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Title:
WHEELED ASSEMBLY INCLUDING A HINGE
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2018/017070
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A wheeled assembly includes a first arm supporting a first wheel, and a second arm supporting a second wheel. A first motor is supported by the first arm and engaged with the first wheel, and a second motor is supported by the second arm and engaged with the second wheel. A hinge is pivotally coupled to the first arm and the second arm allowing the wheeled assembly to pivot between a skateboard position to a bicycle position, and to be used in a variety of user transport devices.

Inventors:
CORTES CERVANTES, Saulo Da (Quinto #237 Fraccionamiento Valle Dorado, Tlalnepantla de BazEstado de Mexico, 54020, MX)
LOPEZ HERNANDEZ, Enrique (Tepozan #130, Toluca Estado de Mexico, 50009, MX)
ALCARAZ ANDRADE, Alejandro Alejandro (Antonio Caso 10, cto. EducadoresNaucalpan de Juarez, Mexico, 53100, MX)
DELAGADO BOURDE, Cristofer (Dakota 375 Int 3 Col. Ampliacion Napoles, Platon 445 102, Palmitas Polanc, Distrito Federal Mexico, 03810, MX)
Application Number:
US2016/043073
Publication Date:
January 25, 2018
Filing Date:
July 20, 2016
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
FORD GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES, LLC (330 Town Center Drive, Suite 800Dearborn, MI, 48126, US)
International Classes:
A63C17/02; A63C17/00; A63C17/01; A63C17/12; A63C17/16
Domestic Patent References:
2014-07-17
Foreign References:
US20040262056A12004-12-30
US20130081891A12013-04-04
US20030051568A12003-03-20
US1406641A1922-02-14
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
FRANCIS, Christopher, M. (Bejin Bieneman PLC, 300 River Place RoadSuite 165, Detroit MI, 48207, US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
83675527 (65080-1972T)

CLAIMS

1. A wheeled assembly comprising:

a first and a second arm;

a first wheel supported by the first arm;

a second wheel supported by the second arm;

a first motor supported by the first arm and engaged with the first wheel;

a second motor supported by the second arm and engaged with the second wheel; and a hinge pivotally coupled to the first and second arms.

2. The wheeled assembly of claim 1, wherein the first and second arms pivot about the hinge between a skateboard position and a bicycle position, wherein the first and second arms are coaxial in the skateboard position and transverse to each other in the bicycle position.

3. The wheeled assembly of claim 1, wherein the hinge includes a yoke connected to the first arm and receiving the second arm.

4. The wheeled assembly of claim 3, wherein the yoke includes a first yoke arm and a second yoke arm, and wherein the hinge includes a rod engaged with the first yoke arm and the second yoke arm.

5. The wheeled assembly of claim 4, further comprising a bracket including a first extension and a second extension spaced from first extension, and the hinge mounted between the first and second extensions.

6. The wheeled assembly of claim 5, wherein the rod is engaged with the first extension and the second extension.

7. The wheeled assembly of claim 6, wherein the rod is moveable between a locked position in which the rod compresses the first yoke, second yoke, second arm, first extension, and second 83675527 (65080-1972T) extension together, and an unlocked position in which the rod releases the first yoke, second yoke, second arm, first extension, and second extension relative to each other.

8. The wheeled assembly of claim 5, wherein the hinge includes a first bushing between the first extension and the first yoke, a second bushing between the first yoke and the second arm, a third bushing between the second arm and the second yoke, and a fourth bushing between the second yoke and the second extension, wherein the first, second, third and fourth bushings are coaxial.

9. The wheeled assembly of claim 1, further comprising a baseplate supporting the hinge, the baseplate configured to releasably mount to a user transport device.

10. The wheeled assembly of claim 9, wherein the hinge is pivotable relative to the baseplate.

11. The wheeled assembly of claim 9, wherein the baseplate includes assembly electrical contacts electrically connected to the first and second motors.

12. The wheeled assembly of claim 1, further comprising a baseplate, a bracket connected to the baseplate, and a bushing between the bracket and the baseplate.

13. The wheeled assembly of claim 1, further comprising a bracket including a first extension and a second extension spaced from first extension, and the hinge mounted between the first and second extensions.

