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Publication numberUS20030230007 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/167,885
Publication dateDec 18, 2003
Filing dateJun 12, 2002
Priority dateJun 12, 2002
Publication number10167885, 167885, US 2003/0230007 A1, US 2003/230007 A1, US 20030230007 A1, US 20030230007A1, US 2003230007 A1, US 2003230007A1, US-A1-20030230007, US-A1-2003230007, US2003/0230007A1, US2003/230007A1, US20030230007 A1, US20030230007A1, US2003230007 A1, US2003230007A1
InventorsGerry Walton
Original AssigneeGerry Walton
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Article of footwear
US 20030230007 A1
Abstract
An article of footwear is shown having a bottom exposed surface with a number of threaded bores. An interchangeable sole element can be affixed to the bottom surface of the foot receiving member by means of threaded metal studs. The studs are sized and positioned with respect to the lower surface of the sole elements to allow the tips of the studs to extend beyond the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range of 2 to 5 millimeters to provide improved traction and support.
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Claims(14)
What is claimed is:
1. An article of footwear, comprising:
a foot receiving member having an upper, foot receiving region and a lower sole region, the lower sole region having a bottom, initially exposed surface defined by a periphery, the bottom surface having a plurality of threaded bores located therein, said bores having mouth regions extending downwardly from the bottom surface of the sole region and generally perpendicular thereto;
an interchangeable sole element having an upper surface and a lower surface and a peripheral edge, the peripheral edge of the sole element being sized to generally mate with the periphery of the bottom surface of the sole region, the sole element having a plurality of bores which communicate the upper and lower surfaces thereof and which are positioned to be in alignment with the threaded bores of the lower sole region when the interchangeable sole element is aligned with the lower sole region;
a plurality of threaded studs sized to pass through the bores in the interchangeable sole element and to threadedly engage the threaded bores in the bottom surface of the sole region to thereby affix the interchangeable sole element to the sole region of the foot receiving member, the studs having a height which is defined between an inner extent and an outer tip, the studs being sized and positioned with respect to the lower surface of the sole element to allow the tips thereof to extend beyond a plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range from 2 to 5 millimeters.
2. The article of footwear of claim 1, wherein the foot receiving member is a sandal having a sole plate region which is received about the shoe or boot of a wearer.
3. The article of footwear of claim 1, wherein the foot receiving member is itself a boot.
4. The article of footwear of claim 1, wherein the foot receiving member is itself a portion of a hip wader.
5. The article of footwear of claim 1 wherein the foot receiving member is itself a portion of a chest wader.
6. The article of footwear of claim 1, wherein the studs which are used to attach the interchangeable sole element to the bottom surface of the sole region are sized and positioned with respect to the lower surface of the sole element to allow the tips thereof to extend beyond the plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range from 3 to 4 millimeters.
7. An article of footwear, comprising:
a foot receiving member having an upper, foot receiving region and a lower sole region, the lower sole region having a bottom, initially exposed surface defined by a periphery, the bottom surface having a plurality of threaded bores located therein, said bores having mouth regions extending downwardly from the bottom surface of the sole region and generally perpendicular thereto;
an interchangeable sole element having an upper surface and a lower surface and a peripheral edge, the peripheral edge of the sole element being sized to generally mate with the periphery of the bottom surface of the sole region, the sole element having a plurality of bores which communicate the upper and lower surfaces thereof and which are positioned to be in alignment with the threaded bores of the lower sole region when the interchangeable sole element is aligned with the lower sole region;
a plurality of threaded studs sized to pass through the bores in the interchangeable sole element and to threadedly engage the threaded bores in the bottom surface of the sole region to thereby affix the interchangeable sole element to the sole region of the foot receiving member, the studs having a height which is defined between an inner extent and an outer tip;
wherein the studs have flared heads at the tips thereof, the flared heads being located in recesses provided in the lower surface of the sole element, whereby the tips of the studs extend beyond a plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range from 2 to 5 millimeters, the positioning of the studs allowing the studs to first penetrate a walking surface, then followed by the attached sole element contacting the walking surface, to thereby provide additional traction and support for a wearer.
8. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the tips of the studs extend beyond the plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range from 3 to 4 millimeters.
9. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the interchangeable sole element is formed of felt with recesses formed by heat impressing the felt at selected locations.
10. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the interchangeable sole element is a rubber bob sole in which a rubber platform is built up on the lower surface of the sole element on which the flared head of the studs rest, whereby the tips of the studs extend beyond the plane defined by the lower surface of the interchangeable sole element for a distance in the range from 2 to 5 millimeters.
11. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the foot receiving member is a sandal having a sole plate region which is received about the shoe or boot of a wearer.
12. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the foot receiving member is itself a boot.
13. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the foot receiving member is itself a portion of a hip wader.
14. The article of footwear of claim 7, wherein the foot receiving member is itself a portion of a chest wader.
Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates generally to shoe sole construction for footwear and, specifically, to an interchangeable sole element which works in cooperation with threaded studs to provide additional traction and support for a wearer.

