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Publication numberUS3905613 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 16, 1975
Filing dateMar 14, 1974
Priority dateMar 14, 1974
Also published asCA1023775A, CA1023775A1, DE2511332A1
Publication numberUS 3905613 A, US 3905613A, US-A-3905613, US3905613 A, US3905613A
InventorsDavid J Romeo
Original AssigneeCalspan Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Ski binding
US 3905613 A
Abstract
An adjustably biased ski binding which provides a combination of safety features which permit the release of the ski in the pitch and yaw planes at moments less than those ordinarily resulting in injury. The binding permits easy, step-in entry and allows exit by either a pivoting or twisting movement.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States ate 1 Romeo [451 Sept. 16, 1975 SKI BINDING [75] Inventor: David J. Romeo, Golden, NY. [73] Assignee: Calspan Corporation, Buffalo, NY.

[22] Filed: Mar. 14, 1974 [21] App]. No.: 451,323

[52] US. Cl 280/l1.35 R [51] Int. Cl. A63C 9/08 [58] Field ofSearch 280/11.35 T, 11.35 H,

280/11.35 D, 11.35 A, 11.35 E, 11.35 Y, 280/11.35 C, 11.35 R

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 3,361,434 l/1968 Scheib 280/11.35 S 3,514,119 5/1970 Sutherland 280/11.35 C 3,608,919 9/1971 Lollmann et a] 280/] 1.35 R

6/1972 Lawrence 280/l1.35 T 12/1973 Betschan, Jr. 280/11.35 R

FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 1,808,712 6/1970 Germany 280/11.35 T

Primary Examiner-David Schonberg Assistant Examiner-Milton L. Smith Attorney, Agent, or FirmAllen J. Jaffe ABSTRACT An adjustably biased ski binding which provides a combination of safety features which permit the release of the ski in the pitch and yaw planes at moments less than those ordinarily resulting in injury, The binding permits easy, step-in entry and allows exit by either a pivoting or twisting movement.

19 Claims, 12 Drawing Figures PATENTEU SEP 1 6 I975 SHZET 2 BF 5 PATENTEU SEP 1 6 I975 FIG.|2

SKI BINDING The increased popularity of skiing has resulted in an overall increase in skiing injuries. Since most skiing injuries stem from a twisting action applied to the skiers leg during falls, many ski bindings have been developed in an effort to reduce serious injuries by improving binding release. Currently, the Americal Society for Testing Materials has a committee dealing with standards for the safety certification of ski bindings in an effort to establish a basis for the comparison of ski bindings.

Major criteria for a safer ski binding include the following:

1. The ski binding should be simple to install and should have a definitive adjustment scale based upon the bending and twisting loads that might be applied. It should be as free as possible from errors that might be made in improper installation or adjustment, such as the jamming or hanging up of the boot on parts of the binding.

2. The ski binding should have features to compensate for the inexperience of novice skiers with respect to both their lack of skiing ability and their lack of familiarity with the equipment.

3. The binding should not release under shortduration, impulsive loads which occur during controlled, but sometimes excessively hard, ski maneuvers. Or, more simply, the binding should have anti-shock features.

4. The binding release should be as independent as possible of the boot and ski shape, flexure and material.

5. Putting on and taking off the ski binding should cycle the release mechanism. Ideally, the binding should permit taking off by simply twisting the leg slowly without causing discomfort.

It is an object of this invention to provide a ski binding incorporating these criteria and thereby having an increased likelihood of release under injury producing stress conditions.

It is a further object to provide an adjustable degree of bias force for retaining the skis in order to accommodate different skier sizes and skill.

It is an additional object to provide a binding which permits easy entry and exit with no requirement of cocking and uncocking and which can be readily removed in the case of an injury.

It is a still further object to provide a binding whose center line of rotation in twist release is close to or cincident with the tibia such that the torque required to release the binding is independent of the point of application of lateral forces.

It is a still further object to provide a binding which secures the boot at the full width of the ski to provide a high degree of edge control.

It is an additional object to provide a binding which secures the boot in such a manner that the boot is not compressed between the toe and heel pieces during deep flexure of the ski whereby the required release is not prevented by jamming.

It is a still further object to provide a binding which secures the boot laterally under or close to the tibia such that steering or control forces applied by the skier do not tend to release or act to release the binding.

