Protector Or Lock Patents (Class 280/507)
  • Patent number: 11086316
    Abstract: Various embodiments include methods, devices, and systems of transporting a payload using a robotic vehicle. Various embodiments may include determining whether a payload is securely held by the robotic vehicle, and taking a corrective action in response to determining that the payload is not securely held by the robotic vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 10, 2021
    Assignee: QUALCOMM Incorporated
    Inventors: Ankit Maheshwari, Michael Franco Taveira, Ankur Maheshwari, Shruti Agrawal
  • Patent number: 11084341
    Abstract: A hitch assembly comprising a receiver having an opening for receiving a hitch member, an anti-rattle member secured with respect to the receiver, and a hitch member comprising a hitch body configured to be received by the receiver, and an engagement portion, wherein when the hitch body is received by the receiver, the engagement portion bears against the anti-rattle member causing at least a portion of the anti-rattle member to resiliently deform in a manner that a reaction force from the resilient deformation causes the hitch body to bear against the receiver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 15, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 10, 2021
    Assignee: Rees Operations Pty Ltd.
    Inventors: Greg Spooner, Huey Lam, Matthew Reimers
  • Patent number: 11073358
    Abstract: A quick-disconnect (QD) sling swivel includes a main body receivable in a socket on a firearm, a locking mechanism coupled to the main body, and an actuation mechanism coupled to the locking mechanism and depressible in a direction generally perpendicular to a longitudinal axis of the QD sling swivel. When the actuation mechanism is depressed, the locking mechanism is in a first position such that the main body is decouplable from and is freely movable in and out of the socket. When the at least one actuation button is not depressed with a portion of the main body received in the socket, the locking mechanism is in a second position such that the main body is interlockingly received in the socket with the locking mechanism engaged therewith.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2020
    Date of Patent: July 27, 2021
    Assignee: Strike Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: David Chin
  • Patent number: 11065926
    Abstract: A cover assembly for a hitch assembly includes a cover and a cover lock assembly. The cover is coupled to the body component for movement between an open position and a closed position. In the open position, the cover permits access to a hitch lock assembly configured to secure a hitch to a hitch receiver and in the closed position, the cover inhibits access to the hitch lock assembly. The cover lock assembly is configured to releasably secure the cover to the hitch receiver when the cover is in the closed position. The cover lock assembly includes a locked configuration and an unlocked configuration. In the locked configuration, the cover is inhibited from moving from the closed position to the open position. In the unlocked configuration, the cover is permitted to move from the closed position to the open position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2019
    Date of Patent: July 20, 2021
    Assignee: Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc.
    Inventor: Todd R. Muck
  • Patent number: 10889153
    Abstract: A trailer hitch cover assembly, which includes an inflatable object capable of withstanding about 2000 pounds per square inch internal pressure, a first attachment plate disposed within the inflatable object, a second attachment plate disposed in physical contact with but external to the inflatable object, a housing comprising a plurality of threaded apertures extending therethrough and dimensioned to be received by a trailer hitch receiver, where a corresponding plurality of threaded members are attached to the first attachment plate, extend outwardly from the first attachment plate through a surface of the inflatable object, extend through the second attachment plate, and intermesh with the plurality of threaded apertures.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 12, 2021
    Inventor: Maher Pedersoli
  • Patent number: 10821791
