US 3647209 A
An exercising device for lifting weights with a cable that is supported by and guided over an upright frame. A vertically movable carriage engages an upright post of the frame, means for guiding the cable to position its free end at different elevations above ground, and a locking pin mounted to the carriage for horizontal axial movement of the pin into engagement with any one of a plurality of vertically spaced apertures in the vertical post. Means are provided for biasing the pin into an aperture-engaging position, for withdrawing it therefrom, and for locking it in its aperture-engaging position. The carriage includes apertured ears for positioning an upwardly extending balanced bar resting on the ground. The end of the cable remote from the carriage has a weight-connecting member that extends through central apertures in a plurality of vertically spaced weight plates that include vertically arranged, radially outwardly extending cutouts and suitable undercuts so that an angular displacement of the member about its axis through 90 DEG engages a protrusion projecting from the member with one of the weight plates for movement of the weight plate, together with the plates above it, with the cable. Means are provided for locking the weight connecting member in its weight plate engaging position. The member includes markings indicating the weight connected thereto. The cable is guided through and engaged by an indicating mechanism which signals the number of times the cable and the weights suspended therefrom have been lifted.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent La Lanne Mar. 7, 1972  WEIGHT LIFTING TYPE EXERCISING Primary Examiner-Richard C. Pinkham DEVICE Assistant Examiner-William R. Browne Attorney-Townsend & Townsend  Inventor: Jack La Lame, 5224 Santa Monica Blvd.,
Hollywood, Calif. 90029 57 ABSTRACT Filed: 1 9 An exercising device for lifting weights with a cable that is  APPL No; 37,553 supported by and guided over an upright frame. A vertically movable carriage engages an upright post of the frame, means for guiding the cable to position its free end at different eleva-  US. Cl. ..272/58, 73/379 R, 272/DlG. 5, tions above ground, and a locking pin mounted to the carriage 272/DIG. 4, 287/92, 248/221, 272/81, 235/93 for horizontal axial movement of the pin into engagement with  Int. Cl ..A63b 21/06, A63b 21/00 any one of a plurality of vertically spaced apertures in the ver-  Field of Search ..272/57, 7 l 72, 80, 81, DIG. 5, tical post. Means are provided for biasing the pin into an aper- 272/69, 74, 75; 235/132, 93, 1.3; 116/73; 273/86 B, ture-engaging position, for withdrawing it therefrom, and for 96; 287/58 CT, 58 R; 248/408, 409; 73/370 R, 380 locking it in its aperture-engaging position. The carriage in- R, 381 cludes apertured ears for positioning an upwardly extending balanced bar resting on the ground. The end of the cable  References Cited remote from the carriage has a weight-connecting member that extends through central apertures in a plurality of verti- UNITED STATES PATENTS cally spaced weight plates that include vertically arranged, 363,599 5/1887 Coop ..272/s1 radially utwardl extending and suiable Reach.- 272/ that an angular displacement Of the member about its axis 1,237,588 8/1917 Vaughn znlma 5 through-90 engages a protrusion projecting from the member 1,491,685 4/1924 Eicheret al ..248/408 With the weigh Plates mmmem weigh 3,097,550 47/1963 Johnston 287/58 R X plate, together with the plates above it, with the cable. Means 3,127,867 4/1964 Bochan n 0 A 16/73 X are provided for locking the weight connecting member in its 3 419 269 12/1968 Satfer ..272/74 weight Plate elgaging The membe' dudes 3438627 4,1969 La Lame 272,81 markings indicatmg the weight connected thereto. The cable is guided through and engaged by an indicating mechanism O G PATENTS 0 APPLICATIONS which signals the number of times the cable and the weights suspended therefrom have been lifted. 738,579 12/1932 France ..272/8l 18 Claims, 16 Drawing Figures ,1? 2 v ,2 a? I 2 1 1 ,/a If f -56 PATENTEDHAR 7 I972 sum 1 0F 4 z rroz/vss s.
PATENTEDMAR H912 Y 31547, 209
SHEET 3 [IF 4 INVENTO/E 0 (Ear l0 IRA/1V5 WEIGHT LIF'IING TYPE EXERCISING DEVICE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION The present invention relates to devices for human physical conditioning and more particularly to weight lifting devices in which the physical exercise is performed by pulling on a cable for lifting and/or lowering weights.
Weight lifting devices, such as disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,438,627, which is incorporated herein by reference, are well known aids in the conditioning of the musculature of the human body. Generally, such devices comprise an upright frame on which a plurality of independent weights are guided for vertical movement. A cable is releasably connected with one or more of the plates, is looped over pulleys supported by the frame and terminates in a handlebar or the like for the application of axial forces by a human. The more versatile devices of this type provide a carriage that is vertically movable along an upright member of the frame and which positions the free end of the cable at different elevations above ground to adapt it for the conditioning of certain muscles and/or for use by persons of different sizes.
