US 2901918 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 1, 1959 R. R. BEAMER BOAT STEERING DEVICE 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Sept. 25. 1958 RALPH R. BEAMER INVENTOR.
BY M 7 FIG Sept. 1, 1959 R. R. BEAMER BOAT STEERING DEVICE '3 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Sept. 25, 1958 RALPH R. BEAMER INVENTOR.
I BY M p 1, 19 9 R. R. BEAMER 2,901,918
BOAT STEERING DEVICE 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Sept. 25, 1958 FIG 54 52 Mmc E FlG 8 n :im
RALPH R. BEAMER INVENTOR.
United States Patent BOAT STEERING DEVICE Ralph R. Beamer, Seattle, Wash.
Application September 25, 1958, Serial No. 763,271
Claims. (Cl. 74-480) This present invention relates to the general field of outboard motor powered boats and more particularly to a device having a foot treadle pivotably secured in the bottom of the boat and arranged with connecting arms to engage the steering handle of the outboard motor and make it possible to steer the boat through the use of foot pressure upon the treadle.
The steering of outboard motors in their relationship to the boat they drive has developed to the point where these motors can be remotely controlled from the front of the boat or from a mid point in the length of the boat by steering wheels which are variously connected to the outboard motors. Such installations further may be provided with means for controlling the reversing mechanism of the motor and the throttle of the same. Such arrangements, however, are normally only justified where relatively large, powerful motors are employed. Studies show that the greatest number of outboard motors are of the low powered type such as are normally employed by a fisherman and these, because they are highly portable and are of low power, are usually controlled by a tillerlike handle directly connected to the motor. As a rule, such motors do not have the reversing mechanism provided in the larger motors. 1
The fisherman who trolls or drift fishes, with his outboard boat, finds that minding the motor requires the constant use of one hand and this greatly handicaps the fisherman in the proper enjoyment of his sport. The problem is further complicated by the fact that a large number of our larger political subdivisions have passed regulatory laws requiring that the fish pole be held in the hand of the fisherman. These and other requirements place such a burdensome, strict attention to the motor and indirectly on the course of the boat, that usually a fisherman finds it most expedient to stop his motor and drift while he prepares a bait and rebaits his line or performs any adjustment in the amount of line played out. These conditions practically preclude the possibility of the fisherman, responsible for the handling of the motor, enjoying the newer forms of casting 'while his boat is in motion. Particularly is this true in the handling of a casting pole whether it is of a spinning type or the revolving reel type. It is to overcome these conditions and provide means whereby the fisherman may have both hands available for the conduct of his sport that I provide my outboard motor steering device.
The principle object of my present invention therefore is to provide a foot actuated steering device for outboard motors, which makes it possible for the operator of the motor to have both hands free.
A further object of this invention is to provide a foot treadle actuating means together with suitable telescoping and partially rotating connecting members, which will permit the partial revolution of certain of the parts and the lengthening and shortening of other connecting parts so as. to provide for-the varying arcsthrough which the controlled device must move and also to compensate for the fact that the outboard motor handle usually moves in an inclined are.
A further object of this present invention is to provide means for resiliently engaging the steering handle of an outboard motor so that the same can be quickly disconnected from the steering device as may be desirable in landing operations and the like.
Further objects, advantages and capabilities will be apparent from the description and disclosure in the drawings, or may be comprehended or are inherent in the device.
In the drawings:
Figure 1 is a perspective view illustrating the employment of my foot operated steering device for outboard motors.
Figure 2 is a top plan view of my steering device with the various parts assembled substantially in the manner they are used.
Figure 3 is a fragmentary exploded view, showing partly in section the locking joint connecting the lower vertical shaft member and the actuating horizontal shaft.
Figure 4 is a cross sectional view along the line 44 of Figure 2, showing the base member and the foot treadle in their relative positions.
Figure 5 is a bracketed view illustrating a side View of my steering device in substantially the position of use, the handle of an outboard motor being indicated in dashed lines.
Figure 6 is a fragmentary, side elevation illustrating a portion of the upper horizontal shaft of Figure 2.
Figure 7 is a fragmentary view showing the upper pivot joint of my device.
