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Publication numberUS20040034914 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/641,830
Publication dateFeb 26, 2004
Filing dateAug 15, 2003
Priority dateAug 20, 2002
Publication number10641830, 641830, US 2004/0034914 A1, US 2004/034914 A1, US 20040034914 A1, US 20040034914A1, US 2004034914 A1, US 2004034914A1, US-A1-20040034914, US-A1-2004034914, US2004/0034914A1, US2004/034914A1, US20040034914 A1, US20040034914A1, US2004034914 A1, US2004034914A1
InventorsFrancis Gross
Original AssigneeGross Francis A.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Removable attachments and shields for aquatic recreation devices
US 20040034914 A1
Abstract
The present invention relates generally to auxiliary devices for aquatic recreation and treatment facilities including but not limited to swimming pools, hot tubs, thermal spas, exercise and conditioning pools and the like. More particularly the invention relates to the field of protective, shielding devices intended to preserve aesthetic features of the aquatic facility as well as to prolong the usable life of structural components thereof. In addition, the present invention includes embodiments for removable attachment devices for such aquatic facilities that provide modular and interchangeable platforms for entertainment, physical therapy appliances as well as for general comfort and serviceability of the facility.
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Claims(18)
1. A removable device for use in aquatic facility, comprising;
an aquatic facility having a perimeter defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone separated by a water line;
a first rigid element sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining an attachment zone, said first rigid element having a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge;
an attachment device for connecting the first rigid element to said attachment zone, said attachment device connected to one of said front and back faces;
a flexible element disposed substantially over at least one of said front and back faces of said rigid element so as to provide a protective wrap for said first rigid element.
2. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein said protective wrap is provide with aesthetically pleasing patterns.
3. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein said attachment device extends substantially perpendicularly from said first rigid device.
4. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein said attachment device is selected from a group including magnetic, adhesive, hook and loop fasteners and combinations thereof.
5. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein said flexible element is selected from a group including foam, vinyl, plastic, rubber and combinations thereof.
6. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein said attachment device is disposed adjacent at least one of said top and bottom edges of said rigid element.
7. A removable device as recited in claim 1, wherein the removable device includes a second substantially rigid element extending substantially perpendicularly to said first rigid element.
8. A removable device as recited in claim 7, wherein said second substantially rigid element is used for physical therapy or training.
9. A removable device as recited in claim 7, wherein said second substantially rigid element is used for entertainment.
10. A removable device as recited in claim 9, wherein said second substantially rigid element includes a cushion or personnel support platform.
11. A removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities, comprising;
an aquatic facility having a perimeter defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone separated by a water line;
a first rigid element sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining an attachment zone, said first rigid element having a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge;
a first attachment device for connecting the first rigid element to said attachment zone, said attachment device connected to one of said front and back faces;
a second rigid element sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining an attachment zone, said first rigid element having a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge; a second attachment device for connecting the second rigid element to said attachment zone, said second attachment device connected to one of said front and back faces of said second rigid element;
each of said first and second rigid elements are independently movable with respect to one another.
12. A removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities as recited in claim 11, wherein at least one of said first and second rigid elements provides a function selected from a group including entertainment, training, lifesaving or relaxation.
13. A removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities as recited in claim 11, wherein at least a third rigid element is provided and has a function selected from a group including entertainment, training or relaxation.
14. A removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities as recited in claim 11, wherein at least one of the first and second rigid elements has a platform extending perpendicularly from said one of said first and second rigid elements.
15. A removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities as recited in claim 11, wherein at least one of the first and second rigid elements has a detachable floatation aid.
16. An interchangeable system for an aquatic facility, comprising
an aquatic facility having a perimeter sidewall defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone separated by a water line;
at least first and second modules, each of said first and second modules are interchangeable with one another, each of said first and second modules having a rigid element having a front face, back face and top and bottom edges;
at least one of said first and second faces having a decorative covering applied thereto;
an attachment means for each of said first and second modules for removably attaching each of said modules to said sidewall of the aquatic facility; and
wherein said decorative covering on each of said first and second modules is complementary to each of said modules.
17. An interchangeable system for an aquatic facility as recited in claim 16, wherein each of said modules are selected from a group including entertainment, training, conditioning, lifesaving, relaxation, therapy and combinations thereof.
18. An interchangeable system for an aquatic facility as recited in claim 16, wherein said system includes a third module selected from a group including entertainment, training, conditioning, relaxation, lifesaving, therapy and combinations thereof.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCES TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