The vertical readjustment of the carriage requires convenient, quick-acting and positive means for locking the carriage at the desired position. Although prior art exercising devices of the type here under consideration include positioning and locking means, their operation can be impaired and their engagement with the vertical frame member can be lost when the carriage or the member is subjected to shock or vibration. Such a loss of the locking of the carriage can result in injuries to the exercising human from the sudden release of a length of the cable.
Additionally, prior art exercising devices of the above described type include relatively cumbersome means for connecting the weight plates to the cable. Usually, such connection means comprise pins which are inserted through apertures in the plates and in a cable connecting member. The insertion of the pin, however, first requires the alignment of the apertures which is tedious, time-consuming and difficult. Moreover, slight misalignments of the apertures due to inaccurate manufacture can prevent such an alignment and render the device inoperable. Lastly, the pin must protrude beyond the weight plate to enable its grasping. It can accidentally strike persons in the vicinity of the device which can cause a disengagement of the pin and/or can injure the person.
Some exercises performed on the above-described exercisers require the use of angularly inclined exercising boards which provide a foot rest and are positioned adjacent the upright frame. The exercising person grasps the handle on the free end of the cable and pulls it towards his trunk while his head extends downward. The board is usually loosely placed adjacent the frame. The application of large forces often causes and undesired repositioning of the board and thus interrupts the exercising. Moreover, the board position with respect to the vertically movable carriage on the frame is important and must be accurate; since the board and the frame are independent tedious and time-consuming positioning of the board is necessary which can be relatively inaccurate.
Thus, prior art weight lifting devices are relatively complicated to operate and frequently require substantial attention on part of the exercising person to assure the proper mechanical functioning of the various operating mechanisms. This, however, distracts from concentrating on the exercising.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention provides an exercising apparatus for lifting weights which are movable along upright members of a support frame and which are selectively connectable with an axially movable cable supported by and guided over the frame. Generally speaking, the present invention provides a carriage that is vertically movable along an upright guide rail supported by the frame and having a plurality of vertically spaced, horizontally oriented apertures for engagement by an axially movable locking member mounted to the carriage and guided in its movement towards and away from the apertures by suitable housing means. Means biasing the member into engagement with the apertures and means for disengaging the member from the aperture in opposition to the biasing means are also provided.
The invention further provides means for engaging an end of an exercising board with the carriage by providing the carriage with a trough-shaped, upwardly opening connecting piece engaging and supporting the board, and means for releasably restraining the board to the connecting piece to prevent their accidental disengagement. The carriage includes horizontally disposed flanges having vertically aligned apertures which receive an upright leg of a balancing bar and maintain the bar in position to provide a secure hold for the exercising person.
The present invention provides means for selectively connecting one more of the weight plates with a weight engaging member secured to an end of the cable. The weight-connecting means generally comprise a vertically oriented aperture in each weight plate which is defined by a substantially circularly arcuate portion and a cutout extending radially outwardly from the arcuate portion. The weight plate includes an undercut spaced from a top surface of the plate which communicates with the cutout, has a radial extent at least about equal to the radial extent of the cutout, and a circumferential extent greater than the circumferential extent of the cutout. The connecting member includes a redial projection that has a configuration permitting axial passage of the projection through the cutout and an angular displacement of the projection about the center of the arcuate aperture portion into the undercut so that a positioning of the projection in the undercut of a weight plate causes a connection between such weight plate, the member and the cable. Locking means prevent unintentional rotational movements of the connecting member about its axis when in a weight-engaging position to prevent an accidental disengagement of the weight plates from the member and possible injuries therefrom.
To enable persons to fully concentrate on exercising the present invention also provides means actuated by the cable for counting the number of weight lifting strokes and signaling when a predetermined number has been completed. The need for keeping count of the strokes during exercising, or possible health damage from overexercising, are thereby eliminated.
Heretofore experienced shortcomings and inconveniences in the construction of weight lifting exercisers are substantially reduced or eliminated by the present invention. More particularly, an accidental disengagement of the locking device for the vertically movable carriage is eliminated by providing the axially movable locking pin instead of the heretofore common, pivotally mounted locking clamps that can loosen under shock or vibration. Moreover, exercising boards can now be precisely positioned and safely secured to the vertically movable carriage.
