PatentDe  


Dokumentenidentifikation EP1281662 28.12.2006
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0001281662
Titel Pneumatischer Sattel
Anmelder Hammersmith Nominees Pty. Ltd., Perth, Western Australia, AU
Erfinder Bates, Ronald Gordon, Mt. Lawley, Western Australia, AU
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
DE-Aktenzeichen 60216017
Vertragsstaaten AT, BE, BG, CH, CY, CZ, DE, DK, EE, ES, FI, FR, GB, GR, IE, IT, LI, LU, MC, NL, PT, SE, SK, TR
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 12.07.2002
EP-Aktenzeichen 022549430
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 05.02.2003
EP date of grant 15.11.2006
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 28.12.2006
IPC-Hauptklasse B68C 1/08(2006.01)A, F, I, 20051017, B, H, EP

Beschreibung[en]
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to saddles for equestrian use.

A conventional saddle has at its underside panels of a compressible structure intended to spread the weight of the rider over the back of the horse. Conventionally, the panels consist of an envelope into which a packing of wool or comparable synthetic material is inserted by hand. In principle, the packing formed by the wool or other filling is intended to conform to the shape of the horse's back and thereby to spread the load while minimising pressure points on the horse's back. When a saddle is used only on one horse, the panels of the saddle will, over a period of time, compress and set to take on the shape of the particular horse's back. However the extent of possible compression which occurs in the packing is relatively limited and unless the saddle tree is shaped to the exact conformity of the horse, pressure points often arise where too much of the weight of the rider is transferred to the horse's back in specific areas. This results in the skin not receiving sufficient blood flow which reduces the ability of the skin to sweat and if this situation continues for a long period of time it can result in hair loss, sore back, and possible muscle damage to the horse. These problems are compounded when, and as often happens, the saddle is used on more than one horse and whereby the compression needed to properly bed the saddle down onto the horse will not arise.

To avoid these problems there is proposed in our New Zealand patent NZ 510546 the incorporation into the panels of the saddle of a plurality of sealed air bags filled with air at atmospheric pressure. The effect of the air bags is that, in use, air will move within each separate bag and an even pressure will be applied over the entire surface of each air bag at the front or back of the saddle thereby eliminating individual pressure points on the back of the horse in contrast to conventional saddles where significant pressure variation on the horses back can arise within a relatively small area.

The present invention relates to an improved version of the air bag arrangement which provides a very even and seamless loading transition between adjacent air bags.

According to the present invention there is provided a saddle for equestrian use, the saddle having panels, each panel containing a plurality of sealed air bags, a separate said air bag being at least in a forward part and a rearward part of the panel and each bag in use serving to apply a relatively even pressure to the back of the horse, wherein each air bag is substantially flat and substantially filled within its interior with a resiliently compressible open cell foam, the bag comprising opposed layers of sheet material sealed together such that air at atmosphere pressure is enclosed within the bag, adjacent side walls of adjacent bags being in abutting engagement to substantially prevent discontinuity of pressure application to the back of the horse in the transition between adjacent bags, and the sheet material forming each of the adjacent bags forming a seam extending from one of the upper or lower surfaces of said bag beyond said side wall thereof to engage the corresponding upper or lower surface of the adjacent bag beyond the said side wall thereof whereby said seam overlaps the abutting side walls.

An embodiment of the invention will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings in which:-

  • Fig. 1 is a schematic cross-section of a saddle in accordance with an embodiment of the invention disclosed in our earlier New Zealand patent NZ 510546 and showing the saddle panels containing an air bag arrangement and adjustable packing externally of the air bags;
  • Fig. 2 is a cross-section through an individual air bag of the saddle;
  • Fig. 3 is a section showing schematically the configuration of the air bag, an associated liner, and packing within the panel; and
  • Fig. 4 is a schematic cross-section in the zone of connection between adjacent air bags associated with the panel to show the improvement in accordance with the present invention.

