US 3570148 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
March 16, 1971 E, MORGAN 3,570,148
SKI BOOT CONSTRUCTION Filed Aug. 21, 1969 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 FIG. 1 7
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII (IIIIIIIIIIIL k i 12 55 INVENTOI? M 1 di ys March 16, 1971 G. E. MORGAN SKI BOOT CONSTRUCTION 3 SheetsSheet 2 Filed Aug. 21, 1969 March 1971 e. E. MORGAN 3,570,14
SKI BOOT CONSTRUCTION Filed Aug. 21, 1969 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 FIG. 7
United States Patent 3,570,148 SKI BOOT CONSTRUCTION Gerard E. Morgan, Lake Forest, 111., assiguor t0 Riddell, Inc., Des Plaines, Ill. Filed Aug. 21, 1969, Ser. No. 851,936 Int. Cl. A43b 23/00 US. Cl. 36-25 14 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A ski boot having a body portion and a pivotally connected ankle section. The structure permits flexion and extension of the ankle with the movement taking place about two separate axes, one axis positioned on one side of the shoe corresponding with the location of the lateral malleolus bone and the other axis on the opposite side corresponding with the location of the medial malleolus bone. A limiting device is associated with the ankle section to determine the allowable extent of pivotal movement, and the limiting device is adjustable to provide the most beneficial conditions for beginners as well as more experienced skiers. The invention also provides securing means for tightening the boot around the foot, the securing means including a band having its opposed ends secured to one boot portion and a locking member for the loop of the band. The opposed ends of the band are adjustably attached so that tightening or loosening of the band can be accomplished after the loop is locked in place.
This invention relates to improvements in ski boots and more particularly to a ski boot construction which can be manufactured with maximum eificiency while still providing highly satisfactory performance characteristics.
Ski boot constructions are commonly produced as heavy, relatively awkward, and highly expensive structures. The weight, complexity and expense results because the boots are subjected to high stress conditions during use and, therefore, must -be extremely durable to provide satisfactory use and protection for the skier.
Because of the nature of ski boots, it has been difiicult to provide boots which are useful for a wide range of skiing ability. For example, beginning skiers find it extremely diificult to Wear a boot which is rigid whereas experts desire a boot which provides very little freedom for pivoting about the ankle joint. Manufacturers, therefore, find it necessary to provide ski boots designed for particular classes of skiers, or skiers simply use boots which are not best suited for their skills.
In order to provide some economy in manufacturing ski boots, boots have been made without taking the best fitting contours into consideration. Latch mechanisms which have been used for the boots have also been unsatisfactory from the standpoint of providing a desirable degree of adjustment to provide the best fit.
It is a general object of this invention to provide a ski boot construction which combines certain unique features resulting in a ski boot which is substantially improved over prior constructions from the standpoint of ease of manufacture and use, and from the standpoint of versatility in that the boot can be adjusted for use by beginners as well as more experienced skiers.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a ski boot which can be efiiciently manufactured while still having the most desirable contours for proper fit and which can be provided with latch means having a high degree of adjustability to also improve fitting characteristics.
These and other objects of this invention will appear hereinafter and for purposes of illustration, but not of limitation, a specific embodiment of the invention is shown in the accompanying drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a ski boot characterized by the features of this invention;
FIG. 2 is a vertical sectional view of the ski boot;
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional view taken about the line 33 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary rear elevational view;
FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view taken about the line 5-5 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary side elevation partly cut away illustrating the ankle section in an extended position;
FIG. 7 is an enlarged fragmentary, sectional detailed view illustrating latch means utilized for the ski boot;
FIG. 8 is a cross-sectional view taken about the line 88 of FIG. 7;
FIG. 9 is a perspective view of the latch construction;
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary sectional view illustrating an alternative limiting device;
FIG. 11 is a sectional side elevational view of the limiting device; and,
FIG. 12 through 14 are perspective views illustrating components of the limiting device.
This invention generally relates to a ski boot having heel and sole portions and an associated upper portion. The upper portion includes a pivotally connected ankle section. In order to control the allowable movement of the ankle section, the invention contemplates the use of a limiting device. An adjusting means is provided as part of the limiting device so that the degree of allowable movement can be varied. In this manner, desirable freedom can be provided for a beginner while a suitably rigid arrangement is available for more experienced skiers.
The invention also contemplates a latching arrangement which can be used in conjunction with the specific ski boot described but which also finds utility with other ski boot constructions. The latching construction generally involves the use of a band having a loop portion for engagement with a holding means, such as a tooth, pro vided on one section of the boot. The ends of the band are located on an opposed section, and the positions of these ends can be adjusted to provide the correct amount of holding force.
