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Publication numberUS20040006854 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/194,632
Publication dateJan 15, 2004
Filing dateJul 12, 2002
Priority dateJul 12, 2002
Publication number10194632, 194632, US 2004/0006854 A1, US 2004/006854 A1, US 20040006854 A1, US 20040006854A1, US 2004006854 A1, US 2004006854A1, US-A1-20040006854, US-A1-2004006854, US2004/0006854A1, US2004/006854A1, US20040006854 A1, US20040006854A1, US2004006854 A1, US2004006854A1
InventorsJames Simon
Original AssigneeSimon James S.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Self-attaching elastic cord
US 20040006854 A1
Abstract
A binding device comprising an elongated elastic member that contains at least one region of loop material generally adjacent to at least one region of hook material. The regions of different material allow binding when the loop material of the binding member comes in contact with the hook material. The elastic member is flexible and may bend back on itself to engage the hook and loop material. For example, an elastic self-attaching cord may include a surface that contains regions of loop material generally adjacent to hook material at evenly spaced intervals or placed at random intervals. Another examples are a tube or strip binding member. The elastic tube or strip binding device also contains loop material generally adjacent to hook material positioned on the surface of the tube or strip.
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Claims(16)
We claim the following:
1. An elastic binding device comprising:
an elongated elastic body with a surface;
at least one region of a loop material on said surface; and
at lease one region of a hook material on said surface.
2. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein at least one region of said loop material is generally adjacent to at least one region of said hook material.
3. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is adapted to fasten to itself by said hook material engaging said loop material.
4. The elastic binding device of claim 1 further comprising a plurality of regions with a loop material and a plurality of regions with a hook material.
5. The elastic binding device of claim 4 wherein said regions are evenly spaced.
6. The elastic binding device of claim 4 wherein said regions are randomly spaced.
7. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is an elastic cord.
8. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is a bungy cord.
9. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is a shock cord.
10. The elastic self-attaching binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is an elastic strip having an top side and a bottom side.
11. The elastic self-attaching binding device of claim 10 wherein said top side is at least partially covered with a hook material and said bottom side is at least partially covered with loop material.
12. The elastic binding device of claim 1 wherein said elongated elastic body is an elastic tube.
13. An elastic self-attaching cord comprising:
an elastic cord having a surface, said surface comprising a plurality hook regions and loop regions, wherein at least one of said hook region is generally adjacent to at least one region of said loop region.
14. An elastic self-attaching tube comprising:
an elastic tube having an outer circumferential surface;
a plurality of hooks connected to said outer circumferential surface; and
a plurality of loops connected to said outer circumferential surface.
15. An elastic binding device comprising:
an elongated elastic member;
a sleeve having an outer surface, said sleeve being positionable over said elongated elastic member, said outer surface having at least one region of a loop material generally adjacent to at least one region of a hook material.
16. An elastic binding device comprising:
a cord having a surface, said cord comprising a plurality of elastic members and a plurality of non-elastic members, said surface having at least one region of loop material and at least one region of hook material.
Description
FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates to an elastic cord or similar material, which is capable of easily securing itself about an object without the need for knots or similar manipulation of the cord. In particular, the present invention relates to an elastic self-attaching binding instrument that utilizes hook and loop regions on the surface of an elastic body to secure itself to itself about an object. By having regions of loop material and hook material on the surface of the binding device, the binding member can form multiple binding positions.

DESCRIPTION OF RELATED ART

[0002] Mating fabrics, such as loop material and hook material, e.g. “VELCRO”, provide the user with the capability to form a strong bond that can nevertheless be broken by peeling the materials apart. The binding occurs when the hook material comes into contact with the loop material. Mating fabrics of loop material and hook material are disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,717,437 and 3,009,235 granted to G.de Mestral with the assignee being Velcro S.A. of Switzerland, each of which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.

[0003] The loop and hook material is often made by using a woven or knitted material in which there are raised threads of material. These raised threads provide multiple loops, which form the loop material. To make the hook material, the individual loops of the loop material may be cut along one side of each of the loops near their outer extremity.

[0004] Earlier binding devices using these fabrics disclose the use of two separate strips in which one strip is constructed of loop material and another is constructed of hook material. In these devices, the binding occurs when the two different strips come in contact with one another with the hook material engaging the loop material. However, the binding possibilities were limited due to the need for two separate strips.