14. The wheeled assembly of claim 13, wherein the hinge includes a rod engaged with the first extension and the second extension.

15. The wheeled assembly of claim 14, wherein the rod is moveable between a locked position in which the rod compresses the hinge, first extension, and second extension together, and an unlocked position in which the rod releases the hinge, first extension, and second extension relative to each other.

16. A system comprising:

a deck having a peripheral edge; 83675527 (65080-1972T) deck electrical contacts and batteries each supported by the deck;

a vehicle including a trunk having a trunk cover;

the trunk cover including charging contacts and a cavity configured to receive the deck; the cavity having a common shape with the peripheral edge of the deck aligning the deck electrical contacts with the charging contacts when the deck is received by the cavity.

17. The system of claim 16, further comprising a wheeled assembly configured to be mounted to the deck, the wheeled assembly including assembly electrical contacts connected to the deck electrical contacts when the wheeled assembly is assembled to the deck.

18. The system of claim 17, wherein the deck includes a top side and a bottom side opposite the top side, the wheeled assembly being mounted to the bottom side, and the batteries being mounted on the top side.

19. The system of claim 17, further comprising a bicycle having a bicycle frame configured to support the wheeled assembly, the bicycle frame including first frame electrical contacts connected to the assembly electrical contacts when the wheeled assembly is assembled to the bicycle frame.

20. The system of claim 19, wherein the bicycle frame is configured to support the deck, and wherein the bicycle frame includes second frame electrical contacts connected to the deck electrical contacts when the deck is supported by the bicycle frame.

Description:
83675527 (65080-1972T)

WHEELED ASSEMBLY INCLUDING A HINGE

BACKGROUND

[0001] User transport devices, e.g., bicycles, skateboards, scooters, etc., allow for alternatives to transportation, as well as provide for exercise and sport. Transport devices in congested urban settings are particularly advantageous for maneuvering around rush hour traffic, and for avoiding parking dilemmas. Daily transportation may be optimized by using a combination of traditional vehicles coupled with user transport devices. As such, this optimization may be further enhanced if the transport devices offered electrical assistance and the ability to provide this assistance across multiple device platforms.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0002] Figure 1 is a perspective view of wheeled assemblies mounted to a skateboard.

[0003] Figure 2A is a perspective view of the wheeled assembly mounted to a frame of a bicycle

[0004] Figure 2B is a top view of a deck including batteries mounted to the bicycle.

[0005] Figure 3 is a perspective view of the wheeled assembly in a bicycle position.

[0006] Figure 4 is a front view of the wheeled assembly in a skateboard position.

[0007] Figure 5 is a side view of the wheeled assembly in the bicycle position.

[0008] Figure 6A is a perspective view of a trunk of a host vehicle showing the deck, batteries and the wheeled assemblies installed in a cavity of a trunk cover.

[0009] Figure 6B is an exploded view of a portion of Figure 6A.

[0010] Figure 7 is a schematic view of a system including a remote and the wheeled assembly.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0011] With reference to the Figures, wherein like numerals indicate like parts throughout the several views, a wheeled assembly 12 for a user transport device 14, e.g., 83675527 (65080-1972T) skateboard, bicycle, etc., is pivotable between a skateboard position, as shown in Figures 1 and 4, to a bicycle position, as shown in Figures 2A and 3. Specifically, the wheeled assembly 12 includes a first arm 20 and a second arm 22. A first wheel 24 is supported by the first arm 20 and a second wheel 26 is supported by the second arm 22. A first motor 28 is supported by the first arm 20 and is engaged with the first wheel 24, and a second motor 30 supported by the second arm 22 and engaged with the second wheel 26. A hinge 32 pivotally couples to the first arm 20 and the second arm 22.

[0012] The first 20 and second 22 arms are pivotable about the hinge 32 between the skateboard position and the bicycle position. In the skateboard position, the wheeled assembly 12 may be mounted to a skateboard 16 and the first motor 28 and second motor 30 may power the skateboard 16. In the bicycle position, the wheeled assembly 12 may be mounted to a bicycle 18, and the first motor 28 and second motor 30 may power the bicycle 18. In any case, by pivoting the assembly 12, a user (not shown) may install the same wheeled assembly 12 on various user transport devices 14 to power the user transport devices 14.

