Title:
Raised platform for ski binding
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A raised platform (1) for a ski binding, intended to be mounted on a ski by a longitudinal guide and vertical retention means in its front and rear zones (3, 4) and/or by binding to the ski in its central part. The platform is made in a single piece which is essentially rigid and narrowed in its central zone (5) so as to be flexible in this zone. A raised platform of this type makes it possible to obtain virtually complete unclamping of the ski in its central part.



Inventors:
Kruajitch, Andre-jean (La Buisse, FR)
Application Number:
10/066977
Publication Date:
09/05/2002
Filing Date:
02/04/2002
Assignee:
KRUAJITCH ANDRE-JEAN
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
280/617
International Classes:
A63C9/00; (IPC1-7): A63C5/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
KLEBE, GERALD B
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
HAUG PARTNERS LLP (NEW YORK, NY, US)
Claims:
1. A raised platform for a ski binding for attachment to a ski, comprising: a front and rear zone with a central zone therebetween; means for attaching the platform to the ski in its front and rear zones with said central zone to the ski free from attachments, said front and rear zones are attached to the ski in a manner that prevents vertical movement, but allows horizontal movement by way of a longitudinal guide and vertical retention means in said front and rear zones on an upper surface of the platform which comprises fastener receiving openings which allow movement of the front and rear zones in the horizontal direction but not the vertical direction; said front and rear zone being substantially of a first thickness; said central zone having narrowed zones therein having a second thickness which is less than the first thickness, said narrowed zones allowing for flexibility in said central zone; and wherein said platform is formed in a single somewhat rigid piece whilst being flexible in said central zone.

2. A raised platform in accordance with claim 1 wherein said central zone includes attachment to the ski which consists essentially of fasteners aligned on substantially a straight line across the central zone.

3. The raised platform as claimed in claims 1 or 2 wherein the narrowed zones of the central zone form at least one hollow therein.

4. The raised platform as claimed in claim 2, which includes a bearing zone through which the means for attaching the raised platform to the ski pass; said bearing zone being located in the central zone; and said narrowed zones comprise at least two hollows located on opposite sides of the bearing zone.

5. The raised platform as claimed in claim 4, wherein the bearing zone is integral with the platform.

6. The raised platform as claimed in claim 4, wherein the bearing zone consists of at least one strut coupled to or integral therewith.

7. The raised platform as claimed in claim 3, wherein said at least hollow is at least partially filled with a flexible and elastic or elastomer material.

8. The raised platform as claimed in claim 4, wherein at least one of said hollows is at least partially filled with an elastic material whose stiffness varies with the rate of strain.

9. The raised platform as claimed in claim 7, wherein the elastic material extends in a thin layer under said front and rear zones.

10. The raised platform as claimed in claim 3, wherein the zones of the platform have a portion thereof which is at a thickness less than the first thickness, and wherein a space is created in this way under the platform which is filled at least partially with an elastic material.

11. The raised platform as claimed in claim 1, which has a means for displaying its displacement relative to the ski when the ski flexes.

12. A raised platform as claimed in claim 1 or 2 wherein said central portion has a transverse width which is less than that of the front and rear zones.

13. A raised platform as claimed in claim 1 wherein said front, and rear zones have lower surfaces which are in a bearing relationship with the ski.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

[0001] This application is a continuation-in-part of U.S. Ser. No. 09/166,323 filed Oct. 15, 1998 entitled “Raised Platform for Ski Binding” the disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0002] The present invention relates to a raised platform for a ski binding, intended to be mounted on a ski by means for binding to the ski and by a longitudinal guide and vertical retention means in its front and rear zones.

PRIOR ART

[0003] With a view to improving skiability, the current trend is toward the mounting of ski bindings on raised platforms. These platforms are generally fixed to the ski in their front zone or in their rear zone, and guided longitudinally and retained vertically in the opposite zone. This method of connection to the ski making it possible to provide some degree of unclamping of the ski in its central zone, that is to say to allow the ski to retain its flexibility, in other words to flex in the central zone so as to maintain contact with the snow when skiing through hollows or over bumps. So as not to counter the natural dynamics of the ski in flexion and torsion, it has proved preferable to bind the raised platform to the ski in its central zone, and to allow the front and rear zones to move relative to the ski. In an embodiment described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,413 371, the raised platform consists of two high-density foam blocks fixed respectively to two platforms which are mounted “floating” on the ski and are connected by a rigid metal plate, fixed to the ski by screws at its center. The high-density foam parts damp vibrations.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0004] The object of the present invention is to further improve the unclamping of the ski and to simplify the manufacture of the raised platform.

[0005] To this end, the raised platform according to the invention is one which is made of moldable synthetic material and is narrowed in its central zone so as to be flexible in this zone.

[0006] The narrowing of the synthetic material in the central zone of the raised platform makes it possible to obtain a very high degree of flexibility in this zone and, consequently, virtually complete unclamping of the ski in its central part.

