US 2899146 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Aug. 11, 1959 Filed March 14, 1956 c. J. BARECKI 1 2,899,146
4 Sheets-Sheet 1 6.9 5 INVENTOR Clzesiez- IBareclai BYWa a-M ATTORNEY Aug. 11, 1959 Filed March 14, 1956 C. J. BARECKI AUTOMATIC REEL 4 Sheets-Sheet '2 ENTOR Czeale v WEmJ/M ATTORNEY Aug. 11, 1959 C. J. BARECKI AUTOMATIC REEL Filed March 14, 1956 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 III INVENTOR Chesi-ez' 1.3a t'ec'bli r l 1 \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\m \\\m1\\\ 1 ATTORNEY United States Patent i The present invention relates to automatic reels of the type used to take up slack in safety belts and harnesses for vehicle occupants and adapted to lock so as 'to re strain the occupant against forward movement in the eventofacrash.
The primary objects of the invention are to provide tin-improved reel of the character indicated which normally winds in any slack in a cable, web or similar elongated fleXible element such as might be attached to or be a part of a safety restraining device for a vehicle occupant; to provide such a reel which is readily yielding under normal 'conditions to permit unwinding of the flexible element, thus affording full freedom" of movemer'it'to the vehicle occupant; to provide such-a reel which when used in conjunction with a safety restraining device for a vehicle occupantwill'automatically lock whenever the flexible element is suddenly jerked 'as would occur in the event the vehicle crashed, thus to prevent unwinding of the flexible element so as to restrain theoccupant against being thrown forwardly in the vehicle and possibly injured or'killedyto provide 'such a reel having manual control mechanism whereby theoccupant of a vehicle seat on which the reel is mounted may look or unlock the reel at will;-'to provide novel automatic mechanism for limiting the travel of the reeled flexible element in both the paying-out and taking-up-'directio'ns; and in general to provide suchan automatic reel "which is'simple in construction, effective in use, and reasonably economical'tomanufacture; i r
. Illustrative embodiments of the invention are shown in the accompanying drawings, wherein? 1 Figure Us a 'sideelevational viewof an airplane pilots chair,':the occupant shown being provided with amore or less conventional lap belt andshoulderhar'ness, and the shoulder harness being shown connected to the new takeup reel mounted on the chair behind-the occupantsshouldls; .th. s 1 'IuFigure 2 is a sectional view of the reel taken on li e 2-2 '0fFigure 1; i "f I Figure 3 isa vertical sectional view thereof taken on line 3-3 of Figure'2; I
muFigure 4is'a vertical sectional view thereof taken on line4 4 of Figure 2;
a I Figure 5 is a vertical sectional view thereof taken on line5- 5 of FigureZ; Hi v Figure G is a vertical sectional view thereof taken on line 6'6 OfFigure'Z; i 7 -u Figure 7 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view of parts of the reel taken on line 7-'7 of Figure 5; 1 "FigureS is a fragmentary vertical sectional view thereof taken on line 81-8 of Figure 6 and showing certain parts of the reel in TdlfiEIElltl'llGVEd positions from their positions-shownin-Figure7; t-...Figure-9 is a fragmentary verti a1 sectional view of certainlpartsof the reelrin different movedpositions from theirpositionsshownin Figures 7 and.8;. x
Figure '10 is a sectional. view similar totFigure 9 and 1 showing the same parts in still other moved positions;
2,899,146 Patented Aug. 11, 1959 E, m; a