[0001] This is a continuation in part of provisional patent application No. 60/404,838 filed Aug. 20, 2002.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0002] The present invention relates generally to auxiliary devices for aquatic recreation and treatment facilities including but not limited to swimming pools, hot tubs, thermal spas, exercise and conditioning pools and the like. More particularly the invention relates to the field of protective, shielding devices intended to preserve aesthetic features of the aquatic facility as well as to prolong the usable life of structural components thereof. In addition, the present invention includes embodiments for removable attachment devices for such aquatic facilities that provide interchangeable and modular platforms for entertainment, physical therapy appliances as well as for general comfort and serviceability of the facility.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0003] Swimming pools, hot tubs, spas, exercise, training and conditioning pools and treatment facilities generally are subjected to harsh environments whether through direct exposure to weather conditions and/or chemicals used to treat, condition and preserve the water quality of the aquatic device. Weather conditions, such as UV degradation from the sun, bleaching from chemicals found in rainwater, and seasonal temperature extremes causing thermal changes, all contribute to the demise of the overall life expectancy of the structural and aesthetic elements of aquatic facilities.

[0004] Extreme temperature changes can cause heaving of the ground as it freezes and thaws as well as cracking of components used in the construction of the aquatic device. Liners, inserts, caps and the like can all crack and deteriorate over time due to regular and continuous exposure to such conditions including thermal contraction and expansion. Sun light and acid rain can cause discoloration of liners, caps and the like. In addition, where such aquatic devices are found indoors or under protective enclosures, chemicals used to treat, condition and maintain the water quality also cause liners, caps and the like to deteriorate and discolor over time. As such, aquatic facilities are regularly subjected to structural life shortening exposure conditions that lead to a general deterioration in the appearance of the facility.

[0005] Those areas that seem to suffer the greatest wear and tear due to exposure are the areas of the aquatic facility just above the water line and below the edge of the aquatic device, or for convenience sidewalls. This is likely due to the regular exposure to the elements, the washing of the sidewalls with additional chemicals to remove rings and films that form on the surface of the water due to chemicals and use by people and animals as well as the reflection of UV rays off the surface of the water back to the edge of the aquatic facility. In addition, scrubbing such as through the use of pool brushes, the build-up of algae and other organic material also can contribute to the demise of the structural elements.

[0006] The sidewall area, particularly that area above the waterline also suffers from additional wear and tear that is occasioned by the users themselves. The sidewalls are regularly contacted by hands, floats, toys, cleaning equipment and the like any one of which can create a tear in the liner area thus requiring the use of patch to hide the area of the tear.

[0007] Failure of the liner often occurs in the area where the liner itself is joined to the edge of the pool, tub, spa or the like. After repeated exposure to thermal, chemical, UV radiation and other deleterious effects, the liner will begin to contract and pull away from the edge, leaving a gap between the edge and the liner into which organic and other debris can accumulate as well as permit the incursion of water and unwanted pests into the opening.

[0008] Currently, if the owner or entity maintaining the aquatic facility wishes to prolong the service life of such facility, the person will normally place a cover over the entire area of the aquatic device. These covers can spread over the surrounding apron, the area around the pool or spa structure or may simply lay on top of the surface of the water. If the cover is not physically secured to the apron or aquatic facility, the cover may slip from the area that it is intended to cover and hence the beneficial effect of the cover is lost until the cover is returned to the area it was intended to protect.

[0009] While the use of such pool or spa covers has been generally effective, the positioning and removal of a cover can take a significant amount of time and effort and often will take more than one person to accomplish the task of installation and pick-up of the cover. In addition, the owner or maintenance entity must store and remove the cover, which can be bulky and difficult to handle. Moreover, if the cover is not dried prior to storage, mold may build up on the cover causing the cover to be treated before it can be used again.

[0010] Another drawback associated with such covers, is that the aquatic facility is unavailable for use while the cover is in the installed condition or is in place over the pool. In addition, if only a portion of the cover has been removed, whether inadvertently or deliberately, the cover can become a hazard to users by potentially trapping users, swimmers or animals within or under the cover.

[0011] Still further drawbacks to the use of covers is that their effectiveness is limited during summer months as the cover is typically off the pool thereby allowing UV rays to damage the liner.

