Title:
In-line skates
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An in-line skate includes a boot, a wheel frame, wheels, wheel mounting devices. The wheel frame includes a top mounting board, a first side mounting board, and a second side mounting board. The top mounting board meets with the two parallel side mounting boards, forming an wheel accepting groove, and the side mounting board includes an inner surface forming the groove and an outer surface. The wheel frame includes a plurality of holes provided in the first side mounting board and the second side mounting board of the wheel frame. The wheels mount the wheel-axle assemblies on the side mounting boards of the wheel frame. The wheels are selectively attached on the outer surface of either the first side mounting board or the second side mounting board, or between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board.



Inventors:
Cha, Arnold (Lakewood, CA, US)
Application Number:
11/019999
Publication Date:
06/29/2006
Filing Date:
12/23/2004
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63C17/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20100019470CARGO CONTAINER SYSTEM WITH SELECTIVELY DEPLOYABLE SUPPORT AND WHEEL ASSEMBLIESJanuary, 2010Schubert
20060055149Vehicle adapted for different driving modes, and a method of driving such vehiclesMarch, 2006Sjolander
20030034619Snowmobile ski and method of building sameFebruary, 2003Bergstrom
20100025952Unit for supporting axle-shaft of go-kartsFebruary, 2010Falsetti et al.
20090309348PROCESS FOR PRODUCING A FUEL TANK WITH UNDERRIDE PROTECTORDecember, 2009Geurtz et al.
20090058176Blow moulded wheelMarch, 2009Beirne et al.
20090174176Safety guard mechanism for lifting deviceJuly, 2009Cui
20090256334Temporary snowboard fastenerOctober, 2009Handel
20090033064DEVICE FOR BINDING A BOOT TO A GLIDING BOARDFebruary, 2009Damiani et al.
20020153691Driving mechanism for a wheelchairOctober, 2002Liao et al.
20100025978RELAY BOX PROTECTIVE STRUCTUREFebruary, 2010Tomizawa et al.



Primary Examiner:
EBNER, KATY MEYER
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
PARK LAW FIRM (3255 WILSHIRE BLVD SUITE 1110, LOS ANGELES, CA, 90010, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An in-line skate comprising: a) a boot comprising a sole part, and a foot accepting part; b) a wheel frame comprising a top mounting board, a first side mounting board, and a second side mounting board, wherein the top mounting board meets with the two parallel side mounting boards, forming an wheel accepting groove, and the side mounting board comprises an inner surface forming the groove and an outer surface, wherein the wheel frame comprises a plurality of holes provided in the first side mounting board and the second side mounting board of the wheel frame; c) two or more wheels; and d) two or more wheel mounting devices for mounting the wheel-axle assemblies on the side mounting boards of the wheel frame, wherein the wheels are selectively attached on the outer surface of either the first side mounting board or the second side mounting board, or between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board.

2. The in-line skate of claim 1, wherein the boot is mounted on the top mounting board of the wheel frame, wherein the wheel accepting groove extends along the direction of length of the sole of the boot.

3. The in-line skate of claim 1 comprising a first wheel, a second wheel, a third wheel, and a fourth wheel.

4. The in-line skate of claim 3, wherein the four (4) wheels are mounted along a straight line in between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second side mounting board.

5. The in-line skate of claim 3, wherein the first wheel, the third wheel, and the fourth wheel are mounted between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board of the wheel frame, and the second wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a first direction by being mounted on the outer surface of the first side mounting board.

6. The in-line skate of claim 5, wherein the wheel mounting device further comprises an auxiliary mounting device for mounting the second wheel on the outer surface of the first side mounting board.

7. The in-line skate of claim 6, wherein the auxiliary mounting device comprises a screw of predetermined length.

8. The in-line skate of claim 5, wherein the width of wheel is reduced to a predetermined value.

9. The in-line skate of claim 3, wherein the first wheel and the fourth wheel are mounted between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board of the wheel frame, the second wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a first direction by mounting on the outer surface of the first side mounting board, and the third wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a second direction by mounting on outer surface of the second side mounting board.

10. The in-line skate of claim 9, wherein the wheel mounting device further comprises auxiliary mounting devices for mounting the second wheel on the outer surface of the first side mounting board and for mounting the third wheel on the outer surface of the second side mounting board.

11. The in-line skate of claim 10, wherein the auxiliary mounting device comprises a screw of predetermined length.

12. The in-line skate of claim 9, wherein the width of wheel is reduced to a predetermined value.

13. The in-line skate of claim 3, wherein the second wheel is dismounted to increase the transfer of force and to reduce friction between the wheels and the floor.

14. The in-line skate of claim 13, wherein the third wheel is dismounted further to increase the transfer of force and to reduce friction between the wheels and the floor.

15. The in-line skate of claim 1, wherein the boot further comprises an ankle protecting part.

16. The in-line skate of claim 15, wherein the material of the ankle protecting part of the boots comprises a soft fabric.

17. The in-line skate of claim 1, wherein the wheel comprises a wheel with a narrow floor-contacting point, whereby being adapted to riding on ice.