    Abstract: A trailer hitch security system for blocking access to a trailer hitch, includes a breach-resistant enclosure within which is positioned hitch engagement means (such as a hitch ball). A locking rod is configured for extending through orifices formed in the enclosure, for reversibly locking into position, and, when in-place, preventing removal of any engaged trailer hitch. Shrouds surround the orifices to prevent access to the termini of the locking rod to further impede tampering or attempted removal of the locking rod.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 6, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 3, 2020
    Inventor: James Craig Pritchard
  • Patent number: 10766321
    Abstract: A disclosed trailer hitch device includes an upper member to restrain the movement of the trailer hitch and a lower member to connect to the upper member and to connect to a vehicle. The upper member is rotatably connected to the lower member. The upper member is substantially U-shaped. The lower member is also substantially U-shaped and substantially symmetrical to the upper member. The upper and lower members include a respective side section, a respective arm section and a respective connecting plate configured to restrain the upper member from rotating with respect to the lower member. The upper connecting plate is connected to the lower connecting plate with a fastening device. A single component step washer includes a flanging washer concentric with a collar washer, the flanging washer comprising a ball mounting surface. The collar washer is configured to fit rotatably inside the hitching aperture of the lower member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 8, 2020
    Inventor: Karl Glenn Pratt
  • Patent number: 10696110
    Abstract: The invention relates to a trailer coupling for a motor vehicle (11), in particular a passenger car, comprising a retainer (20), which is arranged on or can be fastened to the motor vehicle (11), and a retainer part (30), which can be detachably fastened to the retainer (20) and which has a retainer insertion projection (33) for inserting into a retainer insertion receptacle (24) of the retainer (20), wherein the retainer part (30) has an integrated locking device (70) having at least one locking body (71) and has an actuation body (73), which is supported in the retainer part (30) so as to be movable in order to actuate the at least one locking body (71) into a locking position (R), wherein the at least one locking body (71) interlockingly engages in a locking receptacle (72) on the retainer (20) in the locking position (R) and is moved out of the locking receptacle (72) in a detaching position (L), the retainer insertion projection (33) of the retainer part (30) therefore being interlockingly locked in the
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 16, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 30, 2020
    Assignee: WESTFALIA-AUTOMOTIVE GMBH
    Inventor: Gerald Krohn
  • Patent number: 10549591
    Abstract: A cover plate assembly for a vehicle, characterized in that it includes:—a cover plate provided with a flat plate-like main body of the cover plate; and—a counter-part provided with a plate-like main body of the counter-part, the counter-part main body having a through-hole matching with the shape of the cover plate main body, and two guide plates projecting in the through-hole area and supporting the cover plate main body thereunder; wherein the cover plate assembly is in drawer structure, the cover plate being configured to be assembled to the counter-part by sliding along the guide plates. The cover plate assembly in drawer structure is simply structured, low in cost and easy to operate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 4, 2020
    Assignees: Compagnie Plastic Omnium, Yanfeng Plastic Omnium Automotive Exterior Systems Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Liangjun Feng, Jiangang Su, Zhongyu Ma
  • Patent number: 10538133
    Abstract: A tow hook step assembly having a step and hook combination that attaches to current bumpers or other vehicle components with “D” ring brackets. When not in tow position, the assembly acts as a heavy duty step in a step mode position. When towing is desired, the assembly automatically rotates into the towing mode position. The step is adjustable to accommodate any vehicle applications. An accessory access area is also provided to connect any accessories when desired.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2017
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2020
    Assignee: Bestop, Inc.