The saddle of the preferred embodiment is apart from the detailed design of the air bags, substantially the same as the saddle disclosed in our earlier New Zealand patent discussed earlier, to which reference may be made. Briefly, however, as described in that application each of the saddle panels 2 defines an envelope which receives an arrangement of air bags 4 and, above the air bags 4 either along the entire length of the panel 2 or at selected positions, packing 6 preferably in the form of a wool stuffing. The air bags 4 are arranged sequentially in a fore-aft direction with the panel 2.

There may be just two such air bags forming front and rear air bags collectively extending the length of the panel 2 or there may be three or possibly more such air bags consisting of a front, a rear, and one or more intermediate air bags collectively extending the length of the panel 2. The respective air bags 4 are sealed and as a result air will not flow between the bags. It is to be noted that if only a single air bag were to be used extending the length of the panel substantial air movement would occur from the front to the back of the panel when the air bag is under pressure during use and this could result in the formation of pressure points. Although with the arrangement now described air movement will occur within each individual bag when under load, the extent of air movement is inherently restricted by the length of the bag.

With reference to Figure 2, each air bag 4 is formed by upper and lower sheets 8, 10 of impervious material such as PVC sealed together around the periphery 12 with each bag having a filling 14 consisting of a layer of an open cell resiliently compressible foam. The air bags 4 are not inflated with air at above atmospheric pressure but, rather, contain air at atmospheric pressure which is sealed within the bag during manufacture, with the open cell foam filling 14 occupying substantially the entirety of the interior of the bag. The resulting air bag is substantially flat and of substantially even thickness throughout.

The two or more air bags 4 are fitted into the panel 2 and then preferably the wool or other appropriate packing 6 is placed above the air bags where required. Advantageously, the two or more bags 4 are formed into an air bag unit by attaching a layer 16 of flexible lining material to the upper surface of the air bags 4, for example by glueing. The lining 16 will prevent the air bags 4 from being punctured while the wool or other packing 6 is being inserted and also serves to consolidate the two or more bags 4 into a single unit to facilitate assembly. The lining 16 may consist of a felt or a suitable plastics material such as PVC. The air bag unit may consist of front and rear air bags, or front, intermediate, and rear air bags as described in our earlier application as aforesaid. The packing 6 will normally be added in the part of the panel 2 which guides the knee of the rider, and at the rear of the panel 2 where extra depth is required. Very little packing is likely to be required in the middle part of the panel 2 although it can be added if required.

The effect of the air bag arrangement is that, in use, air will move within each separate bag and an even pressure will be applied over the entire surface of each air bag at the front or back of the saddle thereby eliminating individual pressure points on the back of the horse, in contrast to conventional saddles where significant pressure variation on the horse's back can arise within a relatively small area. The application of the even pressure over the surface of the bag is expected to substantially remove possibility for muscle damage and it is expected that this will result in a much freer and more comfortable movement of the horse in use.

It will be understood that although a number of different plastics materials will have substantial impermeability to passage of air and will form suitable materials for the air bags, absolute impermeability might not always be achieved with the result that minor amounts of air might displace through the bag wall when the bag is under heavy loading during prolonged use resulting in minor deflation which does not, however, adversely affect the performance of the bag, but under normal usage this should not occur. However should minor deflation occur under the circumstances discussed above, when the saddle is removed from the horse and the air bag is no longer under load, it has been determined that the expansion of the open cell foam filling within the bag from its previously compressed state does, over a period of time (such as several weeks), cause air to be drawn back into the interior of the bag to establish pressure equilibrium across the wall of the bag. However it is envisaged that if air loss through the bag wall during use does present a problem, laminates can be used which will totally eliminate air loss although these laminates can be relatively expensive and will therefore lead to increased costs.

The improvement in accordance with the preferred embodiment of the invention will now be described.