Figure 8 is a view similar to Figure 5 but showing the upper horizontal shaft revolved from its normal position, in order to more clearly show the working parts in their association with each other.
Figure 9 is a cross sectional view along the line 9-9 of Figure 8.
Referring to the drawings throughout which like reference numerals indicate like parts, 10 designates the base plate, which is adapted to be secured preferably to the keelson of the boat or to the floor or bottom of the boat. The attachment may be secured by using screws through the plurality of screw holes 12 as provided or by a plurality of thumb screws 14, which are disposed to engage the keelson of a boat. This latter attaching means is particularly desirable in many forms of a plastic boat where it is not desirable to drill through the bottom of the boat and where usually there is not sufficient body to hold the conventional wood screw. Fixedly secured to or made as part of the base plate are spaced bearing members 16 and 18, which are disposed on the upper surface of base plate 10 and along the longitudinal axis of the same. Adapted to be revolvably secured in bearings 16 and 18 is the base shaft 20. This shaft is provided with means to limit the longitudinal movement of the same with respect to the bearings 16 and 18. As shown in Figure 5, this is provided by an enlargement of the shaft at 22 and a cotter pin at 24.
Secured upon the shaft 20 and intermediate bearing 16 or 18 is the treadle 30, which is secured against angular displacement on shaft 32 by any convenient means. One simple means is to flatten the upper and lower surfaces as at 26 and 27 of shaft 20 and to provide the treadle boss 34 with a flat coacting with flat 26 and a suitable setscrew 36. The upper surface of treadle 30 and 38 is preferably configured in some manner or provided with a nonskid pad 39 so as to minimize the shifting of the foot on the treadle when in use.
Adjustably secured to shaft 20 at its outer end by means of bolt 40 is the lower vertical tubular shaft 42. A suitable locking means which can be locked in position as by bolt 40 and wing nut 44 is provided by having the meeting faces 41 and 43 serrated or toothed so that shafts 42 and 20 can be adjusted in position angularly with respect to each other and then locked in that position. The lower vertical shaft 42 is preferably tubular so that the upper vertical shaft may engage it in a telescoping arrangement. 'Throughout the drawings, I have indicated the upper shaft as beingseated within the lower shaft. This is merely a matter of convenience. The upper vertical shaft 50 is provided with an .adjustable set collar as 52, which serves as an adjustable stop means and may .be locked in its adjusted position by thumb screw 54. The purpose of this arrangement is to have the set collar 52 so adjusted that it holds the upper assembly in place. Then as the two shafts 50 and 42 are required to be extended to take care of the arcuate sweep of the .shafts upper pivot 56 about the axis of shaft .20, this telescoping feature will easily permit this elongation.
-Pivotably .secured to the upper end of shaft 50 by pin .56 is what .Iq-prefer to term a stub shaft 60. This joint of which pin 56 is the pivot pin is preferably made after the style of the showing .of Figure 7 to the end that the joint can be free working if desired but will have suflicient :bearing .to be capable of transmitting an appreciable force through the joint. An ideal arrangement is .to form .one of the engaging shafts with a smooth tongue and to bifurcate the end of the coacting shaft. This construction is quite well illustrated in Figure 7 in which stub shaft 60 is provided with a tongue portion 62 and the end of shaft .50 is provided with a bifurcated end providing the spaced supporting members 64 and .65.
It will :be apparent, it is believed, if shaft 60 and its coaxial extension 70 are to deliver enough force to steer an outboard motor, they must be used substantially at right angles to shaft 20. It is to be noted that the positions .of shafts 70 and 20 are shown as parallel in Figure 8. This is the storing or carrying position and Figure 8 is included to show all the parts involved and the manner in which they are connected. Shaft 70 is provided preferably with a socket portion, which may be made in any convenient manner as for instance being made as an actual socket integral with shaft 70 or the socket portion 72 may be in the form of a sleeve which is fixedly secured to shaft 70. Due to the arcuate path given in the steering device as it rocks about shaft 20 and the further fact that the handle H of the outboard motor normally is not parallel to shaft 20 in either the horizontal or vertical planes, it is desirable that shaft 70 be capable of a partial revolution with respect to shaft 60. A convenient means of limiting this movement is by means of a pin 74 secured to stub shaft 60 disposed to operate within the slot 76 formed in socket portion 72.. An arrangement of this order permits the limited rotation of shaft 70 yet insures that shaft 60 and shaft 70 will not be pulled apart in use.