Heretofore common difficulties in connecting the desired number of weight plates to the lifting cable are eliminated by providing the cable with the above-described connecting member and constructing the weight plates with connection apertures that permit the interengagement of a plate and the member by simply rotating the member. To facilitate the proper positioning of the connecting member and the engagement of the desired weight plates the member is provided with weight-indicating markings that automatically display the actual connected weight and further indicate to the operator the relative position of the connecting member with respect to the weight plates for rotating the member to engage the desired number of plates.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective side elevational view of a weight lifting exerciser constructed in accordance with the present invention and illustrates, in phantom lines, an exercising board connected to a vertically movable carriage of the exerciser;
FIG. 2 is an enlarged, fragmentary side elevational view, partially in section, and is taken on line 2-2 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a fragmentary front elevational view, partially in section, and is taken on line 3-3 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a fragmentary view similar to FIG. 3 but shows the carriage locking member in its retracted position;
FIG. 5 is a side elevational view, partially in section, and is taken on line 5-5 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 6 is a fragmentary, enlarged side elevational view of the connection between the lifting cable and weight plates and is taken on line 6-6 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 7 is a fragmentary, front elevational view and is taken on line 7-7 of FIG. 6;
FIG. 8 is a bottom view, partially in section, with parts broken away, and is taken on line 8-8 of FIG. 6 and shows the cable-weight plate connection in its locked and unlocked (illustrated in phantom lines) position;
FIG. 9 is a side elevational view, similar to FIG. 6, but shows the interlocking engagement of the weight plates and the cable connecting member while the cable is lifted off the stack of weight plates;
FIG. 10 is a bottom view, partially in section, of the locking mechanism for the weight plate connecting member and is taken on line 10-10 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 11 is a side elevational view, in section, taken on line 11-11 of FIG. 10;
FIG. 12 is a fragmentary front elevational view, with parts broken away, of the means for counting the number of cable strokes;
FIG. 13 is a plan view in section and is taken on line 13-of FIG. 12;
FIG. 14 is a side elevational view, in section, and is taken on line 14-14 of FIG. 12;
FIG. 15 is a fragmentary, enlarged front elevational view of audio signal means incorporated in the stroke counting means; and
FIG. 16 is a fragmentary, perspective view of the lower portion of the weight lifting device illustrated in FIG. I and shows the balancing bar secured to the carriage.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring first to FIG. I, the exercising apparatus 12 of the present invention comprises a base 14 which is preferably secured, e.g., bolted to the supporting floor 16, a pair of spaced-apart rear vertical posts 18, a forward vertical post 20 and a top plate 22 interconnecting the posts to form a rigid upright frame 24. A carriage 26 is vertically movable along forward post 20 and provides a guide pulley 28 over which a cable 30 is looped. The cable extends generally upwardly from guide pulley 28, over a pair of stationary pulleys 32, 33 mounted to top plate 22, and hence downwardly towards base 14. At the lower end of the cable there is mounted a connecting member 34 for interconnecting the cable with one or more of a plurality of vertically-stacked weight plates 36 resting on base 14 for movement of the connected plates with the cable in an axial direction of the cable whenever an axial cable force is applied to a handle 38 secured to a free end of cable 30.
Referring to FIGS. 1 through 5, carriage 26 is defined by a tubular member 40 placed about forward post 20 which has inner sides 41 spaced from the forward post and which, at its ends, mounts low-friction bearing sleeves 42 for reducing friction and wear as the carriage is moved up and down the post. A horizontally oriented lock bolt 44 extends through an aperture in the tubular member and past a housing 46 that is secured to the exterior of the tubular member and, with the aperture in the tubular member, provides guidance for the lock bolt and enables axial movements of the bolt towards and away from the forward post for engagement of the bolt with one of a plurality of vertically spaced apertures 48 in post 20.
A helical compression spring 50 is disposed interiorally of housing 46, engages a cross-pin 52 of the lock bolt and an interior end face of the housing and biases the bolt into its aperture 48 engaging position. The lock bolt further includes an eyelet 54 or the like to enable its grasping and retraction in opposition to the force from compression spring 50 for disengaging the bolt from an aperture and enable the movement of the carriage along the vertical post.
Referring particularly to FIGS. 3 through 5, housing 46 includes an inwardly extending flange 56 that is spaced from the base of the housing to permit cross-pin 52 to be disposed between the flange and the exterior of tubular member 40 for preventing the unintentional retraction of the bolt. Flange 56 terminates in a stop 58 and is sufficiently spaced apart from a second stop 60 to form a passage 62 and permit the axial withdrawal of the lock bolt when the cross-pin is aligned with the passage as illustrated in phantom lines in FIG. 5. In use, once the lock bolt has been engaged with an aperture 48, it is rotated in a counterclockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 5) into the position illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 5. Conversely, the lock bolt is disengaged by rotating it in a clockwise direction (as viewed in FIG. 5) into the position illustrated in FIG. 4.
