US 3876217 A
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United States Patent [1 1 Copier Apr. 8, 1975 1 1 TWIN-ROLLER SKATES ADJUSTABLE TO A SHOE  Inventor: Henri Copier, Villa Les Tilleuls 63.
Veyre, France  Filed: Aug. 20, 1973  Appl. No.: 389,868
Primary E.\'uminerLloyd L. King Assistant E.\'aminerMlChael Mar  ABSTRACT There is disclosed a twin-wheeled skate which. by its construction, is particularly adaptable for use on sloping and uneven grounds. For this purpose, it is made up ofa foot-rest base plate and of a front and of a rear wheel mounted for free rotation each at one end of the base plate and about rotation axes that lie above the plate, at least the front wheel being mounted for oscillation about an axis that lies forwardly with respect to the base plate. The oscillating axis intersects the general plane of the base plate whereby the front wheel may oscillate laterally with respect to the footrest base plate. The oscillation is produced by means of a U-shaped bracket having the ends of the branches secured to the base plate, the front wheel being mounted for rotation at the ends of a fork-like support lying within the bracket and mounted, at its tip, on the tip of the U-shaped bracket for rocking motion about the oscillation axis. The front wheel itself is mounted for free rotation at the ends of the fork-like support.
9 Claims, 9 Drawing Figures TWIN-ROLLER SKATES ADJUSTABLE TO A SHOE The present invention relates to improvements in twin-wheeled skates adaptable to special or ordinary shoes. These improvements aims at increasing the safety for the user when the skates are used on grassy. stony or, in preference. sloping grounds.
For such a use, it is necessarily obvious to exclude twin-roller skates whose rollers have too small a diameter, that is to say smaller than half a normal foot. Similarly. the invention relates only to apparatus whose wheel axles are located above the frame-plate which joins both wheel hubs together and acts as a bracket for the soles of shoes. This choice is peremptory due to the stability necessary for moving over any grounds.
Such skates are already known. Some makers. drawing their inspiration from small diameter twin-roller skates used on special running-track. have made a device which gives the forward wheel freedom of orientating itself, with respect to the frame-plate around a swivel which can be vertical or slightly inclined toward the front part of the skate. This free orientation (or oscillation) facilitates cornering. It is caused by the inclination of the user or by a rocking of the upper part of the body. The difficulties of this problem come from the fact that the mechanisms must remain reliable, simple and be near the tire covering the wheel, in spite of its size. According to a well known arrangement, the hub of the wheel is supported by several bars articulated to one another by hinges mounted on each side of the wheel. This device permits the wheel to pivot around a suitable imaginary axis. But the number of moving mechanical pieces made the system not very reliable, and expensive. All the known systems neglect braking when riding down bumpy grounds. On a track, a skid mounted as an annex ahead of the driving-wheel may be used. By lifting his heel, the user can make said skid rub on the track. Nothing like this is suitable for skates usable on all terrains.
The device, object of the present invention. avoids the above mentioned disadvantages. It facilitates both braking and cornering. One of the main results aimed at by this improved skate is to be able to brake and change direction with the same reflexes as those of a skier. Said braking is proportioned according to the user's skill; it may also adjusted by a special device. All these improvements result in a means allowing fast moving down hills whatever may be the condition and the eveness of the ground.
According to the invention braking or changing direction is obtained by contact of the pivoting (or oscil- Iating) wheel. in its extreme positions. on the inner faces of a special frame surrounding the wheel. in the manner of a bumper. Changes in direction are obtained by the inclination of the apparatus making the wheel turn toward the selected side. The user must use the lightening technique well known in snow-stiling. In use, the skates always remain parallel. On the frame, in its extreme front part, is mounted the articulation of the intermediate fork which the axle of the pivoting wheel bears.
The drawings, which illustrate an embodiment of the invention as a non restrictive example, show the general arrangement of the skate in FIG. 1, in elevation view. The other figures represent:
In FIG. 2, an upper view of same skate.
In FIG. 3, a left view of the skate on the oscillating wheel side.
In FIG. 4, a longitudinal section along AA of FIG. 6 the articulation device permitting the fork bearing the wheel to pivot.
In FIG. 5, a cross-section along BB of FIG. 4 of the same device showing the position of the pivoting wheel during a turn.
In FIG. 6, a cross section like FIG. 5, the pivoting wheel being in a normal position.
In FIG. 7, a side view of a wheel mounted according to a different embodiment. with provision for a user wanting to avoid or to proportion braking action while keeping the clearance of said wheel.
In FIG. 8, an upper view of the embodiment of FIG. 7.
In FIG. 9, a variant in the position of the fork articulation joint supporting the pivoting wheel.
As shown the twin-wheeled skate comprises. as extensions of a foot-rest base or frame plate 1, two U- shaped bracket-frames In (front) and 1b (rear) bearing the two wheels 2 and 3. Each frame In and lb is pinshaped and may be used as a bumper. The face F on which the sole of the shoe bears lies below the plane containing the wheel axles. It comprises the two adjustable fasteners 4 and 5 for the shoe. fasteners and shoe beingsimilar to those used for snow-skis. for example.
At least one of the wheels (frong wheel 3 for example as in FIG. 1) is mounted so as to pivot about a rod 6 whose axis is This rod extends in a journal 7 in a yoke 8, solid with the frame supporting at the front end. the wheel 10. There is formed. in the yoke 8, a cut-out 9 housing a ring 10 pivotable about and solid with fork 11a for supporting the wheel 3. This fork is U- shaped and bent from flat iron bar. Axis is parallel to the sides of this bar and lies close to the bend.
