Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS3860986 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 21, 1975
Filing dateMar 15, 1973
Priority dateMar 15, 1973
Publication numberUS 3860986 A, US 3860986A, US-A-3860986, US3860986 A, US3860986A
InventorsBallard Alexander K Stanton
Original AssigneeBallard Alexander K Stanton
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Shoe tree with selectively adjustable inserts
US 3860986 A
Abstract
A shoe tree with at least one insert that is laterally adjustable for predetermined stretch of the "upper" of a shoe and operated by means of a retractile mandrel which is protracted and with cam means determinably positioning the insert. There is an operating means that assures full protraction of the mandrel, and there is manual adjustment means for each insert which is to be laterally positioned for the desired stretch function.
Images(1)
Previous page
Next page
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent [19] Ballard Jan. 21, 1975 1 SHOE TREE WITH SELECTIVELY ADJUSTABLE INSERTS [76] Inventor: Alexander K. Stanton Ballard, 621

Midvale Ave., Los Angeles, Calif. 90024 [22] Filed: Mar. 15, 1973 [21] Appl. No.: 341,406

[52] US. Cl. 12/1152 [51] Int. Cl A43d 5/00 [58] Field of Search ..l2/115.2,115.8,l16.2,

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 229,156 6/1880 Lyons l2/ll5.2

599,951 3/1898 Thompson 12/1152 Primary Examiner-Patrick D. Lawson Attorney, Agent, or Firm-William 1-1. Maxwell [57] ABSTRACT A shoe tree with at least one insert that is laterally adjustable for predetermined stretch of the upper of a shoe and operated by means of a retractile mandrel which is protracted and with cam means determinably positioning the insert. There is an operating means that assures full protraction of the mandrel, and there is manual adjustment means for each insert which is to be laterally positioned for the desired stretch function.

18 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures SHOE TREE WITH SELECTIVELY ADJUSTABLE INSERTS BACKGROUND Footwear varies in its requirements for different individuals, and it is often difficult to obtain shoes of satisfactory fit. The proper fit of shoes depends primarily upon the lastf configuration selected for the shoe construction which varies in proportions related to length and width. Needless to say, an individuals feet might not be in conformance of the last configuration selected, nor is each foot necessarily identical. For example, a foot can be deformed as a result of injury, and quite often a poor fit can, for whatever reason, result in the formation of protective tissue or skin growths referred to as corns and/or bunions. Therefore, and in accordance with the present invention, it is an object to provide means in a shoe tree which modifies the general last configuration to the needs of the individual and particular shoe involved. With the present invention, selected areas of the shoe tree are adjustably engageable with the interior of a shoe to stretch the same, and a cam element is operable by virtue of installation of the shoe tree in a shoe to urge the selected areas thereof into predetermined positioned engagement with the shoe interior.

An object of this invention is to provide a cam element for a shoe tree as thus far referred to, which inherently operates between a retracted inoperative position and a protracted operative position. With the present invention, the cam element is in the form of a longitudinally shiftable core or mandrel that is positioned by the relatively moveable heel portion of the shoe tree. As will be described, the mandrel is tapered and is protracted so as to wedgedly engage laterally shiftable inserts that are positioned thereby.

Another object of this invention is to provide one or more inserts for a shoe tree as thus far referred to, that are adjustable to predetermined lateral positions whereby a known amount of stretch within certain areas of the shoe is determinable. With the present invention, the aforementioned mandrel has a determined protracted position for maximum operation and it has infinitely adjustable intermediate positions, all to the end that stretch pressures can be gradually applied.

It is another object of this invention to provide one or more laterally positionable inserts which are removeable for manual adjustment of control means, whereby a selected amount of stretch is.determinable over the areas covered by the inserts respectively.

It is still another object of this invention to provide selectively adjustable shoe trees of the character thus far referred to wherein the critical areas of the shoe, or last configuration, are processed as circumstances require to be stretched, by selectively controlling the determinable positions of the said inserts as desired by any particular individual so as to correct the inside contour of his shoes.

DRAWINGS The various objects and features of this invention will be fully understood from the following detailed description of the typical preferred forms and applications thereof, throughout which description reference is made to the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a longitudinal sectional view of a shoe tree incorporating the selectively adjustable inserts and operating mandrel therefor.

FIG. 2 is a plan view taken as indicated by line 22 on FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a transverse sectional view of the shoe tree taken as indicated by line 3-3 on FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is a view similar to FIG. 3 showing a selective adjustment of the inserts made in accordance with the invention.

