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Title:
SKATES AND OTHER FOOTWEAR COMPRISING ADDITIVELY-MANUFACTURED COMPONENTS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2021/062519
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A skate or other footwear comprising one or more additively-manufactured components designed to enhance performance and use of the skate or other footwear, such as fit and comfort, power transfer (e.g., to a skating surface during skating strides), and/or other aspects of the skate or other footwear.

Inventors:
CORBEIL JEAN-FRANCOIS (CA)
KRICK THIERRY (CA)
SEGUIN ALEX (CA)
Application Number:
CA2020/050684
Publication Date:
April 08, 2021
Filing Date:
May 21, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
BAUER HOCKEY LTD (CA)
International Classes:
A43B5/16; A63C1/02; A63C1/38; B29C64/10
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SMART & BIGGAR (Montreal, Québec H3B 4W5, CA)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and - a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises an additively-manufactured component.

2. The skate of claim 1 , wherein the skate boot comprises at least part of the additively- manufactured component.

3. The skate of claim 1 , wherein the skating device comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

4. The skate of claim 3, wherein: the skate is an ice skate; the skating surface 13is an ice surface; and the skating device comprises a blade for engaging the ice surface and a blade holder holding the blade.

5. The skate of claim 4, wherein the blade holder comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

6. The skate of claim 4, wherein the blade comprises at least part of the additively- manufactured component.

7. The skate of claim 1, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

8. The skate of claim 7, wherein the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component differ in stiffness.

9. The skate of claim 8, wherein a ratio of the stiffness of a first one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component over the stiffness of a second one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component is at least 5%.

10. The skate of claim 8, wherein a ratio of the stiffness of a first one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component over the stiffness of a second one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component is at least 15%.

11. The skate of claim 7, wherein the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component differ in resilience.

12. The skate of claim 11 , wherein a ratio of the resilience of a first one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component over the resilience of a second one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component is at least 5%.

13. The skate of claim 11 , wherein a ratio of the resilience of a first one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component over the resilience of a second one of the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component is at least 15%.

14. The skate of claim 7, wherein the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component include at least three distinct zones.

15. The skate of claim 7, wherein the distinct zones of the additively-manufactured component are layers of the additively-manufactured component that layered on one another.

16. The skate of claim 1 , wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a lattice.

17. The skate of claim 16, wherein the lattice comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

18. The skate of claim 17, wherein the distinct zones of the lattice differ in stiffness.

19. The skate of claim 18, wherein a ratio of the stiffness of a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice over the stiffness of a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is at least 5%.

20. The skate of claim 18, wherein a ratio of the stiffness of a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice over the stiffness of a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is at least 15%.

21 . The skate of claim 17, wherein the distinct zones of the lattice differ in resilience.

22. The skate of claim 21 , wherein a ratio of the resilience of a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice over the resilience of a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is at least 5%.

23. The skate of claim 21 , wherein a ratio of the resilience of a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice over the resilience of a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is at least 15%.

24. The skate of claim 17, wherein a density of the lattice in a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is greater than the density of the lattice in a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

25. The skate of claim 17, wherein a spacing of elongate members of the lattice in a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is less than the spacing of elongate members of the lattice in a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

26. The skate of claim 17, wherein elongate members of the lattice in a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice are cross-sectionally larger than elongate members of the lattice in a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

27. The skate of claim 17, wherein an orientation of elongate members of the lattice in a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is different from the orientation of elongate members of the lattice in a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

28. The skate of claim 17, wherein a material composition of the lattice in a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is different from the material composition of the lattice in a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

29. The skate of claim 17, wherein the distinct zones of the lattice include at least three distinct zones.

30. The skate of claim 17, wherein the distinct zones of the lattice are layers of the lattice that are layered on one another.

31. The skate of claim 17, wherein: a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is configured to be located where more force is applied during a skating stride; a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is configured to be located where less force is applied during the skating stride; and the first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is stiffer than the second one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

32. The skate of claim 17, wherein: a first one of the distinct zones of the lattice is configured to be located where more power transfer is desired; a second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is configured to be located where more comfort is desired; and the second one of the distinct zones of the lattice is less stiff than the first one of the distinct zones of the lattice.

33. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a liner disposed within the body of the skate boot; and the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

34. The skate of claim 33, wherein: the body of the skate boot comprises a medial side portion configured to face a medial side of the user’s foot, a lateral side portion configured to face a lateral side of the user’s foot, a heel portion configured to face a heel of the user’s foot, and an ankle portion configured to face an ankle of the user; and the medial side portion, the lateral side portion, the heel portion and the ankle portion of the body of the skate boot comprise respective parts of the additively- manufactured component.

35. The skate of claim 34, wherein: the body of the skate boot comprises a sole portion configured to face a plantar surface of the user’s foot; and the sole portion of the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

36. The skate of claim 33, wherein: the body of the skate boot comprises a medial side portion configured to face a medial side of the user’s foot, a lateral side portion configured to face a lateral side of the user’s foot, a heel portion configured to face a heel of the user’s foot, an ankle portion configured to face an ankle of the user; a sole portion configured to face a plantar surface of the user’s foot, and a toe portion configured to enclose toes of the user’s foot; and the medial side portion, the lateral side portion, the heel portion, the ankle portion, the sole portion and the toe portion of the body of the skate boot comprise respective parts of the additively-manufactured component.

37. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a pad configured to be disposed between the body of the skate boot and the user’s foot; and the pad comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

38. The skate of claim 37, wherein the pad is an ankle pad configured to face an ankle of the user.

39. The skate of claim 37, wherein: the additively-manufactured component is a first additively-manufactured component; the pad is a first pad; the skate boot comprises a second pad configured to be disposed between the body of the skate boot and the user’s foot; the first pad comprises at least part of the first additively-manufactured component; and the second pad comprises at least part of the second additively- manufactured component.

40. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a liner disposed within the body of the skate boot; and the liner comprises at least part of the additively- manufactured component.

41. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a toe cap fastened to the body of the skate boot; and the toe cap comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

42. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a tendon guard projecting upwardly from the body of the skate boot; and the tendon guard comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

43. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a tongue connected to the body of the skate boot; and the tongue comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

44. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a lace-receiving member connected to the body of the skate boot and configured to receive a lace; and the lace-receiving member comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

45. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a footbed disposed within the body of the skate boot; and the footbed comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured component.

46. The skate of claim 1 , wherein: the additively-manufactured component is a first additively-manufactured component; and the skate comprises a second additively- manufactured component.

47. The skate of claim 46, wherein the skate boot comprises at least part of the first additively-manufactured component and at least part of the second additively- manufactured component.

48. The skate of claim 46, wherein the skating device comprises at least part of the first additively-manufactured component and the second additively-manufactured component.

49. The skate of claim 48, wherein: the skate is an ice skate; the skating surface 13is an ice surface; and the skating device comprises a blade for engaging the ice surface and a blade holder holding the blade.

50. The skate of claim 49, wherein the blade holder comprises at least part of the first additively-manufactured component and at least part of the second additively- manufactured component.

51 . The skate of claim 49, wherein the blade comprises at least part of the first additively- manufactured component and at least part of the second additively-manufactured component.

52. The skate of claim 46, wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a plurality of parts connected to the body of the skate boot; and the body of the skate boot comprises the first additively-manufactured component and the second additively- manufactured component.

53. The skate of claim 46, wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a plurality of parts connected to the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises the first additively-manufactured component; and a given one of the parts of the skate boot connected to the body of the skate boot comprises the second additively- manufactured component.

54. The skate of claim 1, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of materials different from one another.

55. The skate of claim 54, wherein a first one of the materials is a first polymeric material and a second one of the materials is a second polymeric material.

56. The skate of claim 54, wherein a first one of the materials is a polymeric material and a second one of the materials is a non-polymeric material.

57. The skate of claim 56, wherein the non-polymeric material is metallic material.

58. The skate of claim 16, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a non-lattice member connected to the lattice.

59. The skate of claim 58, wherein the non-lattice member is configured to be positioned between the lattice and the user when the skate is worn.

60. The skate of claim 58, wherein the non-lattice member is thinner than the lattice.

61. The skate of claim 58, wherein the non-lattice member is bulkier than the lattice.

62. The skate of claim 58, wherein the non-lattice member is a thin member.

63. The skate of claim 58, wherein the non-lattice member is a covering that covers at least part of the lattice and constitutes at least part of a surface of the additively- manufactured component.

64. The skate of claim 58, wherein: the skate is an ice skate; the skating surface 13is an ice surface; the skating device comprises a blade for engaging the ice surface and a blade holder holding the blade; the blade comprises at least part of the additively- manufactured component; the non-lattice member constitutes an ice-contacting surface of the blade; and the lattice constitutes at least part of a body of the blade above the ice-contacting surface of the blade.

65. The skate of claim 1, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises fiber-reinforced composite material.

66. The skate of claim 16, wherein the lattice comprises fiber-reinforced composite material.

67. The skate of claim 65, wherein the fiber-reinforced composite material of the additively-manufactured component is 3D-printed using continuous-fiber 3D printing.

68. The skate of claim 65, wherein at least one fiber of the fiber-reinforced composite material of the additively-manufactured component extends along at least a majority of a length of the additively-manufactured component.

69. The skate of claim 65, wherein at least one fiber of the fiber-reinforced composite material of the additively-manufactured component extends along an entirety of the length of the additively-manufactured component.

70. The skate of claim 6, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises 3D- printed metallic material constituting at least an ice-contacting surface of the blade.

71 . The skate of claim 70, wherein the 3D-printed metallic material constitutes at least a majority of the blade.

72. The skate of claim 71 , wherein the 3D-printed metallic material constitutes an entirety the blade.

73. The skate of claim 6, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises 3D- printed polymeric material constituting at least part of the blade.

74. The skate of claim 73, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises 3D-printed metallic material constituting an ice-contacting surface of the blade and connected to the 3D-printed polymeric material.

75. The skate of claim 74, wherein the 3D-printed polymeric material comprises 3D- printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

76. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

77. The skate of claim 76, wherein the second additively-manufactured zone is stiffer than the second additively-manufactured zone.

78. The skate of claim 76, wherein the first additively-manufactured zone and the second additively-manufactured zone are integrally formed together.

79. The skate of claim 76, wherein the first additively-manufactured zone and the second additively-manufactured zone are respectively part of a first additively-manufactured component and a second additively-manufactured component that are additively- manufactured separately.

80. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

81 . A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

82. The skate of claim 81 , wherein a first one of the additively-manufactured components is movable relative to a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

83. The skate of claim 82, wherein: the skate is an ice skate; the skating surface 13is an ice surface; the skating device comprises a blade for engaging the ice surface and a blade holder holding the blade; the blade holder comprises a connection system configured to attach the blade to and detach the blade from the blade holder; and the connection system of the blade holder comprises at least part of the first one of the additively-manufactured components and at least part of the second one of the additively-manufactured components.

84. The skate of claim 83, wherein the connection system of the blade holder is a quick- connect system.

85. The skate of claim 83, wherein: the blade holder comprises a body; the connection system of the blade holder comprises a connector configured to engage the blade and movable relative to the body of the blade holder; the body of the blade holder comprises at least part of the first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the connector of the connection system of the blade holder comprises at least part of the second one of the additively-manufactured components.

86. The skate of claim 85, wherein: the connector of the connection system of the blade holder comprises a resilient portion configured to resiliently deform to allow the connector of the connection system of the blade holder to move relative to the body of the blade holder; and the resilient portion of the connector of the connection system of the blade holder comprises at least part of the second one of the additively- manufactured components.

87. The skate of claim 85, wherein: the connector of the connection system of the blade holder comprises a hand-engaging actuator configured to be manually operated to move part of the connector of the connection system of the blade holder relative to the body of the blade holder; and the hand-engaging actuator of the connector of the connection system of the blade holder comprises at least part of the second one of the additively-manufactured components.

88. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a plurality of parts connected to the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and a given one of the parts of the skate boot connected to the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

89. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a liner disposed within the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the liner comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

90. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a toe cap fastened to the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the toe cap comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

91 . The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a tendon guard projecting upwardly from the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the tendon guard comprises at least part of a second one of the additively- manufactured components.

92. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a tongue connected to the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the tongue comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

93. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a lace-receiving member connected to the body of the skate boot and configured to receive a lace; of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the lace-receiving member comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

94. The skate of claim 81 , wherein: the skate boot comprises a body and a footbed disposed within the body of the skate boot; the body of the skate boot comprises at least part of a first one of the additively-manufactured components; and the footbed comprises at least part of a second one of the additively-manufactured components.

95. An ice skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user;

- a blade for engaging an ice surface; and - a blade holder holding the blade, the blade holder comprising a body and a connection system that is configured to attach the blade to and detach the blade from the blade holder; wherein at least part of the body of the blade holder and at least part of the connection system of the blade bolder are additively-manufactured.

96. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises an additively-manufactured component and a non- additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

97. The skate of claim 96, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a lattice.

98. The skate of claim 97, wherein the non-additively-manufactured component is received within the lattice.

99. The skate of claim 96, wherein the non-additively-manufactured component comprises foam.

100. The skate of claim 96, wherein the non-additively-manufactured component comprises fiber-reinforced polymeric material.

101. The skate of claim 96, wherein the non-additively-manufactured component comprises an insert removably mountable to the lattice.

102. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

103. The skate of claim 102, wherein the 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material is 3D-printed using continuous-fiber 3D printing.

104. The skate of claim 102, wherein the skate boot comprises at least part of the 3D- printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

105. The skate of claim 104, wherein: the skate boot comprise a body including a medial side portion configured to face a medial side of the user’s foot, a lateral side portion configured to face a lateral side of the user’s foot, a heel portion configured to face a heel of the user’s foot, and an ankle portion configured to face an ankle of the user; and at least one fiber of the 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material extends from the medial side portion of the body of the skate boot to the lateral side portion of the body of the skate boot.

106. The skate of claim 105, wherein the at least one fiber of the 3D-printed fiber- reinforced composite material extends through the heel portion of the body of the skate boot.

107. A skate comprising:

- a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface; wherein the skate comprises an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

108. The skate of claim 107, wherein: the skate comprises an actuator; and the sensor is responsive to an event to cause the actuator to alter the additively-manufactured component.

109. The skate of claim 107, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises the sensor.

110. The skate of claim 107, wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises piezoelectric material implementing the sensor.

111. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- an additively-manufactured component.

112. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively- manufactured zone.

113. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

114. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

115. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user;

- an additively-manufactured component; and

- a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively- manufactured component.

116. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and

- 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

117. A skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising:

- a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user;

- an additively-manufactured component; and

- a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

118. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component.

119. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

120. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component that comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

121. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

122. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively- manufactured component.

123. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

124. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a body and a connection system that is configured to attach the blade to and detach the blade from the blade holder, wherein at least part of the body of the blade holder and at least part of the connection system of the blade bolder are additively-manufactured.

125. A blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

126. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component.

127. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

128. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component that comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

129. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

130. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

131. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

132. A blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material and metallic material that is configured to contact an ice surface.

133. A method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the skate using the feedstock.

134. A method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the skate using the feedstock; wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

135. A method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the skate that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

136. A method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and - additively manufacturing a component of the skate, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

137. A method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot using the feedstock.

138. A method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot using the feedstock; wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

139. A method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the skate boot that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

140. A method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and - additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material. 141. A method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder using the feedstock.

142. A method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and - additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder using the feedstock; wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

143. A method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the blade holder that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

144. A method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and - additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder, using the feedstock, such that the component of the blade holder comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

145. A method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the blade using the feedstock.

146. A method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the blade using the feedstock; wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

147. A method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the blade that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

148. A method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising:

- providing feedstock including metal; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the blade, using the feedstock, such that the component of the blade comprises 3D-printed metallic material.

149. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component.

150. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a motion than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

151. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

152. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

153. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component and a non- additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

154. Footwear comprising:

- a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; wherein the footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

155. A method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising: - providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a component of the footwear using the feedstock; wherein the additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

156. A method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising:

- providing feedstock; and

- additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the footwear that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

157. A method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising:

- providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and - additively manufacturing a component of the footwear, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

Description:
SKATES AND OTHER FOOTWEAR COMPRISING ADDITIVELY-MANUFACTURED COMPONENTS

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims the benefit of United States Provisional Patent Application No. 62/910,002 filed October 3, 2019, the entire content of which is incorporated by reference herein.

FIELD

This disclosure relates generally to footwear, including skates (e.g., for playing hockey) and other footwear.

BACKGROUND

Skates are used by users in various sports such as ice hockey or roller hockey and other activities. A skate comprises a skate boot that typically comprises a number of parts assembled together to form the skate boot. This can include a body, sometimes referred to as a “shell”, a toe cap, a tongue, a tendon guard, etc.

For example, an approach to manufacturing a shell of a skate boot of conventional skates may involve thermoforming different layers of synthetic material and then assembling these layers to form the shell. However, such conventional skates may sometimes be overly heavy, uncomfortable, poorly fitting, negatively affecting power transfer during skating strides, etc. Moreover, such conventional skates can be expensive to manufacture.

Also, a skating device, such as a blade holder holding a blade for ice skating or a wheel holder holding wheels for roller skating (e.g., inline skating), is normally fastened under a skate boot. This may add attachment, manufacturing, and/or other issues. Similar considerations may arise for other types of footwear (e.g., ski boots, snowboarding boots, motorcycle boots, work boots, etc.).

For these and/or other reasons, there is a need for improvements directed to skates and other footwear.

SUMMARY

According to various aspects, this disclosure relates to a skate or other footwear comprising one or more additively-manufactured components designed to enhance performance and use of the skate or other footwear, such as fit and comfort, power transfer (e.g., to a skating surface during skating strides), and/or other aspects of the skate or other footwear.

For example, according to an aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises an additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises a first additively- manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another. According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises a plurality of additively- manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to an ice skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; a blade for engaging an ice surface; and a blade holder holding the blade, the blade holder comprising a body and a connection system that is configured to attach the blade to and detach the blade from the blade holder. At least part of the body of the blade holder and at least part of the connection system of the blade bolder are additively-manufactured.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises an additively-manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively- manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface. The skate comprises an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and an additively-manufactured component. According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively- manufactured zone.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; an additively-manufactured component; and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; and 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material. According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a skate boot for a skate, the skate comprising a skating device disposed below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the skate boot comprising: a cavity configured to receive a foot of a user; an additively-manufactured component; and a sensor associated with the additively- manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively- manufactured zone.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component that comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another. According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising a body and a connection system that is configured to attach the blade to and detach the blade from the blade holder, wherein at least part of the body of the blade holder and at least part of the connection system of the blade bolder are additively- manufactured.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade holder for holding a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade holder being configured to be disposed below the skate boot and comprising 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising a first additively-manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a skating stride than the first additive- manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component that comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising a plurality of additively-manufactured components with different functions additively- manufactured integrally with one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising an additively-manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively- manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a blade for an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the blade comprising 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material and metallic material that is configured to contact an ice surface.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate using the feedstock. The additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the skate that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate, the skate comprising: a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user; and a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D- printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot using the feedstock. According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot using the feedstock. The additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the skate boot that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a skate boot of a skate, the skate boot being configured to receive a foot of a user, the skate comprising a skating device below the skate boot and configured to engage a skating surface, the method comprising: providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the skate boot, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder using the feedstock. The additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the blade holder that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade holder of an ice skate, the blade holder being configured to hold a blade, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade holder, using the feedstock, such that the component of the blade holder comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade using the feedstock. The additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the blade that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making a blade of an ice skate, the ice skate comprising a skate boot configured to receive a foot of a user, the method comprising: providing feedstock including metal; and additively manufacturing a component of the blade, using the feedstock, such that the component of the blade comprises 3D-printed metallic material.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises a first additively- manufactured zone and a second additively-manufactured zone that is located where more power is applied during a motion than the first additive-manufactured zone and structurally different from the first additively-manufactured zone.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises an additively-manufactured component comprising a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises a plurality of additively- manufactured components with different functions additively-manufactured integrally with one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises an additively- manufactured component and a non-additively-manufactured component received by the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user. The footwear comprises an additively- manufactured component and a sensor associated with the additively-manufactured component.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the footwear using the feedstock. The additively-manufactured component comprises a plurality of distinct zones structurally different from one another.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising: providing feedstock; and additively manufacturing a plurality of components of the footwear that have different functions integrally with one another, using the feedstock.

According to another aspect, this disclosure relates to a method of making footwear, the footwear comprising: a structure configured to receive a foot of a user; the method comprising: providing feedstock including fiber feedstock; and additively manufacturing a component of the footwear, using the feedstock, such that the component of the skate comprises 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material.

These and other aspects of the invention will now become apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art upon review of the following description of embodiments of the invention in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

A detailed description of embodiments is provided below, by way of example only, with reference to drawings accompanying this description, in which:

Figure 1 shows an embodiment of footwear in which the footwear is a skate for a user comprising a skate boot and a blade holder and comprising additively-manufactured components;

Figure 2 shows an exploded view of the skate;

Figure 3 shows a method of manufacturing the additively-manufactured components;

Figures 4 to 12 show cross-sectional views of a shell of the skate boot in accordance with various embodiments;

Figure 13 shows a tendon guard of the skate boot;

Figure 14 to 20 show perspective views, a lateral side view, a top view, a bottom view, a front view and a rear view of the blade holder;

Figures 21 A and 21 B show a lateral side view and a cross-sectional view of a blade in accordance with an embodiment;

Figures 22A and 22B show a variant of the blade;

Figures 23 to 25 show an assembly of the blade and the blade holder comprising a blade detachment mechanism;

Figures 26 to 29 show variants of the assembly of the blade and the blade holder and of the blade detachment mechanism; Figures 30 to 34 show examples of framework of the additively-manufactured components comprising a lattice;

Figures 35 and 36 show elongate members of the lattice forming a node in accordance with an embodiment;

Figures 37 and 38 show the elongate members of the lattice forming the node in accordance with another embodiment;

Figures 39 to 44 show cross-sectional shapes of the elongate members of the lattice in accordance with various embodiments;

Figures 45 to 50 show cross-sectional structures of the elongate members of the lattice in accordance with various embodiments;

Figure 51 shows an intersection between two zones of the lattice having different voxel sizes;

Figure 52 shows two distinct non-hollow lattices having different voxel sizes;

Figure 53 shows an intersection between two zones of the lattice having elongate members and/or nodes of different thicknesses (or different “struts size”);

Figure 54 shows three distinct non-hollow lattices having elongate members and/or nodes of different thicknesses (or different “struts size”);

Figure 55 shows a variant of the lattice;

Figures 56 to 60 show variants of the skate; Figures 61 to 76 show a variant of the blade detachment mechanism;

Figures 72 to 75 show another variant of the blade detachment mechanism;

Figure 76 shows a variant of the blade wherein the blade comprises a silkscreen;

Figures 77 to 79 show a variant of the skate wherein the additively-manufactured components comprise sensors and actuators;

Figures 80 to 82 show variants of the skate;

Figure 83 shows a variant of the skate wherein the skate comprises a covering;

Figure 84 to 88 show examples of variants in which the footwear is a ski boot, a work boot, a snowboard boot, a sport cleat or a hunting boot;

Figure 89 shows an example of a test for determining the stiffness of a part of a subshell; and

Figures 90 and 91 are side and front views of a right foot of the skater with an integument of the foot shown in dotted lines and bones shown in solid lines.

It is to be expressly understood that the description and drawings are only for purposes of illustrating certain embodiments and are an aid for understanding. They are not intended to be and should not be limiting.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF EMBODIMENTS

Figure 1 shows an example of an embodiment of footwear 10 for a user and comprising additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. In this embodiment, the footwear 10 is a skate for the user to skate on a skating surface 13. More particularly, in this embodiment, the skate 10 is a hockey skate for the user who is a hockey player playing hockey. In this example, the skate 10 is an ice skate, a type of hockey played is ice hockey, and the skating surface 13 is ice.

The skate 10 comprises a skate boot 22 for receiving a foot 11 of the player and a skating device 28 disposed beneath the skate boot 22 to engage the skating surface 13. In this embodiment, the skating device 28 comprises a blade 26 for contacting the ice 13 and a blade holder 24 between the skate boot 22 and the blade 26. The skate 10 has a longitudinal direction, a widthwise direction, and a heightwise direction.

