Title:
Storage system for detachable motorcycle windshield assemblies
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention provides a storage system for protecting a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly from damage when said windshield assembly is detached from a motorcycle. A storage system according to the invention includes a rigid base and a plurality of mounting bosses connected to said rigid base. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the rigid base is fastened to a wall. In an alternative embodiment, the rigid base is affixed to an inside portion of a hinged protective case.



Inventors:
Poore, Dwayne S. (Norwalk, OH, US)
Application Number:
10/199959
Publication Date:
03/20/2003
Filing Date:
07/19/2002
Assignee:
POORE DWAYNE S.
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
206/449
International Classes:
B62J17/04; B65D85/48; B65D85/68; (IPC1-7): B65D85/48
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
FRANCIS, FAYE
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
RANKIN, HILL & CLARK LLP (North Olmsted, OH, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A storage system for protecting a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly from damage when said windshield assembly is detached from a motorcycle comprising: a rigid base; and a plurality of mounting bosses connected to said rigid base, each of said mounting bosses being adapted for releasable engagement with a corresponding mounting means of said detachable motorcycle windshield assembly.

2. The storage system according to claim 1 wherein said mounting means of said detachable motorcycle windshield assembly comprises: a pair of generally U-shaped first sockets attached to said windshield assembly, said first sockets opening in a substantially downward direction relative to said motorcycle when said windshield assembly is attached to said motorcycle; and a pair of generally U-shaped second sockets attached to said windshield assembly, said second sockets opening in a substantially rearward direction relative to said motorcycle when said windshield assembly is attached to said motorcycle.

3. The storage system according to claim 2 wherein each of said mounting bosses further comprises: an elastomer member sized to be compressed when engaged by one of said generally U-shaped first or second sockets; and a rigid insert supporting said elastomer member.

4. The storage system according to claim 1 wherein said rigid base is fastenable to a wall.

5. The storage system according to claim 1 wherein said rigid base is fastenable to an inside portion of a hinged protective case.

6. The storage system according to claim 5 wherein said rigid base and said hinged protective case are integrally formed of a polymeric material.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a storage system for protecting a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly from damage when the windshield assembly is detached from a motorcycle.

[0003] 2. Description of Related Art

[0004] Many motorcycle riders enjoy riding a motorcycle without a windshield, particularly on short trips and/or when operating the motorcycle at lower speeds on city streets. However, the use of a windshield is desirable for long distance highway travel because it tends to minimize fatigue caused by wind loading on the motorcycle rider's exposed upper body. For this reason, motorcycle manufacturers have begun to offer detachable windshield assemblies as accessories to their motorcycle products.

[0005] Detachment of the windshield assembly from the motorcycle presents a storage problem. The detachable windshield assembly is typically leaned against a garage wall or placed on a flat surface such as a floor or table top when not in use. When left in this manner, the detachable windshield assembly, which is typically made of a transparent, shatter-resistant material such as the polycarbonate resin sheet material sold under the trade designation LEXAN by the General Electric Corporation, can be stepped on, knocked over, scratched or otherwise damaged. A storage system is needed for protecting a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly from damage when the windshield assembly is detached from a motorcycle.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0006] The present invention provides a storage system for protecting a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly from damage when the windshield assembly is detached from a motorcycle. A storage system according to the present invention comprises a rigid base and a plurality of mounting bosses connected to the rigid base.

[0007] Each of the mounting bosses is adapted for releasable engagement with a corresponding mounting means for the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly.

[0008] In a preferred embodiment, the mounting means of the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly comprises a pair of generally U-shaped first sockets and a pair of generally U-shaped second sockets attached to the windshield assembly. The first sockets open in a substantially downward direction relative to the motorcycle when the windshield assembly is attached to the motorcycle, and the second sockets open in a substantially rearward direction relative to the motorcycle when the windshield assembly is attached to the motorcycle. The mounting bosses preferably comprise an elastomer member sized to be compressed when engaged by one of the generally U-shaped first or second sockets and a rigid insert that supports the elastomer member.

[0009] In the preferred embodiment of the invention, the rigid base is fastened to a wall using appropriate fasteners and mounting hardware. Thus, when a motorcycle rider decides to detach the windshield assembly from the motorcycle, the rider can easily press the mounting means of the windshield assembly into engagement with the mounting bosses and releasably secure the windshield assembly to the wall where it is protected from damage.

