US Pat. No. 9,206,860

CLUTCH PLATE AND METHOD OF PRODUCING SAME

JTEKT CORPORATION, Osaka...

1. A clutch plate in an annular shape, the clutch plate comprising:
a plurality of lubricating grooves on one end face and the other end face of the clutch plate in an axial direction; and
a plurality of windows provided radially between outer and inner peripheral edges of the end faces, the windows passing through
the clutch plate in the axial direction, wherein

the lubricating grooves are formed with plastic deformation, in a same phase on both the end faces, and extended up to the
outer peripheral edges and inner peripheral edges of both the end faces, and

a plurality of intersection points where the lubricating grooves intersect with each other are positioned only in other areas
than radially outer edges of the windows and radially inner edges of the windows.

US Pat. No. 9,357,642

CIRCUIT BOARD LAMINATE AND METAL-BASED CIRCUIT BOARD

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A circuit board laminate comprising:
a metal substrate;
an insulation layer disposed on the metal substrate and containing a liquid crystal polyester and 50% or more by volume of
an inorganic filler, the inorganic filler being made of boron nitride having an average particle diameter within a range of
10 to 50 ?m and at least one aluminum compound selected from the group consisting of aluminum nitride and aluminum oxide,
said aluminum compound having an average particle diameter within a range of 5 to 30 ?m, wherein a proportion of boron nitride
in the inorganic filler is within a range of 35 to 80% by volume; and

a metal foil disposed on the insulation layer.

US Pat. No. 9,538,648

LIQUID COMPOSITION AND METAL-BASED CIRCUIT BOARD

SUMITOMO CHEMICAL COMPANY...

1. A metal base circuit substrate comprising a metal substrate, an insulating film provided on the metal substrate, and a
conductive foil for forming a circuit provided on the insulating film, wherein
the thickness of the metal substrate is from 0.5 to 5 mm,
the insulating film is formed by removing a solvent from a casting material of a liquid composition,
the liquid composition comprises a liquid crystalline polyester, the solvent, and a boron nitride having a volume average
particle diameter of not less than 10 ?m and not more than 30 ?m,

an amount of the boron nitride is 30 to 90% by volume, based on a total amount of the liquid crystalline polyester and the
boron nitride, and

the boron nitride is in the form of secondary aggregate particles.

US Pat. No. 9,260,773

NANOCRYSTAL TITANIUM ALLOY AND PRODUCTION METHOD FOR SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A titanium alloy having a composition that is classified as a titanium alloy of a near ? titanium or an ?+? titanium consisting
of 4 to 9 mass % of Al, 2 to 10 mass % of V, and the balance of Ti and inevitable impurities, the titanium alloy consisting
of a uniform fine structure in which equiaxed crystals with an average grain size of less than 1000 nm are uniformly dispersed,
wherein the equiaxed crystals have a ? phase at more than 0% and not more than 1.0% by area ratio, which is measured by an
Electron BackScattered Diffraction (EBSD) method using a phase map.

US Pat. No. 9,795,029

WIRING THIN PLATE HAVING AERIAL WIRING PORTION AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE SAME

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A wiring thin plate comprising:
a supporting layer made of metal;
an insulating base layer provided on a top face of the supporting layer;
a wiring part having a plurality of wiring traces provided on a top face of the base layer;
an insulating cover layer covering the wiring traces;
an airspace defined by the supporting layer;
an aerial wiring portion that is a part of the wiring part passing over the airspace;
aerial base layers provided to the base layer at the respective wiring traces in the aerial wiring portion and being apart
from each other; and

an aerial cover layer provided to the insulating cover layer in the aerial wiring portion and spanning from the wiring traces
of the aerial wiring portion through the aerial base layers and through interspaces between adjacent aerial base layers of
said aerial base layers to bridge the interspaces between the adjacent aerial base layers.

US Pat. No. 9,429,255

HOLLOW SEAMLESS PIPE FOR HIGH-STRENGTH SPRING

KOBE STEEL, LTD., Kobe-s...

1. A hollow seamless pipe suitable for a high-strength spring, comprising a steel material comprising 0.2 mass % to 0.7 mass
% of C, 0.5 mass % to 3 mass % of Si, 0.1 mass % to 2 mass % of Mn, more than 0 mass % and 0.1 mass % or less of Al, more
than 0 mass % and 3 mass % or less of Cr, more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass % or less of P, more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass
% or less of S, and more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass % or less of N, wherein a depth of a whole decarburized layer in an inner
surface layer part is 100 ?m or less, a depth of a flaw which is present in an inner surface is 40 ?m or less, a width of
the flaw is 60 ?m or less, and a number density of a carbide which has a circle equivalent diameter of 500 nm or more and
is present the inner surface layer part is 1.8×10?2 particles/?m2 or less.

US Pat. No. 9,403,457

HEADREST, VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A headrest comprising:
a main body member that supports the head of an occupant;
a stay member that is formed by bending a pipe, that supports the main body member, and that is inserted at both end sides
into tube shaped support members attached to a back frame that supports the back of the occupant; and

a stopper member including
a circular cylinder shaped circular cylinder portion that is inserted into an end portion of the stay member, the circular
cylinder portion having an upper end portion,

a cantilevered portion that is formed to an outer peripheral face of the circular cylinder portion below the upper end portion,
and that extends in the axial direction of the circular cylinder portion in a cantilevered state such that a free end of the
cantilevered portion is movable in a radial direction relative to the upper end portion,

a projection portion disposed on the free end of the cantilevered portion so as to project out toward the radial direction
outside of the circular cylinder portion, and that engages with a through hole formed to a peripheral face of the stay member
on insertion of the circular cylinder portion into the stay member, and

a restriction portion that is formed extending from the circular cylinder portion so as to abut an end portion of the support
member when an attempt is made to pull the stay member out from the support members in a projecting state in which both end
sides of the stay member are inserted into the support members and project out from end portions of the support members, thereby
restricting pulling out of the stay member from the support members.

US Pat. No. 10,021,781

THIN CIRCUIT BOARD HAVING WALL FOR SOLDER MATERIAL

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A thin circuit board comprising:a metal support layer forming a substrate;
a base insulating layer provided on a surface of the metal support layer;
a wiring layer being wiring traces provided on a surface of the base insulating layer;
a cover insulating layer covering the wiring traces;
internal terminals provided to the respective wiring traces and sequentially arranged side by side, each one internal terminal of said internal terminals used to be solder-bonded to a corresponding external terminal through solder material;
a region, provided on a surface of said each one internal terminal, facing the corresponding external terminal when said each one internal terminal is solder-bonded to the corresponding external terminal through the solder material;
a terminal surface defined on the surface of said each one internal terminal in the region; and
a wall, provided for the solder material on at least any one of adjacent internal terminals of said internal terminals, protruding from the surface of said at least any one of adjacent internal terminals in the region.

US Pat. No. 9,139,116

VEHICLE SEAT

Suzuki Motor Corporation,...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat cushion on which a child restraint system can be installed; and
a pair of right and left slide rails that support the seat cushion so as to be slidable in a seat front-rear direction,
wherein locking mechanisms that lock the seat cushion to prevent the sliding of the seat cushion on the slide rails are provided
at the pair of right and left slide rails,

a lock release handle that releases the lock by the locking mechanisms is suspended between the pair of right and left slide
rails,

the lock release handle includes a first handle portion on a center of a seat-widthwise, and a second handle portion that
is located on a seat-widthwise outer side from the first handle portion, and extends obliquely backward from an end portion
of the first handle portion so as to be located closer to a seat rear side toward the seat-widthwise outer side,

a seat frame of the seat cushion includes
a pair of right and left side frames,
a front panel that is suspended between front end portions of the pair of right and left side frames to form a front surface
portion of the seat frame, and

a reinforcement that is suspended between front portions of the pair of right and left side frames so as to be located on
the seat rear side from the front panel, and prevents a front end portion of the child restraint system from sinking downward
into the seat cushion,

a front end portion of the reinforcement is fixed to the front panel,
the reinforcement is provided with a coupling surface to which a device mechanism is coupled from below,
the coupling surface is inclined forwardly upward so as to be located upward toward a seat front side, and
the coupling surface is located on a front outer side from the second handle portion as viewed from a direction perpendicular
to the coupling surface.

US Pat. No. 9,233,479

CUTTING JIG AND CUTTING APPARATUS FOR CUTTING PLATE MATERIAL WITH ROLLING BLADE WHILE HOLDING PLATE MATERIAL AT EACH SIDE OF ROLLING BLADE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A cutting jig for cutting a plate material positioned on a supporting surface, comprising:
a jig body;
a rolling blade rotatably supported with the jig body to roll on and cut the plate material; and
paired holding parts rotatably supported with the jig body at respective sides of the rolling blade in a direction along a
rotation axis of the rolling blade to roll on and hold adjoining portions of a cut portion of the plate material, each adjoining
portion of the cut portion on which a stress acts due to the rolling blade cutting the plate material at the cut portion;
and

wherein the rolling blade has rotary shafts protruding from the respective sides in the direction along the rotation axis,
and the paired holding parts are loosely fitted around the respective rotary shafts.

US Pat. No. 9,180,794

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat cushion on which an occupant sits, and that supports the buttocks and thighs of the occupant;
a rotation portion that is provided in the seat cushion at a location that is contacted by the buttocks of the occupant, and
that is configured to rise with respect to a surrounding seat face thereof in the seat cushion, then rotate with a seat up-down
direction as an axial direction, and descend after rotating,
wherein:
the rotation portion is integrally coupled to a main shaft with an axial direction of the main shaft in the seat up-down direction,
and

the rotation portion is configured so as to rise, descend and rotate due to a lifting mechanism that raises and lowers the
main shaft, and a rotation mechanism that rotates the main shaft, and

a switching mechanism configured to switch between operation of the lifting mechanism and operation of the rotation mechanism,wherein the lifting mechanism comprises
a lead screw that is disposed coaxially to the main shaft and that is coupled to the main shaft,
a driven side lift gear that is disposed coaxially to the main shaft and that moves the lead screw in the seat up-down direction
when rotated; and
the rotation mechanism comprises
a driven side rotation gear that is disposed coaxially with the main shaft and that rotates
the main shaft about the main shaft axis when rotated,wherein:
the lifting mechanism comprises a drive side lift gear that rotates the driven side lift gear about the driven side lift gear
axis by enmeshing with the driven side lift gear;

the rotation mechanism comprises a drive side rotation gear that is provided so as to be capable of rotating together as a
unit with the drive side lift gear, and that rotates the driven side rotation gear about the driven side rotation gear axis
by enmeshing with the driven side rotation gear; and

the driven side rotation gear and the drive side rotation gear are not enmeshed with each other while the driven side lift
gear and the drive side lift gear are enmeshed with each other, and the driven side rotation gear and the drive side rotation
gear are enmeshed with each other while the driven side lift gear and the drive side lift gear are not enmeshed with each
other.

US Pat. No. 9,955,611

PRESSURE STRUCTURE AND PRESSURE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A pressure structure that is arranged between a first pressed body and a second pressed body facing the first pressed body and applies a pressure to the first pressed body and the second pressed body, the pressure structure comprising:a first spring member including:
a center portion which is in contact with the first pressed body;
two end portions, each of which is in contact with the second pressed body; and
two arm portions which extend from the center portion toward the different end portions; and
a second spring member including:
a center portion which is in contact with the second pressed body;
two end portions, each of which is in contact with the first pressed body; and
two arm portions which extend from the center portion toward the different end portions, wherein
the first spring member and the second spring member are alternately arranged in their width directions to allow a part of the center portion of the first spring member to overlap a part of the center portion of the second spring member when seen from the first or second pressed body, and
the first spring member and the second spring member have shapes in which the respective arm portions thereof do not interfere with each other at least without a load.

US Pat. No. 9,227,300

HOLLOW SPRING AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A production method for a hollow spring, comprising:
a preparing step in which a straight-shaped hollow spring material is prepared; and
an abrasive blasting step in which abrasives are ejected to an inner surface of the spring material and are suctioned, and
the inner surface of the spring material is thereby ground, wherein

in the preparing step of the spring material, length of the spring material is set to be 1.5 m to 3.5 m, and an inner diameter
of the spring material is set to be not more than 10 mm;

in the abrasive blasting step, a first blasting and a second blasting are performed as the blasting in turn;
in the first blasting, the abrasives are ejected from one end portion of the spring material and are suctioned at another
end portion of the spring material;

in the second blasting, the abrasives are ejected from the other end portion of the spring material and are suctioned at the
one end portion of the spring material; and

the first blasting and the second blasting are each performed at an ejection pressure of at least 0.5 MPa for at least 90
seconds.

US Pat. No. 9,126,517

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising at each of two sides of a seatback frame:
a side frame base portion that forms a side portion of the seatback frame, and that extends in a seat up-and-down direction,
wherein said side frame base portion is configured to be at an outermost end of the seatback frame in a seat width direction
and formed of resin;

an outer side flange portion that is formed at a seat forward side of the side frame base portion, and that is inflected to
the seat width direction outer side from the side frame base portion;

an inner side flange portion that is formed at a seat rear side of the side frame base portion, and that is inflected to a
seat width direction inner side from the side frame base portion, a corner portion of the inner side flange portion curving
in a circular arc shape;

a rear face panel that links the inner side flange portions at the two sides of the seatback frame with one another, and the
rear face panel and the side frame base portions are integrally molded;

an upper frame base portion that forms an upper portion of the seatback frame, and that extends in a seat width direction
and links the side frame base portions at the two sides of the seatback frame with one another; and

a lower side flange portion that is formed at a seat rear side of the upper frame base portion, and that is inflected to a
seat lower side, a corner portion of the lower side flange portion curving in a circular arc shape,

wherein the lower side flange portion is linked to the rear face panel, and the rear face panel and the upper frame base portion
are integrally molded.

US Pat. No. 9,080,233

SPRING AND METHOD FOR PRODUCING SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

4. A production method for a spring, comprising, in this order:
a step of preparing a steel material consisting of, by weight %, 0.27% to 0.48% of C, 0.01% to 2.2% of Si, 0.30% to 1.0% of
Mn, not more than 0.035% of P, not more than 0.035% of S, and the balance of Fe and inevitable impurities;

a chemical surface treatment step of heating the steel material at a temperature of not less than the A3 point of the steel material and not more than 1100° C. and bringing the steel material into contact with a mixed gas atmosphere
so as to concentrate nitrogen and carbon at a surface layer thereof, the mixed gas atmosphere consisting of 50 vol. % to 90
vol. % of NH3 and the balance of inert gas and inevitable impurities at the standard condition of 1 atmosphere and 20° C.;

a step of quenching the steel material to room temperature at a rate of not less than 20° C./second;
a step of tempering the steel material at a temperature of 100° C. to 200° C.; and
a step of providing compressive residual stress to the surface layer.

US Pat. No. 9,835,544

BONDING STRENGTH TEST DEVICE FOR ELECTRONIC COMPONENTS AND METHOD FOR BONDING STRENGTH TEST

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., To...

1. A bonding strength test device configured to measure a bonding strength between a flexure of a suspension of a hard disk
drive and electronic components mounted on a gimbal of the flexure, the bonding strength test device comprising:
a clamp which fixes the flexure;
a dummy adhered to the electronic components;
a probe which engage with the dummy; and
a device body which measures a tensile load applied to the probe while the probe is being pulled toward a direction to be
apart from the flexure.

US Pat. No. 9,404,941

CONTACT PROBE AND PROBE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A contact probe comprising:
a conductive first contact member comprising, on a same axis, a first distal end portion having a tapered distal end shape,
a first flange portion extending from a base end side of the first distal end portion and having a diameter larger than a
diameter of the first distal end portion, a first boss portion extending from an end portion of the first flange portion different
from the side of the first flange portion which is connected to the first distal end portion and having a diameter smaller
than a diameter of the first flange portion, and a first base end portion extending from an end portion of the first boss
portion different from the side of the first base end portion which is connected to the first flange portion and having a
diameter smaller than a diameter of the first boss portion;

a conductive second contact member comprising, on the same axis, a second distal end portion having a tapered distal end shape
and a second boss portion extending from a base end side of the second distal end portion and having a diameter substantially
equal to a diameter of the first base end portion; and

a coil spring comprising a coarsely wound portion formed by winding at a predetermined pitch with an inner diameter larger
than the diameter of the first base end portion and a tightly wound portion formed by tightly winding with an inner diameter
substantially equal to the diameter of the second boss portion, an end portion of the coarsely wound portion being installed
in the first boss portion, an end portion of the tightly wound portion being installed in the second boss portion, so that
the first and second contact members are connected to each other on the same axis,

wherein the first base end portion contacts with the tightly wound portion when a load having a magnitude equal to or greater
than a predetermined magnitude is applied in a direction in parallel to an axis line and at least approaching to the second
contact member.

US Pat. No. 9,373,900

CONTACT STRUCTURE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A contact structure unit that achieves electrical continuity between a substrate, which includes a plurality of electrodes,
and a contact object that outputs signals for inspection to the substrate, the contact structure unit comprising:
a first-type contact-carrying member that includes a flange portion at one end and a first-type contact portion opposite the
flange portion, for making contact with the contact object;

a plurality of second-type contact-carrying members, each second-type contact-carrying member including:
a first end portion as a second-type contact portion configured to make contact with one of the electrodes different from
another electrode at another first end portion as a second-type contact portion of another second-type contact-carrying member,

wherein each of the second-type contact-carrying member includes
an electrically-conductive first plunger that has a tapering leading end and that has a leading end portion making contact
with the first-type contact-carrying member; and

an electrically-conductive second plunger that includes the second-type contact portion; and
a second end portion configured to make contact with the flange portion of the first-type contact-carrying member; and
a plurality of coil springs each of which links the first plunger and the second plunger and is disposed between the first-type
contact portion and each of the second-type contact portions so as to bias the first contact portion and each of the second-type
contact portions.

US Pat. No. 9,339,941

METHOD OF PUNCHING DAMPER WITH USE OF HOLLOW PUNCH, PUNCHING APPARATUS FOR THE METHOD, AND ATTACHING APPARATUS WITH THE PUNCHING APPARATUS

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of punching a damper out from a damper material that is detachably attached on a flexible exfoliative member through
an attaching surface of the damper material with use of a hollow punch having a tooth portion at a front end of the punch,
comprising the steps of:
setting the damper material on a supporting surface so that the damper material is supported with the supporting surface through
the exfoliative member, the supporting surface having a first part positioned inside a punching range of the punch and a second
part positioned outside the punching range and adjoining to the first part so that the second part is on a same level with
the first part;

positioning a projection part with respect to the first part of the supporting surface between the exfoliative member and
the first part of the supporting surface; and

punching the damper out from the damper material by cutting the damper material around the projection part by the hollow punch
without punching the exfoliative member, while the projection part is positioned between the exfoliative member and the first
part of the supporting surface, and a clearance being larger than a thickness of the exfoliative member is kept between the
tooth portion and the projection part in a lateral direction perpendicular to a punching direction along which the punch punches
out the damper, so that a front end portion of the hollow punch passes through the damper material and at least contacts with
the exfoliative member to bend the exfoliative member away from a cut edge of the punched damper around the projection part
when said cutting, to promote separation between the exfoliative member and the punched damper and hold the punched damper
on a hollow inner surface of the punch.

US Pat. No. 9,296,325

VEHICLE USB PORT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle USB port comprising:
a base body attached to a vehicle-body-side member;
a hook main body that is provided with a hinge portion rotatably attached to the base body and a hook portion to anchor an
anchored member, and that is rotatable between an in-use position in which the hook portion is usable and a stowed position
in which the hook portion is not used;

a hook main body retaining portion that is formed at the base body and that retains the hook main body moved to the stowed
position;

a port opening that is formed at the hook main body retaining portion and that is covered by the hook main body moved to the
stowed position; and

a USB port that is provided in a position facing the port opening, and to which a USB cable can be coupled through the port
opening.

US Pat. No. 9,296,070

METHOD OF MANUFACTURING HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING LOAD BEAM AND FLEXURE ALIGNED WITH LOAD BEAM AND REFERENCE PIN BLOCK USED FOR THE METHOD

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of manufacturing a head suspension by bringing a tongue, which is used to attach a slider, of a flexure in contact
with a convex portion of a load beam and by laser-welding the flexure to the load beam at a first welding spot so that the
tongue is pressed against the convex portion under predetermined load, the method comprising steps of:
before joining the flexure and load beam together, forming at least one positioning reference hole in each of the flexure
and load beam within a circular range that is defined around the first welding spot as a center thereof with a radius equal
to a distance between the first welding spot and the convex portion, the positioning reference hole formed in the flexure
and the positioning reference hole formed in the load beam having different positions relative to the first welding spot so
as to be apart from each other in a planar direction of the flexure and the load beam;

laying the flexure and load beam one on another and inserting reference pins that keep a given distance in the planar direction
according to said positions of the positioning reference holes in the flexure and the load beam into the reference holes in
the flexure and the load beam, respectively; and

laser-welding the flexure and load beam to each other at the first welding spot while positioning the flexure and load beam
with respect to each other with the use of the reference holes and reference pins.

US Pat. No. 9,267,589

MULTI-SHAFT DRIVE DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A multi-shaft drive device comprising:
a single motor that is fixed to a case and that drives a plurality of movable mechanisms mounted to a vehicle;
an input side gear that is provided inside the case and that transmits power of the motor;
an output side gear that is provided so as to be capable of projecting forwards and retreating with respect to the input side
gear, thereby selectively enmeshing with the input side gear, and transmitting power transmitted from the input side gear
to the movable mechanism;

a selector that is provided with a rack to allow the selector to slide in one direction and an opposite direction to the one
direction, that presses a portion of the output side gear to move the output side gear, and disconnects enmeshing between
the output side gear and the input side gear;

a rotation shaft that is provided with a pinion that enmeshes with the rack provided to the selector, the rotation shaft rotating
about its axis due to operation force input to an operation means so as to slide the selector; and a restriction portion that
is provided to a side of the operation means including the rotation shaft, and that restricts the rotation angle of the rotation
shaft.

US Pat. No. 9,230,581

METHOD OF POSITIONING HEAD ATTACHING PART OF HEAD SUSPENSION AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING HALF-FINISHED HEAD SUSPENSION

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of positioning a head attaching part defined at a front end side of a flexure for attaching a read/write head
with respect to a supporting part of a load beam when the flexure and the load beam are laid on and joined to each other on
an outside frame to which the front end side of the flexure is joined, the method comprising steps of:
positioning the flexure with respect to the load beam and keeping the positioned state of the flexure and load beam;
plastically deforming the outside frame to bend the front end side of the flexure so that the position of the head attaching
part of the flexure is adjusted to the position of the supporting part of the load beam; and

joining the position-adjusted flexure and load beam to each other to keep the position-adjusted state of the head attaching
part; and

wherein the plastically deforming step is carried out by irradiating areas defined on the outside frame with laser beams.

US Pat. No. 9,403,451

HEADREST DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A headrest device comprising:
a headrest stay that is coupled to an upper end portion of a seatback of a vehicle seat, and that supports a headrest pad;
an internal structure that is made of foam, that is embedded inside the headrest pad, and that is supported from a rear by
the headrest stay, the internal structure having a support face facing a vehicle front direction when the seatback is in an
upright position so as to support the head of the occupant from the rear during a vehicle rear-on collision; and

a forward projection portion that is configured by a portion of the headrest stay that projects in the vehicle front direction
above the internal structure, and that suppresses the head supported by the support face from tilting backward, which is caused
by the head by pivoting about the support face as a pivoting center,

wherein a front end portion of the forward projection portion projects further in the vehicle front direction than the entire
support face of the internal structure when the seatback is in the upright position, and

the forward projection portion is a same rigid body as the headrest stay.

