Automobile Top Latches Patents (Class 292/DIG5)
  • Patent number: 6158786
    Abstract: A latch for a top of an automobile has a housing mounted on the top with a movable latching hook cooperating with a link mounted on the windshield frame. The latching hook is displaceable by an actuating device from a closed position into an open position. To produce a latch which forms a compact module, takes up little space in the transverse vehicle direction, and whose latching hook is movable by a motor, the motorized actuating device for the latching hook has a drive motor aligned approximately parallel to the lengthwise direction of the latching hook. The motor is in an operating relationship through a transverse transmission element and a downstream transmission with a drive lever to move the latching hook.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2000
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.f. Porsche AG
    Inventors: Hans Droste, Dieter Bauer, Wolfgang Moebius, Reiner Armbruster, Kurt Pfertner
  • Patent number: 6155614
    Abstract: A latching system for an automotive vehicle convertible roof employs a slide having a camming surface which is operably movable in a generally linear direction for moving a cam follower which, in turn, causes a linkage mechanism to pivot a latch. In a further aspect of the present invention, a centrally mounted actuator operably drives a pair of linear slides in a generally cross-car direction for operating a pair of hook-like latches.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 28, 1998
    Date of Patent: December 5, 2000
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Eric W. Lange
  • Patent number: 6102471
    Abstract: A hold-open mechanism for a canopy of a skid steer loader machine is described herein. The hold-open mechanism includes a support block secured to a frame of the machine, a wedging block secured to the canopy, and a prop device. A bracket is connected at a body portion to the support block and extends therefrom for termination at a head portion. A pair of arms extend perpendicularly from the body portion. The prop device has a bar with first and second end portions and a lever connected to the bar and supported within the arms of the bracket. A biasing spring is positioned on the bracket adjacent the bar for biasing the prop device to a working location from a resting location. In a closed position, the canopy is forced against the biasing action of the spring to maintain the prop device in the resting location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Caterpillar S.A.R.L.
    Inventors: Jamison T. Sasser, Reid W. Waitt, Andrew S. Miller, John R. Beaton
  • Patent number: 6102456
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided for manually moving closure an open roof construction for a vehicle between closed and opened positions. This apparatus includes an element which is removably connected to a securing element to be secured to a frame of the open roof construction and which is held in a connected position by a locking device. The locking device includes a locking member which is displaceable between locking and unlocking positions. The locking member is loaded to a locking position by a spring and displacement from the locking position to the unlocking position has the same direction as the releasing movement of the element with respect to the securing element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2000
    Assignee: Inalfa Industries B.V.
    Inventor: Egbert Boersma
  • Patent number: 6042174
    Abstract: A latching and control apparatus for an automotive vehicle convertible roof employs an actuator which operably drives a main gear. In one aspect of the present invention, the main gear causes a latching hook to move from an unlatching position to a latching position. In a further aspect of the present invention, the main gear causes a first structural roof member to move relative to a second structural roof member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 22, 1997
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2000
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Sheryar Durrani
  • Patent number: 6033009
    Abstract: A method controls opening of a folding top of a vehicle. The folding top is openable and closable in a power-operated manner, and a locking device is provided for the releasable connection of the folding top with a windshield frame. The position of the locking device is optimized during a movement of the folding top by operating the locking device so that it is in its locked condition in the open as well as in the closed position of the folding top.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 7, 2000
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG
    Inventors: Bernhard Ritter, Hans-Dieter Dahmen
  • Patent number: 6027162
    Abstract: An opening roof for a vehicle having an opening in the fixed roof, comprises a frame to be mounted around the opening, a flexible cover for selectively closing or exposing the opening, a control beam attached to the front side of the cover and being guided with its lateral ends in guide rails extending along each side of the opening in longitudinal direction of the vehicle, and latch means for holding the control beam in a forward position when the opening roof is closed. Said latch means includes at least a latch member which is operative between the control beam and the frame. An electric motor is coupled to the control beam through drive cables in order to slide it for opening and closing the opening roof. A transmission mechanism between the latch member and the drive cables ensures to tighten the control beam into the forward position with a greater driving force during its last closing movement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 1998
    Date of Patent: February 22, 2000
    Assignee: Inalfa Industries B.V.
