US 3889625 A
A connection for securing the control cable of a remotely controlled electric trolling motor to the drive wheel of the remote control unit. A connection post is pivotally mounted offset from the pivot axis of the wheel and is equipped with a radial slot and an axial bore for receiving the L-shaped end of the control cable. A pin transacting the radial slot above the cable securely retains the cable end in the slot and bore.
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Roller et al.
1 1 CONTROL CABLE CONNECTION FOR AN ELECTRIC TROLLING MOTOR  Inventors: William G. Roller, Purdy, Mo.;
Emery L. West, Oklahoma City,
 Assignee: William G. Roller, Purdy, M0.
 Filed: Oct. 1, 1973 21 Appl. No.: 402,289
 US. Cl 115/18 E; 74/501 R; 114/153  Int. Cl B63h 21/26  Field of Search ..115/18 E, 18 A, 18 R; 114/144 R, 144 A, 153; 74/484, 487, 489,
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Yarbrough 115/18 R June 17, 1975 5/1966 Fernberg 74/501 R 8/1971 Harris 115/18 E Primary ExaminerTrygve M. Blix Assistant Examiner-Charles E. Frankfort Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Lowe, Kokjer, Kircher, Wharton & Bowman  ABSTRACT A connection for securing the control cable of a remotely controlled electric trolling motor to the drive wheel of the remote control unit. A connection post is pivotally mounted offset from the pivot axis of the wheel and is equipped with a radial slot and an axial bore for receiving the L-shaped end of the control cable. A pin transacting the radial slot above the cable securely retains the cable end in the slot and bore.
4 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures CONTROL CABLE CONNECTION FOR AN ELECTRIC TROLLING MOTOR BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to a connection for the control cable of an electric trolling motor of the remote control type. More particularly, the invention relates to a method and apparatus for securely connecting the remote control cable to the driving wheel that is rotated by the cable to change the direction of travel of the boat.
In recent years. fishermen have come to rely on an electric outboard motor, generally known as trolling motor," for boating noiselessly through water without alarming wary fish. Power for such motors is commonly supplied by a direct current voltage source, such as a wet cell DC battery, carried aboard the boat.
Electric trolling motors of this type characteristically fall into one of two catagoricsa hand operated model and a remote control model. Each type of trolling motor includes an elongate shaft having a watertight DC motor equipped with a propeller on the work shaft. Electrical leads from the motor extend up through'thc elongate shaft and are ultimately connected to the necessary switching mechanism to control on-off operation and/or variable speed control of the motor. In the hand operated model, directional control is accomplished by rotatably turning a hand lever attached to the top of the elongate shaft. The second type of trolling motor, to which this invention particularly relates, is commonly referred to as a remote control or foot operated trolling motor and enables the fisherman to have free use of his hands since directional control of the motor as well as on-off operation and/or variable speed control is accomplished by the foot acting on a pedal lever which has the necessary switch and any speed control associated therewith.
Directional control for a remote control trolling motor is conventionally accomplished by extending or retracting a drive cable connected to a centrally pivoted pedal lever. Such action is achieved when the operator alternately depresses the upper portion of the pedal as with the toe of the foot or depresses the lower portion of the pedal as with the heel'of the foot. The opposite end of the control cable is connected to a drive wheel or drum which in turn is geared or otherwise coupled to the elongate shaft of the trolling motor. Extension or retraction of the control cable thu's rotatably moves the drive wheel and such rotation is imparted to the elongate shaft to change the direction of the propulsion unit in the water. With this means of control, it is desirable that the drive wheel be larger in diameter than the elongate shaft so that a small angular movement of the drive wheel causes a much larger angular movement of the elongate shaft.
Heretofore, the control cable wire has typically been connected to the drive wheel by extending it straight through a connection post and utilizing a set screw to hold it in place in the connector. This connection method has proven highly unsatisfactory. since vibration and wear after prolonged use causes the set screw to loosen and the secured parts frequently slip from operative engagement with one another. This slippage has Consequently, there is-need in the field of remote control electric trolling motor for a method of securely and permanently attaching the control cable to on the drive wheel. Fulfilling this need is a primary goal of this invention.
More specifically, an object of this invention is to provide, in a remote control type of electric trolling motor, a method and apparatus for assuring that the control cable does notslip from operative engagement with the drive wheel of the remote control unit and for assuring trouble free operation over the effective life of the trolling motor.
Another object of the invention is to provide, in a remote control type of electric trolling motor, an uncomplicated connection between the control cable and the drive wheel of the remote control unit which is quickly assembled.
