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U.S. PATENT 6,131,381

Issued: October 17, 2000


IMAGES 3- Pushing Leaves

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Pushing leaves allows the efficient movement of large quantities of leaves.

Preparing to push leaves

A unique attribute of the rake is the capability of pushing leaves. Pushing a pile of leaves is a highly efficient way to quickly move a large volume of leaves from one location to another. The efficiency of this function rivals that provided by a powerful leaf blower. There are many reasons why blowers are undesirable machines: expense, noise, danger from blown objects, pollution, fossil fuel usage, and the need for repairs. The Lawn Rake and Cross Head Assembly can compete with a leaf blower in ease and efficiency of use for moving volumes of leaves, without the negative aspects of the blower. Furthermore, blowers are typically handheld, having a relatively low capacity and tiring to use; back mounted, having greater capacity but requiring substantial physical effort; or wheel mounted, having a large fan capacity but unwieldy and difficult to maneuver. Compare these blowers with the inexpensive lightweight plastic rake of this invention and the advantages of the rake become considerable.

Drawing link | Specification link

Leaves can be gathered by standing behind the rake and using the rake to push leaves forward into a pile.

Pushing leaves into a pile

Pushing leaves allows a user to vary hand and arm manipulations as well as muscle use. It also permits a user to take a different stance. By varying the ergonomics, a particular group of muscles is able to rest while another group comes into play. Raking becomes less repetitive, less tedious, less tiring and more interesting as a result.

A gathered pile of leaves can also be engaged by the rake and pushed forward with a continuous walking movement.

Continuing to push leaves

The spacing of the array of tines forms an impenetrable backstop against which leaves accumulate. The flexibility of the tines, together with the angle at which the tines contact the ground, allows the tines to curve backwards and glide along the ground as the rake is pushed ahead. Thus, a pile of leaves can be pushed from one point to another in one continuous forward walking motion. The rake can also be used in a repetitive pushing motion to brush leaves into a pile. Furthermore, the cross-head assembly can be detached from the rake handle and used to scoop up leaves by hand for deposit in a leaf bag. The long narrow configuration of the cross-head assembly facilities lowering part of the cross-head assembly into a bag. Two cross-head assemblies used in unison makes this task even easier.

The rake is alongside a pile of gathered leaves.

An accumulated pile of leaves

As with all rakes, the rake of this invention works best with dry leaves. When the leaves are dry, they are easily gathered, pushed, and moved around in a variety of directions by simply varying the direction of motion of the rake.

A view of the cross-head assembly looking down, while pushing leaves.

View looking down while pushing leaves

The action of pushing leaves into a pile, or pushing a pile of accumulated leaves, is very similar to that of using a push broom. The rake of course has a much higher capacity and is a much lighter weight. The pushing of leaves is particularly effective on a driveway, or along the side of a road where leaves are deposited for pickup. The rake, when used in pushing mode, allows a very efficient and fast method for moving leaves.

One tine is shown released from the cross-head assembly, however, the pushing of leaves can continue.

A tine released while pushing leaves

In this image you will notice that a tine has released from engagement with the cross-arm. The effect on pushing or raking leaves is negligible. However, it is a simple matter to push the endloop of the tine back onto the cross-arm to quickly restore full functionality.


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