[0007] The narrowing is preferably formed by removing material from the lower face of the platform, so that the narrowing of the central zone forms at least one hollow in the lower face of the platform.

[0008] Also preferably, the raised platform has two narrowed sections, to the front and to the rear of a relatively narrow bearing zone through which the means for binding the platform to the ski pass.

[0009] According to a preferred embodiment of the invention, the hollows are at least partially filled with a flexible and elastic or elastomer material, preventing the entry of snow and the formation of ice, and forming a means for damping vibrations. This flexible and elastic material may be cut out extensively, the essential fact being that it forms bands which adjoin the edges of the raised platform to form a barrier for the snow.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0010] The appended drawing represents an embodiment of the raised platform according to the invention by way of example.

[0011] FIG. 1 is a side view of the raised platform when mounted on a ski.

[0012] FIG. 2 is a plan view of the raised platform, without the means for connecting it to the ski.

[0013] FIG. 3 is a bottom view of the central zone of the raised platform.

[0014] FIG. 4 is a view in section on IV-IV of FIG. 1.

[0015] FIG. 5 is a view in section on V-V of FIG. 1.

[0016] FIG. 6 is a view in section on VI-VI of FIG. 1.

[0017] FIG. 7 represents a first alternative embodiment in a view similar to FIG. 1.

[0018] FIG. 8 represents a second alternative embodiment in a view similar to FIG. 1.

[0019] FIG. 9 represents a third alternative embodiment in a view similar to FIG. 1.

[0020] FIG. 10 is a partial view of an alternative embodiment having a flexion indicator.

[0021] FIG. 11 is a side, view of a fourth alternative embodiment of the raised platform when mounted on a ski.

[0022] FIG. 12 is a plan view of the raised platform shown in FIG. 11, without the means for connecting it to the ski.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0023] The raised platform 1, represented in FIG. 1 on a ski 2, essentially consists of a piece of molded synthetic material, for example a polyamide filled with glass fibers. It consists of two supports 3 and 4, front and rear respectively, which are connected by a narrowed central zone 5. This narrowed central zone being itself divided into two narrowed zones located to the front and to the rear of a narrow transverse band 6 which has the same thickness as the supports 3 and 4 and bears directly on the ski. The raised platform also has, in plan, a transverse width reduction in its central zone, this width reduction further enhancing the flexibility of this zone. The narrowed part forms two hollows 7 and 8 in the lower face of the platform 1 (FIG. 3). These hollows 7 and 8 are partially filled with a flexible and elastic material 9, 10, cut out extensively in their central zone so as to leave the hollows 7 and 8 in this zone, but in such a way as to close these hollows laterally. The elastic material is, for example, an SEBS elastomer.

[0024] In this embodiment, the central band 6 has two holes 11 for binding the raised platform to the ski by means of two screws 12. Rectangular holes 13 which have a countersink 14 and in which pins 15 fixed to the ski are engaged, pass through the supports 3 and 4, this connection allowing the supports 3 and 4 to slide longitudinally on the ski while being retained vertically. The raised platform 1 also has a number of holes 16 which are intended to accommodate the binding screws of the elements of the ski binding in various positions.

[0025] A number of variants may, of course, be made to the embodiment which has been described and represented.

[0026] According to a variant represented in FIG. 7, the central bearing band 6 is replaced by one or more struts 17.

[0027] In a variant represented in FIG. 8, the flexible and elastic material 8, 9 also extends in a thin layer between the supports 3 and 4 and the ski, where it has an effect of damping shocks and vibrations.

[0028] According to the variant represented in FIG. 9, the supports 3 and 4 have narrowed end zones 3a and 4a which are more extensive than in the previous embodiments, and resemble the narrowed zones 5 and 6. These zones 3a and 4a give further flexibility to the raised platform at its ends. The spaces which are created are filled at least partially with a flexible and elastic material 18, 19, for example the same material as the material 9, 10.

[0029] The materials 9, 10, 18, 19 could be formed by a material whose stiffness varies with the strain rate, for example a material belonging to the silicone rubber or EPDM or PDMS family, filled with inorganic or organic fillers.

[0030] The raised platform could also have a means for displaying its displacement relative to the ski when the ski flexes. An illustrative embodiment of this means is represented in FIG. 10. It consists of an index 20 located on the platform beside one of the holes 13, and a scale 21 located on the pin 15 which is engaged in this hole. This figure also shows the clearance d between the pin 15 and the hole 13, this allowing the clearance ski to flex.

[0031] A further variation is found in FIGS. 11 and 12 which as distinct from prior embodiments has the center band 6 removed. The central zone 5 is now a solid piece absent holes 11 for screws 12.

[0032] Accordingly, there are no fasteners in the central zone 5 and with the reduced mass by the elementation of band 6, provides for increased flexibility in the central zone 5.





 
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