Devices for braking loose skis
United States Patent 3909024

The present invention relates to a braking device for mounting on a ski and intended to ensure the braking and stopping of skis detached from the wearer's boots and preventing said skis from travelling loose down the ski tracks. The device comprises at least one braking blade mounted movably between two positions with respect to said ski and subjected to the action of control means adapted to move said blade from a braking position to a skiing position, said control means comprising in particular a fixing device with a retaining spring, adapted to slide longitudinally by the action of engaging or disengaging a boot from the ski so as to actuate said blade.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
Filing Date:
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63C7/10; (IPC1-7): A63C7/10
Field of Search:
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US Patent References:
3785663BRAKING DEVICE FOR A SKI1974-01-15Speildiener et al.
2844380Climbing and braking device for skis1958-07-22Tribelhorn

Primary Examiner:
Schonberg, David
Assistant Examiner:
Mitchell, David M.
What I claim is

1. A braking device for a ski controlled by the disengagement of a ski boot from a releasable safety binding device mounted on said ski, comprising:

2. In combination with a releasable safety binding for ski boot on a ski, a braking device for ski, said safety binding comprising:

3. A combination as defined in claim 2 wherein:

4. A combination as defined in claim 2 wherein:

5. A braking device as defined in claim 2 wherein the connecting means comprises a rod secured to said longitudinal sliding means and disposed in the longitudinal axis of the ski.

6. A braking device as defined in claim 5 wherein said rod comprises means for longitudinally adjusting the length of the rod.

7. A braking device as defined in claim 2 wherein:

8. A braking device as defined in claim 2 wherein,

9. A braking device as defined in claim 8, wherein

10. A braking device as defined in claim 9 wherein,

11. A braking device as defined in claim 10 wherein,

12. A braking device as claimed in claim 7 wherein,

13. A braking device as defined in claim 12 wherein,

14. A braking device as defined in claim 13 wherein,

15. A braking device as defined in claim 2 wherein,

16. A braking device as defined in claim 15, wherein said flexible means is elastic whereby, during the clamping operation of said ski boot and corresponding movement of said longitudinal sliding means, said flexible means flexes causing said blade into said skiing position and whereby, during the release operation of said ski boot, said flexible means return to a neutral position moving said blade into said braking position.

17. A braking device as defined in claim 16 wherein, said flexible means is a spring blade fixed to the ski at one end thereof and fixed to said braking blade at the other end thereof.

The present invention relates to a device intended to ensure the braking and stopping of a ski when this latter becomes accidentally detached from the boot.

It is known that in order to prevent a ski from travelling down a track after having become detached from the boot, for example in consequence of a fall which has caused the opening of the safety fixing device, the ski is connected to the boot by a thin strap, or alternatively it is fitted with a braking device intended to be automatically brought into action when the boot and the ski part company.

The known braking devices comprise a braking member associated with an element forming a pedal which is located under the sole of the boot and which lifts when the boot moves away from the ski, this lifting causing the actuation of the braking device which digs into the snow. This braking member is generally constituted by a pallet forming a spade. As in most cases the pedal also serves for automatically putting the brake out of use when putting the boot in place in the fixing device, it must have a shape and occupy a position which are not always compatible with all types of fixing device. In addition, as this pedal is located between the ski and the boot, it is liable to form a troublesome extra thickness or to interfere with the wedges or anti-friction devices already existing in the ski.

The invention has for its object a braking device similar to those of the type described above, but avoiding the provision on a ski of a pedal intended to set the device, such a setting operation involving a movement of a conventional pallet or blade from the braking position to the skiing position of the said blade.

According to the invention, the control means ensuring such a displacement setting of the blade comprise a system intended to slide longitudinally with respect to the ski, under the effect of engagement or disengagement of a boot on the ski. The setting of the device is preferably effected against the action of an elastic member which is extended during the disengagement of the boot.

A device of this kind may advantageously be situated behind or in front of the boot fixing means traditionally provided on such a ski, and it will be clear that the part of this latter on which the boot sole is applied is then completely free.

According to a particular feature of the invention, a device of this kind thus situated is advantageously applicable to a ski fitted with a conventional heel with springs against backward movement.

