US 20030001421 A1
The present invention relates to a seat, in particular a motor vehicle seat, with at least one upholstery body and one cover, on whose underside attachment elements with free ends developed in the manner of barbed hooks are provided. These hooks can be snapped into complementary holding mechanism anchored stress-proof in the upholstery body. The invention addresses the problem of providing for a seat of this type with a substantially simpler structured holding mechanism while maintaining the functionality. In the present invention the holding mechanisms are developed in the form of plates comprised of elastic material with slots which widen during the passing of the free ends of the attachment elements and close behind them after their passage.
1. An upholstered seat comprising at least one upholstery body, a cover over the upholstery body, said cover attached to the upholstery body by an attachment mechanism, the attachment mechanism comprising;
an attachment element having hooked free ends spaced apart, said attachment element being attached to the cover;
a holding mechanism comprising a plate formed from an elastic material having slots spaced apart corresponding to the free ends;
said slots widen during the passage of the hooks and close behind the hook afterwards.
2. The seat of
3. The seat of
4. The seat as in any one of the preceding claims, wherein the holding mechanism is comprised of individual pieces, wherein with each individual piece is associated with a free end of the attachment elements and each individual piece has a slot.
5. The seat of
6. The seat of claims 1, 2 or 3, wherein the holding mechanisms are developed as continuous bars, which have slots for several free ends of the attachment elements.
 This application claims priority from application serial number 101 31 718.2 which was filed in Germany on Jun. 29, 2001.
 The present invention relates to a seat, in particular a motor vehicle seat, with at least one upholstery body and a fabric cover attached to the upholstery body.
 Upholstered seats are well known in the art. There are many industrial applications for such seats, including, but not limited to, motor vehicle seats, airplane seats, movie theater seats, office chairs, bus seats, train seats and similar such types of seating. All of these type of seating must have certain characteristics in order to be economically sound. The seats must assembly quickly and easily, the parts must be low cost and the seats must stand up to large amounts of use. The upholstery body must be firmly attached to the fabric cover. Such seats are disclosed in DE 42 19 891 A1, DE 298 22 649 U1, DE 197 34 408 A1, U.S. Pat. No. 5,882,073 A as well as EP 649 619 A1. All of the holding mechanisms for attaching the cover to the upholstery body disclosed in these publications have in common that they comprise a plate or web-form base part which serves for their stress-proof anchorage in the upholstery body. From the base part projects substantially perpendicularly a holding element, behind whose free end the attachment element can be snapped in.
 While the holding mechanisms known in prior art are developed integrally, they are comparatively complicated and therefore are expensive to manufacture shaped parts. In addition, due to the at least one holding element projecting from the base part, the overall height is relatively large.
 The present invention addresses the problem of providing for a seat of the type known in the art with a significantly simpler holding mechanism while maintaining the functionality.
 The holding mechanism of the present invention comprises only one plate-form base part and the holding elements projecting from the base have been eliminated and replaced by slots. Consequently, the holding mechanism has a considerably simpler structure as well as a significantly reduced overall height. Due to this reduced height, the depth of the draw-in channels provided in the upholstery body can be decreased. A further advantage of the present invention is that the attachment elements known from prior art and connected with the cover can be used and thus, only one new piece is required.
 The primary aspect of the present invention is to provide a simple, easy to manufacture attachment mechanism to attach a cover to a upholstery body for a seat.
 Other aspects of this invention will appear from the following description and appended claims, reference being made to the accompanying drawings forming a part of this specification wherein like reference characters designate corresponding parts in the several views.
 The present invention relates to a seat, in particular a motor vehicle seat, with at least one upholstery body and one cover, on whose underside attachment elements with free ends developed in the manner of barbed hooks are provided. These hooks can be snapped into complementary holding mechanism anchored stress-proof in the upholstery body. The invention addresses the problem of providing for a seat of this type with a substantially simpler structured holding mechanism while maintaining the functionality. In the present invention the holding mechanisms are developed in the form of plates comprised of elastic material with slots which widen during the passing of the free ends of the attachment elements and close behind them after their passage.