US Pat. No. 9,145,941

HOLLOW COIL SPRING AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A method for manufacturing a hollow coil spring, comprising:
sealing opposite ends of a hollow spring member by gathering a core material of each respective end of the hollow spring member
by machining, the machining including relatively rotating the hollow spring member and a tool; and

forming the hollow spring member into a coil shape after the sealing step, wherein
in the sealing step, the ends of the hollow spring member are each formed in a hemispherical shape, and
in the forming step, the hollow spring members is wound around a rod by moving a chuck portion, which grips one end of the
hollow spring member, in an axial direction of the rod while relatively rotating around an outer circumference of the rod,
thereby forming a hollow body in the coiled shape.

US Pat. No. 9,298,036

IDENTIFICATION MEDIUM

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An identification medium comprising a structure, the structure comprising, in the following order as seen from the side
of observation:
a primary cholesteric liquid crystal layer in which a hologram is formed, and which selectively reflects circularly polarized
light of a specific rotating direction of a specific central wavelength;

a secondary cholesteric liquid crystal layer which has reflection characteristics reflecting the entire range of visible light,
and which reflects circularly polarized light of the same rotating direction as the circularly polarized light reflected from
the primary cholesteric liquid crystal layer; and

a display pattern having a specific content displayed.

US Pat. No. 9,270,043

CONNECTOR

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A connector that is interposed between two connection targets and achieves electric continuity between the two connection
targets, the connector comprising:
a first terminal that is electrically conductive and includes
a first contact portion being plate shaped and including a first teeth portion with one of surfaces thereof forming a plurality
of continuous concavo-convex shapes, and

a first base portion joined to the first contact portion and connected to one of the connection targets; and
a second terminal that is electrically conductive and includes
a second contact portion including a second teeth portion with one of surfaces thereof forming a plurality of continuous concavo-convex
shapes, the second teeth portion being engageable with the first teeth portion, and

a second base portion that is joined to the second contact portion and connected to the other one of the connection targets,
wherein the first terminal and the second terminal are electrically connected to each other by engagement between the first
teeth portion and the second teeth portion.

US Pat. No. 9,162,251

LAMINATION AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING LAMINATION

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A lamination, comprising:
a substrate formed of a metal or alloy;
an intermediate layer formed on a surface of the substrate and formed of a metal or alloy that is softer than the substrate;
the intermediate layer having a thickness of 0.05 ?m to 10 ?m; and

a metal film deposited on a surface of the intermediate layer by accelerating a powder material of a metal or alloy together
with a gas heated to a temperature lower than a melting point of the powder material and spraying the powder material onto
the intermediate layer while keeping the powder material in a solid phase, a pressure of the gas being 1 MPa to 5 MPa,

wherein the powder material breaks through the intermediate layer and forms metallic bonds, with a nascent surface of the
substrate.

US Pat. No. 9,082,437

HEAD SUSPENSION WITH DAMPING

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A head suspension for supporting a slider, comprising:
a base plate, a load beam and a load bend connecting the base plate and the load beam, thereby to apply a load onto a slider
through the load beam;

an objective part defined on a surface of the load beam of the head suspension; and
a damper punched out from a damper material that has an adhesive face covered with a removable liner, the damper positioned
relative to the objective part and affixed to the objective part with the adhesive face;

wherein the objective part on the load beam includes a discontinuous section that is present on the surface of the load beam
of the head suspension and has a closed planar shape;

wherein the damper has an exposed top face opposite to the adhesive face and is affixed to the objective part with the adhesive
face, wherein the damper is a band having an annular planar shape with a cutout corresponding to the discontinuous section
in the objective part, the annular planar shape of the damper that corresponds to the shape of the objective part excluding
the discontinuous section so that an inner periphery and an outer periphery of the damper are annular to follow an edge of
the discontinuous section having a closed annular planar shape and to encircle the discontinuous section, whereby the damper
encircles the discontinuous section;

wherein the damper is divided into plural damper segments in a direction along which the damper encircles the discontinuous
section; and

wherein the plural damper segments include at least a first damper segment and a second damper segment that are made of different
materials, the first and second damper segments being used in combination with each other and being affixed to the objective
part together to encircle the discontinuous section.

US Pat. No. 9,234,788

METHOD OF AND APPARATUS FOR MEASURING STRENGTH OF ULTRASONIC WAVES

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of measuring the strength of ultrasonic waves for use with an ultrasonic cleaner that applies ultrasonic waves
to an object soaked in a cleaning liquid in a cleaning tank and thereby cleans the object, the method comprising steps of:
vibrating a particle source soaked in the cleaning liquid with the ultrasonic waves whose strength is going to be measured
when the object is not soaked in the cleaning fluid, so that particles are eluted from the particle source into the cleaning
liquid;

counting a number of particles in the cleaning liquid; and
finding the strength of the ultrasonic waves based on the counted number of particles; and
wherein the finding step finds the strength of the ultrasonic waves based on the counted number of the eluted particles according
to a correlation between the number of the eluted particles and the strength of the ultrasonic waves, the correlation obtained
in advance by vibrating with ultrasonic waves the particle source that is soaked into the cleaning liquid and correlating
the number of eluted particles separated from the vibrated particle source with strength of the ultrasonic waves.

US Pat. No. 9,205,510

PROJECTION WELDING APPARATUS, PROJECTION WELDING METHOD AND PROJECTION WELDING STRUCTURE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A projection welding apparatus for welding a first plate member, that has a plurality of welding projections formed on
a front-face side, to a second plate member, the apparatus comprising:
a first electrode disposed on a back-face side of the first plate member;
a second electrode disposed to face the first electrode, the first plate member and the second plate member being configured
to be provided between the first electrode and the second electrode, the second plate member being configured to include a
facing portion that faces the front-face side of the first plate member and an extension portion that extends from the facing
portion towards the first plate member and an extension direction end face of the extension portion is configured to abut
with the welding projections;

a pressing unit that causes the second electrode to approach the first electrode, presses the second plate member with the
second electrode, and presses the end face of the extension portion against the welding projections;

a voltage application unit that applies a voltage to the first electrode and the second electrode causing current to flow
in the first plate member and the second plate member; and

a stopper member that is electrically conductive, is disposed between the first electrode and the facing portion with a separation
open to the facing portion, is contacted against the facing portion of the second plate member that is configured to be pressed
by the second electrode, restricts the first electrode and the second electrode from approaching each other and electrically
connects the facing portion and the first electrode so as to bypass the first plate member,

wherein the second plate member is configured to have a C-shaped cross-section and the stopper member is provided inside the
C-shaped cross-section of the second plate member.

US Pat. No. 9,865,285

WIRING THIN PLATE WITH A WIRING PART AND A PROTRUSION HAVING THE SAME HEIGHT, FLEXURE AS THE WIRING THIN PLATE AND METHOD OF WELDING OF THE WIRING THIN PLATE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A wiring thin plate comprising:
a supporting layer made of metal;
an insulating layer provided on the supporting layer;
a wiring part having a plurality of wiring traces provided on the insulating layer;
a scheduled portion defined on the supporting layer to be welded for forming a welded spot through which the supporting layer
is joined to a metal member; and

a protrusion formed on the supporting layer to assist during a welding process of the scheduled portion to the metal member
and having a height that is the same as a height of the wiring part.

US Pat. No. 9,285,004

SILENCER FOR A MULTI-LEAF SPRING

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A silencer for a leaf spring assembly, the silencer being configured for disposal between adjacent leaf springs at an end
portion of the leaf spring assembly, the silencer comprising:
a multilayer structure in which layers proximate to each other are integrally injection molded and each layer is comprised
of a resin or an elastomer; and

a projection portion which is formed at one outermost layer of the multilayer structure and configured to closely fit into
a hole formed in one of the leaf springs,

wherein the one outermost layer has a tensile strength higher than another outermost layer of the multilayer structure,
the another outermost layer has a hardness lower than the one outermost layer, and
the projection portion has an engaging portion that projects from the hole of the leaf spring and engages with a surface of
the leaf spring, wherein

the projection portion has a cylindrical portion having a uniform inner diameter at an end portion of the projection portion,
the cylindrical portion including a columnar hole at a front end surface of the projection portion, and the cylindrical portion
has plural slits opening from an outer peripheral surface to an inner peripheral surface of the cylindrical portion and extending
toward an axial direction, and

the cylindrical portion has a tapered front end portion with a diameter that decreases toward a front end side of the cylindrical
portion, and has a base end portion in which the engaging portion is formed, the engaging portion having a contacting surface
substantially perpendicular to an axis of the cylindrical portion and contacting the leaf spring.

US Pat. No. 9,255,609

TOLERANCE RING, HARD DISK DEVICE, AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING HARD DISK DEVICE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A tolerance ring that has a ring shape formed of a plate-shaped member, comprising:
a plurality of convex portions protruding in a radial direction; and
a notch portion notched in a direction orthogonal to a circumferential direction on at least one of outer edge side end portions
in the direction orthogonal to the circumferential direction and provided between the plurality of convex portions, and a
length of the notch portion in the circumferential direction being equal to or less than a distance between the adjacent convex
portions, wherein

the tolerance ring is configured to be housed in a hollow space formed in a carriage of a hard disk device, and the ring shape
of the tolerance ring is configured such that a pivot axis of the hard disk device is inserted therein, and

the notch portion is configured to suppress inclination of an axis of the hollow space formed in the carriage with respect
to a center axis of the pivot axis.

US Pat. No. 9,218,832

METHOD OF REMOVING SLIDER FROM FLEXURE WITHOUT LARGE DISPLACEMENT OF THE SLIDER

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of removing a read/write slider from a flexure of a head suspension, the slider attached to the flexure of the
head suspension through an adhesive, comprising:
heating the slider so that the adhesive is heated through an adhered surface of the slider being in contact with the adhesive,
applying ultrasonic vibration to the slider so that the adhered surface of the slider vibrates at a first ultrasonic frequency
with respect to the heated adhesive to cause a shearing force due to the ultrasonic vibration on an interface between the
heated adhesive and the adhered surface, thereby to detach the slider from the heated adhesive; and

removing the detached slider from the flexure; and
wherein said heating comprises bringing a heating jig into contact with the slider; and wherein said applying comprises vibrating
the heating jig at a second ultrasonic frequency.

US Pat. No. 9,811,067

COIL SPRING MODELING APPARATUS AND METHOD OF THE SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A coil spring modeling apparatus provided on a strut comprising a lower spring seat and an upper spring seat, the coil
spring modeling apparatus comprising:
a first attachment member disposed on the lower spring seat;
a second attachment member disposed on the upper spring seat;
an actuator unit which comprises a plurality of hydraulic cylinders arranged with their inclinations changed alternately between
the first attachment member and the second attachment member, and which extends and retracts;

a spring height detection mechanism configured to detect an amount of displacement with respect to a distance between the
first attachment member and the second attachment member, the spring height detection mechanism comprising displacement gauges
each of which is provided on a respective one of the hydraulic cylinders and each of which detects an amount of displacement
relative to a reference length of its respective one of the hydraulic cylinders; and

a controller configured to control each of the hydraulic cylinders of the actuator unit according to the amount of displacement
detected by each of the displacement gauges of the spring height detection mechanism.

US Pat. No. 9,429,190

TOLERANCE RING AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING TOLERANCE RING

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A tolerance ring comprising:
a ring shape approximately circling along a predetermined direction; and
a plurality of projections, wherein
curvature radiuses of end portions in a circling direction are smaller than a curvature radius of a portion other than the
end portions in the circling direction,

the curvature radiuses of end portions are adapted to be equal to a curvature radius of a coupling section connecting different
parts,

a curvature radius of the portion other than the end portions in the circling direction is larger than the curvature radius
of the coupling section, and

the tolerance ring is adapted to be inserted into the coupling section and adapted to deform when inserted into the coupling
section.

US Pat. No. 9,291,645

PROBE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A probe unit contacting an electrode of a contacted body and an electrode of a contact target at both ends in a longitudinal
direction, the probe unit comprising:
a plurality of conductive contact probes, each contacting the electrode of the contacted body at one end in the longitudinal
direction; and

a probe holder accommodating the plurality of contact probes, wherein
each of the contact probe includes:
a plunger including:
a contact portion contacting the electrode of the contacted body;
a flange portion extending from a base end of the contact portion and having a diameter larger than a diameter of the contact
portion;

a boss portion extending from an end of the flange portion different from an end continuing to the contact portion and having
a diameter smaller than the diameter of the flange portion; and

a base end portion extending from an end of the boss portion different from an end continuing to the flange portion and having
a substantially same diameter with the boss portion; and

a spring coil attached to the boss portion,
the probe holder is made of a conductive material and includes a plurality of holder holes, each having a stepped shape in
which diameters at both ends in a thickness direction are decreased and accommodating the respective contact probes, and

the flange portion abuts one of step portions of the stepped shape, one end of the spring coil abuts the flange portion, another
end of the spring coil abuts another one of the step portions such that the spring coil biases the plunger,

the plunger is configured to abut an inner wall surface of the holder hole when a load is applied to the plunger so as to
electrically connect the contacted body and the contact target via the probe holder, and

the spring coil is made of a conductive material having a higher resistance than the plunger or made of an elastic and insulating
material.

US Pat. No. 9,278,637

LUMBAR SUPPORT OPERATION MEMBER AND VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A lumbar support operation member comprising:
a shaft attachment portion that is configured so as to be fixed to a rotation shaft that rotates about an axis and transmits
rotation force to a moving mechanism of a lumbar support provided to a seatback and that is positioned at a side portion of
the seatback, the side portion of the seatback being configured to be disposed adjacent to a console box, wherein a region
of the side portion located above and forward of the axis is easily accessible to a use's hand; and

operation portions that are provided at a radial direction outside of the shaft attachment portion, that are separated from
each other in a circumferential direction of the shaft attachment portion, and that make the shaft attachment portion rotate,
at least one of the operation portions always being disposed in the region to be easily rotated by the user's hand in a downward
direction over an entire range of lumbar support operation,

wherein the operation portions are configured by a first lever and a second lever that extend from the shaft attachment portion
to form a V-shape, distal ends of the first and the second levers being spaced apart from each other, the first lever being
accessible to the use's hand from a direction parallel to the axis so as to rotate the shaft attachment portion from an initial
position to a first position, the second lever being accessible to the user's hand from the direction so as to rotate the
shaft attachment portion from the first position to a second position, the first lever being configured to be positioned between
the side portion of the seatback and the console box when in the second position.

US Pat. No. 9,387,783

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a cushion frame provided inside a seat cushion;
a seatback frame provided inside a seatback;
a coupling member having a planar portion and a fixing hole disposed in the planar portion, the coupling member supporting
the seatback frame rotatably and being fixed to the cushion frame via the fixing hole, the coupling member coupling the cushion
frame to the seatback frame;

a fixing plate that is integrally provided on a side of the planar portion and having an elongated guide hole overlapping
the fixing hole, the elongated guide hole having a size greater than the fixing hole so as to form a thickened portion surrounding
a weak portion of the coupling member; and

a fixing portion disposed in the fixing hole to fix together the fixing plate, the coupling member, and the cushion frame,
wherein

the weak portion continuously extends from an edge portion of the fixing hole along with the elongated guide hole in a direction
of relative movement of the fixing portion with respect to the coupling member when load is imparted to the seatback frame
in a vehicle rear direction, and wherein the fixing portion plastically deforms the weak portion when the load is imparted
to the seatback frame in the vehicle rear direction.

US Pat. No. 9,360,074

WAVE SPRING AND LOAD ADJUSTING METHOD THEREFOR

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A load adjusting method for a wave spring, comprising:
repeatedly forming a combination including plural kinds of mountain portions having different heights from each other;
wherein in the design of each combination, the total number of the combinations forming the wave spring is decided, pitch
angles of the plural kinds of mountain portions forming each combination are established, and a valley portion is established
between adjacent ones of the plural kinds of mountain portions, wherein a flat portion is formed in at least one of the valley
portions of the wave spring, the flat portion has a predetermined pitch angle and lies in the same plane with the valley portion,
whereby load is adjusted,

wherein the flat portion is connected to a foot of one of the mountain portions such that the flat portion is on a tangent
line of the foot.

US Pat. No. 9,308,847

LUMBAR SUPPORT OPERATION MEMBER AND VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A lumbar support operation member comprising:
a shaft attachment portion that is configured so as to be fixed to a rotation shaft that rotates about an axis and transmits
rotation force to a moving mechanism of a lumbar support provided to a seatback and that is positioned at a side portion of
the seatback, the side portion of the seatback being configured to be disposed adjacent to a console box, wherein a region
of the side portion located above and forward of the axis is easily accessible to a use's hand; and

operation portions that are provided at a radial direction outside of the shaft attachment portion, that are separated from
each other in a circumferential direction of the shaft attachment portion, and that make the shaft attachment portion rotate,
at least one of the operation portions always being disposed in the region to be easily rotated by the user's hand in a downward
direction over an entire range of lumbar support operation,

wherein the operation portions are configured by a first lever and a second lever that extend from the shaft attachment portion
to form a V-shape, distal ends of the first and the second levers being spaced apart from each other, the first lever being
accessible to the use's hand from a direction parallel to the axis so as to rotate the shaft attachment portion from an initial
position to a first position, the second lever being accessible to the user's hand from the direction so as to rotate the
shaft attachment portion from the first position to a second position, the first lever being configured to be positioned between
the side portion of the seatback and the console box when in the second position.

US Pat. No. 9,551,071

SUBSTRATE SUPPORT DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A substrate support device, comprising:
a plate portion including a heater plate including a heating element provided in the heater plate, a first cooling plate provided
on a bottom surface of the heater plate and having a first flow path, and a second cooling plate provided on a top surface
of the heater plate and having a second flow path; and

a shaft portion supporting the plate portion and including a line connected to the heating element to supply an electric current
to the heating element, and a tube supplying a coolant to the first cooling plate and the second cooling plate, the line and
the tube being provided inside the shaft portion;

wherein:
the first flow path includes a spiral flow path wound circumferentially in a first direction from a central area toward an
outer edge portion of the first cooling plate; and

the second flow path includes a spiral flow path wound circumferentially in a second direction from a central area toward
an outer edge portion of the second cooling plate, the second direction being opposite to the first direction.

US Pat. No. 9,278,387

METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING LEAF SPRINGS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A production method for a leaf spring having a leaf portion and an eye portion formed at the leaf portion, comprising steps
of:
forming a gap portion between a leading end portion of the eye portion and a facing portion facing the leading end portion;
shot peening an inner surface of the eye portion by disposing a reflection member, which has a reflection surface, inside
the eye portion, injecting shots from a nozzle to the reflection member, and projecting the shots, which are reflected by
the reflection surface of the reflection member, to the inner surface of the eye portion,

wherein in the shot peening, the reflection surface is located at a cross section perpendicular to an axial direction of the
eye portion such that a straight line does not cross the leading end portion of the eye portion, the straight line connecting
an intersection point and a center point of the reflection surface of the reflection member, the intersection point being
between a perpendicular line and a surface of the facing portion, the perpendicular line extending from a leaf portion side
end point of the leading end portion of the eye portion to the facing portion, whereby shots are projected to the entire surface
of the facing portion.

US Pat. No. 9,073,469

VEHICLE SEAT

TOYOTA BOSHOKU KABUSHIKI ...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat component comprising a seat cushion or a seat back, the seat component including:
a frame defining a seat frame;
a cushion material configuring an outer shape of the seat and capable of elastically supporting a passenger; and
a support arranged on the frame and capable of supporting the cushion material, the support including a frame-shaped support
frame having a polygonal shape that can be attached to the frame, and a bag-shaped planar member that is attached to the frame-shaped
support frame in a tensioned state to support the cushion material,

wherein the frame-shaped support frame can be accommodated in the bag-shaped planar member while at least one side of the
frame-shaped support frame is in a contracted state, and

wherein the frame-shaped support frame is maintained in an expanded state as the at least one side of the frame-shaped support
frame is in a non-contracted state, such that the bag-shaped planar is expanded from an inner side thereof and is maintained
in the tensioned state.

US Pat. No. 9,624,565

NANOCRYSTAL-CONTAINING TITANIUM ALLOY AND PRODUCTION METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A titanium alloy having a structure classified as near ?, and comprising 4 to 9 mass % of Al, 2 to 10 mass % of V and the
remainder of Ti and inevitable impurities, the alloy further comprising:
structure in which equiaxial crystals having average crystal particle diameter less than 1000 nm are uniformly dispersed,
hardness less than 400 HV,
an area ratio of a ? phase is more than 0% and not more than 1.0%, by measurement of a phase map by an electron backscatter
diffraction (EBSD) method, and

tensile strength not less than 1200 MPa,
wherein the titanium alloy is formed by performing hot working of a processing starting material in which an ?? martensite
phase is generated by rapid cooling from a temperature not less than a ? transits temperature.

US Pat. No. 9,446,641

SUSPENSION AND COMPRESSION COIL SPRING FOR SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., To...

1. A knee-action-type suspension comprising:
an arm member which is pivotable in upward and downward directions about a pivot supported on a vehicle body;
a lower spring seat which is provided on the arm member;
an upper spring seat which is disposed above the lower spring seat; and
a compression coil spring which is arranged between the lower spring seat and the upper spring seat, and urges the arm member
downward in a compressed state,

a wire of the compression coil spring comprising:
a large-diameter wire portion which is arranged on a side near to the pivot, and has a wire diameter which is greater than
an average wire diameter of the wire;

a small-diameter wire portion which is arranged on a side far from the pivot, and has a wire diameter which is smaller than
the wire diameter of the large-diameter wire portion; and

a wire diameter varying portion whose wire diameter is continuously varied between the large-diameter wire portion and the
small-diameter wire portion.

US Pat. No. 9,341,223

SPRING AND MANUFACTURE METHOD THEREOF

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A spring comprising:
a composition consisting of, by mass %, 0.5 to 0.7% of C, 1.0 to 2.0% of Si, 0.1 to 1.0% of Mn, 0.1 to 1.0% of Cr, not more
than 0.035% of P, not more than 0.035% of S, and the balance of Fe and inevitable impurities;

a structure including not less than 95% of tempered martensitic structure by area ratio in a cross section of a wire material;
a compressive residual stress layer formed from a surface to a depth of 0.35 mm to D/4, in which D (mm) is a circle-equivalent
diameter of a cross section, the compressive residual stress layer having maximum compressive residual stress of 800 to 2000
MPa;

a center portion with Vickers hardness of 550 to 700 HV in the cross section; and
a high hardness layer with greater hardness than the center portion by 50 to 500 HV from a surface to a depth of 0.05 to 0.3
mm.