It has now been determined that it is particularly advantageous for the upper and lower sheets 8, 10 forming each bag to be sealed in a sealing zone lying substantially in the plane of one of the two sheets rather than lying intermediate the planes of the two sheets as shown in Figure 2. Accordingly, and as shown in Figure 4 the seals of adjacent air bags associated with each panel are arranged so that the seal 12a of one air bag (as shown, the bag 4a) is arranged in the plane of the upper sheet 8 of that bag and the 12b of the adjacent air bag (as shown, the bag 4b) is in the plane of the lower sheet 10 of that bag. With this configuration, the side edges 5a, 5b of the main bodies of the two adjacent air bags can be mounted in close proximity with the seal 12a of the first air bag forming an upper flap which extends over and is adhered to the upper surface of the second air bag and the seal 12b of the second air bag extends beneath and is adhered to the lower surface of the first air bag. With this configuration, the adjacent side edges 5a, 5b of the bodies of the two air bags will tightly abut in the manner shown in Figure 4 to provide a very even and "seamless" loading transition between the two air bags. If there is a third air bag associated with the panel, a similar transition is formed between the second and third air bags, as between the first and second air bags.

In an additional modification to further improve the abutting joint between the adjacent side edges of adjacent bags, the foam filling layer adjacent the joint is formed with a chamfer or skive, with the two chamfers being oppositely directed so that one faces upwardly and the other downwardly to ensure tight abutment of the adjacent sides of the two bags along an inclined plane thus forming, effectively, a skive joint between the two bags, with the skive joint being enclosed from above and below by upper and lower flaps formed from the abutting layers of the two sheets forming each bag in the zone of the seal between the two sheets. The seal itself may be at the extreme outer edge of those flaps. The modified structure just described further improves the "seamless" feel of the transition between adjacent bags.

The embodiment has been described by way of example only and modifications are possible within the scope of the invention, which is properly defined by the following claims.


Anspruch[de]
Sattel für die Verwendung im Reitsport, welcher Sattel Sattelblätter (2) hat, wobei jedes Sattelblatt mehrere verschlossene Luftbeutel (4) beinhaltet, wobei ein separater solcher Luftbeutel zumindest in einem vorderen und einem hinteren Bereich des Sattelblatts vorhanden ist und jeder Beutel während der Benutzung dazu dient, einen relativ gleichmäßigen Druck auf den Rücken des Pferdes aufzubringen,

wobei jeder Luftbeutel im Wesentlichen flach ist und in seinem Inneren im Wesentlichen mit einem elastischen kompressiblen offenzelligen Schaum (14) gefllt ist, und

wobei der Beutel gegenüberliegende Lagen eines bahnförmigen Materials (8, 10) aufweist, die so zusammen versiegelt sind, dass Luft bei atmosphärischem Druck innerhalb des Beutels eingeschlossen ist,

dadurch gekennzeichnet, dass

benachbarte Seitenwände (5a, 5b) von benachbarten Beuteln aneinander liegen, so dass eine diskontinuierliche Druckaufbringung auf den Rücken des Pferdes in dem Übergang zwischen benachbarten Beuteln im Wesentlichen verhindert wird, und