[0010] In an alternative embodiment, the rigid base is affixed to the inside portion of a hinged protective case. Preferably, the rigid base and the hinged protective case are integrally formed of a polymeric material. The motorcycle rider can thus store the windshield assembly inside the protective case so it can be carried by hand, shipped, or stored in a motor vehicle, such as when the motorcycle is being transported on a trailer.

[0011] The foregoing and other features of the invention are hereinafter more fully described and particularly pointed out in the claims, the following description setting forth in detail certain illustrative embodiments of the invention, these being indicative, however, of but a few of the various ways in which the principles of the present invention may be employed.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a storage system according to the present invention.

[0013] FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly.

[0014] FIG. 3 is side elevation view of the storage system shown in FIG. 1 and the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly shown in FIG. 2 in partial engagement.

[0015] FIG. 4 is a side elevation view of the storage system shown in FIG. 1 and the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly shown in FIG. 2 in full engagement.

[0016] FIG. 5 is a section view taken along the line I-I in FIG. 4.

[0017] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of an alternative embodiment of a storage system according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0018] FIG. 1 shows the presently most preferred embodiment of a storage system 10 for a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly according to the invention. The storage system 10 comprises a rigid base 20 and a plurality of mounting bosses 30 connected to the rigid base 20. Each mounting boss 30 is adapted for releasable engagement with a corresponding mounting means 40 of a detachable motorcycle windshield assembly 50, such as shown in FIG. 2.

[0019] The rigid base 20 can be formed from any high strength material such as, for example, metal (e.g., steel, chromed steel, aluminum), wood, fiberglass, or plastic. In the preferred embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the rigid base 20 comprises a flat, generally rectangular frame upon which a plurality of mounting bosses 30 are mounted. This configuration minimizes the amount of material needed to form the rigid base 20, and makes the rigid base 20 very easy to attach to a fixed vertical surface such as a wall. In the preferred embodiment, the rigid base 20 further comprises at least one and preferably a plurality of apertures 60 through which the anchoring portion of appropriate fasteners 70 (shown in FIGS. 3 and 4) can pass. The rigid base can thus be attached to a vertical surface such as a wall.

[0020] To provide adjustability, the rigid base can be made of a plurality of members that can be releasably connected to each other, or the rigid base can comprise a unitary member that is provided with a plurality of attachment points for mounting bosses. However, in the preferred embodiment of the invention, the rigid base comprises a unitary member having the mounting bosses mounted in a fixed location so as to be adapted to receive an engage a particular type or model of detachable motorcycle windshield assembly.

[0021] It will be appreciated that the shape of the rigid base 20 is not per se critical, and that the rigid base 20 can have virtually any shape provided it supports the plurality of mounting bosses 30. For example, the rigid base 20 could be a generally flat plate-like member having a shape and surface profile that is the same as a motorcycle manufacturer's trademark, thus providing an attractive wall decoration when the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly 50 is not attached. The rigid base 20 can also support other decoration and/or functionality such as, for example, a hook for storing a motorcycle helmet.

[0022] As noted above, the mounting bosses 30 must be adapted for releasable engagement with the corresponding mounting means 40 of the detachable motorcycle windshield assembly 50. A preferred mounting means 40 for a detachable motorcylce windshield assembly 50 is disclosed in Armstrong, U.S. Pat. No. 5,853,217, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

[0023] The windshield assembly 50 as disclosed in Armstrong comprises a windshield 80 formed of a transparent, shatter-resistant material having a cutout 90 formed in the lower edge of the windshield 80 such that windshield assembly 50 fits over the front fork and headlight of a motorcycle. The cutout 90 is framed by braces 100, which are suitably secured to the front portion of the windshield 80 by screws and nuts.

[0024] The windshield assembly 50 disclosed in Armstrong also includes a pair of mirror-image brackets 110 affixed on the rear or opposite side of the windshield 80 to the braces 100. Each bracket 110 includes an upper portion 120, and a lower portion 130 that extends downwardly from the rear edge of upper portion 120. A generally U-shaped first socket 140 is formed at the lower end of the lower portion 130 of each bracket 110 such that it opens in a substantially downward direction relative to the motorcycle when the windshield assembly 50 is attached to the motorcycle. A generally U-shaped second socket 150 is formed at the upper rear of upper portion 120 of each bracket 110 such that it opens in a substantially rearward direction relative to the motorcycle when the windshield assembly 50 is attached to the motorcycle.