    Inventor: George C. Stickles
  • Patent number: 10500911
    Abstract: A trailer tongue assembly includes a tongue body, a ball clamp, an actuating device, and a control unit. The tongue body is coupled to a frame and includes a ball socket that defines a socket volume. The ball clamp is located within the tongue body and translates internally within the tongue body so as to selectively protrude into and out of the socket volume. The actuating device is in communication with the ball clamp and is configured to position the ball clamp within the socket volume. The control unit is in communication with the actuating device and is configured to regulate the operation of the actuating device. In all, the tongue body surrounds the ball clamp, the actuating device and the control unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Inventors: Shane Lee Scarborough, Gayle Y. Scarborough
  • Patent number: 10427480
    Abstract: A cushioned protection device may protect a tailgate of a tow vehicle from damage from a trailer. The cushioned protection device may be made from a polyethylene foam block having an internal cavity sized to fit snugly around a top portion of a crank jack attached to the trailer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: Prevent-A-Dent, LLC
    Inventors: Joseph Michael Abernethy, Jr., Samuel Richard Foster
  • Patent number: 10384500
    Abstract: A hitch cushion system for inhibiting a vehicle from being damaged while backing toward a trailer includes a trailer that has a ball receiver. A cushion unit is removably coupled to the ball receiver and the cushion unit extends outwardly beyond a perimeter of the ball receiver. In this way the cushion unit inhibits a vehicle from striking the ball receiver when the vehicle is backing toward the ball receiver. The cushion unit is substantially comprised of a resiliently compressible material to inhibit the vehicle from being damaged when the vehicle contacts the cushion unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Inventor: Douglas Birch
  • Patent number: 10183537
    Abstract: A safety device for attachment to a ball mount of a trailer hitch is provided, the safety device comprising: a tower, the tower including a housing, the housing including a front, a back and a central aperture; a tongue, the tongue slidably mounted in the housing normal to the tower and including a distal end, a proximal end, an underside, a top and at least two tongue apertures, the tongue apertures extending between the underside and the top; and a pin, the pin releasably retained in the central aperture and one tongue aperture to releasably retain the retention tongue in a position. A combination for retaining a trailer socket and a trailer hitch assembly are also provided. A method of releasably retaining a trailer on a trailer hitch is further provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: January 22, 2019
    Inventor: George William Jennex
  • Patent number: 10106001
    Abstract: A hitch ball mount is shown and described. The hitch ball mount may include a generally tubular body having first and second end portions, the first end portion engageable with a hitch receiver of a towing vehicle, and a drop portion monolithic with the tubular body and formed between the first and second end portions of the tubular member. The hitch ball mount may further include a hitch ball mounting portion monolithic with the drop portion and tubular body, the hitch ball mounting portion formed at the second end portion of the tubular member and extending from the drop portion, where a hitch ball is selectively attachable to the hitch ball mounting portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2018
    Assignee: HORIZON GLOBAL AMERICAS INC.
    Inventors: Francis Bernart, Thomas DePietro
  • Patent number: 10099526
    Abstract: A trailer hitch spring bar cover system for providing clean and safe storage of a trailer weight distribution system including spring bars and towing balls. The cover for a trailer weight distribution spring bar generally includes a first body and a second body movably connected to the first body. Each of the bodies have a first end, a second end, a perimeter edge, a cavity, and a cutout near an end of the body. The cover has an opened state adapted to receive or remove a greased portion of the spring bar. The cover also has a closed state to substantially enclose a greased portion of the spring bar.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: Grease Guard LLC
    Inventors: Sharol L. Olson, Kimberly L. Osborn, Diane E. Barker
  • Patent number: 10052925
    Abstract: A cover set for a vehicle hitch ball configured to be secured to and protect the vehicle ball, the cover set having a first and a second U-bolt; a cover having a left face, a right face, a top face, a front face, an open bottom, and a back face having a center hole configured to allow at least a portion of at least a standard vehicle hitch ball to fit within the center hole, a pair of upper back face holes proximate to the top face, a pair of lower back face holes proximate to the open bottom, each hole of the pair of lower back face holes being configured to allow passage of a bolt for securing the U-bolt around a vehicle hitch ball neck portion, and a back face cutout along a bottom edge of the back face for conforming to a vehicle hitch ball mount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2018
