US 3559612 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
, United States Patent  Inventor Jacob E. Patterson 2,514,467 7/ 1 950 Black 1 14/ l 46X P.0. Box 796, Minden, La. 71055 2,633,757 4/ 1953 New et a1 74/480X P 75sl20 Primary Examiner-Andrew H. Farrell  Filed Aug. 26, 196 Anorne s-C1arence A OBrien and Harve B Jacobson 4s Patented Feb. 2, 1971 Y Y ABSTRACT: A remote steering assembly for a boat incorporating a pivotally supported steering stick rigid in relation to  STICK STEERING KIT FOR BOATS a grooved wheel to which a steering cable is connected and 4 Claims, 5 Drawing Figs. entrained n such a manner to steerably control the boat from a point ad acent the bow and one side of the boat. The struc- U.S. ture of the wheel and its associated tructure is uch that the 1 Incl B63h2l/26 cable will be retained in the groove thereby eliminating the  Field of Search 114/146, possibility f disengagement f the cable The stick steering 144A- 74/4803 enables a person adjacent the bow of the boat to control the direction of the boat and the stick may be oriented in a stored  Reierences Cited or inoperative position below the top edge of the gunwale of UNITED STATES PATENTS the boat so that a person occupying the front seat thereof may 964,879 7/ 1910 Park 1 15/ 1 8X fish off the side of the boat without interference from the 2,354,805 8/1944 Fey 74/480UX steering stick.
PATENTEDjFEB 21971 SHEEI10F2 Jacob E Patterson INVIENTOR.
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STICK STEERING KIT FOR BOATS in certain types of boats employed for fishing, especially fresh water fishing, the boat is relatively long and provided with a relatively narrow beam width to enable it to pass between obstructions. The boat is normally provided with at least a center front seat and a center rear seat occupied by fishermen. When the boat is being driven from one location to another, the outboard motor which normally propels such boats is normally controlled from the rear seat thus introducing the problem of the operator of the boat being incapable of observing the condition of the water or obstructions immediately in front of the bow of the boat.
Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a steering stick for controlling the direction of the boat adjacent the front seat and to one side thereof to enable the occupant of the front seat of the boat to control the direction of the boat to enable underwater obstructions, stumps, logs or the like to be avoided. Similarly, a throttle control and other conventional controls provided for an outboard motor are oriented alongside of the front seat so that the boat may be controlled completely by the occupant of the front seat.
The steering stick is in the fonn of an elongated rigid handle attached to a circular wheel mounted for pivotal movement from a supporting bracket that is attached to the boat in a conventional manner. The handle normally projects above the gunwale of the boat but may be oriented in a stored position either forwardly or rearwardly in an inclined manner to be disposed below the top edge of the gunwale thereby enabling fishing rods or similar equipment to be handled easily over the side of the boat during normal fishing operations without interference from the elongated stick.
Another object of the present invention is to provide a stick steering kit for boats in accordance with the preceding object in which the wheel on which the steering cable is entrained is peripherally grooved and associated with adjacent surfaces where the cable takes off from the wheel to retain the cable in the groove in the wheel even though the cable may become slack when the outboard motor is tilted upwardly in the event of engagement with a log or the like or in the event it is tilted upwardly for any reason.
Another important object of the present invention is to provide a stick steering kit for boats which is relatively easily incorporated into a boat structure, effective for steering control, positive in operation and relatively inexpensive to manufacture.
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:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the steering stick of the present invention incorporated into a boat;
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view, on an enlarged scale, of the stick steering assembly incorporated into a boat and illustrating the stored position of the stick in dashed line;
FIG. 3 is a vertical sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 3-3, on an enlarged scale, illustrating the structural details of the supporting structure and the relationship of the retaining surfaces to the periphery of the cable wheel;
FIG. 4 is a transverse, sectional view taken substantially upon a plane passing along section line 4-4 of FIG. 2 illustrat ing further structural details of the cable wheel and the support therefor; and
FIG. 5 is a fragmental sectional view of the cable wheel il lustrating the structure incorporated therein for connection of the steering cable therewith.
Referring now specifically to the drawings, the stick steering assembly or kit of the present invention is generally designated by the numeral and is illustrated as being disposed within the interior of a conventional boat 12 of the type having a pair of longitudinally spaced and aligned seats 14 and 16 disposed adjacent the forward and aft end of the open cockpit which extends from a bow section 18 to a transom 20 with the interior of the cockpit being substantially continuous and uninterrupted. A conventional outboard motor assembly 22 is mounted on the transom 20 and is conventional in construction and control thereof in that a steering cable 24 is associated with each side of the boat and extends inwardly along the front of the transom for engagement with the outboard motor 22 in a conventional manner for controlling the direction of movement of the boat. The steering cable extends along each side of the boat under the gunwale 26 and is entrained over pulley blocks of conventional construction at the comers of the boat with suitable spring structures incorporated into the steering assembly for retaining the steering cable taut. The particular construction of the conventional hardware employed for guiding the steering cable forms no particular part of the present invention. Also, a control handle 28 of conventional nature is provided alongside of the forward seat 14 in a manner to provide a throttle control for the outboard motor 22 and to start the motor if it is of the electric starting type. Also, the bow portion 28 is provided with a bracket structure 30 or the like on which a troll type motor may be mounted if desired during fishing operations.
As illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, the steering stick assembly 10 of the present invention is mounted adjacent one sidewall surface of the hull designated by numeral 32 with the major components thereof underlying the gunwale 26 so that the steering cable 24 underlies the gunwale 26. The stick steering assembly includes a base plate 34 supported on a supporting block 36 connected with or formed integral with the bottom 38 of the boat hull with the base plate 34 being secured thereto by any suitable fasteners such as bolts 40 or the like. Integral with the base plate 34 and extending upwardly from one edge thereof is an elongated upright mounting member 42 in the form of a bar or the like which has an upper end terminating in a laterally extending retaining member 44 in opposed relation to a similar retaining member 46 integral with the base 34 with the retaining member 44 having a downwardly facing surface 48 and the retaining member 46 having an upwardly facing surface 50 disposed in opposed relation to the surface 48 and generally in parallel relation thereto as illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3.
Supported from the bar 42 is a circular wheel 52 having a plurality of inwardly extending spokes 54 integral with a central hub 56 that is joumaled on a supporting bolt 58. The supporting bolt 58 extends through the mounting bar 42 and also through an upstanding support member 60 in the form of a mounting bar which is substantially parallel to the mounting bar 42 and extends downwardly alongside of the retaining member 46 and is supported therefrom by fasteners or bolts 62 thus enabling the bolts 62 and 58 to be removed from removing the wheel 52 in the event this is necessary. The periphery of the wheel 52 is provided with a groove 64 to receive the cable 24 with a portion of the wheel having a pair of adjacent angularly disposed openings 66 extending therethrough for receiving the cable which when pulled taut will bind and secure the cable to the wheel 52 so that the cable will move linearly when the wheel 52 is rotated about the axis formed by the supporting bolt 58.
For pivoting the wheel 52 about its rotational axis defined by the bolt 58, there is provided an elongated rigid handle 68 having a lower offset end 70 that terminates in an attaching plate 72 secured to the wheel 52 by fastening bolts 74 or the like with the terminal end of the mounting plate 72 being apertured as at 76 and received on the bolt 58 so that the handle 68 has a rotational center coincident with the rotational center of the wheel 52 so that as the handle is moved arcuately in a fore-and-aft manner, the wheel 52 will be correspondingly rotated as illustrated in FIG. 2. Also, as illustrated in FIG. 2, the upper end of the handle 68 is provided with a handgrip 78 of resilient material such as rubber, plastic or the like to facilitate gripping engagement with the elongated handle 68.
As illustrated in FIG. 1, the handle 68 is disposed alongside of the front seat 14 so that the occupant thereof may easily control the direction of movement of the boat and may easily observe the water surface immediately in front of the boat so that the boat may be controlled accurately and rapidly to prevent engagement with obstructions and the like.
Inasmuch as the occupant of the front seat 14 will frequently fish off the side of the boat. it is possible to pivot the handle 68 either rearwardly or forwardly sufficiently as illustrated in dashed line in FIG. 2 so that the handgrip 78 will be disposed below the upper surface of the gunwale 26 thereby enabling fishing rods or other fishing equipment to be easily handled and manipulated along the top surface of the gunwale 26 without hindrance by the elongated handle. The steering cable 24 can move sufficiently and pivot the outboard motor about a vertical axis sufficiently to enable the handle to pivot to the dashed line position illustrated in FIG. 2.
The stick steering assembly may be provided in kit form for installation in various boat constructions of the type in which a positive remote steering control is desired with the steering apparatus being oriented alongside of a seat so that the center of the boat may be retained in an open and unoccupied condition. With this device, unobstructed positive remote steering control is provided from the bow area of a boat with the cable retaining surfaces being provided for retaining the cable 24 in the groove within the peripheral surface of the wheel 52 to prevent disengagement of the cable in relation to the wheel which disengagement would eliminate steering control for the boat thus creating an extremely dangerous condition.
The device may be constructed of suitable corrosive-resistant materials such as aluminum or the like and the kits may include the steering cable such as a plastic coated cable or the like conventionally employed in steering control of a boat of this type.
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.
1. A steering assembly for a boat comprising a circular wheel having a grooved periphery for receiving a steering cable thereon, means joumaling said wheel from a boat for rotation about an axis disposed substantially horizontally and transversely of the boat. said means including a vertically disposed mounting strap wherein said mounting strap includes a base, said base underlying the periphery of the wheel. and a mounting bar attached to the base and extending upwardly to the center of the wheel, and a mounting bolt extending through the center of the wheel and the mounting structure therefor to define the rotational axis thereof, laterally extending retaining members at the upper and lower ends of the strap. said retaining members including opposed surfaces disposed adjacent the periphery of the wheel at diametrically opposed points for retaining the steering cable in the said wheel and a radially extending handle attached to said wheel and adapted to extend above the gunwale of a boat when in an upright position for enabling the wheel to be pivoted about its rotational axis by moving the upper end of the handle foreand-aft.
2. The structure as defined in claim I wherein said handle includes a lower offset end portion rigidly fixed to the wheel, the upper end of said handle being provided with a handgrip thereon and adapted to be disposed above the gunwale.
3. The structure as defined in claim 2 wherein said wheel includes a pair of adjacent apertures extending radially therethrough in communication with the peripheral groove therein and converging inwardly for receiving the steering cable for locking the steering cable linearly in relation to the periphery of the wheel thereby moving the steering cable in a linear manner when the wheel is rotated about a horizontal XIS. a 4. The structure as defined in claim 3 wherein the handgrip at the upper end of the handle may be pivoted to a stored position along with the handle in either a fore or aft condition with the handgrip disposed below the surface of the top edge of the gunwale thereby enabling fishing over the side of the boat without interference from the handle and handgrip.