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Publication numberUS3744162 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJul 10, 1973
Filing dateAug 23, 1971
Priority dateAug 23, 1971
Publication numberUS 3744162 A, US 3744162A, US-A-3744162, US3744162 A, US3744162A
InventorsB Beck
Original AssigneeB Beck
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Snowshoe binding
US 3744162 A
Abstract
A binding or harness for securing a boot to the webbing of a snowshoe. The binding includes a wide toe panel and several straps, all comprised of a pliable material such as leather, neoprene-nylon compositions, fabrics, and laminated or layered sheet material. The toe piece or panel has one end secured to the webbing of the snowshoe so as to lie beneath the boot, and it extends forwardly to and upwardly over the toe of the boot. The toe panel provides stability by preventing the boot from sliding forwardly along the snowshoe, and it also prevents snow from accumulating under, over, and around the front of the boot. A toe strap overlies the toe panel and the toe of the boot, and it extends downwardly through slits or openings on each side of the toe panel to attach to the snowshoe webbing on both sides of the boot. An inside strap and an outside strap attached to the showshoe webbing on opposite sides of the toe end of the boot extend rearwardly on each side thereof. The inside strap extends rearwardly to and around the heel of the boot and buckles to the outside strap. An arch strap encircles the boot at an intermediate position between the heel and the toe and holds the inside and outside straps snugly against the sides of the boot. A tie strap connects between the toe panel and the arch strap to hold the top part of the toe panel rearwardly in a proper position.
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United States Patent 1 1 Beck 11 3,744,162 [451 July 10,1973

1 1 SNOWSHOE BINDING Primary Examiner-Patrick D. Lawson Att0rney.loseph B. Gardner [5 7] ABSTRACT A binding or harness for securing a boot to the webbing of a snowshoe. The binding includes a wide toe panel and several straps, all comprised of a pliable material such as leather, neoprene-nylon compositions, fabrics, and laminated or layered sheet material. The toe piece or panel has one end secured to the webbing of the snowshoe so as to lie beneath the boot, and it extends I forwardly to and upwardly over the toe of the boot. The

toe panel provides stability by preventing the boot from sliding forwardly along the snowshoe, and it also prevents snow from accumulating under, over, and around the front of the boot. A toe strap overlies the toe panel and the toe of the boot, and it extends downwardly through slits or openings on each side of the toe panel to attach to the snowshoe webbing on both sides of the boot. An inside strap and an outside strap attached to the showshoe webbing on opposite sides of the toe end of the boot extend rearwardly on each side thereof. The inside strap extends rearwardly to and around the heel of the boot and buckles to the outside strap. An arch strap encircles the boot at an intermediate position between the heel and the toe and holds the inside and outside straps snugly against the sides of the boot. A tie strap connects between the toe panel and the arch strap to hold the top part of the toe panel rearwardly in a proper position.

6 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures PATENIEDJUUOW 3.744.162

FIG. 2

INVENTOR.

BRUCE D. BEC BY. 6 g z W Q A TTORNEY PAIENIEB JUL 1 0191s am anrz FIG. 5

INVENTOR BRUCE D. BECK M TTORNEY BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a binding or harness for securing a boot to the webbing of a snowshoe; and it relates more particularly to an improved binding having a wide panel of pliable material extending from a position beneath the sole of the boot upwardly and around the front of the toe thereof to be secured in a position overlying the forepart of the boot.

A snowshoe usually includes a peripheral frame and a webbing comprised of straps and/or cords laced back and forth across the frame to provide a flat, lightweight structure easily supported by soft snow. A crossbar or cross-rib forming a part of the webbing may extend from one side of the peripheral frame to the other to provide a support for the toe end of the hikers boot. In order to enable a hiker to walk on the snowshoe with facility, the boot is allowed to pivot forwardly about the transversely extending crossbar. However, the boot should be restrained from pivoting or turning about any other axis with respect to the snowshoe. Since the boot is not held rigidly but is allowed to pivot forwardly and rearwardly in a cyclically repetitive manner, that part of the webbing directly under the boot (i.e., the crossbar in particular) is subject to great wear and ordinarily must be of much heavier material than other parts of the webbing not subject to direct contact by the boot.

