjusting lever is preferably arranged largely parallel to the ski and in the at least one release position it is arranged such that it is righted with respect to the ski, i.e. in particular also pivoted with respect to the locking position.
  • The arrangement parallel to the ski allows longitudinal forces to be transferred from the front, first bearing via the adjusting lever to the second bearing, arranged further to the rear, with lowest possible transverse forces. The arrangement of the adjusting lever is advantageous in particular whenever the two bearings are arranged on the automatic heel unit in the way described above one behind the other in the longitudinal direction. With preference, in the locking position, the adjusting lever is lowered in the rearward direction onto the ski, so that, in the downhill position of the automatic heel unit, the adjusting lever rests largely on the ski and so in downhill skiing has only a small area of attack for mechanical damage.
  • In the at least one release position, the adjusting lever is in this case righted, whereby the carriage has been displaced in the rearward direction and the automatic heel unit is in a righted position on account of the way in which according to the invention the adjusting lever is mounted on two bearings. The fact that the pivoted position of the adjusting lever in the release position and the locking position differs means that, as already mentioned above, the automatic heel unit can be brought from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position, and vice versa, by simple pivoting of the adjusting lever by the user.
  • In order to prevent complete lowering of the heel region of the ski boot in the at least one climbing position onto the components of the automatic heel unit that are arranged in front of the sole holder, the adjusting lever advantageously has a first support for the heel region, which in the release position of the adjusting lever has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region. The first support is in this case formed and arranged on the adjusting lever in such a way that it does not interact with the ski boot in the locking position of the adjusting lever, and only in the release position prevents further lowering of the ski boot to the height of the support. The support consequently forms a walking step of the automatic heel unit for use on flat or only slightly inclined terrain. This prevents the adjusting lever from being damaged by the boot via the support in the downhill position. In variants, the first support may for example also be formed on the carriage below the heel region, in this case the heel region preferably not resting on the support in the downhill position with the ski boot locked.
  • Apart from the at least one climbing position, the automatic heel unit advantageously has a further climbing position, in which the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released and in which the adjusting lever has been pivoted into a further release position, assigned to the further climbing position. The various release positions preferably differ by a pivoting angle that a longitudinal axis of the adjusting lever forms with a longitudinal center axis of the ski. The further release positions allow the adjusting lever to be brought into further functional positions by the user in a simple way. The automatic heel unit may, however, also have only one climbing position, in which the heel region of the ski boot is released.
  • In the case of a further advantageous embodiment of the automatic heel unit, the adjusting lever comprises at a supporting distance from the first bearing a further support for the heel region of the ski boot that has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region, largely above the first bearing in the direction perpendicular to the ski, in the further release position assigned to the further climbing position, so that lowering of the heel region toward the ski is limited by the support at a supporting distance from the first bearing. The further supports consequently form climbing steps of the automatic heel unit for convenient use on steep terrain. The further support consequently performs a supporting function in the manner of known climbing aids in the case of ski-touring bindings, which can be activated by the user when climbing on steep terrain and prevents complete lowering of the heel region toward the ski.
  • The automatic heel unit according to the invention may also have additional supports at various supporting distances from the first bearing that allow support of the heel region of the ski boot at various supporting distances. For this purpose, each support is preferably assigned a release position of the adjusting lever, in which the respectively associated support has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region. In this case, one of the climbing positions of the automatic heel unit corresponds to each release position of the adjusting lever.
  • In order to fix the adjusting lever releasably in the at least one or more release position(s), the automatic heel unit preferably has a latching device, which engages the adjusting lever in the various release positions. For this purpose, a latching position is advantageously formed and arranged directly on the carriage in such a way that the adjusting lever is engaged in the latching position by means of the slider, in particular by means of the slider formed as a transverse pin, when the adjusting lever is in the at least one release position. The latching position may in this case be formed as a simple transverse recess or transverse notch, in which the transverse pin engages in the at least one release position. In the case of at least one or more further release position(s), on the carriage there is or are preferably at least one or more further latching position(s), in which the adjusting lever is engaged by means of the slider in the at least one or more further release position(s).
  • In order to secure the engagement by means of the transverse pin, the transverse pin may be mounted in short slots on the adjusting lever, in which the transverse pin is displaceable transversely to its longitudinal direction. By means of leg springs supported on the adjusting lever, the transverse pin can in this case be subjected to a spring force in the direction of the detent recesses, so that the pin securely engages in the detent recesses when the adjusting lever is pivoted into the corresponding release position.
  • In the case of ski-touring bindings with a pivotable ski boot carrier, the binding jaws are fastened on the ski boot carrier and hold the ski boot independently of whether the binding is in a climbing position or a downhill position. In the case of ski-touring bindings of the present technical field, on the other hand, the heel region of the ski boot is released from the automatic heel unit for climbing. This often entails the problem of suitably locking and releasing further binding components, such as for example a ski brake or a crampon, so that they are respectively in an activated or deactivated state in the climbing position, while their function is intended to be deactivated or activated in the downhill position. Also conceivable is an actuation of components of the ski in dependence on the state of the automatic heel unit, such as for example a stiffness adjustment according to whether the binding is in a climbing position or a downhill position.
  • To solve this problem, the automatic heel unit according to the invention therefore preferably has an actuating mechanism with an actuating element for a further component, in particular of the automatic heel unit but also of the ski binding or of the ski, the actuating mechanism being formed and coupled to the adjusting lever, in particular to the slider, in such a way that the actuating element is extended into an activated position and retracted into a deactivated position in dependence on a position of the pivoting, lever. The pivoted position of the adjusting lever at a given time, and consequently the state of the automatic heel unit at a given time, can be seen from the slider in a simple way. The fact that the actuating element is coupled to the slider allows it to be brought into different positions by the slider according to the respectively current pivoted position of the adjusting lever. A number of activated positions, in which the actuating element is for example extended to differing amounts, is also conceivable here.
  • A particularly simple configuration of the actuating mechanism is obtained if the actuating element is displaceably guided on the base part or the intermediate piece, for example in the longitudinal direction. In this case, the actuating element itself may for example have a displacing guide in the form of a groove or a slot, in which the slider additionally engages. On account of the relative inclination, the displacing guide of the actuating element experiences a displacement as a result of a displacement of the slider in the slotted link. Suitable arrangement of the groove or the slot of the actuating element with respect to the guideway of the slotted link consequently allows the actuating element to be displaced in the longitudinal direction in the dependence on the displaced position of the slider.
  • Overall, in this case the adjusting lever, as a multifunctional element, performs not only the adjusting function of the automatic heel unit and a possibly provided function as a climbing aid, but also a function for locking or actuating a further component, such as for example a ski brake. The multipurpose use of the adjusting lever consequently allows the structural design of the automatic heel unit to be simplified further and also allows it to be made lighter.
  • With preference, the actuating element in this case comprises a catch or a slide, which is in the deactivated position in the locking position of the adjusting lever and in the activated position in the release position of the adjusting lever. With preference, in the activated position the catch or slide is extended in the forward direction in such a way that it can interact with the further component, such as for example a ski brake, which is arranged in front of the automatic heel unit, for example for locking. The catch may in this case be formed in such a way that, in the activated position it can be elastically deflected and thus makes possible a snapping-in engagement, for example of an actuating member of the further component. In the deactivated position, the catch or slide is preferably withdrawn into the automatic heel unit, so that no interaction with the further component can take place. Depending on the nature of the further component to be actuated, the activated and deactivated positions may however also be changed over, i.e. the catch is retracted in the activated position and extended in the deactivated position, so that for example a locking effect is obtained by the extended catch or slide in the downhill position.
  • In a preferred embodiment, a ski brake with a braking member is provided as a further component on the automatic heel unit, and is preferably arranged in front of the automatic heel unit in the longitudinal direction of the ski, preferably on the base part, in particular on a baseplate of the base part. In this case, the braking member is movable between a braking position, in which the braking member projects beyond the underside of the ski, and a rest position, the braking member being assigned an actuating member, which is actuated in such a way that the braking member goes over from the braking position into the rest position when the heel region of the ski boot is lowered toward the ski when stepping into the binding. In this case, the actuating member has a detent clearance, in which the actuating element of the actuating mechanism can engage in the activated position and can thus block the actuating member of the ski brake. In this way it is ensured that the ski brake can be locked in the rest position in the at least one or more climbing position(s) of the automatic heel unit, and thus does not hinder climbing when the heel of the ski boot is lifted off. In the downhill position, the actuating element is brought out of the detent clearance and the ski brake is thereby unlocked. If the ski boot is then released from the heel jaw on account of a safety release, the unlocked ski brake can go over into the braking position in the manner of known ski brakes.
  • Further advantageous embodiments and combinations of features of the invention emerge from the following detailed description and the patent claims in their entirety.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • In the drawings that are used to explain the exemplary embodiment:
  • FIGS. 1 a, b each show an oblique view of an automatic heel unit according to the invention in a downhill position;
  • FIGS. 2 a, b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit in a first climbing position;
  • FIGS. 3 a, b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit in a second climbing position;
  • FIGS. 4 a, b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit in a third climbing position;
  • FIG. 5 shows an exploded representation of the automatic heel unit;
  • FIGS. 6 a, b show two central cross sections in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit;
  • FIG. 7 shows a frontal view of the automatic heel unit, seen from the front;
  • FIGS. 8 a, b show two further cross sections of the automatic heel unit;
  • FIGS. 9 a-e show central cross sections in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit together with a ski boot;
  • FIGS. 10 a-d show cross sections in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit together with a ski boot;
  • FIG. 11 shows an oblique view of a further automatic heel unit according to the invention for a ski-touring binding in a climbing position, with the adjusting lever in a release position;
  • FIG. 12 shows an oblique view of the automatic heel unit in the downhill position, with the adjusting lever in the locking position, the sole holder being shown without a housing;
  • FIG. 13 shows an exploded representation of the automatic heel unit;
  • FIG. 14 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit in the downhill position, with the adjusting lever in the locking position, with a locked ski boot in the ski-touring binding;
  • FIG. 15 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit in a first climbing position (first walking step), with the adjusting lever in a first release position;
  • FIG. 16 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit in a further climbing position (second walking step with climbing aid function), with the adjusting lever in a further, second release position;
  • FIG. 17 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit in the downhill position, with the adjusting lever in the locking position, without a ski boot in the ski-touring binding;
  • FIG. 18 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction through a further embodiment of a catch of the actuating device and through a further embodiment of the ski brake (substantially without further parts of the automatic heel unit) and
  • FIGS. 19 a, b show two plan views of a further automatic heel unit according to the invention, in which the heel holder is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski in the downhill position and is turned at a right angle to the longitudinal direction of the ski about an axis substantially perpendicular to the ski in the at least one climbing position.
  • In principle, the same parts are provided with the same designations in the figures.
  • WAYS OF IMPLEMENTING THE INVENTION
  • FIGS. 1 a and 1 b each show an oblique view of an automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention for a ski-touring binding. This automatic heel unit 11 may be used together with an automatic front unit for a ski-touring binding. In the case of such a ski-touring binding, in its toe region, a ski boot is mounted on the automatic front unit pivotably about an axis aligned horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. Various such automatic front units are obtainable on the market. Since such an automatic front unit is not part of the present invention, it is not shown here.
  • In FIG. 1 a, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown from obliquely the front, while in FIG. 1 b it is shown from obliquely the rear. In both figures, the automatic heel unit 11 is in a downhill position and is shown mounted on a surface 501 of a ski 500. To provide an overview, however, not the entire ski 500 is shown, but only a rectangular, board-like detail of the ski 500 in the region of the automatic heel unit 11. The orientation of the automatic heel unit 11 is defined by how it is mounted on the ski 500. Thus, the automatic heel unit 11 is mounted on the surface 501 of the ski 500. Since this surface 501 is aligned in the upward direction, upward and downward are also defined for the automatic heel unit 11. Because the automatic heel unit 11 is part of a ski binding and can hold a heel 601 of a ski boot 600 (not shown here), the designations front and rear are also defined in the case of the automatic heel unit 11. They respectively mean in the direction of the ski tip and in the direction of the end of the ski 500.
  • The additional representation of the ski 500 makes the structure and operating mode of the automatic heel unit 11 easier to understand. Thus, the automatic heel unit 11 comprises a base element 12, which has an elongated, plate-like, substantially rectangular form with a first and a second main area 300.1, 300.2 (see FIG. 5). This base element 12 is aligned with its longitudinal axis parallel to a longitudinal axis of the ski 500, with the first main area 300.1 mounted facing downward toward the surface 501 of the ski 500. Consequently, a second main area 300.2 of the base element 12 is facing upward. Along both longitudinal edges of the base element 12, guide rails 302.1, 302.2 run in an upper region of the base element. They face outward in a plane aligned parallel to the second main area 300.2. That is to say that they are aligned sideways from the ski. On the guide rails 302.1, 302.2 of the base element 12, a carriage 13 is mounted displaceably in the longitudinal direction. For this purpose, on its longitudinal edges the carriage 13 has guide grooves, with which it reaches around the guide rails 302.1, 302.1 on both sides of the base element 12.
  • In a rear region of the carriage 13, arranged on the carriage 13 is a heel holder 14, which faces upward in a substantially block-like manner. In the present exemplary embodiment, this heel holder 14 is produced in one piece together with the carriage 13. However, there is also the possibility that, in a variant, the heel holder 14 and the carriage 13 are produced as separate units.
  • In a front region of the heel holder 14, two levers 15.1, 15.2 are mounted in vertical, lateral notches. These levers 15.1, 15.2 are elongated and aligned substantially vertically. Both levers 15.1, 15.2 are each mounted in a middle region on the heel holder 14 pivotably about an axis 16.1, 16.2 aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. Correspondingly, the two levers 15.1, 15.2 can be pivoted approximately about these axes 16.1, 16.2 in the transverse direction of the ski. In an upper region, both levers 15.1, 15.2 each have a pin 17.1, 17.2, pointing in the longitudinal direction of the ski. By pivoting the levers 15.1, 15.2, these pins 17.1, 17.2 can be moved substantially horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. For example, in this way the two pins 17.1, 17.2 can be moved toward one another or moved away from one another.