t loin... out i. NW1) Figure 11 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view of parts of the reel taken on lines 11 -11 of:Figures Zfand I i t 1.: l i 93".: ..l Figure 12 is a fragmentary vertical sectional view similar to Figure 11 and showing certain parts :of. the mechanism in different positions from their positions'shown in Figurell; :4 7'2" -Figure 13 is a fragmentary front elevational view of the parts shown in Figure-12; -1 I i :5: Figure 14 isasectional view similar to Figures 11 and 12-and showing the parts infstill otheri moved' positions; I I Figure 15' is a fragmentary'vertical. sectional view of 'a modified form of the reel, thei'section' being similar to thatof thexleft hand-endof-the reelshown in Figure 2; Figure '16- is an enlarged fragmentary horizoritali seetional view of parts of; them'odifie'd form of reel, taken on lines 1616 of Figures 15 '-and17; :1 i 11;, r l- :Figure -17-is a similarly-enlarged vertical sectional view of certain parts of the modifiedform' of reel,i-taken 'on lines 1717 of Figures 15 and16;-": if? '1 x .t Figure 18 is a vertical-sectional view of certain parts shown in Figure'vl7 in different moved positions; ii i Figure 119 is a view similar to Figure 18 and showin the same parts in -still other moved positions; and"? A Figure 20 is -a fragmentary'sectional view of4the same parts taken on line 20l20-of Figure'l8u 1 i '1 i Referring now indetail to tthese drawings, and referring-first particularly to the; formzofthe .reel shown in Figuresl through "14; the: device isi'constructed'upon a base 21 which is adaptedvfor mounting on a vehiclerseat 22 in the manner shown'in Figures- 1 and 2: as by' means of wood screws 23.-.'- Spaced bracket supports 24, 25; 26, and, 27 are-mounted upon the 'base 2*1'as"by me'ans of machine screws 28 and are provided with aligned hearings in .which tathollow shaft. is rotatablymounted or? journalled. t The opposite end :portions of the shaft" 29 "ex tendoutwardl-y beyond the inner bracket supports 25;:26 to formspaced apart-spools 30; 31 to which are-conilected elongated flexible, t non-stretchable elements or? webs" 32, 33v which comprise shoulder hamess'straps passing over the shoulders of :thechainoccupant-and attached'at their lower forwarduendstoia moreor less conventional "lap belt 34.. As seenin Figure-3 the inner endtofieach web 32 or 33 is passed through a slot 35 in its spool 30ior- 31 and is .secured thereinxby means of a: clip 36, and the webs are .thus connected'tothe spools and are adapted for Winding thereon orunwinding-th'erefrom; 5 ffr'f A rod'37 connects'the inner bracket supports 25 and 26.. A spiral spring: 38 is disposed between the support 25 and a circular plate member. 39 secure dzbyia' set screw 40 :on-the: shaft '29, and'tthis spring'38 has: its inner andnouteraends connected respectively to? the shaft '29 and to the rod 37 as best seen-:inFigure ts-z'fhe spiral spring 38 nonnally'yieldingly-urges thezshaft 29: in the winding direction, i.e. the direction for: winding .the webs 32, 33sonl the spools 30, 31- thus taking tuplany slack in the webs but atthe same-time=pertnitting freedom of movement to the chair occupantnwz- 1r" in: A disc 41 keyed to the shaft 29 adjacent the inner face of the bracket support--26 and is provided with arcuate slots '42 arranged-coaXially=-with the s'liaft'29; as best seen in-Figure o, Aratchetwheel 43 is nonslidably mounted on the shaft 29 adjacent the'disc .41 and; is provided with studs 44 extending into the discs arcuate slots 42, and the ratchet wheel 43 is thuspere mitted limited rotationtrelative to=the disc and to'the shaft 29. The-ratchet wheel 43-has peripheral ratchet teeth and has also a camming ring "45 extending inwardly therefrom coaxially with shaft- 29- and :providedwith camming teeth46. -A collar ;47 is slidably and nonerotatably mounted on theshaft 29 inwardly of the ratchet wheel '43, said collar 47 having a slot 48into which extend the ends of a pin 49 which passes through the shaft 29 and which keys the collar to the shaft. The outer end of the collar 47 has a cam ring 50 which is provided with notches and which engages with the camming ring 45 on the ratchet wheel 43.