In this embodiment, the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A constitute one or more parts of the skate boot 22 and/or one or more parts of the skating device 28.

Each of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10 is a part of the skate 10 that is additively manufactured, i.e. , made by additive manufacturing, (e.g. 3D printing), in which material 50 thereof initially provided as feedstock (e.g., powder, liquid, filaments, fibers, and/or other suitable feedstock), which can be referred to as 3D-printed material, is added by a machine (i.e., a 3D printer) that is computer-controlled (e.g., using a digital 3D model such as a computer-aided design (CAD) file) to create it in its three- dimensional form (e.g., layer by layer, from a pool of liquid, applying continuous fibers, or in any other way, normally moldlessly, i.e., without any mold). This is in contrast to subtractive manufacturing (e.g., machining) where material is removed and molding where material is introduced into a mold’s cavity.

Any 3D-printing technology may be used to make the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10. For instance, in some embodiments, fused deposition modeling (FDM), direct light processing (DLP), stereolithography (SLA), selective laser sintering (SLS), material jetting (MJ), binder jetting (BJ), continuous-fiber 3D printing, and/or any other suitable 3D-printing technology may be used. Examples of suitable 3D-printing technologies may include those available from Carbon (www.carbon3d.com), EOS (https://www.eos.info/en), HP,

(https://www8. hp. com/ca/en/printers/3d-printers. htm I), Arevo (https://arevo.com), and Continuous Composites (https://www.continuouscomposites.com/).

As further discussed later, in this embodiment, the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10, which may be referred to as “AM” components, are designed to enhance performance and use of the skate 10, such as fit and comfort, power transfer to the skating surface 13 during skating strides, and/or other aspects of the skate 10.

The skate boot 22 defines a cavity 54 for receiving the player’s foot 11. With additional reference to Figures 90 and 91 , the player’s foot 11 comprises toes T, a ball B, an arch ARC, a plantar surface PS, a top surface TS including an instep IN, a medial side MS, a lateral side LS, and a heel HL. The top surface TS of the player’s foot 11 is continuous with a lower portion of a shin S of the player. In addition, the player has an Achilles tendon AT and an ankle A having a medial malleolus MM and a lateral malleolus LM that is at a lower position than the medial malleolus MM. The Achilles tendon AT has an upper part UP and a lower part LP projecting outwardly with relation to the upper part UP and merging with the heel HL. A forefoot of the player includes the toes T and the ball B, a hindfoot of the player includes the heel HL, and a midfoot of the player is between the forefoot and the hindfoot.

More particularly, the skate boot 22 comprises a heel portion 21 configured to face the heel HL of the player’s foot, an ankle portion 23 configured to face the ankle A of the player, a medial side portion 25 configured to face the medial side MS of the player’s foot, a lateral side portion 27 configured to face the lateral side LS of the player’s foot, an instep portion 41 configured to face the instep IN of the player’s foot, a sole portion 29 configured to face the plantar surface PS of the player’s foot, a toe portion 19 configured to receive the toes T of the user’s foot, and a tendon guard portion 20 configured to face the upper part UP of the Achilles tendon AT of the player. The skate boot 22 has a longitudinal direction, a widthwise direction, and a heightwise direction.

In this embodiment, with additional reference to Figures 1 and 2, the skate boot 22 comprises a body 30 and a plurality of parts connected to the body 30, which, in this example, includes facings 311, 312, a toe cap 14, a tongue 34, a liner 36, an insole 18, a footbed 38, a tendon guard 63 and an outsole 39. Lacing holes 45I-45L extend through each of the facings 311, 312, the body 30, and the liner 36 to receive a lace 47 for securing the skate 10 to the player’s foot. In this example, the eyelets 46I-46E are provided in respective ones of the lacing holes 45I-45L to engage the lace 47.

The body 30 of the skate boot 22, which may sometimes be referred to as a “shell”, imparts strength and structural integrity to the skate 10 to support the player’s foot. In this embodiment, the body 30 comprises medial and lateral side portions 66, 68 respectively configured to face the medial and lateral sides MS, LS of the player’s foot, an ankle portion 64 configured to face the ankle A of the player, and a heel portion 62 configured to face the heel HL of the player. The medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, the ankle portion 64, and the heel portion 62 of the body 30 respectively constitute at least part (i.e. , part or an entirety) of the medial and lateral side portions 25, 27, the ankle portion 23, and the heel portion 21 of the skate boot 22. The heel portion 62 may be formed such that it is substantially cup shaped for following a contour of the heel HL of the player. The ankle portion 64 comprises medial and lateral ankle sides 74, 76. The medial ankle side 74 has a medial depression 78i for receiving the medial malleolus MM of the player and the lateral ankle side 76 has a lateral depression 80 for receiving the lateral malleolus LM of the player. The lateral depression 782 is located slightly lower than the medial depression 78 for conforming to the morphology of the player’s foot. In this example, the body 30 also comprises a sole portion 69 configured to face the plantar surface PS of the player’s foot. The sole portion 69 of the body 30 respectively constitute at least part of the sole portion 29.

In this embodiment, the body 30 of the skate boot 22 is manufactured to form its medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, its ankle portion 64, its heel portion 62, and its sole portion 69. For example, in this embodiment, at least part of the body 30 may be manufactured such that two or more of its medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, its ankle portion 64, its heel portion 62, and its sole portion 69 are integral with one another (i.e., are manufactured together as a single piece). For instance, in some embodiments, the body 30 may be a monolithic body, i.e., a one-piece body, made by AM. As another example, in some embodiments, the body 30 may be additively manufacture (e.g., 3D printed) to form its medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, its ankle portion 64, its heel portion 62, and its sole portion 69, which are distinct from (i.e. not integral with) one another.

The body 30 of the skate boot 22 may include one or more materials making it up. For example, in some embodiments, the body 30 may include one or more polymeric materials. More specifically, in this embodiment, the shell 30 comprises a plurality of materials MI-MN which may be different from one another, such as by having different chemistries and/or exhibiting substantially different values of one or more material properties (e.g., density, modulus of elasticity, hardness, etc.) and which are arranged such that the shell 30 comprises a plurality of layers 85I-85L which are made of respective ones of the materials MI-MN. In that sense, in this case, the shell 30 may be referred to as a “multilayer” shell and the layers 85I-85L of the shell 30 may be referred to as “subshells”. This may allow the skate 10 to have useful performance characteristics (e.g., reduced weight, proper fit and comfort, etc.) while being more cost-effectively manufactured.

The materials MI-MN may be implemented in any suitable way. In this embodiment, each of the materials MI-MN may be a polymeric material, such as polyethylene, polypropylene, polyurethane (PU), ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), nylon, polyester, vinyl, polyvinyl chloride, polycarbonate, an ionomer resin (e.g., Surlyn®), styrene-butadiene copolymer (e.g., K- Resin®) etc.), and/or any other thermoplastic or thermosetting polymer. Alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, the materials MI-MN may include one or more composite materials, such as a fiber-matrix composite material comprising fibers disposed in a matrix. For instance, in some embodiments, the materials MI-MN may include a fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP - a.k.a., fiber-reinforced polymer), comprising a polymeric matrix may include any suitable polymeric resin, such as a thermoplastic or thermosetting resin, like epoxy, polyethylene, polypropylene, acrylic, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyether ether ketone (PEEK) or other polyaryletherketone (PAEK), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), polycarbonate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), nylon, polyimide, polysulfone, polyamide-imide, self-reinforcing polyphenylene, polyester, vinyl ester, vinyl ether, polyurethane, cyanate ester, phenolic resin, etc., a hybrid thermosetting-thermoplastic resin, or any other suitable resin, and fibers such as carbon fibers, glass fibers, polymeric fibers such as aramid fibers (e.g., Kevlar fibers), boron fibers, silicon carbide fibers, metallic fibers, ceramic fibers, etc., which may be provided as layers of continuous fibers (e.g. pre-preg (i.e. , pre-impregnated) layers of fibers held together by an amount of matrix). Another example of a composite material may be a self-reinforced polymeric (e.g., polypropylene) composite (e.g., a Curv® composite).

In this embodiment, the materials MI-MN of the subshells 85i-85i_of the shell 30 constitute at least part of the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 of the shell 30. More particularly, in this embodiment, the materials MI-MN constitute at least a majority (i.e., a majority or an entirety) of the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 of the shell 30. In this example, the materials MI-MN constitute the entirety of the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 of the shell 30.

The subshells 85I-85L constituted by the polymeric materials MI-MN may have different properties for different purposes.

For instance, in some cases, a polymeric material M x may be stifferthan a polymeric material M y such that a subshell comprising the polymeric material M x is stiffer than a subshell comprising the polymeric material M y . For example, a ratio of a stiffness of the subshell comprising the polymeric material M x over a stiffness of the subshell comprising the polymeric material M y may be at least 1.5, in some cases at least 2, in some cases at least 2.5, in some cases 3, in some cases 4 and in some cases even more.

In some cases, a given one of the subshells 85I-85L may be configured to be harder than another one of the subshells 85I-85L. For instance, to provide a given subshell with more hardness than another subshell, the hardness of the polymeric materials MI-MN may vary. For example, a hardness of the polymeric material M x may be greater than a hardness of the polymeric material M y . For example, in some cases, a ratio of the hardness of the polymeric material M x over the hardness of the polymeric material M y may be at least 1.5, in some cases at least 2, in some cases at least 2.5, in some cases at least 3, in some cases at least 4, in some cases at least 5 and in some cases even more.

To observe the stiffness of a subshell 85 x , as shown in Figure 89, a part of the subshell 85 x can be isolated from the remainder of the subshell 85 x (e.g., by cutting, or otherwise removing the part from the subshell 85 x , or by producing the part without the remainder of the subshell 85 x ) and a three-point bending test can be performed on the part to subject it to loading tending to bend the part in specified ways (along a defined direction of the part if the part is anisotropic) to observe the rigidity and/or flexibility of the part and measure parameters indicative of the rigidity and/or flexibility of the part. For instance, in some embodiments, the three-point bending test may be based on conditions defined in a standard test (e.g., ISO 178(2010)).

For example, to observe the rigidity of the subshell 85 x , the three-point bending test may be performed to subject the subshell 85 x to loading tending to bend the subshell 85 x until a predetermined deflection of the subshell 85 x is reached and measure a bending load at that predetermined deflection of the subshell 85 x . The predetermined deflection of the subshell 85x may be selected such as to correspond to a predetermined strain of the subshell 85 x at a specified point of the subshell 85 x (e.g., a point of an inner surface of the subshell 85 x ). For instance, in some embodiments, the predetermined strain of the subshell 85 x may be between 3% and 5%. The bending load at the predetermined deflection of the subshell 85 x may be used to calculate a bending stress at the specified point of the subshell 85 x . The bending stress at the specified point of the subshell 85 x may be calculated as o=My/l, where M is the moment about a neutral axis of the subshell 85 x caused by the bending load, y is the perpendicular distance from the specified point of the subshell 85 x to the neutral axis of the subshell 85 x , and I is the second moment of area about the neutral axis of the subshell 85x. The rigidity of the subshell 85 x can be taken as the bending stress at the predetermined strain (i.e. , at the predetermined deflection) of the subshell 85 x . Alternatively, the rigidity of the subshell 85 x may be taken as the bending load at the predetermined deflection of the subshell 85 x . The three-point bending test may be similarly used to determine the flexibility of the subshell 85 x .

A stiffness of the subshells 85I-85L may be related to a modulus of elasticity (i.e. , Young’s modulus) of the polymeric materials MI-MN associated therewith. For example, to provide a given subshell with more stiffness than another subshell, the modulus of elasticity of the polymeric materials MI-MN may vary. For instance, in some embodiments, the modulus of elasticity of the polymeric material M x may be greater than the modulus of elasticity of the polymeric material M y . For example, in some cases, a ratio of the modulus of elasticity of the polymeric material M x over the modulus of elasticity of the polymeric material M y may be at least 1 .5, in some cases at least 2, in some cases at least 2.5, in some cases at least 3, in some cases at least 4, in some cases at least 5 and in some cases even more. This ratio may have any other suitable value in other embodiments.

