US3913930A - Safety runaway ski thong - Google Patents

Safety runaway ski thong Download PDF

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US3913930A
US3913930A US40519173A US3913930A US 3913930 A US3913930 A US 3913930A US 40519173 A US40519173 A US 40519173A US 3913930 A US3913930 A US 3913930A
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thong
coupling
ski
boot
anchoring
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Edward Okonski
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Edward Okonski
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    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A63SPORTS; GAMES; AMUSEMENTS
    • A63CSKATES; SKIS; ROLLER SKATES; DESIGN OR LAYOUT OF COURTS, RINKS OR THE LIKE
    • A63C9/00Ski bindings
    • A63C9/002Strap closures or latches; Leashes

Abstract

A runaway ski leash includes a thong having a coupling ball at one end and is fastened at its other end on the upper front of the ski boot. A releasable anchor mechanism is mounted atop the ski binding toe clamp and includes a base, a pawl plate hinged to the base for rocking about a transverse axis at its front and an anchor plate pivoted to the base for swinging about a transverse axis rearward of the pawl axis, the plates being intercoupled and converging rearwardly. A spring biases the rear of the anchor plate upwardly to close the pawl, and an open diverging front longitudinal slot is formed in the anchor plate. The thong is locked to the anchor by sliding the coupling ball along the underface of the slot past the pawl plate, which is opened against the spring bias by the pull on the ball. It may be released by pressing down on the top of the anchor plate to open the space between the plates.

