Title:
High-performance Chopper Throttle
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip may include an inner flexible sleeve member being expandable to be positioned over the handlebar grip, an outer flexible sleeve member to be positioned over the inner flexible sleeve member and rotatable with respect to the inner flexible sleeve member, a position device to measure the position of the inter-flexible sleeve member with respect to the outer flexible sleeve member, and a control housing member to generate a sound which mimics a motorcycle.



Inventors:
Howell, George (Crandall, TX, US)
Application Number:
12/185076
Publication Date:
02/04/2010
Filing Date:
08/02/2008
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63H5/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
FLETCHER, MARLON T
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WILSON DANIEL SWAYZE, JR. (PLANO, TX, US)
Claims:
1. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip, comprising: an inner flexible sleeve member being expandable to be positioned over the handlebar grip; an outer flexible sleeve member to be positioned over the inner flexible sleeve member and rotatable with respect to the inner flexible sleeve member; a position device to measure the position of the inter-flexible sleeve member with respect to the outer flexible sleeve member; a control housing member to generate a sound which mimics a motorcycle.

2. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 1, wherein the control housing member includes a first flexible attachment member for attaching the control housing member to the handlebar grip.

3. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 2, wherein the control housing member includes a second flexible attachment member to connect to the first flexible attachment member for attaching the control housing member to the handlebar grip.

4. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 1, wherein the control housing member includes a control circuit to generate the sounds which mimic a motorcycle.

5. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 4, wherein the control circuit includes a speaker member.

6. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 4, wherein the control circuit includes a position detector member.

7. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 6, or in a controller/memory member is activated by the position detector member based upon the position device.

8. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 7, wherein the controller/memory member activates the speaker circuit based upon the position detector member.

9. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 7, wherein a controller/memory member generates a sound corresponding to a motorcycle changing gears when the position detector member detects that the outer flexible sleeve member has been rotated a predetermined distance.

10. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 7, wherein the controller/memory member generates a sound corresponding to a motorcycle going faster when the position detector detects that the outer flexible sleeve member is increasingly rotated.

11. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 1, wherein the first flexible attachment member connects to the second flexible attachment member by hooks and loops.

12. A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip as in claim 7, wherein the control circuit includes a power storage member.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to a throttle controller and more particularly to a throttle controller which generates sounds which may mimic motorcycle sounds and which is responsive to the position of the throttle.

BACKGROUND

Motorcycles have generated a great deal of interest in future drivers which may include children and young adults. Many of these drivers look forward to the day that they will be able to drive their own motorcycle. Some of these drivers are too young to drive a motorcycle, yet these drivers wish to participate in the excitement of driving a motorcycle. However, these drivers may be relegated to driving a bicycle or tricycle or other vehicle which may be appropriate for their age group.

A bicycle or tricycle or other such vehicle may have an existing handle grip which may be mounted on the handlebars of the bicycle or tricycle. These handle bar grips may be difficult to remove, and removing these handle grips may significantly detract from the appearance and usefulness of the bicycle or tricycle. Furthermore, these handle grips may include a portion which has an increased diameter which may have to be considered.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,276,230 discloses a throttle controller which includes an electrical position sensor having a movable element and being mounted on a steering mechanism, such as a handlebar, and a mechanical interface from the position sensor to a throttle handle. The movement of the throttle handle actuates the mechanical interface which, in turn, alters the position of the movable element in the position sensor. The changeable position of the movable element thus provides an electrical indication of the position of the throttle handle suitable for controlling the internal combustion engine or electric motor. The position sensor may be a rotary position sensor having a rotor as the movable element, wherein rotating the throttle handle rotates the rotor. The throttle controller is particularly useful on a personal water craft, all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, etc. Potentiometers or Hall effect devices are both suitable for use as the position sensor.