In such a case, it is the longitudinal sliding movement of the heel fitting which controls, when putting on the skis, the tilting movement of the blade from the braking position to the skiing position and conversely when removing the skis.

The device according to the invention makes it possible to utilize blades of various types, in which the movement from the braking position to the inactive position is effected either by pivotal action about a material axis, all by pivoting about a virtual axis or in any other appropriate manner.

In the case in which there is employed a blade articulated on a material axis, this latter may be arranged:

either transversely with respect to the ski, the blade comprising at least one wing arranged laterally with respect to the ski;

or preferably radially on a pivotal axis mounted perpendicularly on the upper face of the ski.

In the second case, the blade may be fixed for example on the end of a spring blade fixed in turn on the ski, this spring blade being subjected to the action of the sliding control means.

It will be understood that such alternative forms are relatively simple to manufacture, and it is clear that their use may ensure good conditions of skiing and braking.

Other characteristic features and advantages of the invention will be brought out in the description which follows below with reference to the accompanying drawings, the said description and drawings being given only by way of examples and without any limitation.

In the drawings:

FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of a first form of embodiment of a device according to the invention;

FIGS. 2a, 2b represent respectively, in a diagrammatic manner, in side elevation, the device of FIG. 1 in the skiing position and in the braking position;

FIG. 2c shows diagrammatically in transverse elevation, the device of FIG. 1 in the braking position;

FIG. 3 shows in perspective, a second form of construction of the device shown in FIG. 1;

FIGS. 4a, 4b are diagrams concerning the positions of braking and skiing of the device shown in FIG. 3;

FIGS. 5a, 5b are diagrams similar to those of FIGS. 4a, 4b, relating to an alternative form of the device shown in FIG. 3;

FIG. 6 is another form of embodiment of the device of the invention, applied to the case in which the blade is associated with a spring blade; and

FIG. 7 is an alternative form of FIG. 6.

In FIGS. 1 and 2, there can be seen an element 1 comprising two arms 1a, 1b of the same length, forming a "U" lying flat, the arm 1a being fixed longitudinally on a ski shown partly broken away.

The arm 1a may be fixed on the ski by screws, not shown in the drawing. The width of the corresponding portion at the bottom of the "U" of this element 1 is substantially equal to that of the ski 2.

A groove with a dove-tail profile 1r is arranged longitudinally in the central portion of each arm 1a, 1b, while being open on the internal face of this arm of the "U" and another element 3 is engaged between these two arms 1a, 1b in order to form a slide.

This slide 3 has the general shape of a rectangular parallelepiped, in which the thickness e is appropriate to the distance formed between the internal faces of the arms 1a, 1b and its faces in contact with the arms 1a, 1b each comprise a rib similar to the ribs 1r. These ribs are respectively engaged in these grooves so as to permit longitudinal sliding, and the length of the slide 3 is appropriate to the length of the arms 1a, 1b so as to permit this sliding.

It will be observed that the width 1 of the slide is smaller than that of the arm 1b and that the arm 1a has two lateral notches 1e, the width of which corresponds practically to half the difference between the widths of the slide 3 and the arm 1b.

A pin 4 is mounted transversely on the slide 3 and is thus arranged parallel to the upper face of the ski 2. Two arms 5a, 5b are freely mounted in a suitable manner, respectively on the end portions of the pin 4, and are located laterally on the sides of the ski 2. The portion forming the hub of each arm 5 is in fact provided with a shoulder 5e, the dimensions of which are appropriate to the thickness and to the width of a notch 1e so as to be able to pass into this latter when the slide is located between the end portions of the arms 1a, 1b (see FIG. 2b).

Finally, the free extremity of each of these arms is arranged with the form of a gouge so as to be able to penetrate easily into a layer of snow.

In addition, a rod 6 is fixed longitudinally by one of its ends on the front face of the slide 3 by means of a threaded end of this rod 6 engaging in a threaded hole in the slide 3.

The other end of the rod 6 (see FIGS. 1, 2a and 2b) is coupled by means of a sleeve 6m to the moving portion 7 of a safety fixing device with back springs also mounted on the ski 2. Such a back spring may be achieved, as illustrated in FIGS. 2a and 2b, by a spring 5 connected between the moving portion 7 and the ski 2; one example of such spring construction may be found described in U.S. Ser. No. 342,468 filed Mar. 19, 1973 now U.S. Pat. No. 3,814,455. This sleeve comprising two threaded portions of opposite directions from each other so as to permit, in known manner, an adjustment of the distance from this moving portion 7 to the slide 3. Although in the example shown it Has been assumed that the portion 7 belonged to a heel portion, it will be understood that it could refer to a front stop.