Description

United States Patent [191 Okonski Oct. 21, 1975 SAFETY RUNAWAY SKI THONG [76] Inventor: Edward Okonski, 61-53 75th Place,
Middle Village, NY. 11379 [22] Filed: Oct. 10, 1973 [21] App]. No.: 405,191
Primary Examiner-David Schonberg Assistant Examiner-Milton L. Smith Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Welder & Gross [57] ABSTRACT A runaway ski leash includes a thong having a coupling ball at one end and is fastened at its other end on the upper front of the ski boot. A releasable anchor mechanism is mounted atop the ski binding toe clamp and includes a base, a pawl plate hinged to the base for rocking about a transverse axis at its front and an anchor plate pivoted to the base for swinging about a transverse axis rearward of the pawl axis, the plates being intercoupled and converging rearwardly. A spring biases the rear of the anchor plate upwardly to close the pawl, and an open diverging front longitudinal slot is formed in the anchor plate. The thong is locked to the anchor by sliding the coupling ball along the underface of the slot past the pawl plate, which is opened against the spring bias by the pull on the ball. It may be released by pressing down on the top of the anchor plate to open the space between the plates.
11 Claims, 11 Drawing Figures US. Patent 00.21, 1975 Sheet 1of3 3,913,930
US. Patent Oct. 21, 1975 Sheet 3 of3 3,913,930
SAFETY RUNAWAY SKI THONG BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates generally to improvements in ski connecting devices and more particularly to an improved safety runaway ski thong.
The conventional ski binding functions to firmly couple the boot to the ski, providing the skier with complete control over the skis. However, the ski binding is generally constructed so as to release the boot from the ski in the presence of undesirable excessive stresses thus minimizing the danger of injuring the skier due to such stresses between the skier or ski boots and the skis. With the emergency release of the ski from the boot during a skiing activity, the released ski is in a runaway condition and is highly hazardous to the skier, and other skiers, frequently causing serious injury. In order to limit this hazard, it is known practice to leash the boot to the ski by an elongated thong so that upon release of the boot by the binding, the ski is loosely connected to the boot for free movement, while preventing its runaway. The ski leashes of the above type which have been heretofore proposed or available, however, possess numerous drawbacks and disadvantages. They are at best awkward and unreliable devices which are difficult and inconvenient to operate both in coupling and uncoupling the boot and ski, and otherwise leave much to be desired.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is a principal object of the present invention to provide an improved ski accessory device to prevent runaway skis.
Another object of the present invention is to provide an improved safety runaway preventing ski thong.
Still another object of the present invention is to provide an improved runaway ski thong which may be easily and rapidly operated to couple and uncouple the boot and the ski without the use of the hands or any tool, such as a ski pole or the like.
A further object of the present invention is to provide an improved ski thong which may be employed with conventional ski bindings.
Still a further object of the present invention is to provide a device of the above type characterized by its ruggedness, simplicity, reliability, convenience of use and its great versatility and adaptability.
The above and other objects of the present invention will become apparent from a reading of the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings which illustrate a preferred embodiment thereof.
The present invention contemplates the provision of a device for leashing a ski boot to a ski which includes a thong attached to the ski boot and provided at its other end with an enlarged coupling element. Anchoring means are mounted on the ski, responsive to the application thereto of the coupling element to retain the element even when the thong is pulled and to release the coupling element when pressure is applied to a predetermined point on the anchoring means.
In one form of the present device the thong is separably attached to the boot by a hook and eye arrangement and the coupling element is in the shape of a ball. An apertured guide slideably engages the thong and is separably attached to the boot by a snap fastener which releases under excessive axial or lateral pressure. The anchoring means includes a base member mounted atop the ski binding toe clamp and pivotly supports an upwardly, rearwardly inclined pawl plate which is swingable about a transverse axis. An anchor plate is located above and is pivoted to the base member for swinging about a transverse axis rearward of the first axis, and is provided with a longitudinal slot which is enlarged and open at its forward end. A spring biases the rear end of the anchor plate upwardly to contract the opening between the pawl and anchor plates which are intercoupled.
The improved thong is rugged, reliable, easy and convenient to use. The skier merely moves the ski boot to bring the thong into registry with the slot and pulls rearwardly to draw the coupling element past the pawl plate. To release the thong he merely steps on the anchor plate to open the plate defining passageway and advance the thong to withdraw it from the slot.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a side elevational view of the improved ski thong mechanism as employed with a conventional ski binding and shown with the boot in a clamped and leashed condition;
FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 with the boot shown released by the binding;
FIG. 3 is a view similar to FIG. 2 with the boot shown further separated from the ski and the thong guide in a detached condition;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary top plan view of the leash mechanism in a locked condition;
FIG. 5 is a sectional view taken along line 5-5 in FIG. 4;
FIG. 6 is a view similar to FIG. 5 showing the thong in the process of being applied;
FIG. 7 is a fragmentary view similar to FIG. 6 showing the thong coupling element passing the locking pawl;
FIG. 8 is a sectional view taken along line 8-8 in FIG. 4;
FIG. 9 is a fragmentary perspective view of the thong and boot connection of another embodiment of the present invention;
FIG. 10 is an exploded perspective view thereof; and
FIG. 11 is a sectional view taken along line 11-11 of FIG. 9.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the drawings and in particular to FIG. 1 4, the reference numeral 10 generally designates one form of the improved thong device shown as applied to a ski l 1 provided with a ski binding of known and conventional construction including toe and heel clamps l2 and 13 respectively. The toe and heel clamps 12 and 13 firmly engage a ski boot 14 at the toe and heel thereof to permit full control of the ski by the skier while releasing the boot when the stress between the boot and the binding reaches a predetermined dangerous level. While the boot 14 is illustrated as being of the type provided with buckle locked closure straps 16 the improved thong may be employed with other types of ski boots.