FIG. 1 is a section through a connection site between an upholstery body and a cover.
FIG. 2 is a side view of attachment elements connected with the cover.
FIG. 3 is a top view onto holding mechanism of the present invention
FIG. 4 is a top view onto an alterative embodiment holding mechanism of the present invention.
 Before explaining the disclosed embodiment of the present invention in detail, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of the particular arrangement shown, since the invention is capable of other embodiments. Also, the terminology used herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation.
FIG. 1 depicts a detail of an upholstery body 1, which comprises a synthetic foamed material, for example polyurethane. This upholstery body 1 can be a seating part or a backrest of a seat. Region 1.1 of the upholstery body 1 forms a side contour and a region 1.2 forms a backrest or a seating area of the seat. The upholstery body 1 is clad on the outside, i.e. on the surface facing a seat occupant, with a cover. To establish the connection between cover 2 and upholstery body 1 seaming sites are provided, which are created with attachment elements 3 and holding mechanism 4.
 The attachment elements 3 are profile bars of synthetic material, whose structure is evident in FIG. 1 in connection with FIG. 2. These representations clearly show that the attachment elements 3 comprise a continuous bar section 3.1, from which project evenly spaced tabs 3.2, whose free ends 3.3 are barbed hooks, which are shown in FIG. 1 in a cross section taken along line A-A of FIG. 2. In the region of the continuous section 3.1 the attachment mechanisms are sewn together or welded together with the cover 2. For this purpose the section 3.1 is disposed between two superjacent margin sections of cover 2.
 The holding mechanism 4 is provided complementarily to the attachment elements 3 described above. The holding mechanisms 4 are plate-form structural parts comprised of elastic, thermoplastic synthetic material. During the production of the upholstery body 1 these holding mechanisms 4 are foamed into it. To increase the bonding between the holding mechanism 4 and the foam of the upholstery body 1, the holding mechanism 4 have holes 4.1, into which the foam penetrates during the out-foaming process of making the seat
 The holding mechanisms 4 are disposed at the base of a draw-in channel 5 in the upholstery body 1 and are provided with slots 6, which are oriented in the longitudinal extension of the draw-in channel 5.
 The holding mechanisms 4 can be comprised of individual pieces, wherein a slot 6 is associated with each individual piece as shown in FIG. 3. In an alternate embodiment the holding mechanism 4 can also be developed as a continuous bar as shown in FIG. 4. In both embodiments the spacing between slots 6 is adapted to the spacing between the tab sections 3.2 of the profile bars. Elastic tabs 7 shown in FIG. 3 can also connect the individual pieces of the holding mechanism 4 with one another, which in this representation are drawn in dashed lines.
 As shown in FIG. 1, the establishment of the attachment between the upholstery body 1 and the cover 2 is formed when the superjacent margin sections of cover 2 with the attachment elements 3 are inserted into an associated upholstery channel 5 of the upholstery body 1, with each end 3.3, widened in the form of a hook, of the attachment element being opposed by a slot 6 of the holding means 4. This penetration is reinforced through the arrow-like development of the free ends 3.3 shown in FIG. 1. Due to the elastic material of the holding mechanism 4 the slots 6 widen during the passing of the hooks 3.3 of the attachment element and close again behind them. This condition is depicted in FIG. 1. In this situation a pulling-back of the hooks 3.3 out of the holding mechansim 4 due to stress forces occurring during normal use of the seat is not possible therefore a secure bonding between the upholstery body 1 and the cover 2 is generated.
 Although the present invention has been described with reference to preferred embodiments, numerous modifications and variations can be made and still the result will come within the scope of the invention. No limitation with respect to the specific embodiments disclosed herein is intended or should be inferred.