A further objeect of the invention is to provide, in a remote control type of electric trolling motor, a connection between the control cable and the driving wheel of the remote control unit that is both economical to produce'and easy to assemble.
Other and further objects of the invention, together with the features of noyeltyappurtenant thereto, will appear in the course of thefollowing description of the drawing. Mi
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the accompanying drawing, which forms a part of the specification and is to be read in conjunction therewith, and in which like reference numerals are employed to indicate like parts in the various views:
FIG. I is a perspective view of a remote control type of electric trolling motor installed on the bow ofa boat;
FIG. 2 is a top plan viewof the directional control housing with a portion broken away to better illustrate the details of construction;
FIG. 3 is a side sectional view of the directional control housing shown in FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary, partially sectional view of the wheel and control cable connection shown in FIGS. 2 and 3; and
FIG. 5 is a fragmentary, bottom plan view of the connection taken along line 5'5 of FIG. 4 in the direction of the arrows.
Referring to the drawing in greater detail, FIG. 1 illustrates a typical electric trolling motor, generally designated by the numeral 10, mounted on the bow of a boat 11 by means of a bracket assembly 12. The trolling motor 10 includes an upper housing 10a having electrical leads 10b connected to the on-off switch and/or motor variable speed control located on a foot operated pedal mechanism 13. Electrical leads lOe from such switching are connected to a suitable voltage source 10f. such as a wet cell DC battery. The propulsion unit 10d contains an electric motor (not shown) which propels the boat through the water. The directional control housing 14 receives and rotates an elongate shaft extending from the upper housing 100 to the propulsion unit 10d mounted on the lower end thereof, such rotation varying. the direction of travel of the boat 11.
As shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the directional control .housing 14 includes a housing 15 and a housing body .16, which are connected together by means of screws .17 tohouse the operating elements of the unit. Housing cover 15 is provided with a bore 18 for rotatably receiving a sleeve 19. An seating flange a contains a bearing 20, which seats on a shoulder 15b to rotatably support sleeve 19. Sleeve 19 is provided with an enlarged integral collar 190 which contacts bearing 20 to limit the downward movement of the sleeve. Housing body 16 likewise contains a bore 21 and a seating flange 16a. Another bearing (not shown) similar to bearing 20 seats within flange 16a on shoulder 16b and is retained therein by a retaining collar (not shown), the retaining collar threadably engaging the threads 23 of the lower portion of the sleeve 19. A set screw locks the retaining collar in position to limit the upward movement of sleeve 19. Elongate shaft 100 fits slidably through sleeve 19, and propulsion unit 10d may be fixed at any desired depth by tightening a lock screw (not shown but receivedthrough hole 22 in integral collar 19a) into engagement with shaft 100. The lock screw also assures that shaft 10c will rotate with the sleeve 19.
Rotatably attached to housing cover 15 by means of a shoulder bolt is a drive wheel25, the bolt extending centrally through wheel 25 into threading engagement with housing cover 15. The bolt has a bushing or bearing surface to allow the rotation of wheel 25 about it, and a cap nut 26 is threaded onto the exposed end of the bolt. The ends ofa driving cable 27 are formed into loops 27a and secured in that shape by cable clamps 28. The two loops 27a are attached to the periphery of wheel 25 at different points by sets of screws 29 and lock washers 30. Cable 27 is tautly wrapped around sleeve 19 and a portion of it is secured (as by soldering) to a cable lock 31, a portion of which enters an aperture in sleeve 19 to securely affix cable lock 31 on the periphery of sleeve 19. Cable 27 thus causes sleeve 19 (and elongate shaft 10c held therein) to rotate in response to the rotation of wheel 25.
The remote control rotation of wheel 25 is effected by a control cable 32 comprising (FIG. 2) a cable shield or cover 32a (preferably constructed of a flexible synthetic material) and a cable wire 32b which extends centrally through cable cover 32a and is longitudinally movable therewithin. Formed integrally with housing body 16 is an apertured projection 34. The end of cable cover 32a is secured within a hollow sleeve 35, and sleeve 35 is threaded into the bore of projection 34 and retained therein by a pair of set screws 33. The end 32c of cable wire 32b extends through the aperture of projection 34 and into-the control housing 14 and is bent into an L-shape foiming approximately a angle (FIG. 4) with respect to the remainder of cable' wire 32b.