[0012] While a cover may be effective in preserving or prolonging the life of an aquatic facility, unfortunately, due to the difficulties enumerated above, covers still cannot prevent degradation and damage due to prolonged exposure to harsh chemicals or environments. Other than replacing an entire pool liner, cap or other damaged area, the owner or maintenance personnel are often left only with the option of patching the effected area. However, this too suffers from several drawbacks.

[0013] Pool liners over time will change colors due to fading or may have patterns that are no longer offered by the original manufacturer. Thus, even if one were to obtain a sample of the original material from the manufacturer, it is more than likely that the material no longer matches the color or pattern of the damaged portion of the liner. As such, the patch will usually be readily identifiable and may even be visibly distinguishable from some distance away from the facility. This regrettably detracts from the appearance of the facility and illustrates the potential age and wear and tear of the site. In addition, if the patch does not completely seal the effected area, the patch may leak, thus causing additional damage, often which may go unseen for sometime until the amount of damage becomes significant. In addition, to the above the adhesive or other bonding means securing the patch to the facility can fail, thus, again leading to the damage described above.

[0014] Another problem suffered by currently available products, is that as with most aquatic equipment and accessories, such equipment or accessories are relatively expensive and commonly are purchased only in connection with a single purpose or function and hence there is little desire to make the investment in such devices, despite the long term benefit of prolonging the service life of the aquatic facility. Moreover, failure of a portion of the cover or protective device requires replacement of the entire device as opposed to just replacing or repairing the damaged area.

[0015] Thus, what is needed is an interchangeable shielding device that provides the benefits of protecting those areas that suffer most of the early damage, but which does not suffer from the drawbacks discussed above. In addition, an easily removable shielding device may provide other utilitarian features not possible with pool covers such as entertainment, physical therapy, conditioning and training aids and additional comfort and the like.

BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0016] The embodiments of the present invention described below are not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise forms disclosed in the following detailed description. Rather, the embodiments are chosen and described so that others skilled in the art may appreciate and understand the principles and practices of the present invention.

[0017] The present invention relates to a removable protective system for the sidewalls of an aquatic facility such as swimming pools, hot tubs, thermal spas, exercise and conditioning pools and the like. In addition, the system of the present invention may be installed in a modular configuration so that in addition or supplemental to the intended function of providing protection for sidewalls, the instant invention may also provide other utilitarian features and functions, such as those related to entertainment, physical therapy, training and conditioning, relaxation and life saving. The modularity of the present system can be used throughout the entire area occupied by the sidewalls, or only pre-selected portions thereof, thereby allowing an owner of such a facility to purchase the system only in segments if so desired.

[0018] In one embodiment of the present invention removable device for use in aquatic facility, is described and includes an aquatic facility having a perimeter defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone separated by a water line. The removable device includes a first rigid element sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining an attachment zone the first rigid element having a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge. The removable device further includes an attachment device for connecting the first rigid element to the attachment zone, the attachment device is connected to one of the front and back faces. In addition the device of the present invention includes a flexible element disposed substantially over at least one of the front and back faces of the rigid element so as to provide a protective wrap for the first rigid element.

[0019] In a still further embodiment of the present invention removable, modular system for use with aquatic facilities, is described an includes an aquatic facility, such as a pool, spa, hot tub and the like having a perimeter defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone that are separated by a water line. A first rigid element is provided and is sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining and defines an area for an attachment zone. The first rigid element has a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge. A first attachment device, such as a magnet, hook and loop type fasteners or adhesive, for connecting the first rigid element to the attachment zone. The attachment device connected to one of the front and back faces. A second rigid element is provided and is sized and configured to fit between the edge of the aquatic facility and an area of the water line of the aquatic facility defining an attachment zone, with the first rigid element having a front face and a back face and a top and bottom edge. A second attachment device is also provided for connecting the second rigid element to the attachment zone. The second attachment device is connected to one of the front and back faces of the second rigid element and each of the first and second rigid elements are independently movable with respect to one another.

[0020] A still further embodiment of the present invention includes an interchangeable system for an aquatic facility that includes an aquatic facility having a perimeter sidewall defined by an external end edge and a water containing zone and a non-water containing zone separated by a water line. The system includes at least first and second modules, each of the first and second modules are interchangeable with one another and each of the first and second modules having a rigid element having a front face, back face and top and bottom edges. In addition, there is at least one of the first and second faces having a decorative covering applied thereto. Each of the modules has an attachment means for removably attaching the modules to said sidewall of the aquatic facility; and the decorative covering on each of the first and second modules is complementary to each of the modules.