  • The two pins 17.1, 17.2 serve the purpose of arresting the ski boot 600 in its heel region in a position lowered toward the ski 500 when the automatic heel unit 11 is in the downhill position. For this purpose, the ski boot 600 should have in its heel region two clearances for interacting with the two pins 17.1, 17.2. These clearances should be open in the downward direction, in order that, when there is a safety release in the forward direction, the ski boot 600 can be moved away from the pins 17.1, 17.2 in the upward direction. Moreover, the two clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 should each have a detent recess, in which the pins 17.1, 17.2 can engage for arresting the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. In this case, the arresting of the ski boot 600 is achieved by the two pins 17.1, 17.2 being pressed toward one another by a force, whereby they hold one another in the corresponding detent recess. For a safety release in the forward direction, this force must be overcome, by the two pins 17.1, 17.2 being pressed apart until the ski boot 600 can be moved away from the pins 17.1, 17.2 in the upward direction. Corresponding ski boots 600 are obtainable on the market.
  • The automatic heel unit 11 comprises an adjusting lever 18, which is formed substantially in a horseshoe-shaped manner. At both its free ends, this adjusting lever 18 is mounted on a metal plate 20 pivotably about an axis 19 aligned horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. This metal plate 20 is arranged between the base element 12 and the carriage 13 and comprises in a rear region two lobes, which reach through lateral slits 37.1, 37.2 in the carriage 13 and are bent perpendicularly upward on both sides of the heel holder 14 (see FIG. 5 in this respect). The free ends of the adjusting lever 18 are mounted on these two lobes.
  • In FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown in the downhill position. In this position, the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted downward in the rearward direction and aligned pointing to the rear substantially in the horizontal direction. It consequently reaches around the heel holder 14 from the rear.
  • The automatic heel unit 11 further comprises a ski brake 21. The ski brake 21 has two arms 22.1, 22.2, which are each produced substantially from a metal bar. In FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, both arms 22.1, 22.2 are pointing with their free ends to the rear in the horizontal direction. Consequently, the ski brake 21 is in a rest position. The ski brake 21 can be activated by the free ends of the two arms 22.1, 22.2 being pivoted downward beyond an underside of the ski 500. This pivoting movement is made possible by the two arms 22.1, 22.2 being mounted in a front region in front of the heel holder 14 on the carriage 13 pivotably about a horizontal axis aligned in the transverse direction of the ski. For this purpose, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 each have a region bent at right angles toward the center of the ski, in which they are mounted rotatably about themselves between the carriage 13 and a supporting element 23. In the region of the center of the ski, however, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 do not go over into each other, but are in turn bent forward at right angles, where they are held together by a tread spur 24. If, consequently, the ski brake 21 is activated, the free ends of the arms 22.1, 22.2 are thus pivoted downward beyond the underside of the ski 500, while the tread spur 24 is lifted off upward from the rest of the automatic heel unit 11 (also see in this respect FIGS. 6 a and 6 b).
  • It can be seen in FIG. 1 b that the automatic heel unit 11 comprises in a lower, rear region a first adjusting screw 25, arranged between the base element 12 and the carriage 13. This adjusting screw 25 is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. It makes possible the setting of a forward position of the carriage 13 in the longitudinal direction of the ski in relation to the baseplate 12. It can also be seen in FIG. 1 b that the automatic heel unit 11 comprises a second adjusting screw 26, which is let into the heel holder 14 in vertical alignment behind the two levers 15.1, 15.2. The second adjusting screw 26 makes possible the setting of a force that is required in order to press the two pins 17.1, 17.2 apart when the two levers 15.1, 15.2 are pivoted with respect to one another. Correspondingly, this adjusting screw 26 makes possible a setting of the force that has to be overcome for a safety release in the forward direction.
  • As already represented in FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, FIGS. 2 a and 2 b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention for a ski-touring binding. The automatic heel unit 11 is in turn mounted on the ski 500. In FIG. 2 a, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown from obliquely the front, while in FIG. 2 b it is shown from obliquely the rear. By contrast with FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, in FIGS. 2 a and 2 b the automatic heel unit 11 is in a first climbing position. In this first climbing position, the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted slightly upward in the forward direction. Moreover, in comparison with the downhill position (see FIGS. 1 a and 1 b), the carriage 13 has been displaced in the rearward direction with respect to the base element 12. As a result, the heel holder 14 has also been displaced together with the pins 17.1, 17.2 in the rearward direction. In this rearwardly displaced position of the carriage 13, the pins 17.1, 17.2 have been moved out from the clearances in the heel 601 of a ski boot 600 (not shown here) held in the ski-touring binding. Correspondingly, as a result the ski boot 600 is now only held in the automatic front unit (not shown here) belonging to the ski-touring binding. Since, in its toe region, the ski boot 600 is mounted in the automatic front unit pivotably about a horizontal axis aligned in the transverse direction of the ski, as a result the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 can be lifted off from the automatic heel unit 11 and lowered again onto the automatic heel unit 11. In this case, the sole of the ski boot 600 can be lowered as far as the supporting element 23. In this way, a walking movement is made possible for the skier.
  • As already represented in FIGS. 1 a, 1 b, 2 a and 2 b, FIGS. 3 a and 3 b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention for a ski-touring binding, which is mounted on a ski 500. In FIG. 3 a, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown from obliquely the front, while in FIG. 3 b it is shown from obliquely the rear. As a difference from FIGS. 1 a, 1 b, 2 a and 2 b, the automatic heel unit 11 in FIGS. 3 a and 3 b is in a second climbing position. In this second climbing position, the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted slightly further upward in the forward direction than in the first climbing position (see FIGS. 2 a and 2 b). As already in the first climbing position, in comparison with the downhill position (see FIGS. 1 a and 1 b), the carriage 13 has been displaced in the rearward direction with respect to the base element 12. As a result, the heel holder 14 has also been displaced together with the pins 17.1, 17.2 in the rearward direction. Since, in its toe region, a ski boot 600 (not shown here) held in the ski-touring binding is mounted in the automatic front unit pivotably about a horizontal axis aligned in the transverse direction of the ski, as already in the first climbing position the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 can be lifted off from the automatic heel unit 11 and lowered again onto the automatic heel unit 11. As a difference from the first climbing position, however, in the second climbing position the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted into the path of movement of the ski boot 600. As a result, the sole of the ski boot 600 cannot be lowered as far as the supporting element 23, but can only be lowered as far as a first offset 27 arranged on the adjusting lever 18, this first offset 27 being arranged at a greater distance from the ski 500 than the supporting element 23. Correspondingly, in this second climbing position the first offset 27 of the adjusting lever 18 has the effect of forming a first climbing aid, which makes it possible even on a slope for the skier to walk comfortably up the incline.
  • As already represented in FIGS. 1 a, 1 b, 2 a, 2 b, 3 a and 3 b, FIGS. 4 a and 4 b each show an oblique view of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention for a ski-touring binding that is mounted on a ski 500. In FIG. 4 a, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown from obliquely the front, while in FIG. 4 b it is shown from obliquely the rear. By contrast with FIGS. 1 a, 1 b, 2 a, 2 b, 3 a and 3 b, the automatic heel unit 11 in FIGS. 4 a and 4 b is in a third climbing position. In this third climbing position, the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted even slightly further upward in the forward direction than in the second climbing position (see FIGS. 3 a and 3 b). As already in the first and second climbing positions, in comparison with the downhill position (see FIGS. 1 a and 1 b) the carriage 13 has been displaced in the rearward direction with respect to the base element 12. As a result, the heel holder 14 is also displaced together with the pins 17.1, 17.2 in the rearward direction. Since, in its toe region, a ski boot 600 (not shown here) held in the ski-touring binding is mounted in the automatic front unit pivotably about a horizontal axis aligned in the transverse direction of the ski, as already in the first climbing position the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 can be lifted off from the automatic heel unit 11 and lowered again onto the automatic heel unit 11. As a difference from the second climbing position, however, in the third climbing position the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted slightly further into the path of movement of the ski boot 600. As a result, the sole of the ski boot 600 cannot be lowered as far as the first offset 27 of the adjusting lever 18, but can only be lowered as far as a second offset 28 arranged on the adjusting lever 18, this second offset 28 being arranged at a greater distance from the ski 500 than the first offset 27. Correspondingly, in this third climbing position the second offset 28 of the adjusting lever 18 has the effect of forming a second climbing aid, which makes it possible even on a steeper slope than in the case of the first climbing aid for the skier to walk comfortably up the incline.
  • FIG. 5 shows an exploded representation of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention. The individual elements of the automatic heel unit 11 can correspondingly be easily seen. The view shows the automatic heel unit 11 in the same way as in FIGS. 1 b, 2 b, 3 b and 4 b from obliquely the rear. By analogy with FIGS. 1 b, 2 b, 3 b and 4 b, designations for upper, lower, rear, front and in the longitudinal direction relate to a ski 500 (not represented in FIG. 5) provided with the automatic heel unit 11.
  • As can be seen from FIG. 5, the base element 12 has four mounting openings 301.1, 301.2, 301.3, 301.4, which reach right through from its first main area 300.1 to its upper, second main area 300.2. These mounting openings 301.1, 301.2, 301.3, 301.4 are distributed over the main areas 300.1, 300.2 of the base element 12. One of the openings 301.1, 301.2, 301.3, 301.4 is respectively located on both sides in a front region and in a rear region of the base element 12. For mounting, a screw (not shown) is led through each of the openings 301.1, 301.2, 301.3, 301.4 and is screwed to the ski 500. In order to be able to countersink the screw heads in the base element 12, there are clearances in the second, upper main area 300.2 of the base element 12 at a rim of these openings 301.1, 301.2, 301.3, 301.4.
  • It can also be seen in FIG. 5 that in the middle of the second main area 300.2 of the base element 12 there is a clearance 303, which runs in the longitudinal direction of the base element 12 over the entire base element 12. This clearance 303 has a semicircular cross section, the rounding facing downward. In the front half of the base element 12, the clearance 303 is largely smooth on the inside. In the rear half, the clearance 303 has a threaded structure 304. This threaded structure 304 is aligned parallel to the longitudinal direction of the base element 12 and can receive a screw thread with a diameter corresponding to the diameter of the semicircular cross section of the clearance 303. The functions of this clearance 303 comprise on the one hand that of providing guidance for a longitudinal displacement of the carriage 13 on the base element 12 and on the other hand, as described further below, that of supporting the carriage 13 on the base element 12.
  • As already shown in FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, the base element 12 has on each side a guide rail 302.1, 302.2, both of which run in the longitudinal direction of the ski. The carriage 13 is mounted displaceably in the longitudinal direction of the ski on these two guide rails 302.1, 302.2. At the same time, it largely covers the second main area 300.2 of the base element 12. As can be seen here in FIG. 5, the carriage 13 has in its downwardly directed area, which is facing the second main area 300.2 of the base element 12, a clearance 29 running in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In a way similar to the clearance 303 in the base element 12, this clearance 29 has in a middle region and rear region a half-round cross section, though here the rounding is facing upward. The cross section of the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 is slightly smaller in the rearmost region of the clearance 29 than in the middle region of the clearance 29 (also see in this respect FIGS. 6 a and 6 b). A transition between the rearmost region and the middle region of the clearance 29 is step-like. By contrast with the clearance 303 in the base element 12, the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 also has a front region with a rectangular cross section. The transition from the front region to the middle region of the clearance 29 is likewise step-shaped. Otherwise, the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 is substantially smooth. At the front end of the carriage 13, the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 is delimited in the forward direction by a stop 45 (also see FIGS. 6 a and 6 b). This stop 45 has a half-round cross section and, facing downward, fits into the clearance 303 in the base element 12. In this stop 45 there is formed a circular opening, aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski.
  • When the carriage 13 is mounted on the two guide rails 302.1, 302.2 on the base element 12, the clearance 303 in the base element 12 and the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 run one over the other and together produce an opening between the base element 12 and the carriage 13 that is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. The first adjusting screw 25 is guided in this opening. For this purpose, the first adjusting screw 25 has a long shank with a circular cross section. In a middle region, the first adjusting screw 25 has a screw thread 30, which can interact with the threaded structure 304 of the clearance 303 of the base element 12. In an end region at the rear end of the first adjusting screw 25, the adjusting screw 25 has a smooth region, which has a smaller diameter than the screw thread 30. This end region fits into the opening between the carriage 13 and the base element 12 and can be turned from the rear, from outside. Correspondingly, the adjusting screw 25 can be screwed forward and back in the longitudinal direction of the ski from outside in the opening between the carriage 13 and the base element 12. As already mentioned, the clearance 29 in the carriage 13 is largely smooth, though in its rearmost region its cross section is slightly smaller than in its middle region. As a result, the opening between the carriage 13 and the base element 12 is smaller in the rear region of the carriage 13 than in the front region. To be more precise, the clearance 29 is so small in the rear region of the carriage 13 that the carriage 13 abuts with the rear region against the screw thread 30 of the first adjusting screw 25 and is stopped when it is moved forward on the base element 12. This correspondingly has the effect of forming a stop 46 (see FIGS. 6 a and 6 b), beyond which the carriage 13 cannot be moved in the forward direction. This stop 46 is adjustable in the longitudinal direction of the ski, since the first adjusting screw 25 can be screwed forward and back in the longitudinal direction of the ski between the base element 12 and the carriage 13.
  • As already in the end region of the adjusting screw 25, in a front region of the first adjusting screw 25 there is a smooth region with a circular cross section. However, the diameter of this front region is smaller than the diameter of the rear region of the first adjusting screw 25. An annular disk 31 is fitted onto this front region. Moreover, this front region is introduced from the rear into a spiral spring 32, which is arranged in the opening between the base element 12 and the carriage 13 such that it is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In this case, the disk 31 is supported in the rearward direction by the screw thread 30 of the first adjusting screw 25 and in the forward direction forms a stop for the spiral spring 32.
  • In the front region of the clearance 29 of the carriage 13, which has a rectangular cross section, an element 33 with a substantially rectangular cross section is guided in the longitudinal direction of the ski. This element 33 has an elongated form and is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In a front region, the element 33 has a stud 34, which is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski and has a round cross section. In the mounted state of the automatic heel unit 11, the stud 34 is mounted in the opening in the stop 45 at the front end of the carriage 13 (also see FIGS. 6 a and 6 b). In a downwardly directed area of the element 33 there is a clearance 35. This clearance 35 is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski and has a semicircular cross section. The width of the clearance 35 corresponds to the width of the clearance 303 in the base element. The clearance 35 reaches from the rear end of the element 33 into the vicinity of the front end of the element 33. In the forward direction, however, the clearance 35 is closed off by a stop 47. This stop 47 comprises a stud pointing into the clearance 35 horizontally in the rearward direction. The stud 34 of the element 33 that is aligned in the forward direction in the longitudinal direction of the ski is likewise arranged on this stop 47.