US Pat. No. 9,829,046

TOLERANCE RING

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A tolerance ring comprising:
a base formed of a strip-shaped member approximately wound around into a ring shape; and
a plurality of projections aligned in at least one row along a winding direction of the base so as to protrude in a radial
direction from an outer peripheral surface of the base,

wherein each of the projections has a pair of opposing edges extending in the winding direction and a pair of opposing edges
extending in a width direction orthogonal to the winding direction each of which serves as a boundary between the projection
and the base, each projection being deformed outwards from the base of the ring, forming a continuous projection member,

wherein each projection includes:
a strip portion shaped like a strip, longitudinally-extending in the winding direction, and curved to be convex in the radial
direction, the strip portion comprising a pair of opposing front and rear edges extending in the width direction adjoining
the base, and a pair of opposing arcuate-shaped longitudinally-extending edges extending in the winding direction; and

a pair of opposing side joint portions each approximately shaped like a flat plate and comprising an edge adjoining a respective
one of the longitudinally-extending edges of the strip portion, and an arcuate-shaped longitudinally-extending base edge extending
in the winding direction adjoining the base,

wherein the opposing side joint portions of the projection each continuously extend between a respective one of the opposing
longitudinally-extending edges of strip portion and a respective one of the arcuate-shaped longitudinally extending base edges
and between the front and rear edges of the projection.

US Pat. No. 9,056,538

STABILIZER LINK AND MANUFACTURING METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A manufacturing method for stabilizer links, comprising:
a preparing step in which a stud ball having a ball portion, and a ball seat having an opening end surface, an overhanging
portion, and a ball receiving portion from an opening side of a side surface portion in this order, are prepared;

a slope portion for a stopper base forming step in which a housing having a caulking portion and a ball seat receiving portion
from an opening side of a side surface portion in this order, is molded, and a slope portion for a stopper base having a taper
shape in which a diameter is increased toward an opening side in an axial direction, is formed between the caulking portion
and the ball seat receiving portion;

an outer peripheral end portion taper surface forming step in which a ring member having a stopper base portion is molded,
and in molding of the ring member, an outer peripheral end portion taper surface is formed at an opposite side to the opening
side in an outer peripheral end portion of the stopper base portion;

a first subassembly forming step in which a first subassembly having the ball stud and the ball seat is formed by inserting
the ball stud and the ball portion into the ball receiving portion of the ball seat;

an abutting step in which a second subassembly is formed by inserting the ball seat of the first subassembly into the ball
receiving portion of the housing, and by arranging the ring member at an opening side of the ball seat, and in the arranging
of the ring member, the stopper base portion is abutted to the opening end surface of the ball seat; and

a pressing step in which the caulking portion of the housing of the second subassembly is caulked inwardly by using a pressing
member, and the opening side of the ball seat is pressed through the ring member by the caulking portion,

wherein in the forming of the second subassembly, the outer peripheral end portion taper surface of the stopper base portion
of the ring member is abutted to the slope portion for a stopper base of the housing.

US Pat. No. 9,168,846

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a base frame mounted to a vehicle body floor portion;
a seatback, a lower end side of a seatback frame thereof being joined to the base frame via an upper bracket supported on
a recliner shaft along a seat width direction, the seatback being capable of tilting forward about the recliner shaft, a cushion
joining portion formed as one piece with the upper bracket and being provided at a front end side of the lower end side of
the seatback frame relative to the recliner shaft, with the seatback in an upright position of use, and the cushion joining
portion turning to a seat lower side and a seat rearward side about the recliner shaft when the seatback is tilted forward;
and

a seat cushion, a rear end side of a seat cushion frame thereof being pivotally joined to the cushion joining portion to be
turnable about a joining shaft along the seat width direction, and a front portion side of the seat cushion frame being supported
at the base frame by at least one link to be movable to follow the turning of the cushion joining portion when the seatback
is tilted forward,

wherein the base frame is pivotally connected to the vehicle body at a point forward from a connection of the link to the
base frame, and the base frame comprises a latch mechanism that restricts the base frame by engaging with the vehicle body
floor portion behind the seatback when the seat cushion and the base frame are generally horizontal in the position of use.

US Pat. No. 9,150,171

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat main body including a seat cushion that supports buttocks and thighs of an occupant and a seatback that supports the
upper body of the occupant; and

a USB connector provided at the seat main body,
wherein the seat main body is provided with a support portion at which a headrest is supported;
the USB connector is integrally configured with a grommet that is attached to the support portion;
the USB connector is embedded in the seat main body; and
the USB connector is provided at an outer side in a seat width direction from a stay of the headrest.

US Pat. No. 9,133,931

BALL STUD, DUST COVER, AND STABILIZER LINK

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A ball stud assembly comprising:
a ball stud comprising:
a stud portion with an approximately columnar shape; and
a ball portion that is formed at an end of the stud portion; and
a dust cover that is attached to the stud portion, wherein:
the stud portion is formed with (i) a seal portion having a circular cross section, (ii) an annular flange that projects radially
outwardly at a first circumferential portion axially apart from the ball portion, and (iii) an annular projection that projects
radially outwardly at a second circumferential portion at an axial side of the seal portion opposite to the flange adjacent
the ball portion,

an axial cross section of the flange has a root side end point at a peripheral edge of the flange which is located at a ball
portion side, and an outer circumferential point at the peripheral edge of the flange which is located at a position radially
outward from the root side end point and opposite to the ball portion side, the axial cross section of the flange being concave
with respect to a straight line that connects the root side end point and the outer circumferential point, thereby defining
an annular concave portion,

the dust cover includes an annular lip that is abutted on the seal portion of the ball stud,
the lip has an end that is formed with an annular side lip portion, and the side lip portion has a shape corresponding to
the concave portion so as to be abutted on the concave portion, and

the side lip portion has a circumferential end adjacent the outer circumferential point of the axial cross section of the
flange and has a shape such that the side lip portion is elastically deformed to a radially outward direction by abutting
on the concave portion of the flange, whereby surface pressure is a maximum at the circumferential end when abutted on the
concave portion of the flange.

US Pat. No. 9,570,948

MAGNETIC PLATE USED FOR ROTOR CORE OF MOTOR AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING MAGNETIC PLATE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A magnetic plate for use in a rotor core of a motor, wherein the magnetic plate has a body portion formed into an annular
shape, the rotor core in which a plurality of the magnetic plates are stacked one on another and permanent magnets whose cross-section
is approximately rectangular and are elongated in a circumferential direction of the body portion are held by a plurality
of openings which are elongated in a circumferential direction inside an outer peripheral edge of the body portions and are
arranged on the body portions at a predetermined interval in the circumferential direction, the magnetic plate comprising:
a magnetic pole portion situated between the outer peripheral edge of the body portion and the opening and having a radial
width smaller than a radial sectional width of the permanent magnet; and

a higher hardness portion being formed on the body portion into a hook shape along an end corner of the opening and having
a radial maximum width smaller than the radial sectional width of the permanent magnet, the higher hardness portion being
set higher in hardness than the body portion other than the higher hardness portion.

US Pat. No. 9,484,050

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION HAVING A TAIL PAD PORTION WITH A BRIDGE ELEMENT AND A PLURALITY OF TAIL TERMINALS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure of a disk drive suspension having a magnetic head mounted therein, the flexure comprising a metal base, a conductive
circuit portion formed along the metal base, and a tail pad portion formed in a flexure tail at an end of the flexure, and
the tail pad portion comprising:
a frame structure including a first frame and a second frame which are a part of the metal base and extend in a longitudinal
direction of the tail pad portion, and in which an opening is formed between the first frame and the second frame;

a tail terminal group comprising a plurality of tail terminals arranged in the tail pad portion, the tail terminals being
arranged to be spaced apart from each other in the longitudinal direction of the tail pad portion, and each of the tail terminals
traversing the opening of the frame structure; and

a bridge portion including at least one bridge element which is a part of the metal base, the bridge element being arranged
at a position which overlaps at least one of the plurality of tail terminals in a thickness direction between the first frame
and the second frame and being electrically insulated from the at least one of the plurality of tail terminals, and the first
frame and the second frame being electrically connected to each other by the bridge element,

wherein a number of the at least one bridge element is less than a number of the tail terminals, and
wherein the tail pad portion further comprises:
a bridge-equipped terminal portion comprising a specific tail terminal selected from among the plurality of tail terminals,
the bridge element overlapping the specific tail terminal; and

a bridge-free terminal portion comprising a tail terminal other than the specific tail terminal selected from among the plurality
of tail terminals, the bridge-free terminal portion being free of an overlapping bridge element.

US Pat. No. 9,276,441

STATOR CORE OF MOTOR, AND MANUFACTURING METHOD

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A stator core for a motor including an annular yoke and teeth protruding radially inward from an inner periphery of the
yoke, an outer periphery of the yoke attached to an inner periphery of an annular member with a radially inwardly tightening
interference, comprising:
a circumferentially deformable part formed on a radially outer peripheral side of the yoke and compressively deformed in a
circumferential direction by the tightening interference;

circumferentially facing divided parts formed on a radially inner peripheral side of the yoke, and each having a dividing
line that is oriented in a radial direction and reaches a portion between the teeth and divided surfaces that face each other
without a gap; and

radially facing divided parts formed between the radially inner and outer sides of the yoke along the circumferential direction
at a predetermined interval, each having divided surfaces that face each other in the radial direction, and being continuous
at one ends with the respective circumferentially facing divided parts, the divided surfaces moved relative to each other
in the circumferential direction by compressive deformation of the circumferentially deformable part, wherein

the circumferentially facing divided parts are in a state of a compressive stress being smaller than a compressive stress
acting on the circumferentially deformable part or being zero,

the circumferentially deformable part has a flexible portion for securing an amount of the deformation in the circumferential
direction, and

the flexible portion is a convex-concave portion in a thickness direction of the yoke having a chevron shape, a top of the
chevron shape in said thickness direction linearly extending between the outer periphery of the yoke and the radially-facing
divided part in a direction intersecting the circumferential direction.

US Pat. No. 9,238,593

CERAMIC MEMBER, PROBE HOLDER, AND MANUFACTURING METHOD OF CERAMIC MEMBER

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A ceramic member comprising enstatite and boron nitride as constituents,
wherein the ceramic member is a sintered body in which the boron nitride is oriented in a single direction.

US Pat. No. 9,174,558

SEAT OPERATING DEVICE AND VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A seat operating device comprising:
an operation member that is mounted to a seat main body of a vehicle seat so as to be rotatingly operated;
a first clutch member that is mounted to the seat main body so as to rotate around a rotational center of the operation member,
and that is connected to an adjusting mechanism that the seat main body is equipped with, and in which is formed a first cut-out
portion that opens outwardly in a rotation radial direction of the first clutch member;

a second clutch member that is mounted to the seat main body so as to rotate around the rotational center of the operation
member, and that is connected to another adjusting mechanism that the seat main body is equipped with, and in which a second
cut-out portion, that opens outwardly in a rotation radial direction of the second clutch member, is formed at an opposite
side of the first cut-out portion across the rotational center;

a switching member that is mounted to the operation member so as to be movingly operated in a rotation radial direction of
the operation member, and that has a first engaging portion and a second engaging portion that are positioned at mutually
opposite sides across the rotational center, and, in a state in which the switching member is positioned at one end of a range
of movement of the switching member, the first engaging portion engages with the first cut-out portion, and, in a state in
which the switching member is positioned at another end of the range of movement of the switching member, the second engaging
portion engages with the second cut-out portion; and

a pair of erroneous operation preventing portions that are provided so as to be unable to be displaced with respect to the
seat main body and that face one another in a direction of rotation of the operation member,

in a state in which the switching member is positioned intermediately in the range of movement, one of the first engaging
portion and the second engaging portion is disposed between the pair of erroneous operation preventing portions.

US Pat. No. 9,440,570

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a first configuration member configuring a portion of a frame of the vehicle seat;
a flange being formed at the first configuration member, the flange curving toward and inside in a seat width direction;
a second configuration member configuring a portion of the frame of the vehicle seat, being manufactured from sheet metal,
and including a joint portion that is joined to the first configuration member at an outer peripheral portion of the second
configuration member;

a bead being formed at the second configuration member, and extending adjacent to the joint portion at an inside of the joint
portion;

a contact portion being formed at the second configuration member, at a position at an inside in the seat width direction
of the bead, and contacting the first configuration member; and

a placement recess portion, formed at the second configuration member, in a recessed shaped, is place above the flange and
protrudes towards a seat lower side.

US Pat. No. 9,404,547

STEEL FOR HIGH-STRENGTH SPRING, METHOD FOR PRODUCING SAME, AND HIGH-STRENGTH SPRING

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A steel for a spring for a vehicle comprising: C: 0.38 to 0.44%, Si: 2.00 to 2.30%, Mn: 0.99 to 1.25%, Cr: 0.10 to 0.43%,
Ni: 0.15 to 0.35%, Cu: 0.15 to 0.35%, Ti: 0.09 to 0.13%, P: 0.02% or less (0% is not included), S: 0.02% or less (0% is not
included), Al: 0.003 to 0.10%, N: 0.002 to 0.012%, O: 0.002% or less (0% is not included), by mass %, and the remainder consisting
of iron and inevitable impurities, wherein an Ac3 transformation temperature as an indicator of the decarburization performance, which is calculated by Equation (1) below,
is from 859° C. to 885° C., a maximum hardened diameter DI as an indicator of the hardening performance, which is calculated
by Equation (2) below, is from 70 to 238 mm, and a temper hardness HRC as an indicator of the spring performance, which is
calculated by Equation (3) below, is from 50 to 55,
Ac3=910?203×?{square root over (C)}?15.2Ni+44.7Si+104V+31.5Mo+13.1W   (1),

DI=DO×fSi×fMn×fP×fS×fCu×fNi×fCr  (2),

HRC=38.99+17.48C+2.55Si?2.28Ni+2.37Cr+8.04Ti   (3),
wherein DO=8.65×?{square root over (C)}, fSi=1+0.64×% Si, fMn=1+4.10×% Mn, fP=1+2.83×% P, fS=1?0.62×% S, fCu=1+0.27×% Cu, fNi=1+0.52×% Ni, and fCr=1+2.33×% Cr.

US Pat. No. 9,061,621

SEAT-CUSHION SHELL UNIT AND SHELL SEAT FOR VEHICLE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A seat-cushion shell unit for a shell seat for a vehicle, the shell seat comprising a seat frame, a forward/backward-position
adjustment mechanism provided below the seat frame, and an exterior cover material provided as the outermost layer of the
shell seat, and the seat-cushion shell unit comprising:
a seat cushion shell made of a substantially rigid material;
a support panel connected to a bottom of the seat cushion shell by a joint mechanism so as to be movable up and down and be
tiltable to an arbitrary angle, the support panel comprising a to surface portion; and

an elastic body provided between the support panel and the seat cushion shell, the elastic body comprising a bottom surface
portion which is in surface contact with the to surface portion of the support panel along substantially an entirety of the
bottom surface portion of the elastic body and the top surface portion of the support panel,

wherein the seat-cushion shell unit is attachable to the seat frame through the support panel.

US Pat. No. 9,804,198

ALLOY MATERIAL, CONTACT PROBE, AND CONNECTION TERMINAL

Yamamoto Precious Metal C...

1. An alloy material, consisting of:
a composition containing 17 at % to 25 at % of silver (Ag), 30 at % to 45 at % of palladium (Pd), and 30 at % to 53 at % of
copper (Cu) in a composition range of a ternary alloy of Ag, Pd, and Cu; and

at least one of manganese (Mn), tin (Sn), silicon (Si), antimony (Sb), titanium (Ti) and magnesium (Mg) added to the composition
in a range of 4.5 at % or less,

wherein the Mn in a range of 0.5 at % to 3.5 at %, the Sn in a range of 1 at % to 2 at %, the Si in a range of 0.5 at % to
2 at %, the Sb in a range of 0.5 at % to 3 at %, the Ti in a range of 0.5 at % to 2 at %, and the Mg in a range of 0.5 at
% to 3.5 at % are added to the composition, and

one of iridium (Ir), ruthenium (Ru) and a combination of Ir and Ru is further added in an amount of 0.01 at % to 0.05 at %.

US Pat. No. 9,463,676

SUSPENSION AND COMPRESSION COIL SPRING FOR SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., To...

1. A knee-action-type suspension comprising:
an arm member which is pivotable in upward and downward directions about a pivot supported on a vehicle body;
a lower spring seat which is provided on the arm member;
an upper spring seat which is disposed above the lower spring seat; and
a compression coil spring which is arranged between the lower spring seat and the upper spring seat, and urges the arm member
downward in a compressed state,

a wire of the compression coil spring comprising:
a large-diameter wire portion which is arranged on a side near to the pivot, and has a wire diameter which is greater than
an average wire diameter of the wire;

a small-diameter wire portion which is arranged on a side far from the pivot, and has a wire diameter which is smaller than
the wire diameter of the large-diameter wire portion; and

a wire diameter varying portion whose wire diameter is continuously varied between the large-diameter wire portion and the
small-diameter wire portion.

US Pat. No. 9,393,850

STABILIZER LINK AND MANUFACTURING METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A stabilizer link formed by injection molding using reinforcing fiber containing resin, comprising a support bar for connecting
two housings,
wherein the support bar comprises a top wing plate, a bottom wing plate, a center supporting plate, and a plurality of ribs,
the top wing plate, the bottom wing plate and the center supporting plate extend to a longitudinal direction of the support
bar, and have a I-shape in a cross section perpendicular to the longitudinal direction,

the plurality of ribs are formed, so as to separate in the longitudinal direction between the top wing plate and the bottom
wing plate, and

when a longitudinal orientation ratio at a longitudinal center portion of the top wing plate and the bottom wing plate is
set to be D1(%), a perpendicular orientation ratio at a perpendicular center portion of the ribs is set to be D2(%), and a
perpendicular orientation ratio at a perpendicular end portion of the ribs is set to be D3(%), the orientation ratios D1 to
D3 satisfy Equation 1,

D1>D2>D3  Equation 1.

US Pat. No. 9,295,888

SHAFT FOR GOLF CLUB HAVING RIGIDITY IMPROVED AT INTERMEDIATE PART

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A shaft for a golf club, comprising:
a tube body; and
a thick part formed on the tube body;
wherein the tube body comprises a distal part, a proximal part, and an intermediate part in a longitudinal direction of the
shaft;

wherein the distal part is provided with a clubhead and extends from a distal end of the shaft to one end of the intermediate
part;

wherein the proximal part is provided with a grip and extends from a proximal end of the shaft to another end of the intermediate
part;

wherein the intermediate part is arranged between the distal and proximal parts and is longer than the distal part and proximal
part in the longitudinal direction;

wherein the tube body has an outer diameter that gradually increases from the distal end of the distal part toward the proximal
end of the proximal part and a wall thickness that gradually decreases from the distal end of the distal part toward the proximal
end of the proximal part so that the distal part is relatively thick and the proximal part is relatively thin;

wherein the thick part extends from the one end of the intermediate part to the other end of the intermediate part so as to
provide a combined wall thickness of the tube body and thick part at the intermediate part that is thicker than wall thickness
along the distal part, thereby improving a rigidity at the intermediate part so that a change in rigidity between the distal
part and the intermediate part has an inflection point; and

wherein the thick part bulges inward from an inner periphery of the tube body at the intermediate part so as to have a truncated
sectional shape, a top surface of the truncated thick part defines inside a tapered hole whose diameter gradually increases
from one end portion of the thick part close to the distal part to another end portion of the thick part close to the proximal
part, and the end portions of the thick part have tapered faces that gradually reduce a wall thickness of the thick part from
the top surface toward the distal part and the proximal part, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,196,277

TERMINAL WITH TERMINAL BENDER HAVING STABLE BEND, WIRING MEMBER, AND HEAD SUSPENSION

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A terminal comprising:
a terminal wiring part formed to a wiring member that is located on an actuator base on one side in a thickness direction
of the actuator base, the actuator base having an opening into which a piezoelectric element is fixed and a surface surrounding
the opening on said one side, the piezoelectric element having on said one side an electrode that is recessed relative to
said surface of the actuator base in the thickness direction to form a gap, the terminal wiring part extending at least from
a portion of the wiring member located on an edge of the opening on said one side in said thickness direction into a region
located over the piezoelectric element on said one side in said thickness direction and including an insulating layer and
a wiring layer formed on the insulating layer;

a terminal main part formed at a front end of the terminal wiring part and connected to the piezoelectric element that is
arranged to face the terminal main part on said one side in said thickness direction; and

a terminal bender that is made of a supportive metal layer, wherein the terminal bender is arranged along and attached to
a part of the terminal wiring part in said region located over the piezoelectric element on said one side in said thickness
direction, and is plastically deformed to form a bend in the part of the terminal wiring part so as to locate the terminal
main part closer to the electrode of the piezoelectric element on said one side in said thickness direction relative to said
portion of the wiring member positioned on the edge of the opening.

US Pat. No. 9,212,714

FIBER REINFORCED PLASTIC SPRING

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A fiber reinforced plastic spring comprising:
a positive direction orientating unit having at least one positive direction orientating layer and a negative direction orientating
unit having at least one negative direction orientating layer, wherein

the plate spring has a layered structure in which the positive direction orientating unit and the negative direction orientating
unit are alternately layered such that (i) a longitudinal direction of the positive orientating unit coincides with a longitudinal
direction of the negative orientating unit, and (ii) the positive orientating unit and the negative orientating unit are in
close contact with each other without clearance over an entire longitudinal length of the positive orientating unit and the
negative orientating unit,

fiber is orientated at an orientating angle of positive direction against the longitudinal direction in the positive direction
orientating layer,

fiber is orientated at an orientating angle of negative direction against the longitudinal direction in the negative direction
orientating layer, and

an absolute value of the orientating angle of the positive direction orientating layer and an absolute value of the orientating
angle of the negative direction orientating layer are set to between 20 and 30 degrees.

US Pat. No. 9,536,551

LASER PROCESSING METHOD AND APPARATUS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A laser processing method of processing spots on an object positioned on a scan area with a laser beam emitted from a laser
emitter, the scan area being defined onto a support that supports the object, the method comprising steps of:
enclosing the scan area with a transmissive member having a box shape to define a closed space on the scan area for accumulating
an inert gas;

jetting in a direction intersecting the laser beam the inert gas into the closed space so that the jetted inert gas forms
a gas curtain extending in said direction toward spots of the object processed with the laser beam and passing in said direction
over the scan area in the closed space while the gas curtain touches the scan area and the object to blow plumes generated
from spots of the object and so that the jetted inert gas is accumulated in the closed space; and

discharging the inert gas from the closed space in which the jetted inert gas is accumulated while maintaining a positive
pressure in the closed space, thereby removing the plumes blown by the gas curtain from the closed space and preventing the
spots from oxidizing.

US Pat. No. 9,388,891

MULTI-SHAFT DRIVE DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A multi-shaft drive device comprising:
a plurality of input side bevel gears that are supported so as to be rotatable with respect to a case and that rotate in response
to transmission of power of a motor;

a plurality of output side bevel gears that are each provided corresponding to each individual of the plurality of input side
bevel gears, that are supported so as to be rotatable with respect to the case and to be capable of projecting forwards or
retreating with respect to the input side bevel gears, that are biased in a direction to enmesh with the input side bevel
gears, and that are respectively coupled to a plurality of movable mechanisms provided to a vehicle such that rotation force
can be individually transmitted to the respective movable mechanisms;

a selector that is provided so as to be movable with respect to the case and capable of making sliding contact with the plurality
of output side bevel gears, that enmeshes a selected output side bevel gear out of the plurality of output side bevel gears
with the corresponding input side bevel gear, and that separates the other output side bevel gears from the corresponding
input side bevel gears; and

a stopper that is provided at the case or at a retention member fixed to the case, that makes contact with the output side
bevel gear that is enmeshed with the input side bevel gear and that restricts a stroke end in a bias direction of the output
side bevel gear,

wherein the selected output side bevel gear is separated from the selector in an enmeshed state of the selected output side
bevel gear with the corresponding input side bevel gear.