In some cases, a given one of the subshells 85I-85L may be configured to be denser than another one of the subshells 85I-85L. For instance, to provide a given subshell with more density than another subshell, the density of the polymeric materials MI-MN may vary. For instance, in some embodiments, the polymeric material M x may have a density that is greater than a density of the polymeric material M y . For example, in some cases, a ratio of the density of the material M x over the density of the material M y may be at least 1.1 , in some cases at least 1.5, in some cases at least 2, in some cases at least 2.5, in some cases at least 3 and in some cases even more.

In this embodiment, the subshells 85I-85L comprise an internal subshell 85i, an intermediate subshell 852 and an external subshell 853. The internal subshell 85i is “internal” in that it is an innermost one of the subshells 85I-85L. That is, the internal subshell 85i is closest to the player’s foot 11 when the player dons the skate 10. In a similar manner, the external subshell 853 is “external” in that is an outermost one of the subshells 85I-85L. That is, the external subshell 853 is furthest from the player’s foot 11 when the player dons the skate 10. The intermediate subshell 852 is disposed between the internal and external subshells 85i, 853. The internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 comprise respective polymeric materials Mi , M2, M3. In this embodiment, the polymeric materials Mi , M2, M3 have different material properties that impart different characteristics to the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853. As a result, in certain cases, a given one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853 may be more resistant to impact than another one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853, a given one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853 may be more resistant to wear than another one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853, and/or a given one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853 may be denser than another one of the subshells 85i, 852, 853.

For instance, a density of each of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may vary. For example, in this embodiment, the densities of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 increase inwardly such that the density of the internal subshell 85i is greater than the density of the intermediate subshell 852 which in turn is greater than the density of the external subshell 853. For example, the density of the internal subshell 85i may be approximately 30 kg/m 3 , while the density of the intermediate subshell 852 may be approximately 20 kg/m 3 , and the density of the external subshell 853 may be approximately 10 kg/m 3 . The densities of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may have any other suitable values in other embodiments. In other embodiments, the densities of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may increase outwardly such that the external subshell 853 is the densest of the subshells 85I-85L. In yet other embodiments, the densities of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may not be arranged in order of ascending or descending density.

Moreover, in this embodiment, a stiffness of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may vary. For example, in this embodiment, the stiffness of the internal subshell 85i is greater than the respective stiffness of each of the intermediate subshell 852 and the external subshell 853.

In addition, in this embodiment, a thickness of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may vary. For example, in this embodiment, the intermediate subshell 852 has a thickness that is greater than a respective thickness of each of the internal and external subshells 85i, 853. For example, in some cases, the thickness of each of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may be between 0.1 mm to 25 mm, and in some cases between 0.5 mm to 10 mm. For instance, the thickness of each of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may be no more than 30 mm, in some cases no more than 25 mm, in some cases no more than 15 mm, in some cases no more than 10 mm, in some cases no more than 5 mm, in some cases no more than 1 mm, in some cases no more than 0.5 mm, in some cases no more than 0.1 mm and in some cases even less.

In order to provide the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 with their different characteristics, the polymeric materials Mi, M2, M3 of the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853 may comprise different types of polymeric materials. For instance, in this example, the polymeric material Mi comprises a generally soft and dense foam, the polymeric material M2 comprises a structural foam that is more rigid than the foam of the polymeric material Mi and less dense than the polymeric material Mi, and the polymeric material M3 is a material other than foam. For example, the polymeric material M3 of the external subshell 853 may consist of a clear polymeric coating.

The subshells 85I -85L may be configured in various other ways in other embodiments. For instance, in other embodiments, the shell 30 may comprise a different number of subshells or no subshells. For example, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 4, the shell 30 may be a single shell and therefore does not comprise any subshells. In other embodiments, as shown in Figure 5, the shell 30 may comprise two subshells 85I -85L.

Moreover, as shown in Figures 6 to 8, when the shell 30 comprises two subshells, notably interior and exterior subshells 85INT, 85EXT, if the exterior subshell 85EXT has a density that is greater than a density of the interior subshell 85INT, a given one of the subshells 85INT, 85EXT may have an opening, which can be referred to as a gap, along at least part of the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 (e.g., along a majority of the sole portion 69 of the shell 30). For example, as shown in Figure 6, in some embodiments, the exterior subshell 85EXT may comprise a gap G at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 such that the interior and exterior subshells 85INT, 85EXT do not overlie one another at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 (i.e. , the interior subshell 85INT may be the only subshell present at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30). As shown in Figure 7, in an embodiment in which the exterior subshell 85EXT has a gap at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30, the interior subshell 85INT may project outwardly toward the exterior subshell 85EXT at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 and fill in the gap of the exterior subshell 85EXT such that a thickness of the interior subshell 85INT is greater at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30. As another example, as shown in Figure 8, in an embodiment in which the interior subshell 85INT has a gap at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30, the exterior subshell 85EXT may project inwardly toward the interior subshell 85INT at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 and fill in the gap of the interior subshell 85INT such that a thickness of the exterior subshell 85EXT is greater at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30. As shown in Figure 9, the footbed 38 may be formed integrally with the shell 30 such as to cover at least partially an inner surface of the innermost subshell (in this case, the interior subshell 85INT) and overlie the sole portion 69 of the shell 30. In other cases, the footbed 38 may be inserted separately after the manufacture of the shell 30 has been completed.

In some embodiments, as shown in Figures 10 to 12, when the shell 30 comprises three subshells, notably the internal, intermediate and external subshells 85i, 852, 853, and the external subshell 853 has a density that is greater than a density of the intermediate subshell 852, the external subshell 853 may comprise a gap 61 at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 and the intermediate subshell 852 may project into the external subshell 853 at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 such as to fill in the gap 61 of the external subshell 853. In such embodiments, the intermediate subshell 852 may have a greater thickness at the sole portion 69 of the shell 30.

The toe cap 14 is configured to receive the toes T of the player’s foot. It comprises a medial part 61 configured to receive a big toe of the player’s toes T, a lateral part 63 configured to receive a little toe of the player’s toes T, and an intermediate part 65 that is between its medial part 61 and its lateral part 63 and configured to receive index, middle and ring toes of the player’s toes T. The toe cap 14 comprises a distal part 52 adjacent to distal ends of the toes T of the player’s foot and a proximal part 44 adjacent to proximal ends of the toes T of the player’s foot.

The toe cap 14 includes rigid material. For example, in some embodiments, the toe cap 14 may be made of nylon, polycarbonate, polyurethane, polyethylene (e.g., high density polyethylene), or any other suitable thermoplastic or thermosetting polymer. Alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, the toe cap 14 may include composite material, such as a fiber-matrix composite material comprising fibers disposed in a matrix. For instance, in some embodiments, the toe cap 14 may include a fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP - a.k.a., fiber-reinforced polymer), comprising a polymeric matrix may include any suitable polymeric resin, such as a thermoplastic or thermosetting resin, like epoxy, polyethylene, polypropylene, acrylic, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyether ether ketone (PEEK) or other polyaryletherketone (PAEK), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), polycarbonate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), nylon, polyimide, polysulfone, polyamide-imide, self-reinforcing polyphenylene, polyester, vinyl ester, vinyl ether, polyurethane, cyanate ester, phenolic resin, etc., a hybrid thermosetting-thermoplastic resin, or any other suitable resin, and fibers such as carbon fibers, glass fibers, polymeric fibers such as aramid fibers (e.g., Kevlar fibers), boron fibers, silicon carbide fibers, metallic fibers, ceramic fibers, etc., which may be provided as layers of continuous fibers (e.g. pre-preg (i.e. , pre-impregnated) layers of fibers held together by an amount of matrix).

In this embodiment, the toe cap 14 is manufactured to impart a shape to the toe cap 14.

The facings 311, 312 are provided on the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68 of the body 30 of the skate boot 22, including on an external surface 67 of the body 30. In this embodiment, the facings 311, 312 extend respectively along medial and lateral edges 32i, 322 of the body 30 from the ankle portion 64 to the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68 towards the toe cap 14.

Each of the facings 311, 312 may comprise lacing openings 48I-48L that are part of respective ones of the lacing holes 45i-45i_to receive the lace 47. In that sense, the facings 311, 312 may be viewed as lacing members. In this example, each of the facings 311, 312 includes a void 49 to receive a given one of the medial and lateral edges 32i, 322 of the body 30 that it straddles and that includes lacing openings 50I-50L which are part of respective ones of the lacing holes 45i-45i_to receive the lace 47.

In this embodiment, each of the facings 311 , 312 is manufactured to impart a shape to the facing. For example, each of the facings 311, 312 may be made from nylon or any other suitable polymeric material, such as thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or any other thermoplastic or thermosetting polymer.

In other embodiments, the facings 311, 312 may include any other suitable material (e.g., leather, any synthetic material that resembles leather, and/or any other suitable material).

The facings 311, 312 may be connected to the body 30 of the skate boot 22 in any suitable way. For instance, in some embodiments, each of the facings 311, 312 may be fastened to the body 30 (e.g., via stitching, staples, etc.), glued or otherwise adhesively bonded to the body 30 via an adhesive, or ultrasonically bonded to the body 30.

In this embodiment, each of the facings 311, 312 overlaps and is secured to the toe cap 14 (e.g., by one or more fasteners such as a mechanical fastener, like a rivet, a tack, a screw, a nail, stitching, or any other mechanical fastening device, or an adhesive). This may enhance solidity, integrity and durability of the skate boot 22 proximate to the toe cap 14 and/or may facilitate manufacturing of the skate boot 22. More particularly, in this embodiment, the facing 311 overlaps and is secured to the medial side portion 61 of the toe cap 14 while the facing 312 overlaps and is secured to the lateral side portion 63 of the toe cap 14.

The liner 36 of the skate boot 22 is affixed to an inner surface 37 of the body 30 and comprises an inner surface 96 for facing the heel HL and medial and lateral sides MS, LS of the player’s foot 11 and ankle A. The liner 36 may be affixed to the body 30 by stitching or stapling the liner 36 to the body 30, gluing with an adhesive and/or any other suitable technique. The liner 36 may be made of a soft material (e.g., a fabric made of NYLON® fibers, polyester fibers or any other suitable fabric). The skate boot 22 may also comprise pads disposed between the shell 30 and the liner 36, including and ankle pad for facing the ankle A. The footbed 38 may include a foam layer, which may be made of a polymeric material. For example, the footbed 38, in some embodiments, may include a foam-backed fabric. The footbed 38 is mounted inside the body 30 and comprises an upper surface 106 for receiving the plantar surface PS of the player’s foot 11 . In this embodiment, the footbed 38 affixed to the sole portion 69 of the body 30 by an adhesive and/or any other suitable technique. In other embodiments, the footbed 38 may be removable. In some embodiments, the footbed 38 may also comprise a wall projecting upwardly from the upper surface 106 to partially cup the heel HL and extend up to a medial line of the player’s foot 11 .

The tongue 34 extends upwardly and rearwardly from the toe portion 19 of the skate boot 22 for overlapping the top surface TS of the player’s foot 11 . In this embodiment, the tongue 34 is affixed to the body 30. In particular, in this embodiment, the tongue 34 is fastened to the toe cap 14. With additional reference to Figure 13, in some embodiments, the tongue 34 comprises a core 140 defining a section of the tongue 34 with increased rigidity, a padding member (not shown) for absorbing impacts to the tongue 34, a peripheral member 94 for at least partially defining a periphery 95 of the tongue 34, and a cover member 143 configured to at least partially define a front surface of the tongue 34. The tongue 34 defines a lateral portion 147 overlying a lateral portion of the player’s foot 11 and a medial portion 149 overlying a medial portion of the player’s foot 11. The tongue 34 also defines a distal end portion 151 for affixing to the toe cap 14 (e.g., via stitching, riveting, welding (e.g. high- frequency welding), bonding or detachable affixing means) and a proximal end portion 153 that is nearest to the player’s shin S.

With additional reference to Figure 21 A and 21 B, the blade 26 comprises an ice contacting material 220 including an ice-contacting surface 222 for sliding on the skating surface 13 while the player skates. In this embodiment, the ice-contacting material 220 is a metallic material (e.g., stainless steel). The ice-contacting material 220 may be any other suitable material in other embodiments.