And, FIG. 5 is a view similar to FIG. 4 showing the basic form of insert selected for dimension and positioned by a round mandrel,

SUMMARY OF INVENTION This shoe tree with selectively adjustable inserts not only applies stretch pressures for the general last configuration of the shoe, but also applies localized stretch pressures to determinable areas of the shoe. In carrying out this invention a shoe tree of conventional form is utilized which comprises a heel portion H and a toe portion T divided over the arch and relatively moveable to be separated under pressure one from the other. In practice, there is a piston P captured by a pin 10 operable through a slot 11 therein and yieldingly urged forwardly from a bore 12 in the heel portion H by means of a spring S. The toe portion T is coupled to the foremost projecting end of piston P by a swivel pin 13 on a horizontal axis, preferably through the mandrel M as will be described. In accordance with the present invention, the improvement in the shoe tree involves the selective application of pressure on predetermined areas throughout the toe portion T (and throughout the heel portion H which is to be executed in the same manner, not shown). As shown, the invention includes, generally, the retractile mandrel M that is protracted into the toe portion T, and the laterally shiftable inserts A, B, C, D and E which are positioned by the said mandrel. A fully protracted positioning of the mandrel M is assured by operating means 0, and each insert A through E is provided in its preferred form with manually controlled adjustment means X.

PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now to the retractile mandrel M, it is clearly shown throughout the drawings in the form of a core that is protracted into working position within the portion of the shoe tree which carries the laterally shiftable inserts, in the form illustrated, into working position within the toe portion T with its inserts A through E. The mandrel M is elongated and is shiftable along a line of movement extending longitudinally of the toe portion T, and it is characterized by at least one inclined surface or plane angularly disposed to said line of movement, and as shown is rearwardly divergent relative thereto. For practical purposes, the areas of the shoe to be stretched are in the upper thereof, in which case there is an upwardly disposed inclined face 20 and opposite inclined side faces 21 and 22. In practice, therefore, the bottom 23 is employed to support the mandrel M in a plane coincidental with said line of movement, upon a supporting face 24 in the toe portion into which the mandrel M is held by means of a dove-tail slide 25. When the mandrel M is fully protracted as shown, the foremost apex 26 occurs at the toe, while the rearmost butt 27 occurs at the arch terminal end 28 of the toe portion. It will be seen that the mandrel M can retract from the toe portion T.

Referring now to the toe portion T (or heel portion H), the last configuration thereof is embodied in a shell-like form 30 having a chamber 31 complementary to the shape of the mandrel M and opening at its inner end to receive the protracted mandrel. The form 30 is provided with a lateral opening 32 for exposure of the insert at both the outer surface of the form and at the inclined surface or plane of the mandrel to be engaged thereby. As shown, the lateral openings 32 are essentially alike for each of the inserts A through E, and each involves a side wall 33 that surrounds the insert and holds it to the area involved and to guide the insert laterally. For example, the toe insert A has a rear wall 34 that pitches forwardly and upwardly so as to thrust the insert A forwardly as it is forced laterally by the mandrel M. Thus, the inserts A through E are exposed to the interior of the shoe to be stretched, and they are exposed to the inclined surface or plane of the mandrel which positions them for this purpose.

Referring now to the inserts A through E, each insert is a body having an exterior wall 35 contoured to the last" configuration of that area, side walls 36 fitted within the guiding side walls 33, and a flat inner face 37 angularly disposed to have flat interface engagement with the inclined face 20, 21 or 22, as the case may be. That is, face 37 is engaged with the mandrel M when the exterior wall 35 is coincidental with the outside contour of the form 30. Thus, the inserts A through E have a normal position when the mandrel M is fully protracted as shown throughout the drawings.

In the embodiment shown; the insert A occupies the area of the big toe, the insert B occupies the area of the tarsus immediate to the big toe, the insert C occupies the area of the metatarsus rearward of the big toe, the insert D occupies the area of the ball of the foot immediate to the side of the big toe, and the insert E occupies the area of the small toes. It is to be understood that these insert areas and others can vary in their extent as circumstances require, and that any one or all of the same can be employed as desired. Further, the heel portion H also can be provided with the mechanism herein described as related to the toe portion T, but with inserts as required to stretch the heel portions of the shoe.