The construction illustrated in the drawings comprises a ski boot 10 defining a sole portion 12 and a heel portion 14. The upper portion of the shoe is divided into a main body 16 and an ankle section 18.
The ankle section is pivotally connected to the body 16 by means of rivets 20. The body section 16 includes flaps 22 and 24 which overlap to provide a closure. The
ankle section includes an inner flap 26 and an outer flip 28 which is divided into two sections 29 and 31. It will be noted that the lower end of the flap 26 extends over the upper end of the fiap 24 so that a seal is provided all along the front of the boot.
The ankle section 18 is provided with a downwardly extending tongue 30 which is received in a slot 32 defined by the back wall 34 of the body section 16. In the embodiment of FIGS. 1 and 2, the tongue 30 defines an elongated opening 36, and this opening is positioned opposite holes 38 defined in the wall section 40 of the back wall 34. These holes are adapted to receive the end 42 of pin 44. The pin is mounted in a bracket 46 which is attached to the body 16. A spring 48 extends between the bracket and a shoulder 50 on the pin to normally urge the end 42 into the opening 36 defined by the tongue. The handle 52 of the pin is provided so that the pin can be pulled outwardly to release the pin from the opening 38 in which it is received.
As best shown in FIG. 4, the back wall 34 of the body section '16 defines a substantially V-shaped cut-out portion 37. This cut-out portion is provided to accommodate the tendency of this section of the back wall to squeeze together in response to forward motion of the tibia-fibula 668mm.
The bracket 46 is attached to the body 16 by means of opposed arms 54 which extend around the sides of the body. The arms may be riveted to the body at 56 to provide a pivotal connection whereby the pin 44 can be moved into engagement with a different hole 38. The position of the pin 44 determines the degree of allowable movement of the ankle section. Thus, the location of the pin in the lower hole 38 would substantially lock the tongue 30, and thereby restrict movement of the ankle section. The upper hole 38 will provide a degree of freedom corresponding with the length of the opening 36 in the tongue. An intermediate position is provided for the pin 44, and it will be appreciated that the number of positions for adjustment as well as the size of the opening 36 can be varied.
In the embodiment shown in FIG. 6, the holes 38 are threaded, and a threaded pin 58 is provided. The extent of allowable movement is then controlled depending upon which of the threaded holes 38 is employed.
A preferred arrangement for a limiting device is shown in FIGS. through 14. This limiting device includes a mounting bracket 110 having a central portion 112 dimensioned to fit snugly against the enlarged portion 114 defined by the back wall 34 of the boot. Openings 118 are defined by the flanges 120 provided on the legs 122 of the bracket. These openings provide means for securing the bracket to the boot.
The central portion 112 of the bracket defines outwardly extending shoulders 124 which are received in the grooves defined by the arms -126 of sliding bracket 128. The bracket 128 carries a spring 130 having an inturned portion 132 which rests in the seat 134 defined by the bracket. A downwardly extending leg 136 of the spring extends through a slot 138. The end of the leg 136, therefore, extends into contact with the upper surface of the central portion 112 defined by the stationary bracket 110.
A locking handle 140 is pivotally connected to the upstanding arms 142 of the movable bracket 128 by means of a pin 144. As best shown in FIG. 11, the handle defines a cam surface in the area of the spring 130 and in the position shown, the leg 136 is being forced downwardly. By raising the handle in the direction of the arrow 146, the pressure on the spring will be gradually relieved. The central portion 112 of the bracket 110 defines a plurality of V-shaped grooves 148 which receive the end of the leg 136 for locking the sliding bracket in position relative to the stationary bracket.
The movable bracket 128 carries a pin 150 which is adapted to extend into the opening 36 defined by the 4 tongue 30. In this embodiment, the tongue 30 extends into the opening 152 defined by the enlarged portion 114 in the back wall of the boot.
In the preferred form of the invention, the body 16 comprises a single molded piece of polyurethane. The molding operation can be efliciently carried out, particularly since the flaps 22 and 24 can be integrally molded. The ankle section 18 including the flaps 26 and 28 and tongue 30 can also be molded as a single piece with material such as polyurethane. The assembly operation for these two pieces merely involves the attachment of the latch hardware, the rivets 20 for achieving pivoting, and the pin mechanism.
The interior contours of the molded pieces 16 and 18 can be determined by considering the natural foot contours. Thus, the design of these pieces permits efiicient production without sacrificing the natural interior contours. The entire interior may be lined with a cushion 60 having a tongue portion 62 attached at 64. This cushion is also designed so that the natural shape of the foot will be accommodated.