The blade holder 24 may comprise a lower portion 162 comprising a blade-retaining base 164 that retains the blade 26 and an upper portion 166 comprising a support 168 that extends upwardly from the blade-retaining base 164 towards the skate boot 22 to interconnect the blade holder 24 and the skate boot 22, as shown in Figures 14 to 20. A front portion 170 of the blade holder 24 and a rear portion 172 of the blade holder 24 define a longitudinal axis 174 of the blade holder 24. The front portion 170 of the blade holder 24 includes a frontmost point 176 of the blade holder 24 and extends beneath and along the player’s forefoot in use, while the rear portion 172 of the blade holder 24 includes a rearmost point 178 of the blade holder 24 and extends beneath and along the player’s hindfoot in use. An intermediate portion 180 of the blade holder 24 is between the front and rear portions 170, 172 of the blade holder 24 and extends beneath and along the player’s midfoot in use. The blade holder 24 comprises a medial side 182 and a lateral side 184 that are opposite one another.

The blade-retaining base 164 is elongated in the longitudinal direction of the blade holder 24 and is configured to retain the blade 26 such that the blade 26 extends along a bottom portion 186 of the blade-retaining base 164 to contact the skating surface 13. To that end, the blade-retaining base 164 comprises a blade-retention portion 188 to face and retain the blade 26. In this embodiment, the blade-retention portion 188 comprises a recess 190 in which an upper portion of the blade 26 is disposed.

The blade holder 24 can retain the blade 26 in any suitable way. In this embodiment, with additional reference to Figures 23 to 25, the blade holder 24 comprises a blade- detachment mechanism 55 such that the blade 26 is selectively detachable and removable from, and attachable to, the blade holder 24 (e.g., when the blade 26 is worn out or otherwise needs to be replaced or removed from the blade holder 24) as implemented in U.S. Patent No. 8,454,030, U.S. Patent No. 8,534,680 and U.S. Patent Application No. 15/388,679, which are hereby incorporated by reference herein. In other embodiments, the blade 26 may be permanently affixed to the blade holder 24 (i.e. , not intended to be detached and removed from the blade holder 24). For example, as shown in Figure 29, the blade 26 and the blade-retaining base 164 of the blade holder 24 may be mechanically interlocked via an interlocking portion 234 of one of the blade- retaining base 164 and the blade 26 that extends into an interlocking void 236 of the other one of the blade-retaining base 164 and the blade 26. In some embodiments, as shown in Figures 26 to 29, the blade holder 24 may retain the blade 26 using an adhesive 226 and/or one or more fasteners 228. For instance, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 26, the recess 190 of the blade holder 24 may receive the upper portion of the blade 26 that is retained by the adhesive 226. The adhesive 226 may be an epoxy-based adhesive, a polyurethane-based adhesive, or any suitable adhesive. In some embodiments, instead of or in addition to using an adhesive, as shown in Figure 27, the recess 190 of the blade holder 24 may receive the upper part of the blade 26 that is retained by the one or more fasteners 228. Each fastener 228 may be a rivet, a screw, a bolt, or any other suitable mechanical fastener. Alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 28, the blade-retention portion 188 of the blade holder 24 may extend into a recess 230 of the upper part of the blade 26 to retain the blade 26 using the adhesive 226 and/or the one or more fasteners 228. For instance, in some cases, the blade-retention portion 188 of the blade-retaining base 164 of the blade holder 24 may comprise a projection 232 extending into the recess 230 of the blade 26.

In this embodiment, the blade-retaining base 164 comprises a plurality of apertures 208i- 2084 distributed in the longitudinal direction of the blade holder 24 and extending from a medial side 182 to a lateral side 184 of the blade holder 24. In this example, respective ones of the apertures 208I-2084 differ in size. The apertures 208I-2084 may have any other suitable configuration, or may be omitted, in other embodiments.

The blade-retaining base 164 may be configured in any other suitable way in other embodiments. The support 168 is configured for supporting the skate boot 22 above the blade-retaining base 164 and transmit forces to and from the blade-retaining base 164 during skating. In this embodiment, the support 168 comprises a front pillar 210 and a rear pillar 212 which extend upwardly from the blade-retaining base 164 towards the skate boot 22. The front pillar 210 extends towards a front portion 56 of the skate boot 22 and the rear pillar 212 extends towards a rear portion 58 of the skate boot 22. The blade-retaining base 164 extends from the front pillar 210 to the rear pillar 212. More particularly, in this embodiment, the blade-retaining base 164 comprises a bridge 214 interconnecting the front and rear pillars 210, 212.

In this embodiment, the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10 constitute one or more parts of the skate boot 22 and/or one or more parts of the skating device 28. More specifically, the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10 constitute one or more parts of each one of the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, the toe cap 14, the facings 311 , 312, the liner 36, the tongue 34, the blade 26, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24. Inversely, each one of the skate boot 22 and the skating device 28 may comprise at least part of (i.e. part of or an entirety of) each one of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10. More specifically, in this embodiment, each one of the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, the tendon guard 20, the toe cap 14, the facings 311 , 312, the liner 36, the tongue 34, the insole 18, the footbed 38, the blade 26, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 is made of a distinct one of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A.

Each AM component 12 x of the skate 10 may be configured to enhance performance and use of the skate 10, such as fit and comfort, power transfer to the skating surface 13, durability, customability, foot protection, cost efficiency and/or other aspects of the skate 10.

The AM component 12 x of the skate 10 may be implemented in any suitable way in various embodiments. For example, in this embodiment, the AM component 12 x may include a lattice 40 which is additively-manufactured such that AM component 12 x has an open structure. The lattice

40 can be designed and 3D-printed to impart properties and functions of the AM component 12 x , such as those discussed above, while helping to minimize its weight.

The lattice 40 comprises a framework of structural members 411 -41 E that intersect one another. In some embodiments, the structural members 411 -41 E may be arranged in a regular arrangement repeating over the lattice 40. In some cases, the lattice 40 may be viewed as made up of unit cells 32i-32c each including a subset of the structural members 411-41 E that forms the regular arrangement repeating over the lattice 40. Each of these unit cells 32i-32c can be viewed as having a voxel, which refers to a notional three- dimensional space that it occupies. In other embodiments, the structural members 411 -

41 E may be arranged in different arrangements over the lattice 40 (e.g., which do not necessarily repeat over the lattice 40, do not necessarily define unit cells, etc.).

Examples of framework for the lattice 40 are shown in Figures 30 to 34. In some embodiments, the framework of the lattice 40 may define a hollow lattice having a lattice pattern that is observable in exploded view, as shown in the examples of Figures 9 to 13. In other embodiments, the framework of the lattice 40 may not be hollow or observable in exploded view, as shown in other exemplary lattices at Figures 52 to 54. It is further noted that some lattices are not hollow or observable in exploded view while they have a lattice pattern that is similar to a lattice pattern of hollow lattices - in other words, in some embodiments, the lattice pattern of hollow lattices may be used to form a non-hollow lattice.

The lattice 40, including its structural members 411 -41 E, may be configured in any suitable manner.

In this embodiment, the structural members 411 -41 E are elongate members that intersect one another at nodes 42I-42N. The elongate members 411 -41 E may sometimes be referred to as “beams” or “struts”. Each of the elongate members 411 -41 E may be straight, curved, or partly straight and partly curved. While in some embodiments at least some of the nodes 42I-42N (i.e. some of the nodes 42I-42N or every one of the nodes 42I-42N) may be formed by having the structural members 411 -41 E forming the nodes affixed to one another (e.g., chemically fastened, via an adhesive, etc.), as shown in Figures 35 and 36, in some embodiments at least some of the nodes 42I-42N (i.e. some of the nodes 42I-42N or every one of the nodes 42I-42N) may be formed by having the structural members 411 -41 E being unitary (e.g., integrally made with one another, fused to one another, etc.), as shown in Figures 37 and 38. Also, in this embodiment, the nodes 42i- 42N may be thicker than respective ones of the elongate members 411 -41 E that intersect one another thereat, as shown in Figure 36 and 38, while in other embodiments the nodes 42I-42N may have a same thickness as respective ones of the elongate members 411 - 41 E that intersect one another thereat.

In this embodiment, the structural members 41i-4l E may have any suitable shape, as shown in Figures 39 to 44. That is, a cross-section of a structural member 41 i across a longitudinal axis of the structural member 41 i may have any suitable shape, for instance: a circular shape, an oblong shape, an elliptical shape, a square shape, a rectangular shape, a polygonal shape (e.g. triangle, hexagon, and so on), etc.

Moreover, in this embodiment, the structural member 41 i may comprise any suitable structure and any suitable composition, as shown in Figures 45 to 50. As an example, the structural member 41 i may be solid (i.e. without any void) and composed of a material 50, as shown in Figure 45. In another embodiment, the structural member 41 i may comprise the material 50 and another material 511 inner to the material 50, as shown in Figure 46. In another embodiment, the structural member 41 i may comprise the material 50, the other material 511 inner to the material 50 and another material 512 outer to the material 50, as shown in Figure 47. In another embodiment, the structural member 41 i may be composed of the material 50 and may comprise a void 44 that is not filled by any specific solid material, as shown in Figure 48. In another embodiment, the structural member 41 i may comprise the material 50, another material outer to the material 50 and the void 44 that is not filled by any specific solid material, as shown in Figure 49. In another embodiment, the structural member 41 i may comprise the material 50 and a plurality of reinforcements 53 (e.g. continuous or chopped fibers), as shown in Figure 50.

In other embodiments, the structural members 411 -41 E of the lattice 40 may be implemented in various other ways. For example, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 55, the structural members 411 -41 E may be planar members that intersect one another at vertices 142i-142v. The planar members 411 -41 E may sometimes be referred to as “faces”. Each of the planar members 411 -41 E may be straight, curved, or partly straight and partly curved. Although in the example shown in Figure 55 the planar structural members 41i-4l E are all parallel to a common axis, in some embodiments, the planar structural members 411 -41 E may not be parallel to a common axis.

The 3D-printed material 50 constitutes the lattice 40. Specifically, the elongate members 411-41 E and the nodes 42I-42N of the lattice 40 include respective parts of the 3D-printed material 50 that are created by the 3D-printer.

Practically, a method for making the AM component 12 x may include the steps of providing feedstock (corresponding to the material 50) and additively manufacturing the AM component 12, as shown in Figure 3.

In some example of implementations, the 3D-printed material 50 includes polymeric material. For instance, in this embodiment, the 3D-printed material 50 may include polyethylene, polypropylene, polyurethane (PU), ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), nylon, polyester, vinyl, polyvinyl chloride, polycarbonate, an ionomer resin (e.g., Surlyn®), styrene-butadiene copolymer (e.g., K-Resin®) etc.), and/or any other thermoplastic or thermosetting polymer.

In some cases, the 3D-printed material 50 may be a composite material. More particularly, in some embodiments, the 3D-printed material 50 is fiber-reinforced composite material comprising fibers disposed in a matrix. For instance, in some embodiments, the 3D-printed material 50 may be fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP - a.k.a., fiber-reinforced polymer), comprising a polymeric matrix may include any suitable polymeric resin, such as a thermoplastic or thermosetting resin, like epoxy, polyethylene, polypropylene, acrylic, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyether ether ketone (PEEK) or other polyaryletherketone (PAEK), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), polycarbonate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), nylon, polyimide, polysulfone, polyamide-imide, self-reinforcing polyphenylene, polyester, vinyl ester, vinyl ether, polyurethane, cyanate ester, phenolic resin, etc., a hybrid thermosetting-thermoplastic resin, or any other suitable resin, and fibers such as carbon fibers, glass fibers, polymeric fibers such as aramid fibers (e.g., Kevlar fibers), boron fibers, silicon carbide fibers, metallic fibers, ceramic fibers, etc. In some embodiments, the fibers of the fiber-reinforced composite material 50 may be provided as layers of continuous fibers deposited along with rapidly-curing resin forming the polymeric matrix. In other embodiments, the fibers of the fiber-reinforced composite material 50 may be provided as fragmented (e.g., chopped) fibers dispersed in the polymeric matrix.

In such cases, as it includes the fiber-reinforced composite material 50, the lattice 40 may be 3D-printed using continuous-fiber 3D printing technology. For instance, in some embodiments, this may allow each of one or more of the fibers of the fiber-reinforced composite material 50 to extend along at least a significant part, such as at least a majority (i.e. , a majority or an entirety), of a length of the lattice 40 (e.g., monofilament winding). This may enhance the strength, the impact resistance, and/or other properties of the AM component 12 x .