These objects, and others as will become apparent hereinafter, are accomplished by the present invention.

Basically the present invention provides a ski binding having means for securing the heel portion and the toe portion of a ski boot to a ski. The means for securing the heel portion include a boot-carried retention member which coacts with a yoke secured to the ski and the means for securing the toe portion includes a toe piece secured to the ski.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS For a fuller understanding of the present invention, reference should now be had to the following detailed description thereof taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is an isometric view of a ski binding in its operative condition;

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the yoke;

FIG. 3 is an isometric view of the toe pad;

FIG. 4 is a partially sectioned, exploded view of the toe piece;

FIG. 5 is a partially sectioned view through the heel retaining structure of the ski binding in its operative condition;

FIG. 6 is a view of the retainer for retaining the bootcarried retention member of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 is a partially sectioned view of a first modified retainer and boot-carried retention member;

FIG. 8 is a partially sectioned view of a second modified boot-carried retention member;

FIG. 9 is an exploded view of a first modified yoke;

FIG. 10 is an isometric view of a portion of a ski binding employing a second rm dified yoke and a first modified toe piece;

FIG. 11 is an exploded view of a second modified toe piece; and

FIG. 12 is a side view of a ski binding in its operative position.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIIVIENTS In FIG. 1, the numeral 10 generally designates a ski binding by which a ski boot 12 is secured to a ski 15. The toe portion of sole 13 of ski boot 12 is secured to the ski 15 by toe piece 16. The heel portion of the ski boot 12 is secured to the ski 15 by the coaction of a boot-carried retention member generally designated 18 with the yoke generally designated 19. A run-away strap 21 is provided to prevent loss of the ski after a binding release.

FIGS. 2-4, taken together, show all of the hardware of the ski binding 10 which is secured to the ski 15. Referring first to FIG. 2, the yoke 19 which includes a base plate 23, a trunnion member 26 and a cover plate 28 is secured to a ski by screws or other suitable means (not shown). Cover plate 28 has a flat surface 29 and a sloped surface 30 which form supporting edge 31. A recess 32 is located in cover plate 28 for receiving and positioning trunnion member 26 on fulcrum defining elevated portion 24 of base plate 23. Trunnion member 26 has upwardly extending arm portions 34 for receiving trunnion seats 35. Trunnion seats 35 have first and second relieved portions 36 and 37, respectively, and a cylindrical portion 39 having a groove 40 and a screwdriver or coin receiving slot 41. Cylindrical portion 39 is inserted through a bore 43 in arm portion 34 and is secured in place by a bowed E-ring 44 or other suitable spring type clip which is received in groove 40. A spacer member 46 is placed between arm portion 34 and either trunnion seat 35 or E-ring 44 to provide an adjustment to the binding. In order to properly orient relieved portions 36 and 37, a bore having portions 47a, 47b and 47c in members 46, 34 and 35, respectively, is provided for receiving removable pin 48. A bore 49 is provided in at least one of the arm portions 29 for attaching a run-away strap.

FIG. 3 illustrates a toe pad 50 for supporting the ball of the skiers foot and for providing a fulcrum and/or pivot point for entry, exit and release of the ski binding. Toe pad 50 is glued or otherwise suitable secured to the ski and is made of a material having suitable coefficient of friction properties. Depending upon the conditions of use, suitable material for toe pad 50 include Teflon and stainless steel.

Referring to FIG. 4, toe piece 16 includes a base plate 52 adapted to be secured to a ski and including tabs 53 and 54 having aligned bores 53a and 54a, respectively, therethrough. Toe clamp member 56 defines a chamber 57 including end walls 48 and 59 having aligned bores 58a and 59a respectively. When toe piece 16 is assembled, spring 60 and tab 54 are located in chamber 57 and threaded spring pin 61 passes serially through bores 53a and 58a, spring 60, bore 54a and is threaded into threaded bore 59a. Toe clamp member 56 further includes a slot 63 for receiving a rub strip 64 made of Teflon or some other suitable material and having a shallow V in edge 65 which engages sole 13 of boot 12. Bores 67 are provided in toe clamp member 56 to permit access to the screws securing base plate 52 to the ski. A recess 68 in the top of toe clamp member 56 is provided for actuation by the tip of a ski pole as will be explained in detail below.