Disposed on the upper surface of shaft 70 is the eye bolt. 80. This is an exaggerated form of ring bolt in which the eye portion .82 is provided with a free opening sufficiently large to easily slip over the steering handle of an outboard motor. This :bolt is normally provided with a shoulder at 84 as is common with eye bolts and the bolt portion 86 is adapted to be loosely seated in any one of several vertically disposed ring bearings 88. The outer. shank of shaft 70 is preferably flattened on its upper surface as indicated in the sectional view of Figure 9 to provide a proper seat for flange 84 to the end that the ring 80 can swing about its vertical axis to accommodatethe various angular positions of the outboard motor steering handle. Suitable securing means .is preferably provided at the .lower end of bolt portion .86 as the washer and cotter pin arrangement as shown in Figure 5. Ring 82 is positioned on handle H of the outboard motor preferably by means of the resilient washers 90 and 92. have through openings of a size to frictionall y 2,901,918 r. I r
4 engage handle H and position ring '82 securely. At the same time the washers and 92 can be easily removed or their adjustment quickly changed if desirable.
The manner of using this outboard motor steering device is probably best illustrated in Figure l in which it will be noted that the fisherman illustrated, is sitting sideways in the boat so that he has a full and convenient view ahead yet he is steering the boat with one foot resting on treadle 30. This leaves him free to engage in all the operationsincidental to fishing which may involve the preparation of a cut bait and the proper securing of it on possibly tandem fish hooks as is commonly employed *wherecut herring and the like are used. Further in employing a casting rod whilethe boat is slowly passing likely fishing spots the fisherman is free to use both hands and enjoy his casting with his favorite type of gear.
The mechanical operation of my steering device starts with securing base 10 in the boat, :at normal foot level, with base shaft 20 disposed on fore-and-aft line, paral v lel to :the keel of the boat, and passing through the vertical drive shaft of the motor M. When so positioned the treadle 30 will be easy to operate and the motor :may be turned an equal amount to the right or :to the left. Rocking treadle 30 will partially revolve shaft .20 and will carry with it the upper elements of the device, consisting of shafts 42, 50, '60, 70 and .ring 82. Shaft 42 should be adjusted by means of bolt 40 and toothed faces 41 and 43 so as to best position ring 82 :in its engagement with handle H of motor M. In Figure l-shaft 42 is shown inclined rearwardly. Ring 82 should be.en gaged .in the bearing hole 88 necessary to place ring in best operative engagement with handle H when the motor is positioned for straight ahead travel. Set .rollar 52 is then adjusted to position shaft .70 in substantially horizontal position to best insure the smooth operation .of ring -.82 on handle H and as the joint about bolt 56 is a free one and shaft 50 is also free to revolve in shaft 42, shaft 60.70 should be positioned substantially at right angles to shaft .20. It will be apparent, it is believed that as the motor handle H is swung from one side :to the other there is need for extension and for shortening of shaft 42-50, shaft till-70 should pivot freely about bolt 56, shaft 70 should be free for limited rotation with respect to shaft 60 and finally ring 82 must be able to pivot in bearing 88. These adjustments are necessary to the free working of my device.
It is believed that it will be clearly apparent from the above description and the disclosure in the drawings that the invention comprehends a novel construction :of a boat steering device.
Having thus disclosed the invention, 1 claim:
1. A foot operated steering device for outboard .motors, comprising: a base plate adapted .to be secured on the floor of a boat and having upwardly extending and spaced apart shaft bearings; a horizontal base shaft revolvably positioned in said bearings and having means for longitudinally positioning said shaft relative to said bearings; afoot treadle secured to said base shaft intermediate said bearings; a lower vertical tubular shaft pivotably secured to the end of said base shaft; locking means for securing said vertical shaft .and said base shaft with fixed, adjusted position in respect to each other; an upper vertical shaft adapted to telescopically engage said lower vertical shaft; adjustable stop means disposed .to limit downward movement of said upper vertical shaft in respect to said lower vertical shaft; an upper horizontal stub shaft :pivotably secured to the upper end of said upper vertical shaft; an upper, horizontal ring shaft having a plurality of spaced ring bearings disposed with their axis substantially vertical; means for positioning said horizontal ring shaft and said horizontal stub shaft in axial alignment and having stop means to limit the relative rotation of said horizontal shafts; an eye bolt adapted to be selectively and rotatively positioned in the ring bearings of said horizontal ring shaft and having a ring opening large enough to slidably engage the steering handle of an outboard motor and resilient washers adapted to frictionally engage said handle on each side of said ring.