[0021] The foregoing embodiments will now be further clarified and explained through the figures and detailed description that follows.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0022] These, as well as other objects and advantages of this invention, will be more completely understood and appreciated by referring to the following more detailed description of the presently preferred exemplary embodiments of the invention in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, of which:

[0023]FIG. 1 depicts a side view of the invention illustrating the attachment of the device to the aquatic facility side wall, below the perimeter edge;

[0024]FIG. 1A is an enlarged view of the present invention as illustrated in FIG. 1; FIG. 1B depicts an enlarged view of additional attachment means such as adhesives, epoxy, etc.

[0025]FIG. 2 shows a further embodiment of the present invention in which a second substantially rigid element has been attached for purposes of entertainment;

[0026]FIG. 3 illustrates a still further embodiment of the present invention in which a device for physical therapy and/or training has been connected to the rigid element;

[0027]FIG. 4 provides a yet still further embodiment of the present invention in which a cushion or relaxation aid has been connected to the rigid element;

[0028]FIG. 5 depicts an additional utilitarian feature of the present invention for serving beverages or other consumable products; and

[0029]FIG. 6 illustrates a modular embodiment of the present invention in which one or more modules of entertainment, training, relaxation and the like can be used in connection with the aquatic facility adding to the utilitarian features of the concept.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0030] The present invention is now illustrated in greater detail by way of the following detailed description, but it should be understood that the present invention is not to be construed as being limited thereto.

[0031] As indicated previously, there are currently a number of available systems for protecting and preserving the life expectancy of certain structural and functional elements of aquatic facilities such as swimming pools, hot tubs, spas, physical therapy, training and conditioning pools and the like. However, many of these devices are difficult to use, can be expensive and are cumbersome in their application. As such, it has been surprisingly found that a modular system can be provided that protects the sidewalls of an aquatic facility that can be manufactured in a number of pre-configured sizes so as to reduce the overall expense of the protection and shielding systems. This coupled with the possibility of including other utilitarian features of the system enables the invention of the present invention to not only provide the shielding and protective functions but also functionality relating to entertainment, physical therapy, training and conditioning, relaxation as well as life saving.

[0032] Currently, there are many in ground and above ground swimming pools, spas and tubs that use a liner. The liner may have been inserted into the hole dug for the pool or may have been added to a gunite pool to add smoother surfaces. Likewise with spas and tubs, liners can be used to add aesthetic features. Typically, these liners are secured to the perimeter of the pool, tub or spa through the use of wall or supporting element that is made of a rigid material such as steel or the like. The liner is then hung from the supporting element and the aquatic facility filled with water. Alternatively, the “hanger” for the liner may be suspended from the decking material that surrounds the aquatic facility. The decking may be of concrete, wood, composite material or any other material that is suitable for the intended use and can sustain and support a hanger system for a pool

[0033] In a further embodiment of the present invention, if a liner system is not used in the pool, spa or tub and the owner or user of the facility desires to utilize some of the other utilitarian features of the present invention, a hanger may be provided to either support the present invention or the attachment means of the present invention, such as epoxy, adhesive, hook and loop fasteners (VELCRO®) may be used to simply affix the invention to the side of the facility.

[0034] Where removable or easy to install systems are utilized to hang the present invention, if a “ring” or line builds up on the surface of the invention, the invention can be easily removed for cleaning.

[0035] Turning now to FIG. 1 of the present invention, a cut away view of the invention installed on the side of an aquatic facility such as a swimming pool that may be found for instance in a residential application. However, the present invention is not limited thereto and may be used in connection with a commercial or public pool facility, hot tub, spa, physical therapy, training or conditioning facility and the like.

[0036] The present invention is depicted in operative engagement with a pool and is generally depicted by reference to numeral 10. The pool is typically surrounded by a decking material 20 (concrete, wood, composite material, plastic, and the like), which supports the confines of the pool and structural and other aesthetic components of the pool. A wall 30 is usually disposed inwardly of the wall and is typically used to support the pool and its contents, e.g. water. The wall 30 may be constructed of any suitable material such as steel, aluminum, concrete, plastic, fiberglass or the like, depending on the particular specifications under which the pool is being constructed and normally is substantially rigid. Walls may permit some movement depending on the fluidity of the contents held within the pool.