In other examples of implementation, the 3D-printed material 50 may include metallic material (e.g., steel such as stainless steel, aluminum, titanium).

In yet other examples of implementation, the 3D-printed material 50 may include ceramic material. In some embodiments, the material 50 of the lattice 40 may be identical throughout the lattice 40. In other embodiments, the material 50 of the lattice 40 may be different in different parts of the lattice 40. For example, in some embodiments, the material 50 of the lattice 40 at the heel portion 62 of the shell 30 may be different from the material 50 of the portion 8O3 of the lattice 40 at the medial side portion 66 of the shell 30. In this embodiments, the different materials 50 of the different portions of the lattice 40 are both polymeric materials. In other embodiments, the different materials 50 of the different portions of the lattice 40 may comprise a polymeric material and a metallic material, or a ceramic material and a metallic material, or a polymeric material, a ceramic material and a metallic material.

The AM component 12 x of the skate 10 may be designed to have properties of interest in various embodiments, depending on the function of the AM component 12 x .

For example, in some embodiments, a stiffness of the AM component 12 x may be no more than 800 N/mm, in some cases no more than 600 N/mm , in some cases no more than 400 N/mm, in some cases no more than 200 N/mm, in some cases even less (e.g., no more than 150 N/mm) and/or at least 150N/mm, in some cases at least 350N/mm, in some cases at least 550N/mm, in some cases at least 750N/mm, and in some cases even more (e.g., at least 800N/mm), when the AM component 12 X is either the blade 26, a given one of the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, or the toe cap 14. The stiffness of the AM component 12 x may be measured by a method which depends on the nature of the AM component 12 x . For example, when the AM component 12 x is the blade 26, the stiffness may be determined by a three-point bending test where a bending load is applied to the AM component 12 x, a deflection of the AM component 12 x is measured where the bending load is applied, and the bending load is divided by the deflection. In another example, when the AM component 12 x is a given one of the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, the stiffness may be determined by a Sharmin test. In another example, when the AM component 12 x is the toe cap 14, the stiffness may be determined by a toe compression test. The stiffness of the AM component 12 x may be no more than 150 KPa/mm, in some cases no more than 70 KPa/mm , in some cases no more than 7 KPa/mm, in some cases even less (e.g., no more than 4 KPa/mm) and/or at least 4 KPa/mm, in some cases at least 35 KPa/mm, in some cases at least 70 KPa/mm, and in some cases even more (e.g., at least 150 KPa/mm) when the AM component 12 x is either the liner 36, the tongue 34, the insole 18 or the footbed 38. In this example, the stiffness of the AM component 12x may be measured by compression test.

As another example, in some embodiments, a resilience of the AM component 12 x at least 100J, in some cases at least 140J, in some cases at least 150J, in some cases at least 175J, in some cases at least 200J, and in some cases even more (e.g., at least 225), when the AM component 12 x is either the blade 26, a given one of the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, or the toe cap 14, in order to resist to impacts with the hockey rink and/or the hockey puck.

As another example, in some embodiments, the AM component 12 x may have anisotropic properties even if the material of the AM component 12 x is isotropic. That is, mechanical properties of the AM component 12 x may vary depending on the direction of the stress. For example, in some embodiments, a stiffness of the AM component 12 X may be greater in a longitudinal direction of the skate 10 than in a thicknesswise direction of the skate 10, and in some embodiments, a flexibility of the AM component 12 x may be lower in the longitudinal direction of the skate 10 than in the thicknesswise direction of the skate 10. This may be achieved by having a greater number of elongated members 411 -41 E extending in the longitudinal direction of the skate 10 than elongated members 411 -41 E extending in the thicknesswise direction of the skate 10. For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the number of elongated members 411 -41 E of the AM component 12x extending within 30° of the longitudinal direction of the skate 10 over the number of elongated members 411 -41 E AM component 12 x extending within 30° of the thicknesswise direction of the skate 10 may be at least 1.1 , in some embodiments 1.5, in some embodiments 2, in some embodiments 4, in some embodiments even more.

In particular, in this embodiment, the AM component 12 x may have a maximal stiffness in a first pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x and a minimal stiffness in a second pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x . The first and second pre determined directions of the AM component 12 x may have any suitable relative position. For instance, in some embodiments, the first and second pre-determ ined directions of the AM component 12 x may form an angle between 15° and 30°, in some embodiments between 30° and 45°, in some embodiments between 45° and 60°, in some embodiments in some embodiments between 60° and 75°, in some embodiments between 75° and 90°, in some embodiments about 90°. In some embodiments, a ratio of the maximal stiffness in the first pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x over the minimal stiffness in the second pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x may be at least 2, in some embodiments at least 4, in some embodiments at least 6, in some embodiments at least 10, and in some embodiments even more.

In this embodiment, the AM component 12 x may have a maximal flexibility in a third pre determined direction of the AM component 12 x and a minimal flexibility in a fourth pre determined direction of the AM component 12 x . The third and fourth pre-determ ined directions of the AM component 12 X may have any suitable relative position. For instance, in some embodiments, the third and fourth pre-determ ined directions of the AM component 12 x may form an angle between 15° and 30°, in some embodiments between 30° and 45°, in some embodiments between 45° and 60°, in some embodiments in some embodiments between 60° and 75°, in some embodiments between 75° and 90°, in some embodiments about 90°. More particularly, in this embodiment, the third pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x may correspond to the second pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x and the fourth pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x may correspond to the first pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12x. In some embodiments, a ratio of the maximal flexibility in the third pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x over the minimal flexibility in the fourth pre-determ ined direction of the AM component 12 x may be at least 2, in some embodiments at least 4, in some embodiments at least 6, in some embodiments at least 10, and in some embodiments even more. In some embodiments, the lattice 40 may include distinct zones 80i-80z that are structurally different from one another. For instance, this may be useful to modulate properties, such as the strength, flex, stiffness, etc., of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40. In this embodiment the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 of the additively- manufactured component 12 x include at least three distinct zones 80i, 8O2, 8O3. For example, the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 of the subshell 85 x may include a zone 8O1 at the heel portion 62 of the shell 30, a zone 8O2 at the ankle portion 64 of the shell 30, and zones 803,804 at the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68 of the shell 30.

In this embodiment, delimitations of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 are configured to match different parts of the skate 10 which may be subject to different stresses and may require different mechanical properties. Accordingly, the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may have different mechanical properties to facilitate skating, to increase power transmission and/or energy transmission from the wearer’s foot 11 to the skating surface 13 to the puck during skating, to lighten the skate 10, to increase impact resistance and/or impact protection of the skate 10, to reduce manufacturing costs, and so on.

Mechanical properties of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be achieved by any suitable means.

For example, in some embodiments, a shape of the unit cells 32i-32 c of each zone 80i may be pre-determ ined to increase or diminished the aforementioned mechanical properties.

As another example, in some embodiments, the voxel (or size) of the unit cells 32i-32 c of each zone 80i may be pre-determ ined to increase or diminished the aforementioned mechanical properties. As another example, in some embodiments, a thickness of elongate members 411 -41 E of each zone 80i may be pre-determ ined to increase or diminished the aforementioned mechanical properties.

As another example, in some embodiments, the material 50 of each zone 80i may be pre determined to increase or diminished the aforementioned mechanical properties.

As such, in some embodiments, the shape of the unit cells 32i-32 c (and thus the shape of the elongate members 411 -41 E and/or nodes 42I-42N), the voxel (or size) of the unit cells 32i-32c, a thickness of elongate members 411 -41 E of each zone 80i, a density of the lattice 40 and/or the material 50 of each zone 80i may vary between the zones 801 -80z.

For instance, in some embodiments, adjacent ones of the nodes 42I-42N in one zone 80i of the lattice 40 may be closer to one another than adjacent ones of the nodes 42I-42N in another zone of the lattice 40, as shown in Figures 51 and 52, and/or the thickness of the elongate members 411-41 E and nodes 42I-42N in one zone 80i of the lattice 40 may be greater than the thickness of the elongate members 411 -41 E and nodes 42I-42N in another zone 80j of the lattice 40, as shown in Figures 53 and 54. In other words, in some embodiments, the density of the lattice 40 in a first one of the distinct zones 80i-80z is greater than the density of the lattice 40 in a second one of the distinct zones 80i-80z. This may be achieved by having a spacing of elongate members 411 -41 E of the lattice 40 in the first one of the distinct zones 80i-80z that is less than the spacing of elongate members 411 -41 E of the lattice 40 in the second one of the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 and/or by having cross-sectionally larger elongate members 411 -41 E in the first one of the distinct zones 80i-80z than in the second one of the distinct zones 80i-80z. For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the density of a given one of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 over the density of another one of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be at least 5%, in some embodiments at least 15%, in some embodiments even more. In some embodiments, also, an orientation of elongate members 411 -41 E of the lattice 40 in the first one of the distinct zones 80i-80z may be different from the orientation of elongate members 411 -41 E of the lattice 40 in the second one of the distinct zones 80i- 80z.

In this embodiment, the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 differ in stiffness. For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the stiffness of a given one of the zones 80i- 80z of the lattice 40 over the stiffness of another one of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be at least 5%, in some embodiments at least 15%, in some embodiments even more.

The first stiffer one of the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be configured to be located where more force is applied during a skating stride and/or where more power transfer is desired, and the second less stiff one of the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be configured to be located where less force is applied during the skating stride and/or where more comfort is desired.

In this embodiment, the distinct zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 differ in resilience. For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the resilience of a given one of the zones 80i- 80z of the lattice 40 over the resilience of another one of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40 may be at least 5%, in some embodiments at least 15%, in some embodiments even more.

In this embodiment, a material composition of the lattice 40 in the first one of the distinct zones 80i-80z is different from the material composition of the lattice 40 in the second one of the distinct zones 80i-80z.

Examples of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A constituting one or more parts of the skate boot 22 and/or one or more parts of the skating device 28 in various embodiments are discussed below. In this embodiment, the shell 30 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of a given one of the AM components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the shell 30 to be customizable and to have desired comfort and stiffness properties over different zones of the wearer’s foot 11 .

In this embodiment, the liner 36 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The pads, including the ankle pad, of the skate boot 22, disposed between the shell 30 and the liner 36, may also comprise at least part of the AM components 12I-12A. The AM components 12i-12A may allow the liner 36 and the pads to fit to the wearer’s foot 11 and to provide desired comfort and stiffness over different zones of the wearer’s foot 11 .

In this embodiment, the tongue 34 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the tongue 34 to be relatively lightweight, yet to provide high protection against flying puck. For example, the tongue 34 may have an increased protection by having an increased thickness while having a diminished weight relative to a traditional tongue (i.e. without AM components). For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the thickness of the tongue 34 over a thickness of a traditional tongue may be at least 1.05, in some embodiments at least 1.1 , in some embodiments at least 1.2, in some embodiments at least 1 .5, in some embodiments at least 2, in some embodiments even more.

In this embodiment, the facings 311, 312 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the facings 311, 312 to be lightweight, durable, at relatively stiff. Additionally, the AM components 12I-12A may allow the facings 311, 312 to be customizable and to have desired comfort and stiffness properties over different portions of the wearer’s foot 11 . The positioning, number and shape of the eyelets 46I-46E, and shape of the facings 311, 312, may also be customizable for the wearer specific needs. In this embodiment, the tendon guard 63 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the tendon guard 63 to be lightweight, to have an enhanced comfort while effectively protecting the Achilles’ tendon of the wearer’s foot. For example, the tendon guard 63 may have an inner surface for facing the wearer’s Achilles’ tendon that is less stiff and less hard than an outer surface of the tendon guard 63 facing away from the inner surface. As another example, the tendon guard 63 of the skate boot 22 may be integrally made with the shell 30 and the tendon guard 63 may thus be free of an attachment portion with the shell 30, resulting in enhanced comfort. As another example, the tendon guard 63 may have any desired stiffness and may provide suitable protection to the wearer’s foot 11 while being substantially less stiff than the shell 30. For example, in some embodiments, a ratio of the stiffness of the tendon guard 63 over the stiffness of the shell 30 may be no more than 0.95, in some embodiments no more than 0.9, in some embodiments no more than 0.8, in some embodiments no more than 0.7, in some embodiments no more than 0.6, in some embodiments no more than 0.5, and in some embodiments even less.