An upper bar 51 connects the bracket supports 25, 26 spacedly from the shaft 29 and opposite said shaft from the. rod 37, said bar 51 being secured to the supports 25,. 26 as by means of screws 52. A similar lower bar 53 is secured to the supports 25, 26 as by means of screws 54. A lever 55 is fulcrumed on a pin 56 secured in a bracket 57 mounted on the upper bar 51 by means of rivets 58, as best seen in Figures and 7. The swinging movement of the lever 55 is about an axis normal to the axis of shaft 29, and the lever has a central .portion 'provided with an opening 59 through which said shaft passes freely. At opposite sides of the opening 59 the lever 55 bears against the inner surface of collar 47 and is desirably provided with riveted-in contact elements 60 at these points. The free end of lever 55 extends generally toward the rod 37.
Adjustable spring means are provided for urging the lever 55 against the collar 47. As best seen in Figures 7 and 8 these spring means comprise a helical spring 61 interposed between the lever 55 and an arm 62 of an angle lever 63 fulcrumed on a pin 64 secured in the bracket 57. An adjustment screw 65 is threaded through the upper bar 51 and through a block 66 secured to said bar by means of rivets 67. The lower or inner end of the adjustment screw 65 bears against the other arm 68 of the angle lever 63, and it will readily be seen that by means of the adjustment screw the force exerted by spring 61 on lever 55 can be adjusted. This force maintains collar 47 in camming engagement with the ratchet wheel 43, and the cams are so formed that ratchet wheel 43 is thus biased in the unwinding direction of the reel toward the ratchet wheels limit of movement relative to shaft 29.
A pawl 69 is mounted on the rod 37 turnably to positions of engagement with or disengagement from the ratchet wheels periphery. Engagement of this pawl 69 with the ratchet wheel 43 prevents rotation of the ratchet wheel, the disc 41 and shaft 29 in the unwinding direction while permitting rotation of these parts in the winding direction for taking up any slack in the webs. A spring 70 circumscribing rod 37 normally urges pawl 69 toward its position of ratchet-engagement with the ratchet wheel.
Lever 55 has its free end bent into U-shape and a detent 71 is turnably mounted on a pin 72 secured in this free end of the lever. The pawl 69 has an inwardly extending pin 73 which is engageable behind the levers detent 71 for releasably maintaining the pawl out of engagement with ratchet wheel 43.
A manual control device generally designated 74 is mounted on the side of the vehicle chair within ready access of the chair occupant as seen in Figure 1, and this control device is connected to the reel by means of an encased flexible control cable 75. At the reel end of the control cable it is coupled to a control shaft 76 reciprocally slidably disposed in a tubular bearing 77 mounted on the bracket supports 26 and 27. The inner end of the control shaft 76 is reduced in diameter and has mounted thereon a control key 78 which is reciprocally slidable inwardly and outwardly with the control shaft 76 in response to movements of the manual control devices lever 79 by the chair occupant. The control key 78 is keyed against rotation on the shaft 76 by means of a fin 80 extending into a slot 81 in the tubular bearing 77 (see Figure 7). This control key 78 is so formed as to cam the pawl 69 out of engagement with the ratchet wheel 43 each time it passes over the pawl in either direction, and a pin 82 on the control key 78 is adapted to contact the lever 55 when the key is moved inwardly beyond the pawl, thus to move the lever 55 inwardly.
4 Operation In Figures 2, 4, 5 and 7 the parts of the reel are shown set for automatic operation to lock the shoulder harness webs 32 and 33 against payout whenever there is an abrupt jerk on the 'webs such as would be caused by sudden deceleration of the vehicle as in the event of a crash and consequent sudden acceleration of the chair occupants body relative to the vehicle. With the parts of the reel so set, pawl 69 is held out of engagement with ratchet wheel 43 by the engagement of the pawls pin 73 behind detent 71 on lever 55. Shaft 29 is thus free to rotate in either direction to permit paying out or taking up of the harness webs 32, 33 wound on the shafts end portions or spools 30, 31. The chair occupant is thus permitted full freedom of movement during normal operation of the vehicle, but any slack in the harness webs is taken up by the spiral spring 38 acting on shaft 29.