The thong device 10 includes a thong l7 and a releasable anchor mechanism 18 mounted on the ski 11 in any suitable manner. The thong 17 is strong and flexible and may be formed of nylon, stainless steel cord, or any other suitable material. Securely fastened to the distal or outer end of thong 17 is an anchor coupling element in the form of a metal ball 19, and a hook member 20 is secured to the proximate or inner end of thong 17. The hook member 20 includes an inner hook section 21 to which the corresponding inner end of thong 17 is attached and an outer hook section 22. An eye member is firmly attached to the upper front face of boot 14 by being suitably secured to the upper strap 16 and is engaged by hook section 22 to effect the securement of the thong 17 to the boot 14 while permitting the detachment thereof only when desired.
Also supported by and slideable along the thong 17 is an elongated thong guide 23 which is formed as an integral preferably metal unit of elongated shape, provided with a medial longitudinal bore which slideably engages the thong 17. The guide 23 includes a pair of legs 24 depending from opposite ends thereof and having slightly concave confronting faces provided with coplanar triangular grooves 26 extending transversely for the full widths thereof.
Cooperating with the guide member 23 is a male separable fastener member of head 27, securely medially mounted on the upper outer face of the toe section of boot 14 below and forward of eye member 25. Fastener member 27 includes a longitudinally elongated ovoid outer shell which is formed of a resilient metal and is longitudinally contractable. It has a tapered peripheral edge 28 which compliments the grooves 26. The longitudinal distance between the opposite end edges 28 when the fastener 27 is unstressed is slightly greater than the corresponding distance between the bases of grooves 26. Thus, the guide member 23 may be snap-fit onto fastener member 27 and is released therefrom by the application of a predetermined lateral or vertical force.
The anchoring mechanism 18 comprises a base member 29, including a flat bottom plate 30 and a pair of laterally spaced parallel side plates directed upwardly from the side edges of bottom plate 30. The base member 29 is mounted atop the forward portion of toe clamp 12 by means of a horizontally extending bracket plate 32 provided with laterally extending side wings 33 which embrace the top face of toe clamp 12 and are secured thereto by fastening screws. The rear and side borders of bracket plate 32 are turned upwardly and inwardly, as at 34 to tightly embrace the corresponding borders of bottom plate 30 and retain it on bracket plate 32.
An anchor plate defining lever 36 of transverse, inverted, V-shaped cross section extends longitudinally above bottom plate 30 and includes dependent side webs 37, which extend along the outer faces of base member side arms 35 and are connected thereto by pivot pins 38, permitting the swinging of lever 36 about a transverse axis between the ends of lever 36. Medially formed in the top face of lever 36 is a slot 39 which extends from the front end of lever 36 to a point short of the rear thereof. The slot 39 includes a rear narrow section 40 with parallel side edges and of a width less than that of ball 19 and greater than that of coupling thong l7, and a front section 41 having forwardly diverging side edges defining an enlarged front opening to slot 39. A helical compression spring 42 is suitably entrapped between the rear bottom face of lever 36 and the bracket plate 32 to resiliently urge the lever 36 to its clockwise most position as viewed in FIG. 5 of the drawings.
A pawl member 43 is supported by and between base plates 35 for swinging about a transverse axis forward of that oflever 36. It includes an upwardly, rearwardly, inclined transverse pawl plate 44 having a convex upper edge 46. A pair of parallel forwardly directed arms 47 lying in vertical planes extend forwardly of the forward side edges of pawl plate 44 and are hinged to respective base side plates 35 by pivot pin 48 intermediate the ends of arms 47 and forwardly of pivot pins 38. A longitudinal slot 49 is formed in the forward end of each arm 47 and is slideably engaged by a headed follower pin 50 affixed to each anchor plate side web 37. The pawl 43 and lever 36 are so related and dimensioned that in the clockwise position of lever 36, as shown in FIG. 5, the upper edge of pawl plate 44 is closest to the confronting underface of lever 36 at a distance less than the diameter of ball 19 and upon depression of the rear end of lever 36 to swing it counterclockwise, the pawl plate 44 is likewise swung counter clockwise by lever 36 to open the space between lever 36 and the pawl plate upper edge 46 to a distance greater than the diameter of ball 19, as shown in FIG. 7.
Considering now the application and operation of the thong mechanism 10 described above the thong 17 is normally connected to eye member 25 by means of hook member 20 and the guide member 23 is coupled to fastener member 27 as shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. To couple the thong 17 to the anchoring mechanism 18, the coupling thong 17 is positioned in enlarged slot section 41 with coupling ball 19 below the level thereof. With the boot heel partly raised, the toe is positioned on the ski with the heel clearing the rear heel binding 13 and the heel is then depressed to pull the thong l7 rearwardly along slot 40 thereby drawing coupling ball 19 between pawl plate 47 and lever 36 to separate these sufficiently against the bias of spring 42 until the coupling ball 19 passes rearwardly of pawl member 43 permitting it to return to its contracted position under the influence of spring 42 and to lock the thong 17 in its anchored position. The boot is then inserted in the bindings 12 and 13 in the usual manner. It should be noted that the wedging of the pulled ball 19 between pawl plate 44 and lever 36 causes the counterclockwise rotation of these about their respective axes as effected by the coupling between arms 47 and lever 36.
To uncouple the thong 17 from the anchoring mechanism 18 the skier merely releases boot from the binding, advances it over and depresses the rear end of the lever 36 with the toe of the boot. This swings lever 36 and paw] member 43 counterclockwise to effect the separation thereof as explained above, and the forces of the thong will urge the coupling ball 19 forwardly along and out of engagement with the slot 40, thus releasing the thong 17 without the use of the hand or any tool.
