US 3926383 A
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United States Patent 1191 1111 3,926,383 McConnell Dec. 16, 1975 WATER SKI ROPE HOLDER 3,498,563 3/1970 Palmlel'l 242/86.5 A Inventor: Vince McConnell 5 O 3,831,545 8/1974 Cam 242/865 A Lincoln, Nebr. 68510 Primary Examiner--Edward J. McCarthy  Flled: 1974 Attorney, Agent, or Firm--Cushman, Darby & 211 Appl. No.: 528,580 Cushman 52 US. Cl 242/85.1; 24/115 J; 114/235 ws;  ABSTRACT 2 242/865 A A water ski tow rope holder with a base member at-  Int. Cl. B65H 75/36 tachable on one side to a boat and decreasing in cross  new of Search 242/851 section from that side toward the opposite, a pair of 242/54 R; 114/235 ws; 24/115 14 115 K rope retainers attached to and extending outward from the opposite side, one being pivotably attached  References Cted to permit placing and removing a rope coil therefrom UNITED STATES PATENTS and a pair of clips mounted on the base member for 89,5i4 4/1869 Stevens 24/115 J releawlflly holding a tow 3,147,935 9/1964 Wilson 242/865 A 3,195,831 7/1965 Shriner 242/865 A 6 Clam, 3 Drawmg Flgul'es Imam-1 all Illlllll US. Patent Dec. 16, 1975 WATER SKI ROPE HOLDER I BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART AND}.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION I The invention relates to a unique holder which isparticularly satisfactory for holding a water ski tow rope .or the like in place on a boat. r 2
Water skiing is one of the most popular sports in the United States. The water skier is towed behind a boat by means of a ski rope attached to the boat at one end and having one or more bars or handles at the other end which are grasped by the skier. This tow rope is typically stored on board the boat where it inevitably tangles and snarls as objects are thrown on the rope where it lies on the bottom of the boat or individuals inadvertently step through the rope or kick it while not in use. Accordingly, the ski rope usually must be unsnarled each time before use. Not only is this a timeconsuming nuisance, but may in fact create a dangerous situation in a congested sking area where a skier is waiting in the water for a snarled tow rope.
A variety of devices have been developed in the past for providing pay-out retrival and storage function for ski tow ropes. The patents to Pickrell, US. Pat. No. 3,813,055, and Sklenar, US. Pat. No. 3,028,829, show devices of this general type.
The present invention relates to a simple, improved ski tow rope holder adapted to be fixedly mounted to the boat, preferably on the inside top edge of the boat in a horizontal position near the rear thereof and onto which the tow rope can be quickly and easily wound as it is retrived from the water or after it has been coiled.
The holder comprises a base member which gradually decreases in surface area from a first side which is attached to the boat to a second flat side which is opposied thereto. First and second rope retainer members are pivotably attached to this second side to extend outward in opposite directions from their respective points of attachment. One of the rope retainer members is preferably fixedly attached to the base member while the other member is pivotably attached. The rope can be wound about the base member and held in place by the rope retainer members as they extend in opposite directions. To remove the rope, the pivotably mounted rope retainer member can easily be pivoted upward to release the rope which can be removed as an unsnarled coil. Structure is preferably provided in conjunction with the pivotable member for temporarily holding it in a latching position extending opposite to the other retainer member to prevent the rope from inadvertently slipping off the holder.
Many other objects and purposes of the invention will become clear from the following detailed description of the drawings.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 shows a top view of the holder of this invention in place on a boat with the tow rope and holder illustrated in an aligned position on the holder.
FIG. 2 shows a plan view of the holder of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 shows an end view of the holder of FIGS. 1 and 2.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS Reference is now made to FIGS. 1-3 which illustrate a first embodiment of the unique water ski tow rope holder of this invention. As discussed briefly above, the
holder includes a base member. 20 which may be formed of molded plastic or fiberglass. A pair of rope retainer members 22 and 24 are attached to one. side 26 ofthe base member 20. The opposite side 28 of the base member20prefe rably is attached directly to a boat. The ideal location for attachment is a horizontal position near therear of the" boat on either the port or starboardside. However, the holder will work nearly as well and in any other positionbr location. More than one holder can be r'nounted at separate locations on the boat and can be used as rope storage when trailing a boat out of the water. I 4
The base member 20 decreases in cross-section between sides 28 and 26 to form an area in which tow rope can be coiled as shownin phantom lines in the drawings.
One of the retainer members is preferably fixedly attached to side 26 of member 20 and the rope retainer members 22 and 24 preferably extend as illustrated in opposite directions when they are in their rope retaining positions. In the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. l3, rope retainer member 22 is fixedly attached to side 26 of member 20 by means of a bolt 30 which extends through a hole through retainer member 22 into a threaded insert 32 in member 20. Member 20 preferably includes a bore 36 which extends therethrough between surfaces 26 and 28 and through which a bolt 38 extends into the part of the boat 40 to which the holder is to be attached. The head of bolt 38 also holds retainer member 22 firmly against surface 26 of member 20.
Retainer member 24, however, is pivotably attached to surface 26 so as to be moveable between a position in which the coiled tow rope can be slipped onto or off of the holder and a position in which is held firmly in place. Threaded stud 44 extends through bore 46 of holder 20 and is similar bolted onto a part of boat 40. A conventional wing nut 50 is attached to the end of bolt 46 which extends beyond surface 26. Further, retainer member 24 is provided with a slot 26 which engages the portion of stud 44 between wing nut 50 and surface 26. Wing nut 50 can be easily lossened or tighten by hand to permit the retainer member 24 to be pivoted as illustrated in FIG. 2 to remove or place a tow rope coil onto the holder. Retainer member 24 pivots about a pivot point provided by nut 56 which extends through the hole 58 in retainer member 24.
Two clips 60 and 62 are preferably mounted on the top of the holder as illustrated in FIGS. 2 and 3, for retaining the tow rope bar and are preferably formed of high tension spring steel. So positioned, the tow bar will be out of the way of snagging the rope as it is brought in and the tow bar can be placed immediately on the clips when it is retrieved. The clips are preferably spaced about 9" apart so that they can be used as a holder for both single and double hand ski tow ropes. The retainer members 22 and 24 are preferably formed of rubber coated strap metal.
Many changes and modifications in the above described embodiment of the invention can, of course, be carried out without departing from the scope of the invention. Accordingly that scope is intended to be limited only by the scope of the appended claims.
What is claimed is:
1. A water ski tow rope holder comprising:
a base member having a cross-sectional area which decreases from a first side adapted for attachment to a boat to a second side,
3. A holder as in claim 1 wherein the other rope retainer member is fixedly attached to said second side and said rope retainer members extend outwardly in opposite directions when said one retainer member is held in said fixed position.
4. A holder as in claim 1 second side is flat and oval shaped.
5. A holder as in claim 1 wherein said clip means includes first and second clip member fixedly attached to said base member at separated locations.
6. A holder as in claim 1 wherein said retainer member are elongated metal strips.