Referring now to the controllable adjustment means X, note particularly FIG. 4 of the drawings wherein inserts B and E are projected laterally into pressure exerting positions (shoe not shown). The flat inner face 37 is effectively displaced by a shim preferably in the form of a screw jack 40 having a free turning screw 41 that displaces a flat head 42 thereof from the face 37, thereby extending the effective height of the insert. Thus, the fully protracted mandrel M lifts the inserts to the selected stretch positions, all as is determined by manual adjustment of the screw jacks 40 as cicumstances require.

Referring now to the positive fully protracted positioning of mandrel M, I have provided alternate operating means and O' as best illustrated in FIG. I of the drawings wherein the mandrel M is shown fully protracted thereby. The operating means 0 involves a rearwardly faced step 45 on the mandrel M and a forwardly positionable member 46 carried by the form of the toe portion T. The member 46 disengageably presses the mandrel forwardly into its fully protracted position, and thereby causes the mandrel to displace the inserts to preadjusted lateral positions. As shown, the member 46 involves a knob operated screw 47 that retracts from the chamber to press the shoulder 45 to move said mandrel into its fully protracted position. The said fully protracted position is determinable by observing the coplanar condition of butt 27 with end 28, and accordingly this condition can be assured by employing operating means 0 which involves a wedge 50 that is forcible between the portions H and T, the heel portion H having an inner terminal end 51 opposed to and in a plane upwardly divergent with the planes of 27 and 28 so as to receive the wedge 50. Wedge 50 provides for longitudinal adjustment while forcing 27 and 28 to said coplanar condition which assures full protraction of the mandrel M.

Referring now to the basic form of insert shown in FIG. 5, there is a multiplicity of insert openings 32' throughout the exterior surface of the formed portion 30' and in the form of relatively small bore openings for exposure of the inserts to the mandrel. In this embodiment the mandrel M is shown as a round element having an inclined surface 20' as above described, and which is therefore a tapered cone-shaped mandrel. The inserts A etc. are buttonshaped with a flat head 55 providing the exterior wall 35' and with a stem 56 providing the guiding side walls 3' and inner face 37'. In practice, a selection of inserts A comprised of different length stems 56 is provided and selectively used as indicated, and all to the end that a predetermined lateral positioning is obtained when the mandrel M is fully protracted.

From the foregoing it will be seen that l have provided a very practical shoe tree that is not encumbered in any way. The improvements therein reside in laterally shiftable inserts that modify the exterior contour of the last configuration and all to the end that localized areas thereof can be stretched to predetermined extents. The predetermined positioning of the insert or inserts is effected by the fully protracted positioning of the mandrel, while the desired adjustment of the insert or inserts is in each instance effected by selection or by manual adjustment of the screw jacks, or shims, which determine their lateral displacement. The most critical areas are illustrated and described herein, and it is a simple matter to install the removeable and adjusted inserts into their complementary recesses or openings and to spring the shoe tree into working position which protracts the mandrel for lateral actuation of the inserts. It will be observed that the walls 33 of openings 32 are inwardly convergent so as to limit depression of the inserts while permitting removal and free lateral displacement thereof; and since stretching of a shoe upper requires pressure, force is applied by the operating means 0 which positively moves the mandrel forwardly into its fully protracted position (as shown). It is the fully protracted positioning of the mandrel M which determines the predetermined lateral displacement of the adjusted inserts.

Having described only typical preferred forms and applications of my invention, I do not wish to be limited or restricted to the specific details herein set forth, but wish to reserve to myself any modifications or variations that may appear to those skilled in the art.

I claim:

1. A shoe tree having a formed portion with an exterior contour complementary to and to be fitted to the interior contour of a shoe, and including; a chamber within the said formed portion and opening at its inner end, a retractile mandrel entering said inner end opening of the chamber and with an inclined surface thereon and shiftable along a longitudinally disposed line of movement to a fully protracted position into said chamber, protracting means moving the mandrel into the chamber, and a laterally displaceable insert having an exterior contour form normally continuing from the surrounding exterior contour of the shoe tree, said insert being engageable with the inclined surface of the mandrel when fully protracted into position for predetermined lateral displacement of the insert.

2. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the said formed portion of the shoe tree has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof to accommodate the laterally displaceable insert.

3. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the said formed portion has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with walls engageably surrounding the insert to guide the same.

4. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the said formed portion has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with outwardly divergent walls engageably surrounding the insert to limit inward depression of the same.

5. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the said formed portion has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with inclined walls engageable with the insert to displace the same longitudinally upon lateral displacement of the same.

6. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the lateral displacement of the insert is adjustable by means increasing the dimension thereof between its exterior contour form and face engageable with the said inclined surface of the mandrel.

7. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the lateral displacement of the insert is adjustable by screw means increasing the dimension thereof between its exterior contour form and said inclined surface of the mandrel.

8. The shoe tree with laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 1 wherein the protracting means is a force applying screw means operable from the said formed portion of the shoe tree to engage and move the mandrel therein into said fully protracted prosition.

9. A shoe tree having formed toe and heel portions each with an exterior contour complementary to and to be fitted to the interior contour of the toe and heel of a shoe respectively, and including; a chamber within one of said formed portions and opening at its inner end, a retractile mandrel entering said inner end opening of the chamber and with an inclined surface thereon and shiftable along a longitudinally disposed line of movement to a fully protracted position into said chamber, means forcibly separating the other of said formed portions from the mandrel to protract the mandrel into the chamber in said one formed portion, and a laterally displaceable insert having an exterior contour form normally continuing from the surrounding exterior contour of said one formed portion of the shoe tree, said insert having a face engageable with the inclined surface of the mandrel when fully protracted into position for predetermined lateral displacement of the insert.

10. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the said one formed portion of the shoe tree has a lateral opening coexten sive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof to accommodate the laterally displaceable insert.

11. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the said one formed portion of the shoe tree has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with walls engageably surrounding the insert to guide the same.

12. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the said one formed portion of the shoe tree has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with outwardly divergent walls engageably surrounding the insert to limit inward depression of the same.

13. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the said one formed portion of the shoe tree has a lateral opening coextensive with the contour form of the insert and extending from the chamber to the exterior thereof with inclined walls engageable with the insert to displace the same longitudinally upon lateral displacement of the same.

14. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the lateral displacement of the insert is adjustable by means increasing the dimension thereof between its exterior contour form and face engageable with the said inclined surface of the mandrel.

15. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the lateral displacement of the insert is adjustable by screw means increasing the dimension thereof between its exterior contour form and said inclined surface of the mandrel.

16. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the protracting means is a force exerting means operable between the said one formed portion of the shoe tree and the mandrel, and the mandrel moved thereby to said fully protracted position.

17. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the protracting means is a force applying screw means operable from the said one formed portion of the shoe tree to engage and move the mandrel therein to said fully protracted position.

18. The shoe tree comprised of forcibly separated toe and heel portions and one with a laterally displaced insert as set forth in claim 9 wherein the protracting means is a force applying wedge means removeably applied between the said other portion and the said one portion of the shoe tree and the mandrel engaged thereby to be fully protracted

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US229156 *Apr 17, 1880Jun 22, 1880 Joel lyons
US599951 *Jan 18, 1897Mar 1, 1898 Boot or shoe stretcher
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US5881413 *Jun 28, 1996Mar 16, 1999James L. ThroneburgShoe last and method of constructing a shoe
US5909719 *Dec 3, 1997Jun 8, 1999James L. ThroneburgShoe last and method of constructing a shoe
US6266837 *Jun 8, 2000Jul 31, 2001Robert E. NordCombined two-shoe tree and organizer
US6845541May 11, 2000Jan 25, 2005David LaiShoe last rack
US6883197Dec 26, 2000Apr 26, 2005Sht Co., Ltd..Shoe corrector
US7287293 *Aug 12, 2005Oct 30, 2007Nike, Inc.Custom fit system with adjustable last and method for custom fitting athletic shoes
US7757325Oct 4, 2007Jul 20, 2010Nike, Inc.Custom fit system and method for custom fitting athletic shoes
US7980007Jul 16, 2010Jul 19, 2011Nike, Inc.Custom fit system with adjustable last and method for custom fitting athletic shoes
US7992243Jul 19, 2010Aug 9, 2011Nike, Inc.Custom fit system with adjustable last and method for custom fitting athletic shoes
US20120192365 *Jan 26, 2012Aug 2, 2012Ottenstein Joseph BExplandable shoe tree for soft shoes
EP1244370A1 *Dec 26, 2000Oct 2, 2002SHT Co. Ltd.Shoe corrector
WO2001015562A1 *Aug 31, 2000Mar 8, 2001Benabadji MehdiShoe tree
WO2001093714A1 *Jun 7, 2001Dec 13, 2001Nord Robert ECombined two-shoe tree and organizer
Classifications
U.S. Classification12/115.2
International ClassificationA43D3/00, A43D3/08
Cooperative ClassificationA43D3/08
European ClassificationA43D3/08