US Pat. No. 9,056,349

COIL-SPRING MANUFACTURING APPARATUS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A coil-spring manufacturing apparatus comprising:
a first roll;
a second roll which is arranged on a same side as a side on which the first roll is arranged in relation to a conveying path
for conveying a coil wire material and which is arranged downstream of the first roll in a conveying direction of the coil
wire material;

a third roll which is arranged across the conveying path on a side opposed to the side on which the first roll and the second
roll are arranged; and

a pitch tool which moves back and forth along a screwing direction of a coil spring,
wherein the coil spring is manufactured by bending the coil wire material at a predetermined curvature by the first roll,
the second roll, and the third roll, and by shaping the bent coil wire material at a predetermined pitch, and

wherein the second roll is movable back and forth along the screwing direction of the coil spring, and is tiltable about,
as an axis of rotation, a line parallel to the conveying path of the coil wire material.

US Pat. No. 9,482,302

PROCESS FOR MANUFACTURING SEAMLESS STEEL PIPE, HOLLOW SPRING UTILIZING SEAMLESS STEEL PIPE

SHINKO METAL PRODUCTS CO....

1. A method for producing seamless steel pipe comprising:
a billet molding step in which a steel material is molded into a cylindrical billet;
a first heating step in which the billet is heated;
a hot isostatic extrusion step in which the heated billet is subjected to hot isostatic extrusion processing performed at
1,050° C. or more and less than 1,300° C. to obtain a seamless steel pipe workpiece;

an extension step in which the heated seamless steel pipe workpiece is extended by at least one of Pilger mill rolling and
drawing processing;

a third heating step in which the extended seamless steel pipe workpiece is heated; and
a pickling step in which the extended and heated seamless steel pipe workpiece is pickled; wherein
a second heating step is not performed between the hot isostatic extrusion step and the extension step.

US Pat. No. 9,273,372

METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING STABILIZER, AND HEATING DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A method for manufacturing a stabilizer having a curved part, comprising:
a tempering process for performing tempering of a half-finished stabilizer by current-application heating,
wherein a first heating process and a second heating process are sequentially performed in the tempering process,
wherein current-application heating is performed on the half-finished stabilizer by continuously flowing current to set a
temperature of an inner portion in the half-finished stabilizer lower than a target tempering temperature in the first heating
process,

and wherein current application heating is performed on the half-finished stabilizer by intermittently flowing current to
raise the temperature of the inner portion in the half-finished stabilizer up to the target tempering temperature in the second
heating process.

US Pat. No. 9,593,731

RING-SHAPED SPRING AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A ring spring formed to be endless by welding two ends of a raw material, the raw material being a steel material containing
C: 0.10 to 0.30 mass %, Si: 0.50 to 2.10 mass %, Cr: 0.50 to 1.50 mass %, Mn: 1.0 to 2.0 mass %, P: 0.025 mass % or less,
S: 0.025 mass % or less, Fe as a remainder and inevitable impurities, the steel material having carbon equivalent Ceq shown
by Formula (1) below of 0.5 to 0.75 mass % and hardness of 350 HV or more as the raw material, wherein brackets indicate mass
%,
the ring spring comprising:
a welded metal part formed at an interface of the two ends of the raw material, and
a welded heat-affected zone formed at the circumference of the welded metal part and which is heated by welding,
wherein tensile strength is 1000 MPa or more, and
wherein the ring spring is formed without quenching and tempering,
Ceq=[C]+[Mn]/6+[Si]/24+[Ni]/40+[Cr]/5+[Mo]/4+[V]/14  (1).

US Pat. No. 9,559,285

PIEZOELECTRIC ACTUATOR AND HEAD SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A piezoelectric actuator having a piezoelectric element that deforms according to a voltage applied thereto and thereby
displaces an object the piezoelectric actuator supports, the piezoelectric actuator comprising:
an actuator base supporting the object and having an opening that accommodates the piezoelectric element;
a receiver member laid on and fixed to the actuator base and forming a receiver that faces the opening and receives the piezoelectric
element;

an adhesive part formed of a liquid adhesive that is filled in a space defined by the piezoelectric element, an inner circumference
of the opening, and the receiver and adheres the piezoelectric element to the inner circumference of the opening and the receiver;
and

a suppressing zone formed along an overlapping area where the actuator base and receiver member overlap each other and suppresses
penetration of the liquid adhesive due to a capillary phenomenon into the overlapping area; and

wherein the suppressing zone in the overlapping area is a water repellent zone formed by carrying out a water repellent process
on at least one of the actuator base and receiver member and extends in a direction away from the opening from an edge of
the overlapping area proximal to the opening.

US Pat. No. 9,688,090

IDENTIFICATION MEDIUM

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An identification medium having a structure comprising, in the following order, as seen from the side of observation:
a cholesteric liquid crystal layer or a multiple film layer, each of which reflects specific colors,
a separation layer that is partially formed,
a printed layer that is formed so as to cover the entire surface of a lower surface of the cholesteric liquid crystal layer
or the multiple film layer, by using an opaque ink having specific colors, and

a colored adhesive layer that is formed so as to cover the entire surface of a lower surface of the printed layer,
wherein when an adhesive strength between the colored adhesive layer and an adherend is set to be Xa, an adhesive strength
between the colored adhesive layer and the printed layer is set to be Xb, and an adhesive strength at a portion in which the
separation layer is laminated between the optical function layer and the printed layer is set to be Xc, the adhesive strength
of each part is set to satisfy:

Xb>Xa>Xc,
and wherein the identification medium is configured such that, when the identification medium is torn off from the adherend,
the printed layer and the colored adhesive layer are primarily separated from the cholesteric liquid crystal layer or the
multiple film layer and absorbed into the adjacent printed layer and the adjacent colored adhesive layer to form a gap in
an area at which the separation layer is formed under the cholesteric liquid crystal layer or the multiple film layer,

the printed layer and the colored adhesive layer remain adhered to the cholesteric liquid crystal layer or the multiple film
layer in a second area where the separation layer is not formed, and

all portions of the printed layer and the colored adhesive layer are separated from the adherend.

US Pat. No. 9,555,724

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a back frame that configures a seatback frame;
a cushion frame that configures a seat cushion frame;
a movable back shell that is supported so as to be capable of at least moving in the up-down direction relative to the back
frame, and that is adapted to be capable of supporting the back of a seated person;

a cushion shell that is supported so as to be capable of moving in the up-down direction relative to the cushion frame and
that is adapted to be capable of supporting the buttocks and thighs of the seated person;

a hinge that couples together a lower end portion of the movable back shell and a rear end portion of the cushion shell so
as to be capable of turning about a first axis running along the seat width direction;

a non-movable back shell that is disposed on a back face side of the movable back shell, that covers the back frame, wherein
at least both end sides in a seat width direction of the non-movable back shell extend further to an outside than an outer
periphery of the movable back shell when viewed from a front side of a seatback, the movable back shell being movable in the
up-down direction relative to the non-movable back shell; and

a pair of left and right back shell support mechanisms coupling the movable back shell to the back frame such that the movable
back shell can move in the up-down direction and turn about a second axis running along the seat width direction,

wherein the cushion shell is resiliently supported by a support material that is interposed between the cushion shell and
the cushion frame, and that is made of foam material,

up-down movement of the cushion shell is accompanied by up-down movement of the movable back shell,
each back shell support mechanism comprises:
an attachment member,
a slide rail,
a slider, and
an attachment plate,
wherein the movable back shell is attached to the slider through the attachment plate, and wherein the attachment plate is
coupled to the slider so as to be rotatable about the second axis running along the seat width direction.

US Pat. No. 10,141,015

REFERENCE BLOCK CONFIGURED FOR USE IN A METHOD OF MANUFACTURING A HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING A LOAD BEAM AND A FLEXURE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A reference block for use in a method of manufacturing a head suspension comprising a load beam and a flexure, in which method a tongue, which is used to attach a slider, of a flexure is brought in contact with a convex portion of the load beam and the flexure is laser-welded to the load beam at a first welding spot so that the flexure is bent with respect to the first welding spot to press the tongue against the convex portion under predetermined load, wherein:the reference block comprises a single block and reference pins integral therewith and protruding therefrom, the reference pins having been machined together with the block from a single body of material;
the load beam has at least one positioning reference hole formed therein;
the flexure has at least one positioning reference hole formed therein;
the at least one positioning reference hole of the load beam and the at least one positioning reference hole of the flexure have different positions relative to the first welding spot so as to be apart from each other in a planar direction of the flexure and the load beam;
the at least one positioning reference hole of each of the load beam and the flexure are located within a circular range that is defined around the first welding spot as a center thereof with a radius equal to a distance between the first welding spot and the convex portion, and so that upon laying the flexure and load beam on one another respective said reference pins can be inserted into the at least one positioning reference hole in the load beam and the positioning reference hole in the flexure and the flexure and the load beam are positioned with respect to each other by insertion of the at least one reference pin into the at least one positioning reference hole; and
the reference pins are located at positions on the single block such that the reference pins are simultaneously insertable into the at least one positioning reference hole of the load beam and the at least one positioning reference hole of the flexure that are located within said circular range that is defined around the first welding spot as the center thereof.
US Pat. No. 9,469,895

SPRING STEEL AND SURFACE TREATMENT METHOD FOR STEEL MATERIAL

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

4. A spring steel consisting of, by weight %, 0.27 to 0.48% of C, 0.01 to 2.2% of Si, 0.30 to 1.0% of Mn, not more than 0.035%
of P, not more than 0.035% of S, and the balance of Fe, infiltrated N and inevitable impurities, the spring steel having a
nitrogen compound layer and a carbon compound layer at a total thickness of not more than 2 ?m at a surface thereof and having
a center portion with hardness of 500 to 700 HV in a cross section,
wherein the spring steel has a high hardness layer under the nitrogen compound layer and the carbon compound layer, and the
high hardness layer has a thickness of 0.1 to 1.0 mm and has greater hardness than that of the center portion by 100 to 500
HV.

US Pat. No. 9,371,022

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a cushion frame provided inside a seat cushion of a vehicle seat on which an occupant sits;
a seatback frame provided inside a seatback of the seat;
a coupling member that rotatably supports the seatback frame, that couples together the cushion frame and the seatback frame,
and that is provided with a fixing hole such that the coupling member, is fixed to the cushion frame;

a fixing portion that is inserted through the fixing hole, and that fixes the coupling member to the cushion frame; and
a weakened portion that is provided to the coupling member, that extends upward or downward continuously from an edge portion
of the fixing hole, and that lets the coupling member undergo relative rotation with respect to the cushion frame by performing
plastic deformation due to being pushed by the fixing portion when load in the vehicle rear direction or the vehicle front
direction is imparted to the seatback frame at a time of vehicle collision,

wherein the coupling member and the weakened portion are plate shaped, and a plate thickness of the weakened portion at an
area close to the edge portion of the fixing hole is thinner than a plate thickness of the coupling member and becomes gradually
thicker on progression of extending upward or downward from the edge portion of the fixing hole.

US Pat. No. 9,278,602

STABILIZER LINK AND PRODUCTION METHOD FOR SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A production method for stabilizer links, comprising:
a preparing step in which a stud ball, a ball seat, and a dust cover are prepared, wherein
the stud ball has a ball portion;
the ball seat has a flange portion and a groove portion, the flange portion extending from a side surface of an outer peripheral
side of the ball seat to a radial direction outside, the groove portion formed at a boundary portion between the flange portion
and the side surface of the outer peripheral side of the ball seat; and

the dust cover has a fixing portion and a projection portion formed at an end portion of the fixing portion;
a subassembly forming step in which a subassembly having the stud ball, the ball seat, and the dust cover is formed, wherein
in the subassembly forming step, the ball portion of the stud ball is inserted into an opening portion of the ball seat, an
inner peripheral side radial direction surface of the fixing portion of the dust cover is abutted to an outer peripheral side
radial direction surface of the flange porting of the ball seat, and a portion of the projection portion of the fixing portion
is engaged with the groove portion; and

an injection molding step in which the subassembly is inserted into a die as a core, a cavity is formed, and injection molding
is performed by injecting a resin into the cavity, so that a housing and a support bar are integrally formed, the housing
covering an outer peripheral portion of the ball seat, the support bar supporting the housing, wherein

in the inserting of the subassembly into the die, a die having a radial direction surface pressing portion extending toward
a radial direction inside is used as the die, a predetermined gap is provided between an inner surface of the die and the
outer peripheral portion of the ball seat, an outer peripheral side radial direction surface of the fixing portion of the
dust cover is pressed toward the flange portion by the radial direction surface pressing portion of the die, and the fixing
portion of the dust cover is held by the radial direction surface pressing portion of the die and the flange portion of the
ball seat;

in the holding of the fixing portion, the projection portion of the fixing portion is compressed by the radial direction surface
pressing portion of the die and the groove portion of the ball seat, and internal pressure is thereby generated in the projection
portion;

a radial direction surface pressing portion side tapered surface is formed at an end portion of the radial direction surface
pressing portion of the die;

a flange portion side tapered surface is formed at the groove portion of the flange portion of the ball seat and faces the
radial direction surface pressing portion side tapered surface; and

the projection portion is pressed by the radial direction surface pressing portion side tapered surface and the flange portion
side tapered surface, thereby being compressed toward the radial direction inside.

US Pat. No. 9,222,562

OUTPUT MEMBER AND MULTI-SHAFT DRIVING DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An output member comprising:
an output shaft that is made of resin and that is applied to a mechanical device for a vehicle;
a movable shaft that is made of resin and is installed at the output shaft;
an output-side clutch member that is made of resin and is provided integrally with the movable shaft;
a guide portion that is structured by a shape of an outer peripheral surface of one of the output shaft and the movable shaft
and a shape of an inner peripheral surface of another of the output shaft and the movable shaft, and that makes the movable
shaft able to slide in an axial direction and unable to rotate relatively, with respect to the output shaft, wherein the inner
peripheral surface of the other engages with the outer peripheral surface of the one of the output shaft and the movable shaft;
and

an urging member that urges the movable shaft in one direction or another direction opposite to the one direction in the axial
direction,

wherein the urging member is disposed at interiors of the output shaft and the movable shaft,
a guide hole that opens toward a distal end side is formed in the output shaft, and a coil spring that serves as the urging
member is accommodated in the guide hole, and a positioning portion, that positions an end portion of the coil spring, is
provided at the movable shaft, and

the output-side clutch member is an output-side bevel gear that, when the movable shaft slides in the one direction, is configured
to mesh-together with an input-side bevel gear that serves as an input-side clutch member.

US Pat. No. 10,041,160

STEEL FOR SPRING, AND METHOD FOR PRODUCING SPRING

JFE STEEL CORPORATION, T...

1. Steel for springs, the steel comprising a chemical composition containingC: 0.45 mass % or more and less than 0.65 mass %,
Si: 0.15 mass % or more and 0.70 mass % or less,
Mn: 0.10 mass % or more and 1.00 mass % or less,
Cr: 0.20 mass % or more and 1.50 mass % or less,
P: 0.025 mass % or less,
S: 0.025 mass % or less,
O: 0.0015 mass % or less,
Sb: 0.010 mass % or more and less than 0.030 mass %,
Sn: 0.010 mass % or more and 0.030 mass % or less, and
the balance being Fe and incidental impurities, and an A value calculated by Formula (1) being 0.65 or more and 3.50 or less, a B value calculated by Formula (2) being 3.10 or more and 34.00 or less, and a C value calculated by Formula (3) being 0.020 mass % or more and 0.050 mass % or less:
A=[C]/([Si]+[Sb]+[Sn])  (1),
B=[Si]/([Sn]+[Sb])  (2),
C=[Sb]+[Sn]  (3),
where brackets represent content in mass % of an element enclosed in the brackets.

US Pat. No. 9,803,269

?+? TYPE TITANIUM ALLOY AND PRODUCTION METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. An ?+? titanium alloy comprising:
an ultrafine structure consisting of equiaxial crystals in which area ratio of crystals having a grain diameter of 1 ?m or
less is 60% or more, and a maximum frequency grain diameter is 0.5 ?m or less;

wherein a portion in which an integration degree of plane orientation (0001) of a hexagonal close-packed crystal is 1.00 or
more exists within a range of 0 to 60 degrees with respect to a normal line of a processed surface of the alloy.

US Pat. No. 9,318,135

METHOD OF MANUFACTURING PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of manufacturing a piezoelectric element that deforms so as to elongate and contract along a deformation direction
according to a voltage applied thereto, the method comprising steps of:
cutting a plurality of piezoelectric elements out from a base piezoelectric material plate so that each one piezoelectric
element of said plurality of piezoelectric elements has peripheral end faces that are formed to define a peripheral shape
of said each one piezoelectric element and a gap is formed between facing end faces of the peripheral end faces of adjacent
piezoelectric elements in said plurality of piezoelectric elements; and

forming polymer coatings on at least opposite end faces in the peripheral end faces of the piezoelectric element in an orthogonal
direction relative to the deformation direction by vapor deposition polymerization through which gasified monomer enters into
the gap, respectively,

wherein the method further comprises
forming electrodes on opposite sides of the piezoelectric element, respectively, each said electrode to be connected to another
member in order to apply a voltage to the piezoelectric element; and

covering at least a middle portion of each said electrode in said orthogonal direction with a mask, to avoid the middle portion
from the vapor deposition polymerization at a subsequent coating forming step, in which

the mask for one of the electrodes exposes side portions of said one of the electrodes in said orthogonal direction to cover
the middle portion defined between the side portions, and

a space is defined between adjacent masks for said one of the electrodes covering the respective middle portions of the adjacent
piezoelectric elements to communicate with the corresponding gap when the covering step is carried out.

US Pat. No. 9,064,516

DISK DRIVE FLEXURE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A disk drive flexure which is secured to a load beam of a disk drive suspension and on which a magnetic head is mounted,
the flexure comprising:
a metal base and a conductive circuit portion formed on the metal base; and
a flexure tail,
the flexure tail comprising:
a tail pad portion in which tail electrodes are formed;
a stub including a cut surface formed on one end of the tail pad portion and comprising conductors which are electrically
connected to the tail electrodes; and

a bent portion formed in the stub in a thickness direction.

US Pat. No. 9,721,598

TERMINAL PAD OF A FLEXURE FOR A HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING A PADDING PLATING AND METHOD OF FORMING THE TERMINAL PAD

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A terminal pad of a flexure for a head suspension connected to a functional part through a bonding material, comprising:
a terminal body;
a base plating formed on a surface of the terminal body and having a uniform thickness;
a padding plating bulging from the base plating and made of a same material as the base plating and being continuous with
and integrated with the base plating without a boundary between the base plating and the padding plating; and

a surface plating of a material different from the material of which the padding plating is made, formed on a surface of the
padding plating and defining a boundary between the surface plating and the padding plating;

wherein the flexure has an insulating layer and the padding plating has a D-shaped cross-section that bulges from the base
plating and the insulating layer around the base plating to define an arc-shaped surface including corner regions rising from
the insulating layer, and a top region spanning between the corner regions wherein the top region has a curvature smaller
than the curvature of the corner regions or the top region has a flat profile.

US Pat. No. 9,453,596

MEMBER WITH FLOW PASSAGE AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING THE SAME

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A member with a flow passage provided thereinside, comprising:
a base member made of metal or alloy;
a plate-like member made of metal or alloy in a plate-like shape, including: two flat plate portions that are positioned at
both widthwise ends and have main surfaces passing over one and the same plane; and a convex portion that is provided between
the two flat plate portions and has a cross section shaped in a thickness direction so as to protrude with respect to the
flat plate portions, and forming the flow passage; and

a metal deposit layer that is formed by, while main surfaces of the flat plate portions opposite to a top of the convex portion
are facing the base member, accelerating powder of metal or alloy together with a gas, and spraying and depositing the powder
in a solid-phase state on a surface of the plate-like member at the top side of the convex portion and a surface of the base
member,

wherein end portions of the plate-like member are wider with increasing proximity to the base member.

US Pat. No. 9,117,466

DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A disk drive suspension comprising:
a load beam;
a flexure with a metal base supported by the load beam, the flexure comprising a tongue on which a slider is mounted, and
a pair of arms formed on both sides of the tongue; and

a conducting member connected to the slider,
wherein the conducting member includes an insulating layer made of an electrically insulating resin and conductors formed
on the insulating layer, and the conducting member comprises unsupported conductive circuit portions which do not overlap
with the metal base and which comprise curved bendable portions that protrude toward the pair of arms, respectively,

wherein the tongue comprises a pair of supporting portions to which end portions of a pair of microactuator elements are secured,
respectively,

wherein the conducting member further comprises bridge members to mutually connect the unsupported conductive circuit portions
and the tongue between the unsupported conductive circuit portions and the tongue, and

wherein the bridge members are formed of a resin which is the same material as the electrically insulating resin of the insulating
layer, and the bridge members comprise:

bridge bodies along the pair of arms;
first-side end portions which extend from first ends of the bridge bodies to the tongue, and which are fixed to the metal
base at the pair of supporting portions, respectively; and

second-side end portions which extend from second ends of the bridge bodies to the unsupported conductive circuit portions,
and which are connected to outsides of the curved bendable portions, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,062,365

METHOD OF MANUFACTURING METAL PART

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A method of manufacturing a suspension part mountable on an actuator arm of a disk drive, the method comprising:
(i) obtaining a press-formed product for the suspension part by press-forming an austenitic stainless steel plate;
(ii) heating the press-formed product to at least 600° C. in an oxygen-free atmosphere; and
(iii) heat-treating the press-formed product at a temperature of 150 to 300° C. in an oxygen atmosphere after the heating
step (ii), thereby generating a passive film on a surface on the press-formed product.

US Pat. No. 9,905,252

HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING ACTUATOR IN WHICH PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT IS BONDED WITH BONDING TAPE, ACTUATOR AND METHOD OF ATTACHING PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT WITH BONDING TAPE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of attaching a piezoelectric element to a head suspension that includes a base to be attached to a carriage and
turned around a spindle of the carriage, a load beam having a rigid part and a resident part, the resilient part connecting
the rigid part to the base, the load beam applying load onto a head at a front end distal to the base to write and read information,
a flexure attached to the load beam and supporting the head to connect the head to read/write wiring, an actuator attaching
part located between the base and the head, to enable the head to be moved in a sway direction relative to the base, and the
piezoelectric element fixed to the actuator attaching part, the piezoelectric element being deformable in response to a voltage
applied thereto to move the head in the sway direction relative to the base, the method comprising:
bonding the piezoelectric element with a bonding tape to the actuator attaching part; and
applying an adhesive to fix the piezoelectric element to the actuator attaching part after the bonding step.

