Patents Examined by Margaret A. Focarino
  • Patent number: 5655619
    Abstract: A control system for controlling the locking and unlocking of a vehicle's seat belt retractors in response to detection of the state of the vehicle's doors and the state of the vehicle's ignition switch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 12, 1997
    Assignee: Chrysler Corporation
    Inventors: Michael J. Suran, Ronald E. Fassnacht
  • Patent number: 5601311
    Abstract: A web guide (20) having a load absorbing core (30), a hinge and an integral cover (170). The core is covered by a synthetic resin that also forms the integral cover and hinge. The cover is locked into place by tabs integrally formed by the coating material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 1995
    Date of Patent: February 11, 1997
    Assignee: AlliedSignal Inc.
    Inventors: Robert C. Pfeiffer, Philip H. Goniea, Stephan F. Vetter
  • Patent number: 5590895
    Abstract: The frame (2) for a collapsible bicycle of the present invention includes a head tube (10), a front frame (11), a rear frame (12), a handlebar locking mechanism (14)and a frame locking mechanism (17). On the head tube (10) the front fork (4) is mounted to support the front wheel (5). The front frame (11) is coupled to the head tube (10) in a manner that allows the leading edge to freely rotate perpendicular around the axis using a bearing (13). The rear frame (12) is coupled to the front frame (11) in a manner that allows the leading edge to freely rotate perpendicular around the axis using a hinge (16) as well as be able to support the rear wheel (6) on other edges. The handlebar locking mechanism (14) locks and freely releases the head tube (10) and front frame (11). The frame locking mechanism (12) locks and freely releases the front frame (11) and rear frame (12).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 1, 1995
    Date of Patent: January 7, 1997
    Assignee: Exedy Corporation
    Inventor: Koji Hiramoto
  • Patent number: 5588661
    Abstract: A support bracket for mounting a first wheel onto a second wheel in side-by-side, parallel alignment. The bracket includes a mounting hole for engaging with and securing the bracket to a tightening bolt of a wheel axle assembly of the second wheel, a positioning slot for securing the bracket in place, and an open mounting slot through which a wheel axle of the first wheel is engaged and tightened. One embodiment includes a spacer that can be positioned on the opposite side of the first wheel axle so as to take up thread slack and utilize the clamping action of the first wheel tightening bolt for mounting the wheel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 10, 1995
    Date of Patent: December 31, 1996
    Inventor: Robert M. Wolfe
  • Patent number: 5566959
    Abstract: A single runner ski-sled is provided wherein the main structure is adapted for one piece molding techniques with sufficient strength for effective use. The runner is designed to be rigid. The device of the invention also includes a seat attachment structure that allows for easy installation and removal yet can withstand strong pressures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 1994
    Date of Patent: October 22, 1996
    Assignee: Snowblade Corporation
    Inventor: Paolo M. B. Tiramani
  • Patent number: 5551720
    Abstract: A system for changing the stiffness of a ski having a boot sole with first and second movable portions, and a biasing device for urging the portions apart to add stiffness to the ski.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 1994
    Date of Patent: September 3, 1996
    Inventor: Piero G. Ruffinengo
  • Patent number: 5549318
    Abstract: A luggage trolley comprises a lower support member having a first and a second cup members respectively attached to the two ends thereof. A shaft member extends through the lower support member with a pair of wheels respectively mounted on the two ends thereof to rollingly support the lower support member on the ground. A pair of first tubular members are respectively insertedly received within the cup members and extending therefrom. A pair of extension members, each of which is constituted by a second and a third tubular members, are respectively telescopically inserted into the first tubular members. An upper support member is releasably mounted between the upper ends of the first tubular members so as to define a trunk loading area with the first tubular members and the lower support member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 1993
    Date of Patent: August 27, 1996
    Inventor: Ching-Feng Ho
  • Patent number: 5549173
    Abstract: In a control device for a hydraulic actuator used in steering for controlling a hydraulic actuator comprising an angle sensor for detecting an angle of rotation given to a steering wheel, and an angle sensor for detecting an angle of an angular displacement of a vehicle wheel disposed to a steering mechanism for controlling the directional movement of the vehicle wheel with the hydraulic actuator, in which the given angle of an angular displacement of a vehicle wheel to a control device is outputted as an aimed positional signal, an actual angle of an angular displacement of a vehicle wheel of the vehicle wheel is outputted to the control device as a feedback signal, the desired positional signal is compared with the feedback signal to and the aimed positional signal is calculated and outputted to the actuator to control the hydraulic actuator,a memory table for previously storing steering control characteristics is used in a circuit for comparative calculation of an output in accordance with inputs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 27, 1996
    Assignee: Sumitomo Precision Products Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Ryoichi Tomita
  • Patent number: 5544906
    Abstract: An improved human powered recumbent vehicle is provided. The vehicle includes a frame that comprises a central keel. The keel comprises four tubes that are spaced equidistant from a central longitudinal axis. Outrigger arms are disposed approximately halfway along the longitudinal axis of the keel and extend forwardly and outwardly therefrom. The angle that each outrigger arm forms with the keel, provides an access area that allows a rider access to the seat without having to step over any portion of the invented vehicle, for easy mounting and dismounting. Outboard ends of the arms terminate in pivotable connectors that may be provided for wheel bearing yokes. A rear section of the keel is wide enough to accommodate a wheel. The keel has a prow that terminates in a single plane, so that the vehicle can be placed on its prow for storage in an upright position, to minimize storage space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 13, 1996