As best shown in FIG. 5, the trunnion seats 35 of the yoke 19 each receive the semispherical head of a respective piston element 70 of the boot-carried retention member 18 in a recess located therein. Piston elements 70 are located in tubular member 71 which has crimped ends to keep the piston elements 70 located therein. Spring 73 biases the piston elements 70 outwardly and into engagement with the trunnion seats 35 in the operative position of the binding. The removable and replaceable boot-carried retention member 18, which is in the form of a plunger or detent, is held in place in the boot 12 by means of retaining rings 76 which are best shown in FIG. 6.

FIG. 7 illustrates a modified boot-carried retention member similar to that of FIG. and corresponding structure has been numbered 100 higher. Modified boot-carried retention member 118 includes a tubular member 171 having shoulders 173 which are engaged by spring clips 177 for retaining retention member 118 in boot 1 12. Retention member 118 is otherwise identical to retention member 18 in structure and function.

FIG. 8 illustrates a second modified boot-carried retention member whose structure has been numbered 200 higher than that of the corresponding structure of FIG. 5. Boot-carried retention member 218 includes a threaded shaft member 279 which is received in the ski boot 212 and extends outwardly therefrom. Ball members 270 are threaded into shaft member 279 and are received into sockets 280 which are spaced from boot 212 by spacers 282. Threaded shaft member 279 passes loosely through sockets 280 and spacers 282 so as to accommodate any irregularities as from the shape of the boot 212.

FIG. 9 illustrates a modified yoke whose structure has been numbered 100 higher than that of the corresponding structure of FIG. 2. The modified yoke 119 includes member 120 having a base portion 123 and a trunnion portion 126 which are connected by portions 124 which support trunnion portion 126 above base portion 123 and the underlying ski. Yoke 119 further includes a cover plate 128 having a supporting edge 131. Yoke 119 is otherwise similar to yoke 19 of FIG. 2 in structure and function.

FIG. 10 illustrates a ski binding employing a modified yoke and toe piece whose structure has been numbered 200 higher than that of the corresponding structure of FIGS. 2-4. Yoke 219 differs from yoke 19 of FIG. 2 in that cover plate 228 includes a portion 233 which functions in the manner of a shoehom when entering the ski binding. Portion 233 has apertures 249 therein for securing a run-away strap. Although portion 233 has been shown integral with cover plate 228, a separate member could be provided. Toe piece 216 differs from toe piece 16 of FIG. 4 in that base plate 252 has been extended and has toe pad 250 located thereon. Yoke 219 and toe piece 216 are otherwise similar to yoke 19 of FIG. 2 and toe piece 16 of FIG. 4 in structure and function.

FIG. 1 1 illustrates a second modified toe piece which is similar to toe piece 216 of FIG. 10 and structure has been labeled 100 higher than the corresponding structure of FIG. 10. The toe piece 316 and toe pad 350 coact to correct for bowleggedness or other anatomical characteristics of a skier which tend to inhibit proper edge control of the ski. Base 352 is canted to accommodate a bowlegged skier by correcting for his normal stance which would normally cause difiiculty in edge control.

FIG. 12 illustrates the support structure of the ski binding 10 of FIGS. 15. Ski boot 12 rests on supporting edge 31 of cover plate 28 and on toe pad 50. Ski boot 12 is held in position by the rub strip 64 of toe piece 16 which engages sole 13 and by the coaction of yoke 19 and boot-carried retention member 18.

OPERATION AS is best shown in FIG. 4, spring 60 acts against end wall 58 and tab 54 to bias toe clamp member 56, and thereby rub strip 64, rearwardly. Under normal skiing conditions, the upper surface of ski 15, upon which the binding 10 is located, may flex between a convex and a concave surface with resultant changes in the distance between the yoke 19 and toe piece 16. These changes in the distance between the yoke 19 and the toe piece 16 are accommodated by the movement of member 56 against the bias of spring 60.