A wide variety of devices and methods exist that are related to position sensors. A few examples of patents related to position sensors are as follows, each of which is herein incorporated by reference for its pertinent and supportive teachings:

U.S. Pat. No. 5,828,290 is a modular position sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,460,035 is a bearing free spring free throttle position sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,416,295 is a combined pedal force switch and position sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,415,144 is a throttle position validation method and apparatus;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,385,068 is an electronic accelerator pedal assembly with pedal force sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,321,980 is an integrated throttle position sensor with independent position validation sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,133,321 is an integrated throttle control and idle validation sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,047,746 is a potentiometer wiper assembly;

U.S. Pat. No. 5,039,975 is a resistor substrate for a variable resistor employed in a throttle sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,703,649 is a throttle valve opening sensor;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,688,420 is a throttle valve position detecting device for a vehicle engine;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,621,250 is a rotary potentiometer, particularly for measuring angular position;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,616,504 is a throttle position sensor with a potentiometer modular that fits into a connector casing;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,435,691 is a dual track resistor element having nonlinear output;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,430,634 is a rotary potentiometer with molded terminal package;

U.S. Pat. No. 4,334,352 is a method of making of a variable resistance control; and

U.S. Pat. No. 3,643,198 is a linear displacement transducer system.

One possible way of controlling recreational machines, such as personal water craft, all-terrain vehicles, and motorcycles, uses a twist-grip mechanism as an interface to the engine throttle via a complex set of mechanical linkages and cables. This method employs transmitting the driver's input at the handlebar of the vehicle to the throttle plate on the engine carburetor. Another possible way of controlling these machines is with the use of electronic circuitry.

One component of such electronic circuitry often includes a potentiometer used to sense the position of the throttle valve. This potentiometer is in some ways similar to the volume controls used in radio and television receivers. A voltage is applied across the extreme ends of a resistor. An intermediate tap is provided between the two extreme ends of the resistor. The tap is mechanically linked to the device which is to be sensed, such as the throttle valve, and the position of the device is determined by the voltage at the intermediate tap. Thus, a precise position of a throttle valve may be determined by linking it to a potentiometer mounted on the engine. Once the position is known, other adjustments may be made to control the engine at a higher efficiency.

SUMMARY

A throttle device adapted to generate a motorcycle sounds for use with a handlebar grip may include an inner flexible sleeve member being expandable to be positioned over the handlebar grip, an outer flexible sleeve member to be positioned over the inner flexible sleeve member and rotatable with respect to the inner flexible sleeve member, a position device to measure the position of the inter-flexible sleeve member with respect to the outer flexible sleeve member, and a control housing member to generate a sound which mimics a motorcycle.

The control housing member may include a first flexible attachment member for attaching the control housing member to the handlebar grip, and the control housing member may include a second flexible attachment member to connect to the first flexible attachment member for attaching the control housing member to the handlebar grip.

The control housing member may include a control circuit to generate the sounds which mimic a motorcycle, and the control circuit may include a speaker member.

The control circuit may include a position detector member, and the controller/memory member may be activated by the position detector member based upon the position device.

The controller/memory member may activate the speaker circuit based upon the position detector member, and the controller/memory member may generate a sound corresponding to a motorcycle changing gears when the position detector member detects that the outer flexible sleeve member has been rotated a predetermined distance.

The controller/memory member may generate a sound corresponding to a motorcycle going faster when the position detector detects that the outer flexible sleeve member is increasingly rotated, and the first flexible attachment member may connect to the second flexible attachment member by hooks and loops.

The control circuit may include a power storage member.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention may be understood by reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which, like reference numerals identify like elements, and in which:

FIG. 1 illustrates a perspective view of the control housing member of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a circuit diagram of a control circuit of the present invention;

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view of the control housing member mounted on a handlebar;

FIG. 4 illustrates a perspective view of the inner and outer sleeve members of the present invention;

FIG. 5 illustrates an end view of the inner and outer sleeve members of the present invention;

FIG. 6 illustrates a perspective view of the control housing member and the inner and outer flexible sleeve members mounted on a handlebar grip.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The present invention provides an apparatus that includes a throttle control which may be flexible in order to be positioned over a existing handlebar handle/grip and subsequently may be removed from the existing handlebar handle/grip. The throttle activates a control circuit which may generate a sound which corresponds to the sound of a motorcycle or chopper motorcycle, and in addition, as the throttle is rotated, the sound corresponds to the motorcycle changing gears and mimics will the sound of the motorcycle operating at a faster rate. Consequently, the throttle and control circuit mimic the operation and sound of a motorcycle providing increased excitement with its operation.

FIG. 1 illustrates a perspective view of the control housing member 101 of the present invention. The control housing member 101 may include the control circuit 200. The surface of the control housing member 101 may include an activation switch member 103 to activate the control circuit of the present invention and a speaker member 105 to generate the appropriate sounds which may include the sound of the motorcycle changing gears. The control housing member 101 may include a first flexible attachment member 107 and a second flexible attachment member 109 in order to mount the control housing member 101 on the handlebars or grip of the bicycle or tricycle. Each of the first flexible attachment member 107 and the second flexible attachment member 109 may include Velcro such as hooks and loops, belts, hooks snaps etc. in order to connect the first flexible attachment member 107 and a second flexible attachment member 109 around the handlebars or hang grip of a bicycle or tricycle or other type of vehicle of the present invention.