    Inventor: Peter Baron
  • Patent number: 10017019
    Abstract: A jack lock has a hinged jack enclosure that encompasses a trailer jack. In a first restraining position the jack enclosure prevents a trailer jack from retracting to an transport position. In a second releasing position the jack lock may be easily and quickly removed from the jack. To further deter theft, a tongue arm is unitarily fabricated with and extends from the jack enclosure. The tongue arm runs under a trailer ball receiver, and terminates with a hitch stop that wraps around the ball receiver to block a land vehicle from accessing the trailer coupler. A lock selectively holds the jack enclosure closed to prevent the trailer jack from retracting, but when unlocked permits the jack enclosure to be removed from the trailer jack. Removal of the jack enclosure will also remove the hitch stop from blocking the ball receiver. A lock enclosure prevents access to the locking mechanisms.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 10, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2018
    Inventor: Duane L. Ludwig
  • Patent number: 9981512
    Abstract: In order to provide a coupling unit for a trailer coupling of a motor vehicle comprising a coupling ball and a coupling ball carrier carrying the coupling ball with the aid of which the loads effective thereon when in use can be detected in a reliable and simple manner, it is proposed that the coupling unit comprise a load-bearing structure which engages around a channel extending parallel to an axis, and that a reference finger extending from a first end to a second end in a longitudinal direction approximately parallel to the axis be arranged in the channel, wherein said finger is fixed at the first end such as to be static relative to the load-bearing structure and extends such as to be free from deformations of the load-bearing structure up to the second end, and wherein the second end cooperates with a sensor unit which detects a relative position of the second end relative to a region of the load-bearing structure engaging around it.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 12, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2018
    Assignee: Scambia Holdings Cyprus Limited
    Inventor: Wolfgang Gentner
  • Patent number: 9902224
    Abstract: Provided is a trailer hitch coupler locking device for preventing the unauthorized use or theft of the trailer when stored or otherwise unattended. The locking device includes a lock mechanism configured to move a ratchet member from a first position where the ratchet member is engaged with an elongate member to a second position away from the elongate member where the members are disengaged. The elongate member is movable from a first position where an end of the elongate member is proximate a hitch ball to hold a trailer socket between the end of the elongate member and the hitch ball, and a second position where the end of the elongate member is spaced from the hitch ball to allow the trailer socket to be moved away from the locking device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2018
    Assignee: Winston Products, LLC
    Inventor: David Edward Birn Rathman
  • Patent number: 9884529
    Abstract: A trailer lock system may enclose and secure a bumper or 5th wheel trailer hitch. The trailer lock system can have at least a first housing that is configured to engage a second housing to enclose a portion of a hitch. The second housing can support a first protrusion that extends at least six inches from the second housing to prevent the hitch from connecting to a vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 6, 2018
    Assignee: Turn & Burn Welding, Inc.
    Inventors: Fred A. Davis, Jr., Tami A. Davis
  • Patent number: 9796230
    Abstract: A safety device 100 for a hitch assembly 10 is provided, the safety device 100 containing a cover member or hitch clip 20 for securing a retainer pin 18 of the hitch assembly 10.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2017
    Inventor: James A. Buckner
  • Patent number: 9797437
    Abstract: The invention pertains to a connecting device for connecting a first structural component and a second structural component that can be moved relative to the first structural component in an articulated fashion such that three rotatory degrees of freedom are provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 24, 2017
    Assignee: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Werner Dyckrup, Hauke Harding
  • Patent number: 9784042
    Abstract: A clamp assembly for coupling an auxiliary line to a marine riser includes a clamp body having a central axis and an interface radially spaced from the central axis and a clamp cap having an interface configured to be inserted axially into the interface of the clamp body, wherein the clamp body is configured to clamp to the marine riser, and the clamp body and clamp cap are configured to retain the auxiliary line in an aperture formed between the interface of the clamp body and the interface of the clamp cap.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 10, 2017
    Assignee: Whitefield Plastics Corp.