  • In the mounted state of the automatic heel unit 11, the spiral spring 32 is mounted in the opening formed by the clearance 303 in the base element 12 and the clearance 35 in the element 33 such that it is aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In this case, the stud pointing in the rearward direction into the clearance 35 of the element 33 protrudes into a front opening of the spiral spring 32. Correspondingly, the spiral spring 32 is arranged between the element 33 and the adjusting screw 25 (also see in this respect FIGS. 6 a and 6 b).
  • As already shown in FIGS. 1 a and 1 b, the metal plate 20 is mounted between the base element 12 and the carriage 13. As can be seen here in FIG. 5, the metal plate 20 has a middle region, which is aligned substantially parallel to the ski. At its front end, the metal plate 20 is bent upward, so that, seen in the longitudinal direction of the ski, it has an upwardly directed arc which, at its forwardmost tip, points slightly downward again. As a result, a hook 44 is formed by the metal plate 20. Furthermore, in its rear region this metal plate 20 has at the sides two perpendicularly upwardly bent lobes, in which the adjusting lever 18 is mounted pivotably about the axis 19 aligned horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski. For this purpose, the two perpendicularly upwardly bent lobes of the metal plate 20 reach upward through two lateral slits 37.1, 37.2 in the carriage 13 to the sides of the heel holder 14. At its rear end, the metal plate 20 has a perpendicularly downwardly bent region, which has a round opening 36 aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. In the mounted state of the automatic heel unit 11, the front region of the first adjusting screw 25 is led through this opening 36. In this case, the disk 31 is in front of the opening 36. Correspondingly, the metal plate 20 is connected to the base element 12 by the adjustable first adjusting screw 25. Consequently, the metal plate 20 can be displaced with respect to the base element 12 in the longitudinal direction of the ski by adjusting the first adjusting screw 25. At the same time, the rear stop 46 for the carriage 13 is thereby also displaced in the longitudinal direction of the ski. Since the carriage 13 is also pressed in the forward direction by the spiral spring 32, the carriage 13 is pressed against the rear stop 46, whereby a forward position of the carriage 13 is also adjusted by adjusting the first adjusting screw 25.
  • When the automatic heel unit 11 is fastened together with an automatic front unit (not shown) on a ski 500 and together with this automatic front unit forms a ski-touring binding, the distance between the automatic front unit and the heel holder 14 of the automatic heel unit 11 should be adapted to a length of the sole of the ski boot 600 (not shown here) to be held in the ski-touring binding. On account of the interaction of the adjusting screw 25 with the base element 12, the carriage 13 and the spiral spring 32, this can take place in a simple way, since the forward position of the carriage 13 can be adjusted in the longitudinal direction of the ski by the first adjusting screw 25. Turning the first adjusting screw 25 allows the forward position of the carriage 13, when seen in the longitudinal direction of the ski, to be chosen in such a way that the pins 17.1, 17.2 of the two levers 15.1, 15.2 engage in the clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 and that the heel holder 14 just makes engaging contact with the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. When the automatic heel unit 11 is in the downhill position (see FIGS. 1 a and 1 b), in the case of a ski-touring binding that is set in this way the pins 17.1, 17.2 of the two levers 15.1, 15.2 of the heel holder 14 engage to the maximum extent in the clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. It should be noted that the first adjusting screw 25 makes possible such a setting of the ski-touring binding on ski boots 600 of various boot sizes.
  • In the downhill position, the carriage 13 is pressed in the forward direction against the rear stop 46 by the forwardly pressing force of the spiral spring 32 (see FIGS. 6 a and 6 b). Starting from this forward position, the carriage 13 in the downhill position can, however, also be moved on the base element 12 in the rearward direction within a dynamic region against the forwardly directed force of the spiral spring 32. This displaceability serves the purpose that the position of the carriage 12 and of the heel holder 14 can be dynamically adapted to a distance between the automatic front unit and the automatic heel unit 11 if the ski is flexed upward at both ends during skiing. This dynamic positional adaptation of the heel holder 14 within the dynamic region has the advantage that the forward position of the carriage 13 can be set in such a way that the heel holder 14 just makes engaging contact with the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 and that a flexing of the ski is nevertheless possible. Since, thanks to this resilient movement along the dynamic region, the heel holder 14 adapts itself during skiing always to be just flush with the heel 601 of the ski boot 600, the two pins 17.1, 17.2 also always engage to the same depth in the clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 during skiing. As a result, optimum starting conditions for a safety release that always remain constantly the same are obtained during skiing.
  • In FIG. 5, the individual elements of the ski brake 21 are also shown. Thus, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 and the tread spur 24 can be seen. Moreover, it can be seen that the carriage 13 has in front of the heel holder 14 a horizontal area 38. The supporting element 23 is fastened on this area 38. For fastening the supporting element 23, the area 38 has on each side in a front region a vertically aligned hole with a thread. Matching exactly, the supporting element 23 also has two corresponding holes. The two holes in the supporting element 23 each have a clearance in their upper rim, in order that a screw head can be countersunk therein. For fastening the supporting element 23 on the horizontal area 38 of the carriage 13, a screw is placed into both holes of the supporting element 23 and screwed with the thread in the corresponding hole in the area 38. In this case, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 of the ski brake 21 are mounted rotatably about an axis aligned horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski in corresponding clearances in the area 38 of the carriage 13 and in the supporting element 23 that run in the transverse direction of the ski between the supporting element 23 and the carriage 13. Also arranged between the carriage 13 and the supporting element 23 is an adjusting spring (not shown), which by prestressing urges activation of the ski brake 21. Here in FIG. 5, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 of the ski brake 21 are shown as separate elements, which are both each arranged with an end on a tread spur 24. As a variant of this, however, there is also the possibility that the two arms 22.1, 22.2 of the ski brake 21 are produced from one piece, i.e. go over into each other under or in the tread spur 24. In this variant, the two arms 22.1, 22.2 may be mounted such that they are braced with respect to one another between the supporting element 23 and the carriage 13, the prestressing for activating the ski brake 21 being produced by this mutual bracing of the two arms 22.1, 22.2 and not by the adjusting spring. In this variant, therefore, it is possible to dispense with the adjusting spring for urging activation of the ski brake 21.
  • When the automatic heel unit 11 is in the downhill position, the ski brake 21 can be activated by the adjusting spring as soon as the tread spur 24 can be moved in the upward direction. In the event of a safety release of the automatic heel unit 11, this is the case when the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is released from the automatic heel unit 11. As a result, a region above the tread spur 24 is released from the sole of the ski boot 600, whereby the ski brake 21 can be activated by the adjusting spring.
  • However, when the automatic heel unit 11 is in one of the three climbing positions, the carriage 13 has been moved in the rearward direction with respect to the base element 12. Together with the carriage 13, the ski brake 21 has in this case also been moved in the rearward direction. This allows the hook 44, which is arranged at the front end of the metal plate 20, to interact with a counterpart 48 (see FIGS. 6 a and 6 b) on the tread spur 24 and keep the ski brake 21 arrested in the rest position. If the ski brake 21 is activated and the automatic heel unit 11 is in one of the three climbing positions, the ski brake 21 can be transferred into the rest position by pressing down the tread spur 24. In this case, the counterpart 48 on the tread spur 24 can snap in at the hook 44, whereby the ski brake 21 is arrested in the rest position. After that, the ski brake 21 can be released again by transferring the automatic heel unit 11 into the downhill position, since, as a result, the carriage 13 is displaced together with the ski brake 21 in the forward direction with respect to the base element 12 and the metal plate 20, whereby the counterpart 48 of the tread spur 24 is drawn away from the hook 44 in the forward direction.
  • In FIG. 5, the two levers 15.1, 15.2 can be seen in their entirety. Both levers 15.1, 15.2 are each produced as one part with the corresponding pin 17.1, 17.2. The two levers 15.1, 15.2 are aligned substantially vertically. The pins 17.1, 17.2 are arranged pointing forward in the longitudinal direction of the ski at the upper ends of the levers 15.1, 15.2.
  • Both levers 15.1, 15.2 are each mounted in their middle pivotably about an axis 16.1, 16.2 aligned in the longitudinal direction of the ski. At their lower ends, both levers 15.1, 15.2 each have a horizontally rearwardly pointing offset 39.1, 39.2. In this case, the two offsets 39.1, 39.2 each run downward toward the center of the ski, when seen in the transverse direction of the ski.
  • As already mentioned, the two levers 15.1, 15.2 are each mounted in the front region of the heel holder 14 in vertical, lateral notches. In this case, the offsets 39.1, 39.2 of the levers 15.1, 15.2 point rearward toward a middle of the heel holder 14. Arranged vertically aligned in this middle of the heel holder 14 is a ram 40. This ram 40 is substantially rectangularly shaped. In its lower region, it has a beveled lateral corner, in order to be able to interact optimally with the two offsets 39.1, 39.2 of the levers 15.1, 15.2 (also see FIG. 8 b). In its upper region, on the other hand, the ram 40 has an upwardly open opening. Arranged in this opening is a vertically aligned spiral spring 41. This spiral spring 41 is prestressed with a downwardly directed force. For this purpose, it abuts in the upward direction against an adjusting nut 42, which is screwed onto the second adjusting screw 26. The second adjusting screw 26 is in turn supported from below against an inner side of the heel holder 14 and can be turned through an opening 43 in the upper area of the heel holder 14.
  • By turning the second adjusting screw 26, the adjusting nut 42 can be screwed in the upward or downward direction. In order to prevent the adjusting nut 42 from being turned together with the second adjusting screw 26, the adjusting nut 42 has a downwardly bent metal strip, which is laterally guided in a rearwardly directed clearance of the ram 40. The ram 40 is in turn hindered from turning together with the second adjusting screw 26 within the heel holder 14 by its substantially rectangular form.
  • Adjusting the position of the adjusting nut 42 on the second adjusting screw 26 has the effect of setting the force with which the ram 40 is pressed by the spring 41 downward against the two offsets 39.1, 39.2 of the two levers 15.1, 15.2. Correspondingly, the force that is required to move the two pins 17.1, 17.2 apart can be set by turning the second adjusting screw 26. In this way, the force that should be overcome for a safety release in the forward direction can be set by turning the second adjusting screw 26.
  • FIGS. 6 a and 6 b each show a cross section through the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention. This cross section is a vertically aligned longitudinal cross section extending through the center of the automatic heel unit 11 as seen in the transverse direction of the ski. In both figures, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown in the downhill position.
  • In FIG. 6 a, the ski brake 21 is shown activated, while in FIG. 6 b it is shown in the rest position. In FIG. 6 a it can be seen how, with the activated ski brake 21, the arms 22.2 reach out downwardly beyond the ski 500 and how at the same time the tread spur 24 has been lifted off from the ski 13 in the upward direction. In the cross-sectional representation there can also be seen the counterpart 48, which is arranged on the tread spur 24 and can interact with the hook 44 of the metal plate 20 in the three climbing positions of the automatic heel unit 11. Since the automatic heel unit 11 is represented in the downhill position both in FIG. 6 a and in FIG. 6 b, however, the carriage 13 together with the ski brake 21 has been pushed into the forward position. Correspondingly, the counterpart 48 and the hook 44 are at a distance from one another. As a result, the counterpart 48 and the hook 44 also cannot interact when the ski brake is in the rest position (FIG. 6 b).
  • Along with the ski brake 21, in both FIGS. 6 a and 6 b it can be seen how the spiral spring 32 is restrained between the first adjusting screw 25 and the rearwardly directed stud of the element 33. It can also be seen how the metal plate 20 is supported with its vertically downwardly bent region and the opening 36 in the rearward direction on the screw thread 30 of the first adjusting screw 25 and how the disk 31 on the first adjusting screw 25 is arranged between the opening 36 of the metal plate 20 and the spiral spring 32. At the front of the automatic heel unit 11 it can also be seen how the element 33 abuts with its forwardly aligned stud 34, arranged on the stop 47, against the carriage 13. In this case, the forwardly directed stud 34 is led through the opening in the front stop 45 of the carriage 13, the main body of the element 33 abutting against the front stop 45 of the carriage 13.
  • As already described, the carriage 13, which is displaceable in the longitudinal direction of the ski on the base element 12, is pressed in the forward direction by the spiral spring 32. It thereby abuts with an offset between the middle region and the rear region of the clearance 29 against the screw thread 30 of the first adjusting screw 25 and is hindered from further movement in the forward direction. The rear stop 46, formed by the rear region of the clearance 29 and the screw thread 30, can be easily seen.
  • In the cross-sectional representations of FIGS. 6 a and 6 b it can also be seen furthermore how the ram 40 is arranged with the spiral spring 41, the adjusting nut 42 and the second adjusting screw 26 in the heel holder 14. It can be seen here that the opening in the ram 40 passes through from the top almost to the bottom, whereby the spiral spring 41 arranged in this opening abuts in a lower region of the ram 40. Correspondingly, the spiral spring 41 takes up a large part of the height of the heel holder 14.
  • FIG. 7 shows a frontal view of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention from the front. In this representation, the automatic heel unit 11 is shown in the downhill position. It can be seen how the two levers 15.1, 15.2 are mounted pivotably about the axes 16.1, 16.2. It can also be seen that the heel holder 14 has in the region of the pins 17.1, 17.2 notches 49.1, 49.2 laterally in the front side. These two notches 49.1, 49.2 make it possible for the two pins 17.1, 17.2 to be able to reach out from the front side of the heel holder 14, pointing forward from the levers 15.1, 15.2 mounted in the lateral notches in the heel holder 14. If the ski boot 600 (not shown) is arrested in the automatic heel unit 11, the two pins 17.1, 17.2 have been pivoted inward as far as the inner rim of the notches 49.1, 49.2. In the representation shown, however, the automatic heel unit 11 is just in the releasing phase of a safety release in the forward direction. Correspondingly, the two pins 17.1, 17.2, and consequently the levers 15.1, 15.2, have been pivoted apart. This can be seen from the fact that the pins 17.1, 17.2 are not in contact with the inner rim of the notches 49.1, 49.2 but pivoted slightly outward.
  • FIGS. 8 a and 8 b show two further cross sections of the automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention. FIG. 8 a shows a vertically aligned longitudinal cross section, which has been displaced to one side from the center of the automatic heel unit 11, as seen in the transverse direction of the ski, and extends through one of the two levers 15.2. As a result, of this lever 15.2, the forwardly pointing pin 17.2 and the rearwardly pointing offset 39.2 can be seen. In FIG. 8 b, on the other hand, a cross section in the transverse direction of the ski is represented. This cross section extends through the ram 40 arranged in the heel holder 14 and through the two offsets 39.1, 39.2. As a result, it can be seen that the ram 40 has on its underside two laterally beveled edges 55.1, 55.2, which run laterally outward in the upward direction as seen from a center of the ski. With these edges 55.1, 55.2, the ram 40 presses onto the supports 39.1, 39.2 of the two levers 15.1, 15.2 downward from above. The bevels of the edges 55.1, 55.2 and of the offsets 39.1, 39.2 have the effect that the lower regions of the levers 15.1, 15.2 are pressed apart. Since the two levers 15.1, 15.2 are each mounted in their middle pivotably about the axes 16.1, 16.2 aligned in the longitudinal axis of the ski, as a result the pins 17.1, 17.2 arranged at the upper end of the levers 15.1, 15.2 are pressed toward one another. On account of this way in which the levers 15.1, 15.2 are mounted, the offsets 39.1, 39.2 are pressed toward one another when there is a safety release in the forward direction, because the two pins 17.1, 17.2 are pressed apart. The bevel of the offsets 39.1, 39.2 and of the edges 55.1, 55.2 of the ram 40 has the effect that the ram 40 is pressed in the upward direction against the downwardly acting spring force by the pressing together of the two offsets 39.1, 39.2.
  • FIGS. 9 a, 9 b, 9 c, 9 d and 9 e each show a cross section through an automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention and a ski boot 600, which is held in a ski-touring binding comprising the automatic heel unit 11 and an automatic front unit (not shown). The cross sections respectively extend in a vertical plane in the longitudinal direction of the ski.