[0013] With reference to Figures 1-2B, the wheeled assembly 12 may be a component of a system 10, e.g., a multi-modal transportation system. The system 10 may also include any suitable user transport devices 14, including the skateboard 16, the bicycle 18, etc. The skateboard 16 and the bicycle 18 are shown in the Figures for exemplary purposes, and the skateboard 16 and the bicycle 18 may be of any suitable type.

[0014] With continued reference to Figures 1-2B, the system 10 may include a deck 34. The deck 34 may be a component of the skateboard 16, i.e., assembled with two wheeled assemblies 12 to form the skateboard 16, and may be mounted to the bicycle 18, as set forth further below.

[0015] With continued reference to Figures 1-2B, the deck 34 includes a top side

36 and a bottom side 38 opposite the top side 36. The deck 34 includes one or more deck cavities 40 on the top side 36 of the deck 34.

[0016] The deck 34 may include one or more batteries 42. The batteries 42 may be disposed in the deck cavities 40. The batteries 42 may be of any suitable rechargeable type, e.g., lithium-ion, nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH), nickel-cadmium (NiCd), etc. The batteries 42 may be of any suitable shape, e.g., square, rectangle, oval, etc. The batteries 42 may include solar cells 44 fixed, i.e., encapsulated, onto a top face 50 of the batteries 42, as shown in Figures 1, 83675527 (65080-1972T)

2B, 6A-6B. The solar cells 44 convert sunlight into electricity that may be used to charge the batteries 42 any time the solar cells 44 are exposed to sunlight.

[0017] The deck 34 includes top side electrical contacts 46 in the deck cavities

40. The batteries 42 include battery electrical contacts 48 that align with the top side electrical contacts 46 when the batteries 42 are installed in the corresponding deck cavities 40. When installed in the deck cavities 40, the batteries 42 may be flush with the top side 36 of the deck 34. In other words, as shown in Figure 1, when the one or more batteries 42 are installed in the deck cavities 40, at least a portion 52 of the top side 36 of the deck 34 and the top face 50 of the batteries 42 are coplanar. The batteries 42 may include mechanical packaging that allow the user to stand on the deck 34 while the batteries 42 are installed in the deck cavities 40 without damaging the batteries 42.

[0018] The wheeled assembly 12 includes a baseplate 54 and a bracket 56. The bracket 56 is coupled to the baseplate 54 by a fastener 58, e.g., a lag bolt, kingpin bolt, etc. For example, the fastener 58 may be threaded at a first fastener end 60, and the baseplate 54 may include a threaded hole 62 that receives the first fastener end 60. A first kingpin bushing 64 may be disposed between the bracket 56 and the baseplate 54, and a second kingpin bushing 66 may be disposed between the bracket 56 and the fastener 58, as shown in Figures 3-5.

[0019] The baseplate 54 may be formed a suitable metal, such as steel, aluminum, etc. Alternatively, the baseplate 54 may be formed of any suitable high strength plastic material, e.g., polypropylene, carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP), etc. The first kingpin bushing 64 and second kingpin bushing 66 may be formed of a suitable polymer, such as silicone, urethane, etc.

[0020] With reference to Figures 3-5, the bracket 56 includes a first extension 68 and a second extension 70 spaced from the first extension 68. As shown in Figure 4-5, the hinge 32 is mounted between the first extension 68 and the second extension 70. The bracket 56 may be formed a suitable metal, such as steel, aluminum, etc. Alternatively, the bracket 56 may be formed of any suitable high strength plastic material, e.g., polypropylene, carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP), etc.

[0021] With continued reference to Figures 3-5, the first 20 and second 22 arms pivot about the hinge 32 between the bicycle position and the skateboard position, as set forth above. When in the bicycle position, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 are transverse to each other, e.g., in a V-shape as shown in Figure 3. Specifically, as shown in Figure 3, the first 83675527 (65080-1972T) arm 20 and the second arm 22 extend from the hinge 32 at intersecting axes B, C, respectively, in the bicycle position. When in the skateboard position, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 share a common axis A, as shown in Figure 4.