    Inventor: Robert Smith
  • Patent number: 5957511
    Abstract: A closure for a passenger car cover which is stretched against a stationary frame of a vehicle body, comprises a housing which is arranged on the top side and has an operating element and comprises a swivellable locking hook which interacts with a connecting link mounted on the frame. In its locked position, while having an inconspicuous appearance, the lock does not project with respect to the adjoining top contour in the direction of the passenger compartment. During the opening operation, the operating element takes up a position advantageous for gripping by a user. In the locked position of the lock, a first and a second operating element are arranged in a sunk manner in a recess of the top frame. The two operating elements interact such that the second operating element will be moved into a lowered gripping position only after the operation of the first operating element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: September 28, 1999
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG
    Inventors: Bodo Homann, Wolfgang Moebius, Hans Droste, Reiner Armbruster, Ralf Mertin
  • Patent number: 5944375
    Abstract: A movable roof construction for an open or convertible passenger car with a two-part foldable hardtop. To prevent the occurrence of wind noises in the area of the bordering of the two hardtop parts, a locking mechanism is provided between the two parallelogram control arms on each side of the parallelogram linkage. The locking mechanism is restrictedly coupled by transmission devices to the locking device of the forward roof part on the windshield cross member. Thereby, for a release of the parallelogram control arms, the locking mechanism can be unlocked together with an unlocking of the locking device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 1997
    Date of Patent: August 31, 1999
    Assignee: Daimler-Benz Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Bernhard Schenk, Juergen Schrader, Eckart Schuler
  • Patent number: 5869231
    Abstract: The invention relates to a sampling kit for obtaining, in a rapid and gentle manner, a defined volume of lacrimal fluid for the purpose of reproducibly determining components of the lacrimal fluid.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 14, 1997
    Date of Patent: February 9, 1999
    Assignee: Behring Diagnostics GmbH
    Inventors: Jurgen Romisch, Eckhard Schuler, Klaus Habenstein, Jurgen Lindner
  • Patent number: 5832757
    Abstract: A latch device arrangement for a vehicle comprises a main engaging assembly attached to a vehicle body, a sub engaging assembly attached to a movable roof which is displaceable between a storing position and a lifted position and engageable with the main assembly for holding the roof in the storing position. The sub assembly has a ratchet for holding the engagement of the main and sub assemblies. The main assembly has a ratchet lever which comes into contact with the ratchet to release the engagement of the main and sub assemblies. The arrangement further has an open lever connected to the ratchet lever, a rotating handle rotating the open lever from a standby position toward an operating position, and a lock pin displaceable between a locked position and an unlocked position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 1997
    Date of Patent: November 10, 1998
    Assignees: Mitsui Kinzoku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha, Honda Giken Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Koji Chikata, Ryuko Hanaya, Makoto Imada
  • Patent number: 5779299
    Abstract: An isolation apparatus reduces vibrations and destructive twisting forces otherwise transmitted between an automotive vehicle body and roof. A striker isolator and a roof pivot isolator are provided. Furthermore, a hinge isolator is provided between a pair of foldable roof sections. These isolators are ideally suited for use in combination with convertible roofs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 1997
    Date of Patent: July 14, 1998
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventors: George F. Purcell, Adam A. Erickson, Robert A. Patterson, B. Michael Flaherty
  • Patent number: 5772275
    Abstract: A latching mechanism and method secures a convertible roof to a body of an automotive vehicle acting proximate with the front of the roof, rear of the roof, or both. In one aspect of the present invention, a catch secures the rearmost portion of a convertible roof to a tonneau cover.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 13, 1996
    Date of Patent: June 30, 1998
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Stephen P. Tokarz
  • Patent number: 5755467
    Abstract: A convertible roof latching and switch operating system provides an actuator which moves a first latch toward a vehicle centerline and a second latch away from a vehicle centerline in order to engage their respective strikers. In another aspect of the present invention a movable handle is directly and mechanically coupled to the pair of latches. In a further aspect of the present invention, the handle also operates one or more switches which activate driving means for raising or lowering a convertible roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 1995
    Date of Patent: May 26, 1998