  • In FIG. 9 a, the automatic heel unit 11 is in the downhill position. The adjusting lever 18 is pointing substantially horizontally rearward in the longitudinal direction of the ski and the carriage 13 has been pushed into its forward position with respect to the base element 12. The heel 601 of the ski boot 600 has been lowered almost as far as the supporting element 23 and is arrested by the two pins 17.1, 17.2. The distance between the supporting element 23 and the sole of the ski boot 600 depends on the ski boot 600 and may vary. In FIG. 9 a, this distance cannot be seen, since the ski boot 600 has a maximum possible height between the clearances in the heel 601 and the sole. The sole of the ski boot 600 keeps the ski brake 21 in the rest position by keeping the tread spur 24 pressed in the downward direction. The heel holder 14 adjoins the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 from the rear, just flush with it.
  • In FIG. 9 b, the automatic heel unit 11 is likewise in the downhill position and the adjusting lever 18 is likewise pointing substantially horizontally rearward in the longitudinal direction of the ski. By contrast with the representation in FIG. 9 a, however, here the carriage 13 has been moved in the rearward direction all the way along the dynamic region. Correspondingly, the counterpart 48 of the tread spur 24 engages the hook 44 of the metal plate 20. As can be seen from the figure, the heel holder 14 has been moved so far in the rearward direction that the pins 17.2 have come out from the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. This does not correspond to an actual position of the automatic heel unit 11. However, the figure illustrates how far the carriage 13 can be moved along the dynamic region in the rearward direction. Correspondingly, the figure illustrates that the ski 500 can be flexed upward very far at both ends (not shown here), the carriage 13 being able to compensate for the resultant change in distance between the automatic front unit and the heel holder 14 by movement along the dynamic region. However, the heel holder 14 can thereby always remain in contact with the heel 601 of the ski boot 600.
  • In FIG. 9 c, the automatic heel unit 11 is in the first climbing position. The adjusting lever 18 is correspondingly pointing obliquely upward in the rearward direction and the carriage 13 has been pushed into its rearward position with respect to the base element 12. Correspondingly, the counterpart 48 of the tread spur 24 engages the hook 44 of the metal plate 20, whereby the ski brake 21 is kept in the rest position even when the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is not pressing the tread spur 24 in the downward direction. Moreover, as a result, the pins 17.2 have come out from the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. The heel 601 of the ski boot 600 can consequently be lifted off from the heel holder 11 in the upward direction. In the representation in FIG. 9 c, however, the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is shown lowered onto the supporting element 23.
  • In FIG. 9 d, the automatic heel unit 11 is in the second climbing position. The adjusting lever 18 is correspondingly pointing slightly further in the forward direction. As a result, the first offset 27 of the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. The ski boot 600 consequently can no longer be lowered toward the ski 500 as far as the supporting element 23, but only as far as an angle. As already in the first climbing position, the carriage 13 has been pushed into its rearward position with respect to the base element 12. Correspondingly, the counterpart 48 of the tread spur 24 likewise engages the hook 44 of the metal plate 20. As a result, the ski brake 21 is kept in the rest position even when the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is not pressing the tread spur 24 in the downward direction.
  • In FIG. 9 e, the automatic heel unit 11 is in the third climbing position. The adjusting lever 18 is correspondingly pointing obliquely upward in the forward direction. As a result, the second offset 28 of the adjusting lever 18 has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. The ski boot 600 consequently can no longer be lowered toward the ski 500 as far as the first offset 27, but only as far as a greater angle than in the second climbing position. As already in the first and second climbing positions, the carriage 13 has been pushed into its rearward position with respect to the base element 12. Correspondingly, the counterpart 48 of the tread spur 24 likewise engages the hook 44 of the metal plate 20. As a result, the ski brake 21 is kept in the rest position even when the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is not pressing the tread spur 24 in the downward direction.
  • As already in FIGS. 9 a, 9 b, 9 c, 9 d and 9 e, FIGS. 10 a, 10 b, 10 c and 10 d each show a cross section through an automatic heel unit 11 according to the invention and a ski boot 600, which is held in a ski-touring binding comprising the automatic heel unit 11 and an automatic front unit (not shown). The cross sections shown in FIGS. 10 a, 10 b, 10 c and 10 d likewise respectively extend in a vertical plane in the longitudinal direction of the ski. By contrast with the cross sections shown in FIGS. 9 a, 9 b, 9 c, 9 d and 9 e, however, the cross sections shown here respectively extend laterally offset from the center of the automatic heel unit 11. As a result, they respectively extend through a pin 17.2 of a lever 15.2.
  • FIGS. 10 a, 10 b, 10 c and 10 d illustrate how the carriage 13 can be displaced with respect to the base element 12 in the rearward direction by the adjusting lever 18 when the automatic heel unit 11 is transferred from the downhill position into one of the three climbing positions. For this purpose, the two arms of the adjusting lever 18 each have on their inner side a lobe 56, which has three channels. In the downhill position, these lobes 56 rest flat on a counterpart 57 of the carriage 13, or the carriage 13 is pressed with this counterpart 57 from the rear in the forward direction against the lobes 56 (FIG. 10 a). When the automatic heel unit 11 is brought into one of the three climbing positions, the adjusting lever 18 is pivoted forward in the upward direction. As a result, the lobes 56, which are arranged on the adjusting lever 18 below the axis 19 of the adjusting lever 18, are pivoted in the rearward direction. Correspondingly, the carriage is pressed in the rearward direction against the spring force of the spiral spring 32. In order that the adjusting lever 18 remains arrested in different positions in the three climbing positions, the lobes 57 each have three channels lying one behind the other. These channels can engage in a front corner of the counterpart 57 of the carriage 13. As a result, in the various climbing positions, the carriage 13 is respectively kept in the rearward position and the adjusting lever 18 is positioned in a way corresponding to the climbing position. As soon as the adjusting lever 18 is again pivoted flat in the rearward direction, the lobes 56 are drawn away from the counterpart 57 of the carriage 13 in the forward direction and the carriage 13 can be moved again in the forward direction by the spiral spring 32.
  • FIG. 11 shows an oblique view of a further automatic heel unit 1 according to the invention for a ski-touring binding. The automatic heel unit 1 is shown mounted on a surface 501 of a ski 500. To preserve the overview, however, not the entire ski 500 is shown, but only a rectangular, board-like detail of the ski 500 in the region of the automatic heel unit 1. The orientation of the automatic heel unit 1 is defined by how it is mounted on the ski 500. Thus, the automatic heel unit 1 is mounted on the surface 501 of the ski 500. Since this surface 501 is aligned in the upward direction, upward and downward are also defined for the automatic heel unit 1. Because the automatic heel unit 1 is part of a ski binding and can hold a heel 601 of a ski boot 600 (not shown here), the designations front and rear are also defined in the case of the automatic heel unit 1. They respectively mean in the direction of the ski tip and in the direction of the end of the ski 500.
  • The additional representation of the ski 500 makes the structure and operating mode of the automatic heel unit 1 easier to understand. Thus, the automatic heel unit 1 is mounted with a base part 2 on the surface 501 of the ski 500. This base part 2 comprises a baseplate 3 and an intermediate piece 4. The baseplate 3 has an elongated, plate-like, substantially rectangular form. It is mounted on the surface 501 of the ski 500 such that it is aligned with its longitudinal axis parallel to a longitudinal axis of the ski 500. In this case, a first main area 100.1 of the baseplate 3 is facing downward and a second main area 100.2 is facing upward. The first main area 100.1 thereby forms a mounting area, with which the base part 2 is mounted on the ski 500. On the second main area 100.2, the intermediate piece 4 is mounted resiliently in the longitudinal direction. The mechanism of this resilient mounting and the interaction of the baseplate 3 with the intermediate piece 4 are shown in detail in FIGS. 13 to 17. In FIG. 11 it can be seen that the intermediate piece 4 has two upwardly and slightly rearwardly directed arms 120.1, 120.2. These arms 120.1, 120.2 are arranged at a distance from one another such that they are parallel in the longitudinal direction of the ski and symmetrical with respect to a central vertical plane and form between them a central gap, in which a catch 10 is located. The arms 120.1, 120.2 are located above a region of the baseplate 3 that is largely central in the longitudinal direction.
  • Along both longitudinal edges of the baseplate 3, guide rails 102.1, 102.2 run in an upper region of the baseplate 3 (one of these guide rails 102.1 is concealed by further parts of the automatic heel unit 1 and is shown in FIG. 13). They face outward in a plane aligned parallel to the second main area 100.2. That is to say that they are aligned sideways from the ski. On the guide rails 102.1, 102.2 of the baseplate 3, a carriage 5 is mounted displaceably in the longitudinal direction. For this purpose, on its longitudinal edges the carriage 5 has guide grooves, with which it reaches around the guide rails 102.1, 102.2 on both sides of the baseplate 3.
  • In a front end region, the carriage 5 has on each side a side plate 110.1, 110.2. In FIG. 11, the carriage 5 is arranged in relation to the intermediate piece 4 in such a way that the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 enclose the two upwardly and slightly rearwardly directed arms 120.1, 120.2 of the intermediate piece 4 on both sides symmetrically with respect to a central vertical plane of the ski. The carriage 5 is coupled to the intermediate piece 4 by means of an adjusting lever 6, as described in detail further below.
  • The adjusting lever 6 is formed in a substantially horseshoe-shaped manner. At free ends of both its arms, it has stub axles 130.1, 130.2 that are inwardly directed, i.e. facing the other arm respectively (the stub axles are only shown in FIG. 13). These stub axles 130.1, 130.2 engage laterally in corresponding clearances 135.1, 135.2 in the outer sides of the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 at the front end of the carriage 5. As a result, the stub axles 130.1, 130.2 interact together with the clearances 135.1, 135.2 of the carriage 5 as a first bearing 50 of the adjusting lever 6. A straight line leading through both stub axles 130.1, 130.2 defines a first geometrical axis of rotation 51, about which the adjusting lever 6 is mounted rotatably on the first bearing 50. Mounted on the carriage 5, this first geometrical axis of rotation 51 is aligned parallel to the surface 501 of the ski 500 and transversely to the longitudinal direction of the ski 500. In this case, the adjusting lever 6 can be righted about the first geometrical axis of rotation 51 or lowered in the rearward direction, for example onto the surface 501 of the ski 500, into a position largely parallel to the ski. Independently of the exact position of the adjusting lever 6, the first geometrical axis of rotation 51 lies here in front of a connection 133, in which the two arms of the adjusting lever 6 go over into one another in the manner of a horseshoe.
  • The adjusting lever 6 has in each of both arms an aperture 131.1, 131.2 in the transverse direction, formed as a slot. These slots 131.1, 131.2 are formed on the adjusting lever 6 slightly at a distance from the stub axles 130.1, 130.2 in the direction of the connection 133 between the two arms and are arranged such that they are in line with one another with respect to a direction parallel to the first axis of rotation 51. The slots 131.1, 131.2 thereby run largely parallel to an alignment of the two arms of the adjusting lever 6, are therefore aligned largely radially with respect to the first axis of rotation 51. An axle bolt 7 with a circular cross section is led through the two slots 131.1, 131.2. In this case, the length of the axle bolt 7 is chosen such that the axle bolt 7 connects the two slots 131.1, 131.2, but does not reach out laterally beyond outer sides of the two arms. In the inner sides of the arms of the adjusting lever 6 there are at both slots 131.1, 131.2 spring elements 132.1, 132.2 formed as leg springs (only shown in FIG. 13). The spring elements 132.1 and 132.2 act with a spring force on the axle bolt 7 in the slots 131.1 and 131.2 in the direction of the first axis of rotation 51. The position of the slots 131.1, 131.2 on the arms is chosen such that the axle bolt 7 is also pressed by the spring force against the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 of the carriage 5. This has the effect that, when the adjusting lever 6 is turned about the first geometrical axis of rotation 51, the axle bolt 7 slides over an upwardly directed region of the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 under the pressure to which it is subjected. For this purpose, the upwardly directed region of the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 substantially follows a circle that is concentric with the first geometrical axis of rotation 51.
  • The two side plates 110.1, 110.2 each have three transverse recesses 136.1, 136.2, 136.3, 136.4, 136.5, 136.6, which are aligned parallel to the first axis of rotation 51 and in which the axle bolt 7 can engage on account of the spring force acting on it. This has the effect of defining altogether three pivoted positions, in which the adjusting lever 6 is righted (release positions). Adapted to the release positions, the adjusting lever 6 has on each of both arms three offsets 134.1, 134.3, 134.5 and 134.2, 134.4, 134.6, which are arranged in pairs (134.1/134.2, 134.3/134.4, 134.5/134.6) at the same distance from the first axis of rotation 51. These offsets 134.1, 134.2, 134.3, 134.4, 134.5, 134.6 are arranged on an upwardly or, depending on the pivoted position, forwardly directed side of the adjusting lever 6. Depending on the pivoted position of the adjusting lever 6, i.e. depending on in which of the transverse recesses 136.1, 136.2, 136.3, 136.4, 136.5, 136.6, the axle bolt 7 is engaged, the offsets 134.1-134.6 are arranged in pairs largely above the first axis of rotation 51 or above the first bearing 50 and thereby form in pairs a horizontally aligned support for a heel 601 of a ski boot 600 held in the binding and released in the heel region. Moreover, the side plates 110.1 and 11.2 have two further detent recesses 136.7 and 136.8, in which the axle bolt is arranged in the locking position of the adjusting lever 6, i.e. when it has been lowered completely in the rearward direction.
  • The axle bolt 7 not only connects the two arms of the adjusting lever 6 and defines the position of the adjusting lever 6 but is also led through apertures 121.1, 121.2 in the arms 120.1, 120.2 of the intermediate piece 4 that are formed as slots. The slots 121.1, 121.2 thereby form a slotted link in which the axle bolt 7 is displaceably guided as a slider and is supported on the intermediate piece 4. The slots 121.1, 121.2 are described in detail on the basis of FIGS. 13 to 17.
  • In FIG. 11 it can be seen that, in the upper region along the alignment of the arms 120.1, 120.2 of the intermediate piece 4, the slots 121.1, 121.2 are aligned such that they are inclined in the upward direction, in a direction largely perpendicular to the ski, and slightly in the rearward direction. Together with the axle bolt 7, they form a second bearing 52 of the adjusting lever 6, a longitudinal axis of the axle bolt 7 that is guided displaceably in the slots 121.1, 121.2 forming a second geometrical axis of rotation 53 of the adjusting lever 6.
  • The bearing 52 in this case supports the adjusting lever 6 on the intermediate piece of the base part 2 and allows a displacement of the axle bolt 7 in such a way that, when there is pivoting of the adjusting lever 6 mounted on the automatic heel unit 1 in the first bearing 50 and in the second bearing 52 about a geometrical pivoting axis at a given time that is produced by the two bearings 50 and 52, a displacement of the carriage 5 takes place along the guide rails 102.1, 102.2 of the baseplate 3 of the base part 2.
  • Thus, when the adjusting lever 6 is righted, the axle bolt 7 is displaced in the upward direction in the slots 121.1 and 121.2. Since the axle bolt 7 is guided in the slots 121.1, 121.2 of the intermediate piece 4, it is thereby also guided to some extent in the rearward direction. The force exerted by the user on the adjusting lever 6 in the region of the connection 133 when it is righted, largely in the forward direction, has the effect that the adjusting lever 6 undergoes via the axle bolt 7 a normal force in the opposite direction that is applied by the intermediate piece 4. The fact that the adjusting lever 6 is supported on the intermediate piece 4 by means of this normal force means that the carriage 5 consequently undergoes a force in the rearward direction by way of the adjusting lever 6 via the axle stubs 130.1, 130.2, arranged oppositely with respect to the axle bolt 7 of the connection 133, and via the first bearing 50. Therefore, with respect to the second axis of rotation 53 (at a given time) defined by the position at a given time of the axle bolt 7 in the slots 121.1, 121.2, the adjusting lever 6 forms a rocker, the one (front) arm of which is mounted in the first bearing 50 on the carriage 5 and the opposite arm of which (with connecting piece 133) forms an actuating arm.
  • When the adjusting lever 6 is lowered again in the rearward direction, the carriage 5 is displaced in the forward direction by an interaction of the base part 2 with the axle bolt 7 and the adjusting lever 6 that proceeds in the reverse direction. On account of the four positions of the adjusting lever 6, four positions that differ in the longitudinal direction are therefore obtained for the carriage 5. However, the fact that, with increasing distance from the baseplate 3, the slots 121.1 and 121.2 are inclined slightly in the rearward direction means that there is a smaller displacement of the carriage 5 the more the adjusting lever 6 is righted. That is to say that a difference in the longitudinal positions of the carriage 5 between a forward position and the next position toward the rear decreases the more the adjusting lever is righted. Consequently, the first bearing 50, arranged at the front on the carriage 5, always remains arranged in a region below the heel 601 of the ski boot.
