STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
This invention relates principally to a bracket, that may be applied to the gunnels of a boat, or any other supporting structure, and for use for securely holding or supporting other accessories such as a lamp, fishing rod, or any other structural framework, for use for facilitating the overall convenient usage of the vehicle.
Various styles of brackets have long been used in the art for holding other items. Brackets and frameworks have had known usage in the boat field, for use for holding frameworks, for supporting camouflage, as for example when used for a duck blind, or supporting other covers, as for enclosure and covering purposes. In addition, brackets have long been used for securement to other structures, even for application for holding other types of items, either during usage, or for storage.
Examples of the early type of use of bracketing arrangements, as for example, that may be fastened to the rim or gunwale of a boat, and held in position by means of its sockets, can be found in the early patent to Adams, Jr., U.S. Pat. No. 3,422,829. While the overall principle of the lifeboat cover as shown in this patent may provide coverage for a boat, the actual structure of the bracketing means, and the framework involved, is distinct from the current invention.
The patent to Stubbmann, U.S. Pat. No. 3,978,610, shows a mobile holding device. This is a mobile device for use for supporting upon a crib, or its crib wall, and is held in place by means of a series of elastic clips as can be seen from the spring clips as disclosed in this patent. These types of clips, as to be seen, hold the housings in place, that support the arch of the tube that functions as a support for the mobile items.
The patent to Kirby, Jr., U.S. Pat. No. 4,878,642, shows an object support for attachment to a cylindrically shaped support member. This disclosure shows a clamp member, that is generally C-shaped, and is used for clamping onto a supporting member, and then for application for holding a variety of other components, one of which is even defined and shown as a support for a plurality of different diameter fishing poles. It can also be seen that this device can be used for holding a can, drinking glass, cup, or the like. The concept of utilizing a C-clamp for holding a structural support, or holding other accessories, is certainly shown in this earlier patent to Kirby. But, this specific structure, and variety of methods of usage, particularly in the marine field, is what is quite distinct from the current invention when viewed in comparison to the overall attachment as disclosed in this Kirby patent.
The patent to Steward, U.S. Pat. No. 4,979,456, shows a portable blind for attachment to a boat. It includes a series of interconnecting frames or attachment means, which are secured by means of U-shaped brackets, to the side walls of a boat. Hence, this patent does disclose the usage of various types of clamp members, to hold the framework onto gunwales of a boat, and in this instance, for supporting the camouflaged material.
The patent to Shillington, U.S. Pat. No. 5,005,793, shows a pole clip needle cap holder. This is a clip for holding a cap to an IV needle, or the like. It simply shows a C-clamp having arms that extend outwardly, for attachment or mounting onto a supporting pole.
The patent to Ennis, U.S. Pat. No. 5,069,416, shows a display fixture for spectacles. This device also shows a C-type clamp, for use with a different type of holder, and for a different purpose.
The patent to Hughes, U.S. Pat. No. 5,167,353, shows a “U” post bracket for bicycles. This bracket also provides a C-clamp, at its lower end, for clamping apparently onto some rod-like portion of a bicycle, such as the seat post, as can be noted.
The patent to Sinohuiz, U.S. Pat. No. 5,356,107, shows a beverage container holder. This holder incorporates a C-clamp, and which can be clamped onto the leg of a chair, as noted. While this disclosure provides a showing of a C-clamp, the type of beverage container holder is quite distinct from the current invention.
The patent to Clews, U.S. Pat. No. 5,642,557, shows a panel display system. This panel display system includes a clip, forming a C-clamp, which may be affixed to a post, and then has extending from its lower common connecting member the various jaws for clamping onto paneling material. The current invention is not concerned with a panel display system.
The patent to Cooper, U.S. Pat. No. 5,697,591, discloses an ornament holder for a Christmas tree. It includes a pair of C-clamps, connected together at a perpendicular angle, and for holding ornaments, or the like, in place.
The patent to Meeker, et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,704,576, shows a clip for a child exerciser/rocker. This is a rather different type of clip, for use for an entirely different purpose than the current invention.
The patent to James, U.S. Pat. No. 5,857,477, shows a portable car port. This is a quite distinctly appearing device, from that of the current invention, and includes a locking mechanism that mounts or attaches onto the wheels of a vehicle, and functions as a covering for an automobile.
The patent to Rex, et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,887,537, shows a boat mounted blind. This device shows a frame, which appears to fasten by means of clips to the gun wale of a boat, and which holds the covering material in place, once assembled. The device of this framework is a pivotally attached device, connected to the side rails of the boat, which is not the same type of structure of the current invention.
The current invention, as previously commented, provides a peculiar and novel type of clamp, that can be assembled or built upon itself, with related structure, for use for holding a variety of accessories in place.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
This current invention contemplates the formation of a specific style of bracket fitting. It is a fitting that is made out of various types of angles or sections, such as of the PCV pipe category, and which can be assembled into various types of supporting structures. As can be noted, the bottom T-section has a cut out portion along its length, but the cut portion is beyond the center point, so that part of the T may snap directly onto the gunnel or side rail of a boat, as for example when the bracket is used in conjunction with a marine vessel, or it can secure to any other type of supporting structure, and be firmly held in place, as can be understood. In one embodiment, a plug or cap may fit into the upper end of the T, and a hole may be provided therein, and can be used for supporting, for example, another bracket, or a light may be bolted thereon, as can be noted. Thus, when used with a light, or used as a light bracket, it can be secured directly to the gunnel of the boat, and provide either illumination as required for steering, or perhaps even furnish fog light attributes, as when that may be required in an emergency situation. Or, it may hold a spot light in place, as for example when the fisherman is fishing, frogging, or gigging for other aquatic life.