FIG. 2 illustrates a circuit diagram of the control circuit 200 of the present invention. The control circuit 200 may include the actuation switch member 103 to activate and deactivate the control circuit 200 by the user and consequently controls the sound. The control circuit 200 may include a speaker member 105 to generate the motorcycle sounds in accordance with the controller/memory member 111 which may be connected to the position detector member 115 and may include a power storage member 113 to store power for the control circuit 200. The position detector member 115 may detect the position of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 with respect to the outer flexible sleeve member 113. As the outer flexible sleeve member 133 is rotated with respect to the inner flexible sleeve member 131, the position detector member 115 detects the rotation of the outer flexible sleeve member 133 with respect to the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and signals the controller/memory member 111 to generate sounds which correspond to a faster motorcycle engine when the outer flexible sleeve member is rotated further and also corresponds to the motorcycle shifting gears when the outer flexible sleeve member has been rotated a predetermined distance. Consequently, as the user rotates the outer flexible sleeve member 133, a faster engine is heard by the user, and the user hears changing gears.

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view of the control housing member 101 and illustrates the first flexible attachment member 107 and the second flexible attachment member 109; the first flexible attachment member 107 and the second flexible attachment member 109 may be detachably connected together to attach the control housing member 101 onto the handlebars 135 or handlebar grips 137.

FIG. 4 illustrates a side view of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 which may be formed from flexible material in order to cover the handlebar 135 or the handlebar grips 137 and may expand to cover different sizes handle bar 135 or handlebar grips 137. The internal surface of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 may form a friction fit with the handlebar 135 or handlebar grips 137. The exterior surface of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and the inner surface of the outer flexible sleeve member 135 slidingly rotate so that the user can obtain the feel of using a real throttle of a motorcycle. The inner flexible sleeve member 131 or the outer flexible sleeve member 135 may include a position device 139 in order to provide a position of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 to the outer flexible sleeve member 133 and send a signal to the position detector member 115 indicating the relative position. A pair of bushing members 151 may be positioned on each end of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and the outer flexible sleeve member 133 in order to maintain the outer flexible sleeve member 133 over the inner flexible sleeve member 131.

FIG. 5 illustrates an end view of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 which may be formed from flexible material in order to cover the handlebar 135 or the handlebar grips 137 and may expand to cover different sizes handle bar 135 or handlebar grips 137. The internal surface of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 may form a friction fit with the handlebar 135 or handlebar grips 137. The exterior surface of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and the inner surface of the outer flexible sleeve member 135 slidingly rotate so that the user may obtain the feel of using a real throttle of a motorcycle. A pair of bushing members 151 may be positioned on each end of the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and the outer flexible sleeve member 133 in order to maintain the outer flexible sleeve member 133 over the inner flexible sleeve member 131.

FIG. 6 illustrates the control housing member 101 which may be connected to the handlebar grip 137 by the first flexible attachment member 107 and the second flexible attachment member 109 and the inner flexible sleeve member 131 and the outer flexible sleeve member 133. The position device 139 is connected to the position detector member 115 by a flexible bridge member 153 which may include an electrical wire for the connection. The flexible bridge member 153 may be sufficiently flexible in order to extend over or cross an enlarged diameter portion 155 of the handlebar grip 137. The enlarged diameter portion 115 may be of varying heights or may not be formed on the handle grip 137. However, the flexible bridge member 153 allows for the connection of the outer flexible sleeve member 113 to the control circuit 200 positioned within the control housing member 101. The present invention can be used with handle grip 137 whether or not the handle grip 137 includes an enlarged diameter portion 115. The flexible bridge member 153 may allow the control housing member 101 to be mounted on the handlebar 115, eliminating the need for the control housing member 101 to be directly adjacent to the outer flexible sleeve member 113 and the bearing member 151.

While the invention is susceptible to various modifications and alternative forms, specific embodiments thereof have been shown by way of example in the drawings and are herein described in detail. It should be understood, however, that the description herein of specific embodiments is not intended to limit the invention to the particular forms disclosed.