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventors: Christopher J. Dilluvio, Kim E. Taylor
  • Patent number: 5681069
    Abstract: A prop device for assembly on a vehicle having a convertible top and a tonneau cover. The prop device is adapted to support a five bow of the convertible top in a suspended position. The prop device includes a mounting bracket adapted to be mounted on the tonneau cover and a pivoting arm attached to the mounting bracket at a first end thereof. The pivoting arm has a curved bow engaging portion at a second end thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 1996
    Date of Patent: October 28, 1997
    Inventors: Mark Timothy Gaylord, Michael Robert Uhlmeyer, Ryan Wayne Massey
  • Patent number: 5678881
    Abstract: A latching mechanism and method secures a convertible roof to a body of an automotive vehicle acting proximate with the front of the roof, rear of the roof, or both. In one aspect of the present invention, a catch secures the rearmost portion of a convertible roof to a tonneau cover. In a further aspect of the present invention, a catch mechanism is substantially located and hidden within a front header thereby eliminating undesirable head impact obstructions or unsightliness. In another aspect of the present invention, a first catch mechanism secures a rear portion of a convertible roof to a tonneau cover and a substantially similar second catch mechanism secures a forward portion of the roof to a front header. A further aspect of the present invention employs a movable striker for engagement with a catch. In yet another aspect of the present invention, a latching apparatus is employed in the combination with a retractable hard top roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 1995
    Date of Patent: October 21, 1997
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Stephen P. Tokarz
  • Patent number: 5636894
    Abstract: A locking arrangement for the openable top of an open automobile, in an open automobile provided with a multiple-articulated roof mechanism (1), by which the car top can be moved with the aid of an actuator into opened, respectively closed, position, and in which to the foremost, or first, rib (2) on the free end of the car top has been connected a first locking member (3) and on the windshield beam (4) has been provided a second locking member (5), said locking members in mutual cooperation locking the car top to the windshield beam when the car top is in closed position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 1995
    Date of Patent: June 10, 1997
    Inventor: Matti Kinnanen
  • Patent number: 5624149
    Abstract: A latching mechanism and method secures a convertible roof to a body of an automotive vehicle acting proximate with the front of the roof, rear of the roof, or both. In one aspect of the present invention, a catch secures the rearmost portion of a convertible roof to a tonneau cover. In a further aspect of the present invention, a catch mechanism is substantially located and hidden within a front header thereby eliminating undesirable head impact obstructions or unsightliness. In another aspect of the present invention, a first catch mechanism secures a rear portion of a convertible roof to a tonneau cover and a substantially similar second catch mechanism secures a forward portion of the roof to a front header. A further aspect of the present invention employs a movable striker for engagement with a catch. In yet another aspect of the present invention, a latching apparatus is employed in combination with a retractable hard top roof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 1994
    Date of Patent: April 29, 1997
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Stephen P. Tokarz
  • Patent number: 5595407
    Abstract: A roof latching device for latching a convertible folding roof to the header of the windscreen of a vehicle having a pull-to mechanism located centrally of the header, the pull-to mechanism including a hook element for engagement of a formation on the roof when the roof is located close to the header and acting to pull the roof firmly down onto the header, the latching device also including a locking mechanism located in the header on either side of the pull-to mechanism to lock the roof against the header after it has been pulled against the header by the pull-to mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 1994
    Date of Patent: January 21, 1997
    Assignee: Jaguar Cars Limited
    Inventors: Gerhardus E. R. ter Horst, Donald J. Moore
  • Patent number: 5547234
    Abstract: A locking device for locking in closed position the openable top (1) of an open automobile, comprising connected to a frame rib (3) of the top framework (2) of the openable top: a twisting handle (4), locking hooks (5), and a transmission (6) by which said locking hooks are connected with each other and with one joint twisting handle (4) for transmitting the motion of said twisting handle to said locking hooks in order to bring them simultaneously into opening position, respectively into locking position, and a fixing lug (8) connected to the body (7) of the open automobile and disposed for engagement with a locking hook. The transmission (6) comprises an angle drive (10) placed on the foremost frame rib (3) of the top framework of the openable top, which is operated in a plane substantially parallelling the top, i.e.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 1992