[0022] As set forth above, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 support the first motor 28 and second motor 30, respectively, e.g., fasteners, screws, welding, etc. The first motor 28 and the second motor 30 may include output shafts 72 offset from the axes B, C, respectively. In this configuration, the first wheel 24 may be supported by the first motor 28, i.e., indirectly supported by the first arm 20, with a first rotatable shaft 74. Similarly, the second wheel 26 may be supported by the second motor 30, i.e., indirectly supported by the second arm 22, with a second rotatable shaft 76. The first 74 and second 76 rotatable shafts may be rotatably supported by the first 28 and second 30 motors, respectively, and engaged with the output shafts 72 of the first 28 and second 30 motors, respectively, with pulleys 78 and belts 80. The output shaft 72 of the first motor 28 rotates the corresponding pulley 78 and belt 80 to rotate the first rotatable shaft 74 and the first wheel 24. Similarly, the output shaft 72 of the second motor 30 rotates the corresponding pulley 78 and belt 80 to rotate the second rotatable shaft 76 and the second wheel 26. The first motor 28 and the second motor 30 may be of any suitable electrical motor type, e.g., permanent magnet direct current (PMDC) motor, brushless direct current (BLDC) motor, etc.

[0023] As set forth above, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 support the first wheel 24 and the second wheel 26, respectively. Specifically, as shown in Figures 3 and 4, the first arm 20 may indirectly support the first wheel 24 through the first motor 28 and the first rotatable shaft 74, and the second arm 22 may indirectly support the second wheel 26 through the second motor 30 and the second rotatable shaft 76. In the configuration shown in Figures 3 and 4, the first wheel 24 may be fixed to, i.e., rotatable with, the first arm 20 and the second wheel 26 may be fixed to, i.e., rotatable with, the second arm 22. In alternative embodiments, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 may directly support the first wheel 24 and the second wheel 26, respectively, in which case the pulley 78 and wheel 24, 26 may rotate as a unit relative to the respective first arm 20/second arm 22, and the belt 80 may rotate the pulley 78 relative to the respective first arm 20/second arm 22.

[0024] The first arm 20 and the second arm 22 may be formed of a suitable metal, such as steel, aluminum, etc. Alternatively, the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 may be 83675527 (65080-1972T) formed of any suitable high strength plastic material, e.g., polypropylene, carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP), etc.

[0025] The hinge 32 may include a rod 82 and the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 may pivotally engage the rod 82. The rod 82 may extend along a pivot axis P, and the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 may pivot about the rod 82 between the skateboard position and the bicycle position.

[0026] With reference to Figure 5, the rod 82 may be threaded. Specifically, the rod may extend between a first end 84 and a second end 86, and the first end 84 may be threaded. The first extension 68 may include a threaded feature 88, e.g., a weld nut, that threadedly engages the rod 82, e.g., the first end 84 of the rod 82. A second end 86 of the rod 82 may include a cap 90, e.g., a bolt head, cap nut, etc., that captures the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 on the rod 82 between the first extension 68 and the second extension 70. Alternatively, the rod 82 may capture the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 between the first extension 68 and the second extension 70 in any suitable fashion.

[0027] The rod 82 may be moveable relative to the first 68 and second 70 extensions between a locked position in which the rod 82 compresses the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 together, and an unlocked position in which the rod 82 releases the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 to allow for relative rotation between the first arm 20 and the second arm 22. As shown in Figures 3-5, the rod 82 may include a lever 92 for rotating the rod 82 relative to the first 68 and second 70 extensions.

[0028] With reference to Figures 4-5, the hinge 32 may include a yoke 94 connected to the first arm 20. The yoke 94 includes a first yoke arm 96 and a second yoke arm 98. The second arm 22 is disposed between the first yoke arm 96 and the second yoke arm 98. The rod 82 extends through the first yoke arm 96, the second arm 22, and the second yoke arm 98. In other words, the first yoke arm 96, the second yoke arm 98, and the second arm 22 are pivotally coupled to each other by the rod 82 about the pivot axis P. Alternatively, the first arm 20 and second arm 22 may be of any suitable configuration that allows the first arm 20 and the second arm 22 to pivot about the pivot axis P while maintaining the common axis A in the skateboard position.

