US 3205905 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
C. GOTTMAN Sept. 14, 1965 CRUTCHES Filed March 1, 1963 INVENTOR CARMAN GOTTMAN United States Patent 3,205,905 CRUTCHES Carman Gottman, 2732 Cherry, Kansas City, Mo. Filed Mar. 1, 1963, Ser. No. 262,123 1 Claim. (Cl. 135--50) This invention relates to new and useful improvements in crutches, and in particular the invention concerns itself with crutches of the type which provide a leg rest and constitute a prosthetic leg extension for below the knee amputees.
The knee crutch of the invention represents certain structural and functional improvements in the knee crutch disclosed in my earlier Patent No. 3,074,420, issued Jan. 22, 1963.
An important feature of the present invention resides in making the main body of the crutch in the form of a light-weight, sturdy casting to which other components of the crutch are removably and adjustably connected, such a casting serving to provide a rigid, dependable backbone, so to speak, for the crutch as a whole, which is not facilitated by crutches fabricated from simple tubular stock in accordance with conventional practice. Moreover, the casting, as an integral entity, includes clamping sleeves or bosses to adjustably receive the other crutch components such as the crutch leg member and means for stabilizing the crutch relative to the body of the user, such components being readily adjustable not only to suit users with different physical characteristics, but also to facilitate retraction of the crutch into a compact form when it is not in use.
Other objects, features and advantages of the invention will become aparent from the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein like characters of reference are used to designate like parts, and wherein:
FIGURE 1 is a front elevational view of one embodiment of the invention which is in the form of a knee crutch;
FIGURE 2 is a fragmentary side elevational view thereof;
FIGURE 3 is a sectional view, taken substantially in the plane of the line 3-3 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 4 is a sectional view, taken substantially in the plane of the line 4-4 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 5 is a sectional view, taken substantially in the plane of the line 5-5 in FIGURE 1;
FIGURE 6 is a sectional detail, taken substantially in the plane of the line 6-6 in FIGURE 1; and
FIGURE 7 is an enlarged, fragmentary sectional view, taken substantially in the plane of the line 7-7 in FIG- URE 1.
Referring now to the accompanying drawings in detail, the knee crutch in accordance with the invention is designated generally by the reference numeral and embodies in its construction a vertically elongated main body casting 16 which is formed integrally from any suitable light-weight material, as for example, aluminum, or the like. The upper portion of the casting 16 consists of a concave saddle 16a which has a pair of downwardly convergent side portions 16b extending from the ends thereof, the lower ends of these side portions uniting in a split clamping sleeve 16c at the lower end of the casting. The upper end regions of the side portions 16b are formed integrally with a pair of transversely spaced, split clamping bosses 16a, it being noted that the casting components 16a, 16b, 16c and 16d are substantially of the same width, while a pair of relatively narrow or thin reinforcing webs 162, 16 are formed integrally with the casting at the inside of the side portions 16b and centrally thereof, as shown in FIGURE 5. The webs 16e, 16 are spaced "ice apart so as to provide a vertically elongated clearance or recess 17 in the casting, as will be apparent.
The split clamping sleeve at the lower end of the casting 16 slidably receives a tubular crutch leg member 18, the upper end of which projects freely into the casting recess 17 while its lower end is equipped with a. conventional ground engaging foot 19. The leg member 18 is held in a selected, vertically adjusted position in the sleeve 160 by a pair of clamping screws 20, extending through a pair of flanges 21 with which the sleeve 160 is provided at the opposite sides of its split, as shown in FIGURE 6.
The casting 16 also carries means for stabilizing the crutch with respect to the body of the user, such means including an inverted U-shaped, tubular rail 22 which comprises a bight portion 22a and a pair of spaced parallel side portions 22b. The rail 22 extends upwardly from the casting 16 and has the side portions 22b thereof slidably disposed in the aforementioned split bosses 16d of the casting, whereby the rail 22 may be adjusted upwardly and downwardly relative to the casting. The rail is held in a selected position of adjustment by clamping screws 23 with which the split bosses 16d are equipped, as is best shown in FIGURE 4. The bight portion 22a of the rail 22 is forwardly arcuated or curved to fit the thigh of the user and provided below the bight portion 22a is a hand grip 24 which has tubular end portions 24a slidable along the side portions 22]) of the rail 22. Thus, the position of the hand grip on the rail may be raised or lowered as desired, the hand grip being retained in a selected position by set screws 25 which extend through the portions 24a to grip the rail portions 22b, as will be clearly apparent.
