Title:
Climbing shoe with multiple hardness rubber sole
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A climbing shoe includes an upper portion and an outer sole attached to the upper portion. The outer sole of the toe part has an edge area, a mid-area, and an interior area. The edge area will be made of rubber polymer with a hardness greater than the mid-area, and the mid-area will be made of rubber polymer with a hardness greater than the interior area. The edge area and mid-area will be substantially U-shaped along the toe part of the outer sole of the climbing shoes.



Inventors:
Chu, Young (Fullerton, CA, US)
Application Number:
10/029092
Publication Date:
06/26/2003
Filing Date:
12/21/2001
Assignee:
CHU YOUNG
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
36/59R, 36/32R
International Classes:
A43B5/00; A43B13/04; A43B13/12; A43B13/18; (IPC1-7): A43B13/04
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
KAVANAUGH, JOHN T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
YOUNG CHU (Fullerton, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed:



1. A climbing shoe comprising: a) an upper portion; and b) an outer sole attached to the upper portion, the outer sole having an edge area, a mid-area and an interior area, wherein the outer sole having a thickness substantially uniform, and wherein the edge area has a harder rubber polymer than the mid-area and the mid-area has a harder rubber polymer than the interior area.

2. The climbing shoe of claim 1, wherein the edge area of the toe of the outer sole has a width ‘w’, wherein the width ‘w’ is about one-fourth of an inch.

3. The climbing shoe of claim 2, wherein the thickness ‘t’ of the outer sole is about one-sixth of an inch.

4. The climbing shoe in claim 3, wherein the edge area of the toe part of the sole is substantially U-shaped.

5. The climbing shoe in claim 4, wherein the edge area has a rockwell hardness of between 70 through 85.

6. The climbing shoe in claim 5, wherein the mid-area has a rockwell hardness between 60 through 75.

7. The climbing shoe in claim 6, wherein the interior area has a rockwell hardness between 55 through 70.

8. The climbing shoe in claim 7, wherein the outer sole has multiple hardness rubber using different rubber polymers.

9. The climbing shoe of claim 8, wherein the top surface of the outer sole is substantially flat or semi-flat.

10. A climbing shoe comprising: a) an upper portion; and b) an outer sole attached to the upper portion, the outer sole having multiple hardness rubber, wherein the front portions, which are the edge area and mid-area, of the outer sole uses a harder rubber compound than the other portions of the outer sole, whereby the front portions can be used to provide stability to climbers on small footholds and the other portion can be used to provide stability on large footholds.

11. The climbing shoe in claim 10, wherein the edge area of front portion of the outer sole is hard and inflexible, wherein the rest of the outer sole is soft and flexible.

12. The climbing shoe in claim 11, wherein the edge area of the toe of the outer sole has a rockwell hardness between 70 through 85.

13. The climbing shoe in claim 12, wherein the mid-area has substantially the harder rubber hardness than the interior area and the softer rubber hardness than the edge area.

14. The climbing shoe in claim 13, wherein the other interior portion of the outer sole has a hardness less than the edge area and mid-area.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] Not applicable.

BACKGROUND

[0002] 1. Field of Invention

[0003] The invention relates to climbing shoes, specifically climbing shoe with a multiple hardness rubber sole that assists the climber in maintaining a firm foothold on the rocks.

[0004] 2. Description of Prior Art

[0005] Rock climbing shoes have two main functions, edging and smearing. Edging is to stand on a small foothold during the rock climbing. Smearing is to stand on a big foothold using the whole part of the toe during the rock climbing. With a flat surface, the edges of the toe are placed on small footholds in the rocks. For edging purposes, a climbing shoe should have a hard rubber sole to provide the stability in a small foothold. In addition, a climbing shoe should have a hard rubber toe part for edging purposes. For smearing purposes, a climbing shoe should have a soft rubber sole to provide maximum surface contact on a large foothold.

[0006] Traditional climbing shoes have generally a single hardness rubber sole on the toe part of the climbing shoe. Traditional climbing shoes with a single hardness rubber sole on toe part have disadvantages depending on the type of foothold a climber needs to use. Climbing shoes that have soft rubber soles may deform and a rock climber can slip during edging as a result. Furthermore, a toe part with soft rubber may fail to support the climber when edging. Climbing shoes that have hard rubber soles may not conform enough to provide maximum surface contact and a rock climber can slip during smearing as a result.

[0007] The prior art includes climbing shoes with a single hardness rubber sole. The traditional shoe design allows the sole to flex to grip the climbing surface with the toe part of the sole. This shoe design is disadvantageous for climbers if the rubber sole is too soft or too hard in relation to the type of foothold available to the climber. Just a small area of the bottom outer sole may be supporting the climber's entire weight in a small foothold and a hard rubber sole is required to give the necessary stability and support. The traditional shoe design is disadvantageous for climbers if the rubber sole is too hard. A larger area of the toe may be supporting the climber's weight in a large foothold that requires a soft rubber sole that will flex to provide a large contact area to prevent slipping.