[0029] The first arm 20 may be integral with the yoke 94, i.e., formed together simultaneously a single integral unit, e.g., by hot forging. Alternatively, the first arm 20 and the 83675527 (65080-1972T) yoke 94 may be formed separately from each other and subsequently assembled, e.g., welded, fastened, etc.

[0030] The hinge 32 may include a first bushing 100, a second bushing 102, a third bushing 104, and a fourth bushing 106. As shown in Figures 4-5, the first bushing 100 is between the first extension 68 and the first yoke arm 96; the second bushing 102 is between the first yoke arm 96 and the second arm 22; the third bushing 104 is between the second arm 22 and the second yoke arm 98, and the fourth bushing 106 is between the second yoke arm 98 and the second extension 70. The first bushing 100, the second bushing 102, the third bushing 104, and the fourth bushing 106 may each receive the rod 82. The first bushing 100, second bushing 102, third bushing 104, and fourth bushing 106 may be coaxial along the pivot axis P.

[0031] As set forth above, the system 10 includes the skateboard 16. Specifically, as set forth above, the deck 34 and two wheeled assemblies 12 may be components of the skateboard 16, i.e., the two wheeled assemblies 12 may be assembled to the deck 34 to form the skateboard 16, as shown in Figure 1.

[0032] The baseplate 54 of the wheeled assembly 12 may be configured to releasably mount to the deck 34. For example, as shown in Figures 2A and 3-5, the baseplate 54 may include mounting grooves 108, and the deck 34 may include corresponding grooves (not shown) on the bottom side 38 of the deck 34 that mate with the mounting grooves 108. Alternatively, the baseplate 54 may include mounting holes (not shown) where, e.g., bolts, screws, etc., may be used to attach the baseplate 54 to the bottom side 38 of the deck 34. In any case, the baseplate 54 may be suitably configured to releasably mount to the bottom side 38 of the deck 34.

[0033] The baseplate 54 includes assembly electrical contacts 110. The assembly electrical contacts 110 are electrically connected to the first motor 28 and the second motor 30. The electrical connection may be, e.g., a wiring harness (not shown) that extends from the assembly electrical contacts 110 to both the first motor 28, and the second motor 30 of the wheeled assembly 12.

[0034] The deck 34 includes deck electrical contacts 112. The deck electrical contacts 112 are mounted on the bottom side 38 of the deck 34. When the baseplate 54 of the wheeled assembly 12 is mechanically attached to the bottom side 38 of the deck 34, as set forth 83675527 (65080-1972T) above, the assembly electrical contacts 110 and the deck electrical contacts 112 come in contact with each other and form a first electrical connection.

[0035] The top side electrical contacts 46 of the deck 34, as set forth above, are electrically connected to the deck electrical contacts 112 by, e.g., wires running internally to the deck 34. When the batteries 42 are installed in the corresponding deck cavities 40, as further set forth above, and the wheeled assembly 12 is attached to the deck 34, a first electrical circuit is formed from the batteries 42, through the deck 34 and baseplate 54, to the corresponding first 28 and second 30 motors. The first electrical circuit delivers the energy from the batteries 42 to the first 28 and second 30 motors to power the skateboard 16.

[0036] As set forth above, the system 10 includes the bicycle 18. The bicycle 18 may include a bicycle frame 114 mounted to the bicycle 18, as shown in Figure 2A. The deck 34, bicycle frame 114, and one wheeled assembly 12 may be components of the bicycle 18. Specifically, the deck 34 and one wheeled assembly 12 may be assembled to the bicycle frame 114 to power the bicycle 18.

[0037] The bicycle frame 114 may be mounted to various locations on the bicycle

18. As shown in Figure 2A, for example, the bicycle 18 may include a rear wheel 116 and a seat tube 118, and the frame 114 may be attached to a rear hub 120 of the rear wheel 116 and the seat tube 118. Alternatively, for example, the bicycle 18 may include a front wheel (not shown) and a head tube 122, and the frame 114 may be attached to a front hub (not shown) of the front wheel and the head tube 122. The bicycle frame 114 may be attached to the bicycle 18 in any suitable fashion by, e.g., clamps, fasteners, etc.