  • On an upper side of a rear region of the carriage 5, a sole holder 8 is provided for fixing the heel 601 of the ski boot 600. This sole holder 8 has at a slightly elevated position two forwardly and slightly downwardly directed pins 140.1, 140.2, lying one next to the other. These pins 140.1, 140.2 can engage from behind in clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 when said heel has been lowered completely toward the ski, and thereby lock these pins.
  • If the adjusting lever 6 is aligned in the rearward direction in a pivoted position parallel to the surface of the ski (locking position), the carriage 5 is consequently in a forwardmost position. In this position, the pins 140.1, 140.2 are in a longitudinal position at and above the second bearing 52. In this position, the pins 140.1, 140.2 can engage in the clearances in the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 when said heel has been lowered. Correspondingly, the heel 601 of ski boot 600 can be fixed in this position. If the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position, the automatic heel unit 1 is consequently in the downhill position.
  • As already described, if the adjusting lever 6 is righted about the first geometrical axis of rotation 51, the carriage 5 can be displaced in three stages in the rearward direction on account of the three pivoted positions of the adjusting lever 6 that are defined by the transverse recesses 136.1, 136.2, 136.3, 136.4, 136.5, 136.6 on the side plates 110.1, 101.2. In this case, the first position following the forwardmost position is already shifted to such an extent in the rearward direction that the pins 140.1, 140.2 can no longer engage in the clearances of the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 when said heel is lowered toward the ski 500. In the two further positions, the carriage 5 is shifted still further in the rearward direction, but only to the extent that the region of the carriage with the first bearing 50 is still arranged below the heel 601 of the ski boot. Correspondingly, these three positions of the adjusting lever 6 are referred to as release positions, in which the automatic heel unit 1 is in assigned climbing positions. In the three release positions, a pair of the aforementioned offsets 134.1-134.6 has been pivoted above the first bearing 50 into the path of movement of the heel of the ski boot in such a way that lowering of the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is limited by the offsets to the corresponding height above the first bearing 50.
  • It should be noted that the adjusting lever 6 is represented in FIG. 11 as pointing obliquely upward in the rearward direction in a first of the three release positions, i.e. the axle bolt 7 is engaged in the rearmost transverse recesses 136.5 at 136.6. In this position, the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is released and the offsets 134.1, 134.2 arranged closest to the stub axles 130.1 and 130.2 form a support for the heel 601 of the ski boot. By contrast, in FIG. 12 the automatic heel unit 1 is represented in the downhill position, in which the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position and is aligned parallel to the surface of the ski. In this position, the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 can be fixed by the pins 140.1 and 140.2.
  • Along with the carriage 5, a ski brake 9 is fastened on the guide rails 102.1, 102.2 at the front end of the baseplate 3, in front of the carriage 5. Serving as fastening means is a clamp 150, which engages around the second main area 100.2 of the baseplate 3 and the two guide rails 102.1, 102.2 in the transverse direction of the ski. On an upper side of this clamp 150 there are two eyelets, which together define an axis in the transverse direction of the ski. Led through each of these eyelets is an arm 152.1, 152.2, which arms continue into braking members of the ski brake 9. In the mounted state, the two arms 152.1, 152.2 run parallel to one another at a distance that is slightly greater than a width of the ski 500. When the ski brake 9 is deactivated, as shown here in FIG. 11, these two arms 152.1, 152.2 run parallel to the ski. On the other hand, when the ski brake 9 is activated, they point obliquely downward in the rearward direction beyond an underside of the ski 500 on both sides of the ski 500 (see FIG. 17). Coming from the free ends of the two arms 152.1, 152.2 and continuing along the two arms 152.1, 152.2, at the point of the eyelets of the sheet-metal clamp 150 both arms 152.1, 152.2 are bent inwardly at right angles in the transverse direction of the ski, parallel to the second main area 100.2 of the baseplate 3. They run toward one another and are led from outer sides through the eyelets of the sheet-metal clamp 150. This portion of the arms 152.1, 152.2 thereby forms an axis of rotation of the ski brake 9. On inner sides of the eyelets, the two arms 152.1, 152.2 are in turn bent at right angles, so that they run parallel to their free ends, but away from them. After a short region running in this direction, they are in turn bent at right angles, toward one another. In this region, the two arms 152.1, 152.2 are rotatably mounted on an underside of a foot plate 151. This foot plate 151 is additionally connected to the intermediate piece 4 by a righting bracket 153, formed as a wire bracket. For this purpose, the righting bracket 153 is mounted on the underside of the foot plate 151 about an axis of rotation lying parallel to the axis of rotation of the ski brake 9.
  • The wire bracket 153 is connected to the front region of the intermediate piece 4 by its two arms running parallel to one another. For this purpose, the arms run almost parallel to the arms 152.1, 152.2 of the ski brake 9 in the rearward direction and slightly in the downward direction, and are mounted by free ends, which point inwardly, i.e. run toward one another, from outer sides in obliquely forwardly and upwardly aligned elongated clearances 129.1 (and 129.2, not shown) of the intermediate piece 4 (see FIG. 13 in this respect). The free ends of the righting bracket 153 are angled away inwardly at an angle of less than 90 degrees. The angled-away free ends are arranged in the clearances 129.1 according to the alignment thereof. The alignment of the clearances 129.1 and 129.2 corresponds to the position of the righting bracket 153 in the activated position of the ski brake 9 when the foot plate 151 has been lifted off from the ski. For the deactivation of the ski brake 9, i.e. when it is brought into the rest position, the foot plate 151 is pressed in the downward direction, whereby the arms 152.1, 152.2 are turned into an alignment largely parallel to the ski and are swung in toward the automatic heel unit in a known way. This takes place for example when stepping into the binding, when a ski boot is lowered onto the foot plate 151. The free ends of the righting bracket 153 are thereby fixed in their alignment in the clearances 129.1 and 129.2 on the intermediate piece, whereby a torsion is obtained in the wire of the righting bracket 153. This torsion acts counter to the lowering of the foot plate 151 and thereby produces a righting force of the ski brake 9.
  • If no external force is acting on the foot plate 151 and the latter is also not locked, the foot plate 151 is pressed in the upward direction by the spring force acting on the wire bracket 153, whereby the braking members are pivoted out in the downward direction and the ski brake 9 is thus activated.
  • On account of the short lever arms at the free ends of the righting bracket 153, great loads on the intermediate piece must be expected in the region of the clearances 129.1 and 129.2. The clearances 129.1 and 129.2 are therefore respectively provided with a bearing bush 122.1 and 122.2, which bushes are for example made of metal and prevent wear from occurring at the clearances 129.1 and 129.2.
  • As already in FIG. 11, FIG. 12 shows an oblique view of the automatic heel unit 1, which is mounted on the ski 500. The automatic heel unit 1 is shown from the same perspective in both figures. FIG. 12 shows the automatic heel unit in the downhill position, the sole holder 8 being represented without a housing 142 (the housing 142 is described on the basis of FIG. 13). The housing 142 has not been represented in FIG. 12 in order to show a first triggering mechanism 60 of the sole holder 8 that makes possible a forward safety release of the ski boot 600 held in the binding and fixed in the heel region.
  • In the event of a safety release in the forward direction, the heel 601 of the ski boot 600 is released from the fixing by the automatic heel unit 1 in a movement in the upward or forward direction when a predetermined triggering force is overcome. The two pins 140.1, 140.2 that lie one next to the other and fix the ski boot 600 are forced apart symmetrically on account of the way in which the clearances are formed on the ski boot 600, whereby they release the heel of the boot 601. For this purpose, the clearances of the ski boot 600 have detent notches which are directed toward a center of the boot and in which the pins 140.1, 140.2 are engaged when the ski boot 600 is fixed in the binding. When there is a sufficiently great force upward/forward on the ski boot, the pins are forced out of the detent notches. As a result of the force effect, the heel 601 is moved in the upward direction, the pins 140.1, 140.2 being able to slide out through downwardly open channels of the clearances and thus release the heel of the boot 601. Such ski boots are sufficiently well known, and are therefore not described in detail at this point.
  • The required triggering force that is needed for such a safety release is determined by the torque with which the two pins 140.1, 140.2 are kept in their rest position. How this torque comes about is described on the basis of the mechanics of the triggering mechanism 60 in the following paragraph.
  • The two pins 140.1, 140.2 are each mounted pivotably about a vertical axis of rotation in the front region of the sole holder 8, the axes of rotation running through anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 of the pins 140.1, 140.2. These two axes of rotation are formed by two studs 141.1, 141.2, which are held above and below the anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 by the housing 142 (not shown here) of the sole holder 8. The anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 are cylindrically formed in the direction of the studs 141.1, 141.2 and have in a plane parallel to the ski a sharkfin-like cross section. The curved front edges of the sharkfin forms are thereby made to face one another in the plane parallel to the ski. This increases a distance between the two anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 taken from the studs 141.1, 141.2 in the rearward direction.
  • A thrust piece 145, formed as a wedge, is pressed in the forward direction into this intermediate space between the two anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 from the rear by a spiral spring 144 supported on the rear periphery of the housing 142. The thrust piece 145 consequently forces the anchoring elements 143.1 and 143.2 apart, whereby the pins arranged oppositely with respect to the studs are forced toward one another into their rest position. So if the two pins 140.1, 140.2 are pressed apart in the event of a safety release of the first triggering mechanism 60, the two anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2 behind the studs 141.1, 141.2 are pressed toward one another. On account of the form of the anchoring elements 143.1, 143.2, the anchoring elements slide on the thrust piece 145 and displace the latter in the rearward direction, the spiral spring 144 being compressed. Correspondingly, the torque with which the two pins 140.1, 140.2 are kept in their rest position is produced by the force of the spiral spring 144. A prestressing of the spiral spring 144 can be set by means of an adjusting screw 149.1 mounted on the housing 142, so that the triggering force can be adapted to a user (see FIG. 13 below).
  • FIG. 13 shows an exploded representation of the automatic heel unit 1. By analogy with FIGS. 11 and 12, designations for upper, lower, rear, front and in the longitudinal direction still relate to a ski 500 (not represented in FIG. 13) provided with the automatic heel unit 1. Parts already described in FIGS. 11 and 12, such as the baseplate 3 and the intermediate piece 4, which form the base part 2, the carriage 5, the adjusting lever 6, the axle bolt 7, the sole holder 8 and the ski brake 9, can be seen completely.
  • As can be seen from FIG. 13, the baseplate 3 has four mounting openings 101.1, 101.2, 101.3, 101.4, which reach right through from its first main area 100.1 to its upper, second main area 100.2. These mounting openings 101.1, 101.2, 101.3, 101.4 are distributed over the main areas 100.1, 100.2 of the baseplate 3. One of the openings 101.1, 101.2, 101.3, 101.4 is respectively located on both sides in a front region and in a rear region of the baseplate 3. For mounting, a screw (not shown) is led through each of the openings 101.1, 101.2, 101.3, 101.4 and is screwed to the ski 500 (not shown here). In order to be able to countersink the screw heads in the baseplate 3, there are clearances in the second, upper main area 100.2 of the baseplate 3 at a rim of these openings 101.1, 101.2, 101.3, 101.4.
  • In the middle of the second main area 100.2 of the baseplate 3 there is also a clearance 103, which runs in the longitudinal direction of the baseplate 3 over the entire baseplate 3. This clearance 103 has a semicircular cross section, the rounding facing downward. In the front half of the baseplate 3, the clearance 103 is largely smooth on the inside. In the rear half, the clearance 103 has a threaded structure 104. This threaded structure 104 is aligned parallel to the longitudinal direction of the baseplate 3 and can receive a screw thread with a diameter corresponding to the diameter of the semicircular cross section of the clearance 103. The functions of this clearance 103 comprise on the one hand that of providing guidance for a longitudinal displacement of the intermediate piece 4 on the baseplate 3 and on the other hand, as described further below, that of supporting the intermediate piece 4 on the baseplate 3.
  • The intermediate piece 4 has an elongated form. Its underside is formed such that it is substantially flat and has a rectangular clearance that is aligned in the longitudinal direction and is enclosed by the intermediate piece 4 in a frame-like manner. In a front periphery and in a rear periphery of this frame there are clearances 128.1, 128.2 on the underside. These clearances 128.1, 128.2 are aligned in the longitudinal direction and lead in the longitudinal direction through the entire front periphery and rear periphery, respectively. They have a semicircular cross section, the rounding of which is aligned upward. The front one of these clearances 128.1 is closed off in a downward direction by a semicircular strip to form a circular opening 123. With this strip, the intermediate piece 4 is guided in the longitudinal direction on the baseplate 3 in the smooth portion of the clearance 103.
  • In this case, a pushrod 124, which has a long shank with a circular cross section, is guided in the opening 123 while aligned in the longitudinal direction. In a rear region, the pushrod 124 has a screw thread 125, which can interact with the threaded structure 104 of the clearance 103 of the baseplate 3. In an end region at the rear end of the pushrod 124, the pushrod 124 has a smooth region and is guided in the clearance 128.2 of the rear periphery of the rectangular clearance of the underside of the intermediate piece 4. In its rear end face, the pushrod 124 has a notch, at which it can be turned, for example with a screwdriver, in such a way that the pushrod 124 can be screwed in the forward and rearward directions in the threaded structure 104 of the clearance 103 of the baseplate 3. The pushrod 124 consequently forms a spindle drive that is resiliently supported on the intermediate piece 4 and by means of which a longitudinal position of the intermediate piece 4 with respect to the baseplate 3 can be set.
  • Between the opening 123 in the front periphery of the rectangular clearance of the underside of the intermediate piece 4 and a front end of the screw thread 125 of the pushrod 124, a spiral spring 126 that can be compressively loaded is led around the shank of the pushrod 124. The spiral spring 126 brings about a forwardly directed spring force on the intermediate piece 4 when the intermediate piece 4 is pressed in the rearward direction with respect to the baseplate 3. This resilient mounting of the intermediate piece 4 with respect to the baseplate 3 makes it possible to maintain a constant distance from the sole holder 8 to a front jaw (not shown), if for example the ski 500 is flexed under loading.
  • At the front end of the rectangular frame of the base of the intermediate piece 4, clearances in which the wire bracket 153 of the ski brake 9 is mounted are provided on both sides in the lower region. By contrast with FIG. 11, also shown here are the two spring elements 122.1, 122.2, which bring about a righting force on the wire bracket 153 and thereby produce a force for activating the ski brake 9. Also shown here is a plug 154, which is fitted from below onto the underside of the foot plate 151 and thereby mounts the wire bracket 153 rotatably between itself and the foot plate 151.
  • On the rectangular frame of the base of the intermediate piece 4 there is in the front half a formed-on support. Toward the middle of the intermediate piece 4, on this support there are the two arms 120.1, 120.2, which have already been described in FIG. 11. By contrast with FIG. 11, here the form of the two slots 121.1, 121.2 of the arms 120.1, 120.2 can be seen as a whole. This form is substantially a slightly rearwardly inclined L shape. The longer arm of the L shape points in the upward direction and is at the same time slightly inclined in the rearward direction. The shorter arm of the L shape is arranged in the lower region of the slots 121.1, 121.2 and extends from the connection to the longer arm in the rearward direction and slightly in the downward direction. The shorter arm provides the axle bolt 7 with a latching position, in which the axle bolt 7 is engaged when the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position (also see in this respect FIG. 14).
  • In the front periphery of the support of the intermediate piece 4 there is an opening 127 in the upper region. This opening 127 is aligned in the longitudinal direction and has a horizontal, rectangular cross section. Through this opening 127, the catch 10 of an actuating mechanism of the automatic heel unit 1 is displaceably guided in the longitudinal direction. In the representations of the figures, the catch 10 is formed from a sheet-metal strip. Its forwardly pointing end is flat, i.e. aligned parallel to the ski in the longitudinal direction and guided in the opening 127. In the rearward direction, the sheet-metal strip is bent upward, so that it points upward in the rearward direction at an angle of 45°. At the rear end of the catch 10, the sheet-metal strip is bent in the form of a hairpin, so that the free end of the sheet-metal strip points downward in the forward direction at an angle of 45° and forms a downwardly open loop 119.