[0008] There is a need for a climbing shoe with multiple hardness rubber sole where the stability of a climber can be maintained for both small and large footholds. The climber can lose his grip if the hardness of the rubber sole prevents full surface contact with a large foothold or the softness of the rubber sole prevents a strong rigid contact with a small foothold. A multiple hardness rubber sole will provide a rock climber stability and support for both small and large footholds.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] A climbing shoe with a multiple hardness rubber sole fulfills the objective of a climbing shoe that will provide stability and support in both small and large footholds. A climbing shoe with multiple hardness rubber will provide a hard rubber part for stability on small footholds and a soft rubber part for stability on large footholds. Furthermore, a climbing shoe with multiple hardness rubber sole will provide better stability with a hard rubber toe part for edging. The climbing shoe with a multiple hardness rubber sole provides greater stability and grip than traditional climbing shoes, which provides greater safety and confidence for the climber.

[0010] The climbing shoe includes an upper portion and an outer sole attached to the upper portion. The upper portion has a height ‘h’. The outer sole has an edge area, a mid-area and an interior area. The outer sole has a thickness “t” that is substantially uniform.

[0011] The edge area of the toe part of the sole, is made of rubber with a hardness “r1”. The edge runs along the front edge of the sole. The front edge is substantially U-shaped.

[0012] The mid-area of the sole is made of rubber with a hardness “r2.”. The mid-area runs along the inner edge of the sole between edge area and interior area of the sole. The mid-area is substantially U-shaped.

[0013] The interior area of the sole is made of rubber with a hardness “r3”. The interior area extends to substantially cover the back section and the entire outer sole, excluding the edge area and the mid-area of the sole.

[0014] The climbing shoe with multiple hardness rubber is further described with detail in the appended figures, description and claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

[0015] FIG. 1 is a cutaway side view of the climbing shoe.

[0016] FIG. 2 is a bottom view of the climbing shoe showing the multiple hardness rubber sole.

[0017] FIG. 3 is a cutaway side view of the climbing shoe along the 5-5 line as shown in FIG. 2.

[0018] FIG. 4. is a cutaway side view of the climbing shoe along the 6-6 line as shown in FIG. 2.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

[0019] Referring to FIG. 1 through FIG. 4, a climbing shoe 10 includes an upper portion 11 and an outer sole 12 attached to the upper portion 11. The outer sole 12 has an edge area 15, a mid-area 14, and an interior area 13. The multiple hardness rubber sole is created by the differences in hardness between the edge part 15, the mid-area 14, and the interior area 13. The interior area 13 has a thickness ‘t’. The edge area 15 and the mid-area have a thickness ‘t’.

[0020] Referring to the cutaway side view of FIG. 1, the upper portion 11 can include any material commonly used for shoes, such as leather, nylon and cotton fabrics. The upper portion 11 has a height ‘h’.

[0021] Referring to the bottom view of FIG. 2, the outer sole 12 can be made primarily from a rubber polymer. The size and dimensions of the outer sole 12 can vary smaller or larger based on the climber's foot size. The edge area 15 and mid-area 14 are substantially U-shaped. The edge area 15 has a width ‘w’. In one embodiment, ‘w’ of the edge area 15 is one-fourth of an inch. The mid-area 14 has a width ‘w’. In one embodiment, ‘w’ of the mid-area 14 is about one-fourth of an inch.

[0022] Referring to the cutaway side view of FIG. 3, along the 5-5 line as shown in FIG. 2, the edge area 15, the mid-area 14 and the interior area 13 can be made primarily from a rubber polymer.

[0023] The edge area 15 will have a rubber hardness ‘r1’ greater than the mid-area 14 and interior area 13. In one embodiment, ‘r1’ of the edge area 15 is a rockwell hardness greater than or equal to 70, but less than or equal to 85. The hardness of the rubber ‘r1’ in the edge area 15 will provide added stability for small footholds and will support the climber.

[0024] The mid-area 14 will have a rubber hardness ‘r2’ greater than the interior area 13. In one embodiment, ‘r2’ of the mid-area 14 is a rockwell hardness greater than or equal to 60, but less than or equal to 75. The hardness of the rubber ‘r2’ in the mid-area 14 will provide added stability for small footholds and will support the climber.

[0025] The interior area 13 will have rubber hardness ‘r3’ softer than the mid-area 14 and the edge area 15. The hardness of the rubber ‘r3’ in the interior area 13 will allow flexibility to provides added stability for large footholds and will support the climber. In one embodiment, ‘r3’ of the interior area 13 is a rockwell hardness greater than or equal to 55, but less than or equal to 70.

[0026] The edge area 15 will be on the outer edges of the front portion of the outer sole 12. The mid-area 14 will be between the edge area 15 and the interior area 13. The interior area 13 will cover the remaining portion to the outer sole 12.

[0027] Although the present invention has been described in considerable detail with regard to the preferred version thereof, other versions are possible. Therefore, the appended claims should not be limited to the descriptions of the preferred versions contained herein.

REFERENCE NUMERALS IN DRAWINGS

[0028] 10 climbing shoe

[0029] 11 upper portion

[0030] 12 outer sole

[0031] 13 interior area

[0032] 14 mid-area

[0033] 15 edge area