[0038] With reference to Figure 2A, the bicycle frame 114 may be configured to support the wheeled assembly 12. Specifically, the frame 114 includes a vertical portion 124 facing in a rearward direction along a longitudinal axis of the bicycle 18 that may be configured to releasably mount the assembly 12 to the vertical portion 124. For example, as shown in Figures 2A and 3-5, the baseplate 54 may include mounting grooves 108, and the vertical portion 124 may include corresponding grooves (not shown) that mate with the mounting grooves 108. Alternatively, the baseplate 54 may include mounting holes (not shown) where fasteners, e.g., bolts, screws, etc., may be used to attach the baseplate 54 to the vertical portion 124. In any case, the baseplate 54 and the vertical portion 124 of the frame 114 may be suitably configured to releasably mount to each other. 83675527 (65080-1972T)

[0039] With continued reference to 2A, the bicycle frame 114 may also be configured to support the deck 34. Specifically, the frame 114 includes a horizontal portion 126 facing in an upward direction transverse to the rearward direction that may be configured to releasably mount the deck 34 to the horizontal portion 126. For example, the deck 34 may include holes (not shown) where fasteners, e.g., bolts, screws, etc., may be used to attach the deck 34 to the horizontal portion 126. Alternatively, the deck 34 may include slots (not shown), and the horizontal portion 126 is received by the slots when the deck 34 is assembled to the horizontal portion 126. In any case, the deck 34 and the horizontal portion 126 of the frame 114 may be suitably configured to releasably mount to each other.

[0040] The bicycle frame 114 includes first frame electrical contacts 128. The first frame contacts 128 are mounted to the vertical portion 124 of the frame. When the baseplate 54 of the wheeled assembly 12 is mechanically attached to the vertical portion 124, as set forth above, the assembly electrical contacts 110 of the baseplate 54 and the first frame electrical contacts 128 come in contact with each other and form a second electrical connection.

[0041] The bicycle frame 114 includes second frame electrical contacts 130. The second frame contacts 130 are mounted to the horizontal portion 126 of the frame 114. When the deck 34 is mechanically attached to the horizontal portion 126, as set forth above, the deck electrical contacts 112 of the bottom side 38 of the deck 34 and the second frame electrical contacts 130 come in contact with each other and form a third electrical connection.

[0042] The first frame electrical contacts 128 of the bicycle frame 14 are electrically connected to the second frame electrical contacts 130 of the frame 114 by, e.g., wires running internally to the bicycle frame 114, a wire harness running external to the frame 114, etc. When the batteries 42 are installed in the corresponding deck cavities 40, as set forth above, the wheeled assembly 12 is attached to the vertical portion 124, and the deck 34 is attached to the horizontal portion 126, a second electrical circuit is formed from the batteries 42, through the deck 34, frame 114, and baseplate 54, to the corresponding first 28 and second 30 motors of the wheeled assembly 12. The second electrical circuit delivers the energy from the batteries 42 to the first 28 and second 30 motors to power the bicycle 18.

[0043] With reference to Figures 1, 2A-2B and 6A-6B, the system 10 further includes components of a host vehicle 132. The host vehicle 132 includes a trunk 134 having a trunk cover 136. The trunk cover 136 includes a cavity 138 configured to receive the deck 34. 83675527 (65080-1972T)

The deck 34 may have a peripheral edge 140 and the cavity 138 may have a common shape with the peripheral edge 140 of the deck 34 aligning the deck electrical contacts 112 with charging contacts 142 of the trunk cover 136 when the deck 34 is received by the cavity 138. Specifically, the entire peripheral edge 140 of the deck 34 and the entire cavity 138 may have matching shapes (including matching size), or a portion of the peripheral edge 140 and the cavity 138 may have a common shape suitable to align the deck electrical contacts 112 with the charging contacts 142 when the deck 34 is received by the cavity 138. As set forth below, when the deck 34 is not in use, the deck 34 and the batteries 42 may be stored in the cavity 138 of the trunk cover 136, and the batteries 42 may be recharged by the host vehicle 132.

[0044] The host vehicle 132 includes an electrical system. The electrical system, i.e., 12-volt system, of the vehicle 132 supplies low voltage power to vehicle subsystems. The electrical system may be connected to the trunk cover 136 to supply energy for recharging the batteries 42, as set forth below. The charging may occur when the vehicle 132 is running or not running.