[0025] A latch 160 is mounted adjacent to each of the second sockets 150. Each latch 160 consists of a heavy gauge wire spring that is bent to define a stem portion 170 and a head portion 180. The latch 160 is biased to hold a mounting boss 30 within the second socket 150 when the detachable windshield assembly 50 is engaged on the storage system 10.

[0026] In the preferred embodiment of the invention, a pair of mounting bosses 30 are connected to the rigid base 20 in a spaced-apart relationship exactly the same distance as exists between the first sockets and second sockets 140, 150. Each mounting boss 30 is oriented so as to be adapted for releasable engagement with a corresponding first socket 140 or second socket 150.

[0027] With reference to FIG. 5, each mounting boss 30 preferably comprises an elastomer member 190 having a central opening for receiving a rigid insert 200 such as, for example, a screw that secures the mounting boss 30 to the rigid base 20 through a vertically extending brace 210. The elastomer member 190 further comprises radially extending flanges 220. An annular metallic or plastic insert 230 is disposed between the flanges 220 for being engaged by the first or second socket 140, 150.

[0028] With reference to FIG. 3, in order to mount a detachable windshield assembly 50 to the storage system 10, the detachable windshield assembly 50 is positioned with the first sockets 140 on the lower ends of a pair of mounting bosses 30 connected to the rigid base 20. The width of each first socket 140 is sufficient to engage the insert 230. The detachable windshield assembly 50 is pressed downwardly onto the lower pair of mounting bosses 30 until the upper margin of the first sockets 140 engage the lower mounting bosses 30. The detachable windshield assembly is then pressed toward and pivoted against the storage system such that the second sockets 150 engage the upper mounting bosses 30. The latches 160 are flexed upwardly as the inserts 230 of the mounting boss 30 are pressed into the openings of the second sockets 150. The detachable windshield assembly 50 is pressed onto the upper pair of mounting bosses 30 until the rear margin of the second sockets 150 engage the upper mounting bosses 30. When the detachable windshield assembly 50 is fully seated on the mounting bosses 30 such as shown in FIG. 4, the spring bias provided by the latches 160 is sufficient to securely hold the detachable windshield assembly 50 in position on the storage system 10.

[0029] When it is desired to remove the detachable windshield assembly 50 from the storage system 10, the latches 160 are flexed upwardly allowing the second sockets 150 to be pulled away and disengaged from the upper mounting bosses 30. The detachable windshield assembly 50 may then be pivoted on the lower mounting bosses 30, and then the first sockets 140 can be pulled away and disengaged from the lower mounting bosses 30.

[0030] It will be appreciated that the storage system according to the present invention can be configured to releasably engage detachable windshield assemblies having mounting means that are different than the mounting means for the detachable windshield assembly disclosed in Armstrong. For example, when the detachable windshield assembly is configured as disclosed in Willey, U.S. Pat. No. 6,254,166, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety, the mounting bosses must be configured so as to be substantially similar to the attachment points as shown in FIGS. 3 and 3a of Willey. Similarly, when the detachable windshield assembly is configured as disclosed in Lawson et al., U.S. Pat. No. 6,176,538, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety, the mounting bosses will constitute tubular sections for engagement with the c-clips as shown in FIG. 2A of Lawson et al.

[0031] It will be appreciated that the storage system 10 according to the present invention can be mounted to surfaces other than a wall. For example, the rigid base 20 can be mounted to the inner portion 240 of a hinged protective case 250 such as shown in FIG. 6. In a preferred alternative embodiment of the invention, the rigid base 20 and the hinged protective case 250 are integrally formed of a polymeric material. The detachable windshield assembly 50 can thus be stored inside the protective case, where it can be carried by hand, shipped, or stored in a motor vehicle when the motorcycle is being transported on a trailer.

[0032] Additional advantages and modifications will readily occur to those skilled in the art. Therefore, the invention in its broader aspects is not limited to the specific details and illustrative examples shown and described herein. Accordingly, various modifications may be made without departing from the spirit or scope of the general inventive concept as defined by the appended claims and their equivalents.