In the event of a crash of the vehicle resulting in abrupt jerking of the shoulder harness webs 32, 33 and consequent sudden urging of shaft 29 and collar 47 on the shaft in the unwinding direction, ratchet wheel 43 by its own inertia lags behind this sudden movement of the shaft, being permitted to do so to a limited extent by the elongated arcuate slots 42 of disc 41 into which slots extend the ratchet wheels studs 44. This sudden inertia-effected relative rotation between the ratchet wheel 43 and the shaft 29 causes the toothed camming ring 45 on the ratchet wheel to cam inwardly collar 47 by its notched cam ring 50, as seen in Figure 8. Collar 47 thus urges lever 55 inwardly in a swinging movement about its fulcrum 56, against the biasing influence of spring 61. This inward movement of lever 55 disengages the levers detent 71 from the pin 73 on pawl 69, thus permitting pawl 69 to be moved by spring 70 into ratchet-engagement with the ratchet Wheel 43 (see Figure 6) and thus locking the ratchet wheel and shaft 29 against rotation in an unwinding direction for paying out the webs while permitting rotation of these parts in the opposite or winding direction. The chair occupant is thus prevented from being thrown farther forwardly than he happened to be at the time of the crash, and if he subsequently moves rearwardly any slack in the webs is taken up to further protect the occupant in the event of ensuing or rebounding crashes.
After the reel has become locked as above described, lever 55 remains in its inwardly moved position seen in Figure 8 by reason of the engagement of the levers detent 71 behind the inner end of the pawls pin 73, as shown. If it is subsequently desired to reset the reel for automatic operation, this can be accomplished by moving the manual control lever 79 half-way through its limit of travel and then returning it. This first moves the control key 78 from its position seen in Figure 8 to its position seen in Figure 9, thus camming the pawl 69 out of engagement with the ratchet wheel 43 and permitting lever 55 to be moved by spring 61 from its dotted to its solid line position seen in this Figure 9. Return of the control key 78 to its former position releases the pawl 69 so that its pin 73 again engages behind the levers detent 71, and the reel is thus reset for automatic oper ation.
In some situations it may be found desirable to manually lock the reel against paying out of the harness webs, and this may be accomplished by the chair occupant by moving the manual control lever 79 as far 'as it will go, and leaving it there. This moves the control key 78 inwardly to its position seen in Figure 10, and pin 82 contacts lever 55 swinging the lever inwardly and thus permitting pawl 69 to engage the ratchet wheel 43 to lock the reel. Subsequent returning movement of the manual control lever 79 cams the pawl downwardly and permits the several parts to resume their unlocked positions wherein the reel is set for automatic operation.
Means are provided for positively stopping the turning movements of shaft 29 in both directions so as to limit the total amount of harness web'which can be payed out ortaken up by the reel. 'As shown in Figure;'2 and Figures -11 through 14 these means-comprise three cooperating counter fingers 83, 84-, and 85 secured in'position on-shaft 29 between pins 86 and 87 passing through the shaft. These counter fingers have stop flanges 88, 89 and 90 respectively, each adapted to engage an adjacent finger or, in the case of counter finger 85, the pin 86, during successive turns of shaft 29. Friction washers 91 are interposed between the counter fingers and be tween the end fingers-and the adjacent pins -86, 87; Shaft 29 is shown in Figure'll at the -limit of its rotation in the winding direction in which the counter finger 83 engages a' block 92 secured to base 21 by screws 93, finger 84 engages flange 88,finger '85 engages flange 89, and pin 86 engages flange 99L -The parts are urged into such engagement bythe'spiral spring '38.
*In Figure 12, shaft 29 has been rotated about 1 /2 turns in the unwinding direction; Counter finger '83 has been stopped against the other side of 'block"92,' while the other counter fingers continue to rotate with the shaft.- I
In Figure 13, shaft 29 has reached its limit of unwinding rotation. Counter finger 83 engages block 92,finger 84 engages flange 88," finger 85 engages flange 89, and pin 36 engages flange 90.. Unwinding movement of shaft 29 is thus stopped after about four revolutions of the shaft.