It will be recalled that a heel portion of this kind comprises fixing means for the rear portion of a boot sole and that these fixing means are arranged on a portion 7 intended to move backwards (arrow f1) against the action of retaining springs when a boot is engaged in this heel portion.

When the heel portion is at rest (see FIG. 2b), the slide 3 is located between the extremities of the arms 1a, 1b and the shoulders of the arms 5a, 5b are arranged in their notches 1e of the arm 1a. Springs (not shown) may be mounted between the slide 3 and its shoulders 5e so as to return these arms towards their braking position.

When a boot is engaged between a front stop and the heel fitting mounted on the ski 2, the portion 7 moves back (arrow f1), pushing back the slide 3 towards the bottom of the "U". During the course of this sliding movement, the rear transverse faces of the shoulders 5e are supported on the transverse edges 1t of the notches 1e so as to cause a pivotal movement of the arms 5a, 5b until these latter are brought almost parallel to the longitudinal axis of the ski 2, that is to say into the skiing position (FIG. 2a).

With such an arrangement according to the invention, it will be noted that the retaining springs which at the present time were housed in the heel fitting, could be placed in the ski braking device (in particular between the slide 3 and the element 1). Such a solution may in certain cases facilitate the construction of the heel fitting. It should finally be observed that the rod 6 being adjustable in length, it may be coupled to any fixing element (heel or stop) mounted with possibility of backward movement.

In FIGS. 3, 4a and 4b, there is again seen a ski 2 on which a rectangular plate 8 is fixed by screws. The longitudinal axis of this plate is arranged so as to coincide with that of the ski 2.

Each of the longitudinal edges of the plate 8 is provided with a flange 8a having a groove for longitudinal sliding of the wings 9a formed laterally on the bottom portions of the sides of an element 9, the said wings being engaged in these grooves. This element 9 forms a slide which may be coupled to a heel fitting by a longitudinal rod 6, as has been described above.

It will be noted that this slide 9 has a vertical longitudinal slot which is open towards the rear.

A shaft 10 FIGS. 4a, 4b) is fixed perpendicularly on the plate 8 between the sides of the notch of the slide, and a socket 11 is mounted on this shaft so as to form a hub. A coil spring 11r is mounted in the usual manner between this hub and the shaft 10 in order to ensure a return movement of this hub 11 in the direction of the arrow f2.

In addition, a circular segment 8s provided with teeth, is fixed coaxially with the shaft 10 on the plate 8, and a bevel pinion 12 is held in engagement with this segment 8s by means of the teeth of this pinion 12, made for that purpose.

This pinion is in fact freely mounted on a rod 11a, radially welded in a suitable manner on the hub 11 in order to ensure this co-operation of the pinion 12 and its segment 8s.

The rod 11a is rigidly fixed to a lateral lug 11c forming a cam adapted to co-operate with the rear extremity of the flank 9f of the slide 9 in order to cause the rod 11a to rotate about its shaft 10 (arrows f2, f3).

Finally, the pinion 12 is fixed to one of the extremities of a tube element 12a, on the other extremity of which is mounted a blade 15 having a nose 13a intended to form a brake on a layer of snow.

It will be understood that an operation of putting on the ski 2 has the effect of pushing back the slide 9 (arrow f3) and thereby causing, against the action of the spring 11r, a displacement of the swivel formed by the blade 13 and the rod 11a which supports this latter.

During the course of this backwards movement of the slide 9, this blade 15 pivots about the rod 11a while the rod 11a pivots about its own axis 10 so as to take-up above the ski 2, a raised position which permits skiing to be carried out. In this movement, the rear end of the flank 9f can pass beyond the lug 11c.

Conversely, when for any particular reason, the boot frees the heel fitting 7, this latter ensures the sliding movement towards the front (arrow f4) of the slide 9, which enables the spring 11r to return the arm 11a in the direction of the arrow f2, so as to bring the blade 13 downwards and to one side of the ski. The nose 13a of the blade then ensuring a braking action on the ski.