Referring to FIGS. 5 and 12, entry to the ski binding of FIGS. 1-5 is achieved by inserting the toe portion of sole 13 beneath rub strip 64 and rolling the foot so that one of the piston elements is located in its corresponding trunnion seat 35. The other piston element 70 will be aligned with relieved portion 36 and entry can be completed by stepping down. Entry will inherently occur in this manner even if the skier steps down before one of the piston elements 70 is seated in its corresponding trunnion seat since entry of one piston element will occur before entry of the other piston element. Trunnion member 26 which is supported by fulcrum defining elevated portion 24 of base plate 23 can flex downwardly and outwardly to permit easy entry. Yokes 119 and 219 of FIGS. 9 and 10, respectively, would similarly function to permit entry. In addition, portion 233 of yoke 219 would function in the manner of a shoehorn in further acting to guide the bootcarried retention member into trunnion seats 235.

In exiting from the ski binding of FIGS. 1-5, a ski pole (not shown) may be inserted into recess 68 to force toe clamp member 56 forward to thereby free the toe portion of sole l3. As'best seen in FIG. 12, the toe portion of boot 12 may then be rotated upwardly causing the sole 13 of boot 12 to engage the rear portion of cover plate 28 which provides a fulcrum for pitch plane release upon continued upward movement of the toe portion of ski boot 12. Release takes place through flexure of trunnion member 26 and/or compression of the coating boot-carried retention member 18. Alternatively, with a properly biased boot-carried retention member 18 and a proper spacing of the trunnion seats 35, release may be had by twisting the ski boot 12 parallel to the plane of the ski.

Under skiing conditions, if the skier tends. to fall forward in the pitch plane, the toe pad 50 will serve as a fulcrum for the moment arm of the forces applied at the yoke 19 due to the falling motion of the skier. In the case of a fall in the yaw plane, the twisting forces applied to the skiers leg would be transmitted to the binding causing spring 60 to yield and the yielding of spring 74 and/or the flexure of trunnion member 26 to cause release of the binding. As noted above, spacer members 46 can be used to adjust the effective biasing force of spring 74 by placing none, one or bothof the spacer members 46 on the inside of trunnion member 26. Additionally, boot-carried retention member 18 may .be replaced with one having a different spring bias.

The modified yokes and toe pieces are compatible in all combinations employing the boot-carried retention members of FIGS. 5 and 7 and exit will be as described above. If, however, the boot-carried retention member 218 of FIG. 8 is employed, flexure of the trunnion member employed is necessary for exit as well as for entry. Where retention member 218 is used, the trunnion member must be suitably designed to act as the release spring as by the use of springier material and/or by the use of lighter stock.

If injury should occur without release having taken place, as best shown in FIGS. 2 and 5, pin 48 may be withdrawn from trunnion member 26. A screwdriver or coin may then be inserted into slot 41 and trunnion seat 35 rotated 180 to locate the relieved portion 37 such as to facilitate exit due to the greater depth of the relieved portion 37. Only one of the trunnion. seats 35 is shown as having a pin 48 with the other trunnion seat fixed as by a pin, not shown, but, if desired, both trunnion seats 35 may be adapted to be rotated to facilitate exit in the case of an injury.

Although a number of modifications of the toe piece, yoke and boot-carried retention member have been described, any combination of toe piece, yoke and boot carried retention member may be employed with the qualification that the material and/or dimensions of the yoke member may have to be modified to provide the required springiness necessary with the boot-carried retention member 218 of FIG. 8.

Although preferred embodiments of the present invention have been illustrated and described, other changes will occur to those skilled in the art. For example, the mechanical spring 74 may be replaced by a fluid spring, or by a damped spring which would be velocity sensitive to reduce the possibility of inadvertent release of the binding. It is therefore intended that the scope of the present invention is to be limited only by the scope of the appended claims.

I'I claim:

1. In combination, a ski boot, and step-in binding means for securing toe and heel portions of said boot to a ski, said step-in binding means comprising:

toe piece means adapted to be secured to a ski for engaging said toe portion of said ski boot;

yoke means adapted to be secured to a ski at a position beneath the heel portion of said ski boot and including a resiliently deformable trunnion portion having two upwardly extending arms, and two members defining facing seats which are supported by said arms; and

boot-carried retention means extending outwardly of said heel portion of said boot and adapted to engage said facing seats by causing the resilient deformation of said trunnion portion and to thereby permitstep-in entry of said binding means and releasibly securing said ski boot therein.

2. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein at least one of said members defining facing seats has a first relieved portion and a second, deeper, relieved portion spaced from said first relieved portion, and includes means for selectively positioning said first and second relieved portions.