The boot design also takes into consideration the malleolus or ankle bone position since the pivot axis for the ankle section 18 substantially corresponds with this bone position. This is particularly apparent when considering FIGS. 5 and 6. It will be noted in this connection that the pivot axis is ditferent on the opposite sides of the boot. The rivet 20 on the outside of the boot is positioned in accordance with the position of the lateral malleolus while the rivet 20 on the inside is positioned in accordance with the position of the medial malleolus. These positions can be calculated for a given boot size in accordance with known anatomical standards.
Although the material employed for the boot is relatively stiff, it is desirable to provide additional stifiening means 65 in the sole of the boot. This stifiening means may consist of a piece of wood, metal or plastic molded integrally with the boot and dimensioned to extend adjacent the exterior surfaces on the molded part.
Because of the thickness of the sole '12 and the relative stiffness of polyurethane, particularly if the stiffener 65 is utilized, bending of the boot in the top or vamp area 66 cannot be easily achieved. In a modified form of the invention, the sole 12 defines a radius bottom as shown at 68. This provides a rocker affect which is desirable particularly because of the stiffness of the shoe and to provide proper functioning of the safety bindings. Thus, if the shoe sole were flat, pivoting movement relative to the ski would take place at the front edge and, this fulcrum point is not satisfactory for achieving release of the bindings at a proper stress level.
FIGS. 7 through 9 illustrate an improved latch construction employed for securing the flaps 24 and 28 relative to the shoe body when these flaps are in overlapping relationship with the underlying flaps 2.2 and 26. The latching mechanisms are particularly useful with the boot construction of this invention; however, these mechanisms have definite utility with respect to boot construction of other designs.
The latch arrangement comprises a plate 70 which is riveted to a shoe section 72 comprising a portion of one of the flaps 24 or 28. The rivet 74 includes a reduced diameter portion 76 which permits pivotal movement of the plate 70.
Holding brackets are formed by means of U-shaped members 78 secured by the rivets to plates 70. Corresponding U-shaped members 82 are adapted to be received within the walls of the members 78. Openings 84 are defined by the walls of the member 78 for receiving the ends 86 of securing bands 88. The bifurcated side walls of the U-shaped member 82 provide openings permitting location of this member within the member 78. A weld or other suitable securing arrangement may be provided for holding the members 78 and 82 together.
The bracket arrangement provides open side walls whereby nuts 92 fitted around the ends 86 of the bands may be rotated with the fingers. In the embodiment illustrated, the bands are formed by means of a centrally located wire 94 and a coil 96 extending along the length of the wire. The outer periphery of the cable provides a thread for interfitting with the internal threads of the nuts 92.
The loop provided by the bands 88 is adapted to be held by means of a lever 98. The lever defines teeth 100 which are engaged by the loop in the band. After engagement with the loop, the lever is pivoted about the mounting 102 thereby locking the loop in position. The nuts 92 can be rotated for fine adjustment of the band prior to pivoting of the lever to the locked position. This provides a highly suitable arrangement for achieving a snug and comfortable attachment of the fiaps on each boot. Thereafter, the wearer adjusts the limiting device with the position usually depending upon skiing experience. Thus, a beginner usually requires a larger degree of freedom, and this can be accomplished by inserting the pin 44 or 58 in the upper hole or by eliminating use of the pin altogether whereby the tongue will be free to move in the slot 32. In the case of a more experienced skier, an intermediate or lower hole would be utilized.
Irrespective of the amount of pivoting allowable, the pivoting action will take place about the axis of the rivet which provides a natural pivot position from the standpoint of the ankle joint of the wearer. In addition to the control provided for pivotal movement, the construction provides a high degree of lateral stability. The use of molded polyurethane and the design of the overlapping portions of the body 16 and ankle section 18 are important in this regard.
It will be understood that various changes and modifications may be made in the above described construction which provide the characteristics of this invention without departing from the spirit thereof particularly as defined in the following claims.
That which is claimed is:
1. A ski boot including a sole and heel portion and an upper portion, said upper portion including an ankle section and a foot section, means pivotally connecting said ankle section to said foot section, and a movement limiting device comprising means extending from one of said sections into overlapping relationship with the other section, stop means associated with said other section for engaging said extending means whereby said ankle section is free to pivot in unrestrained fashion until said extending means engages said stop means, and including means for adjusting the position of said stop means to thereby vary the allowable extent of pivotal movement whereby the limiting device can be set to provide substantial freedom of movement or to substantially reduce the capacity for movement.
