US 3085359 A
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April 16, 1963 H. E. RUBENS ROTATABLE HEEL Filed Dec. 30, 1958 3g 30 2Q 1g 2; 3p
3,085,359 ROTATAELE HEEL Harry Ernest Rubens, Westport, Conn. Burndy Corp, Norwalk, Conn.) Filed Dec. 30, 1958, Ser. No. 783,901 3 Claims. (Cl. 36-39) My invention relates to improvements in heels and more particularly to readily replaceable heels, portions of which may be rotated to equalize wear.
Heels wear quickly at the lower rear edge. It has been a problem to provide a practical heel which the wearer may easily adjust so as to furnish a fresh edge and thus save the expense of replacing and installing a new heel. When the adjustable portion is made circular a feature which will permit rotation, various problems are presented such as friction between moving parts which may be of rubber. Another problem is the liklihood of grit or other substances slipping in between the parts and opening up a gap which is unsightly and liable to fill with dirt rendering rotation and even wear unlikely. In addition the parts are difficult to center and excessive pressure may be required to snap the parts together to form a working heel. Finally if the moving part is accidentally lost the shoe provided with a replaceable heel may be difficult to use because of the missing part.
Accordingly, it is an object of the invention to provide a heel of the rotating type, in which a marginal pressure is produced at the edge to prevent any gap from forming. Other objects are to provide a centering means enabling the parts to be quickly snapped together; which will permit the rotating parts to be readily moved when it is desired to change the position of wear without removing the parts, and which will permit more or less. level walking even though the replaceable parts are missing; and to accomplish the foregoing without extra cost or loss of wearing qualities.
A further object is to provide a sealing means Which will keep out all deleterious substances and which will facilitate the normal operation of the heel.
According to the invention I provide a circular wearing part or plate movable on a heel base provided with resilient securing means whereby the pressure between the parts is concentrated at the peripheral circular edges, to ensure that the securing pressure will always keep the edges closed. Preferably this is done by introducing a divergent taper between the two engaging parts, the tapered surfaces meeting near the edges, when the two parts are clamped together. If the body weight is deposited on the heel the slightly divergent tapered surfaceswill resiliently engage to distribute the pressure more or less uniformly over the entire heel area, said pressure being greatest near the peripheral edges, and existing there even when the weight of the body is shifted to the other foot. In addition a sealing substance may be introduced to prevent entrance of deleterious substances and to facilitate operation of the moving parts.
In order that the invention may be more clearly understood, one particular embodiment thereof will be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawing in which FIG. 1 is a side elevation of the heel,
FIG. 2 is a bottom view thereof,
FIG. 3 is a sectional view taken longitudinally through the center of the heel along line 3-3 of FIG. 1, showing the two parts in clamped position.
Referring more in detail to the drawing, the invention comprises a heel base 10, and an attached circular heel plate 12, each provided with conical surfaces, such as the heel body surface 14, and the circular heel plate surface 16. The two parts are secured together by form- 3,685,359 Patented Apr. 16, 1963 ing a circular bead 18, on the plate which is snapped into a correspond-ing seat 20, formed in the heel base through seat opening 22, in the heel base conical surface 14. The circular bead is slightly larger in width than the opening 22, so that a predetermined amount of force is required to push the bead into the seat through said opening.
Accordingly, at least the heel base forming opening 22, or the bead 18, should be made of resilient material such as rubber, for allowing the head to be forced through the opening. Any securing means can be used which will snap-fit the two parts tightly in position. It is of course desirable for the plate to be rotated on the heel base when said parts are adequately secured together. The two conical surfaces 14 and 16 are slightly divergent to provide a small central chamber 24, which may be filled with a non-drying grease 25, harmless to the material of the parts, such as silicone grease. This crease permits the parts to rotate freely, one on the other, even when they are both made of rubber which normally offers a resistance to rotation. The grease will seal the parts to each other keeping out water, dirt and air. Thus the conical or tapered surfaces permit the two parts to be clamped tightly at the contacting marginal or peripheral edges. When the full body weight is placed upon the heel parts, the conical surfaces tend to fully meet under the pressure and more or less distribute the pressure over the entire conical surfaces. Any grease contained in the chamber will be forced, to some extent, along the inner wall of the circular head through the opening 20, and into the seat 22. Walking will, therefore, constantly feed the grease into the seat tending to lubricate the parts constantly and seal the contacting surfaces.
Should the plate he accidentally lost, the apex 26, of the cone, which is just above the lowest surface of the heel base, will support the rear of the heel base in more or less horizontal position until such time as a new heel plate can be snapped into position.
It will be noted that the wear surface of the heel will tend to follow the dot-dash line 27. By making the heel plate thickest at the edge which is the result of using the tapered surfaces, additional wearing material is provided where it is most useful.
In assembling the plate 12 to the heel base 10, the parts normally center themselves by reason of the conical surface 14, fitting centrally within the ring formed by the head 18. When pressure is applied the bead 18 will be directly over the opening 22, which will facilitate insertion. The bead should be provided with a restricted neck section 28, which is more or less the width of opening 22, to prevent the bead and plate from readily separating under accidental reverse forces. The height of the neck section 28, should be slightly less than the height of the corresponding neck section 30 of the seat, to cause the parts to be under continuous clamping pressure.
The bottom surface of the plate 10 may be formed with radiating protuber-ances 32, to facilitate rotation of the heel plate with respect to the heel base. Protuberance 34 may similarly be formed on the lower surface of the heel base to provide a level heel.
Nail apertures 36, may also be provided where needed in the heel base and in the conical surface 14. The heel base may be trough-shaped as at 38 to facilitate attachment to the sole 40, of the shoe base 42. Instead of nails the heel body may be glued to the sole 40.
I have in the foregoing invention overcome the problems found in previous heel structures and have produced a practical and commercially acceptable replaceable and rotatable heel suitable for mass production. By avoiding the gap at the edges, workmen and others employed in dusty and dirty places will be enabled to freely rotate the heel when desired. Wear and friction between the surfaces are avoided and the contacting surfaces are always clean.
The self feeding grease may be employed to facilitate rotation and sealing of the inner parts. Replacement is readily made when necessary, the centering action providing a help in installations. Extra material is furnished at the points of greatest wear, without extra material cost, and the heel may be used in an emergency without difiiculty even though the replaceable plate is lost.
' What 'I claim and desire to secure by Letters Patent is as follows;
1. A heel comprising a heel base for permanent attachment to a shoe, and a circular heel plate having a wear area, said heel base and plate provided with detachable securing means for supporting the heel plate to the heel base, said heel base and plate having peripherally extending contacting surfaces arranged about the outer edge of the plate, that taper inwardly and towards the wear area of the heel plate to provide greater thickness of the heel plate at the outer edge.
2. A heel comprising a heel base for permanent attachment to a shoe, and a circular heel plate having a wear area, said heel base and plate provided with detachable securing means for supporting the heel plate to the heel base, said plate having a cone shaped inner surface nearest the heel base, the apex of which is directed towards the wear area of the heel plate to provide minimum thickness of the heel plate at the center thereof.
3. A heel comprising a heel base for permanent attachment to a shoe, and a circular heel plate having a wear area, said heel base and plate provided with a circular interlocking bead and groove forming detachable securing means for supporting the heel plate to the heel base, said base and platehaving peripherally extending contacting surfaces arranged about the outer edge of the same, that taper inwardly and towards the wear area of the heel plate to provide greater thickness of the heel plate at the outer edge, and a cone shaped inner surface on said heel plate nearest the heel base, the apex of which is directed towards the wear area to provide minimum thickness of the heel plate at the center thereof.
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