It is an object of this invention to provide an improved binding for use in securing a boot to a snowshoe, and which binding permits the boot to pivot repetitively forwardly and rearwardly about the crossbar or reinforced part of the webbing of the snowshoe, the toe of the boot being protected from an accumulation of snow thereabout and also secured against translational displacements or slippage with respect to the snowshoe especially in a forward direction.

It is a further object, among others, of this invention to provide an improved showshoe binding of the type described in which a panel of pliable anti-friction material forming a part of the binding is disposed intermediate the toe end portion of the boot and webbing including the crossbar thereof to form a protective pad protecting the crossbar and cooperating with other components of the binding to prevent slippage or translational displacements of the boot relative to the snowshoe, thereby facilitating use of the snowshoe and minimizing wear thereof.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION A boot is secured to a snowshoe by means of a binding that includes a toe strap that crosses twice over the toe of the boot and attaches on both sides thereof to a crossbar constituting a reinforced part of the snowshoe webbing. A toe piece or toe panel is attached to the crossbar or other webbing by means of short straps extending under the toe end of the boot. The toe panel extends from underneath the boot upwardly around the front of the toe of the boot and rearwardly under the toe strap. Slits or openings are provided for the toe strap which passes therethrough. An outside strap and an inside strap buckle together and pass around the heel of the boot and extend to points of attachment with the crossbar to prevent the boot from pivoting or twisting about a vertical axis. An arch strap encircles the boot at a position intermediate the heel and the toe. The arch strap holds the inside and outside straps snugly against the side of the boot. A tie strap, located between the toe panel and the arch strap, holds the end of the toe panel rearwardly in proper position for good stability.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS The various features and advantages of this invention will become apparent upon a consideration of the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings which illustrate an exemplary embodiment of the invention in a binding or harness securing a boot to a snowshoe. The views of the drawing are as follows:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a snowshoe with a boot secured thereon by a binding or harness in accordance with this invention;

FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of a fragmentary part of the snowshoe with the boot and the binding secured thereto, and illustrating the manner in which the boot may pivot forwardly upon a crossbar of the snowshoe binding;

FIG. 3 is a partial top plan view looking downwardly from above the snowshoe and boot;

FIG. 4 is a partial bottom plan view looking upwardly from below the toe end of the boot; and

FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the binding in operative association with a boot and crossbar of a snowshoe, each of which is shown in phantom.

DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT As shown in FIG. 1, a typical snowshoe comprises a generally rigid peripheral frame 11 formed of wood and a somewhat flexible webbing l2 crisscrossing the frame from one side thereof to the other in an area to support a shoe or boot 13. The parts of the webbing 12 which contact the boot 13 and generally underlie the same to support the weight represented thereby are relatively heavy bands and those other parts of the webbing may be lightweight cord 14. The snowshoe may be reinforced with longitudinally spaced transverse frame elements 15 and 16. A transverse crossbar or main support 17 constitutes a reinforced part of the webbing, and it also provides a fulcrum or axis of generally horizontal orientation about which the boot 13 may pivot forwardly, as shown in FIG. 2, and rearwardly alternately in opposite angular directions as one walks alon on the shoe 11.

The various straps and parts of the binding or harness securing the boot 13 to the snowshoe are formed of a pliable material, such as a neoprene-nylon composition. In the past, leather has been commonly used for this purpose, but has several inherent disadvantages. For example, when leather gets wet, it becomes soft and slippery and will stretch and become misshapen, thereby requiring a hiker to stoop over and readjust and tighten his snowshoe bindings after they have stretched unduely. If the hiker is carrying a heavy pack, such stooping is difficult. Also, when leather straps dry out they become hard and stiff; and consequently the buckling and adjusting operations required at this time i are difficult and time consuming. Furthermore, leather straps will break unexpectedly to create problems when a hiker may be isolated and away from his base camp and his supplies.

