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Publication numberUS3389481 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 25, 1968
Filing dateOct 31, 1966
Priority dateOct 31, 1966
Publication numberUS 3389481 A, US 3389481A, US-A-3389481, US3389481 A, US3389481A
InventorsEngland Harold H
Original AssigneeHarold H. England
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Expandable shoe
US 3389481 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 25, 1968 H. H. ENGLAND EXPANDABLE SHOE 2 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed 001.. 31. 1966 Harald H. Eng/and INVENTOR.

Fig. 3

June 25, 1968 H. H. ENGLAND 3,389,481

EXPANDABLE SHOE Filed Oct. 31, 1966 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Harald H. Eng/and INVENTOR.

United States Patent 3,389,481 EXPANDABLE SHOE Harold H. England, 14616 88th Ave, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada Filed Oct. 31, 1966, Ser. No. 590,603 13 Claims. (CI. 36-25) ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE The invention disclosed herein invloves a shoe for children which can be expanded one size increment for extending the useful life of the shoe. The expanding feature may be incorporated into various styles and types of shoes without altering their appearance and retaining sound orthopedic principles for properly supporting the foot at all times.

The present invention generally relates to shoe construction and more specifically to an expandable shoe for use by children from infant age to teen-age when their feet are still growing which are conventional in appearance and, of most importance, orthopedically sound and may be constructed in the form of a shoe or boot, either welted or nonwelted with the designs and appearances of the shoes and boots being practically unlimited.

It is a well-known fact that most children and teenagers outgrow their shoes rather than outwearing the footwear in view of significant advances in the expected life of the footwear due to the materials from which present-day footwear is constructed. It is a well-known orthopedic fact that the increase in size of a childs foot is substantially completely in its length rather than its width. In other words, a child over a relatively short period will not require any increase in the size insofar as width is concerned but will require lengthening of the shoe or boot an increment of one size and this requirement occurs usually after only a few months of wear.

Accordingly, the primary object of the present invention is to provide an expandible shoe which may be simply and easily lengthened one increment of size and retained in the lengthened position with the increment of size of lengthening being variable with the shoe or boot size but in all instances, the one increment of adjustment is orthopedically sound. After the childs foot growth to a point beyond accommodation by a lengthened shoe, it then is necessary to obtain a larger size shoe which can subsequently be lengthened after several months of wear thereby providing an orthopedically sound shoe throughout the growth range of the childs feet.

Another object of the present invention is to provide an expandable shoe which may be incorporated into conventional oxford type shoes, boots or any special orthopedic shoe such as a corrective shoe or the like with the lengthening being quite simple to accomplish without requiring the shoes to be taken to a shoemaker or the like inasmuch as the child or his parent may easily lengthen the shoe one size.

A further object of the present invention is to provide an expandable shoe in accordance with the preceding object having novel means for enabling adjustment of the shoe in or adjacent the arch supporting region of the shoe to provide for the elongation of the shoe in the same area as elongation of the foot occurs inasmuch as it is an orthopedically known fact that elongation of the foot primarily occurs in the arch region thereof.

Yet another important object of the present invention is to provide an expandable shoe or boot having an adjustable self-locking shank preferably of metal which can be adjusted one size length together with associated structural components which retain all of the other components of the shoe or boot in a constant position in relation to the foot of the wearer.

Still another important object of the present invention is to provide an expandable shoe or boot having an insert which may be inserted to accommodate the elongation of the sole thereby eliminating the necessity of providing an adjustable shank thereby simplifying the construction.

Yet a further important feature of the present invention is to provide an expandable shoe which will maintain a conventional appearance, maintain waterproof characteristics and yet be relatively inexpensive to manufacture in order to render the expandable shoe economically feasible.

These together with other objects and advantages which will become subsequently apparent reside in the details of construction and operation as more fully hereinafter described and claimed, reference being had to the accompanying drawings forming a part hereof, wherein like numerals refer to like parts throughout, and in which:

FIGURE 1 is a side elevational view of an expandable shoe of the present invention;

FIGURE 2 is a bottom plan view of the shoe with portions thereof broken away and illustrating the one size increment of elongation of the shoe;

FIGURE 3 is a longitudinal sectional view of the shoe construction illustrated in FIGURE 1;

FIGURE 4 is a perspective view of the self-locking adjustable shank;

FIGURE 5 is a perspective view illustrating the expendable construction of the upper of the expandable shoe;

FIGURE 6 is a transverse, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 6-6 of FIGURE 3 illustrating further structural details thereof;

FIGURE 7 is an enlarged detailed sectional view illustrating the shoe in expanded condition;

FIGURE 8 is a detailed sectional view illustrating another embodiment of the invention;

FIGURE 9 is a side elevational view of a conventional boot illustrating another embodiment of the invention before it is expanded; and

FIGURE 10 is a partial perspective view of the heel portion of the construction of FIGURE 9 illustrating the insert which may be disposed between the spaced ends of the sectional sole which has been expanded.

