The world is a better place because people often think about ways to make things better.  And when someone dreams up an invention that they want to retain the rights to, they file a patent application.

Sometimes it’s clear on its face that the invention will be of significant benefit.  Other times, the utility of a claimed invention is difficult to fathom.  And finally, there are some inventions where people might disagree on whether an invention has any real utility.

Does the glider have utility?

Such is the case with a recent patent application filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).  Kevin Henderson, from Downey, California has filed a patent application for a new kind of racing glider (a.k.a. slider) for a motorcyclist’s forearm and shin.

Henderson’s patent application says that current “gliders” cause problems that his new design solves:

“Prior art pads exist to protect riders during these cornering maneuvers but have the significant drawback of substantial friction between the ground and the pad.  This friction slows the rider, impacts the cornering geometry and creates rider discomfort.”

The application goes on to describe a “stick-slip” effect.  He says instead of smoothly sliding across the pavement, the glider sticks momentarily.  Henderson says that this issue can cause riders discomfort leading to the rider not using the slider and decreasing lean angles.

ball bearing slider

The new gliders use abrasion-resistant ceramic balls to smoothly roll over the pavement. Image credit: USPTO

Henderson’s gliders seek to solve these problems.  His gliders attach via velcro and have a deformable base with slits that allow a secure and comfortable fit to the rider’s arm or leg.

Glider assembly

Attached to the deformable base is a case.  The case securely holds a set of abrasion-resistant balls made of “smooth abrasion-resistant ceramic.  These ceramic balls are secured inside the case by a separate set of ceramic ball bearings.

According to the patent application, the…

“…abrasion resistant balls move smoothly within the bearings and casing and roll when contacting the ground creating minimal friction but also providing substantial rider support.”

If Henderson’s assertions are true, the gliders will smoothly skim across the pavement, give riders additional support, and allow them to use maximum lean angle.

What do you think?

So what do you think?  Do you believe Henderson’s ideas have merit and would you purchase a set if they were reasonably priced?  Let us know in the comments below.


Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Thank you for subscribing!
This email is already subscribed.
There has been an error.