das bahnförmige Material (8, 10), das jeden der benachbarten Beutel bildet, eine Naht (12a, 12b) bildet, die sich von der oberen oder der unteren Oberfläche des Beutels nach jenseits der besagten Seitenwand (5a, 5b) des Beutels erstreckt, um mit der entsprechenden oberen oder unteren Oberfläche des benachbarten Beutels nach jenseits von dessen besagter Seitenwand in Eingriff zu geraten, wodurch die Naht die aneinanderliegenden Seitenwände überlappt.
Sattel nach Patentanspruch 1, bei welchem die kompressible Schaumfüllung (14) jedes Beutels durch eine Schicht aus einem Schaummaterials ausgebildet ist, die an einer ihrer Kanten unmittelbar neben der besagten Seitenwand des Beutels angefast ist, wodurch die benachbarten Seitenwände der benachbarten Beutel entlang einer geneigten Ebene aneinander stoßen, die durch die Fasen der Schaumschichten innerhalb der Beutel definiert ist. Sattel nach Patentanspruch 1 oder 2, bei welchem jedes Sattelblatt eine Füllung (6) auf der Seite der Luftbeutel beinhaltet, die entfernt von dem Pferd ist. Sattel nach Patentanspruch 3, bei welchem eine Verkleidung (16) zwischen der Füllung (6) und den Luftbeuteln vorgesehen ist, um die Luftbeutel während des Einbringens der Füllung vor Beschädigungen zu schützen.
Anspruch[en]
A saddle for equestrian use, the saddle having panels (2), each panel containing a plurality of sealed air bags (4), a separate said air bag being at least in a forward part and a rearward part of the panel and each bag in use serving to apply a relatively even pressure to the back of the horse, wherein each air bag is substantially flat and substantially filled within its interior with a resiliently compressible open cell foam (14), the bag comprising opposed layers of sheet material (8, 10) sealed together such that air at atmospheric pressure is enclosed within the bag, characterised in that adjacent side walls (5a, 5b) of adjacent bags are in abutting engagement to substantially prevent discontinuity of pressure application to the back of the horse in the transition between adjacent bags, and the sheet material (8, 10) forming each of the adjacent bags forms a seam (12a, 12b) extending from one of the upper or lower surfaces of said bag beyond said side wall (5a,5b) thereof to engage the corresponding upper or lower surface of the adjacent bag beyond the said side wall thereof whereby said seam overlaps the abutting side walls. A saddle according to claim 1, wherein the compressible foam filling (14) of each bag is provided by a layer of foam material which is chamfered at an edge thereof immediately proximate to the said side wall of the bag whereby the adjacent side walls of adjacent bags abut along an inclined plane defined by the chamfers of the foam layers within the bags. A saddle according to claim 1 or claim 2, wherein each panel contains packing (6) at the side of the air bags remote from the horse. A saddle according to claim 3, wherein a lining (16) is interposed between the packing (6) and the air bags to protect the air bags against damage during insertion of the packing.
Anspruch[fr]
Selle pour une utilisation équestre, la selle ayant des panneaux (2), chaque panneau contenant une multiplicité de poches d'air scellées (4), une poche d'air séparée étant au moins dans une partie avant et une partie arrière du panneau et chaque poche en utilisation servant à appliquer une pression relativement égale sur le dos du cheval, chaque poche d'air étant sensiblement plate et remplie de manière substantielle à l'intérieur avec une mousse à cellule ouverte compressible de manière élastique (14), la poche comportant des couches opposées de matière en feuille (8, 10) scellées ensemble de telle sorte que de l'air à pression atmosphérique est enfermé à l'intérieur de la poche, caractérisée en ce que des parois latérales adjacentes (5a, 5b) de poches adjacentes sont en engagement de butée afin d'empêcher de manière substantielle une discontinuité d'application de pression sur le dos du cheval dans la transition entre des poches adjacentes, et la matière en feuille (8, 10) formant chacune des poches adjacentes forme une couture (12a, 12b) s'étendant depuis une des surfaces supérieure ou inférieure de ladite poche au-delà de ladite paroi latérale (5a, 5b) afin d'engager la surface supérieure ou inférieure correspondante de la poche adjacente au-delà de ladite paroi latérale de sorte que ladite couture chevauche les parois latérales en butée. Selle selon la revendication 1, dans laquelle le remplissage en mousse compressible (14) de chaque poche est pourvue d'une couche de matière en mousse qui est chanfreinée au niveau d'un bord immédiatement à proximité de ladite paroi latérale de la poche de sorte que les parois latérales adjacentes de poches adjacentes butent le long d'un plan incliné défini par les chanfreins des couches de mousse à l'intérieur des poches. Selle selon la revendication 1 ou la revendication 2, dans laquelle chaque panneau contient un rembourrage (6) au niveau du côté des poches d'air éloignées du cheval. Selle selon la revendication 3, dans laquelle une doublure (16) est interposée entre le rembourrage (6) et les poches d'air afin de protéger les poches d'air contre un endommagement pendant l'insertion du rembourrage.






IPC
A Täglicher Lebensbedarf
B Arbeitsverfahren; Transportieren
C Chemie; Hüttenwesen
D Textilien; Papier
E Bauwesen; Erdbohren; Bergbau
F Maschinenbau; Beleuchtung; Heizung; Waffen; Sprengen
G Physik
H Elektrotechnik

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