In addition, a second T may be secured to the initial bracket T, as through an intermediate sleeve, and oriented at a particular angle for holding a fishing rod in place, as can be noted. Thus, a series of such brackets could be applied to the side rail of a boat, and hold a variety of fishing poles in place, as used. In many states, a single fisherman may use as many as three rod and reels, or fishing poles, when participating in such piscatorial pursuits.
As can further be noted, additional PVC pipe or other related piping may be fabricated into the structure of the framework, that may extend upwardly, and angularly inwardly, and join in an apex, with the framework from the opposite side of the boat, and thereby form a fabricated framework, in place, throughout a significant length of the boat, and then covered with a camouflaged material, which may be located upon the framework, so that the boat may be used as a duck blind, as on the water. Or, when the boat is moored, onto the dock, or pulled up onto the shore, such framework may support other waterproof covering material, so that the boat could even be used to accommodate overnight sleeping, as when docked, or when supported on a trailer, if the hunter or fisherman desires to use it for that purpose. In addition, the cover may simply provide just that, protection for the boat when stored, either on land or water.
It is, therefore, the principle object of this invention to provide a unique bracket that is of universal construction and can be secured to the gunnel or side rails of most John boats, or other boats, and provide a supported fitting type bracket for use on a boat or other structures for holding a variety of accessories.
Another object of this invention is to provide for a bracket that can be snap fitted and resiliently clamped onto the side rail of a boat or other structure.
Yet a further object of this invention is to provide a bracket that can accommodate other structural tubular like components, in its assembly, and for use for securement thereto of a variety of other accessory products.
These and other objects may become more apparent to those skilled with the art upon reviewing the summary of this invention, and upon undertaking a study of the description of the preferred embodiment, in view of the drawings.
In the assembly of the fitting bracket, developed from a series of T-sections, the concept is to modify, in the specific embodiment, a one inch diameter PVC pipe, of the type normally used in plumbing, for water lines, etc. The T fitting is modified to allow for it to be snapped onto the one inch gunwales of an aluminum John boat. Other sizes of T fittings could be used on other size gunwales, or side rails, for a boat. For example, it is known in the art, that some gunwales have a diameter of approximately one and a quarter inch, rather than just one inch, as normally encountered. The modified T is made by making two parallel lengthwise cuts in the bottom of the T, at approximately at the 105° angle from the center, and directly opposite from the other pipe opening. The remaining material, or the remaining portion of the T, which is yet an over center arranged portion, allows the T to snap down unto the gunwale securely, but yet can be fairly easily removed, or moved, as may be necessary, due to its inherent resiliency. By altering where the material is removed, one can change how far the T will rotate either inboard or outboard, as may be desired, particularly where the fitting bracket may be used for holding a fishing rod in place, which desirably will be angulated upwardly, when fitted into the T-section forming that style of bracket. In addition, it may be desirable to apply a double faced type of pressure sensitive adhesive tape to the gunwale, before the T-section for the fitting bracket is applied, in order to help keep the T from moving, and secure it in place, once installed.
The upper section 17 of the T fitting, within its interior, is designed to accommodate within its central opening 21, a short length of PVC or other material sleeve 22, which may be adhesively secured therein, by any type of adhesive, as know in the art. The upper end of the sleeve 21 inserts within and cooperates with an upper T 23, which as can be seen also incorporates a tubular section 24, which is horizontally disposed, having integrally formed extending from an intermediate portion the segment 25, which accepts the sleeve 22 therein, and which is adhesively secured, for forming the double T-style of fitting bracket as shown. Thus, when fabricated in this manner, the bracket may be secured, once again, as by attachment of its resilient section 18 to the side rail of a John boat, or the like, tilting the same slightly inwardly, so as to arrange the upper tubular section 24 of the upper T 23 at an angle, for accommodating the insertion of the handle 26 of a fishing rod and reel R, supported thereto, upon installation. See FIG. 2B. As can be noted, the lower T-section 18 is herein shown snap clasping onto the side rail S of the John boat, or other structure. For example, the rail may be included on a chair, so that the fisherman can sit in the chair, and direct his rod and reel outwardly over the water, as when bottom fishing, as known.
When used as a framework for a boat cover, or camouflaged material, as for preparation of a blind for duck hunting, using the boat itself, reference is made to FIG. 3, which shows the formation of the fitting bracket from a modified T, as at 27. This includes the lower tubular section 28 of the T being cut, below center, to provide for its snap clasping onto the side rails of the boat, when installed. The upper perpendicular integral section of the T, as at 29, within its interior central cavity 30, is designed for fitting therein, temporarily, the various framework members 31 comprising the linear sections as shown, coupling with an elbow 32, for directing another section 33 angularly upwardly towards the center of the boat, which may connect with additional framework to form a supporting framework F, elevated from the surface of the boat, to accommodate the application and draping of any camouflaged material M thereon, as when the boat is being used as a duck blind, or any other covering, as when the boat is to be stored, or used for accommodating the hunter for meals, resting, or sleep, as previously explained. This simply shows an additional feature of the usage of the fitting bracket of this invention, for adding versatility to the use and application of the boat, or other vehicle, or even other supporting structures, for use for holding accessories, whether they be lamps, fishing rods, covers, or other endless and related uses. These are just examples of the versatility of the bracket of this invention.