[0037] Adjacent the wall 30 is a liner material 40, if one is provided or alternatively a decorative coating or design may be provided. Reference numeral 40 refers both to the imposition of a liner as well as a decorative coating or features, such as ceramic tile, and the term liner has used herein refers to both instances. The liner 40, in a first instance may be made of vinyl, waterproof fabric and other synthetic material suitable for the purpose intended. If a decorative coating, the liner 40 may be tiles, ceramic, resin, polymeric material and the like. Typically, liners 40 are provided in colors, usually shades of blue, and may have various designs associated with the liner 40. Where a liner is not provided, the concrete, fiberglass or walls of the pool enclosure may also be provided in a colored format and have designs imparted thereto.

[0038] The subject of the present invention is perhaps better illustrated by reference to FIG. 1A. The rigid supporting element is designated by reference numeral 50 and includes a front face and back face 51 and 52 respectively, a top edge 53 and bottom edge 54. The front face 51 is provided with a protective covering 60 that creates an overwrap or covering over the front face. The covering may be made of vinyl, plastic, resin, film or the like that can be applied directly to the material such as by coating or immersion of the rigid element in a bath containing the material, or by wrapping the vinyl, plastic or other material around the top and bottom edges of the device to at least substantially cover the face of the rigid element and then fastening the wrap such as by welding, bonding, fasteners and the like.

[0039] Still referring to FIG. 1A, the attachment means 55 is used to secure the rigid element 50 to the wall of the pool or other aquatic device. The attachment means may include but is not limited to adhesive, epoxy, resins, magnets, hook and loop fasteners (VELCRO®) and other means suitable for affixing the invention to the wall, depending on the type of wall that is in place. The attachment means should be chosen so as to provide a secure attachment while at the same time being removable from the wall. For example, if the supporting wall or a portion thereof is a steel wall, the attachment means 55 may be magnets that allow the device to be affixed and removed and interchanged. If the wall is concrete, fiberglass or other material a removable adhesive may be used or hook and loop fasteners may be used in a manner that is well known. Should the owner or user of the pool desire that the attachment become permanent, it is within the scope of this invention that the user or owner could use additional attachment means, such as mechanical fasteners, epoxy, adhesives or the like to make the connection permanent. As an example, FIG. 1B, depicts magnets used for the attaching device, plus additional attachment means such as 56, which can include, but is not limited to, adhesives, epoxy, etc.

[0040] As again can be seen in FIG. 1, the rigid element portion 50 of the present invention along with the protective covering 60 is disposed so as to be roughly adjacent to the edge of the pool enclosure, that is the cap or perimeter, with the distal portion of bottom wall 54 being placed below the water line 70. In this fashion, the ultraviolet rays, depicted by reference numeral 80 contact that portion of the rigid element 50 and protective covering 60 that is above the water line 70 as well as the partially refracted portion of the rays 80 that may penetrate the water below or near the water line 70.

[0041] The rigid element 50 may be provided in various length segments, and may be straight, curved, angled or the like in order to fit the perimeter of the pool. For example if the pool is a rectangular configuration, one would order a number of straight sections of the invention, each coming in certain lengths, one foot, one yard, two yards, etc. as well as four right angled sections for each of the corners. The sections would then be cut to length in order to make the shield extend around the perimeter of the pool. Where the owner or user only wishes to protect or shield one sidewall, then the owner may only purchase segments for that portion of the wall.

[0042] The thickness of the protective covering or seal 60 may range from about 0.25 mils to about 50 mils with around 10 to about 30 mils being preferred.

[0043] As indicated previously, in addition to providing shielding and protective features, the present invention may also provide other functional attributes, such as those related to training, conditioning, relaxing, entertainment and others. Each of these embodiments are modular in their configuration and as such are interchangeable with one another. That is, one may have an entertainment module adjacent one that is suited for training and conditioning. For greater clarity, if a rigid section 50 of the present invention is provided in a three-foot or one yard segment, the entertainment module may be interposed with a physical therapy module. In addition, the coating or covering 60 on the rigid element may also be tailored to meet or complement the module that it is used with. For example a basketball module as depicted in FIG. 2, may have basketballs or favorite teams on the cover material 60—FIG. 1. Likewise a physical therapy module may have inspiration messages on the cover 60.