In this embodiment, the toe cap 14 of the skate boot 22 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the toe cap 14 to be lightweight while still offering a suitable protection. For example, the toe cap 14 may comprise a lattice 40 having elongated members 411 -41 E arranged to increase stiffness and hardness of the toe cap 14 in a direction normal to its surface while diminishing the weight of the toe cap 14. This may be achieved by having a greater number of elongated members 411 -41 E extending in the direction normal to the outer surface of the toe cap 14 than elongated members 411 -41 E extending in other directions. For example, a ratio of the weight of the toe cap 14 over a weight of a traditional toe cap (i.e. without AM components) may be no more than 0.95, in some embodiments no more than 0.9, in some embodiments no more than 0.8, in some embodiments no more than 0.7, in some embodiments no more than 0.6, in some embodiments no more than 0.5, and in some embodiments even less. Additionally, the AM components 12I-12A may allow the toe cap 14 to be customizable and to have desired comfort and stiffness properties over different zones of the wearer’s foot 11 . For example, inner dimensions of the toe cap 11 may be customizable to improve fit, performance and comfort of the toe cap 11 .

In this embodiment, each one of the insole 18 and the footbed 38 of the skate 10 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the insole 18 and the footbed 38 to fit to the wearer’s foot 11 and to provide desired comfort and stiffness over different zones of the wearer’s foot 11.

In some embodiments, the skate 10 comprises an outsole 39 disposed between the shell 30 and the blade holder 24 to enhance stiffness, power transmission between the wearer’s foot 11 and the blade holder 24, and to increase durability. The outsole 39 may comprise at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the outsole 39 to be lighter and stiffer, or lighter and softer, to further enhance power transmission between the wearer’s foot 11 and the blade holder 24 and/or to enhance comfort and customability.

In this embodiment, the blade holder 24 comprises at least part of the additively- manufactured components 12I-12A. More specifically, the base 164 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 each comprises at least part of distinct ones of the additively- manufactured components 12I-12A. The AM components 12I-12A may allow the base 164 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 to have an increased stiffness and a diminished weight. Notably, the blade holder 24 may enhance power transmission between the wearer’s foot 11 and the blade 26. Additionally, the AM components 12i - 12A may allow designs (e.g. shapes, dimensions) of the base 164 and the support 168 which either: require complex manufacturing tools and/or manufacturing operations to manufacture traditionally; or are impossible to manufacture traditionally. For example, the AM components 12I-12A may comprise internal voids, undercuts restrictions, etc., which would be complex or impossible to manufacture traditionally. In this embodiment, also, the AM components 12I-12A may allow the base 164 and the support 168 to integrate mechanisms (e.g. the blade-detachment mechanism 55) without making separate components.

In this embodiment, the blade 26 comprises at least part of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A. In this example, the blade 26 is removable (i.e. detachable) from the blade holder 24 and, as such, the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A of the skate 10 may be movable relative to one another. More specifically, AM components 12i - 12A may comprise 3D-printed metallic material 50i constituting at least an ice-contacting surface of the blade 26. The 3D-printed metallic material 50i may constitute at least a majority of the blade 26. In this embodiment, the -printed metallic material 50i constitutes an entirety of the blade, as shown in Figures 21 A and 21 B. In other embodiments, the AM components 12I-12A may further comprise a 3D-printed polymeric material 502 (e.g. comprising 3D-printed fiber-reinforced composite material) constituting at least part of the blade 26 and connected to the 3D-printed metallic material 50i, as shown in Figures 22A and 22B. With additional reference to Figures 21 A and 21 B, the AM components 12I-12A may allow the blade 26 to be lightweight while preserving its hardness, stiffness and durability. For instance, the blade 26 may comprise internal cells 125i-125c that do not comprise any 3D-printed material and that may be filled with air in areas where local stresses are typically lower in order to diminish weight of the blade 26. In this example, the internal cells 125i-125c may be viewed as internal “voids” which would be complex or impossible to manufacture traditionally.

The skate 10 may be implemented in any other suitable manner in other embodiments.

For example, in some embodiments, each one of the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 may comprise a distinct one of the additively-manufactured components 12I -12A such that the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 are connected to one another to form the shell 30. In this embodiment, the subshells 85i-85 s are the heel portion 62, the ankle portion 64, the medial and lateral side portions 66, 68, and the sole portion 69 of the shell 30 rather than layers forming the shell 30. Each one of the subshells 85i-85 s may comprise distinct zones 80i-80 z that are structurally different from one another to modulate properties, such as the strength, flex, stiffness, etc., of the zones 80i-80z of the lattice 40. For example, in this embodiment, the distinct zones 80i-80z of the additively-manufactured components 12I-12A are layers of the additively-manufactured component that layered on one another. In this embodiment, a distal (i.e. outer) zone 85d of the additively-manufactured component 12 x may be stiffer than a proximal (i.e. inner) zone 85 P of the additively-manufactured component 12 x.

As another example, in some embodiments, the AM component 12 x may be at least part (i.e. may be part but not constitute an entirety or may constitute an entirety) of two or more of: the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, the tendon guard 63, the toe cap 14, the facings 311, 312, the liner 36, the tongue 34, the insole 18, the footbed 38, the blade 26, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24.

For instance, in some cases, as shown in Figures 56 and 57, the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30 and the toe cap 14 may be formed of the same AM component 12 x . That is, the shell 30 and the toe cap may be a one-piece AM component 12 x . In this example, the shell 30 still comprises the distinct zones 80i-80 z that are structurally different from one another to modulate properties.

In some cases, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 may be formed of the same AM component 12 X . That is, the blade holder 24 may be a one-piece AM component 12 x connected to the skate boot comprising or being connected to a blade attachment mechanism of the blade holder 24. In this example, the blade holder 24 still comprises the distinct zones 80i-80 z that are structurally different from one another to modulate properties.

In some cases, as shown in Figures 58 to 60, the subshells 85I-85L of the shell 30, the tendon guard 63, the toe cap 14, the facings 311, 312, the liner 36, the insole 18, the footbed 38, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 are made of a single AM component 12 X . That is, the shell 30, the tendon guard 63, the toe cap 14, the facings 311, 312, the liner 36, the insole 18, the footbed 38, the lower portion 162 of the blade holder 24 and the support 168 of the blade holder 24 may be a one-piece AM component 12 x . In this example, the one-piece AM component 12 x still comprises the distinct zones 80i-80 z that are structurally different from one another to modulate properties.

As another example, in some embodiments, with additional reference to Figures 60 to 71 , the blade holder 24 comprises a connection system 320 configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. The connection system 320 facilitates installation and removal of the blade 26, such as for replacement of the blade 26, assemblage of the skate 10, and/or other purposes.

More particularly, in this embodiment, the connection system 320 of the blade holder 24 is a quick-connect system configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 quickly and easily.

Notably, in this embodiment, the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 without using a screwdriver when the blade 26 is positioned in the blade holder 24. In this example, the quick-connect system 320 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 screwlessly (i.e. , without using any screws) when the blade 26 is positioned in the blade holder 24. It is noted that although the quick- connect system 320 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 screwlessly, the quick-connect system 320 may comprise screws that are not used (i.e. manipulated) for attachment or detachment of the blade 26. Thus, in this embodiment, the quick-connect system 320 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 without using a screwdriver and screwlessly when the blade 26 is positioned in the longitudinal recess 190 of the blade holder 24. In this example, the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 toollessly (i.e. , manually without using any tool) when the blade 26 is positioned in the blade holder 24. That is, the blade 24 is attachable to and detachable from the blade holder 24 manually without using any tool (i.e., a screwdriver or any other tool). Thus, in this example, the quick-connect system 320 is configured to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 toollessly when the blade 26 is positioned in the longitudinal recess 190 of the blade holder 24.

In this embodiment, the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 comprises a plurality of connectors 330, 332i-332p to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. The blade 26 comprises a plurality of connectors 350, 352i- 352p configured to engage respective ones of the connectors 330, 332i-332p of the quick- connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 to be attached to and detached from the blade holder 24. The connectors 330, 332i-332p of the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 are spaced apart in the longitudinal direction of the skate 10, and so are the connectors 350, 352i-352p of the blade 26.

In this embodiment, the connectors 330, 350 of the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 and the blade 26 are configured to preclude the blade 26 from moving in a distal direction, i.e., away from the blade holder 24, when the blade 26 is attached to the blade holder 24, and the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 is disposed between the pillars 210, 212 of the blade holder 24. In order to be connectable with the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24, in some embodiments, the connector 350 of the blade 26 may be disposed within 30% of a length LBL of the blade 26 from a longitudinal center CBL of the blade 26, in some embodiments within 20% of the length LBL of the longitudinal center CBL, in some embodiments within 10% of the length LBL of the longitudinal center CBL, in some embodiments within 5% of the length LBL of the longitudinal center CBL, in some embodiments at the longitudinal center CBL. In this example, the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 of the blade holder 24 is movable relative to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. That is, at least part of the connector 330 is configured to move relative to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 (e.g., be displaced in relation to or disconnected from the body 132 of the blade holder 24) while attaching the blade 26 to and detaching the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 to allow attachment and detachment of the blade 26.

In particular, in this embodiment, the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 remains connected to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 while at least partly moving relative to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. In this embodiment, the connector 330 of the quick- connect system 320 is threadless (i.e. , without any thread required to attach the blade to the blade holder).

The connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 may comprise a base 333 for affixing the connector 330 to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 and for connecting parts of the connector 330.

The connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 may comprise a resilient portion 334 configured to resiliently deform (i.e., resiliently change in configuration from a first configuration to a second configuration in response to a load and to revert to the first configuration in response to the load ceasing to be applied) to allow the connector 330 to move relative to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 to attach the blade 26 to and detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. More specifically, in this example, the resilient portion 334 of the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 is configured to bias the connector 330 in a position to attach the blade 26 to the blade holder 24. The resilient portion 334 of the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 is also configured to exert a spring force during attachment of the blade 26 to and detachment of the blade 26 from the blade holder 24 and to resiliently deform when the blade 26 is placed in the blade holder 24 to attach the blade 26 to the blade holder 24 and when the blade 26 is removed from the blade holder 24 to detach the blade 26 from the blade holder 24. As such, at least part of the resilient portion 334 may be considered to form a clip configured to attach the blade 26 to the blade holder 24 by gripping, clasping, hooking or otherwise clipping a portion of the blade 26.

In this embodiment, the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 comprises a hand-engaging actuator 336 configured to be manually operated to move part of the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320 relative to the body 132 of the blade holder 24. The hand-engaging actuator 336 of the connector 330 may be configured to be manually operated by manually pushing thereon. More specifically, the hand- engaging actuator 336 of the connector 330 may comprise a button 370. The base 333 may thus be viewed as a “button cage” as it receives and keeps the button 370 captive.

In this embodiment, the button 370 may have a width WB and a length LB allowing the quick-connect system 320 to be ensure that an impact between the blade holder 24 and a flying hockey puck would not eject any component (e.g., the button 370) from the blade holder 24. For instance, in some embodiments, the width WB of the button 370 may be between 0.25 inch and 1 inch, in some embodiments about 0.5 inch, while in some embodiments the length LB of the button 370 may be between 0.25 inch and 2 inches, in some embodiments between 0.75 inch and 1.5 inch, and in some embodiments about 1 inch. Thus, the hand-engaging actuator 336 may have a hand-engaging actuating surface 337 that is greater, therefore allowing the user to actuate the hand-engaging actuator 336 using a smaller pressure, thereby facilitating the use of the hand-engaging actuator. For example, in this embodiment, the hand-engaging surface 33 occupies at least a majority of a width of a cross-section of the blade holder 24 normal to the longitudinal direction of the blade holder 24 where the hand-engaging surface 337 is located. For instance, the hand-engaging surface 337 may occupy at least 60%, in some cases at least 70%, and in some cases at least 80% of the width of the cross-section of the blade holder 24 normal to the longitudinal direction of the blade holder 24 where the hand-engaging surface 337 is located. For example, in some embodiments, the hand- engaging actuating surface 337 may be of at least 0.0625 in 2 , in some embodiments of at least 0.125 in 2 , in some embodiments of at least 0.5 in 2 , in some embodiments of at least 1 in 2 , in some embodiments of at least 2 in 2 , in some embodiments even more.