US Pat. No. 9,470,590

COIL SPRING MODELING APPARATUS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A coil spring modeling apparatus provided on a strut comprising a first strut element and a second strut element which
are movable relatively along an axis, the coil spring modeling apparatus comprising:
a lower spring seat provided on the first strut element;
an upper spring seat arranged above the lower spring seat;
a first attachment member disposed on the lower spring seat;
a second attachment member disposed on the upper spring seat;
a base member disposed above the upper spring seat;
an actuator unit which is arranged between the first attachment member and the second attachment member, and extends and retracts;
a rotation support mechanism which is arranged between the base member and the actuator unit, and configured to rotatably
support the upper spring seat and the actuator unit with respect to the base member about the axis;

a first inner load cell which is arranged coaxially with the rotation support mechanism within the first attachment member,
comprises a through-hole into which the first strut element is inserted, and is configured to detect an axial force applied
to the lower spring seat and a moment about the axis; and

a second inner load cell which is arranged coaxially with the rotation support mechanism within the second attachment member,
comprises a through-hole into which the second strut element is inserted, and is configured to detect an axial force applied
to the upper spring seat and a moment about the axis.

US Pat. No. 9,341,650

SPACE TRANSFORMER HAVING A CERAMIC SUBSTRATE WITH A WIRING PATTERN FOR USE IN A PROBE CARD

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A space transformer comprising:
a ceramic substrate that contains enstatite and boron nitride as components;
a through hole running through in a thickness direction with respect to a sintered body in which the boron nitride is oriented
in one direction;

conductive material provided inside the through hole; and
a wiring patterns including a plurality of electrodes provided on each of two principal surfaces of the ceramic substrate,
wherein a wiring pitch in the wiring pattern on one principal surface is different from a wiring pitch in the wiring pattern
on the other principal surface,

wherein the ceramic substrate has an orientation index K=|log10{(I(100)/I(002))///(I(100)/I(002))?}| equal to or higher than 0.8 that is calculated based on a ratio (I(100)/I(002))// between intensity of X-ray diffraction I(002) along a (002) plane of a crystal of the boron nitride and intensity of X-ray diffraction I(100) along a (100) plane thereof when irradiated with an X-ray in the orientation direction of the boron nitride and a ratio (I(100)/I(002))? between the intensity of X-ray diffraction I(002) along the (002) plane and the intensity of X-ray diffraction I(100) along the (100) plane when irradiated with an X-ray in a direction orthogonal to the orientation direction.

US Pat. No. 9,070,487

CONDUCTIVE MEMBER

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A conductive member comprising:
a first and a second conductive materials, at least one of which contains a conductive material having electrical resistance
lower than aluminum; and

a metal film formed by depositing powder including a metal, the powder being accelerated together with a gas and sprayed,
in a solid state, onto a surface of a butting part, where the first and the second conductive materials are butted against
each other, wherein another one of the first and the second conductive materials is aluminum or an aluminum alloy, wherein

each of the first and the second conductive materials includes a cutout portion having a cutout shape in an end on a butting
side,

the metal film covers the cutout portion,
the cutout portion has a tapered shape, which is inclined relative to each of principal surfaces of the first and the second
conductive materials, and

the cutout portion has an angle of inclination from zero to 45 degrees relative to each of the principal surfaces of the first
and the second conductive materials.

US Pat. No. 9,804,496

METHOD OF FORMING A WIRING PART OF A FLEXURE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of forming a wiring part of a flexure having a metal substrate, the metal substrate having a front end supporting
a slider, the wiring part having a base insulating layer and a conductor layer formed on the base insulating layer, the wiring
part including a normal wiring part that is on the metal substrate, and an aerial wiring part that is on a space separated
from the metal substrate, the base insulating layer of the aerial wiring part being formed to be thinner than that of the
normal wiring part, the wiring part further including a terminal where each face of the conductor layer is exposed in a layer
direction of the wiring part, the method comprising steps of:
forming the terminal by:
forming the base insulating layer on the metal substrate;
forming a first recess in the base insulating layer on a first side opposite to the metal substrate in the layer direction;
forming the conductor layer on the base insulating layer such that the conductor layer follows the first side of the base
insulating layer and has a first face exposed through the first recess and a second face opposite to the first face in the
layer direction;

partly removing the metal substrate and forming a substrate opening corresponding to the first recess; and
forming a second recess in the base insulating layer adjacent to the substrate opening from a metal substrate side up to the
first recess so that the second face of the conductor layer of the terminal is exposed through the second recess and the substrate
opening; and

forming the aerial wiring part simultaneously with the terminal by:
executing the steps, on a portion of the wiring part proximate to the terminal, of forming the base insulating layer on the
metal substrate, and a) forming a first wiring recess, the conductor layer, and a wiring substrate opening or b) forming the
conductor layer, the wiring substrate opening, and a second wiring recess, thereby to leave, along the first face or the second
face of the conductor layer of the aerial wiring part, the base insulating layer of the aerial wiring part being thinner than
the base insulating layer of the normal wiring part and the base insulating layer extending across the entire wiring substrate
opening.

US Pat. No. 9,656,579

HEADREST AND VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A headrest comprising:
a pad member including a recess shaped housing portion open to a rear side when the headrest is assembled to a vehicle seat
and being a resilient body that supports the head of an occupant; and

an attachment member having a portion housed in the housing portion, being formed with an opening portion for attaching a
display device to, and further having an outer peripheral portion of the opening portion that is disposed further to the rear
side than the pad member,

wherein the attachment member is formed in a box shape open at the opening portion, and includes a bottom plate, an upper
plate with a plate face facing upward, one side plate with a plate face facing one side, another side plate with a plate face
facing the other side, and a lower plate with a plate face facing downward,

the attachment member comprises a slit that enables flexing of the lower plate,
the slit is disposed at a corner portion formed by the lower plate with one of the one side plate and the other side, and
an end of the slit is open at the opening portion of the attachment member such that the outer peripheral portion of the opening
portion of the attachment member is separated by the slit,

wherein the pad member comprises a lower bottom portion at a lower side of the recess shaped housing portion; and a covering
member covering the pad member, wherein at least a portion of the covering member is disposed in the slit.

US Pat. No. 9,643,444

IDENTIFICATION MEDIUM

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An identification medium comprising
a cholesteric liquid crystal layer on which a hologram is formed,
a first supporting member and a second supporting member between which the cholesteric liquid crystal layer is sandwiched,
and at least one thereof is made of transparent material which does not disturb circularly polarized light reflected from
the cholesteric liquid crystal layer, and

a mounting region to be sewn onto an object, the first supporting member and the second supporting member extending to the
mounting region and being adhered directly to each other by an adhesive layer in the mounting region, wherein

the first supporting member is a polyurethane film or a cloth, and the cholesteric liquid crystal layer is affixed to both
of the first supporting member and the second supporting member by adhesive layers.

US Pat. No. 9,638,650

PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT FEEDER CAPABLE OF MEASURING ELECTRIC CHARACTERISTICS OF PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT AND METHOD OF MEASURING ELECTRIC CHARACTERISTICS OF PIEZOELECTRIC ELEMENT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A piezoelectric element feeder for feeding a piezoelectric element, which is ready to be installed in an actuator attaching
part, onto the actuator attaching part, comprising:
a hollow cylindrical main body defining an internal space on which negative pressure acts;
a drawing unit that is a hollow cylindrical part comprised of a front end of the main body and having an opening communicating
with the internal space of the hollow cylindrical main body to draw a first electrode surface of the piezoelectric element
by the negative pressure acting on the internal space of the main body while the drawing unit contacts the first electrode
surface of the piezoelectric element along a periphery of the opening, and to convey the drawn piezoelectric element onto
the actuator attaching part; and

a probe supported in the internal space of the main body so as to be movable through the opening between a first position
at which the probe protrudes from the internal space so that a front end of the probe is brought into contact with the first
electrode surface when or just before the drawing unit draws the first electrode surface, to enable the measurement of electric
characteristics of the piezoelectric element, and a second position at which the probe is retracted into the internal space.

US Pat. No. 9,610,871

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seatback frame that configures a frame of a resin-formed seatback, and that comprises a plate-shaped back face panel portion
disposed at a back face of the seatback;

a headrest that is provided at an upper end of the seatback;
a seatback pad that is provided at a front side of the seatback frame;
a lattice-shaped spring member that is formed from wire arranged in a lattice shape, that is attached to the seatback frame
at a seat front side of the back face panel portion, and that is configured to resiliently support the seatback pad from a
seat rear side, with a space formed between the back face panel portion and the lattice-shaped spring member; and

a load transmission section that includes a first face and a second face being opposite to the first face, the load transmission
section being disposed inside the space such that the first face is attached to one of the lattice-shaped spring member or
the back face panel portion and the second face projects out toward the other one of the lattice-shaped spring member or the
back face panel portion such that a gap is formed between the load transmission section and the other one of the lattice-shaped
spring member or the back face panel portion, and such that the second face does not contact any other member in a normal
operation.

US Pat. No. 9,463,724

HEADREST STRUCTURE AND HEADREST DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A headrest structure comprising:
a bottom plate that is provided at a lower face of a headrest attached so as to be capable of rotating in a seat front-rear
direction with respect to a stay provided at a seatback of a vehicle seat, and that is provided with an elongated hole extending
in the seat front-rear direction through which the stay is inserted, the bottom plate being rotated in the seat front-rear
direction with respect to the stay by rotation of the headrest in the seat front-rear direction;

a guide sheet that has the same width as a width of the elongated hole, that is longer than a length of the elongated hole,
whose both end portions are slidably supported by the bottom plate such that the guide sheet is slidable in the seat front-rear
direction on the bottom plate, and that is provided with an elongated guide hole that is smaller than the elongated hole;

a concealing sheet that is provided with an attachment hole to which the stay is attached, and that is overlapped slidably
on an upper face of the guide sheet so as to cover the elongated guide hole; and

a wall portion that is formed at the bottom plate, and that restricts movement of the guide sheet and the concealing sheet
in a seat width direction,

wherein the wall portion is provided with a stopper portion that projects out from the wall portion in the seat width direction
and to an opening face of the elongated hole so as to cover both end portions of the guide sheet in a width direction of the
guide sheet and both end portions of the concealing sheet in a width direction of the concealing sheet.

US Pat. No. 9,454,982

WIRING STRUCTURE OF HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING A STACKED INTERLEAVED PART AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE SAME

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A wiring structure of a head suspension including a flexure that supports a head used to write and read data to and from
a recording medium and is attached to a load beam applying load onto the head, comprising:
write wiring and read wiring formed on the flexure and connected to the head, each having wires of opposite polarities; and
a stacked interleaved part provided at least for the write wiring; and
wherein the stacked interleaved part comprises:
segments electrically connected to the respective wires of the write wiring at both ends in each segment, the segments stacked
on and facing the wires of the write wiring through an electrical insulating layer so that the facing wire and segment have
opposite polarities to interleave at least the write wiring at the stacked interleaved part; and

first and second crossing sections spanning from respective ends of said each segment to the wire of the same polarity, the
first and second crossing sections of one of the segments crossing the second and first crossing sections of the other of
the segments with an interposition of the electrical insulating layer in a direction in which the segments are stacked on
the wires to form grade separation crossings, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,224,254

DISPLAY APPARATUS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

15. A display apparatus for use in a vessel, the display apparatus comprising:
a display;
an interface configured to manipulate a screen displayed on the display,
a communication device configured to communicate with a steering system including a helm apparatus configured to designate
a rudder angle of a propulsion device provided in the vessel and a steering actuator configured to drive a steering mechanism
in accordance with the rudder angle designated by the helm apparatus, thereby to change the rudder angle of the propulsion
device; and

a controller configured to cause the display to display an emergency screen when a malfunction occurs in the helm apparatus,
and to communicate with the steering system via the communication device, thereby to drive the steering actuator in accordance
with the rudder angle designated by operating the interface at the emergency screen.

US Pat. No. 9,056,355

LATHE MACHINING MEMBER

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A lathe machining member that is mounted on a lathe to be lathe machined, the lathe machining member comprising:
a cylindrical core portion, at least a part of which is made of a noble metal alloy, is configured to have a diameter larger
than a maximum diameter of a shape obtained by lathe machining, the noble metal alloy comprising:

silver (Ag), palladium (Pd), gold (Au), platinum (Pt), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), iron (Fe) and nickel (Ni),
palladium (Pd), silver (Ag), and copper (Cu), or
silver (Ag), platinum (Pt), zinc (Zn), gold (Au) and copper (Cu); and
a hollow-cylindrical peripheral portion made of a material that is different from the material of the core portion, the peripheral
portion being a portion to be cut off by lathe machining wherein

the core portion is arranged in a hollow portion of the peripheral portion with no space.

US Pat. No. 10,134,432

FLEXURE CHAIN BLANK SHEET FOR DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure chain blank sheet for a disk drive suspension comprising a plurality of frame units, each of the frame units comprising:a frame portion made from a stainless steel plate; and
a plurality of flexure elements arranged at a predetermined pitch within the frame portion, each of the plurality of flexure elements comprising a metal base formed from the stainless steel plate and a conductive circuit portion provided on the metal base,
wherein the frame portion includes a first lengthwise frame and a second lengthwise frame extending in a longitudinal direction of the plurality of flexure elements, and a first lateral frame and a second lateral frame extending in a width direction of the plurality of flexure elements, and
wherein the flexure chain blank sheet further comprises:
a slit which is formed between the first lateral frame of a first frame unit of the plurality of frame units and the second lateral frame of a second frame unit of the plurality of frame units, the first frame unit being adjacent to the second frame unit, and the slit having a first opening width;
a connection portion which connects the first lateral frame of the first frame unit and the second lateral frame of the second frame unit, the connection portion including a portion-to-be-cut which is to be sheared by a cutter; and
recesses which are formed on both sides of the connection portion, each of the recesses having a second opening width greater than the first opening width, and the second opening width allowing the cutter to be inserted into the recesses.

US Pat. No. 9,630,696

OUTBOARD MOTOR SHIFT ACTUATOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A shift actuator inside an outboard motor including a propeller shaft and a gearshift case having gears and a shift member,
the shift actuator comprising:
a main body section accommodated in the gearshift case of the outboard motor; and
a shaft section inside the gearshift case joined to the main body section,
the main body section comprising:
an electric motor having a rotating shaft extending vertically and perpendicularly to the propeller shaft; and
a gear mechanism causing the rotating shaft of the electric motor to rotate the shaft section, and
the shaft section comprising:
a threaded shaft extending parallel to the rotating shaft of the electric motor, and made to rotate by the gear mechanism
in conjunction with the rotating shaft of the electric motor; and

a movable nut screwed on the threaded shaft to vertically move along the threaded shaft with rotation of the threaded shaft,
and connected with the shift member to shift the gears for the propeller shaft.

US Pat. No. 9,576,600

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure of a disk drive suspension with a magnetic head mounted therein, the flexure comprising a metal base, a conductive
circuit portion formed along the metal base, and a tail pad portion formed in a flexure tail at an end of the flexure, and
the tail pad portion comprising:
a frame structure including a first frame and a second frame which are a part of the metal base and extend in a longitudinal
direction of the tail pad portion, and in which an opening is formed between the first frame and the second frame, a distal
end of the first frame and a distal end of the second frame being separated from each other;

a tail terminal group comprising a plurality of tail terminals arranged in the tail pad portion, the tail terminals being
arranged to be spaced apart from each other in the longitudinal direction of the tail pad portion, each of the tail terminals
traversing the opening of the frame structure; and

a bridge portion including at least one conductive bridge member which electrically connects the first frame and the second
frame to each other, the at least one bridge member being arranged between the tail terminals which are adjacent to each other
between the first frame and the second frame,

wherein the at least one bridge member is made of a metal which is the same material as the tail terminals.

US Pat. No. 9,517,709

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat cushion that supports the buttocks of a seated occupant;
a seatback that supports the back and the lumbar region of the seated occupant; and
a multi-layer cover member that configures a portion of a cover covering the seat cushion or the seatback, and comprises natural
leather disposed at an outer surface of the multi-layer cover member, a plate shaped first foam body adhered to the inside
of the natural leather, a plate shaped second foam body adhered to the inside of the first foam body, an inside non-woven
fabric adhered to the inside of the second foam body, and an intermediate non-woven fabric adhered between the first foam
body and the second foam body at a location of contact of the natural leather with the body of the seated occupant.

US Pat. No. 10,118,208

HOLLOW SPRING UTILIZING SEAMLESS STEEL PIPE

SHINKO METAL PRODUCTS CO....

1. A hollow spring, comprising:a seamless steel pipe formed from a cylindrical steel material billet through a hot isostatic extrusion step, the seamless steel pipe having a hollow body in a shape of a coil or a bar or a bar with curved part, wherein
a depth of a contiguous flaw formed on an inner periphery surface or an outer periphery surface of the steel pipe is 50 ?m or less;
the steel material is spring steel and the hollow body has compressive residual stress resulting from applying a surface treatment of either a quenching and tempering heat treatment plus nitriding treatment, or a carburization quenching and tempering heat treatment to the hollow body; and
the hollow body in a shape of a coil or a bar or a bar with curved part has a cross-sectional outer contour in a shape of an ovoid in which a curvature radius on an inner diameter-side is smaller and a cross-sectional inner contour in a shape of a circle.

US Pat. No. 9,689,405

HYDRAULIC ACCUMULATOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A hydraulic accumulator comprising:
a shell including an internal space having a gas chamber to be filled with a pressurized gas and a fluid chamber to be filled
with a hydraulic-fluid;

a bellows that is extendable and contractible, installed in the shell, and partitions the internal space into the gas chamber
and the fluid chamber, the bellows including a bellows cap at an end portion of the bellows;

a port portion provided to the shell and defining a hydraulic-fluid inlet communicating with the fluid chamber; and
a self-seal stay disposed in the fluid chamber and comprising a cylindrical body portion surrounding the port portion; and
a lid-shaped head portion defining a through hole and extending from the cylindrical body portion, the through hole being
configured to be closed by the bellows cap which comes into contact with the head portion,

the cylindrical body portion including a first recessed portion recessed from an outer circumferential surface of the cylindrical
body portion and extending in a circumferential direction of the cylindrical body portion,

the first recessed portion including a bottom surface that is plane or circular arc curved shaped; and
at least one of both end portions of the bottom surface in the circumferential direction joined with the outer circumferential
surface of the cylindrical body portion,

the first recessed portion having a wall thickness which increases from a central portion of the first recessed portion to
said at least one of the end portions of the bottom surface in the circumferential direction of the cylindrical body portion,
and

the first recessed portion being configured to be deformed when a gas pressure in the gas chamber is higher than a predetermined
threshold.

US Pat. No. 9,620,158

TOLERANCE RING AND HARD DISK DEVICE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A tolerance ring comprising:
a base formed of a strip-like member substantially wound around into a shape;
a plurality of projections provided along a winding direction of the base so as to protrude from an outer peripheral surface
of the base in a radial direction of the base orthogonal to the outer peripheral surface;

at least one extended portion extending from at least one of edge end portions in a width direction of the base, the width
direction extending orthogonally to the winding direction and the radial direction,

wherein the extended portion extends from a region that includes at least one of a plurality of straight lines, the straight
lines passing through respective contact points and extend in parallel with the width direction, the contact points being
disposed between a section of the base and a circumscribed circle that circumscribes the section, the section being taken
along a plane that extends in parallel with the radial direction of the base and that does not pass the projections, and representing
the base that is necked down with both ends of the tolerance ring in the winding direction brought close to each other relative
to the base in a natural state.

US Pat. No. 9,564,155

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION HAVING A TAIL PAD PORTION WITH A BRIDGE ELEMENT AND A PLURALITY OF TAIL TERMINALS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure of a disk drive suspension having a magnetic head mounted therein, the flexure comprising a metal base, a conductive
circuit portion formed along the metal base, and a tail pad portion formed in a flexure tail at an end of the flexure, and
the tail pad portion comprising:
a frame structure including a first frame and a second frame which are a part of the metal base and extend in a longitudinal
direction of the tail pad portion, and in which an opening is formed between the first frame and the second frame;

a tail terminal group comprising a plurality of tail terminals arranged in the tail pad portion, the tail terminals being
arranged to be spaced apart from each other in the longitudinal direction of the tail pad portion, and each of the tail terminals
traversing the opening of the frame structure; and

a bridge portion including at least one bridge element which is a part of the metal base, the bridge element being arranged
at a position which overlaps at least one of the plurality of tail terminals in a thickness direction between the first frame
and the second frame and being electrically insulated from the at least one of the plurality of tail terminals, and the first
frame and the second frame being electrically connected to each other by the bridge element,

wherein a number of the at least one bridge element is less than a number of the tail terminals, and
wherein the tail pad portion further comprises:
a bridge-equipped terminal portion comprising a specific tail terminal selected from among the plurality of tail terminals,
the bridge element overlapping the specific tail terminal; and

a bridge-free terminal portion comprising a tail terminal other than the specific tail terminal selected from among the plurality
of tail terminals, the bridge-free terminal portion being free of an overlapping bridge element.

US Pat. No. 9,480,891

METAL SHAFT HAVING LONGITUDINALLY VARYING HARDNESS, GOLF SHAFT USING THE METAL SHAFT, GOLF CLUB USING THE METAL GOLF SHAFT, METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE METAL SHAFT, AND TEMPERING APPARATUS

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A metal shaft comprising
a hollow tube made of metal,
wherein the tube has a hardness pattern exhibited by hardness of the tube varying in a longitudinal direction of the tube
according to Young's modulus or tensile strength of the metal varying in the longitudinal direction, so that the hardness
relatively increases as the tensile strength relatively increases or as the Young's modulus relatively decreases and the hardness
relatively decreases, as the tensile strength relatively decreases or as the Young's modulus relatively increases in the hardness
pattern.

US Pat. No. 9,400,027

CONED DISC SPRING

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

2. A coned disc spring comprising:
a hole and
a body in a disc shape in which an outer circumference is an ellipse,
wherein
a portion having a maximum outer diameter in the ellipse body is defined as a long radial part and a portion having a minimum
outer diameter in the ellipse body is defined as a short radial part,

a plate width extending from an inner circumference of the hole to a peripheral portion of the long radial part of the body
is set to be greater than a plate width extending from an inner circumference of the hole to a peripheral portion of the short
radial part of the body, and

an inner diameter of the hole along the long radial part is set to be larger than an inner diameter of the hole along the
short radial part.

US Pat. No. 9,379,465

CONNECTION TERMINAL HAVING A PRESS-FITTING PART INSERTED INTO A HOLLOW PART OF A HOLDING MEMBER

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A connection terminal for a power module, the connection terminal being a part of the power module including: a semiconductor
element; a substrate on which the semiconductor element is mounted; and a tubular conductive holding member which is joined
to a surface of the substrate and extends in a direction perpendicular to the surface, the connection terminal electrically
connecting an external circuit to the substrate constantly by being held by the holding member, the connection terminal being
obtained by winding a conductive wire,
the connection terminal comprising:
an insertion part, at least a part of which is closely wound and inserted into a hollow part of the holding member;
a rough winding part in which the wire is wound at a predetermined interval; a diameter-enlarging part connected between the
insertion part and the rough winding part; and

a contact part which is provided at an end part of the rough winding part on a side different from the end part on a side
of the insertion part, and comes into contact with the external circuit,

wherein the insertion part includes a press-fitting part having a diameter larger than a diameter of the hollow part.