2. A ski boot in accordance with claim 1 wherein the pivot axis of said ankle section is aligned to substantially correspond with the position of the ankle bone when the ski boot is worn.
3. A ski boot in accordance with claim 1 comprising a main body formed of a first single molded piece, said first molded piece including said sole and heel portion and part of said upper portion, said ankle section comprising a second single molded piece completing the upper portion of the boot.
4. A ski boot in accordance with claim 3 wherein the top area of said main body includes integrally molded flaps adapted to be bent into overlapping relationship, said ankle section also including integrally molded flaps adapted to be bent into overlapping relationship, and including adjustable securing means for the respective flaps.
5. A ski boot in accordance with claim 1 wherein said limiting device comprises a tongue extending downwardly from said ankle section, a receiving area for said tongue defined by the adjacent upper portion, said tongue being movable relative to said receiving area; and adjustable means for limiting the extent of movement of said tongue relative to the receiving area.
6. A ski boot in accordance with claim 5 wherein said tongue extends downwardly from the back of said ankle section, said receiving area being defined in the back wall of the heel portion of the boot.
7. A ski boot in accordance with claim 6 wherein said tongue defines an elongated opening, said receiving area comprising a slot defined between opposing wall portions in the back of the boot, and pin means associated with the wall portions and adapted to extend into the elongated opening of the tongue whereby engagement of the pin by the tongue portion at the end of said opening will limit the allowable extent of the withdrawal of the tongue from said slot.
8. A ski boot in accordance with claim 7 including a plurality of separate openings defined in the back of said boot for receiving said pin, the extent of allowable withdrawal of the tongue from the slot being dependent upon which opening receives the pin.
9. A ski boot in accordance with claim 7 including a stationary bracket attached to the back wall of said upper portion, a movable bracket supporting said pin attached to said stationary bracket, and resilient means carried by said movable bracket for engagement with said stationary bracket to hold the movable bracket in a selected position relative to the stationary bracket, the extent of allowable withdrawal of the tongue from the slot being dependent upon the selected position of said movable bracket.
10. A ski boot including a sole and heel portion and an upper portion, the sole of the boot defining a curvilinear bottom surface tapered upwardly from an intermediate position toward the opposed front and back ends of the boot, said upper portion including a pivotally connected ankle section, a movement limiting device asociated with said upper portion for determining the extent of allowable pivotal movement of said ankle section, and means associated with said limiting device for adjusting the allowable extent of pivotal movement whereby the limiting device can be set to provide substantial freedom of movement or to substantially reduce the capacity for movement.
11. A ski boot in accordance with claim 14 including a stiffener embedded in the sole of the boot and extending substantially along the length thereof.
12. A ski boot construction comprising a main body portion including a sole and heel and a section of an upper, and an ankle section connected to said main body portion as a continuation of said upper, means pivotally connecting said ankle section to said main body portion, said connecting means comprising a first element defining a first pivot axis on that portion of the boot which is located in a position substantially corresponding with the lateral malleolus bone of the wearer when the boot is worn, and a second element defining a second pivot axis on that portion of the boot which is located in a position substantially corresponding with the medial malleolus bone of the wearer when the boot is worn, said first pivot axis being located in a horizontal plane positioned vertically below a horizontal plane including said second pivot axis.
13. A ski boot in accordance with claim 12 wherein said main body portion comprises a single molded piece, and wherein said ankle section comprises a second single molded piece, and including a movement limiting device associated with said ankle section and with the upper of said main body portion for determining the extent of allowable pivotal movement of said ankle section relative to said body portion.
14. A ski boot including a sole and heel portion and an upper portion, said upper portion including a pivotally connected ankle section, a movement limiting device associated with said upper portion for determining the extent of allowable pivotal movement of said ankle section, and means associated with said limiting device for adjusting the allowable extent of pivotal movement whereby the limiting device can be set to provide substantial freedom of movement or to substantially reduce the capacity for movement, said limiting device comprising a tongue extending downwardly from said ankle section, a receiving area for said tongue defined by the adjacent upper portion, said tongue being movable relative to said receiving area, and adjustable means for limiting the extent of movement of said tongue relative to the receiving area.
8 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,067,531 12/1962 Scott et al. 36-2.5 3,313,046 4/1967 Werner et a1. 36-25 5 3,405,463 10/1968 Werner 36-2.5
'- FOREIGN PATENTS 1,075,014 2/1960 Germany 362.5 10 1,390,882 4/1964 France 362.5
PATRICK D. LAWSON, Primary Examiner US. Cl. X.R. 36-50