Neoprene-nylon is a synthetic material which is now commercially available, and it has proved to be a greatly superior material for snowshoe bindings. This material comprises an inner layer or core of a tough nylon fabric permanently bonded to and sandwiched between two layers of heavy neoprene rubber. From such neoprene-nylon material, binding straps and other parts may be formed which are flexible, will not stretch, will not absorb water, and will not collect ice. Although the material is flexible and pliable, it is nevertheless very strong and tough. Holes may be punched or otherwise formed therein for buckles without materially weakening the straps; and, therefore, buckle holes may be larger and more closely spaced than was practical with leather straps. A snowshoe binding of neoprenenylon material in substantially all cases will be easier to adjust and to buckle onto a boot and a snowshoe.

It will be understood that the usual hiker will require a pair of boots and snowshoes, but for purposes hereof it is sufficient to show and describe a single binding in association with a boot and snowshoe since the second binding is essentially a duplicate thereof. The specific combination illustrated is the boot and snowshoe for a hikers right foot, and this fact is noteworthy because certain parts and straps may be referred to as inside and outside components. With respect to the hikers right foot (as shown), the inside parts are on the left side of the boot between the hikers two feet; and the outside parts are on the right side of the boot or away from the hikers other foot. Obviously, these parts are reversed when examining the boot and snowshoe for the hikers left foot.

With reference to the drawing, a toe strap 21, crosses over the top of the toe end of the boot l3 and attaches to the webbing 12 of the snowshoe on each side of the boot in encircling relation with the crossbar 17. The toe ,strap 21 actually crosses the toe of the boot 13 twice and extends down to and around the crossbar 17 on both sides of the boot and closes upon itself with its ends fastened together by a buckle 22. An outside strap 23 has one end secured by a slide fastener 24 to the crossbar 17 of the snowshoe webbing, and it extends rearwardly along the outside of the boot 13 toward the heel theref. Analogously, an inside strap 25 has one end secured tothe crossbar 17 of the webbing by a slide fastener 26, and it extends rearwardly along the inside of the boot to and around the heel to the outside thereof where the inside strap 25 and outside strap 23 are fastened together by a buckle 27 (see FIGS. 3 and An arch strap 28 encircles the boot 13 about the arch thereof which is an intermediate position between the heel and the toe of the boot, and the two ends of the arch strap are closed and fastened together by a buckle 29. The arch strap 28 passes through a pair of slits or openings 31 in the inside strap and through a similar pair of slits 32 in the outside strap 23 such that the arch strap 28 will be held in the arch or intermediate position with respect to the boot l3 and cannot slip longitudinally therealong. The arch strap 28 functions to hold both the outside and inside strips 23 and 25 snugly against the sides of the boot 13. As shown in FIGS. 1 and 3, the outside and inside straps 23 and 25 are both fastened to the webbing or crossbar 17 thereof at transverse points spaced rather widely from each other and from the boot 13. The outside and inside straps 23 and 25 thereby restrain the boot from twisting or pivoting with respect to the snowshoes about a vertical axis, while at the same time allowing the boot to pivot forwardly about the horizontal axis defined by the crossbar 17.

A toe piece or toe panel 34 underlies the toe of the boot 13 in overlying relation with the webbing 12 of the snowshoe, and extends fowardly to and upwardly around the toe of the boot to a position overlying the forepart thereof. A pair of short anchor straps 35 and 36 are secured to the crossbar 17 of the snowshoe webbing by slide fasteners 37 and 38, and are attached to the toe panel 34 by means such as rivets (see FIG. 4). The straps 35 and 36 provide a means for fastening the toe panel 34 to the webbing of the snowshoe beneath the boot 13 and fixedly locating the toe panel with respect thereto.