When the boot is released from the binding under emergency conditions due to excessive release pressure in the binding, it is still joined to the ski by the thong 17. Moreover, under the pull of the released ski, the guide member 23 is separated from the fastener element 27 so that the thong l7 joins the part of the boot above the ankle to the ski to minimize the the possibility of any injury due to the pressure exerted by the ski. The ski may be employed without the thong or its presence by detaching the thongs from the boots by uncoupling the hook and eye connections.
In FIGS. 9 to 11 of the drawings there is illustrated another embodiment of the present invention which may be employed to great advantage and which differs from that first described only in the mechanism for connecting the thong 52 to the ski boot 53, the front end of the thong 52 being provided with a coupling ball 54 which is associated with a ski mounted anchor mechanism similar to releasable anchor mechanism 18. Specifically, the connecting mechanism includes a forwardly directed yoke 56 having forwardly slightly diverging top and bottom legs 57 and 58 respectively and mounted on a footplate 59 secured to the medial toe portion of ski boot 53.
A first screw 60 extends through footplate 59 and engages a tapped bore 61 in the rear of bottom leg 58 and a second screw 63 extends through aligned openings in foot plate 59 and the forward portion of lower leg 58 and an internally threaded sleeve 64 extends through an opening 65 formed in the forward part of upper sleeve 57 and engages screw 63. A finger piece 66 is affixed atop sleeve 64 and facilitates the tightening and loosening of sleeve 64.
A U-shaped swivel member 67 is loosely embraced between yoke legs 57 and 58 and includes a knee portion 68 and a pair of forwardly directed upper and lower arms 69 provided with enlarged annular rear portions 70 which rotatably engage sleeve 64 and forwardly directed portions 71 which extend beyond the free ends of yoke legs 57 and 58. A pair of vertically aligned openings 72 are formed in swivel ann portions 71. A helical tension spring 73 is disposed between yoke legs 57 and 58 and has hooked ends engaging screw 60 and swivel knee portion 68 to resiliently bias the swivel member 67 to a medial position thereof while permitting the swinging of the swivel member 67 about sleeve 64 against the urging of spring 73.
An integrally formed coupling member 74 is suitably secured to the end of thong 52 remote from the ball 54 and is tapered at its front end toward the thong 52. An arcuate yoke or saddle 76 is formed at the rear of coupling member 74 and matingly rotatably engages sleeve 64 and is sandwiched between the swivel member arm portions 71. Recesses 77 are formed in the opposite outside faces of coupling member 74 and are matingly engaged by swivel arm portions 71 which are secured to the coupling member 74 by a mating screw 78 and sleeve nut 79 which register with openings 72 and an aligned bore 80 formed in coupling member 74.
The application and operation of the embodiment last described is similar to that first described and are clear from the above explanation.
While there has been described and illustrated a preferred embodiment of the present invention, it is apparent that numerous alterations, omissions and additions may be made without departing from the spirit thereof.
I claim:
1. A runaway ski thong device for leashing a boot to a ski comprising a thong having a first end thereof attached to a boot, a coupling element including an enanchoring means mounted on said ski for engaging and locking said coupling element in response to the application of said coupling element to Y said anchoring means and being unresponsive to'a pullon said thong larged head secured to the other end of said thong, and I to release said coupling element and being responsive to a predetermined pressure applied to said anchoring means for releasing said coupling element, said anchoring means comprising a longitudinally extending anchoring member having a longitudinal slot formed therein open at its forward end and closed at its rear end and having a width less than that of said coupling element head, a pawl member underlying said anchoring member and rearwardly converging therewith, said anchoring member and pawl member being relatively moveable to vary the space therebetween and spring means urging said pawl and anchoring members to a contracted condition.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein said anchoring means comprises a base member, said pawl member including an upwardly rearwardly inclined pawl plate mounted to said base member for swinging about a transverse first axis forwardly of the rear edge of said pawl plate, and said anchoring member is supported by said base member for swinging about a transverse second axis disposed rearwardly of said first axis and coupled to said pawl plate for swinging said pawl plate with the swinging of said anchor member.
3. The device of claim 2, including a toe clamp mounted on said ski and including means for mounting said base member atop said toe clamp.
4. The device of claim 1 wherein said slot is delineated along the rear portion thereof by parallel side edges and along the front portion thereof by forwardly diverging side edges.
5. The device of claim 1 wherein said coupling element comprises a ball.
6. The device of claim 1 including a guide member slideably engaging said thong and means for separably securing said guide member to said boot.
7. The device of claim 1 including an eye member mounted in the front of said boot and a hook member fastened to said thong first end and separably engaging said eye member.
8. The device of claim 1 including a swivel member joining said first end of said thong to said boot.
9. The device of claim 8 including means resiliently biasing said swivel member to a position along the longitudinal axis of said boot.
10. A runaway ski thong device for leashing a boot to a ski comprising a thong having a first end thereof attached to a boot, a coupling element secured to the other end of said thong, anchoring means mounted on said ski for engaging and locking said coupling element in response to the application of said coupling element to said anchoring means and being unresponsive to a pull on said thong to release said coupling element and being responsive to a predetermined pressure applied to said anchoring means for releasing said coupling element, a guide member having a longitudinal bore formed therein slidably engaging said thong and a pair of spaced depending legs having coupling recesses formed in their confronting faces and separable securing means including a head mounted on said boot and having a peripheral edge in snap engagement with said recesses.
11. The device of claim 10 wherein said thong first end is separably secured to the upper front of said boot above said guide member securing means.