3. .The combination as defined, in claim 1 wherein said binding means includes a toe pad located for supporting the toe portion of said boot.

4. The combination asdefined in claim 3 wherein said toe piece means includes a base plate and said toe pad is located on said base plate.

5. The combination as defined in claim 4 wherein said base plate is canted.

6. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said yoke means includes an upwardly extending member which serves to guide said boot into said binding means and includes means for attaching a run-away strap.

7. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said boot-carried retention means includes a tubular member containing two piston elements biased for engaging said facing seats, and means removable securing said tubular member in said boot.

8. The combination as defined in claim 7 wherein a spring movably biases said piston elements into engagement with said facing seats.

9. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said boot-carried retention means includes a pair of generally spherical members fixedly attached to a rod extending through said boot and which engage said facing seats.

10. The combination as defined in claim 9 wherein resilient deformation of said trunnion portion permits entry to and exit from said binding means.

11. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said yoke means includes a portion supporting said heel portion of said boot.

12. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said toe piece means includes means for guiding said ski boot into said binding means and for preventing upward release of said toe portion of said ski boot.

13. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein said yoke means includes means for mounting said trunnion portion such that less force is required to resiliently deform said trunnion portion for entry of said binding means than for release of said binding means.

14. The combination as defined in claim 1 wherein 15. In combination, a ski boot, and binding means for securing toe and heel portions of said boot to a ski, said binding means comprising:

toe piece means adapted to be secured to a ski for resiliently engaging said toe portion of said ski boot;

yoke means adapted to be secured to a ski and including a resiliently deformable trunnion portion having two arms, and two members defining facing seats which are supported by said arms, at least one of said members defining facing seats having a first relieved portion and a second, deeper, relieved portion spaced 180 from said first relieved portion, and including means for selectively positioning said first and second relieved portions; and

boot-carried retention means extending outwardly of said heel portion of said boot and adapted to engage said facing seats by causing the resilient deformation of said trunnion portion and to thereby permit step-in entry of said binding means.

16. In combination, a ski boot, and binding means for securing toe and heel portions of said boot to a ski, said binding means comprising:

seats which are supported by said arms and an upwardly extending member which serves to guide said boot into said binding means and including means for attaching a run-away strap; and

boot-carried retention means extending outwardly of said heel portion of said boot and adapted to engage said facing seats by causing the resilient deformation of said trunnion portion and to thereby permit step-in entry of said binding means.

17. In combination, a ski boot, and binding means for securing toe and heel portions of said boot to a ski, said binding means comprising:

toe piece means adapted to be secured to a ski for engaging said toe portion of said ski boot; yoke means adapted to be secured to a ski and including a resiliently deformable trunnion portion having two arms, and two members defining facing seats which are supported by said arms; and

boot-carried retention means extending outwardly of said heel portion of said boot and including a pair of generally spherical members fixedly attached to a rod extending through said boot and adapted to engage said facing seats by causing the resilient deformation of said trunnion portion and to thereby permit step-in entry of said binding means.

18. The combination as defined in claim 17 wherein resilient deformation of said trunnion portion permits entry to and exit from said binding means.

19. The combination as defined in claim 12 wherein said toe piece means includes means for resiliently engaging said toe portion of said ski boot.

UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE CERTIFICATE OF CORRECTION PATENT NO. 3, 905,613 DATED September 16, 1975 INVENTOR(S) I Da idJ. Romeo It is certified that error appears in the above-identified patent and that said Letters Patent are hereby corrected as shown below:

Column 7, lines 9 and 10 ca ncel "resiliently"; lines 28 and 29 cancel "resiliently".

Signed and Sealed this ninth Day 0; December 1975 '[SEAL] 8 Attest:

RUTH C. MASON C. MARSHALL DANN Arresting Office Commissioner ofPaIents and Trademarks

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Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4157191 *Nov 25, 1977Jun 5, 1979Ramer Paul CSki binding
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Classifications
U.S. Classification280/623, 280/613
International ClassificationA63C9/086, A63C9/085
Cooperative ClassificationA63C9/001, A63C9/0846, A63C9/08592, A63C9/084, A63C9/0848, A63C9/08507
European ClassificationA63C9/085A, A63C9/085P, A63C9/084P, A63C9/084H, A63C9/084