Referring now specifically to the drawings, the numeral 12 generally designates the expandable shoe of the present invention which includes an upper 14, a sole assembly 16 and a heel assembly 18 all of which represent shoe structure of substantially conventional appearance either of the conventional oxford type, corrective orthopedic shoes, boots or the like.

The sole assembly 16 includes an outsole 20 and a welting 22 which are attached to each other and to the insole in any conventional manner while the heel assembly 18 includes the usual heel 24 secured in place by the usual fasteners 26. The upper 14 includes the usual toe cap 28, which is preferably employed inasmuch as the shoes will be worn for a longer period of time. Also, the usual lace assembly 30 or other means may be provided for securing the shoe on the foot of the wearer in a conventional manner. A conventional counter 32 is provided in the heel portion of the upper to retain the shoe in proper configuration and to employ conventional production techniques in order to render the shoe economically feasible.

Disposed in the upper 14 is an expandable portion 34 of crinkled leather or the like and the expandable portion 34 is secured to the adjacent sections of the upper by suitable stitching 36. The expandable portion 34 of the uppers is secured in place to an expandable portion 37 of the welt 22 by loop-type stitches 38 which enables expansion of this area of the uppers in relation to the outsole 2t Interposed between the outsole 2t) and insole 23 is a metal shank generally designated by the numeral 40 which includes arcuate plates 42 and 44 which are retained in overlying relation to each other by rivets 46 or other fastening means with the rivets 46 extending through slots 48 in the plate 42. The plate 42 also has a pair of spaced transverse slots 50 for receiving a spring tongue or detent 52 formed in the plate 44 so that the over-all length of the plates 42 and 44 may be adjusted one increment for enabling elongation of the shoe a distance X (see FIG. 2) which is equal to an increase in length of one size. Inasmuch as the tongue 52 will normally be in the forwardmost transverse slot 50, it is only necessary to pull the sole assembly 16 forwardly while holding the heel assembly 18 so that the spring tongue 52 will ride up out of the forward transverse slot 50 and click into the rearmost slot 50 thus forming an adjustable self-locking shank 40. Apertures 54 are provided in the ends of the plates 42 and 44 for anchoring the shank in position by suitable fastening elements 56.

The adjoining edges of the outsole 20 are inclined or skived at 58 at a position overlying the heel 24 so that there will be substantially no change in the thickness of the outsole 20. The insole is also provided with a skived joint 60 which provides a smooth joint for the expandable junction in the insole.

The heel 24 secures the portions of the sole assembly in either of its two positions by a screw device 62 which extends up through the heel and through the overlapping segments of the sole 20. By removing the screw assembly 62, the shoe may be elongated and then the screw 62 is reinserted for retaining the shoe in extended position. The lower surface of the sole 20 may be provided with indicia 64 adjacent the front edge of the heel for indicating when the shoe has been expanded by being revealed when the sole 2% is moved forwardly.

FIGURE 8 illustrates a modified form of the invention which is a nonwelted shoe including an outsole having a skived joint 82 with the heel 84 secured thereto by screws 86 and with the adjustable shank 88 similar to the shank 40 but with an insole 90 having a rear section 92 joined thereto by a folded flexible connector 94 which has a central portion 96 folded down into the space between the adjacent edges of the sections of the insoles 90. The flexible member 94 may be secured to the sections of the insole 90 in any suitable means such as by stitching or the like. Thus, when the sections of the insole 90 are pulled apart such as when the shoe is expanded, the folded portion 96 of the connecting element 94 will be straightened out and form a juncture between the sections of the insole. Overlying the connecting member 94 is a heel pad 98 of conventional construction which eliminates any uncomfortable contact between the heel of the wearer and any of the underlying components of the shoe.

FIGURES 9 and 10 disclose another form of the invention generally designated by the numeral 100 in which the outsole 102 is connected to the rear section 104 thereof by a transverse slit or line of separation 106 with the heel 108 extending forwardly beyond the line of separa tion 108. Thus, when the screws 110 are removed, the forward section of the outsole 102 is moved forwardly 'thus leaving a transverse space 112 between the forward outsole 102 and the rear section 104. A correspondingly shaped plug 114 of the same material as the outsole 102 is inserted into the space 112 and may be secured therein by any suitable bonding material such as adhesive or the like thereby enabling the shoe to be expanded without providing an extensible shank. In this form of the inven- 4 tion, the uppers define a boot-like structure and the upper 116 is provided with an arcuate expandable section 118 to enable expansion of the uppers 1116 to the desired length. Also, oxfords maybe built in this manner.