    Date of Patent: August 20, 1996
    Assignee: Valmet Automotive
    Inventor: Matti Kinnanen
  • Patent number: 5499855
    Abstract: A locking arrangement for securing a pivoting and sliding cover to a counter-structure of a vehicle body, in particular for folding hoods of convertibles, has a fastening pin which is disposed on the cover and protrudes from the rear side of the cover, a catch fastening which is disposed on the counter-structure and interacts with the fastening pin in the locking operation and an intrusion guide for the intrusion of the fastening pin into the catch fastening via a notch, mounted in front of the locking catch, on the counter-structure. To enable an auxiliary mechanism to be less expensive and more space-saving, elements which interact during the closing of the cover are deflection apparatus which butt against each other. A sliding advancement of the cover, which is maintained after the deflection apparatus are run up against, can be partially converted into transverse advancement of the cover which accompanies the axial advancement of the fastening pin.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 1994
    Date of Patent: March 19, 1996
    Assignee: Mercedes-Benz AG
    Inventors: Rudolf Andres, Holger Seel, Kurt Schaible
  • Patent number: 5435615
    Abstract: A locking device for convertible tops has a four-joint construction with a support frame connected to the roof, a handle, a joint bracket and a lever. At the extended end of the lever, a locking hook, which can be swiveled around an axis, is fastened. This locking device is modified so that a precise control of the locking hook, and with that, a convenient course of operations during the closing of the top becomes possible and, moreover, accident safety is improved. For this purpose, a connecting-link guidance and a spring, which exerts a torque on the hook, are provided for the locking hook.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 4, 1994
    Date of Patent: July 25, 1995
    Assignee: Wilhelm Karmann GmbH
    Inventor: Hermann Schmitz
  • Patent number: 5413390
    Abstract: A vehicle sun roof fastening device, particularly for convertible vehicles, wherein a lever is fitted with a hinged latch element designed to mate with a fixed connecting element, and is hinged to a support so as to oscillate in relation to the support and by virtue of a crank mechanism interposed between the lever and the support and operated by a linear actuator, the output rod of which is connected to one end of a crank having the other end angularly integral with a crank (14) on the crank mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 12, 1993
    Date of Patent: May 9, 1995
    Assignee: Roltra Morse S.p.A.
    Inventor: Aldo Filippi
  • Patent number: 5346267
    Abstract: A hinged panel, mounted in a frame, has a latch comprising a toggle mechanism having a first link connected to the panel by a first pivot pin and a second link connected at one end to the first link by a second pivot pin. At its end opposite to the second pivot pin, the second link has an open-ended slot for receiving a third pivot pin which is mounted on the frame. A resilient retention lever is pivotally mounted on the second link and has a hook-like formation adapted to engage with the third pivot pin to retain it in the slot. At least one part of the periphery of the third pivot pin is flattened for that part of its length which is engaged by the hook-like formation. The retention lever is so arranged that the hook-like formation can disengage from the third pivot pin only by traversing the flattened surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 1993
    Date of Patent: September 13, 1994
    Assignee: Britax Weathershields Limited
    Inventors: Timothy D. Betteridge, Adrian K. Lawler
  • Patent number: 5328229
    Abstract: A closing apparatus for a convertible roof of a convertible vehicle comprises two locking organs (9, 10), which in the closing position of the folding roof (1) each engage an anchoring bracket (11, 12) at the windshield frame (3) and by means of at least one operating handle (15) lock in the closing position and disengage from the anchoring brackets (11, 12) when opening. For this purpose, the locking organs (9, 10) are connected over a connecting element (14), which imparts a synchronous swivelling motion and to which an operating handle (15), which is constructed as a one-hand swivelling handle, is centrally assigned.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 1993
    Date of Patent: July 12, 1994
    Assignee: Wilhelm Karmann GmbH
    Inventors: Armin Brandt, Wolfgang Richter
  • Patent number: 5301987
    Abstract: A latching mechanism for a convertible top where a single drive mechanism engages and disengages multiple latching points. The latching mechanism serves not only to secure the convertible top but to pull down the top into position as it is being secured.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 4, 1992
    Date of Patent: April 12, 1994
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventors: Stephen P. Tokarz, David J. Siefert, Stanley S. Maday
  • Patent number: 5284378