[0044] Turning now to FIG. 2, a further embodiment of the present invention is described and relates to an entertainment module which includes a base platform 100 that is connected to the rigid supporting element 50 that is affixed to the wall of the pool 30. Connected to the platform 100 is a backboard or upright element 110 that supports a net 115 such as used in connection with basketball. However, other sports such as water polo could be used and the net configuration changed to accommodate such structure. In addition, the platform 100 may have cut outs 120 into which foam or other floatation material may be inserted to aid in the buoyancy of the entertainment module. The foam or other material should desirably be removable so that it can be used in connection with lifesaving or buoyancy aids for other users of the pool or aquatic facility.

[0045] With respect to FIG. 3, a further module of the present system is depicted and again includes the rigid element 50 to which a bar 150 has been affixed. The bar 150 can be used in connection with training and conditioning, swimming training and physical therapy as it would allow the user to hold onto the device while exercising those limbs in need of conditioning.

[0046]FIG. 4 shows a still further embodiment of the present invention related to relaxation, resting and protection. In this regard, a cushion 160 is affixed to the rigid element 50. The cushion 160 can be affixed to the rigid element 50 by a releasable attachment, such as VELCRO® so that the cushion can be removed for treating, washing or replacement as well as to serve as a floatation aid in the event of an emergency. In addition, in connection with this embodiment, an entire series of cushions can be provided around the pool so as to provide additional comfort, padding for a game of water polo or basketball or protection for swimmers from bumping into the wall upon completion of a lap or the like.

[0047] A still further embodiment is shown in FIG. 5 which provides for a platform 170 extending outwardly from the rigid element 50 and serves as a drink holder or for placement of other consumable products and the like. In this embodiment, the consumable products are generally provided above the water line 70.

[0048] In a yet further embodiment of the present invention, the modular concept of the invention is illustrated in FIG. 6. Here, three modules are shown in a configuration to show the versatility of the present invention. FIG. 6 provides an entertainment module 100 (basketball goal), exercise or conditioning module 150 and a relaxation or lifesaving module 160 in a arrangement that may make up a single sidewall of a pool, tub, spa or the like. These could be provided in straight, curved or angled segments to meet the needs of the owner or user. In addition as the rigid element 50—FIG. 5 is removable from the wall of the aquatic device, the user may utilize any number of permutations of modules to achieve the end result desired.

[0049] It should be understood that in each of the additional embodiments provided in FIG. 2 through FIG. 6, that the protective and shielding features and attributes of the original embodiments are still present and that the additional embodiments are provided in order to further illustrate the versatility of the invention. In addition, it should be understood that there is no limit on the permutations that can be created through use of the present invention to increase one's enjoyment of the aquatic facility to which it has been connected. Moreover, as each module of the system of the present invention wears out or the owner becomes dissatisfied with the module, the module may be readily replaced without having to replace the entire system.

[0050] It will thus be seen according to the present invention a highly advantageous removable device for an aquatic facility has been provided. While the invention has been described in connection with what is presently considered to be the most practical and preferred embodiment, it will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art that the invention is not to be limited to the disclosed embodiment, that many modifications and equivalent arrangements may be made thereof within the scope of the invention, which scope is to be accorded the broadest interpretation of the appended claims so as to encompass all equivalent structures and products.

[0051] The inventors hereby state their intent to rely on the Doctrine of Equivalents to determine and assess the reasonably fair scope of their invention as it pertains to any apparatus, system, method or article not materially departing from but outside the literal scope of the invention as set out in the following claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7284735Sep 28, 2004Oct 23, 2007Jacuzzi, Inc.Apparatus for holding reading material, beverage containers or other articles employed by a bather
US8276221Mar 8, 2011Oct 2, 2012C.G. Air Systems Inc.Cushion system for a washing/bathing tub
US8328789 *Jan 6, 2005Dec 11, 2012C.G. Air Systems Inc.Cushion system for a washing/bathing tub
US8366849 *Apr 7, 2006Feb 5, 2013Sika Technology AgMethod for lining a container and lining of a container
US8683623Sep 7, 2012Apr 1, 2014C.G. Air Systemes Inc.Cushion system for a washing/bathing tub
US20090139633 *Apr 7, 2006Jun 4, 2009Sika Technology AgMethod for Lining a Container and Lining of a Container
Classifications
U.S. Classification4/496
International ClassificationE04H4/14
Cooperative ClassificationE04H4/14
European ClassificationE04H4/14
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Aug 15, 2003ASAssignment
Owner name: WARD KRAFT, KANSAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:GROSS, FRANCIS A.;REEL/FRAME:015237/0398
Effective date: 20030814