Various types of shanks may be provided and also various types of attachment structures may be provided for attaching the shank to the sections of the sole of the shoe which are extended. Any type of lock techanism may be provided for retaining the extensible sections of the shank in its normal shortened position and its elongated position and various structures may be provided for retaining the sections in aligned position. For example, the edges of the wider shank plate may be upturned or turned upwardly and inwardly to slidingly and guidingly receive the edges of the shorter shank plate. The position and orientation of the slots and rivets may be varied as desired. The lock mechanism may be any suitable device for locking the shank plates in adjusted position with it being desirable to provide a positive click or other noise when the shank has been extended in order that the person elongating the shoe may be apprised thereof.

The shank may be constructed of suitable rust-proof material and preferably metal such as heat treated stainless steel to prevent deterioration thereof. The shanks will be available in sizes required for different sizes of shoes and boots. The arrangement of the expandable portion of the upper may be varied with it being preferable to place the expandable portion of the upper forwardly of the counter so that the counter will not be effected in any way whatsoever. The insole structure may be provided with the necessary elongation in various manners such as by skiving, folding over the rear end thereof, providing a folded connecting portion so that the insole and heel lining pad will provide a smooth support for the foot of the wearer. The waterproofing of the shoe will be in a conventional manner and conventional materials and fasteners and stitching will be employed whenever possible.

As will be obvious, the use of stretchable materials in the basic shoe and boot construction will eliminate the need for the stretchable inserts.

The foregoing is considered as illustrative only of the principles of the invention. Further, since numerous modifications and changes will readily occur to those skilled in the art, it is not desired to limit the invention to the exact construction and operation shown and described, and accordingly, all suitable modifications and equivalents may be resorted to, falling within the scope of the invention as claimed.

Wha is claimed as new is as follows:

1. An expandable shoe having a sectional sole, a heel underlying and bridging the juncture between the sections of the sole thereby supporting both sections thereof, an upper having an expandable portion extending above the juncture between the sections of the sole and the heel, and means retaining the sectional sole and upper in a normal short condition and enabling elongation thereof one orthopedically acceptable size increment and retaining the sole and upper in the elongated condition thereof.

2. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein the expandable section of the upper includes expandable material, the forward end portion of the heel having a fastener extending through the heel and the forward section of the sole.

3. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein the juncture between the sections of the sole is skived to enable change in the length thereof without substantial alteration of the thickness of the sole.

4. The structure as defined in claim '1 wherein the means retaining the sole and upper in shortened and extended position includes a shank, said shank including two longitudinally movable plates guidingly engaging each other, and friction detent means interlocking the plates for retaining them in their adjusted position.

5. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said means includes a transverse line of separation defining the sections of the sole, and an insert plug disposed between the spaced ends of the sections of the sole when the sections are moved apart from each other thus forming a continuous sole.

6. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said shoe includes an insole, said insole including two sections having a .skived juncture overlying the heel, and a heel lining pad overlying the juncture in the insole.

7. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said shoe includes an insole, said insole including two sections having adjacent edges interconnected by a folded connecting panel, said connecting panel being unfolded when the shoe is lengthened, and a heel lining pad overlying the connecting panel and the rear section of the insole.

8. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said shoe includes a welting secured to the lower edge of the upper and the sole, said welting including an expandable section aligned with the juncture between the sections of the sole and the expandable portion of the upper.

9. The structure as defined in claim 1 wherein said expandable portion of the upper is secured to the juncture between the sections of the sole with expandable attaching means.

10. An adjustable shoe comprising a sectional sole, a heel underlying and supporting both sections of the sole, a sectional upper connected with the sectional sole, said upper including an expandable and contractible portion bridging the area between the sections of the upper and being disposed substantially in alignment with the area between the sections of the sole.

11. The shoe as defined .in claim 10 wherein said heel is in bridging relation to the juncture between the sole sections, means releasably connecting the heel to one of said sections of the sole to enable movement between the sole sections and retention of the sole sections in adjusted relation.

12.. For use in a shoe construction, a shank comprising two longitudinal plates disposed it at least partial overlying registry, and means releasably retaining said plates in longitudinally retracted relation to enable the shank to be exetnded one size increment after installation in an extendable shoe for maintaining the shoe orthope-dically correct.

13. The shank as defined in claim 12 wherein said means includes guide mears interconnecting said plates to guide the plates during their relative movement, and spring detent means on one plate engageable with a re cess means on the other plate for releasably retaining said plates in longitudinally adjusted position.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 797,966 8/1905 Lange et al. 36--2.5 2,009,684 7/1935 Atl ronte 36-2.5 2,112,052 3/1938 Smith 36-25 FOREIGN PATENTS 1,266,620 6/1961 France.

PATRICK D. LAWSON, Primary Examiner.

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U.S. Classification36/97, D02/972
International ClassificationA43B3/30, A43B3/00, A43B3/26
Cooperative ClassificationA43B3/26, A43B3/30
European ClassificationA43B3/30, A43B3/26