Patents Examined by Charles R. Watts
  • Patent number: 4824136
    Abstract: Landing gear for a vehicle such as a trailer, comprising a leg, a foot at the lower end of the leg adapted for engagement with the ground, a pair of generally channel-shaped members forming a tube which extends up from the foot and telescopically receives the lower end of the leg, the members being generally symmetric about a central vertical plane of the tube, an elastomeric member disposed in the tube between the lower end of the leg and the foot, and a bearing plate in the tube interposed between the elastomeric member and the lower end of the leg. The tube is attached to the lower end of the leg to permit limited telescopic movement of the leg and the foot whereby the foot is adapted to move upwardly relative to the leg as the landing gear accepts the weight of the vehicle thereby resiliently to compress the elastomeric member between the foot and the bearing plate. A method of making the foot and tube of the landing gear is also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 1987
    Date of Patent: April 25, 1989
    Assignee: The Binkley Company
    Inventor: Baxter G. Bobby
  • Patent number: 4811967
    Abstract: A hitch for connecting a trailer to a tow vehicle includes a hitch bar which projects from the tow vehicle and a hitch box which receives the end of the hitch bar and is coupled to one trailer through a hitch ball and a socket-type coupler. The hitch bar has a shank provided along its four sides with beveled surfaces that are presented outwardly and rearwardly. The hitch box, on the other hand, has a box-like enclosure provided with a forwardly presented open end through which the shank of the hitch bar projects. The enclosure furthermore contains beveled surfaces which conform to the beveled surfaces on the hitch bar shank and indeed seat against those surfaces when the hitch bar is fully inserted into the hitch box. The beveled surfaces of the hitch bar and box are maintained in this seated condition by over center clamps, and when so seated, the hitch box will not shift relative to the hitch bar.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 14, 1989
    Inventor: James C. Hensley
  • Patent number: 4811965
    Abstract: A vehicle hitch for automatically connecting a vehicle to a trailer or connecting two vehicles for pushing or pulling one or the other. The hitch includes a coupling member mounted for pivotal movement in generally horizontal and vertical planes and provided with a shock absorber for cushioning certain forces and movements. An attachement pin has a cam surface to permit automatic coupling and can be locked in a disconnect position to simplify decoupling of the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 14, 1989
    Inventor: Hubert M. Eubanks
  • Patent number: 4811964
    Abstract: A wheelchair propelled by rowing action includes a wheelchair frame with a pair of large main rear wheels connected by an axle, a rowing lever pivotally connected to the frame, a steering shaft with a handlebar grip mounted coaxially within the rowing lever and connected by a universal joint to a steering linkage connected to caster brackets mounting small front wheels, a pair of ratcheted sprockets mounted on the axle, a pair of sprocket chain segments connected by cables through pulleys to the rowing lever such that pulling and pushing of the rowing lever alternately causes driving engagement of one of the ratchets with the axles for propulsion and causes the other to slip. The leverage exerted by the rowing lever on the ratcheted sprockets is adjustable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 25, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 14, 1989
    Inventor: Douglas J. Horn
  • Patent number: 4809998
    Abstract: A collapsible wheelchair and a lift assembly which is permanently mountable in a vehicle and operable for moving the wheelchair and an occupant thereof between the interior and the exterior of the vehicle. The wheelchair includes a chair member and a pair of enlarged rear wheels on the chair member which are operable for movably supporting the rear portion of the chair member on a supporting surface when the chair member is in the erected position thereof. The wheelchair is movable to a collapsed position wherein one of the rear wheels is positioned behind the back portion of the chair member in substantially parallel relation therewith and the other rear wheel is positioned beneath the seat portion of the chair member in substantially parallel relation therewith. When the wheelchair is in the collapsed position, it has a reduced overall profile to enable the wheelchair and an occupant thereof to be effectively moved between the interior and the exterior of a vehicle with the lift assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 1987
    Date of Patent: March 7, 1989
    Assignee: K G Engineering, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert H. Girvin
  • Patent number: 4807900
    Abstract: A trailer hitch having a rotatable draw plate, which trailer hitch is characterized by a metal frame adapted for mounting on the bumper plate of a truck bumper and a pivot plate rotatably attached to the frame for selectively positioning a removable hitch ball outwardly of the housing in functional configuration and inwardly of the housing in non-functional configuration. The pivot plate is secured with the hitch ball in selective functional and non-functional configuration by means of a latch located in the frame. In a preferred embodiment, the trailer hitch is bolted to the bumper plate of the truck and is located beneath the bumper plate and bumper.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 28, 1989
    Inventor: Woodrow R. Tate
  • Patent number: 4807712