The toe panel 34 is a rather wide strap which wraps over the toe of the boot 13, and it is provided with an extra width on the top end overlying the boot to allow for slits or openings 41 alongeach side thereof. As shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 5, there are two slits or openings 41 on each side of the upper end of the toe panel 34 through which the toe strap 21 pass. The toe panel 34 is thereby coupled to the toe strap 21 so that (a) the upper end of the toe panel 34 is held down over the toe of the boot l3, and (b) the toe strap 21 is restrained from slipping off of the toe of the boot by the toe panel 34. The toe strap 21 is threaded or passed from an initial or first position over the toe panel 34 and the toe of the boot 13 through the inner rear of the openings 41, downwardly to and around the crossbar 17. Then the toe strap 21 passes upwardly through the inner front of the openings 41 in the toe panel and crosses over toe panel 34 and over toe of the boot, and thereafter passes downwardly through the outer rear slit or opening in the toe panel to and around the crossbar 17 and upwardly therefrom on the other side of the boot. Finally, the toe strap 21 passes upwardly through the outer front slit in the toe panel 34 to the first or initial position over the toe of the boot where the two ends are fastened together by the buckle 22.

A tie strap 42 connects between the upper end of the toe panel'34 and the arch strap 28 to hold the toe panel in place over the toe of the boot 13. One end of the tie strap 42 is formed in a loop and is held by means such as a rivet 43 (see FIG. 5) in encircling relation with the arch strap 28. The other end of the tie strap 42 passes through a slit or opening 44 at the upper end of the toe panel and is held by a slide fastener 45. Since the toe panel 34 is held beneath the boot by the anchor straps 35 and 36 and is held above the boot by the tie strap 42, the toe panel 34 will restrain the boot 13 from moving forwardly with respect to the snowshoe. This feature becomes very important when the hiker is walking downhill at which time the bootwill tend to slide forwardly on the snowshoe with each step. I

The short anchor straps 35 and 36 with their slide fasteners 37 and 38 positioned beneath the boot and the snowshoe create no problems when hiking in snow; and indeed the downwardly facing straps and fasteners actually provide additional traction for gripping the underlying surface which is useful especially in ice-snow. As indicated previously, the neoprene-nylon harness or snowshoe binding will not absorb moisture and does not tend to collect ice. In addition, the neoprene rubber surface of the binding is a good friction material such that any tendency for slippage between parts is minimized.

The toe piece or toe panel 34 stabilizes the snowshoe prevent pivotal movement about a vertical axis, but permit forward pivotal movement or angular articulation around the horizontal axis of the crossbar 17 of the snowshoe webbing. The toe panel 34 additionally keeps snow from accumulating over, under, or around the toe section of the boot; and it also protects the webbing of the snowshoe from undue wear by providing a pad extending rearwardly under the sole of the boot and over that part from contact with the boot. Therefore, it will be appreciated that the addition of the toe panel to this snowshoe binding is very beneficial in increasing the stability and control of the snowshoe by the hiker; and in protecting both the boot and the webbing of the snowshoe from adverse effects of snow and ice accumulation and of excessive wear between the parts.

While in the foregoing specification an embodiment of the invention has been set forth in considerable detail for purposes of making a complete disclosure thereof, it will be apparent to those skilled in the art that numerous changes may be made in such details without departing from the spirit and principles of the invention.

1 claim:

1. A snowshoe binding for securing a toeand heelequipped boot to webbing of a snowshoe, comprising: a toe strap of pliable material adapted to extend transversely over the toe of said boot and downwardly therefrom to be fastened to the webbing on both sides of such boot; a toe panel of pliable material adapted to overlie the toe of such boot and be attached to said toe strap thereat and to extend forwardly and downwardly over the toe and thence rearwardly beneath such boot intermediate the webbing underlying the same; strap means for fastening said toe panel to the webbing of such snowshoe at a position beneath the boot; an inside strap and an outside strap equipped with means for fastening first ends thereof to parts of the webbing of such snowshoe on opposite sides of the toe of such boot, said inside and outside straps being adapted to extend rearwardly from the first ends thereof with one strap extending to and around the heel of the boot and thence forwardly to a point of connection with the other; an arch strap for encircling such boot at a position intermediate the toe and heel thereof; and means connecting said arch strap and said inside and outside straps for holding the same snugly against the sides of such boot including openings in said inside and outside straps, said arch strap passing through said openings whereby said arch strap will be held in fixed positions along said inside and outside straps when confining the same against such boot.