18. The in-line skate of claim 1, wherein the wheel frame further comprises a second frame provided on the outer surface of the first side mounting board and a third frame provided on the outer surface of the second side mounting board.

19. The in-line skate of claim 18, wherein the second frame and the third frame enclose and provide mounting support to wheels mounted on the outer surfaces of the side mounting boards.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

This invention is related to an improved in-line skate, which is easy to balance and ride. More specifically, the invention is related to an improved in-line skate, in which the mounting points of wheels can be changed according to the level of a skater. Also, the invention is related to an improved in-line skate, which increases the stability of skating and results in an in-line skate with a shorter and softer ankle protecting part.

The in-line skate has been very popular since the improvement and re-introduction from the quad roller skate by Scott Olson and Brennan Olson in 1979.

Even though it was originally intended to be used for an off-ice hockey training, the in-line skates have been used for generally popular pastime in recreation and sports by all kinds of people including young people.

Since in-line skating is riding on a small wheels installed at the bottom of shoes, however, sense of bodily balance and moderately strong legs are required to ride and maneuver the in-line skate. The wheels are usually narrow and disposed along a straight line in the direction of motion to reduce the friction against the floor, which makes it harder to balance in standing and riding slowly the in-line skate. It can be a high barrier to the beginners of in-line skating.

Also, since the skaters improve their skill to ride the in-line skate as time goes on, an in-line skate the balancing stability of which is adjustable would be preferable in many situations, especially when the beginners are small children.

Considering the status that the in-line skating as a fitness activity is quite strongly popular among adults and that many young or senior people start the in-line skating every day, a need for in-line skates that are easier to wear, balance, ride, and enjoy is high.

Accordingly, this invention is directed to solve these problems and satisfy the long-felt need.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An in-line skate includes a boot, a wheel frame, two or more wheels, and two or more wheel mounting devices.

The boot includes a sole part, and a foot accepting part.

The wheel frame includes a top mounting board, a first side mounting board, and a second side mounting board. The top mounting board meets with the two parallel side mounting boards, forming an wheel accepting groove, and the side mounting board includes an inner surface forming the groove and an outer surface. The wheel frame includes a plurality of holes provided in the first side mounting board and the second side mounting board of the wheel frame.

The two or more wheel mounting devices for the corresponding wheels mounts the wheel-axle assemblies on the side mounting boards of the wheel frame.

The wheels are selectively attached on the outer surface of either the first side mounting board or the second side mounting board, or between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board.

The boot is mounted on the top mounting board of the wheel frame, and the wheel accepting groove extends along the direction of length of the sole of the boot.

The in-line skate can include four wheels; a first wheel, a second wheel, a third wheel, and a fourth wheel from the toe to the heel.

The four wheels can be mounted along a straight line in between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second side mounting board.

The first wheel, the third wheel, and the fourth wheel can be mounted between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board of the wheel frame, and the second wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a first direction by being mounted on the outer surface of the first side mounting board.

Alternatively, the first wheel and the fourth wheel can be mounted between the inner surfaces of the first side mounting board and the second mounting board of the wheel frame, the second wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a first direction by mounting on the outer surface of the first side mounting board, and the third wheel is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove to a second direction by mounting on outer surface of the second side mounting board.

The boot further includes an ankle protecting part, which can be short or can be made of a soft fabric due to the increased stability of skating.

The in-line skate can include two or three wheels to reduce friction between the wheels and the floor. With a wheel with a narrow floor-contacting point, the skate can be adapted to riding on ice.

Many other innovations, features, and advantages will be evident with the following description of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

These and other features, aspects and advantages of the present invention will become better understood with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an in-line skate;

FIG. 2 is a bottom view of a skater's foot;

FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the in-line skate;

FIG. 4 is a bottom view of wheels with respect to the skater's foot;

FIG. 5 is a plan view of two skates with wheels in a first formation;

FIG. 6 is a plan view of two skates with wheels in a second formation; and

FIG. 7 is a plan view of wheels in a third formation.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIGS. 1 and 2 shows an in-line skate 100 according to the present invention. The in-line skate 100 includes a boot 10, a wheel frame 20, two or more wheels 30, and two or more wheel mounting devices 40. The weight of the skater presses on the four spots on the foot 51, 52, 53, 54.

The boot 10 includes a sole part 12, and a foot accepting part 14.

The wheel frame 20 includes a top mounting board 22, a first side mounting board 24, and a second side mounting board 26. The top mounting board 22 meets with the two parallel side mounting boards 24, 26, forming an wheel accepting groove 25, and each of the side mounting boards 24, 26 includes an inner surface 41 forming the groove 25 and an outer surface 42. The wheel frame 20 includes a plurality of holes 28 provided in the first side mounting board 24 and the second side mounting board 26 of the wheel frame 20. Most of the holes 28 are aligned to mount the wheels 30 in the groove 25, but some of the holes 28′ may be provided without corresponding holes for mounting the wheels on the outer surfaces 42 of the frame 20.

