Decathlon has filed a patent for a hinge design for folding bicycles. The hinge includes a first and second tube portion that can be folded and unfolded. It also features a locking element that can retain the second tube portion in the unfolded position or allow it to be folded. An unlocking member and an actuating device are included to bring the locking element into the open position. GlobalData’s report on Decathlon gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.
According to GlobalData’s company profile on Decathlon, sport bats was a key innovation area identified from patents. Decathlon's grant share as of June 2023 was 1%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.
A folding bicycle hinge with a locking and unlocking mechanism
A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230120128A1) describes a new hinge design for folding bicycles. The hinge consists of a first tube portion and a second tube portion that can pivot between an unfolded position and a folded position around a first axis of pivot. The hinge also includes a locking element that can retain the second tube portion in the unfolded position or allow it to be displaced in the folded position. An unlocking member is provided to bring the locking element from a closed position to an open position, allowing the second tube portion to pivot. A device is included to actuate the unlocking member and bring it into an active position.
The patent also claims the inclusion of a return device that brings the unlocking member back to a neutral position when the actuating device is not being used. The unlocking member is pivotably mounted on the second tube portion about a third axis of pivot, parallel to the second axis of pivot of the locking element. It extends into a housing defined by a mounting portion on the second tube portion. The unlocking member has a pushing portion that can push the locking element to open it, and a pulling portion that can be pulled by the actuating device to bring the unlocking member into the active position.
The actuating device is described as including a control member and a cable portion. The control member, shaped like a lever, can be mounted near the handlebar of a folding bicycle. The cable portion has one end linked to the control member and the other end linked to the pulling portion of the unlocking member. This arrangement allows the actuating device to rotate the unlocking member about its pivot axis.
The locking element and unlocking member have specific configurations to ensure proper interaction. The locking element has a receiving portion, and the unlocking member has a locking portion that interacts with the receiving portion to retain the locking element in the closed position. When the unlocking member is brought into the active position, the interaction between the locking portion and receiving portion is interrupted.
The patent also mentions the use of the hinge design in a folding bicycle, with at least one first hinge included. Additionally, a second hinge is described, and the actuating device for the unlocking member of the second hinge includes an actuating cable that is attached to one of the tube portions of the first hinge and linked to the unlocking member of the second hinge. This configuration allows the unlocking member of the second hinge to be brought into the active position when the second tube portion of the first hinge pivots with respect to the first tube portion.