2. A foot operated steering device for outboard motors, comprising: a base plate adapted to be secured on the floor of a boat, substantially on the fore-and-aft axis of the motor controlled, and having a shaft bearing With its longitudinal axis disposed substantially parallel to the center line of the boat in which the device is used; a base shaft revolvably positioned in said bearing and having means for longitudinally positioning said shaft relative to said bearing; a foot treadle secured to said base shaft; a lower vertical tubular shaft pivotably secured to the outer end of said base shaft; locking means for securing said vertical shaft and said base shaft in fixed, adjusted position with respect to each other; an upper vertical shaft adapted to slidably engage said lower vertical shaft; an upper horizontal stub shaft pivotably secured to the upper end of said upper vertical shaft; an upper, horizontal ring shaft having a ring bearing disposed with its axis substantially vertical; means for positioning said horizontal ring shaft and said horizontal stub shaft in axial alignment and having stop means to limit the relative rotation of said coaxial horizontal shafts; an eye bolt adapted to be selectively and rotatively positioned in the ring bearings of said horizontal ring shaft and having a ring opening large enough to slidably engage the steering handle of an outboard motor and resilient washers adapted to frictionally engage said handle on each side of said ring.
3. A foot operated steering device for outboard motors, comprising: a base plate adapted to be secured on the floor of a boat and having upwardly extending and spaced apart shaft bearings; a base shaft revolvably positioned in said bearings and having means for longitudinally positioning said shaft relative to said bearings; foot treadle secured to said base shaft intermediate said bearings; a lower vertical tubular shaft pivotably secured to the end of said base shaft; locking means for securing said vertical shaft and said base shaft in fixed, adjusted position with respect to each other; an upper vertical shaft adapted to telescopically engage said lower vertical shaft; adjustable stop means disposed to limit downward movement of said upper vertical shaft in respect to said lower vertical shaft; an upper, horizontal ring shaft having a plurality of spaced ring bearing-s disposed with their axis substantially vertical; an eye bolt adapted to be selectively and rotatively positioned in one of the ring bearings of said horizontal ring shaft and having a ring opening large enough to slidably engage the steering handle of an outboard motor and resilient means adapted to engage said handle and position it longitudinally within said ring.
4. The subject matter of claim 3 in Which the locking means for securing said vertical shaft and said base shaft together comprises: coacting, toothed engagement faces, one on the base shaft and one on the vertical shaft; a centrally disposed pivot and clamping bolt adapted to position said toothed faces in cooperative engagement and nut means for applying clamping pressure and securing the faces in fixed relationship.
5. A controlling device for outboard motors, comprising: a base shaft disposed substantially on the foreand-aft axis of an outboard motor; means for revolvably supporting said base shaft and positioning it longitudinally; an extensible vertical shaft secured at its lower end to said base shaft by adjustable means; clamp means for locking said adjustable means; an upper horizontal ring supporting shaft pivotably secured to the upper end of said vertical shaft and disposed when the controlling device is in use, substantially at right angles to said base shaft; a ring pivotably secured to said upper horizontal shaft and having a through opening large enough to slidably engage the steering handle of an outboard motor; and said ring, positioned on said steering handle by resilient means secured to said handle and capable of limited rotation in the plane of the ring body.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,586,454 McTague May 25, 1926 1,825,240 Miller Sept. 29, 1931 2,309,159 Binger Jan. 26, 1943 2,365,490 Pieron Dec. 19, 1944 2,624,212 Urguhart Jan. 6, 1953 2,724, Lerman Nov. 22, 1955