[0045] With reference to Figure 6B, and as set forth above, the trunk cover 136 includes the charging contacts 142. The charging contacts 142 may be disposed inside the cavity 138, or alternatively, may be disposed on the trunk cover 136 external to the cavity 138. The deck electrical contacts 112 of the bottom side 38 of the deck 34 align and come in contact with the charging contacts 142 when the deck 34 is received by the cavity 138. When the batteries 42 are installed into the deck cavities 40 of the deck 34, and the deck 34 is installed into the cavity 138 of the trunk cover 136, a third electrical circuit is formed from the batteries 42, through the deck 34 and the trunk cover 136, to the vehicle electrical system that is connected to the truck cover 136. The vehicle electrical system includes an energy storage device, e.g., a 12-volt battery, generator, etc., that provides energy to the recharge the batteries 42.

[0046] The batteries 42 may be recharged by the solar cells 44, as set forth above, when the batteries 42 are installed in the deck cavities 40, and the deck 34 is installed in the cavity 138 of the trunk cover 136. Alternatively, the batteries 42 may be recharged by the solar cells 44 when the batteries 42 are installed in the deck cavities 40, and the deck 34 is either outside of the host vehicle 132, or not in the cavity 138 of the trunk cover 136.

[0047] The trunk cover 136 may include a wheeled assembly cavity 144 to receive the wheeled assemblies 12 when the wheeled assemblies 12 are disassembled from either 83675527 (65080-1972T) the deck 34 or the bicycle frame 114. The assembly cavity 144 has a common assembly shape with a perimeter 146 of the wheeled assembly 12. The common assembly shape may be the perimeter 146 formed by the wheeled assembly 12 in the skateboard position, as shown in Figure 6A-6B. Alternatively, the common assembly shape may be the perimeter 146 formed by the wheeled assembly 12 in the bicycle position.

[0048] The user transport device 14 may include one or more wheeled assemblies

12 that either directly drive the device 14, or indirectly drive the device 14. For example, as shown in Figure 1, the assemblies 12 directly drive the skateboard 16. Specifically, the assemblies 12 themselves serve as a wheel source for the device 14. Alternatively, as shown in Figure 2A, the wheeled assembly 12 indirectly drives the rear wheel 116 of the bicycle 18 in which the first wheel 24 and the second wheel 26 of the assembly 12 provide a frictional driving torque to the rear wheel 116 when the first wheel 24, the second wheel 26, and the rear wheel 116 are all in contact with each other.

[0049] The user transport device 14 may include one or more wheels that include one or more wheeled assemblies 12 that indirectly drive the wheels of the transport device 14. For example, the bicycle 18 of Figure 2 could have an additional wheeled assembly 12 attached in parallel to the rear wheel 116 of the bicycle 18 to provide additional power to the rear wheel 116 of the device 14. Alternatively, the bicycle 18 could have a wheeled assembly 12 on the front wheel and the rear wheel 116 of the device 14. The user transport device 14 may include any suitable number of wheeled assemblies 12 indirectly engaging any number of wheels of the device.

[0050] The wheeled assemblies 12 may be configured to releasably mount to and from various types of user transport devices 14, e.g., skateboards 16, bicycles 18, scooters, three wheeled devices, etc. The baseplate 54 may be suitably configured to releasably mount to any suitable user transport device 14.

[0051] As shown schematically in Figure 7, the wheeled assembly 12 may be a component of a remote system 148 and may include a processor 150. The remote system 148 may include a remote 152 in communication with the processor 150 of the wheeled assembly 12. Specifically, for example, the processor 150 may be programmed to receive a signal from the remote 152, and based on the signal, the processor 150 may instruct the first motor 28 and/or the 83675527 (65080-1972T) second motor 30 of the wheeled assembly 12 to actuate. The remote 152 may be in communication with one or more wheeled assemblies 12. The remote 152 may communicate wirelessly, e.g., BLUETOOTH®, WiFi, etc., with the processor 150. The remote 152 may be directly wired to the processor 150. In addition, the remote 152 may be mounted to a strap 154 fixed to the user transport device 14, as shown on in Figure 2A, or held by the user. Alternatively, the deck 34 may include the processor 150. The processor 150 may include electrical circuitry to interface to the first 28 and second 30 motors. The processor 150 and the electrical circuitry may be mounted in any suitable location on either the wheeled assembly 12 or the deck 34.