  • This loop 119 has a diameter in which the axle bolt 7 guided in the transverse direction is accommodated. The loop 119 is thereby arranged with respect to the slots 121.1, 121.2 in such a way that the axle bolt 7 guided in the slots 121.1, 121.2 can engage in the loop 119 from below when it is displaced in the upward direction from a lowermost position. The loop 119 is in this case inclined to a greater extent in the rearward direction than the longer arms of the slots 121.1, 121.2. As a result, when the adjusting lever 6 is turned in the upward direction and the axle bolt 7 is thereby displaced in the upward direction in the slots 121.1, 121.2, the catch 10 is pushed in the forward direction in the opening 127 in the intermediate piece 4. When the adjusting lever 7 is turned in the downward direction, the catch 10 is pushed oppositely in the rearward direction (also see FIGS. 14 to 17), until it is in the rearmost position and the axle bolt 7 emerges from the loop 119 in the downward direction.
  • The carriage 5 with the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 can be seen well from the exploded representation shown in FIG. 13. Thus, the four indentations in the upwardly directed regions of the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 can be seen. Furthermore, the lateral clearance for the corresponding stub axle 130.2 of the adjusting lever 6 can be seen here in the side plate 110.2 facing the viewer. The clearances of the two side plates 110.1, 110.2 are in this case downwardly open, so that during the assembly of the automatic heel unit the stub axles 130.1 and 130.2 can be introduced into the clearances from below. Together with the two stub axles 130.1, 130.2, the clearances of the carriage 5 form the already described first bearing 50.
  • The structure of the sole holder 8 can also be seen from the exploded representation shown in FIG. 13. On the rear region of the carriage 5 there is a circular-cylindrical base 111, which is aligned perpendicularly to the ski, is fixedly connected to the carriage 5 and the rear side of which is flattened in the transverse direction of the ski. The housing 142 of the sole holder 8 has been fitted on this base 111 with a bearing sleeve 111.1 such that it can be turned about an axis perpendicular to the ski.
  • On account of the rotatable mounting, the sole holder 8 can be pivoted out to the side for a sideways safety release. The control of such a release is maintained by a second triggering mechanism 61. This second triggering mechanism 61 comprises a cylindrical thrust piece 146, which is aligned in the longitudinal direction and is pressed from the rear against the flattened rear side of the base 111 by two spiral springs 147.1, 147.2 guided one in the other. Largely by analogy with the spiral spring 144 of the first triggering mechanism 60, the spiral springs 147.1, 147.2 aligned in the longitudinal direction are in this case supported on the housing 142 of the sole holder 8. Here in FIG. 13, the structure of this support can be seen: the spiral springs 144 as well as 147.1 and 147.2 are supported on screw nuts 148.1 and 148.2, respectively. These nuts are screwed on adjusting screws 149.1, 149.2, which have been introduced into the spiral springs 144, 147.1, 147.2 from the rear and the heads of which are supported on the rear wall of the housing 142 of the sole holder 8. Since the screw nuts 148.1, 148.2 are hindered from a turning movement by the housing 8, they are displaceable in the longitudinal direction by turning the adjusting screws 149.1, 149.2.
  • FIG. 14 shows a central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit 1. In this representation, the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position. In this position of the adjusting lever 6, a heel 601 of a ski boot 600 can be fixed by the sole holder 8. This is illustrated by the schematic representation of the ski boot 600, in the heel 601 of which the pins 140.1 and 140.2 of the sole holder 8 engage. It can also be seen from the schematic representation of the ski boot 600 that, in this position of the adjusting lever 6, the ski brake 9 is deactivated by pressure on the foot plate 151 from above from the sole of the ski boot 600, i.e. is in the rest position.
  • The interaction of some of the parts described above is illustrated in FIG. 14. Thus, the resilient coupling of the intermediate part 4 to the baseplate 3, which is achieved by means of the pushrod 124 and the spiral spring 126, can be seen here. The second triggering mechanism 61, which extends from the base 111 on the rear region of the carriage 5, can also be seen. It can also be seen that the base 111 is only flattened in a certain region of the rear circumferential surface, corresponding to the dimensioning of the thrust piece 146. In a region above the flattened portion, the base 111 again has a circular cross section for improved mounting of the sole holder 8.
  • It can also be seen that the thrust piece 146 has a rearwardly open hollow space, so that the two spiral springs 147.1, 147.2 are guided in this hollow space up to a front covering of the thrust piece 146, at which they are supported on the thrust piece. Moreover, the mounting of the adjusting screw 149.2 of the second triggering mechanism 61 in the housing 142 of the sole holder 8 can be seen here. This mounting is configured in such a way that the adjusting screw 149.2 is accessible from the rear to a user and can be turned, whereby the screw nut 148.2 can be displaced in the longitudinal direction. This allows the strength of the spring force acting on the base 111 to be set. In order to deflect the sole holder 8 sideways, the thrust piece must consequently be deflected in the rearward direction. Corresponding to the setting with the adjusting screw 149.2, a greater or lesser lateral torque is necessary to be able to deflect the housing 142 of the sole holder 8 (triggering force).
  • Along with the second triggering mechanism 61, the first triggering mechanism 60 for the forward safety release can also be seen here. By contrast with FIGS. 12 and 13, the mounting of the adjusting screw 149.1 in the housing 142 of the sole holder 8 can likewise be seen here. This mounting is configured in a way corresponding to the second triggering mechanism 61, in such a way that the adjusting screw 149.1 can be reached and can be turned from the rear, whereby the screw nut 148.1 can be displaced in the longitudinal direction. This allows the triggering force of the first triggering mechanism 60 to be set.
  • As already described, in FIG. 14 the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position. Correspondingly, the axle bolt 7 is also in the lowermost position. In this case, the axle bolt 7 is engaged at the lower end of the slots 121.1 and 121.2 of the intermediate piece 4 in the shorter arm of the L shape. Correspondingly, the carriage 5 is in the forwardmost position and the catch is in the position drawn back furthest in the rearward direction, the deactivated position. In this case, the front end of the catch 10 scarcely protrudes beyond the front end of the intermediate piece 4.
  • FIG. 15 shows a further central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit 1. By contrast with FIG. 14, here the adjusting lever 6 is in the first of the three release positions, by analogy with FIG. 11. Correspondingly, the adjusting lever 6 is righted obliquely in the rearward direction and the axle bolt 7 is engaged in the rearmost transverse recesses 136.5 and 136.6. In this case, the lowermost offsets 134.1 and 134.2 of the adjusting lever 6 have been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel 601 of the ski boot as a walking step, such that they form a support for the heel 601 of the released ski boot 600 (indicated by dashed lines). The adjusting lever 6 is in this case formed in such a way that it partially encloses the heel of the ski boot from the rear and from the sides. In particular, the regions of the adjusting lever 6 in which the next-higher supports 134.3 and 134.4 are arranged are arranged in front of a rear end of the ski boot sole in the longitudinal direction of the ski.
  • In this position of the adjusting lever 6, the axle bolt 7 is in the upper region of the slots 121.1 and 121.2 of the intermediate piece 4. Correspondingly, the carriage 5 has been displaced in the rearward direction in comparison with the downhill position, whereby the automatic heel unit 1 is in a climbing position. The raised position of the axle bolt 7 also has the effect that the catch 10 has been displaced in the forward direction over the loop 119. The front end of the catch 10 then reaches beyond the front end of the intermediate piece 4 and engages in a clearance 155 in the rear end of the lowered foot plate 151 of the ski brake 9. The front end of the catch 10 thereby comes to lie against the lower periphery of the clearance 155 in the foot plate 151 and hinders upward yielding thereof on account of the righting force. Correspondingly, the ski brake 9 is locked by the catch 10 and activation of the ski brake 9 is prevented in spite of the released heel 601 of the ski boot 600.
  • FIG. 16 shows a further central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit 1. By contrast with FIGS. 14 and 15, here the adjusting lever 6 is in the middle of the three release positions, in which the axle bolt 7 is engaged in the middle transverse recesses 136.3 and 136.4. Correspondingly, the adjusting lever 6 is positioned so steeply upward that the offsets 134.3 and 134.4 that are present on the adjusting lever midway from the axis of rotation 51 form a support for the heel 601 of the released ski boot 600.
  • FIG. 17 shows a further central cross section in the longitudinal direction of the automatic heel unit 1. As already in FIG. 14, here the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position. As a difference from FIG. 14, there is no heel 601 of the ski boot locked at the automatic heel unit. Correspondingly, the ski brake 9 has been activated and the foot plate 151 has been raised in the upward direction, while the free ends of the arms 152.1 and 152.2, acting as braking members, project downward beyond an underside of the ski 500. In the representation of FIG. 17, the ski brake 9 is in a transitional position between the rest position and the activated position. If the ski brake 9 is completely in the activated position, the foot plate 151 is raised up further away from the ski 500 and the braking members 152.1 and 152.2 project downward beyond the ski 500 at a steeper angle.
  • FIG. 18 shows an alternative configuration of a catch 210 as an actuating element of an actuating mechanism of the automatic heel unit 1 in an activated position. For a better overview, only parts of a further embodiment of the ski brake 209 and of the catch 210 are represented in a sectional view in the longitudinal direction. The other parts of the automatic heel unit 1 correspond to the parts of FIGS. 11 to 17 with the minor modifications described below.
  • In the configuration of FIG. 18, the catch 210 is preferably formed as a plastic part that is mounted displaceably in the longitudinal direction on the intermediate piece 4, between the two side plates 110.1, 110.2. For this purpose, the catch 210 has on an underside a profile rail 211, such as for example a dovetailed strip or a T-shaped profile rail, which engages in a corresponding groove on the intermediate piece (not represented in FIG. 18). The catch 210 is in this case subjected to a spring force in the forward direction by a spring 212, which is internally arranged and can be compressively loaded, via a support 213 on the intermediate piece 4. The catch 210 can consequently be deflected in the rearward direction with respect to the intermediate piece against the spring force. At a front end face, the catch 210 has a wedge-shaped nose 210.1, which has an upper side that is downwardly inclined in the forward direction.
  • At a rear end, the catch 210 has an arm 220 protruding obliquely upward in the rearward direction by approximately 45 degrees with respect to a perpendicular to the ski and is passed through in the transverse direction of the ski by a slot 219 that is likewise aligned obliquely upward in the rearward direction. The slot 219 is in this case inclined to a greater extent in the rearward direction than the longer arms of the slots 121.1 and 121.2 of the slotted link on the intermediate piece 4, and widens continuously toward an upper end.
  • The axle bolt 7 guided in the slots 121.1 and 121.2 passes through the slot 219 of the catch 210 (largely by analogy with the loop 119 of the catch 10 described above). The widening of the slot 219 toward the upper end is formed in such a way that the catch 210 has been displaced all the way forward into its activated position on account of the spring force acting on it when the axle bolt 7 is arranged at an upper end of the slots 121.1 and 121.2 (i.e. when the adjusting lever 6 has been pivoted into one of the release positions). On account of the widening of the slot 219 at the upper end, the catch 210 can yield to the spring force in the rearward direction within the limits of the widening when a force acts from the front to the rear.
  • If, on the other hand, the axle bolt 7 has been displaced all the way downward in the slots 121.1 and 121.2 (not represented), i.e. when the adjusting lever 6 is in the locking position, the catch 210 is forced all the way rearward into a deactivated position against the spring force on account of the inclination of the slot 219. At a lower end, the slot 219 has a width that largely corresponds to the diameter of the axle bolt 7, whereby in this position of the axle bolt 7 the catch 210 is fixed by said bolt.
  • For fastening on the baseplate 3 of the base part 2, the ski brake 209 of FIG. 18 has a base part 250, preferably made of plastic, on which both arms 252.1 and 252.2 of braking members of the ski brake 209 and a wire bracket acting as a righting bracket 253 are mounted. The arms 252.1 and 252.2 as well as the righting bracket 253 are in this case connected to one another by means of a foot plate 251. The ski brake 209 in this case largely corresponds to the ski brake 9 described above, with the difference that the righting bracket 253 is also mounted on the base part 250 (and not on the intermediate piece 4). The ski brake 209 is consequently formed as an independent part that can be attached to the baseplate 3 by means of the base part 250. In this case, the base part 250 has guide grooves 250.1 and 250.2 (guide groove 250.2 cannot be seen in the sectional representation of FIG. 18), which by analogy with the carriage 5 enclose the guide rails 102.1, 102.2 of the baseplate 3. The ski brake 209 can consequently be attached with the base part 250 on the baseplate 3 such that it is guided displaceably in the longitudinal direction. On a rear end face of the base part 250, two rearwardly protruding holding lugs 254.1 and 254.2 are also formed (holding lug 254.2 cannot be seen in the sectional representation of FIG. 18), with which the base part 250 can be hooked into corresponding clearances of the intermediate piece 4 (not shown) from below. If a ski brake 250 is desired at all, this takes place before the carriage 3 and the intermediate piece 4 are pushed onto the guide rails 102.1 and 102.2 of the baseplate 3 during the assembly of the automatic heel unit 1. This achieves the effect that the base part 250 of the ski brake 209 is coupled to the intermediate piece 4 fixedly with respect to longitudinal displacement (but such that it can be released again by pulling off the carriage 3 and the intermediate piece from the baseplate 3). Consequently, when there is an adjustment of the longitudinal position with respect to the baseplate 3, the ski brake 209 is displaced at the same time by means of the spindle drive 124 described above of the intermediate piece 4 and consequently is at the same desired distance from the intermediate piece 4, and consequently also from the carriage 3 coupled thereto on which the sole holder 8 is provided, in every longitudinal position of the intermediate piece 4.
  • As a further difference from the ski brake 9, the foot plate 251 has on a rear end face a projection 255, which is beveled upwardly in the rearward direction on an underside. The projection 255 is in this case arranged in such a way that the nose of the catch 210 can be brought into engagement with the projection 255 when the catch 210 is in the activated position and the foot plate 251 is lowered. If the catch 210 is in the activated position represented in FIG. 18, the beveled underside of the projection 255 comes into contact with the beveled upper side of the nose 210.1 of the catch 210 during the lowering of the foot plate 251 and displaces the catch 210 in the rearward direction against the spring force during the further lowering. If the projection 255 arrives under the catch 210, the catch 210 snaps forward on account of the spring force, so that it overlaps with the projection 255. In the activated position, the catch 210 consequently provides a snap locking for the foot plate 151 of the ski brake 209. The activated catch 210 consequently prevents the foot plate 251 from being able to be raised again when the foot plate 251 has been lowered—the ski brake 209 is consequently locked in a rest position.
  • For the transfer into the deactivated position, the catch 210 is drawn in the rearward direction in the way described above by means of the interaction of the axle bolt 7 with the slot 219, whereby the catch 210 leaves the region of the projection 255 and, no longer overlapping with it, cannot interact with it. The foot plate 251 is consequently no longer locked and can be raised by the spring force of the righting bracket, whereby the ski brake 209 can go into the activated position if the foot plate is not otherwise blocked (for example by a boot held in the binding)—the ski brake 209 is consequently unlocked or released.
  • This configuration of the catch 210 consequently ensures that the foot plate 251 of the ski brake 209 can be locked without any risk of damage to the actuating element, even if the catch 210 is already in the activated position, when the foot plate 251 is for example lowered by stepping into a binding.
  • The invention is not restricted to the first automatic heel unit 11 shown here and the second automatic heel unit 1 shown here. Various modifications thereof are possible. As shown in FIGS. 19 a and 19 b, for example, an automatic heel unit 550 according to the invention can also be brought from the downhill position into the at least one climbing position by the heel holder 552 being turned about a substantially vertical axis, in order that the holding means 553.1, 553.2 can no longer interact with the heel of the ski boot. For this purpose, the automatic heel unit 550 may be formed for example as described in EP 0 199 098 A2 (Barthel). However, in this case the substantially vertical axis should be arranged either on the carriage or else on the base element (551), so that, in the downhill position, the carriage is movable along the dynamic region.
  • To sum up, it can be stated that an automatic heel unit that increases the safety for a skier is provided.