US Pat. No. 9,278,603

SEMIMANUFACTURED PRODUCT OF MOVEMENT REGULATION MEMBER, STABILIZER BAR HAVING MOVEMENT REGULATION MEMBER, AND METHOD FOR INSTALLING SEMIMANUFACTURED PRODUCT OF MOVEMENT REGULATION MEMBER TO A STABILIZER BAR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A semimanufactured product of a movement regulation member to be installed onto a stabilizer bar for a vehicle, wherein
the semimanufactured product includes: a plate-shaped bridging portion; a first curved portion which extends from one end
portion of the bridging portion integrally; and a second curved portion which extends from the other end portion of the bridging
portion integrally, and an entirety of the semimanufactured product is formed in a C-shape;

the first curved portion includes a first locking part at an end portion of the first curved portion;
the second curved portion includes a second locking part that engages with the first locking part at an end portion of the
second curved portion;

the first locking part includes a convex-shaped convex portion and a pair of receiving portions positioned so as to sandwich
the convex portion;

the second locking part includes a concave-shaped concave portion which can accommodate the convex portion and a pair of projecting
portions positioned so as to sandwich the concave portion;

each of the pair of projecting portions includes a protruding portion which protrudes from a tip portion of the projecting
portion toward an opening of the concave portion;

the convex portion includes a constricted portion in a base end portion of the convex portion;
the pair of receiving portions include: a shoulder portion which is positioned at an outer side of the first locking part
in a width direction and projects in an expanding direction of the convex portion; and a guide surface which is inclined to
a direction opposite to the expanding direction of the convex portion toward the constricted portion with respect to the shoulder
portion;

height of the pair of protruding portions is larger as compared with depth of the concave shape of the guide surface;
a gap between the first and second locking parts is larger as compared with diameter of the stabilizer bar, and
the semimanufactured product of the movement regulation member is to be installed onto the stabilizer bar as a completed product
by making an inner circumferential surface of the bridging portion and the first and second curved portions pressingly contact
with an outer circumferential surface of the stabilizer bar using a pair of molds which cover outer peripheral sides of the
first and second curved portions, respectively, in a state where the stabilizer bar is placed onto an inner circumferential
surface of one curved portion among the first and second curved portions by passing the stabilizer bar through the gap;

by accommodating the convex portion in the concave portion upon administrating clamping work that makes the first and second
locking parts engage with each other; and

by the pair of protruding portions being plastically deformed so as to fill concave spaces sectioned by the guide surface
including the constricted portions toward an inner side in a width direction of the first locking part by being pressed onto
the guide surfaces which are continuous to the shoulder portions after contacting the guide surface of the pair of receiving
portions.

US Pat. No. 9,086,135

ENGINE CONTROL APPARATUS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An engine control apparatus comprising:
a housing;
a drive shaft provided rotatably in the housing;
a control lever mounted on the drive shaft, and configured to be pivoted over a forward shift operation range, a forward throttle
operation range, a reverse shift operation range, and a reverse throttle operation range with a neutral position in between
forward and reverse;

a shift drive unit configured to move a shift cable to a forward position when the control lever is moved to the forward shift
operation range from the neutral position, and to move the shift cable to a reverse position when the control lever is moved
to the reverse shift operation range from the neutral position;

a throttle drive unit configured to transmit pivoting of the control lever to a throttle cable in a state where the control
lever is moved to one of the forward throttle operation range and the reverse throttle operation range; and

a friction mechanism configured to apply friction to the pivoting of the control lever in a state where the control lever
is moved to one of the forward throttle operation range and the reverse throttle operation range,

the shift drive unit comprising:
a shift drive gear including a driving side gear portion which rotates together with the drive shaft; and
a shift arm including a driven side gear portion which transmits pivoting of the shift drive gear by meshing with the driving
side gear portion when the control lever is in one of the forward shift operation range and the reverse shift operation range,
the shift arm being in a stopped state when the control lever pivots in either of the throttle operation ranges,

the throttle drive unit comprising:
a throttle drive gear configured to rotate in a first direction and a second direction from an initial position;
a slide member comprising a first rack gear which meshes with the throttle drive gear when the control lever is in the forward
throttle operation range, and a second rack gear which meshes with the throttle drive gear when the control lever is in the
reverse throttle operation range, and configured to move by the pivoting of the throttle drive gear; and

a throttle arm connected to the slide member.

US Pat. No. 9,047,895

FLEXURE WITH RIGIDITY REDUCED DUE TO THINNED BASE INSULATING LAYER OF AERIAL WIRING PART

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A flexure comprising:
a metal substrate whose front end supports a slider;
a wiring part having a base insulating layer and a conductor layer formed on the base insulating layer, the wiring part including:
a normal wiring part that is on the metal substrate; and
an aerial wiring part that is on a space separated from the metal substrate, the base insulating layer of the aerial wiring
part being formed to be thinner than that of the normal wiring part in a layer direction of the base insulating layer, said
layer direction being a thickness direction of the wiring part in which the conductor layer is formed on the base insulating
layer; and

wherein the aerial wiring part is continuous with the normal wiring part in a length direction of the flexure, the base insulating
layer of the aerial wiring part having a recess extending along the aerial wiring part in said length direction, the recess
spanning at least a portion of a width of the aerial wiring part and having a thickness thinner than a thickness of the base
insulating layer of the normal wiring part.

US Pat. No. 9,905,496

WIRING CIRCUIT BOARD AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE SAME

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A wiring circuit board comprising:
a metal support layer forming a substrate;
an electric insulating layer laid on a surface of the metal support layer;
a wiring layer having a general part laid on a surface of the electric insulating layer and a functional part connected to
the general part to provide a given function; and

a raising structure in a thickness direction of the wiring layer provided to the functional part independently of the metal
support layer so that the functional part protrudes from a surface of the general part or has a surface being flush with the
surface of the general part.

US Pat. No. 9,786,307

GIMBAL ASSEMBLY WITH A GOLD TONGUE/DIMPLE INTERFACE AND METHODS OF MAKING THE SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD, Yok...

1. A gimbal assembly of an actuator, comprising:
a movable loadbeam having a dimple;
a flexure including:
a layer of stainless steel;
an insulation layer disposed below the layer of stainless steel;
a layer of copper disposed below the insulation layer;
a layer of gold disposed over the layer of copper; and
a cover plate layer;
wherein a hole is formed in the layer of stainless steel and the insulation layer to expose the layer of gold disposed over
the layer of copper, and wherein the dimple of the movable loadbeam is movable into the hole so as to contact the exposed
layer of gold.

US Pat. No. 9,761,256

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION, AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING CONDUCTIVE CIRCUIT PORTION OF FLEXURE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., To...

1. A flexure mounted on a load beam of a disk drive suspension, the flexure comprising:
a metal base formed of a stainless-steel plate; and
a conductive circuit portion arranged along the metal base,
the conductive circuit portion comprising:
an insulating layer formed of an electrically insulating material and formed on the metal base; and
a conductor formed on the insulating layer,
the conductor comprising:
a thin conductor portion formed in a first region which constitutes a part of the conductive circuit portion in a longitudinal
direction; and

a thick conductor portion formed in a second region which constitutes another part of the conductive circuit portion in the
longitudinal direction, a thickness of the thick conductor portion being greater than that of the thin conductor portion,
wherein:

the flexure comprises a flexure tail portion;
the flexure tail portion comprises:
an opening formed in the metal base;
a bent portion of the metal base which is bent in a thickness direction at the opening; and
a trace curved portion which is curved in the thickness direction at a position facing the opening; and
the trace curved portion comprises the thick conductor portion.

US Pat. No. 9,713,946

STRUT-TYPE SUSPENSION AND COMPRESSION COIL SPRING FOR SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A strut suspension comprising:
a lower spring seat;
an upper spring seat;
a compression coil spring which comprises a wire that is formed into a helical shape, and which is arranged in such a state
that it is compressed between the lower spring seat and the upper spring seat; and

a shock absorber which comprises a cylinder and a rod that is inserted into the cylinder, the shock absorber passing through
an inside of the compression coil spring,

wherein a coil central axis of the compression coil spring is offset to an outer side of a vehicle with respect to an axis
of the shock absorber, and

wherein the wire of the compression coil spring comprises:
a plurality of counter-offset-side large-diameter wire portions which are arranged more toward an inner side of the vehicle
than the axis of the shock absorber, wherein each of the plurality of counter-offset-side large-diameter wire portions has
a wire diameter that is greater than an average wire diameter of the wire, and wherein maximum values of the wire diameters
of the plurality of counter-offset-side large-diameter wire portions differ from each other;

a plurality of offset-side small-diameter wire portions which are arranged more toward the outer side of the vehicle than
the axis of the shock absorber, wherein each of the plurality of offset-side small-diameter wire portions has a wire diameter
that is smaller than the wire diameters of the plurality of counter-offset-side large-diameter wire portions, and wherein
minimum values of the wire diameters of the plurality of offset-side small-diameter wire portions differ from each other;

a plurality of wire diameter varying portions having wire diameters that are continuously varied between the plurality of
counter-offset-side large-diameter wire portions and the plurality of offset-side small-diameter wire portions;

a lower-end-side end turn portion whose wire diameter is smaller than the minimum values of the wire diameters of the plurality
of offset-side small-diameter wire portions, wherein the lower-end-side end turn portion contacts an upper surface of the
lower spring seat; and

an upper-end-side end turn portion whose wire diameter is smaller than the minimum values of the wire diameters of the plurality
of offset-side small-diameter wire portions, wherein the upper-end-side end turn portion contacts a lower surface of the upper
spring seat.

US Pat. No. 9,531,178

OVERHEAD WIRE TENSION BALANCER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD, Yok...

1. An overhead wire tension balancer, having cylinders coaxially arranged, comprising:
a long member that extends to an inside of the innermost cylinder of the cylinders,
a regulating member that is fixed at an end of the inside of the innermost cylinder of the cylinders, which relatively moves
the long member in a longitudinal direction, regulates rotation of the long member in which the longitudinal direction is
a rotational axis, and engages with the long member in a condition which prevents the long member from completely pulling
out from the inside of the innermost cylinder of the cylinders, and

a fixing member for fixing an end of the long member to the outermost cylinder of the cylinders,
wherein the long member is formed by members that are arranged in a direction perpendicular to the longitudinal direction,
the regulating member has a non-circular opening,
each of the members penetrates the opening and has an engaging portion at another end thereof for engaging with the opening
of the regulating member, and

the engaging portions of the members are engaged with the opening of the regulating member respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,489,978

METHOD OF SURFACE-TREATING METAL COMPONENT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A method of surface-treating a Fe—Cr—Ni stainless steel component, comprising:
a polishing step polishing a surface of the Fe—Cr—Ni stainless steel component formed into a given shape by chemical polishing;
and

a heat treat pseudo-plating step forming a pseudo-plated layer on the surface through a heat treatment conducted by heating
the Fe—Cr—Ni stainless steel component having the surface being in a chemically-polished state at a solution treatment temperature
or above in a reducing atmosphere after the polishing step.

US Pat. No. 9,414,441

SHAFT-EQUIPPED HEATER UNIT AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING SHAFT-EQUIPPED HEATER UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A shaft-equipped heater unit comprising:
a heater plate that heats an object to be heated placed thereon; and
a shaft that supports the heater plate,
wherein
the shaft is formed by spraying, on a rear surface of the heater plate, material powder which constitutes the shaft on the
heater plate at a temperature lower than a melting point of the material powder by heated compressed gas, and

the material powder bites into the rear surface of the heater plate at an interface between the shaft and the rear surface
of the heater plate.

US Pat. No. 9,388,830

ACCUMULATOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An accumulator comprising:
a shell inside which an air chamber and a fluid chamber are formed;
a bellows which is housed to freely expand and contract in the shell and partitions the inside of the shell into the air chamber
and the fluid chamber;

a port part which is provided on the shell and in which a pressure fluid inflow port that is open to the fluid chamber is
formed; and

a self-sealing member which is arranged on a tip portion of the bellows to face the port part, wherein
when a pressure in the fluid chamber is lower than a predetermined pressure relative to a pressure in the air chamber, the
self-sealing member is allowed to abut onto a seal area of the port part to block the pressure fluid inflow port, and wherein

the self-sealing member includes a base material part, a resilient member which is arranged on a surface of the base material
part to face the seal area, and an overhanging portion which is formed on the resilient member and allowed to abut onto the
seal area for sealing, and

the port part includes a seal face which is allowed to abut onto the overhanging portion and on which the seal area is formed,
and a projecting portion which is arranged on a region other than the seal area on the seal face, and wherein

when a temperature in the air chamber rises more excessively than in a normal operation, the overhanging portion on the resilient
member transubstantiates to allow the projecting portion to abut onto the base material part and to form between the seal
face and the self-sealing member a gap portion which leads from an outer border of the seal face to the pressure fluid inflow
port, the gap portion communicating with the fluid chamber through a spaced portion provided in the projecting portion, so
as to release the pressure in the air chamber through the gap portion.

US Pat. No. 9,214,746

CONTACT TERMINAL INTERPOSED BETWEEN TWO CONTACT TARGETS

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A contact terminal interposed between two contact targets so as to provide electrical conduction between the two contact
targets, the contact terminal comprising:
a first conductive member comprising
a salient portion composed of a plurality of inclined surfaces, and
a first contact portion that is provided at an end different from the salient portion and contacts an electrode of one of
the contact targets; and

a second conductive member comprising
a second contact portion that has a curved shape and contacts an electrode of another one of the contact targets,
a plurality of elastic portions each of which extends in a band shape along the curved shape from the second contact portion
and is elastically deformable, and

sliding contact portions each of which is provided at a leading end of one of the elastic portions and slidably contacts a
corresponding one of the inclined surfaces,

wherein an angle ? formed by the inclined surfaces satisfies a relation tan (?/2) ??, where ?represents a coefficient of friction
between the inclined surfaces and the sliding contact portions.

US Pat. No. 9,121,482

MULTI-SHAFT DRIVE DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A multi-shaft drive device comprising:
an input portion to which power of a motor is transmitted;
a plurality of output portions, each of which is provided with an output shaft, the output shafts being individually connected
to a plurality of movable mechanisms;

a clutch part capable of selectively disconnecting power transmission from the input portion to the plurality of output portions;
and

a gearbox that includes a power transmission member provided coaxially to the output shaft of at least one output portion
out of the plurality of output portions, and that connects together the output shaft and the movable mechanism,

wherein at least three output portions are provided at the multi-shaft drive device, and
the input portion and the output portions are configured to be connected to and separated from each other such that power
transmission is selectively performed, and

wherein the power transmission member is integrally formed with the output shaft.

US Pat. No. 9,076,957

TERMINAL CAPABLE OF STOPPING FLOW OF OOZED CONDUCTIVE ADHESIVE, FLEXURE HAVING THE TERMINAL, AND HEAD SUSPENSION HAVING THE FLEXURE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A terminal extending from a wiring member to face an electrode of a piezoelectric element and including a proximal end
part and a distal end part with respect to the wiring member, the distal end part being connected to the electrode of the
piezoelectric element through a conductive adhesive, comprising:
an insulating layer that faces the electrode of the piezoelectric element;
a wiring layer laid on the insulating layer and connected to the electrode at the distal end part; and
at least one liquid stopping recess provided on a surface of the insulating layer facing the electrode at the proximal end
part, the liquid stopping recess spanning between both edges of the insulating layer in an direction intersecting an extending
direction of the proximal end part.

US Pat. No. 9,070,418

CUTTING JIG FOR REWORKING HEAD SUSPENSION

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A cutting jig used to cut a bonding material of a terminal joint where an electric terminal of a slider on which a magnetic
head is arranged and an electric terminal of wiring formed on a flexure having a tongue resiliently supporting the slider
are joined together with the bonding material, the cutting jig comprising:
a base adapted to set thereon the slider that is supported by the flexure;
a blade being movable along the base and facing a front side wall of the slider in a moving direction of the blade with interposition
of the bonding material when the slider is set on the base; and

an upright portion formed on the base and having a stop face that faces a rear side wall of the slider in said moving direction
when the slider is set on the base, the rear side wall being opposite to the front side wall in said moving direction;

wherein the blade moves toward the slider to come into contact with the bonding material and be pressed to the front side
wall of the slider with interposition of the bonding material in said moving direction while the rear side wall of the slider
is brought into contact with and is stopped by the stop face in said moving direction when the slider is set on the base and
the bonding material is cut.

US Pat. No. 10,052,929

BUSH FOR STABILIZER, FASTENING TOOL, AND FASTENING METHOD

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A bush for a stabilizer, comprising:a hole part in which a bar of the stabilizer is inserted, and
the bush for a stabilizer is contained in a concave part of a bracket and the bar is bonded to the hole part,
wherein the hole part includes a first arc part and a second arc part,
the center of the first arc part and the center of the second arc part are separate,
a curvature radius of the second arc part is set to be smaller than that of the first arc part,
during bonding of the bar to the hole part, the first arc part is located at the opposite side of the opening part side of the concave part of the bracket, and the second arc part is located at the opening part side of the concave part of the bracket, and
a ratio of a gap between the centers of the first and the second arc parts with respect to an outer diameter of the bar is set to be 2 to 7%, whereby a surface pressure difference in an inner circumferential surface of the hole part is not more than 30%.

US Pat. No. 9,783,091

SEATBACK FRAME AND RESIN FOR EMPLOYING IN A SEATBACK FRAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A seatback frame that configures a frame of a seatback supporting the back of a seated occupant and is integrally formed
by resin molding, the seatback frame comprising:
an upper side frame section that includes a headrest retaining portion retaining a headrest, that is positioned at an upper
end of the seatback frame, and that extends along a seat width direction;

a pair of side frame sections that have upper sides connected to respective seat width direction end portions of the upper
side frame section and that extend along a seat vertical direction of the seatback frame; and

a reinforcing section that is formed in the upper side frame section by forming a plurality of recessed portions extending
along a seat front-rear direction, at least from the headrest retaining portion to the seat width direction end portion,

wherein more than one of the plurality of recessed portions are formed by being open toward a seat rear side and by providing
a first wall face extending along the seat vertical direction at a seat front side, and

wherein more than one of the plurality of recessed portions are formed by being open toward the seat front side and by providing
a second wall face extending along the seat vertical direction at the seat rear side.

US Pat. No. 9,752,636

HELICAL COMPRESSION SPRING AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A compression coil spring, comprising a steel wire material consisting of 0.45 to 0.80 weight % of C, 0.15 to 2.50 weight
% of Si, 0.3 to 1.0 weight % of Mn and iron and inevitable impurities as the remainder, and having a circle equivalent diameter
of 2.5 mm to 10 mm,
wherein an internal hardness at a freely selected cross section of the wire material is in a range of 570 to 700 Hv,
a C-condensed layer that exceeds an average concentration of C contained in the steel wire material exists at surface layer
part, and

in an approximate maximum principal stress direction generated when the coil spring is compressed and a compressive load is
loaded on an inner diameter side of the coil spring, an unloaded compressive residual stress at a depth of 0.2 mm and 0.4
mm from surface of the wire material is not less than 200 MPa and not less than 60 MPa, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,689,051

HOLLOW SEAMLESS PIPE FOR HIGH-STRENGTH SPRINGS

Kobe Steel, Ltd., Kobe-s...

1. A hollow seamless pipe, comprising: a steel material comprising
0.2 to 0.7 mass % of C,
0.5 to 3 mass % of Si,
0.1 to 2 mass % of Mn,
more than 0 mass % and 0.1 mass % or less of Al,
more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass % or less of P,
more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass % or less of S,
more than 0 mass % and 0.02 mass % or less of N, and Fe,
wherein
a C content in an inner peripheral surface and an outer peripheral surface of the hollow seamless pipe is 0.10 mass % or more,
a thickness of a whole decarburized layer in each of the inner peripheral surface and the outer peripheral surface of the
hollow seamless pipe is 200 ?m or less, and

an average grain size of ferrite in an inner surface layer part of the hollow seamless pipe is 11.7 ?m or less.

US Pat. No. 9,586,508

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seatback frame formed from resin that configures a framework of a seatback, and that includes a plate-shaped back face panel
portion disposed at a back face of the seatback and side frame portions configuring side portions of the seatback frame, the
back face panel portion and the side frame portions being formed in a single piece;

a headrest that is provided at an upper end portion of the seatback frame;
a seatback pad that is provided at a front face side of the seatback frame, with a space formed between the seatback pad and
the back face panel portion;

a back spring that is formed from wire and includes left and right side portions extending in an up-down direction of the
seatback, at both seat width direction sides inside the space, and includes a lower portion coupling together lower end portions
of the left and right side portions in the seat width direction, wherein the left and right side portions are supported so
as to be capable of undergoing displacement toward a seat width direction outer side with respect to the seatback frame, and
support the seatback pad from a seat rear side.

US Pat. No. 9,524,888

STAGE HEATER AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING SHAFT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A stage heater comprising:
a heating substrate made of aluminum or an alloy containing aluminum; and
a shaft that is bonded to one surface of the heating substrate and supports the heating substrate, wherein
the shaft includes a pipe made of a metal having a lower heat conductivity than a material of the heating substrate, and a
bonding layer formed on a side of the pipe to be bonded to the heating substrate, the bonding layer being formed by accelerating
a powder material of aluminum or a powder material of an alloy containing aluminum together with a gas and blowing the powder
material while being maintained in a solid phase to the pipe so as to deposit thereon,

wherein the bonding layer adheres tightly to the pipe by anchor effect, and
wherein a thickness of the bonding layer along a longitudinal direction or along a radius direction where the bonding layer
is bonded to the heating substrate is 50 to 5% of a thickness of the pipe.

US Pat. No. 9,454,175

CONTROL LEVER COMPRISING SWITCH AND REMOTE-CONTROL DEVICE COMPRISING THE CONTROL LEVER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A control lever attached to any one of a right side surface and a left side surface of a control box so as to be selectively
detachable, and manually turned in a back and forth direction of the control box, the control lever comprising:
a lever body comprising a base connected to a rotatable member in the control box, and an arm extended straight from an outer
periphery of the base, the arm comprising a first portion and a second portion positioned at a back of the first portion,
the first portion and the second portion being arranged in a lateral direction of the arm and having shapes that are symmetrical
to each other;

a grip arranged on the arm so as to be extractable in a longitudinal direction of the arm to selectively cover any one of
the first portion and the second portion from a right side or a left side of the arm, the grip comprising a handle positioned
on an opposite side of the base; and

a switch provided at an end of the handle, the switch comprising a button which is manually controllable and a cable paid
out from the switch, the cable being guided to the base through a space between the arm and the grip, and further guided to
the control box from the base,

wherein the base comprises a storage portion having a serpentine-curved path, and a middle portion of the cable passes through
the path such that the cable can be paid out therefrom.

US Pat. No. 9,194,440

PRODUCTION METHOD FOR CONED DISC SPRING AND CLUTCH APPARATUS PROVIDED WITH CONED DISC SPRING

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A clutch apparatus comprising:
plural clutch structures having common axis lines; each of the clutch structures comprising a cylindrical first member, a
second member and a third member provided in the first member so as to be movable in an axial direction, and a ring-shaped
coned disc spring provided between the second member and the third member, the coned disc spring comprising a convex surface
and a concave surface, the convex surface including an outer edge and an inner peripheral portion with an inner edge, the
concave surface including an inner edge and an outer peripheral portion with an outer edge,

wherein the coned disc springs in the plural clutch structures have the same thicknesses and have outer diameters that are
different from each other, and at least one of the coned disc springs is formed with a flat portion or a tapered portion,
the flat portion or the tapered portion being formed on at least one of the inner peripheral portion and the outer peripheral
potion, the flat portion and the tapered portion extending from a portion between the inner edge and the outer edge to the
inner edge in the convex surface, or extending from a portion between the inner edge and the outer edge to the outer edge
in the concave surface;

wherein the flat or tapered portion is provided only to the coned disc spring in which a required load in a flat condition
is larger than a required load of the other coned disc spring; and wherein one of the coned disc springs comprises a primary
coned disc spring having a larger outer diameter and the other coned disc spring comprises a secondary coned disc spring having
a smaller outer diameter, the secondary coned disc spring having a size configured to be disposed inside of the primary coned
disc spring.