In this embodiment, the quick-connect system 320 comprises a frame 324 affixed to or integrally made with the body 132 of the blade holder 24 and supporting the connector 330 of the quick-connect system 320. For instance, in some cases, at least part of the frame 324 is fastened to the body 132 of the blade holder 24 by at least one fastener, such as a screw, a bolt, or any other threaded fastener, an adhesive, or any other fastener. In some cases, at least part of the body 132 of the blade holder 24 is manufactured over the frame 324. In some base, the frame 324 and the body 132 of the blade holder 24 are additively manufactured and form a one-piece additively manufactured component. The frame 324 may be concealed by material of the body 132 of the blade holder 24. In some cases, the frame 324 may comprise two apertures 385 and the base 333 may comprise two posts 338 extending through the apertures 385 of the frame 324 and secured to the frame 324 by any suitable means, for instance using screws or bolts, thereby affixing the base 333 to the frame 324.

In this embodiment, the connector 350 of the blade 26 comprises a connecting projection 390 projecting from an upper surface 356 of the blade 26. The connecting projection 390 of the blade 26 comprises two hooks 392. Each hook 392 is configured to engage the connector 330 of the blade holder 24 to hold the blade 26 and comprises an upper end 394 configured to enlarge the resilient portion 330 of the connector 330 while the blade 26 is being attached to the blade holder 24. For instance, in this embodiment, the upper end 394 of the projection 390 defines a width of the projection 390 progressively diminishing as the projection 390 projects from the upper surface 356 of the blade 26.

In this embodiment, the connectors 332i-332p of the blade holder 24 are voids of pre determined shapes and the connectors 352i-352p of the blade 26 are projections projecting from the upper surface 356 of the blade 26 to engage the voids 332i-332p and stabilize the blade 26 in longitudinal and widthwise directions of the skate 10. In this embodiment, the quick-connect system 320 is configured such that the blade 26 is attachable to and detachable from the blade holder 24 by a single translation of the blade 26 relative to the blade holder 24 in a heightwise direction of the skate. In other words, the quick-connect system 320 may be configured such that the blade 26 is attachable to and detachable from the blade holder 24 without rotating the blade 26 relative to the blade holder 24. Although this may be achieved by having connectors 352i-352 c of the blade 26 having edges that may be oblique relative to a longitudinal direction of the blade 26, as shown in Figure 62, in some embodiments, the connectors 352i-352 c of the blade 26 may project from the blade 26 in a straight manner and perpendicularly relative to the longitudinal direction of the blade 26, as shown in Figure 71.

In other embodiments, the connectors 332i-332p of the blade holder 24 are structurally substantially similar to the connector 330 of the blade holder 24 and the connectors 352i- 352p of the blade 26 are structurally substantially similar to the connector 350 of the blade 26.

In particular, in this embodiment, the connector 330, the hand-engaging actuator 336 and the frame 324 of the quick-connect system 320 and the body 132 of the blade holder 24 comprise AM components 12I-12A. More specifically, at least one of the connector 330, the hand-engaging actuator 336 and the frame 324 of the quick-connect system 320, and the body 132 of the blade holder 24 may be made by additive manufacturing. For example, in some cases, the frame 324 of the quick-connect system 320 may be integrally made, i.e. made of the same AM component 12 x , with the body 132 of the blade holder 24. In this embodiment, each one of the connector 330, the hand-engaging actuator 336 and the frame 324 of the quick-connect system 320 and the body 132 of the blade holder 24 comprises at least part of AM components 12I-12A.

In other embodiments, as shown in Figures 72 to 75, the connectors 352i-352p of the blade 26 comprises two hooks to engage the connectors 332i-332p of the blade holder 24, each comprising a clip 345. Each clip 345 may be made of the same AM component 12x than that of the body 132 of the blade holder 24 such that the clip 345 is configured to retain a given one of the connectors 352i-352 c of the blade 26 from being attached to or detached from the clip 345, but when an attaching or detaching force exceeds a pre determined threshold, the clip 345 resiliently deforms to allow the given one of the connectors 352i-352 c of the blade 26 to be attached to or detached from the clip 345 and returns to its original shape after the attachment or detachment.

With additional reference to Figure 76, in some embodiments, the upper portion of the blade 26 may comprise a silkscreen 329 that may serve as a visual indicator of the adjustment and alignment of the blade 26 relative to the blade holder 24 to ease attachment of the blade 26 to the blade holder 24.

In some embodiments, a lower portion of the blade 26 may also comprise the silkscreen 329, for example as a visual indicator of the use and condition of the blade 26. For instance, when the blade 26 is used for play, it needs to be sharpened and sharpening of the blade 26 reduces height of the blade 26 and the ice-contacting surface 222 of the blade 26 gets closer to the upper portion of the blade 26. In this example, the silkscreen 329 may comprise a mark indicating that the blade 26 needs to be changed for a new blade when the ice-contacting surface 222 meets the mark.

In some embodiments, the silkscreen 329 may be three-dimensional. As such, the silkscreen 329 may help reducing lateral movements of the blade 26 relative to the blade holder 24 and reduce loss of energy caused by these movements. For instance, the silkscreen 329 may comprise a material of the blade 26. In other cases, the silkscreen 329 may comprise a material that is softer and/or less rigid than the material of the blade 26, for instance aluminum or polymeric material. In some cases, the polymeric material may comprise an adhesive material.

More specifically, in this embodiment, the silkscreen 329 is additively manufactured and may be part of the AM component 12x. As another example, in some embodiments, the skate 10 may be an “intelligent” skate 10. That is, the skate 10 may comprise sensors 280i-280 s to sense a force acting on the skate, a position, a speed, an acceleration and/or a deformation of the skate 10 during play or during a testing (e.g. of hockey sticks, of players, etc.). More particularly, in this embodiment, the lattice 40 comprises the sensors 280i-280 s . More specifically, in this embodiment, the sensors 280i-280 s are associated with an additively-manufactured component of the lattice 40.

Further, in some embodiments, as shown in Figures 77 and 78, the skate 10 may comprise actuators 286I-286A. Specifically, the actuators 286I-286A may be associated with at least some of sensors 280i-280 s and may be configured to respond to a signal of the sensors 280i-280 s . In particular, the sensors 280i-280 s (which may be disposed in the lattice 40, as shown in Figure 77, or out of the AM component 12 x , as shown in Figure 78) may be responsive to an event (e.g. an increase in acceleration of the skate 10, an increase of a force acting on the skate 10, an increase of the deformation of the skate 10, etc.) to cause the actuators 286I-286A to alter the additively-manufactured component to alter the lattice 40 (e.g. to increase resilience, to increase stiffness, etc.).

Practically, in this embodiment, this may be achieved using piezoelectric material 290 implementing the sensors 280i-280 s , the piezoelectric material 290 being comprised in the additively-manufactured component of the lattice 40, as shown in Figure 79.

As another example, in some embodiments, more or less of the skate 10 may be latticed as discussed above.

In some embodiments, as shown in Figure 80, the lattice 40 may constitute at least part (e.g., occupy at least a majority, i.e. , a majority or an entirety) of the skate boot 22, but not constitute any part of the blade holder 24 and/or the blade 26. That is, the skate boot 22 may include AM components 12i-12A, while the blade holder 24 and/or the blade 26 may not include any AM components 12I-12A. In another example, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 81 , the lattice 40 may constitute at least part (e.g., occupy at least a majority, i.e. , a majority or an entirety) of the blade holder 24, but not constitute any part of the skate boot 22 and/or the blade 26. That is, the blade holder 24 may include AM components 12i-12A, while the skate boot 22 and/or the blade 26 may not include any AM components 12I-12A.

In another example, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 82, the lattice 40 may constitute at least part (e.g., occupy at least a majority, i.e., a majority or an entirety) of the blade 26, but not constitute any part of the skate boot 22 and/or blade holder 24. That is, the blade 26 may include AM components 12i-12A, while the skate boot 22 and/or blade holder 24 may not include any AM components 12I-12A.

In some embodiments, the skate 10 may comprise one or more AM components 12i -12A, instead of or in addition to the latticed AM components. That is, the lattice 40 is one example of an additively-manufactured component in embodiments where it is 3D- printed. Such one or more additively-manufactured components of the skate 10 may be 3D-printed as discussed above, using any suitable 3D-printing technology, similar to what was discussed above in relation to the lattice 40 in embodiments where the lattice 40 is 3D-printed. The skate 10 may comprise the lattice 40, which may or may not be additively- manufactured, or may not have any lattice in embodiments where the skate 10 comprises such one or more additively-manufactured components. For example, in some embodiments, as shown in Figure 83, the AM components 12I-12A may comprise a non lattice member 89 connected to the lattice 40. The non-lattice member 89 may configured to be positioned between the lattice and the user when the skate is worn. In this case, the non-lattice member is a thin member thinner than the lattice. In other case, the non lattice member may be bulkier than the lattice. More specifically, in this embodiment, the non-lattice member 89 is a covering that covers at least part of the lattice and constitutes at least part of a surface of the additively-manufactured component. The covering 89 may be clear (i.e. translucent), while in other embodiments the covering 89 may be opaque. In other embodiments, the covering 89 may be apart from the AM components 12i -12A, i.e. , may not be part of any AM components 12 x . For instance, the covering 89 may cover part of the skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24 by being applied over the skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24 in any suitable way. In some cases, the covering 89 may be provided as a polymeric sheet that is folded or wrapped over the skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24, while in other cases the covering 89 may be sprayed or injection molded around the skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24 to protect skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24 from premature wear and/or to protect graphical elements displayed by the skate boot 22 and/or the blade holder 24.

In some embodiments, also, the method of manufacture, the materials and the structure of each additively-manufactured component of the skate 10 may differ.

Although in embodiments considered above the skate 10 is designed for playing ice hockey on the skating surface 13 which is ice, in other embodiments, the skate 10 may be constructed using principles described herein for playing roller hockey or another type of hockey (e.g., field or street hockey) on the skating surface 13 which is a dry surface (e.g., a polymeric, concrete, wooden, or turf playing surface or any other dry surface on which roller hockey or field or street hockey is played). Thus, in other embodiments, instead of comprising the blade 26, the skating device 28 may comprise a set of wheels to roll on the dry skating surface 13 (i.e., the skate 10 may be an inline skate or other roller skate).

Furthermore, although in embodiments considered above the footwear 10 is a skate for skating on the skating surface 13, in other embodiments, the footwear 10 may be any other suitable type of footwear. For example, as shown in Figure 84, the footwear 10 may be a ski boot comprising a shell 830 which may be constructed in the manner described above with respect to the shell of the skate. In particular, the ski boot 10 is configured to be attachable and detachable from a ski 802 which is configured to travel on a ground surface 8 (e.g., snow). To that end, the ski boot 10 is configured to interact with an attachment mechanism 800 of the ski 802. In another example, as shown in Figure 85, the footwear 10 may be a boot (e.g., a work boot or any other type of boot) comprising a shell 930 which can be constructed in the manner described above with respect to the shell of the skate. In another example, as shown in Figure 86, the footwear 10 may be a snowboard boot comprising a shell 1030 which can be constructed in the manner described above with respect to the shell of the skate. In another example, as shown in Figure 87, the footwear 10 may be a sport cleat comprising a shell 1130 which can be constructed in the manner described above with respect to the shell of the skate. In another example, as shown in Figure 88, the footwear 10 may be a hunting boot comprising a shell 1230 which can be constructed in the manner described above with respect to the shell of the skate.

Certain additional elements that may be needed for operation of some embodiments have not been described or illustrated as they are assumed to be within the purview of those of ordinary skill in the art. Moreover, certain embodiments may be free of, may lack and/or may function without any element that is not specifically disclosed herein.

Any feature of any embodiment discussed herein may be combined with any feature of any other embodiment discussed herein in some examples of implementation. In case of any discrepancy, inconsistency, or other difference between terms used herein and terms used in any document incorporated by reference herein, meanings of the terms used herein are to prevail and be used.

Although various embodiments and examples have been presented, this was for purposes of describing, but should not be limiting. Various modifications and enhancements will become apparent to those of ordinary skill and are within a scope of this disclosure.