    Inventors: William H. Whitefield, Brandon Carringer
  • Patent number: 9731570
    Abstract: A vehicle hitch cover for covering a hitch ball of a vehicle hitch is disclosed, the hitch cover including a ball cover portion for concealing the hitch ball and a secondary cover portion providing a mount for the ball cover portion. The ball cover portion includes at least one movable cover that is movable relative to the hitch ball of the vehicle hitch. The at least one movable cover is movable between a closed position for fully covering and concealing the hitch ball and an opened position for exposing the hitch ball. The secondary cover portion is in turn removably attached to the vehicle hitch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Inventor: Carlos Enrique Rodriguez
  • Patent number: 9663039
    Abstract: A folding hitch assembly, system, and method includes two opposed sides plates and a vehicle shank secured partially between the two opposed sides plates and extends outward therefrom. A support ledge is secured between the two opposed side plates and a support bar is secured between the two opposed side plates in a position intermediate the pivot holes and the vehicle shank. An accessory shank is pivotable about a pivot point between a first position at least partially defined by engagement of the accessory shank with the support ledge and a second position at least partially defined by engagement of the accessory shank with the support ledge and a support bar, a first pair of retention holes are configured to receive a retention rod to lock the accessory shank in one of the first and second position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: Discount Ramps.com, LLC
    Inventors: Lawrence Marmon, Robert Krolski
  • Patent number: 9663049
    Abstract: A cover device for covering an opening in a bumper for a motor vehicle is provided, which can be used as a passage for a detachable trailer hitch component, features a frame that forms an opening and a cover part to cover the opening of the frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 30, 2017
    Assignee: GM GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY OPERATIONS LLC
    Inventors: Achim Weigand, Torsten Radusch, Frank Schweikhard, Roland Seewald, Raffael Urzola, Waldemar Appelhans
  • Patent number: 9649900
    Abstract: A universal trailer lock including an upper housing, a lower housing, a lock barrel set and a latch. A limit separator is further included, wherein the limit separator is provided to embed into a limiting groove of the upper housing. By the composition of above structure, the universal trailer lock may applied to trailer couplers with different specifications for effectively prevent trailers from being stolen.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 8, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 16, 2017
    Assignee: HANDYWAY CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Chin-Hui Tsai
  • Patent number: 9573430
    Abstract: An adjustable trailer hitch security apparatus for use with an adjustable trailer hitch assembly to selectively cover the side holes of the hitch assembly's hitch mount, thereby preventing unauthorized access to the fastening system used to secure a trailer connection to the hitch mount comprises a moving cover portion connected to a fixed attachment portion. The cover portion is defined by a rectangular box shaped, hollow housing having an open elongated side opposite an elongated side wall and an open bottom side opposite an top side wall. The attachment portion is defined by a rectangular plate body having a top lip and a bottom lip, with a plurality of attachment apertures in its body. The cover portion is hinged to the attachment portion, enabling it to rotate from a open position to a closed position in which the cover portion and the attachment portion form a rectangular enclosure.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2017
    Inventor: Steven Craig Elliott
  • Patent number: 9527356
    Abstract: A locking hitch ring apparatus includes a hitch ring member adapted at a rear end thereof for attachment to a towed vehicle. A drawpin hole defined by the hitch ring member is oriented such that an axis of the drawpin hole is oriented vertically when the hitch ring member is attached to the towed vehicle. A lock plate is movably attached to the hitch ring member such that the lock plate is movable from a closed position, where the lock plate blocks the drawpin hole, to an open position, where the drawpin hole is open, and a lock mechanism is operative to lock the lock plate in the closed position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: December 27, 2016
    Assignee: POWER PIN INC.