[0005] Other binding devices of this type include those having a binding strip where one side contains only loop material while the other side contains the hook material. While this type of strip adds the ability to bind to itself when one side comes into contact with the other side, the user does not have unlimited flexibility to bind the strip despite the orientation of the strip.

[0006] Prior to the present invention, other fastening devices that utilize Velcro-like hook and loop attachments have been devised. Examples of such fastening devices are disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 5,075,934, issued Dec. 31, 1991 to Osedo; U.S. Pat. No. 6,161,371, issued Dec. 19, 2000 to Glesser; U.S. Pat. No. 6,205,623, issued Mar. 27, 2001 to Shepard et al.; and U.S. Pat. No. 6,276,031, issued Aug. 21, 2001 to Haiduk, each of which is incorporated herein by references in its entirety. Due to the non-compliant nature of the strip or rope implemented in these devices, the user must take extra care in securing the device around the objects to be bond by the fastener. Furthermore, once the fastening device is set in place, shifting or movement of the bonded objects could lead to loosening of the objects and result in failure of the fastener to maintain adequate pressure to continue securing the objects.

[0007] The present invention offers the user great flexibility for binding by having a compliant body that maintains pressure around the so-bound objects. In addition, the presence of loop material and hook material regions on the surface of the binding device allows the user maximum flexibility in securing the self-attaching elastic cord around objects.

[0008] To separate a hook region and a loop region that are in contact with each other, a force perpendicular to one region or the other is desirable. A lateral force that is parallel to the surface of the loop and hook region may increase the force necessary to separate the two interconnected regions. The self-attaching elastic cord, when properly positioned, may have the added benefit of increasing the force necessary to separate the attached cord regions due the lateral force created by the elasticity of the extended cord.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0009] My elastic binding device allows the user multiple possibilities of binding since it has on its surface at least one region of loop material generally adjacent to at least one region of hook material. Self-binding may occur anywhere the hook material comes into contact with the loop material.

[0010] My elastic binding device maintains the benefit of the loop material and hook mating material in that this material has the ability to form, break, and reform the binding. Materials such as Nylon, Orlon and Krylon may be used to form the loop and hook material of the present invention. Other polymers that are well know to one skilled in the art, which are suitable for fabricating the hooks and loops, are also within the contemplation of the present invention.

[0011] One variation of the binding device is an elastic strip having opposite sides and on each side of the strip there is at least one region of loop material generally adjacent to a least one region of hook material. Another variation of the binding device is a bungy cord or shock cord having at least one region of loop material generally adjacent to at least one region of hook material running along the surface of the cord. Another variation of the binding device is an elastic tube having at least one region of loop material generally adjacent to at least one region of hook material running along the surface of the tube.

[0012] In the present invention, regions of loop material and hook material form patterns of those materials. The materials can be at evenly spaced or spaced at random intervals.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

[0013] In the accompanying drawings, reference characters refer to the same parts through out the different views. The drawings are intended for illustrating some of the principles of the elastic binding device and are not intended to limit the description in any way. The drawings are not necessarily to scale, emphasis instead being placed upon illustrating the depicted principles in a clear manner.

[0014]FIG. 1A is a transverse cross sectional view of an elastic strip having loop material generally adjacent to hook material.

[0015]FIG. 1B is a side view of an elastic strip with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material on each side of the elastic strip.

[0016]FIG. 2A is a transverse cross sectional view of an elastic cord having loop material generally adjacent to hook material.

[0017]FIG. 2B is a side view of an elastic cord with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material on the outer surface of the elastic cord.

[0018]FIG. 3A is a transactional cross sectional view of an elastic tube having loop material generally adjacent to hook material.

[0019]FIG. 3B is the side view of an elastic tube with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material on the outer circumferential surface of the tube.

[0020]FIG. 4A is an example of an elastic strip with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material at evenly spaced intervals.

[0021]FIG. 4B is an example of an elastic strip with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material at random intervals.

[0022]FIG. 4C is a perspective view of an elastic strip with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material at random intervals.

[0023]FIG. 5A is a fragmentary close-up view of loop material and hook material.

[0024]FIG. 5B is a fragmentary close-up view of hook material engaging loop material.