Claims (16)

1. An automatic heel unit for a ski binding, in particular a ski-touring binding, with a base element for mounting the automatic heel unit on the upper side of a ski and a carriage which is mounted on the base element and on which there is arranged a heel holder with two holding means for holding a ski boot in a heel region of the ski boot, wherein the two holding means are pins, which are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski and as a result can engage in at least one corresponding opening in the heel region of the ski boot
a) wherein the automatic heel unit has a downhill position, in which the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position,
b) and the automatic heel unit has at least one climbing position, in which the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released,
characterized in that, in the downhill position, the carriage with the heel holder is movable with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along a dynamic region and is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force and is pressed in the direction of a front end of the dynamic region.
2. (canceled)
3. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 1, characterized by at least one holding element, which is mounted on the heel holder rotatably about an axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, the at least one holding means being arranged on the at least one holding element at a distance from a straight line defined by the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski, and as a result is pivotable substantially in the transverse direction of the ski about the axis aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski.
4. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 3, characterized in that the automatic heel unit comprises at least two holding elements, on each of which at least one holding means is arranged.
5. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 4, characterized in that the holding elements have an elongated, lever-like form and are mounted on the heel holder such that they are aligned substantially vertically.
6. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 5, characterized in that
a) the holding means are respectively arranged in a first region at a first end of the holding elements, in that
b) the axes of the holding elements that are aligned substantially in the longitudinal direction of the ski are respectively arranged in a middle region of the holding elements, and in that
c) the holding elements respectively have a second region at a second end of the holding elements, the second region being respectively arranged on a side of the middle region that is opposite from the first region.
7. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 4, characterized in that the automatic heel unit comprises precisely two holding elements, on each of which a holding means is arranged.
8. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 7, characterized by a ram, which can interact with the second regions of the holding elements and which can be subjected to a force applied by an elastic element, so that a torque acting on the holding elements can be produced.
9. (canceled)
10. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 1, characterized in that the heel holder is rotatable about an axis substantially perpendicular to the ski and,
a) in the downhill position, the heel holder is turned about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski into an alignment parallel to the ski, whereby the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position and
b) in the at least one climbing position, the heel holder is turned away from an alignment parallel to the ski about the axis substantially perpendicular to the ski, so that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released.
11. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 1, characterized in that
a) in the downhill position, the carriage has been displaced together with the heel holder in the forward direction with respect to the base element, whereby the at least one holding means can interact with the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding in such a way that the ski boot is arrested in a lowered position and
b) in the at least one climbing position, the carriage has been displaced together with the heel holder with respect to the base element into a rearward position in such a way that the heel region of the ski boot held in the ski binding is released.
12. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 11, characterized by an intermediate piece which is displaceable with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski, is acted upon by an elastic element with a forwardly directed force with respect to the base element and on which the carriage is displaceably mounted, wherein the carriage
a) is displaced into a rearward position with respect to the intermediate piece in the at least one climbing position and
b) is displaced into a forward position with respect to the intermediate piece in the downhill position and is movable together with the intermediate piece with respect to the base element in the longitudinal direction of the ski along the dynamic region.
13. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 11, characterized by an adjusting lever, which has a downhill position and at least one climbing position, wherein, by positioning the adjusting lever in the downhill position, the automatic heel unit can be brought into the downhill position and, by positioning the adjusting lever in one of the at least one climbing positions, it can be brought into the corresponding one of the at least one climbing positions.
14. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 13, characterized in that the adjusting lever is mounted on the base element pivotably about an axis of rotation oriented horizontally in the transverse direction of the ski.
15. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 11, characterized in that the adjusting lever has a support for the heel region of the ski boot that has been pivoted into the path of movement of the heel region when the adjusting lever is positioned in a corresponding one of the at least one climbing positions and, as a result, limits lowering of the heel region of the ski boot toward the ski.
16. The automatic heel unit as claimed in claim 11, characterized by a ski brake with a braking member, which comprises a rest position and a braking position, the braking member being assigned an actuating member, which can be actuated in such a way that the braking member goes over from the braking position into the rest position when the heel region of the ski boot is lowered toward the ski when stepping into the binding, wherein, in the climbing position, the braking member of the ski brake can be kept in the rest position by a holding mechanism, by a first element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the base element and a second element of the holding mechanism that is arranged on the ski brake interacting, wherein the ski brake is arranged on the carriage, whereby
a) in the downhill position, the ski brake together with the carriage is pushed in the forward direction and the first element and the second element are at a distance from one another and
b) in the at least one climbing position, the ski brake together with the carriage is pushed into the rearward position, whereby the first element and the second element can interact.
US13/819,164 2010-08-27 2011-08-29 Touring heel binding having a dynamic sliding region Abandoned US20130181427A1 (en)