Pivotally mounted to wheel 25 at a position offset from the wheels axis of rotation is cable connection post 36. Connection 36 comprises a bulbous head 36a, a shank 36b pivotally received through a hole in the drive wheel 25, and a lock nut 360 which seats in a depression 37 on the opposite face of wheel 25 to pivotally secure the cable connection 36 to the wheel. Head 36a contains a channel or slot 36d which is cut transversely along a diameter of head 36a and which extends vertically through a major portion of head 36a. Slot 36a is of sufficient width to receive the diameter of the cable wire 32b. A small bore 36e (slightly larger than the diameter of cable wire 32b and slightly deeper than the length of bent end 320) extends centrally from the inward extremity of slot 36d into shank 36h on the axis thereof to receive the bent end 324' of the cable wire.
The portion of cable wire 32 b adjacent bent end 320 is disposed in the bottom of slot 36d with bent end 320 extending into bore 36c, and the cable Wire is permanently but removably connected to cable post 36 by a cotter pin 37 overlying the cable wire 32b at a position such that the distance between the top of the wire 32b (when same is disposed in the bottom of the slot 36d) and the pin 37 is less than the length of the bent end 320. The cotter pin 37 is received in holes through the head 36 to transect slot 36d at a position outwardly offset from bore 36e to prevent removal of the cable wire from engagement with cable post 36 when the pin 37 is thus inserted.
The opposite end of cable wire 32b is conventionally connected to the rear portion of the pivotal pedal 13 located within the boat 11, and the end of cable cover 32a is secured to fixed block 38 to assure that it will remain stationary as pedal 13 pivots. Downward pivoting of rear pedal portion 13a (as is effected by the operator depressing his heel thereupon) pushes cable wire 32b forwardly. which causes wheel 25, sleeve 19, and shaft 100 to rotate counterclockwise as viewed in FIG. 2, thereby steering the boat 11 to the left. Conversely, upward pivoting of lever portion 13a (as is effected by the operator depressing his toe on forward pedal portion 13b) draws cable wire 32b rearwardly, which causes shaft 10(- to rotate clockwise as viewed in FIG. 2, thereby steering the boat 11 to the right.
Bosses 38 and 39, which are integral with the interior face of housing body 16 positively limit the extent to which wheel 25 can be rotated by engaging cable connection head 36a when the limiting position is reached. It can be seen that the maximum angle through which wheel 25 may be rotated is approximately which, because of the larger diameter of wheel 25 in relation to the sleeve 19, imparts at least 360 of rotation to the elongate shaft 10c. It should be noted that cable wire 32b is strong and rather rigid wire but is flexible enough to bend slightly within housing 14, such flexibility permitting its end to move from alignement with the aperture through which it enters housing 14 as it rotates wheel 25.
From the foregoing. it will be seen that this invention is one well adapted to attain all the ends and objects hereinabove set forth together with other advantages which are obvious and which are inherent to the structure.
It will be understood that certain features and subcombinations are of utility and may be employed without reference to other features'and subcombinations. This, is contemplated by and is within the scope of the claims.
Since many possible embodiments may be made of the invention without departing from the scope thereof, it is to be understood that all matter herein set forth or shown in the accompanying drawings is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
Having thus described our invention, we claim:
1. In a remote control unit for directionally controlling an electric trolling motor having an elongate shaft with a water submergible propulsion unit on the lower end thereof, the combination comprising:
a housing equipped with a rotatable sleeve which receives and fixedly retains the elongate shaft of the trolling motor to correspondingly rotate said shaft with said sleeve;
a wheel member pivotally mounted within said housing and being larger in diameter than said sleeve;
linkage means interconnecting said wheel member and said sleeve to impart rotational movement of said wheel member to said sleeve;
a retractable and extendable control wire partially disposed within said housing and having a bent end to form substantially an L-shaped portion on the end of said wire;
a post-like connector pivotally installed on said wheel member outwardly from the axis of rotation thereof, said connector having a vertical slot and a bore therein to receive the end portion of said control wire with said bent end disposed within said bore and'the portion of control wire immediately adjacent said bent end disposed within said slot; and
a pin member transversely disposed within said slot and overlying said control wire to permanently but removably secure connection of said wire to said connector.
2. The combination as in claim 1, said bore of said connector being slightly deeper than the length of said bent end of the control wire and being slightly larger in diameter than said control wire.
3. The combination as in claim 1, said bore being axially disposed in said connector and said pin member being offset from the axis of said connector.
4. The combination as in claim 1, said pin member positioned such that the distance between the top of the control wire and the pin is less than the distance the bent end of the control wire penetrates said bore.