[0025]FIG. 6 is a side view of an elastic tube having loop material in one region on the outer surface of the elastic tube and hook material in another region on the outer surface of the elastic tube.

[0026]FIG. 7 is a side view of an elastic strip having loop material in one of the distal regions on the elastic strip and hook material in the other distal region of the strip.

[0027]FIG. 8A illustrates an elastic tube with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material. The hooks and the loops are integrated with the elastic tubular body.

[0028]FIG. 8B illustrate the same elastic tube shown in FIG. 8A being stretched by forces applied at the two distal ends. The position of the hooks and loops on the surface of the elastic tube changes relative to each other as the tube is stretched.

[0029]FIG. 9A illustrates an elastic cord with generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material. The hook regions and the loop regions are located on surfaces that are relatively inelastic.

[0030]FIG. 9B illustrates the same elastic cord shown in FIG. 9A being stretched by forces applied at the two distal end of the elastic tube. The hook regions and the loop regions remains relatively unchanged and the regions between the hook and loop regions elongates due to the force that stretches the elastic cord.

[0031]FIG. 10 is a side view of an elastic strip comprised of sections of elastic and non-elastic materials.

[0032]FIG. 11A is a cross sectional view of an elastic cord having a sleeve, which has generally adjacent regions of loop material and hook material at its outer surface.

[0033]FIG. 11B is a transverse cross sectional view of the same elastic cord shown in FIG. 11A, the sleeve on the elastic cord having loop material generally adjacent to hook material.

DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0034] Throughout these figures, reference number 20 is used to generally designate hook material. Numeral 21 is used to generally designate loop material.

[0035]FIGS. 1A and 1B show a variation of the binding member of the present invention. FIG. 1A illustrates a cross sectional view of an elastic strip 10 that contains hook material 20 on face 11 and loop material 21 on face 12. As depicted in FIG. 1B on face 11, there is an area of hook material 20 and a generally adjacent area of loop material 21. The generally adjacent regions are also found on a second variation of the binding member as illustrated in FIGS. 2A and 2B. These figures show an elastic cord 30 with hook material 20 and loop material 21 generally adjacent on the surface 35 of the elastic cord 30. FIG. 2A illustrates a cross sectional view of the elastic cord 30 showing hook material 20 on one part and loop material 21 on the other part of the elastic cord surface 35. FIG. 2B depicts a side view of elastic cord 30 showing generally adjacent regions of loop material 21 and hook material 20 running along the surface 35 of the elastic cord 30.

[0036] A third variation of the binding member is illustrated in FIGS. 3A and 3B. These figures show an elastic tube 40 containing generally adjacent regions of hook material 20 and loop material 21 on the surface 45 of the elastic tube 40. FIG. 3A illustrates a cross sectional view of an elastic tube 40 in which part of the elastic tube 40 contains loop material 21 and the other part contains hook material 20. The side view of the elastic tube 40 is represented by FIG. 3B where generally adjacent regions of hook material 20 and loop material 21 are found running along the surface 45 of the elastic tube 40. The elastic tube may also be collapsible when stretched. This variation may enhance the amount of contact surface when the elastic tube is wrapped around an object. In addition, this design may also maximize the amount of hook-and-loop interlocking when one area of the tube is place over another area of the tube, and result in improved attachment strength.

[0037]FIGS. 4A, 4B and 4C illustrate the placement of loop material 21 and hook material 20 on opposite sides 11 and 12 of an elastic strip. FIG. 4A is a representation of generally adjacent regions of loop material 21 and hook material 20 placed at evenly spaced intervals while FIG. 4B is a representation of a random placement of the generally adjacent regions. FIG. 4C shows a perspective view of a random pattern of hook material 20 and loop material 21 on an elastic strip. It should be noted that these are only examples of the placement of material and are not limited to the binding member or pattern illustrated in the figures.

[0038] It is also within the contemplation of this invention that large surface areas on the elastic attachment device are covered with only hook material or only loop material. For example, in FIG. 6, one-half 33 of an elastic tube 31 is covered with hook material 20 and the other half 35 is covered with loop material 21. In another variation, shown in FIG. 7, an elastic strip 41 has three regions, the first region 43 is covered with loop material 21, the second region 45 is neither cover with hook nor loop material, and a third region 47 is covered with hook material 20.