This construction of the carriage, the lock bolt and the housing permits positive engagement of the positioning apertures 48 by the lock bolt even though the tubular member 40 of the carriage is spaced from the vertical post 20 since the lock bolt moves parallel to the axis of the positioning aperture and not along a circular path, as has been common in the past. I-Ieretofore encountered lock bolt misalignments, inaccurate bolt positioning and a resulting general looseness of the carriage-to-frame connection are eliminated.
Referring to FIGS. 1 through 3, the present invention also provides means for connecting an exercising board 62 to carriage 26 for movement of an end of the board with the carriage in a vertical direction to suitably vary the slope of the board. The lower end of the board rests on floor I6 and the upper end, adjacent the carriage, includes a foot rest 64 against which an exercising person braces his feet in a head down position for pulling on handle 38 and cable 30. The upper board end includes a U-shaped bar 66 which is placed into an upwardly opening trough 68 that depends from tubular member 40 of the carriage so .that the board weight, and the weight of a person thereon, is supported by forward post 20 via trough 68, the tubular member and lock bolt 44.
To prevent the accidental disengagement of bar 66 and trough 68 a pair of laterally spaced latches 70 interconnected by a transverse bar 72 are pivotally mounted to sides of the tubular member with a pair of pivot pins. The latches are defined by a pair of substantially perpendicular forward and aft legs 74 and 75. The transverse bar interconnects the end of aft legs 75 while the forward legs are dimensioned so that their ends are disposed in, or slightly vertically above the open end of the trough when the transverse bar gravitationally biases the latch in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 2, until the bar engages tubular member 40 of the carriage. Thus, the free end of forward legs 74 covers a portion of the open trough side so that when exercising board bar 66 is disposed in the trough it cannot be moved upwardly without first pivoting the latch in a counterclockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 2, into the position illustrated in phantom lines in FIG. 2.
This arrangement is particularly convenient since the exercising board can be connected to the carriage by simply dropping bar 66 into trough 68 which automatically pivots latch 70 in a counterclockwise direction. Thereafter the weight of transverse bar 72 biases the latch back into its locking position. For removal of the exercising board from trough 68 the transverse bar of the latch is grasped and pivoted in a counterclockwise direction to enable the removal of bar 66 from trough 68. Thus, a quick and convenient connection between the carriage and the exercising board is provided which securely and immovably connects the two even when substantial forces are applied to the board by an exercising person.
Referring briefly to FIGS. 3 and 16, a carriage 26 includes a pair of vertically spaced, laterally projecting horizontal flanges 59 and 61 which have vertically aligned apertures 63 through which a vertical leg 65 of a balancing bar 67 extends. The
balancing bar includes a substantially horizontally disposed, or slightly downwardly sloped, transverse member 69 which is grasped by an exercising person during certain exercises, such as when pulling cable 30 with his legs as schematically illustrated in FIG. 16 to provide a secure hold for the person.
The slidable engagement of vertical leg 65 by horizontal flanges 59 and 61 enables the use of the bar irrespective of the vertical position of carriage 26 over the vertical length of the leg. Thus, the balancing bar can be utilized by persons of different heights as well as for exercises in which the cable is attached to the person's foot, lower leg or thigh without the need for time consuming and complicated adjustments or repositioning of the bar. At the same time, it is virtually instantaneously removed from the exercising device when not needed by simply withdrawing it from apertures 63.
Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 6 through 9, the present invention also provides means for conveniently connecting to cable 30 the desired number of weight plates 36 to reduce annoying and distracting mechanical operations and enable a person to concentrate on his physical exercises. Each weight plate is substantially flat, has a rectangular shape, and at its narrow sides includes grooves or openings 76 which are formed for engaging the plates with rear posts 18 of frame 24 for slidable movement of the plates along the post. Furthermore, the narrow sides of the plates are provided with lowfriction, e.g., plastic covers 78 that extend into grooves 76 and prevent metal-to-metal contact between the posts and the plates.
Each weight plate has a centrally located aperture 80 that is defined by a circularly arcuate, e.g., semicylindrical wall 82 of a diameter slightly greater than the diameter of a core 84 of connecting member 34, and a radially outwardly extending concentric cutout 86 of a diameter substantially greater than the diameter of the arcuate aperture wall. An underside 88 of each weight plate includes an undercut 90 that communicates with cutout 86, is concentric with the center of arcuate wall 82 and has a radial extent equal to the radial extent of cutout 86. The undercut comprises a pair of opposing voids 92 having the shape of a circle segments which extend over slightly more than 90 from alignment with cutout 86 to a stop defined by a downwardly extending wall 94 of a pair of opposing segments 96 which protrude past underside 88 and form a lowermost I support surface for the weights. The downwardly protruding segments include outwardly extending, generally circularly arcuate ring sections 98 which protect the undercut from being viewed from the exterior.