    Abstract: A latch mechanism for latching a convertible top header to a vehicle windshield header comprises a latch hook receiver mounted adjacent to each end of the windshield header and a pair of movable latch members each having a free end mounting a hook. A mounting bracket located adjacent to each end of the top header has an elongated base slot and an intersecting curvilinear branch slot adjacent to its outer end. A guide pin and a spaced drive pin are carried by each latch member. The guide pin is received within the base slot and the drive pin is received within the branch slot in the unlatched position. A drive link is connected to each latch member drive pin. Operation of the drive link pivots the latch members about the guide pins until the drive pins enter the base slots and terminally slide both pins toward the inner ends of the base slots to move the latch members from unlatched to latched positions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 1992
    Date of Patent: February 8, 1994
    Assignee: Wickes Manufacturing Company
    Inventor: Robert H. Sautter, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5269586
    Abstract: A sunroof, or like vehicle cover, is secured to a motor vehicle frame utilizing a latching mechanism which has a simple construction, low overall height, and reliable operation. An engagement element on the vehicle cover cooperates with a hook mounted to the vehicle frame by a guide pin received within a guide slot, and a pivot pin received within a reception slot. One of the slots is linear and the other is non-linear. The slots, pins, and hook are positioned with respect to each other and the engagement element so that as the hook moves from an unlatched position to a latched position, moving the engagement element toward the frame, it moves through an intermediate position in which the engagement element is closer to the volume defined by the frame than in the latched position. A resilient, compressible material is preferably provided between the cover and frame to accommodate movement through the intermediate position, and to bias the components to the latched position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 1991
    Date of Patent: December 14, 1993
    Assignee: Design & Technik GmbH
    Inventors: Christian Hahn, Edwin Lundgren
  • Patent number: 5253917
    Abstract: Fastening apparatus for detachably fastening a removable roof section to a vehicle body includes an elongated locking device on the roof section movable between a roof-lock position in which the locking device locks the roof section to the vehicle body and a roof-unlock position in which the locking device unlocks the roof section from the vehicle body. A bow-shaped handle has two end parts, and a rotatable device rotatably connects one end part of the handle with the locking device such that the handle is rotatable between a handle-lock position to dispose the locking device in the roof-lock position and a handle-unlock position to dispose the locking device in the roof-unlock position. A connecting device is disposed between the other end part of the handle and the connecting link, the disconnectable connecting device having a connect position which connects the other end part of the handle and a rotatable connecting link.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 1992
    Date of Patent: October 19, 1993
    Assignee: Wilhelm Karmann GmbH
    Inventor: Heinrich Brueggemann
  • Patent number: 5203605
    Abstract: In a folding roof for an automobile, a front hood bar is moved by entraining elements driven by cables, which entraining elements can travel in curved transitions of lateral guide rails and simultaneously in curved control slits of control plates, slidable transversely on the front hood bar. The control slits run partly ascending towards the closure position, in order to create a downward displacement of the front hood bar as the roof is closed and an upward displacement of the hood bar as the roof is opened. The closing of the roof takes place with a continually decreasing speed of movement and continually increasing closure force, without any noticeable feedback effect upon the actuating force to be applied.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 1991
    Date of Patent: April 20, 1993
    Assignees: Rockwell Golde GmbH, Rockwell Golde GmbH
    Inventors: Rainer Grimm, Horst Bohm
  • Patent number: 5186516
    Abstract: A power latching mechanism for use on automobile closures is disclosed, comprising a pin member, a keeper member having a hollow cylindrical body which receives the pin member, a motor for urging engagement between the pin member and the keeper member, and a spring and associated hardware for selectively retaining the pin member in the keeper member. In one embodiment, the keeper member retentively engages the pin member when the pin member is manually inserted thereinto and is also manually disengagable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 1991
    Date of Patent: February 16, 1993
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventors: Michael P. Alexander, Allan J. Adams, Stephen P. Tokarz
  • Patent number: 5183300