2. A snowshoe binding for securing a toeand heelequipped boot to webbing of a snowshoe, comprising; a toe strap of pliable material adapted to extend transversely over the toe of said boot and downwardly therefrom to be fastened to the webbing on both sides of such boot; a toe panel of pliable material adapted to overlie the toe of such boot and be attached to said toe strap thereat and to extend forwardly and downwardly over the toe and thence rearwardly beneath such boot; strap means for fastening said toe panel to the webbing of such snowshoe at a position beneath the boot; an inside strap and an outside strap equipped with means for fastening first ends thereof to parts of the webbing of such snowshoe on opposite sides of the toe of such boot, said inside and outside straps being adapted to extend rearwardly from the first ends thereof with one strap extending to and around the heel of the boot and thence forwardly to a point of connection with the other; an arch strap for encircling such boot at a position intermediate the toe and heel thereof; means connecting said arch strap and said inside and outside straps for holding-the same snugly against the sides of such boot; and a tie strap connecting said toe panel and arch strap for securing said toe panel in position against forward longitudinal displacements with respect to said boot.

3. A snowshoe binding in accordance with claim 2 wherein said toe panel and all of said straps are flexible and comprised of a neoprene-nylon material having an inner layer of nylon fabric permanently bonded and sandwiched between two layers of neoprene rubber.

4. A snowshoe binding in accordance with claim 2 wherein said means connecting said arch strap and both saidinside and outside straps comprises openings in both said inside and outside straps, said arch strap passing through said openings whereby said arch strap will be held in fixed positions along said inside and outside straps when confining the same against such boot.

5. A snowshoe binding for securing a toeand heelequipped boot to webbing of a snowshoe, comprising; a toe strap of pliable material adapted to extend transversely over the toe of said boot and downwardly therefrom to be fastened to the webbing on both sides of such boot; a toe panel of pliable material adapted to overlie the toe of such boot and be attached to said toe strap thereat and to extend fowardly and downwardly over the toe and thence rearwardly beneath such boot intermediate the webbing underlying the same and be connected with the webbing thereat; an inside strap and an outside strap equipped with means for fastening first ends thereof to parts of the webbing of such snowshoe on opposite sides of the toe of such boot and at transversely spaced locations therewith, said inside and outside straps being adapted to extend rearwardly from the first ends thereof with one strap extending to and around the heel of the boot and thence forwardly to a point of connection with the other; an arch strap for encircling such boot at a position intermediate the toe and heel thereof; and means for connecting said arch strap and said inside and outside straps for holding the latter snugly against the sides of such boot and for hold ing the former in fixed positions along said inside and outside straps when confining the same against such boot.

6. A snowshoe binding in accordance with claim 5 and further comprising a tie strap connecting said toe panel and arch strap for securing said toe panel in position against forward longitudinal displacements with respect to said boot.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1523222 *Apr 2, 1923Jan 13, 1925Victor E LeetSnowshoe harness
US2420261 *Aug 22, 1944May 6, 1947Joseph A L NadeauSnowshoe harness
US2619742 *Jul 12, 1951Dec 2, 1952Cumming James DeansSnowshoe harness
US2821031 *Dec 24, 1956Jan 28, 1958Howe Folding Furniture IncSnowshoe binding
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4348824 *Jan 19, 1981Sep 14, 1982Treadwell Buford WSnowshoe and harness assembly
US5542197 *Jun 5, 1995Aug 6, 1996Vincent; MauriceSnowshoe with adjustable decking tension
US5659981 *Sep 25, 1995Aug 26, 1997Liautaud; Jeffrey T.Snowshoe
US5740621 *Sep 29, 1995Apr 21, 1998Wing Enterprises, Inc.Compactible snowshoes and bindings and method of assembly
US6363628 *Dec 30, 1999Apr 2, 2002Terrence K. MahonErgonomic snow shoe binding and method of making the same
US6564478Aug 21, 2000May 20, 2003Wing Enterprises, Inc.Compactible snowhoes
Classifications
U.S. Classification36/125
International ClassificationA63C13/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63C13/001
European ClassificationA63C13/00B