Title:
Tent stake
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A co-axial tent stake intended for use by campers that is comprised of a long outer hollow tubular stake which has co-axially nested inside a shorter wire stake, inner wire stake can be removed from the outer stake by twisting off the end cap of the outer stake. The sharp point of the wire stake is sheathed by the outer hollow stake when stored. To reduce the weight of the co-axial tent stake, either stake or both stakes can be fabricated with carbon fiber composite materials.



Inventors:
Warren, Bruce A. (Lake Jackson, TX, US)
Application Number:
10/065873
Publication Date:
05/27/2004
Filing Date:
11/26/2002
Assignee:
WARREN BRUCE A.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04H15/62; (IPC1-7): E04H15/62
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
YIP, WINNIE S
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BRUCE A. WARREN (LAKE JACKSON, TX, US)
Claims:
1. A tent stake of multiple parts comprising a) an outer stake with a tubular cross-section; b) an inner stake with a solid cross-section; bonded to an end cap of a diameter larger than said outer stake; c) wherein said inner stake can be fixed coaxially inside said outer stake:

2. A tent stake of multiple parts comprising a) a length of carbon fiber composite tubing; b) an end cap of shorter length and greater diameter fitted to one end of said length; c) a metallic point bonded to the other end of said length.

3. A tent stake of multiple parts comprising a) an outer stake with a tubular cross-section; b) an inner stake with a tubular cross-section wherein said inner stake is bonded to an end cap of a diameter larger than said outer stake; c) wherein said inner stake can be fixed coaxially inside said outer stake.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

[0001] Tent stakes are used by backpackers to maintain the structural integrity of their tent. Lightweight tents typically utilize at least four and sometimes as many as 12 stakes. Many varieties of stakes are available on the market. Lightweight backpacking tent stakes are made from plastic, aluminum and titanium and are available in many different cross-sections, including round tubes, solid wire, Y-cross-section, and T-cross-section. Lengths vary from 6 inches to 12 inches. This large variety is due to the different types of surfaces upon which the tent may be setup. The surface may be soft dirt, deep pine needles, rocks, sand, soft snow, icy snow, packed dirt, frozen ground, tree roots, and any combination of these surfaces. Many types of tent stakes prove useless in some soils, such as a wire type stake in beach sand. Beach sand will require a fatter cross-section and a longer length to insure wind forces due not pull the stake out. But a long, fat stake will bend if pounded into a rocky soil. Snow requires long wide stakes; soils with tree roots need a short, sharp wire stake made of titanium that will not bend when hammered.

[0002] Backpackers strive for light weight and compact gear. Many backpackers will carry several sets of stakes to be sure the tent will work at all campsites. Typically a long tubular stake and a short wire stake are enough for all but extreme campsites. But tent stakes are easy to lose and are usually dirty and have sharp edges. It would be desirable to carry a stake that combined the features of a long tubular stake and a short wire stake. It is also desirable to reduce the weight of the tent stake by using carbon fiber composite materials where possible.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

[0003] The invention is a co-axial tent stake optimized for use by lightweight backpackers that is comprised of a long outer hollow tubular stake which has co-axially nested inside a shorter solid rod stake. The inner rod stake can be removed from the outer stake by twisting the end cap of the inner stake from its attachment to the outer stake. This allows the camper to use the long and fat outer stake in soft ground, sand, or snow or use the inner stiff rod stake in rocky, hard-packed, or root-filled soils. The sharp point of the wire stake is sheathed by the outer hollow stake when stored in the backpack. The two stakes can be tethered together with a string and also tethered to the tent strap to insure they do not get lost. To reduce the weight of the co-axial tent stake, either stake or both stakes can be fabricated with aluminum, titanium, or carbon fiber composite materials.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0004] FIG. 1 is a view of the nested co-axial stake as it would be used in soft soils.

[0005] FIG. 2 is a view of the inner stake partially removed from the outer stake.

[0006] FIG. 3 is the inner stake by itself as it would be used in hard soils.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0007] The co-axial tent stake as shown in FIG. 1 is typically comprised of two tent stakes, one nested coaxially inside the other, but can be three or more stakes co-axially nested. The most universal and lightest stake will have a hollow outer stake 11 with a shaft of carbon fiber composite and an inner stake of titanium rod as shown in FIG. 3 with a sharp point 32. The inner stake shaft 31 is fitted with an aluminum end cap 12. Alternatively, the end cap 12 can be made of carbon fiber composite material or another metal such as titanium or a high impact plastic. The end cap 12 can be one piece that, when removed with the attached inner stake 31, leaves no end cap remaining on the outer stake shaft 11, or the end cap 12 can be constructed in two pieces such that one piece is removable with the inner stake 31 and one piece remains behind bonded to the outer stake shaft 11. This would enable each component of the co-axial stake to be used independently as the outer stake will still have a wide top to retain the tie-down line from the tent or shelter. The end cap 12 can also be formed by molding the material used to manufacture stake 31 into a wider diameter, similar to the head of a common nail.

[0008] The inner stake 31 is typically made of solid titanium for bend resistance with light weight, but other metal alloys can be used. Or alternatively, the inner stake 31 can be made of hollow metallic tubing or carbon fiber composite tubing typically used to make hunting arrows. If a carbon fiber inner stake is utilized, the tip of the stake will be reinforced with a pointed metal tip bonded inside the carbon fiber tubing. The inner stake 31 of the prototypical stake is a solid titanium wire to enable it to withstand being hammered with a rock or hammer into tight soils, rock cracks, or tree roots The inner stake 31 is permanently bonded to the end cap 12 by force fitting it into a smaller hole in the aluminum end cap 12 or it can be bonded with high strength epoxy or other method of attachment. A co-axial stake of the invention must have an end cap 12 that is tightly fixed to the shaft of the outer stake 11 when the two stakes are nested and used in the configuration shown in FIG. 1, when the stake will most commonly be pushed by hand or boot into sand or soft soils. The line from the tent or shelter will be looped around and under the end cap 12 and this force must not pull the inner stake of FIG. 3 loose from the outer stake shaft 11. To accomplish this, the end cap 12 is attached to the stake shaft 11 by using a press-fit pin 21 inserted into the end cap 12 such that it slips into an ā€˜Lā€™ shaped slot 22 in the wall of the outer tube shaft 11. By pushing and turning, the hiker can mate the inner stake of FIG. 3 with the stake shaft 11 such that they lock together. By twisting in the opposite direction and pulling, the two stakes can be easily separated. Alternatively, the end cap 12 and outer stake shaft 11 can have matching threads to allow screwing and unscrewing the two stakes; a spring loaded ball detent mechanism could be incorporated; a friction fit joint can be fitted, or another method of connection could be used.