-.Figures 15 through 20 illustrate a novel modification of the means for limiting the travel of shaft 29and as here shown, to about six revolutions. In thistmodification a notched wheel ltltl of Geneva-type is rotatably disposed on a spindle 101 mounted in spaced arms 162 and 103 of a bracket 104 secured to the base by screws res. A wheel 1% is keyed on the shaft 29 and is provided with a pin 107 adapted to engage in successive notches 108 of the notched wheel 100 to permit continuous rotation of wheel res and eflect step-by-step rotation of the notched wheel. This movement is similar to that of the usual Geneva-type mechanism, except that in the present device one of the notches has been omitted from the notched wheel and in its place there is an abutment 1G9 adapted to be contacted by the pin N37 to stop the movement of both wheels, and of shaft 29 after the shaft has completed about six revolutions in either direction. It will be noted that the mechanismprovides for approximately one more revolution of the shaft than the number of notches in the Geneva-type wheel, and that the number of revolutions permitted might be varied by varying the number of notches in the notched wheel.
In any form of the invention it is desirable that a cover be provided for the entire mechanism, such a cover being designated 110 in Figures 1 through and being secured to the base 21 as by means of screws ill. it Will be seen that the base 21, bracket supports 24, 25, 26 and 27, upper bar 51, lower bar 53 and the cover 110 constitute a rigid housing on which the various parts are mounted and within which they are enclosed. In Figures -20, the bracket MM is also a part of the housing. As seen in Figure 7, the cover is provided with an aperture 112 through which access may be had to the adjustment screw 65 without removing the cover from the base.
It will thus be seen that the invention provides a novel and efficient safety shoulder harness takeup reel of the automatic inertia-operable type, and while but two specific embodiments of the invention have been herein shown and described, it will be understood that numerous details thereof may be altered or omitted Without departing from the spirit of the invention as defined by the following claims.
1. In an automatic reel: a housing; a shaft rotatably mounted in the housing and having a spool rotatable therewith; an elongated flexible, non-stretchable element connected tothe spool and adapted to be wound thereon and unwound therefrom; spring means for normally yieldingly urging the-shaft in the winding direction; aratchet wheel non-slidably mounted on the shaft forrotation therewith and for limited rotationrelative thereto,said ratchet wheel having peripheral ratchet teeth and having also a camming ring extending therefrom'coaxially with the shaft; a collar slidably and non-rotatably mounted on the shaft adjacent the ratchet-wheel and having on one side a cam ring in engagement with the camming ring on the ratchet wheel; a lever mounted on the housing for swinging movement about an axis normal to the shaft, said lever bearing against the otherside of said collar; spring means urging the lever against the collar to maintain the collar incamrning engagement with-the ratchet wheel thus biasing said ratchet wheel in the unwinding direction toward its limit of movement relative to the shaft,'said limited relative rotation of the ratchet wheel in the opposite direction against the forceof the biasing spring means being'eifected by said wheels own inertia upon abrupt jerking of the elongated element and consequent sudden urging of'the shaft and thecollar in the unwinding direction; a pawl mounted in the housing turnably-to positions of engagement with or disen gagement from the ratchet wheel whereby engagement of the pawl with the ratchet wheel prevents rotation of the ratchetwhecl and'the'shaft in the unwinding direction while permitting rotation of said parts in'the winding-direction; means normally urging the pawl toward its position of ratchet-'engagementwith the'ratchet wheel; detent means for releasably maintaining the pawl out of engagement with the ratchet wheel; and means "responsive to 'said"inertia eifected limited rotation of; said ratchet wheelrelative to "thes'haft 'whereby said detentmeans is actuated to free the pawl and thus permit engagement of the pawl with said ratchet wheel.