[0003] 2. Description of the Prior Art

[0004] Various types of shoe sole constructions are known in the prior art for providing additional traction and support for wearers engaged in a variety of activities. For example, in fishing and other water related activities, the user often wears a sandal, boot or wader and must traverse slippery rocks and gravel and may also encounter moving water. Accordingly, conventional fishing waders are usually provided with integrally molded gripping soles for the purpose of supporting a user under slippery conditions. Fly fishing boots and sandals have been provided with felt soles to improve traction. Shoes or boots with traction improving roles are also used in industrial areas, for example, in roofing tasks. It is generally recognized in the industrial and sporting industries, that no single sole design will provide the best traction under all conditions. As a result, a large number of anti-slipping devices have been devised for attachment to the soles of shoes, boots and the like for providing improved traction when needed.

[0005] Certain of the prior art designs featured outer soles which were worn by persons over regular footwear. For example, it has been known for some time to design anti-slip outer soles that are provided with cleats. This is generally been done in the form of sandals or some other type of clip-on or tie-on device that is attached beneath the sole portion of regular footwear. Customarily such attachment is accomplished by means of straps. However, in other cases, the attachment means employed included toe or heel hoods or caps.

[0006] One non-slip sandal in issued U.S. Pat. No. 5,836,090, to Smith, and features a sole plate made from a semi-flexible material which utilizes fabric straps or laces attached to the sole plate to secure a sandal to a shoe or boot of the wearer. The Smith patent provides interchangeable cleats or studs for different traction surfaces and also provides a replaceable layer of synthetic foam material on the bottom of the sole plate which can be secured into position by means of “Velcro.”

[0007] Despite the above described advances in the art, a need exists for an improved shoe sole construction which can be adapted to a variety of types of footwear to provide improved traction and support under a variety of conditions.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0008] The article of footwear of the invention includes a foot receiving member having an upper, foot receiving region and a lower sole region. The lower sole region has a bottom, initially exposed surface defined by a periphery. The bottom surface also has a plurality of threaded bores located therein. The bores have mouth regions extending downwardly from the bottom surface of the sole region generally perpendicular thereto.

[0009] An interchangeable sole element is provided having an upper surface, a lower surface and a peripheral edge. The peripheral edge of the sole element is sized to generally mate with the periphery of the bottom surface of the sole region. The sole element has a plurality of bores which communicate the upper and lower surfaces thereof and which are positioned to be aligned with the threaded bores of the lower sole region when the interchangeable sole element is aligned with the lower sole region.

[0010] A plurality of threaded studs are sized to pass through the bores in the interchangeable sole element and to threadedly engage the threaded bores in the bottom surface of the sole region to thereby affix the interchangeable sole element to the sole region of the foot receiving member. The studs have a height which is defined between an inner extent and an outer tip. The studs are sized and positioned with respect to the lower surface of the sole element to allow the tips thereof to extend beyond a plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element by a distance in the range from 2 to 5 mm.

[0011] The foot receiving member can be a sandal having a sole plate region which is received about the shoe or boot of a wearer. The foot receiving member can also be a boot itself, a portion of a hip wader or a portion of a chest wader each of which employs the improved sole construction of the invention.

[0012] Additional objects, features and advantages will be apparent in the written description which follows.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0013]FIG. 1 shows an article of footwear of the invention in exploded fashion illustrating the attachment of the interchangeable sole element with the foot receiving member.

[0014]FIG. 2 is an isolated view of a portion of the sole element of FIG. 1 showing its attachment with a metal stud.