The ends of void 92 are defined by a pair of aligned, upwardly extending grooves 100 which nest a cross-pin 102 projecting radially from a lower end of core 84 and having a length which is less than the diameter of cutout 86 to enable the axial insertion of the core through aperture 80. When the cross-pin is disposed in undercut 90 the core is rotated 90 in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 8, until the cross-pin engages stop walls 94. Thereafter, the core is raised in an axial direction until the cross-pin nests in groove 100 for interconnecting the weight plate, together with all plates resting on top of the engaged plate, with the core and cable 30.
To enable the interconnection of the core and a weight plate the spacing between a top surface 104 of the undercut and the upper surface of the next lower weight plate must be greater than the diameter of cross-pin 102 to allow the passage of the pin between the two surfaces during rotation of the core. In the illustrated embodiment this spacing is obtained by providing a relatively shallow undercut and increasing the spacing between adjacent weight plates by means of plastic covers 78 so that the total effective spacing between the un.' dercut top surface 104 and the top surface of the next lower weight plate exceeds the cross-pin diameter.
Referring to FIGS. 1, 10 and 11, a core-locking mechanism 112 is provided for preventing accidental pivotal movements of core 84 about its axis. The locking mechanism comprises a substantially horizontal plate 114 having the same plan configuration as weight plates 36 and includes a pair of diametrically opposed downwardly facing undercut sectors 116 which house a cross-pin 118 extending through the core and into the sectors. One end of the pin is engaged by a tension spring 120 which is anchored to plate 114 by a threaded bolt 122 or the like and disposed in a tangential passage 124 communicating with one of the sectors. The other end of the pin engages a sector defining vertical wall 126 and thus limits the rotational movement (in a counterclockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 10) induced by the spring.
A bushing 128 is fitted between the core and a bore 130 in plate 114, includes a freely accessible handle 132 disposed on the upper side of plate 114 and is rigidly secured to the core with cross-pin 118 as shown in FIG. 11. Thus, handle 132 can be rotated in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 10, in opposition to the force exerted by spring 120 until cross-pin 118 arrives in its unlocked position (illustrated in phantom lines in FIG. 10) which is angularly spaced from the locked position by about This rotational movement of the handle, the bushing and core 84 rotates cross-pin 102 at the lower end of the core from its locked to its unlocked position (as illustrated in FIG. 8 in solid and phantom lines, respectively) to engage or release weight plates 36.
Core locking mechanism 112 enables a quick and effortless connection and disconnection of core 84 with any one of the weight plates 36. Additionally, once connected, spring 120 locks the core in its weight plate engaging position and prevents accidental rotational movement of the core which would cause disengagement of the weights, dropping of the weights from substantial heights, and which can result in injuries to inattentive bystanders.
Referring again to FIGS. 6 through 9, to prevent accidental rotational movement of core 84 when no core locking mechanism is provided, when weight plates 36 connected to the core are lowered and rest on base 14 of frame 24 (as illustrated in FIG. 7) it is preferred to provide the top surface of each weight plate with a depressed groove 106 that is aligned with upwardly extending groove when the plates are stacked on the frame. During nonuse the cross-pin drops into the depressed groove and is maintained in the correct position in alignment with the upwardly extending groove 100.
A plurality of weight indicating markings 108 are preferably applied to depressions in the exterior surface of core 84. The depressions are spaced apart a distance equal to the total effective thickness of the weight plates 36 with a lowermost depression 110a being spaced from the center of crosspin 102 sufficiently so that when the cross-pin engages an upwardly extending groove 100 the lower edge of the lowermost depression 110a is disposed above the top surface of the same weight plate as illustrated in FIG. 9. This arrangement of the weight markings facilitates the ease and speed with which a desired number of weight plates are connected with cable 30. Core 84 is simply rotated to align cross-pin 102 with cutouts 86 and the core is lowered into the stack of plates until the desired weight marking is just above the top surface of the uppermost weight plate. Thereafter, the core is moved downwardly an additional increment, it is rotated to align the cross-pin with the upwardly extending grooves 100 and axial, upward movement of cable 30 engages the necessary number of weight plates which make up the weight indicated by marking 108.
Referring now to FIGS. 1 and 12 through 15, counting means 134 is secured to forward post 20 for recording the number of completed weight lifting strokes and for signalling when a predetermined number of strokes have been made. The counting means comprises a baseplate 136 having rearwardly projecting spaced legs 138 which define a channel nesting forward post 20. A set screw 140 firmly secures the base to the forward post. A housing 142 is placed over the base, spaced therefrom by a spacer 144 and connected to the base. The housing face includes a suitable dial for an indicator 146 which is normally at the 12 oclock position and which can be set by moving it in a clockwise direction for counting the strokes on cable 30. A cable actuated ratchet mechanism 148 is disposed between base 136 and housing 142 and connected to indicator 146.