This articulation device is preferably located forwardly of the front wheel in the riding direction. FIG. 1 shows it to be roughly in the horizontal plane passing through the front axle and being substantially-vertical. FIG. 9 shows another arrangement capable of facilitating return of the wheel to its normal position. Axis .vx' is inclined backward, its intersection with the ground being clearly ahead of the wheel 3. Frame la is bent up accordingly.
Clearance of the wheel 3 by an angle a FIG. 5, around facilitates turning motion. It is obtained simply by changing the lateral tilt of the users body (swinging).
The tire of the pivoting wheel 3 along the wheel support la, at c or c (FIG. 5) allows, by this process, a braking action by merely tilting the users body. The users reflexes are then the same as those of skiers when the latter slaloms or makes a turn.
In order that this slowing down be more rational, without damaging, two small rubbing pads 14 may be mounted on the frame, being made ofa material having a high coefficient of friction. Pads 14 are located to face the rim (FIG. 6).
In order that the user may change direction without braking (contact at c and c or at 14) of the wheel, further adjustable stops 15 and 16 FIG. 8, (for example screw and bolt system) are secured on the bracket frame 1a; fork 11 in this case, being arranged to abut against the stops, thus restricting its clearance. Rubbing of tire or rim is then limited or avoided according to the degree of adjustment of the stops 15 or 16.
Accoding to a variant. both wheels (front and rear ones) of each apparatus may be mounted to oscillate. Wheel 2 is then carried by another fork identical to the first one. It is articulated at 12 or 13. for example (in dotted line on FIG. 1). This articulation is mounted on the rear part of the frame-plate 1. Wheel 2 then oscillates between two positions limited by the contact of the tire or of the rim on the inner face of the frame 16. (with or without interposition of a friction pad).. FIG. 1 does not show the pivoting fork but it is easy to understand how this variant may be achieved.
The invention is not to be restricted to the manner of making the different particularly indicated parts. On the contrary, it covers all possible variations. particularly for their shape. The articulation device of fork 11 may be different. provided axis possesses the same characteristics as those which are above indicated. The oscillation axis may have another inclination than the one shown in the different figures.
The device. object of the invention. may apply to sporting and entertaining equipment. Particularly, it may be used for skiers training during summer on grassy slopes.
1. Twin-wheeled skate especially adapted for use on uneven ground. comprising: a foot-rest base plate and a front wheel and a rear wheel mounted for free rotation each at one end of said base plate and about rotation axes lying above said base plate; means mounting said front wheel for oscillation thereof about an axis lying forwardly of said front wheel with respect to said base plate. said oscillation axis intersecting the general plane of said base plate whereby said front wheel may oscillate laterally with respect to said base plate; a U- shaped bracket extending from the forward end of said base plate with the ends of the branches of said bracket secured to said base plate; a fork-like support between the branches of said bracket and means mounting the tip of said support on the tip of said U-shaped bracket for rocking motion about said oscillation axis. and bearing means mounting said forward wheel for free rotation at the ends of said fork-like support; said tip of said U-shaped bracket being' located at substantially the same level as the rotation axis of said forward wheel and in the central longitudinal vertical plane of said base plate, said oscillation axis being vertical.
2. Skate as claimed in claim 1. wherein said oscillation axis is perpendicular to the general plane of said fork-like support, said support being narrower than said bracket whereby to allow oscillation thereof and oscillation of said forward wheel mounted for rotation thereof, said forward wheel coming to butt against the branches of said U-shaped bracket during its oscillation.
3. Skate as claimed in claim 2 wherein said oscillation axis lies in the central longitudinal vertical plane of said base plate.
4. Skate as claimed in claim 3, including braking pads secured to said branches of said bracket to smoothen the abutment of said forward wheel thereagainst.
5. Skate as claimed in claim 3. including adjustable stops on said branches of said bracket to control the magnitude of oscillation of said support and wheel.
6. Skate as claimed in claim 1. including means mounting the rearward wheel for oscillation about an axis lying forwardly of said rear wheel with respect to said base plate, said oscillation axis of said rear wheel intersecting the general plane of said base plate.
7. Skate as claimed in claim 6, wherein said rear wheel oscillation means comprises: a U-shaped bracket extending from one end of said base plate with the ends of the branches thereof secured to said base plate; a fork-like support within said bracket and means mounting the tip of said support on the tip ofsaid U-shaped bracket for rocking motion about said oscillation axis of said rear wheel. and bearing means mounting said rear wheel for free rotation at the ends of said fork-like support.
8. Skate as claimed in claim 7, wherein said rocking motion means for said rear wheel is a joint located at substantially the same level as the rotation axis of said rear wheel and in the longitudinal central vertical plane of said base plate. said oscillation axis being vertical.
9. A two-wheeled skate especially adapted for use on uneven ground. comprising:
a foot-support base plate having a wheel rotatably mounted at each end thereof. the rotation axes of said wheels being above said base plate;
a generally U-shaped bracket extending from at least one end of said base plate with the ends of the legs thereof secured to said base plate;
a generally U-shaped support between the legs of said bracket with the bight portion of said U-shaped support pivotally mounted on the bight portion of said bracket about a generally upright axis; and
one of said wheels beingjournalled on an axis extending between the legs of said U-shaped support. said wheel being between the legs of said bracket and being swingable, about said upright axis, into braking engagement with either leg of said bracket.
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