[0039] A fragmentary close-up view of the hook material 20 and loop material 21 and its engagement 25 are illustrated in FIGS. 5A and 5B. FIG. 5A represents a view of hook material 20 and loop material 21 in proximity to one another yet not engaged. FIG. 5B illustrated the engagement 25 of loop material 21 by hook material 20. Various other hook material and loop material well known to one skilled in the art may also be implemented in the elastic self-attaching device. Recently developed hook-and-loop fastener based on a lightweight, non-woven loop product, which is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,329,016, may also be implemented in the present invention. U.S. Pat. No. 6,329,016 is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.

[0040] The elastic body of the elastic self-attaching device is preferably fabricated from a single piece of elastic material such as a natural material, e.g., rubber, a synthetic material, e.g., elastomer, a mixture of the two, or a multi-strand elastic. The elastic body may also be fabricated from other suitable elastic material depending upon the design of the specific device made according to the teachings here. In one variation, the hooks and loops may be integrated on the surface of the elastic body such that when the elastic body is stretched the positions of the hooks and loops would be displaced relative to each other. FIG. 8A illustrates an elastic self-attaching tube 51 in a relaxed position. FIG. 8B shows the same elastic self-attaching tube 51 in a stretched position. As seen in FIG. 8B, the diameter of the elastic self-attaching tube 51 becomes smaller and the length of the elastic tube is increased. As the result, the distribution of the hooks 20 and loops 21 on the surface of the tube also changes due to the deformation of the outer surface of the elastic self-attaching tube 51.

[0041] Alternatively, the hook and loop regions on the surface of an elastic body may be relatively inelastic. For example, FIG. 9A shows an elastic cord 61 with such a design (the elastic cord is shown in a relaxed state). FIG. 9B shows the same elastic cord 61 been stretched by forces applied at the two distal 63, 65 ends of the elastic cord 61. As seen in FIG. 9B, the regions between the hook 67 and loop 68 regions 69 extend themselves, and the hook 67 and loop 68 region remains relatively unchanged. Since the spaces between the hook and loop regions 69 are increased, the overall length of the elastic self-attaching cord is also increased. In another variation, the hook 67 and loop 68 regions may be semi-elastic and stretch as force is applied to the axis of the elastic cord 65. Other variations of distributing the hook 20 and loop 21 regions on an elastic body that one skilled in the art would appreciated are also intended to be part of this invention.

[0042] In another variation, the elastic cord may comprise of sections of elastic 73 and non-elastic 75 cords, as seen in FIG. 10. In this example, the hook and loop materials are located on the non-elastic section of the cord. However, other variation, such as having the hook and loop materials located on both the elastic sections and the non-elastic sections are also feasible. Alternatively, the hook and loop material may be present only on the elastic sections or only on the non-elastic sections.

[0043] The elastic body 80 may also be covered with a sleeve 81, such as a braided nylon cover, a stretchable cloth or a membrane. In this variation, the hook material 20 and the loop materials 21 are adapted on the surface of the sleeve 81, as seen in FIGS. 11A and 11B. The hooks and loops may be an integral part of the sleeve material. Alternatively, the hook 20 and loop 21 materials may be connected to the sleeve 81 through various methods well known to one skilled in the art, such as by use of adhesives, by welding or sewing. In another variation, the sleeve 81 is secured only to the elastic body 81 at the two distal ends of the elastic body 81.

[0044] This invention has been described and specific examples of the invention have been portrayed. The use of those specifics is not intended to limit the invention in anyway. Additionally, to the extent there are variations of the invention, which are within the spirit of the disclosure or equivalent to the inventions found in the claims, it is our intent that this patent will cover those variations as well.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7096544 *Apr 12, 2003Aug 29, 2006Kevin Timothy LusardiWrap-it
US7954207 *Nov 21, 2006Jun 7, 2011Ali FatemiApparatus and method for securing and protecting electronic devices
US20100043951 *Nov 19, 2007Feb 25, 2010The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd.Pneumatic tire
US20110079415 *Oct 2, 2009Apr 7, 2011Man-Young JungHook and loop rope
Classifications
U.S. Classification24/306
International ClassificationA44B18/00
Cooperative ClassificationA44B18/0088
European ClassificationA44B18/00G10