Device to be attached to a ski for preventing ski runaway
United States Patent 3917297

A brake is attached to a ski having a movable braking member in the form of a spring biased hinge. The hinge is held to the ski by the skier's boot and is operated by the spring when the weight of the skier is relieved from the ski causing the hinge to snap open and against the ground to effect a braking action which causes the ski to come to a halt and generally within a very short space so that the skier can easily recover the runaway ski. The brake is held retracted by a release means so that while the ski is hand carried the brake is held in retracted position and the release means is engaged and moved out of locking relation when the ski is foot-mounted thereby enabling the brake to be automatically actuated when the foot is separated from the ski as occuring during accidental skiing movements.

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:
3433494BRAKE ATTACHMENT FOR SKI1969-03-18Hinterholzer
3195911Loose ski arresting device1965-07-20Cubberly
3048418Ski-stopping device1962-08-07Gertsch

Primary Examiner:
Betts, Kenneth H.
Assistant Examiner:
Smith, Milton L.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Young, John A.
What I claim is

1. A device for attaching to a ski and for effecting automatic braking thereof upon detachment of the ski from the ski binding, comprising mounting means disposed wholly between the ski boot and ski and secured to the ski on the upper surface thereof, a brake plate adapted to be held in a first position flatly against the ski in confronting relation with the upper ski surface and proportioned to lie substantially entirely between the sides of the ski to be in non-interfering relation with running movement of the ski, resilient means for effecting loading on the brake plate to actuate such brake plate to a second position wherein the brake plate is brought out of noninterfering relation and into ground engaging position wherein the movement of the ski is impeded from further movement thereof, locking means having an open locking surface operatively secured to said ski and directly engagable with said brake plate to releasably hold such brake plate in its retracted non-interfering position on the ski, and means for swivably mounting said locking means for angular movement transversely to the movement of said brake plate between its first and second positions, and disposed in relation to the ski boot to be urged into non-locking position, said locking means being held against movement into a locking position by the ski boot until the ski is loosened from the ski shoe or binding.

2. The device in accordance with claim 1 wherein said locking means is spring loaded to be held in direct locking relation with said brake plate until moved out of contact with said brake plate by engagement with said ski boot.

3. The device in accordance with claim 1 wherein the locking plate is characterized by relatively smooth rounded corners to minimize injuries from engagement therewith.

4. The device in accordance with claim 1 wherein the brake element is of U shaped outline.

5. The device in accordance with claim 1 wherein the resilient means for effecting loading of the braking plate is of sufficient rate to effect overturning of the ski upon engagement of the braking plate with the ground.

6. The device in accordance with claim 1 including eccentric mounting means, and means forming an attachment between said braking plate and said eccentric mounting means.


During skiing, there are well known hazards including runaway skis which, once detached from the skier can continue down the slope independently of the skier and cause hazards to others on the slope. Ideally, when the skis become detached from the skier there should be a provision for braking the ski well within the reach of the skier.

In the art, there are sometimes employed what are known as runaway straps or safety straps which loosely connect the skis with the ski boots so that should the skier become unbalanced the skis will remain loosely attached and hence prevented from runaway. This also entails danger and disadvantage in that the ski will be dragged along by the skier through the runaway straps, or other securement between the strap and the ski boot and this can be the source of great harm to the skier.

Although this above described problem has been one of long standing, straps forming safety connections with the ski boots have been uniformly used in spite of the difficulty to attach and reattach, particularly so when the attachment is performed with ski gloves on the hands. Frequently the ski safety clasp is released by impact while skiing over uneven terrain and the skier then falls for the reason that the ski hangs on to the leg which is attached thereto. If the ski were separated from the leg, falls of this sort could be avoided.


It is one of the essential purposes of the present invention to provide a safety device which, after release of the runaway strap will automatically brake the ski against independent movement down the slope and this result will occur whenever there is separation of the ski from the leg of the skier.

An important feature of the present invention is the use of a brake element which is fastened to the ski on a swivel mount so that immediately upon separation of the leg from the ski the brake element will swivel out of the ski profile and be brought to the side of the running surface of the ski to effect a braking action. The braking action occurs without the necessity of a strap connection between the ski and the boot and is formed through a plate-like hinge secured to the ski or to the safety strap, i.e., the ski binding of the ski. The swivel movement occurs automatically by means of a spring mechanism which causes the aforementioned swiveling action immediately upon occurence of ski separation.

It is possible to attach the brake device in an upright position on the ski and when the mechanism is released the brake plate will swivel under the spring action through 180° to effect the retardation of ski movement.

To trigger the brake hinge several possibilities are available including the use of a pin which secures the brake hinge in a normal position and is disposed along one of the edges of the ski and is swung out or turned to enable the hinge to spring the brake into a braking position. Another form of release of the brake hinge is a swivel lever that is attached to the brake hinge and is automatically moved into a disengaging position with respect to the lever should the ski separate from the ski boot.