    Abstract: A self-propelled table for carrying and/or lifting/lowering objects for invalid people having a hollow plastic upper enclosure which is padded at the edges and upon the surface of which contains anti-slip recesses and a joystring assembly. The lower portion of this assemblage is attached to a vertically mounted, telescoping tubular assembly which may be either fixed or supplemented with a motor-power assembly with which to adjust the height-away-from-the-floor of the uppermost serving surface. The bottom of the tubular assembly is attached to the upper portion of a hollow plastic lower enclosure which contains wheels, motors, batteries, and electronic circuits to translate the electronic signals from the joystring into meaningful wheel motions. Pulling the free end of the joystring causes the invention to propell itself and it's load in the same direction that the joystring was pulled; thereby providing handicapped people with the ability to perform simple tasks unassisted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 23, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 28, 1989
    Inventor: Christopher Skottegard
  • Patent number: 4805717
    Abstract: Bracket construction of the motor-transmission assembly of a motorcycle comprising at least one front axle assembly and at least one rear axle assembly, wherein at least one connecting element operating under tensile stresses connects the means for securing the front and rear axle by assemblies, thus displacing downwards the neutral zone of bending of the engine assembly, this invention being applied to a motorcycle with a standard motor block working operating in a bending condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 27, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1989
    Assignee: ELF FRANCE
    Inventor: Daniel Trema
  • Patent number: 4805927
    Abstract: A hitch adapter couples a semi-integral, PTO-driven implement to a quick coupler carried by a tractor three-point hitch. The hitch adapter includes a drawbar located significantly below the level of the connection of lower three-point hitch link with the quick coupler and a parking stand is integral with the bottom of the drawbar. Lowering of the three-point hitch from a normal working position results in the stand engaging the ground to prevent interference between the hitch and the drive shaft coupling the implement to the tractor PTO shaft. Once the stand engages the ground, the hitch adapter can be disconnected from the quick coupler hooks by releasing latches associated with the lower hooks and lowering the three-point hitch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1989
    Assignee: Deere & Company
    Inventors: Roger D. Stephenson, James C. Walters, Craig A. Richardson
  • Patent number: 4805714
    Abstract: A power steering system which includes a fluid source that supplies pressure fluid of a constant flow rate, a fluid motor for supplementing manual steering torque, a servo-valve for distributing fluid to the fluid motor, and a reaction device for applying hydraulic reaction or feeling to a steering wheel. A magnetic control valve is connected to the reaction device to control fluid pressure applied thereto in accordance with a vehicle operating condition, such a vehicle speed. A flow dividing valve serves to divide the pressure fluid of a constant flow rate in a predetermined ratio into first and second flows which are respectively directed to the servo-valve and reaction device. A bypass conduit provided with a bypass orifice is connected between the fluid source and the servo-valve in parallel relation with the flow dividing valve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 16, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1989
    Assignee: Toyoda Koki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Keiichi Nakamura, Susumu Honaga, Mikio Suzuki, Hiroshi Kawakami
  • Patent number: 4805925
    Abstract: The sports wheelchair includes a frame portion (A) having left and right side frame portions. Rear wheel assemblies (B) are connected with the left and right side frame portions such that the rear wheels are connectable to the frame in any one of a plurality of positions and with an adjustable camber. A pair of front wheel assemblies (C) selectively interconnect front wheels with the frame with any one of a plurality of adjustable height, inward-outward, and forward-aft positions. An operator supporting seat (D) having a segmented center portion and an outer portion is selectively interconnected with the left and right side frame portions. A folding mechanism (E) enables the left and right side frame portions to be folded together for easier transportation and storage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 21, 1989
    Assignee: Invacare Corporation
    Inventors: Gilbert E. Haury, Nathalal C. Patel, Walter G. Lockard, Thomas R. Wiatrak, Neal J. Curran
  • Patent number: 4802545
    Abstract: A steering system for an articulated vehicle has pivotal wheel steering such as front axle wagon-wheel steering, a hydraulic actuator for pivoting the axle with respect to the vehicle, and a pair of hydraulic actuators for causing articulation of the vehicle. The system includes sensors for providing signals dependent on the degree of front wheel pivot relative to the vehicle and the degree of articulation of the vehicle. These signals are detected by a microprocessor controller which in turn controls the sequence of actuation of the axle and articulation hydraulic actuators. The actuators are operated sequentially so that small directional changes of the vehicles are achieved solely through pivoting of the axle. Operation of the axle and articulation actuators is controlled by a manual steering unit having a conventional hydraulic steering valve, with sequencing being provided through manipulation of a hydraulic fluid diverter valve.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1987
    Date of Patent: February 7, 1989
    Assignee: J. I. Case Company
    Inventors: Paul A. Nystuen, Barry D. Batcheller, Kevin L. Brekkestran, Calvin J. Kraning
  • Patent number: 4801153
    Abstract: A trailer for a pontoon boat or other multiple-hull water craft has a pair of V-shaped glide members positioned for supporting the pontoons along substantially their entire length. The glide members are covered with a fabric, such as carpet, and are provided with a plurality of rollers in the bight of the V to provide superior support and to assist in loading and unloading a craft. The glides and frame beneath are articulated so that a rear trailer portion may be pivoted to assist in loading and unloading a craft. The trailer wheels are located laterally beyond the glides to provide exceptional load stability.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 31, 1989
    Assignee: World Pride Welding, Inc.