    Inventor: Lawrence D. (Jake) Clapper
  • Patent number: 5544903
    Abstract: A flexible, low friction, rideable sliding toy is disclosed that slides over relatively smooth, firm surfaces with very low friction. The toy is comprised of a bag of flexible, air impermeable material having one or more relatively large holes cut out of the bottom of the bag where the bag contacts the floor when in use. The bag is inflated by allowing it to drop onto the floor, trapping air inside it as it lands. The outer edges of the hole form a relatively airtight seal allowing the bag to retain its inflated state when laid upon by a user, thus permitting a user to propel himself over fiat surfaces in a low friction manner. A flap of material may be affixed inside the bag positioned so that it lies loosely over the large holes, providing a seal when the bag leaks unduly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 1994
    Date of Patent: August 13, 1996
    Inventor: James A. Bears
  • Patent number: 5542706
    Abstract: An improved fuel system for motor vehicles, such as motorcycles, including a fuel tank having a fueling port and a separate relief port, a cap which is adapted for closing and sealing the fueling port, a pressure relief valve for closing and opening the relief port, and a conduit for directing fuel from the relief port to a location which is away from a rider of the vehicle. The pressure relief valve has an inner orifice which is normally closed, but opens to allow fuel to flow from the tank through the conduit when the pressure within the tank exceeds a predetermined super-atmospheric level, for example, during a collision. The fuel system also provides for venting of air into the tank as fuel is consumed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 1995
    Date of Patent: August 6, 1996
    Assignee: Safety Engineering Associates, Inc.
    Inventor: Kris D. Kubly
  • Patent number: 5540298
    Abstract: An integrated controller for a vehicle comprises a contact preventive device for detecting a distance between a vehicle and an obstacle and a relative speed, and deciding whether the vehicle may come in contact with the obstacle based on the results of detection so as to perform automatic braking or automatic steering, and a characteristic changing device for causing the suspension or steering characteristic of the vehicle to be changed. The control part of the characteristic changing device changes the suspension or steering characteristic based on information from the control part of the contact preventive device when operating the contact preventive device. In case the characteristic changing device is an active suspension device, the control part changes the suspension characteristic so as to increase a control gain when performing automatic braking and to inhibit the vehicle from being rolled when performing automatic steering.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 30, 1996
    Assignee: Mazda Motor Corporation
    Inventors: Tohru Yoshioka, Kenichi Okuda, Hiroki Uemura, Yasunori Yamamoto, Tomohiko Adachi, Tetsuro Butsuen, Toshihiro Hara, Kazuki Fujise
  • Patent number: 5540456
    Abstract: A hub for a bicycle can typically have an axle for being non-rotationally connected to a frame of the bicycle, a hub body rotatably mounted about the axle, and a drive element rotatably mounted on the axle. A plurality of transmission elements can preferably be disposed between the axle and the hub body for transmitting a drive force from the drive element to the hub body, and a selection between various gearing ratios provided by the transmission elements can preferably be provided by a selectively engageable ratchet mechanism and a control device for selectively engaging and disengaging the ratchet mechanisms. The ratchet mechanism can be provided by at least one pawl, biased radially inward by at least one spring, to non-rotationally couple a ring body in one direction of rotation with the axle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 1995
    Date of Patent: July 30, 1996
    Assignee: Fichtel & Sachs AG
    Inventors: Gerhard Meier-Burkamp, Werner Steuer
  • Patent number: 5535840
    Abstract: A steering system for use in a track-laying vehicle comprising: a steering motor that is forwardly and reversely rotatable and designed to drive crawler belts provided at both sides of the vehicle such that a relative travel difference is caused between the crawler belts, thereby turning the vehicle rightwards or leftwards; a forward/reverse drive state detector for detecting whether the vehicle is in its forward drive state or reverse drive state; a lateral turn instructing device for instructing right turn or left turn of the vehicle; and a steering motor forward/reverse rotation control unit for determining the forward or reverse rotation of the steering motor in accordance with the forward or reverse drive state of the vehicle detected by the forward/reverse drive state detector, such that the vehicle turns to the right or left in response to a right turn instruction or left turn instruction released from the lateral turn instructing device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 16, 1996
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Komatsu Seisakusho
    Inventors: Tsutomu Ishino, Ryoichi Maruyama, Hideki Yamada
  • Patent number: 5535483
    Abstract: A locking and unlocking device is provided for the U-shaped handle bar of a baby carriage which slides between folded and unfolded positions on front legs of the carriage. The handlebar has spring hooks which engage pins in the respective legs in the unfolded position and the device includes a manually rotatable disc in the central section of the handlebar connected to the hooks by cables for releasing the hooks from the pins. A manually releasable dog is provided for locking the disc against rotation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 16, 1996
    Assignee: Jane, S.A.