    Abstract: A fastening arrangement for a movable part especially a folding top or a roof of a motor vehicle. The arrangement includes a rotary latch which serves for securing a fastening pin of the movable part and is rotatable by means of an actuating device for a blocking and release of the fastening pin which can be retained by means of a detent pawl. In the locked position of the fastening, the detent pawl rests in an undercut principal notch of the rotary latch. High frictional forces and disturbing noises therefore are avoided during the unlocking operation. The rotary latch is rotatable through a specific angle oppositely to the blocking direction of the detent pawl by means of a control device activatable by the actuating device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 1992
    Date of Patent: February 2, 1993
    Assignee: Mercedes-Benz AG
    Inventors: Andreas Bonne, Klaus Claar, Jurgen Schrader
  • Patent number: 5165743
    Abstract: A device, system and method of tailgate locking in accordance with the invention includes a lock housing, a locking member and a bracket having a flange. The bracket is connected to the lock housing. The locking member is releasably connected to the lock housing and adapted to engage a truck canopy handle. The bracket is adapted to engage a truck tailgate handle. In accordance with the method of the invention a pick-up truck canopy handle is effectively locked to a truck tailgate handle using the locking device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 1991
    Date of Patent: November 24, 1992
    Inventor: Ronald F. Zock
  • Patent number: 5156424
    Abstract: A vehicular lock device comprises a main latch engageable with a main striker and rotatable, a main ratchet engageable with the main latch in order to keep an engagement relation between the main latch and the main striker, a subsidiary latch adapted to engage with a subsidiary striker and rotate, a subsidiary ratchet adapted to engage with the subsidiary latch in order to sustain an engagement relation of the subsidiary latch with the subsidiary striker, and a rotation lever engageable with the main latch and rotatable correspondingly to rotation of the main latch. Both the latches, both the ratchets, and the rotation lever, respectively are journalled rotatably to the same body of the lock device. When the latch engages with the main striker and the former rotates, the rotation lever rotates so as to make the subsidiary ratchet released from the subsidiary latch.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 1991
    Date of Patent: October 20, 1992
    Assignees: Mitsui Kinzoku Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha, Honda Giden Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Shuji Nakamura, Atsuo Suzuki, Takahiro Hisaminato
  • Patent number: 5154479
    Abstract: A latch mechanism for latching a convertible top headed to a windshield header includes an electric motor mounted centrally on the top header which is drivingly connected by flexible drive shafts to side-rail-mounted latch units. Each latch unit includes a transmission connected to a drive shaft and an output drive screw which drives a drive nut and an attached drive link. The drive link is pivotally attached to a side-rail-mounted bell crank that is pivoted to a J-hook. Selective operation of the electric motor will cause the drive screw to shift the drive nut and drive link to move the J-hook between an extended and retracted positions. In extended position, the J-hook can be retracted to engage a windshield header abutment to latch the headers together, or retracted within the side rail for top retraction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 1991
    Date of Patent: October 13, 1992
    Assignee: Wickes Manufacturing Company
    Inventor: Robert H. Sautter, Jr.
  • Patent number: 5137327
    Abstract: Combined vehicle vent and escape hatch having a frame bounding a roof opening, a cover hingedly connected to opposite sides of the frame by hinge brackets for limited venting movement relative to one or more of the sides, one of the brackets being separable into cover and frame parts and normally prevented from separating by a cammable release rod engaging the cover part and a frame-backed movable stop plate backing the rod, and an emergency button instanding from the cover and when pushed operative to project the cover from all of said sides to full venting position and separate the parts of the separable bracket for enabling the cover, as an escape hatch, to be swung about the opposite bracket to open position. For extending the service life of the combined vent and hatch, an inner panel of the cover is backed by a rigid metal backup plate on which, for relieving the panel of stress, are hung the operating parts attached to the cover.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 1991
    Date of Patent: August 11, 1992
    Inventors: R. Michael Edmonds, Randall C. Hansen, Timothy A. Kelly
  • Patent number: 5088777
    Abstract: A lock device for locking a detachable roof to a car body, which a housing mounted to the detachable roof, the housing defining a certain clearance through which the interior of the housing is exposed to the outside of the housing; a handle lever including a base portion pivotally arranged in the housing and a grip portion projected into the outside of the housing, the base portion being formed with a curved guide slot which has at least a locking part; a lock member linked to the handle lever in such a manner that, when the handle lever is pivoted to a lock position, the lock member becomes operative and, when the handle lever is pivoted to an unlock position, the lock member becomes inoperative; a guide pin movably received in the housing and slidably engaged with the curved guide slot of the handle lever, the guide pin suppressing the handle lever from pivoting from the lock position toward the unlock position when received in the locking part of the guide slot; a slide member incorporated with the guide p