    Inventor: Parks B. Wilson
  • Patent number: 4799705
    Abstract: The hitching aid disclosed is for use with agricultural tractors. It is used to allow the tractor to be backed onto a trailer, whereupon the trailer becomes automatically hitched to the tractor. The aid includes a converging channel which receives the head of the trailer's draw-pin. The channel draws the pin-head into a throat, thus aligning the pin before the pin enters the pin-receiving jaws. Thus, any abusive loads due to mismatch, etc., are taken by the bulbous head of the pin and the channel, rather than by the shank of the pin and the jaws.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 24, 1989
    Inventors: John B. Janes, Carson I. Anderson
  • Patent number: 4799566
    Abstract: A motor-operated power steering apparatus having a failure diagnosis function for a motor control device includes a steering force transmitting mechanism for transmitting a manual steering force applied to a steering wheel to a steerable road wheel, an electric motor for generating assistive power, an auxiliary power transmitting mechanism for transmitting the assistive power generated by the electric motor to the steering force transmitting mechanism, motor control means for controlling operation of the electric motor in response to the manual steering force, first direction detecting mechanism disposed in the steering force transmitting mechanism for detecting the direction of the manual steering force and generating a signal indicative of the direction of the manual steering force, second direction detecting mechanism for detecting the direction of the assistive power generated by the electric motor and generating a signal indicative of the direction of the assistive power, ascertaining mechanism for ascer
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 1988
    Date of Patent: January 24, 1989
    Assignee: Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Yasuo Shimizu
  • Patent number: 4798253
    Abstract: An electric power steering apparatus comprising an axial conversion mechanism includes a slider for converting the relative rotation between an input shaft and an output shaft to an axial deviation. A first sensing unit senses axial deviation of the slider. It includes a lever with a torque sensing element fixed thereto with the lever fixed at one end and supported at the other end by the slider. A second sensing unit senses the direction of rotation, or the direction and torque of rotation, of a steering wheel. A controller compares the output signals from the first and second sensing units and controls the direction and torque of rotation of an electric motor which contributes to the steering force. The comparison value between the signals from the first and second sensing units is used to stop the motor when the comparison value is outside a predetermined range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 17, 1989
    Assignee: Aisin Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Hiroshi Naito
  • Patent number: 4796722
    Abstract: A drive shaft apparatus for transverse engine vehicles including an opening portion formed in a bracket in the radial direction into which a pressing mechanism with an elastic body is fitted from the outside of the bracket, thereby pressing the outer peripheral surface of a bearing against the inner peripheral surface of a through hole which is formed in the bracket.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 10, 1989
    Assignee: Toyota Jidosha Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Tadanobu Kumagai
  • Patent number: 4796907
    Abstract: A chain-propelled vehicle is driven forward by pulling a spring-biased lever to which the chain is attached. The vehicle is steered by feet of an operator and has a steering-box geometry which imparts camber to a rear wheel when the vehicle negotiates a turn.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 10, 1989
    Inventor: Herbert Geller
  • Patent number: 4795182
    Abstract: A wheelchair is provided including a forward transversely extending support mounted at one forward corner of the wheelchair for angular displacement about a horizontal axis for movement between a closed position extending between opposite side forward corner positions of the wheelchair and an open position projecting forwardly of the aforementioned one forward corner portion of the wheelchair, the other forward corner portion of the wheelchair and the support including coacting structure for releasably latching the support in the closed position and supporting the adjacent portion of the support against downward deflection relative to the wheelchair as a result of a load being supported by the support.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 1987
    Date of Patent: January 3, 1989
    Inventors: Larry B. Dyess, Kenneth R. Ball
  • Patent number: 4793626
    Abstract: The trailer hitch comprises a channel-shaped body having a bottom wall containing therein two longitudinally offset holes and an elongated slot located forwardly of said holes. Associated with the slot is a trigger mechanism that can be rotated into a perpendicular relationship with the bottom wall of the channel-shaped body so as to flex a resilient strip downwardly. The resilient strip has mounted thereon a U-shaped rod that provides a pair of pins that project upwardly from the upper side of said strip, the pins being aligned with the holes in the bottom wall.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 17, 1987
    Date of Patent: December 27, 1988
    Inventor: John A. Gefroh