It is clear that the mechanism formed by the segment 8s and its pinion 12 could be replaced by other known systems in order to ensure a skiing position and a braking position respectively for the blade 13.

Thus, as shown in FIGS. 5a and 5b, a blade 14 similar to the blade 13 could simply be mounted freely on the free extremity of the rod 13, while being subjected to the return action downwards of a small spring 14r, and the arm 11a could be subjected to the thrust of a spring 11r supported on a suitable abutment of the plate 8. For a position of rest of the heel fitting, these two springs would ensure a braking position for the blade 14.

The operation of putting on the ski would obviously involve a rotation (arrow f3) of the arm 11a, by virtue of the action of the flank 9f of the slide on the cam 11c in order to compress the spring 11r and to bring the blade 14 on the upper face of the ski. The edge of the ski then plays the part of a cam, producing a slight upward rotation of this blade.

It will be noted that there could very readily be found means to adapt the systems described above to the case of fixing systems not having any return springs, that is to say which do not slide longitudinally on the ski. It would in fact be sufficient in this case to provide the device with an independent spring supported on a fixed part of the ski, which would thus make it autonomous. In this case, the vertical edge of the boot sole would act directly on the rod 6 associated with the device and passing beyond the adjacent fixing element. An alternative of this kind is shown for example in FIG. 7, which will now be described below.

Furthermore, in order to show the universality of the system forming the subject of the present invention, there will now be described devices operating by the same principle as shown in FIGS. 1 to 5, but in which the braking blade is not of the type having a material axis of rotation.

In FIG. 6, there has been shown diagrammatically at 20 a heel fitting slidably mounted against the action of retaining springs on a support 20a rigidly fixed on the ski 2. The braking device is constituted by at least one blade 21 arranged laterally on the side of the ski, and in which the upper extremity is fixed to the free extremity of a spring blade 22, the other extremity of which is fixed to the ski, for example by insertion and screwing between the support 20a and the ski.

In the position of rest shown in heavy lines in FIG. 6, the spring blade is curved back towards the top and the brake blade has an inclined position so that its free extremity can penetrate into the snow.

At the rear, the heel fitting carries a rod 23, the free extremity of which is applied against the spring blade 22. As can be seen, the distance between the extremity of the rod 23 and the ski is very small and it will be clear that when the heel fitting 20 moves back, the rod 23 pushes down the spring blade which is curved on the ski, thus producing a lifting of the brake blade into the position shown in broken lines in FIG. 6.

Finally, FIG. 7 shows an alternative form in which the fixing element is fixed on the ski. In the present case this element is a front stop 24 under the jaw 24e in which the point of a boot is intended to be engaged. The braking device is constituted in this case, as in FIG. 6, by a blade spring 22, of which one extremity is fixed between the stop and the ski while the free extremity raised on the ski is fixed to a brake blade 21. The control means of the braking device is constituted in this case by a rod 25 mounted slidably in the stop and prevented from turning about its axis. This rod could for example be of prismatic section.

On the side of the jaw 24e of the stop, the rod 25 projects under the action of a spring 26 supported on the one hand against the stop and on the other against an enlarged head 27. This head will preferably have a form such that even if the skier engages his boot badly in the stop and applies a vertical pressure downwards on the head, the latter is able to escape towards the front. This head may be bevelled as shown, flat or rounded in a plane parallel to the ski. The other extremity of the rod 25 is bent back at 28 towards the ski and is supported against the blade spring.

It will be understood that when the skier engages his boot in the stop, he begins to push back the rod against the action of its spring. The rod is fully pushed back when the heel of the boot takes its place in the heel fitting, since there is then a toggle joint effect which causes the sole to be completely engaged under the stop.

As has already been described with reference to FIG. 6, when the boot is in position, the blade spring is flattened on the ski and the brake blade is straightened.

It will be understood that these devices can ensure good skiing and braking conditions for a ski and that they can be mounted without particular difficulty on skis already equipped with heel fittings or stops with backward movement of the boot fixing device.

Naturally, and this is valid for all the alternative forms described, if the sliding travel of the fixing device proves to be insufficient to actuate suitably the braking system, a demultiplication system may be utilized.