Rifle, CO- Bryan Dorr of Rifle, Colorado received U.S. Patent 6,676,112 on January 13, 2004. The patented invention relates to a safety weight for a winch line commonly used by off-road four-wheelers. When such winches are in use, it is possible for the winch line to suddenly break, causing the broken end to whip about, sometimes causing damage to the four-wheel vehicle or injury to a person standing nearby. Common practices by four-wheelers to minimize such damage or injury is to raise the hood on the vehicle to stop the free-whipping end of the line or to use a jacket or a blanket thrown over the winch line when it is under tension.
His invention provides a weight that can be selectively moved along the winch line and then locked into position. When the winch line snaps, the weight tends to drop towards the ground and causes a pivot point for the free end to help reduce the effective radius of possible damage. The weight conveniently stores at the end of the winch line on the front of the vehicle when not in use. The weight is comparable to the weight of a bowling ball and may be coated with a soft resilient outer layer so as to minimize any impact.
The Glenwood Springs Post Independent wrote a front-page article on this invention in its Sunday, February 15, 2004 paper, which can be seen here.
His patent is available here.
Mr. Dorr an active four-wheel enthusiast and rock-crawler intends to sell or license his invention to a company in the business of four-wheel accessories. He is a member of High Country 4-Wheelers of Glenwood Springs, Colorado. He resides with his wife, Jennifer, and his daughter Jordan in Rifle.
The patent papers may also be read here.
Mr. Dorr can be reached at for an interview or further information:
560 E. 12 th Street
Rifle, CO 81650-3612
Phone: (970) 625-9049