A leg rest, specifically a knee rest 26 is mounted on the saddle 16a of the casting 16, this rest comprising a rigid, convexoconcave plate 27 which is attached to the saddle by suitable screws 28, as is best shown in FIGURE 7. A cushion pad of sponge rubber, or the like, 29 is placed on the plate 27 and a cover 30 is superposed on the pad 29. The cover 30 is preferably made of plastic material and includes a downturned perimetric edge 30' with an inturned lip 30". The material of the cover has sufficient resiliently flexible characteristics so that the perimetric edge 30' with the lip 30" may be spread to facilitate placing of the cover on the pad 29 and snapping of the lip 30 under the perimetric edge portion of the plate 27 for holding the cover as well as the pad in position on the plate. Of course, the cover and the pad may be readily removed when replacement of either the cover or the pad is desired.
When the crutch is to be used, it is applied to the leg so that the knee of the user rests on the rest 26, the bight portion 22a of the rail 22 abuts the front of the users thigh, and the hand grip 24 projects forwardly for convenient grasping by the users hand. It will be noted that the rest 26 extends more rearwardly than forwardly from the saddle 16a to properly support the users knee, and it will be also noted that the vertical axis of the crutch leg member 18 is offset laterally to one side of the center of the rest 26, that is, to the outside of the leg with which the crutch is used, so as to enhance the stability which the crutch affords. As such, the arrangement of the various components is particularly adapted for use of the crutch with one leg, for example, the right leg, but the crutch may be quickly and easily converted for use with the opposite leg, for example, the left leg, by simply reversing the position of the casting 16 relative to the rail 22 and also reversing the position of the rest 26 relative to the casting. When the crutch is not in use, it may be conveniently retracted to a compact form by sliding the hand grip 24 as close as possible to the bight portion 22a,
sliding the rail 22 downwardly in the bosses 16d of the casting 16 until the hand grip 24 is adjacent the rest 26, and retracting the leg member 18 upwardly through the sleeve 16c into the recess 17 in the casting.
' While in the foregoing there have been described and shown the preferred embodiments of the invention, various modifications may become apparent to those skilled in the art to which the invention relates. Accordingly, it is not desired to limit the invention to this disclosure, and various modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the spirit and scope of the invention as claimed.
What is claimed as new is:
A knee crutch, comprising in combination, a vertically elongated crutch body formed integrally by casting and comprising a transversely concave upper portion constituting a saddle for a users knee, inner and outer downwardly convergent strap-like side portions extending downwardly from the ends of said-saddle, a split clamping sleeve provided at the lower ends of said side portions, a pair of webs provided on opposing-inner surfaces of said side portions'and connected at their upper ends to the underside of said saddle, said webs being transversely spaced to provide therebetween a vertically elongated recess extending from said clamping sleeve to-the underside of said saddle, and a pair of split bosses provided on the outer surfaces of said side portions at the upper ends of the latter, a vertical tubular leg vertically slidably adjustable insaid clamping sleeve and receivable in said recess between said webs, a clampingscrew in said split clamping sleeve locking said leg in an adjusted position, an inverted U-shaped stabilizing member having a forwardly curved thigh fitting bight portion and a pair of parallel side pieces vertically slidably adjustable in said bosses,
of tubular guides vertically slidably adjustable on the sidepieces of said stabilizing member above said saddle, and set screws provided in said guides to engage said side pieces and lock said hand grip in an adjusted position, said knee saddle, said thigh-fitting bight portion and said hand grip being aligned in a vertical plane disposed transversely centrally between said side pieces of said stabilizing member, said vertical leg being straight and, together with said clamping sleeve, having its vertical axis ofiset laterally from said first mentioned vertical axis toward the outer side portion of said crutch body, whereby the crutch is gravitationally biased toward the inside thereof.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS nAnRgson R. Mos'ELEY, Primary Examiner. CHAiifiLES E. OCONNELL, Examiner.