    Inventor: Ramon Jane Cabagnero
  • Patent number: 5531475
    Abstract: An inflator (14) for inflating an inflatable vehicle occupant restraint (12) includes a body (60) of ignitable gas generating material, an igniter (260) for igniting the body (60) of gas generating material, and a housing (50) having a tubular wall (52) surrounding the body (60) of gas generating material. The tubular wall (52) has a longitudinal central axis (40), a plurality of outlet openings (100) through which gas flows radially outward, and an open end portion (232) with the contour of a dome centered on the axis (40). The inflator (14) further includes a circular end cap (56) which is located coaxially within the tubular wall (52). The end cap (56) supports the igniter (260) on the axis (40), and has a peripheral surface portion (216) with the contour of a dome centered on the axis (40). The open end portion (232) of the tubular wall (52) closely overlies the peripheral surface portion (216) of the end cap (56).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 2, 1996
    Assignee: TRW Vehicle Safety Systems Inc.
    Inventors: Alex G. Meduvsky, George W. Goetz, Edward Q. Glac, Steven W. Maurer, David L. Geyer, Dennis J. Fiore, Heidi M. Westlake, William E. Gest
  • Patent number: 5531472
    Abstract: Apparatus and method for controlling an occupant restraint system in a vehicle (10) comprises storing in a ROM memory (220) a block of image data representative of a viewing field within the vehicle (10). The viewing field includes an unoccupied vehicle seat (18) located in the occupant compartment (12) of the vehicle. A new block of image data is obtained which is representative of the viewing field with an occupant (202) on the seat (18). This image data is obtained with an image sensor (200), such as a CCD sensor, mounted in the vehicle (10) for viewing the field. The new block of image data is compared with the stored block of image data by a controller (30) to obtain the occupant's size and/or position in the vehicle. The controller (30) provides a control signal having a value which is a function of the comparison. A restraint regulator (120), such as a vent valve, responds to the control signal for controlling the occupant restraint system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 1995
    Date of Patent: July 2, 1996
    Assignee: TRW Vehicle Safety Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: John H. Semchena, Ernest M. Faigle, Richard J. Thompson, Joseph F. Mazur, Charles E. Steffens, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5529139
    Abstract: A vehicle speed control system for controlling the speed of a controlled vehicle to follow a preceding vehicle detected at a constant interval is provided. In this system, when a preceding vehicle traveling ahead of the controlled vehicle is detected, it is checked if the preceding vehicle detected meets a given tracking condition. When the tracking condition is encountered, it is reported to a driver. The system is responsive to a manual operation of the driver after the driver has perceived that the preceding vehicle can be tracked to initiate constant inter-vehicle distance control.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 25, 1996
    Assignee: Nippondenso Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Akira Kurahashi, Katsuhiko Hibino, Mamoru Shimamoto, Mitsufumi Hashimoto
  • Patent number: 5529141
    Abstract: All improvement in a kit for converting a motorcycle to a tricycle is described. The kit includes a pair of swing arms having a first end and a second end. Axle couplings are provided at the first end of each swing arm whereby the swing arms are secured to an axle which supports two wheels. Pin receiving couplings are provided at the second end of each swing arm whereby the swing arms are pivotally secured by pins to a motorcycle frame. The improvement is characterized by swing arms having a top surface and a bottom surface. The axle coupling and the pin receiving coupling extend vertically from the top surface of the swing arms. The top positioning of the axle couplings and the pin receiving couplings leaves the majority of the top surface of the swing arms dropped below the level of the original floor boards of the motorcycle. The swing arms can pivot as intended without their movement being impeded by the original floor boards.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 2, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 25, 1996
    Inventors: John Lehman, Larry D. Strilchuk
  • Patent number: 5529140
    Abstract: A traction control system for a motor vehicle has an engine with a catalytic converter in an exhaust path. The traction control system has wheel speed sensors for detecting wheel speeds of respective wheels, a slip amount detection device for calculating slip amounts in driven wheels based on the wheel speeds, an engine output controller for decreasing engine output based on predetermined engine output decreasing patterns which correspond to the slip amounts, and an octane number detection device for detecting a difference in octane numbers of fuel between fuel designated in the engine and fuel actually supplied to the engine. The engine output decreasing pattern is changed so as to decrease unburned hydrocarbons in the exhaust gas flown into the catalytic converter when the octane number of the actually supplied fuel is more than a predetermined number smaller than that of the designated fuel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 14, 1994
    Date of Patent: June 25, 1996
    Assignee: Mazda Motor Corporation
    Inventors: Tetsuhiro Yamashita, Koji Hirai