Priority Applications (3)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
CH1387/10 2010-08-27
CH13872010 2010-08-27
PCT/CH2011/000195 WO2012024809A1 (en) 2010-08-27 2011-08-29 Touring heel binding having a dynamic sliding range

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
US20130181427A1 true US20130181427A1 (en) 2013-07-18

Family

ID=44583877

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US13/819,164 Abandoned US20130181427A1 (en) 2010-08-27 2011-08-29 Touring heel binding having a dynamic sliding region

Country Status (4)

Country Link
US (1) US20130181427A1 (en)
EP (1) EP2608853B1 (en)
DE (1) DE202011110813U1 (en)
WO (1) WO2012024809A1 (en)

Cited By (11)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20130307252A1 (en) * 2012-05-18 2013-11-21 Skis Rossignol Ski binding with brake
US20140159343A1 (en) * 2012-12-10 2014-06-12 Skis Rossignol Braking Device for Alpine Touring Ski
US8827302B2 (en) * 2012-09-11 2014-09-09 Fritschi Ag-Swiss Bindings Automatic heel unit for a ski binding
RU2541747C1 (en) * 2014-04-23 2015-02-20 Роман Владимирович Шамов Ski binding
US9242167B2 (en) 2013-07-09 2016-01-26 G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc. Ski binding heel unit
US20160089592A1 (en) * 2014-09-26 2016-03-31 Salomon S.A.S. Heel-piece for binding a boot on a gliding board
EP3266504A1 (en) * 2016-07-07 2018-01-10 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Ski binding
US9868047B2 (en) 2015-08-27 2018-01-16 Salomon S.A.S. Braking device for a binding for a gliding board
US10188935B2 (en) * 2016-01-23 2019-01-29 Markus Steinko System for a touring ski-binding comprising a front unit and a heel unit
US10391383B2 (en) * 2017-09-07 2019-08-27 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Ultralight front jaw
US10426221B2 (en) * 2016-01-08 2019-10-01 Nike, Inc. Method and apparatus for dynamically altering a height of a sole assembly

Families Citing this family (19)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
DE102011079210A1 (en) 2011-07-14 2013-01-17 Salewa Sport Ag Heel unit for a touring ski binding
DE202012002705U1 (en) * 2012-03-14 2013-06-17 Salewa Sport Ag Heel unit for a touring binding
DE102012206879A1 (en) * 2012-04-25 2013-10-31 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Lightweight ski binding with increased trigger safety
DE202012013673U1 (en) * 2012-05-25 2019-05-21 Salewa Sport Ag Heel unit with climbing aid and brake assembly
DE102012214001B4 (en) * 2012-08-07 2014-03-13 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Ski brake with lock
EP2705883B1 (en) 2012-09-11 2015-07-29 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Automatic heel device for a ski binding
FR2999091B1 (en) 2012-12-10 2019-05-10 Rossignol Sa Braking device for hiking ski with integrated adjustable rise
DE102013201725A1 (en) * 2013-02-01 2014-08-07 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Heel holder with locking lever
DE102013204065B4 (en) * 2013-03-08 2014-11-06 Micado Cad-Solutions Gmbh Buttocks with a ski brake for a ski touring binding
DE102013224571A1 (en) * 2013-11-29 2015-06-03 Salewa Sport Ag Heel unit with brake assembly
FR3025435B1 (en) * 2014-09-04 2016-09-02 Salomon Sas Detachable attachment
EP3053632B1 (en) 2015-02-03 2018-09-26 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Automatic heel mechanism
EP3115089B1 (en) 2015-07-07 2019-02-27 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Heel unit
ITUB20169930A1 (en) * 2016-01-12 2017-07-12 Atk Race S R L Heel with heel lifts for the practice of alpine skiing
DE102016102997A1 (en) 2016-02-19 2017-08-24 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Buttocks with ski brake safety
EP3120903B1 (en) 2016-10-14 2018-12-26 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Heel unit
EP3345659B1 (en) 2017-01-04 2019-06-26 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Automated heelholder device for a ski binding
FR3069445A1 (en) * 2017-07-31 2019-02-01 Rossignol Sa Braking device for hiking ski
EP3581248A1 (en) 2018-06-14 2019-12-18 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Heelholder

Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3241849A (en) * 1964-10-05 1966-03-22 Great Lakes Inst Safety release ski bindings
WO2009105866A1 (en) * 2008-02-29 2009-09-03 G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc. Heel unit for alpine touring binding
US20110175328A1 (en) * 2010-01-19 2011-07-21 Atk Race S.R.L. Heel Piece For An Alpine Ski Attachment

Family Cites Families (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
DE3153703C2 (en) * 1981-03-13 1995-09-14 Rohrmoser Alois Skifabrik Safety ski binding with heel and toe holders
AT381458B (en) 1985-03-25 1986-10-27 Barthel Fritz touring
AT402796B (en) 1995-02-01 1997-08-25 Fritschi Apparatebau ski binding
DE19703955C2 (en) * 1997-02-03 1999-06-17 Silvretta Sherpas Sportartikel touring binding
EP3300778A1 (en) 2008-04-03 2018-04-04 G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc. Toe unit for alpine touring binding
DE102010006218A1 (en) * 2010-01-29 2011-08-04 MARKER Deutschland GmbH, 82377 Ski binding with climbing aid

Patent Citations (3)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3241849A (en) * 1964-10-05 1966-03-22 Great Lakes Inst Safety release ski bindings
WO2009105866A1 (en) * 2008-02-29 2009-09-03 G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc. Heel unit for alpine touring binding
US20110175328A1 (en) * 2010-01-19 2011-07-21 Atk Race S.R.L. Heel Piece For An Alpine Ski Attachment

Cited By (13)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20130307252A1 (en) * 2012-05-18 2013-11-21 Skis Rossignol Ski binding with brake
US8827302B2 (en) * 2012-09-11 2014-09-09 Fritschi Ag-Swiss Bindings Automatic heel unit for a ski binding
US20140159343A1 (en) * 2012-12-10 2014-06-12 Skis Rossignol Braking Device for Alpine Touring Ski
US9114306B2 (en) * 2012-12-10 2015-08-25 Skis Rossignol Braking device for alpine touring ski
US9242167B2 (en) 2013-07-09 2016-01-26 G3 Genuine Guide Gear Inc. Ski binding heel unit
RU2541747C1 (en) * 2014-04-23 2015-02-20 Роман Владимирович Шамов Ski binding
US10010782B2 (en) * 2014-09-26 2018-07-03 Salomon S.A.S. Heel-piece for binding a boot on a gliding board
US20160089592A1 (en) * 2014-09-26 2016-03-31 Salomon S.A.S. Heel-piece for binding a boot on a gliding board
US9868047B2 (en) 2015-08-27 2018-01-16 Salomon S.A.S. Braking device for a binding for a gliding board
US10426221B2 (en) * 2016-01-08 2019-10-01 Nike, Inc. Method and apparatus for dynamically altering a height of a sole assembly
US10188935B2 (en) * 2016-01-23 2019-01-29 Markus Steinko System for a touring ski-binding comprising a front unit and a heel unit
EP3266504A1 (en) * 2016-07-07 2018-01-10 Fritschi AG - Swiss Bindings Ski binding
US10391383B2 (en) * 2017-09-07 2019-08-27 Marker Deutschland Gmbh Ultralight front jaw

Also Published As

Publication number Publication date
EP2608853B1 (en) 2016-08-24
DE202011110813U1 (en) 2016-07-18
EP2608853A1 (en) 2013-07-03
WO2012024809A1 (en) 2012-03-01

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
US3194574A (en) Safety ski binder
US6964428B2 (en) Device for binding a boot to a sports article
JP2569551Y2 (en) Drawer guide device
EP2259850B1 (en) Heel unit for alpine touring binding
US3785668A (en) Safety ski binding system
RU2345811C2 (en) Fastening device with rotary lever
US9597578B2 (en) Toe unit for alpine touring binding
EP2535092B1 (en) Ski binding
US5924719A (en) Apparatus for attaching a gliding element to a shoe
US8544869B2 (en) Touring binding
FI74877B (en) Foer binding was not terraengskida.
US5310206A (en) Safety binding
US6467795B1 (en) Snowboard binding with highback
US20050206128A1 (en) Crosscountry ski
US20080129015A1 (en) Cross-Country or Telemark Binding
US7264263B2 (en) Ski binding
US20070138765A1 (en) Cross-country ski assembly and cross-country ski binding
JP2599505B2 (en) Ski attaching the ski boot to the apparatus
EP2340876A1 (en) Ski shoe and binding system comprising a ski shoe and a ski binding
US3953042A (en) Touring ski boot heel binding
US5669622A (en) Ski binding
RU1780514C (en) Monoski
WO1998007479A1 (en) Device for fixing a boot onto a sporting good
US3704024A (en) Brake mechanism attached to a ski
US4145071A (en) Safety binding for ski-boot with automatic refitting

Legal Events

Date Code Title Description
AS Assignment

Owner name: FRITSCHI AG - SWISS BINDINGS, SWITZERLAND

Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:FRITSCHI, ANDREAS;REEL/FRAME:030097/0512

Effective date: 20130222

STCB Information on status: application discontinuation

Free format text: ABANDONED -- FAILURE TO RESPOND TO AN OFFICE ACTION