[0052] Processing devices such as those discussed herein generally each include instructions executable by one or more processing devices such as those identified above, and for carrying out blocks or steps of processes described above. For example, process blocks discussed above may be embodied as computer-executable instructions.

[0053] In general, the computing systems and/or devices described may employ any of a number of computer operating systems, including, but by no means limited to, versions and/or varieties of the Ford SYNC® application, AppLink/Smart Device Link middleware, the MICROSOFT® Automotive operating system, the Microsoft WINDOWS® operating system, the Unix operating system (e.g., the SOLARIS® operating system distributed by Oracle Corporation of Redwood Shores, California), the AIX UNIX operating system distributed by International Business Machines of Armonk, New York, the Linux operating system, the Mac OSX and iOS operating systems distributed by Apple Inc. of Cupertino, California, the BlackBerry OS distributed by Blackberry, Ltd. of Waterloo, Canada, and the Android operating system developed by Google, Inc. and the Open Handset Alliance, or the QNX® CAR Platform for Infotainment offered by QNX Software Systems. Examples of computing devices include, without limitation, an on-board vehicle computer, a computer workstation, a server, a desktop, notebook, laptop, or handheld computer, or some other computing system and/or device.

[0054] Computing devices generally include computer-executable instructions, where the instructions may be executable by one or more computing devices such as those listed above. Computer-executable instructions may be compiled or interpreted from computer programs created using a variety of programming languages and/or technologies, including, without limitation, and either alone or in combination, Java™, C, C++, Visual Basic, Java Script, 83675527 (65080-1972T)

Perl, etc. Some of these applications may be compiled and executed on a virtual machine, such as the Java Virtual Machine, the Dalvik virtual machine, or the like. In general, a processor (e.g., a microprocessor) receives instructions, e.g., from a memory, a computer-readable medium, etc., and executes these instructions, thereby performing one or more processes, including one or more of the processes described herein. Such instructions and other data may be stored and transmitted using a variety of computer-readable media.

[0055] A computer-readable medium (also referred to as a processor-readable medium) includes any non-transitory (e.g., tangible) medium that participates in providing data (e.g., instructions) that may be read by a computer (e.g., by a processor of a computer). Such a medium may take many forms, including, but not limited to, non-volatile media and volatile media. Non-volatile media may include, for example, optical or magnetic disks and other persistent memory. Volatile media may include, for example, dynamic random access memory (DRAM), which typically constitutes a main memory. Such instructions may be transmitted by one or more transmission media, including coaxial cables, copper wire and fiber optics, including the wires that comprise a system bus coupled to a processor of a computer. Common forms of computer-readable media include, for example, a floppy disk, a flexible disk, hard disk, magnetic tape, any other magnetic medium, a CD-ROM, DVD, any other optical medium, punch cards, paper tape, any other physical medium with patterns of holes, a RAM, a PROM, an EPROM, a FLASH-EEPROM, any other memory chip or cartridge, or any other medium from which a computer can read.

[0056] Databases, data repositories or other data stores described herein may include various kinds of mechanisms for storing, accessing, and retrieving various kinds of data, including a hierarchical database, a set of files in a file system, an application database in a proprietary format, a relational database management system (RDBMS), etc. Each such data store is generally included within a computing device employing a computer operating system such as one of those mentioned above, and are accessed via a network in any one or more of a variety of manners. A file system may be accessible from a computer operating system, and may include files stored in various formats. An RDBMS generally employs the Structured Query Language (SQL) in addition to a language for creating, storing, editing, and executing stored procedures, such as the PL/SQL language mentioned above. 83675527 (65080-1972T)

[0057] In some examples, system elements may be implemented as computer-readable instructions (e.g., software) on one or more computing devices (e.g., servers, personal computers, etc.), stored on computer readable media associated therewith (e.g., disks, memories, etc.). A computer program product may comprise such instructions stored on computer readable media for carrying out the functions described herein.

[0058] The disclosure has been described in an illustrative manner, and it is to be understood that the terminology which has been used is intended to be in the nature of words of description rather than of limitation. Many modifications and variations of the present disclosure are possible in light of the above teachings, and the disclosure may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.