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 1991
    Date of Patent: February 18, 1992
    Assignees: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Ohi Seisakusho Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tomio Ono, Ryo Tsuruo, Hiromi Koyama, Ryoji Fujihara
  • Patent number: 5085483
    Abstract: A latching mechanism for use with a convertible-type vehicle is disclosed, in which a handle is pivotally rotatable about a fixed pivot pin, the handle being connected to a transfer arm which moves a retaining member out of engagement with a latch pin when the handle is pivotally rotated about the pin to disengage the convertible top from the vehicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 1991
    Date of Patent: February 4, 1992
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Michael Alexander
  • Patent number: 5064241
    Abstract: A pull-to device pulls a vehicle closing component into a locked end position automatically in a final closing-movement phase. Whereas prior pull-to devices formed by a closure or even by a plurality of closures were effective only after the closing component has reached a pre-engagement position on the counter-component, here, during the closing movement, this pre-engagement position is assumed large independently of the closing accuracy of the closing component. For assistance, there is an additional pull-to device which consists of a leading catch coupling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 1990
    Date of Patent: November 12, 1991
    Assignee: Daimler-Benz AG
    Inventor: Rolf Ohrle
  • Patent number: 5058939
    Abstract: A powered latching device for an automotive vehicle convertible top includes a reversible drive element linked to a latch incorporating a substantially J-shaped keeper for engaging a latch receiving flange portion of the vehicle's windshield header. The modular latching system is mounted to an articulated side rail of the convertible top, and, preferably two such latching systems are employed, one on each side rail of the convertible top.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 22, 1991
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventor: Dean R. Miilu
  • Patent number: 5052743
    Abstract: An open-top roof structure is assembled by first assembling an inner panel, a reinforcing panel and an outer panel into a roof subassembly which has a roof opening to be closed with a roof lid and which is rigid enough to resist distortion. The subassembly is then joined to the front and rear pillars of the vehicle body in order to improve the dimensional accuracy, the fit, and the watertightness between the roof opening and roof lid. The roof structure further includes a weather strip bordering the roof opening and a roof lid locking member which are both fixed to the roof outer panel with a common bolt.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 18, 1989
    Date of Patent: October 1, 1991
    Assignee: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yoshinori Inada, Takehisa Makiyama, Hideo Sekizawa
  • Patent number: 5046768
    Abstract: A latch mechanism for a vehicle closure panel hingedly mounts to a vehicle body panel and latches the closure panel in a closed position. A striker post is rotatably connected to one panel. A handle is mounted to the striker post and allows the striker post to be manually rotated, when the handle extends outwardly in an extended position. A striker guide is mounted on the other panel and has an open ended slot therein engaged by the striker post upon closing movement of the closure panel. The slot is angularly disposed to rotate the striker post from the extended position upon movement of the closure panel toward the closed position. A primary latch engages the striker post to hold the closure panel in the closed position and is releasable to allow movement of the closure panel from the closed position toward an opened position. A pop-up spring moves the closure panel from the closed position toward the open position so that the slot rotates the striker post toward the extended position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 1990
    Date of Patent: September 10, 1991
    Assignee: General Motors Corporation
    Inventor: Robert J. Myslicki
  • Patent number: 5046767
    Abstract: A convertible top latching mechanism in which blade shaped tangs each have a recess formed with a sloping cam surface mating with a surface on an associated sliding operating rod to pull the tang into an opening in a locking housing. A vertically swingable handle moves respective operating links horizontally to each cause sliding movement of a connected operating rod by a pin and slot arrangement.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1989
    Date of Patent: September 10, 1991
    Assignee: Jubbu Designer's Inc.