    Inventor: Brian R. Olson
  • Patent number: 9434225
    Abstract: An illuminated trailer hitch cover assembly that is removably attached to a hitch receiver of a vehicle. The illuminated trailer hitch cover assembly is configured to display one or more illuminated indicia when the vehicle's taillights or brake lights are activated. At least one indicia is projected onto the ground surface below the illuminated trailer hitch cover assembly. The illuminated trailer hitch cover assembly is configured such that different indicia can be displayed through use of interchanging display indicia assemblies.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 20, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 6, 2016
    Inventor: Mark Anthony Corsaut
  • Patent number: 9437095
    Abstract: A safety system for a trailer hitch device having a hitch member and a hitch ball. The safety system includes a body configured to peripherally surround the hitch member and the hitch ball and a fastening device attached to the body and configured to secure the body to the hitch member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 10, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 6, 2016
    Inventor: Weston Hudspeth
  • Patent number: 9393936
    Abstract: A jack lock for a landing gear crank of a tractor-trailer includes a four sided box to enclose the crank on four sides. A pin extends rearwardly within the box and extends through the crank yoke on the inner end of the crank, to preclude the yoke and crank from being moved from a lowered inoperative position to a raised operative position. A padlock is mountable on the end of the shaft to lock the box onto the crank.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2016
    Assignee: Neffco Technologies
    Inventor: Jeff M. Grote
  • Patent number: 9358850
    Abstract: A security device for a coupler for a trailer includes a bracket, a clamp lever cover, and a cover lock. The bracket is connected to the coupler, which includes a socket, a ball clamp, and a clamp lever. The clamp lever cover is engaged with the bracket and, in a secured arrangement, prevents movement of the clamp lever, thereby holding the ball clamp in a clamped arrangement, in turn retaining a hitch ball within the socket or preventing insertion of a hitch ball into the socket; in an unsecured arrangement the cover permits movement of the clamp lever from the engaged structural arrangement to the disengaged structural arrangement, thereby releasing the hitch ball or permitting insertion of a hitch ball. When unlocked the cover lock permits movement of the clamp lever cover to the unsecured arrangement; when locked retains the clamp lever cover in the secured arrangement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2013
    Date of Patent: June 7, 2016
    Inventor: Bruce H. Bale
  • Patent number: 9333821
    Abstract: A ball/lock component formed with a C-shaped central section having horizontal upper and lower legs. A ball extends upwardly from the lower leg. A bolt is threadedly received in the upper leg. The bolt is axially movable toward and away from the ball. An adjustment collar is attached to the bolt for rotating the bolt. An attachment leg extends forwardly from the central section and has a horizontal bore. A support component has vertical walls with vertically spaced adjustment apertures extending there through. An adjustment rod extends through selected aperture pairs. The support component has a coupling leg. A support bore extends through the coupling leg.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2016
    Inventor: Israel Rosario
  • Patent number: 9254723
    Abstract: A trailer coupler may be provided with an opening and socket for a hitch ball, and a clamping bar in an internal channel for locking the coupler and hitch together. The internal channel may extend horizontally and be positioned above the opening and below the socket. The channel may include a laterally-facing aperture adjacent the second end, out of which one end of the clamping bar may extend. That end of the clamping bar may include a bracket with an open channel to fit over a flange on the coupler body. The coupler may be assembled by inserting a first end of the clamping bar through the laterally-facing aperture, and moving the first end of the clamping bar into the coupler body channel while fitting the bracket over the flange at the open channel of the clamping bar.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 9, 2016
    Assignee: Pacific Rim International, LLC
    Inventor: Yibin Ye
  • Patent number: 9242521
    Abstract: A multi-function hitch accessory retaining device and method which includes an assembly comprising a housing, receiver engagement pin, biasing mechanism, fastener, and coupling pin that is inserted into an accessory shank and configured to easily engage and disengage a conventional hitch receiver as well as a method of firmly securing the shank within the hitch receiver tube.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2016
    Inventor: John R. Columbia
  • Patent number: 9067630
    Abstract: A locking device according to the present invention, for use with a trailer gooseneck, the trailer gooseneck having a post with upper and lower ends, the upper end being attached to a trailer and the lower end. The lower end forms a recess and a pair of bore holes at a right angle to the centerline of the recess for accepting a coupler for receiving a hitch. The coupler is removed to allow insertion of the locking device. The locking device includes a body adapted to fit into the recess of the lower end, a pair of locking pins within the body of the locking device, a cam within the body of the locking device and a lock to prevent the cam from being turned when the lock is engaged. The locking pins face opposite directions and are adapted to be inserted into the bore hole on the two sides of the recess.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 30, 2015