[0015]FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the assembled article of footwear of FIG. 1.

[0016]FIG. 4 is a side, cross-sectional view of a portion of the sole element and foot receiving member of the article of footwear of FIG. 3.

[0017]FIG. 5 is a side view of the assembled article of footwear of FIG. 3.

[0018]FIG. 6 is a side, cross-sectional view of a portion of another interchangeable sole utilized in the article of footwear of the invention.

[0019]FIG. 7 is a bottom view of a bob sole element.

[0020]FIGS. 8A and 8B are top and side views respectively of the metal stud used to secure the sole element to the foot receiving member of the invention.

[0021]FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional view taken along lines IX-IX in FIG. 7.

[0022]FIG. 10 is a view of a wearer utilizing chest waders having the improved sole construction of the invention.

[0023]FIG. 11 is a perspective view of one version of the foot receiving member of the invention showing the strap construction thereof.

[0024]FIG. 12 is a perspective view of the sandal of FIG. 11 in place over the boot of a wearer, the boot being shown in dotted lines.

[0025]FIG. 13 is a side, perspective view of a traditional boot employing the improved sole construction of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0026] Turning to FIG. 1 there is shown an article of footwear designated generally as 11. The article of footwear, in this case a sandal, includes a foot receiving member 13 having an upper, foot receiving region 15 and a lower sole region 17. The lower sole region 17 has a bottom, initially exposed surface 19 defined by a periphery 21. The bottom surfaces 19 has a plurality of threaded bores 23 located therein. As shown in FIG. 2, each bore 23 has a mouth region 25 which extends downwardly from the bottom surface of the sole region 17 along an axis 27 generally perpendicular to the surface 17.

[0027]FIG. 1 shows one embodiment of an interchangeable sole element 29 having an upper surface 31 and a lower surface 33 and a peripheral edge 35. The peripheral edge 35 of the sole element 29 is sized to generally mate with the periphery 21 of the bottom surface 19 of the sole region 17. The sole element 29 has a plurality of bores 37 which communicate the upper and lower surfaces 31, 33 thereof and which are positioned to be in alignment with the threaded bores 23 of the lower sole region 17 when the interchangeable sole element 29 is aligned with the lower sole region.

[0028] A plurality of threaded studs 39 are sized to pass through the bores 37 in the interchangeable sole element 29 and to threadedly engage the threaded bores 23 in the bottom surface 19 of the sole region 17 to thereby affix the interchangeable sole element to the sole region of the foot receiving member. As shown in FIG. 4, the studs have a height “h” which is defined between an inner extent 41 and an outer tip 43. As will be described in greater detail, the studs are sized and positioned with respect to the lower surface 33 of the sole element 29 to allow the tips 43 thereof to extend beyond a plane defined by the lower surface of the sole element for a distance in the range of 2 to 5 millimeters, preferably 3 to 4 millimeters. With reference to FIG. 4, “d” represents the distance between the tip 43 and the plane of the lower surface 33.

[0029]FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the assembled article of footwear with the sole element 29 secured to the sole region 17 by means of a plurality of of threaded studs 39.

[0030] Various techniques can be employed to achieve the desired positioning of the stud tips relative to the plane of the lower surface 33 of the sole element. For example, in the embodiment of the invention of FIG. 1, the interchangeable sole element 29 is formed of conventional felt material. However, the felt material has recesses 47 (FIGS. 2 and 4) formed therein. The recesses may be formed by heat impressing the felt in such a way as to allow the stud to sit recessed within the felt by a depth sufficient to allow the stud tip 43 to extend beyond the top of the felt by 3 to 4 millimeters in the most preferred case.

[0031] FIGS. 5-9 illustrate another embodiment of the interchangeable sole element which features a rubber “bob” sole. The sole element 50 again has recesses 57 and threaded studs 49 for attaching the sole element to the front recurring member.

[0032] The rubber bob sole, as shown in FIG. 6, features a plurality of outwardly extending protuberances 55 which extend beyond an inner plane 57 of the sole element. As shown in FIG. 7, the protuberances 55 can be arranged in a variety of patterns to provide the desired degree of traction. In order to provide the desired recessed effect for a bob sole, it is necessary to build up a rubber platform on top of the sole inner plane 57 upon which the tip of metal stud rests, thereby extending the tip of the stud beyond the outer plane (45 in FIG. 6) of the interchangeable sole element by 3 to 4 millimeters in the preferred example. The amount of rubber added to build up the rubber platform is illustrated as “t”. The distances “d,” in FIG. 6 is approximately 3 to 4 millimeters.