    Inventor: Mario Muscat
  • Patent number: 5042869
    Abstract: A locking arrangement for coupling a top with the windshield frame of a motor vehicle includes an actuating device arranged on a front frame part of the top approximately in the area of a longitudinal center plane of the vehicle. The actuating device, by way of transversely extending connecting elements, is connected to laterally exterior locking elements. The locking elements, when the top is in a closed position, interact with receiving devices mounted at the windshield frame. The receiving devices are only accessible from above in order to create a locking arrangement which, while having a simple mounting, ensures a good operation and enables large travel movements to be achieved in the vertical direction. The receiving devices are each formed by a closing part fastened to the windshield on which an approximately horizontally extending bolt is locally mounted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 27, 1991
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG
    Inventor: Constantin Brin
  • Patent number: 5037146
    Abstract: A lock for a detachable vehicle body part, particularly a roof of a motor vehicle, includes a fixed receiving device and a movable actuating member. The actuating member, which is pivoted at a pin, has a circular plate with a circle segment-type flattening and is adjustable from a closed position to an open position and vice versa. The adjustments are accomplished by moving the actuating member along a circular path segment. In the closed position, the actuating member reaches over the receiving device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 1990
    Date of Patent: August 6, 1991
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG
    Inventors: Eugen Kolb, Reinhold Schreiber
  • Patent number: 4962960
    Abstract: An arrangement for fixing in position a top of a passenger motor vehicle includes a first member retained in position at the windshield frame which form-lockingly cooperates in the closed position of the top with a second member attached at the top. In order that this arrangement which has a simple construction with good functioning and which requires little structural space--as viewed in the vertical direction--, the first member is formed by an upwardly directed, transversely extending leg adjoining a recess which is surrounded by a downwardly open receiving section of the second member, whereby a web of the receiving section facing the windshield frame protrudes into the recess.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 13, 1990
    Date of Patent: October 16, 1990
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Willi Wurl, Benjamin Dimson, Rainer Uerlings
  • Patent number: 4923232
    Abstract: A window apparatus for a vehicle comprising a vehicle body, a window glass, a lock means provided on the window glass, and a link-type hinge means which is provided on the vehicle body and is connected to the window glass through the lock means. When the window glass is closed or opened at a predetermined angle, the window glass and the link-type hinge means are connected together by the lock means, thereby enabling the window glass to be retained. When the lock means is unlocked, the window glass is disengaged from the link-type hinge means, thereby enabling the window glass to be fully opened. Accordingly, it is possible to readily take out luggage or the like in the compartment from the window without the need to open the door of the vehicle from the outside. Further, the link-type hinge means in this apparatus is designed so that there is no fear of a lock handle moving when the window glass is to be closed. Thus, it is possible to smoothly engage the lock handle with the lock means.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 1989
    Date of Patent: May 8, 1990
    Assignee: Aisin Seiki Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Shigeyuki Kawagoe, Yoshikatu Furuya
  • Patent number: 4917415
    Abstract: A latching mechanism for a top of a motor vehicle which is tightened against a fixed body, includes a support bracket arranged on the side of the top having an operating lever supported about a first transverse axis as well as a pivotal latching member which cooperates with a receiving device on the side of the body. For improving the operating comfort of the latching mechanism, the operating lever is connected with the latching member by way of a guide lever. Furthermore, the latching member cooperates with the support bracket and the receiving means by way of a positive control in such a manner that during the pivoting of the operating lever into its raised locking position, a defined upward movement of the latching member in the direction toward the receiving means and a following tightening movement inside of the receiving means take place.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 1988
    Date of Patent: April 17, 1990
    Assignee: Porsche Aktiengeselschaft
    Inventor: Willi Wurl
  • Patent number: 4913486
    Abstract: A sliding sunroof assembly for a vehicle and a latching mechanism for such a sunroof assembly are disclosed.A gear shaft has two drive gears disposed on opposite ends thereof which ride on gear guides on tracks, the gear guides having serrations formed thereon to engage teeth of the drive gears. A lock gear is provided centrally on the gear shaft, and one or more engaging members are normally biased into engagement with the lock gear to prevent rotation of the shaft. Movement of a handle disengages the engaging member or members from the lock gear, allowing the gear shaft to spin and allowing slidable movement of a sunroof panel. The latching mechanism enables the sunroof assembly to be latched in a plurality of positions between a fully closed portion and a fully open position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 27, 1989
    Date of Patent: April 3, 1990
    Assignee: ASC Incorporated
    Inventors: Dennis W. Staley, Antony W. Chamings
  • Patent number: 4898410
    Abstract: A latching mechanism for a foldable top at a windshield frame of a motor vehicle includes a pivot lever arranged on the side of the top and a mounting device provided at the windshield frame, whereby the pivot lever rotatably supported about an approximately horizontally aligned longitudinal axis cooperates with an actuating mechanism. In order to provide a latching mechanism for a top which has a good functioning combined with simple construction and in which the closing force acting in the vertical direction reaches its maximum value in the latching position of the top, the mounting device is formed by a rotatable roller which cooperates with a guide track provided at the pivot lever in such a manner that during the closing operation the guide track is displaced from an unlatched position extending laterally adjacent the roller about the lower area of the roller by way of intermediate positions into a latching position lying underneath the roller.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 1988
    Date of Patent: February 6, 1990
    Assignee: Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG
    Inventor: Constantin Brin