2. In an automatic reel: a base; spaced supports mounted on the base and provided with aligned bearings therein; a shaft journalled in said bearings and having its opposite end portions extending outwardly beyond the supports to form spaced apart spools; elongated flexible, nonstretchable webs connected to the spools and adapted for simultaneous winding thereon or unwinding therefrom; a rod connecting the supports spacedly from the shaft and parallel thereto; a spiral spring disposed between said supports and having its inner and outer ends connected respectively to the shaft and to said rod whereby the shaft is normally yieldingly urged in the winding direction; a disc keyed to the shaft adjacent the inner face of one of said supports and provided with arcuate slots arranged coaxially with the shaft; a ratchet wheel rotatably mounted on the shaft adjacent the disc and provided with studs extending into said discs arcuate slots whereby the ratchet is permitted limited rotation relative to the disc and the shaft, said ratchet wheel having peripheral ratchet teeth and having also a camming ring extending inwardly therefrom coaxially with the shaft; a collar slidably and non rotatably mounted on the shaft inwardly of the ratchet wheel and provided with an outwardly extending cam ring in engagement with the inwardly extending camming ring on the ratchet wheel; a bar connecting said supports spacedly from the shaft and opposite the shaft from the rod; a lever fulcrumed at one of its ends on said bar for swinging movement about an axis normal to the shaft, said lever having a central portion provided with an opening through which freely passes the shaft and at opposite sides of which opening the lever bears against the inner surface of said collar, the free end of said lever extending generally toward said rod; spring means urging the lever against the collar to maintain the collar in camming engagement with the ratchet wheel thus biasing said ratchet wheel in the unwinding direction toward its limit of movement relative to the shaft, said limited relative rotation of the ratchet wheel in the opposite direction against the force of the biasing spring means being effected by said wheels own inertia upon abrupt jerking of the elongated Webs and consequent sudden urging of the shaft and the collar in the unwinding direction; a pawl mounted on the rod turnably to positions of engagement with or disengagement from the ratchet wheels periphery whereby engagement of the pawl with the ratchet wheel prevents rotation of the ratchet wheel, the disc and the shaft in the unwinding direction while permitting rotation of said parts in the winding direction; spring means normally urging the pawl toward its position of ratchet-engagement with the ratchet wheel; a detent on the free end of said lever; an inwardly extending pin on the pawl engageable behind the levers detent for releasably maintaining the pawl out of engagement with the ratchet wheel, said inertia-effected limited rotation of the ratchet wheel relative to the shaft resulting in camming of the collar inwardly and consequent swinging of the lever inwardly thus disengaging the levers detent from the pawls pin and permitting the pawl to turn into ratchet-engagement with the ratchet wheel.
3. In an automatic reel comprising a housing and a shaft rotatably mounted in the housing for taking up and paying out a reeled element, mechanism for limiting the travel of said reeled element comprising: a notched wheel mounted in the housing for rotation about an axis parallel to that of the shaft, said wheel being of the Geneva-type having equidistantly spaced notches extending completely around its periphery except for an abutment in the place of one notch, and a pin on the shaft adapted to engage in said notches successively with each complete revolution of the shaft thus to rotate the wheel by steps, said pin being adapted to contact said abutment in both directions of rotation of the shaft to stop the movement of the shaft and the wheel and thus limit the number of revolutions of the shaft to approximately one more than the number of notches in the wheel.
4. A safety device for mounting in a vehicle to restrain the movement of a body within the vehicle when the body is subjected to relatively high acceleration'movement relative to the vehicle comprising an elongated flexible element adapted to be coupled to the body, a rotatably mounted reel having said element secured thereon, resilient means coupled to said reel for rotating said reel in a direction to wind said element on said reel, said reel rotating in the opposite direction to unwind said element therefrom due to forces exerted on the element by the body, a rotatably mounted inertia member having camming means thereon, a collar rotatable with the reel and slidable relative thereto, said collar having a cam thereon adjacent said camming means, spring means urging the collar toward the inertia member thus yieldably coupling said inertia member to said reel to thereby cause said member to rotate with said reel during rotation in said unwind direction below a certain acceleration, said camming means operating against said cam to overcome said spring means during rotation at said certain acceleration to cause said reel to rotate relative to said inertia member, and means associated with said collar operated when said reel rotates relative to said inertia member for stopping rotation of the reel in said unwind direction.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 886,387 Mehl May 5, 1908 2,547,777 Ray Apr. 3, 1951 2,708,555 Heinemann et al May 17, 1955 2,845,234 Cushman et al. July 29. 1958