The swivel lever has two operation positions, one in the transport position and a second position wherein the ski shoe or boot is fastened to the ski binding and which depresses the swivel lever into a disengaging position wherein it lies flat on the upper side of the ski. The cam surface is also engageable with an extension of the brake plate with the swivel lever resting on the extension when the brake plate is down.

Generally, the preferred brake plate profile is U shaped and in its mounted condition the two sides of the U lie on the upper side of the ski. In this position the entire device is mountable between the upper side of the ski and the ski boot. The swivel plate is also mountable on the turntable of the ski binding and is released when the turntable has turned sufficiently to enable the swivel plate to snap into braking position.

The spring that activates the brake plate is made sufficiently strong to overturn the ski and the result is an exceptionally good braking effect.

The brake member is rounded at its edge corners to minimize bodily harm.

Other objects and features of the present invention will become apparent from a consideration of the following description which proceeds with reference to the accompanying drawings.


FIG. 1 shows, in perspective, a brake device according to the invention, mounted on a ski in the braking position;

FIG. 2 shows the same device as FIG. 1 in the transitional position between the transport position and the skiing position;

FIG. 3 shows the device in skiing position with superimposed ski boot and ski binding;

FIG. 4 shows a second embodiment corresponding in view to FIG. 1;

FIG. 5 is a view, corresponding to FIG. 2, of the embodiment shown in FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a view of the second embodiment of FIGS. 4 and 5 with the device in skiing position with superimposed ski boot and ski binding;

FIG. 7 shows a top view of another embodiment in which two safety devices are attached to the heel and toe of the ski binding;

FIG. 8 shows the embodiment of FIG. 7 with a turntable of the ski binding;

FIG. 9 shows an embodiment with a brake plate erected on the ski, which swings out 180° after being released;

FIG. 10 shows the strap device of the brake plate of FIG. 9;

FIG. 11 is a section view through the strapping mounting of FIG. 10;

FIG. 12 shows the release mechanism of the brake plate of FIGS. 1-11.


Referring first to FIGS. 1-3, there is attached to a ski 1 a device which essentially consists of an attachment plate 2 and a brake plate 3. Both plates swivel around axis pin 4. On this axis pin 4 a spiral spring 5 is mounted, which tends to press the brake plate into the position shown in FIG. 1, in which position it lies along the side edge of ski 1. This brake plate terminates in a rounded end 6, which is harmless. The attachment plate 2 is fastened with screws 7 to the upper deck of ski 1.

The brake plate 3 is provided on the side with an extension 8 which serves as a cam surface. In the closed position (of. FIG. 2) a swivel lever 10 fastened to the attachment plate 2 retains the brake plate flat on the attachment plate 2 by the insertion of the engagement of 8 into a corresponding indentation 11 of the swivel lever 10. Besides this, a spring may be provided which presses the swivel lever 10 in the direction of the arrow 12 (FIG. 1), upward. The swivel lever 10 swings around the axis pin 13.

During transport the swivel lever 10 is turned in the direction of the arrow 14 at a smaller angle than that shown in the position of FIG. 2, so that it points almost vertically to the upper side of the ski. This is the so-called transport condition. The transition from this transport position to the initial fastening position is shown in FIG. 2, in which the swivel level 10 with its edge 11 overlies the lateral protrusion 8 in the view of FIG. 2. The lever here stands at an angle of about 45° but in this position it still holds the sprung brake plate 3.

The skiing position is shown in FIG. 3. The swivel lever 10 is here in a flat position parallel to the upper side of the ski. The lever 10 is depressed into the flat position by the underside of the ski boot 15. If the ski binding indicated by position 16 and 17 is released, then the brake plate 3 swings into a position releasing plate 3 from the position of FIG. 2 to that of FIG. 1 and the ski then comes to a sudden stop by the action of the rounded edge 6 which burrows into the snow or overturns the ski, so that the ski binding 16, 17 itself acts as brake. A safety strap (runaway strap) is therefore not needed.

The locking device shown may also be inserted into the brake lever or be entirely within the same. If it is entirely enclosed, then there is a rectangular hole in the brake plate, provided with cams 8, in which the swivel lever 10 is located. When it is entirely inserted, then the protruding cam 8 does not protrude.

The following second embodiment according to FIGS. 4-6 differs from the first embodiment in FIG. 1-3 essentially in that the swivel lever 10 with its continuation 8 is eliminated. In its place a swiveling pin 18 is provided in the extension of the axis pin 4, which lies along the side edge of the ski 1 shown in the position of FIG. 2 and thereby secures the brake plate 3. If the pin 18 is swung on its axis 19 into the position shown in FIG. 4, then the brake plate is released and swings into the brake position, as long as the ski boot does not lie on it. The manner of action is therefore essentially similar to that of the embodiment in FIGS. 1-3. The pin 18 may be so long that it protrudes under the running surface of the ski shown in the position of FIG. 5 and is automatically pressed back into the horizontal position by the ski in motion. Here a spring 20 inserted into the pin 18 may help, which presses on the specially formed end of the axis pin 4. This is pictured in FIG. 5 by broken lines. Furthermore, a springy plate 21 is affixed to the inner side of the brake plate 3, which increases the brake action. In addition, the outer end of the brake plate 3 may be shaped as shown in rounded end 6 of FIG. 1. FIG. 1, 2, 4, and 5 show also the U shaped profile of the brake plate 3.