Housing 142 includes upper and lower cutouts 150 through which cable strand 30a extends and a pair of vertically spaced, pivotally mounted blocks 152 having arcuate surfaces 154 which protrude into the cable path and engage the vertically oriented cable strand.
Indicator 146 is keyed to a shaft 156 rotatably mounted in base 136 and housing 142 and retained thereto with suitable snap rings 158. A floating arm 160 is journaled on shaft 156 for pivotal movement thereabout. The floating arm extends radially away from the shaft and terminates in an arcuate end 161 which is positioned to intercept the path of the cable strand 30a and thus bias the strand against arcuate surfaces 154 of blocks 152. A pair of stops such as threaded bolts 166 are secured to base 136 and limit the pivotal movement of the floating arm to a predetermined angle. Presently this angle is selected to be 18 so that counting means 134 can record 20 successive cable strokes before indicator 146 returns to its neutral position. If desired greater or lesser angularities for increasing or decreasing the number of recordable strokes can be selected.
When the exercising person pulls on cable 30 to lift weight plates 36 along rear posts 18 of the weight lifting device 12 cable strand 30a moves downwardly past blocks 152 and arcuate end 161 of floating arm 160. The blocks are thereby pivoted in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 12, and the floating arm is pivoted in a counterclockwise direction until it engages the lower stop bolt 166. The floating arm remains in its lowermost position even though cable strand 30a continues to be pulled downwardly. Next, the exercising person permits the weight plates to return to their bottom position by permitting them to retract cable 30 so that cable strand 30a now moves upwardly. The engagement of the arcuate floating arm end 161 by the cable strand now pivots the floating arm in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 12, until it engages the upper bolt 166 after it moves through an arc of 18. The floating arm remains in its uppermost position (illustrated in phantom lines in FIG. 12) even though cable strand 30a continues to move upwardly. After the weight plates rest on lifting device base 14 the interengagement between the cable strand 300, blocks 152 and floating arm 160 continues to maintain the floating arm in its upper position.
An actuator 162 is pivotally mounted to floating arm 160 adjacent the latters arcuate end 161, has a generally L-shaped configuration and includes a horizontal leg 164 provided with a counterweight 168 for biasing the actuator in a counterclockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 12. The other leg of the actuator defines a pawl 170 biased intoengagement with the teeth of a ratchet 172 keyed to shaft 156. Thus, each time cable 30 is released and cable strand 30a and floating arm 160 move upwardly ratchet 172, shaft 156 and indicator 146 are rotated through an arc of 18. Downward movement of cable strand 30a causes pawl 170 to ride over the ratchet teeth into the lower position illustrated in FIG. 12. To prevent rotation of the ratchet and the indicator while pawl 170 is disengaged from the ratchet teeth, i.e., while the floating arm and the pawl move from their uppermost to their lowermost position, a dog 174 is pivotally mounted to base 136 and biased into engagement with the teeth of ratchet 172 by a leaf spring 176. The tooth engaging dog locks the ratchet against counterclockwise rotation and creates sufficient friction to prevent its clockwise rotation under normal operation of the weight lifting device.
In use, indicator 146 is turned in a clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 12, until it points to the desired stroke number on the dial of housing 142. Thus, if strokes are desired the indicator is turned to the 3 oclock position. Thereafter the person begins to exercise. At the end of each complete exercising cycle, that is at the end of each cable release to return the weight plates to base 14 of the weight lifting device, indicator 146 is moved l8 in a clockwise direction. After the weight plates have been lifted and released 15 times the in dicator arrives at its neutral or l2 oclock position indicated in phantom lines in FIG. 12.
To provide an audible signal when the indicator returns to its l2 o'clock position and thereby automatically signal to the exercising person that he has completed the desired number of strokes a bell 178 is affixed to base 136. A clapper 180 is pivotally mounted to the base and so positioned that its lower end strikes bell 178 when it is pivoted. A clapper actuator 182 is connected to a hub 184 of ratchet 172 and depends radially away therefrom a sufficient distance so that it engages an end of the clapper as illustrated in FIG. 15. The clapper actuator is positioned so that the engaged clapper end is released when indicator 146 moves through the last l8-segment before it arrives at its 12 oclock position. Release of the clapper by the actuator causes the former to pivot (as shown in phantom lines in FIG. 15), strike bell 178 and thus emit an audible signal indicating completion of the exercise.