    Inventor: Mark Cline
  • Publication number: 20150137485
    Abstract: There are provided a cap having an expanded pad and an apparatus having a towing pipe provided with the cap. The cap includes a body having opened ends and an expanded pad attached to an inner circumferential surface of the body. The expanded pad does not close the opened ends of the body before being heated, expands when being heated, and closes the opened ends of the body after being heated. The body includes a ring-shaped ring plate and a plurality of legs that protrudes from one side of the ring plate and spaces apart from each other along a circumference of the ring plate. When the expanded pad is heated, ends of the legs are bent radially outwardly by expansion of the expanded pad. The body includes a head and a screw protruding from one side of the head. The head and screw are opened in a longitudinal direction of the body.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 11, 2014
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Applicant: Hyundai Motor Company
    Inventors: Dong-Wook Kim, Hyun-Baek Jung
  • Publication number: 20150137484
    Abstract: A hitch accessory retaining device includes a pair of opposed engagement pins and a biasing device. When positioned within a shank body, the engagement pins are slidable within shank pinning apertures and are normally urged in outward, extended positions by the biasing device. When biased outwardly, a portion of each engagement pin extends outwardly from and projects beyond a shank sidewall while an additional portion of each engagement pin is retained within the shank body. A portion of the biasing device contacts, is attached to, or is part of, the engagement pins. The normally outwardly biased engagement pins are biasable inwardly to a retracted position within the shank pinning apertures to a position wherein the outward ends of the engagement pins are flush with the outward sides of shank sidewalls.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 22, 2014
    Publication date: May 21, 2015
    Inventor: John R. Columbia
  • Patent number: 9033358
    Abstract: A trailer hitch coupler guard including a trailer hitch coupler receiving member; a trailer hitch coupler covering member; an extraction stopping lug attached to and extending upwardly from the trailer hitch coupler receiving member; a hinge interconnecting the trailer hitch coupler receiving member and the trailer hitch coupler covering member, the hinge facilitating movement of the trailer hitch coupler covering member between opened and closed positions, the trailer hitch coupler covering member overlying the trailer hitch coupler receiving member upon movement to the closed position, and being displaced away from the closed position upon movement to the opened position; and a pair of eyed flanges fixedly attached to one of the members among the trailer hitch coupler receiving member and the trailer coupler covering member; the flanges' eyes being positioned for alignment with each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Inventor: Christopher H. Williamson
  • Publication number: 20150123379
    Abstract: A locking device for obstructing towing of a trailer has a lock base and a lock bracket. The lock base has an upright ball-shaped member and two legs each with an aperture. The lock bracket has two arms. When the locking device is in a locked condition, both arms are engaged in their corresponding apertures. When the locking device is in an unlocked condition, one arm of the lock bracket remains attached to its corresponding aperture, and the other arm is removed from the other aperture to release the coupler. Grooves on one of the arms allow a locking means to engage with the lock bracket at different height. In another aspect of the invention, the ball member is detachable and can be replaced by different sized ball member so that the same locking device can be used on trailer couplers with different socket sizes.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 1, 2014
    Publication date: May 7, 2015
    Inventor: Guoji Yuan
  • Publication number: 20150121975
    Abstract: A locking device for obstructing towing of an unattached trailer has a lock base and a single-armed curved interlock bracket. The lock base has a cylindrical leg. The single-armed interlock bracket has an grooved arm sliding along an aperture on the cylindrical leg and may be permanently attached to the lock base. Grooves on the arm allows a locking means to be engaged with the lock bracket at different height. When engaged, the locking means may restrict the interlock bracket from swirling. The open end of the interlock bracket provides flexibility to accommodate trailer couplers with different cap/rim sizes. The cylindrical leg may have a sealed bottom end and may function as a handle. The locking device may also feature a push-in locking mechanism to lock the interlock bracket in a position without using a key.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 1, 2014
    Publication date: May 7, 2015
    Inventor: Guoji Yuan
  • Patent number: 9010796
    Abstract: The Adjustable Pintle Mount Adapter Bracket is a device capable of attaching a pintle and a weight distribution shank at varying heights. The pintle and weight distribution shank are attached on opposite sides of the bracket. The unique adjustability of the design is accomplished through a series of holes and easily removable pins which thread through the holes in the bracket and the weight distribution shank. The invention comprises of a series of components which are combined through welding.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Diapa Info Inc.