[0033]FIG. 11 illustrates one form of the article of footwear of the invention which features a foot receiving member 60 in the form of a sandal. The sandal 60 has a sole plate 59 with an upstanding heel member 61 and a toe region 63 for receiving a wearer's foot. A series of straps are utilized to retain the foot receiving member about the wearer's foot. In this case, two straps 65, 67 are utilized. Strap 65 is permanently sewn to an opening 69 in the toe region of the foot receiving member and passes first through a clip 71 and then out an opening 73 provided in the heel member 61. Similarly, strap 67 is permanently sewn within an opening 75 in the toe region 63 and extends first through a clip 77 and then through an opening 79 provided in the heel member 61. Commercially available bayonet fastening elements 81, 83 are used to secure to secure the straps about the ankle and foot of the wearer. FIG. 12 illustrates the foot receiving member 60 in place over the boot of a wearer with the boot being shown in dotted lines.

[0034] Although the invention has been generally described with respect to a wear over sandal (shown in FIG. 11), it will be understood that the improved sole construction could be employed on a traditional boot such as the boot 85 shown in FIG. 13. The improved sole element 86 is held in place by means of threaded studs (not shown) as previously described. The improved sole construction could also be utilized with a hip wader or chest wader such as the wader shown as 87 in FIG. 10. The improved soles are shown as 88 in FIG. 10.

[0035] An invention has been provided with several advantages. Existing metal studded footwear has been developed to provide improved traction. However, the improved sole construction of the invention provides interchangeable soles that work in conjunction with metal studs to provide even more traction and stability. The interchangeable soles are designed in such a way that, when attached to the bottoms of sandals, boots or waders, the metal studs are allowed to extend beyond the outer plane of the sole by approximately 2 to 5 millimeters. This degree of clearance allows the stud to penetrate a surface, followed by the attached sole, so that additional traction and support are achieved. The interchangeable soles can be provided in a variety of configurations including conventional felt and custom designed rubber bob soles. The soles are quicky and easily interchangeable by means of threaded metal studs which are received within mating bores in the bottom surfaces of the foot receiving member. The interchangeable sole construction can be employed in wear-over sandals or in traditional types of footwear such as hunting and hiking boots, fishing waders, and the like.

[0036] While the invention has been shown in only one of its forms, it is not thus limited but is susceptible to various changes and modifications without departing from the spirit thereof.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7111416 *Apr 7, 2003Sep 26, 2006Gallegos Alvaro ZFootwear
US7549237Aug 10, 2006Jun 23, 2009Gallegos Alvaro ZFootwear with two-plate system
US7721466 *Apr 2, 2007May 25, 2010Cing-Yang GuoShoe sole and insole structure
US7780581 *Dec 20, 2004Aug 24, 2010Emmert Second Limited PartnershipFoot plate assembly with adjustable symmetric retention strap arrangement
US7866064 *Feb 16, 2007Jan 11, 2011Nike, Inc.Interchangeable pod system
US8250781Dec 6, 2010Aug 28, 2012Nike, Inc.Interchangeable pod system
US8291613 *Aug 25, 2006Oct 23, 2012Kenneth Dean CunninghamReady cleat
US8356426 *Dec 10, 2009Jan 22, 2013F3M3 Companies, Inc.Article of footwear
US8516720Jan 31, 2011Aug 27, 2013Nike, Inc.Interchangeable pod system
US20130263478 *Apr 29, 2013Oct 10, 2013Nfinity Ip, LlcFootwear Having Cleats
WO2006125997A1May 26, 2006Nov 30, 2006Jason KershawInter-engaging fasteners
Classifications
U.S. Classification36/15, 36/7.6
International ClassificationA43B3/12, A43B5/08, A43B13/26, A43B5/18, A43B13/36
Cooperative ClassificationA43B13/36, A43B3/128, A43B13/26, A43B5/08, A43B5/18
European ClassificationA43B5/08, A43B5/18, A43B13/26, A43B3/12S, A43B13/36