US Pat. No. 9,153,463

SUBSTRATE SUPPORT DEVICE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A substrate support device, comprising:
a plate section formed of a metal;
a shaft section connected to the plate section and formed of a metal;
a heating element provided in the plate section;
a first insulating film formed on a first surface of the plate section, the first surface opposite to the shaft section, by
ceramic thermal spraying; and

a second insulating film formed on a second surface of the plate section which intersects the first surface of the plate section
approximately perpendicularly, by ceramic thermal spraying,

wherein:
the first surface of the plate section has a recessed portion;
an edge between the recessed portion and a peripheral non-recessed portion of the first surface has a curvature rounded off
so as to be curved outward, and an edge between the first surface and the second surface has a curvature rounded off so as
to be curved outward;

the first and second insulating films are insulating films as thin as possible in a range to achieve a desired withstand voltage;
the second surface of the plate section has a portion having a curvature, and having a value nearly equal to a thickness of
the plate section, which is curved outward toward a third surface of the plate section, the third surface being connected
to the shaft section;

the second insulating film is gradually thinner from the second surface of the plate section toward a connection position
with the shaft section on the third surface; and

the first insulating film connects the second insulating film on the edge between the first surface and the second surface,
a connection part of the first insulating film and the second insulating film has a curvature rounded off so as to be curved
outward.

US Pat. No. 10,082,525

PROBE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A probe unit, comprising:a first contact probe configured to contact with a first electrode of a contact target object at a first end in a longitudinal direction and contact with a second electrode of a substrate at a second end in the longitudinal direction, the first contact probe being formed of a conductive material and configured to be expandable and contractible in the longitudinal direction;
a second contact probe configured to contact with a third electrode of the contact target object at the first end and contact with the fourth electrode of the substrate at the second end, the second contact probe including:
a first contact unit formed of a conductive material and configured to contact with the third electrode;
a second contact unit formed of a conductive material and contacting with the fourth electrode; and
a coupling member configured to be expandable and contractible in the longitudinal direction and couple the first and the second contact units;
a probe holder configured to accommodate and hold the first and the second contact probes, the probe holder including
a conductive block formed of a conductive material and including a plurality of first insertion holes to which the first and the second contact probes are inserted, the conductive block contacting with each of the first and the second contact units; and
an insulating block provided inside the conductive block, the insulating block being formed of a material having an insulating property, and including a plurality of second insertion holes to which the first and the second contact probes are inserted, the insulating block at least preventing the first contact probe from loosening.

US Pat. No. 9,969,237

METHOD FOR PRODUCING STABILIZER AND HEATING DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A method for producing a stabilizer using a hollow member including a part at which a cross sectional area varies along a central axis from a part having a small cross sectional area to a part having a large cross sectional area as a starting material, the method comprising:a heating process in which the hollow member is heated up to a temperature necessary to perform heat treatment by performing an energization heating of the hollow member, the heating process comprising:
a primary heating process in which energization heating is performed between primary electrodes arranged at a cross-section varying part of both ends of the part having the large cross sectional area; and
a secondary heating process performed after the primary heating process, in which energization heating is performed between secondary electrodes arranged at both ends of the hollow member,
wherein in the primary heating process, the electrodes arranged at the cross section varying part are arranged apart from an interface part of the part having the large cross sectional area and the cross section varying part, and
a position along an axis direction of the contacting portion between the electrode and the cross section varying part of a side of the part having the large cross sectional area is aligned to a position along the axis direction at which a cross sectional area ratio with respect to the part having the large cross sectional area in the cross section varying part is 90%, and alternatively, is aligned to a position closer to a side of the part having a small cross sectional area than the position at which the cross sectional area ratio is 90%.

US Pat. No. 9,835,217

COIL SPRING MODELING APPARATUS AND METHOD UTILIZING A TORSION DETECTION TO CONTROL AN ACTUATOR UNIT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A coil spring modeling apparatus provided on a strut comprising a lower spring seat and an upper spring seat, the coil
spring modeling apparatus comprising:
a first attachment member disposed on the lower spring seat;
a second attachment member disposed on the upper spring seat;
an actuator unit which is arranged between the first attachment member and the second attachment member, and which is extendible
and retractable;

a torsion detection mechanism comprising a displacement gauge configured to detect a relative displacement including a torsional
angle formed between the first attachment member and the second attachment member; and

a controller configured to control the actuator unit and to correct a force line position based on an amount of the displacement
when the displacement is detected by the displacement gauge of the torsion detection mechanism.

US Pat. No. 9,702,905

PROBE UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A probe unit comprising a plurality of probe groups each including two or more contact probes to be in contact with one
electrode of a contact target body on a side of one end in a longitudinal direction, the respective contact probes being to
be in contact with separate electrodes of a board on a side of another end, wherein
the contact probe comprises:
a first contact unit that is arranged on the side of one end in the longitudinal direction, that has a plurality of nail portions
having a tapered end shape, and that is brought into physical contact with the electrode of the contact target body by at
least two of the plurality of the nail portions positioned on a side near other contact probe contacting the same electrode;

a second contact unit that is arranged on the side of another end in the longitudinal direction, and that is to be in contact
with a corresponding electrode of the board; and

a coil spring that is arranged between the first contact unit and the second contact unit, and that biases the first and the
second contact units,

wherein the first contact unit is brought into contact with the electrode of the contact target body by at least two of the
plurality of the nail portions that are located where a clockwise or counterclockwise rotation angle from a position at which
the plurality of contact probes come closest each other is less than 45 degrees.

US Pat. No. 9,624,950

BOOT BAND

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A boot band comprising:
a band body that is wound, for clamping in a ring-like form around a member to be clamped, in such a way that an outer-layer
portion overlaps an inner-layer portion;

a first boot-band pawl that is formed on a top end side of the outer-layer portion:
a planar terminal end portion formed in the outer-layer portion, and that is located nearer to the top end of the outer-layer
portion than the first boot-band pawl;

a second boot-band pawl formed in the inner-layer portion, that has an opening into which the terminal end portion can be
inserted, and a pressing part that presses, from the outside, the terminal end portion that is inserted into the opening,
and that clamps the band body together with the first boot-band pawl so that the band body is reduced in diameter;

a plurality of engagement holes formed along the lengthwise direction in the outer-layer portion;
an engagement pawl formed on the inner-layer portion, and that rises in a slope-like form facing the top end side of the outer-layer
portion,

wherein in a state where the engagement pawl is inserted into a top-end side engagement hole that is located at the top end
side of the outer-layer portion in the lengthwise direction, clamping force is applied to the band body in the diameter-reducing
direction, so that the top-end side engagement hole is moved over the engagement pawl, whereby a following engagement hole
is engaged with the engagement pawl;

a guide means disposed at a back end portion of the top-end side engagement hole, with the guide means being opposite the
engagement pawl, wherein the guide means has a slope portion along the engagement pawl, and

wherein the clamping force in the diameter-reducing direction allows the guide means to climb over the back face of the engagement
pawl, and

wherein the slope of the back face of the engagement pawl is formed to include two stages of angles, an inclination angle
? at the beginning of the climbing over and an inclination angle ? at the end of the climbing over, and the slope portion
of the guide means has an inclination angle of ?, and the relationship between ?, ?, and ? being ?

US Pat. No. 9,616,725

SUSPENSION ARM MEMBER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A suspension arm member comprising:
a connecting portion configured to connect a plurality of members of a suspension mounted on a vehicle; and
a support bar provided with the connecting portion at each end and extending in a longitudinal direction,
wherein the support bar is made of a resin material and comprises a plurality of lightening hole portions each formed in a
shape of a recessed portion in a direction orthogonal to the longitudinal direction, and

wherein the lightening hole portions comprise:
a plurality of front upper lightening hole portions formed in the longitudinal direction in a front upper portion of the support
bar,

a plurality of front lower lightening hole portions formed in the longitudinal direction in a front lower portion of the support
bar and staggered in a top-to-bottom direction with respect to the front upper lightening hole portions,

a plurality of rear upper lightening hole portions formed in the longitudinal direction in a rear upper portion of the support
bar and staggered in a front-to-rear direction with respect to the front upper lightening hole positions,

a plurality of rear lower lightening hole portions formed in the longitudinal direction in a rear lower portion of the support
bar and staggered with respect to the rear upper lightening hole portions and the front lower lightening hole portions, and

wherein parts of the support bar in which the lightening hole portions are formed in an S-shape or in an inverted S-shape,
as seen in a cross-sectional view in a widthwise direction.

US Pat. No. 9,496,625

TERMINAL CONNECTION STRUCTURE WITH ELEVATED TERMINALS

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A terminal connection structure comprising:
a first connection and a second connection conductively connected to each other through an anisotropic conductive film,
wherein at least one of the first and second connections comprises
a base insulating layer,
a cover insulating layer,
a wiring pattern formed between the base and cover insulating layers layers and having a wiring trace with a top face on which
the cover insulating layer is layered,

terminals arranged side by side at an end of the wiring pattern to expose outside the cover insulating layer and contact with
the anisotropic conductive film, and

a support portion protruding relative to a part of the base insulating layer in a surrounding area of a respective one of
the terminals, to have a supporting face positioned at a first protruding position relative to a top face of said part of
the base insulating layer in a protruding direction of the support portion, the supporting face on which said respective one
of the terminals is supported, the support portion positioning a top face of said respective one of the terminals at a second
protruding position elevated in the protruding direction relative to a portion of a top face of the cover insulating layer
that is located over the wiring trace according to the first protruding position of the supporting surface.

US Pat. No. 9,446,690

POWER SEAT OPERATION DEVICE AND POWER SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A power seat operation device comprising:
a selection operation member that is disposed in such a way as to be turnable relative to a power seat, with the turning operation
of the selection operation member relative to the power seat being a selection operation that selects a moving mechanism that
becomes a target of operation from among a plurality of moving mechanisms disposed in the power seat, the selection operation
member comprising an outer peripheral portion and a recessed portion disposed in the outer peripheral portion, the outer peripheral
portion defining a virtual circle centered on the turning axis of the selection operation member, the recessed portion being
open in a direction away from the turning axis at least at the outer peripheral portion; and

an activation operation member that is disposed in such a way as to be turnable about a turning axis of the selection operation
member or about a turning axis along that turning axis relative to the selection operation member, with the turning operation
of the activation operation member relative to the selection operation member being an activation operation that activates
the moving mechanism selected by the selection operation, the activation operation member comprising an operation portion,

wherein the operation portion is disposed in the recessed portion.

US Pat. No. 9,389,634

HELM DEVICE FOR BOAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A helm device of a boat comprising:
a case secured to a hull;
a steering shaft which is rotatably arranged in the case and on which a steering wheel is mounted;
a sensor configured to detect rotation of the steering shaft; and
a stop mechanism configured to stop rotation of the steering shaft when the steering wheel is turned to a maximum steering
angle,

the stop mechanism comprising:
a cylindrical portion which is relatively rotatable with respect to the steering shaft in a circumferential direction;
an inversion control pin which is provided in a radial direction of the steering shaft, extending through both the cylindrical
portion and the steering shaft, the inversion control pin being secured to one of the steering shaft and the cylindrical portion;

a slit which is formed in the other one of the steering shaft and the cylindrical portion, and through which the inversion
control pin is inserted to be movable in the circumferential direction;

a first pin receiving stopper wall which is formed on one end of the slit in the circumferential direction, in which when
the steering shaft rotates in a first direction, the first pin receiving stopper wall contacts the inversion control pin,
thereby rotating the cylindrical portion in the first direction, and when the steering shaft rotates in a second direction,
the first pin receiving stopper wall is separated from the inversion control pin by an angle which is greater than or equal
to a minimum detection angle detectable by the sensor; and

a second pin receiving stopper wall which is formed on the other end of the slit in the circumferential direction, in which
when the steering shaft rotates in the second direction, the second pin receiving stopper wall contacts the inversion control
pin, thereby rotating the cylindrical portion in the second direction, and when the steering shaft rotates in the first direction,
the second pin receiving stopper wall is separated from the inversion control pin by an angle which is greater than or equal
to the minimum detection angle detectable by the sensor.

US Pat. No. 9,381,828

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seat cushion having a seat cushion main body portion for supporting buttocks of an occupant when seated and seat cushion
side portions that are disposed on both sides in a seat width direction of the seat cushion main body portion;

a seat back having a seat back main body portion for supporting an occupant's back when seated and seat back side portions
that are disposed on both sides in the seat width direction of the seat back main body portion; and

a varying mechanism supporting both the seat cushion main body portion and the seat back main body portion, and, when activated
in the case of supporting the seat cushion main body portion, varying the position of the seat cushion main body portion in
a seat upward and downward direction relative to the seat cushion side portions, and, when activated in the case of supporting
the seat back main body portion, varying the position of the seat back main body portion in a seat frontward and rearward
direction relative to the seat back side portions,

wherein:
the seat back main body portion is displaced in the seat rearward direction synchronously with the displacement of the seat
cushion main body portion in the seat downward direction,

the seat back main body portion is displaced in the seat frontward direction synchronously with the displacement of the seat
cushion main body portion in the seat upward direction, and

the varying mechanism is configured by parallel link mechanisms.

US Pat. No. 9,368,138

DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A disk drive suspension comprising:
a load beam;
a flexure comprising a metal base secured to the load beam, and a slider mounted thereon;
actuator elements configured to displace the slider;
a slider terminal portion which is electrically connected to a terminal of the slider;
a first terminal portion which is electrically connected to a first electrode of the actuator elements via an electrically
conductive paste; and

a second terminal portion which is electrically connected to a second electrode of the actuator elements and via an electrically
conductive paste;

wherein the slider terminal portion comprises a terminal conductor made of copper, a base nickel layer formed on the terminal
conductor, and a gold-plating layer formed on the base nickel layer;

wherein the first terminal portion comprises a first insulating layer having an electrical insulating property provided on
the metal base, a first conductor made of copper which is formed on the first insulating layer, a first terminal element made
of nickel which is provided on the first conductor and has a thickness greater than the base nickel layer, and a first gold-plating
layer which is formed on the first terminal element and comprises a first roughening processed portion on its surface, and
the first terminal element disposed between the first roughening processed portion and the first conductor constitutes a first
protection means for preventing a part of copper of the first conductor from being exposed to the first roughening processed
portion;

wherein the first terminal portion comprises a cover layer having an electrical insulating property which covers the first
conductor, the cover layer comprising a first opening; and

wherein the first terminal element and the first gold-plating layer comprising the first roughening processed portion are
provided at a position corresponding to the first opening.

US Pat. No. 9,718,385

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat including a seatback frame comprising:
a first base member formed of a thin plate member made of resin;
a second base member formed of a thin plate member made of resin and disposed facing the first base member;
a pass-through portion that is formed to at least one of the first base member or the second base member, and that enables
insertion of an injection nozzle for injecting a foaming liquid for a foamed body; and

a core section that is configured by the foamed body, that is disposed between the first base member and the second base member,
and that is adhered to the first base member and the second base member, wherein:

the seatback frame comprises a back shell section and a pair of side shell sections;
the core section comprises a first foamed section, a second foamed section, and a third foamed section, having respective
densities such that the second foamed section has a higher density than the third foamed section and the third foamed section
has a higher density than the first foamed section;

the first foamed section is disposed further toward the seat upper side than a seat up-down direction center of the back shell
section, and at the seat upper side of the side shell sections;

the second foamed section is disposed further toward the seat lower side than the seat up-down direction center of the back
shell section, and at the seat lower side of the side shell sections; and

the third foamed sections are disposed at seat up-down direction center portions of the side shell sections.

US Pat. No. 9,592,755

VEHICLE SEAT

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle seat comprising:
a seatback that holds an upper torso of an occupant;
a headrest that is provided above the seatback, the headrest including a pad portion that supports a head of the occupant
and a support member that projects out from the pad portion and supports the pad portion;

an attachment portion that is fixed to the seatback;
a retaining member that is attached to the seatback via the attachment portion, the retaining member having an insertion hole
into which the support member is inserted;

a front side restriction portion that restricts bending of the retaining member towards a vehicle front at a vehicle front
side part of the retaining member and the attachment portion; and

a pair of rear side restriction portions that restricts bending of the retaining member towards a vehicle rear at a vehicle
rear side part of the retaining member and the attachment portion; wherein:

one of the pair of rear side restriction portions being located on a headrest side with respect to the front side restriction
portion, such that the retaining member has a bending rigidity towards the vehicle front lower than a bending rigidity towards
the vehicle rear;

the retaining member is formed in a tube shape, and the pair of rear side restriction portions are provided in an axial direction
of the retaining member such that each rear side restriction portion projects from the retaining member towards the vehicle
rear;

the front side restriction portion is disposed in the axial direction of the retaining member between the pair of rear side
restriction portions such that the front side restriction portion projects from the retaining member towards the vehicle front;

wherein the front side restriction portion fills a space between an inner wall of the attachment portion and the support member,
the retaining member comprises front side voids on the vehicle front side portion of the retaining member, which voids leave
respective spaces between the attachment portion and the support member, the spaces straddling the front side restriction
portion axially, and the pair of rear side restriction portions fill a space between the inner wall of the attachment portion
and the support member axially above and below a rear side void formed in the vehicle rear side part of the retaining member
such that the rear side void leaves a space between the attachment portion and the support member on a rear side of the retaining
member between the pair of rear side restriction portions.

US Pat. No. 9,576,602

FLEXURE WITH CONDUCTORS FOR MULTI-READER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure comprising a metal base and an interconnection part formed on the metal base, the flexure being configured to
mount a recording element and a plurality of reproduction elements thereon,
the metal base comprising:
a first area extending in a longitudinal direction of the metal base; and
a second area extending along the first area and in which a window portion is formed,
the interconnection part comprising:
an insulating layer comprising a first lane which covers the first area, and a second lane which covers both the window portion
and the second area;

a write trace pair, which is provided on the first lane, is constituted of a first write trace and a second write trace which
form a pair and transmit a differential signal, and is connected to the recording element;

read trace pairs which are provided on the second lane to face the window portion in a thickness direction of the metal base,
each of the read trace pairs being constituted of a first read trace and a second read trace which form a pair and transmit
a differential signal, the read trace pairs being connected to the reproduction elements respectively; and

a ground trace which is arranged between two adjacent read trace pairs, comprises a first end portion and a second end portion,
and is provided with grounding points at the first end portion and the second end portion, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,555,748

VEHICLE-USE RESIN COVER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A vehicle-use resin cover for covering a fastener opening comprising:
a resin cover main body that is configured including an opening, and anchoring portions formed at a plurality of locations
running along a peripheral edge of the opening;

a resin cap member that is mounted in the opening and that is configured including a cap main body that covers the opening,
and a plurality of anchored portions that are provided to an outer peripheral portion of the cap main body so as to correspond
to the anchoring portions and that are anchored by the anchoring portions;

a recessed portion that is formed at the peripheral edge of the opening, that is in communication with the opening at the
cap member side of the recessed portion, and through which a leading end of a tool for removing the cap member is insertable;
and

a marker portion having an inward cutout that is provided to the outer peripheral portion of the cap main body at a position
facing the recessed portion,

wherein the marker potion is located between two of the plurality of anchored portions.

US Pat. No. 9,449,624

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure of a disk drive suspension with a magnetic head mounted therein, the magnetic head comprising a first element
and a second element,
the flexure including a metal base, a conductive circuit portion formed along the metal base, and a tail pad portion formed
in a flexure tail at an end of the flexure, and

the tail pad portion comprising:
a frame structure which is a part of the metal base, and which comprises a first frame and a second frame extending in a longitudinal
direction of the tail pad portion, wherein an opening is defined between the first frame and the second frame;

a first pair of tail terminals connected to the first element, wherein the first pair of tail terminals are electrically insulated
from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame;

a second pair of tail terminals connected to the second element, wherein the second pair of tail terminals are electrically
insulated from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame at a place
different from where the first pair of tail terminals is provided;

a third pair of tail terminals connected to a third element, wherein the third pair of tail terminals are electrically insulated
from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame at a place different
from where the first pair of tail terminals and the second pair of tail terminals are provided;

a first bridge element which is a part of the metal base, which is arranged between the terminals constituting the first pair
of tail terminals, and which is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a second bridge element which is a part of the metal base, which is arranged between the terminals constituting the second
pair of tail terminals, and which is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a third bridge element which is a part of the metal base, which is arranged between the terminals constituting the third pair
of tail terminals, and which is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a first bridge-free opening portion defined between the first pair of tail terminals and the second pair of tail terminals,
wherein the first bridge-free opening portion does not have a bridge element between the first frame and the second frame;
and

a second bridge-free opening portion defined between the first pair of tail terminals and the third pair of tail terminals,
wherein the second bridge-free opening portion does not have a bridge element between the first frame and the second frame.

US Pat. No. 9,396,747

INTERLEAVE CIRCUIT OF CONDUCTIVE CIRCUIT PORTION OF DISK DRIVE FLEXURE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. An interleave circuit of a conductive circuit portion of a disk drive flexure which comprises:
a metal base comprising a metal base body portion;
an insulating layer which is formed on the metal base, and comprises a first surface which is in contact with the metal base
and a second surface which is on a side opposite to the metal base;

a first conductor member which is disposed on the second surface of the insulating layer, and connected to a first electrode
pad; and

a second conductor member which is disposed on the second surface of the insulating layer, and connected to a second electrode
pad,

the interleave circuit comprising:
a plurality of first branch conductors which constitute the first conductor member;
a plurality of second branch conductors which constitute the second conductor member, and is disposed alternately with the
first branch conductors along the first branch conductors; and

a jumper conductor having an independent shape which is a part of the metal base, and electrically insulated from the metal
base body portion,

the jumper conductor comprising:
a branch-side metal portion which is formed at a position corresponding to connecting terminals of the first branch conductors,
respectively, and electrically conducts to the connecting terminals via branch-side connecting members which penetrate through
the insulating layer in a thickness direction;

a pad-side metal portion which is formed at a position corresponding to the first electrode pad, and electrically conducts
to the first electrode pad via a pad-side connecting member which penetrates through the insulating layer in the thickness
direction; and

a bridge portion which is formed between the branch-side metal portion and the pad-side metal portion.