Thus, the present invention provides a weight lifting exerciser which substantially facilitates the ease with which it is operated and adjusted for the performance of different exercises requiring changes in the amount of weight to be lifted or requiring the repositioning of the free cable end. Additionally, persons can now fully concentrate on their physical exercising instead of observing and controlling the mechanical functioning of the device. By virtue of the present invention the exerciser is furthermore substantially safer than heretofore available prior art exercisers to practically eliminate the likelihood of a malfunctioning that can cause physical injuries to the exercising person.
1. An exerciser for lifting weight plates comprising in combination: a plurality of weight plates, an upright post having a plurality of spaced positioning apertures, carriage means movable on the post, a movable locking member for locking the carriage means in a desired position, means connected to the carriage means or guiding the locking member into engagement with the carriage means and the post means biasing the member into post-engaging position, the cable being guided over the post and around the carriage means for vertically positioning the free cable end one or more weights positioned in a vertically stacked arrangement to be engaged by a quick release means, a quick-release means for selectively connecting and disconnecting one or more of the weights from the first cable end, said quick-release means comprising a weight-engaging member fixedly connected to the first cable end, each of said weight having a centrally located aperture through which the weight-engaging member telescopes, the cutout having maximum and minimum transverse dimensions perpendicular to the axis of the cutout, said cutout extending through each weight, each weight further including an undercut concentric with the cutout and having a transverse dimension perpendicular to the axis of the cutout equal to at least the maximum transverse dimension of the cutout and being disposed on a side of the any one of said weights facing downwardly, the weight-engaging member including a core having a transverse dimension less than the minimum trans verse dimension of the cutout and having a lateral protrusion fixedly connected to the cord, said lateral protrusion having a cantilevered dimension less than the maximum transverse dimension of the cutout and greater than the minimum transverse dimension of the cutout, the protrusion having a thickness less than a depth of the undercut to enable the engagement of any one of said weights in a stack of weights with the protrusion, whereby the total weight connected to the first cable end is quickly and readily adjustable.
2. An exerciser according to claim 1 including a locking means comprising means for biasing the cantilevered portion into a weight-engaging position and means for moving the cantilevered portion in a weight-disengaging position in-opposition to a biasing force exerted by the biasing means.
3. An exerciser according to claim 1 wherein the carriage means includes substantially horizontally disposed vertically spaced flange means having vertically aligned apertures for positioning and supporting a balancing bar adjacent the exerciser.
4. Apparatus according to claim 1 including an exercising board, including means connected to the carriage means for engaging an end of said exercising board for movement of said board end along the post into inclined positions and means releasably preventing disengagement of the board end with the carriage means.
5. Apparatus according to claim 4 wherein the means for engaging one end of said board, said board-engaging means comprises an upwardly opening trough-shaped member connected to the carriage means, and wherein the means preventing disengagement comprises a member covering at least part of an upwardly opening portion of the trough-shaped member, means for biasing the member into a trough-covering position, and means for selectively retracting the member from the trough-covering position to enable the insertion and the removal of the exercising board from the trough-shaped member and prevent accidental disengagement of the exercising board while suspended from the trough-shaped member.
6. Apparatus according to claim 1 including a balancing bar having at least one upright member, and wherein the carriage means include means for engaging the uprightmember and permitting vertical movements of the carriage means with respect to the upright member.
7. Apparatus for exercising body musculature by vertically displacing a weight comprising: an upright frame including a support surface, one or more weight plate vertically positioned on the support surface, each of said weight plate including a substantially centrally positioned cutout having a maximum transverse dimension and a minimum transverse dimension perpendicular to the axis of the cutout, and said cutout extending through the weight plate, each of said plates having undercuts concentric with the cutout and having a transverse dimension equal to at least the maximum transverse dimension of the cutout and being disposed on a side of the weight plate facing the support surface, when said plates are in a stacked position cable means for lifting any number of said weight plates during exercising, a weight-engaging member fixedly connected to a free end of the cable means, the weightengaging member defining a core with a transverse dimension less than the minimum transverse dimension of the cutout and having a fixedly connected cantilevered portion having a length less than the maximum transverse dimension of the cutout and greater than the minimum transverse dimension of the cutout, the cantilevered portion being vertically adjustable through a plane of the maximum dimension and also angularly displaceable within the undercut said projection being positioned transverse to the direction of maximum transverse dimension when a plate is being lifted, the undercut having a depth and the protrusion having a thickness in a direction perpendicular to the support surface so that there remains space between the protrusion and the support surface when the protrusion engages the undercut to enable the connecting and disconnecting of the weight from the weight-engaging member while the weight plate rests on the support surface.
