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1. US20180051773 - Device for guiding long object

Note: Text based on automatic Optical Character Recognition processes. Please use the PDF version for legal matters

[ EN ]

Claims

1. A long object guiding device, the device comprising a plurality of links pivotally coupled to each other, wherein
each link includes a pair of link portions that face each other in a first direction,
the links are pivotally coupled together in a state in which the links are arranged in series in a second direction orthogonal to the first direction,
the links include a first link and a second link that are adjacent to each other in the second direction,
the first link and the second link are pivotal between a first state, in which longitudinal axes of the link portions of the first link match with longitudinal axes of the link portions of the second link, and a second state, in which the longitudinal axes of the link portions of the first link intersect with the longitudinal axes of the link portions of the second link,
each link portion includes
a first engaging portion provided at a first end in the second direction,
a restricting portion located apart from the first engaging portion in the second direction,
wherein, when the restricting portion of each link portion is aligned, in the first direction, with the first engaging portion of the link portion that is adjacent in the second direction, the restricting portion restricts movement of the first engaging portion of the adjacent link portion in the first direction, and
a second engaging portion located at the first end in the second direction adjacent to the first engaging portion,
the restricting portion includes a first restricting member and a second restricting member,
an opening portion is formed between the first restricting member and the second restricting member,
when the first link and the second link are located in the first state, the first engaging portion of the second link is aligned with the first restricting member of the first link in the first direction, and the second engaging portion of the second link is aligned with the second restricting member of the first link in the first direction,
when the first link and the second link are located in the second state, the first engaging portion of the second link is aligned with the second restricting member of the first link in the first direction, and
when the first link and the second link are located in a third state between the first state and the second state, the first engaging portion of the second link is aligned with the opening portion of the first link in the first direction.
2. The long object guiding device according to claim 1, wherein each link is a single component.
3. The long object guiding device according to claim 1, wherein
a direction orthogonal to the first direction and the second direction is a third direction,
each link further includes
an arm that couples the pair of link portions at a first end in the third direction, and
a pair of extensions extending inward from the pair of link portions in the first direction at a second end in the third direction, wherein the extensions face each other and are elastically deformable, and
a gap is formed between the pair of extensions.
4. The long object guiding device according to claim 3, wherein a width of each extension in the second direction is narrower than a width of each arm in the second direction.