    Inventors: James A. Eckhart, Victor H. Grande
  • Publication number: 20150097356
    Abstract: A coupler lock for attaching to a trailer hitch coupler. The hitch coupler has a socket. The coupler lock includes a locking bar and a plug member for receipt within the socket of the hitch coupler and supported by the locking bar. The coupler lock includes a base structure removably attached to the locking bar. The base structure includes a locking structure actuatable to lockingly retain the base structure attached to the locking bar so as to retain the plug member within the socket of the hitch coupler. The locking structure is positioned above the plug member with the base structure attached to the locking bar and the plug member retained within the socket of the hitch coupler.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 3, 2014
    Publication date: April 9, 2015
    Inventors: Winston Breeden, III, Thaddeus T. Brej, David Edward Birn Rathman
  • Patent number: 8966945
    Abstract: An anti-theft device for use on a hook of a carting container, the device comprising: an engagement unit including a shaft dimensioned to occupy an engagement portion of the hook, a first plate coupled to one end of the shaft, and having a passageway associated therewith, and a second plate coupled to an other end of the shaft, a retaining bar including a stop plate, a locking arm having at least one hole therein dimensioned to accept a lock shackle, the locking arm being dimensioned such that a distal end of the locking arm can be inserted through the passageway, the locking arm further having a length such that, when the distal end has been inserted through the passageway, the stop plate will be on one side of the engagement unit and the at least one hole will be on the other side of the engagement unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Inventor: Thomas Buechel
  • Patent number: 8967654
    Abstract: A trailer hitch is disclosed which eliminates the need for safety chains. The trailer hitch includes a locking device which is selectively pivotally secured to the tongue of a trailer or the hitch ball coupler assembly at the forward end of the tongue or to both the hitch ball coupler assembly and the tongue. The locking device is selectively movable between locked and unlocked positions. When the locking device is in its locked position, the locking device prevents the disconnection of the hitch ball coupler assembly from the hitch ball.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Inventor: Gary Riibe
  • Patent number: 8960709
    Abstract: An insert bar assembly for a hitch-rack carrier comprises a self-locating securement pin. The insert bar assembly can comprise an elongate hitch-attachment bar which in turn comprises a hitch-receiver insert portion located at an insertable end of the bar. The assembly can include a flexible securement pin or a rigid securement pin resiliently joined to the bar at a fixed distance from the engagement end of the pin. The assembly accommodates repetitive, same location positioning of the engagement end of the pin at a pin-tip facing surface on the bar in the pin-secured configuration of the insert bar assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Thule Sweden AB
    Inventors: Keith L. Prescott, Kevin S. Bogoslofski, John Laverack, Greg G. Weaver
  • Patent number: 8915515
    Abstract: A gooseneck hitching system is disclosed which couples the gooseneck hitch of a trailer to a hitch ball of a vehicle through the use of a remotely RF controlled linear actuator which also includes a locking receptacle structure mounted on the bed of the vehicle which replaces the conventional safety chain arrangement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 2013
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2014
    Inventor: Gary Riibe
  • Patent number: 8915514
    Abstract: A multi-function, anti-rotational, power-sports utility hitch receiver assembly includes a four-sided hollow receiver tube having a forward end configured to attach to a tow vehicle and a rearward end configured to house an attachment of an accessory shank. Aligned apertures are present in the opposing sidewalls between the forward end and the rearward end for securing a hitch accessory shank within the receiver tube by inserting a hitch-pin through apertures. A removable, adjustable tightening bar is attachable to an underside of the hitch receiver tube for maintaining the receiver tube in a stationary position when the receiver tube is installed on a tow vehicle by abutting a surface on the tow vehicle. The assembly further includes a tow loop, e.g., for attaching tow chains, straps, bungee cords, tow hooks and the like to the receiver.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2014
    Inventor: John R. Columbia