8. Apparatus according to claim 7 including a plurality of vertically stacked weight plates, and wherein each plate weighs a predetermined amount, and including markings applied to the exterior of the weight-engaging member indicating the total weight of plates engaged by the weight-engaging member when the protrusion is disposed in the undercut of a late.
p 9. Apparatus according to claim 8 wherein the weight plates are of equal weight and shape, wherein the weight-engaging member has an axial length exceeding the axial length of the weight plate stack when the weight-engaging member engages the lowermost plate, and wherein the markings comprise weight-indicating numbers spaced from the cantilevered portion a distance at least about equal to the spacing between a top surface of the uppermost plate and the undercut of the plate engaged by the weight-engaging member.
10. Apparatus according to claim 7 wherein the frame comprises a pair of spaced apart, vertically disposed post means, wherein the weight plates include openings in engagement with the post means for positive guidance of the plates along the post means, and wherein the weight plates further include nonmetallic bearing surfaces in engagement with the post means.
11. Apparatus according to claim 7 including means rotatably biasing the cantilevered portion into engagement with. the undercut for releasably retaining the cantilevered portion in engagement with one of said weight plates to prevent accidental relative angular motions between the member and the plate and a resulting accidental release of said one of said weight plates from the cable means.
12. in an exercising apparatus having a cable with a handle for applying axial forces to the cable, means for guiding and positioning the cable, a plurality of vertically stacked weight plates, and means for selectively connecting one or more of the weight plates to the cable means for vertical movement of the connected weight plates with the cable means and for adjusting the total weight to be lifted, the improvement comprising: a vertically aligned aperture in each weight plate, the aperture including a substantially circularly arcuate portion and a cutout extending radially outwardly from the arcuate portion, the plates further including undercuts spaced from a top surface of each weight plate, each of the undercuts having a predetermined minimum height parallel to the aperture, the undercuts communicating with the cutouts and having their inner most radial extents at least equal to the radial extents of the cutouts and radial extents being greater than the radial extents of the cutouts, a substantially cylindrical connecting member for attached to an end of the cable, and a radial projection fixedly attached to and extending from the member, said cutouts being vertically aligned and having dimensions larger than the projections, said apertures in the plates being dimensioned to telescopically receive the member, said projection being positioned at the lowermost portion of an aperture to permit rotation through the cutout until it engages the undercut to lockingly engage the desired plate and thereafter enable the lifting of the plates thereabove.
13. Apparatus according to claim 12 wherein the undercut extends in a circumferential direction from a common center with the cutout through substantially about and wherein the projection comprises a radially oriented pin secured to the member.
14. Apparatus according to claim 13 including stop means for limiting the travel of the cantilevered portion defined by the weight plates and extending from the upper undercut end to about the support surface and said cantilevered portion being rotatable into a weight engaging position.
15. Apparatus according to claim 12 wherein the cable means guiding and positioning means comprises an upright post including a plurality of vertically spaced horizontally disposed positioning apertures, a tubular member disposed about the post for movement along the post, the tubular member including means for engaging and guiding the cable means, bearing means spacing the tubular member from the post, an axially movable, horizontally disposed lock bolt, means engaging axially spaced points of the lock bolt for guiding the bolt in its movement towards and away from the post and for positioning the bolt for engagement of the horizontal apertures when at a common elevation therewith, means biasing the bolt towards the post, means for moving the bolt in opposition to the biasing force away from the post, and means for releasably locking the bolt into engagement with an aperture in the post to prevent accidental movements of the tubular member along the post.
16. Apparatus according to claim 15 including means for connecting an end of an exercising board to the tubular member.
17. Apparatus according to claim 16 wherein the exercising board connecting means comprises hook means for supporting the board end, and means for releasably retaining the portion of the board engaged by the hook means to the hook means to prevent accidental disengagement of the board and the tubular member.
18. A weight exercising apparatus comprising a cable having an end for grasping the cable and applying an axial force thereto, means for guiding and positioning the cable, at least one weight plate, means for connecting the weight plate to another end of the cable, means for guiding the weight plate in vertical direction from a support surface in an upward direction when an axial force is applied to the cable, and indicator means for indicating the number of reversals in the movement direction of the cable, the indicator means including a movable means, said movable means having a movable member, said movable member being freely pivoted and having a free end portion in frictional engagement with said cable during both a movement of the cable in one direction during a pulling action by a user and also in the opposite direction when the cable is caused to move under force of a weight plate when said cable is released by the user, a rotatable indicator secured to a rotatable ratchet wheel, and a one-way paw pivotally mounted to the movable means for engaging the ratchet and causing said ratchet to move during of the cable under either the force of a weight plate or a force exerted by a user and thus advancing the ratchet and the indicator in predetermined increments in response to each weight plate raising and lowering cycle.
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