US Pat. No. 9,358,681

WORK HANGING APPARATUS AND WORK HANGING METHOD FOR HANGING WORK ON HANGER THROUGH MOVEMENT OF WORK UNDER CORRECTION

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A work hanging apparatus comprising:
a hanger line that continuously conveys a plurality of hangers each having a hook;
a robot that has a movable hand with which a work having a hole is held and transfers the held work to a hanging location
set in the hanger line;

a controller that controls a movement of the hand to catch the hook of a given one of the hangers as a target hanger with
the hole of the work at the hanging location for hanging the work on the target hanger;

a hole deviation detector that detects a positional deviation of the hole of the work with respect to a reference hole position
only at a hole measuring location that is short of the hanging location and is set in a path along which the work that is
held by the hand of the robot is transferred to the hanging location while the work is held by the hand of the robot;

an attitude deviation detector that detects, only at an attitude detecting location that is short of the hanging location
in the hanger line, an attitudinal deviation of the target hanger with respect to a reference hanger attitude defining a hook
of a reference hanger to be allowed to be caught with a hole of a reference work in the reference hole position at the hanging
location; and

a corrector that corrects the movement of the hand controlled by the controller according to the detected positional deviation
of said work that is held by the hand of the robot at the hole measuring location and the detected attitudinal deviation of
said target hanger at the attitude detecting location so that the hole of the work that is held by the hand of the robot correctly
catches the hook of the target hanger at the hanging location.

US Pat. No. 9,994,083

PIPE-SHAPED MEMBER AND METHOD OF CLOSING END PORTIONS OF SAME

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A pipe-shaped member formed from a hollow pipe comprising:a flat plate portion positioned at at least one end portion of two end portions of the pipe, and formed in a flat plate shape, with groove-shaped recessed portions formed in first and second extended surfaces in the flat plate shape, the flat plate portion comprising first and second plates with a mating surface in a wavy shape, wherein
the recessed portions are formed such that the flat plate portion has at least a substantially W-shape, in a direction crossing a longitudinal direction of the flat plate portion, and with a depth not reaching a boundary between the first and second plates of the flat plate portion.

US Pat. No. 9,841,457

PSEUDO FLEXURE FOR DISK DRIVE AND METHOD OF TESTING ELECTRONIC CIRCUIT FOR DISK DRIVE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A pseudo flexure for a disk drive comprising a flexure body portion including a conductive circuit portion, and a test
coupon which electrically conducts to the conductive circuit portion,
the test coupon comprising:
a substrate formed of a first metal;
a dielectric layer formed of an electrically insulating resin, and having a first surface and a second surface, the first
surface overlapping the substrate;

a metal layer formed of a second metal whose electrical resistance is different from that of the first metal, and arranged
on the second surface of the dielectric layer;

a pair of input-side terminal portions electrically connected to write conductors of the conductive circuit portion;
a pair of pads for probing provided at a detection position; and
a pseudo element circuit formed between the input-side terminal portions and the pads for probing,
the pseudo element circuit comprising:
a main circuit section having a double-layered conductor structure including a first pattern conductor formed of the first
metal, and a pair of second pattern conductors, which is formed of the second metal, overlaps the first pattern conductor
with the dielectric layer interposed therebetween, and is connected to the first pattern conductor; and

an adjusting section having a single-layered conductor structure which includes a pair of linear conductors arranged along
the dielectric layer, the linear conductors electrically connected to the second pattern conductors, respectively.

US Pat. No. 9,834,060

BUSH FOR STABILIZER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A bush for a stabilizer, which is configured to be contained in a concave part of a bracket, the bush comprising:
a hole with a circular shape, which is configured to be adhered with a bar of the stabilizer;
a body part with a side surface part; and
a protruding part formed on the side surface part so as to outwardly protrude from a portion of the side surface part, wherein:
the protruding part is pressed toward the body part by an inner surface of the concave part when the body part is contained
in the concave part,

the body part includes a rectangular part with a rectangular shape and a curving part having a curved shape at an outer circumferential
part thereof, with the rectangular part side at a lower side and the curving part side at an upper side,

a protruding amount of the protruding part in a horizontal direction gradually decreases in a vertical direction from a vertical
center of the protruding part, which is where a maximum protruding amount of the protruding part in the horizontal direction
is located,

an upper end of the protruding part is positioned at the same height as, or at a lower height than, an upper end point of
an inner circumferential surface of the hole, whereas a lower end of the protruding part is positioned at the same height
as, or at a greater height than, a lower end point of the inner circumferential surface of the hole, and

the upper end of the protruding part is smoothly connected to the outer circumferential part of the curving part, and the
lower end of the protruding part is smoothly connected to the outer circumferential part of the rectangular part.

US Pat. No. 9,556,524

TEMPERATURE REGULATOR, COOLING DEVICE, AND METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING TEMPERATURE REGULATOR

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A temperature regulator comprising:
a pipe that is made of a metal with corrosion resistance to a predetermined thermal medium, or an alloy with corrosion resistance
to the predetermined thermal medium, and serves as a flow path for circulating the thermal medium;

a plate in which the pipe is buried, the plate including:
a deposition portion formed by accelerating powder made of aluminum (Al) or aluminum alloy together with a gas and thereafter
spraying the powder remaining in a solid phase toward the pipe so that the powder is deposited on the pipe, and the deposition
portion is dug into the pipe at an interface between the deposition portion and the pipe;

a base plate adjacent to the pipe and made of aluminum or aluminum alloy;
a support pole connected to a center of the deposition portion of the plate to support the plate;
an introduction duct housed in the support pole and connected to an inlet port of the pipe; and
a discharge duct housed in the support pole and connected to an outlet port of the pipe,
wherein the pipe is disposed on a smooth flat surface of the base plate, the base plate defines an upper surface, a distance
between the upper surface and pipe is uniform, and a thickness of the deposition portion is thicker than a thickness of the
base plate.

US Pat. No. 10,120,011

TEST UNIT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A test unit that performs testing of two contact targets, at least of one of which includes electrodes on both sides thereof, the two contact targets being substantially plate shaped and arranged in a layering direction thereof, the test unit comprising:a first contact probe that comes into contact, at one longitudinal direction end portion side thereof, with an electrode provided on a front surface of one of the contact targets, and comes into contact, at the other end portion side thereof, with an electrode of the other contact target;
a second contact probe that comes into contact, at one longitudinal direction end portion side thereof, with an electrode provided on a back surface of the one of the contact targets, and comes into contact, at the other end portion side thereof, with an electrode of a substrate that outputs a signal for the testing;
a first probe holder including a suction holder that directly sucks and holds the one of the contact targets to the first probe holder and accommodating and holding therein a plurality of the first contact probes according to a predetermined pattern;
a second probe holder accommodating and holding therein a plurality of the second contact probes according to a predetermined pattern; and
a base portion that is layered over the first probe holder and holds, at a side thereof layered over the first probe holder, the other contact target, wherein
a gap is formed between the other contact target and the first probe holder.

US Pat. No. 10,065,471

COIL SPRING FOR VEHICLE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., To...

1. A vehicle suspension coil spring including a wire formed into a helical shape, and being arranged between a lower spring seat and an upper spring seat, the vehicle suspension coil spring comprising:a lower end turn portion which is in contact with the lower spring seat;
an upper end turn portion which is in contact with the upper spring seat;
an effective portion having a cylindrical shape and provided between the lower end turn portion and the upper end turn portion; and
a force line, which is a straight line, connecting a center of force applied to the lower end turn portion and a center of force applied to the upper end turn portion in a state in which a force which compresses the effective portion is applied to the lower end turn portion and the upper end turn portion,
wherein at least one of the lower end turn portion and the upper end turn portion comprises a force-line-controlling taper portion which has a taper length and a taper thickness for approximating the force line to a target position, a thickness of the wire of the force-line-controlling taper portion is reduced in a tapered way from a thickness varying portion, which is provided at an intermediate portion of the corresponding end turn portion, toward a distal end of the wire along its length, and the thickness varying portion is arranged at a position closer to the force line than the cylindrical effective portion.

US Pat. No. 9,950,459

VEHICLE RESIN PART AND VEHICLE RESIN PART MANUFACTURING METHOD

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A vehicle resin part comprising:a base portion that is formed on at least one of opposing molded portions and is molded using a cavity and a core; and
a raised portion that is formed projecting from the base portion in the direction of the other of the opposing molded portions, is molded using a slanted slide mold, and is an engagement portion that is configured to engage with a part of a vehicle,
wherein the vehicle resin part is a rail cover that covers at least a portion of a rail disposed on the vehicle and the opposing molded portions are opposing side wall portions of the rail cover.

US Pat. No. 9,920,399

TITANIUM ALLOY MEMBER AND PRODUCTION METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A titanium alloy member having a fine deformed structure including curved grains and containing 0.02 to 0.13 mass % of
nitrogen in solid solution,
GOS?3° of the titanium alloy member is 30% or more, when an average misorientation among all pixels in each grain by FE-SEM/EBSD
(Electron Back Scatter Diffraction) method is represented by GOS (Grain Orientation Spread) and an area ratio of grains with
not less than 3° of the GOS to the entire observation visual field is represented by the GOS?3°,

the titanium alloy member has 0.2% bending proof stress of 1702 MPa or higher, and
a bending strength of 2321 MPa or higher,
wherein diameter of pores in the titanium alloy member having the fine deformed structure is less than 10 ?m, and
the fine deformed structure is constructed without an ? coarse phase and without a ? coarse phase.

US Pat. No. 9,920,403

MAGNESIUM ALLOY MEMBER AND PRODUCTION METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Ka...

1. A magnesium alloy member formed as a wire rod, in which at least one of bending stress and twisting stress primarily acts,
wherein the magnesium alloy consists of 2 to 5 atomic % of Ni, 2 to 5 atomic % of Y, and the balance of Mg and inevitable
impurities, and the wire rod comprises: a surface portion having the highest hardness of 170 HV or more in the vicinity of
the surface; and an inner portion having a 0.2% proof stress of 550 MPa or more and an elongation of 5% or more at room temperature,
and the wire rod has the highest compressive residue stress in the vicinity of the surface of 50 MPa or more.

US Pat. No. 9,844,789

METHOD OF FORMING LUBRICATIVE PLATED LAYER ON VISCOUS LIQUID FEED NOZZLE AND VISCOUS LIQUID FEED NOZZLE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A liquid feed nozzle, comprising:
nozzle bodies, wherein each of the nozzle bodies is formed as a discrete hollow cylinder spaced from any adjacent nozzle body,
and each of the nozzle bodies being provided with a hole and having a front end serving as a feed port, an inner peripheral
surface extending straight in a longitudinal direction of the respective nozzle body to define the hole straightly in said
longitudinal direction, and a length of the respective nozzle body being at least three times greater than an inner diameter
of the respective hole of the nozzle body; the liquid feed nozzle further comprising:

a wide port having a flat bottom wall to which the nozzle bodies are attached so that the nozzle bodies protrude from the
bottom wall, a circumferential wall formed along an outer periphery of the bottom wall, and a shoulder part interposed between
the bottom wall and the circumferential wall; and

a lubricative plated layer formed at least on a surface of an inside and outside of the feed port of each of the nozzle bodies,
the lubricative plated layer having a higher lubricating property than a surface on which the lubricative plated layer is
formed; and

wherein the shoulder part has a dimension in a lateral direction intersecting the longitudinal direction, the dimension being
gradually reduced toward the bottom wall from the circumferential wall so that the outer periphery of the bottom wall is positioned
inwardly from an inner periphery of the circumferential wall in the lateral direction; and

wherein each of the nozzle bodies has an end face of the base end surrounding an opening of the respective hole at the base
end of the respective nozzle body, the end face and the opening facing an inside of the wide port and the end face continuing
flat to a surface of the bottom wall inside the wide port; and wherein distances spanning from the shoulder to proximate nozzle
bodies in a radial direction of the wide port are longer than a radial distance defined by the dimension of the shoulder.

US Pat. No. 10,052,989

HEADREST DEVICE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A headrest device comprising:a left and right pair of headrest stays that are fixed to a seatback frame in a state projecting out toward an upper side of a seatback of a vehicle seat;
a headrest main body that has the pair of headrest stays inserted inside from a lower face of the headrest main body and that is supported by the pair of headrest stays; and
a removal restricting mechanism that is provided inside the headrest main body, that restricts removal of the headrest main body from the pair of headrest stays, and that enables the removal of the headrest main body from the pair of headrest stays by a release operation portion positioned inside the headrest main body being press-operated from an outside of the headrest main body,wherein:the removal restricting mechanism comprises a restricting member that restricts the removal of the headrest main body by engaging with one of the pair of headrest stays,
the restricting member is released from engagement with the one of the pair of headrest stays by press-operation of the release operation portion, and
the removal restricting mechanism comprises a release member having an upper end portion that engages with the restricting member and having a lower end portion that configures the release operation portion and is press-operated from a lower face side of the headrest main body.

US Pat. No. 9,969,238

HOLLOW STABILIZER

NHK SPRING CO., LTD, Yok...

1. A hollow stabilizer, comprising:a torsion bar portion extending longitudinally;
an arm portion extending transversely to the torsion bar portion; and a curved portion extending between the arm portion and the torsion bar portion, the curved portion having an inner wall and an outer wall in a radial direction of a curvature of the curved portion,
wherein with a thickness of the inner wall of the curved portion being larger than a thickness of the outer wall of the curved portion, a hardness of the outer wall of the curved portion is made higher than a hardness of the inner wall of the curved portion.

US Pat. No. 9,576,601

FLEXURE OF DISK DRIVE SUSPENSION

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A flexure of a disk drive suspension with a magnetic head mounted therein, the magnetic head comprising a first element
and a second element,
the flexure including a metal base, a conductive circuit portion formed along the metal base, and a tail pad portion formed
in a flexure tail at an end of the flexure, and

the tail pad portion comprising:
a frame structure which is a part of the metal base, and comprises a first frame and a second frame extending in a longitudinal
direction of the tail pad portion, an opening being defined between the first frame and the second frame;

a first pair of tail terminals connected to the first element, the first pair of tail terminals being electrically insulated
from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame;

a second pair of tail terminals connected to the second element, the second pair of tail terminals being electrically insulated
from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame at a place different
from where the first pair of tail terminals is provided;

a third pair of tail terminals connected to a third element, the third pair of tail terminals being electrically insulated
from the first frame and the second frame, and arranged between the first frame and the second frame at a place different
from where the first pair of tail terminals and the second pair of tail terminals are provided;

a fourth tail terminal arranged between the first pair of tail terminals and the second pair of tail terminals;
a first bridge element which is a part of the metal base, is arranged between the fourth tail terminal and the first pair
of tail terminals, and is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a second bridge element which is a part of the metal base, is arranged between the fourth tail terminal and the second pair
of tail terminals, and is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a third bridge element which is a part of the metal base, is arranged between the first pair of tail terminals and the third
pair of tail terminals, and is contiguous with the first frame and the second frame;

a first bridge-free opening portion defined between the terminals constituting the first pair of tail terminals, the first
bridge-free opening portion not having a bridge element between the first frame and the second frame; and

a second bridge-free opening portion defined between the terminals constituting the second pair of tail terminals, the second
bridge-free opening portion not having a bridge element between the first frame and the second frame; and

a third bridge-free opening portion defined between the terminals constituting the third pair of tail terminals, the third
bridge-free opening portion not having a bridge element between the first frame and the second frame.

US Pat. No. 10,190,621

OUTER CASING FOR CONTROL CABLE, METHOD OF MANUFACTURING THE SAME, AND CONTROL CABLE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. An outer casing for a control cable for vehicles, the outer casing comprising:an inner tube, which includes a crystalline resin; and
an outer tube, which includes an outer resin layer covering an outer periphery of the inner tube and, in the outer resin layer, includes a plurality of metal wires buried in parallel with an axial direction of the inner tube and at equal intervals in a circumferential direction of the inner tube, wherein a primer applied to a surface of the metal wires adheres the plurality of metal wires to the outer resin layer so as to inhibit relative movement between the plurality of metal wires and the outer resin layer, a thickness of the inner tube is from 50 to 1,000 ?m, and a thickness of the outer resin layer is from 0.2 to 2.0 mm, and the outer resin layer includes a resin having a storage elastic modulus according to dynamic viscoelasticity of not more than 3,000 MPa.

US Pat. No. 10,109,306

METHOD OF CORRECTING HEAD SUSPENSION, METHOD OF MANUFACTURING HEAD SUSPENSION, HEAD SUSPENSION AND METHOD OF PROCESSING THIN PLATE

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A method of correcting a head suspension by irradiating an objective part of the head suspension with a laser beam to bend the objective part with heat before or after mounting a read/write head on the head suspension, comprising the steps of:irradiating with the laser beam a surface of the head suspension within the objective part defined on an outrigger of the head suspension to heat the surface, thereby correcting at least one of a roll angle and a pitch angle of a surface of the head mounting part, the outrigger surrounding the head mounting part and a distal end of the outrigger constituting a distal end of the head suspension and the head mounting part and the outrigger being connected to one another only at the distal end of the head suspension and a remaining periphery of the head mounting part being spaced from the outrigger by an air gap; and
wherein the irradiating step comprises:
intermittently emitting the laser beam, along a first straight line of predetermined length on said surface, so that a first irradiation history is formed within said objective part by the laser beam and includes plural irradiation spots each having a center on the first straight line and so that each of the laser irradiation spots includes a region formed by a higher irradiation energy density of the laser beam than the rest of the spot and the irradiation spots are continuous and partly overlap respective adjacent irradiation spots so that the regions formed by the higher irradiation energy density in the adjacent irradiation spots do not overlap each other; and
intermittently emitting the laser beam, along a second straight line of predetermined length on said surface, and which crosses the first straight line at a predetermined angle so that a second irradiation history is formed within the objective part by the laser beam and includes plural irradiation spots each having a center on the second straight line and so that each of the laser irradiation spots includes regions formed by higher irradiation energy density of the laser beam than the rest of the spot and are continuous and partly overlap respective adjacent irradiation spots so that regions formed by higher irradiation energy density in adjacent irradiation spots do not overlap each other, the second straight line crossing the first straight line on a same plane which is said surface at a point intermediate ends of both said straight lines and at a predetermined angle resulting in an area of overlap of the first and second irradiation histories;
guiding the laser beam to set the overlapping area, with a correlation that the overlapping area decreasing with an increase of the crossing angle from more than 0 degrees to almost 90 degrees in one direction and the overlapping area increasing with an increase of the crossing angle from more than 90 degrees to less than 180 degrees in said one direction;
wherein the decrease of the overlapping area with the increase of the crossing angle from more than 0 degrees to almost 90 degrees in the correlation becomes gradual starting from a first crossing angle of 30 degrees based on the interval between the adjacent irradiation spots in the irradiation histories of this time and the last time, and the increase of the overlapping area as with the increase of the crossing angle from more than 90 degrees to less than 180 degrees in the correlation is gradual to a second crossing angle of 150 degrees based on said interval between said adjacent irradiation spots; and
wherein the crossing angle that is set based on the correlation is within a range of the correlation spanning between said first and second crossing angle, thereby correcting the head suspension with high accuracy.

US Pat. No. 10,060,493

DISK SPRING

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Ka...

1. A disk spring comprising:a spring portion having a circular disk shape, the spring portion configured to be interposed between a pair of rotary members being relatively movable in an axial direction to come close to and separate away from each other, wherein
the spring portion has a width spanning from an inner periphery to an outer periphery in a radial direction of the spring portion and has a rounded cross-section portion and a straight cross-section portion within said width in a cross section extending orthogonal to a circumferential direction of the spring portion and along the radial direction,
the rounded cross-section portion is a curved portion having a concave surface and a convex surface that define a thickness of the rounded cross-section portion, the convex surface including a first contact point configured to be brought into contact with a first rotary member of the pair of the rotary members, and
the straight cross-section portion is continuous to the rounded cross-section portion and formed on at least one of an inner diameter side and an outer diameter side of the spring portion, the straight cross-section portion has a first end being continuous to the rounded cross-section portion and a second end distal to the rounded cross-section portion so as to extend straightly from the first end to the second end, and has outer surfaces that define a thickness of the straight cross-section portion and are continuous to the respective concave and convex surfaces of the rounded cross-section portion, the second end of the straight cross-section portion includes a second contact point configured to be brought into contact with a second rotary member of the pair of the rotary members and be compressed between both the rotary members in a close contact state.

US Pat. No. 10,052,677

SPRING FORMING DEVICE AND FORMING METHOD THEREFOR

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A method for forming spring, comprisinga heating step for heating a steel wire while feeding the steel wire,
a coiling step for coiling the heated steel wire in a coiled shape, and
a cutting step for cutting the steel wire coiled at a given number of turns off the steel wire remained backward,
wherein the cutting step is carried out by a receiving blade and a cutting blade which closes and separates to the receiving blade, and the cutting blade follows tracks, has a speed Va that moves to the receiving blade and has a speed Vc that moves in an axial direction of the coiled steel wire, in cutting of the coiled steel wire, and
wherein when the steel wire is cut off by the cutting blade, a feeding speed Vw of the steel wire and the speed Vc of the cutting blade are controlled satisfying the relationship Vc/Vw?1.1.

US Pat. No. 9,937,833

SEATBACK FRAME AND VEHICLE SEAT

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A seatback frame comprising:left and right side frames that are provided at left and right side portions of a seatback of a vehicle seat, with the respective lower end portions of the side frames coupled to a rear end portion of a seat cushion frame provided to a seat cushion of the vehicle seat; and
a back face panel that is formed of one piece of sheet metal, that spans across between rear end portions of lower portions of the left and right side frames with its thickness direction along a seatback front-rear direction, that is fixed to the left and right side frames, and that includes an undulating shaped portion bent such that peaks and troughs alternate in a row along a seat width direction, wherein:
the back face panel comprises a left and right pair of the undulating shaped portions, and a general portion is provided extending along the seat width direction between the pair of undulating shaped portions; and
an opening is formed to the general portion for inserting an air blower of an air conditioning mechanism attached to a back face side of the back face panel.

US Pat. No. 9,869,378

LOAD APPLICATION DEVICE

NHK SPRING CO., LTD., Yo...

1. A load-applying device comprising:
a spiral spring that is formed from a thin strip that is wound multiple times in a spiral shape;
a movable body; and
a fixing member;
said spiral spring being disposed between said movable body and said fixing member, in a manner capable of performing a diameter
reduction operation and a diameter expansion operation, and an outer-circumference part of said spiral spring contacting said
movable body and said fixing member directly, or indirectly, such that said moveable body and said fixing member contact said
outer-circumference part of said spiral spring with respect to a radial direction of said spiral spring.

US Pat. No. 10,193,426

METHOD FOR MANUFACTURING A STACKED IRON CORE OF A VEHICLE DRIVE MOTOR

NHK Spring Co., Ltd., Yo...

1. A method for manufacturing a stacked iron core of a vehicle drive motor, the manufacturing method comprising:a pressing process of pressing a strip-shaped magnetic steel sheet so as to manufacture a carrier-attached single sheet in which a plurality of circular arc-shaped iron core pieces, differing from each other in the presence or absence of a key protrusion and in the placement of the key protrusion, are coupled together by a coupling portion;
a stacking process of sequentially cutting the circular arc-shaped iron core pieces out from the carrier-attached single sheet that is being conveyed, arranging the cut out circular arc-shaped iron core pieces into ring shapes to form ring-shaped iron core pieces, and, while forming the ring-shaped iron core pieces, stacking a plurality of the ring-shaped iron core pieces so that the plurality of the ring-shaped iron core pieces are phase-offset with respect to each other in a circumferential direction, to thereby manufacture a stacked iron core body with the key protrusions aligned along a stacking direction; and
a welding process of welding each layer of the circular arc-shaped iron core pieces, which are phase-offset with respect to each other in the circumferential direction, along the stacking direction at a plurality of locations arranged around the circumferential direction of an inner circumferential portion or an outer circumferential portion of the stacked iron core body.