The two or more wheel mounting devices 40 for the corresponding wheels mount the assemblies 44 of wheels 30 and axles 43 on the side mounting boards 24, 26 of the wheel frame 20. The third wheel 33 can be mounted on the outer surface 42 of the frame 20 by fixing the assemblies 44 of wheel 30 and axle 43 on a single hole 28′ or on two corresponding holes 28 provided each on the side mounting boards 24, 26. When two corresponding holes 28 are used to mount the assemblies 44, the axle 43 is long enough to straddle over the two side mounting boards 24, 26.

The wheels 30 are selectively attached on the outer surface 42 of either the first side mounting board 24 or the second side mounting board 26, or between the inner surfaces 41 of the first side mounting board 24 and the second mounting board 26.

The boot 10 is mounted on the top mounting board 22 of the wheel frame 20, and the wheel accepting groove 25 extends along the direction of length of the sole 12 of the boot 10.

The in-line skate 100 can include four wheels 30; a first wheel 31, a second wheel 32, a third wheel 33, and a fourth wheel 34 from the toe to the heel of the boot 10.

In a first formation, the four wheels 31, 32, 33, 34 can be mounted along a straight line in between the inner surfaces 41 of the first side mounting board 24 and the second side mounting board 26 as shown in FIG. 1, FIG. 3 and FIG. 5. With the first formation of the wheels 30, the pressure spots 51, 52, 53, 54 are scattered about the center line and then the center of mass of the skater on a foot 50 is right on the line of the wheels 30 and thus meta-stable.

With the wheels 30 aligned as in the first formation, however, it is very hard for the beginners to balance on the in-line skate 100, or just to stand.

Therefore, it would be useful if one or two wheels can be shifted off the center line of the groove 25, which makes the balancing more stable. Especially, the beginners fall down while standing on a single skate in between walking or riding slowly. The shifted wheel 32 or 33 expands the area surrounded by the wheels 30 and makes standing on a single skate more stable.

In a second formation, the first wheel 31, the third wheel 33, and the fourth wheel 34 can be mounted between the inner surfaces 41 of the first side mounting board 24 and the second mounting board 26 of the wheel frame 20, and the second wheel 32 is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove 25 to a first direction, outward from the middle of two feet, by being mounted on the outer surface 42 of the first side mounting board 24, which corresponds to 32′, as shown in FIG. 6.

In a third formation, the first wheel 31 and the fourth wheel 34 can be mounted between the inner surfaces 41 of the first side mounting board 24 and the second mounting board 26 of the wheel frame 20, the second wheel 32 is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove 25 to a first direction, outward from the middle of two feet, by mounting on the outer surface 42 of the first side mounting board 24, which corresponds to 32′, and the third wheel 33 is shifted sidewise from the center line of groove 25 to a second direction, inward to the middle of two feet, by mounting on outer surface 42 of the second side mounting board 26, which corresponds to 33′, as shown in FIG. 7.

The wheel mounting device 40 further includes an auxiliary mounting device for mounting the second wheel 32 and/or the third wheel 33 on the outer surface 42 of the first side mounting board 24 and/or the second side mounting board 26. The auxiliary mounting device is preferably a screw of predetermined length.

The boot 10 further includes an ankle protecting part 16, which can be short or can be made of a soft fabric due to the increased stability of skates 100.

The in-line skate 100 can include only two wheels 31, 34 to reduce friction between the wheels 30 and the floor. With a wheel 30 with a narrow floor-contacting point, the skate 100 can be adapted to riding on ice.

In the second formation and the third formation, the width of the wheels 30 can be reduced to a predetermined value due to the increased stability.

The second wheel 32 and the third wheel 33 can be dismounted one by one to increase the transfer of force and to reduce friction between the wheels 30 and the floor.

A plurality of holes 28 bored through the first side mounting board 24 and the second side mounting board 26 of the wheel frame 20 are for mounting the wheels 30 in addition to the regular holes used in the first formation as shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 3.

The differences of balancing stability between the different formations are the result of shifting one or more wheels 30 sidewise from the center line of the groove 25 and setting the center of mass of the skater in the middle of the surface formed by the stationary wheels and the shifted wheels. Considering two feet, the picture is clearer. The area of surface 72 surrounded by the eight wheels 30 is smaller than the area of surface 74 surrounded by the eight wheels 30. The balancing stability is increased with the increased area of surface 74 surrounded by the wheels 30.

In other embodiment of the invention, the in-line skate 100 can include a second frame to secure the mounting of the second wheel 32 and a third frame to secure the mounting of the third wheel 33.

In learning the in-line skating, the beginners can start with the in-line skate in the third formation as shown in FIG. 7, and proceeds to shift the second wheel 32 and the third wheel 33 to the original positions one by one with progress. In an expert level of skating, the skater can remove the second wheel 32 and the third wheel 33 leaving only the first wheel 31 and the fourth wheel 34 to reduce the friction and speed up more.

While the invention has been shown and described with reference to different embodiments thereof, it will be appreciated by those skilled in the art that variations in form, detail, compositions and operation may be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention as defined by the accompanying claims.