FIG. 7 and 8 show a third embodiment, in which a brake device is attached to the front of the turntable of the ski binding and on its back side. It is sufficient, however, to provide only one of these two braking devices.

In this embodiment the spring hinge is eliminated. In its place a specially shaped eccentric segment with a spring is added. The turntable of the ski binding is covered with a protective plate.

In FIG. 8, a support 22 receives hinge 23, the hinge 23 being turned upwardly onto the turntable. The hinge 23 is pressed down by the ski boot during use and once it is released, it is set free for braking action. Ski braking consists of a hinge part 23 secured to the turntable 24 with screws 7 (FIG. 7). The turntable 11 is formed of one piece and has supports 22 including an axis pin 4. The axis pin 4 contains a spring 5 and supports a brake plate 3 so that the brake plate 3 can be turned about the axis pin 4 against the resistance of the spring and lie flatly against the ski 1 (FIG. 7) or, once the turntable is turned to the position shown in FIG. 8 then the brake plate 3 will move downwardly in a direction transverse to the ski (FIG. 8) and extend under the running surface of the ski to act as a brake.

It should be understood that the brake plates swivel by about 90°, that is from the horizontal position of the ski FIG. 7, to the position of FIG. 8. When the brake device is attached on an eccentric knob, the flap can turn by about 225° so that it is then located underneath the ski's running surface. In the embodiment in which the brake plate has the hinge mounted laterally on the turntable the swivel angle is 270° and in the case of an eccentric 25 the spring hinges 3 and 5 are not needed.

The eccentric hinge may have a specially shaped form instead of the usual round shape. For good braking effectiveness, the cam 26 may be laterally attached and turn on bearings in bores 27 so that the top part swings downwardly by the spring 26 after the release of the ski and is disposed under the running surface to cause braking. To prevent the turntable from movement while putting on the ski a latch bolt 29 is utilized. Since the turntable may not turn after the ski is detached a spiral spring 30 is mounted on the support 22 on the inner side of the turntable confronting the ski. The spring 30 swings with the turntable so that ski release is not influenced. With the embodiment having the hinge mounted on the side of the plate the spring of the hinge arm pushes the turntable itself aside.

Referring next to the embodiment of FIGS. 9-12, FIG. 9 illustrates the brake plate viewed from behind the direction of travel. The swiveling part 102 is on the upper ski side and it moves from the full line position (FIG. 9) to the dotted line position about axle 103 to retard the ski movement. In FIG. 10, the support has a lower part 101 attached to the ski top and part 102 (FIG. 11) is shown removed in FIG. 10. Within 101, brake part 102 is swivel mounted on axle 103 and on the opposite side is inserted a securing box through which a movable securing and releasing bolt is affixed.

As indicated in FIG. 11, part 101 is illustrated in section view and the releasing bolt 111 is shown secured at one end side in the support 101. The bolt 111 is biased by the spring 109 to the position indicated in FIG. 11. If the bolt 111 is pulled against the action of the spring it bears against piston 106 and part 102 against the resistance of the spring 107. The piston is somewhat smaller than the bore 104 and beveled so that part 102 can be swung with the piston 106 extending into the bore 104. The swivel part 102 is loaded by spring 105 for swiveling movement to the dotted line position (FIG. 9) and will do so after bolt 111 is pulled. As the bolt 111 is pulled, it presses against the piston 106 forcing it out of the bore 104. The piston 106 also has a recess into which the bolt 111 extends with some free play and since the swivel part is under spring pressure the part 102 swings up around the clearance of the bolt 111 in the recess of the piston while still being held by the bolt 111.

FIG. 12, illustrates the release, with the mounting on the ski under the shoe. Plate 117 has at its back a loop 115 attached to a tension spring 116 having a cable or other means of attachment to the bolt 111. The length is determined by the loop 115 which is upright from the ski. As the skier stands on the binding the bolt 111 is pulled over the tension spring 116 and the bolt 111 is removed from its resting place when the shoe is removed, i.e., when the runaway strap is loosened and the ski slides away. This will trigger the brake part 102 from the full line position (FIG. 9) to the dotted line position swiveling as it does on axle 103 and thereby slowing down the ski.

Although the present invention has been illustrated and described in connection with a few selected example embodiments, it will be understood that these are illustrative of the invention and are by no means restrictive thereof. It is reasonably to be expected that those skilled in this art can make numerous revisions and it is intended that such revisions will be included within the scope of the following claims as equivalents thereof.