Claims (11)

1. A runaway ski thong device for leashing a boot to a ski comprising a thong having a first end thereof attached to a boot, a coupling element including an enlarged head secured to the other end of said thong, and anchoring means mounted on said ski for engaging and locking said coupling element in response to the application of said coupling element to said anchoring means and being unresponsive to a pull on said thong to release said coupling element and being responsive to a predetermined pressure applied to said anchoring means for releasing said coupling element, said anchoring means comprising a longitudinally extending anchoring member having a longitudinal slot formed therein open at its forward end and closed at its rear end and having a width less than that of said coupling element head, a pawl member underlying said anchoring member and rearwardly converging therewith, said anchoring member and pawl member being relatively moveable to vary the space therebetween and spring means urging said pawl and anchoring members to a contracted condition.
2. The device of claim 1 wherein said anchoring means comprises a base member, said pawl member including an upwardly rearwardly inclined pawl plate mounted to said base member for swinging about a transverse first axis forwardly of the rear edge of said pawl plate, and said anchoring member is supported by said base member for swinging about a transverse second axis disposed rearwardly of said first axis and coupled to said pawl plate for swinging said pawl plate with the swinging of said anchor member.
3. The device of claim 2, including a toe clamp mounted on said ski and including means for mounting said base member atop said toe clamp.
4. The device of claim 1 wherein said slot is delineated along the rear portion thereof by parallel side edges and along the front portion thereof by forwardly diverging side edges.
5. The device of claim 1 wherein said coupling element comprises a ball.
6. The device of claim 1 including a guide member slideably engaging said thong and means for separably securing said guide member to said boot.
7. The device of claim 1 including an eye member mounted in the front of said boot and a hook member fastened to said thong first end and separably engaging said eye member.
8. The device of claim 1 including a swivel member joining said first end of said thong to said boot.
9. The device of claim 8 including means resiliently biasing said swivel member to a position along the longitudinal axis of said boot.
10. A runaway skI thong device for leashing a boot to a ski comprising a thong having a first end thereof attached to a boot, a coupling element secured to the other end of said thong, anchoring means mounted on said ski for engaging and locking said coupling element in response to the application of said coupling element to said anchoring means and being unresponsive to a pull on said thong to release said coupling element and being responsive to a predetermined pressure applied to said anchoring means for releasing said coupling element, a guide member having a longitudinal bore formed therein slidably engaging said thong and a pair of spaced depending legs having coupling recesses formed in their confronting faces and separable securing means including a head mounted on said boot and having a peripheral edge in snap engagement with said recesses.
11. The device of claim 10 wherein said thong first end is separably secured to the upper front of said boot above said guide member securing means.
US40519173 1973-10-10 1973-10-10 Safety runaway ski thong Expired - Lifetime US3913930A (en)

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Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4125275A (en) * 1976-09-02 1978-11-14 Tmc Corporation Safety ski binding
US4361345A (en) * 1978-04-21 1982-11-30 Tmc Corporation Safety-straplike connecting member
US6866273B2 (en) 2000-12-08 2005-03-15 The Burton Corporation Sliding device
US20140103621A1 (en) * 2012-10-11 2014-04-17 Salomon S.A.S. Device and assembly for gliding

Citations (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2933324A (en) * 1957-12-23 1960-04-19 Stimler Morton Ski leash

Patent Citations (1)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2933324A (en) * 1957-12-23 1960-04-19 Stimler Morton Ski leash

Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4125275A (en) * 1976-09-02 1978-11-14 Tmc Corporation Safety ski binding
US4361345A (en) * 1978-04-21 1982-11-30 Tmc Corporation Safety-straplike connecting member
US4365823A (en) * 1978-04-21 1982-12-28 Tmc Corporation Safety-straplike connecting member
US6866273B2 (en) 2000-12-08 2005-03-15 The Burton Corporation Sliding device
US20140103621A1 (en) * 2012-10-11 2014-04-17 Salomon S.A.S. Device and assembly for gliding
US9242166B2 (en) * 2012-10-11 2016-01-26 Salomon S.A.S. Device and assembly for gliding

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